Ugh, politicians...

Discussion in 'Politics' started by D_Martin van Burden, Jul 8, 2011.

  1. D_Martin van Burden

    D_Martin van Burden Account Disabled

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    I woke up a little earlier than expected this morning and turned on a national news network. It makes for decent background noise while I'm starting up my day, and I'm catching a few headlines. Anyway, the current debt ceiling talks are sucking up much media attention this morning, and the story is that Democrats are likely not and Republicans are most assuredly not giving up their positions on the matter. Obama wants to trade off cuts to Medicare and Social Security (despite being widely unpopular among polled voters in swing states, no less) to get Republicans to detrench from tax increases. The latter seems just as willing to "negotiate" as before.

    In an effort to score early political points, Democrats hammer Republicans for shirking everyone else in favor of the rich while Republicans warn that Obama's policies have failed on virtually all fronts. The ads are starting to play back home -- though the likelihood that Kentucky votes Democrat is incredibly low at the national level.

    As you know, I'm liberal. I'm also not very much enthused by the Democratic party, save for the few progressive politicians that are willing to take a stand on the important issues and fight. But don't worry. I think hell will freeze over before I vote Republican. That's not out of sheer spite; rather, it's because trickle-down-economics has never worked since Friedman advocated it decades ago, yet the GOP wants to trot out that philosophy at a moment's notice. In addition, even with empirical proof of its failure, the GOP fails to consider alternatives let alone surmise why it's happening or how to change course.

    As I recall, Bush II was rather unrepentant at massive job hemorrhage and couldn't properly call out progress in the war in Iraq and Afghanistan. The dude even applauded some old lady on the campaign trail for working three jobs. I nearly spit out my water and thought, you know how TIRED you get working that many jobs? (I should know; I nearly microslept and hit a telephone pole once.)

    And honestly, I'm rather tired of Boehner getting his drunk ass on television and complaining that Obama isn't doing anything about jobs. As I also recall, he along with McConnell spearheaded initiatives to defund Planned Parenthood, the EPA, and NPR; reignite the gay marriage debate (even though New York just passed it, bastards); and insist that millionaires need more tax cut. Oh, and collective bargaining. Fuck you, people who fought for the 40-hour work week and benefits.

    Again, this is despite the outflow of jobs away from the US, the tendency for large corporations to hoard their cash instead of hire, rampant discrimination against unemployed workers, and the general malaise of misinformation.

    Beyond particular stances on issues, I'm just really tired of politicians and strategists trying to push their half-truths. Democrats are bad about it, but Republicans are even worse. I'm waiting for these highly-paid media analysts and journalists to say something as simple as, "What assurances do we have that helping the rich ensures that we're helped?"

    "Oh, it's because they're job creators."
    "Yeah, elsewhere. Why not here? What about more American manufacturing?"
    "The American people want..." "Yes, John; they want jobs. You want to give tax breaks. But you can't run a government without revenue and we're at a 60-year-low when compared against GDP."
    " 'Cause you can't raise taxes in a recession."
    "Sure, on people that are already broke. They're getting stuck to."
    "We need to control our spending."
    "Sure, by spending it smarter. Do you know how much your tax cuts are bleeding the economy? That, plus no money in, equals the shit that American families deal with on the day-to-day."

    Sorry guys, I just had to vent that out. I think it was the 2004 cycle that someone coined the phrase stuck on stupid, and that's an indictment both parties need to avoid precariously right now.
     
  2. StormfrontFL

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    :clap::clap::clap::clap::clap:
     
  3. TomCat84

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    I don't think that many politicians in either major party really care one way or the other about regular folks- simply their corporate masters. The powers that be have done a great job though- somehow getting it in the minds of the people that while the GOP is controlled by Big Business, the Dems are controlled by Unions. It simply is NOT true. The Dems are controlled by Big Business as well. Big Business learned a lesson from the Great Depression in the 1930s, a period in which economic hopelessness bred a not insignificant groundswell for true Socialists. They learned that they too must put up a populist candidate, and control BOTH parties to hedge their bets, lest the people march on DC with proverbial pitchforks in hand. So now we have this false dichotomy. The only difference between the Democrats and the Republicans is that the Democrats may or may not give you a reach around. In the end, though, you're still getting fucked.
     
  4. D_Martin van Burden

    D_Martin van Burden Account Disabled

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    Thanks guys. What really troubles me is the amount of injustice and poverty we'll tolerate before we're really willing to do something concerted to fix a problem. As much as it is my idealistic dream to do policy analysis to fix problems, I keep forgetting that politicians (from an employment and a self-interest perspective, to say the least) are hardly suited to do the task. It's hilarious as it is farcical. I mean, when I write my vita, I have to show that I'm actually contributing to my field of study. I wonder how many politicians can show empirically that they have contributed to fixing American problems throughout the tenure of their work.

    In the meantime, let's get some stimulus. Cut every politicians' salary in half and benefits in full. Make them live on five (strong) figures and see if that won't whip them into shape.
     
  5. TomCat84

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    I disagree with the last part. I'm not opposed to politicians making a lot of money in salary- as long as there are strong campaign finance laws and anti-lobbying laws once they get out.
     
  6. D_Martin van Burden

    D_Martin van Burden Account Disabled

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    Heh, I'm going to stick to my guns on this one. First, and empirically, campaign finance laws may be supported by polled voters but that's no guarantee that those wishes will be granted. If anything, the reverse is clearly happening given the Citizens United case, the proliferation of SuperPACs, and the cloud cover of anonymous wealthy donations.

    Second, who is to propose the campaign finance laws and anti-lobbying laws? If there's something to politico self-interest, then politicians are not likely to bite a rich hand that feeds, whomever does it. As much as I'd like to think that politicians believe in fundamental values of fairness, those values need not interfere with the financial part of politicking.

    If anything, their resource abundance is part of the problem. I look at it and think of the same grievances I have with well-paid executives. Actual job performance at that level isn't a requisite, and maybe not even a factor, in how they are compensated. Imagine that -- if politicians were paid according to how well they solve problems, contribute to solutions, sponsor and co-sponsor fiscally sound bills, and so on. Like you said earlier, they're paid to do someone else's bidding.

    Heh, no wonder they get so angry about raising taxes on those who make $250K. Given their gross salary is a bit chunk of that, let's hope their spouses have a crap job. :p
     
  7. Mensch1351

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    Politicians of both ilk may be liars and promise the moon during election cycles and then do whatever they damn well please to serve their OWN self interests.................but don't forget............every 2 years (for the House at least) we have the chance to upset the Applecart. I DO forsee a time when the issues of election reform and Congress's OWN feeling of exceptionalism are going to come to the forefront as Americans see "party" gridlock. Eventually we can turn the entire bunch out every 2 years until we get a Congress that has the balls to Change what needs to BE changed for the Benefit of this nation!! They're going to find out that there is a rising generation of new voters who are not going to necessarily fall for the lies and rhetoric! They are disillusioned by an interminable war. They are frustrated with a nation that can find the money to police the world but can't seem to rebuild its own infra-structure or devote its resources to excellent education. They aren't "scared" of their investments faltering so that they don't want to pass laws that would regulate Wall Street into sanity! You cannot ignore the numbers -- there are just tooooo many of US and when we get riled --- Washington WILL sit up and take notice and fast! We are an incredible nation and our FIRST expectation is that the people we elect to be OUR representatives need to act in OUR interest -- not their own!
     
  8. B_RedDude

    B_RedDude New Member

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    Let's hope this generation is paying close enough attention and has a sufficiently in-depth understanding of the issues.

     
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