Friday, October 12, 2007

Another Foolish, Naive Liberal

In today's Washington Post, E.J. Dionne attempts to address the right-wing case against the family of Graeme Frost, the coma survivor conservatives feel is unworthy of S-CHIP. Dionne thinks the right's arguments are preposterous and inconsistent with right-wing positions on other subjects.

Is Dionne right? Clearly not. Let's take his quibbles one by one:

Most conservatives favor government-supported vouchers that would help Graeme attend his private school, but here they turn around and criticize him for ... attending a private school. Federal money for private schools but not for health insurance? What's the logic here?

Why, the difference is obvious. Vouchers allow you to buy stuff (i.e., an education) on the open market. With S-CHIP, you don't buy health insurance on the open market -- you get health insurance from the (ick) government, which means it has liberal cooties on it.

Conservatives endlessly praise risk-taking by entrepreneurs and would give big tax cuts to those who are most successful. But if a small-business person is struggling, he shouldn't even think about applying for SCHIP.

Well, small-business people shouldn't be struggling at all -- if they are, how can right-wingers use them to illustrate how great capitalism is?

The exception to this rule is if you're struggling because of the big evil government and its horrible taxes and regulations. That's allowed. In fact, it's encouraged, because it's always important to show how appalling it is that we actually have a government.

Conservatives who want to repeal the estate tax on large fortunes have cited stories -- most of them don't check out -- about farmers having to sell their farms to pay inheritance taxes. But the implication of these attacks on the Frosts is that they are expected to sell their investment property to pay for health care. Why?

Just remember this simple rule: Financial trouble as a result of taxes assessed by the evil government -- understandable. Financial trouble for any other reason -- unacceptable, and your fault, loser. It's especially unacceptable to say that you're having financial trouble because of private health insurers, who are capitalists, and therefore a force for absolute good in the world.

Oh, yes, and conservatives tell us how much they love homeownership, and then assail the Frosts for having the nerve to own a home. I suppose they should have to sell that, too.

Yes, they should if they're going to keep bumming us out by being failures and not saying it's the government's fault.

There. Wasn't that simple?

(Cross-posted at No More Mister Nice Blog.)