Does it seem to you that the political “left” and “right” has changed considerably in the last couple of decades? It seems as though the left has shifted slightly right on the spectrum, while the right has shifted significantly more to the right. Sadly enough, I don’t think that a lot of people have noticed how far the “right” has moved to the right. Today’s seniors, who grew up with The New Deal and a prosperous, large middle class were represented by a much different “right-wing” than they are today.
Think about this: In Nixon’s message to the congress in 1974, proposing a comprehensive healthcare insurance program he stated:
Early last year, I directed the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare to prepare a new and improved plan for comprehensive health insurance. That plan, as I indicated in my State of the Union message, has been developed and I am presenting it to the Congress today. I urge its enactment as soon as possible.
The plan is organized around seven principles:
First, it offers every American an opportunity to obtain a balanced, comprehensive range of health insurance benefits;
Second, it will cost no American more than he can afford to pay;
Third, it builds on the strength and diversity of our existing public and private systems of health financing and harmonizes them into an overall system;
Fourth, it uses public funds only where needed and requires no new Federal taxes;
Fifth, it would maintain freedom of choice by patients and ensure that doctors work for their patient, not for the Federal Government.
Sixth, it encourages more effective use of our health care resources;
And finally, it is organized so that all parties would have a direct stake in making the system work–consumer, provider, insurer, State governments and the Federal Government.
Note the first principle: offering EVERY American an opportunity to obtain a balanced and comprehensive range of health insurance benefits. Is this or any of the other six principles different than what Obama has proposed? I think not. You can read Nixon’s entire address to congress regarding his health care plan here.
So, do you think Richard Nixon would even come close to surviving a Republican primary today? Keep in mind, this REPUBLICAN was the U.S. President from 1969 to 1974. I think Nixon would be crucified by today’s “me-first” party. I’ve been reluctant to say that it is right wing radicalism, but I think it is. There is no longer any compromise…they want to cut social spending and cut corporate taxes, and if you don’t like that, well too bad, welcome to the 99%. It is really sad and can’t go unchecked for any longer. President Obama recently said “By gutting the very things we need to grow an economy that’s built to last — education and training, research and development, our infrastructure — it is a prescription for decline.” The U.S. used to be a country that actually built things. We don’t do that any more. We let our corporations send all of the work overseas (very cheaply, just ask Apple!) and then we make sure that our richest 1% get richer by offering tax cuts.
It’s time (actually long overdue) that people took a close look at the people who are representing them. They are not who they used to be. Conservatives, just understand that the Republican Party you grew up with is not what it is today. Ultimately, the people do have the final say…and I hope that they speak soon.
“Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in healthcare is the most shocking and inhumane.”
– Martin Luther King Jr.