11.11.2006

GOP Takes a Spanking

Ok, so this is a new direction for the blog. Truth is, I frequently have lots more on my mind besides the cub, and I'm thinking I may write more if I broaden the horizons here a little. Plus, it's more interesting for me to write about all the things a Type "A" Mama might have on her mind. So here goes.

One thing - my politics go pretty far to the left. Not as far as communism - I do, after all, represent profitable businesses and anyone who's had the opportunity to negotiate on the other side of a deal with me knows how seriously I take the "profitable" part of my job. And there are some things I just don't think the government ought to be properly involved in. Like telling people who they are allowed to fall in love and build a family with, for instance. Which brings me back full circle (these days) to the left end of the spectrum. Just so you know where I'm coming from.

I'd like to think that the recent election sweep for Democrats indicates a more socially progressive nation than I had hitherto dared hope for, but I don't think so. I think, rather, that it reflects the very deep American pragmatism that comes to play in our political decisions. Americans will vote based on cultural values when everything else important is more or less taken care of. But when things are going seriously awry - corruption, an unpopular war, repeated failures of leadership, crippling health care costs - they'll fire whoever's in office and bring in a new guy, even if there's disagreement about abortion, gay marriage and stem cell research.

I hope that the Democrats will recognize that their mandate now is to govern. Which means rolling up their shirt sleeves, extending an open hand across the aisle, and starting to put solutions into place that never would have been passed in the all-GOP Congress. Start to seriously consider a single-payer system for goodness' sake. Raise the minimum wage. Create a sensible path to citizenship for immigrants that separates the contributors from the criminals. Invest heavily in efforts to reduce greenhouse gasses and dependence on foreign fossil fuels. Increase funding to education and provide tax relief for college tuition.

Get to work.

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