Yes, we all know we need to get people off of Food Stamps!
Yes, even though it is the law of the land we know the Affordable Care Act, affectionately or not so affectionately known as ObamaCare, is a bad solution that will only make the system worse and drive up costs because of its reliance on the health insurance industry.
But, why do we continue to play the same games. Rather than put our heads together in recognition that our country is in trouble and because we need to find some new solutions that will actually work, we play like two kids on the beach who cannot get along. Rather than build something beautiful, together, we devote all of our energy to tearing down the other guy or gal’s sand castle.
On the beach, the only consequence of such child’s play is that parents have a source of frustrated amusement that Bob and Sally can’t play together.
In the real world, at the seats of power of the United States of America, such games hurt people who can least afford to be hurt and bring us no closer to meaningful solutions.
When we use ObamaCare as leverage to try to win budget concessions in an attempt to reduce federal spending, we create a stalemate that will eventually lead to a government shut down or sequester that will take money out of the pockets of hard-working Americans and benefits away from the unfortunate who have no way to make up the difference.
Of greater long-term consequence is the fact that such stalemates and painful cuts only deepen the resentment of the disenfranchised who have already become embittered; they are citizens who no longer believe in the American dream and who have become hopeless, and feel powerless to change the outcomes in their lives.
As long as this population of the disenfranchised continues to grow, the burden that must be carried by the rest of us will only grow with no end in sight. Somehow, rather than push them further away from mainstream America we need, desperately, to find a way to pull these people back in as productive citizens who can help us face the challenges of an uncertain and rather frightening future.
When are we going to find positive leaders who can find a way to set aside their differences and work together to find solutions to the enormously difficult challenges confronting us? When will someone say “enough!” and begin working to pull people to the table to do the important work of our government?
Our elected officials in both the executive and legislative branches of our government have become trapped in their daily work that they have forgotten to step back and look at the panorama. The only thing they know is attack and destroy what their opponents want to accomplish and to remain committed to fruitless process of incremental change in dealing with monumental challenges; challenges that cannot be overcome incrementally.
For those of you who are reading these words, you are not powerless. Provide some positive leadership and begin expressing you concerns directly to your elected officials. Tell them what you think. Just as importantly, encourage the people you know to roll up their sleeves and share in the work.
The clock is ticking and when the tipping point is reached there will be no second chances.