Submitted By: Mike Spindell, Guest Blogger
When I awoke a short time ago my mind was in its usual morning fog that slowly dissipates as I go through my wake-up routine which includes laying out the 35 or so pills that I take to stay alive. That fog mentally is usually a jumble of wide ranging short thoughts that are later forgotten as the fog lifts after my first coffee. On the way to the bathroom for my morning ablutions I found myself thinking about the biggest news all week which had been the shutdown of the government and the crisis that ensued. Suddenly, as an idea arose that woke me from the fog. Political Theater, it is all political theater. The threatened shutdown by the Republican Congressman, led by John Boehner et. al. was merely a show whose purpose was to destroy the publicity that would have surrounded the inception of enrollment in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) dubbed by the conservative PR geniuses “Obamacare”. How obvious this was took my breath away and also gave me some chagrin that it took me so long to see this con job in the making, while I mulled over the ramifications of a government shutdown. As the President has said and as some Republican have opined the GOP’s great fear regarding “Obamacare” is that it will succeed. Since enrollment was scheduled to begin on October 1st, without the shutdown speculation dominating the news cycle there would have been much publicity on the beginning of people enrolling in the plan. There would have been actual discussion of the plan and not just the cacophony of misinformation deftly spread by well placed conservative rumor mongers, broadcast blaringly on FOX News and flacked by the innumerable leaders of the “Tea Party”. Our mainstream media would play their continuing game of false equivalence by blithely accepting all information as being equal and not bothering to supply context when lies are told in the service “informing” the public.
Instead we have a manufactured crisis that sends the ACA to the back pages of virtual news media and we have faux layoffs and service loss endlessly debated. Now in truth this thought make me even a little sad for those “Tea Party” congresspeople that haven’t been let in on the nature of the game, nor their role as pawns in the manipulations of some the wealthy elite in this country. As I explained awhile ago in these guest blogs: http://jonathanturley.org/2011/08/02/tea-party-and-the-myth-of-a-grassroots-movement/#more-38049 and http://jonathanturley.org/2013/02/16/tea-party-a-phony-movement-mantled-as-legitimate/ the so-called “Tea Party” is not a grassroots movement, but the creation of the Koch, via an organization known as “Freedomworks” which they fund. On the Bill Maher show last Friday night one of his panel guests was the President and CEO of “Freedomworks” Matt Kibbe. From my perspective he was debunked by the panel, particularly Congressman Alan Cranston. What caught my attention though, was that Kibbe was at one point railing about how big government was run by insider lobbyists. None on the panel, or Maher, were perceptive enough to call him out on this since he is the quintessential lobbyist for the Koch Brothers. To my mind there is nothing to see here folks, move along and allow yourselves to be distracted by yet another manufactured crisis, designed to prevent you from actually evaluating the health care plan that is now available to you without adequate health care, or who are paying far too much for what should be a basic right of citizenship, health care. The Affordable Care Act is not my ideal of what American health insurance should be about because I believe in the “single payer” system used in most civilized nations. However, it is far better than what we already have and because of that should be fairly evaluated by the public. Perhaps though that fair evaluation will never get a chance since there are those who consciously work to distract us through propaganda, mythology and political theater into supporting what is in our own worst interests.
After I had written and posted this to my surprise I discovered this article in The New York Times. “A Federal Budget Crisis Months in the Planning” http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/06/us/a-federal-budget-crisis-months-in-the-planning.html?hp&_r=0 . A short excerpt:
“WASHINGTON — Shortly after President Obama started his second term, a loose-knit coalition of conservative activists led by former Attorney General Edwin Meese III gathered in the capital to plot strategy. Their push to repeal Mr. Obama’s health care law was going nowhere, and they desperately needed a new plan.
Out of that session, held one morning in a location the members insist on keeping secret, came a little-noticed “blueprint to defunding Obamacare,” signed by Mr. Meese and leaders of more than three dozen conservative groups.
It articulated a take-no-prisoners legislative strategy that had long percolated in conservative circles: that Republicans could derail the health care overhaul if conservative lawmakers were willing to push fellow Republicans — including their cautious leaders — into cutting off financing for the entire federal government.”
Perhaps my subconscious was channelling, but it seems that my idea through the morning fog has some weight to it.
Submitted By: Mike Spindell, Guest Blogger