Sunday, July 03, 2016

The Price of Deception in Arkansas is Now $150 Million per Month on Arkansas Works

Obamacare in Arkansas has been sold with one lie after another for the last three years. I started to go back and add links to all the deceptions, distortions, bribes and falsehoods which have been used to keep Arkansas in this program, but my life is too full for that. Most people who want to know it already know it anyway. Those who don't want to know it cannot be convinced with more facts. Their hearts are hardened to the truth and the heart problem must first be addressed before they become willing to admit truth. For those few who truly have not heard, here is one article demonstrating that our ruling class had to engage in massive welfare fraud in order to make the scam that we call the "Private" Option or "Arkansas Works" look somewhat reasonable for a while.
Most of the deception has come from Republicans, since Democrats don't normally need any lies to sell this program. They are up for using the state to loot their wealthier neighbors and impose generational slavery through debt anytime. It is the Republican voters that needed to be lied to, and the Republican Party of Arkansas through its elected officials has dedicated a tremendous amount of effort to that task. There are a few exceptions, like State Senator Bryan King with the rest of The Magnificent Seven in the Senate. For most of them though, its been shuck-and-jive to their constituents for the last three years.
In this case though, they were given mis-information. How can they vote correctly if the information on which they based those votes was incorrect? I am accustomed to the legislature, the supposed "People's Branch" being treated like mushrooms. They would vote based on one set of numbers, and then as soon as the vote was over we would learn that another set of numbers was closer to the truth. In April they voted to fund this program. Then numbers came out in May which when investigated closely reveal just what a farce the "savings" from this program were. Now we learn that even the numbers which came out in May underestimate the true costs of this program by $300 million over five years. 
This is false advertising. The legislature votes in April based on one set of numbers, then another set of numbers immediately comes out which shows that they voted on bad information, but two months later more numbers come out which shows that even those numbers were too generous. 
Would it have changed the votes of any legislator? Not if they wanted to be lied to, and I think that is where a lot of them are. A lot of them want the Governor's office and the Stephen's group to provide them bad information if that is what it takes to support this program. They want to be lied to because it helps them lie to you. 
But before you get indignant toward them because they want a comforting lie instead of the painful truth, ask yourself a hard question: are we doing the same when we expect the Republican Party to say "no" to this sort of wasteful government spending? Do we just play a game with ourselves when we say "we voted for them and they fooled us again?" How many times must we be fooled until it is our fault for continuing to vote for their candidates instead of facing the truth about what they are, even if its hard? 
I have long supported the idea of candidates for the state legislature running as independents, and local groups banding together to get our own access to the ballot under our own label. Republican legislators will normally feel some pressure to cooperate with a Republican Governor rather than the folks back home. Your legislator should work for you, not the Governor. Self-government is work. That is the truth. But it is a truth that we need to face


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