Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Remember The Maine!

So apparently this Republican Homosexual (patent pending) thinks that in my post below, I'm accusing George Bush of killing the miners in West Virginia.

In the 1920's, my grandfather was working in the oil fields in Bakersfield. There was an accident on a unsafely maintained rig, and he lost all the fingers on his right hand.

This was before the New Deal, and as a result, my grandfather's employer didn't need to have disability insurance for their workers. So, my grandfather had to pay the hospital bill for his injuries himself, by selling his truck. Because he had no paid sick leave, he couldn't afford to miss any time off, and he had to be back on the job three days later, or be fired. He never received a cent of compensation for his crippling injury, and the lifetime pain he quietly suffered as a result. All this happened while the "pro-business" "anti-regulation" Hoover administration was in power.

Herbert Hoover did not cut off my grandfather's fingers. He did not cause the accident that injured him.

But you better bet that my grandfather voted for every Democrat from Franklin Roosevelt to Bill Clinton.

Policy has consequences. Republican political activists hold the government in contempt. I know, I used to be one. They believe that regulation and oversight is for losers, and that real men don't need the government to protect them. They believe that business is engaged in a valiant moral cause, that making money is a righteous act, and that a government that stands in the way of the marketplace is committing a grave error.

When you put people in charge of government who believe these things, there are consequences. In the Bush Administration, these anti-government activists are smart enough to know that dismantling government protections and regulations is politically unpopular, so instead they practice a kind of atrophy, hoping that government will die on the vine.

What this means in practice is that the agenda of business is adopted without balance. When you open the doors to regulatory agencies, you invite both graft and incompetence. You end up with, on the one hand, the Jack Abramoffs and Halliburtons, and, on the other hand, the New Orleans's of history.

Every now and then we need a reminder, a shock, a jolt to recall to us of why we have government, and why we hold it accountable. I say "Remember New Orleans" because this should be our reminder, our battle cry, our mantra against the propaganda of deregulation and all that it means, all its unforseen consequences. In this instant-distraction age, we need something to recall us to our duty.

My grandfather didn't need a reminder, though. He had one, each time he reached out to shake a hand, grip a wheel, or rub his grandson on his head. He always knew what happened when men in power do nothing to help those who are not. Maybe the Republican Homosexual above doesn't get it, but then again, if being gay isn't enough to make you question the conservative political agenda, what's it going to take? Hopefully not a personal tragedy like those miners families are experiencing, like the abandoned and flooded of the Crescent City know all too well. I wouldn't wish that on anyone. There's enough tragedy, and not enough accountability, going around already as it is.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm confused. Bush rode in on the ticket of less government. But all I've seen since Bush took over the white house (and the republican lobbyists own the house & senate), has been the government in my face - now even spying on everybody. "Well duh, who cares, as long as the gays can't get married, and I can buy a gun, we're in hog heaven !"

Bush's supporters think it's wonderful, we need a strong protective leader. He needs to spy on us to protect us. This chump, who didn't bother to read FBI briefings, and appointed buddy chumps in important positions like FEMA (fraternity buddy Heckuva job Brown), well this chump can barely tie his own shoelaces, yet the unwashed masses look to him to save them from the terrorist? Did Katrina clear any illusions of the utter incompetence of these chumps? But nooooo.

These chumps who didn't bother with real evidence, since the made up stuff was so much better?

This is what staggers me - these chumps are only out to hold hands with their slimy Saudi oil sheiks, or run and hide in their bunkers. They are not gonna protect you, leastwise when you are a hard working West Virginian, mining an important American energy source (Coal). Yet those West Virginian's probably would vote Bush back in. This is because these Ivy League MBAs and Marketers and flim flam artists like Rove have figured out you don't need to please all the people all the time like the dems. You just need your base.

8:46 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home