[January 5, 2017]
Welcome to Year Zero
Just one week into the new year and Congress has put forth at least two issues (three if you count them licking their lips over the goal to de-fund Planned Parenthood) which make me question exactly who they are working for.
There was yesterday’s issue with closing the Office of Congressional Ethics under the pretense that when they are forced to indict a representative, it may cost the representative from a $1,000 to $30,000 to muster a defense.
The House Republican Conference voted Monday night to approve a change to House rules to weaken the independence of the Office of Congressional Ethicsand place it under the oversight of the House Ethics Committee, a panel controlled by party leaders.
Later in the day, a rebuttal from Donald Trump’s Twitter account (which in my opinion was uncharacteristically literate, and thus unlikely to have been the @realDonaldTrump) indicating this might not be the right time for this kind of effort.
On January 5, 2017, the Congress decided to vote on repealing the Affordable Care Act also known as Obamacare, and the Senate passed the vote 51 to 48.
Why or how this was arrived at is anyone’s guess. While there are four steps in their process, I am put in mind of South Park’s Underpants Gnomes and their excellent business acumen.
As I sit and try to understand their four-part plan for repealing Obamacare, I still hear an amazing lack of a plan for what will replace Obamacare for the MILLIONS upon MILLIONS upon MILLIONS of people (did I say MILLIONS?) who will go back to not having health insurance.
Who will go back to not being able to be insured despite having a pre-existing condition;
Who will go back to getting sicker longer, because they can’t afford to go to a doctor;
Who will cost hospitals more, far more, by showing up in emergency rooms with bronchitis and pneumonia and other expensive diseases with even more expensive treatments, rather than going to a clinic at the first sign of a cold.
Who will have children who would have been covered by their parents plans now showing up in emergency rooms for ANY kind of treatment when the parents simply don’t have any insurance because they work two or three part-time jobs with no health benefits.
The sickest Americans will simply be unable to afford healthcare and die.
Perhaps that’s the plan.
We’ll be too busy dying to notice the government malfeasance going on.
For all intents and purposes, this has as much positive economic value as the Underpants Gnomes plans for world domination. It doesn’t appear any humanity or thought for the well-being of others was used to consider the ramifications of taking 20 million people away from health insurance, putting them back in the hands of an industry which is only too happy to drive down the value of the services they provide while astronomically increasing the costs again. An industry with the richest CEOs in the nation chomping at the bit to get richer.
In an era where technology is replacing workers, dollars are stretched ever thinner, people are working more jobs for less pay, kids are basically raising themselves, education is as expensive as it has ever been and yet the price is STILL rising, opportunities are diminishing in terms of places you can work, places who will hire you and careers you went to school for that no longer exist in this country and the most important things the Congress can think of is repealing Obamacare because of some racist bullshit concepts like invalidating his presidency.
The US is balanced on an emotional razor’s edge with economic disparity at an all-time high and the Congress’ pending solution are to:
- Take away Medicare, Medicaid, and replacing them with a voucher system for people who are often the sickest and most in need of care but having the smallest economic footprint in our society. The old in this nation are poor and sick and this plan can’t possibly improve their condition.
- Delay paying out Social Security for people today, completely doing away with it for anyone under 35, after all, who needs Social Security? Let the old work until they can’t work any more and then put them in state-mandated private facilities run by corporate agencies providing the lowest possible quality of care driven primarily by Profit.
- De-fund Planned Parenthood: They are in the process of doing this right now. Don’t blink, you might have already missed it.
- Overturning Roe vs Wade (oh it’s next, I can set my watch by it). All they need to do is put someone in the Supreme Court, the same way they prevented Obama from doing the same for no reason other than they wanted the opportunity to overturn Roe vs. Wade and anything else that offends their conservative (read that as rapacious, control-freakish natures keeping women, minorities and anyone else White men need dominance over) ideals operating to benefit them first and foremost.
- Provide tax incentives which will help the wealthy keep more of their money in their pockets while taking away tax incentives which helped lower-income families offset the bite of the tax season.
Let it be said by me, right here:
- Yes, you made more money. You should pay more in taxes. This means you may not be able to afford that thirtieth Lamborghini or your seventh personal jet — one for each major land mass — but you will get over it.
- You should not have a such a low ceiling on your social security payment. Raising the ceiling for social security would make it capable of doubling its already considerable lifespan to nearly a hundred years without appreciable retooling.
- You should not be able to keep your money in foreign banks to avoid paying taxes.
- You should be paying MORE in taxes. Why? You made more. Seems simple enough. Even when you pay more you notice it less. You simply have more money than you will EVER spend (if you aren’t buying more Lamborghinis than you can sit in at one time, at any rate.)
- Why? Because if you weren’t speculating with your money in random schemes to grow even richer, you would never see the bottom of your bank accounts and the society you live in which makes it possible for you to be fabulously wealthy would not be dying all around you, economic implosions taking place with alarming frequency, queuing up one after another, with people preparing to consider an age old expression: Eat the Rich.
Eat the Rich: is an abbreviation of a saying attributed to Jean-Jacques Rousseau: When the people shall have nothing more to eat, they will eat the rich. See Also: French Revolution (fascinating reading)
Getting rid of healthcare for millions of people and replacing it with an anemic voucher program designed to ensure insurance companies make a killing every time you get sick, while the Antibiotic Age draws to a close, meaning you can sick and die from an infection you get at the gym trying to stay healthy so you don’t need the healthcare you no longer can afford because your part-time job no longer has healthcare since it replaced most of the workers with robots.
Yes, this is exactly what government is for. To FUCK over its constituents until the nation is vulnerable enough for a foreign power to want to go to war with us…bolstering military contractors (who are all in the pocket of the government…)
What a sick cycle this appears to be.
I have yet to hear any alternative to what’s being done except to stock up on KY, recite the Pledge of Allegiance, and watch the Grand Old Party fuck the little guy every which way he can.
Remember, poverty is a weapon.
This article was originally published on the author’s Medium blog and is republished here with his permission.
Photo credit: Getty Images