Monday, January 26, 2009

Republicans - Talk to the hand.... !

It is neither major nor surprising but this week’s news started with the Republicans’ staunch opposition to stimulus package on grounds of their ever flimsy ‘fiscal responsibility’ lies. Democrats faced this opposition and responded in a manner that they know how to do best – running scared and grovelling to the base of the other side. When Republicans took the “my way or the highway” approach in recent history, we saw a complete destruction in may areas of governance, so I am inclined to support the Obama administration’s willingness to cooperate with differing points of view. However, destructive points of view should have no place in politics. On this and many other points Democrats do not have cave to the Republicans. As Paul Krugman, a noted Nobel Prize winning economist has asserted, the best budget bill passed during the Clinton Administration was done with zero votes from the Republicans. While I am against any possibility of a tyranny of the majority, regardless of whether it was Republicans or Democrats, I am also against sabotage, political lunacy and fear mongering, which is all the Republicans have shown they are capable of. The hypocrisy of Republicans of labelling people as un-American if they do not support their President during a time of crisis clearly only applies to Republican Presidents. I for one, however, am not going to discourage Republicans from saying whatever they want because it is their right.

It should be noted that the American people have categorically rejected the platform the republicans put forward. The U.S. House of Representatives have 256 Democrats out of 435 members, the Senate has 58 (possibly 59) Democrats out of 100, and a Democratic President, all of whom have been decisively democratically elected. It is disappointing to see public service and infrastructure projects are being cut out form the stimulus package to accommodate tax cuts, which clearly did not and do not work. We need a way to kick start the economy where people have a source of income and NOT a once a year payment that they clearly are not going to spend. One only has to look at the behavior of banks that were given bailout money to specifically spend it, to see that in times of crisis people hold on to whatever they’re given unless there is a promise of more in a predictable periodic fashion. One word - Security. The public needs to know that there will be a steady income and funnily enough a job provides steady income, tax cuts decidedly do not. Perhaps the time had come for Democrats to show that they too have a spine to make decisions that they were elected to make. Unless the Republicans take a reflective position of what went wrong and more importantly the wrongs they have committed in the last 8 years, Democrats should only have one response.

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