Sure, it's Sarah Palin, but Publius and I are both kind of taken aback at the sheer insanity of the lies she's telling about the Obama health care plan: "The America I know and love is not one in which my parents or my baby with Down Syndrome will have to stand in front of Obama's "death panel" so his bureaucrats can decide, based on a subjective judgment of their "level of productivity in society," whether they are worthy of health care."
I hope Democratic Congresscritters can keep in mind the sheer level of misinformation that's in the heads of the disruptive mobs that show up at their town halls. When some of your constituents furiously oppose legislation mainly on the basis of total confusion about what's in it, you have no obligation to represent their preferences in your vote. This kind of situation would probably resolve itself at an ordinary town hall -- the Congressman would have a chance to explain that the bill doesn't do what the angry people say it does. But if some of the videos I've seen of recent town halls are any indication, there's not even an opportunity to get that point across amidst all the shouting.
Neither is there any hope for a Democrat to get the mob's votes by voting the way they want. These are the most extreme people in the Republican Party, and there's no way to be a Democrat and get their votes. They're the people who work to boot moderate Republicans out of the party in primaries. So apart from the sheer physical intimidation that these mobs present, there's really no reason for anyone in Congress to be affected by them. I'm concerned that the sheer intimidation may have some effect, though.
And really, that's one of the reasons why it's now more important than ever that we win this thing. Physical intimidation can't be allowed to determine the course of public policy. For the health of our democracy, these tactics have to fail.
"When some of your constituents furiously oppose legislation mainly on the basis of total confusion about what's in it, you have no obligation to represent their preferences in your vote."
You do when they're in the majority, unfortunately. Fortunately, that's not the case in most places.
It’s funny we hear Republicans say that they do not want “faceless bureaucrats” making medical decisions but they have no problem with “private sector” “faceless bureaucrats” daily declining medical coverage and financially ruining good hard working people. And who says that the “private sector” is always right, do we forget failures like Long-Term Capital, WorldCom, Global Crossing, Enron, Tyco, AIG and Lehman Brothers. Of course the federal government will destroy heathcare by getting involved, Oh but wait, Medicare and Medicaid and our military men and women and the Senate and Congress get the best heathcare in the world, and oh, that’s right, its run by our federal government. I can understand why some may think that the federal government will fail, if you look at the past eight years as a current history, with failures like the financial meltdown and Katrina but the facts is they can and if we support them they will succeed.
How does shouting down to stop the conversation of the healthcare debate at town hall meetings, endears them to anyone. Especially when the organizations that are telling them where to go and what to do and say are Republicans political operatives, not real grassroots. How does shouting someone down or chasing them out like a lynch mob advanced the debate, it does not. So I think the American people will see through all of this and know, like the teabagger, the birthers, these lynch mobs types are just the same, people who have to resort to these tactics because they have no leadership to articulate what they real want. It’s easy to pickup a bus load of people who hate, and that’s all I been seeing, they hate and can’t debate. Too bad.
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