Friday, March 18, 2011

Chris becomes disillusioned with politics.

Hello, friends.  I watched an episode of Jersey Shore last night.  Twice.  In a row.  Sober.  I wanted to do a little write-up for you nice people to get you up to speed on The Situation, Snooki and the tens of thousands of STDs that they’ve contracted.  So I watched the show twice and I got two paragraphs into the review before I was legitimately angry at my situation (pun intended!).  I decided to shelve the Jersey Shore recap for another day and direct my white hot fury at something more deserving.  Which brings me to…


Let’s get one thing straight.  I am not very smart.  I listen to NPR, I read the paper, I watch The Daily Show and that is about the limit of my political knowledge.  I know a lot more about The Empire Strikes Back than about Congress.  Although, I do really like to use words like “filibuster” and “gerrymandering.”  I have no intention of yelling my (mostly uninformed) political views from the soapbox of this here blog.  And I don’t like to get into partisan debates…they all end in yelling.  But, every now and then, the people in power will make a decision so egregiously stupid that it needs to be discussed.

The last few weeks have brought three such decisions.  Recently, the House of Representatives voted to repeal the Health Care bill, cut all Federal funding to National Public Radio, and they are trying to cut teachers’ salaries nationwide.  This is bad, right?  It’s not just me? 

An expensive baby strikes a free baby in the face.
Let’s talk about Health Care, folks.  As many of you know, I am a world famous doctor.  As such, I feel that I can weigh in on this matter with some authority.  Let’s take a look at an example.  In the United States, the average cost to have a baby in a hospital is between $10,000 and $25,000.  Are you chuckling at those comically high prices?  THOSE ARE THE ACTUAL PRICES!  GOOGLE THAT SHIT!  Do you know how much it costs to have a baby in Canada?  ZERO MONEY!  You can deliver a hockey loving baby in Canada for absolutely no cost to you.  The Health Care bill passed last March is not perfect.  It’s not even all that great but it’s a step in the right direction.  It ensures that 95% of all Americans have insurance.  The bill decreases the cost of preventative care which decreases ER visits which saves everybody a lot of money.  Does the health care bill still need a lot of work?  Yes.  Does that mean we should scrap the first logical step forward in decades?  No.

Yesterday, the House also voted to cut off funding for NPR.  Watchdog group “Accuracy in Media” stated: “If NPR wishes to continue their thinly-veiled disparagement of millions of Americans, they can do so without taxpayers having to pay for the insult."  In this writer’s opinion, watchdog group “Accuracy In Media” is full of a bunch of whiny babies.  Feel free to visit if you want to read the delusional ramblings of some serious nut bars.  Does NPR lean a little to the left?  Probably, but it’s impossible to report news without a little bit of bias.  It’s human nature.  I’M BEING BIASED RIGHT NOW!  Walter Cronkite was vehemently Pro Moustache and he didn’t care who knew it.  Does A Prairie Home Companion really represent a threat to our nation?  While I was reading up about NPR I found out that Joan Croc, widow of Ray (the guy that founded McDonald’s), recently donated $200 million to NPR.  I am so pleased with this that I will buy a Filet-O-Fish sandwich and a small fry, post-haste!

Luckily the repeal of the health care bill and the funding cut to NPR were only approved by the House and will almost certainly be voted down by the Senate.  The issues with education, however, are a little more dire.

In recent weeks, the spotlight has been on the proposed cuts to teachers’ salaries in Wisconsin.  This is only the most divisive example of a nationwide trend.  Those in favor of these cuts think that public school teachers are overpaid.  I would like to direct these people to go teach somewhere.  Anywhere.  Have you ever met a 7th grader?  He or she was probably an asshole.  Now imagine 30 of those little jerks in one room.  And you have to teach them math!

Look at this greedy monster.
Here’s a statistic: 46 percent of new teachers quit after less than 5 years.  Does it sound like the salary matches the workload?  Many teachers still have to work a part time job during the summer to make ends meet.  Even more teachers have to pay for classroom supplies out of their own pockets due to budget restrictions.  And did I mention all those 7th graders?  The focus should be on finding the best teachers and paying them more.  In the immortal words of Helen Lovejoy, “Won’t somebody please think of the children?”  Future generations will already need to work until they die and they’ll likely be enslaved by merciless robot overlords.  Now we want them to be dumb, too. 

Thanks for letting me vent, my stalwart reader.  I promise that I won’t be bringing up politics too often around here and I apologize for the digression.  As soon as I’m mentally able I will provide you with all the latest goings-on at the Jersey Shore.  Until then, Internuts, have a lovely weekend.  Excelsior!

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