Thursday, December 17, 2009
Low Hanging Fruit
The phrase above is used to describe an easy win; one that was almost a foregone conclusion. The fruit bearing tree is right there in front of you and the fruit thereupon is hanging shoulder high. It is ripe and tasty and will make you a hero to whomever you share it with.
But occasionally the phrase could bring to mind the allegory of Tantalus for whom the word tantalize was coined. Tantalus was being tortured by the furies of mythology by being placed neck high in a river of water with wonderful fruit hanging low above his head. Each time he would bend his head down for a drink the river would recede and whenever he reached up for a tasty treat the tree would lift it's limbs high.
The two paragraphs above being played out of play these days in a farcical way with the main character being the United States Government. And the stars are those warring factions of hypocrites commonly known as Congressmen.
In the first case where the fruit is easily within our reach the Government has shown it's disdain for a giant company subverting all attempts at stopping their monopolistic practices by suing them. The company is Intel and the claim is that they have hobbled competitors in the semiconductor business by using illegal sales practices.
One may argue that that is exactly what a company in a free enterprise system is supposed to do and their competitors must try harder if they feel they are number two. We have seen this happen before and it will continue.
So what is the problem here?
The problem is consistency.
If our elected official feel it is prudent to go after Intel, a move which although justified may in the end cost the consumer more for computer products then why stop there?
Why not also go after a much larger sector of criminals who are subverting our very lives?
Why not at the very least remove the anti-trust exclusion for the insurance industry?
The cold hard fact has to do with cold hard cash. The cash our leaders are reaping by stringing us along in a dog and pony type show of ongoing debates.
Will we get health care reform?
Will we get a lowered age for Medicare?
Will the public ever be allowed to shop for alternative lower cost insurance?
Since our Government is so hell bent on making Intel allow the public to have options then why not also sue the far more costly insurance industry???
American citizens are drowning in a river of debt with the low hanging fruit of affordable health care closer to our reach than ever before. But the furious silent behind the scenes furies of the insurance lobbies continue to pull the branch away.
Congress has the solution within their reach but they are being weighed down by their pockets filled with campaign donations from the very industry they claim to wish to reform.
Is there a way to reconcile the differences between the two opposing sides? Some say 'reconciliation' is the way and some form of reform would pass with a mere 51 - 49 vote in the Senate.
But the truth is neither side wants that.
As long as the debate continues and there is the slightest glimmer of hope that Congress will do the right thing the insurance lobbies must continue to pay them to rethink. Congress will never kill the Golden Goose no matter how many polls or e-mails beseech them to do so.
So where is our knight in shining armor?
Where is the Champion of Change?
Since Congress has been blinded by bullies without borders when will OUR President show the strength of character and proper power we need him to exert?
It is way too long past the point of no return. For if the majority in power today cannot reach high enough to grab this low hanging fruit from the bastardized branches of the insurance cartel then they shall surely not return in 2010 or 2012.