5 Best Tuesday Columns

David Brooks and George Will knock health care reform, Josh Green re-evaluates Nancy Pelosi, and more

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  • David Brooks on Health Care Reform  "Watching this, I feel again why I’m no longer spiritually attached to the Democratic Party," sighs The New York Times columnist, who offers a laundry list of fiscal nightmares the health care bill will produce. Warning of "stagnation and fiscal ruin," Brooks wags his fingers at spend-happy Democrats. "This country is in the position of a free-spending family careening toward bankruptcy that at the last moment announced that it was giving a gigantic new gift to charity. You admire the act of generosity, but you wish they had sold a few of the Mercedes to pay for it."
  • George Will on Health Care Reform  The Washington Post columnist dusts off some of his snappiest language to impale the bill and the Democrats who voted for it. Created by a party hellbent on "promoting dependency," the bill is "a museum of hoary artifacts from liberalism's attic" that will engorge the country's "teetering tower of unkeepable promises" and restrict American dynamism. For all the French Revolution historians out there, Will concludes by referencing Thermidor to illustrate his hope that future Democratic reform efforts will stall.
  • Bret Stephens on U.S.-Israel Relations  Peppering in a few health care jabs of his own, The Wall Street Journal columnist shows signs of coming off the rails completely with his fake, parenthetical-filled, non sequitur-laden letter from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to President Obama. "Even when we go to war we don't just carpet bomb our enemies, [like your hero Franklin Roosevelt did to the innocent civilians of Dresden and Tokyo]," he writes for reasons not immediately understandable. Stephens is clear on at least one point: "Netanyahu's" terms for removing the settlements.
"Let's make a deal, Mr. President: Our settlements for your bombers. We can't fully destroy Iran's nuclear sites—but you can. You can't dismantle our settlements—but we can. We'll all come out the better for it, including the Palestinians. Think about it, Barack."
  • The Boston Globe on Life After the Health Care Vote  The Globe's editors point out that just because the health care bill is about to be made law doesn't mean we're going to stop hearing about it. "The extension of health insurance to almost all citizens is just the precursor for equally thorny disputes over reimbursements," the editorial reads. "Structural weaknesses remain in the health system, and the pace of medical advances guarantees that costs will rise even in the leanest of systems." Meanwhile, Obama must decide which policy initiative he'll tackle next, and most of the likely contenders--climate change, financial regulation--are "almost as ideologically charged and subject to misrepresentation" as health care.
  • Josh Green on Re-evaluating Pelosi  Writing at The Atlantic's Politics channel, Green offers an extended mea culpa for his dismissal of Nancy Pelosi, five years ago, as an "ineffectual party lifer" who "lacked the salesmanship to rally the broader public behind the Democratic agenda." This, Green says, is clearly not the case: "She's adapted handily to the way Congress operates today. It isn't always pretty and it doesn't resemble the bipartisan days of yore. But after last night's vote, it's much harder to argue that it can't be effective."
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.