Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

The GOP Hopes That You Keep Sleeping

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, July 31, 2019

America has become like the proverbial frog in a pot of water, which has slowly, but steadily, increased in temperature to the point that it is boiled alive without realizing it.

As the story goes, if the frog were dumped into boiling water, it would immediately jump out.

But, since the water’s temperature was initially comfortable, even pleasant, and only slowly increased, the frog gradually became acclimated to it, and therefore was, in effect, desensitized to the inevitable, impending danger, and died slowly.

For the past nearly 50 years or so, and more specifically, within the last 38, America has swooned under the siren song led by the GOP, which in part started off with the not-so-oblique condemnation that, “In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.” (As Brian Gurney, a private citizen from California, noted: “You can’t govern if you don’t believe in government.” But set up a straw man, and beat it to a pulp – demonize the Constitutional effigy.) And to sweeten the deal, and help matters along, a little bit of “They’re individuals and families whose taxes support the government and whose voluntary gifts support church, charity, culture, art, and education. Their patriotism is quiet, but deep. Their values sustain our national life,” was thrown in for good measure (“a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down,” you know).

In order to facilitate that destruction, first was an appetizer of dessert – across-the-board personal income tax rates were cut 23%, which made the majority of working-class Americans and families very happy.

But then, calling them “job creators,” (veritable sacred cows which should be left alone to wander about in traffic and poop anywhere they desire) another round of personal income tax cuts came around, this time for the elites, and personal income tax rates upon the very wealthiest Americans was dramatically slashed to less than half the former rate – from 70% to 28%.

And then, there came cries and demands for liberty, and freedom from the tyranny of genuine governmental slavery in the form of, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!” And truly, who could disagree? But that was quickly transformed into efforts to squelch personal liberty as healthcare decision-making in the most intimate of, and deeply personal matters involving reproduction, by providing opportunity for nosy neighbors (government) to tell others how they ought to run their lives according to the dictates of others’ religious convictions, all under the auspices of government.

Dissatisfied with that aspect of control, they sought to again meddle into the private lives of others – despite the fact that their private liberties were not encroached upon – and the sanction of committed legal relationships in the civil sector were forbidden to select individuals… just like it once was with ethnic minorities. And when in indignation they invited the SCOTUS to step in and rule (hopefully to their advantage, though contrary to their own religious writings), which ruled against their religiously-motivated (no religious test), publicly-sanctioned governmental discrimination (equal protection under law), they loudly cried ‘FOUL!’

And then, when more of their hand-picked, fair-haired children ruled against them, that rights were not absolute (D.C. v Heller), that not just anyone had a right to own, possess, or brandish any firearm, anywhere, at any time, they couldn’t stand it any more, and falsely accused the SCOTUS of partiality and of siding with their opponents whom they continuously maligned, despite the fact that they were ruled against by one of their own most staunch hard-liners.

Feeling emboldened, their most powerful, yet little-known instigator went public and said in part that, “I don’t want to abolish government. I simply want to reduce it to the size where I can drag it into the bathroom and drown it in the bathtub.” And yet, none dare call it treason.

And when their anarchist advocates sought to interfere in a soon-upcoming Federal election, the SCOTUS overturned established precedent, and essentially ruled that money is Free Speech and therefore protected by the First Amendment (Citizens United v FEC) despite the fact that if it was true, then the poor man would have none, and our laws were written for all equally, without regard to any other factor (14th Amendment’s “equal protection” clause). Then, pouncing upon that work, an unlimited free-for-all ensued (McCutcheon v FEC), which overturned long-standing stare decisis precedent (Buckley v Valeo, 1976), and other statutes, yet only minimally acknowledged the corrupting influence of wealth and the undue influence its power brings.

And finally, when the long-term abuses of Wall $treet-traded BIG HEALTH INSURANCE companies were challenged, ruled in, and forbidden by law through the PPACA – Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, aka “Obamacare” – it was castigated, and derided as “socialism” despite the fact that it was initially the brain-child of a conservative think thank (The Heritage Foundation, 1989, Stuart M. Butler, PhD, “Assuring Affordable Health Care for All Americans“).

Such abuses were, including, but not limited to: Discrimination against women by charging them more, “cherry picking,” denying claims because of spelling errors or trivial oversights in the application, denying coverage because of “pre-existing conditions,” not using premiums to pay for care (the PPACA required 80% of premiums be used to pay for care instead of being used for CEO compensation, advertising and overhead expenses), encouraged and mandated personal responsibility, forbade unjustified premium increases, and provided opportunities to exercise the same through the healthcare “public exchanges,” established sunshine laws for physicians and hospitals to ensure openness and honesty, required publishing of costs for common procedures, it was called a “government takeover” of healthcare by ideological opponents, and their hoards of corporate attorneys and other minions set out to dismantle it bit-by-bit, piece-by-piece.

And when, under the guise of “free trade,” they shipped secure good-paying jobs overseas (GHW Bush negotiated and signed NAFTA), where minimum pay rates and union representation were absent, as were safety laws and work regulations, along with a wholesale absence of environmental stewardship and responsibility laws and regulations, suddenly, it began to get real.

And using the same code-words and catch-phrases, they made it appear as if corporate responsibility and free enterprise itself was on trial, and they were given virtual free reign to do with their money as they saw fit, regardless of their inherent social responsibility. Tax rates upon corporate profits were also slashed so much that one of the world’s most profitable companies, headed by the world’s wealthiest man, effectively paid NO TAXES, despite wildly phenomenal profiteering (Jeff Bezos, and Amazon). But such abuses weren’t limited to it, and over 60 large corporations paid NO CORPORATE INCOME TAX. Such actions have effectively shifted the social responsibility and burden unjustly and inordinately upon the working families of America. It is a form of taxpayer-funded subsidized corporate welfare. But corporations don’t need such help. The people do.

It began to hit home with families whose breadwinners suddenly found themselves out of work, and facing the insulting prospects of training their replacements, and having no other marketable skills, they were staring down the double-barreled shotgun of homelessness and starvation… because the “social safety nets” of food security and other social benefit programs had been slowly starved of resources. And as of yet, very few have mentioned that the agency providing the mechanism of governmental funding has also been significantly reduced in size (despite population growth), and is in the process of being drowned in the bathtub.

Not only are laws being dismantled, the entire government is being dismantled… bit-by-bit, piece-by-piece, law-by-law, because our “government of the people, by the people, for the people” … “government is the problem.”

And now, well… SOCIALISM! Because, you know… SOCIALISM!

BOO!

Halloween has come early this year, and the GOP is hiding behind the spectre of the evil “liberals” whom they call SOCIALISTS!

But, in reality… they know that you’re just a frog in the water, and they’ve only turned up the temperature very gradually.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

 
%d bloggers like this: