This really isn’t a piece completely thought out. It’s more of a rant if anything. A rant out of frustration at many things. I’ll might come back and reflect on this later, but these are my feelings at the time of writing this.
Last night was the first Tuesday in November, and, in America, that only means it was time for another election. As the Democratic-controlled Congress and President Obama didn’t hand every American a job in the two years after being elected since the start of a recession three years ago, the American people did the only logical thing it could: vote back in the other party that originally lead us to this mess to begin with. Because, as we all know, the American people are really that stupid.
But I don’t blame the American people for that. And I don’t blame the Republicans nor the Democrats for that. Is there really anyone to blame?
Overall, I’m not really disappointed that the Republicans now control the house. The Republicans did what any person trying to get ahead would do: take advantage of an opportunity. The American public have been suffering from this terrible recession even before the Democrats were voted into office (that’s just one thing that lead to the original wave of “change”). Some of us have been looking for employment for over a year (myself included) and still have not been able to secure a job. The Republicans simply took advantage of this apathy in the voices of America and ran with it. It makes sense and I cannot blame them for that. That’s the whole idea about campaigning for a public office. You feel something is wrong and think you can do it better than the guy that’s suppose to be fixing it.
I’m not really disappointed that the Democrats couldn’t get everything done that they wanted. Although the Democrats had the majority in both houses of Congress, they really didn’t have a true majority thanks to some in fighting in the House and the ridiculous and mathematically incorrect “60 is really more than half, not 51” filibuster rule in the Senate. In fighting within one’s own party is going to happen no matter what side you’re on. To think that in a group of hundreds of people that nobody will disagree with you is stupid. But that doesn’t change the fact that the Democrats still don’t know how on earth to build support for their causes. Instead of capitalizing on the various things they DID get accomplished, they idling sat on their thumbs and did nothing (a common characteristic of Democrats). If you’ve done something that both sides of the aisle agree is great for the American people, then say something about it! It’s okay to brag every once in a while.
I’m not disappointed in the American people. When it comes to elections, we’re usually given only two choices: the guy or gal to your left and the guy or gal to your right. The person on your left is an incredible accountant and has shown line-by-line just how we can get rid of the deficit without affecting any services, but thinks cooties is a real epidemic and wants to use all our resources to find a cure to it. While the person on your right has a miracle solution to ending poverty while still able to give major tax cuts to everyone without increasing the deficit, but also hates babies and puppies. These two, out of everyone in America, somehow are considered the best two people for the job, and we’re told it’s either one or the other.
“But there are more than just two parties, Travis” you’re probably saying to me. You’re right. There are Libertarians, the Green Party, and the up and coming Tea Party. Although I’m not a supporter of the Tea Party, I welcomed them as they actually showed promise as a viable third party, something the Libertarians and Green Party just haven’t been able to do. Yet they rallied under the banner of one of the political parties they said weren’t being conservative enough. For a party that wasn’t happy with their own party (as well as others), it seemed to go against their anti-establishment stance.
How many elections do we have to go through with someone saying “I’m going to Washington and going to show those Washington elitist what the Americans really care about!” only for that person to become exactly what they said they were going to fight. It’s a disease. Washington has an incurable disease called “Politicians”. No matter how many people claim to have found the cure, it’s really only snake oil.
There’s no real way to judge a voter’s distaste of all candidates listed on the ballot. You can’t compare the number of registered voters and the actual number of people who voted as we don’t now how many of those registered voters were just lazy and didn’t feel like voting. We’re not given the choice of “None of the Above” in any races, which would give us a true official number of our dislike for the available candidates. So, we continue on with our “This or That” voting mentality and never question it at all.
Then there’s the rhetoric. Everyone this year wanted to “take our country back”. Back from what? Did the British reclaim the United States as theirs and started taxing our tea? Was there a Martian invasion overnight and we’re now ruled by Xorglos, high-commander of Mars? No. We’re still America. We’re still bound by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. None of that has changed. So don’t give me this crap about “taking back our country”. But Americans love catch phrases. You can only hear someone spit out catch phrases from “The Mask” and “Ace Ventura” for so long before you punch them in the face (not that I’m speaking from experience from high school or anything). But these slogans and catch phrases work on the American people or else they wouldn’t be repeated over and over and over again.
President Obama mentions often that there are some things in bills that Republicans and Democrats can agree upon. Then why not pass the parts you agree upon and continue hammering out the rest instead of just saying “all or nothing”. You both come out looking good because both sides were able to show they can work together. But it seems like our “representatives” just want someone to look like the bad guy so they can get more of their buddies in office. How is that serving the American people? I’d much rather take the small victories that will make this country a better place than overall sweeping changes that can divide this country even more. Something is better than nothing. But I guess that would make sense.
We are in the 21th century. Look at the silly crap that Americans vote for already. We vote for D-List celebs dancing with professionals. We vote on unknown people with incredible singing talents. Look at the social interaction we’ve created with services like Twitter and Facebook. I find it hard to believe we haven’t figured out how to build upon things like this and give the American people a true voice in how and what happens in this country. It’s obviously we can’t rely on the people we vote in that are suppose to “represent” us.
But I’m the minority here. I don’t get swayed by silly slogans, over-the-top half-the-story attack ads, and promises that cannot be backed up. I like being rational as much as I can. I like trying to think things through. I want to see both sides of the story with solid facts (not opinion) and make a clear decision. But that doesn’t win votes in this country. It’s all about who has the most money. It’s all about who can shout the loudest. It’s all about pandering.
The Democrats wanted to bring change. The Republicans want to bring change. The American people need change. But nothing ever changes. Every year, it’s the same thing.
If anything has changed, it’s that I just don’t care anymore.