Sarah Palin says that Rand Paul is learning what it’s like to be her. Resentful and whiny?
I want to go back to something I read yesterday. Rand Son of Ron wants to eliminate the Americans With Disabilities Act, which he said is burdensome to small business. He gave the example of a small business in a two-story office building forced to install an elevator for one employee. John Cook of Yahoo News writes that Rand doesn’t seem to understand what the ADA actually says, and that most small businesses are exempt.
But here’s the interesting part:
Trouble is, we searched far and wide for a single instance in which a private employer was successfully sued under the ADA for failing to provide an elevator, or was compelled by a lawsuit to do so, and we came up empty. We searched the case law, contacted ADA experts â€” both proponents and opponents of the law â€” the Justice Department, and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Not one of them knew of any case involving the government-ordered installation of an elevator. It looks like Rand Paul is either peddling a myth or spinning some vanishingly small number of elevator installations we’ve yet to hear of into an epidemic big-government overreach.
So, essentially, Rand Son of Ron is screaming about an alleged injustice that isn’t actually happening and therefore doesn’t need addressing.
It hasn’t happened lately, but in decades past Republicans in Washington liked to introduce laws or constitutional amendments banning flag burning. And they’d go on and on about how awful it was that those hippies burned flags, but research always failed to turn up any epidemic of flag burning.
And then yesterday we were blessed with the comment from “Liberty Dawn” —
Only the dumbed-down media can try to make a racist bash out of individual and statesâ€™ rights. Point being the federal government has shoved its fist down our throat â€” and Americans arenâ€™t going to take it anymore.
And, of course, one hears this stuff all the time, but I’ve yet to see anyone screaming about government fists down throats who appears to have a genuine grievance. Not in the U.S., anyway. Exactly what is the government doing to these people that is so oppressive? And if you push them for an answer, if you get an answer at all it’s usually something about using their tax money for something they don’t like. This was L.D.’s second point —
No national heathcare, no more spending of billions of dollars that arenâ€™t theirs to give away.
Never mind that if the health care reform bill goes into effect as written as works as planned, it will save L.D. and the rest of us money in the long run. We all pay taxes for all kinds of stuff we don’t use personally. My taxes have paid for roads I will never drive on, bridges I will never cross, schools my children will never attend, wars that are a damnfool waste of everyone’s money. And it’s perfectly normal, and reasonable, for us citizens to disagree with each other how our tax dollars are spent.
But that’s not oppression. That’s not government fists down throats. That’s just the normal kind of stuff citizens disagree about. Because the disagreement here is not between “the government” and “citizens.” It’s between “citizens who favor health care reform” and “citizens who don’t favor health care reform.” And because the former group did a better job getting their politicians elected during the last couple of election cycles, now there’s a health care reform law. This is how republican representative government is supposed to work.
BTW, if you want to see what real government fists down throats look like, catch the documentary Burma VJ sometime. HBO has been showing it lately.
The tea partiers are marching around saying they want to take their country back, but from whom? and for whom? and by repealing the 17th Amendment? Frank Rich wrote of Rand’s acceptance speech,
Paul said the votersâ€™ message was to â€œget rid of the power people, the people who run the show, the people who think theyâ€™re above everybody elseâ€ â€” or, as he put it on an earlier occasion, the establishment who â€œfrom their high-rise penthouseâ€ look down on and laugh at the â€œAmerican rabble.â€
That Paul gave his victory speech in a â€œmembers onlyâ€ country club is no contradiction to white Tea Partiers.
And repealing the 17th Amendment will rectify this?
The pundits keep trying to analyze the teabaggers as if they had some kind of coherent agenda that is just laying there waiting to be uncovered. I don’t think so.
A few days ago there was a nice essay by Paul Rosenberg at Open Left called “America’s Delusional Politics.” The real key to understanding the teabaggers is in here —
Conservatives believe that they should rule the world. Liberals, not so much. Liberals tend to believe much more in process-that whoever wins elections should rule, and that ideally whoever’s ideas are best should prevail. As long as there are processes in place protecting basic rights, liberals tend to trust the political process-or at, to trust its legitimacy. Conservatives, OTOH, tend to regard any loss of power as somehow illegitimate.
They are not in charge; therefore, they are oppressed. It’s not about issues. The entire tea party movement is about a bunch of aged children throwing a tantrum because they’ve been told they have to play nice with other kids. They don’t have real grievances, so they make some up.