Like Don Quixote tilting at windmills I have repeatedly used this space, my Twitter, and other online forms of communication to make as clear as much my case for why faith has failed mankind, and how clinging to faith in the face of reality is worse than a grown adult Linus Van Pelt still holding his security blanket and sucking on his thumb. I have cited many examples why science and facts trump belief and faith. I do this not to convert anyone to atheism, because I don’t care enough to join some foolish crusade for doubt. I do this because I am also an absurdist and I find the absurdity of this disparity between mankind and reality.. amusing, to say the least.
As I write these words, there is something going on in American politics that once again illustrates this disparity and how dangerous it can be. House Speaker John Boehner finds himself between a rock and a hard place. To his right is a conservative republican party infected with extremist, partisan, juvenile, domestic terrorists who would rather extort the federal government and hold the US economy hostage than continue on with business as usual. I admire their spirit, but not the method to their madness.
To Boehner’s left is president Barack obama, the US Senate, and a law referred to by some as “The Affordable Care Act” because that’s what it was dubbed when it was a bill, passed by both the House and the Senate, then signed into law by Obama on March 23, 2010 — OVER THREE YEARS AGO. Now, when I was a kid, being liberal was equated with being unreasonable and crazy. The conservatives were the sober ones. Today, the liberals are rational, sober, and on the side of the law. The conservatives are behaving as if they are in a drunken stupor and their girlfriend just dumped them. I’m not comfortable with liberals being rational. Aw, but who am I kidding? This entire country is so pulled to the right, there really is no such thing as liberal. The alleged liberal voice is really moderate, and the extreme right wing is behaving like PacMan leaving the screen on the far right to reappear on the far left. I don’t think the true liberal is even allowed on the playing field anymore.
Jimmy Kimmel recently did a “man on the street” interview segment on his show, where he asked people on the street which law they preferred: The Affordable Care Act or “ObamaCare.” Many interviewed chose the sober sounding name over the one that alludes to Barack, oblivious to the FACT that “ObamaCare” is just the nickname the far right gave to The Affordable Care Act. They are one and the same. By the way, Jimmy Kimmel is the same guy who some years ago, on something called The Man Show with Adam Carolla, went out on the street asking Americans to sign a petition “ending women’s suffrage” with similar hilarious results.
People believe there are two different ‘acts’ being considered. They do not believe there is only one LAW that HAS BEEN A LAW FOR OVER THREE YEARS and the argument is over. There’s nothing left to consider. That’s the fact, but facts are only truthy to some people if they really believe in them. Clap for Tinkerbell, boys and girls. Essentially, random Americans on the street don’t like “ObamaCare” solely cuz it’s got Obama’s name attached to it, but who would possibly be against “affordable care” for everyone? why, you’d have to be some kind of monster to not want every American to be healthy, right?
Personally, I’d rather see this argument be about whether or not The Affordable Care Act actually makes health care affordable. I’m not of the opinion that it will. However, because of this blatant circus performance on behalf of congress, this intentional distraction, that is SO not where this argument is. I feel that’s by design. Rather than where the argument should be, the pretend argument is over whether or not there are enough votes in the House of Representatives to raise the debt ceiling of government spending or else the government will default on its loans and other obligations to itself, its people, and the rest of the world. Congress has already allegedly shut down the government, although all that’s really shut down are some things we can do without temporarily, mostly things the extremist conservatives have been trying to shut down for years anyway, cuz they hate spending all this money on stuff that doesn’t turn a profit, just cuz it helps people.
The extremists in Congress want to negotiate, or that’s what they claim. What they believe negotiate really is, is they get what they want and their opponents lose. That’s not negotiation. That’s walking into a bank with a gun and saying “lets negotiate all your cash into this bag.” They want concessions that defund “ObamaCare” in order to cripple The Affordable Care Act without making them look like the bunch of supervillains that they are. Why? Cuz their name isn’t on it. Even though they helped give birth to it three years ago, Obama and the democratic party will get all the credit. The republicans would rather repeal the law entirely but they haven’t figured out how to weasel that trick into being, so they’ll settle with crippling it. This is not to do what’s right by the American people. This is in order to stick it to Obama. Not cuz he’s Muslim (he’s not really). Not cuz he’s black (he’s not really – have you seen him dance? puh-leeze). It’s cuz he’s democrat. The two party system in this country thinks its a part of the NFL!
Congress has always controlled the purse strings in the government. That’s intentionally built into the checks and balances of this country for a reason, although I doubt our Founding Fathers intended it to be used in quite this way. I like to imagine Thomas Jefferson would share my sentiment at the audacity and absurdity of this entire debacle, and would be sitting with me on the sidelines with a sardonic grin eating nachos and drinking beers as we are entertained by this three ring circus. I hear the Supreme Court’s spotlight is about to turn on. That should be an adorable little dog and pony show, eh Tom? House Speaker John Boehner CLAIMS there are not enough votes in the House to pass anything substantial that can stop this inevitable defaulting of loans or shutting down the government or all these other horrors that have been artificially placed in the path of America as it careens hilly nilly into the future with the brakes rigged so they can’t function. He’s the brakes. He feels there’s no reason to call this to a vote. The votes aren’t there. Barack Obama has called Boehner’s bluff. If that were true, then there’s no harm in calling a vote to confirm that belief. John Boehner doesn’t want to do that, because proof denies faith.
And once again, I have successfully tilted at yet another windmill, cuz They Might Be Giants.
This sort of thing happens all the time when you are working with people who believe in things that they are unwilling or unable to test for proof. Sometimes the results are innocuous. If a woman prays her car will make it to the shop despite smoke coming from the engine, and it does, she thanks her god for answering her prayer and goes on with her life oblivious to the fact that praying to her god did absolutely nothing to the car engine or time or helped her avoid a wreck or anything. if the car stops working on the freeway on the way to the shop and causes an accident, well, I guess The Devil won that day. The “Devil” is winning in the United States government today, and that “Devil” is humanity scaring itself silly. The government shutdown is related to health care only in the minds of those who want to believe they are connected. The Affordable Care Act was made into a law three years ago. Now, republicans claim to want to negotiate over a LAW. Not a bill, but a law that they themselves witnessed pass. Objections were made then, and then it passed in both The House and The Senate. The president signed it. It’s a law now. They still don’t believe it. It is not my opinion that The Affordable Care Act is a law. I don’t even like it. I think it’s stupid, but that doesn’t change reality. Reality is, it’s a law now. This is a reality that politicians and rich people in very powerful, influential places refuse to accept.
Do i STILL have to explain WHY rational, reasonable people have no real choice but to point at the Emperor when he is wearing no clothes and laugh at him? Is this really still hard for you to understand? Is that because you’re also walking around naked cuz you think its very fine silk? Is that what they told you?