Political Gridlock In The Land Of The Weird


Yesterday came the big announcement that the U.S. and China cut a historic deal on limiting carbon emissions to prevent the planet from turning into one big rain forest.   It’s noteworthy because this is  the first  time China has agreed to anything regarding climate change.  It’s hoped the pact between the two major powers will prompt smaller nations to follow suit.

You could almost sense the Republicans stumbling over one another to come out against it.   Mitch McConnell, who represents Kentucky, the third largest coal producing state in the country, a man who received $914.408 from the oil and gas industry in the past five years, was among those decrying the agreement to prevent Florida and several other states from flooding out by saying,  “I would welcome the president moving toward the middle. I have said before I hope we can do some business on trade and maybe tax reform. First indications have not been very helpful.” 

“Tax reform,” is Republican code meaning more tax-cuts for the rich.  “Do some business on trade” is code for anything that benefits big business regardless of its impact on the nation’s common good.

McConnell isn’t  talking about the fact that up until now, nobody has been able to get the Chinese to agree to anything with regard to cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

But Obama, just did.  But then, the science-denier Republicans don’t believe in global warming.   Or in a system of national health care.   Or in caring for our poor and elderly.  Or in public education.   Or in feeding the poor.  Or in adequate care for our veterans.   Or in jobs programs.  Or for women’s health care.   Or for raising the minimum wage.   Or in the USPS, which is profitable, regardless of what the Republicans might say.   According to Sen. Bernie Sanders, “The Postal Service announced on Friday that revenue grew by more than half a billion dollars in the past year but USPS still plans to cut service and eliminate thousands of workers.” 

This current herd of Republicans oppose civilization and nearly anything that promotes our general welfare as a people.

What they do believe in is letting multi-national corporations run amok in an unending and mostly unregulated greed-driven march to make as much money for their shareholders as possible, regardless of the impact it has on a majority of Americans (and on the planet as well).

And so today, the Republicans threw a bone to their backward base and followed up their condemnation of the climate change deal with a political Quid pro quo of taking a vote on the Keystone Pipeline.

We’re on track to become energy independent as an oil-exporting nation, and the Koch Brothers gotta have that oil.

But we never saw that coming, did we?   Just like we have no reason to expect the new Republican majority in both houses to hammer away at repealing the Affordable Care Act, or failing to  cut a deal on immigration or downplaying the need for green energy production or that they’ll back away from their insane Ayn Rand-driven belief in largely unregulated free trade and trickle down economics.   Which doesn’t work.  Crunch the numbers.  Half of America is at or near the poverty level.   “Reaganomics” was a lie, perpetrated by the wealthy few who want only to extract more of the nation’s wealth, sucking it to the top where it does the least amount of good for the many.

Millions of duped voters gave Republicans control of the Senate, nevertheless.   That’s what’s difficult to understand.

“What do you want?  You’re already living in the land of the weird.”  -Bill Murray as Hunter S. Thompson in “Where the Buffalo Roam”

Faced by two years of nothing being done to move the country forward, since denying this president any achievement whatsoever is the stated credo of the Republican Party,  we must then wonder how long it will take the House to draw up Articles of Impeachment?   You know they’re eventually going to do it.  You also know Mr. Obama will never be convicted by the Senate.   They’ll never get a two-thirds vote.   So it will be another huge waste of time and of the taxpayer’s money, as will the Republican drive to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which has already been before the Supreme Court.  A  huge waste of time and money.  However,  two years worth of this nonsense is staring us in the face, thanks in large part to this current Republican Party and the uninformed, angry and to a degree bigoted voters who have given them control of both houses of the Congress.

What can you say about a party that shouts down our President as being a “liar” during a joint session of Congress and later connects his Administration to the term “tar baby?”   Or Arizona Governor Jan Brewer sticking her finger in the President’s face, or the overt and amazing disrespect shown Mr. Obama by Mitt Romney during the debates?   Romney treated Mr. Obama not as a sitting president, but as an underling, regarding him as one might regard an inferior and wayward child.

Bigotry is bigotry, no matter what it might later be called by back- peddling politicians who dive for cover after planting the seeds of hate.

Our only hope, our only salvation, might be that these current Republicans will, over the next two years, continue to show themselves to be exactly what they are, bought-off lap dogs for billionaries and multi-national corporations, who care more for their bottom lines than for the country.   Of course many of the Democrats have been bought-off as well, there’s no question of that, since our political system has degenerated into bribery-driven legislation.

No question about it, we have the best government money can buy, and only we the people can turn it around.

It took America several years to wake up to the futility of the Vietnam War, which our leaders refused to call a war, calling it a “police action” instead.   Ya, right.   Hundreds of dead each month in a police action.  And now we’re engaged in an global police action and our honorable leaders insist upon calling it a war.   The words that serve their needs at any given moment are the words they will use.  Forget about honesty, this is politics.

I am terribly disappointed in Mr. Obama’s failure to hold the line on getting our people out of Iraq and his tendency to cozy-up to the robber barons on Wall Street.    Be that as it may, Obama and the Democrats are still far preferable to this current Republican bunch, which has no qualms about showing themselves to be exactly what they are, nothing but front men and women for the nation’s wealthy minority.   People who will do and say whatever they must to advance the economic interests of the rich, even though it means the continued devastation of the American middle class.    A new feudalism, with a handful of wealthy captains and kings in charge, people who have no interest in the concepts of majority rule, the “general welfare,” or the common good.  In other words, they have no interest whatsoever in the American dream.

Even Susan Eisenhower, has left the Republican fold.

But I was talking about hope, and it does still exist.  It exists in the determination of the American people to take back the democratic process that has been stolen by big money.  Stolen by a lust for power now running rampant through the halls of Congress.   Our government is broken.   Taking money out of the legislative process is the only way to fix it.

Our democracy-driven constitutional republic will be nothing but an illusion, so long as those with the most money are allowed to purchase whatever legislation they might want to further their specific interests.    Campaign finance reform can be something more than just an idea,  and we can make it happen, but only by becoming politically involved, by going to the polls and by letting it be known that any politician who betrays the well-being of the majority will be booted from office.

It took America several years to understand the futility of the Vietnam War, so it isn’t unreasonable to think it could take another couple of years for the majority to begin understanding that their country has been stolen from them by a wealthy minority and that they need to take it back.  Or not.  And if not, then what we had will be over and the America so many have fought and died for will continue moving toward a contemporary form of feudalism represented by the new American oligarchy.

2 thoughts on “Political Gridlock In The Land Of The Weird”

  1. Nicely stated, Ron. I enjoyed reading it and I hope it registers with some Republicans, but that’s doubtful. It makes too much sense.


  2. Ron,
    Amidst all of the wisdom contained in this blog, this is my favorite Ron Olsen quote: “This current herd of Republicans oppose civilization and nearly anything that promotes our general welfare as a people.”
    Gads, I wish I had said that.

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