The Right to Freedom of Speech is Killing America

A once great America has been brought to its knees by the very thing the founding fathers enshrined in the Constitution – The right to freedom of speech.

“The most basic component of freedom of expression is the right of freedom of speech. The right to freedom of speech allows individuals to express themselves without interference or constraint by the government.”

Whilst not necessarily on topic this is a frightening development and will have economic consequences in the long term.

Since those early days abuse of this right has been growing but with the advent of the electronic media it grew enormously.

Now with the Internet the abuse has gone viral. Reputations can be destroyed at the speed of light.

It’s those in power that wield free speech as a weapon that do the most damage to America.

For example it astounds me that the Leader of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi can just stand up and say, without facts or figures to back her up, that the insurance companies are immoral and are villains. In this article, “Pelosi lashes out against insurance companies“, she says,

“It’s almost immoral what they are doing,” Pelosi said to reporters, referring to insurance companies. “Of course they’ve been immoral all along in how they have treated the people that they insure,” she said, adding, “They are the villains. They have been part of the problem in a major way. They are doing everything in their power to stop a public option from happening.”

If that is so, produce the facts. Why did she not say this years ago when she first became the speaker of the house – and do something about it?

Even President Obama claims Health Insurance Companies are making record profits right now. He said,

“At a time when everybody’s getting hammered, they’re making record profits, and premiums are going up. What’s the constraint on that? … Well, part of the way is to make sure that there’s some competition out there.

Apparently only one company did make some profits – not record profits,

“….. UnitedHealth did make healthy profits, and we asked Steve Shubitz, a health care financial analyst with the investment firm Edward Jones, about it.

“The profits are still significant, there’s no question about that. But the reality is they’re losing a lot of customers in this economy,” Shubitz said.”

The article, “Pelosi lashes out against insurance companies” was posted on Digg and received 496 diggs. But it’s not the Diggs that are important here – its the level of debate,  the lack of any references to facts to backup the comments  and the lack of any respect for other people or their ideas by many of the commenter’s. Go and read some of them for yourself.

I have living in the UK and now in Australia and I can tell you there are major problems with our health care systems. In Australia Prime Minister Mr Rudd is considering taking over 40% of the States Health systems because they are in serious trouble. It may result in a medicare levy increase for all Australians – a tax increase by any other name.

It is my understanding that insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies, doctors and others in the medical field had a “meeting of the minds” in President Obama’s office and have basically agreed in principle to his health care proposals. None of these groups appear to be saying anything – and they should be debating the issues openly and vigorously. This is supposedly about a sixth of the US economy and these groups will be the ones that will make or break it along with the government.

Where are the TV stations with their highly skilled investigative reporters? Why are they not fact finding, interviewing, finding out where the problems are and presenting them openly and honesty in well made, informative and factual TV programs for the people?

The Democrats want the health care issue muddied so that they can convince you the system doesn’t work and high level government intervention is the only way to go. The Republicans want confusion to reign too in the hope of convincing you to maintaining the status quo for fear of losing what you have now.

The “sick” thing is (no pun intended) both parties know the major problems but rather than address them they want to impose their ideological view on any outcome so they can win.

It’s not a betrayal by either party to admit that too much litigation is driving up the cost of insurance and something needs to be done about it. Surely that is a bipartisan issue?

If Insurance companies are dropping people off insurance after three Chemo sessions then investigate and do something about it through the legislative processes. It would be obvious to both Democrat and Republic alike.

If there is a believe that “preexisting conditions should be covered by insurance companies, have a rational debate on how insurance companies might achieve this, in concert with government, and still protect their business. Don’t vilify the insurance companies.

Profit is not a dirty word. You want your insurance company to make a profit so there is money to pay for your medical bills which will surely come.

I have not been able to find one insurance company or someone from their association who has responded to Nancy Pelosi. This is very sad but who would blame the? They have seen the President of the United States remove the head of GM at the stroke of a pen. Why would anyone open their mouth and speak out against any part of the President’s plan.

Stifling debate through vilification, lies and distortions which go unchallenged and/or unpunished is censorship by any other name.

Freedom of speech has been misused, abused and hijacked for far too long in America. The Internet is being used to take that abuse to heights never imagined and by people who should know better.

Whole reputations can be ruined in a few seconds on the Internet when people who should respect the right of freedom of speech use it as a personal weapon and not as a way to argue for their ideas.

The frightening thing is people of ability and intellect and who may want to contribute to the well-being of America are quickly learning to keep their mouths shut. It’s a sad day for America and a terrible day for the world.

America your right to freedom of speech, the very thing that makes you great is killing you. Fix it please. Cherish it.

Just so you know in “Free” Australia we do not have the right to freedom of speech. In the Parliamentary Library under, “Free Speech and the Constitution” it states

Article 19 of the 1966 United Nations International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) states that: Everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression … (3)

Australia is a signatory to this treaty(4) and, in order to incorporate treaties and conventions into Australian law, governments must pass a specific Act of Parliament. Although some parts of the treaty have been implemented into law, such as the Human Rights Commission Act 1981,(5) no government has implemented the free speech provisions and therefore they are not enforceable by Australian courts.

America are so lucky. I’m saying nothing 🙁

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