Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Republican Party’

72910

Source: Wall Stats– Yep, that pretty much sums it up

Source: The New Democrat Plus

Andy Hailey seems to making the argument that Washington lobbyists became a problem, when our tax rates became lower. That since we’ve cut taxes both in 1981 under President Reagan and again in the 1990s multiple times under President Clinton and again under President Bush in the 2000s and President Obama in 2009, that is when lobbyists became a problem in Washington. And that after we made lobbying easier in Washington that is when lobbyists became a problem as well.

83980

Source: Steemit– Deep State Fantasy

I have a different take. Economics Professor Classical Liberal Milton Friedman, who I didn’t agree with on everything mostly having to do with regulations of the economy where I tend to be in favor of them, if they’re commonsense and not intended to run private businesses, argued that the problem with money in Washington, has to do with power and money in Washington meaning the Federal Government. That the reasons why lobbyists lobby so much in Washington is the same reasons why bank robbers rob banks, because that’s where the money is. Since 1964 the Federal Government has only gotten bigger, with few exceptions in the 1990s. And since that time even if you want to go up to 1970 from 1964, we’ve also only seem more lobbyists in Washington.

My other take on this has to do with American voters themselves. One good definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results. You continue to vote for the same people to serve in Congress and vote for members that are corrupt or if you prefer bought and expect their behavior to change, you’re acting insane. U.S. Representatives and Senators, are not lifetime appointments. They go up for reelection every 2 and 6 years which gives their constituents the opportunity every 2 or 6 years to evaluate them and decide if they’re doing a good job or not. Are they of strong character and have strong qualifications to serve in the House or Senate, or are they lazy, vote against their constituents interests, and are corrupt or bought by the people who write them checks and finance their political campaigns.

So if you want to better politicians in America, you have to have better voters. And voters who stop voting for politicians because they like the smartphone the person uses, or because the politician is up to date on pop culture references, catch phrases, and entertainment in general, but who can be bought for a 100 bucks to vote this way or that way. And instead vote for candidates and incumbents who will do the job that they’re elected to which is to represent their constituents especially the people who can’t afford too write big checks to political campaigns.

And to go back to the Milton Friedman argument. You want fewer lobbyists in Washington, a good way to do that is to get money out of the Federal Government and decentralize a lot if not all the social insurance programs and allow for the states and localities to run them, under basic Federal standards to make sure those programs for the people who truly need them are run the way they’re supposed to be. Stopping running budget deficits in the hundreds of billions of dollars every year. And get the the country’s fiscal house in order.

A couple of things that Congress can do and the U.S. Supreme Court might do one of these things for Congress, since Congress probably won’t has to do with gerrymandering and full disclosure. Eliminate gerrymandering all together and you’ll make Congress at least in the House accountable. Because representatives will no longer be able to just run to a hyper-partisan faction in their district and instead will have to represent a district that is more balance politically and ideologically.

And the second one being which unfortunately qualifies for the good luck with that column, because it goes against current members of Congress own political interests , would be full disclosure off all political contributions in America, at least at the Federal level and force members and candidates, as well political action groups and lobbyists, to disclose how they’re funding their political campaigns. And let the voters decide if their politicians and candidates, are bought or not.

A lot of the so-called Washington swamp and lobbyists issue in Washington, goes to personal responsibility. Back to my definition of insanity about doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results, you keep voting for the same politicians and you’ll just get the same behavior and same policies. Which will probably be written by the lobbyists who make the biggest political contributions. But you vote for good qualified people instead and help them get elected and get them elected and you’ll get different policies that are designed to represent their constituents instead. And Congress if they decided to go against their current political interests, could be helpful here as well by eliminating all gerrymandering and passing full disclosure off all political contributions. But fixing Washington and Congress starts with the voters themselves.

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

David Frum’s Trumpocracy argues that thanks to President Donald Trump and perhaps other people and other things our liberal democracy and liberal democratic form of government is at risk. That Donald Trump represents a right-wing nationalist populist movement that puts their political and cultural values over everyone else and everything else. Including the U.S. Constitution. The one clue that you need to know about the Trump Nationalist Tea Party populist movement is not conservative, is that they’re not traditionalists. They don’t believe in conserving the status quo. They want to blow up the system and the Washington way of doing things and replace that system with their own political system which wouldn’t be democratic.

Just as political and current affairs junkie, I hate it when political commentators and reporters, call people Conservatives when they’re not conservative. The tax bill and budget that the Republican Congress passed in the last two months that will add trillions of dollars to the national debt and as a result we’re looking at a deficit of over a trillion-dollars next year which would be our first trillion-dollar deficit since 2012. Conservatives don’t borrow and spend and they don’t blow up tradition and the status quo. They protect and conserve the system that they’re part of because it works and they helped design it. Donald Trump represents an anti-conservative movement that is nationalist, tribalist, and authoritarian, that believes their movement are the real Americans and everyone else are Un-American.

Donald Trump by himself I don’t believe is as scary as people want to believe. As much as a wannabe nationalist dictator that he wants to be the problem is he operates in a system with checks and balances and still is part of a liberal democratic form of government and there real limits to what he can do by himself and he like no other President in American history is above the law. If he’s guilty of anything illegal or impeachable we’ll know about it and Congress will have an opportunity to act on that.

What people should really worry about are the people and voters that Donald Trump represents and the prospects for those people coming to power in America. Not just at the Federal level but the state and local levels which is more important, since a lot of members of Congress come from state and local government. And establish regimes that pass laws that make it close to impossible for members of the opposition to even vote. That is what we should worry about as people who believe in checks and balances and liberal democracy.

Politics & Prose: David Frum- Trumpocracy

Read Full Post »

Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

I agree with David C. Johnston that Donald Trump is not the disease in American politics, but a symptom. His presidency is an example of what can happen when Americans are literally so pissed off about American politics, American politicians, the lobbyists that they actually represent instead of the everyday American voters who work very hard for their living and proud of that.

Not just Independents but Democrats voted for Donald Trump. Far-Left-Wing Democrats and third-party voters who voted for Socialist Senator Bernie Sanders in the Democratic primaries for President, voted for Nationalist Republican Donald Trump for President. Who came out in favor of banning Muslims from entering America and a huge border wall that is supposed to be about two-thousand miles along and cover the entire American-Mexican border, even though no one actually believes that is even possible to accomplish let alone will ever happen, except for Donald Trump’s Far-right Breitbart Fox News voters. Even Donald Trump knows enough about immigration to know his wall won’t ever happen, but he’s also smart enough to know that his base doesn’t know that.

Think about that for a second. Socialists voting for a right-wing Nationalist for President, even though they had Green Party Socialist candidate Jill Stein, as an option to vote for President. Donald Trump for all of his weaknesses and lack of knowledge about everything other than how to make money for himself and entertainment, understands the American political system very well. Not the governmental system where he’s not even a student of American government at this point, but instead barely knows it exist and sees the U.S. Justice Department and White House Legal Counsel Office, as his personal law firms that are supposed to be in the business to only represent him.

But Trump is smart enough about American politics to know where American voters are at least on the right-wing side of it and not the Center-Right of the Republican Party, but the hardcore Right if not Far-Right. And he knows what he can do and has to do to get those voters to vote for him and support him. He also knows that there is this so-called Reagan Democrat wing in the Democratic Party who generally vote for Democrats for President and who voted overwhelmingly for Barack Obama for President twice, but that these voters haven’t been part of the economic recovery that we’ve been living though since 2009. And hate our American political system and the politicians that get elected for obvious reasons. And that Donald Trump completely represents the anti-political as well as government establishment in America.

Donald Trump represents what can happen when you have a Congress with a 15% approval rating. Where you have a large percentage of middle class workers who haven’t gotten a raise in twenty years, where corruption in politics and government looks like the norm instead of a surprise and for the Far-Right in America Trump represents what can happen when you have an America that looks like America which is the world ethnically and racially, instead of just looking like Europe.

All Donald Trump did in 2015-16 was to be smart enough to understand these things and be smart enough to take advantage of them. You want to get the Donald Trump’s of the world out of the American political system and more importantly out of the American government, you need better government and better people working in government especially at the top. And even more importantly you need better and smarter voters who vote for good people to represent them. Even if they tell them things and take positions that they don’t want to see and here from time to time.

Politics and Prose: David Cay Johnston- ‘It’s Even Worst Than You Think’

Read Full Post »

Attachment-1-1132

Source: The Ripon Society- Gregory Koger

Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

Before I get into the Republican hypocrisy about the Senate filibuster which is as loud as Metallica heavy metal concert unclose with no earplugs and as obvious as the Grand Canyon is big, I just want to get to the constitutional arguments about the Senate filibuster.

Article 1 of the U.S. Constitution grants all Federal legislative powers with Congress. Under the U.S. Constitution Congress writes their own rules. So the Senate decided to have a filibuster and cloture rule. The House decide to have an almost completely majoritarian framework in how they run their business. Which is both the right of the Senate and House of Representatives to write and enforce their rules the way they decide to. Whatever rules they make for themselves are constitutional. Its the laws that Congress passes together that are subjected to judicial rules by the Federal judiciary.

Now the more fun side of this debate. Where were GOP calls for eliminating the Senate filibuster and calling it unconstitutional the first two years of the Obama Administration when Democrats controlled Congress and even had 3/5 majorities in both the House and Senate? But under then Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and a few Senate Democrats as well, were still able to block some bills proposed and passed by House Democrats. Like extending Unemployment Insurance and additional stimulus bills to the economy. Senate Republicans were able to do this because they stayed inline and prevented Democrats from getting 3/5 majority vote in the Senate.

Or where was the GOP call to eliminate the filibuster from 2011-15 when there were two divided Congress’s because House Republicans won back the House in 2010 and held onto majority in 2012. With Senate Democrats keeping the Senate in 2010 and 2012? Senate Republicans with 47 and then later 45 members, were able to block a whole list of Obama Administration executive and later judicial appointments simply by preventing Senate Democrats from obtaining 60 votes. Which is why then Senate Leader Harry Reid eliminated the filibuster in 2013 on executive and judicial nominees.

There are very good reasons why Congress is more unpopular than traveling salesman, lawyers, trial lawyers and make conmen look like good decent moral people. One of those reasons is hypocrisy.

Members of Congress will say they believe in fiscal responsibility and even fiscal conservatism. Until they become fiscally responsible at least in the sense that they’re now in power and in control of the nation’s fiscal policy. They run against deficit spending when they’re in the opposition, especially when they’re in both the opposition and minority, which is where Republicans were in 2010 and 2011. And then whey come back into power which is where Republicans are now, deficits no longer seem to matter to them. Especially if they have political priorities and objectives and things they need to accomplish in order to get reelected in 2018.

Why try to pay for tax relief and tax reform and ask people to pay for those things with few government services, when you can just finance those things on the national credit card and get way with it, if they’re successful in passing it this year? Being in the political opposition is easy in the sense that you can complain all you want and not really pay any price for it. But governing is difficult because it means making decisions and risking offending groups that you may need to win reelection. Which is where the Trump Administration and Congressional Republicans find themselves now.

Republican complaints about the Senate filibuster today and Congress failing to move on anything because legislation getting blocked in the Senate, well their a couple of problems with that.

One, the House isn’t passing much if any legislation right now either. At least legislation that even Senate Republicans want to deal with. So maybe the GOP should look at their colleagues in the House when it comes to gridlock or their own Senate Leadership. But the second reason is more obvious and is nothing more than hypocrisy on a month long sugar high. The GOP was in favor of the filibuster when they were in the opposition, especially the opposition and minority, because they could use it to obstruct the Obama Administration and Congressional Republicans. Now they’re against it because they’re divided and can’t seem to find enough votes to even pass legislation with a simple majority, let alone a super majority. Opposition to the filibuster is nothing more than political hypocrisy at this point and a big example of why Americans hate politics and hate Congress.

Attachment-1-1133

Now This World: U.S. Senator Rand Paul

Now This World: Trace Dominguez- U.S. Senator Rand Paul: What Is a Filibuster?

Read Full Post »

29438685755_5455b144e9_o

“Without the emergence of the Christian-Right in the 1970s…”

Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

Without the emergence of the Christian-Right in the 1970s and 1980s, there is no Reform Party USA today. Why, because what is the Reform Party and what’s the point of it? The Reform Party is what the Republican Party use to be and what they believed in. Before they recruited the Christian-Right and broader Far-Right out of the Democratic Party and into the GOP. They use to believe in fiscal responsibility, economic freedom, strong but limited national defense and foreign policy that’s not designed to police the world and they were tolerant or federalist on social issues. Not believing that the Federal Government or government in general, should be used to tell how Americans should live their own lives and make their personal decisions for them. That was the GOP of the 1960s that Dwight Eisenhower essentially created in the 1950s, that Tom Dewey tried to create in the 1940s. That also had a growing conservative-libertarian wing in it led by Barry Goldwater and others.

If Donald Trump takes down the Republican Party in November and they lose the House as well as the Senate and he decides to take his movement with him and perhaps launches a new third-party and perhaps some nationalist party, the Reform Party could become relevant for the first time since Ross Perot launched this movement in the early 1990s. Along with the Libertarians and this is how the Republican Party could become a national party again that can win the presidency, because it would have the members and voters, to compete for the presidency and not need gerrymandered House districts to hold a majority in the House. Or low turnout elections to win a majority in the Senate, because again they would have the voters to be able to compete with Democrats everywhere. Or perhaps the GOP dies and the Reform Party emerges as the new Center-Right party in America. And brings in Libertarians and Northeastern Conservative Republicans.

The Reform Party, to me at least represents the Republican Party when it wasn’t owned by the Christian-Right and broader Far-Right in America. A party where the Ku Klux Klan and other Far-Right European-American nationalist groups, didn’t feel at home in. Because it was a big-tent party that welcomed African-Americans, Latin-Americans, Jewish-Americans, women, Catholics, immigrants, etc. Where it was the party of Abraham Lincoln, Dwight Eisenhower, Ronald Reagan and yes even Barry Goldwater. Not Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, David Duke, Donald Trump, or the Tea Party. A party that could not only competed in the Northeast with moderate-conservative Republicans, but in the Midwest and the West with Conservative-Libertarians and even California, but in the South as well. And could win high turnout elections, because it had the members and voters to compete everywhere with the Democratic Party. That is no longer the case for the GOP today.

Read Full Post »

Non-Voter

Non-Voter

Source: Meg Rifter: George Carlin: Maybe it’s Not The Politicians Who Suck?

I partially agree with George Carlin on this. Our politicians actually do suck in way too many cases. I think that is obvious when you have a Congress that can’t get its basic responsibilities taken care of. Like gee I don’t know, funding the government that they are part of. Or paying the bills that has been run up on the debt, which is what a debt ceiling extension actually is. Not an agreement to borrow more money, just to pay the interest on the current debt. And you could add other examples of how members of Congress in both parties treat each other. Like the majority not allowing the minority opportunities to offer amendments and other examples like that. But just in case people who aren’t insomniacs actually read this, I don’t want to put everyone else to sleep with what is called in Washington Congressional speak. Language that only the House and Senate uses.

I completely disagree with George Carlin on his notion that non-voters have every right to complain. Sure, according to the First Amendment they do, which is all that they need. But for people to be taken seriously, they have to sound credible. And if you’re not doing everything you can to improve government and the least you can do is to bother voting, you can’t credibly complain about politicians who are on office now, because you were too busy complaining, or sitting on your ass at home, or at a coffee-house, perhaps watching celebrity TV all day, getting drunk, masturbating, whatever it might be and not voting. Had Democrats bothered to turn out in 2010 and 2014 anywhere near the numbers they did in 2008 and 2012, what Tea Party revolution? Republicans rely on low voter turnout to get elected and reelected. There are still more Democrats than Republicans in America. What Republican gerrymandering if Democrats held onto all of those legislatures and governorships in 2010?

I realize I’m coming at this from a Democratic vantage point, but here’s a newsflash. I’m a Democrat and I’m not saying this to put Republicans down, but Democratic voters don’t have much to complain about when they don’t vote for Democrats. Especially when their reasoning is that they don’t like Center-Left establishment Democrats and that the candidate, or incumbent is not in love with government and doesn’t have a new tax or government program to take care of everyone’s problems for them. Or is not as Far-Left as the Green, or Democratic Socialist candidate. Democrats, won back Congress in huge numbers in 2006, because Republicans didn’t bother voting. This works both ways. If you don’t do the very least that you can do to improve government and get the best possible people to represent you, which is bothering to vote and the person you most not rather see wins that office, whose fault is that? All the opposition did was show up and win and beat a party that didn’t bother to vote.

If you don’t like the current field of candidates, run yourself, or encourage someone who you think would be a good candidate to run and then work for that person. Assuming that you caught them when they were drunk, or high, or had a gun pointed at their head (that wasn’t filled with water) and agreed to run for that office. But a big reason why we have politicians who suck is because we have voters who suck themselves and maybe we should require all voters to pass a sobriety test, or eye examination before voting. But other reasons why we have politicians who suck is because we have voters in name only. People who are registered to vote, but who don’t bother voting at all. And as a result we get politicians, because of a low voter turnout who would’ve lost badly had we just had a decent voter turnout for that election. Who represent a small faction of the country and wouldn’t have won any other way.

Read Full Post »

Mondale-Ferraro

Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat Plus

1984 was almost unfair to the Democrats because they had no one who can beat Ronald Reagan and they probably knew that going in. If you look at where the country was in 1980 and where it was in 1984, it certainly wasn’t good, but the country was feeling much better than it was in 1984 than in 1980. Imagine waking up with a head cold or the flu and then waking up the next morning with a cold. You aren’t feeling great, the next morning with the cold and perhaps a stuffed nose and cough. But at least the headache is gone and you’re no longer vomiting every hour were able to sleep the whole night. Well that is how the country felt in 1984 with Ron Reagan compared with 1980 with Jimmy Carter.

1984 was what the what the hell year for Democrats. “Hey I can’t win so I might as well run for president, because what do I have to lose”. Which I believe was one of Walter Mondale’s campaign themes that year. “Vote for me, what do you have to lose?” 1984 was for Democrats what 1964 and 96 was for Republicans. The country not feeling great, but much b
etter off than it did four years earlier. And when that is the case the party in power tends to get reelected. And if that party holds at least one chamber of Congress as well, they not only hold their majority in the House or Senate, but tend to add to it as well. Which is what Senate Republicans did in 84.

It is too bad for Democrats in 84 because they had at least two good candidates. And if Gary Hart was just able to communicate what he believed in 84, the Mondale line of “where’s the beef” doesn’t play as well or is even used. Because Democrats tended to like Gary Hart and did other Americans, but with Mondale they knew him and knew where he was on the issues. He was the safe choice especially considering they knew he wasn’t going to win anyway, but at least Fritz wasn’t going to embarrass them. Ron Reagan was something special as a politician and when things were going well under his leadership or at least perceived that way, he was almost impossible to beat. Which is what Democrats found out in 1984.

Mark Russell PBS: Mark Russell Looks Back at Campaign 84

 

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

%d bloggers like this: