Tuesday, August 11, 2009

A Very American Protest

By Alan Caruba

The mainstream media is focused, as always, on the more dramatic aspects of the “town hall” meetings during which astonished members of Congress discover how total the disconnect between the machinations of Washington, D.C. and the rest of America is.

If the Democrat politicians could recall anything from the past they might draw some lessons from it, but they are fixated on expanding the federal government’s control over our lives while, at the same time, abandoning anything that passes for common sense.

In the July issue of Healthcare News, a publication of The Heartland Institute, a non-profit, free market think tank headquartered in Chicago, Greg Scandlen, Heartland’s Director of Consumer Care Choices, recalled the reaction of Americans in 1988 when Congress passed the Medicare Catastrophic law. Like Obamacare, it was supported by the AARP, essentially a large insurance company, was passed by bipartisan majorities in Congress, and signed into law by Ronald Reagan.

“Except when the elderly found out they were about to be required to buy something they didn’t need, they were furious,” said Scandlen. “In a famous scene, a group of elderly people chased House Ways & Means Committee Chairman Dan Rostenkowski down the streets of Chicago and beat on his car with their canes and picket signs when he tried to escape. Eighteen months after it was passed, the law was repealed.”

If Obamacare is passed by the majority party in Congress, it is likely to suffer a similar fate, but by then none of those voting for it will be around. Voters will literally clean house of any politician stupid enough to vote for it.

At the heart of Obamacare is a complete loss of a moral compass by those who support it. At the heart of the American Republic is a belief in a Supreme Being and His dictates for moral behavior. Requiring people to pay for something they do not want or believe they need is theft. Requiring people to consider death as an option is one step from euthanasia and murder.

That’s why the town hall meetings are so valuable and why the September 12th March on Washington to protest taxes will likely sink President Obama’s ambitions to “change” America into a socialist nation similar to those in Europe and others.

The spending frenzy of the current Congress is not going unnoticed and Obamacare is just one element of it.

Voters know that Medicare and Medicaid, along with Social Security are going broke. It doesn’t take a Ph.D. to figure out that Obamacare will do the same while intruding into patient-doctor relationships and denying the most personal decisions anyone can make regarding their health.

A lot of people, for their own reasons, do not purchase healthcare insurance. “About 20 percent of the people in California are uninsured, 25 percent of Texans, and similarly huge numbers in almost every other state,” notes Scandlen. Many are younger Americans in good health who want to put off the expense.

“It isn’t just the cost. About one-third of the uninsured for free coverage from Medicaid and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) don’t find the programs worth enrolling in.”
Requiring Americans to buy health insurance is a very un-American idea. The outrage being seen and heard in the town hall meetings is quintessentially American.

The entire idea behind the drafting of the U.S. Constitution was to keep the federal government small and to restrict any intrusion into enumerated rights.

The notion of “redistributing” personal income has perhaps hit its apex and the failure of giant, socialist programs for an ever-growing population with an increasingly large portion of the elderly has had its day. A free, competitive marketplace will meet our needs at a cost we can afford once we cap the “tort” process by which some garner huge payoffs in court while others do not. That’s not law. That’s a lottery.

We don’t ask or expect the elderly to die in the interest of the rest of the population, but that is exactly what Obamacare does. We honor and respect them. We take care of them in their final years.

Calling this “un-American” and calling those attending the town hall meetings “mobs” will not change that. It is insulting, infuriating, and elitist.

It will, however, change the composition of Congress and make Obama a one-term President.


Red said...

I'm hoping for an early end to his first term.

Eddy said...

Problem is that more and more "Americans" are from immigrant families coming from "socialist" countries (South America, Latin America, China, Europe) and they no longer think like the "heart-land" American.
Unfortunately, the same "give-me" mentality is prevalent in the African-American culture.

Alan Caruba said...

Do you have any numbers?

Naturalized Americans tend to prize their citizenship higher than native born because they know what they very deliberately left behind and do not want to see it repeated here.

Carolyn said...

I know this will never ever be considered because there are way too many big businesses which are making money on health related services and it's old fashioned. But I remember when I was a kid- and I was a very accident prone one too, I might add, (and this is before Canada's socialized care started breaking down) When I needed a doctor- whether for a split head, getting hit by a car, having my thumb crushed, breaking a toe or tearing a ligament- my mom took me to the same doctor which our whole family went to. No specialists, no foot doctor, no head doctor. And we went to his office for x rays, casts, and stiches as well as tetinus and other shots.
This was at a time where you only went to the hospital if it was falling off or bleeding out, and only after doctor hours.
This is also only a couple of years when house calls were common.
Sorry this is so long Mr. Caruba, but a lot to be covered.
Seems to me, that if doctors weren't having to worry about sky high insurance because of slip and fall lawyers, and if people could, as in the older and wiser days- pay as they go, wouldn't health care be a little more affordable?
Seems to me, tort reform would go a long way in itself, but add that to a pay per visit...
If doctors could once again be schooled in general health instead of going into specialty care to make up for their huge schooling and malpractice insurance coverage, we could go back to good and decent quality care, where doctors know their patients and can know exactly their needs.
I know... I'm dreaming. At least I got it off my mind. God Bless you Mr. Caruba~

Alan Caruba said...

You just described my youth, Carolyn. The family doctor was a man who came to the house if I got the chicken pox or to look after any problem with my parents. I do not ever recall stepping foot in his office, if he had one.

I have been in a hospital twice in my life, to be born and for a quick bit of surgery, in and out the same day.

But I have a friend who was in a coma for four months and yet brought back to life. No one pulled the plug on him. They waited because he was still alive. Tchenically, he died, but I still get to talk to him on the phone whenever I want.

Wallis said...

I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.



Alan Caruba said...

Welcome to the blog, Wallis. I am glad you're enjoying it. Please share word of it with your friends.

As you will see from our "Followers", it's a very sharp group of people who visit daily.

Buzzg said...

I too hope for an early terminus of his first term, however I fear it won't happen. I'm waiting for the introduction in Congress of a bill to repeal the 22nd Amendment. That will be our death knell.
On the subject of taxation, tea parties, town hall protests, I suspect that these people represent a minority portion of the voting population. A large contingent has discovered that they can vote themselves largesse in many forms from the public coffers. Converting these folks into responsible, hard working Americans is not likely to occur. Taking away their "benefits" will be extremely difficult if not impossible. After all when you steal from Peter to pay Paul you can always count on Paul. This is the fundamental Liberal approach; buy votes with Government funds. Why do you suppose the American Bar Association in concert with Congress resists tort reform?
The conversion of the public school system from education to indoctrination has only exacerbated this situation.
Last week the White House publicly requested that we spy on each other.
I think it is necessary to resist these things and resist mightily, but know that if you believe in Constitutionsl Government, low taxation, the Bill of Rights, a strong military, etc. you are in the distinct minority.


Alan Caruba said...

For what it's worth, I do not think this generation of Americans is ready or willing to give up the protections of the U.S. Constitution or the benefits of our free market, capitalism economic system.

They will organize. They will vote out legislators who do not listen to them. They will render Obama a one-term President.

Buzzg said...

I hope so Alan, but it's very difficult to extract a full hand from the cookie jar without letting go of the cookies or breaking the jar. I haven't lost faith in my country, nor have I lost faith in my countrymen. I just don't think there's enough of the latter anymore with the mindset to get the job done.


Rich Kozlovich said...

I would like to address the comments regarding foreign immigrants who leave socialists societies. They left because it was stinko there. They left there for the same reason my great grandparents and my grandparents left Europe at the end of the 1800’s and the beginning of the 1900s’. It was stinko there and they wanted more and were prepared to work for it.

I have a friend who left Cuba at the age of three (how they all got out is an interesting story in itself by the way) because his dad wanted a better life for his family than Castro’s communist state was going to allow. Make no mistake about this….they are absolute capitalists.

They didn’t ask for or want a handout. His father eventually bought the pest control company he was working for and it is still in the family. A third generation company now. I think that they would quality as “real heartland” Americans.

The only immigrants that this doesn’t seem to apply to are those greenie, big government loving Californians who voted themselves out of an economy and then fled to other states carrying all of their idiotic ideas with them. They are now attempting to promote the very things they created in California and fled. So who are the “real heartland” Americans?

We are what we do, not where we come from.

Alan Caruba said...

I don't see hundreds of Americans at dockside waiting to leave America because they don't like it here and want to go somewhere a dictator can make all their decisions for them.

Freedom is intoxicating and people want it. George W. Bush was right.