On health care, both sides need a deep breath

We are in dire need of a national deep breath.

A week ago, the U.S. House of Representatives, in unrepresentative fashion, pushed through a health-care bill that most Americans said they didn’t want. Since then, there have been a handful of death threats and a report of a racial slur being used toward Rep. John Lewis of Atlanta at a rally against the bill in Washington.

The latter incidents have fueled efforts to brand ObamaCare opponents as either extremists or, in the words of Rep. James Clyburn (D, S.C.), people “aiding and abetting…terrorism.”

Breathe. Just breathe.

Six months ago, in this space, I warned against our rising incivility and observed that, in the health-care debate, we were only adding to our divisiveness.

How quaint those fears seem in hindsight. If only we’d stopped at “divisiveness.”

At this point, I’m sure, many readers are thinking one of the following things:

1. We are so divided because Democrats decided to shove an unconstitutional mess down our throats; or

2. We are so divided because Republicans decided to fight the bill by branding it the onset of tyranny.

I sympathize with the first point, but I acknowledge the second one.

Make no mistake, I believe the Democrats’ health bill was the wrong step for America to take. The aim of ensuring that more people have access to health care is laudable. But the methods to which we are now committed are wrong-headed, unaffordable and, yes, represent a socialization of health care. There’s no other way to put it.

All that said, the history of our country is one of defeating long odds. And while the passage of this bill means we face longer odds than before in truly fixing what’s wrong with our health-care system, the task is not impossible.

When the left’s approach inevitably fails — and fail it will, for the story of socialized health insurance is the journey toward insolvency — another opportunity to fix health care will beckon. It may come sooner than later. But we Americans who wanted a solution that lessened, not enhanced, Washington’s role in health care will have another chance. We will not miss it next time.

In the meantime, making death threats or using various epithets toward members of Congress damages our cause. We cannot hesitate to tell those who do these things that they are not welcome in our movement, and take any steps necessary to dissociate ourselves from them.

But it doesn’t end there, or with us.

It is utterly irresponsible, false and dangerous to label the entire opposition to ObamaCare as racist or extremist based on the actions of a few. Even if a thousand people have carried objectionable signs, said distasteful things or threatened violence, we are talking about a fraction of a fraction of the tens of millions of people who opposed this bill, in silence or in voice.

Those who would slur this entire group are also at fault.

Passions will remain, but tensions must ease. Oppose this law in the American way.

But the pro-Obama factions must also realize that their screeds against the “teabaggers” needlessly provoke the people on the fringe as well as those closer to the mainstream.

There is enough upheaval going on in this country. Cooler heads need to prevail.

***

NOTE: I won’t be able to monitor comments very frequently this weekend, so comments will go through moderation and I’ll post them as I’m able. Thanks.

101 comments Add your comment

joan1

March 26th, 2010
7:18 pm

I have attended two tea party rallies, and have never heard any racist remarks. This could be “put up”. And whether we can reverse this law that will cause our economy to further tank is debatable of course. The consequences of not reversing it however could cause our country to become even worse off than it is now–more in debt, fewer corporations citizen here, more offshore jobs, smaller companies (under 50), and of course, with amnesty looming on the horizon, as bad as it is envisioned to be now, it is only likely to get worse. What is the point of free healthcare if you can’t find a doctor who will take government insurance in any form? This will further separate those who can afford to pay from the freeloaders.

jt

March 26th, 2010
7:28 pm

Just ignore the corruptocrats.

Jon

March 26th, 2010
7:57 pm

“I have already intimated to you the danger of parties in the state, with particular reference to the founding of them on geographical discriminations. Let me now take a more comprehensive view, and warn you in the most solemn manner against the baneful effects of the spirit of party, generally.

This spirit, unfortunately, is inseparable from our nature, having its root in the strongest passions of the human mind. It exists under different shapes in all governments, more or less stifled, controlled, or repressed; but, in those of the popular form, it is seen in its greatest rankness, and is truly their worst enemy.

The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries, which result, gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of Public Liberty.

Without looking forward to an extremity of this kind, (which nevertheless ought not to be entirely out of sight,) the common and continual mischiefs of the spirit of party are sufficient to make it the interest and duty of a wise people to discourage and restrain it.”

-#1

Tyler Durden

March 26th, 2010
8:00 pm

Dang it. Twice in one week that I agree with Kyle.

Must be a full moon or something…

gil

March 26th, 2010
8:24 pm

Why do you and the rest of the “poor losers” (i.e. evry republican in america) continue to refer to the healthcare legislation that was passed as”Obamacare”? the last time I checked, Congress passed this legisleation, which was neither proposed nor written by our president. Can you imagine the civil rights legislation that was passed in the 60’s being referred to as Johnson’s civil rights bill? You and others of your ilk are part of the problem, not the solution, and you insult our intelligence. Remember, there is a reason the Democrats now have a majority, The American people voted for it.

Reality

March 26th, 2010
9:15 pm

Kyle – You incite these emotions YOURSELF. You call something “Obamacare.” What is that specifically? Define it for me, please.

I would bet that you cannot. The reason is because this term was created by the FOX news/repub PR to remind their followers that healthcare reform is lead by Obama – a black man. That is ALL the term means. That and nothing more.

Healthcare reform is/was needed. The American people recognize this. They did when they voted for Obama and they recognize it now.

This Healthcare LAW has good stuff in it. Most of the details are EXACTLY what the American people asked for. One of the first parts to roll out is to provide healthcare for children.

Will republicans really run to oppose that? Are they really going to say that children don’t “deserve” healthcare? Good luck with that.

Legend of Len Barker

March 26th, 2010
9:19 pm

First, Kyle, do you know what “teabagger” means? I don’t think you do or you wouldn’t use the term.

Second, how is pointing out signs from birthers, signs that are racially inappropriate, and signs that promote violence (such as the one saying that if Scott Brown doesn’t stop the bill from passing, a Browning gun would) something that doesn’t need to be done?

At this point, it’s up to the Republicans to try to corral this insane behavior.

Actually, Kyle, the threats have been under-reported because none of the big media companies has compiled them. There have been at least 35 threats against Democrats this week. More than the handful that you’d like to believe.

At the same time, Republicans like Michelle Bachmann and Steve King (Ohio, not the Maine author) are almost condoning the violence, saying that’s what Democrats get for their votes for healthcare.

DLink

March 26th, 2010
9:36 pm

Hmmmm… Every industrialized nation in the world has some form of “Socialized Health-care” “Universal Health-care” except the United States. So, I dispute the presumption that it simply cannot be done. I prefer, “There’s just no profit to it” and that is, in fact, the problem.

My job’s health plan for just me in a $12/hr job is, brace yourself, $600/mo. So I’d like for everyone to take a hard look at the people bagging your groceries, washing your car, warehouse workers who ship your goods, turn down your beds at the hotel… These people likely have no medical insurance. No preventative medical resources.

That is just using people up and throwing them away, and I daresay most people take better care of their lawnmower than the person pushing that mower for pay. If anyone chooses to use any tool, only a fool doesn’t take care of that tool. When it’s people, that means health-care, OSHA, things like that.

Because the fools aren’t taking care of their tools, the fed stepped in like a good parent to let you know how to take care of people; just like every other industrialized nation who’s ever picked up a tool and ever fixed or built anything. Remember, the United States is a kid in the terms age of various nations who’ve been through all this. And we are still learning how to take care of our tools, as it were.

This health-care bill reminds me of a baby taking its first step, likely to land on it’s face and there needs to be someone holding its hand while they learn to walk. But, it’s like mom is there doing her best, while dad’s throwing baby to the floor and saying, “They’ll learn faster if you throw them down enough.”

I just don’t know what to think about all that. Right now I’d recommend family counseling and some schooling from an older nation on the tools we use. Any older nation who is more experienced in this matter.

Needabailout,too!

March 26th, 2010
9:49 pm

Thanks, AJC and other online media in advance for providing an outlet for so many that seem to need to blow-off their amped-up rage. Better to express themselves and their heated temperature here than with physical violence and bloodshed….

MrLiberty

March 26th, 2010
9:50 pm

What virtually every politician in this country fails to realize is that americans are fed up with politics as usual. Neither the republican nor democratic parties represent the values of america anymore. Both are beholden to big business – the democrats to their particular folks and the republicans to theirs. Neither seem beholden to the ideas of liberty or to the american people (except those that they are buying off with their votes, money, regulations, subsidies, etc.). People are finally waking up to realize that the two party system is geared to keep them in fear of the other side while the real players are meeting behind closed doors and using the banner of “bipartisanship” to collude against them.

The financial crisis is not an R or a D issue. Rampant deficit spending has been going on since the Federal Reserve was created in 1913 and certainly from both sides of the aisle since Nixon finally closed the gold window in 73.

The politicians are very afraid that the people will finally wake up and realize that the problem is not with the “other side” but rather with government itself as the founding fathers of this country attempted to remind us over and over again.

The attempts of the republicans to infiltrate and coopt the tea party movement to promote their neoconservative agenda will backfire and with any hope, the people will realize that wonderful candidates like Ron Paul and others need to be elected from the only two parties that are allowed to effectively operate in this country.

The american people do not need to step back and take a breath. The government is on the ropes and desperate. It is now that we need to muster all of our strength, double our efforts, and make sure that the clowns on both sides of the aisle realize that their time of power abuse is over and that we want our country back.

Michael Humphrey

March 26th, 2010
9:54 pm

Mr. Wingfield,
First, let me say that, unlike many opponents of health care reform that I have spoken to, you seem very intelligent. I guess my question to you and others that are so absolutely certain that this bill, and universal health care in general, is doomed to failure is: do you realize that every other developed nation has some sort of universal health care system? It has dawned on me recently that we really need to take a closer look at domestic programs in other countries as well as our own. I have talked to quite a few people that have done some serious travelling and they have all said that people in countries such as England, France, and Greece seem pretty pleased with their health care systems. Sure, they have issues with certain problems within their health care system, but there will be, inevitably, problems with any health care system (I mean, jeez, take a look at ours). You said that you applaud the Democrat’s efforts to ensure everyone has access to affordable health care, but how could we do that without implementing universal health care, or ’socialized medicine’ as you call it? Do you really think that we could do it using the free-market system alone? If so, please explain to me how you think this would be possible because the free market has failed to do so for the last 234 years. Additionally, I know that, living in Georgia, it seems like the majority of Americans didn’t want this bill, but elsewhere in the country people yearned for its passage. In fact, a news article came out recently that reported a large percentage of the people being polled weren’t actually opposed to adopting a system of universal health care; just the opposite, actually. Many people asked whether they supported or opposed the bill said they believed that the bill did not go far enough in ensuring people the right to health care, and, as a result, said they opposed it. Polls can be very deceptive like that. In fact, Republicans repeatedly stressed the point that polls ‘don’t mean crap’ when asked about George W. Bush’s approval rating, and I would agree with them. And in regard to the recent threats and racial slurs made towards Congressmen and women who supported the bill, I would agree that not everyone who opposes health care reform is a racist or a gun-toting fanatic. But what is appalling is how the right still panders to these people, especially right-winger Sarah Palin (Who, in Canada, admitted that she used Canada’s universal health care system). Apparently, she posted a map of the United States with crosshairs over congressional districts that Republicans should target in the up-coming elections as if reinforcing the “defend ourselves at the end of a muzzle” mentality of Tea Partiers.

BuildaWall

March 26th, 2010
9:56 pm

Here’s a thought! Since liberals and conservatives are so divided on major issues, let’s conduct a test. Let’s split the country down the middle and have citizens pick their side; liberal or conservative. After about a ten year period we then take at look at the results to determine which society actually has it better. It is of my opinion that during this ten year test period, the conservatives would have to build a wall and man it with guns to keep the fleeing liberals from crossing back over illegally. Like I said, just a thought!

John Lewis???

March 26th, 2010
10:22 pm

At this point is it even newsworthy to report anything that has both John Lewis and racism in the same story. That once admirable man has done nothing but claim racism against him and his ideas for many years now. He really has not had a worthwhile idea or lead any meaningful legislation for more than 10 years, but he realizes he can still make the news by claiming “racism.”

Hey John get over it. It is time for you to move on and let someone who can provide value take what you believe to be your seat. Of course, if someone ever contests him that person must also be a “racist” too.

james spencer

March 26th, 2010
10:24 pm

social security and medicare/medicaid will ruin america.give health care
a try it might work.

joe

March 26th, 2010
10:49 pm

What “death threats” or “epithets”?

Threre’s been no proof, no video evidence, nothing that shows these claims by the left are justified.

Dazed and confused

March 26th, 2010
10:52 pm

I think you started this article off wrong. Most Americans did want the health care bill. That is why they voted for President Obama in the firsat place.

96 SC

March 26th, 2010
11:47 pm

Where did you find the facts to support your statement that most Americans doesn’t want healthcare reform? I will bet you pulled it out of your A$$.

ND

March 26th, 2010
11:51 pm

The political arena could use more thoughtful people like Wingfields and Bookmans, and less blind partisans like Tucker and Wooten.

CJ

March 27th, 2010
12:10 am

Kyle wrote, “A week ago, the U.S. House of Representatives, in unrepresentative fashion, pushed through a health-care bill that most Americans said they didn’t want.

I’m sorry Kyle, but you can’t write the silliness above, but then, a few keystrokes later, complain about incivility in our political discourse.

First, I’m tired of seeing a bunch of angry white people portrayed as if they represent “most Americans.” Tens of thousands show up for demonstrations in support of HCR, immigration reform, and any number of issues, and the media yawns (i.e, little to no coverage). But when two or three angry teabaggers are found sitting around the lobby of a retirement home watching Fox News, they somehow represent a grassroots effort that speaks for “most Americans.”

Also, HCR couldn’t have passed in a more “representative fashion.” We held free and fair elections and sent our hired representatives to Congress. They looked at the merits, had multiple debates, held several votes, and those with the most votes won. What is it that you don’t understand about representative democracy?

Finally, it’s frustrating again to have the right dismiss the death threats, broken windows, and gas lines as a few nuts who don’t represent the anti-HCR movement—ignoring the fact that Republican leaders have been encouraging it–

Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX): “They fought against tyranny and oppressive taxes, do that sound familiar? We’re continuing that revolution right here in Austin, Texas today. Thomas Jefferson said the Tree of Liberty will be fed by the blood of tyrants and patriots. You are the modern day patriots.”

Audience Member: “I’m a proud right-wing terrorist.”
Rep. Wally Herger (R-CA): “Amen god bless you, there’s a great American.”

Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN): “I’m a foreign correspondent on enemy lines. I want people in Minnesota armed and dangerous on this issue of the energy tax because we need to fight back.”

Rep. Steve King (R-IA): “If I could start a country with a bunch of people it would be the folks standing out here the last few days. Let’s hope we don’t have to do that. Let’s beat that other side to a pulp. Let’s take them out, let’s chase them down. There’s going to be a reckoning”

vuduchld

March 27th, 2010
1:24 am

Mr. Wing Nut Job

It is what it is. For you to try to paint me or any other person who has called out the teabeggers and the GOP is a joke. Where were you when all your minions were calling our President socialist, Obama Waffles, monkey, uppity, communist, etc. Where were you when your same Nazi buddies were going after Mrs. Obama. Now that you idiots have lost you want to lower the temperature. To that I say HELL NO! We have just begun with you idiots because for too long you have ranted and raved a bunch of nothingness.

Me and others have every right to go after scumbags like you because at the end of the day you’re nothing but a cabal of quack, bottom feeding hypocrites. We’re sick and tired of your sleazy revisionist herecy so I’m surely not going to stop attacking you and the other fools who support a bogus agenda. I’VE JUST BEGUN!!

GaLiberal

March 27th, 2010
5:24 am

This is typical of the republiNazi shills who use their unique place to shape public opinion using misinformation and outright lies. I guess having racial slurs hurled at you and being spit at is just the good ol’ boys blowing off some steam. Is it lost on anyone that this republiNazi shill continues to use the same inflammatory red-meat baiting language (unconstitutional, socialization of health care, socialized health insurance, etc) that has given these republiNazi stooges license to engage in this behavior. The fact is the republiNazis and their shills cannot put the blame on Democrats. The fact is they gave these republiNazi stooges the motive, the venue, and the opportunity for their ILLEGAL behavior. Just like the Nazis, they cannot wash off the stench by telling everyone to just take a breath. Of course, the republiNazis and their shills just ignore facts because they just get in the way of manipulating the voters.

jack

March 27th, 2010
7:23 am

First !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I agree with you, both sides are getting a bit carried away. But the overabundance of hatred, upheaval and outright threats by the Teabaggers is evident. Perhaps most clearly by the “Crosshairs” map that the “brilliant” and inspirational Sarah Palin posted up on her facebook page. Could there be a more clear call to arms statement that that ? I will be very surprised if one of her “targets” does not end up at the wrong end of a gun,

arnold

March 27th, 2010
7:31 am

“It is utterly irresponsible, false and dangerous to label the entire opposition to ObamaCare as racist or extremist based on the actions of a few.” It is more than a few. It is also irresponsible national politicians egging on the fanatics.

Maybe you aren;t old enough to remember the civil rights issues of the early 60’s. The look and rhetoric reminds me of Those supporting George Wallace. Have you forgotten how the Republican party grew after the civil rights fight. The nut case Democrats flocked to the Republicans as the Silent Majority.

Today seems to be no different.

A CONSERVATIVE--

March 27th, 2010
8:05 am

NO….NO..NO..KYLE…..In CHESS…….you don’t take a breeak..you forge on….you attack….attack…atack…your opponent..you don’t become timid with your enemy.

A CONSERVATIVE--

March 27th, 2010
8:09 am

IN FOOTBALL…….when the other team scores again you….you don’t take a break…you try to run the ball down the field against your opponent……Your opponent will not take a break..

A CONSERVATIVE--

March 27th, 2010
8:10 am

KYLE…….You obviously are not a “in the trenches” fighter……

J Balfour

March 27th, 2010
8:29 am

Health care is desperately needed and the Democrats victory in Nov 2008 proves the people of this country want Obama’s ideas put into law -democracy at work! This country should be ashamed of the elected officials who are trying to stop the will of the voters and more ashamed that millions flock to free clinics with desperate conditions that could have been treated, cured, or lessened in severity if they had insurance. We must look ridiculous compared to France, Germany and others with universal single payer systems. Shame on you for stirring up unnecessary controversy with your jaded and incorrect statements about the HC bill.

gadem

March 27th, 2010
8:33 am

Great article Kyle…cooler heads must prevail. It is actually scary to see how things are going right about now.

Kyle's Korner

March 27th, 2010
8:37 am

The t-word has been banned, Kyle, so your article probably wont make it through moderation, or the cyberbully patrol guy.

Also, the phrase “cooler heads will prevail” is never used at face value, but as a sarcastic estimate about the chances for surviving any confrontation. It was born when JFK heard his advisor phrase it as the deus ex machina that would stop the Cuban Missile Crisis from ending the world. Thus, when used in your context, you are conceding civil war, but you’re too naive to know it. In that sense, you are a very dangerous man. A loose cannon, who understandably misses President W. Malaprop.

(”Well, Mr. President, by then cooler heads will have prevailed”. JFK had heard enough. There would be no invasion of Cuba, and the world was saved.)

You break too many rules to deserve the credibility necessary to inspire cooler heads. You steal too many bits from others to deserve any respect. You write at the level of the average commenter here, which is like intermediate elevator music 101.

Originality is gold. Believe it. Live it.

JKL2

March 27th, 2010
8:40 am

It’s amaizing how the left is complaining about all the threats but it was a republican that got shot at.

The Tea Parties have all been peaceful protest in the way they were meant to be. It the Democrat thugs that are causing all the violence. But somehow I’m sure it’s still Bush’s fault.

david wayne osedach

March 27th, 2010
8:40 am

I agree. Healthcare is a done deal. Now both sides should work together to make it right!

ohmy

March 27th, 2010
8:44 am

Joe in Decatur

March 27th, 2010
9:05 am

Kyle,

Your comments about healthcare costs pushing our country towards insolvency are true because they were already doing so under the aegis of a parasitical private healthcare industry that produces absolutely nothing but expenditure.

But the money that we spend on our so-called “defense” spending where we fight wars of choice and have troops in scores of countries around the world, that’s not responsible for our insolvency at all, is it? That little bit of having hundreds of thousands in the government uniform on the government isn’t socialism, is it? Whatever it takes for the national defense, right?

If the majority of people, as indicated by polls, didn’t like the health care legislation, it’s only because the people on the left didn’t think that it went far enough, which is a vastly different reason than that of you and your angry Republicans. If you want to change things, get organized and get elected. Stop threatening people.

For eight years, we on the Left lived with the “war” on terror where we attacked a country that had nothing whatsoever to do with the events of 9/11; we lived with the shame that our government had sponsored torture; we observed out economy going down the tubes because of all manner of gross fiscal irresponsibility practiced by the conservative financial sector of our country. And why? Because you and your angry Republicans “won” the first term of the Bush presidency through the intervention of an activist Supreme Court, and won again, legitimately this time, in the second term.

If you really believe in our society, try to learn to live with the results of fairly won elections.

The Tar and Feathers Party

March 27th, 2010
9:07 am

According to yesterday’s wsj, the private equity people have been buying up hospitals at a rapid rate. Blackstone owns one out of Nashville, Cerberus is buying a catholic chain in Ma, and several other deals are in the works. Another article said hospitals are demanding 30 and 40% price hikes in their negotiations with insurance companies. It looks like the stage is being set for a inflationary spike in health care costs. ObamaCare is pumping OUR money into health care to feed the inflationary fires, and PE is expecting to reap the profits.

hatin' on the stupid

March 27th, 2010
9:09 am

I read this last night and again this morning and am incredulous that Kyle wants us to think this is a sincere and impartial call for cooler heads to prevail. All he does here is distance the right from any responsibility from those threatening violence, while at the same time repeatedly justifying why such strenuous objection to the new law is necessary. Nowhere does Kyle take responsibility for the incitement of this threatened violence by the PR machines of the right. Instead, aside from the following three lines:
“In the meantime, making death threats or using various epithets toward members of Congress damages our cause. We cannot hesitate to tell those who do these things that they are not welcome in our movement, and take any steps necessary to dissociate ourselves from them”
Kyle spends the whole tract explaining how the left is really at fault.
In his words the Healthcare Reform bill is: “..wrong….being shoved down our throats….socialism….” and spends the last third of the article blaming the Left for painting all of the victimized Right with the same brush. The Left is “…irresponsible…false….dangerous…at fault…” and that, “their screeds against the “teabaggers” needlessly provoke the people on the fringe as well as those closer to the mainstream”.
Laughably, nowhere is there any acknowledgement of a year of attempting to “swiftboat” the entire issue and anyone avocating healthcare reform by the right-wing media. Whipped up by Fox and the talk radio goons, mobs were dispatched to town hall meeting in an attemp to intimidate lawmakers. A simple attemt to help people has been characterized as “a government takeover…death panels…corrupt… the end of America…” and on and on. I used to at least respect Kyle, though differing with him. More and more I see him as a petulant partisan, angry that our representatives in congress and the White House have set policy that he disagrees with. It is even the more laughable because these policies are very centrist in approach and would likely have been more effective at controlling cost if the right had not blocked and obfuscated every attempt to write good policy. Ever since Bush’s hard jerk of America toward the far right, there is no longer a true left. The center is the radical left to the conservatives. It’s a very limited view of the spectrum of american political opinion. But very effective for painting everything in black or white.

just a thought

March 27th, 2010
9:13 am

There has never been a better time for the middle ~80% of voters that are moderate Democrats and open-minded Republicans to unite in a Liberarian effort to lead this great country out of this mess. All the Kings horses and all the Kings men had their chance and blew it. No the Tea Party isn’t the open-minded Republicans.

Gay rights and abortion aren’t political issues!

Morrus

March 27th, 2010
9:20 am

Vote out the incumbents and start over

Jess

March 27th, 2010
9:31 am

Having lived through the 1960’s, I entered high school in ‘61 and graduated college in ‘70, I have to say that things now are really not that bad. The Viet Nam war, all the various counter cultures, Kennedy and King assasinations, Kent State, riots at political conventions and much more, made many wonder if normalcy would ever again exist. I know Obama and many others are prone to call everything unprecedented, and are quick to label things a crisis, but historicaly…..It ain’t so bad.

Road Scholar

March 27th, 2010
10:07 am

Good column Kyle. Other than mandating most people purchase HI, where is the socialism? Also, this plan resembles the Mass. HC law and that proposed by the Repubs in 1992. Also the VA HC is socialist; ready to cancel that also? By the way it was rated the best system in the US!

And now the Repubs want to Repeal and replace….with what? Is it written down? What are the talking points?

While we’re at it, what is their specific position on immigration? Transportation? Jobs? etc. Where is Gov Perdue’s jobs, transportation, education, etc fixes also, since many say it’s the states right to legislate. Where are the specific conditions of what they want to do?

I’m waiting…

PS. Since the Repubs in the state house now say that raising fees that haven’t been adjusted in years is ok, where is the gas tax adjustment that has been due since the early 1980’s? It’s a user fee…you drive a car, you pay it! Oh and as some of your conservative brothers and sisters have pointed out, it’s a right to drive. Now, let’s pay for the improvements needed to make that right more beneficial and enjoyable, including transit.

Real American

March 27th, 2010
10:15 am

Calling it “Obamacare” adds to to incivility Kyle…maybe you should practice what you are attempting to preach.

SwamiDave

March 27th, 2010
10:20 am

Respectfully, Kyle.

The fault does lie with Democrats for our current atmosphere of incivility. To, as liberals and their willing media shills are attempting to do, blame conservatives expressing their frustration and anger for the current environment is about like blaming victims of theft for their feeling toward thieves. Let us make not mistake about it; Liberals are (as they always do) using legislation to do what muggers do with guns! If they do not want to be looked upon and treated like thieves, then there should quit engaging in legislative theft from producers and achievers to fund transfer payments and service to their political power base of the ever-burgeoning depenency class.

That said. Our current political atmosphere is a predictable (and unfortunate) outcome of the reality which we face. In not-so-distant times, there was a “convince-able” group of Americans who were neither “left” or “right”, but held views in agreement with both. In recent years, elections (and polling) shows that this poll has gotten smaller and smaller as both sides approach what they perceive to be a “magic majority” whereby they will have convinced 50% + 1 and, thereby, gain more permanent power.

As the pool of “open’ minds has shrunk, both sides have gotten louder and more passionate in their attempts to sway the “remainder”. Likewise, as elections have been won on such close margins, the actions taken to defend what they hold while trying to get that “last little bit” have only exacerbated the issue.

Effectively, our current environment is actually a political “Civil War” that happens to be very uncivil. It is a battle between two sides whose philosophy prevent cooperation and compromise. For the most part, one side perceives freedom from a perspective of opportunity; the other perceives freedom from a perspective of outcome.

Personally, I happen to be among the former. I recognize that the philosophy of the latter is based on lies and has a woeful history of the misery-filled consequences that its theological adherents must ignore to defend it.

-SD

reasonable

March 27th, 2010
10:28 am

While you and I disagree about the health care reform law just passed, I can agree with you absolutely on the need to cool the rhetoric on both sides. Violence or threats of violence along with racist slurs on supporters of the health care act and equally intemperate attacks on those opposed to the act dishonor both sides. Ballots, not bullets and threats of violence, must rule. Thank you for your editorial. I can only hope more editorialists from both the left and right would heed your wise words on cooling the tempers on both sides.

Dirty old man

March 27th, 2010
10:36 am

I agree a deep breath needs to be taken, but only by the Republicans. The majority of Americans are in favor of this historic legislation despite the lies Republicans repeat over and over on talk radio and Fox news, coast to coast, 24/7/365. Republican’s motive for loyalty to private insurance is latent racism and an unfounded fear of Marxism, Socialism, and Communism (which are not synonymous).

It is fully understood that Republicans are against everything Obama, but their “alternatives” are exercises in jingoism. Rep Tom Price offers a “patients first” plan. Pervading his “plan” is a faulty assumption that working Americans prefer to spend their spare time shopping for insurance, Dr’s, and prescription drugs. Tom trots out the Republican “tort reform” myth, but offeres no alternate remedy for malpractice victims. Could it be that, as an advocate of for-profit healthcare, giant Pharma, and the private insurance cartel that Rep Price’s knows that his supporters extort more profit from those who have been negligently injured by Doctors? Price is a native of Michigan, and about 75% of his campaign money comes from the for-profit healthcare lobby. He is to healthcare what a used car salesman is to a person needing a new car. For those interested, here is a link showing who butters Rep. Price’s bread:
http://www.opensecrets.org/politicians/contrib.php?cycle=2010&cid=N00026160&type=I

As soon as Republicans have substantive ideas, then maybe they will be considered credible. Obama offered the Republicans “transparency” time and time again. Tom Price and his well-moneyed interests on the right-wing met that transparency with childish petulance.:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ewafPV2brQA

D.S.

March 27th, 2010
11:04 am

While I don’t agree with your views on health care, I am right there with you on civility.

Rightwing Troll

March 27th, 2010
11:45 am

“Conservatives” have missed every opportunity they been given to fix anything that was “broken”, they chose instead to “fix” things that aren’t broken… Why would we trust them to do so now?

Hillbilly Deluxe

March 27th, 2010
12:21 pm

We’re divided because we all think for ourselves. Always been that way; always will be. In my opinion, the only time this country has ever been united for an extended period of time was WW II. The rest of the time we disagree and argue about everything. Isn’t that the way it was intended to be? This’ll blow over and pretty soon we’ll be arguing about something else.

A CONSERVATIVE--

March 27th, 2010
1:21 pm

ONLY LOSERS TAKE A BREATHER FROM A life-&DEATH Struggle to SAVE THE COUNTRy from the SOCIALISTs…

ezra09

March 27th, 2010
1:48 pm

Kyle you are good kind person. However, I watched the movie “The Patriot”. The main character wanted not war but cooler heads to prevail. For his efforts of diplomacy against a tyrant cost him his son. Tryanny is tyranny! The overthrow of the government or taking control of the people by the government is tyranny. My constitution gives me the right to stop it. You can not debate with liberals unless you are willing to give up your values and beliefs. I do not want this to escalate probably no more than you. I have sons who will pay the price while you and your family will ride the tide out. I want the conservatives to block every thing possible until we have the democrats regain their party from the liberals. Then and only then can the people have a two party system that can come together to provide for the needs of the people. The liberals want to break down our country by attacking the beliefs and principles of the common folk. Their direction now is demanding vile disgusting acceptance as normal for small special interests grougs. Most are in direct confrontation with traditional values. Look at the tv shows! If you did not know better you would think that half the population were homosexuals. Every movie and every series has its homosexual scenes. Indoctrination of our children by the liberal educational programs is a continuous fight by traditional parents. My values are in constant attack and theirs are contantly promoted. Not by a majority but by the lame stream media and Hollywood. Now the rejection of the will of the people by the progressive liberals is tyranny. People should resort to anything to deny the socialist a permanent foothold in our government. This is not a democracy but a representative republic. I am not being represented when backroom deals are cut or bribed representatives forget why they are there. Freedom is not free! So please do not tell me how I have to behave to remain free when freedom is at stake.

BehindEnemyLines

March 27th, 2010
2:44 pm

While I supposed this sounds nice enough, I believe you’re overlooking a key point: the distrust & dislike between the two sides is genuine, to the extent that I don’t believe hatred it too strong a word.
Even if neither side ever said another word about, or even to, the other side the fundamental differences in beliefs, values, and goals are irreconcilable. Ultimately it seems to me that it falls somewhere between denial and delusion to believe that simply swallowing our honest feelings about the enemy is somehow going to accomplish anything other than creating a few more ulcers.

BS Aplenty

March 27th, 2010
4:16 pm

Well said, Kyle, especially the part about “a socialization of healthcare.”