For those of you who follow IACWE regularly – you know that I’m not afraid to share my opinion. I heavily editorialize and then when I take a position on something … I have no problems hitting ideas home over and over. I always fashioned myself an independent who leans Democrat … but an independent. I used to believe there were good ideas in both parties and that neither party was completely realistic in that regard. I used to believe both parties were fighting for their genuine priorities and not only winning their next race.
But conservatives of today are not genuinely interested in finding solutions to America’s problems; their one goal is to throw as many wrenches into the cogs of Congress to completely shut it down …. with their preferred result of Americans blaming the Democratic party. I’ve seen Republicans walking away from immigration reform bills they previously supported, deficit reduction bills they previously supported, tax cut bills they previously supported …. all to ensure this President can’t claim bi-partisan success. It’s a scandal. It’s embarrassing.
Whether we like it or not – America is an exceptional nation in the world …. even when we don’t deserve that label. If you think through all of the technical and industrial innovations in the world that come courtesy of the United States … it is pretty easy to draw a correlation from America’s innovation to a better, more prosperous world. I can’t imagine anyone discounting the huge contributions the USA has made to the world even with whatever anger there may be for our moral sins. We’re not perfect. We voted for Bush twice; yeah – we kind of own that. And we’re trying to make it right.
Politics is a team sport. Whatever member of Congress you elect … regardless of their votes – they will be nominating a person from their party to control whatever chamber they are a member – House of Representatives or Senate. If they’re Republicans – they’ll be voting for McConnell or Boehner or someone else in their party just as bad but they will not be supporting a Democrat. And vice-versa with a Dem candidate no matter how conservative. So the party you’re voting for matters. Some people like to parrot this bullshit that “they’re all the same” just because Dems and Republicans are equally corrupt in 20% of their votes; oh yeah genius – what about the other 80%?
I often tell conservatives that I’m offended by the Republican party and what they stand for. I often hear this response “I’m not a Republican – I’m a conservative”. Oh really? Let’s run through one simple pH test to cipher through that thought process. You say you’re a conservative and not a Republican and that there is a difference. Tell me one conservative that you’ve voted for who isn’t a Republican. I would like to just hear one to this day. There is no such thing as the “conservative party”. I don’t see Jim Demint (C-SC). He has an R by his name. And it’s interesting how conservatives say so and so wasn’t really a conservative after the fact but during their entire time in office – they would be branded a conservative all the same. George W. Bush was the pre-eminent conservative with every other conservative voting in lock step with his agenda that blew a huge hole in the deficit through reckless budgeting. But now – he’s not a conservative because conservatives say he’s not.
So – conservatives just need to accept this truth in the world. There is no tea party … there is no such thing as a conservative – there is a Republican driven by conservative ideology. And 99% of the moderate Republicans are dead; now if you consider compromise … they’re coming after you. They got rid of Dick Lugar and Bob Bennett in the Senate this year. They’ve already said they’re going after Lindsey Graham (R-SC). He has voted with the Republican party on every single vote they wanted him to, but it doesn’t matter … he seems willing to compromise on immigration reform etc. He is too liberal for their tastes. Conservatism and thus the Republican party has lost its damn mind.
One party is completely in the pocket of corporate interests while the other party is merely somewhat beholden to them. One party wants to turn back the clock so that Medicare and Social Security never existed. One party is determined to force women to have unnecessary medical procedures in order to have an abortion even in cases of rape and incest and the other is against government involvement. One party wants to go back to the laissez-faire economic model of the Bush era and the other wants to regulate the financial services industry with extreme prejudice. One party has voted time and time again to block an economic recovery and the other has been trying to fix unemployment. One party wants to go back to the gold standard – the other party wants a mostly independent Federal Reserve. One party wants to cut unemployment benefits, food stamps and other important services for people struggling to make it on their feet and the other party is protecting those hit hardest by the Bush economic crisis.
One party wants to cut taxes for oil companies and the other wants to cut taxes for alternative energy companies. One party wants to eliminate campaign cash in politics and the other wants to open the floodgates and allow corporations to donate unlimited amounts. One party supports a solution for immigration reform and the other party has actively blocked the ability to resolve our immigration problems. One party is against having a minimum wage law for the most part and the other supports a living wage. One party is trying to get American soldiers out of Middle East wars and the other is trying to start a war with Iran. One party supports universal healthcare and the other wants to repeal the law that would make it so. One party wants to cut taxes for the rich via elimination of capital gains and estate taxes while the other is blocking such a move. One party wants to cut spending on education for our children and the other is trying to increase spending on teachers and the education system in general.
One party would have let us get into a Great Depression and the other stopped it. One party has created a new definition for rape and the other party believes rape is rape. One party believes 47% of Americans should pay more in taxes and the other party believes those people should pay less in taxes. One party is trying to eliminate your right to vote and the other is trying to expand your right to vote. One party is trying to increase the number of private schools and the other is trying to build off the public education system. One party believes we need more god in our politics and the other believes in the separation of church and state. One party is hell bent to eliminate unions in this country and the other supports the rights of the working man to collectively bargain. One party is serious about addressing our dependency on foreign oil and the other is serious about just pumping more oil. One party wants to eliminate clean air and water standards and the other believes that government has a responsibility to ensure water and air are clean for our citizens.
Conservatism is a bastardization of the word conservative. There is nothing conservative about the Republican party today. My vitriol and anger towards the Republican party was earned frankly. I didn’t used to feel this way; they had to work long and hard to earn that sort of animosity and resentment. Unlike most Americans who only seem to focus on what their elected leaders are doing in the final 2 minutes of the game – I’m one of the few hardcore politicos who eats, sleeps and drinks politics from sunup to sundown. When it comes to conservativism – the more you’re exposed to it … the more it smells like day old fish.
The Democratic party isn’t perfect and I don’t even expect perfection from the Republican party but I do expect an honest attempt to solve the country’s problems with sane people. The Republican party has failed in that regard. This election is a turning point election that will affect the future of this country much more so than the average election. I refuse to accept this idea that a majority of Americans wish to live under this conservative ideology that has been preached for the past 30 years; it’s a cancer that needs to be removed. It’s a blight on our country’s history that should be surgically removed and then left to die on its own. The conservative “go it alone”, “you get yours and I’ll get mine” philosophy is not consistent with America’s history. We swim together or drown separately.
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