Digby hits another one out of the park with her takedown of the argument against the families of the children being held up as examples of why the vetoing of the S-CHIP program is so wrong.
This is what Republicans call "solutions to problems:" all of you
people who work in jobs that don't offer health insurance, and can't
afford the ridiculously expensive private health care plans that are
available, well, you need to get a job that provides health insurance
for your whole family --- or don't have kids.
Oh, and while
you're at it, you'd better be prepared to do whatever it takes to keep
that job no matter what, especially if your kid gets sick, because if
you find yourself without health insurance for any reason it will be
because it was your choice. This is what Republicans call "freedom."
the earlier Frost family smear, this attitude was manifest with the
criticisms of Mr and Mrs Frost for working "intermittently" and failing
to get a "real job." Implicit in all of this is that every parent in
this country has an obligation to either work for someone who provides
health insurance for their families ---- or be rich. The alternatives
--- entrepreneurial risk taking, working for retail employers like
Walmart or restaurants which fail to provide health insurance, is
something that no responsible parent would do. Therefore, that sector
of the economy is completely off limits to middle class families. And
that is the only sector of the economy that's actually growing.
and by the way, those health insurance providing companies which all
responsible middle class should work for are under no obligation to
these employees with kids who indenture themselves for the benefit.
They are allowed to pull back this coverage any time they want, raise
the contributions and fire the employees at will. That's what
Republicans call "liberty.")
Tennesee Ernie Ford had it right. "Saint Peter don't you call me, 'cause I can't go. I owe my soul to the company store"
This is an old letter now, and many of its observations are unsurprising to many of us. When it was originally published in the NYT, though, its viewpoint was neither old nor commonly understood. It's worth preserving as a testament to a diplomat who understood before many of us that sacrificing our honor on the altar of our fear was a bad bargain, as well as being cowardly and wrong.
Kiesling is (after spending a year as a visiting lecturer at Princeton) still living in Athens, and doing occasional lectures. He's written a book called Diplomacy Lessons that is just coming out in paperback. If you want to keep a copy of that resignation letter, which should be added to the collection of important American documents, buy it. Whether you do so or not, let's hope he gets some wider recognition soon for taking an honorable stand at a time when it would cost him dearly, as well as making accurate predictions about the dangers of replacing diplomacy with cowardly bluster. Read the letter. It's an eye-opener, and it's too bad it was ignored when it was written.