It is early Monday morning as I write this article. All weekend I was waiting in vain for the outcry on what should be the major political story. It never happened. In the process I made some other observations. It is time to get this off my chest. Let’s explore.
The government runs out of money Friday and we are facing another potential shutdown. There is a distinct possibility this is the first time you have heard that in the last week. Is this the new normal? The Republicans shoulder the vast majority of the blame because they control the White House and both chambers of Congress. They need some Democratic votes in the Senate to overcome a filibuster; in the House they do not need a single Democratic vote if they can only overcome their family feuds. I honestly believe they have the lackey in Trump that they have long desired in the White House. Typical of a bully he lacks the courage to veto anything that the Republicans put on his desk. Besides, this is a man devoid of political philosophy who is only interested in self-enrichment.
My prediction is that instead of a real solution taking us to the end of the fiscal year – which is only the end of September – we will see another eleventh hour punt. As on a really bad college football team the only player with a shot at making All-American is the punter. He touches the ball more than anyone except the center and quarterback.
Part of the blame lies squarely on the shoulders of the American electorate. Collectively we elected these clowns either by voting for seriously flawed candidates or, worse yet, not voting and allowing the votes of the ignorant to carry more weight. I have no problem with watching the NCAA tournament but Monday morning water cooler conversations had more to do with the games than they did with funding the federal government. (In full disclosure I watched the two games my alma mater played during which I witnessed an event I thought I wouldn’t live long enough to; them winning a tournament game.) Continuing on that theme, where is the public outcry? Will we hold our members of Congress accountable in November? Keeping the “shop” open is a fundamental part of their jobs.
The news media isn’t helping any either. In their defense there is simply way too much news to cover in the finite amount of time and/or space available. The news has been dominated by Russiagate, Stormy Daniels and firings. There has been a ton of publicity about the forthcoming 60 Minutes interview of Stormy Daniels on the 25th and basically none of the impending shutdown on the 23rd. No pun or innuendo intended, but the Stormy Daniels story is sexy and the shutdown isn’t. Our media is a for profit media that needs to attract listeners, viewers and readers.
I will leave you with a reflection from an American patriot and an original thought of mine. Our second President John Adams said “The government ought to be what the people make it.” I have a new American oxymoron: Republican leadership. I’m afraid in 2018 both are true and neither are good for America.
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