Sunday, June 2, 2013
Going Back to the Basics
I'm all about crossing the bridge into the 21st Century, but I don’t want to forget all the basics that got us here. There is no short cut for hard work and patience, tolerance, compromise and perseverance should continue to be the formula for success.
The president, whomever it might be, is often used as the reason our country is doing poorly by those who voted for the other guy. In some cases that happens to be true but history won’t make that decision for centuries. Nowadays, some forget everything they learned in civics 101 and equate the president to a dictator. It's as if, your vote for a representative and a senator doesn't matter because the three co- equal bodies of government simply cannot the match the innumerous powers of the executive branch.
Catch phrases, sound bites, and slogans like “ small government, less taxes, and less regulations” will always get applause but in most cases it’s just a self –fulfilling prophecy for failure. We should want effective government, size and scope will ultimately decide that; not a predetermined goal of privatizing everything.
Let’s analyze Rosalie Sykora’s recent letter to the editor in which a poster named Brain Vandale thinks everyone would agree with her. I certainly don’t but first we have to get down to basics and compare the two eras.
I believe it took 4 years to complete the Hoover Dam, but about 100 people died in doing so. I think OSHA would not have allowed that and today the EPA will rightly ensure that clean air and water will not be jeopardized.
Rosalie said “ maybe a project like the Hoover Dam is what the Obama and his progressive movement should be looking at.” Rosalie, all you have to do is watch a couple of hours of MNBC and you would see a commercial of Rachel Maddow standing by the Hoover Dam emphasizing the need for such a project, metaphorically speaking. You would also see the likes of Ed Schultz, Lawrence O'Donnell and Chris Hayes doing the same thing. You might check back to some of the president's stump speeches standing by a bridge in a republicans district telling the people to urge their congressman to vote for an infrastructure project.
This how it works Rosalie. We don't need dams but we need mass transit, broadband, and energy projects but the president can’t just sign a work order and make it happen. The House of Representatives should be the first body to take up this issue because they control the purse strings. It would be a fool’s errand to ask the Tea Party to consider borrowing three trillion dollars, even at these low interest rates and almost a guarantee to recoup all the money with interest to boot. That leaves the Senate to take the lead as they have in all major pieces of legislation this year because John Boehner is the weakest Speaker of the House since its inception. The Senate would likely pass the bill, but then we go back to square one. I agree, creating jobs should be a priority right now but the sequester is giving us the opposite.
I shook my head in amazement of how John Stossel of Fox News compared the folks of the Great Depression to those on public assistance today. He didn't say that our government ran out of national assistance and soup lines were commonplace until that became unsustainable because we had not yet implemented a Keynesian recovery policy. Many people died, and that would be the case today if not for SNAP,Medicare,Medicaid,unemployment benefits and Social Security. Revisionist history has made people like John Stossel a rich man.
It's all about basics because states like California and Oregon, where they have implemented the Affordable Care Act (ACA), insurance rates are dropping. States like Texas and Louisiana will fight the health care law, purely on ideological grounds, will likely see their insurance rates rise. The GOP said that they would no longer try to repeal the entire ACA but now will take steps to defund it, which will weaken it, for its eventual downfall. The GOP has also abandoned" Repeal and Replace,” so under their plan,you are on your own.
Some corporations have to step up and start paying decent wages, although it will temporarily weaken their stock value. That's what we're seeing, it's a rich man's recovery. Yes, housing automobile sales are rising but when unemployment is at 7.5%,the well- off are the ones purchasing. Republicans haven't figured out that when you cut food stamps, it affects Wal-Mart, and the industries that rely on the purchases of poor people. And that’s just what we see on the spreadsheets, how well will that child do in school when you just cut off their fuel for their nutrition lacking brain cells?
I find it a complete waste of my time to argue with someone who doesn’t believe in science, basic math, accepted economic principals, or substantiated facts.