Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Clarification of Healthcare Reform

Clarification of Healthcare Reform 
 July 16, 2012

The GOP has taken great delight in venomous deceptive criticism of “Obamacare” by calling it “socialism.”  They gloat on by stating that Obama is going to ruin the country with his “socialism.”  They seem to equate socialism with communism, fascism, devil worship and any other negative connotation that comes out of Rush Limbaugh’s mouth. Equating socialism with these evil regimes lies somewhere between a bold-faced lie and the grandest of deceptions. The GOP still harbors resentment at a deep level against Franklin D. Roosevelt who initiated social security in the 1930s.  This humanistic and prophetic action gave elderly American citizens who had worked until they could work no more a safety net of a minimum amount of income so that they could still live their remaining days in their own homes. What in God’s name is evil about that ? The desire to give the most needy citizens of this country who have worked until the health and the aging process has rendered them unable to make a living a subsistence allowance to live out their days with dignity. Had FDR not initiated social security, which the richest and the most powerful country in the world could easily afford even during an economic downturn, look where we would be today.  Our demographics have changed dramatically such that the elderly make up a much higher percentage of our population than has ever existed in the entire history of mankind. A vast percentage of this previously unimaginable number of elderly are entirely dependent on social security.  Isn’t that a wonderful achievement that this country who has been at the cutting edge of every major arena of human endeavor, is able to provide a safety net for so many millions of needy elderly. 
The Republican Party treats this issue in such a black and white manner that one would think they were dealing with the cost of steel.  Their oversimplification consists of cut social security and Medicare costs and the United States government will save money, reduce our debt, and stimulate the economy.  Striking a blow against the evil of socialism at the expense and suffering of the elderly is all upside and no downside, right?  This not very clever deception reveals a concrete and simplistic view of life that would cause the Founding Fathers to wretch. Abraham Lincoln, the acknowledged father of conservatism, made a clear and concise statement regarding this and other similar issues: “The role of government is to do for the people what the people cannot do for themselves.”

Avoiding the label of socialism, and considering what FDR did through the government, was to help the elderly do what they could not do for themselves. What action could a government possibly take that would fit Mr. Lincoln’s definition more precisely?  In their black and white thinking, the GOP treats the “problem of the elderly “ and the inherent expense of taking care of them, as a simple matter: reduce the benefits of the elderly, save money, and the problem is solved. As much as I hate to burden the GOP with facts, the expense of caring for the elderly will not disappear; it will fall on their families. Millions of currently employed children of these elderly will be forced to quit work, thereby stop paying taxes, in order to care for their loved ones.  It is a very complex issue because it involves almost everyone in society, both socially and economically. 

I challenge the GOP to engage an independent accounting firm to perform a comprehensive analysis of the economic ramifications of their simplistic “sound bite” solution.  Most of the “savings” of cutting Federal spending on taking care of the elderly, will come out of the pockets of their loved ones, lost wages, lost taxes on those lost wages, not to mention the intangible suffering for the majority of families when suddenly responsible for care of the aging loved ones, and lacking adequate recourses, experience additional suffering personally as the see the quality of the care they can render deteriorates.

If avoiding this inhumane and cruel scenario by paying a few dollars more in taxes, is “socialism”, then I for one am very happy to pay it.  Americans, have by far the lowest tax rates of any equally affluent nation.  And what do they “get” for these higher tax rates?  Far superior care of their elderly and better access to medical care for starters.  In comparison to these mostly Western European nations, we Americans want “something for nothing”.  Parents who were raised on small family farms raised me.  They had few “extras”, had to work hard, but were thankful for whatever they had.  This consumerism society is never happy with what they have.  TV and Madison Avenue sociopaths that control it, have taught us to never be happy with what we have.  They will invent a bigger fancier thing that we don’t need, and the TV tells us we must buy it.  In our television stupor we do as we are told, and act like greedy teenagers.  But a few more dollars a year in taxes for grandma, they we are too busy to even visit any more, and we behave like spoiled brats.  And if we have forgotten how to behave like that Rush Limbaugh will teach us how.

The GOP tries to make it simple for us: oppose taxation or we won’t be able to afford the new 63 foot plasma screen TV.  Grow up  America.  Turn of the electronic narcotic, get off your butts, and pay attention to what is important in life.  Pay you taxes with a smile; and vote the politicians that teach us consumerism and greed out of office.

Morris Creedon-McVean

Monday, July 16, 2012

Response to Donald Trump's Response to Obama Care

Donald Trump’s Cheap Shots on Obama Care
Posted on Facebook June 6, 2012

My response: Trump: you have just put together a list of cheap shots. Posturing yourself as a wise man who is deeply concerned with our health care system. You really don't give a damn. Your behavior for years clearly demonstrates you are on of the most antisocial, and selfish narcissistic people in this country. Posturing yourself in this manner is just another lie and deception. The only way you know how to behave. Here are the facts, which you carefully fail to mention. Our health care system is just like everything else in this country: it favors the rich and penalizes the poor. It is a disgrace. Compared to other similarly wealthy nations, we rank so high in very basic delivery of health care, like infant mortality, we rank with developing nations. Obama's plan has many flaws and it is easy to criticize. But at least he had the courage to try. Neither you or any member of the GOP has ever had the courage to do. The forces that favor the rich over the poor, that's you Donald, just sit back and criticize any body else's attempts to correct the disparity. Because, you are happy with the status quo. You have access to the finest care our system has to offer. You have money and status. Not caring that any one else has access, is morally and ethically impoverished.

The systematic plan by the GOP and the super rich to ride this country of the middle class and reduce this nation to an aristocracy, with the super rich as the kings and queens and the rest of us as wage slaves is retarded. History has shown REPEATEDLY that when the gap between the “have's and the have nots”, becomes too great, bloody revolution takes place. And in every case the poor ultimately win. That's your brilliant plan to save America. Save it from what? Being the first nation to succeed in evolving a new form of government that keeps wealth evenly distributed and peace erupts? Giving the challenges of an overpopulated world and climactic changes which combined with the end of oil as a natural recourse, our capacity to feed the world's population will be less than the 3 billion present in 1900. Thus, even if we stop population growth, that still leaves 3.5 billion doomed to starvation in the next generation. To have a CHANCE at survival for our species tribalism (us vs them) my die and altruism (those with more than what they need share with those less fortunate), must be rapidly adopted as the new planetary consciousness, because only altruism can give us the flexibility to adapt to the rapidly changing world that is our future. Just as opposing birth control is a suicidal path for our species, so is aristocracy a suicidal path for our species. Stay focused on your bank account Don, and lead us to our demise.

Morris Creedon-McVean

Review of Literature on the 2012 Presidential Election

Essay on Published Literature on the 2012
Presidential Election
July 14, 2012

This is a review of the current whole-article literature concerning the parties and candidates for President of the United States and the election in November of 2012.

Using the Amazon.com database, I reviewed 5 popular authors representing each of the 2 major political parties. Using a combination of the reviews written by the Amazon staff, and the extensive commentaries posted by readers of these books, I was able to get a very good picture of the structure and contents of each of the books. It is important to note, that many of the reviewers are prominent scholars, politicians, and well-known media personalities. Their comments were well written, very detailed, and, in general, had high praise for the book in question. Admittedly, this is a lazy man's attempt to evaluate this literature, but the time it would take to read ten volumes is beyond my current capacity and time limitations. However, let me add that I have been a high-volume consumer of new nonfiction literature since I was in college. More specifically, after reading The Medium is the Message by Marshall McLuhan in 1969, in which he warned of the hidden dangers of watching television, I stopped that habit and have been consistent in not watching television ever since. I know of no other individual who took Marshall McLuhan's advice; and, so while my peers have been watching television I have been reading books.

The appearance of Amazon.com on the Internet changed forever my reading experience. The brilliant structure of the database included reader reviews, which greatly aided myself and many, many others in making intelligent decisions concerning our next purchase and reading experience. Another splash of breakouts included cross-linking of the purchasers’ buying history, as well as their browsing history. With these two constants, the purchaser would then be offered books labeled as " other books you might be interested in." This soft sell, while at first seeming like a cheap gimmick, actually proved to be affective in helping me find books that I was interested in. Because the database permanently maintains your purchasing history and your browsing history, it was particularly effective for my style of reading. For example, I like to jump from topic to topic, for instance reading 3 or 4 books on recent breakthroughs in brain physiology; and, then switch to an interesting new series of subatomic particles in theoretical physics. In addition, the service was impeccable: fast, accurate, and reliable. The point in all this is that I have learned from 25 years of experience using Amazon.com how to use their system to the greatest advantage in finding books that were interesting and expanded my scope of knowledge. For example, I developed a screening criteria for readers’ comments; and, after a short while, it was obvious which readers’ commentaries were written by a knowledgeable person and which were written by a hack just wanting to spout off.

Given the basis of my methodology, here are my conclusions about the 10 best-selling books concerning the candidates and political parties engaged in the presidential election of 2012.

First, the books were all structured in an almost identical manner. These books began with the philosophical origins of the party. This was followed by a glorified history of the tradition of the political party and a lengthy section on their accomplishments and achievements that benefited the American people.

The majority of these writers wrote in a very erudite manner and were very convincing. But the overall tone was consistently more of a cheerleading exercise than a discussion of important issues of the day. When the current issues of the day were discussed, whether it be the poor state of the economy, the massive federal deficit, unemployment, or the decline in " family values", the emphasis was well focused on blaming the other party for all of these ills. Facts were always sporadically introduced when convenient; and ,only when supporting the claims that all of our major problems are the other parties’ fault. There was a complete absence of discussion of the underlying causes of the problems. When an occasional topic of discussion relative to the cause of our difficulties, it rapidly deteriorated into a high mannered blame game.

I was struck by the world view of all the authors. They wrote as if the world still functions as it did in the 1950s. It made me wonder if either of the candidates, their party leadership, or the writers of these books, have read a single book relative to the astonishing changes in our world view that have occurred in the last 20 to 30 years. In particular, they were totally ignorant of the concept of ecology, which was heralded in the 1950s by Rachel Carlson's Silent Spring. Her idea is that our planet is, in effect, a single organism in which everything affects everything else.  The delicate balance that keeps our environment in balance can easily be disrupted and destroyed by human folly. The entire scientific community has accepted this theory for over 20 years. The Democrats have made some efforts to support ecological agendas, but due to the fact that Congress has become completely corrupt, and every congressman's vote is up for sale to the highest bidding lobbyist, Democratic stance as the defender of the environment has been pathetic. The Republicans, on the other hand, have chosen to ignore the issue altogether, their belief being that anything that benefits the environment is costly to business and therefore reduces profits. They initially and stubbornly refuse to accept that issues like global warming are even real, based on the lame excuses of " we don't have enough information yet" or " scientists are not in agreement on this issue" which is a bold-faced lie.

The other major worldview-altering discovery, that human behavior is at least as much driven by biological factors as psychological factors, was not even hinted at in any of these " comprehensive" assessments of our current troubles. A prime example was the failure of any author to mention television as the technological "Marvel" that was the root cause of the unraveling of every aspect of American life. While the proof of this statement has only recently been proven down to the molecular level of neurotransmitters and brain circuitry, the general principles have been known in the scientific community for at least two decades. Another glaring omission that fits under the category of the effects of biology on human behavior is the discovery of the precise biological mechanisms that cause the overtly antisocial behavior of the sociopath. While sociopaths makeup slightly less than 1% of the human population, some very large and very convincing research studies have shown that these individuals, when they are able to gain positions of power and influence, cause roughly 99% of the misery in the world for the “other” 99%.

Morris Creedon-McVean