Monday, March 15, 2010

Profile in Courage

The right wing-nut boilerplate on the Obamacare lemming run in Congress has been that the radical left is so desperate to implement their self-consciously nation-destroying vision that they will risk everything to make it happen. That is a bit hyperbolic.

Regardless, one question that crosses the mind of any American history dilettante is whether President Obama's steadfastness in the face of its unpopularity is in fact a display along the lines illustrated by the subjects in then-Senator Kennedy's Pulitzer Prize-winning Profiles in Courage:
  • John Quincy Adams from Massachusetts, for breaking away from the Federalist Party
  • Daniel Webster also from Massachusetts, for speaking in favor of the Compromise of 1850
  • Thomas Hart Benton from Missouri, for staying in the Democratic Party despite his opposition to the extension of slavery in the territories
  • Sam Houston from Texas, for speaking against the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854 and for later opposing Texas' secession from the Union, when he was governor
  • Edmund G. Ross from Kansas, for voting for acquittal in President Andrew Johnson's impeachment trial
  • Lucius Lamar from Mississippi, for eulogizing Charles Sumner on the Senate Floor and other efforts to mend ties between the North and South during Reconstruction, and for his opposition to the Bland-Allison Act to permit free coinage of silver
  • George Norris from Nebraska, for opposing Speaker Joseph Gurney Cannon's use of power, for opposing the arming of US merchant ships while the country was neutral during the early phases of WW I, and for supporting the campaign of Democrat Al Smith for president
  • Robert A. Taft from Ohio, for criticizing the Nuremberg Trials for trying Nazi war criminals under what he considered ex post facto laws
However, in the final analysis, what is ultimately lacking is not courage, but principle in truth. The legislation the president is advocating does not do what it is purported to do, neither in terms of effectively covering the non-voluntary uninsured, nor in reducing health care costs, nor in stimulating economic growth. And it is quite easy to confirm. The complexity, the lack of transparency, the brazen lies about what is plainly in the bill, and the aptly named Slaughter Solution put the truth to it: Cynical machinations to blur member accountability reveal that this has very little, if anything, to do with health care, or health insurance, reform (!). Rather it is an upfront attempt to go big with mainstreaming the welfare statist philosophy in America.

The irony is that it all may come down to a man who supports health insurance reform, Bart Stupak, but who so far has stood against his party, including the president and the congressional leadership, by opposing the current bill in a manner worthy of his legislative forebears. Let's pray he holds firm to principle.

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Because Life is Life
and not just on election day