Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Hail Caligula and His Horse, Incitatus!

Dear Abby,

I had a friend who, when they were with me, made me believe that I was the most important thing to them. They told me that their most highest goal was to help me be the best I could be, that they would help me take care of my family, that they would make sure we had the best of everything. They said if I would help them move to another city, that they would be able to do more for me, to make my life even better than before. I believed them, got my friends to help them too, working day and night to make sure they had what they needed for the move.

Then they moved away....

Now they never call or write unless they need something, which, in their case, is all too often. They're guilting me and my friends into doing more for them, frightening us too, telling us if we don't help them someone might hurt them, even hurt us. What kind of person would promise to give us everything, then work as hard as they can to take it away?

They say they know what's best for me and my friends. Something just doesn't feel right. I can’t trust them anymore. Abby, what should I do?


Failed by a Friend

This sentiment expressed in the fictional letter above has been given voice millions of time in the last year, but not about a faithless friend. It is an indictment of the political class in America.

People in elected office all over the country have broken faith with their constituents. Politicians turned starry-eyed crowds of admirers into believers in the unbelievable, in the hope that, if they were elected to office, things would change. If they got power they could improve our schools and roads, make our children safer, not raise or cut taxes, grow the economy, strengthen our nation at home and make us more respected abroad, make health care available to everyone, slow the rise of the oceans and fundamentally transform the United States of America.

What do the starry-eyed crowds have to show for the time, toil and treasure, all the promises? Graft and corruption - dissipation and venality - millions spent for liquor, junkets and junk - democrat degeneracy, progressive profligacy, and Republican reprobacy. It's not for nothing that most Americans believe the country is on the wrong track.

The central problem is not the country, but the government. Very few Americans approve of Congress. In fact, that anyone in America approves of their actions indicates that there is something wrong with that segment of the population.

The government/media enterprise is working overtime to convince people that their best hope for social, economic and ecological justice is a second-world remake of our enduring institutions. Know-nothing politicians cite the general welfare clause from Article 1 section 8 of the U.S. Constitution as the source of the penumbra from which emanates the "right" to health care, and then proceed to ram the legislation through the Congress and down our throats. They justify their actions by claiming a majority support this, when the truth is that 61% of Americans believe the current proposals need to be scrapped. President Obama says we will recognize the value of his plan once health reform is passed and the furor dies down. Yet, while hosting the Republicans at a heath care summit at Blair House, he has a proposal ready for passage via reconciliation in the Senate.

Long ago in the health care or health insurance "reform" debate, Obamacare was derided as a trojan horse for socialism. I would submit that, based on their imperious attitude toward the American people, the imperial House, Senate, and Obama administration are more like the dissolute Roman emperor, Caligula. Obamacare is more like Caligula's horse, Incitatus who, according to legend, was put forward by Caligula as a member of the Roman senate. Hail Caligula and the horse, Incitatus!

Like Caligula, Congress and the administration require homage and tribute from their subjects. They name bridges, parks, post offices and office buildings after themselves. They memorialize themselves in airports, universities, and even statues. Like Caligula, who worshipped Incitatus the horse as the embodiment of at least six Roman deities, and provided him a gold and ivory stable encrusted stable, President Obama (“sort of god… above the country….”, according to Newsweek Magazine editor Evan Thomas) and Congress have wrapped Obamacare in the gilded box of social and economic justice and deficit reduction. They demand obeisance and fidelity to Obamacare and command Republicans and C-SPAN to summits in its name.

Jeers to President Barack Obama and the progressive majority of the 110th Congress for fiddling with health care while the economy burned! Their legacy will be written in the red ink of profligacy and crushing debt. Their squander of American treasure would make even Caligula blush. Incitatus, too....

Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.