The Least, First

Monte Asbury's blog

What’s “unpatriotic, servile, and morally treasonable?”

with 7 comments

I was reading Enough is Enough, (lair of HonestPoet, my much-respected atheist friend), when I noticed this good old quote in the sidebar. In light of the conflicts that spring up in the blogosphere, it’s worth repeating:

“To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public. “

– Theodore Roosevelt, 26th President of the United States

Ahh. That’s American. Criticism of government is way different from hatred of country.


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Written by Monte

December 20, 2007 at 9:06 pm

Posted in patriotism, Politics

7 Responses

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  1. Hi Brenda! I certainly agree with a couple of your points, especially about billions spent on “senseless, unjustified wars.” And the healthcare plan you mention is probably Hillary’s, which seems like a big mistake to me. Forcing everyone to buy Big Insurance’s products explains why she receives more campaign contributions from the health insurance industry than any candidate of either party! Not hard to figure that one!
    As to wasted money in Medicaid, my guess is that it’s nothing compared to the industry’s ways, where $330 billion (if I recall correctly) is spent on promotional efforts like advertising. We Americans spend double on healthcare per person than do people of any other nation in the world, yet are ranked by the World Health Organization at 20-something in terms of quality of care received. All around us are nations doing universal healthcare, giving higher quality, and in every case spending half as much per person as our American private-insurer setup. Not as many people getting paid millions per year, I’d guess. At any rate, we pay double, we get less than 20th-best.
    Hillary’s plan isn’t like the ones that do so well in exactly the way you mention. Check out What everybody knows about health care and Clinton Healthcare is giant subsidy for insurance industry. Romney’s model, passed in MA, is similar to hers, only state-based. Only Kucinich has really addressed this well, IMO.
    You might enjoy My Clipmarks page, where there are lots of remarkable newsbits that I and others have dug up.
    Great to hear from you! Thanks for commenting! Merry Christmas!

    Monte

    December 24, 2007 at 2:22 am

  2. “Criticism of government is way different from hatred of country” — absolutely. Some of the strongest critisism of government is directly fueled from a LOVE of country.

    Having listened a lot lately to political postions on various issues, this blog title caught my attention as well as the following quote from an older post:
    “Medicaid alone in 1997 cost $172.5 billion. If the 325,000 religious congregations in the United States tried to shoulder that load, each local congregation would have to raise an extra $529,000 per year.”

    I just wonder how much of that cost goes to actually meeting medical needs and how much is due to government mismanagement. I think there’s a very good chance that private charities would do a much better job of handling finances than the government does and the result would be that less money would go a lot farther. Just a thought…

    I agree that we have a responsibility to look out for those in need and perhaps if so much money was not being wasted at the federal government level on senseless, unjustified wars, and all the bloated bureacracies we are currently funding, we could pare down the federal agencies to a few that really matter and they could be run well.

    I’m learning one has to be really cautious because something can sound really good on the surface but have all sorts of hidden problems. I recently listened to one of the candidates discussing a plan for universal affordable health care. When questioned further, this candidate explained that it would be mandated for everyone to carry it and they would be fined for not doing so. Reminded me of how most states have laws about automobile liability insurance.

    I have a real problem with the government deciding for people what is “affordable”. People should be able to make their own decisions about how to spend their money. For some people, at some points in their lives, it may come down to eating or paying for their “affordable” health insurance. And then what, they are going to be fined for it? I found this idea that sounded great at first to be completely unacceptable.

    I don’t have all the answers but I do believe very strongly that the federal government mandating and managing any more stuff is definately not the answer.

    And by the way this was great:
    “I was surprised to find such a myopic modernist outlook outside the Christian right camp (where it is preserved as a living museum tableau).”

    Brenda

    December 23, 2007 at 4:47 am

  3. Interesting point – I’ve recently had a long discussion with an atheist fellow on my Clipmarks page (there are 90 comments on that post – scroll halfway down to get the gist of it, if you like). Again and again it struck me that his arguments used the same tools that fundamentalists use: either I had to see truth the way he framed it or concede that my faith was preposterous. I was surprised to find such a myopic modernist outlook outside the Christian right camp (where it is preserved as a living museum tableau).

    Monte

    December 22, 2007 at 11:53 pm

  4. (And I love “lair.” That’s too funny!)

    honestpoet

    December 21, 2007 at 2:03 pm

  5. Actually, Monte, I’ve decided I’m not really an atheist; the label I’ve penned for myself is: Agnostic Secularist. I’m beginning to think that atheism is the other side of the coin that holds fundamentalism, and I don’t want that in my change purse at all.

    I’m glad you like the quote. I especially like it because Bush SAYS he admires Roosevelt.

    honestpoet

    December 21, 2007 at 2:03 pm

  6. What if you hate a president that you believe to be “unpatriotic, servile and morally treasonable”? Is THAT American?

    I think people that like to sit back and determine how American or non-American other people are or are not, are in fact, idiots. And I truly believe that the opinion I just rendered is VERY American!

    Bucky

    December 21, 2007 at 10:35 am

  7. What if you hate a president that you believe to be “unpatriotic, servile and morally treasonable”? Is THAT American?

    I think people that like to sit back and determine how American or non-American other people are or are not, are in fact, idiots. And I truly believe that the opinion I just rendered is VERY American!

    Bucky

    December 21, 2007 at 10:34 am


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