Lanterns: Why I Don't Speak Progressive


Why I Don't Speak Progressive

I know you don't understand me, you never have, and probably can't -- our brains are wired quite differently. Sadly, that hasn't stopped you from mislabeling and denigrating me. This is often seen in the history of man -- we dismiss and disrespect what we don't understand. I am aware you think me heartless and cold, but you really couldn't be further from the truth. I sincerely hope you will read this carefully and thoughtfully. It's my fervent hope you'll absorb what I'm attempting to convey in somewhat simplistic terms. However, I won't hold my breath.

You, of the Liberal and Progressive persuasion, are poster children for the "Law of Unintended Consequences," and likely the meaning behind, "The road to hell is paved with good intentions."  Large central government has been the downfall of numerous civilizations throughout history. Perhaps you cannot grasp the big picture, so let's zoom in on a couple of smaller bits of the whole -- the VA, and the War on Drugs, and Poverty.

In case you missed it, veterans are dying at a pretty good clip waiting for medical services promised to them by well-meaning administrations. They are falling through the cracks because the system is bloated and has ceased to function. The cracks have become holes, and a trickle has become a deluge of those left behind in the never-ending grind of big government.

The VA is too big, and there are too many cogs in the works. The statistic that should illuminate the scene is: less than 5% of our population is now wearing, or has ever worn, the uniform -- of all the military services combined: Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines. In other words, the federal government has royally screwed up medical care for a proportionately minuscule segment of our population. Perhaps that will help you to understand why I was so vehemently against ObamaCare. Putting one's health in the hands of government bureaucrats is not only unsafe, but it's also crazy.

Considering the epidemic of overdoses happening across the nation, the War on Drugs has been a spectacular failure. Prohibition didn't work with booze, and it won't work with drugs. Illegality drives it underground, creating a behemoth black market that serves a relative few drug lords and gang leaders, making it a magnet for violence. Prohibition on guns wouldn't work for the same reason, but legalizing and decriminalizing drugs would significantly impact those who most profit from the carnage of trafficking.

As for the War on Poverty, we've spent trillions, with a T, on this program. It hasn't just failed, it's become exponentially worse, with a far higher percentage of population impoverished now, than when it started. It needs a total overhaul. Democrats are quick to say Republicans don't want to help the poor...false. We don't want to pour more money into failed programs. We want to actually help improve lives. I'm getting a bird's eye view of poverty, and I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy, let me tell you.

I'm in poverty because I'm waiting on yet another government program. My disability claim was finally approved last week after 2 1/2 years (which is not unusual for disability claims.) I've lost everything I ever owned, right down to my wedding band, because we had to eat. That's the norm too. An advocate once told me about 60% of her clients are homeless before they get a disability decision. My husband and I are not homeless, only because our landlord is an angel right here on earth. We owe him over one year's rent and an enormous debt of gratitude. It's reprehensible that anyone should have to wait so long, and become destitute, to get their own money -- the money we are forced to pay into Social Security.

Having the federal government determining the course of your life is a horrible fate, just as I always thought it probably was. My heart goes out even more to those in need, now that I'm experiencing this first hand. This ordeal has solidified my political predilections. Ronald Reagan was right, when he said, "The most terrifying words in the English language are: 'We're from the government, and we're here to help."

The wealthiest 1% don't actually have enough assets to cover college tuitions for any significant length of time, even if you took every dime and stock they own. Look it up, it's an economic fact. It's also theft. It never seems to occur to you that they, or their family, earned that money.

Why in the world do you think you have a claim to any of it? Envy is one of the seven deadly sins for a reason. If your cohorts succeed in making tuition "free," everyone will pay for the tuition for the rest of their lives in the form of taxes the likes of which you've never conceived.

Do you know why college is so expensive? A hint: it's not the fault of corporations or the wealthy. The government started providing subsidies and funding, and the colleges upped the prices, knowing the government would be pushed to provide more and more money -- a perfect case of the law of unintended consequences. It certainly didn't cost anywhere near what it costs now when I went to college in the early eighties. No matter what you're talking about, when the government gets involved, costs skyrocket.

As for other countries, one cannot compare them to the US, because it isn't apples to apples or even apples to oranges. Apples to refrigerators is more accurate. They are incomparable. Other countries various systems of government are wholly incompatible with our Constitution and Bill of Rights, and in this example, size matters. One cannot simply accept a small-scale program will translate successfully to a much larger population pool, especially when some of the countries in question, are barely larger than one of our cities.

You must take ideas to their logical and natural consequences; you stop thinking far too soon in the process. You fail to see beyond the tip of your nose. You fail to take into account human nature. You see government through rose colored glasses. It occurs to me you probably think Progressivism represents moving forward, to progress. This is why we are not on the same page, and probably never will be.

So please stop trying to tell me how stupid and heartless you think I am. I am a critical thinker. I consider the big picture before its smaller counterparts. Just because an idea sounds good, doesn't mean it will be, and in practice and fact, rarely is. Go off and have a drum circle or something, and leave the big questions of the day to those equipped for the task.

Written by Julie Custer

2 Responses

"You must take ideas to their logical and natural consequences; you stop thinking far too soon in the process." Yes, yes, YES. Thank you, Julie. This is exactly the point. It's so frustrating to have such a serious topic, though, because the title and image for your piece made me LOL. ;) Pax!

Thank you Sarah! The struggle is real... ??

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