Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Paglia's man-crush on Obama continues

For hundreds of years before the revolution which overthrew the czar in favor of a democratically elected government (it was this democratic government that the communists overthrew a short while later) the Russian people had a curious attitude toward their government.

They knew that it was corrupt, inefficient and brutally repressive however it was never the fault of the Czar. It was always the Czar's advisers who were to blame. The people would always say that if only the Czar knew what was going on he would put a stop to it and that when the Czar found out how he was being misled by those closest to him there would be a new day in Russia.

I was reminded of that when reading Camille Paglia's latest column in Salon. I won't fisk thew entire thing, that would be far too tedious, but here are some highlights:

Buyer's remorse? Not me. At the North American summit in Guadalajara this week, President Obama resumed the role he is best at -- representing the U.S. with dignity and authority abroad. This is why I, for one, voted for Obama and continue to support him. The damage done to U.S. prestige by the feckless, buffoonish George W. Bush will take years to repair. Obama has barely begun the crucial mission that he was elected to do.

Its hard to know how to respond to this. As far as I know the most significant things to come out of this summit were Obama's promise to shove amnesty down an unwilling American electorate's throat right after he got finished ramming Marxist socialized medicine down the same place. That and the fact that when asked about Canada's terminally broken socialized health care system Obama praised how well it works for Canada while ignoring the long waiting periods and the fact that the American side of the border is lined with doctor's offices, hospitals and clinics built to serve the large number of Canadian citizens who come south of the border for their health care (where are they going to go when the American system becomes as fraked up as Canada's?). If Obama is so dense that he can't step back and realize that there is something seriously meaningful about the fact that the traffic of those seeking quality medical services along the US/Canadian border is all one way with Canadians coming to the US and no Americans going to Canada then how can anyone trust him to reform America's health care system (or our economy or foreign relations or anything else)?

Having said that, I must confess my dismay bordering on horror at the amateurism of the White House apparatus for domestic policy. When will heads start to roll?

See, it's not the Czar. It's the Czar's advisors. When the Czar finds out what is going on there will be a new day dawning for Rus. . . I mean America!

Case in point: the administration's grotesque mishandling of healthcare reform, one of the most vital issues facing the nation. Ever since Hillary Clinton's megalomaniacal annihilation of our last best chance at reform in 1993 (all of which was suppressed by the mainstream media when she was running for president), Democrats have been longing for that happy day when this issue would once again be front and center.

But who would have thought that the sober, deliberative Barack Obama would have nothing to propose but vague and slippery promises -- or that he would so easily cede the leadership clout of the executive branch to a chaotic, rapacious, solipsistic Congress? House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, whom I used to admire for her smooth aplomb under pressure, has clearly gone off the deep end with her bizarre rants about legitimate town-hall protests by American citizens. She is doing grievous damage to the party and should immediately step down.

There is plenty of blame to go around. Obama's aggressive endorsement of a healthcare plan that does not even exist yet, except in five competing, fluctuating drafts, makes Washington seem like Cloud Cuckoo Land. The president is promoting the most colossal, brazen bait-and-switch operation since the Bush administration snookered the country into invading Iraq with apocalyptic visions of mushroom clouds over American cities.

You can keep your doctor; you can keep your insurance, if you're happy with it, Obama keeps assuring us in soothing, lullaby tones. Oh, really? And what if my doctor is not the one appointed by the new government medical boards for ruling on my access to tests and specialists? And what if my insurance company goes belly up because of undercutting by its government-bankrolled competitor? Face it: Virtually all nationalized health systems, neither nourished nor updated by profit-driven private investment, eventually lead to rationing.

I just don't get it. Why the insane rush to pass a bill, any bill, in three weeks? And why such an abject failure by the Obama administration to present the issues to the public in a rational, detailed, informational way? The U.S. is gigantic; many of our states are bigger than whole European nations. The bureaucracy required to institute and manage a nationalized health system here would be Byzantine beyond belief and would vampirically absorb whatever savings Obama thinks could be made. And the transition period would be a nightmare of red tape and mammoth screw-ups, which we can ill afford with a faltering economy.

"Why the insane rush to pass a bill, any bill. . . ?" Ms. Paglia I know you don't want to hear this but Barack Obama is a Marxist who harbors a deep hatred for the United States of America. He intends to remake America in the same way that Castro remade Cuba except that he hopes to use the legislature and the courts rather than a violent revolution. He believes that the poor are only poor because what is rightfully theirs has been stolen from them by the greedy few at the top and his mission is to redistribute the wealth of the evil rich to the virtuous poor.

Obama's desire to socialize medicine in the US, along with his already accomplished takeover of the largest American auto manufacturer and several large lending institutions is not about providing Americans with better goods and services. It is about bringing as much of the American economy under the control of the federal government as possible.

Why else is Obama refusing to allow those banks which took bailout money but are once again profitable to pay the money back? Having gotten the federal government's claws (that is his claws) into those banks he will not now, nor will he ever, willingly give up control.

That is the heart and soul of Barack Obama. He is a totalitarian Marxist who wishes the central government to control every meaningful aspect of the life of every citizen. To Obama it doesn't matter that there would be long lines for medical services - lines so long that people would die while waiting for treatment. It doesn't matter that research and development of new drugs and medical technology would slow to a glacial pace or stop altogether [Try this - from the time of the communist revolution in Russia to the day the Berlin Wall fell how many major breakthroughs of medical science came out of the USSR? I can think of one - laser eye surgery. Now how many came out of the United States? Game. Set. Match].

It doesn't even matter to Obama that there really would be "death panels" set up to decide who got life saving treatment based upon their value to The State.

In fact from Obama's perspective all of those things are the reason to do socialized medicine. Giving the government the power to dispense or withhold life-saving treatment invests it with enormous power. The kind of power that is almost impossible to ever take away. Think of FDR saying "let's see them try to repeal that" after Social Security was enacted into law.

As with the massive boondoggle of the stimulus package, which Obama foolishly let Congress turn into a pork rut, too much has been attempted all at once; focused, targeted initiatives would, instead, have won wide public support. How is it possible that Democrats, through their own clumsiness and arrogance, have sabotaged healthcare reform yet again? Blaming obstructionist Republicans is nonsensical because Democrats control all three branches of government. It isn't conservative rumors or lies that are stopping healthcare legislation; it's the justifiable alarm of an electorate that has been cut out of the loop and is watching its representatives construct a tangled labyrinth for others but not for themselves. No, the airheads of Congress will keep their own plush healthcare plan -- it's the rest of us guinea pigs who will be thrown to the wolves.

At this point we have to wonder why Paglia is still a Democrat.

What does either party stand for these days? Republican politicians, with their endless scandals, are hardly exemplars of traditional moral values.

Endless? Seriously, endless? I'm not going to bother listing the more famous Republican scandals and then listing an even longer list of Democrat scandals. The point is this. Republicans realize that the human race is fallen and that we will all fail to perfectly live up to our highest ideals. That's what it means to be sinners in need of salvation.

The difference between Republicans and Democrats is that Democrats reelected Bill Clinton in spite of knowing what a degenerate he was while Republicans hold their leaders accountable (or do you still think that Governor Sanford has a shot at the GOP nomination in 2012).

The point of having morals and values is not that you always live up to them (if you can do that then they are set too low). It is that they give you a goal to aim at and a reason to try to be better than you currently are.

Nor have they generated new ideas for healthcare, except for medical savings accounts, which would be pathetically inadequate in a major crisis for anyone earning at or below a median income.

At this point I wonder if she is deliberately misstating the conservative position or if she really doesn't know.

In case this is genuine ignorance rather than an attempt to create a straw man I'll explain. Health savings accounts are only one part of a genuine free market solution to our current problems. The other parts are tort reform and insurance deregulation.

Tort reform could lower health care costs by more than 25% as doctors would do far less "defensive testing" and would pay far lower malpractice insurance premiums.

Insurance deregulation would allow insurance companies to do what they are now forbidden by law from doing. Write policies which cover only catastrophic events like major illness and accident. Policies like this can be very inexpensive, especially for the young which make up a large percentage of the uninsured.

These three items along with some very narrowly targeted programs aimed at those with pre-existing conditions and the very poorest of the poor would take care of the vast majority of the problems that have been identified with our current system.

I should point out that those programs for the currently uninsurable should depend heavily upon giving the private sector incentives to offer free or discounted treatment. For example drug companies who provide free or reduced cost medicine could get tax breaks and extensions on the amount of time that their drugs receive patent protection. Hospitals and clinics could get significant tax breaks for offering free care to those in legitimate need and doctors could get the same tax breaks along with relief from student loan obligations.

You see these problems can be solved without giving the federal government control of a huge sector of the American economy and the literal power of life and death over the citizenry.

And what do Democrats stand for, if they are so ready to defame concerned citizens as the "mob" -- a word betraying a Marie Antoinette delusion of superiority to ordinary mortals. I thought my party was populist, attentive to the needs and wishes of those outside the power structure. And as a product of the 1960s, I thought the Democratic party was passionately committed to freedom of thought and speech.

Where have you been, Ms. Paglia? It has been a long damn time since the Democrat party has stood for any of those things. What the Democrat party has been about, at least since the Great Society, has been amassing as much power in Washington as humanly possible.

This attitude that Paglia shows here, that the Democrat party is still the party of the "common man" is the single greatest threat to the survival of this nation as a free and prosperous land.

Whatever the Democrat party may have been in the past what it is today is the party of socialism and an all powerful central government run by an elite which considers themselves to be separate from and superior to the average American.

But somehow liberals have drifted into a strange servility toward big government, which they revere as a godlike foster father-mother who can dispense all bounty and magically heal all ills. The ethical collapse of the left was nowhere more evident than in the near total silence of liberal media and Web sites at the Obama administration's outrageous solicitation to private citizens to report unacceptable "casual conversations" to the White House. If Republicans had done this, there would have been an angry explosion by Democrats from coast to coast. I was stunned at the failure of liberals to see the blatant totalitarianism in this incident, which the president should have immediately denounced. His failure to do so implicates him in it.

Ms. Paglia you teach at a major university and you are a student of popular culture. If you want to know why liberals think what they think about big government OPEN YOUR DAMN EYES AND LOOK AROUND YOU AND WHILE YOU'RE AT IT LOOK IN THE DAMN MIRROR!

Look at what you have written in this essay that I'm quoting from and contemplate the fact that you can still remain a brain-dead O-bot zombie!

And as for the snitch site where we can inform on our neighbors who are critical of the little tin messiah and his policies we once again hear that it isn't the Czar who is to blame but his evil advisers. Except that Obama knows about this and approves of it.

He approves of the snitch-site because the idea of seeding the land with a network of informers like the KGB or Gestapo did in the USSR or Nazi Germany is an idea which flows naturally out of Obama's evil totalitarian heart.

I used to have some respect for Camile Paglia's intelligence but after the way she has turned herself into an intellectual whore for Obama I can't feel anything for her but contempt.

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