The right eloquence needs no bell to call the people together and no constable to keep them. ~ Emerson

Friday, August 7, 2009

If You Liked Gitmo . . .

How Republicans Can Oppose Socialized Medicine and Housing Terrorists in their States’ Prisons Just Doesn’t Make Sense

Republican Senator Pat Roberts of Kansas is a minority member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions. Unsurprisingly, as a Republican, he does not think much of the healthcare reform legislation proposed by his Democratic counterparts and backed by President Obama. In Roberts’s view, it means adding to an already bloated federal government bureaucracy.

“This bill jeopardizes the [current] healthcare system . . . and puts the government – not patients and doctors – at the center of decisions about treatment,” Roberts sputters indignantly. Worst of all, it will do so “at the expense of the already overburdened taxpayer.” When it comes to healthcare reform, Roberts wants Washington to leave Kansas alone. Kansas is more than competent at taking care of its own backyard.

As a former Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, another thing that Roberts does not want in Kansas’s backyard is imprisoned terrorists. Obama recently named Fort Leavenworth military prison as one of the locations he is leaning toward for housing Guantanamo Bay’s most dangerous terrorist detainees once that facility closes. Only this time, Roberts wants the federal government to back off because Kansas apparently lacks the competence to handle this problem themselves.

“Leavenworth is not suitable for the hundred most dangerous terrorists in the world,” Roberts insists.

Right. How could the U.S. Army possibly duplicate in Kansas what it has been doing in Cuba for the past eight years? Suddenly, big, centralized, bureaucratic federal government strikes Roberts as the only way to go.

Republican Representative Mike Rogers of Michigan is a minority member of the House Subcommittee on Health. Like Roberts, he too is dismayed at the prospect of Obamacare passing into law.

Despite the fact that “more than any other state, Michigan has faced the most difficult crisis [regarding healthcare costs],” Rogers insists many Michigan families are happy with the private health insurance plans they have through employers, even if “they might not be perfect.” In his mind, this means healthcare reform is possible “without piling up mountains of debt and without putting the government in charge of our healthcare.”

Rogers has authored his own reform proposal that would “expand funding for Community Health Centers, with a focus on cities and towns.” He is another Republican who believes healthcare reform is best undertaken is one’s own backyard.

Obama has also named Standish maximum-security prison in Michigan as yet another potential destination for Guantanamo detainees. Strictly speaking, this is not in Roger’s immediate backyard – he represents Michigan’s eighth district, while Standish is in Michigan’s first district, represented by Democrat Bart Stupak. However, since Stupak apparently lacks the sense to be scared shitless by this prospect, Roberts has decided to step up and do it for him.

As a member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, as well as its Subcommittee on Terrorism, Rogers insists his state could not possibly handle what the big, bloated, doddering federal government is currently doing for them. “These are people who are highly trained and motivated to commit jihad,” Rogers quails. “No amount of money can be thrown at these states that will make this safe and acceptable.”

He has a point. The worst of the lot at Guantanamo are extremist terrorist fanatics, who are guilty of killing, depredating human worth, and destroying civilization in the name of ideology and religious purity. Can you imagine the horrors that would result if we mixed them with the murderers, rapists, and arsonists currently housed in U.S. military and civilian prisons, who are guilty of killing, depredating human worth, and destroying civilization merely for profit and/or gratifying their private psychosexual deviances?

The terrorists might even be able to convert a few of our unsuspecting innocents to Islam before getting their throats slashed for their smokes by them.

In fairness, Roberts says he believes the military police at Fort Leavenworth can “secure a facility . . . without a doubt.” Whew! However, he maintains that Kansans are terrified “their schools, hospitals and shopping centers will become symbolic, easy targets for terrorists and terrorist sympathizers.”

Yes, I can see how uncomplicated it would be for Arab-looking Middle East men to slip through those borders unnoticed. Imagine this scene . . .

OFFICIAL – Now then, Mr. Al . . . Kighdee, is it? From one a’ them Muslim countries?

AL – That’s right.

OFFICIAL – What exactly is your reason for visiting Kansas?

AL – I enjoy taking walking tours of wheat fields located near sensitive government facilities on my vacations and I understand the ones in Kansas are the best in the world.

OFFICIAL – Well, we like to think so. You’re free to go about your business. Oh, and be sure to take as many guns as you like from that stack of semi-automatic weapons over there.

AL – Re-really?

OFFICIAL – Yup, it’s part of a new program we’ve started. We hope that by getting a chance to exercise the same Second Amendment rights we take for granted, you’ll be motivated to transform your backward, barbaric country from a religious theocracy to a secular democracy, much like our own . . . with Christ’s help, of course. Praise Jesus!

AL – Uh, yes. Praise the heck out of him. What a guy!

OFFICIAL – See, you’re already getting into the spirit.

As silly as the above dialogue may have been, so it seems equally silly that those who are so quick to endorse turning U.S. military forces into international police officers and prison guards are equally mortified by the thought of the government empowering doctors to return to practicing medicine.

C’mon Senator Roberts and Representative Rogers . . . if you liked Gitmo, you ought to love Obamacare. Just think of disease as a bunch of bad guys that need to be contained and you’ll come to realize you’ve been living in a socialist utopia for years now.

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