This is not about a lack of compromise.
Posted on October 3, 2013
The government is shut down. Children have been sent home from Head Start programs. Federal workers are furloughed and have no idea whether or not they’ll get paid. The NIH has had to pause all clinical trial enrollment. WIC funds are in danger. And people are angry that they can’t visit the WWII memorial in DC, even though park rangers (the handful that have not been furloughed) are letting in all veterans (despite what you may have heard in conservablogs).
This is because one party is throwing a hissy fit over something that is already law. That was voted on, enacted, and vetted by the Supreme Court. That moves forward even despite the shutdown.
This is not about a lack of compromise between two parties. This is one small group of (mostly) men in Congress who have gotten it into their heads that it is okay to hold an entire nation hostage to their whims.
Normally, I support the ideas of “let’s work together!” and “compromise is a good thing!” Despite my strong preference for Democratic policies, I like that there is a natural pendulum swing between Conservatives and Liberals in most political offices–it keeps us closer to the middle, which I think is a good place to be. But you don’t compromise on something that has already been compromised a million times over. The ACA is a watered down version of what was originally proposed. There was compromise again and again when it was being written. And in the end, a less-than-stellar-but-still-better-than-what-we’ve-had-so-far bill was passed into law.
If you believe that this is an issue of two parties being unwilling to compromise, you’re been misled by people who want you to believe that they are reasonable.
Many of my conservative friends have been up in arms over this shutdown. I’ve seen countless Republican friends post on Facebook that they’ve come to terms with the fact that the ACA–which they hate–is now law, and that their party needs to MOVE ON.
One thing I heard on the radio this morning was that one of the reasons Tea Party anti-Obamacare representatives aren’t budging is because their seats are so safe and secure. They aren’t getting any pressure from their constituents. So, if you are a conservative and you are frustrated with what is going on here, and you can see through the really weak charade that this is somehow a failed compromise, and if you happen to live in a district that is represented by one of these Tea Party “patriots,” then please. Please, please, please start voicing your dissatisfaction.
My voice doesn’t matter to these people, because I’m not their constituent, and I’ve been written off as an ignorant, greedy, socialist, handout-loving, bleeding heart liberal. But you? You’re a conservative. You hate the ACA. But you also think that a symbolic objection to the law is not worth hurting as many people as your party is currently hurting.
(Embedding isn’t working, so please watch Jon Stewart’s excellent response to all of this here.)