I’ve said several times before that the outrage and frustration displayed at health care town halls runs much deeper than just health care.
Sure Americans are disturbed and worried about the current health care legislation, but more than anything they’re fed up at the lies and distortions that both parties have pushed to get elected and get legislation passed.
People have complained about the shedding of private health insurance, the left has pushed this off as a scare tactic, but why should we trust them? Why should we trust any government official? They inherently have our trust when we vote for them, but it can be taken away quite easily. And over the past ten years both sides of the aisle have done a fabulous job of shedding the public’s trust.
Politicians are notorious for talking a big game and delivering nothing. We’ve seen it with the border (what ever happened to the fence and all of the fancy technological protection?). We’ve seen it with war (what happened to pulling our troops out of Iraq?). And now we’re seeing it with earmarks.
In 2006 democrats swept into majorities in the House and Senate. They won not only off the heels of the republicans empty promises, but also by promising more “transparency and efficiency.” Nancy Pelosi said in 2006, “There has to be transparency. I’d just as soon do away with all (earmarks), but that probably isn’t realistic.â€
Boy, that’s some big talkin’. Doing away with all earmarks. Sounds good right? Most Americans agree that earmarks are unnecessary wasteful spending, especially when we are saddling $11 trillion in debt ($9 trillion at the time).
Unfortunately Pelosi didn’t keep good on her promise. The latest numbers show that earmarks have, once again, gone up.
Earmarks, which are inserted in appropriations bills by members in order to fund specific projects, added up to $19.9 billion in 2009, according to an analysis by the Taxpayers for Common Sense and Center for Responsive Politics. Earmarks in 2008 spending bills were worth $18.3 billion.
I guess that’s why Pelosi is seen as one of the worst politicians in Washington. Actually let me rephrase that, she’s one of the best politicians in Washington, she’s seen as one of the worst offenders of the public trust.
But it’s not just the left that ignores the public’s trust. After all, it was Bush 41 that said “no new taxes” only to create new taxes. In 2006 the republicans were swept out of power not just because Bush was widely unpopular, but because they promised a mountain and delivered a valley. It was actually the republicans who promised Pelosi’s transparent earmarks, they just didn’t deliver on it.
And how many president’s have said they would end our dependence on foreign oil? Everyone since Carter has made that promise, and that adds up to three democrats and three republicans.
But America now we face a problem. We’re playing party ping-pong. We’re going back and forth between two parties who could care less about the trust of the American people. We have to stop voting for parties and start voting for people.
If we punish the democrats for failure to listen, only by promoting a party that failed to listen four years ago, what good have we done? Don’t vote against your district’s democrat just because they’re a democrat, vote for the person who you trust more. If that person happens to be a republican than so be it. But if that person happens to be a democrat then fill in their bubble.
The cornerstone to a functioning democracy is trust. We elect leaders and trust that they’ll vote as we see fit. We trust that they’ll write good and understandable legislation. We trust that they’ll work for us and not special interest. At the end of the day it’s more beneficial to vote for someone you trust than someone who you align with ideologically.
The town hall protesters you see on TV are from the right and the left. They’re not angry at the democrats for creating a bureaucratic health care bill, they’re angry at all of Washington for not respecting their trust.