Monday, April 30, 2012

Two Schools of Health Reform Thought:  Neocon and Neogov

I think, therefore I am.

Rene Descartes (1596-1650)

All jargon of the schools.

Matthew Prior (1664-1721), I Am That I Am, An Ode (1688)

April 30, 2012 – As I wandered down the health reform campaign trail,  I came across two schools of thought.  They were engaged in an “ I am” jam session.

Neocon:  I am American business.  I am a pragmatic capitalist.  Prosperity, happiness, and freedom come only through economic growth.

Neolib:   I am American government.   I am an expert and an idealist.   I am for a more perfect union, which can only come through social justice and fairness.

Neocon: I am a bottom-up person.   Anything truly American percolates up from the bottom of society from the people. I buy and sell.  I consume. I live and let live.  I am free.

Neolib:   I am a top-down person.  Everything truly good in America flows from the top-down for the truly down, from the educated and dedicated to the common good.

Neocon:   I am the center-right, where America has always been and will continue to be.   It is the government’s responsibility to get out of the way.

Neolib:  I am from the center-left,  where America ought to be.  It is the government’s responsibility to cure all the ills of the human condition.

Neocon:  I am the mainstream of everything truly American. I am why people came and continue to  come to America.

Neolib: Nonsense, I am the mainstream.  I speak for American.  That is why our spokespersons are called the mainstream media.

Neocon:  I am for personal liberty – the right to be what one wants to be, free of government rules and domination. .

Neolib:  I am for personal fraternity and the obligation to follow the rules of a civilized society. Only government can establish those rules.

Neocon:  I am the common folk – the true believers in American freedom.

Neolib:  I am the uncommon educated folk  - scientists, teachers, administrators, government employees, doctors in the public sector, public lawyers, politicians,  staffs of foundations, government experts – all of whom stand up for the disenfranchised. 

Neocon:  I am markets. Markets are imperfect but they are most efficient at creating wealth and distributing it. 

Neolib: I am government. Only government can redistribute wealth fairly and justly. Only government can oversee  markets.

Neocon:  I am free enterprise. It works.  It avoids the welfare state, which slows economic growth and spreads economic misery.

Neolib: I am for the broad public interest. I am the hope and guiding light for the public good.

Tweet:   Two schools of American political thought exist- each right in its own way – the bottom-up center-right and the top-down center-left.

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