I have a good friend named Gerard. Being that he has lived in Canada much of his life, he often starts out on the progressive/liberal side of issues. But, being that he also lived in the U.S. much of his life, soon after thinking an issue through, he comes to his senses!
Recently, he sent me an email about the house in Obion County, TN that burned to the ground while the owner and fire department watched – because the owner had opted NOT to pay the $75 for the “Rural Fire Subscription Service” that would have protected it.
Of course, progressives and liberals are latching onto this (see Robert Creamer’s Huffington Post article) as “what’s wrong with Tea Party America” Horse puckey. Below is my heartfelt reply to my friend.
The loss of a home in Obion Country Tennessee (because the homeowner had decided not to pay his fair share for rural fire protection) WAS INDEED a bad situation (for the homeowner – not for anyone else). But – as progressive/liberals so often do – they trot out a “victim” to attempt to win an argument, hoping the tears in the victim’s eyes will blind everyone else to the stupidity of the victim’s own actions. So allow me dispassionately respond.
“The Obion County fire incident is symbolic of the moral and economic bankruptcy of the Tea-Party-Republican vision of government and the economy. And it poses the stark choice facing American voters in the Mid-Term elections.”
Yep, it sure does point out the “moral and economic bankruptcy in which we find ourselves.” Both of which can be laid right at the feet of the progressive fools who are spending the nation into oblivion.
And as to posing “stark choices”… couldn’t agree more. The Tea Party/Conservative choice: Bottom line, you are responsible for your own life. This includes making personal decisions and paying your bills. The service that the Obion homeowner decided NOT to buy was something called a “Subscription Fire Service,” not uncommon in rural areas.
The Progressive/Liberal choice: Ahhh… don’t worry about it. DON’T WORRY about buying fire protection services. DON’T WORRY about purchasing flood insurance (even though your neighbors did) – the government will step in with a taxpayer-funded “emergency bill” and bail you out if “you fall down and go boom…” DON’T WORRY about health care insurance – go ahead and spend that money on your monthly mobile phone bill. The government (by robbing your neighbors) will take care of your health care needs. DON’T WORRY about taking out a mortgage that some evil banker “hoodwinked” you into. The government (and your neighbors) will make your payments for you. Simply put: DON’T WORRY… BE HAPPY.
Competitive markets are extremely efficient at encouraging innovation, increasing productivity and distributing goods and services in many arenas. But there are other arenas where history and experience have demonstrated that it is both more efficient and more humane to provide goods and services through government — which, as Congressman Barney Frank likes to say, is the name we give to the things we have chosen to do together.”
BARNEY FRANK???? BARNEY FRANK??? They dare bring up that scandalous Congressional page-chasing windbag? The very sicko who has been overseeing the collapse of our housing and financial market for YEARS? And who now wants to point his semen-stained fingers at others? That bastard needs a hot pole up his a**.. and not one he would enjoy, either. He has NOTHING to contribute to good government. “The name we give to the things we have chosen to do together,” as Frank puts it, still is not legal in most states.
“The core difference in values between the right wing and progressives is whether we create a society where we’re all in this together, or all in this alone.”
BULL!!! Core difference: We’re either all adults here, or we’re not. We will help our neighbors, sure… but only if we think they are at least TRYING pull their own weight.
“We came to the conclusion decades ago that government should provide every child with an education, and our public schools have provided the foundation of American economic prosperity.”
Yes – the STATES provided that foundation, not the FEDS, who now think they know best and have RUINED public education with the incessant support of teacher’s unions, etc. Education was always a state and local matter… until the progressives/liberals changed things “for the better.” Government which governs closest to the people governs best. And you know what – it was a LOCAL COMMUNITY DECISION to let this guy’s house burn to the ground. I guess they knew something everyone else didn’t?
We use government to provide infrastructure necessary to support our economy — roads, bridges, harbors, airports, sewer and water systems, and street lights. We provide common parks and recreation facilities that are open to public use. Government provides for our common defense and our domestic security. We don’t require each person to hire a private army or security firm to defend his or her home. That would be stupid, wasteful and lead to anarchy.
Gee… I don’t know of anything in our federal system of government which charges the feds to “provide infrastructure necessary to support our economy.” Actually… that would, again, be local and state government’s job. (The same people who decided to let this guy’s house burn down.) The ONE THING the idiot-author DOES get right is the responsibility of the Federal Govt to “provide for the common defense.” That actually IS stated as a government precept. But progressives/libs don’t usually drag that one out… because it means WAR and the MILITARY… (ooooooo…. bad!)
Government is particularly efficient when it comes to providing social insurance — like Social Security and Medicare. The overhead for these programs is tiny compared with other insurance programs (including private health insurance plans) run by the private sector. They have covered everyone reliably and effectively for generations. That’s why they have virtually unanimous public support.
Hold on… I have to stop laughing before I choke. Social Security and Medicare are examples of GOOD programs run by the govt.? The ones with the incalculable waste and fraud? The ones that are broke? The ones that have been robbed by grubbing politicians (like Barney Frank) so they can spend the money on more important “social experiments?” And… the reason they have virtually unanimous support, you babbling idiot, is THEY HAVE BEEN BEATEN INTO US FOR DECADES AND GENERATIONS. Ask the taxpayers this question: “Would you rather ‘Social Security’ taxes paid by you and your employer be given to you so that you can make your own retirement decisions and investments?” Does the writer think people would almost unanimously shout “No! Please keep taxing us and making the money disappear!”
At long last, with the health care reform bill, America joined the company of every other industrial nation, in understanding that it is more efficient and more humane for government to assure that everyone in society has access to health care. Of course one of the signals that prompted this change was the sheer fact that private market health insurance caused our health care cost to skyrocket to 50% more per person than any other nation — with worse outcomes. Almost certainly, the Affordable Care Act is just the first step in reform, since a public option will certainly be needed to ultimately bring our spending in line with other nations. But it was a critical first step.
I really don’t know where to begin. Is it our goal to become like “every other industrial nation” in most things? Really? Think about it. Is that why immigrants in search of a better life are flooding into all of those other nations? And our private market health system is responsible for making our health care costs skyrocket? Nothing to do with government mandates regarding levels of care? Nothing to do with not being able to buy health care insurance across state lines in a truly free market, akin to auto insurance? Nothing to do with the fact that medicine keeps making miraculous advancements and we, as a people, are making increase use of those advancements (until, of course, the government steps in and says “no” to new and innovative treatments). Don’t forget – Medicare is the largest denier of claims, far surpassing any “private health care provider.” Oh, and “worse outcomes?” Yes… that’s why Americans and people the world over are always jetting off to Great Britain and Canada is search of better medical care.
The Obion county story demonstrates what happens when we forget that government – financed by common taxes — is the most efficient provider of so many goods and services.
Again… the writer is missing the point COMPLETELY. The story demonstrates what happens when individuals make dumb choices. In this case, the people of that country opted NOT to tax themselves to create a RURAL fire department. People like the guy whose home burned down was no doubt one of those who said “no, don’t tax me.” After, the yearly $75 fee was really a “voluntary tax,” and the guy opted out. The story also illustrates that progressives/libs feel they know best for everyone. I mean, really, why should a guy be able to “opt out?” Shouldn’t we have FORCED him to pay by levying a tax he had to pay under force of law? Then we could have thrown in another tax or two to do OTHER things that the stupid people don’t understand they really NEED (like social programs, school programs that teach children about Barney Frank’s wandering frank, and other things.)
It makes no economic sense to allow what is likely a multi-hundred thousand dollar home to be consumed by flames because a failure to pay a $75 fee. Now, either the insurance company or the Cranick’s will have to build a brand new home in its place. Their former home was wasted because of the absurdity of the system that had been set up to protect it.
AMEN, MR. WRITER!!! It DOESN’T make sense to allow a multi-hundred thousand dollar home to burn because a guy didn’t want to pop for $75 to protect it. And I’ll bet everyone around the guy has pointed that out to him by now. And I’ll bet the guy will pay the fee next time. And… who says this ding-dong HAS homeowner’s insurance? After all, he wouldn’t pop for $75 to protect himself. And no, the home wasn’t “wasted because of the absurdity of the system”… it was “wasted because of the idiocy of the owner.” Big difference. And yes, the Cranick’s will now have to build a brand new home… can you say “economic activity” as a result of stupidity? Government cherishes that very principle!
But let’s be clear. The people behind the “drown government in the bath tub” politics are not the kind of folks who run around in three corner hats and George Washington wigs. The Tea Party rank and file is not the principal engine of anti-government fervor. The money for the ads and the buses and the radio shows are provided by big corporations — by people like Rupert Murdoch of Fox and David and Charles Koch. The Koch brothers own virtually all of Koch Industries, a conglomerate whose annual revenues exceed a hundred billion dollars and is the second largest privately owed company in the country. The Koch’s combined fortune of thirty five billion dollars is exceeded only by those of Bill Gates and Warren Buffett.
And maybe by the fortune of George Soros, estimated between 14 and 20 Billion? (The irony is that he made his money from RISK MANAGEMENT – something this guy in Tennessee could have used a course in.) The writer’s point is that EVIL BUSINESS is behind it all…. Bwwhahaha! Burn the children! Torch the pets! The Tea-Party people are just “useful idiots” being manipulated by propangandists!
But… Could it really be that a large segment of the population DOES believe in “drowning the government in the bathtub?” You’d better believer it… Everyone knows that if you try to save a drowning man and that man soon jeopardizes YOUR life by his thrashing and other foolish action – well, you LET GO of the man and let him drown. You don’t go down with HIM. Of course, in this case, the drowning fool has a chain around your leg, and it’s attached to his own… so you’re going down if you don’t CUT IT.
In fact, the Cranicks of Obion County Tennessee are truly emblematic of the victims of the Koch brother’s vision of America. The Cranicks are victims, as are the eight million Americans who lost their jobs because of the greed and recklessness of the big Wall Street banks — because of the traders and CEO’s that ride around in corporate jets and demand that smaller and smaller quantities of their billions be taxed to pay for our common welfare. The choice we face on November 2nd is between the interests of the Cranicks and the interests of the Kochs.
Oh, would I like to DROWN THIS WRITER, and I volunteer to sit on top of him in my hot tub until no more air bubbles out of him. To say that the fools who didn’t pay their fire protection fee are “emblematic of the victims of the Koch’s and Wall Street” is beyond logic and BEYOND STUPID. Nobody stopped the Cranicks from paying their fees. Nobody forced them to make a very personal decision to roll the dice. Is someone saying that it was all due to some clerical error, and the firefighters and county were negligent? Here’s an actual quote from the “aggrieved homeowner”: “”I thought they’d come out and put it out, even if you hadn’t paid your $75, but I was wrong,” said Gene Cranick.” No sh*t, Sherlock.
And by the way – the people who decided to let their house burn to save $75? They’re just “good citizens, right?” The local news reports tell us so: “South Fulton police arrested one of Gene Cranick’s sons, Timothy Allen Cranick, on an aggravated assault charge. When officers arrived at the firehouse Wednesday, South Fulton Fire Chief David Wilds was in an ambulance receiving medical treatment.” Well, the fire chief deserved to be assaulted, right? Maybe even KILLED? I’m sure the chief’s wife and family would have agreed with that outcome…
“Hopefully the fire in Obion County, Tennessee will provide the light necessary to illuminate the true consequences of the Tea Party Republican agenda. And it may help provide the spark that is needed to help mobilize millions of Americans to vote November 2nd and reject that agenda at the polls.”
Ummm… I pray that it “provides the light” (and HEAT) to illuminate the true outcomes of pushing a responsibility free agenda to the point where people begins to believe it? THAT is the ONLY “fire” the Tea Party and others demanding personal responsibility have begun. But of course, children (whether young or adult) don’t get that whole idea.