Letter: Maybe voters are to blame for the shutdown
October 11, 2013
To the Editor:
Why can't our federal Congress act like adults? Why can't they get along? Why can't they compromise? And the beat goes on.
Well folks, I've got news for you. Congress is not some amorphous blob that ever acts with a single mind. There are real differences between the parties and the 435 House members and the 100 Senators, each with an individual mind. This has always been true, but is truer now than ever. Why? Because one party increasingly believes that the Federal government is the solution to all our problems. One party believes in the individual being responsible for their own problems. One party thus believes in the "government solution" and the other in "limited government." One party naturally needs higher taxes and/or debt to pay for the nanny government and the other does not. One party believes in "going left" while the other in "going right." This is somewhat like 535 people in Omaha, some wanting to go to the Atlantic Ocean and some wanting to go to the Pacific Ocean and the rest of us saying "why can't they compromise." All this while the President doesn't take the lead, and in fact, he frequently blames "Congress" for failure to compromise and has stated flatly that he won't compromise.
Take a close look at the "partial government shutdown." One party closes the WWII War Memorial — a memorial designed to be open like the Lincoln Memorial. That party hires contractors to put up barricades in order to blame the other party for "shutting down government." They put the word out to their minions to shut the gates to National Parks. OUR Lands – we the people's lands. Never mind that a highway goes through it. They could of course, shut the offices, campgrounds and service buildings while the roads are left open – just as they have done with leaving Obamacare open for business. They could, but the President obviously desires to make this as painful as possible on we the people and then to blame "Congress" – more specifically the Republican-controlled House.
It looks suspiciously like the rest of us are the real problem. We don't seem to recognize that the differences are real and meaningful, to understand the details and find the devil in the details! We rather stand back and blame "Congress" — many not voting at all but rather saying, "What difference does it make? Congress is all screwed up anyway."
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