can we say goodbye to Republibots yet?

President Obama gave a speech last night, as you undoubtedly know, and in tone it achieved a much-needed balance of hopefulness and realism in laying out his agenda, even if it focused more on vision than detail. His heart and head seem to be in the right place – the real test is how his policies on energy, healthcare reform, and economic reform will actually come to pass. The bottom line is he same it’s always been: Obama talks a great game, but it remains to be seen how well he plays it. One really good thing, though: mentioning that with his budget, he’ll actually include the cost for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal delivered the GOP response, and it was every bit the pre-programmed Republibot pabulum you could expect. From a man who can’t understand the life-saving value of volcano monitoring, nor the importance of transportation infrastructure in creating jobs, boosting the economy, and easing mobility, he epitomized what is wrong with the GOP. And there are two points in particular in which Republican’s intellectual dishonesty is in full force:
As we take these steps, we must remember for all our troubles at home, dangerous enemies still seek our destruction. Now is no time to dismantle the defenses that have protected this country for hundreds of years, or make deep cuts in funding for our troops. America's fighting men and women can do anything. If we give them the resources they need, they will stay on the offensive, defeat our enemies, and protect us from harm.
Dismantle our defences? Make deep cuts in funding? This is classic GOP sleight-of-mind, in that any cut to defense is portrayed as weakening National Security. Yet with reports of massive Pentagon overspending, fiscal responsibility demands that military spending, like any other, be made leaner and more efficient. As it stands, this assumption that all military spending is good spending, and that cuts are always to be avoided, only encourages the war profiteers to game the system to their benefit. Calling for responsible spending is not to call for depriving the military of vital resources. In face, a trimmer budget means that the military will need to develop meaningful priorities and fund workable systems instead of getting distracted by this or that shiny new and deadly toy.

The second point is healthcare, and Jindal summarizes the GOP’s:
We stand for universal access to affordable health care coverage. What we oppose is universal government-run health care. Health care decisions should be made by doctors and patients, not by government bureaucrats. We believe Americans can do anything, and if we put aside partisan politics and work together, we can make our system of private medicine affordable and accessible for every one of our citizens.
Unfortunately, the healthcare system hasn’t worked, the GOP has not put forth any meaningful plan to make health care coverage affordable, and all Jindal has done is reinforce the GOP’s pious devotion to private, for-profit medicine. HMOs win.

As nobel-prize winning economist Joseph Stieglitz told Democracy Now!, "I think that there are some fundamental problems in the efficiency of our healthcare system. And what we’ve seen is that the private healthcare insurers do not know how to deliver an efficient way."

There’s no particularly enlightening moral or insight this week, except that as much as the Democrats aren’t the shiniest of the shiny, the GOP really need to go away.


Nick said...

I think all conservative governments should go away I don't like them at all. You forgot to mention that Bobby Jinal is the GOP's new poster boy who recently pushed through a bill that will allow the 'teach the conspiracy' advocates a leg in on the science curriclum. Luisiana, the state left behind. http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2009/02/louisiana_boycotts_science_sci.php

I've also heard rumour that he could be in the running for next president. Scary.

Not overly suprising the way this guy talks and other GOP people. Ignorance is bliss until something happens to them.

Frederik Sisa said...

Yes, Jindal seems to be the GOP's new hope, although reactions to his speech last night weren't positive from either Democrats or Republicans. One can only hope that the past 8 years and continued GOP obstructionism won't renew their party but will instead, at least, shoe people to what extent they have become morally turgid and ideologically bankrupt.