Diary

A Legacy We Can Live Without

The forces of the left are now trying to argue that Senator Edward Kennedy’s death is another, new, powerful reason that we must pass H.R. 3200 (or something like it) as a tribute to the “great Senator”, or as his last great legacy, or something else equally foolish. They even want to rename the bill in his honor (something that I expected to actually happen before his death and am surprised that it didn’t happen).

If H.R. 3200 (or any other similar Democratic version of ‘health care’ reform) is to be Senator Kennedy’s legacy, then it needs to be a legacy that goes to the grave with him.

John Donne said, “No man is an island, entire of itself…any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind…” I will not debate this philosophy, but if Senator Kennedy’s death diminishes me, I am having a hard time seeing exactly how. I will lament the death of a fellow human being, but at the same time I will rejoice in his personal and permanent absence from the U.S. Senate, which should have happened long ago. America can sleep sounder since Thursday night, for she is safer now. “The Lion of the Senate” — give me a break.

I also have a hard time understanding, much less accepting, why Kennedy’s death makes a hill of beans difference in the fundamental arguments and problems that the majority of Americans have with this reform plan. Mr. Kennedy was in the Senate for nearly 46 years. If he didn’t manage to make his ‘legacy’ in that length of time, then I propose that he wasn’t effective enough to deserve having this travesty being passed as a tribute to him.

The last time the US passed legislation as a tribute to the legacy of a deceased Kennedy, we got the Civil Rights Act (good) and the Medicare Act (bad, as it has led us to where we are today). That’s 50-50 odds on the outcome of passing H.R. 3200, and since this is a health care bill, the past presents an ominous omen for the future.

Let us ridicule the notion of passing this ‘tribute’ or ‘legacy’ at each and every opportunity. And let’s certainly not pass another piece of crappy legislation to honor a political dynasty that rightfully should have been a relic of history by now.

If we want to pay tribute to the man, let’s rename a bridge for him. I hear there’s one near Chappaquiddick that’s quite appropriate. Though it probably ought to be named after someone else.

Crossposted at Rantings of a Medical Mind