In the Purfuit of Happineff


David Rosman, Columbia, MO – This commentary is in response to an April 1 column written by “Augustine 25” on the blog site DRScoundrels.com. Regardless of what Beck, Coulter, Limbaugh, others and he say, I believe we have forgotten what the words defining governmental forms mean and, therefore, are mislabeling the President and government. So, from the Merriam-Webster Dictionary:

Communism: a totalitarian system of government in which a single authoritarian party controls state-owned means of production.

Democracy: a government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation.

Fascism: a policy that exalts nation and often race above the individual (ethnocentrism) and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation and forcible suppression of opposition.

Republic: a government in which supreme power resides in a body of citizens entitled to vote and is exercised by elected officers and representatives responsible to them and governing according to law.

Socialism: any of various economic and political theories advocating collective or governmental ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods, in which there is no private property.

Social Justice: a society that gives individuals and groups fair treatment and an equitable share of the benefits of society

If we take Merriam-Webster at its word, the new health care laws are not communist, socialist, or fascist. It is a privately run insurance program under federal regulation, mush like Medicare supplement plans are today. But not everyone agrees.

In a House Joint Resolution, the Missouri General Assembly wishes to declare that the US Constitution “is not a living, breathing document.” This resolution is supported by the neo-conservative side of the aisle, not the liberal, who wish to return to the original language of the Constitution. But, they must also return to the original meaning of that language. 

The HJR would have Missouri refusing to recognize federal laws concerning the any “public option” health care law. In addition, other items listed include the hot button issues of our day – abortion, gun ownership laws, civil rights, hate crime legislation and more.

The Constitution’s preamble provides that the new nation is designed to, “establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence (original spelling), promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.” To meet this criterion, we must have a healthy nation. To have a nation of healthy and happy citizens promotes prosperity. We need a public health system to counter greed enterprise.

Our government is a democratic-republic that promotes social justice. Our federal and state governments do not advocate a Socialist, Totalitarian, Marxist or Fascist society. These are emotive words designed to create more fear than to define a purpose or direction. As the great Bertrand Russell,

Collective fear stimulates herd instinct, and tends to produce ferocity toward those who are not regarded as members of the herd. – Neither man nor crowd nor a nation can be trusted to act humanely or to think sanely under the influence of great fear. (Russell, Bertrand. “An Outline of Intellectual Rubbish.” The Portable Atheist. 2007. Comp. Christopher Hitchens. Da Capo Press, 2007. Print.)

Is this the philosophy of the Tea Party? The neo-conservative Republicans? I think so.

The 2010 health care reform law is not fascist, socialist or communist in nature. It is designed to be a government sanctioned health care program to cover all Americans, thus meeting the Constitution’s requirement to “promote the general welfare.” I find it strange that many of the same people who want to eliminate social justice as provided through a government endorsed health care package are also the ones who are fighting to keep their Medicare, Medicaid and VA medical benefits, all government sanctioned social justice medical programs.

So, here is the deal. If my neo-conservative friends learn the definitions of governmental structures and philosophies, and stop using fear mongering as a tool to insight hatred towards our federal government, I will find something nice to say about Ann, Glenn and Rush. However, do not throw fuel on a fire that is on the verge of going out of control. Yes, this is a slippery slope argument, but many are predicting the coming of American political chaos.

-30-

David Rosman is an award winning editor, writer, professional speaker and college instructor in Communications, Ethics, Business and Politics.  You can read more of David’s commentaries at ColumbiaMissourian.com and New York Journal of Books.

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About David Rosman

David Rosman is an award winning editor, writer, professional speaker and college instructor in Communications, Ethics, Business and Politics. You can read more of David’s commentaries at ColumbiaMissourian.com, InkandVoice.com and NYJournalofBooks.com.
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9 Responses to In the Purfuit of Happineff

  1. K Leos says:

    The US is a republic. The five core principles defined in the constitution are limited government, strong national defense, individual freedom, personal responsiblity and free market economy.

    there is no declaration or defining statement in the constitution that a citizen must buy a product from the federal government to ensure any of the above principles or guarantee “life liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

  2. Dan C says:

    You picked the definitions which fit your agenda. This is acceptable with poetic license, but your essay is far from clearly defining the necessary aspects of the issues. Failure of corporative health care does not necessarily lead to a public option or single payer. Failure of the public to live healthy lives does not necessarily require the intervention of government. The so-called “Tea Party” is not a party of defined goals, but rather a mob of diverse, angry people who sometimes know what they want, and other times have no clue about the source of their angst.
    The current economic culture is one of burning money. The more money that can be burned in things like hospitals, insurance buildings, government employment offices, and advertising and news media, the more fear and GDP is generated. The more fear and GDP, the higher the stock market. Each of us has turned into a corporation that makes decisions based on our relationship to the flow of money toward those fires, even though we usually only receive something like the smoke as our payment for all of our labors.
    The real ignorance of Americans lies in their medieval beliefs in things they will never have, such as: perfect health without working at it, easy monetary riches without already being rich, and especially; immortality. Americans are notoriously ignorant of Cause and Effect relationships, gullible to advertising of all kinds, and possess egos that are so huge they don’t even fit in their oversized storage sheds with their motorcycles and boats (bought with money they didn’t have on promises for work they’ll never get paid that much for).
    What is at issue is not health care, government, or drugged talk show hosts. What is at issue is freakin’ Reality, and the connections that humans must find to it in the near future. We must learn what REAL things we need, how they are acquired, what they really cost, and which of us should be doing the work, as well as how many resources are available and what we can do to improve them or ration them. Money is not the issue, because that is not based on reality. Government is not the issue because that is based on money. The value of the human animal as part of the future of its own species and planet is at the heart of our Future Usefulness. Cooperation vs. competition, reality-based belief systems, and respect for everything as stewards of our domain are the things that will carry us to a possible future. Without them, we will simply consume everything until we consume each other.

    • inkandvoice says:

      Dan – Thank you for your reply. My question is, how could I choose the definitions I needed to support my position when these are the only definitions provided through M-W as well and the American Heritage, Black’s Law, Britannica and other renown dictionaries?

      Can you please expand on what you mean by “reality based belief systems?” More specifically, whose reality? Isn’t reality based on interpretation of facts and those interpretations can be different for different individuals?

  3. Pingback: In the Purfuit of Happineff Ink and Voice

  4. Jim Jones says:

    If one accepts that we are a Republic, and one of the core priciples is ‘personal responsiblity’ and if one understands that the reason for mandatory automobile insurance is to make drivers responsible for their actions, why is it so hard to understand that mandatory health insurance it (partly at least) to make people responsible for taking care of their bodies…to take personal responsibility for their own care.

    • Dan C says:

      Along that vein, why is it so difficult for the public to understand that mandatory insurance is wasting money on insurance instead of direct, single payer systems of health care? If the government is going to mandate that risk be distributed among everyone, then insurance companies are redundant; sucking up resources that shouldn’t be wasted. The difference from auto is that you don’t have to buy an auto.

    • inkandvoice says:

      Jim – I love ya, man.

  5. Pingback: Tweets that mention In the Purfuit of Happineff « Ink and Voice A great article regarding current Political rhetoric & tension. #p2 #tcot -- Topsy.com

  6. jjMichael says:

    No. But now i will. Thanks for that.

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