Politics

Not Meeting Needs

Not Meeting Needs

When I was a boy, my mom would often make me come with her when she would deliver food to older relatives. As a child the last thing I wanted to do was waste my time delivering food, especially when the houses and people often smelled funny. Of course the people were always appreciative, and I remember vaguely one great aunt of mine saying that my mom doing this was close to heaven. I know the aunt was grateful for the food, and it certainly did not hurt that my mom was an excellent cook.

My dad was always supportive, except perhaps for an occasional grimace. If my mom was not able to make dinner because time got away from her, my dad without complaint either took all five of us out to dinner or we got carry out.

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Government is the Solution, a Seismic Shift

A major shift in thinking has occurred since the passage of the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, and the political ramifications are likely to be enormous.

At his inaugural in 1981, Ronald Reagan said, “In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.” This wrong belief has pervaded and controlled political thought for at least three decades and led to some very bad policies such as the bank deregulation that caused the financial crisis of 2008.

Recently, Republicans realized they have to actually develop a plan to replace the Affordable Care Act, and people are demanding that some important features are available in a replacement plan. These features include allowing people with pre-existing conditions to get insurance, no lifetime limits, and allowing children under 26 to stay on their parents’ plans.

It gets even worse for Republicans. People are also demanding improvements such as more affordable premiums and lower copayments and deductibles.

For the first time in many, many years, there is a popular uprising where people are saying to the government, “fix this.” People realize government is the solution.

This is not to say that the government is the solution for everything. However, the right government policies can provide great solutions to some problems as illustrated by health care.

In point of fact the public enables the private, and now that people are realizing this, it signifies a seismic shift in our politics.

Democrats Must Focus on Messaging

There is a passionate debate as to whether Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz should be replaced. This debate focuses on three main points: did Wasserman Schultz show favoritism towards Secretary Clinton, has she been biased against Senator Sanders, and can Wasserman Schultz unify the party? However, neither of the preceding points are the most important criteria for evaluating the Chairwoman’s performance as head of the DNC.

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Deadly Discrimination

Discrimination denies freedom. Early Sunday morning Omar Mateen killed 49 people at popular gay bar in Orlando. At least one official called it a “domestic terror incident.” It is a hate crime.

The killer’s father, Mir Seddique, said his son got “very angry” when he saw two men kissing. “This had nothing to do with religion,” according to the father. The father is wrong. This has plenty to do with religion and politics, especially when prominent religious leaders and politicians condemn homosexuality and say it is acceptable to discriminate against gays. In less extreme cases we get bakers refusing to wedding cakes for gay couples. In the most extreme cases, we get beatings and death.

Maybe disgruntled bakers would never kill anyone, but where would such people choose to stop? Would gay sex become illegal? Would courses in morality be required? Would beatings be allowed?

Regardless of how the intolerance manifests itself, it all grows from the same seed. Early Sunday morning we saw a tragic illustration why discrimination must cease and freedom must be protected!