By Alan Caruba
I have this theory that nations go crazy from time to time. Collectively they lose their wits or, as is often the case, the people either elect or have imposed on them a complete lunatic, discovering it in slow stages as reports of various horrors make their way to the countryside.
These days, those stages are greatly speeded up by the mass media that swiftly spread the word. Unlike the United States, in many nations the news is what the government says is news, but it must also be said that the mainstream media has utterly disgraced itself over the course of the recent campaign and the first months of the Obama administration. There are signs, however, some have rediscovered their role in our society.
The most vigorous signs of sanity among the general populace of America have been the recent town hall meetings. The tea parties, too. And just wait for the big march in Washington, D.C. on September 12!
That will surely put the fear of the people into the hearts of Congress men and women. It is far better that they fear us than the other way around.
The sage of Baltimore, journalist H.L. Mencken noted that, "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule." Healthcare “reform” is a perfect example of this warning.
Healthcare is far too important to be left to the machinations of politicians and bureaucrats. A society that does not put a high premium on life, from newborn to the elderly, is itself sick.
The concept of caring for the ill, looking after widows and orphans, is as old as the Torah, the Old Testament. You can find the foundation of charity there, too. A society, whether it was an ancient city-state or a massive modern one, that does not tend to those who have fallen on bad fortune or illness is not worthy of existence.
Though Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid are “liberal” concepts, I think they reflect the religious roots of the nation and a belief that the common good is served when those citizens who have contributed to these systems benefit and require care.
These two systems, however, are in trouble because they have been poorly managed and their funds have routinely been taken by Congress that left IOU notes in their place. If these two systems cannot be trusted to Congress, why would anyone want to turn our entire healthcare system over them?
Americans, even in the early days of the Republic, had developed a unique capacity to organize themselves for all kinds of public service and purposes. Alexis de Tocqueville, in his famed “Democracy in America”, was especially impressed by this aspect of our society because it was so uncommon in the Old World of Europe.
So I think Americans have collectively looked at the insanity coming out of the Obama administration and decided to reverse course on what looks like a very bad political decision; first to turn power over to the Democrats in Congress and, second, to have entrusted the present and the future of America to a man who can barely speak without uttering a new or old lie and is laughably dependent on a TelePrompter.
It is insanity, when the nation is reeling from the financial crisis of the sub-prime mortgage meltdown, to spend billions to take over General Motors instead of permitting established bankruptcy procedures to occur. It is insanity for the government to own a huge insurance company.
It is insanity for Congress to vote, sight unseen and unread, on a multi-billion dollar spending bill for the purpose of “stimulating” the economy when everyone knows it is just a huge compilation of political pork projects, often of dubious merit.
It is insanity to expect Congress to vote, again largely unread, a massive “reform” of the nation’s healthcare system, one sixth or one seventh of the economy, when the government is clearly not empowered by anything in the Constitution to do so.
It is insanity for Congress to vote for a “cap-and-trade” bill based on the utterly false assertion that America must save the planet from a global warming that isn’t happening. It is a cap-and-tax bill on the provision and use of the most vital element of society, the energy it uses. It will drive up the cost of electricity and drive out jobs and industry.
It is insanity to triple the national debt in the midst of a Recession or, as Vice President Biden said, to spend more to avoid a Depression.
Despite this, I am not ready to despair for America. There are Americans, Democrats, Republicans, and Independents, who understand the threats and who are showing up to demand that Congress do their bidding. That is exactly the way our system is intended to work.
If the Democrats in Congress ram through healthcare and cap-and-trade they will destroy their party, but since it is now led by people whose lust for power renders them irrational we need to keep in mind that next year’s midterm elections are the remedy and that, even if passed, these bills can and will be repealed