In this week's American Issues Project column, I comment on how Barack Obama promised the American people that he would transform America, which at the time sounded uplifting and positive, but what the American people are seeing now is a transformation that is terrifying them. Obama's policies take those decisions people have made for themselves to the government. Here's a portion:
With dramatic increases in the size and scope of government, Americans fear there will be an unprecedented intrusion into their lives.
The laws of physics tell us that no two objects can occupy the same space at the same time. This principle also applies to the question of government versus freedom. Freedom cannot thrive when government continues to grow and takes over industries and services that were previously in the hands of the free market. As government control, regulations and taxes increase, freedom of choice retreat at a similar rates. As government control, regulations and taxes decrease, freedom grows and fills the void that government once held.
Nothing embodies this struggle better, perhaps, than the president's proposed health care overhaul. Very few people would argue that our health care system should remain as it currently is. Virtually everyone acknowledges that it needs reform; however, the kind of reform the president and the nanny-staters want to achieve is centered on government playing a much larger role in the delivery of health care. Many nanny-staters want a public option, which is just another way of defining government-run health care. Several liberal members of Congress have insisted that the health care bill that will land on the president's desk will have a public option. If the president signs a health care reform bill with a public option, the American people will see their freedoms and choices slip out of their control.
The Baucus health care proposal that was just passed out of the Senate Finance Committee will artificially drive up the cost of private health insurance premiums for two reasons. First, health insurance premiums are more expensive than the penalty for not purchasing insurance. At the same time, the cost must be the same whether a person is healthy or sick, leaving no incentive for young, healthy individuals to purchase insurance until after they have become sick. This will leave primarily sick people who are paying into and drawing from the system, driving up costs. Second, insurance companies will be hit with a 40 percent excise tax for the more expensive health care premiums, a cost that will be passed onto consumers. What makes matters significantly worse is that the new tax policies associated with employer provided health insurance will drive down wages. The Joint Committee on Taxation admitted this fact in two separate letters issued on October 13th.
The consequence of these policies is that millions of Americans who want to live their lives independent of government largesse will be forced into a government run plan. But more than that, this kind of government control gives bureaucrats a say in the amount of health care that will be provided and to whom it will be provided. Naturally, the American people, particularly our nation's senior citizens, are very concerned that their access to much needed procedures will be based upon the metric of whether it is financially beneficial to the collective.
Please read the rest and let me know if you agree or not. You can leave a comment here or at my column.
The polls reflect the fears the American people have about President Obama's transformation. Fox News' most recent poll says that the American people's opposition to his health care reform plans remains strong. On top of that, only 43% of the American people would vote to reelect him if the election were to be held now. Probably even more aggravating is that Hillary Clinton is more popular than he is right now. Obama dismisses these polls, chalking them up to fear of change. He had better take the American people's push back seriously or he will find himself with a much stronger Republican opposition in Congress by the time 2010 comes to a close.
While you're at AIP, be sure to check out the other columnists. Lorie Byrd has a great column that examines the president's misplaced priorities. Ed Morrissey exposes the Democrats' cap and trade shell game.