Good interview with Krugman in TAP. Here's the highlight:
EK: And one thing you sort of suggest in the book is that universal health care isn't merely good policy but has the potential to act as the wedge on rolling a lot of this back, on changing how people think of government, what they think of what their responsibility to each other is -- that it has a cultural component.
PK: Yeah, I mean this is one of the few things on which William Kristol and I are in complete agreement. Bill Kristol had this famous memo during the defeat of the Clinton health care plan saying, we as Republicans must ensure that there is no plan because if there is a plan, if Clinton gets something, it will legitimize, re-legitimize the welfare state, and he's right. Universal health care is important and worth doing in its own right, but it also clearly would be a demonstration that you can do good things, that government can make society safer and more equitable, which is why conservatives are so hysterical over even S-CHIP. If we can get heath care, and I think we have slightly better than even odds that we can, it does change the whole set of norms.
PK: The big three auto makers are enthusiastic supporters of single-payer health care … in Canada. It's an interesting question why they won't say that in the United States, and I think a lot of it is social pressure on the executives and political fear that they will be punished by a dominant right. And it's interesting. If we get this, I think there will be a real marginalization of the hard right in the years ahead, and we may also find that corporate American speaks up for single-payer health care and maybe for other things too, because they realize those policies are good for heading off erratic protectionism and draconian immigration restrictions.
Of course you've heard that argument before.