“Tell a big enough lie and people will believe it because they think nobody would dare say such a thing if it weren't true.” That advice, often attributed to Hitler's dictatorship, seems to have spread around the world. It pains me to say this about my country, but it also seems to have infected the U.S. presidency and congress.
For four straight weeks in October President Obama mentioned his health care reform in his weekly message. In each of the four messages he went so far as to claim that the people and congress were coming together to provide bipartisan support for his plan. I do not understand how anybody could believe that claim. Doubts have been growing, even in Obama's own party, and that was obvious before Obama made his claims. Either he is completely out of touch with reality or he is telling a big lie.
It saddens me to make such an accusation within my own country, just as it saddened me when Nixon was shown to have engaged in a cover-up of the Watergate break-in. Unfortunately the facts are there. Nixon did participate in the cover-up. Obama did tell a flagrant lie, claiming people were coming together to support his plan when the opposite was true.
Worse, that was not an isolated incident. On 24 October, Obama claimed that the “reform” would help save small business in the country. Somehow imposing higher costs on those companies is supposed to help their bottom line? You gotta' be kidding! Can he be that out of touch with reality or is he telling us another big lie?
Though there is not yet a single, finalized health care reform plan, it is clear that all the plans Obama and his followers support would add costs, either through taxes or through forcing employers to provide insurance. Companies with that additional expense would be competing with imports from China, Southeast Asia and elsewhere, places where wages are low and employer-paid health coverage hardly known. The result will be the near destruction of small business in this country.
Obama is not alone in this. Sen. Max Baucus claims that there is a “sense of inevitability....we're going to pass health care reform and it's going to lower costs, provide better health insurance coverage.” Sorry Max, there is no sense of inevitability except as you create one. Nor is it all that obvious that government meddling will lower cost or provide better coverage. I’m not sure if you are that out of touch with reality or if you’re telling another big lie, but it has to be one or the other. What you claim is completely wrong.
Al this is reminiscent of teen-age peer pressure. “Everybody's doing it, why don't you?” It appears to be an attempt to steamroll the opposition by creating a false impression that the “reform” is inevitable. Reasoned discussion takes a back seat. Instead the message is that we better get on board, join the bandwagon, do what everybody else does without thinking it through.
There was a time when we expected honor in our elected servants. While the story of Washington and the cherry tree was not true, it does illustrate an expectation that the people we hire to run the country should tell us the truth. Sadly that expectation has changed and we now go so far as to say that the way to tell if a politician is lying is if his lips are moving. That must change. We, the voters, must put a stop to this nonsense. We must contact our representatives and tell them to stop lying. If they refuse we must publicize that, then fire them at the next election – or recall them before that election if recall is available.
No democratic government can long survive unless the voters can trust their representatives.
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