Monday, August 10, 2009

Sarah Palin Is Latest Heartless Person to Attack Protestors

Sarah Palin has told healthcare reform protestors to use their words. Palin joins a chorus of individuals who believe that the recent protests at public meetings held to discuss healthcare reform were, ironically, unhealthy. Writing on her Facebook page, Palin says:
There are many disturbing details in the current bill that Washington is trying to rush through Congress, but we must stick to a discussion of the issues and not get sidetracked by tactics that can be accused of leading to intimidation or harassment. Such tactics diminish our nation's civil discourse which we need now more than ever because the fine print in this outrageous health care proposal must be understood clearly and not get lost in conscientious voters' passion to want to make elected officials hear what we are saying. Let’s not give the proponents of nationalized health care any reason to criticize us (boldface added).
In an earlier blog post, I criticized liberal and conservative protestors. Despite distributing my criticism across the ideological spectrum, a hearty discussion is taking place in the discussion section of that post which portrays the essay as a mean-spirited attack on conservatives. Palin, however, seems to be speaking exclusively to her constituents ("us"), who are overwhelmingly conservatives. I wonder whether this means she is an evil elitist attacking the people who are simply trying to speak. Tune in!

Recently, Palin herself provoked criticism after she said that Obama's proposals would allow the government to kill her developmentally disabled son. The claim is patently false.

Finally, for those of you who will likely reject this essay, on the grounds that I undoubtedly suffer from "Palin Derangement Syndrome" and only listen to her now because she has criticized conservatives [insert filler], take a look at these links:

Is Liberal Sexism Against Palin OK? No!

Washington Post Proclaims That "Sarah Palin Picks Ferraro as Favorite Vice President." Shocking -- Yes. Truthful -- No.

Palin's Neiman Marcus Run a Drop in the Bucket: 2008 Is Most Expensive Election Ever

CNN and CBS Release Highly Misleading Polls Regarding VP Debate

Palin: A Roveian Strategy?

Madness from the Left and Right: Obama's Birth and Palin's Divorce

The Democrats' Palin Strategy: A Bridge to Nowhere!

Like a Moose Caught in the Headlights? How Will Sarah Palin Do Tonight?

November Surprise Regarding Troopergate: Palin Did Not Break Any Laws, Alaska Board Finds.

By my count, I have defended Palin more than many conservative commentators! Also, I wrote most of these essays during the Presidential campaign, when every self-respecting kneejerk liberal was in "promote Obama" mode. So, let go of the conspiracy theories and let's all address each others' arguments.


Roy Lofquist said...


American politics does not take place in a courtroom. There are currents flowing in this country that are new to me and I've been watching for more than 60 years. Deconstructing Palin and parsing her statements to refute her are essentially futile. You'll not sway anyone with that approach. You'll only lead the convinced down the garden path of reinforcing their conviction that they are the ones who have the "true" answers.

You have indicated in previous discussions that you are opposed to any references to religion in schools. I have followed this melodrama since Madelyn Murray O'Hair got prayer out of the schools. That is the seminal event that restarted the religious war in this country, one that the founders tried to strangle in 1785 with the first amendment.

I'm starting to round the barn here and bore you so I'll try to get to the point (must be the gin).

You can not really understand our culture or our literature unless you are familiar with The Bible. I think you don't quite realize how many biblical allusions there are in our national conversation. One who is unfamiliar with these meanings that are ingrained in the people is like the traveler who takes a Berlitz course in French and thinks he understands their culture. Superficial in the extreme.

Derrida and Chomsky are charlatans. They do not understand how people communicate. Theirs is a mechanistic approach to humanity that closely tracks the leftist notion that people can be manipulated by the right words or culling. "New Soviet Man", "Die Volken", "The Aryan Super Race".

Back to the vague point. Palin is resonating with multitudes. You don't quite understand why. It is because many. many understand what "death panels" means.

I'll close with the words of George C. Scott as spoken in the movie "Patton". "Rommel, you magnificent bastard, I've read your book".

Know your enemy. Free advice.

Fight the good fight, my friend. I'm not trying to aid my enemy. I just like fair fights.


Darren Lenard Hutchinson said...

Ah - here's the comment. I thought it was intended for the other thread and that it had vanished. Well, first, I NEVER said I oppose any mention of religion in public schools. That is FALSE.

Second, I have not "deconstructed" Palin's words. Instead, I took them at face value.

Third,your assumptions about my understanding of the Bible is FALSE. I grew up in a very conservative southern relgious home.

Finally, Palin's "death panel" comment was ridiculous, whether she had some hidden meaning or not.

Anonymous said...

Let us know as soon as Sarah calls Obamacare opponents unAmerican, Nazis, Brown Shirts, terrorists, and paid mobsters, all of which your party leaders did in the past week. Let us know when she tells them to shut up while Obama cleans up the mess they made, like Obama told them.

Sarah's death panel criticism was right on target. "Free" government health care will necessarily be rationed by bureaucrats who will decide who gets what care and when. Live with it, defend it.

We have a high level of consumption of medical services and drugs in the U.S., and high costs, because we use a third-party payer system for everything from check ups to prescriptions for cold medicines, and use insurance as a payment system instead of what it should be used for -- truly unexpected major medical problems and emergencies. It isn't rocket science.

Obamacare will be even more economically irrational, and the only way for the government to "control" costs in the face of unlimited demand for expensive services and drugs will be to ration care, suppress market prices, and thwart medical innovation. That is the future you are advocating. Bureaucrats will decide.

Darren Lenard Hutchinson said...

Anonymous: Sorry, but I don't have "party leaders." I argue on my own, not for any party.

Second, bureaucrats already decide when care is made or not. These same bureaucrats would likely do so under healthcare reform. They are: insurance companies.

Roy Lofquist said...


Nothing that I write here is direct is personal. I may not be a very good writer and slip into perceived insinuation. I do try to keep it impersonal. No innuendos, no hidden meanings, just normal "failure to communicate". If it ever gets personal you will have no doubt. I'll come right through your monitor and bite so hard you'll eat standing up for a week.

Now to the discussion.

"I NEVER said I oppose any mention of religion in public schools. That is FALSE."

A couple of days ago another commenter wrote something about not understanding the sturm und drang about prayer in the schools. I responded with my own personal experience - I was there. I posted the King James version of The Lord's Prayer, arguing that it was a homily and non-sectarian. You interjected, quite politely, that it was indoctrination and had no place in a school. Jest sayin.

"Second, I have not "deconstructed" Palin's words. Instead, I took them at face value."

OK, careless use of the word. What is the meaning of "a rose by any other name" or "whole cloth". If you parse the expression, take them literally, you'll end up in Kansas instead of Florida. These are allusions - shorthand whose meaning is clear to those who speak the lingo, opaque to the uninitiated. Think of legal terms - lot's of Latin that confuses and confounds those who have but a casual acquaintance with the law. As you know, they are a formalized short hand, a technical term, to represent settled doctrine. You know the lingo. Most don't.

-continued on next rock.

Roy Lofquist said...

"Third,your assumptions about my understanding of the Bible is FALSE. I grew up in a very conservative southern relgious home."

Darren, I haven't been inside a church in 50 years except for weddings and funerals. I have, however, been reading "Asimov's Guide to the Bible" off and on for about 20 years.

What you know about the bible is the interpretation and emphasis of the doctrine of a particular sect. There are a lot of established religions and their differences are small beer - quibbles about the meaning of particular biblical passages.

"Finally, Palin's "death panel" comment was ridiculous, whether she had some hidden meaning or not."

No hidden meanings. Millions of people got it immediately. You just don't get it. Jewish and Yiddish sayings pervade our speech - shlemiel, kvetch, shlep - We are vaguely aware of their general meaning but you have to be very familiar with that particular culture in order to know "the rest of the story".

On prominent Democrat recently said (paraphrase) "I read the bill and it says nothing about death panels". Clever? Hardly - asinine, yes. People are used to the game. When the run into "the party of the first part tortuously filched the gin from the party of the second part's party" they know they're in for a hosing.

A particularly egregious example of this kind of thing is "tea baggers". This expression was introduced by the highly paid, intellectually superior talking heads of a network. Their take on it is "Hah, we put one over on the great unwashed - they don't know that it's really a vile insult". If they ever inadvertently wander outside of their circle-jerk crowd they'll find out what happens if you call somebody a wop in a tavern in Boston. Millions of people have found out about an expression they wish they'd never have to think about.

All "groups" are insular and, yes, incestuous. They reinforce each other and think that they are the ones who really get it. I emphasize "all". They are viewed by others as crazies. Think of all the words in our language that refer to groups - Jews, commies, Rosicrucians (whoops, a little dated on that one). Almost always there are negative connotations attached. Nobel Peace Prizes used to be viewed as a rare honor awarded to particularly distinguished people. Now they are viewed as party favors to somebody that is properly politically correct.

OK, I said you'd know when I was getting personal. Edumacated intellekshual is an archetype. Particularly arrogant and insultingly condescending. They build elaborate sand castles in their heads and give each other prizes for the one that captures the essence of Warhol in Sino-Soviet foreign policy. In the real world a Phd who actually accomplishes anything meaningful is a rarity.

That's not my view but it is the view of more people than you'd care to believe.

As always, highest regards.


Anonymous said...

Re: Insurance companies deciding who gets treatment. This is more of a talking point and urban legend than a fact. Hollywood makes movies about it, and demogogues preach about it, but there is little substance to it.

Most of the disputes people have with their insurers are over much more pedestrian treatments and preventive care that, as I said, aren't by any rational measure best dealt with through insurance in the first place. E.g., but my kids should get two fluride treatments a year, not one! What do you mean I have to try OTC before Nexium?

And there is a basic fallacy in your response. Private insurance is still just that -- a private arrangement chosen in a free market. The farther into centralized Obamacare we go, the more we lose that freedom and control. Being subject to government bureaucrats isn't the same as dealing with a private insurer who can be replaced.

Darren Lenard Hutchinson said...

Roy: I (and the other poster) said that Greg had misrepresented the status of SCT doctrine on school prayer. He said that the Court had banned students from praying in schools. That's False. Instead, the court has banned MANDATORY school prayer and things that schools do to reinstate mandatory school prayer (like mandatory moments of silence, etc.). Students can pray; schools just cannot make them do so.

Anonymous: Actually, have you ever read your insurance contract to see what is covered or not? This is real - not "Hollywood." Try to get cosmetic surgery, treatment for mental illness, etc. You will see. And the issue is not "who" gets treated, but what services are covered. The "who" gets treated is just a misleading boogeyman.

Anonymous said...

Yes, I should have said "what" rather than "who," as the examples I mentioned show -- people complain if their plan pays for only one fluoride treatment instead of two, or requires step therapy before Nexium, or doesn't pay for tatoo removal, or whatever.

But the point lost on liberals is that these are NOT decisions dictated by anyone. They are decisions determined in a free (although imperfectly free) market. If I am foolish enough to want to pay for a plan that pays for tatoo removal (instead of just paying for it directly), I am sure I can go buy one instead of the plan I currently pay for.

When the government assumes control of health care decisions, however, that free choice and free market decision making disappears in favor of bureaucrats who dictate what treatments are available and what providers can be paid for them.

Darren Lenard Hutchinson said...

Anonymous: The flaw in your argument is that you assume that most people go out and "shop around" for insurance as if there really was a "free market." Instead, 1/3 are on government-funded insurance, 56 percent are in employer plans--with taxpayers footing 30 percent of the bill (to make it affordable for your supposedly "free market" activities), and only 13 percent purchase their own. Not only does goverment tax policy make the so-called "free market" insuarance available for 60 percent of Americans, government policy has intervened in response to consumer demands and implemented a lot of other rules. For example, if you lose your job, COBRA forces the plan to continue covering you (if you can pay the premiums). Also, they have to treat pre-existing conditions. This is not the "free market." This is regulation. Are you willing to give that up?

Finally, you are really misrepesenting how insurance companies work. Individuals who are insured are normally in a take it or leave it situation with respect to coverage. A lot of them do not even read the contracts. Their job offers 1 or 2 options, and they take the one that is "most popular." Even if they read the plan, they cannot negotiate different outcomes with the companies, and they cannot usually afford to go out and purchase insurance on their own. So, who makes the decisions-- insurance companies. Insurance company risk analysis is largely responsible for what gets covered and what is not. Add to that, federal and state policy -- and the typical insurance contract is already negotiated and solid before the insured ever signs up. The decisions are made by BUREAUCRATS.

Finally, you mention tatoo removal, as if that is the typical excluded item. Try mental health services, weight loss treatment, pre-existing conditions, dental and vision services, and many other serious medical needs. No amount of individual "negotiation" will cause insurance companies to flip on these issues.

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