New Blood In Our Veins
The Game of Politics
A couple of years ago, my body had a heart attack. There were symptoms of pain, weakness and momentary loss of consciousness. After tests, a triple bypass was performed and recovery began. I now take a simvastatin tablet each day. Is all well? I hope so, but not solely because of the operation and medicine. A lifestyle change was required. I became a vegan.
There is a disease in our country, and the rhetoric, methodology and energy surrounding the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act are the symptoms. A “lifestyle” change is required if we are to recover from the malaise that inflicts us.
One thing each party abhors is the other party getting credit for something that actually helps the American people.
Please consider with me the image of a game. It begins zero—zero. The game progresses, and at the end, the score is zero—zero. Zero for the Republicans, Zero for the Democrats. However, the game is not scoreless. No points for the Republicans or Democrats, but lots of points for the American people. This is how the game of politics is to be played. It is not for the political parties; it is FOR THE PEOPLE.
The Affordable Care Act is not perfect, but is a place to begin. However, rather than hold public hearings, invite the varied opinions of experts and the contribution of the Democrats, the Republicans went it alone. Perhaps you will remember in a previous blog, I mentioned that our Constitution established a way of governing that requires not compromise, but creativity.
The Constitution was a creative act. The founding fathers experienced profound creativity as they debated and struggled with one another, and finally the vision of a new form of governance emerged. True to their process, their creation, the Constitution, requires creativity. Opposing views must merge to create something new. The three branches of government and two houses of Congress demand this. When our legislators fail to understand the creative structure of the Constitution, we have the chaos we currently have.
It is interesting to me that many of our Congress people who were trained as attorneys seem to be unaware that our way of governing requires creativity, opposing views that unite to form something new. For instance, Senator McConnell declared shortly after President Obama’s election that every Democratic legislative proposal would be opposed. He didn’t even know what the proposals would be. This is obstructionism, and it is Constitutional Treason. It is in blatant opposition to the structure and spirit of the Constitution.
Lifestyle Change Required
Most diseases require more than operations and drugs; they require a lifestyle change. The malaise that inflicts our country requires a return to the spirit of the founding fathers.
Remember the game that ended zero to zero for each political party, but with multiple points scored for the people… As Americans, we need to ask ourselves whom we want in the game? Do we have the players on the floor or on the field who can play a game that ends zero to zero for the parties?
I don’t think so. Let us listen carefully to the rhetoric and watch with great interest the votes of our legislators, for their words and votes determine who knows how to contribute on the field. The words and votes reveal to us who understands, regardless of their training and education, the creative nature of our founding document.
As the initial Republican Healthcare bill was introduced with it provisions affecting pre-conditions, it became evident that political ideology trumped compassion for the people.
In today’s world, we hear that one of the primary tasks of government is to keep us safe.
When you take an oath to defend the Constitution of the United States (I have taken this oath and administered it to others.) it is to defend the Constitution/country against enemies foreign and domestic. When it comes to healthcare and pre-existing conditions, the threat is domestic—“health” insurance companies that abuse and take advantage of people when they are most vulnerable.
My wife and I experienced this first hand many years ago. She had a one time, temporary condition and has never had it since, but under our old insurance plan and before the Affordable Care Act, no claim could be made regarding this health challenge. When we went to another health insurance plan, there was still no coverage.
We are living not in a democracy; we are immersed in a revolutionary democracy that our founders never envisioned. We are perpetually at war with one another; we are in the midst of an ongoing revolution where each party vies for power and points. The party that is “out of power” strives to return to power. Its objective is to overthrow the party currently in power. We the people are forgotten in this battle. We are collateral damage.
Rather than work creatively for the people, a perpetual revolution is waged. This is why I say, “We live in a revolutionary democracy.” And on occasion when a party controls at least two branches of government, its ideology can become so central that it does not invite into the debate the other party or the opinion of the American people. Lobbyists are listened to, but no us. Town Hall meetings are canceled. In fact, attempts are made to devalue opposing views when, in fact, they are the crucible out of which something new is born, a new intoxicating brew that fills us with joy because once again the democracy conceived as a creative act now flows through our veins.