Wednesday, September 25, 2013

The Cruz 20-Hours of Fame

Senator Ted Cruz is not Jimmy Stewart in Mr. Smith Goes To Washington. That doesn’t mean he is uneducated on the filibuster but he did prove, unlike Mr. Smith, the time he spent showboating on the Senate floor was more an exercise in building up his own political base for any future elected office he might seek and not out of some benevolent act of self-sacrifice for the public good, or even the good of his own party.

Mr. Cruz spent a tad over 20 hours on his feet attired in his Sunday best and spoke eloquently the whole time about the evils of ObamaCare, how it should be de-funded and why ultimately the entire program should be entirely scrapped. I have little disagreement over that issue and applaud him making it quite clear where 70% of the American people already stand on that particular program. That was the surface lining of his nearly day long talk but there was an underbelly that had absolutely nothing to do with ObamaCare and everything to do with who will lead and what will be the future of the Republican Party.

At the heart of Cruz’ real intent was just the opposite of what a past great Republican leader did. Cruz definitely wants an extreme right conservative GOP and remove every moderate and slightly left-of-center member from its wings. His 20 hour speech was a mainly, though veiled, call-to-arms to the extreme right-wing base of the Republican Party to wage war against itself, to make no room for the likes of a McCain or a Graham. Give no quarter to those in the middle, the moderates of the GOP and to capture with a vice-like grip the policy of the party starting in 2014 and onward.

The idol of the Republican Party, former President Ronald Reagan must be rolling over and moaning in his grave at the sight of his vastly divided Grand Old Party. Unlike Senator Cruz, then Governor Reagan, soon to be President Reagan, tore down the walls that divided the great caged Elephant. He gave the mighty beast room to grow and breath and move and expand by opening it up to all who hated the idea of an extreme left-wing liberal-led America. This meant making room for the McCains within the political spectrum and the George Herbert Walker Bush’s of the GOP as well as those more harder to the right like himself, the Goldwater Republicans and even those like today’s Cruz wing and the Libertarian quarter which today is led by Senator Rand Paul. The tent was big under Ronald Reagan and the country was greater and better off for it because it allowed for negotiations, compromise, finesse in legislative endeavor which produced results in which everyone from all sides, even the Democratic side under their House Speaker Tip O'Neill , got something they wanted while President Reagan basically got all he wanted. However, Senator Cruz of Texas, whether he would ever admit to it or not, is bound to rip the GOP apart, to destroy what this country’s greatest modern President built over his political lifetime, a strong, centered, principled and robust Republican Party. Cruz, wants his party to be a 3D printed cutout of himself and his ideology and it makes no room at all for anyone or anything that doesn’t toe his particular agenda and policy line in the sand.

I want the party of Ronald Reagan back. I hope it is possible to regain that Grand Old Party and not see it go the way of Truman and JFK’s Democratic Party that was soon eroded away after their deaths by the ultra-left wing liberal progressives that we see today with leaders like Pelosi and Reid.

If Senator Cruz and those like him have it their way there will be two diametrically opposed political parties in the United States - the Leftist-Progressive Democratic Party and the Ultra-Conservative Republican Party. There will be no room for those wishing to govern this great country from the middle, the only place where progress can be made. You will either be required to totally align with one side or the other with no room for compromise and governance and that spells nothing but disaster for the future of a truly free Constitutional America.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Throat-Cramming Time

Here we go again. The United States government is on the verge of another shutdown come October 1, 2013 if both sides of the Congressional aisle and the President cannot come to an agreement over the budget. Sounds strangely familiar because we have been here far too many times in the past. At least six times altogether.

The House of Representatives, led by the GOP has already passed a bill that would ensure the government stays open but with one caveat, the bill provides de-funding of the Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. ObamaCare.

ObamaCare is government run healthcare, better known throughout the world as socialized medicine. The Act was forced down American’s throats in the House and Senate even though the Democrats who supported it (without ever reading it) and President Obama said they were not and would never force this kind of measure down the throats of its citizens. Now, with the shutdown of the government looming large on the horizon and the American populace on the verge of being shackled by such an outcome and ObamaCare at the center of the whole issue, it is looking more and more like a force-feeding of something 70% of taxpayers say they don't want in the first place, that being ObamaCare.

Exactly what will it mean if the Democratic-controlled Senate doesn’t pass the House measure (H.J. Res. 59) and forces a shutdown of the United States government and a cramming of the Affordable Care Act down the throat of America?

The last time there was a shutdown of the Fed on this grandiose scale occurred during the Clinton Administration and it lasted a little over two weeks. It too was caused by a huge disagreement over government healthcare commonly known as HillaryCare and also how Medicare would be further funded. Federal workers from all branches of government that were not in national security strategic jobs were sent home without pay. Those forced by their job description to stay on did so without compensation. Government welfare entitlement checks ceased being sent. All members of the U.S. military and their families received no money but were required to continue serving their terms of service. Seniors will still get their social security checks but there may be delays in arrival from their normal date. Medicare payments continued but at a slower pace. Those becoming eligible for social security during a government shutdown are likely to have to wait until the government is fully up and running before applying thereby causing further delays in receiving their well-earned paid-for benefit (not entitlement). Air Traffic Control remained intact but without pay. Federal border patrol was cutback and those required to stay on did so without pay and twice the workload. During the Clinton 21 day shut down a little over 800,000 Fed workers were “laid-off,” and it laid the foundation for the beginning of the decline of the American economy that finally came to a near collapse by 2007.

Currently the U.S. economy is beginning to show a rise for the first time since 2007. The employment market is slowly showing signs of improvement, the housing market has been resuscitated from near death, the stock market is at its highest in recorded history and those who want to work are now, for the first time in six years, able to find jobs.

The Democrats in the United States Senate and a President who stated he would veto any bill that didn't include funding for his healthcare plan, are willing to throw all these hard-fought gains away and threaten sending this nation and quite possibly the world markets into the possibility of a status of no-return just to ensure that a program, ObamaCare, a program that 70% of all voting and taxpaying Americans DO NOT WANT, remains funded and pushed down their throats.

If and when this shut down occurs the political spin doctors will be out in-force trying to make the Republican-led House of Representatives the bad guys in this. Saying they caused the government to shut down, they caused your checks to stop flowing, they caused you to lose your job, they cause the economic collapse that we may never recover from again. DO NOT be fooled by the rhetoric. The House, both Republicans and Democratic Representatives, showed their true compromising and statesmen-like ability by passing a bill that ensures the government stays open and secure beyond September 30, 2013 and that the will and desire of 70% of their constituents is honored by the de-funding of The Affordable Care Act.

If the government shuts down on October 1 there is nobody to blame but the Democrats in the Senate and President Barack Obama.