The Debt Deal: America

By YeOldeScribe ~ August 25th, 2011 @ 10:53 pm

The title is kind of funny, we know. But it makes sense if you look at the series as a whole. We’ve been talking about the debt deal in relation to specific groups or people – first the Republicans, then the Democrats, and yesterday President Obama. Today, we’re looking at what the American people did to get us in the mess, what they did during the crisis, and what the crisis says about our future.

Before the Crisis

The biggest reason we’re in such a big mess right now is all thanks to the Republican propaganda machine – and because the general public was hoodwinked into/stupid enough to listen to them. Republicans successfully re-named the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act into “Obamacare”. From there, they incorrectly convinced the nation that “Obamacare” was socialism, that it would cost the country billions, and that it would force all of us into state-run health care. From there, the public reacted. And it’s quite clear now they over-reacted.

America has always been a system of reactionary politics. Something bad happens, we fix it. Someone attacks us, we attack them. People get sick, we provide money for them to get treated. It’s the way our system (and really all political systems) work. However, our reactionary nature is one reason we’re in this mess.

See, by lying to the public and brewing up America’s hatred for all things Russian in a way that only Joseph McCarthy could appreciate, the Republicans tied the PPACA to Obama’s leg, and it sank him and his Democrats in the 2010 mid-term elections. The public responded to “Obamacare” by telling Democrats exactly what they thought of the program at the ballot box. In this way, the party that gave birth to the Tea Baggers was probably the Democrats and not the Republicans – without their push for the PPACA, Tea Baggers would have nothing to hang their hats on – or at least the movement would not have picked up as much steam as it did.

But you know the story from here – Republicans take over (with the help of Tea Baggers), they refuse to negotiate on anything, world goes to hell. Yeah, if you voted Republican even if you usually don’t because you were upset at the PPACA, we’re blaming you (at least in part) for the mess our nation is in. Sorry, but if those idiots hadn’t been elected in the first place, they wouldn’t have had the chance to screw things up as badly as they did (unless you think Russ Fiengold would really have voted against the deal like our buddy Ron Johnson did).

During the Crisis

One of the things we failed to talk about yesterday that we feel was a stroke of genius on the part of Obama was when he reached out to the American people, telling them to contact their Congressmen and women to urge them to agree on a compromise. We thought it was a good ploy, but that not many people would take him up on the offer. We were wrong, once again. People – especially seniors – showed up en masse to Rep. Reid Ribble’s offices, demanding answers as to why Ribble and his Republicans were so opposed to a seemingly reasonable compromise. The line actually stretched well outside his office, and those in attendance were overwhelmingly not supportive of the Republican’s hardline stance. That’s the only office we saw with our own eyes, but we’re told that scene was repeated across Wisconsin, as well as across the whole nation. To that, we say “Good job, America!” Seriously, it shouldn’t take things as significant as a government shutdown or a financial crisis to get people off their asses and into their elected representatives offices, whether that’s in person, on the phone or via email (and actually, you don’t even need to get off your ass for the last two).

Our only other thing of note was that a lot of people actually started paying a small amount of attention to political happenings because of this debacle. That’s a very good thing, and we’d hope that as more people become frustrated with government that they continue to follow it so that representative change is made. But one thing that really drives us nuts is people who think that, after watching an hour of The O’Riley Factor (or an hour of The Rachel Maddow show) that they’re experts on the subject. We’d like to think that our writer is fairly educated on the subject, but even he won’t profess to be a high-ranking official when it comes to the inner working of our nation’s economy and debt structure. Again, people became so polarized on this issue because they refused to do any of their own research, they refused to even consider that they were wrong, and they refused to listen to any point of view except their own.

What it All Means

You’re probably tired of hearing it, so we’ll just say it once: we’re in for a rough few years in politics. If you need more explanation as to why, feel free to check any of our previous Debt Deal posts.

More than that, America’s actions (combined with other indicators, such as the recall elections in WI) are early signals that America is less than pleased with Republicans and the Tea Party. Yes, we gave the proverbial reins to the Republicans in the hope that they’d rein in Obama’s power, which they did. But they were not elected to create gridlock, to be the party of “NO” and nearly drive our country into economic ruin on multiple occasions. In this way, America is reacting again – this time to spite the Republicans instead of supporting them. Sure, there will always be Republican supporters just as there will always be Democratic supporters. But the centrists and moderates are seeing that Obama and the Democrats are the ones getting things done, even though the Republicans are being bratty little kids about the whole situation. The Repubs are being children because they’re essentially complaining about the size of the piece of cake they got for their birthday, while Obama and the Democrats are saying “At least you got cake!”

Tomorrow, we’ll conclude this series by taking a look at Wis. Sen. Ron Johnson’s decision to vote against the Debt Deal Bill. Here’s a (shocking) preview: Johnson is a dumbass and made a dumbass decision.

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