Conor Rogers, Editor
Ideology: Moderate Republican | Writing from: Washington, DC
For the many conservatives from my TV screen to my facebook newsfeed who last night declared everything from the rise of socialism to the end of America, it’s time to take a step back, it’s not so bad.
There is no public option, President Obama is backed into a corner on abortion funding, and fourty-one Democrats from swing-districts have essentially handed their seats over to a tea-party Republican. There is insurance regulation, there are price controls and of course ‘consumer protections’ but they do not take effect until 2014.
Last night Speaker Pelosi reminded Americans why she was the Democrat’s minority whip and why she is now Speaker. She can create votes out of thin (well, hot) air. But the Liberal Democrats also reminded us why they have consistently handed elections over to Republicans over the past two decades – they push unpopular policies and cannot govern responsibly. So much so that more than ten percent of House Democrats voted against the party’s signature issue.
On the bright side for Republicans: the Democrats have just passed one of the most unpopular initiatives ever proposed, an irreparable rift has been created between the fiscally conservative Democrats and Speaker Pelosi, and finally, that President Obama now has to sign an executive order that will put him at odds with one of his staunchest backers: pro-choice groups.
The real reason conservatives, moderates, and any American should be concerned has nothing to do with anything explicitly written in the bill, or any specific provision of the House or Senate bills. The alarm that should be sounded and realized by all is that this is not a bill simply about health; it is a foot in the door for how the left side of things wants to govern America; how they envision the relationship between a citizen and their government. It is not socialism, but it is certainly not the individualistic ‘do-it-yourself’ that has defined American culture past.
Congress, as it rarely does, has created something completely new – a mandatory right to health insurance coverage. A right that if not obtained from a private insurer, must either be provided to a citizen by the government, or with the help of the government.
This is not how rights have worked in America, and it’s not how they should, not now, not ever.
We have a right to free speech, but I do not get my own newspaper to publish at birth. I have a right to worship, but the government need not build me a church. I have a right to own and protect my property, but that does not mean I have a right to be provided with a home. Apparently, I have a right to health coverage – but that does not mean I have a right to be provided with it. I have a right to have access to it. Just like I have a right to attend a church of my choice, read a newspaper of my choice, and purchase a home of my choosing.
The Liberals have gotten their foot in the door on re-defining healthcare, and ‘rights’ in America, but in order to not go the way of many high-tax social-democratic European nations, we must slam the door on the foot.
Near-universal healthcare is quite possibly a good thing for each American, it makes sure we have an easier life – but that does not mean it is a good thing for all Americans, or America itself. If Congress declared a right to own a house, it would be a good thing for each American, but it would not benefit America, nor would it be financially sustainable for our taxpayers.
The deficit is going to become unfathomable, and (Social Security & Medicare were also declared ‘deficit-neutral.’) Our taxes will likely be raised in the long-term as a result, and the amount of people on the public ward will skyrocket. Many Americans will be relying on the government for their very survival – a nightmare for any conservative who values the right of any man to be free from dependence upon his government, and anyone who realizes it was individualism and an all-out struggle to attain the American dream that has made America what it is today. The very America President Obama is trying to ‘change.’
Price controls and insurance regulations are not nearly as bad as the initial bill Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama crafted over a year ago, but the intentions and implications are the same. The job of conservatives and moderates over the next election cycle, and likely the next decade must be to keep the healthcare bill what it is now – a price control and corporate regulation statue. As with any government program, they will try to expand it, apply it to more people, lower the bar on who can qualify for the program, and eventually, complete its transition to a money-losing tax-eating entitlement.
President Obama said last night from the east room that ‘a new stone has been laid in the foundation of the American dream.’ Apparently, it has come to a point where the American President does not even understand the American dream – the dream is not to be given, nor to simply have. The dream is to create, to work, to own, and eventually, to prosper – and has historically been the case, with the help of parents, siblings, your sons and daughters, and co-workers not Washington, DC.
They’ve got their foot in your door. Slam it, slam it as hard as you can and keep them out.