By: T F Stern
T F Stern’s Rantings
Congress recently passed the “James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act,” otherwise known as the 911 First Responders Bill. The AP article on the Fox News website mentioned how some Republicans originally tried to block the bill but eventually gave in to the $ 4.2 Billion compensation package. Obama signed it while on vacation in Hawaii.
We will never forget the selfless courage demonstrated by the firefighters, police officers and first responders who risked their lives to save others,” Obama said in a statement. “I believe this is a critical step for those who continue to bear the physical scars of those attacks.
The Sacred Cow has been acknowledged once more; can’t say no to a spending bill that honors brave men and women who served valiantly on the day we were attacked by Muslim extremists. Anyone voting against such a bill must be cruel and heartless, or has no desire to get re-elected; interesting how history repeats itself.
In the early 1800’s Congress was considering a bill to appropriate tax dollars for the widow of a distinguished naval officer. Several beautiful speeches had been made in support of this bill. It seemed that everyone in the House favored it. The Speaker of the House was just about to put the question to a vote, when Davy Crockett, famous frontiersman and then Congressman from Tennessee, rose to his feet.
“Mr. Speaker, I have as much respect for the memory of the deceased and as much sympathy for the suffering of the living as any man in this House, but we must not permit our respect for the dead or our sympathy for a part of the living to lead us into an act of injustice to the balance of the living. I will not go into an argument to prove that Congress has no power to appropriate this money as an act of charity. Every member upon this floor knows it. We have the right, as individuals to give away as much of our own money as we please in charity, but as members of Congress we have no right to so appropriate a dollar of the public money. Some eloquent appeals have been made to us upon the ground that it is a debt due the deceased. Sir, this is no debt. We cannot without the grossest corruption, appropriate this money as the payment of a debt. We have not the semblance of authority to appropriate it as a charity. I cannot vote for this bill, but I will give one week’s pay, and if every member of Congress will do the same, it will amount to more than the bill asks.
Republicans and Democrats have no idea how to carry out the job of representing the people; believing spending money solves problems. A simple resolution to honor the day of the attack as a national day of remembrance would have been a reasonable measure; but instead, Congress decided, “Let’s throw lots of money away to prove we care.” If only we could get Congress to fund Sacred Cows out of their own pockets instead of dipping into the public treasury, show a little fiscal responsibility and respect for the office they hold; but that reality will have to wait, now won’t it?
Money with them is nothing but trash when it is to come out of the people. But it is the one great thing for which most of them are striving, and many of them sacrifice honor, integrity, and justice to obtain it.
It’s a shame Congress hasn’t learned from Davy Crockett’s wisdom. Maybe they grew up thinking he was only famous for his coon skin cap and killing a bear when he was only three. Never mind, they’re not listening. “Davy, Davy Crockett, king of the wild frontier.”
This article has been cross-posted to The Moral Liberal, a publication whose banner reads, “Defending The Judeo-Christian Ethic, Limited Government & The American Constitution.”