Obama and Kharsai: “Pot Calling Kettle Black”?

Sunday, March 28, 2010

I first started this article a couple months ago, but didn’t post it thinking that I would expound upon my thoughts; but even today, it’s relevant.  So, here goes. 

Not too long ago, Obama made a “surprise” visit to Afghanistan to meet with Hamid Kharsai.  It was also reported that Kharsai was told that he MUST (and the emphasis here is mine, although apparently it is the underlying purposed of the visit), MUST do more clean up the corruption in the Kharsai government.  The old saying of “the pot calling the kettle black” came instantly to mind.  If you don’t like old clichés, then here’s a better descriptor:  Hypocrisy.

Here is an example of a “leader” who builds a regime of corruption by implanting and empowering czars to run his government while saying that another leader must clean up the corruption in their government.  For example, Obama’s czars are neither confirmed by Congress nor elected by the people, and as a general rule, have never experienced leadership in any type of major business, capitalistic venture, or industrial enterprise.  However, Obama’s czars now literally have control over large portions of the nation’s economy (the automobile industry, banking industry, etc.) – let’s not mention how the affectation of their decisions have far-reaching implications, impacting  the daily lives of ordinary individuals.  In fact, Obama recently put 15 more people into important positions while Congress was on a 2-week spring break, blaming the GOP for the timing of his actions.  How absurd is that?  These positions were not so critical to the function of the government that they could not be put off two more weeks for Congress to have the opportunity to at least put on their “show” of Congressional investigation prior to affirmation.  He just circumvented “the old system” with his new one. 

So, how is this different from some of the shenanigans that are done in countries like Afghanistan or Venezuela or Russia or, for that matter, any other country where there is supposed to be some form of democratic practices –  if only in theory?  Rather than standing apart, being ” a light in a dark world”, being an example to be followed as the US once was, the Omabanation (AKA, the USA) has made enormous steps toward blending in with countries led by thugs, vandals, and despots. 

How is being just like other countries that suppress the wishes of the majority of its people a good thing?  Who will now be able to hold up a standard against corruption in those countries, or in this one?  It will all be the same modus operandi, only now known by different monikers, depending upon which country and which leader.  The difference used to be that in this country was the standard-bearer with checks and balances to help limit corruption in its government.  However, this administration has made its own brand of corruption the standard from which to perpetuate their “change” while trying to persuade others to conform – but conform to what, the US form of corruption?  A rose by any other name!

So, will all this said,  and with obvious corruption in his own administration, how can Obama in any form of conscience make demands on the Kharsai regime?  There’s another quote that comes to mind:  “How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take the speck out of your eye’, when you fail to see the plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” 

While the US is in an obvious downward spiral, morally and ethically speaking (with the corruption which now is more blatant and commonplace at the highest levels of our government), and with places like Afghanistan and others are being touted as “supposedly” on an upward trend (though we’ve seen no difference in their behaviors), will that mean, again ethically and morally speaking, that our countries will meet somewhere in the middle?   If so, the US loses big.  Why?  Because the US will no longer be the “example” that other countries have looked up to.  Where the US once was the country who led the world by example, they now will be “eye to eye” on a lower plane – down in the muck and mire with corrupted countries. 

So, there you have my take on it.  Simply stated, Obama is trying his best to lower the prestige and moral strength of this country while trying to compel other countries – who, by the way, don’t respect his leadership – to behave according to his set of standards for behavior.  He suggests that the US should lower its “standards” and compel others to “meet us halfway.”   Thousands of years of history tells us that this won’t happen.  So, who really comes out ahead in this situation? 

In my opinion, as far as the US is concerned, mediocrity is not a good thing.  NOT A GOOD THING AT ALL!


More on the Healthcare Issue…

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Just a thought here:  Let’s say that the House and Senate can come up with a single plan and it goes to Obama and he signs it – with or without the public option.  How much do you think that Congress can change that healthcare program between now and 2013 when it actually takes effect?  The thought is more than I can comprehend just based on the “mind-boggling” actions Congress has done in passing these huge deficit inducing bills over the past year.

Right now there really isn’t a single healthcare plan.  There are at least five proposals out there right now.  Some pet aspects from each of the versions will have to be cut when they put the different versions together – but they will not be forgotten.  So, you could expect “disgruntled” Democrats to come back time and again to get those added to whatever version gets passed into law.  This scenario is not so far fetched with the healthcare plan that is being shoved through our Congress right now and given how much debate is going on – even within parties.   However, none of the proposed plans will contain the crucial elements that most Americans are adamant about – those being tort reform, capping drug and insurance costs, and cutting waste in Medicaid and Medicare. 

No one is saying that malpractice shouldn’t be litigated, but there should be some restrictions in place in such a way as to what constitutes frivolous lawsuits, time limits for litigation should also be shortened, and there should be caps placed on the awards.  Drug companies should not be allowed to rob US citizens in favor of citizens of other countries to make their businesses profitable.  The insurance companies should also be held accountable for running premiums costs up just to increase their bottom line.  Waste in the administration of Medicare and Medicaid and fraudulent claims should be addressed and dealt with, too.  And you know what?  If these things were added to the legislation, that would be real healthcare reform!

Cadillac Insurance Could Apply to Anyone Who Presently Has Insurance

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Okay, I’m being facetious, but as I discussed before, a Cadillac insurance plan is usually described as a high premium policy. Generally speaking, that means an insurance plan that is expensive coverage, usually defined by the total cost of the insurance premiums, rather than what coverage the patient actually gets. Let’s say some poor Joe was able to get healthcare coverage even with a pre-existing and had astronomically high premiums. Voila! He’d be in the Cadillac insurance category! How fair is that?

I have heard one individual say that it depended upon what type of coverage you had; in other words, if you had insurance that covered dental and vision, that could be considered a Cadillac insurance plan.

When I was younger, I had insurance coverage based upon what I could afford to pay out of pocket in premiums, co-pays and deductibles. And it was sort of a balancing act between out of pocket expenses and how much coverage I could get. Just getting started in life, I didn’t have a much extra cash on hand to pay for the occasional drugs and doctor visits and I certainly didn’t have anything that I could save since I was just starting out. So, I had to have low deductibles and co-pays. I could also opt for a policy that would pay a higher percentage of the healthcare cost in the event of hospital visits, etc. – if I could afford it in the additional premium cost. Of course, all that meant was my payroll deducted premium would be somewhat higher than average. So, I guess I had a “Cadillac” policy and didn’t know it.

So, just who is it that have these Cadillac plans in the government’s estimation? Getting a straight and definitive answer is about the same as asking them if they can say with certainty what is and what is not included in the healthcare bills from the House and Senate… all five versions apparently say different things. And who the heck really knows since they’re not reading the darn things???

Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., chairman of the Finance Committee, had set the threshold for most people at $8,000 in annual premiums for an individual and $21,000 for a family. However, the estimate is that only 2 or 3 percent of covered workers and families would hit that benchmark, so there are clearly not going to be enough people to “rob from” through taxes to cover the 40-some-odd million people who supposedly don’t have any coverage. In fact, the Baucus plan still leaves about 15 million without coverage.

So, besides taxing the very tiny percentage of people who fall into the rich category and robbing $500B from the old folks’ Medicare Advantage plan (for which they pay extra to have!), there hasn’t been any other revelation as to how this healthcare reform is going to be (1) deficit neutral and (2) not increase taxes on the middle and lower income people.

That presents a major problem. So, just how will the politicians decide what constitutes a Cadillac insurance plan? Oh, that’s easy. They’re going to review the majority of the plans that the 90% of Americans have now. They’re going to determine the average coverage and then determine that anything above that average will be considered the “Cadillac”.

As mentioned before, the BaucuSCARE bill isn’t going to cover everyone. They’re still saying that 15 million or more will not be covered. So, the arbitrary number of the 47 million, which had dropped down to something in the high 30 millions (you can just pick any huge number) only about half of them will be covered under his plan. How is that so much better than what we have now? We will still have the lawyers skinning doctors and drug companies alive. We will still have drug companies gouging US citizens while practically giving drugs to other countries for pennies on the dollar. We will still have the Medicare and Medicaid fraud and abuse…. all of which will remain under HR3200 AND the Baucus’ bill  AND the Reid bill, as well as any of the others, I’m sure. So, ALL of the problems that exist with our current US healthcare system we’ll just carry over to the next healthcare system, and for the switch we’ll have less quality care, increased taxes and insurance premiums, but add 15 million “to the rolls” who are basically getting free medical care now…. just check any hospital emergency room!

The other thing of great concern is the fact that when the new healthcare reform act is passed and signed by the president, the changes will not take effect immediately. Paying for the plan will begin immediately, but the actual plan itself will not be implemented until 2013. That means that we will be paying for a healthcare plan over three years before we can utilize its benefits. (Why don’t I go buy a real Cadillac right now on a ten-year loan and wait for them to deliver it to me in three years. How smart is that?)

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released a report last week which claimed the Baucus bill would not add to the national deficit. This was the “plain speak” version not the “political-speak” one with all the confusion – I mean – all the details, either! But this report assumes that those employers who had previously provided healthcare coverage for their employers and who might drop employee coverage in favor of the less costly non-coverage tax penalty as provided under the Baucus bill would increase their worker paychecks by an equal amount which they spent on the insurance coverage. (I’m not sure if this would be less the penalty the employers would have to pay!) This practice will take a nontaxable event for the employer (the health care provision) and replace it with a taxable one (employee wages). Proponents of the bill say this will produce $83 billion in government revenues. If this revenue doesn’t come into the coffers, then the Baucus bill will add billions of dollars to the federal deficit in the next ten years.

So I’m asking, why would a company drop employee coverage just so it could pay more (in fines, taxes, and wages) than it did before? Seems more likely they’d just drop the expensive insurance, pay the fine, and let the insurance part go! Sounds more logical, doesn’t it?

Overall, it would be much more effective and much less expensive if politicians would just address the problems that presently exist in our current healthcare system rather than building a whole new system around those problems. It’s like building a new house on a crumbling foundation. And that is exactly what the American people are trying to tell Congress – only they’re not listening.

All I can say is any Democrat who supports any final bill of this type should be and will be held responsible for this healthcare mess when premiums rise, taxes increase, deficits skyrocket, and Big Government’s power grab reaches farther and farther into the American’s wallets and way of life.

Obama Looks for Healthcare Breakthrough

Monday, September 21, 2009

It still is amazing to me how totally out of touch with the American people our elected officials in Washington are.  It is as if the town hall events which took place during August and the huge numbers of protesters who marched in Washington in September just didn’t exist to them.  It’s as if there weren’t major poll results on critical issues that document people’s opinions which are opposing the proposed healthcare and expressing grave concern about the budget deficit.  (Check out Rasmussen’s latest polls at http://tinyurl.com/ly4hb3.)

But the Obama administration and Congress are not recognizing the validity of the voices of the majority of Americans who have said “No” to Obamacare.  It’s obvious that Obama hasn’t heard the people. This fact was evidenced in the content of his media blitz this past Sunday.  In spite of losing ground in the healthcare debate, President Barack is pushing even harder for his reform by appearing on five major networks in one day, spouting much of the same rhetoric as he has all along. In one of the interviews, Obama said that his message is sometimes not “breaking through.”  He said, “I think there have been times where I have said, ’I’ve got to step up my game in terms of talking to the American people about issues like health care.’” 

Well, his position on healthcare reform been stated many times, and in many ways – sometimes with public option and sometimes with government run co-ops instead.  Congress doesn’t appear to be listening either.  Well, that’s not exactly accurate.  Nancy Pelosi seems to have heard something – even if they are the old voices in her head from the past!  But the American people are informed.  They have read the information for themselves in the HR3200 and Baucus bills.  The result is they just don’t want it. 

When Obama was asked by the interviewer if he had lost control of the health debate, Obama said, “Well, not so much lost control, but where I’ve said to myself, somehow I’m not breaking through.”  Oh, no!  I think he’s wrong.  I believe he got through alright – months ago! The American people have heard, and the American people have been speaking.  His message has been rejected.  But he isn’t listening – to the people! 

Further, he doesn’t want to hear.  He and his minions have their own agendas they are going to push through regardless of what the masses say.  And, yes, they are playing the game of politics, and it’s well known that Democrats own the ball, bat, gloves, and they are even threatening to inappropriately apply obscure rules so they can “win” the game while ignoring the voices of any opposition.

The mandate to the President comes from the people; the President and Congress are not supposed to mandate what the people should do or have.  That isn’t constitutional; it’s not democratic.  It sounds more like the foundation for a dictatorship (especially when people who are not elected or constitutionally vetted are given policy making powers, but that’s another topic).  

But apparently people-mandate isn’t the way this group in Washington operates.  They all still appear to be going on with their business as usual, pushing their agendas through with no regard to the majority of the American people who have made their positions abundantly clear. 

If I’m wrong, then I guess I obtained a skewed understanding of how things are supposed to work or was incorrectly taught during my government-run education, but I believe that when the American people speak, whether in town hall meetings or in protest rallies or express their opinions in polls, it’s the responsibility of their elected representatives to listen.  And in a democracy the majority is supposed to prevail. All of our elected officials are supposed to listen to the majority voice of the people – and our “elected officials” means the House, the Senate, and the President!

Tea Party – We Will Be Heard

Monday, September 7, 2009

Contrary to what liberals are saying about the “Tea Party” idea, the Tea Party rallies are events where genuinely concerned people can come together to express their frustration over excessive government spending, government takeover of private corporations, pervasive governmental intrusion into our very lives, and where they can demonstrate a genuine concern over the challenges to some of our individual freedoms.  And make no mistake, the people are “conservatives” who are Democrats, Independents, Republicans, and non-committed to any political party and from several racial backgrounds as well.

The Tea Party rally I just attended had quite a crowd for a small state; I’d estimate it was close to 1,500 people.  I spent an hour and a half reading all the handmade signs and t-shirts that I could.  No one wore swastikas, no signs had a singe racial slur, and nothing was hateful.  Instead, I saw signs that said things like “I fought for my country once, and I’ll do it again!”  “I’ve seen your change, now change it back.”  “No Obamacare.”  “Haste Makes Waste”  “Term Limits Now!” “Stop spending my grandchildren’s money.” “Silent Majority – No Longer Silent”.  Some were catchy like “I’m an anti-socialist” or “Astroturf made in [name of state]; Anger manufactured in Washington” and other signs expressing their desire for responsible spending, imposing term limits on Congress, the requirement of the teaching of the Constitution in public schools, as well as for Congress and the President to return to the Constitution as the ultimate guide writing and applying all laws.

All pretty innocuous, I’d say.  But regardless of what was printed on their signs or shirts, their belief in their Constitutional rights to be heard is what brought them all to one central place to make a statement.  And if I were to boil it all down to a few simple statements, it would be these:  President Obama, we don’t like path to socialism you have us going down and we are determined to go no further.  Congress, since you work for us, we demand you listen to us.  Preserve our individual freedoms now! 

Obviously, since we elected our US Representatives and Senators to represent us (their home states) in Washington DC, it is natural for us to expect them to listen to us whether they are at home or when we contact their Washington offices, and then to express our wishes on the floor of the House and Senate or in committee meetings and to protect our interests.  Unfortunately, many of them have truly forgotten that. Here’s a prime example of that:


So, there you have it. Their constituents have become a vehicle to get elected, to gain power, and then they are no longer necessary because “everybody knows that it’s hard to get an incumbent out of office.” Perhaps that cliché’ has long past. Ya think? We shall see. We shall see.

But in Washington, here’s what is happening. Our representatives are hearing some things from their colleagues that they think has merit (or is a good deal that they can get in on or that they can line their pockets with or trade favors for), they conduct “legislative swap-meets”, in order to gain support on issues that would profit them in some way. It’s has become abundantly apparent that in Washington DC, and specifically in the halls of Congress, it’s all about special interests groups, or how much money and favors change hands in order to get certain legislation passed, how it is going to benefit their own personal wealth, or give them position and/or power on committees, and so on. If you don’t believe that’s what it’s all about, just look at how many lobbyists there are there in DC!

An example of what goes on might look something like this: If you help me get this bill passed, I’ll support you in getting that widget manufacturing company to locate in your state and the company will pay out a bonus of a gazillion dollars which we will split. Or, if you help me get this legislation passed, I’ll see that you get on such and such committee. But it starts back home. State legislators vote to lower taxes or give tax breaks/credits or make other conciliatory arrangements to lure business to their state. That brings jobs – a good thing – and it brings revenue in taxes – not a bad thing – but most importantly from a Tea Party perspective is the backroom dealings that go on that ultimately line the pockets of politicians who are sponsoring that company’s relocation – a bad thing! There is corruption at every level of government beginning even in municipal government.

It is imperative that House and Senate members remember that they are sent Washington with a mandate from their voters, and should not come back home to lecture their constituents on what they have doing in Washington “for their good”. Who, in the world, gave them the idea that they would get some epiphany while in Washington, that the socialistic ideas of a particular group of people, or the special interests of certain lobbyists would be best for their people back home?

Do they believe these conservatives from all political backgrounds are so stupid as to not know what has been going on for years and years on end? No, I don’t think that’s it – at least all of it. Rather, I think that they know that we were lulled into lethargy, perhaps feeling that we couldn’t do anything to change the system – a feeling of hopelessness and oftentimes despair.

But those of us who are attending these Tea Parties do know what’s going on, we have become well informed, and we have grown extremely tired of politics as usual, and we’re not going to sit quietly by and let the erosion of our freedoms continue any more. We’re going to start at ground zero and make a difference. We are going to “get in their faces”, if necessary, and remind all of our elected officials that they work on our behalf, that we elected them to do a job for us. It is not their job to take office so they could barter and trade their votes on programs and policies and to line their pockets. They need to be reminded that people who elected them want to what they were mandated to do, to protect their Constitutional rights, to protect their interests and to represent them before the House and Senate. We certainly did not send our legislators to change the Constitution, to gain personal wealth while relieving us of our own, or to convert this nation to socialism or fascism or communism.

We Tea Party goers value our freedoms, we value free enterprise, and we value the system that allowed a bi-racial kid to rise to the rank of President of the United States without the benefit of wealth or birthright. That is what needs to be stressed — how, under the freedoms that are afforded to the American people under the US Constitution, that can happen for anyone born under those liberties that we have enjoyed for over 200 years. Abraham Lincoln used to be our example for a poor, self-educated person’s ability to become the leader of the free world. But today, we have a modern day model who had humble beginnings, managed to get a good education, and run and ascend to the highest office in the land. And in regard to Obama’s School Speech to be delivered on Tuesday, that is all the politics that needs to be shared with elementary students.

But this same President seems intent on bringing us as quickly as possible to socialism. At every turn, he stresses socialistic policy where the hardest workers are required to share with those who don’t put forth equal effort, or won’t work at all. I’m not talking about people who cannot work. There are government programs (though improperly run) and charities in existence to assist those with their needs. But to say that if we work very hard and make a very good living and provide a comfortable life for our families, that we will be penalized by having to dole out part of our means to others do don’t put forth equal effort. Or if we start a business and it finally becomes successful, that we’ll have to pay a high tax level which will be diverted to the poor (if it really ever reaches them). That only encourages lazy, non-productive individuals who are content to just “exist” to sit back with hands out. It discourages those like Obama with humble beginnings to reach for a higher plateau than they were born to. And there are lots of people out there that don’t have any drive or ambition in life.

So, Tea Parties are popping up with a unified agenda to do whatever they can peacefully and lawfully to protect our Constitutional rights to enjoy life, liberty, and to pursue happiness. They’re people who are simply concerned citizens, concerned over what they see happening to their country. Some are “wealthy” small business people, but most are middle class, blue-collar workers who have worked very hard for years and years to get to some level of comfortable living and who pay their fair share of taxes. Most of them have never been political before, never made a public stance on any issue, but they have now come together to form a coalition of grassroots patriots who will be a force to be reckoned in 2010 and 2012 and thereafter.

What they believe and what they’re feeling – what’s motivating them is captured in The Tea Party Anthem. Enjoy!


What’s Good For The Goose…

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Representative Charles Rangel (D), the House Ways and Means Committee chairman — you know, the committee that writes the tax laws — well, he owes a lot of money in back taxes, but he is now wanting to impose “double penalties” on the rest of us even if we make honest mistakes.

Somehow, he conveniently didn’t report rental income from his vacation home he’s owned in the Caribbean since 1988. He has now disclosed $75,000 in income over the past five years only, but what about those other years? His excuse for failure to pay his fair share on this income was: “While over the years I delegated to my staff the completion of my annual House financial disclosure statements, I had the ultimate responsibility.” Ya think?

But there’s more discrepancies in Mr. Rangel’s income reporting. Seems he, or someone else, found somewhere between a half million and three-quarters of a million dollars tucked away in a checking account. Hmmm? That’s not easy to forget about since you get monthly statements on this type of account, right? DOH! So he’s now disclosed some of these “mistakes”, but has he adjusted his income and revised his tax return and paid any additional taxes that were due, not to mention the penalties?

Wait, that’s not all. There are some questions about nondisclosure of his sizable investments in JP Morgan, Merrill Lynch, Oppenheimer and BlackRock. WHAT? And what about not paying property taxes on a couple lots he owns in New Jersey that have been valued at “as much as” $15,000 each. Where can you buy land anywhere in the northeast at that price? Really, I’d like to know.

So, Mr. Rangel wants to punish you with double penalties for not paying all your taxes, even if there was an honest mistake made. And guess what, he’s trying to get that clause slipped into the healthcare bill. Give me a break! Give us all a break! Everything gets back to that albatross healthcare bill, doesn’t it?

I guess that’s because this healthcare bill is so complex, no one would notice. You think? And since we already know members of Congress have a Golden Parachute in regards to their own healthcare and they won’t be affected by this bill, perhaps the new IRS penalties wouldn’t either?

Under the Congress’s healthcare plan, they have full coverage and no out of pocket expenses. Yet, they are wanting the rest of us to have this healthcare plan that, when restructured according to their imposed guidelines, will produce reduced care quality. Never mind philosophically, just logistically, that’s true. You cannot provide the same quality health care we presently are getting to the majority of people when you add 45, 46, 47 million people (depending on which politician you listen to). There aren’t enough doctors available. The daily calendars of doctors are already triple booked, as you can attest to by your long waits already. It stands to reason that you can’t force that many more people into the system without additinonal doctors. Ah — but I digress. Sorry.

As questions about Representative Rangel’s tax indiscretions was coming to light, Republican Congressional leaders called for him to be replaced as chairman of Ways and Means saying that Mr. Rangel’s tax indiscretions had grown to the point where he “cannot effectively carry out his duties as chairman.”

In a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D), Rep. John Boehner (R), the House Minority leader, wrote, “You, as the speaker of the House, must insist that Representative Rangel step down from his Ways and Means chairmanship pending an investigation of his ethical lapses.” Her response through a spokesperson was, “The American people would be better served if Republicans would stop playing politics and allow the bipartisan ethics committee to do its job.” Well, I’d like to see them actually do their job! Perhaps they’re impeded by their own unethical behaviors or perhaps they’re indentured in some way to their own parties. Whatever the issues may be, it takes an enormous amount of time to act against a member of the House, the resulting penalties for offense have generally amounted to a slap on the wrist or a censure. OUCH! That hurts, right? And the IRS doesn’t even seize their assets.

And let’s not forget that there’s plenty of Senators that need to be investigated and properly reprimanded as well. Unethical behavior is not occurring in just one party; it’s both. Both the Senate and the House of Representatives have their share of offenders and they need to be held accountable. They have got to realize that they are not above the laws that they have imposed on the country at large.

So, I’m declaring that Congress has got to be reigned in. Let me reiterate that. Congress has got to be reigned in and held accountable. They have gotten so far out there that they aren’t even orbiting the rest of us. They must be made to realize that they are not immune to prosecution for violations of the very laws they have written and enacted.

You know what? Congress works for us, the people. They really do. And most of them, because of having held office so long, have forgotten that. So, it’s no wonder they feel as if they can write their “own ticket”. They have learned how to fly just under the radar as they build wealth and political power. They get in bed with lobbiests. They barter their votes…. our votes…. for political gain. It’s just wrong. It’s all wrong. It’s really unethical behavior all around. We must demand that they represent us and not the interests of lobbyists or their colleagues. Why are we allowing this behavior to continue?

Besides our own complacency, what gives Congressional members who violate the very laws they enacted immunity against prosecution? What gives them a lesser penalty than what we would be charged? In regards to these issues like Rangel’s, it is up to us to get tough on Congress and demand that they adhere to these laws that they are imposing on us? All the laws. And if they don’t, we need to make sure that the Ethics Committee will follow through with appropriate action. We all should be held responsible for our own actions and face the consequences for our irresponsible behavior. No one, regardless of who they are and what position they hold should get a free pass. This preferential treatment given to office holders in Washington, DC has got to stop! This has got to stop – now!

America Has a Long-Term Memory Problem

Thursday, August 6, 2009
In regard to making a change in the politics of our country, there is something that bugs me about Americans. And that is they like to whine about situations… nothing more, just whine! Whichever party is in power, everything is their fault.

But what that really bugs me is that people have such short memories when it comes to following up at election time. Oh, they get upset or angry in the moment and threaten to make a difference when the time comes to “vote the bums out” — but do they follow through with their threats? Never! Rather, they get wrapped up emotionally in the most current issue(s) of the moment when making their decisions, forgetting that these issues which have been brought to the forefront at that particular moment are only a portion of the greater problem. And most often, it’s the same issues that have been with us since the early days of our country.

Why do we not follow through? Is it because we’re a “forgiving” nation? I’m all for being forgiving, but I personally adhere to the saying, “Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.” So, I forgive…. but I don’t forget. Or, could it be that we just expect people in Congress to change? Perhaps it’s both. Will people actually change? Well, no they won’t. They adjust or re-adjust, but they don’t change. And if they’re left alone out of the spotlight, so to speak, and are shielded for a while from the pressures that predicated the adjustments, they regress. So, since this is the pattern of human nature, we need to become mindful that making a difference in our politics requires being determined to follow through when the time comes to exercise our only avenue for change. Let’s not be hoodwinked by sweet, but empty promises, a winning smile, or eloquent speeches.

Soon, some of us will have an opportunity to have our say when we cast ballots next year in local elections. It will be a time for actions to line up with words. It will be a time to be heard. It will be a chance to create a real change for this nation. That is, if we will remember to follow through.

If we cannot get a law through to limit terms for our elected officials, our votes can limit them. Vote those out of office who are not listening to the wishes of the people they represent. Vote those out of office who sell their votes to gain favors for their own benefit. Vote those out of office who vote along party lines because of a party label only. To make the difference, to get the kind of change we really want in our country, we must begin requiring our senators and congressmen to actually represent us and our best interests and not special interests of a small group of people or organizations or face us at the ballot box.

So, put up or shut up! When the time comes to make your voice heard, don’t let the issues of the moment cause you to whine and complain and forget what it is you must do to begin to change the situation we are finding our country is in. Don’t vote based on personality or looks, or God forbid— just because of a political party label….follow through and vote the bums out!