Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Smack Down, Smack Back

Friends and I were sharing some hilarity on Facebook during the presidential debate last night and enjoying some special glee when Obama retorted to Romney's proposal to add an additional (unasked for) $2 trillion on the military that, "We have these things called air craft carriers, where planes land on `em."  I posted, "We have this thing called ELECTRICITY, Governor" to the general chuckles of my lefty pals who were snickering with me.

I posted on a public place so of course my comments are open to criticism.  But boy, was I stunned to find this response this morning:

Yeah. It's made from coal & oil. A whopping 12% from "green" sources. Divorce Pakistan? Nah, divorce O'blahblah. Building the military makes jobs. You remember what a job is, right? Not as adjunct, but with benefits & tenure. The cave as you call it must not have good reception. The dogs can't make political discussions. Might want to go grab a bite to eat somewhere that has cable TV. O'blahblah repeated almost verbatim everything Romney said. Oh, and by the way, on the military--Marines still use bayonets. Looks like your boy's rhetoric smacked down, allright. O'blahblah was petulant--almost childish. He smacked himself by being out of touch with the practice of the men he's supposed to be "in command" of. Romney at 52%, O'blahblah at 45%. Rasmussen. History dictates that no candidate up by more than 50% this late in Oct has ever lost. *little shrugs* Hm! BTW, does walking dogs require taxes be filed, or would that make you one of the 47% Miiittenns was talking about? I like the name "Mittens." It fits: Simple, straightforward, strong, warm and effective.

I don't know this writer except that we both play Cityville together.  My profile page has seen lots of political controversy in the last few months and I know I've argued with this writer more than once -- but I don't think I attacked her personally.  A dear friend from childhood is a well-informed neo-con with whom I take umbrage on a regular basis but she is also interested in the peanut butter cookie recipe I used to make my father's birthday present.  She refers to instances from her life in her argument as I do mine.  The ire behind this response, however, is seething.

We are all seething.

This is the zeitgeist and I feel I need to respond to her and other conservatives who look at me and shake their heads at the enemy.

Yes, Virginia, I have cable.  I work and I pay taxes, to the tune of 33% a year.  I do not have children so the taxes I pay toward education do not directly benefit me.  I own nothing so I have no tax loop holes.  I do not receive food stamps or medicaid.  I also pay sales taxes, taxes on my cable connection and cell phone, electricity and air flights.  Et cetera.

I'm not part of the 47% but I'm a taker because I have collected unemployment twice in my life and worker's compensation once.  I also use traffic lights, subways, streets, libraries, PBS, NPR, Homeland screening at airports, etc.  I went to a public high school, a public university and a private graduate school that receives prodigious federal funding.  

refuse to be shamed by the fact that I work in nontraditional jobs that require a degree of personal enterprise and complete self-discipline (i.e., if I don't walk a dog, it doesn't get walked by someone else and I don't get paid: I'm not claiming to be the world's most disciplined person by far!)

I've written two books that have, I believe, helped people understand their relationships with/around food better and reassured them that they are not alone, not freaks, not even very weird.  I may have even helped a lot of people.  I'm proud of that.

Polls are polls.  If Romney wins it doesn't mean he's the better man.  It doesn't make me a loser if I back a loser.  It just means a LOT OF PEOPLE ARE GOING TO DIE.

Medicare and Medicaid will be left to individual state governments, many of which have such records of grift and nepotism that no one will protect the recipients.  Those recipients include my father, by the way, who is 95, self-made and a veteran.  

But, hey -- you can always go to the emergency room, right?  That drives medical care up higher and only the person obviously at death's door is going to get the correct diagnosis and treatment.  An ER will not screen for cervical cancer, say, or take a routine chest x-ray.  From my personal experience, an ER will look for the simplest explanation -- ulcer -- when the problem is a 36-pound ovarian cyst.  (And I had insurance then.)

I do not worship Barack Obama but I would martyr myself to comprehensive health care.  It's simply the right thing to do -- extend a hand to everyone because we CAN.  If we can run two wars, we can provide health care.  My taxes pay for all sorts of things that neither help nor I believe in.  Get over it.

And if you want evidence, look at life expectancies and happiness indexes of European countries with national health care.  Socialist?  Who cares?!  People are healthier (the Dutch are even taller) and happier where the central government provides essential services and safety nets.

An enlarged military, history also tells us (see Germany in the late 19th century), means two things: it will go looking for a fight and high profits for industrialists.

You can't cut taxes, add $2 trillion to the military and balance the budget.  It.  Can.  Not.  Be.  Done.

Trickle-down doesn't.  I live in a neighborhood of true trickle-downers.  It trickles down in imported cars, imported marbles, gold bathroom fixtures, real estate in swank weekend towns, trips to Turkey, kids in private schools and Armani.

Do you know how long it takes for that to trickle down to Nebraska?

This is the most important election I have voted in because it's life and death.  We either make our people healthier and more secure or we throw the deck of health cards in the air and watch what happens.  We either take a sane military approach to the Middle East or your grandson dies in Iran.  We are either grateful for the actual progress that is being made in the economy or we believe in political roulette. 

I hate it that an election has come down to a moral perception of the world but the fact is that all evidence points toward the contempt someone lucky and suited for a job-with-benefits has for everyone who doesn't and how life-threatening that is this year.

And by the way?  Even the Post, owned by Rupert Murdoch of Fox News, noted that Romney agreed with Obama's foreign agenda.  Obama didn't repeat Romney -- Romney conceded to Obama.

So really, don't assume, OK?  And if you want to truly claim that you don't rely on the federal government, get off the highways, home school your kids, find out if those drugs you take for high blood pressure were invented with federal grants, don't let your kids go to ANY college and sit in your back yard and rot.


Kathleen said...

There is no amount of fact or reason that will make Romney disciples change their mind. Not when a TX preacher posts a church sign that says "Vote for the Mormon Not the Muslim" Or a guy at a Romney rally has a shirt on that says "Put the white back in the White house." The only ammunition they have is to attack you as a voter and President Obama as a person. I guess you can totally ignore a great deal when you are completely blind with hate. Let's hope there are enough reasonable people voting to make the swing and keep President Obama in. Otherwise, we are going to think the Bush years were heaven.

Laura N said...

Glad you responded to that comment. She's completely off her nut. No one can put stock in comments like that.

I agree with you point for point on everything you wrote. And because I can't vent on FB (clients & family who are Repubs, and it's just not worth it for me to expose myself), I'm going to rant on your blog, 'k? :)

Health care is the biggest issue for me, and it's a big issue for anyone who isn't employed with health benefits. Those people have no idea what it's like to live without benefits. God help them if they ever lose their jobs or decide to be an entrepreneur. Then they'll be screwed, like the rest of us.

My husband & I are self employed, have been since 2007. Our health insurance costs have more than doubled in 5 years. Last year we paid a third of our income toward health insurance and medical costs. What we shelled out is what many people make in a year. 3 of us are on meds--my antidepressent isn't even covered by insurance--and my husband has chronic back pain that he is getting treatment for. But no hospitalizations or terminal disease, and we still paid that much money. God forbid one of us gets cancer or my husband has a heart attack & survives. Either will break us, for good.

The money we spend on health care costs is money that could have gone toward retirement savings, college savings, a bigger house, newer cars, and charity. Things that drive the economy, which the Repubs are all about.

My hope is that by 2014, health care reform will go into place and our max for premiums will be around $10k a year. I have no idea how else it will help, but I know it is our only shot at digging out of this hole we (my family) are in b/c of health care costs. If Romney is elected, it is completely possible my husband will have to give up his business that he has spent the last 20 years building--and go get a job with health benefits.

That is SO not the American dream.

And that's just one problem I have with Romney. His statement about putting the smack down on China on "day one" is scary as hell. Yeah, go piss off the Chinese. What a great way to start your Presidency. And his BS about GM & Detroit is nonsense. Yes, what they did to the bond holders was unprecendeted & down right theft. But no one, back in 2009, was willing to put up private capital to bail out the auto industry. In hindsight he can say they were. But it's BS. Americans have a short memory for disaster, it seems. Very few are talking about how close we were to a depression. Letting the auto companies fail could have pushed us over the edge.

I know who I'm voting for & why. I pray (literally, am praying) that I don't have to listen to his condescending voice for 4 years.

Ok, that's all. :)

Eating as a Path to Yoga said...

I just think America could do so much better than Romney and Obama. Sigh. I guess I'll pursue Gary Johnson or Jill Stein.

Frances Kuffel said...

Your comments are really important, Laura. I'm a single person pursuing flitty stuff like writing and dogs but you're in the trenches of running a self-made business and struggling with the burden of health care.

Thank you for such a personal and articulate response.

Boss said...

are you talking about that mormon?

Frances Kuffel said...

Hi, Boss -- I don't know if you're talking about Romeny-the-Mormon or a FB acquaintance who is Mormon. I don't know if the person who flamed me Mormon but she didn't say anything religious. As for Romney, I've made a decision, based on the fact that I have many family members who are LDS who I adore, not to address that aspect of his candidacy. I'll let that matter go by saying only that Romney is a Good Company Man but I want someone who can think for him/herself (or who can think, for that matter) as my president.

Hilary said...

Frances, I don't think there was ever a time when I was so concerned about the outcome of an election. I have a loved one who is self-employed. Health insurance is crucial. I was thrilled with the great news on Tuesday. As a friend of mine said, "Now we can breathe again."

Anonymous said...

what is done is done.
lets now make the best out of it and wear your nice Church suit and hat and go to church to praise the lord.

Sallee said...

There is really only one question I can ask here and that is, why are you playing cityville with people who would make a comment like that (I suppose I could ask why you are playing cityville at all but we all destress in different ways)? But my real point here is that I want you to know that your books really have helped people. I have read Passing for Thin no less than 10 times. It is the book that I turn to when my relationship with food gets out of control. Please do not let the haters get you down. (And thank you for keeping LDS issues out of the argument--as a Mormon who voted for Obama I appreciate that)