Although there are a diverse set of political beliefs in the United States, there are currently two major political philosophies clashing for control of the American body politic. One, the progressive view, believes in a society where a democratically elected government plays an active role in helping all people achieve the American Dream, no matter who they are. The other, the conservative vision, believes in the on-your-own-society that favors the wealthy, big corporations, and other privileged sectors of society.
GOP House candidate Jesse Kelly, who is running in Arizona’s 8th congressional district, championed this second vision a week ago at a campaign rally hosted by the Pima County Tea Party Patriots. During a question-and-answer period, a voter asked Kelly about the recent salmonella outbreak, which led to recall of more than half a billion eggs.
The voter asked if Kelly, if elected, would he help pass a law that would allow the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and other government agencies to shut down companies that have too many safety violations, such as the companies that allowed millions of eggs that sickened people to be sold to the public. Kelly responded that he doesn’t “believe what we’re lacking right now is more regulations on companies,” complaining that “you could probably spit on the grass and get arrested by the federal government by now.” When the voter followed up by asking, “Who’s protecting us?” Kelly responded, “It’s our job to protect ourselves.” The exasperated voter asked once more, “Am I supposed to go to a chicken farmer and say I’d like you to close down because all of your birds are half dead?” Kelly once more answered, “There’s a new thing that comes along every day. But I know this: Every part of our economy that is regulated by the government doesn’t have fewer disasters, it has more”:
QUESTIONER: Given the salmonella outbreaks that we have seen every three weeks, with the chicken industry, with pesticides and what not that they put onto spinach in order to get the salmonella. We have rules and regulations. However there is no rule mandating that they be enforced. Is there some way when you’re in Congress that you’ll have a bill passed that says instead of having companies voluntarily change, mandate that they must change or give them the ability to shut ‘em down and that goes for mining companies or anyone who has hundreds of violations against ‘em.
KELLY: Here’s the thing with that point, that’s the first time I’ve ever had that question. Congratulations on being unique. First shot out of the box, no ma’am. I do not believe that what we’re lacking right now is a lack of regulations on business. […] You could literally go spit on the grass and get arrested by the federal government if you wanted to right now. […] More regulation, more federal control, giving Nancy Pelosi more power, is not the solution right now.
QUESTIONER: Who’s protecting us?
KELLY: That’s the thing, ma’am, it’s our job to protect ourselves. Because no one else is going to look out for your best interests except for you. […]
QUESTIONER: Am I supposed to go to a chicken farmer and say I’d like you to close down because all of your birds are half dead?
KELLY: I’ve not heard a lot about that recently, obviously there’s a new thing that comes along every day. But I know this, every portion of our economy that is heavily regulated doesn’t have fewer disasters, it has more.
Unfortunately, this is not the first time that Kelly attacked the FDA and advocated that people would be better off if no one was helping protect them from security hazards like diseased eggs which are very difficult for the average person to detect.
At a Rotary Club meeting earlier this month, the candidate said he wanted to “reduce the [FDA] as much as humanly possible,” claiming that we want to “blame the evil pharmaceutical companies” because drugs cost too much, and that we shouldn’t “spend our time blaming big business” (ignoring that the drug industry’s political clout over the FDA is the real problem).