I read the election headlines - the GOP getting control of the Senate and gaining in the House. Those headlines really made me feel - well - sick. I had to put on some classical music to calm my nervous system down a bit. Then I just had to post something to my blog. Had to.
I want to shout, scream at people - "What are you thinking?" Now, I've come to see that both parties are way too similar now - too beholden to corporate interests primarily. But I still find the brand of conservatism, neo-conservatism, libertarianism, whatever pushed by so many GOP'ers to be distasteful for this Liberal. I think that close inspection reveals their policies mostly benefit the well-off and corporate interests, and are socially repressive, especially toward women and minorities. Not that Democrats are all that great now, but I think they do have to pay some attention, however small and superficial to the concerns of the traditionally underrepresented and disenfranchised. Of course, I wish they'd do more. After all, Eleanor Roosevelt had to continually press FDR. Civil rights leaders had to press Kennedy and other leaders.
Some things related here concern me. One is apathy. Too many of our citizens either feel that nothing can be done or are just too busy trying to make a living to be activist at any level. This applies to economic issues as well as issues around mass surveillance. We somehow must break through this and come together to press for some real reforms.
The other is the attitude displayed toward some fellow Americans. I've mentioned this before. Just read the comments on Yahoo or at The Guardian when the story concerns those who are economically challenged. There are not a few that will maintain it's all "their fault." Ok, there is something to be said for personal responsibility, but that doesn't mean the social contract should be thrown out on its head or the safety net dismantled. What about such a thing as a living wage? I happened to see a discussion on one of the c-spans with Marianne Cooper, author of Cut Adrift: Families in Insecure Times. One thing she said was that if you're working full-time, you shouldn't be living in poverty. Well, Amen to that! (It would also be a good idea for businesses to give more people full-time hours!)
One more thing: The U. S. had a pretty decent economy in say, the 50's and 60; policies and programs designed to strengthen and expand the middle class helped drive that. I think we have somehow lost track of that. Of course not everyone shared in that economy equally, but if we look back on some of the programs that were successful - like the G. I. Bill - maybe we could design some programs to work on today's challenges.
Well, I think I'm about ranted out. Looks like a bitter morning after...