Rob's Soapbox Archives
April 26th, 2010
THE EVER GOING LIST OF RIGHTS
We learned over the last year that health insurance in America is a right. This was news to those of us who have actually read the Constitution, but alas, we were shoved aside, with our questions literally never being addressed. In fact, when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was asked to identify where in the Bill of Rights or the Constitution was either the guarantee of health insurance or the power of congress to mandate it her response was “are you serious?”
Ummm…yes…and we’re still waiting. Health care is provided in America to any and all who need it. Health insurance is a benefit and/or luxury that is earned via employment or the marketplace; which leads to the weak among us arguing that such things “are not fair.” Thus, we add to the ever-growing list of rights. Americans now, apparently have a right to “affordable” health insurance, whatever the hell that means.
If we were to actually amend the United States Constitution to properly acknowledge all of the rights we have added to our dopey society, there would be over 100 amendments. We have discovered over the past many decades that we have a right to clean water, gay marriage, maternity leave, safe investments, paved roads, healthy food alternatives, television convertor boxes, prescription medications, never-ending unemployment benefits, street lights, roadside memorials, clean air, pristine beaches, regulated and controlled prices of energy and gasoline, sick leave, veterinary care, and never-hurt-feelings.
It makes you wonder, when you have so many things promised and guaranteed to you, why you work for anything yourself?
But I digress.
Two new rights have been added to the never ending list of things you are entitled to; vacations and carry-on baggage on airplanes.
Ah, the glory of what Jefferson, Washington and the boys dreamt of is truly coming into focus now. It all makes me so proud to be an American.
To be fair, the first right has not yet been suggested in America but let’s be honest shall we; one need look no further than Europe to see America’s future. Over the past 50 years Europe has simply become what we will be soon, only they did it faster. It has been announced that various segments of the European Union will take up and discuss a proposal that deems both travel and vacations a “right.” Such a measure will declare, and I am not making this up, that it is stressful and difficult to be unemployed and that such people should still have access to “time away.”
It is in America where carry-on luggage on airplanes have been deemed a right. A few weeks ago, Spirit Airlines announced that they would begin charging passengers who wanted to bring aboard and store in overhead compartments any carry-on luggage. The fee could go as high as $45; to which the CEO of Spirit also pointed out that consumers would make choices of which airline to fly based on the marketplace. Keep in mind that Spirit often charges literally 1 cent for certain flights; this is all about marketing, choice, competition and other things that used to be deemed “the American way.”
Your government is having none of it, of course. Upon hearing the Spirit announcement, a group of Senators swooped in to announce a bill to ban airlines from charging people to carry bags onto planes and in the process declared a new right in America.
Senator Robert Menendez of New Jersey, an actual Senator of the United States said the following:
“families should have the right to bring a change of clothes with them and not be gouged for it,"
This is a U.S. Senator; a man who has sworn to uphold the Constitution, interfering in a private company’s decision to make a price change to its business model while also declaring clothing a right. I ask Senator Menendez where that’s guaranteed?
While it is truly sickening to watch our founding documents be shredded before our eyes, the real folly is in the incompetence of all of this; demanding by law that airlines not charge more for bags will simply force them all to raise their ticket prices. Soon, those families Mr. Menendez is so concerned about won’t have to worry about carry-on fees because they won’t even be able to afford the damn ticket. Until, of course we take over the airline industry and deem air travel a right. Oh wait, that’ll never happen in America, right?
Soon, your glorious government will pass “financial regulation reform,” a very official sounding piece of legislation that you will be told really “Sticks it” to the big banker, fat cats on Wall Street. Guess what that means? It means that “rich guys who run companies” will be taxed and fined and will then turn around and raise your service charges, fees, fines and cost of doing business. The “fat cats” will feel no pain, they will pass it on to you, and you will stupidly pay it out of some antiquated notion of exacting some revenge on people you have actually gotten no revenge on. Perhaps we should start a movement to make revenge a right in America; it’s about the only thing not being guaranteed to us anymore.