Printed letters, October 11, 2013
Remember the political ads on television several years ago of then-candidate Barack Obama, declaring how disgraceful out-of-control government spending had become?
He compared it to someone who kept maxing out credit cards and opening more accounts with the “Bank of China” to keep spending more money that couldn’t possibly be paid back. Someone else could worry about paying that debt later.
But that was then and this is now. Now those who want to put the brakes on government spending are branded as a crazy, right-wing extremists.
Even though President Obama won the election last year, so did a large number of conservatives in the House of Representatives who opposed the Affordable Care Act and plunging the country more deeply into debt. The bottom line is we don’t have the money to pay for it.
Since the U.S. Constitution says all spending bills must originate in the House, representatives have the “power of the purse.” They are elected every two years to represent the most current wishes of the citizens and to maintain the balance of power. This helps to keep any group or individual from becoming excessively powerful at the expense of our rights and liberties.
Obama needs to consider this before making chilling statements such as, “I will not let Congress stand in my way.”
The public has become disgusted with the arbitrary way this “law of the land” is being administered. Some 12,000 waivers have been issued to big corporate businesses, big labor unions, Congress and the president — one law for them and a different law for us.
If Obamacare is good, they should be willing to abide by it themselves.
Tea party exerts undue influence on Republicans
Republicans campaigned on shutting the government down. Their grass roots cheered it.
After the GOP House caucus voted recently, the representatives were giddy with joy. As psychotic as it sounds, members of the GOP were happy about their planned extortion. The hated government would be shut down, or millions would be denied health insurance plus the rest of us denied the numerous benefits of the Affordable Care Act. Right-wing media would blame Obama and lay a smokescreen of misinformation.
Regular news outlets would predictably use a false equivalency that would claim the president was equally at fault because he would not negotiate with a gun to the country’s head. Billionaires would buy ridiculous ads falsely proclaiming that government would replace doctors.
This strategy sounds insane to observers who pay attention, especially from congressmen who already have government-subsidized insurance. Why would anyone joyfully hurt so many?
Conservative “news” outlets have generated lies and misinformation about Obamacare that have left many not even knowing that the Affordable Care Act and Obamacare are the same thing. They like all the benefits of the ACA but hate “Obamacare.”
Very few know the ACA reversed the upward trajectory of government health care costs and extended Medicare for ten years. The media made the public delusional.
The Senate has sent a clean continuing resolution to the House for the dollar amount that the GOP wanted. It would immediately pass if Boehner allowed an up-or-down vote. But why compromise when you can extort and lead the nation into one manufactured crisis after another? Blaming President Obama is like the rapist blaming the victim.
The tea party is in an ideological war, and it does not care if it brings down the country or its people. Thank God for the Republicans who still do care.
Editorial on federal shutdown panders to local sentiments
Tuesday’s editorial was interesting. Talk about provincial, self-serving attitudes! Every community in the country has a complaint of some kind about local discomfort caused by the current government closure and how its situation is exceptional and it should not be a victim of the closure.
Keep in mind who caused the possible illegal closure and why: Republicans cannot achieve their objectives through normal legislative action, so they have chosen extortion to get their way. We have elections and regular legislative routine and Republicans lost.
The author of the editorial commits a cardinal journalistic offense of taking one anecdotal comment in a notorious reactionary Washington paper as proof that Obama is trying to inflict as much pain as possible on citizens. Once again, who caused the closure?
There is a budget on the table from the Senate that Obama will sign. House Republicans refuse to allow a vote unless they can have a majority without any Democratic votes.
They don’t have the votes so, like three-year-olds, they try to blame Obama and Democrats for their own inability get their way with a program voters rejected twice by electing Obama and the legislature passed with the Affordable Care Act.
The final sentence of the editorial tells all. The author suggests that the whole mess will hurt Democrats. That suggests that the editorial is either trying to please local sentiments or is hoping to help in spreading distrust in those who are standing up to a completely unconstitutional, outrageous plan of extortion to inflict on voters something contrary to what those voters have rejected over the last five years.
Republicans should grow up, as is also true of the editorial writer. The Sentinel is diminished by such a thoughtless, partisan effort to spread misinformation and mistrust. Why encourage the Republican information bubble?
Freidman off-base in criticism of shutdown, Colorado recall
Thomas Friedman appears to have his brains, head or both where there is no sunshine. He deplores the government shutdown because of the Obamacare issue with Republicans. He sees this as deplorable “because the future of how we govern ourselves is at stake.”
Well I, for one, hark back to the passage of a multi-thousand-page health care bill (strictly on a party-line vote) that was read by nobody, because the Democrats could force it that way.
Even then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi implored passage so we could then find our what was in it. That was endangering the future of governing our country. All that is happening now is fallout from this occurrence.
Later in the column, Friedman excoriates those who voted for the recall of two Colorado state senators, just because they voted their “conscience on a narrow issue.” Well, those senators voted against, apparently, the wishes of their constituents. Friedman says they “lost their seats in a recall election engineered by gun extremists and reportedly financed with some $400,000 from the National Rifle Association.” This donation was actually more on the order of $360,000.
Friedman should note what The Denver Post published prior to the recall: “Proponents of the recall have raised about $540,000, while opponents have collected nearly $3 million. Much of the cash has come from out of state — a sign of the national significance these recalls have.”
I have a list of the major donors, if Friedman would like to know who they are. Just one of them dwarfs the amount the NRA donated.
Sending homeless away invites needless litigation
An answer to letter writer D.D. Lewis:
I don’t think sending homeless folks somewhere with a one-way ticket will help the problem. However, having sue-happy lawyers get involved is just going to make matters worse.