Its a good week to be a student!

In that past week, we have witnessed the passage of a revolutionary health care bill as well as vital student aid reform. Both overhaul their respective systems, placing a focus onto patients and students rather than insurance companies and big banks. While the focus of the debate around reconciliation was on the health care aspect of the bill, it is important for students to know how the loan industry will change will the passage of student aid reform. Students will see increases in the Pel...
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Health Care Postscript

There's been some discussion on liberal blogs lately about the true meaning of the recent health care reform victory that has reflected some of  my own thoughts. It is a great progressive acheivement, and yet the legislation itself is pointedly centrist, even Republican. This has struck me as quite a contradiction. But over at Jon Chait's blog, a commenter known as 'Virginia Centrist' has articulated an accurate dissection of this idea: I think the answer here is that this isn't really an ideal...
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January Endorsements

On January 28, 2010, the Cal Berkeley Democrats endorsed four bills, ballot initiatives, and policy positions regarding both state and federal government. Members voted unanimously to support AB 656, the California Democracy Act, an end to the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. AB 656 would place a 9.9% “severance” fee on oil companies, which drill in our lands and profit from our resources. Currently, California is the only oil-pro...
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A Socratic Dialogue on Senate Sausage Grinding

Jeremy Pilaar: "Kill The Health Care Bill! Start Over!" - Howard Dean Robbie Bruens: Yeah, because if we start over now we're not going to end up waiting another decade or two. Killing a bill does not mean we will get bolder reform in the future. It means we will get less bold reform in the future. History tells this story from Truman through Obama. Only Democrats are this good at adopting Republican talking points when the going gets tough. Nik Dixit: The way I see it: A) This is s...
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Nate Silver: The Health Care Elevator Pitch

Nate Silver addresses criticism from the left and makes another great argument for health care reform. His elevator pitch: Ben Nelson and Blanche Lincoln are probably willing to sign off on $900 billion in public subsidies so that poor and sick people can have better access to health care. Is there really no way we can make this work for us? Another noteworthy passage: But that money isn't really going to poor people -- it's going to Cigna! Then there's an argument I have much less symp...
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Mills Health Care Forum

On December 7, Cal Dems Robbie Bruens and Nik Dixit spoke at a health care forum hosted by the Fem Dems at Mills College. Robbie discussed his work with Organizing for America, and the moral case for health care reform. Nik discussed the policy and politics behind the legislation in Congress. Watch excerpts of their presentations: httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OoAmNXjNpbM httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=laN2UmEYdGo
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Krugman: Pass the Bill

Paul Krugman has a column which makes the same points I did, only more eloquently. I strongly recommend you read it: The result would be a huge increase in the availability and affordability of health insurance, with more than 30 million Americans gaining coverage, and premiums for lower-income and lower-middle-income Americans falling dramatically. That’s an immense change from where we were just a few years ago: remember, not long ago the Bush administration and its allies in Congress suc...
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Pass Health Care Reform

Since Joe Lieberman killed the public option, many liberals, from Howard Dean to Keith Olbermann to Markos Moulitsas, have called on Democrats to shelve health care reform. They argue that without a public option reform is worthless, and Democrats should wait to pass "real" reform at a later date. Such a view, while understandable, is immensely shortsighted. Even without a public option, health care reform would do tremendous good and is still worth passing. First, the bills before Con...
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The Need for Health Reform

On Monday, Cal Dems visited Mills College for a health care reform panel discussion. Members Nik Dixit and Robbie Bruens were among the presenters. Below is a screencast of Nik's presentation: Part One: httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2-aGVvc3SOM Part Two: httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SFemwtebEwI Thanks to the Fem Dems for hosting the great event!
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