Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Remaining Engaged

I am finding it more and more difficult to stay connected to the political environment these days. It’s not that I don’t care, or that I am blissfully happy now that Obama is in office, obviously such is not the case. It’s that the political conversation has taken such a turn toward the inane and meaningless that it is difficult to remain engaged in it.

I don’t care about the “Tea Party” that the media and Internet is so fascinated by. I see them as a noisy minority of angry people, no two of whom are angry about the same thing. They cannot agree sufficiently with each other, let alone get affiliated with anyone outside of themselves, to accomplish anything that means anything.

I’m not interested in gloating and crowing about how self destructive the Republican party has become, nor in discussing the scope or meaning of its current “purge” of membership. It is out of power and will remain out of power until it can develop a coherent message on which to run.

Unlike Chris Matthews, I am neither surprised nor confused by politicians “pandering to their base” at the moment. He wonders why they are doing that when it will not win for them in a general election, apparently unaware that they are currently running in primary elections which they must survive before they can even think about the general election. Pandering to the base is exactly what they must do to win in the primary, and it rather astonishes me that he does not know that.

Of course “Chris Matthews is an Idiot” is a title I use frequently.

If you aren’t interested in the Tea Parties or flogging the Republications, the only thing left being discussed is who will win in November and a) I’m perfectly willing to wait and see who wins and b) I recognize that it doesn’t matter in the least who wins.

Remember the election of 2006, when Democrats won both houses of Congress and everything was going to change? We were at long last going to bring to an end the horror of the endless war in Iraq, right? We got the “surge” of 2007; acquiesced to and funded by a Democratic Congress.

The Democrats brought us “health care reform” did they? They provided health insurance for William Mann of Pittsburgh, for which the government pays $2756 while he must contribute $1845 per year. He says he cannot afford that and will pay the smaller fine.

“I just can’t put that kind of money out for a ‘maybe’ — maybe I’ll get sick and use it,” said Mr. Mann, who makes just over $25,000 a year as an administrative assistant at a small wine distribution company. “That’s a lot of money. The people who make all these decisions don’t live like the way I do,” Mr. Mann added, echoing other uninsured people in his income group. “They don’t live like the rest of us.”

Whether the elite governing class labels itself Democrat or Republican is a matter of little moment. They don’t live like the rest of us.

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