Mirror, Mirror, on the wall
posted by Jim Barber
at 26 December, 11:52 AM 0
Cynthia Malla, of Clarkdale, AZ (“Connecticut shooting no surprise”, Camp Verde Bugle, Perspective, 12/26/12) made an interesting statement, “…we’ve allowed our government to cut funding for mental health until it’s pretty much non-existent…” That’s not exactly accurate. While action on mental health issues is on our “wish list” of goodies we demand of our ever-expanding government, it certainly has not been a priority. We, essentially, tell our lawmakers to give us more and more “stuff” or we will not vote for them. They, in turn, cut the healthcare-pie into smaller and smaller pieces in order to cover all the demands. Even though that pie is growing unsustainably (because there simply aren’t enough dollars existing to tax high enough to cover the growth), we refuse to prioritize our “list”. Instead, we demand healthcare for millions who, with a change of lifestyle (such as young people who rather have a new car, a nicer apartment and who are healthy), could afford their own insurance. We refuse to demand tort reform to drive out frivolous lawsuits so doctors could lower their overhead and prices (the trial-lawyer lobby pays off more politicians than any other in Washington). We refuse to demand competition across the board by lowering the barriers (erected by the big-insurance company lobby as payment for their political donations) across state lines that would reduce premiums.
We allow our politicians, the vast majority of whom view their first priority as re-election, to demonize those who make all the goodies possible – the job builders. We let them tell us that they could give us all we demand if we just give them those next 2, 4 or 6 years to “fix the system.” They tell us, and we grasp at it, that the “other guy”, if he weren’t so selfish, should just be willing to give a little more and it would cure all our ills. We allow ourselves to believe that there really is a “free lunch.” We ask for more, not results. When a government program fails it is not ended, another is simply added. We ask for more, not reform. When our kids can’t read, when they drop out and can’t find a job we demand financial support instead of accountability. Most of the homeless on our streets are addicted or mentally ill. We choose to look past them into the store window full of more “goodies.”
In short, it is not the politicians who are to blame. They are trying mightily to give us everything we demand by taking it from a smaller and smaller population that is actually paying the tab. Look in the mirror. Better yet, just look to Europe, the riots and strikes, and you will see what happens when the “pie” is gone and the fight starts for the crumbs.