Polarization

Demonization and Polarization Gone Amuck: The Attacks On Hillary Clinton

The demonization and polarization that has developed around Hillary Clinton has gone amuck!

No public figure has been put through so much character assassination and disrespect as the dignified, courageous next President of the United States.

She has been accused of corruption, malfeasance, and every crime that any sick, demented person can conjure up.

She has faced the most dangerous and mentally unstable opponent in all of American history, but has refused to get down into the gutter with Donald Trump.

She faces the likelihood of possible investigation and impeachment by vengeful, despicable Republicans, but she will emerge with her grace and reputation unsullied, except by the lowest scum imaginable in the extremist right wing party that the Republicans have become.

She will fight tooth and nail for the American people, and will continue the great work of the 44th President, Barack Obama, who has campaigned for her like no previous President has done for his designated successor of his party.

A great moment is coming on Tuesday night, probably by 11 pm, and the decent people in America will rejoice in the election of the first woman President of the United States, and the 45th President!

Rapidly Growing Polarization Threatens Safety Of President Obama And Vice President Biden!

As the fury and anger of critics of President Obama and Vice President Biden on so many issues—the debt ceiling, gun control legislation, Cabinet nominees, gay rights, immigration reform, climate change, and foreign policy controversies (including a nuclear Iran, the Syrian Civil War, Afghanistan, Pakistan, North Korea)— continues to escalate to dangerous emotional levels, the safety of both men is, more than ever, a subject of great concern not often directly talked about publicly.

The argument could be that both the President and Vice President have exceptional Secret Service security, and that we need not worry.

But as one realizes as we begin the 50th anniversary of the John F. Kennedy assassination this coming November 22, no security detail can guarantee the safety of any President, Vice President, or anyone else.

There is always the “lone wolf” out there, ready to sacrifice himself to gain glory, to make a political point, to act out hatred of someone, knowing they will be part of the American history story forever, as much as John Wilkes Booth, Charles Guiteau, Leon Czolgosz and Lee Harvey Oswald—the assassins of Abraham Lincoln, James Garfield, William McKinley, and John F. Kennedy, respectively!

And the rhetoric that has become “normal” these days is far greater than it was even when John F. Kennedy was traveling to Dallas, Texas, almost 50 years ago.

And we have talk show hosts on radio and Fox News Channel who thrive on building hate and animosity and conspiracy theories, and will stop at nothing in their hateful and divisive rhetoric!

And we have the power of pressure groups, and not just the National Rifle Association, but many others, who ratchet up the stress and tension by making it seem like the world will end, due to the federal government passing legislation or extending executive authority, as if we are Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, the Soviet Union, or Communist China, when our history and our heritage have nothing to do with the history of those nations!

As we come up to the second inauguration of Barack Obama and Joe Biden, we all need to do a lot of praying that the polarization which exists will not lead to a greater tragedy which solves nothing, and just would show the depths of the threats we face from right wing wingnuts who want to set back the progress of America, and are delusional about the world they live in!

Two Prestigious Scholars Blame The Republican Party For The Stalemate In The 112th Congress

Two well known scholars, Thomas Mann of the Brookings Institution and Norman J. Ornstein of the American Enterprise Institute, have recently published a book and authored articles criticizing the Republican Party for the stalemate in the 112th Congress.

The Republican Party is blamed for its refusal to hold members of their party in Congress accountable for their wild statements; is seen as totally against compromise; refuses to accept facts, evidence and science; lacks respect for the legitimacy of the opposition party and its members; and is so far outside the mainstream as to be alarming for any hope of accomplishment of any goals or programs!

The two people most responsible for this extremism are former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, and Grover Norquist of the Americans for Tax Reform. But also the filibuster has been abused in the Senate, and prevented many executive branch appointments from being confirmed, both in the government agencies and in the court system.

The reaction to Roe V. Wade after 1973 mobilized social conservatives, while the tax revolt in California in 1978 mobilized anti tax activists. Also, the South turned conservative Republican after the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s; and the rise of conservative talk radio, and the growing impact of Fox News on cable, also had a great impact on what has become a growing stalemate and gridlock.

Health care reform, climate change, economic recovery, deficits, and debt issues have become a chasm between the two major political parties. Polarization has become the norm, and is a dangerous trend which may continue, if the voters again send a confusing message of a divided Congress in the 2012 Congressional elections. The Tea Party movement, if it grows, will further create conflict at a time when we need negotiation and compromise!

This assessment is extremely worrisome, as it means that our national government may be totally paralyzed, when we need true statesmen in both parties dealing with our important national agenda!