John McCain has lately been proclaiming that he and Sarah Palin are the only ones who can bring the much-needed changes to Washington. He claims Barack Obama and Joe Biden represent failed ideas from the past and therefore offer nothing new or better. John McCain is denying history and fails to understand that the real change needed in Washington involves he and the party he represents being minimized in government.
The GOP owned Washington for most of the last eight years and the harvest of their policies is currently being reaped globally. Their militaristic philosophy that celebrates minimal regulation coupled with a blind reliance on free markets has brought civilization to the brink of a perfect storm on many fronts. The crisis list includes war without end, increased global poverty, environmental deterioration, crumbling international stock markets, skyrocketing energy costs while the world of finance collapses. Republican ideology, when given free rein to govern, ultimately produces chaos and catastrophe. This presidential race is about much more than Obama or McCain. This election should be viewed as a referendum on the core Republican values that guide their domestic and foreign policy concepts as opposed to what Democrats offer.
Partisan gridlock is generally viewed as a negative, but sometimes it is necessary. A narrow Democratic margin in the House and Senate has at least gotten the GOP foot off the gas if not on the brake. Hopefully, they have enough will to hold the Bush administration in check until January.
It was during the Ronald Reagan era that I first remember hearing the expression “record deficits”. It seems that every year of his tenure was marked with a new record budget deficit. The first President Bush converted to Reagan’s Voodoo economics and then presided over even bigger record deficits. Their presidencies produced twelve record years of unfathomable fiscal irresponsibility. Then, a Democratic governor from Arkansas, sporting the nickname of Bubba, moved into the White House for eight years and produced the unheard of and what many thought was impossible…budget surpluses! He even accomplished this with a split Congress.
Most have heard the expression, “If it’s not broke, don’t fix it.” I guess George W. Bush never heard that slogan. Maybe he heard it but mis-remembered it as, “If it’s not broke, fix it until it is.” How else can the detestable and familiar resumption of record deficits be explained since he took power almost eight years ago? The GOP is supposedly synonymous with low taxes and fiscal responsibility while Democrats are branded as “tax and spend liberals”. The last twenty-eight years clearly reveals something quite different on both counts. Another slogan is now coming to mind, “Fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can't get fooled again”- George W. Bush.
The Sarah Palin pick perfectly underscores the GOP philosophy of, “It doesn’t matter who is in the White House as long as it’s a Republican.” She, like George W. Bush are actually idyllic choices for heading a party that must have a puppet to dance and sing to the tune of corporate elitists while holding the party line. McCain has promoted his Maverick branding, yet votes with Bush ninety percent of the time…more of the same.
History plainly reveals the changes we must have as a nation are more likely to be brought through the combined efforts of a Democratic President working with a solid Democratic majority in the Congress. Barack Obama gives the Democratic Party a type of standard-bearer that comes along about once every generation. He is an inspired and inspiring man whose message resonates with the heart as well as the mind. It’s time for the Democrats to have their shot at it again…they can only do better than the Republicans.