Derek Thompson’s article in The Atlantic about Rep. Ryan’s budget proposal lacks key aspects of critical analysis.
1. The article implies that only the federal government can provide certain levels of government support.
Derek wrote: It [Ryan’s Plan] would leave nothing for infrastructure. Nothing for unemployment insurance. Nothing for food stamps.
We have states, cities, and other local governments that can provide many of these programs, maybe even better than the federal government too. In fact, many Americans, to include me, feel that charities and other private organizations are best equipped to help the needy.
2. Derek missed Ryan’s point, even as he put a chart together that perfectly showed Ryan’s point. The chart comparing Ryan’s plan as compared to 1950 demonstrates the destructive path of social spending. A different perspective could be to argue that Medicare and Social Security (even in Ryan’s “extreme right-wing” plan) will still be 12% of GDP.
3) Also, the article assumes that effective government has to be equal or greater than the previous year, say 14% of GDP. Why? Every other organization in this country tries to cut costs in unproductive programs. Yet, every single government agency needs to grow year-over-year?
You may not agree with Representative Ryan, but at least he’s proposing real reform. The reality is that our government is cashing checks that my grandkids (and I don’t have any yet) can’t write. At some point in time, Americans will need to reduce government spending.
Wow! Here are the Presidential fundraising totals for February:
Obama - $45 million
Romney - $11.5 million
Santorum - $9 million
Where does this money go? And who’s buying votes? Wouldn’t you rather a candidate not raise this type of money?
It’s not that raising money is bad. It’s just that the totals seem a little ridiculous. Especially if all the candidates do is spend money on: crappy advertising, useless polls, mercenariy advisors, and lavish travel arrangements. Worse, it seems like all this fundraising is being spent on more fundraising. Sad.
75% of kids complete high school but that’s not really important. Hypothetically, we could give every kid a diploma when they turn 18. Does that mean our kids are smarter?
While it’s good that more kids are graduating, it’s more important to compare like data. For example, are we to assume the standards for a diploma in 1950 are the same as in 2009?
According to the article the goal was to not educate but to graduate:
New York educators attribute overall improvements to a sharper focus on high-needs districts and a stronger commitment to getting diplomas into the hands of all students.
I believe this article was more about getting money from the taxpayers:
Teachers, meanwhile, worry that hard-won gains in graduation rates amid some of the nation’s toughest graduation requirements are at risk of being undone by budget challenges that have led to layoffs and bigger class sizes.
Class size may or may not be relevant to the graduation rate. However, this article glosses over that point but instead touts graduation rate gains then threats of impending graduation rate losses if money demands aren’t met.
As you can see on the box, you take exactly one pill per day. To make sure it works, you need to take one pill every day at the same time, or it stops working. You take only one pill, and you keep taking them regardless of what you are doing that day.
Rush was wrong for being derogatory. Qualifying statement done. Now let’s address this post line-by-line. (My notes are in parenthesis.)
She [Fluke] testified before a small, Democrat-led hearing after she was cut out of the actual birth control/insurance discussion (the real hearing was about religion and Barry Lynn was supposed to speak) . Her testimony was about a friend of hers who, because her insurance did not cover birth control, lost an ovary due to an ovarian cyst (Who is this friend, the reason government needs to mandate a new law for all citizens?).
This somehow translates into “I, myself, personally, am having so much sex I can’t afford birth control, and so I want the government to pay for it.” (Rush was wrong to shift the argument to sex.)
This is wrong for multiple reasons.
It was about a friend, not her. To say her testimony was about her personally is factually incorrect. (So we’re supposed to enact laws based on hearsay? we need names, facts, it’s law, right?)
Sex had nothing to do with the testimony - her friend lost an ovary because of medical condition that was left untreated (Again, any evidence? I’m not saying Fluke is lying but she is a law student so facts would help her cause). A medical condition that was completely treatable, but wasn’t, because her insurance wouldn’t cover it (So a person didn’t buy birth control because someone else didn’t pay. Did the friend know she was going to lose an ovary and didn’t buy contraception on her own, or was this a tragic misdiagnosis? This is important, Fluke’s testimony says that her friend lost an ovary and is blaming the insurance company, not a doctor. How is the insurance company, school, and the rest of the citizens in the US [ she testifying in Congress] at fault?) . To say that her testimony was about her being “a slut” or “a prostitute” is factually incorrect. (Maybe, if there were facts but I believe that this testimony was more about politics, in the sense the Democrats were hoping for a “Rush” incident to change the debate from religion to contraception.)
Even if she was having loads of sex, she would still only have one pill a day, not one pill per sex act, so to say “I’m having so much sex I can’t afford birth control” is completely erroneous. The Pill is not Viagra or condoms. To say that she is such “a slut” that she constantly needs more pills is factually incorrect.(True. But let’s agree that the friend doesn’t want to pay for it herself. We can assume this friend is a Georgetown law student, and somehow she’s paying those bills. What other bills is she paying yet foregoing birth control bills?)
The current political debate is not “should the government pay for birth control?” (True. But a mandate is a tax in which increases the costs of health insurance for everyone. Government may not be paying, but everyone has a new tax, pills ain’t free.) The debate is “should insurance companies, that people and their employers pay for, on their own, be required to cover birth control?” (Exactly right!)To say that Sandra Fluke wants the government to pay for her birth control is factually incorrect. (Maybe, but whatever happens, Fluke and her friend don’t believe it’s their responsibility to pay. No, they feel it’s everyone’s responsibility to pay[remember, the new law mandates we all have insurance], even those of us that feel it’s against our morals. Which I don’t feel, but I’m stating on behalf of few million people, maybe a minority, but a sizable group none-the-less. And to be clear, I do feel it’s immoral to mandate most personal, and health is personal, behaviors.)
Religious organizations do not want to have birth control covered by their insurance, even for employees not of their faith, even if their employees never actually use their insurance to cover birth control. By this logic, they should also not pay their employees, because they could use that money to pay for birth control out of pocket. (That’s a dumb argument and not worth even worth debating.) To say that this issue is about religious freedom and not about women’s health is disingenuous, as Ms. Fluke’s testimony demonstrates.
More of my thoughts:
From my perspective this issue is all about liberty and freedom. I’m baffled that free citizens petition Congress to have someone else pay for their goods, whatever they be.
There are commons, things everyone shares equally: national defense, police, roads. But health is very personal and some citizens need more or less base on millions of criteria. An McD’s, smoker, that plays dangerous extreme sports needs more health care than me. Why should I pay for this guys activities?
The idea that government mandates we buy health insurance then mandates those same insurance companies cover a specific ailment smacks of ignorance. Is the government going to make a book of illnesses that communally we pay for for via increased insurance? What are things we don’t expect our insurance to cover: hair transplants, massage, Jenny Craig, etc? When does it stop?
Contraception is in essence about preventing pregnancies. Agreed? At some point in the future we free humans have to assume some level of personal responsibility. Many of us are drawing that line here. We’re tired of mandates on top of mandates, especially when it comes to our bodies.
If you want to take the pill, fine, just pay for it, don’t use the power of governmental law to force us to join in with you.