Were it Tom Coburn in the White House in 1981 instead of Ronald Reagan, we’d still be dealing with the Soviet Union.Ronald Reagan was in the minority who thought the Soviets should be fought and could be beaten. The majority of Republicans and Democrats alike had so thoroughly bought into detente and peaceful coexistence and containment that Reagan had to fight his own side and the left. Since Barry Goldwater was defeated asking “why not victory?” with Lyndon Johnson quoting the Bible “Hitherto shalt thou come, but no further,” no one thought rolling back the Soviets was achievable.Reagan thought otherwise and was prepared to fight.He did fight and he won.Tom Coburn, joining John Boehner, has declared that the Republican strategy against Obamacare must be one of detente and containment and peaceful coexistence. Tom Coburn says that because the GOP lost in 2012 we cannot get rid of Obamacare. Ronald Reagan, it should be pointed out, took every opportunity to undermine the Soviets. Coburn, because the GOP does not control the Senate or White House, is taking the position that we should not even try to undermine Obamacare because we cannot replace it.Obamacare is destructive to our domestic economy like the Soviets were destructive to democracy and free markets in their day. Obamacare will make the poor poorer, deliver worse health care, cause shortages of doctors, bankrupt the nation, and ration care like the Soviets rationed bread. As George Will said, Obamacare only works if people behave irrationally. It cannot be contained. A free people cannot peacefully coexist with it. It must be defeated. The American people want it defeated. And until we are in a position to defeat it, we should work constantly to undermine it at every turn to prevent it.Tom Coburn is a doctor. Doctors are trained to do no harm. Why then is Tom Coburn so willing to let this harm be inflicted on the American public?
Coburn made his presence felt immediately. It became clear to him that Speaker Gingrich, House Majority Leader Armey and the rest of the Republican leadership were not what they pretended to be. They were revolutionaries in name only, content to take possession from the Democrats of the machinery of government and then run it virtually unchanged. That froze in place the system of pork barrel spending that young Woodrow Wilson described in Congressional Government more than 130 years ago. . . .Gingrich either felt that he could not use his office to control spending or was not willing to lose his office to control spending. This goes to the heart of the matter: If your decisions are based on not losing a position, you cannot effectively serve the best long-term interests of the country. . . .Gingrich would receive our input, but he rarely took it seriously. He usually made us feel as if we didn’t have much value because we didn’t know anything about the political game in Washington. We were from the outside and wet behind the ears in terms of politics, and we obviously didn’t know as much about history as he did. It would not take long for us to become “the conservatives” to him.Sen. Tom A. Coburn M.D.;John Hart. Breach of Trust: How Washington Turns Outsiders Into Insiders. Kindle Edition.
Thus the outsider again is consumed by the system he once opposed. In 2000, Tom Coburn gave a speech at Patrick Henry College and quoted Martin Luther King, Jr. The quote:
Cowardice asks the question, is it expedient? And vanity asks the question, is it popular? But conscience asks the question, is it right?
Perhaps he should be reminded of that quote.