cur-mud-geon: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner
It seems such a long time ago that we elected Barack Obama as our new president, and yet it was only a few months ago. We have been on the ride of our lives since inauguration day and it shows few signs of slowing.
There are things at work in our country that are very difficult for me to divine, much less to define, but...
The debate about reforming health care, or whatever the debate is about, has taken a very hard turn that threatens meaningful action. Seemingly every week there is a new strategy, a new bogeyman, a new enemy of the people.
We, the people, were ready for wise change. We knew, or most of us knew, that our health care system could be improved upon. We are now being subjected to the extremes of politics when most of us comprise the broader group in the middle of the two extremes.
The threat that exists today is that there may be no change, or that there may be drastic change. We don't seem able to get ourselves back on the roadway, We are veering from the ditch on the left to the ditch on the right and back again, and that is tiring our country at a rapid pace.
The new Administration is using the "ready, fire, aim" approach to politics. The president is beginning to appear as very smooth and eloquent, which we all knew having followed the campaign, but lacking in substance. He has set himself up for some of that by permitting the extremists in his party to define the goals for health care reform. When he strays from the text he has been given, he too often manages to foul up the discourse with a remark that simply destroys whatever the message of the day was to be. We expected those remarks from Mr. Biden, but we didn't expect them from the new president who made virtually no such mistakes during his two-year long campaign.
His town hall meetings are charades comprised of nothing but softball questions and avid supporters, the press among them. His organization is the ACORN of current politics. It is very well constructed and very well tuned, but it is also obvious. The "opposition", as it has been tagged, is the average guy and gal who are really concerned about such a huge undertaking since they'll be required to use whatever it is that results from this undertaking. Those making the decisions as to what we will have for health care, won't be using that system; they have a better idea for themselves.
Those who have taken the time to immerse themselves in these bills and proposals can see where the words used have the ability to be turned from what they appear to mean to what they really mean, and to be turned in the blink of an eye. The attempts at writing have purposely left much to be further defined. That is to provide cover for those who'll vote for it while also providing the mechanism for further definition once it has become law.
Many of us have been down that road before. Many of have seen earlier administrations, of both persuasions, use similar tactics. We're tired of being presumed to be stupid; we are not stupid. We may be guilty of being too trusting, but we're not stupid.
Most of us do not like the glib vacuum cleaner salesman but we'll listen to him rather than slam the door in his face. The door is about to be slammed in our president's face and that won't be good for any of us since he'll not have much power left with which to accomplish good things for all of us.
He is my president and, although I didn't support him, I want the best for him and for us. I don't feel as though that is what I'm getting...and I don't think I'm alone in that feeling.
And, I am very troubled by that feeling.