Hand Me an Issue

Some issues. Discuss.

* Dependence on Oil
I recognized this problem in 1973 when I was 10. I couldn’t solve it then, and I can’t solve it now, because the American people are too greedy, short-sighted and ultimately stupid to elect leaders who will stand up to global oil and say we’ve had enough, while at the same time stand up to Americans and say that they will need to make changes and sacrifices.

* High Taxes
This isn’t ancient Rome or feudal Europe. It’s the 21st century, which means that your tax dollars don’t go into the king’s coffer. They build roads, educate children, kill Iraqis, subsidize tobacco, pay for air shows, pay millions of government salaries, allow the CIA and the NSA to listen to your phone calls, and all kinds of other wonderful things without which we would be genuinely free. The biggest slice of your tax pie, by the way, goes to “defense,” which includes…

* War in Iraq
Anyone who knows me knows that I thought the Iraq war was a mistake since I heard the first reports of armor moving towards Baghdad in March 2003. There are a lot of slogans and catchy phrases to describe the war on both sides of the issue, and I think the funniest was a bumper sticker that said, “U S A: We’re gonna free the shit out of you!” But the bottom line is this: it was never our country to invade, and it’s not ours now. It doesn’t matter if you think we’re doing good or freeing an oppressed people: it’s not ours!

* Gun Rights
Most gun owners, like my family and me, are responsible sporting firearm owners and users, and in hands such as ours, guns are safe and fun. But (you saw a “but” coming, didn’t you?) so many people in the world have too much rage, too much alcohol, and too many Dirty Hairy and Rambo viewings to be trusted with lethal force. By the way, the number one cause of firearms deaths in the United States is suicide.

* Health Care Reform
If I were a doctor in this country I would carefully screen my patients, and take very few new ones. Why? The reason is twofold. 1. Most health problems are choices, particularly dietary choices. and 2. The reason medical care costs a fortune in the first place is that people don’t understand it very well, and often expect it to be perfect. The result is that when things go wrong, doctors are then greeted by lawyers, and greed gets thrown into the equation. Greed is also, by the way, why prescription drugs are so expensive. Sidebar example: when Abby and I visit our doctor, there is usually a drug company rep in his office.

* Two-Party Monopoly
The powers that be have spoken, and not well. Sometimes I think that the people have given up on any kind of dynamic government, and other times I think they are too stupid to care.

* Global Warming Controversy
This issue only appears controversial if you listen to Rush Limbaugh.

* Same Sex Marriage
I think people who are concerned about this issue just don’t have enough to do.

* Abortion
As hotly contested as this issue has been over the years, the truth is that the people, by majority, have spoken, and the answer since 1973 is that abortion should be legal. If you respect democracy, you have to accept legal abortion. But here is a notion for conservatives to consider: no one is pro abortion. People who are “Pro Choice” really are for the right to choose. I know. Deaf ears.

* Social Security’s coming bankruptcy
This is the real world, people. If you can’t plan for retirement without leaning on the government teet, you probably should be screwed when social security goes under.

* Shrinking Middle Class
That’s funny, because most of the middle-class people I see are too fat to see their own feet.