Letter: Can democracy survive?I recently had a spirited lunch with a friend and very successful business man who had just returned from a two-day stay in the Dallas Airport as he awaited an American flight. As I listened to his lament, I began to take notes as I certainly could not otherwise retain the content.
By: David W. Florence, MD, Hudson, Hudson Star-Observer
I recently had a spirited lunch with a friend and very successful business man who had just returned from a two-day stay in the Dallas Airport as he awaited an American flight. As I listened to his lament, I began to take notes as I certainly could not otherwise retain the content.
Why, he stated, can’t the airlines appropriately monitor the safety necessities of their planes? Should the FAA need to do the job for them? The diatribe was feisty.
Within moments the tide shifted to the non-system of medical care in America. Forty-seven million uninsured is unforgivable in the most prosperous nation on the planet, he decried. The insurance industry has us over a barrel. And those medical TV ads nauseate me, not to mention the uncontrolled trash programs on TV that I am embarrassed to watch with my kids.
I next made the mistake of asking for his opinion on the housing disaster, and I did hit a chord. “Corruption and greed” was his response, but again the problem progressed unchecked until a prominent Wall Street financial organization went to the brink and had to be rescued by the federal government. Is that democracy? And what about Enron and the pseudo blackouts to build up profits before its crash?
I felt he was running out of steam, so I threw one more curve ball before dessert, and that related to the plight of the middle class, and I added on “immigration.” He responded clearly that we are destroying our middle class, the life-blood of America. We simply can’t have our manufacturing jobs go out of the country and expect to survive in the long run.
As one who is very knowledgeable in the business world, he frankly admitted that we do have a need for workers who will fill certain needs, and we need to treat them with consideration and respect, but a policy must be developed.
He closed the conversation decrying that, “Democrats and Republicans keep fighting at the state and national levels, and nothing of substance gets accomplished. I just wonder if democracy is working?” I thought long and hard for the answer.