In “The Power Broker,” Robert Caro’s epic biography of urban planner Robert Moses, the author details the hardball tactics Moses utilized to achieve his vision for the New York park and highway system.

One strategy was to simply get a project started with whatever money was available, knowing that politicians wouldn’t simply allow, say, a short stretch of highway to sit idle or for parks to wind up partially completed. …

Obama, it should be remembered, has long considered a government-run single-payer health care system to be his ideal. He said so in a 2003 speech to the Illinois AFL-CIO, cautioning the crowd, however, that “we may not get there immediately.” …

Just as Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid are not going anywhere, Obama assumes, once in place, a new health care entitlement will not only survive, but grow over time. This will be true, he’s concluded, no matter how disastrous its initial rollout is, no matter how deleterious to the nation’s finances, no matter how rife with fraud.