Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The Massachussets Tea Party and Humpty Dumpty's Health Insurance

Massachussets Tea Partiers, in a fit of angry inchoate anarchist rebellion against politics as usual, elected a .... Republican Real Estate Lawyer.... to the US Senate. It shocked the Democrats that the Massachusetts "Ted Kennedy" seat was taken away, and the Republicans may not like Scott Brown's "social" positions -- he's pro-choice, for example. And let's remember that the Tea Party movement has been created by corporate donors and a conservative media mouthpiece, Fox News, along with a few out of power Republican movers and shakers, i.e., Dick Armey. The Tea Partiers may implode from their own anarchic rhetoric and chaotic impulses, but the Supreme Court has handed those same corporate backers the keys to the palace with its recent ruling regarding corporate campaign finance $$$$.

As a Nebraskan who supported Barack Obama, the role of Ben Nelson's sweetheart deal to federally fund future Nebraska Medicaid increases as a factor in the election of new Senator Scott Brown in Massachusetts particulary irks me. Nelson's "hard to get" strategy hurt President Obama and the chances for meaningful health insurance reform. Senator Nelson maneuvered himself into a bad political place and is paying a high price. Polls indicated that this "sausage grinding" aspect of politics turned independent Massachusetts voters against Coakley, the Democratic candidate there. Their shock that "politics" was going on in Washington is particularly amusing in the Land of Tip O'Neill and Ted Kennedy -- two legendary deal makers. Ben Nelson has back-tracked on his "deal" and now wants Medicaid increases for all states paid for by the Federal government. Too much, and too late.

And the icing on the cake is the irony that Massachusetts , which mandates that citizens purchase health insurance and subsidizes to some degree those unable to purchase it, has apparently stopped in its tracks the incremental steps Barack Obama campaigned on and attempted to midwife through the minefields of (sorry about the mixed metaphor but I like the alliteration) disparate Democrats and an obstructionist minority whose only program is to oppose President Obama on everyting.
So after 8 years of bad government by the Republicans and 1 year of the Republican's intransigent refusal to take yes for an answer on President Obama's many concessions to them on health insurance reform, Independent voters and "Tea Partiers" have sent another Republican, a real estate lawyer, to Washington. How much sense does that make? Not much......

Republicans are licking their chops, and Democrats, scared silly it appears, are trying to make sense out of the incoherent nature of it all. Remember the woman last summer who became the poster child of the Tea Party's approach to Health Insurance Reform -- "Keep Government out of my Medicare" and the propogation of the Death Panels Big Lie. They won, it looks like. Too bad for us. The Boston Tea Party has turned in the Alice in Wonderland Tea Party.....where reality no longer matters.

`When I use a word,' Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, `it means just what I choose it to mean -- neither more nor less.'

`The question is,' said Alice, `whether you can make words mean so many different things.'

`The question is,' said Humpty Dumpty, `which is to be master -- that's all.'

And to mix one more metaphoric allusion -- we'll see whether the Democrats can put Humpty Dumpty's health insurance back together again!


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