RETURN TO THE AMERICAN IDEAL

The problems facing the people and the government of the United States are many. We are mired in a military campaign (War? Really? Against whom?) in the middle east that has been going on for more than a dozen years and to which there is no end in sight. We are deeply in debt with no realistic hope of getting out of it. We are suffering more and more poveerty, less and less opportunity for escape from that poverty, a collapse of the middle class and an accelerating rate of concentration of wealth in the hands of a few whose sole apparent interest is in accumulating more wealth. Our infrastructure is a scandal, our environment is on a path to chaos. We have a medical system that is bankrupting us, while a very loud segment of the political world decries any attempt to correct it. We are taking money away from health care, from education, from road repair, from public transportation, all to pay off the debt we are incurring by cutting taxes.

These are just a few of the problems, and they are just the political and financial problems. We have huge underlying problems with religion. Instead of being a source for moral decisions, it has become just another avenue of self-satisfaction. We don’t care that people are starving; we care about getting a good seat at the heavenly banquet. We have, therefore, huge problems with morality. We declare ourselves pro-life and at the same time endorse policies of killing people who are merely suspected of wrongdoing and we do not blink at the killing innocent civilians as “collateral damage.” We have completely forgotten the American ideal of recognizing inalienable rights in every human being and instead guide our actions by the single principle of self-interest.

There is a simple solution to our political and financial problems. Cut the military budget in half, raise taxes to the level in existence during the Clinton administration, and make as our largest expenditures fixing roads, installing a program of universal health care with accompanying limits on the amounts charged by pharmaceutical companies and those who manufacture medical devices and the elimination of all subrogation programs, and providing vastly increased funding to schools, colleges and universities to make education available to all. If that all sounds crazy to you, you might want to check with your neighbor. The vast majority of Americans approve of every one of these changes.

Most of all, though, the vast majority of Americans lust for a return to the American ideal. They truly want to see that opportunity remains open for all. They truly want every person in America to have the basic benefits of education and health care. And they most certainly want America to turn away from this mounting atmosphere of self-interest and return to the fundamental commitment to the inherent rights of all humans.

It is likely that we are in this position because each of us were lured away from our real meaning by the greed of the Koch Brothers types. However that happened, we need to return to that American ideal. The Latin word for turning is “volvo”, from which we get the word “Re-volution.” The survival of the American ideal rests on our willingness to make that turn.

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