Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Once upon a time in America seemed that the country was capable of taking big steps, achieving broad consensus on big issues and getting appropriate legislation passed. I'm thinking of the Marshall Plan, a huge undertaking that seemed to go against the American people's traditional postwar isolationism/leave-us-alone-to-get-on-with-our-lives sentiment. The proponents made the case, and the Congress acted on it. The Civil Rights legislation of l964, the creation of Head Start, of Medicare...these were all ambitious measures undertaken to solve specific, very serious problems in the country. Somehow, we mustered the will, the consensus and the votes to get these signature initiatives passed. Now, it is almost impossible to imagine life without them.

So it was with particular chagrin that I read about President Bush's veto of the Senate's S-chip expansion. This amounts to a small increase in expenditures for children's health care, extending coverage to what essentially are the working poor in America, those making between $40,000 and $60,000. If we can't even agree that a greater number of children at risk should have health coverage, what hope is there for solutions to looming crises involving entitlement reform, upgrading of essential infrastructure, and, um, finding a way out of the Iraq fiasco?

I can't understand why even the simplest, clearest matters seem to be beyond the county's abilities now. Are we really so different now than we were in the l940s, 50s and 60s?!


Blogger TomCat said...

In those days, Bucky, we had two parties who had different ways on how to best represent the people. Now we have one that cares only for representing the rich.

4:24 PM  
Blogger moville said...

I think that's right, but the repubs have always represented that side in the 20th century. the difference seems to be that there were some republicans at that time who were willing to put the public interest ahead of their constituents'. Where have you gone, Arthur Vandenberg?

5:32 PM  

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