The Politics of Fear

As I’ve watched the health care debate unfold I’ve been wondering why people are buying into the nonsense. More importantly, though, I have to wonder why the debate has grown so irrational. Certainly there are arguments to be made against a public option and you would think someone…anyone…would be trying to make them. Instead it’s been one nonsensical claim after another. Death panels, of course, are the most ridiculous of the many claims.

But why would the opposition resort to such absolutely outlandish tactics? Well, I’ve got a theory.

Since 2001 we’ve been living under the politics of fear. FOX News and the Bush administration made us believe that there was danger at every turn. Terrorists were hiding around every corner, and the only one who could save us was our president. These days, though, the administration in charge has a different message, and people responded in a big way.

The party that ruled for so long by terrorizing the country into agreeing with whatever it said is now competing against hope and a message of change. So the scare tactics have gotten more ridiculous. Terrorists we could all believe in. But death panels?

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3 thoughts on “The Politics of Fear

  1. Confused says:

    I’m a Democrat and sorry, but I’m still confused by this. Is this just a general “blahblahblah Bush Administration” dig? As a writer – a liberal writer at that – this is all you came up with?

    People are making frequent valid arguments, and while I do not agree with them, they certainly make me think. There are plenty of educated ideas and theories to explore. The Bush Administration is an umbrella excuse that is lazy, tired and needs to be retired.

    Really, was that post even necessary to publish?

  2. Tones says:

    I would have to agree somewhat to the “confused” poster. Some people of differing education & knowledge have information foreign from our own–until we google it or delve into it further.

    “Death Panels” isn’t the official label of the plan, but in turn is what the result of some of the plans imply.

    Also, in reviewing the 100 page Baucus plan and the House Approved 1990 page plan, both these plans don’t match in some instances & the amendments made to the 1990 page plan eliminate some of the Death Panels.

    But know this.. Medicare’s yearly (1 year) budget is $511 Billion, the house approved plan was $1.2 Trillion for 10 years. There is no way $120 Billion for 10 years will pay for this plan when 18% of the population (Medicare recipients) cost $511 Billion/year. The “Public Option” also will assure that many people who currently have insurance through their employer will drop their employer due to the “Never in a million years” principle people have adopted in loving Health Insurance Companies of today.

    The financing & projections of the Healthcare Overhaul are similar to “Cash for Clunkers” financing projections. C.A.R.S. was supposed to last 4 months, the funds lasted all of 3 weeks!

    I project the plan’s actual costs would have to be approximately $3 to 5 trillion for 10 years (at a minimum) and that’s a low estimate.

    I say this as a democrat that understands math.

    Healthcare NEEDS to change, but it needs to change responsibly.

    There are many “barb wires” in regards to healthcare: Doctor’s Salaries, Facilities, Pharmaceutical companies who over charge, Canadian Drugs being illegal in the U.S… For one thing.. these “barb wires” need to be removed or adjusted.. before we throw a blanket(called tax payer money) at it… the system won’t last.. & the rich won’t pay for the full plan–it will be everybody.

  3. verdeverdad says:

    This was simply intended as a “thought-provoking” entry, asking why the anti-health care reform faction had not simply grounded their cases in facts–by, say, using numbers the way the previous commenter did. That sort of argument I can understand, if not agree with. But when this post was written, the debate was about death panels and being ruled by people who screamed and yelled at town hall meetings — not by rational debate. I had an idea about why I thought the debate was so low-brow. That is all.

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