"I do solemnly swear (or affirm)
that I will faithfully execute
the Office of President of the United States,
and will to the best of my ability,
preserve, protect and defend
the Constitution of the United States."
The Oath of the President of the United States
Is it just me, or is there an element of a whole lotta lip service going on right now in Washington?
As a matter of fact, He is speaking LIVE right now, again.
The process continues, and on this day in the life, Obama is in the midst of convincing his fellow democrats that they are doing the right thing. He is about to sign the historic health care bill into law any minute now...
wait for it...
But this oath they all take -- doesn't it mean anything anymore?
I just can't help but think of how the likes of Franklin, Madison, Adams, Washington, and Jefferson might be feeling right about now, as they most assuredly are watching the flagrancy of this government sign into law the most reprehensible legislation that has ever lived in American History. Can you just imagine it? From high above, they are watching all of their hard work be mocked, mangled and molded into something unrecognizable.
All the while, our men and women in office think nothing of it.
The Constitution of the United States.
At the very root of everything, that is all anyone is ever asked to do (especially a President); even a fifth grader understands the gravity of upholding this one.
Speaking of which, my very own thirteen year old going on thirty is not pleased; she just can't believe that this Administration and House of Representatives could so brazenly oppose not only the will of the people, but the very foundation our country, as prescribed and set forth in our Constitution, was built. And believe me, this girl of mine was already worried about what was going to happen by the time she was all grown up, but now, she is just beside herself.
Oh, she isn't defeated in any sense of the word; no way.
She is even more committed, more beholden, more enlivened to finding her own way and making her own mark -- following the very dynamics set forth by our founding fathers all the way around; growing up self reliant is her mission in life in every stretch of the imagination. But here she is, at thirteen and seeing the writing on the wall, she is watching the growing number of Americans pulling on the sleeves of Washington, as if saying. 'moor please', with a voice reflecting the sweetness of the little English orphan, Oliver Twist, if you will.
People, get your head in the game, this country was made from revolutionaries and pilgrims, pioneers and tycoons.
The burden is on us to make a life, a life with the ability to afford using the services of a doctor and buying health insurance, just as we buy car insurance (if we own a car), life insurance (just in case we die), home insurance (just in case of a flood/earthquake/tornado...), rental insurance (just in case we leave the iron on), boat insurance (if we are lucky enough), or even pet insurance (for our furry friends of the family)...
If we have a body, we should have health insurance; while if we smoke, drink too much, eat too much, or simply let ourselves go for any period of time -- there are consequences.
Is it a right to have health insurance? Absolutely not; but to mandate that every one of us has to buy it (and punish us if we don't)? Command states to cover additional liabilities years down the road when they are already overburdened with their fair share of fiscal policy landmines?
This kind of thinking is simply not part and parcel of the framework, or intent, or even in the actual words specifically chosen within the Constitution of the United States...building self-reliance and autonomy was the key, even while we were each and every one of us united in faith, hope and success of the whole.
But basically, the federal government was never intended to grow up like this.
Yet here we are -- reckless, poor, dysfunctional, looking desperately for a safe haven, a place we can call home...just a little bit of security could go such a long, long way.
Chock it up to a bad set of circumstances maybe; perhaps we were born into the wrong family, or no family at all; perhaps we were given everything, yet nothing had value; perhaps we were wronged by someone, used by someone, violated or left alone; perhaps we grew up surrounded in despair and desperation, allowing a bad element to permeate our belief system and prevent our own natural inclinations to aspire to grander things; perhaps we just gave up altogether -- he left me, she got sick, the world is unfair and I just don't care anymore; perhaps we were simply out of touch with reality, not saving for a rainy day, not protecting ourselves, or unfortunately, just put all of our eggs in one basket; perhaps we failed at something and then another thing, and then another, and then, simply lost faith.
This health care "reform" doesn't feel quite right because it goes against every American principle in the book; oh sure, there are a host of people supporting this, but that doesn't say anything except that either they "are misinformed, or have misinformed you."
My idea of reform would be based on building upon what we do right and eliminating what we do wrong.
We are good at competition here in America, whip out a Monopoly game and just wait until all the railroads are purchased by another player. So if we are good at that, which history proves that we are, build upon that! Incentivize the competitive spirit, create the environment that promotes service and substance and growth in a healthy and supportive way.
As most of us agree now, a good place to start would be to open up commerce over state lines, and eliminate what is not working, the protections our government has furnished open handedly to insurance companies -- and getting rid of the anti-trust exemption which restricts growth into new markets. OPEN it up; let insurance opportunities from far and wide flow in and out of the homes of America, just as we get water from the well.
Unfortunately, back behind Obamacare is an element of restriction, regulation, taxation and mandates -- it seeks to find money it does not have through simply taking money from somewhere else -- and in the end, at some point, this will fail us (just as we have seen in Social Security/Medicare/Medicaid).
Where is the reward to the hospitals and doctors and nurses for their capital investment, for the years of schooling and cost of doing business, and most importantly, for their bedside manner that gets us through the night? Where is their reward in this new legislation?
Restricting Medicaid reimbursements, cutting off Medicare allowances and regulating what they can or can't do, using the same 500 Billion dollars to fund two programs, and all the while not address the most prevailing pitfalls in the health care system by not providing for TORT reform and limiting malpractice liabilities -- is this the way this administration rewards 10 years of schooling, student loans up the a**, buying everything from radar machines to tongue depressors, and somehow being able to continue to hang the doctor's shingle out their door until they die, or retire, whichever comes first?
With this kind of love, America will never inspire our children to grow up to be doctors and nurses...
You know, the truth is, even in spite of the prevalence of diabetes and childhood obesity, as a country, we are healthier; no longer are we dying from a pneumonia, bubonic plague, German measles or mumps; but here we are, in spite of all of the system's ills, it has worked reasonably well.
Here we are, though, with technology to combat cancer, treat heart disease, prescribe antibiotics and cure nearly anything that comes along, the system is suddenly frowned upon, forgetting we are light years away from the days when a little tooth decay was a precursor to a set of wooden teeth; when we had a tumor, we didn't even know it; when we had a heart attack, we died.
LOOK at all the ways our health care system has worked, how it has progressed -- for all the years we have usually been quite happy with it -- let us take a moment and revel in it right now, for it's days are surely numbered now.
AND with that, we should also take a look at all the ways in which we have allowed it to erode right out from under our noses; our ability to control our standard of health care, our personal responsibility to it, along with the benefits we gain from it is part of the oath we take as Americans as one to another...we have just ignored the symptoms for a very long time now, or we have just expected to be able to take a happy pill and have the diagnosis totally go away.
We had it in the palm of our hands and somehow we let it slip away; little corrections could have done the job, and yet, here we are with a brand new government entitlement program signed, sealed and delivered.
The fact is, the more government interference -- and especially it's involvement with the insurance marketplace -- the more we the people have lost control over every aspect of our lives, even areas we thought were once hands off.
We let it happen to us. And once a company like Blue Cross has the monopoly on the individual out of pocket plans, and has the discretion to use this leverage, knowing full well there isn't another company walking in the door right behind them offering something better, cheaper, more comprehensive, the game is over.
But to be perfectly fair, this practice doesn't make insurance companies evil (as we are so often misinformed they are); this is just how the game is played.
More often than not, America has excelled over the last couple of hundred years because of how well we played the game, how well we played with others, along with our ability to play fair, follow the rules, not cheat, and take turns.
Yes, at times, competition gets to us, we scream "you're not playing fair" when in fact, things are just rolling in someone else's favor; but normally, we keep our head in the game, we keep moving our feet onward and upward, while after a little extra effort and a lot of patience, we can sometimes turn the game around -- if not completely come back and bury little nancy in the process.
As long as we seem to have a government who takes greater pride in penalizing industry, stifling creativity and ingenuity, punishing doctors, insurance companies, and any other company or place of business who makes a little profit or is rewarded with success,
and be willing to risk it all in the process, we will all lose.
What's there to love about a government where it is common place
to leverage our personal freedoms and liberties
and burdens us with overhead we can no longer afford?
What's there to love about a government where it is common place
to add more worry and less security,
and divide us from the sound principles from which we were made?
What's there to love about a government where it is common place
to reward failure over success
and capitalize on a system sinking
to the lowest common denominator vs. rise to our highest values?
As long as every time we pass go and land smack dab on taxation without representation, restricting our ability to grow our own wealth, build our own business, acquire our own property, and pay for our own insurance (however many we want or need) fair and square, the more Americans will become discouraged. I mean, who wants to play with the punish-er or the control freak, someone who just does a hostile take over every time we play or someone who can't stand to watch other people win -- where's the fun in that?
Cheaters never prosper....nana nana na na....
Mr. President, you took an OATH. You swore on the Lincoln Bible to preserve, protect and defend our Nation's Constitution. Not only were the founders watching, but our children, too.
Lord knows, it may be too late for you, but please, I beg of you, even though some people may be lulled into thinking entitlement programs we can't afford, or for that matter work, are justifiable reform --
they hardly pass as true rewards of the America I know and love -- stop, and get back to basics.
Teach our children to compete, wisely and fairly, honestly and respectfully; it's not just about the Rule of Law as it's carried up through generations, but in the choices we make each and every day.
Teach our children to strive higher and to work smarter; and that perhaps the old adage remains true, it doesn't matter if we win or lose, it's how we play the game.
Teach our children to recognize that this country rewards those of us who don't smoke too much, or eat too much, or drink too much (...hiccup)
Teach our children that we reward companies with sound business practice, remarkable service, outstanding products and long standing reputation of excellance.
Mr. President, with all due respect, what you signed today is a game changer, that is for sure.
And from me and my girl, I have two words for you:
Make it a GOOD day, G