“We’re very excited Rep. It’s exactly what we wanted, and we got it.”
– Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) on the prospect of government shut down.
Just stop for a brief moment and reflect on the democratic process we sometimes take for granted. Reflect on how one section of one party in one House of Congress has conceived that to be “American” in the 21st Century means to entirely ignore the fact that you lost the Presidency twice, you lost the Senate, you lost the popular vote for the House, you lost the Supreme Court ruling, and yet you’re still willing to threaten the stability of not just the US economy, but economies across the World, for the sake of an ideology that isn’t even remotely popular enough to win anything of significance through the proper democratic process. Reflect on how serious the situation is, that the President had to sign emergency legislation to fund the military. Reflect on how House Democrats and moderate House Republicans are willing to pass a a budget without a threatening attachment. Reflect on how that one section, of one party, in one House of Congress holds the lives of millions of uninsured people, including children, in the palm of its hand whilst it plays a relentless game of undermining the President for no other real purpose. Reflect on how their programme for change was rejected in the legislature, and executive elections, and judicial branch. Reflect on how instead of producing new ideas to present to the public having lost on their last platform, they arrogantly move to tell the American people; accept our previously rejected programme of change, or we will close down your government. But we’ll continue to take our salaries that you pay us, and when it all collapses, we’ll blame you for not giving into our unelectable demands & threats.
How on Earth is this an American, Constitutional, or Democratic system of values?
If you don’t like a law, that’s fine. You now have two steps.
Step 1. Come up with a new platform, new ideas, and win elections.
Step 2. Change the law.
But the rules of the democracy (or Republic; whatever euphemism they choose to attempt to justify this shutdown) under which you live imply that you cannot move to step 2, without passing step 1. To do so, is to show a thorough disregard and disdain for the consent of the governed, for the framework upon which your system of government was created, and a disrespect for the office you represent. To move to step 2, without achieving step 1, is as close to dictatorial as one gets within a democratic framework.
It seems more and more obvious that a one year delay is simply a stall for time, before the mid-terms. For the Affordable Care Act to come into force, and to work as it is supposed to work (which it will), to help millions of people including children access affordable care would be a nightmare situation for the far right of the Republican Party, because they’ve spent an extraordinary amount of time creating horror myths that simply wont come true, and they will have to answer for that. It is therefore essential for Republicans that the ACA not be allowed to work, even if it means closing down the government and threatening the economy over. And so human beings are treated as unimportant, disposable, and secondary to the political aims of one section of one party in one House of Congress who could not win by traditional democratic means. It is not just contempt for the most vulnerable; for children with pre-existing conditions; for women whom paid far more than men for the same coverage under the old system; It is a Confederate-esque contempt for the democratic framework that enables their existence in the first place and especially if that democratic framework provides results unfavourable them. It is that contempt that is absolutely impossible to justify.