Well, the Senate has finally hammered out a new debt deal to raise the debt ceiling and fund an increasingly non-essential government. So if the House passes the legislation, everything in Washington will be hunky dory. Except for one small detail overlooked by pretty much everyone in the Senate but Rand Paul: You can’t spend what you ain’t got. “Au contraire, Senator Paul,” says Washington, “we’ve been spending what we ain’t got for years.”1
This debt deal sets one thing in high relief: our political reality is quickly dispersing the illusory two-party fog. Usually we give different names to different things to distinguish them from one another. Some designations become redundant over time (like “scallions” and “green onions,” for example), while other single designations could use a few more distinctions (like “government”). In that line, Republican has become a synonym for Democrat. And both words are quickly becoming synonyms for “lying, greedy coward.” We have two names. We need only one.
And “Republican” needs to be better distinguished as well. There are maybe a handful of actual republicans left in the Republican party. Those who take the name and talk the talk but never walk the walk (the so-called RINOs) need to be called what they are. I will leave to your discretion the level of explicit language necessary for that new moniker.
Consider for a moment Mitch McConnell, the Republican Senate minority leader from Kentucky (keep this state in mind), who spear-headed the most recent debt deal with Senate majority leader Harry Reid. I’m sure this is purely coincidental, but the deal ended up including an earmark worth a few billion dollars for a public works project in… wait for it… Kentucky. This Paducah dam project has been a little pet of McConnell’s for quite some time. So this debt deal smells suspiciously of bribes/compromise/selling out. In other words, this “new” debt deal smells suspiciously of Washington.
Japan has one party (the ridiculously named Liberal Democratic Party). There are factions within that party, but no one pretends that the factions are based on a disagreement of principles. These factions are all about a hierarchy of current power, and a bandwagoning to get more. Members of factions hitch their wagons to the people they think will be able to get and do more for them.
It’s beyond time we recognize that the American system is fundamentally no different. We don’t have two parties, with two platforms, operating from two distinct ideological and political frameworks. We have one party, with a couple of petty factions squabbling over who gets the biggest piece of the taxpayer’s pie.
And I for one think we should get rid of the whole lot. Don’t vote out the same for more of the same. Let’s actually say something worth saying come next election. Don’t let fear and guilt manipulation force your hand to the Republican side of the ballot box. Don’t vote for either party. Vote for men who have proven that they stand on principle and conviction.
- Just so no one gets me wrong, I think we needed a plan to pay our debts and end the government “shutdown.” This debt deal attempts to address the latter without addressing the former. That’s stupid and irresponsible. [↩]