Monday, August 08, 2011

Strapped in the backseat

Watching the debt debacle, you feel like a passenger in the backseat of a van that’s headed over the cliff. The doors are locked, so you’re trapped inside as the driver heads straight for the cliff.

It’s easy to blame the GOP for not doing more, but I heard a poll a short while back awarding Congressional Republicans a 70% disapproval rating for being too obstructionist. And I’ve also heard the Ryan plan is massively unpopular.

Assuming the stats are true, we can’t expect Republicans to do more without public support. Indeed, to do even more in the face of public opposition. Why should they commit political suicide? The electorate would simply vote them out of office, vote more Democrats back into office, who will then reverse whatever debt reductions the GOP managed to push through.

Ultimately, politicians are no better or worse than the voters who put them in office and keep them in office.


  1. Steve,

    Ultimately, politicians are no better or worse than the voters who put them in office and keep them in office.

    Now that's a frightful thought!

    One of my attorneys came to the office one day and proceeded to explain how the Native American leaders of the county our various reservations are located on can control the outcome of every county election.

    He pointed out that historically no elected official or issue was won or lost by more than 100 votes because the constituency was evenly divided.

    He further pointed out that by getting the 4,200 non registered adult Indian population in the county to register to vote and then form a coalition of Tribes and vote for a person or issue in toto, the Indians could control the outcome of every election in said county!

    Well, what can I say? That hasn't happened yet. Doesn't that bring a frightful thought if it did and the Native Americans wised up to start controlling the outcome of all elections in the county?

    Now we are talkin' about the white man being strapped in the backseat of a car going over the county cliff!

    As a famous U.S. Speaker of the House of Representatives once noted, "all politics is local".

    Should Native Americans, rise up, register and then vote as one voice? :)

  2. Hi Natamllc, almost all the elections in this country are decided not by the 80% of voters on either the "left" or "right", but by the 20% in the political "center". If those folks can be persuaded one way or the other, that's when you've got a political majority. This is why the "Reagan Democrats" were so important in 1984.

    In 2004, Karl Rove engineered an election in which the 40% on the "right" was expanded, based on right-leaning issues, and that worked, but then we saw the backlash against the Republicans in 2006 and 2008.

    In our form of "representative democracy," it seems to me that there will always be enclaves of the right, and enclaves of the left. The key always will be to persuade the center, and in this respect, there is no substitute for clear thinking and helping the overall population to become educated about the issues.

    This is one of the primary reasons why I believe it's more important for the church to be the church. In the American system, at least, the more Christians there are voting, the greater the chances of having that "educated middle" who really understand what's at stake at any given time, in any given election.