Friday, October 4, 2013


I am struggling
To have you listen to my
And not your own

Thursday, October 3, 2013

What should Marlin and his friends get out of it?

"We're not going to be disrespected," Rep. Marlin Stutzman (R-Ind.) told The Washington Examiner. "We have to get something out of this. And I don't know what that even is."

So, this begs the question ... what do you think he ought to get out of it?  A few things jump to my mind.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Want a Deal, We've Got A Deal For You!

I think there is one circumstance under which the President should agree to delay Obamacare.  That is if, in return, the Republicans agree to implement a nationally coordinated system of independent commissions to oversee redistricting in ever state at every level, with all Congressional districts being redrawn for the 2014 elections.  If the redistricting plan wasn't up and ready to go by years end, Obamacare would go into effect for at least two years and the President would get his ideal budget put in place.  We have smart folks working in Washington.  We could get it done in time.  That would be a compromise that would work for me.

Stand Your Ground

Dear Mr. President,

Please stand your ground, even if the consequences are dire.  The time has come to stare down those who have placed their own political futures and their own narrow ideological quests above the best interests of the country.  We need to return to a place where health care for all is a shared goal, even if we differ on how to achieve it.  We need to get back to a country that scrutinizes government for waste and mismanagement, but realizes its importance in protecting rights and freedoms.  We need to return to a common sense appraisal of the very real limitations of the free market.  We need to go back to a place where everyone is a real American.  Most of all, we need to get back to dialogue, compromise, and collaboration.  And to logic and reason.  Defaulting on our debt would be bad, but there are worse things ... and they are coming ... quickly. The time has come to take a stand.  Please lead us so that we can follow.

Simple Summary

The debt ceiling should just be raised.  Congress approved spending and now its time to pay.  Republicans should not get another chance to approve spending they have already approved.  They should not be able to use this as an opportunity to extract concessions.

None of this is about health care.  This is the time for making tough decisions on the budget and not an opportunity to circumvent democracy in order to get a result more to the liking of a vocal minority of Republicans.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Yo ... Republicans in the House of Representatives, you're wrong.

The folks controlling the decision making for the Republican Party in the House of Representatives are wrong.  And it isn’t a close call.  The refusal to work with the President and Democrats to come up with a reasonable and long term approach to spending, debt management, and the like is completely indefensible. 

Republicans want to be the party in power, but that doesn’t excuse them from doing their jobs in the meantime.  As of now, there is only one President at a time.  Only one party can control the house.  The same is true in the senate.  So, it just isn’t workable for the party who is not in charge to stand in the way of every single thing the other party wants to do. 

Usually this isn’t so much of an issue because there is enough overlap between party platforms and enough divergence within a party that things get done.  No sane person is going to agree, or disagree, with everyone on everything.  Unfortunately, a number of our representatives have lost their sanity.  There are reasons for it, including Congressional districts that are way too manipulated and safe.  But, regardless of reasons, insanity is insanity.  Just because you disagree with me on health care, shouldn’t mean that we can’t get a reasonable budget done, even one that reaches beyond the short term. 

Of course, if cooperation and collaboration are dirty words, well then nothing gets done.  If nobody compromises, no one accomplishes anything.  If agreeing with Democrats is seen as evil, then there will be no agreement.  If Democratic legislation is seen as the “the most insidious law known to man” (an actual quote) then there will be no agreement.  When you cast the other side as completely wrong, un-American, socialist, fascist, etc. then nothing will get done.

When you cast the President as the son of Satan, nothing will get done.  I don’t know why Obama is the worst president in the history of man.  I’m not sure why he should be up for impeachment.  I tend to think this all has to do, at least a little, with the color of his skin.  But that doesn’t matter.  What matters is that he is the President, and things have to get done in the next three years.  We simply can’t stand for the routine we got on Syria to be repeated.  “That Obama needs to do something.  He needs to act.  What, he wants to act?  Oh, well in that case there is no way we should be acting in Syria.”

And, by the way, all government is evil and the free market is the solution to everything.  Except, of course, that neither of those things is the least bit true.  Angry rhetoric is a big problem.  It works people up.  It sets the stage for conflict.  And in this case, it is just plain false.  We need to move past these fictions and into a reality where we can solve some real problems.  We emerged from our own little caves and embraced governments long ago.  Government helped to open up the West in which we showcased our individuality.  It helped provide the land and built the roads and railroads to get us to it.  The unfettered free market brought us child labor, twelve hour work days, and blatant inequality.  It is time for us adults to leave the land of fantasy and enter the real world.

While we are at it, why are we pretending healthcare for everyone is such an atrocious thing?  And why are we still talking about it at all?  The legislation passed.  The Supreme Court found it to be constitutional.  It was a key issue in the Presidential election, and Obama (of Obamacare fame) won.  That chapter should be over.  By all means, make it better.  Alter it.  Amend it.  It isn’t perfect.  But for now, you just have to live with the fact that everyone is going to have access to healthcare.  I know that is awful, but ….

The time has come to stop.  This is not about health care.  Our representatives need to focus on the issue at hand.  They need to get our government running again.  They need to start governing again.  If not, the rest of us need to start doing our jobs, and not just next November.  Changing the redistricting process can start now.  The use of common sense and logic can start now.  Replacing the tea Party in the history books can start now.  And maybe, just maybe, the silliness can end now.