It is quite often I find myself in a political discussion wherein I state that I think that both major political parties are essentially corrupt but I find it extremely annoying when a democrat seizes on this to focus on my allusion to republican corruption, agreeing with me momentarily but jumping right back, usually within minutes, to using this as evidence that democrats are altruistic while their colleagues across the aisle are not. This is the bipolar nature of our minds it seems. Agreeing that both sides are corrupt as a premise for a later statement that one side is not is evidence of mental disorder if anything.

Now, I think I just might have you here. Today, I would like to talk about this from the opposite perspective. Today, I will rant against this dynamic as it is employed by the right.

While both sides of congress are known to try to sneak things through legislation without fully divulging themselves, today we find this disingenuous posture being taken by Senator McCain and others. While they tell the American people, in one media spot after another, that their budget is fiscally conservative and that this is the big difference between it and the other budget being considered (it is true that it reduces the deficit in comparison to the democratic effort by four tenths of a percent), another difference that is, by the numbers, much bigger is that the McCain offering suggests an increase in defense spending over the next five years by 125%!

Even if you think that is necessary, why is it glossed over? That is enormous! Why is this not cited as a big difference between the two budgets? Well, I have the answer for you: because republicans know that the mandate demonstrated by the American people is not in unison with their aims. Just as in the 2000 election and in the 2004 one (where one of the founders of Diebold - an executive with the biggest manufacturer of electronic voting machines promised to "deliver Ohio"), the will of the people is seen as something to be avoided by what passes for republicanism these days.

Do democrats have a habit of misleading people in pursuit of some goals? Yes. Is their power based on a mandate from the people without the necessity of calling in a conservative body like the 2000 Supreme Court to manufacture it? Yes.

I voted in 2008 for the first time in my life and I voted for Barrack Obama, knowing full well that up to a point, if not completely, he just might be as corrupt as all the others but I was not voting for him; I was voting for a mandate. Without a clear statement by Americans as far as what they stand for, we might as well have abandoned all hope.

The mandate matters, people. It is the thing that these bastards are answerable to. Even if it is answered to by most politicians merely as a posture or on the surface, it is still something they cannot stray too far from lest the discrepancy between word and deed become such a chasm as to be undeniable. This is what happened to the republicans in the last twenty or thirty years. Hooked on ideas of how to project populist adoration, they forgot that such things are most easily put forth by folks who actually do feel the pain of the people and not just studied how to appear to feel.

Obama won because he stood closely enough to the mandate of the American people that he was actually able to speak at enormous length without cue cards, off the top of his head, the very things we were all thinking and this reeked of legitimacy. We shall see I suppose.

Again, I say that the mandate matters for these very reasons and right now, as I type, the McCain crew is trying to shove through a budget whose biggest difference, by far, with the other one being considered is that it more than doubles our military budget. Why hide this fact?

They are appealing to their very constituency and this is where their whole house of cards might come down for good, which would be a sad blow to traditional conservative republican principles (not ones based on corporate greed and race but the original republicanism). This ought to be a good indicator of whether they are behind the people or the defense contractors and now, clearer than ever, is the fact that the agendas of the people and the defense and intelligence community differ markedly.

Still, I must ask why did this footnote pertaining to a vast increase in military expenditures not get reported by the media or the democrats? Why did I discover this as scrolling text at the bottom of my television screen while viewing C-Span?


  1. Eric Stewart said...
    An old high school buddy wrote the following to me:

    "Given the North Koreans shooting off a Ballistic Missile cloaked in satellite clothing, terrorist still calling for the murder of Americans, and the turmoil at the Mexican border, I find it hard to believe that cuts in defense spending is an American Mandate. I would ask the author to discuss not only the increased defense spending requests of the... Read More Republicans but also the defense cuts of the democrats along with the programs that are being pushed that will triple the debt over the next couple of years. This would only be a fair portrayal of both sides and their position. Is strapping our children with an increase of debt responsibility from $17K to $37K from the date of birth an American Mandate? If so, I fear for the future. Is it an American mandate for Government to take over our banking and auto industry in a bid to socialize our country? If so, I again fear for our future. When asked to vote on socialism in 2010 I believe the mandate will then be clear, no socialism."

    Here I would like to address this:

    1. Americans voted already and I guarantee that no one that voted for Obama (who was voted for overwhelmingly) did so to increase defense spending.

    2. I am beginning to perceive that it is pathological, this insistence that Obama won but that the mandate is a conservative one.

    3. The author was myself so you can ask me.

    4. Our very monetary system creates debt. The creation of a dollar itself incurs a debt to the private entity known as the Federal Reserve so for their act of nodding in approval that this rectangular piece of paper gets to be printed at OUR expense incurs a debt to THEM of $1.25. No democrat or republican is up to the task of even acknowledging this. THAT is a fair portrayal. Both parties are essentially corrupt. Obama's biggest campaign contributor was Godman Sachs fer gawd's sake.

    5. A government by the people, for the people, and of the people is, by definition, a large government. The trick is that everyone IS actually informed and involved. We champion democracy in one breath but instead of using a representative system to check non-representative, even tyrannical ones we are stuck on checking the only institutional body that we have an actual say in in its effort to regulate those bodies, like major corporation, in which no one can say with a straight face ISN'T a my-way-or-the-highway system. Where's the democracy? Does anyone here live in a living situation in which there isn't one individual that calls the shots? Some do but far more don't. Does anyone here WORK at a company where the guy that sweeps the floor has the slightest iota of representation in the big decisions that vastly affect his own life?

    The problem with big government is that people don't get involved AND consistently vote to keep an openly hierarchical and totalitarian propped up as the main American institution. It is appealing, like some Klingon warrior society, to champion the strong wherein in practice, might equals right and this is precisely the road to fascism.

    Again, the people spoke and they didn't expect a militaristic president when they did. It is those whose representatives lost that constantly speak of a mandate that is the minority and in democracy, minority does not rule, except in the case of small government.

    ANY government that affects us all must be participated in by all, at least all who wish and this does not mean it is okay to discourage people from getting involved. A truly representative social order CANNOT be small; it is physically impossible.
    Eric Stewart said...
    As I have said over and over, when I attack anyone on the right I am accused of being a socialist and whenever I attack someone on the left, I must be a redneck. There are actually several places in this piece wherein I allude to democratic corruption, like the OPENING paragraph and the CLOSING paragraph. It's just symptomatic of this "you're with us or against us" outlook wherein you either agree with our party's ENTIRE platform or you are the enemy.

    This is why few of my friends belong to a major party. I am apparently the enemy of both.

    See this piece at my blog for something relevant.
    Eric Stewart said...
    Why is it that fiscal conservatism wasn't an issue during the Clinton years? Because Clinton had the first balanced budget in years and it would not have been a winning point for them.

    Why was it not an issue during the Bush years? Because GW was busy re-instituting massive debt.

    Why is fiscal responsibility suddenly an issue today? Because everyone demands some financial relief now, from the little guy to the CEO's and everyone knows you can't do that and be fiscally conservative so it is a way to try to force Obama into a noose of disapproval ratings.

    I watched as republicans whined and moaned that they weren't being included in the budgetary process. Nevermind that the single biggest issue that landed Obama in the presidency by a LANDSLIDE was how republicans handle economic issues. Okay, we gave them a say and they insisted in certain things, things that radically dissolved the potency of the stimulus plan and the budget in its ability to actually address these things.

    Of course they did. This way they got to look out for their constituency's pocketbook a little (big business) AND sabotage the new president's ability to be effective as he sought a genuine bipartisanship.

    The added bonus for republicans is that when this whole process fails for not having been enough, something that they insisted on, they will use it as some proof that the people cannot be trusted with their own well being.

    The truly psychotic thing about it all is that it wasn't but about eight weeks into the new presidency that we were all asked to forget that he was elected on an economic platform and republicans started to blame him for the economy he was elected to fix.

    Someone needs their thorazine.

    Is Obama corrupt? Probably - almost certainly as a matter of fact. Does that change one thing about what I have written at my blog about republicans? Nope. They are different topics. We can talk about democrats, sure, but not as an excuse to NOT talk about republicans.

Post a Comment

Newer Post Older Post Home