Government is shut down.
The kids aren’t getting along, again. Politics aside here, and I’m going to disclose my support for Obamacare, matter of fact I would support a European style single payer healthcare plan and would gladly pay more taxes to be free of the constant worry of economic ruin I have about medical expenses. Part of my ongoing issues with anxiety, which.. I don’t treat anymore because it isn’t covered on my plan leading too..
A Tasmanian devil like tornado of worry and concern and blah blah blah.
But trying my best to keep some perspective here- seems to me that Obamacare, love it or hate it, did pass the legislature and is in fact the law of the land. Done. Now the Tea Party folks have decided hold the country hostage by linking critical legislation of enormous importance to the American people to their proposal to subvert the law by defunding this thing. John McCain at the moment is the voice of reason, clearly a statesman and pragmatic leader who wants to do the write thing, John is saying it’s passed moved on and when we get in power we can overturn it.
That’s how it used to work. The problem is, IMHO that Ted Cruz, who is neither a statesman nor a leader, sort of like our own soon to be out office Michelle Bachmann, believe that if Obamacare gets from it and like it. At least the bottom 90% or so. Then Ted and Company would find themselves in the position of having to take something away that’s benefiting people and is popular.
They say that the only time politicians lie is when they’re talking and that really has yet to be disproven. This defunding thing, in my mind, yet another gasp from the far right to maintain a status quo that no longer exists in much of the country.
Seriously in 2013 we are debating
- Voting rights
- Endless wars
I kinda thought we’d have moved passed most of these by now. Thinking about the abortion and marriage thing, if the Republicans really are, as they claim to be, small government, freedom loving folks then they really should be as eager to remove the burdensome restrictions on peoples personal lives with as much enthusiasm as they pursue the elimination of regulations on financial institutions and industrial polluters.
But as we’ve witnessed the last few years the party is getting torn in half, mostly due to, with the exception of the Midterm Elections in 2010, a stinging series of defeats on the national level. This I compounded by growing awareness that long term demographics and voting trends are not in their favor. Personally, as a bleeding heart liberal with a Machiavellian perspective, I see the Tea Party as means to an end, specifically more Democratic and progressive victories in the future. I support Bachmann and Cruz and Santorum when they say that the reason the Republicans are losing elections these days is because they’ve lost their conservative focus on social issues. That’s the answer, more conservative, more religious dogma, and less control on business, the environment..
Barbara Tuchman’s book March of Folly explores the reasons that nations make bad decisions and pursue policies against their interests. She cites four examples in history- The Trojan war, why would Troy take on Athens and why in the hell do you bring the horse into the city? The Renaissance Popes- In the face of rising Protestantism they entrench themselves in personal ambition and dogma and basically set the Church on a path of decline they’re still dealing with. The British loss of the American Colonies- I’ve read a ton about this one over the years and firmly believe that had King George and the Parliament made a few small accommodations and looked at the situation in America with a logical and objective eye.. we’d all be one giant Canada today. (and BTW, have the universal health coverage I crave) Finally America’s involvement in Viet Nam which is a topic for another day.
I kinda of see the Tea Party on the same path. Angry about perceived loss of influence and personal wealth they’re lashing out at what they see as the destruction of their America by their political rivals by framing themselves as the only real patriots. Those who have different views are not. I hate that line of thinking, makes dialogue and negotiations impossible.
They’re also lashing out at immigrants, documented and illegal. Immigrant bashing has been an American tradition since the second boatload of European castoffs landed on these shores to find the first boatload had secured all the good stuff. Thus it went from the Hessians during the revolutionary war, the Arcadians, the Irish, Jews, and now the Mexicans. Frankly I believe the immigrant “problem” solves itself when Mexico and Latin America get their economic engines revved up and running. Maybe if we were to assist that effort immigration would reverse. Again, another topic.
However attacking immigrants is not good long term policy as we learned in the last election. Hispanic voters, the fastest growing segment in America by the way, really take offense to attacks on illegals. Not surprising, listen to some rabid anti-immigrant folks and then get pulled over a few times in Arizona. See who they vote for. The long term prognosis for this group isn’t great and they realize it.
That’s why there’s some much vitriol about Obamacare, if it gets through and if the American people find it helpful they’ll find themselves on the losing end of yet another popular program, like Social Security and Medicare. It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out in the long run.