Before President Obama was elected, the voters were all one big whine, “Gaawww, we gotta have health care reform, we’re dying out here, dying! Help, Help, Help, We want single payer, we want a public option, we want, we want, we want.”
Then they elected Obama AND re-elected and elected a sufficient number of congresspeople who are philosophically and practically utterly OPPOSED to single payer, or anything even resembling real reform or any public options.
So Congress sets to work to make sausage without a veto-proof number that would enable them to actually deliver some sort of single payer, public option, medicare-for-all type plan the public said they wanted. The result was a sausage that sold the American public to the insurance companies, guaranteed their continued high profits with only minor tinkering around the edges instead of real “reform” in how we deliver health care, and a fat deal cut for big pharama – EXACTLY what one would expect when you have a non-veto-proof congress composed of anti-public programs, status quo, insurance company/big pharma water carriers.
At which the American people start whining, “Eeeeuuu, we don’t’ like THIS health care bill, we want ANOTHER one, we want a blue one, this one’s green, we don’t like green, plus we want a public option, we want, we want, we want.”
Errrkk, Sorry, America. Ya gits whatcher pay for. You elect people who do not believe the government has a role to play in people’s lives, who believe that the free market will solve all their problems, who believe that the status quo is just fine, who believe that their only job is not to actually govern but to do everything in their power to keep themselves in power, no matter how damaging that is to the rest of the country, then that’s exactly what you’ll get. So, zip it. There’s an election coming up. You want “real change,” America? Well, here’s your chance. Laws are made in Congress, not in the White House. In the meantime, stop whining.
Speaking of which . . .
How often have you heard the comment, “It doesn’t matter who’s president,” well last night’s State of the Union had an interesting example of how wrong that idea is. Right down front sat the Supreme Court who recently voted to grant “personhood” free speech rights to corporations. President Obama commented to their faces that he thought that was a bad idea that would open America up for more money corrupting the political process, plus allowing foreign corporations a huge foot in the door of our own home-grown national pastime: Buy A Congressman.
Weirdly, everyone stood up to applaud his whacking this recent Supreme Court decision, even Republicans who mostly remained seated throughout the speech, even when the President noted he had cut taxes, a Pavlovian phrase that usually automatically brings Republicans to their feet, cheering.
But there it was: Presidents who appoint Supreme Court members actually DO matter because the Supremes then go on to “legislate from the bench” and thereby impact real people’s lives long after the President who appointed them has gone.
How this recent ruling shakes out remains to be seen. But you have to admit, the idea of China, Inc. OWNING our Congress is delicious to contemplate. But that Chief Justice Roberts would make a ruling that would open the door for just such a “corporate” move should come as no surprise. Chief Justice Roberts was a “corporate” guy from day one. His promise to respect legal precedence during his confirmation was hokum designed to get him confirmed. But that’s how our kabuki theatre of Supreme Court confirmations go. As with all things, leopards don’t usually change their spots. And we shouldn’t expect them to do so. Once again, ya gets whatcha ask for.
Which is why . . .
America needs to stop whining about President Obama being some sort of flaming Liberal. That’s more hokum Republican talking points. Obama was and is a firmly planted centrist. And it’s no use whining that Obama needs to take the reins and just drive this wagon. He’s not a “driver,” either. Never was. He’s a “community organizer,” through and through. And while Sarah Palin sneered at that occupation, she failed to understand the basic mind set of “community organizers:” Bottom up, self-generated, consensus, centrist.
Community organizers don’t “lead.” They allow The Community to chose the path and the method and then enable movement. Which is exactly what Obama did with the health care issue. Congress was the “community,” representing the people who elected them, so it was up to Congress to craft a plan that would be bottom up, self-generated, consensus and centrist. And leaving aside the corruption of Congress by the health care/big pharma industries and other lobbying forces in removing key components (single payer, public option) even before the discussion began, that’s exactly the health care proposal they ended up with – bottom up, self-generated, consensus (all the wheeling and dealing designed to get everyone on board), centrist.
And, of course, that’s when the whining started. Eeeuuuu, it’s blue. I don’t LIKE blue, I want green. And so forth. Which is caused because the American people don’t seem to realize that our system of government is based on “community organization.” Congress IS our Community Organization and depends on all members seriously working together to craft laws that will solve problems. The system works only if all parties work to actually get things done (make sausage), understand that nothing centrist will please everyone, and know that pragmatic compromise is the name of any Community Organizing game. And the system fails to work if a sufficiently large number of organizers simply turn into a Party of NO and block any efforts that aren’t to their liking.
And seeing to it that our National Community Organization (Congress) functions properly is the job of the voters. If they want a functioning Congress, they need to vote in people who will actually work to get things done. If they want a dysfunctional Congress, they’ll vote in whole Parties of NO or keep electing or re-electing Wholly Owned Subsidiaries of Corporation X whose constituent isn’t The People, but is Corp. X, or they’ll keep electing strictly partisan, regional Bringers of Local Pork who don’t give a fig for the rest of the community (the nation).
In short, here in America, we get the Congress we deserve. The choices are always ours. So enough with the whining. Ya gits whatcha asked for.