Tuesday, March 23, 2010

It is Time for Responsible Republicans to Be Heard


While Obama and Pelosi have captured center stage in the media with the health care reform and they have already declared a host of other social issues will be pursued next, I wonder what the Republican alternative to the Obama agenda might be?

The Democrat White House and Congress are clear in their intentions to overthrow, I mean overhaul the federal agenda and continue building their single payer, single employer and single owner social empire, meaning a very fat federal government.

Now we know that the Republicans by nature are opposed to Uncle Sugar and having the government hire and own everything. We also know that up until the beginning of the 21st century the Republicans were also the protectors of our economy and opposed to increasing the national debt. During the first decade of this century they seemed to have gone brain dead regarding the debt but there was hope they would come to their senses eventually.

Now that they are the minority party, meaning they blew it the last decade, one would think they might be offering an alternative to the Obama social juggernaut and demand the attention of our government be focused on what is being ignored in Washington. I mean there are a few issues still being ignored by everyone like the economy, jobs, unemployment and credit markets. How quickly we forget Main Street.

Then there are the massive number of fixes that are needed within the federal government covering everything from Financial reform to Housing Mortgage reform, Campaign reform to Energy independence, stronger ethics and conflict of interest laws to limits on lobbying and special interests. Fact is we are still waiting for Obama to start prosecuting all those crooks who manipulated federal laws and nearly destroyed the world economy. Those crooks remain in their offices on Wall Street.

So my question is this? If the public seems to dislike Obama's agenda though they like him okay, and if nothing has happened in Congress for over a year except the nasty old health care reform, where are the GOP ideas, initiatives and reforms to lead us out of the quagmire in Washington? Why are they not screaming about the trillion dollar debt the Obama agenda has created and why are they not offering alternatives?

Most days it seems as if the Republicans just trash Obama and the Democrats but offer nothing in terms of new ideas. If either party was really interested in Main Street they would be pushing for investigations and prosecutions of all the people who caused the economic meltdown, paid the outrageous bonuses, and profited from all the market manipulations.

The Democrats complain about the crooks on Wall Street but can't even pass a financial reform bill with enough teeth to prevent corruption, let alone prosecute the corrupters. Don't suppose it has anything to do with the fact these same crooks are filling the campaign coffers of the Democrats?

Yet the Democrats blame the Republicans for being the protector of Wall Street and stalling the financial reform laws. If I were a Republican I would be offering a comprehensive financial reform bill that does stop the corruption and prosecutes the corrupters because neither has any place in a free market economy. Then I would go after the Democrats for protecting the fat cats. Of course that assumes the GOP is not trying to protect the old ways of Wall Street.

I have trouble finding any Republican position on financial reform or anything else for that matter. It seems their agenda is stopping Democrats, not fixing America. If they want to get all worked up over the health care that's okay, but fix the bill, don't destroy the progress that has been made.

No benefit will come to the GOP if they simply oppose everything Obama and Pelosi want and then there is no alternative being offered. If I were a Republican every time I spoke I would preface it with a stand against increasing the national debt further and then offer alternatives to bigger government.

I think the GOP might have a false sense of security about the mood of the public. If they read the polls and think everyone hates the Democrats they better read again. If they think they are the natural alliance for the Tea Party movement they are also mistaken.

The independent movement in America belongs to no one and no party. As the Democrats continue to pursue more and more liberal goals and the Republicans continue to blabber more and more conservative opposition to everything both parties are at risk of being booted into oblivion by a public that is fed up with all politicians.

The social agenda of the president is certain to get the liberal and moderate Democrats in trouble in the fall elections and will increase the Republican resolve to win back seats. But without an agenda, without a plan and without concrete proposals the Republicans will just be blowing the same hot air as the Democrats and may find themselves on the endangered species list along with the Democrats.

We do not need politicians whose purpose in life is to tear down and destroy. We do not need politicians who believe there is a single political philosophy everyone must embrace. This is a big country. There is room for a lot of diverse ideas. Political leadership requires acknowledging the diversity of Americans and the diverse needs that result.

A good conservative can still have a social conscious and a free spending liberal can still show restraint for the good of the people. But they don't. The GOP leadership needs to stand for something. Spouting you are the party of fundamental conservative principles is nice, but will it assure food and housing for the poor? Being fiscally conservative and opposed to big government carries a responsibility to make certain those who benefit from such a system do not abuse it like Wall Street.

I figure anyone who offers real meaningful campaign reform and abolishes legal loopholes preventing prosecution of crooks on Wall Street and in Washington, and anyone who first considers the impact on the national debt before spending more billions we don't have, can't be all bad. Now I find myself still waiting for someone to come through with the ideas we need to fix America.


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