Day: May 22, 2012

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!

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul’s Loony Budget Proposal: A “Clear And Present Danger”!

One of the worst results of the midterm Congressional elections of 2010 was the election of Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky, the son of Texas Congressman and Presidential candidate Ron Paul.

Rand Paul, an optometrist who is not certified by the national organization in the field of optometry, but instead by his own self created association, and who was ranked as the worst Senator in oral discourse in Congress, with an average of only 8.0, eighth grade language, has been seeking to raise his libertarian image within the Republican Party, and is clearly looking to run for President in the future, based on his father’s reputation, and his own,. even more loony, ideas.

Like his father, Rand Paul is an isolationist and a small government man, and he has no concern about the effects of massive cuts in the federal budget.

So last week, he proposed a budget that would totally destroy the whole direction of the nation in an extremist way. absolutely nuts!

What did Paul propose?

A cut in the Social Security payments of 40 percent to all recipients.
End the Medicare program as we know it in two years.
Reduce defense spending by $100 billion below a level considered “devastating” by the Pentagon.
Eliminate the Education, Energy, Housing and Urban Development, and Commerce Departments.
Dramatically cut the Homeland Security Department.
Cut programs for the poor in a radical fashion.
Give tax cuts to the wealthy, lowering rates to 17 percent, and eliminate all taxes on capital gains and dividends.

The vote in the Senate was 83-16 against this radical, crazy plan of Rand Paul. The fact that fifteen Senators joined Paul in backing this most reckless plan is scary beyond belief.

It is clear that Rand Paul is a “clear and present danger” to our future, and must be resisted in every way possible to prevent any chance of him being a serious factor in future Congressional leadership battles and Presidential ambitions.

Paul makes other right wing Republicans look sane by comparison, which makes any intelligent person totally terrified of what this crazy libertarian stands for, sadly backed by many who have no concept of how dangerous this Kentucky Senator has the potential to be in the future!

The Crash And Burning Of Cory Booker: The End Of National Leadership Potential!

Just a few weeks ago, it looked as if Newark, New Jersey Mayor Cory Booker had a great political future, thought to be likely to challenge New Jersey Governor Chris Christie for re-election in 2013, and maybe to become a possible Presidential candidate in 2016.

This author theorized that Booker could become the successor to Barack Obama, and be the second consecutive African American President of the United States.

It is now time to say forget it, as that is NOT going to happen!

Mayor Booker ruined his political future in one fell swoop when he went on Meet the Press on Sunday morning, and openly criticized the Obama campaign’s argument that Mitt Romney’s experience at Bain Capital, primarily concerned with maximizing of profit over people and survival of specific businesses, was a negative that disqualified Romney to be President of the United States. Booker disagreed with the attack on equity capital, venture capital, saying he found it “nauseating”, stunning David Gregory, the host of Meet the Press, and the rest of the panel that was on the program Sunday morning.

Later, Booker backed off on his criticism, and also went on Rachel Maddow’s show on MSNBC last evening, protesting the way the Republican Party is now using his statement to help their own campaign and attack Obama.

Unfortunately, it is too late once you have left, symbolically, the toothpaste out of the tube, as it cannot be put back!

We have now learned that Bain Capital helped to finance Booker’s campaign for Mayor, and he is, therefore, already tainted, so do not expect him to go further than, maybe, re-election to be mayor of Newark.

Booker turns out to have made a fatal error that cannot be reversed, and if, by some chance, Mitt Romney wins the Presidency, this moment will be seen as the moment that Romney gained an edge, all due to a Democratic mayor who was fatally flawed by his own blunders and personal association with Bain Capital.

What a sad ending to a promising political career, stained by connection to equity capital which he should have rejected, but was too tempted by the offer of support, and, therefore, lost his principles!