Now that the GOP-led House of Representatives has tried for the fortieth time(!) to repeal or de-fund ObamaCare, members are in "recess" so they can return to their districts to "listen to their constituency" and to collect money from their collective pockets. Think I am making this up? Take a look at Representatives "recess" schedules and you will find many "meet and greets" with fundraisers scattered throughout. Anyway, back to ObamaCare. Now that Congress (again) is not working in Washington, several members are taking to their districts to convince their constituents that the number one task before them is to kill the Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act ("ObamaCare"). Does anyone really think the health care law is the number one problem facing America? Apparently, many Americans must because the House of Representatives sure seems to be making repeal their top priority. While in Ohio though, I met with a CEO of a fast-growing company only to learn that his company stands to cut its health insurance premiums in half by enrolling employees in the Exchanges created by ObamaCare. Yes, you read that correctly, saving upwards of fifty percent (50%) on health care insurance premiums by utilizing ObamaCare! But that can't be! Why not? Because folks in the Media have told Americans over and over (since 2009) that the plan (now law) is a "socialist effort creating death panels designed to destroy America's system of capitalism!" Well, you know what I mean!
Just last night as I was returning from the airport I spotted an adult with two small children waving two American flags and a sign that read, "IMPEACH OBAMA NOW!" I understand everyone has the Constitutional right to publicly protest, but what motivates someone to take two children with them and stand on an overpass of a freeway to hold signs bearing such a message? Impeach Obama? For what? I have doubts that the sign holder even has a clue that impeachment does not mean automatic removal from office, but that pushes me into another area of angst - ignorance of the basic workings of government under the Constitution. Regardless, some folks are firm in their belief that Obama is evil - even when nothing more than unsubstantiated (and often times outrageous) statements are developed and repeated to create long shadows on the man. I use the word "unsubstantiated" because it is nicer than saying "lies."
According to all polling, there are three aspects of ObamaCare most Americans like; 1. Elimination of pre-existing conditions (you all know what that means). 2. Children under the age of 26 may be maintained on their parents health plans and 3. Deductibles for wellness care are reduced or eliminated. So for the umpteenth time, if Conservatives honestly believe ObamaCare to be such a threat on our society, what alternatives are they offering instead? As of this date - NONE. Although the name "Obamacare" was initially used by Conservatives to taint the program by identifying it with Obama, the man himself has embraced the name. Yet honestly, had Obama honored the name of Ronald Reagan and called the law "ReaganCare" instead, Republicans would still dislike it. Why? Because it has become a reflexive action to object, refuse, deny, reject or disavow anything Obama proposes - even ideas that originated from Conservative think tanks. How many folks atop overpasses holding signs know that ObamaCare was originally proposed by The Heritage Foundation for introduction by Republican Senator Bob Dole as an alternative to "HillaryCare" during Clinton's presidency? I bet not many. Sad but true.
Which gets me to the next point. When the "Arab Spring" began in Libya, Republican Senators McCain and Graham made public demands that the President commit American troops in order to topple Gadhafi. When
Obama did not do so, they made public demands that something had to be done "militarily" to aid the revolution undertaken there. When President Obama ordered the military to provide "fly-overs" and air support to the rebels, other Republicans like Speaker Boehner publicly condemned Obama for committing the military without "consulting Congress" - in total violation of the War Powers Act. (Note to readers - The War Powers Act was passed over the Veto of then President Nixon and has been ignored by every President since its passage...every President).
But it does not stop there. Since the tragedy in Benghazi, Republicans and their supporting media have been trumping up the incident as a scandal "Much bigger than Watergate!" (See Mike Huckabee and his ilk). Watergate HAS to be something that really sticks in the gut of current Republicans. Even the revisionist imagery used about Reagan does not remove the stain on the American Politic like the downfall of a corrupt Richard Nixon, a Republican president. Why else would Republicans attempt to manufacture "Scandals" at every opportunity against Democrats? Are Democrats with clean hands when it comes to shady dealings and corruption? Of course not! But they pale in comparison to Watergate, no matter how hard Conservative Pundits and Talking Heads try.
Since the revelation of the NSA's widespread snooping into Americans' daily communication and activities, Conservatives are caught in a tangled web of necessity. Do they object to the "Tyrannical" use of surveillance by the Obama Administration or do they support all measures necessary to thwart any terrorist threats (the very same platform Bush used to enter us in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan/Pakistan)? Such a quandary! But now that Egypt's Arab Spring has become its "Arab Fall" Conservatives are besides themselves with what to do - except to blame Obama. As of this writing, the intelligence network has determined Al Qaeda in the Yemen region has produced a viable threat to our embassies in the region. Hence, American State Department personnel have been ordered evacuated from the region as a precaution. The Republican response? Some advocate (again) sending in US Troops. Some suggest the only reason our "enemies" are making these threats is because Obama is "Timid" and unprepared to use force when necessary (See Rick Santorum). Really? How many thousands of Muslims has Obama ordered killed with drone strikes throughout that region of the World? Obama is "timid?" What do some expect America to do? Enter and occupy every country we deem a potential threat and "control" them militarily? Somehow I think this is exactly what Bin Laden had planned for all along. Only Americans can really destroy America - and we seem determined to become as polarized politically as possible.
Which leads me to the latest in using both sides of one's mouth. Many Conservatives in the Media slammed "left-wing" groups demanding an economic boycott of sponsors of Rush Limbaugh's radio and television shows after his inappropriate references to a previously unknown Sandra Fluke as a "slut." From a March 12, 2012 article in Business Insider, Limbaugh supporters complained loudly, leading to the following analysis:
"Note the repeated theme: That somehow this is a fake scandal generated by the left, and that liberal attacks on Limbaugh are per se unfair. The problem with this angle is that it's demonstrably untrue. The scandal was generated entirely by Limbaugh's own words. What makes it especially infuriating for conservatives is that the battle has been fought using the traditional weapons of the free market: the supply and demand of dollars (advertiser dollars in this case). The irony that is driving conservatives nuts is that this isn't another Obama plot—it's capitalism working exactly the way it should. And they just can't stand it."(See businessinsider.com). So what, why raise this old news now? Because GOP National Chairman, Reince Preibus has demanded that any documentary on Hillary Clinton not be aired or else! Or else what?
It appears production companies have been considering creating documentaries on Hillary Clinton. It also appears that production companies have no script, no actors, nothing produced at all, just the proposal to create the documentary. Like many production "projects," the idea was pitched to NBC and CNN for potential development. Okay, nothing set in stone, no cast, no script - no angles on how to portray Clinton, NOTHING. What does the head of the GOP publicly demand?
"Their actions to promote Secretary Clinton are disturbing and disappointing. I hope Americans
will question the credibility of these networks and that NBC and CNN will reconsider their
partisan actions and cancel these political ads masked as unbiased entertainment. If they have
not agreed to pull this programming prior to the start of the RNC’s Summer Meeting on August 14,
I will seek a binding vote stating that the RNC will neither partner with these networks in 2016
primary debates nor sanction primary debates they sponsor."
Huh? Can you see his lips moving? Isn't it amazing how "prior restraint" of free speech suddenly is acceptable when it is being used by Conservatives? How does anyone know in advance what the production will reveal about Hillary Clinton? How do they already know the film(s) may not be more like "Hillary the Movie" of Citizens United fame?
Unfortunately, political leaders on both sides of the spectrum actively engage in hypocritical actions and statements - only now more than ever, Republicans appear more like pinballs being shot from one side of an argument to another, regardless of any foundation in truth. Impeach Obama the sign read. And then what?