Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Why Not a Referendum on the Democratic Party?

Political pundits are wondering how Republicans should position their debate coming into the 2012 election cycle.

Should it be on policy or on the records of individual politicians?

My preference would be to highlight the recent practices of the Democratic Party and put them up for evaluation by our electorate. We need to find out if our current political atmosphere is “right” for America.

To put this in perspective, look at some recent events. Does it seem appropriate that every domestic and foreign policy issue has to be examined from the standpoint of what benefit it can bring to the power and authority of the Democratic Party? Rising fuel costs, unrest in the Middle East and governmental spending all must be examined in two ways: What is right for the country, and what does it do to enhance the power and authority of the Democratic Party.

Many Americans don’t see a problem with this stance. After all, it’s just politics…and elections have consequences. But shouldn’t it be discussed?

There are so many examples from the last few years: President Obama closes the Guantanamo Bay detention facility, or does he? His timing and actions are based on what increases the power and authority of the Democratic Party.

Attorney General Eric Holder tells us he makes decisions in the context of “my people.” You might think that would refer to people with dark skin tone, but he would not be including Condoleezza Rice, Herman Cain or Clarence Thomas. His “people” are those who support the Democratic Party.

Rahm Emanuel doesn’t want to allow a “crisis to go to waste.” He extracts additional power and authority for the Democratic Party at each and every opportunity.

One gets the feeling that our country is being used as a “prop.” We are watching events unfold that clearly do not promote the general welfare. Shouldn’t we be discussing whether “the Democratic Party way” is what we want as “The American Way”?

And then there is something more sinister at work.

Our country is beset with the constant theme that “Republicans are Bad People.” Individuals such as Representative Steve Cohen characterize Republicans as liars over the use of the terminology “government takeover of healthcare.” A more accurate phrase might be “government control of healthcare,” but then I don’t think Representative Cohen wishes to debate the issue. His point is to characterize Republicans as bad people, and he does that by calling out Republicans as “liars.”

Cultures in the Middle East teach their citizenry to hate people of non-Muslim beliefs, characterizing the infidels as being impure. That makes for effective politics, but is it something that we need to emulate in America? Making sure Republicans are stigmatized as racist, homophobic bigots might be effective politics, but is it the direction we want our political discourse to take? (NPR, what do you think?)

Isn’t it time to turn these “rhetorical questions” into a referendum before the electorate?

Let the debate begin…and then let’s have America vote!

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