I thought I had nothing to worry about from the government shutdown when it comes to bike rides. Wrong. It turns out the bay is one giant Federal national wildlife refuge.
I knew that, but it’s easy to forget with so many government agencies in play around here.
I arrived in Alviso ready to ride around the outer levee only to see the closure sign. The same goes for the trail around Moffett Field. Where possible, the Feds closed gates to keep people out and that seems to be the only thing that’s keeping people from enjoying a walk, jog, or bike ride on the levees even with the signs.
Now that I know what’s up, I’ll stay away until the trails re-open. Let’s hope that’s soon. Last I heard governments exist to serve the needs of the people.
Since we’re all caught up in the government shutdown, and my cycling enjoyment took a hit, I’ll weigh in with my opinion.
Tea Party Republicans, the train has left the station on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. It was voted into law and confirmed as constitutionally legal by the Supreme Court.
We need auto insurance to drive. We should have mandatory health insurance. Let’s give it a try and see how it works out. I had a catastrophic accident when I was 28, but I had Blue Shield health insurance. The bill came to $40,000 in 1981 (it would be about $500,000 now). I paid almost zero — just the ambulance ride for $250. Today the same accident under the new insurance plan would wind up costing someone $6,500. That’s not as good as zero, but those days are behind us.
Republicans should move on to helping balance the budget. You’ve got a little more sympathy from me here. We can start by making personal economics a mandatory class in high school. Let’s teach kids that living within one’s means is the right thing to do. An economy built on credit cards and IOUs is doomed to collapse. Too many people live like there’s no tomorrow. Our government spends too much. Do we need 10 nuclear-powered aircraft carriers?
Finally, Social Security needs fixing. Many proposals have already been made by bi-partisan committees, all of them ignored. I’d start with this: You only get back what you put in, with interest of course.