Friday, November 05, 2010

Lessons Not Learned

What Democrats and Republicans have learned or not learned from this mid-term election is open to question. There is one thing that is for sure, Americans did not get what they wanted. The argument will now be about what it was that they didn't get.

I'm getting to listen to Dan Boren (D-OK) talk about how the Caucus needs to move to "the center." This is the kind of thing I'd expect from someone with seriously limited intellect and the news media in general. This is the kind of stupidity that reads getting blown out of the House as disdain for liberalism rather than fury over lack of accomplishment. This in the face of huge accomplishments.

You wouldn't know it from the polling. The Democrats own the Bankster Bailouts, Ds will raise your taxes - despite lowering them, health care death panels, failed socialism. Ask yourself why clear untruths are held valid by voters. It would seem that Democrats were really bad at letting voters know what they were trying to do, what they had done, and how it benefitted Amvericans. They were particularly bad at letting the GOP set the terms of the debate. You would think that with about 1/3 of the stimulus cost being tax cuts and voted against by the GOP that voters might think differently about who is on their side economically. Nope. Wall Street reform legislation was almost totally opposed by the GOP and yet ... anger at banks landed on Democrats.

I'll lay you a bet, the damn Democrats will attempt some move to the Right in response to their own ineptitude at communication.

Republicans And Governance

I don't know if voters last Tuesday were thinking about national outcomes, local politics, or just pissed off and it really doesn't matter in relation to governance. The reason it doesn't matter is that whatever voters wanted the result is an over 50 vote House Republican majority. It may matter later, but the result is what matters now. The House is Republican while the Senate and White House remain Democratic and the House is not Republican enough to over-ride a White House veto.

Nothing can get to the White House for signing that doesn't pass the Senate and to even be considered, as the Republicans demonstrated so willingly, there must be enough votes to defeat a filibuster. As far as legislation goes, the House Republicans are helpless without serious Democratic help. The House knows this even if the public doesn't really pay enough attention to understand it. The House Republicans are free to pass any kind of stupidity they choose without having to pay for it in the real world. This also means that they are pretty free to not pass anything that pleases them. That little piece should bring to mind the subject of the budget. That could mean real havoc.

The matter of the House taking up whatever investigations it pleases has concerned some. It is quite true that Committees could harass the White House with stupid pointless unfounded investigations. It is also true that a twenty four hour news cycle needs to be fed and the feeding opportunities presented by such are large. Here's the rub for some of the whackoes, there are other news outlets than FauxNews and they are capable of reporting the actual allegations made by someone like Issa about a President most Americans find personally likable. Public perception that pure mischief making is at work would have huge public relations costs. That might or might not dissuade some but outcomes rule, either dissuasion from game playing or public backlash over it. The media might play the game of false equivalence that such and such was investigated under BushCo ... but even stating the issues investigated will blow up stupidity in front of viewers. I really don't think I'm overestimating either media or the public. I really don't care if folks like Issa are stupid or not and I'm not real worried about a bit of White House harassment.

The real deal is that no matter what representations John Boehner may make about how they'll affect the direction of the nation, their options are seriously limited. Considering the limits and Boehner's knowledge of them, I'm real doubtful that he has any idea of doing anything more than shooting for political advantage and that may be more illusive than Boehner and other pundits seem to think. GOP blindness to its own public image weaknesses could lead them off a cliff.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Voted Today

I turned in my OR vote by mail ballot today. Sometimes I turn it in days after receiving it sometimes on Election Day - for no special reason. Voting here is easy to do and was easy choices this time. I won't talk about the loca races or initiatives but it was easy to vote for Sen Wyden (D) and even easier to vote agains Rep Greg Walden (R-OR02) and Dudley (R) for Gov. It isn't as though John Kitzhaber (D) former Gov and running for it again has shown a lot of interest in E OR but he's running against a know-nothing same old (R).

It's pretty much the same across the nation, but it looks as though stupid same old crap or crazy wing crap are the beneficiaries of vote against. Damn, I'd like to talk about how special Democrats have been these last two years, but that'd be ... well, difficult. It isn't as though they haven't gotten things done, but somehow they managed to do it while pissing off people on both sides and not even pleasing the so-called middle. You'd think that would require real effort.

I won't make predictions about Election Day outcomes other than that whatever majorities (D)s have had will be much smaller. It was a bit tempting to just sit back and not vote to let crazy have its run and maybe finally teach this country a lesson. But no, that isn't in my nature - for some reason I keep believing (an emotional response) that people will get it, eventually without too much suffering. Thinking might easily lead me a different direction, so we'll let that go.

Announcing that this blog is probably done resulted in more comments on one article than a month's worth have gotten. I'm not that much concerned that a dozen or fifty or a thousand read this thing, but I don't like talking to myself. I have no idea if I'm just a crazy guy yelling or if people agree or not and can expand on my thoughts. This election has stirred a lot of things up and I'm not the only one around with feelings and thoughts on it and I'm curious. I'm always curious and some have stated that they'd have commented if they'd known it mattered. As a vanity project this thing can just go away and this is as good a post to say "Good-night."