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This is semi-serious.

I know exactly how Ayn Rand would answer this question, but she's gone and this is not a seance.  I'm not asking Ayn Rand.

I live surrounded by Bubba, and he's not mean.  If Bubba sees me, an old gray guy, struggling with a flat tire, Bubba will stop his truck and help me change it.

Bubba will mow the lawn for the elderly lady next door.  He drops his pocket change in the collection jar for the family hit by cancer, and it's Bubba who serves the hot dogs at the ball games that allow the Band Boosters to buy the musical instruments for the kids that Gov. Perry has hacked out of our budgets--they always hit the arts and foreign languages first when money gets tight.

For all these reasons, I'm not nervous that Bubba keeps a rifle in a rack on his truck.  I know he's not going to shoot me.

I'm nonplussed that Bubba voted for Gov. Romney.

And the question below the fleur-de-kos is real.

On the tube today, there was Bubba lamenting that Obamacare just began to ruin his life and the country today. He said "My taxes went up $400 to pay for Obamacare!"

His taxes did not go up $400 to pay for Obamacare. John Boehner's might have, because of the amount of time he spends in a tanning solon, which is subject to a new tax.

Then there's ending tax deductions for high end health insurance, but those are deductions and not credits so it's highly unlikely that Bubba would be subject to that unless he had a great union contract and still more unlikely it would amount to $400.

There's a medical device tax of a little over 2%. The logic of this is that, with 40 million new insured, more medical devices will be sold.

So, as I was inventorying the Obamacare taxes in my mind and trying to figure out what in the world Bubba was talking about other than what Rush and Faux Noise told him, the following question hit me like a blinding flash of the obvious...

If 40 million of your fellow citizens had no access to healthare

and you, personally, could change that for $400, a little over a buck a day for a year,

would you?

If not, why the hell not?

NOTE:  They just replayed the film clip and he said four THOUSAND dollars, leading me to believe he must be a business owner, but he's still wrong.  Small businesses get subsidies for covering their employers, not extra taxes.  So I still don't know what he's talking about and I'm going to go ahead and post this diary based on my misunderstanding of the number he claimed, because my question still gets at the observed gulf between how Bubba lives his life and the Ayn Randian nonsense he sucks up so eagerly.  Ayn Rand would say that stopping to change a flat tire for somebody else just makes you late.  Bubba does not believe that any more than I do.
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Comment Preferences

  •  It is worth pointing out, I think (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    that many will happily, even eagerly, give of their own money or time to help people they know -- not necessarily people they know well, but people they see often and can recognize -- or people with whom they feel a strong group identification ... but will bitterly resent having the same money taken from them to give the same kind of help to people they consider total strangers.

    It's a lot easier to have and keep a social contract with people with whom you are personally acquainted, even if you dislike them, than with people you have never met and probably never will.  And that leads to after-the-fact rationalization of why you shouldn't have to help them: they don't deserve it, they're lazy, they're defrauding the system, etcetera ... but it comes down to "they're not my neighbors."

    •  There's a lot of truth in your comment, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TheDuckManCometh, Batya the Toon

      and I think it's part of the explanation why the discriminatory laws that burden our gay neighbors are falling and even sometimes being replaced by protective laws.

      As more and more gay people came out, othering them got harder.  In many high profile instances, you had right wing gay bashing pols get surprises in their families.

      Policy wonks are trained not to make decisions by anecdote.

      But I'm afraid we have to sell policy by anecdote, and the only thing that will talk Bubba down off the ledge is knowing people who have their lives saved by Obamacare.  That is going to take a while.

      I can accept that without liking it.

      What really chaps me is that the liars will pay no price for lying.  They'll just turn the page to the next set of talking points that make no more sense than the ones just shot out from under them.

  •  What about this long term solution (0+ / 0-)

    Site academic, medical and tech campuses all over the South.  Hire all the locals possible, in every capacity available.  Basis:  opinions directed by paycheck.  

    This is us governing. Live so that 100 years from now, someone may be proud of us.

    by marthature on Tue Oct 01, 2013 at 11:17:16 AM PDT

    •  Well... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      You might say Indiana did that, because Southern Indiana is culturally Kentucky.  

      So you have the flagship campus of IU at Bloomington with all the amenities of a progressive campus:  daily student newspaper, world class music program with both jazz and classical, live theater to die for, world class library.

      The result?  Bloomington elects progressive local government and turns the congressional district purple.  Rays of enlightenment radiate from Bloomington like they used to from Austin on account of the University of Texas.

      Austin has caught enough techies now that it no longer depends on UT to lean forward, but it still leans substantially forward of the rest of Texas.

      Quality higher education moves politics.  Republicans have always understood that.  But the mechanism is more ideas than money.

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