'You have awakened the sleeping giant'
By Frank Salvato
web posted August 17, 2009
One of the benefits coming from the recent congressional town hall meetings – of which there are many – is that we now know to what extent the elected class in Washington DC is cognizant of their constituents' positions on the issues; specifically, healthcare. They aren't, especially on the Left side of the aisle. Instead, the elected class in Washington – and it is true for an overwhelming majority on both sides of the aisle – has opted-out of their sworn duty to represent their constituents in deference to a blinding loyalty to their political party organizations and the ideologies they hold.
While many of the elected officials in question, their aides, the DNC, MoveOn.org, Organizing for America and the agenda-driven mainstream media talk about the "angry" and "vocal" nature of the town halls, they allude to the notion that the American citizens attending these meetings are not letting the elected officials speak; that they are "shouting down" the Congressmen and Senators as they try to explain a "very complicated" healthcare plan to their constituents. Nothing could be further from the truth.
To believe that the American people haven't heard – ad nauseam – the plethora of contorted and contrived talking points meant to sell this gigantic over-reach of government into the private sector health insurance industry is to lie, bald-faced, to anyone within earshot.
▪ The mainstream media has been talking about nothing else for months.
▪ Conservative talk radio has been dissecting the five – not one – healthcare legislation proposals currently coming out of House and Senate committees for months.
▪ And President Obama has been focused on healthcare reform – now healthcare insurance reform (convenient how that morphed) – ever since he threw his hat into the ring for the 2008 Presidential Election, so much so that his original campaign talking points about him being a champion of a single-payer system is coming back to bite him in his approval poll numbers.
The American people have heard what the elected class has to say about the current proposals coming out of the congressional committees. We have heard the Washington DC insiders' talking points again and again and again. We have heard – and understand – what the special interest group crafted proposals are offering, why we need it, why we must pay for it, how it will affect our choices, how it will affect the economy, how it will affect the healthcare we receive, the bureaucratic nightmare being proposed, what the special interest groups will receive, how the elected class will be exempt, and how it will contribute to the saddling of the next generation with insurmountable debt. We have heard it all and we simply don't like what we are hearing, and who can blame us?! To ask American citizens, mindful of the facts, to sit-down and stay quiet – yet again – while the self-indulgent from Congress, on orders from Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and President Obama, regurgitate the tired old talking points, while using the tone of a parent talking to an idiot child, needs to be considered the ultimate insult.
Add to all this the fact that there exists no one singular piece of healthcare legislation – at the moment there are five proposals between the House and the Senate – and that because of this the elected officials are afforded plausible deniability when they say that one element or another "isn't included in the bill," and we can see why the elected class, in all their arrogance, have overplayed their hand.
And so, the American people are angry, frustrated and increasingly untrusting of our government.
We are tired of the spin.
We are tired of the political positioning.
We are tired of the political opportunism that seems to be spreading inside the beltway faster than a California wildfire on a parched August day.
We are tired of elitist ideologues hijacking our government to impose fringe agendas on the whole of the populace.
We are tired of those we send to Washington to represent us in executing good government stabbing us in the back, picking clean our wallets and then ingratiating themselves to special interest groups and voting blocs simply to extend their tenure in power as they line their pockets with ill-gotten gains.
We are tired of politics over good government...and now we are being "angry" and "vocal" about it.
Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO), while seemingly a nice enough person, epitomized the arrogance and the elitism held by so many elected officials today in Washington DC when she responded to constituents' ire by saying:
"I don't understand this rudeness...I honestly don't get it."
To wit, someone from the audience shouted out that they didn't trust McCaskill, a Democrat who was among the earliest supporters of then Senator Barack Obama's run for office.
"Beg your pardon...you don't trust me?...I don't know what else I can do."
Here's what you can do, Senator McCaskill, here is what every elected official in Washington should do: represent your constituencies instead of your political parties. Instead of you doing all the talking, instead of you providing only one-way information for fear of your political party's retribution, have the intellectual courage to do your jobs; represent your constituents!
The bad news in all of this is that there are more issues just as important – if not more so – than healthcare. Immigration reform and energy policy is going to be debated and voted on in the coming years, so the fight, this long, frustrating, maddening fight, has just begun. If we walk away patting ourselves on the back after we send the Progressive-Left government healthcare takeover to the ash heap, we won't recognize our country come 2012.
It takes courage to stand up to bullies. Increasingly we are seeing Americans, hard-working, average Americans, who have until today, gone along with the flow in a quest for the American Dream, arriving at the moment when they are saying, "No more!" We are witnessing the reawakening of the American spirit and, so help me, I do love it so!
Perhaps one of the best examples of American courage came from a Pennsylvania woman named Katy Abrams in her statement to Flippity-Floppity Senator Arlen Specter (D-PA):
"I don't believe this is just about healthcare. It's not about TARP. It's not about Left and Right. This is about the systematic dismantling of this country. I'm only 35 years old and I've never been interested in politics. You have awakened the sleeping giant. We are tired of this. This is why everybody in this room is so ticked-off. I don't want this country turning into...a socialized country."
We need to hear from more people like Katy Abrams. We need more Katy Abrams in elected office.
We have a mid-term election coming up. It is time for courageous Americans to examine the voting records of those who represent them. If their records show that they are simply political party puppets, we must – all of us – have the courage to do what we know we have to in order to save our country.
The re-revolution starts now!
Frank Salvato is the Executive Director and Director of Terrorism Research for BasicsProject.org a non-profit, non-partisan, 501(c)(3) research and education initiative. His writing has been recognized by the US House International Relations Committee and the Japan Center for Conflict Prevention. His organization, BasicsProject.org, partnered in producing the original national symposium series addressing the root causes of radical Islamist terrorism. He is a member of the International Analyst Network. He also serves as the managing editor for The New Media Journal. Mr. Salvato has appeared on The O'Reilly Factor on FOX News Channel, and is a regular guest on talk radio including on The Captain's America Radio Show airing on AM1220 WSRQ and on the Internet catering to the US Armed Forces around the world and on The Roth Show with Dr. Laurie Roth syndicated nationally on the USA Radio Network. His opinion-editorials have been published by The American Enterprise Institute, The Washington Times & Human Events and are syndicated nationally. He is occasionally quoted in The Federalist. Mr. Salvato is available for public speaking engagements. He can be contacted at email@example.com.
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