Skip to comments.So Much Fear, Not Enough ZOT
Posted on 08/05/2009 5:39:03 PM PDT by KeepingCalm
I was embarrassed for my country when many Americans let the fear of terrorism turn them into cringing cowards, willing to give up our basic civil liberties for the illusion of safety, ignoring how we are 200 times more likely to die in our automobile than in a terrorist attack on our soil. I am equally embarrassed today. Many of my fellow Americans have let themselves be manipulated by corporate interests and ratings-hungry media. They have become frightened, angry, and unable to cooperate to form a more perfect union. Why do so many Americans have so little faith in our fundamental Constitutional principles? Why all the fear?
WERE HEADED FOR TYRANNY The nation elected a liberal Democrat by a substantial margin, and he's behaving exactly like a liberal Democrat, not a tyrant. We have representation in government. We have elections every two years. We have a functioning court system. Our taxes have not gone up in the past six months. We are a sovereign nation. Our Constitutional principles are sound.
You disgrace the memory of those who truly suffered under tyranny throughout history by whining about government control of your life because your favorites didnt win an election. Has anything really changed in your life over the past six months, or are you frightened about what some people say MIGHT happen?
Complaints about "taxation without representation" make no sense while elected legislators represent us. We get to vote them out of office if the majority of constituents want a change, and vote in people we do trust. Calling for some kind of vague but ominous "revolution" in the meantime is counterproductive and can encourage violence by unbalanced fringe elements.
Our Congress still makes our laws, approves federal judges and top-level managers, establishes annual budgets and authorizes all executive branch spending. You dont live in tyranny when you can choose your representatives at the voting booth.
WERE BECOMING A SOCIALIST (OR MARXIST OR COMMUNIST) NATION! Socialism (or whatever the 1950s-style bogeyman du jour might be) refers to an economic system. We enjoy a capitalist economy in the United States and this has not changed in the past six months. In recent decades we have certainly increased the number and complexity of government-administered public services funded by tax dollars, but taxation and government spending does not equal socialism. How are the recent public health insurance proposals all that different from the many government services already in existence to promote the general welfare?
Socialistic government activities in the United States include interstate highways, Medicare, the Environmental Protection Agency, county health departments, Medicaid, public libraries, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, unemployment compensation, tax-funded fire and police departments, Social Security, the Federal Communications Commission, disability insurance, the Federal Aviation Administration, welfare benefits, food stamp programs, and public schools (where, if you were paying attention, socialism was probably accurately defined).
Which of these tax-funded public services frighten you so much? Which of these are you willing to do without to avoid an encroachment of socialism in our nation? These are not rhetorical questions.
WERE SPENDING TOO MUCH MONEY WE DONT HAVE! I agree. But this is nothing new. The cost of a new public health insurance plan, or other government activity we dont have the funds to pay for, will simply be added to the eleven TRILLION dollar national debt. That would be the staggeringly huge mountain of debt nobody seemed to care so much about six months ago, or six years ago. Why all the horror and outrage now?
THE PRESIDENT IS REALLY A FOREIGN CITIZEN! Oh, please. Tin foil hat. Flat earth. Tooth fairy. That is all.
THE GOVERNMENT IS CONTROLLING AMERICAN BUSINESSES! Government control of businesses has been part of our nation since the early 1900s when President Theodore Roosevelt, a Republican, took steps to prevent monopolies and centralize commerce. The government has been meddling in industry for years to regulate environmental concerns and public safety issues. Why all the terror about government interference in business now?
Although I do not approve of government purchase of business interests, only one-fifth of one percent of all business assets in America are nationalized, even after the government's recent questionable acquisitions. One-fifth of one percent is not a very slippery slope. Is this what all the fear is about? One-fifth of one percent?
ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS WILL GET FREE HEALTHCARE! I am uncomfortable with non-citizens getting the same services taxpaying citizens receive. But you cant put the toothpaste back in the tube, and we cant allow children visiting our nation to suffer from illness or injury while we wrangle about political expediency. Surely we can come to some understanding about this without being so afraid of change. It is also interesting how the fickle, attention-deficit-afflicted voters arent yelling quite so much these days about our porous borders and the millions of undocumented workers still employed in America. Immigration reform is part of economic recovery, and illegal immigrants have been tapping federally funded services for many years now. Again, why the sudden panic?
WE JUST WANT TO MAKE EVERYTHING BETTER! Are people crying out in anger and fear because they want to effect change? A practical analysis of all the fear-mongering reveals that it makes little sense strategically. Remember how the last Presidential election turned out despite all the inflammatory "He's a terrorist/socialist/foreigner" allegations? Maybe the right wing should re-think how this disruptive anger is going to play with the centrists and independents, who will REALLY decide the next few elections. The scare tactic approach to manipulating the electorate is a foolish strategy that will probably backfire with all those voters who dont buy the real American rhetoric.
In the 2004 campaign, President Bush asked the American people for more time to complete his goals. As an alternative, the Democratic Party offered candidate John Kerry, who couldnt even supply vague charisma or leadership to counter the unfinished business message of President Bush. The voters gave President Bush what he asked for, another term to improve the economy and prevail in Iraq. It's too early to say "anyone but Obama" will win in 2012, and it's a foolish gamble to assume it'll suffice. Todays Republican Party needs to develop substantially better policies and better candidates, without counting on a disaffected electorate a few years from now. Otherwise, the Republicans might find themselves playing the John Kerry role in 2012.
In Summary This "us versus them" attitude will never advance our nation. It's not the fault of the liberals or the conservatives, it's the fault of the liberals versus the conservatives. The other guys in the left-right dichotomy aren't ever going away, and all this hostility won't change a thing. You are both stuck with each other, in "one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for ALL."
So what's next?
Maybe it's time to try for consensus instead of conflict. There are ways to make a difference with dignity, and without fear:
Vote whenever we can and encourage others to vote too. Stay in touch with our elected representatives about the things that matter to us.
Support candidates you trust with volunteer time and contributions.
Be civil to each other even when we disagree.
Recognize how the media exists to keep us tuned in so they can sell advertising, not because they care about us and want us to be objectively informed.
Think for ourselves.
Honestly, people, we have weathered Democratic Party presidents before. If we cant survive the next three-and-a-half years, we dont deserve to continue as a nation. But we certainly will. Were already good at it.
Do you actually believe this crap you wrote?
Please add me to the Viking Kitty list! :)
Good grief. So many trolls today.
Thnks for your opinion...yep to some of your thoughts...no to others...and “oh, brother” to the rest.
I’m afraid you’ve wasted your time here. BTW, your rant doesn’t fit your screen name. Now, go out and try to stop all those angry mobs out there at the town hall meetings.
You haven’t been paying much attention the past six months, have you?
Man, what a busy day!
I was in right after post #1 for an IBTZ, but instead took the time to write a response to the troll.
You have no clue or you are trolling.
“So many trolls today’
It was the messiah’s burfday yesterday. they are celebrating by annoying FR.
There are still several hours until midnight. Plenty of time for a midnight snack or two.
ZOTS R US!!
(Clams got legs!)
Believe it or not, I remember that line from the comic as a kid.
Add me to your ping list, please.