Last week a new form
of chaos was unleashed on the American taxpayer. The culprit: A bill
creating massive prescription drug benefits for Medicare recipients.
Betraying their most basic creed, Republicans have not only increased the
size of government, but the spending rate of it to boot. As they say,
The bill, laden with pork incentives, is “said” to cost $400 billion over
the next ten years, but by the time all of the subsidies kick in, it could
be upwards of two trillion over the same period of time. The upswing
comes from entitlements granted to corporations for not dropping similar
benefits for their retired employees. The odd part of this is that
only 4% of seniors claim that they even have trouble getting the drugs they
need. It just doesn’t make sense.
Many of you reading this are probably saying to yourself, “Why do you care,
you’re in college. You’re nowhere near retirement age.” True,
I’m nowhere near retirement age, and yes, I’m still in college, but after
graduation, I’m going to join the workforce. I’m going to take this
grand education I’ve received and turn it into a profit. Naturally,
the government is going to want a piece of that profit via taxes. With
this massive entitlement for seniors, the government is going to want a damn
site more of that profit than I am willing to give. Real soon,
I’m going to be paying for grandma and grandpa’s medications. I’m not
the least bit happy about that at all.
The reason politicians did not consider a view like mine before passing this
bill is simple. My generation doesn’t care. They don’t.
Politics is the most boring thing imaginable for them. They’re far
too busy getting the gel in their hair just right, to spend twenty minutes
of their day voting. They care more about the latest “fashions” at
Abercrombie and Fitch, or who they’re going to sleep with tonight, rather
than their financial security in 10, 20, or even 30 years. This is
the problem that breeds all of the irresponsibility this scheme will reward.
I’ll let you in on a little secret; like most of the other handouts the government
gives, prescription drug benefits are for the irresponsible in our society.
In this case, those who have not planned ahead for their retirement and health
care are saddling workers with the cost of their irresponsibility.
And the people who should care the most about this, the ones who will have
to pay for years to come, namely the soon-to-be workers of America, are too
irresponsible to realize this. Funny how things move in cycles, isn’t it?
How about another secret; the politicians who pushed this through Congress
do not care one bit about prescription drugs for seniors. Think people,
seniors are the largest block of voters in America today. They vote
and, when they do, they vote mainly for Democrats. By passing this
monstrosity, Republicans will be able to say, “Look what we’ve done.
We’ve given you what Democrats couldn’t.” This will likely sway some
of those geriatrics to the right on Election Day.
You must be saying to yourself now, “I thought Republicans were the party
of limited government and fiscal conservity.” Well, I did too.
I do not understand what is happening here. In the past two years,
government spending has shot up 20%, yes 20%. Part of this can be blamed
on the war, which is understandable, but the vast majority of it has been
spent elsewhere. Where? Who knows? A little bit here, a
little bit there, it adds up…fast.
What’s more, the man who should be the voice of reason in this fiasco, President
Bush, has been nothing more than a rubber stamp for spending increases.
By signing this bill, he’s once again inked his name on a massive Congressional
spending spree. This must be the “compassionate” part of his “compassionate
conservative” 2000-campaign slogan.
Message to President Bush: You don’t show compassion by throwing money
at problems, hoping they go away. This is the kind of nonsense that the left
preaches; all of life’s problems can be drowned out in a sea of money.
Ideology like this attributed to a conservative like Bush is scary.
On abortion, gun rights, and the War on Terror, I’m with the president.
I’m with him on tax cuts, pre-emptive strikes, and ending tyranny in the
Middle East, but this reckless spending has to stop. If it doesn’t,
perhaps reforms should be considered for the GOP.
Andy Obermann is majoring in History and Secondary Education at Missouri Valley College.