BY KAREN WEBB
First, you should always keep in mind Trump’s favorite mantra: “we will have the best of everything and we will have the best people running these agencies.” However, they rarely have any details of any of these things and he promised he would not be hiring lobbyists, but there are at least 187 former lobbyists now working in the administration and there are industry insiders running the cabinet. And the guy at the top is making a fortune because he is using us to fund his businesses.
The Trumps have never had it so good. We pay for all their business trips and for all of their security while they don’t even give us a discount for having to put all of the entourage and secret service in theirhotels.
Trump promised that drug prices would be the lowest ever, which would affect me, but they are not lower. They decided to do it through competition from generic drugs, but generics have to wait for the most needed drugs to be out of patent, which takes years because they can tweak the formula where you take it twice a day instead of four times a day and keep it under patent. And they plan to increase prices everywhere else to lower prices here. They are going to force other countries to care as little as the GOP cares about their constituents, which is not much.
In those scary, evil, socialized-medicine countries they negotiate for lower prices by saying, “if you want to sell prescription drugs in Canada or Mexico you will do it at these prices and you will make money and our seniors and sick people will be able to buy food. Granted you won’t make as much and your CEOs won’t make 300 times what the people making the drugs make, but we care more about our people than we care about Pfizer’s huge profit margins.” But in the US of A the most important thing is profit and to hell with you and they will never, ever have enough profit. The more profit they make from your suffering, the happier they are.
Do you know why you have to pay so much? Part of it has to do with being able to bombard you with commercials for products you can’t buy without a prescription. Tell your doctor you think you need this because on TV they tell you it is better than anything else, but it could cause any of these 150 side affects they are warning you about, so you can’t sue them if the stuff doesn’t work and you do end up with one of those side effects which can be anything from tummy rashes to death from a massive heart attack.
Then there is that thing that used to dominate the GOP platform, but since 2016 they just don’t give a crap about and that is tort reform. They want to limit the damages you can receive even if you are 30, have four children under 10 and your husband dies from a medical error. Frivolous lawsuits were always at the top of their list, but is now non-existent because they elected the king of frivolous lawsuits. He has lessened his lawsuit threats because now he has the biggest button on the planet and he isn’t afraid to use it unless you swear that America is first and your country is somewhere down the list.
Since Day One they have been trying to get rid of health care for “the least of these” by getting rid of the Affordable Care Act because there are millions and millions who should be getting just “thoughts and prayers.” If they can’t just abolish it, they can defund parts of it. They can force people to give birth and then forget them. It is because of these people that we can’t keep giving huge tax cuts to people who are not going to trickle anything down to us, except what should be going into a urinal. No health care, no living wage and a doctor will increase rent on millions who have difficulty paying their rent now. There is not a single country where anyone can afford a one-bedroom apartment on minimum wage.
I have read that most teachers in the U.S. qualify for food stamps and have to buy their own supplies. They have the most important job and they are paid the least. Teachers are “the least of these” in most states. Last week, I was watching a pinch-hitter for Katy Tur interview Noelle Nikpour and Robert Bianchi about Education Secretary Betsy Devos wanting to use funds from the Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants to pay for guns for teachers. The Congress voted to give them $50 million a year for security, but said it could not be used to buy guns. I am not sure why Betsy thinks arming teachers would academically enrich students, but she has said and done a lot of crappy stuff.
Noelle thinks the NRA should consider paying for armed security guards or maybe Homeland Security should foot the bill. Robert, on the other hand, says he has been to the schools and it is impossible to secure the perimeter and prohibit ingress. Law enforcement cannot do it, he doesn’t like it, but arming teachers is the only way to protect the kids. He says they need to be trained just like law enforcement and I am guessing that the government should pay for that considering most teachers will be paying off student loans until the are on Social Security. Thanks to Betsy, not heavens to Betsy, student loans are still something you cannot write off through bankruptcy because Betsy makes millions from collecting overdue student loan payments.
Noelle doesn’t like Betsy having to do gun control. I don’t like Betsy or the GOP having anything to do with education. Not only do they not want to make college affordable for anyone who wants to go, they think college and too much education is what is ruining the country. “You have to defend yourself from these school shootings. Look gun control, not gun control, whether you are for or against it, you have got to do something because they are unarmed. They are using desks and safe rooms as their only alternative to protect from a crazy shooter.”
As usual, the NRA and GOP are insisting that we just don’t have enough guns out there. They are all in the gun-selling business. We already have more guns per capita than anywhere else and still have more gun violence than anywhere else, except a war zone. They say that it is your fault if you are a victim because you should have a gun. Then it will come down to this entire country will be wiped out because Karen Webb is the only person without a gun. It’s her fault, we need a law requiring everyone to be armed.
It is the same argument the GOP uses for prayer or saluting the flag in schools. That is why there is violence. Not only have we left God out of schools, but it must be only Christian beliefs because that is what the majority believes. The Bible says not to be too proud and it also says you can pray in a closet. I used to ask why it wouldn’t be OK to pray with your child at home before school or in the car before you let them out and this will not do. Everyone has to either participate or it won’t work. God will not listen or answer, positively, if everyone is not at least forced to listen. And yes, kids will tease or attempt to convert non-participants.
Just this week I read that a family in Achille, OK will be moving out of state because about 12 “Christians”[?] were threatening to castrate or have their kids beat up a 12-year-old trans girl or the parents were going to beat up her parents. White supremacy, police brutality and homophobia are encouraged by the Trump Administration. I was at the demonstration and saw nothing that would cause the police brutality that followed, although the police kept announcing things were going on.
To keep all of his business dealings and campaign dealings secret, Donald Trump lies and then changes those lies and then changes those to fit whatever is happening. He is firing or taking clearance away from anyone he choses. It looks like he is about to get rid of Attorney General Jeff Sessions and then appoint someone who will be loyal to Trump and to hell with the rest of us. And even if he appoints someone who fires Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein and then Special Counsel Robert Mueller, the GOP will not protect them regardless of what they have promised.
The reason they are letting him go wild is because they are not finished destroying the lives of “the least of these” and those who support them to fund more tax cuts for people who do not need more money. They separated 3,000 children from their families and flew them all over the country, even nursing infants and toddlers. They forced toddlers to represent themselves in court. I keep thinking maybe there are some Republicans who care, but they don’t.
The Democrats are the only ones with a platform that doesn’t involve protecting the Trumps so the GOP can treat “the least of these” like crap. They are now going after Social Security and Medicare because they do not think “the greatest generation” is entitled to what they have been paying for since before most of the GOP caucus was born.
This election will be easy for me. If they are Democrats I will vote for them and I do not care who they are. I am 72 so I won’t have too many years left, but I will never vote for anyone who claims to be part of the GOP and I don’t care who they are – a relative, someone I have known all my life, it doesn’t matter. Reagan started my move toward becoming “yellow dog democrat” when he put my life and everyone else’s on some insurance giants profit margin. George W. Bush helped when they decided to invade Iraq, even though they had no part in 9/11 and no WMDs. He even made a joke about not finding WMD.
The part that cemented me into the “never GOP” movement was the treatment of President Obama. They wouldn’t even support their own ideas if Obama presented them. And now they have elected a man that is my age, that I have watched for over 40 years, and he has never done or said anything presidential. He has always been in it for himself and he still is in it for just Donald Trump.
The Russians have been keeping him afloat for decades which is why he wants no investigation. He wants a military parade after he said, on video, that avoiding VD with as many willing sexual partners as he could get was his personal Vietnam and he was a “very brave soldier” and that alone would cause me never to vote for him. There are 58,318 of our generation who died while Trump was avoiding VD. While VD is unpleasant, I am sure it is not the same as the Tet Offensive.
There it is folks. I also would like a couple of impeachments and for Democrats sucking up to the swing and independent voters to actually offer a really good platform.
– Longtime Oklahoma resident and Observer contributor Karen Webb now lives in Portland, OR