Same Goal, Different Path

Last night, after watching the phenomenal results of the Senate race in Massachusetts, I expressed my glimmer of hope in humanity with a quick comment on my Facebook profile about how the people there have spoken–loud and clear.  This was a big deal.  This state is the birthplace of the liberal Kennedy dynasty; voting Democrat is a way of life.  The people who voted yesterday put the well-being of their country ahead of their personal ideology.

In the privacy of the voting booth, the voice of the majority has been expressed.  But why is this growing majority not heard as often in the media, in the blogosphere, or even on the streets?  I can tell you.  You’re misunderstood.  You sound heartless and politically incorrect.  You feel like the “Ugly American.”

Some of the nicest people I know think this administration’s plans to completely turn this country upside down in the guise of “helping people” is the only way to go.  Some of them are victims of the bad economy and are searching for the short-term help that the government is promising.  Others are just caring people who have been trusting enough to believe that the government really just wants to help people with no ulterior motives in mind.  Making a deal with the devil never seems so bad in the beginning.

I can’t even begin to express all of my misgivings about the government’s race to take control of America’s health care (and banking, and media, and auto industry…).  Many younger people don’t fully understand that Socialism/Communism doesn’t work for anybody but the ones in charge because the education system started omitting the stories about the Soviet gulags, the killing fields of Cambodia and the violent suppression of Chinese dissidents from the curriculum in favor of stories about how bad it is to be successful, entrepreneurial or white.

All I can say is that what I want is what most rational Americans want.  I want our country to prosper and continue to be a place where persecuted foreigners can seek safe haven by legally entering our country and embracing and contributing to our culture.  I want our own citizens to be able to live the American dream and enjoy the fruits of their labor without worrying that a serious illness will put them out on the streets.  I just think there are better, cheaper, and less intrusive ways to get there.

21 Responses to “Same Goal, Different Path”

  1. 1 Cyndi January 20, 2010 at 12:58 pm

    I fully expected you to blog about this and thank you for not disappointing!

    This clip from The Daily Show cracked me up:

    I don’t know the answers to any of these very tough problems. I do have a question that has been bothering me for some time that does showcase my ignorance….how does a person from Mexico go about legally entering the US?

    • 2 les@mamaneeds2rant January 20, 2010 at 1:45 pm

      lol–Jon Stewart is funny as hell–even though I don’t usually agree with him.

      I’m guessing Mexicans enter the US the same way we enter Mexico–of course, in reverse. Same routes, and with appropriate paperwork.

  2. 3 Dawn January 20, 2010 at 1:50 pm

    In the words of Ron Paul, “Why are the wrong people are in charge? It’s because they showed up and we didn’t.”

    Your post reminds me that our voice and votes do matter.

  3. 4 Cyndi January 20, 2010 at 1:55 pm

    In doing some extremely limited research it seems that in order for a Mexican citizen to obtain a visa to live in the US, at the very minimum they have to apply and pay a non-refundable $131 fee. For most Mexican citizens who are coming here illegally, that may as well be a $1M fee. They don’t have the money to go through legal channels or the time to wait for the red tape. They are dirt poor and desperate. I know this was only 1 point in your post but it is one that I have been meaning to research. “Give us your tired, your poor….” no longer seems to apply, sadly. Just like anything involving politicians, the ideals of our founding fathers have been completely obliterated.

  4. 6 lynette January 20, 2010 at 6:34 pm

    living here in the thick of things… i am a MA voter who voted against Scott Brown, not because of party (i tend towards democcrat because of my beliefs but do vote on issues, not party), but because of who he is, his lack of substance, and where he stands on many issues of importance to me. Coakley would have been a more seasoned, deliberate, and thoughtful Senator in my opinion. she has done a good job as AG, and i have no doubt she would have done as good a job as Senator.

    but he got out and talked to people (although if i hear him use the line about his truck one more time, i will scream — he, being a divorce lawyer, and his newscaster wife are LOADED), and he won.

    i hope it is not a bad thing. he has two years to prove his stuff.

    i will state for the record that MA already has healthcare reform in place since 2006 — it works. there is a gov’t program that allows uninsured individuals and families to select from a number of programs that insurance companies compete to provide. the health insurance is paid for by the subscriber — the insurance company contracts with the state. they have to follow state guidelines that make sense, and that are competitive with other health insurance providers in MA. everyone in MA is required to have health insurance, otherwise you pay a tax penalty.

    it has cut costs. some hospitals in Boston have found that without being subsidized by Medicaid they are losing money. no hospital’s operating costs should be supported by Medicaid, a gov’t program, wouldn’t you agree?

    and for the record, Scott Brown voted FOR our MA healthcare reform in 2006.

    just my two cents from the front…. 🙂

  5. 8 lynette January 20, 2010 at 6:55 pm

    i agree it was a surprising win. i think he was even surprised. the media spin was completely crazy — i think it was impossible to sort out fact from fiction (not that this would have changed anything necessarily). overall, people figured they would get a republican in — after all, we have our first democratic governor in decades (it has been a republican governor for a very long time, in this little “Democrat” state).

    i don’t know — in my opinion, MA healthcare reform hasn’t failed — too short a time frame to tell. as someone who works in business development, what i see is that there will now need to be a readjustment in the pricing of medical care in response to its impact, and a shift in the way the system works.

    the way the system works — which has huge problems — needs to change. it is now becoming apparent.

    also, the economic downturn has impacted it, with 10% unemployment the programs that are in place for those who do not have healthcare through their employer have now had increaesed enrollment because they are now depending on that.

    2 years is not a long time to test a program. it’s probably not even a long enough time to test a senator!

  6. 9 robinaltman January 20, 2010 at 9:21 pm

    I’m from Massachusetts originally! I think it’s very cool that they voted for a republican, mostly because any entrenched party that takes its supremacy for granted is bound to become corrupt. Wait. We’re talking about politicians. Corrupt-er.

    I love Jon Stewart’s take on it. Too funny.

  7. 11 lynette January 20, 2010 at 9:51 pm

    i hate to say it but i kind of think they voted for a guy…. 🙂

    MA gov’t is very good-old-boy, and if this guy doesn’t look like he can become yet another good-old-boy… despite the Cosmo nude centerfold.

  8. 12 Evenshine January 21, 2010 at 12:40 pm

    So glad you blogged about this. In the middle of a FB confrontation which started when the person expressed their distaste for the uncaring, immigrant-abhoring, moneyed Reps that turned the race around. Arrgh. Some days I’d just be happy with people realizing that we’re all in agreement on what we want- just maybe not so much in how to get it.

    • 13 les@mamaneeds2rant January 21, 2010 at 1:19 pm

      FB confrontations are hard. Not because I mind expressing my opinions (duh!) but because it’s not really a good forum to express all your reasons for something. One or two snippets just can’t get to the heart of a matter and I don’t feel comfortable writing a book on a FB site. Thus, the blog is born!

  9. 14 Consuella Banana Hammock January 22, 2010 at 6:17 pm

    well said! i think all of us watched this election with a morbid fascination. i feel like this conversation is so over my head. i have opinions. i have ideas. but when it comes down to it i really don’t know how to fix what is broken in our health care system. something is broken. my fear is that we are becoming a nation that just wants to be taken care of. the result, from my limited experience overseas, is lack of ambition, little to no economic mobility and a “this is just how it is” attitude. i sure don’t want to head down that road! i guess we could if we wanted to compete with france for the most depressed (emotionally that is) country in the world!

    • 15 les@mamaneeds2rant January 23, 2010 at 12:16 am

      Is that why they’re so mean to Americans over there, Consuella? Because they’re depressed? Because everyone I know that has been there said the French were really rude to them. Good God, we DEFINITELY don’t want to head down that road!! We might have messed up health care, but at least we’re nice to tourists. 🙂

    • 16 les@mamaneeds2rant January 23, 2010 at 10:28 am

      Maybe different is a better word, Consuella. At least I hope they’re not trying to be rude. My niece was treated pretty crappy by a host family over there and that was after my sister had made sure their daughter had a great time while she was over here. My son and his girlfriend endured nasty looks and attitude while in Paris. But, yeah. I don’t mean to dis an entire country…there’s my Ugly American rearing its head again…

      Maybe spilling our guts on blogs is good for our mental health. It does feel good sometimes 🙂

    • 17 Consuella Banana Hammock January 23, 2010 at 10:03 am

      well, they are the country that takes the most anti-depressants in europe. when they did a study of college graduates around the world, the french students were the most pessimistic about their futures and opportunities. americans were the most optimistic. so we are doing something right.

      now about the rude thing…seriously it is way exaggerated. in paris you find it some in the tourist areas. but french people in general are very nice. they are helpful and curious. the big difference is they are direct and don’t tend to chit chat with people they don’t know. not rude just different. they think americans tends toward superficial cause they tell anybody anything. anyway. i could talk about this for hours but i won’t…

  10. 18 lynette January 23, 2010 at 3:28 pm

    i lived in Paris for a number of years, and in other European countries too, and through my work meet a lot of people from countries around the world. i agree with consuella — it is not that they are rude per se, but in most northern european countries (france and others), people just are not outgoing and friendly to strangers. they are formal, and don’t smile randomly at people in the street. they do expect respect of their culture, and in my years living there saw many times when it was, intentionally or not, not given.

    to americans, the formality might seem rude. they find our “tell your life story” outgoingness very uncomfortable. i did myself when i moved back to the us.

    not rude. just different. there are of course rude people everywhere 🙂

    • 19 les@mamaneeds2rant January 23, 2010 at 4:00 pm

      Sometimes I picture us as big old sloppy tail-wagging dogs, just being too eager and friendly running up to strangers. And I can see how that would make some people feel uncomfortable if they’re not used to dogs. Before I ever had a dog and grew to love them like I do now, I would have been very uncomfortable having one running toward me!

  11. 20 robinaltman January 25, 2010 at 7:53 pm

    I loved reading the comments. This was the most interesting conversation on a blog I’ve heard yet.

    I’m with Consuela, in that I know something is screwy with our health care system, but I don’t know what it is. In my practice, I refuse to deal with insurance. It’s just fee for service, and I don’t charge exorbitant fees, and I give away free care all the time, if I think it’s a burden for a family. But they come expecting to pay.

    I’d like a system where kids could get the care I recommend and everyone could get health care. I just don’t know how to get there. I do know that I’m not going to fill out 12 redundant, useless forms for each patient’s insurance company. That I know.

    When I went to France, I liked the people in outlying towns a lot. They were sweet and normal. In Paris, I found people strangely hostile. When I attempted French, (granted, I suck), they’d look at me like I had 3 heads. Also, some guys at the train station purposefully tried to rip us off, and it was lucky I spoke Italian. They were way nicer when they thought I might be Italian, and not American. Yet, there were some really nice people in Paris, too. All in all, I’d probably not go back to Paris. The French will really miss me, I know.

    • 21 les January 25, 2010 at 8:52 pm

      Thanks, Robin. I love reading my blog comments; I learn a lot from you guys. You all are very insightful, and express your opinions without attacking my point of view. Much better than the comments I sometimes get on FB!

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