Sunday, November 8, 2009

Health Care Bill Passes House, but Frustrations Remain

Pro-life Democrats insisted that a no-abortion-coverage amendment be placed in the health care bill before they would vote for it. That is OK as far as it goes, although I do not agree with that position.

This flame Tied in Knots©2009, expresses my frustrated joy in the passing of the health care bill by the house.

But why would they have to get permission from the Catholic Church to vote for the bill?  Why is the permission of their constituents not enough reason to vote?  When did a government that expresses Freedom of Religion and Separation of Church and State to be the Law of the Land allow a religious leader control over what Congressional members do?  Neither the Catholic Church nor any other religious group should be making laws for the United States.  Influence, ok, just as other special interest groups have influence.  But to control the vote is anathema to the Constitution of this country.

Maybe legislatures should be prevented from discussing an upcoming vote within 12 hours of a vote with any lobbyist, special interest group--including religious leader, or non-congressional member. Then they would be forced to vote their conscience and/or what they know their constituents want.  No, I guess that wouldn't work.

Maybe, the amendment will be declared unconstitutional since it is obviously religious in text and motivation. Oh, that's right, there is a preponderance of Catholics on the Supreme Court, too.  Hmm. Who controls their judgements?  As Americans, we trust that our Supreme Court  to rule on constitutionality, not religious belief.  I hope so.  Otherwise, a group analogous to the Taliban will rule this country as Thought Police--and that is no more extreme an hyperbole than those the Republicans are tossing out when they say America is in a Civil War and Obama is Hitlerian.

The Republican lost the 2008 election. Why are they crying foul?  Republicans, you lost. Get over it!  Stop trying to hurt this nation in your snit over having the majority rule!  While I am fussing at you, Republicans, would you please stop it with the lies and hypocrisy?  "Three years ago" problems were being covered up; and when they finally forced an economic crisis, Republicans had just been voted out of office. The Obama Administration did not create the national debt or the recession. That occured under the Bush Administration, under the Republican watch. Why do you speak as if Obama created the problem?  Everyone knows Obama is cleaning up the mess the Republicans created.  The huge national debt we face today is money spent to clean up the Republican mess plus the excessive spending during Bush's term in office.  Just because Bush's Presidency brought us to the brink of ruin is no reason to not take care of the US citizenry today.

And how do you Republicans plan to recover from the disastrous national debt in place at the end of the Bush Presidency without raising taxes?  I suppose you think you can just pretend it ain't so and it will all go away.  Do not blame Obama and Democrats for the need to raise taxes. Your careless placement of this country in debt means someone has to pay your bills. Be grateful the Democrats are fiscally responsible enough and politically courageous enough to bail you out so when the country is back on its feet you can claim their rightful credit as your own.

Back to the issue at hand:  Thank goodness the health care bill passed the House. Now if only it doesn't get gutted before it clears the Senate!

And why must the war mongers insist that a woman  have an unwanted baby?  The Republican's war is currently killing our sons and daughters.  I guess they want to insure that a new crop of poor kids will be around to repopulate the army so their wars can continue to be fought.

Yes, I am also tired of the Conservatives, no matter what religion, forcing their religious views on all of us, too.

Monday, October 26, 2009

To Opt In or Opt Out? That is the Question.

What is the difference? Either way citizens get the health insurance they need to pay for the health care they need. And just what is so socialistic about the citizens getting something directly from the taxes they pay. After all, huge corporations and even regular-sized businesses and (farmers/food producers) get support from the government all the time. Even after using all the tax loopholes that deprive this country of the needed taxes that they would ordinarily owe. (No wonder the country is in debt!)

Oh, wait. I know. If a state has to opt out, then the state legislatures and governors have to overtly show the citizens they represent that health care for the regular people of their state is not something that they care about--even if the majority of the citizens are in need and are asking for it.

If the state has to opt in, then the minority, who happen to have decent health care insurance, can ignore the matter and hope it goes away and that the citizens of their states will not ask why they got left out. Maybe there will not be a grass-roots movement to demand an opt in.

But wait, there's more...

Watch. These same politicians will be the first to respond to the inevitable grass-roots demand for decent options to their health care choices insurance with the mantra: "Vote for me and I will see that this state opts in."

It is just semantics. It is just politics.

I think there should be an executive order to drop the health care insurance policies of Congress that is funded by taxpayers and change it to a set of private heath care insurance programs. Privatize it for everyone, not just the needy citizenry. It is feudal elitism for the Congress to get privileges paid for by taxpayers that the same Congress refuses to grant to the same taxpayers. Why do we fund these obstructionists? Our blood, sweat, and tears are shed so they can collect from the special interest groups and ignore the needs of the people. Are we tired of this yet?

Wake up, Republicans. Get with the program, Democrats.

And another thing: Why is there such an uproar over the possibility of coverage for abortion from the same people that send our sons and daughters to a war to be maimed, killed and traumatized. Are we exhausted yet?

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Growth of the English Language

image is Line of Fire &(c)2009 V. Coskrey

American English is constantly growing in the number of words in everyday usage. Today while watching Book tv on C-SPAN2 I heard David Finkel use a word in a sentence that broadened the definition of the word. He said it so matter-of-factly that I could tell that this definition must now be in common use since the original show was David Finkel's talk on the Good Soldiers given 9/16/09.
He said, "...where the Shiite had pretty well cleansed the Sunni..."

Have the dictionaries been updated as yet? If not, I offer these suggested definitions to be included in next year's editions:

to cleanse
-to destroy an identifiable subset of the human race.
-the destruction of a population or culture by a competing population or culture.

Of course we all know this word from watch spy and special agent and rogue assassin movies:
-one who destroys all evidence and witnesses of an incident

I once said the Holocaust was not a unique incident in history. Ethnic Cleansing practices of today are the equivalent of the Holocaust. There are incidences throughout history, too, even America's. I'll bet we could make a list of dozens of such incidences if we begin with the dawn of man and continue until today. Any takers?

I suppose we must be very careful not to make familiarity with a human practice and frequency of a human practice equate with acceptance of a human practice. Considering the horror of the Holocaust as a unique event forced us to partition its effects as something we hoped would never happen again and to punish the perpetrators. Now we must face the fact that such horrors continue, albeit under a different name--a name that insulates us from the continuing horror and thereby makes us more complacent.

Maybe the United Nations should create stiffer penalties against such hate crimes. Certainly America should.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Let's Celebrate the U.S. Bill of Rights and the U.S. Constitution

Once again Congress has pushed an agenda that reaffirms the values of this great nation. Primary to our Bill of Rights and to our Constitution is that an individual has the right to decide one's life and activities for oneself--as long as those decisions do not threaten the rights of others.

Thank you, Congress for passing the Gay Rights bill. Now let us give to the gay military heroes the recognition that so justly deserve.

Thank goodness we as Americans do not see ourselves as thought police. Thank goodness that we do not insist that everyone shares the same religious convictions. Thank goodness we are free.

What values do we all share? Probably the same humanistic values shared by the Founding Fathers.

Hey, guys, look to Star Trek and Star Trek the Next Generation for morality plays that demonstrate how these values guide behaviour. Look to Star Trek Deep Space Nine for a demonstration of how the humanistic values can blend with religious convictions. With these and other stories shaping the thoughts of the current generations, no one can say that Americans are not exposed to values education.

Monday, October 19, 2009

On Health Care

Ok, Democrats, let's get the vote in!  We need the public option. We need health insurance coops. We need all the safeties for patients: no preexisting clauses, no chopping off coverage because of sickness or limits to payments.

I can understand the need for insurance companies to make a profit and that full coverage would not be profitable. That is why the government must help.

I cannot afford private insurance. Few can. And employee insurance is bankrupting small and even large companies: look at GM's reasons for needing a bailout.  This huge, profitable company could no longer fund the health insurance for its employees.

Come on, Congress. Vouchers will cover the health insurance coverage for, what, 2 months? If that. Big Woop.

Tax breaks do not help the ones with so many dependents and so low a salary that their taxes are too low, anyway. And how far will this small amount go? Nowhere near as far as the vouchers, I'll bet.

Doctors are usually the upper class members of a community. Why should they be rich off of our suffering?  They can be adequately paid and hospitals supported with a public option.  It beats the charity that is now offered in the ERs.

Help us Congress!!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Political Correctness

The image Turmoil©2009. Used with permission.

I have long thought that politically correct talk encourages the white lie and discourages honest discourse. Maybe someone thought that good manners would be followed. I suspect that what does follow is hypocrisy and limits to the discourse.

How does pussy-footing around a controversial issue solve the problems when the problems cannot be expressed honestly? Doesn't that just get the issues shoved under the carpet?

How does this foster tolerance? Yeah, I know you aren't supposed to insult others, but the idea has expanded beyond the insult to cover the idea that only certain issues can be defined and discussed.

Who gets to define the correctness anyway? What happened to understanding resulting from "walk a mile in my shoes" if it is politically incorrect to recognize that not all shoes are the same?