Thursday, October 3, 2013


Is it Boehner's boner?

Have Republicans been drinking too much of the Cruz booze?

Maybe the Republicans are the ones really in touch with the will and pleasure of the American people and they are just doing their civic duty by telling Obama to take his socialized health care back to his mama.

Whichever party is on the right side of history or the dark side of the moon, this week's latest Debt Ceiling crisis tells us a great deal about the current state of the American political system as well as provides ominous warnings for the future of our Republic if the citizens don't wisen up.

  1. Special Interest Groups Run Washington - In school, our first lessons on American governance usually come in the form of Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, in which the Great Emancipator exhorts a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. In contemporary times, this notion of representative government has morphed into mythology. A very small, dedicated, well funded group of donors dictates the message in any given election cycle. Their foot soldiers then disperse the message amongst a rabid electoral base who, in tern, gerrymander districts and elect representatives to office that fit this myopic profile of what it means to govern. Need evidence? look at the mid-term elections of 2010, in which the upstart Tea Party faction of the Republican Party was pushed into power with the expansive mandate of getting the government out of the citizen's lives. 3-years later, we are reaping the molded, rotten crop that was sown.
  2. Citizens Are Bargaining Chips - Republicans would rather shut down the government than see President Obama's signature piece of legislation remain law. Democrats would rather shutdown the government rather than appear weak in the face of Republican demanded concessions. The Democratic blather machine has painted the Republicans as "hostage takers". The fact of the matter is that most politicians that end up in Washington are adept at the art of hostage taking and hostage negotiations. Just look at the tactics. When President Obama was pushing the Affordable Care Act forward, his administration conceded to spending cuts and tax hikes that affected the very base that elected him. Look at the Republican's current strategy. They are willing to cut food stamps for citizens in poverty, risk service member's paychecks, and take the chance that senior citizens won't be able to get their prescription, just to repeal or delay legislation that their base and donors don't like.
  3. Poll Numbers Drive Beliefs - There was a time, not so long ago, when citizens ran for elected office because they had deep-seeded convictions, and wanted to see those convictions come to fruition in the seat of government, for the benefits of all citizens. Maybe I'm just an idealist and this sort of politician never existed because they sure as hell don't exist now! Mitt Romney passes health care reform as governor of Massachusetts; magically against it when he runs for POTUS. Then Senator Obama votes against the war in Iraq; President Obama launches attacks in Pakistan and Libya, with a failed attempt at conflict in Syria. Senator Ted Cruz of Texas rides the Tea Party wave all the way to Washington on the promise that he would repeal Obamacare; Now, Senator Cruz is willing to accept a delay because he see's how hard this governing thing actually is. Why did all three of these men magnanimously flip-flop on previous positions that appeared to be heartfelt? Simple. The poll numbers told them to. Dance, puppets, dance!
  4. Crisis of Conscience - Nothing shows the ability (or lack thereof) of a leader more than their reaction in the face of crisis. Politicians have known this for literally a milenia. What happens when there's no crisis to pivot off of? You create one. Our leaders in Washington have become very adept over the past few generations of being master arsonist and firefighters. Thesis - Antithesis - Synthesis. Create the problem - Come up with the solution - Solve the problem. Here comes the fame, massive donations, committee chairmanships, and invitations from cable news. The citizens have become a means to an end, instead of the end itself. Politicians now use public service as a giant trampoline to book deals, speaking engagements, cable news shows, and lucrative contracts in private industry. With this blueprint and thousands upon thousands of citizens willing to follow the plan, can the citizens really trust that the people they send to govern have the best interests of their constituents in mind, or just their own.
These are just some of the revelations that the recent Debt Ceiling crisis has unveiled to the American people. The question now becomes, what can we do moving forward.

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