Sunday, January 5, 2014
We All Fall Down
This was a theme of the holiday parties I attended, when conversations turned political people were getting excited about how they can't wait until Obama's out of office, not only that, but ever since he was elected things have gone down hill for them. There is the audacity of hope that with a new Republican president, things would get better and Obamacare, (which no one calls the Affordable Care Act) is horrible and the cause of a lot of misery.
I had the audacity of facts and pointed out that 48 million people are uninsured according to the 2010 census. When I let this FACT fly out of my mouth it was met with silence. Yeah, I'm a lot of fun at a dinner party.
I am not sure if these party goers thought that this was Obama's fault or they just don't give a damn. One retired gentleman volunteered that along with his Medicare he also pays $900 a month for his secondary insurance for all the stuff said Medicare won't cover. Was there a thought in his head that a nationalized single payer healthcare system might be more economically sound? Uh oh, that would be socialism which is tied to communism which is the same thing, right?
Because capitalism is the best "ism". It's a free market and 'free markets" are the best markets. People I meet and work with and socialize with actually believe this is what we live with, that this is what our economy is based on.
We can vote President Obama out of office and repeal Obamacare when the Republicans get in there! Republicans will save the country! This is what I hear. Meet the new boss same as the old boss. Voting Republican isn't going to change anything. People who still vote are under the impression that they have the same power as a corporation with a corrupt lobby paying for legislation. Try telling people that they are non-corporate persons and they have very little power. Their eyes just glaze over and they act like they don't understand what I'm talking about.
This "free market" capitalist American economy groupthink, comes from a place in time that is predicated on the fact that we got a "free continent" and after mass ethnic cleansing and "go west young man" ideology, displacing populations and destroying vast resources, we then rewarded ourselves with the spoils of war profiting from rebuilding or annihilating, take your pick. All of this is gone and cannot be replicated. This WAS mans out from declining empires-in the past. Now everything is already owned.
We must go in a new way, in a new direction.
We have different wars to fight and it's not the war on drugs. It's not a war in Afghanistan or against Al-Queda. It's a war on poverty, "46 million Americans live in households where the government considers their income scarcely adequate." 50 Years Later, War on Poverty Is a Mixed Bag - NYTimes.com
It's a war on unemployment, With Benefits Cut, Unemployed Take Stock Of Dwindling Options : NPR,
we continue to spend trillions on a bloated Department of Defense but can't spare anything for the displaced in our own society. 48 million without health insurance and 46 million in poverty is a plague, it's a black death to anyone getting a pink slip and trying to get full time employment. While this crises continues, we all fall down.