Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Left Jab

I have coffee every Thursday with a good friend whose politics are opposite mine. We tend to look for common ground, and here's one patch we agree on: America is starting to look ungovernable. As Steven Flynn put it Tuesday morning on the Diane Rehm Show: "the U.S. has become like a bus where everyone has a brake. It won't run."

Exactly what the hell the voters of Massachusetts thought they were doing by electing a Palin wannabe is quite beyond me. Fortunately, Mitchell Bard's excellent post outlines the main points of this epic act of stupidity, so I can at least get my head around how it happened.

Have a taste:

Bush spent eight years running the country into the ground. The issues that seemed to bother Massachusetts voters (the economy and the abuses on Wall Street) not only originated and/or were encouraged under Bush, but the current Republicans in Congress have no desire to help on either of these counts. They oppose stimulus or anything else to help put Americans back to work (no, more tax cuts for the rich won't accomplish that goal), and they have even less interest in reforming financial regulation (they've come out against consumer protection and re-regulating the industry).

In effect, the voters of Massachusetts decided that even though it took eight years of Republican rule to create these problems, the Democrats should have solved them in 11 months (even as the Republicans tried to block solutions at every turn). And for the Democrats' failure, the state should send a Republican to Washington who has no interest in fixing the problems his party created in the first place. And again, the result will be 41 Republicans blocking any Democratic programs aimed at fixing the financial industry or unemployment. Democracy worked perfectly.

Yup. Welcome to to the traffic jam. And thanks, Massachusetts. We owe you one.