BENEATH THE SPIN • ERIC L. WATTREE
It's Time for a Congressional Housecleaning
It's become increasingly obvious that simply taking away control of congress from the GOP wasn't quite good enough to disengage the corpo-congressional alliance. Self-service has now become an entrenched way of life for politicians of both parties, so the only way the American people are going to ever get the kind of representation we deserve is to do a complete housecleaning of the old congressional guard, both Democrat and Republican, in both houses of congress.
The political establishment in this country has become corrupt all the way to its bone marrow. The people who we thought we were sending to congress to represent OUR interests have become a class unto themselves, and their primary interest is in feathering their own nests.
Dedication has become a radical concept in congress, so it's time to get rid of all but the most statesmanlike of this group, and replace them with new politicians who understand that their primary role is to serve the people, not themselves.
What's most disgusting about this group is that they have no true political philosophy or loyalty to anything but themselves. The only concern that they have for political philosophy is as a convenient hook upon which to hang their demagoguery while manipulating the people.
They have absolutely no qualms about sending young Americans to die for the benefit of war profiteers, passing laws designed to protect big business as they poison our environment, and blocking our right to legal recourse after we've been harmed by one of their many campaign contributors. Truth and justice is meaningless to these people. It's all about dollars and sense - their dollars, and our lack of sense.
Their very survival depends on creating turmoil, distraction, and confusion, and their favorite method of operation is through distortion, misinformation, and division. Thus, the American people will never have the prosperous, tranquil, and productive nation that we all yearn for as long as we allow people of such moral depravity to occupy the highest offices in this land. They simply can't allow it.
Republican politicians have become so transparent that even though we clearly see them reaching under the table for the rabbit to pull out of their hat, they keep us so distracted by their divisive non-issues that many Republicans don't care that they're cutting their our own family's throat, "just as long as we don't do anything to benefit 'those socialist-leaning liberals'" - and the tragic humor in that is that most of them can't even define either socialist or liberal.
Take national healthcare, for example. Many people in this country have been convinced that it's a bad thing to ensure that they and their families will have affordable healthcare if they lose their jobs, or that their policies can't be cancelled simply because they have an illness that's deemed too expensive to treat. They see it as socialism. So in essence, just through the use of the word "socialism" they've been trained like Pavlov's dog to protect the very industry that's cutting their throats.
But the Democrats are no better. They've convinced their constituents that they're "the party of the people." But we mustn't forget that they're being funded by the very same people who are funding the Republicans, and now that they have a huge majority in congress, their efforts on our behalf just don't seem to be passing the sniff test.
What's the difference between a Democrat and a Republican? A lot of flowery rhetoric.
After all of the fancy speeches, promises, and flowery rhetoric over the past fifty years, now that the Democrats have the votes and everything is in place to provide the people of this country with universal healthcare, all of a sudden, the Blue Dog Democrats have discovered fiscal responsibility.
Where was their sense of fiscal responsibility when they voted for every crony-enriching scheme that Bush and Cheney could conjure up?And where was their sense of fiscal discipline when during the closest thing we've had to a full blown depression since the thirties they voted themselves and every member of congress a $93,000 raise in "petty cash?"
They seem to have temporarily lost their way, but now that we want to do something to benefit the people, they've put their foot down - saying, "It's intolerable!"
We have a problem here. We've become so apathetic over the past thirty years or so that we've allowed a political culture to spring up in this country that is a clear and present danger to our national security. They represent everything that the founding fathers of this nation was dead set against. They've become royalty - a class unto themselves. Clear evidence of that is even though the Democrats and Republicans are mortal enemies, the Democrats are protecting their Republican predecessors against charges of war crimes.
I'm hoping that President Obama is taking these issues into account, because in the final analysis, it doesn't matter how well he does as president if he doesn't adhere to certain standards. History, and his constituency, is going to judge him on the following issues: Was Bush and Cheney held accountable for looting this country and committing war crimes in our name? Did he protect the integrity of the United States Constitution? And did he promptly address the issue of bigotry within the military? Those would be changes we can believe in? Anything short of that will be business as usual.
The president should consider as he's looking towards 2012 that he has a problem that the Republicans don't share. His constituency are not mindless zombies. They're thinking people - thinking people with long memories. So if he doesn't hold fast to his promises, as much as they love him, they're going to be intellectually immune to his charm. In fact, the polls are beginning to show that it's wearing thin as we speak. So he needs to stop worrying about the Republicans and start thinking about his own base of support.
As for congress - ladies and gentleman, that is up to us. If we do what we need to do in 2010, we'll get everybody's attention - including the president's.
Eric L. Wattree
Religious bigotry: It's not that I hate everyone who doesn't look, think, and act like me - it's just that God does.