Mass megalomania

September 9, 2009 at 5:25 AM 17 comments

I’ve been thinking a lot about the health care debate.  The several debates I have been involved in tend to lean toward the absurd, logic-wise.  Most of the arguments are based on emotions of fear, a general misunderstanding of proposed options, and a complete lack of human compassion.  But I noticed when people start talking about certain things, mostly involving money, once generally rational, civilized people get this crazed “Reefer Madness” syndrome.

Ill make people healthy and destroy the world! Muahahaha!!!

I'll make people healthy and destroy the world! Muahahaha!!!

Americans, over and over, repeat a mantra of egoism and declarations of greatness.  Pay no mind that I think the United States a fantastic place to be.  Many reading this will glaze over this fact and declare me an enemy of freedom.  However, being proud of a heritage and a healthy sense of nationalism is what I have.  Quite honestly, I want to stir your mind, shake it to its roots, and then dump it out to examine the pieces.  What I see doesn’t make sense.  People who seem to care turn into screaming zealots of selfishness.  What I see from my brothers and sisters, all too frequently,  is something far more dangerous.  As I watch the debate, I see the disturbing trend I’m calling  mass megalomania.

Megalomania, from the The American Heritage® Stedman’s Medical Dictionary is “a psychopathological condition in which delusional fantasies of wealth, power, or omnipotence predominate.

In the first-hand debates I’ve been involved, the debate over health care revolves around choice, freedom, and socialism.  Any discussion of a “public option” for health insurance, in the minds of a growing, if nothing else, vocal dissidents, throws a over-my-dead-body flag in their minds.  While this debate could have a whole series of posts dedicated to it, which I may do, there is something interesting that bubbles to the surface — a profound belief in the “American way.”

We hold no truths to be self-evident that only my own beliefs are meaningful.

Americans have all but canonized the United States Constitution.  It *is* the bible of republican politics.  Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and John Hancock are the polytheistic gods of the American way of life.  Just as you believe in God, so too must you believe in this one nation, under God.  Just as there are for religion, there are fundamentalists of the Articles of the Constitution, quoting their scripture as to save them from some political Hell that could only be run by the French.  Despite the fact the Constitution was drawn to be very generalized, to adapt for the future, these constitutional fundamentalists hold on to every word as if each word had but one meaning.  While those men did a fantastic job creating a foundation for our country, not even all of the framers of the Constitution thought the same way.  There was no American Christ.  Thomas Jefferson, the republican savior, didn’t die in the Rose Garden for your political sins.  A brilliant man, with many rivals, in fact died deeply in debt.  Jefferson’s vision for American virtue was that of an agricultural nation of yeoman farmers minding their own affairs — a far cry from the my-way-or-no-way politicking, Lexus-driving, PS3-playing, HD-loving souls many of you 9-to-5ers are today.

Yeoman farmer

Yeoman farmer

There is no place else like the United States of America and I am proud to call her home.  I am as passionate about the success of our nation as just about anyone I’ve met.  So, it is with great caring that I ask you to WAKE UP! Corruption, mild and grotesque, is what makes any system, especially political, susceptible to failure.   You can’t sit idly by, doing nothing, expecting some magic, invisible economic hand to swoop in and carry you out of selfishness and greed.  A true free-market economy is the perpetual motion engine — great in theory, but impossible to make, in reality.  Because any thing, truly free, has just as much freedom to not work as it does to work.  For you and your free will, there are numerous and many souls just waiting to take advantage.

So, to all my Jeffersonian republican friends, and libertarians, I give it to you that Thomas Jefferson had some pretty grandiose ideas about government, and without him, our country may not be what it is today.  For that, I am thankful.  We live, though, in the United States of America and it’s not utopia.  It’s got problems that will not heal on their own by market forces nor will they heal going on deluded that the same ol’ way of doing things with a worked-in-the-past-so-it’s-gotta-work-now mentality.  We’re deep in debt from decades of supply-side and trickle-down economics and a general refusal of the citizens of this country to pay taxes for what they demand our country provide.  Thomas Jefferson advocated that the national debt should be eliminated.  He did not believe that living individuals had a moral obligation to repay the debts of previous generations. He said that repaying such debts was “a question of generosity and not of right.”

The Emperors New Clothes

The Emperors New Clothes

A lot of people believe a lot of things.  What many of you have is a deep, rank, and dangerous egoism about what we have in this country.  The Emperor’s New Clothes comes to mind.  Be careful with your beliefs.  Jesus died a martyr for his beliefs.  One of the founders of this country, that so many of you hang your hats, was a radical even amongst his peers.  Thomas Jefferson, a brilliant and enterprising man, was nonetheless a political extremist and an anarchist.  He was the Nikola Tesla of politics — inventing some amazing concepts, but little of it practical for regular use.   Thomas Jefferson lived much of his life in direct opposition to his beliefs, and once more, died deeply in debt.  In the end, though, someone had to pay for his debts, regardless of his beliefs.

There is an old Zen saying:  “Be master of mind rather than mastered by mind.”  So, fair friends, and casual detractors, I hope I leave you with something to think about:  there is nothing you know that your mind doesn’t make so.

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Entry filed under: economics, health care, politics. Tags: , , , , , , , .

Tort Reform, the Free Market, and the Constitution

17 Comments Add your own

  • 1. vendettamine  |  September 9, 2009 at 11:43 AM

    Opposing argument here:
    http://www.thefreemanonline.org/columns/economic-fascism/

    Reply
  • 2. Mark-  |  September 13, 2009 at 1:53 PM

    ven-

    no original thoughts? Obvious tr0ll obvious dittohead.

    Reply
  • 3. Maggie  |  September 17, 2009 at 12:07 AM

    Well said and thanks for helping keep the pot stirred! I’ve got a naked emperor and a poorly defined elephant nearly ready to go!
    (The Little Red Hen may make an appearance.) -Maggie
    http://thoughtsfromthewell.wordpress.com/

    Reply
  • 4. Jackie Durkee  |  September 17, 2009 at 9:46 AM

    Thank you for your post. This whole healthcare debate is really getting old for me. Being one of those individuals considered to be well below the poverty line in America, and being a Christian, but also being a Conservative, I struggle with my opinions on this whole debate.

    On the one hand, as a struggling working single mom, I need all the help I can get. On the other hand, I feel trapped by my entitlements and want to be free (see “American Slavery in the 21st Century at http://www.FaithfulinPrayer.wordpress.com). I feel entitlements are hurting the people of America, not actually helping them.

    On the other hand, as a Christian, I want everyone in America to have the healthcare they need. I know what it is like to not go to the doctor when you really need to because you can’t afford the $2500 deductible on your insurance policy. Actually, it would be better for me to not have insurance, because there is a free clinic and hospital here that I could go to.

    On another hand, as a conservative and American, I don’t want to see the federal government grow any larger than it should. I’m probably not the worse fundamentalist when it comes to the Constitution, but I know when it was written the colonist where extremely concerned about a government becoming too big and too powerful and ending up like the King of England.

    Well this are just my thoughts, as scattered as they might be.

    Reply
    • 5. michaeldpool  |  September 17, 2009 at 5:54 PM

      Keeping in mind that no one has expanded the hand of government more than George Bush, except for Ronald Regan, who nearly doubled government spending in his time in office
      . Why must you cling to this notion that you are a conservative? Why do you have to be one or the other, will they ostracize you at church if you don’t proclaim so? How have they fooled you this deeply into thinking that only conservatives have morals and that only Liberals expand government or seek power?
      By the way, Government has grown in size because 1.) America has grown in size 2.) Society has grown more complex– that’s not rocket science. You probably didn’t even see the idea for mp3 players coming 8 years ago, but somehow the founding fathers saw ALL THE COMPLEX WEB OF TECHNOLOGY that has complicated life immensely coming 300+ years in advance, and the system is thus designed with ALL THIS COMPLICATION IN MIND? No, that makes no sense. Stop hitting the buzz words and start reading between the lines. Embrace change, along with death its the only thing you’re guaranteed in this life.

      Reply
  • 6. trishothinks  |  September 17, 2009 at 10:55 AM

    The Constitution of the United States IS what this country was formed around. It SHOULD be as you say “Canonized” by ALL Americans, and when every Legislator is appointed (Per Article VI of the Constitution) they are sworn by oath to uphold the Constitution.

    I give you this written by Alexander Hamilton, Aug 28,1794:

    Essay in the American Daily Advertiser
    Topic: Constitution

    “If it be asked, What is the most sacred duty and the greatest source of our security in a Republic? The answer would be, An inviolable respect for the Constitution and Laws – the first growing out of the last. . . . A sacred respect for the constitutional law is the vital principle, the sustaining energy of a free government.”

    You write:
    “these constitutional fundamentalists hold on to every word as if each word had but one meaning.”

    Please explain what this “one meaning” is according to you.

    Please show me/us where the Constitution was written to be “very generalized”.

    Who’s political “sins” are you talking about?

    You write:
    “Any discussion of a “public option” for health insurance, in the minds of a growing, if nothing else, vocal dissidents, throws a over-my-dead-body flag in their minds”.

    My response:
    There is a reason for the above mentality of the “dissidents”, because what is being told to the people is simply NOT TRUE.
    It is obvious to me that you haven’t read the thousand plus page of the HR3200 Bill.

    This bill (if passed), will further push the country towards “financial ruin”. Not to mention violating our right to choose. WHO GAVE THE GOVERNMENT THE RIGHT TO TAX PEOPLE WHO CHOSE NOT TO HAVE HEALTHCARE? This “Tax’ is their answer to pump funds into a bureaucratic nightmare….another way to bleed the people of their own money so that it can be wasted by the government…..thanks but NO THANKS.

    Here is another quote from Thomas Jefferson, a principle which I believe our Congress has forgotten or blatantly ignores today….

    Thomas Jefferson, letter to Shelton Gilliam
    June 19, 1808
    Topic: Budget

    “The same prudence which in private life would forbid our paying our own money for unexplained projects, forbids it in the dispensation of the public moneys.”

    And this:
    Thomas Jefferson, letter to Samuel Kercheval
    July 12, 1816
    Topic: Budget

    “We must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt.”

    YES….this bill would load us with perpetual debt for generations to come…..again NO THANKS.

    Honestly, I’m tired of hearing about the “Haves” and the “Have nots”, there is usually a good reason for this, and we cannot give freely to the masses that are lazy….yes lazy, and the “I’m entitled to this and that” mentality of the same lazy people. There are too many out there that want a “free ride” at the expense of the middle class. And the Democrats and Liberals are paving the way for this to happen. And Don’t even get me started with the issue of the ILLEGALS!

    I HAVE THIS TO SAY TO THE PRESIDENT AND CONGRESS IF THIS BILL PASSES…..WHY DON’T YOU JUST BILL THE MEXICAN GOVERNMENT EVERYTIME AN ILLEGAL GETS TREATED IN OUR EMERGENCY ROOMS? LET THEM FOOT THE BILL….NOT THE GOOD CITIZENS OF AMERICA!!!

    Whew….I think that is all for now.
    Trisho

    Reply
    • 7. michaeldpool  |  September 17, 2009 at 5:59 PM

      Why don’t they just bill them now? It happens all the time, a new system doesn’t change that. By the way, That’s not what the new bill says. Your boy Joe already got called out on that–must you continue spreading his ignorance and mis-representation? Nobody believes you except your fellow fanatics. There is a GREAT REASON FOR HAVE AND HAVE NOTS: there’s a finite amount of money in the economy–if some are going to have large portions of it that guarantees that some will be left with little to nothing. Stop flattering yourself, you’re not even close to being that intelligent. Where are the “good citizens of america/” CLEARLY YOU ARE NOT ONE OF THEM with your misrepresented, uninformed ideas and selfish, self-serving ideals. I’ve got an idea: Why don’t you pray for Jesus to make you less of a selfish asshole next sunday?

      Reply
      • 8. Trisho  |  September 19, 2009 at 12:06 PM

        I didn’t even comment on the un-insurred legals, which is what I am assuming you are talking about. I have no problem with there being a way to insure them….but only them. And, there doesn’t need to be an overhaul of the whole healthcare system to fix that problem.

        So….i’m not a good citizen because I follow the law…pay my taxes, but should just go ahead and pay MORE taxes….to cover people who don’t pay taxes at all ?(the illegals). Wow….then call me selfish then. But I work hard for all I have….no free hand-outs to me….so that makes me selfish?

        Also….I do have charities I contribute to. I would rather chose who I want to help, then let the government waste my money on various “programs’ that they think is important.

    • 9. Nathan Schmidt  |  September 18, 2009 at 6:40 AM

      Trisho,

      First, let me thank you for taking some time to visit my blog. I really appreciate it.

      > The Constitution of the United States IS what this country was formed around. It SHOULD be as you say “Canonized”
      > by ALL Americans, and when every Legislator is appointed (Per Article VI of the Constitution) they are sworn by
      > oath to uphold the Constitution.

      The country was formed on the constitution and canon may not have been the best word choice given its many connotations. However, my point was that it was being used as dogma, raised above the mere intent of foundational and framing documentation it was meant to be.

      > I give you this written by Alexander Hamilton, Aug 28,1794:
      >
      > Essay in the American Daily Advertiser
      > Topic: Constitution
      >
      > “If it be asked, What is the most sacred duty and the greatest source of our security in a Republic? The answer would be,
      > An inviolable respect for the Constitution and Laws – the first growing out of the last. . . . A sacred respect for the
      > constitutional law is the vital principle, the sustaining energy of a free government.”
      >
      > You write:
      > “these constitutional fundamentalists hold on to every word as if each word had but one meaning.”
      >
      > Please explain what this “one meaning” is according to you.

      It’s early and I’m not as eloquent as I could be, so I’ll let this article do the talking:
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Original_intent

      > Please show me/us where the Constitution was written to be “very generalized”.

      There were 55 people who were involved in writing the constitution (Philadelphia convention) and they all didn’t agree on what was best to have in the constitution, so it was designed to be open ended, modifiable, and dynamic. Meaning, it was not designed to remain static, unmalleable, and closed to the ideas of the people. there are only 7 original Articles to the constitution and everything else is amendments, of which was baked in one of the 7 articles, by which by very definition implies the founders knew there would need improvement and correction for the constitution to make sense. The framers were well aware that they were not going to be able to think of everything that the country needed and they were smart enough to know that something that worked then may not work later.

      > Who’s political “sins” are you talking about?

      The line actually reads “Thomas Jefferson, the republican savior, didn’t die in the Rose Garden for your political sins.” That whole section, culminating to this sentence is a metaphor for blind faith. While many deify the framers of the constitution, in particular Thomas Jefferson, a favorite for the more right-leaning folks out there, that he was a radical. But not only did he not follow his own advice. He didn’t practice, himself, what he preached. What I’m saying is that people are making these men “saints” or exalting these people who had wildly different views as proclaiming their written compromise as the end-all-be-all of the land, which is exactly what they didn’t want. The Founding Fathers found common ground in their thought and made the Constitution “of and for the people” All people. Including those who live in this country with varying opinions.

      > You write:
      > “Any discussion of a “public option” for health insurance, in the minds of a growing, if nothing else, vocal dissidents,
      > throws a over-my-dead-body flag in their minds”.
      >
      > My response:
      > There is a reason for the above mentality of the “dissidents”, because what is being told to the people is simply NOT
      > TRUE.
      > It is obvious to me that you haven’t read the thousand plus page of the HR3200 Bill.
      >
      > This bill (if passed), will further push the country towards “financial ruin”. Not to mention violating our right to choose.
      > WHO GAVE THE GOVERNMENT THE RIGHT TO TAX PEOPLE WHO CHOSE NOT TO HAVE HEALTHCARE? This “Tax’ is their
      > answer to pump funds into a bureaucratic nightmare….another way to bleed the people of their own money so that it can
      > be wasted by the government…..thanks but NO THANKS.

      You’re going to have to give me some examples of what you believe not to be true and how you claim it to be a lie. I’ve been through several of these debates already and I’m not going to generalize what you might be referring to. I encourage you to look at: http://www.whitehouse.gov/realitycheck/faq

      Your whole tax argument is presumptuous and rhetorical. You can’t not have government and you can’t not have taxes. This is a whole other debate.

      > Here is another quote from Thomas Jefferson, a principle which I believe our Congress has forgotten or blatantly ignores
      > today….
      >
      > Thomas Jefferson, letter to Shelton Gilliam
      > June 19, 1808
      > Topic: Budget
      >
      > “The same prudence which in private life would forbid our paying our own money for unexplained projects, forbids it in
      > the dispensation of the public moneys.”
      >
      > And this:
      > Thomas Jefferson, letter to Samuel Kercheval
      > July 12, 1816
      > Topic: Budget
      >
      > “We must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt.”

      Thomas Jefferson died in debt and someone else had to pay for it. Thomas Jefferson was 1/55th of the representational opinion of the Constitution of the United States of America. Thomas Jefferson is one man with some ideas. Thomas Jefferson is not law. Thomas Jefferson was a human being with flaw, just like you and me. Thomas Jefferson was not perfect and did not have perfect ideas.

      > YES….this bill would load us with perpetual debt for generations to come…..again NO THANKS.

      Prove it.

      > Honestly, I’m tired of hearing about the “Haves” and the “Have nots”, there is usually a good reason for this, and we
      > cannot give freely to the masses that are lazy….yes lazy, and the “I’m entitled to this and that” mentality of the same
      > lazy people. There are too many out there that want a “free ride” at the expense of the middle class. And the Democrats
      > and Liberals are paving the way for this to happen. And Don’t even get me started with the issue of the ILLEGALS!

      So you don’t care about anyone else? If you don’t have money, for whatever reason, you should die? Wow. I’m just going to call this as I see it. You might consider submitting your picture for the dictionary under selfish.

      There is a good reason why a person should go bankrupt paying for cancer treatments? There is a good reason for a person who lost their job in a recession to die because they don’t have a job? You’re lucky to have what you have. What would happen if you didn’t.

      > I HAVE THIS TO SAY TO THE PRESIDENT AND CONGRESS IF THIS BILL PASSES…..WHY DON’T YOU JUST BILL THE MEXICAN
      > GOVERNMENT EVERYTIME AN ILLEGAL GETS TREATED IN OUR EMERGENCY ROOMS? LET THEM FOOT THE BILL….NOT THE
      > GOOD CITIZENS OF AMERICA!!!

      Define “good citizen” in your own words.

      > Whew….I think that is all for now.
      > Trisho

      Thanks again, Trisho for coming to my little world of ideas here. I hope that you’re not just blindly arguing, but are really thinking about why you feel the way that you do. Telling others what you think is one thing. I’m exploring the why you think aspect. So I’d ask some questions:

      Why do you think Thomas Jefferson had better ideas than John Jay, Benjamin Franklin, or Barack Obama? Why do you feel he is more qualified?

      Why do you feel that people deserve to die for lack of money?

      Why do you think our country should offer no shared services?

      Why do you feel your life is more valuable than others?

      Just curious…
      Nathan

      Reply
      • 10. Trisho  |  September 20, 2009 at 3:28 PM

        > YES….this bill would load us with perpetual debt for generations to come…..again NO THANKS.

        Prove it.

        Well….check this out: http://zfacts.com/p/461.html

        Prove to me IT WONT cause debt for generations. The government is proposing yet ANOTHER institution similar to Medicare/Medicaid…..it will only cause MORE debt. (I’m sure there will be mass fraud within this new “government healthcare”, just like all the other programs in force now).

        Obama says they can save money by stopping the fraud within Medicare and Social Security….if they can save money, why haven’t they done that now? (Answer….they cant stop it).

        I never said Thomas Jefferson was more qualified…..just that I agree with his philosophy that smaller government is better than big government.

        I didn’t say people should “die” for lack of money. But if they want help…… well they better help pay the system that helps them!

        I do believe that the country should NOT offer shared (government) services…because of the results of a government run healthcare is proven to be bad for people (see the systems of England and Canada…..why do you think they all come here for medical help?……yes, it is for their lives, because their government makes them wait for vital tests and services).

        I did NOT say my life was more valuable than anyone elses…..period.

        Trisho

    • 11. wiggy  |  September 18, 2009 at 2:09 PM

      holy crap on a cracker!!

      aparently, you have not read the bill either, good webizen.

      what I get tired of is Americans refusing to help other Americans. However, if cuckoo for cocoa puffs president says “Let’s bomb ” then America is all for using our tax money to go fight someone else’s war that does nothing but bring our national debt up, and our morale down.

      remember, back in September of 2001, when Americans actually came together, respected, and cherished our friends/family/American brothers and sisters? I know Vendetta Mine does, I know I remember…do you? Seems not, as we’re back in the same boat of selfishness and childishness. The proof is above my comment.

      -w-

      Reply
  • 12. pachipro  |  September 17, 2009 at 11:57 AM

    Well written and sadly, the majority will never acknowledge that the “emperor” has no clothes even when they see it for themselves as they were never taught to think for themselves. It’s like the story of the man who is cheating on his wife and gets caught in bed with another woman by his wife. He says to his wife something like, “Who are you going to believe, your eyes or me?” This is what our media and country has become today.

    Our media says the same thing when the truth is before the people and they tell them otherwise. The left and right are equally to blame in laying this game. It will only change when the majority of voters can think for themselves.

    I hope I made some sense here.

    By the way Thomas Jefferson also said, “I sincerely believe that banking institutions, having the power to issue money, are more dangerous than standing armies.”

    Tell that to the Federal Reserve, which is neither Federal nor reserve, but a private bank lending money to the US at interest! Jefferson is probably turning over in his grave!

    Reply
  • 13. michaeldpool  |  September 17, 2009 at 6:01 PM

    By the way blogger, whenever you troll on my blog to link to your blog I’m going to come over and post excessively on your board. If you want to read my content that’s great, but nobody likes a troll. Didn’t your mother teach you anything?

    Reply
    • 14. Nathan Schmidt  |  September 17, 2009 at 6:22 PM

      I thought I was linking a good debate. Think of me as the Pandora of thought 🙂 “If you liked that you might also like this. ” 🙂 Perhaps I’m trolling for a good debate. If that’s what you want to label me as, I’m okay with that! And I like lots of comments, so don’t hesitate…keep ’em coming.

      Reply
  • 15. Danimal  |  September 25, 2009 at 10:45 AM

    I like cake. Whole bunches.

    Reply
  • 16. JimmyBean  |  October 1, 2009 at 1:33 PM

    I don’t know If I said it already but …Great site…keep up the good work. 🙂 I read a lot of blogs on a daily basis and for the most part, people lack substance but, I just wanted to make a quick comment to say I’m glad I found your blog. Thanks, 🙂

    A definite great read..Jim Bean

    Reply
    • 17. Nathan Schmidt  |  October 2, 2009 at 6:14 AM

      Thank you, Jim! I really appreciate it.

      Reply

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