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Monday, September 1st, 2014
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Looking back: The unique perspective of time


Fri, Feb 21st, 2014
Posted in All Commentary

Jeff Erding

By Jeff Erding

Last May Fillmore County Journal published a piece I wrote concerning how The Affordable Care Act was going to affect union workers who were covered by Multi-Employer plans. The information I used was not my own, but was gleaned from a union advocate website/newsletter. The gist of the article in the March 18 edition at www.labornotes.org was highly critical of the ACA and it’s affect on union workers.

My editorial touched a sensitive nerve belonging to a former area resident who still subscribes to FCJ. He was so upset that, even though he stated “I usually don’t respond to Right Wing Kooks,” he took the time to write me a two-page single spaced letter to chastise me for my “ignorance, prejudice, lack of education, and ridiculous opinions.” According to him, I have “made myself look foolish and invited others to use me as an easy target.”

To protect the identity of this person, we’ll call him Andrew Addelpate.

Mr. Addelpate, who stated he “had enough of your wingnut drivel,” felt compelled to respond as he is a “Proud, Progressive, Liberal.” Hmm. After six months, I wonder a couple things: If he’s so proud, why not write an editorial? And after recent events and revelations, is he still as proud as ever?

Mr. Addlepate touted the accomplishments of FDR, Teddy R., Eisenhower, and Nixon.[ Conspicuous by their absence were Kennedy, Carter, and Clinton. Strange! And not a kind word about Ronny Reagan!] He castigated me for my “right wing nonsense” my “extremist ideology” and my “unmerited negative insinuations.”

Now to Andrew’s glowing praise of our present chief executive. Obama replaced our “horrifying” health care system with the landmark ACA, a system so wonderful it cannot ever be improved upon except by a single payer (read 100 percent government) system. Obama saved the USA from a total meltdown, says Addelpate, by the canny bailout of Chrysler and GM. And his foreign affairs and military accomplishments are “ingenious” and his “Courage and ingenuity” exhibited at levels seldom ever reached.

Dear readers, please consider I received Andrew’s letter around the middle of June. Time has past and much has been revealed, allowing a response that reflects reality and not just opinion and political ideology. How do we feel now? What have we learned

What do we know now that we didn’t know then?

Andrew, please allow me to offer a response.

First of all, I hope you are doing OK. I know it made you feel better to unload on me, but in view of all that has transpired, I doubt the feeling of relief lasted long.

Was our system of health care all that bad? Eighty-five percent had private coverage and most others had medicade or medicare. It was not perfect, but what ever is? Did we have to gut the whole thing and start over?

Since you sent your letter, Snowden leaked a lot of information about snooping by the NSA. Our closest allies have abandoned us and world opinion of the USA is at an all time low. Innocent citizens are still dying from the “Fast and Furious” debacle and the situation in the Middle East is now in a complete meltdown thanks to ineptitude by Obama and Hillary. John Kerry to the rescue? Please.

We found out that Mr. Obama stole the 2012 election by knowingly misleading (lying is such a nasty word) the American public about the realities of Obama Care and also using the power of the IRS to silence and crush any opposition.

We now know FIAT corporation is negotiating to purchase Chrysler and GM still owes billions to the American taxpayer

We found out what happens when a lifetime bureaucrat is in charge of a bunch of other lifetime bureaucrats and they hire their political cronies to build a critical and complex website and infrastructure like the one needed to support Obama Care. Utter chaos and utter failure. Typical. (Let’s not forget, Hillary was pushing a similar system long before Obamacare came along.)

Andrew, I know these last few months have been tough, but a few more facts must still be faced. You and I share admiration for the worthy former chief executives you mentioned. Their accomplishments are many and not to be taken for granted. But what you have forgotten is that none of these good things could have been achieved without bi-partisan support. Bi-partisan actions are achieved by mutual discussions and mutual respect. Leadership and the gift and ability to persuade. A genuine acknowledgement that though people think differently, their ideas and opinions still are valid and worthy of consideration.

This total lack of leadership and respect for people of different political views is the root cause of the abysmal failure of the current administration.

I’m a conservative person, as are many others in America. Most are hard working, honest citizens who love their country and are not racist in any fashion. We believe our ability to be a moral and positive influence in the world is directly in proportion to our strength as a nation. A morally weak and financially bankrupt person or nation is in no position to help anyone. We believe that the trouble with socialism is , as so well and truly stated by Margaret Thatcher, “sooner or later you run out of other peoples’ money!”

Mr. Addelpate, if you had not identified yourself as a “Proud, Progressive Liberal,” I would have known it anyway by your abusive, insensitive language and name calling. The lack of respect and unwillingness to acknowledge that other ideas, though not the same as your own, still have validity and are worthy of consideration is, sadly, typical of those on the far left.

Lastly, though I will never call you names and instead resolve to use facts and reason to persuade others, I will defend to the death your right to call me any names you want. After all, This is America, One Nation Under God; Home of the Brave and Land of the Free!

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