Old is New Again
The Old and the New
Well here we are approaching the mid-term elections. And not surprisingly campaign rhetoric on both sides is heating up. Fox and MSNBC have both drawm their respective lines in the sand.
No matter what your polictical leanings are, I believe it's important to know just who you are voting for. Now surprisingly television commercials for the individual candidates are not always the window on the truth they claim to be. Each time politicians vote, they leave an unalterable record of that vote and in doing so, they give us an idea of where they really stand on the issues.
I get a little nauseated everytime I see a prospective politician wearing a blue shirt (intentional by the way) standing among a group of blue collar workers telling them how he is on their side, how he is going to creaet jobs. The proof of your convictions is, if you are a politician, your voting record. When you have someone running for the Senate who has consistantly voted against union labor, against tax penalities for sending jobs overseas, then you have to doubt that candidate's sincerity- at least when it comes to being a friend to labor.
The Tea Party has come to the forefront in the last two years. And proponents of the Tea Party would like us to believe that this movement is new - a reaction to socialists doctrines enacted by the Obama Administration and the Democratically-controlled Congress. Education has always been the enemy of extreme political movements - on both the Left and the Right. The Tea Party is the reincarnation of the John Birch Society better known as the "Birchers." This movement came about in the 1950's during the Red Scare. These were the backers of McCarthyism - the witch hunts of the 1950's that saw communists in every corner of government, the entertainment industry, etc. The Birchers were somewhat the "wing-nuts" of poltics and died out in the mid 1960's. Now fueled by hard economic times, they have found a new voice, a new consituency... but they are not new. And they are heavily funded by large business - check out who funds Americans for Prosperty.
This is a short blog and one that I hope is very neutral in tone. All I ask is that before you vote, you check the record of the candidates. Many on the Far Right or with the Tea Party are running to abolish the IRS, abolish Social Security or worse yes, privatize it, Medicaid, Medicare, the US Post Office - everything except the military. If Social Security had been privatized at the time of the Financial Crisis two years ago, Social Security would have been drained as it would have been directly connected to performance of the stock market. This movement is being fueled by the Libertarians who believe that if it wasn't spelled out specifically in the Constitution, it has no place in our country. Now these are some serious claims - radical even, but again, listen to what they say and how they vote. And remember, politics has often been described as the art of getting people to vote against their own self interests.