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Previously: Epistemic closure, still here, alive, kicking, though not quite screaming (August 7, 2013)

At noon today four individuals showed up at a Warrensburg meeting room for a constituent “listening post” conducted by a member of Representative Vicky Hartzler’s (r) district staff, Zack Brown. Once everyone had seated themselves around the table Mr. Brown asked if they had any questions or concerns. They did and they took the time to talk. The meeting lasted an hour.

Zack Brown, of Representative Vicky Hartzler’s (r) district staff, at a constituent “listening post” in Warrensburg on May 20, 2014.

The opinions voiced at the beginning of the hour long session were a catechism of right wingnut talk radio – when will impeachment of Obama happen, why was the Senate giving away our rights to the United Nations, what about the implementation of an international currency by July, and atmospheric engineering (chemtrails)? At around eighteen minutes the conversation turned to healthcare, Medicare, and Obamacare. Apparently death panels are still a concern. One person asked about the Obamacare enrollment numbers. Apparently they believe that the numbers are a wash – that is, roughly the same number of people lost their insurance as gained it through Obamacare. There was no mention of any differences in actual coverage standards.

At around forty minutes into the meeting immigration came up. It was an interesting context, though. Apparently if immigration reform takes place those individuals who benefit from it in California and Texas will make it next to impossible for any republican to ever win the presidency once they start voting.

The conversation then turned back to healthcare. When it comes to those who are presently uninsured one individual stated, “…There’s also a lot of government, what do you call ’em, uh, programs to help people who do not have insurance. So if you go in there and you have a catastrophic, um, incident you have access to government monies to pay that, especially hospitals, hospitals have that…” The conversation moved along a vein where, if it had continued, would have reached a logical conclusion that the personal mandate (from a personal responsibility standpoint) was the thing to do, though I don’t think they were aware they were going in that direction.

Apparently, Obamacare was set up to fail by Obama so we’d get a single payer system like the VA.

A few minutes later, out of the blue: “…John McCain, I think they ought to make him a Democrat.” “He’s already a RINO.” Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts isn’t very popular either.

Conservatism can’t fail, it can only be failed.

“Well, we’ve got a lot of problems, do we have any solutions?”

One solution offered – invest in infrastructure. Funny that.  

At around fifty-one minutes – Benghazi! Somewhat halfhearted, but still, Benghazi!

At fifty-three minutes – the cost of running congressional offices.

At around fifty-seven minutes – how do we get our astronauts back to the space station now that they Russians aren’t inclined to help out?

At around fifty-nine minutes –  “…Apparently a lot of Americans are being detained [by Homeland Security] randomly trying to come back into the country…” When did that start? Just asking.

Yep, epistemic closure is a powerful drug. America is a zero sum game – if someone else gets something that means you get less, or nothing at all. How did we get to this point?

Meanwhile, the 0.01% are laughing all the way to the bank.