Posted July 2, 2012 | comments 5 Comments

Reader commentary: Open letter to Sen. Mark Obenshain


Dear Sen. Obenshain,

In reply to your email to me, indicating your dissatisfaction with the SCOTUS's decision on Obamacare, you protest that the federal government is doing too much to limit our freedoms when it can make us purchase something against our wills. That's not how I read the decision or the law. But then, I am not a lawyer. Seems to me the law just says that if you do not purchase health insurance, you will pay a penalty (tax). You do not have to purchase anything, but you do have to pay for your irresponsible behavior. That seems like good karma to me, so I am not troubled by the people of this country who choose to be freeloaders, since we are going to have to pay for their emergency room visits anyway.

So, if you are running for attorney general of Virginia in order to defend the rights of these freeloaders, I do not want to vote for you. I would be more inclined to vote for you if you were to run on a platform that included suing the federal government for indefinite detention without a trial of anyone they suspect of being a terrorist.

How can anyone think that being charged a penalty for my behavior is more limiting to my freedom than being incarcerated without the right to a trial? Yet, this has been the case in this country since The Patriot Act became law, and you have not spoken out against that practice of our government. Why? I can only guess you agree with that governmental overreach. If so, what then keeps you or anyone else in government from branding me a terrorist just because I disagree with you or them, or because I go to meetings expressing differing opinions from yours or theirs, and then arresting and detaining me indefinitely? But then, I digress.

It also seems to me that if you were so concerned about the freedoms of our folks, that you might vote for us rather than for the corporations that have been making a fortune providing health insurance to those who could afford it and not providing it to those most in need of it. Maybe you could have found a way to vote for those of us who could not afford health insurance, but wanted to have it, because the corporations we worked for refused to provide it for us because it would take away from their profits and their CEO salaries. But no, you have not done that. You support the corporations and their right to make money at our expense. You do not support our right to health care. In fact, I suspect you do not think we have a right to health care. But you do think that the corporations have a right to make a profit at our expense. These corporations could not exist without us a workers, but they more often than not treat us as a commodity, not as a valuable asset. And you and the Republicans you stand with, stand against us and for the corporations.

So, as I see it, it's OK if the government helps the corporations infringe on our rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. And it is OK for the government to incarcerate us for being suspected terrorists, which the government gets to define, without giving us a trial before our peers. It is just not OK for the government to charge us a penalty for being a freeloader; even if we would rather pay a fair price for health insurance, but can't afford it because we have to pay for the salaries of the folks who run these robber baron health insurance corporations as well as the stock dividends of all of their shareholders.
So, no thank you, I do not think I will be contributing any money to you to run for attorney general or anything else. You need to go home and quit trying to ruin our country.


Michael Cash, Fort Valley

5 Comments | Leave a comment

    BRAVO Mr. Cash! Well said and in words everyone should be able to understand. The Republicans deal in fear and double talk.

    We all pay for those who have no health care, one way or another right now.

    Hopefully everyone will take the time to actually understand the issues instead of jumping on the "bandwagon of ignorance" that this watered-down party is counting on.

    The uninsured motorist fee offered in Virginia allows drivers to own and operate cars with no insurance. Is this a tax or a fee. For the last 35 years I've been driving in this state I never heard anyone say the state is forcing me to buy car insurance. Should all drivers have car insurance? If your hit by one of these uninsured person you'll wish they had it, wont you.

    Really great letter, Mr. Michael Cash! You certainly point out the gross hypocrisy of the Republicans/Obenshain.

    On the one hand, Republicans have always beat the drum beat saying that "all Americans should take personal reponsibility" in their actions----but------ all of a sudden the Republicans decide that personal responsibilty is not important when it comes to "Obama's health care law" and doing the right thing by getting health insurance. Not only that-----Republicans are actually encouraging people to be freeloaders and irresponsible!

    Republicans have always claimed "they are the party of law and order" and their audience actually cheered during one of the Republican primary debates when one candidate, Mr. Perry of Texas, stated the large number of executions his state had carried out. Strange that "the party of law and order" has actually had some Republican congressional members urging people since the Supreme Court decision ruled the health care law is constitutional, to not buy the mandated health insurance thereby encouraging Americans to break the law.

    The Republicans in the past have been proponents of the mandate plan and in fact, it was an idea of the conservative Heritage Foundation in 1993 and widely supported by Conservatives------well, at least supported up until President Obama supported it. Strange how things change.

    Do I think the Affordable Health Care Act, aka Obamacare, is perfect? Of course not---I do not think anyone, "left" or "right" thinks that, but it is a much needed step in the right direction. Not only is it the right thing to do, if you want this great country of ours---the richest and greatest in the world---to be one who expects all to do their share but still has compassion for those who truly need a helping hand. Perhaps even more important though, is that we can not afford to go on the way we have. Believe me-----we have ALL been paying for those who are not insured but show up in an Emergency Room requiring care and very expensive care at that. Many of us have seen it first hand for years now. The Republicans say they will "repeal and replace Obamacare"? They had years when they were in charge and could have passed something and yet they never even attempted to address the problem or find an answer to this major problem in our country. So I do not hold much hope that Republicans will do anything meaningful in the future to tackle this problem that will continue to get worse. If The Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) is repealed in the event that Republicans take control in November, do not look for anything to be solved, but you can be sure that the "Big Business Insurance Company" profits and CEO salaries will be protected and increased at the expense of the rest of us.

    I can't improve on your letter Mr. Cash.

    Unfortunately for America, the Republican party and most of its membership are afflicted with an unhealthy obsession with distorting reality, especially their core fetishes concerning gun control, women's reproductive rights, and affordable health care. For these three issues especially, and for all of their other political positions, Republicans are not intellectually invested, they are emotionally committed, immune to logic, reason, concession, and rationale to place individual liberties before corporate profits.

    I encourage independent thinking. Avoid political party propaganda from the likes of Obenshain and Goodlatte.

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