Chapter II – Promises Not Kept, Hearts Broken

by The Liars' Den

 I would rather be accused of breaking precedents than breaking promises.  

– John F. Kennedy

 Much talk has been had this week following the release of Obama’s 2013 budget. Critics of the budget proposal are now pointing to the fact that Obama has broken a promise he made in 2009 to cut the deficit in half by the end of his first term. What they don’t mention is that the President’s proposal is simply a suggestion and that the actual money spent by the federal government and any federal program is ultimately determined by Congress. I don’t really feel like getting into the details of appropriations and continuing resolutions, but just want to point out the fact the budget proposed by this president, and any president for that matter, is a proposal, a recommendation, a “hey I think you should try the McRib but you can get the filet-o-fish if you really want to” type of deal.

I will be happy to point out that the Senate hasn’t passed a budget resolution in almost three years, but blame can’t simply be placed on the Dems as so often is the case when the words “senate” and “budget resolution” are spewed in the same sentence. Yes, it is true that the Senate is ultimately responsible for passing a budget, but if the “Ryan Plan” is the best that the House can do, then placing blame 100% on the Senate, and thus Democrats, is like an owner of a Toyota blaming the company for the inability of their car to fly to the moon.  In order for that to happen, then a lot of different people with different beliefs and different goals have to work together with one common goal in mind, getting a Camry into space. However, if whoever is supplying the rocket fuel doesn’t like the fact that Toyota hires unions to build their vehicles and decides all they are going to do is provide them with jell-o, then the chances of reaching the moon in a car are nil.

I apologize for my analogy as it probably makes zero sense now that it is out of my head, but the point is that the whole budget/discretionary spending vs. mandatory spending/tax this-don’t tax that/we have a spending problem not a revenue problem/everyone pay their fair share crap is all related and at this present moment it is a giant shit show that will not be solved so long as politicians on both sides are simply focused on their own careers rather than the people that provide them with their jobs in the first place.

Moving on, along with “fiscal policy” the other topic that makes my head spin is insurance. It wasn’t something I had planned on discussing today as my thoughts on it are difficult to sum up in the time period I have limited myself to for this particular post. With that said, I was on the facebook and read something that irked me. The point of the actual statement was difficult to understand, but based on previous posts of this particular individual, I gathered that the basic premise of the statement was something along the lines of “insurance (healthcare) is not a right…people who have jobs have to pay for their insurance…blah blah blah…insurance is a benefit of hard work….liberal agenda…blah blah blah…obama is the devil…. wait lists for healthcare…blah blah blah.” Let’s get something straight here; whether or not “Obamacare” or any government mandated insurance, public option, universal healthcare or anything closely associated with those ever fully comes to fruition in this country, hard work, education, stature,  pay grade or income level should have no impact whether a person lives or dies. Healthcare is and always should be a basic right. No one person has ever needed medical assistance (health “care”) and been denied entry into an emergency room.  However, people with jobs have been provided the “benefit” of better healthcare through their employment, and that so called “benefit” has proven to save a life or two for those who have it. This, while countless people who may be less fortunate than those with employer sponsored plans – for whatever reason – have been provided with the “minimum” amount of healthcare mandated by both the state and the fed, to ensure the hospital cannot be sued for negligence. Consequently, people without insurance die because they didn’t have the “benefit” of decent healthcare. Living and dying is not a “benefit.” The entire healthcare industry in this country is broken, from pharmaceutical companies to insurance companies, to companies that design and develop medical products and any other company that falls within the trillion dollar industry known as the “healthcare industry.” When profits can in any way shape or form dictate whether a human being lives or dies, then something needed to be done. If someone can live one more day or 7,650 more days because I paid an extra 5% in taxes, then so be it. Now, I do not support everything that is in the Affordable Care Act, nor do I lack the intelligence to understand that it can be improved upon so that it is more efficient and cost effective. The healthcare industry did not become broken overnight and there is no reason to expect one bill, one president, or one congress to be capable of fixing it as quickly. But, the policies mandated in the ACA is a step in the right direction.

Note: Interesting article here highlighting the gap in health insurance in correlation to income. I think it is somewhat ironic that it talks about the fact that in addition to uninsured adults “30 percent of insured adults have had to give up medical care (doctor visits, prescriptions, specialist care, and recommended tests and treatments) because of costs.” I guess I should consider myself lucky to receive the “benefit” of company sponsored health insurance that I pay into each month, yet just last month I had to choose between filling prescriptions and paying the rent.

In other news:

  • Florida Senate Reverses Stance on USF Budget Cuts; Budget to Increase 1.14 Billion, Become US(S)F – University of (SUPER) South Florida” – Wait, never mind. (TBO.com)
  • It seems those on the left as well as those on the right have their favorite polls that they often use in an attempt to justify one position over the other. However, it appears as though the pundits, and thus the pollsters, are having difficulty determining which side is right and which side is up, I mean left. Gallup, a favorite of those “progressive lefty leaning liberal media” types, published this one that was quickly picked up by those whose stated goal is for “Barack Obama to be a one term president:”

85% of Small Businesses Not Hiring. (Hot Air)

  • However, just as interesting is this poll, via Rasmussen, a typically “righty god-fearing, fiscal conservative” type, indicating this:

52% Say GOP Agenda in Congress is Extreme (Rasmussen)

Interesting indeed.

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