BY BOB BEARDEN
President Trump has released his 2020 proposed budget and it is in the trillions. It includes drastic cuts to Medicaid and Medicare [over a 10-year period], which would directly affect most of the people who voted him into office. Our state-run media known as Fox News – or in some circles as Faux News – is ramping up the hate, Islamophobia and the denigration of people who live in what the president once referred to as sh–hole countries.
They are doing this, of course, to distract his base from the fact again that promises made have not been promises kept. Well, except to those who hold the purse strings to 90% of the nation’s wealth. And just like Al Gore’s clueless frog, this is slowly boiling his base to death and they haven’t got a clue what he is doing to them.
Medicare is one of the most popular social programs ever devised. Along with Social Security and Medicaid, it has literally allowed millions of our citizens to live long productive lives well into their 90s. Social Security saves lives and it is definitely a perfect fit within the framework of our constitution.
One of the most precious rights we have under our Constitution is having a government of the people, for the people and by the people. A government in which our most sacred document literally has established a right that most Americans don’t even realize we have: The right to have our government protect our citizens by promoting the general welfare.
Yes, there’s that onerous word once bandied about by the man still missing from Mount Rushmore, Ronald Reagan, who ranted about so-called “Welfare Queens” ripping off the government with the misuse of food stamps they received [now known as SNAP]. That was another distraction carefully planned and devised when the people ripping off the government were the CEOs of America. Later ol’ Ronnie screwed We The People by doing away with the “Fairness Doctrine” which gave rise to the likes of Fox News, and people the like of Rush Limbaugh, Laura Ingraham and Tucker Carlson.
Social Security came to us through a caring government thanks to FDR and Frances Perkins [the first female to hold a cabinet office as FDR’s Labor Secretary]. It was an example of promoting the general welfare of our citizens. Some 30 years later, with the aid and comfort of LBJ and men like Everritt Dirksen, our socialistic government went about promoting the general welfare of our seniors again in creating Medicare.
Those two creations by an openly caring and intelligent government, one that was truly socialistic, have allowed millions of our citizens to lead full lives just as our founders intended and just as they put into words in our socialistic constitution: “Promote the general welfare and secure the blessings of liberty for ourselves and our posterity.”
Our founders, despite their missteps and wrong turns, got our Constitution right. We all should be thankful that they did. And we all should be prepared to take whatever measures necessary to ensure that our government remains of the people, for the people and by the people, and continues to act in the best interests of all of our citizens, not just a hoarding few!
– Bob Bearden is a trustee of the Central Oklahoma Labor Federation and a member of Mayflower Congregational Church UCC in Oklahoma City