Uninformed? No, Tea Partiers are alarmed

04/22/2010 12:00 AM |

Although I am not a member of the Tea Party, and as far as I know am not even acquainted with any member, I was bothered by Peter Waldner’s cheap-shot cartoon which slandered Tea Partiers as uninformed, unpleasant dopes.

Ironic, no? The Left inevitably waxes self-righteously indignant should any of their “preferred” groups be subjected to such ugly stereotyping, yet it thinks nothing of maliciously caricaturing any group so foolish as to organize against its policies.

Besides “uninformed,” I believe the left-leaning media’s favorite Tea Party adjective is “angry.” Well, perhaps “alarmed” might be the more appropriate word, and one I certainly can relate to. Why on earth shouldn’t people be alarmed? Despite our president’s countless speeches and our mainstream media’s unquestioning validation, the public was clearly against the health-care bill. But in a triumph of ideology over cold, hard facts, the Democrats shoved this half-baked 10-ton turkey down our reluctant throats. It is worth noting that no such expansive, significant bill has ever before been forced through Congress with no bipartisan support whatsoever.

It was obvious ¬­– to anyone who cared to look — that what this administration dearly desired was never just to “fix” health care, but rather to implement sweeping, all-encompassing government-run health care. Our president is on video record stating as much in several precampaign speeches. Had the Dems been able to muster enough votes from their own party, we would now be saddled with the “public option,” which would have put America on the fast track to socialized medicine.

And here, a question is begged: If it is a “right” and a moral obligation for the government to provide all citizens with health care, why isn’t it a right and moral obligation for our government to provide decent housing for all its citizens as well? And shouldn’t all citizens have the “right” to a nutritious, well-balanced diet and a decent job? But hold on, this is sounding suspiciously like full-blown socialism, an ideology that has a remarkable record of bringing out the worst in human nature.

Many of us believe government-run health care will have the same unintended consequences and failures. To make matters worse, besides the typical inefficiency and ineptitude of any large government-run bureaucracy, today all U.S. Government-run agencies have an additional, self-inflicted shortcoming, namely quotas. Thus, in the leftist dreamed-of world of U.S. government-run health care, a significant percentage of the thousands upon thousands of jobs in this gigantic new bureaucracy, including your doctors, nurses, lab technicians, etc., would be set aside for race/sex preferences. I’d guess as much as a third of all jobs.

Whoa there, quick-draw race-card P.C. gunslingers. I truly don’t care what “group” my doctor or nurse or technician comes from as long as I’m confident that they were hired for their expertise from among the best candidates available, rather than to “meet the numbers.” Unfortunately, meeting mandatory quotas inevitably fosters the lowering of standards, much as it does with college admission standards. As has been its practice for several decades now, our government would have no intention of simply hiring the best-credentialed health-care applicants, regardless of ethnicity or sex. That colorblind practice wouldn’t satisfy the quotas.

The other extremely problematic characteristic of civil-service meets quotas meets unions is it is essentially impossible to fire even the most inept employees. Between quota-hiring, no firing, adding 30 million people to the same number of doctors, the trillions of dollars needed — which we assuredly do not have — and the typical federal bureaucracy’s waste, fraud and inefficiency, my enthusiasm for nationalized health care is closer to dread.

As for the Waldner cartoon, at least on this government-run health-care issue, consider me a member — not of the Tea Party or the so-called “Party of No” — but a proud, card-carrying member of the party of “Hell No!”

Hugh Prestwood lives in Greenport. He is a country and western music songwriter