Gov. Blunt and top people at the Department of Mental Health know that some of the residents of Bellefontaine Habilitation Center in St. Louis will die if transferred to private care homes, but that information doesn’t factor into their decision-making.
It’s time to call a spade a spade and stop pussyfooting around. No one wants to say out loud that the neo-cons in control of the Republican Party don’t care if people die as long as private companies make a profit. Just like no one wanted to say out loud that Bush would start a war under false pretenses. It’s too awful to believe.
But one of the foundational legs of the neo-con ideology is that it is not the government’s job to help individuals survive (or, in the words of the Founders, “to promote the general welfare.”)
Their goal is not to help people who can’t afford health insurance or severely disabled people who might die when moved from the only home they’ve known. In fact, the more people who die in that process, the fewer the government has to support.
And why get serious about lead contamination in St. Louis City when you need to keep kids’ chances of learning at a minimum in order to use “failing schools” as a rationale for privatizing public education? Or why guarantee preventive health care or age-appropriate daycare for working families when you need a steady stream of troubled teens for the prison-industrial complex?
We are now paying the price for all the anti-government rhetoric of the last 25 years. Since Pres. Reagan’s “Get the government off our backs” campaign started in the 1980’s, the neo-cons have been dismantling all our publicly-funded social and environmental programs. They’ve done their best to destroy the sense of community we used to have for the welfare of each other. Maybe this “sink or swim” attitude is what the majority of Americans want. If so, we’ve sold our soul to the devil and will pass on to our children and grandchildren a spiritually sterile society.