Save your kisses, Judas Iscariot. Stop praising Caesar, Brutus. Make room in your special hell, Benedict Arnold, Axis Sally and all traitors of any age and stripe. Make room for five United States Senators named Max Baucus, Kent Conrad, Blanche Lincoln, Bill Nelson and Tom Carper.
Today they gave their souls to the insurance industry, tacitly licensing private insurers to withhold health insurance from the sick, the poor and the dying; to amass fortunes on the pain of sick, suffering people; to thumb their noses at the quaint notions of compassion and human decency.
Today those five nominal members of the Democratic party voted to send out from the Senate Finance Committee a so-called health care bill that has no government-run option to compete with the rapacious private insurers.
Rapacious. That's the word Sen Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia rightly used in the debate before the vote. Generous, I suppose, is the term the Traitorous Five would use, because their campaign funds -- which will one day augment their Senatorial pensions -- have been exponentially swollen by donations from the insurers.
Thus the United States of Goldman Sachs proudly admits to its ruling oligarchy the Supreme States of Blue Cross/ Blue Shield, Cigna, Aetna and United Healthcare.
Today, the Infamous Five not only betrayed the best traditions of their party. That betrayal is minor compared to their greater treason: against the 50 million American citizens without health insurance today; against the millions more who have been victimized by loopholes, fine print, lies and bullying of the insurers and now will continue to be so victimized; and against the Constitution they swore allegiance to, whose preamble demands that they promote the general welfare, not the welfare of rapacious corporations.
This is a sad day for the Republic. With representatives like Baucus, Conrad, Lincoln, Nelson and Carper, its people will suffer many more sad days. Too many more.