Only YOU can prevent Forest Fires AND Bad Government!
Alright my friends, I want to take a break from beating on the politicians today, and I want to redirect my focus on the real reason these government officials are so ineffective and off-course:
That’s right – YOU. You, and me, and all of us out there in Voter Land.
We are all pretty darn good at complaining, at criticizing, at taking umbrage and getting angry. And those are perfectly natural and understandable reactions to the political world. If you’re angry, at least it means you’ve been paying attention. I know for a fact that my blog buddies here on WordPress are all tuned in to the news. They are well-informed and they give a damn about the way things are. That’s why we’re all here, right? To take part in the exchange of information and ideas that helps to keep the wheels of democracy turning.
But let’s be…
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I’m a liberal. I’m 60. I’ve been following and active in politics since 1967. I ‘came clean for Gene’. (Extra points for anyone who remembers who that was).
But I wasn’t always a Liberal.
I was born and raised in a Republican household. This was back in the 50’s. A completley different World! If your parents were Republican – you were Republican. It wasn’t the ‘end of the story’. There WAS no other story.
Then came the 60’s. The Age of Aquarius. The age of questioning. The ‘birth’ of the John Birch Society.
I became an Independent because you shouldn’t legislate out of hate.
But the longer and stronger the ‘hate’ grew in the Republican Party, the more Liberal I became.
You don’t stand on the sidelines.
And you ‘don’t bring a knife to a gunfight’.
You ‘pick a side and fasten your seat belts.’
From Brad DeLong : ‘Six Questions I Asked Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein About Their Book “It’s Even Worse than It Looks” on May 18, 2012’
‘Look. You two are expecting normal politics to rein in a Republican Party gone bonkers extreme. But it will not work. The press corps will continue to say “he said, she said, yadda yadda yadda” either because they are gutless cowards or because they are bought. In a world of low-information voters, the bonkers extremism and sheer total meanness of the Republican Party will not get through. The only way it could get through would be if moderate Republican barons were to announce that they had had enough and were crossing t’he aisle, and if they did so in a way that they brought their affinities with them. But I don’t see Brent Scowcroft doing that, I don’t see Colin Powell doing that, I don’t see Greg Mankiw doing that, I don’t see Marty Feldstein doing that, I don’t see Gail Wilensky doing that, I don’t see Bob Dole doing that, I don’t see Jack Danforth doing that, I don’t see Richard Lugar doing that–and I don’t see you doing that, Mr. Ornstein. I don’t see you calling for the defeat of every single Republican candidate this fall and every fall until the party comes back to reality’.
‘And since all of you moderate Republicans are unwilling to take the only step that might fix the situation on your side, we have to take the only step open to us: We have to stop bringing a set of policy proposals and briefing papers to what the Republican Party has made a thermonuclear exchange. We have to oppose their noise, slime, and lie machine with a noise, disinfectant, and truth machine of our own–and at the same intensity’.
‘That means you moderates need to pick a side and fasten your seat belts, rather than wringing your hands about how the Republicans are being so mean, and you wish they would be less so.”