Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Yes, I know, the electorate is angry

And with good reason.

-The 111th and 112th congresses have spent more time bickering among themselves and with the White House than producing meaningful legislation
-The Obama administration offers sterling rhetoric but often little more
-Public approval of Congress is at record-low percentages
-A stubborn unemployment picture places too many people in the unemployed, underemployed or fearing they will be unemployed columns
-The federal government finds a way to bail out corporations and itself, but it can't come to terms with helping Main Street America
-Partisan politics has reached a corrosive level; anyone who reaches across the aisle is instantly tarred with a label akin to traitor.

I could add to the list, but I think you get the idea.

And when the electorate is angry, the "throw the bums out" mentality starts to take over. So, for one moment, let's assume that next year that voters determine that Barack Obama and many, many members of Congress ought to be tossed out of office.

Wonderful. Fantastic. Cathartic.

And useless...

...because Americans remain unable to pick real reformers. Yes, the Tea Party could turn out to be something different than has been in Washington in decades; but let's face it, when it comes time to vote we have to choose between one of two parties that are entrenched and face no real outside opposition.

So, go ahead, replace Barack Obama with...fill in any Republican you want...but I guarantee you that he or she cannot make a difference. He or she will be hamstrung by the same special interests, intense lobbying and "this is how Washington works" attitude. At the same time, get rid of your Congressional representative and/or one of your senators. Let's see the good that does.

Do you not remember that one of the reasons Americans voted for Mr. Obama was because he assured us that he would change the tone of the often-nasty political conversation in the nation's capital? We see where that has gotten him.

No, I'm not calling for some revolution or insurrection. But I am saying that America needs (and I am using that word carefully but believe it is appropriate in this context) other viable political parties. Until that happens, the bums on that side and this side of the aisle really don't have much to worry about.

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