Can Truth be Non-Partisan?
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by Laramie Boyd
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I thought I had heard it all until I read about Barbara Boxer's press conference "Detailing
Medicare" in the Desert Sun newspaper. At first, hope arose that finally someone was going to tell exactly what president Obama's
health care plan was all about, since no one seems to be able to get a handle on it. Sen. Boxer informed the audience that "I'm here
as a truth-teller. I am not here on a partisan basis." At last, in an election year full of personal attacks and evasive side-stepping
on important issues, the Senator was going to straighten things out once and for all. The truth about healthcare at last.
Well that notion ended abruptly. Sen. Boxer started with "Republicans have opposed Medicare since its inception in 1965." This was
followed by "Sixty percent of Senate Republicans and 50 percent of House Republicans voted against it." She then quoted a "finding"
that Paul Ryan's voucher system would be $6000 short of what seniors would need for Medicare. And more "non-partisan truth" was to
follow. She claimed the Democrats would put health care waste back into the program, an interesting concept, while the GOP would use
that money to "give wealthy Americans a tax break," whatever that means. And as if her press conference listeners hadn't heard enough
"objective" information, she "called out Rep. Bono Mack on her support of the Romney budget."
At that point in the article I'd had about all the "non-partisan truth" I could handle at one sitting. I just wondered what goes through
the minds of some people when processing words and their meanings. Words like truth, facts, partisan, let alone honesty and objectivity.
Wouldn't non-partisan in this situation be more like listing what the president had done or is going to do and whether it would help
the nation's medical care crisis and why we should all support his program if it did. That's non-partisan. Not the old cop-out used
by all parties these days of whining about what was wrong with those who disagreed with their program, but clearly defining what they
proposed instead. The truth of it all would remain to be seen.
Non-partisan rhetoric should
include both the good and bad from both parties. Not once did the Senator mention anything good about any Republican idea, or one
thing wrong with any Democratic view. Could I surmise that she believes there are none of the former or the latter. You can't have
it both ways if you are truly a "non-partisan truth-teller." But I guess it's the old mind over matter game, played by many people
in all walks of life, not just politics. Without a clear thinking mind, what comes out of it doesn't really matter. A harsh statement,
but in this case, it is the truth, non-partisan truth at that.