To Comfort The Afflicted
And Afflict The Comfortable

To Comfort The Afflicted And Afflict The Comfortable

Wednesday, July 17, 2024


Does He Joke About Bombs On Planes, Too?



Dr. Tom Coburn, R-OK, can say that Congress is “a class of career elitists” and “cowards or “a class of elitist cowards” or “a class of cowardly elites” – but, folks, Tom is the guy who introduced a bill to allow congressmen to carry concealed weapons in DC after Rep. Gabrielle Giffords was shot.

He believes in God, he is a Baptist deacon, but everyone knows God only protects those who arm themselves. I think that if I even jokingly suggested shooting a congressman or carrying a concealed weapon to Congress someone would be coming to arrest me.

Tom is not out to just punish cowardly congressmen alone, he wants to punish all of us.

Recently in Tulsa, he was pointing out that the military and military veterans are being lulled into dependency at least as fast as African American males. “The average military person, noncombat, retires at 21 years. During that time, there are significant benefits and salary that are higher than the average earnings in Oklahoma.”

Well, you know how it is when those who fight for you or even those non-combatants expect too much. He thinks those guys who believe they were damaged by Agent Orange need more evidence.

He knows all about, combat, Agent Orange and it’s affects because while those overly paid and overly benefited Americans on socialized GI medicine were in Vietnam, Tom was in college, BA in Business, and then he went straight to work as the manufacturing manager of the Ophthalmic Division of Coburn Optical Industries which his Daddy owned. The company grew from 15-350 employees and took in 35% of the business in the U.S.

Are you beginning to see why he thinks Barrack Obama, whose father abandoned him before he started school, just got too many benefits?

On the subject of Medicare and taking care of the “frail and elderly” he said to considerable applause, “If you look at the Constitution, where is it the federal government’s job is to do that?” The Constitution doesn’t say it is the government’s job to pay wealthy physicians to sterilize women under 21, without written consent, but you did it anyway, Tom.

Tom claims to have had 15,000 patients and delivered 4,000 babies and he wasn’t paid with chickens or donuts. What he does today, in Congress, isn’t worth a chicken with mange.

And then, and then he said, “The way I was brought up, that’s the family’s responsibility.” He was raised by an Optician with a business that raked in 35% of the U.S. market. My mom is 89 and my mother-in-law is 88 and I took care of my mother-in-law for the last five years and it is more responsibility than I am able to do at 65. Tom has been so deprived of benefits. He likes to say, they should have planned better like somehow you can change the past or your parents.

So he wouldn’t sound devoid of compassion he added, “Do we have a commitment that we need to take care of the frail and infirm? Yeah. But we also have a commitment to our kids not to take away all their opportunity?” Right, because we may have a responsibility, Biblically speaking, to take care of our elders, but our children should not be responsible for taking care of us or, Biblically speaking, receive God’s blessings for doing so. Guess what – just as Tom will never need help taking care of his parents, none of his three daughters are even close to poverty.

Tom, tell us again about the programs you meant when you said, “I just don’t believe they work overall, and in the long run they don’t help our country.” He, meaning Obama, “doesn’t know that because his life experience is something different.” What? Obama doesn’t know they don’t work because they did work for him?

If I hear one more wealthy person say anything close to the idea that the only reason we are not all millionaires is because we or our parents were lazy or stupid, I am going to become really angry and probably call Tom and yell some more.

One set of my grandparents were farmers and the other set never had any money, but would have shared their last meal with anyone who was hungry and none of my grandparents were lazy or stupid. My mother was a stay-at-home mom and my dad didn’t get to go to college even though he was offered a scholarship because his dad died the month before he graduated. He was a veteran of World War II, he started at Southwestern Bell as lineman, climbing poles, he was a union steward and he retired after 43 years as a full engineer.

The day I need a frat boy who never needed anything to tell me how to take care of my elders I will let Tom Coburn know.

I don’t care if you are talking about Tom Coburn, the Koch brothers, Warren Buffet or Henry Ford not one of them became wealthy without people to build their houses, make the bricks, cut the lumber, raise their food, sell their goods, make their products or do all those things only people who really need money will do.

To say anyone in this country can become a millionaire is ludicrous because if we were all millionaires who would take care of your children, clean your house, pull your damn weeds, keep your books, teach your children, fight your wars and fires, and generally make it possible for you to sit around thinking of ways to deny the rest of us a living wage or health care.

You can pay a fortune to buy off Congress and then you get them to take away the rights of the rest of us to even organize. The only way you stay on top is to force others to the bottom.

There is no such thing as an over-paid or overly benefited public employee, soldier, fireman, policemen, teacher or nurse. You pay people overseas pennies to make things that you can’t sell to most of your employees because you don’t pay them enough. Not only is it alright for the guys at the top to destroy the economy it is also alright to reward them with tax breaks. It is alright to have everyone, except the wealthy, sacrifice to make it better. You give them tax breaks and tax cuts out the wazoo and they do not create jobs with a living wage.

Well, Tom, you said you aren’t running again so why are you cuddling with the Tea Party? Are you expecting them to recall you?

Just one thing – and I was not a business major, but I am not an idiot – you can’t pay bills without revenue and you can’t kill Granny, the poor, or children to save money. They are here and you can’t let them starve or neglect them and still claim to be Christian.

You have benefited way more than Obama has from the government tax breaks and lax business laws, most of which are not in the Constitution. Come on Tom you don’t need more tax cuts and neither do the top 10% who make over half the income while the rest of us do all the labor.

Please stop answering your Senate phone, “Dr. Coburn’s office.” We are not calling for a pelvic exam.

The author lives in Moore, OK and is a regular contributor to The Oklahoma Observer

Editor’s Note: Coburn caricature courtesy of DonkeyHotey



Arnold Hamilton
Arnold Hamilton
Arnold Hamilton became editor of The Observer in September 2006. Previously, he served nearly two decades as the Dallas Morning News’ Oklahoma Bureau chief. He also covered government and politics for the San Jose Mercury News, the Dallas Times Herald, the Tulsa Tribune and the Oklahoma Journal.