Saturday, May 1, 2010

They're Not Listening

Two editorials reminded me of the need for a Tea Party movement, and a Coffee Party movement as well. Both parties AREN'T LISTENING. Peggy Noonan looks at immigration policy and concludes that both parties let the problem slide towards crisis because they calculated that it was in their best interests to do so, because they could reap political rewards. Never mind what's good for the country.

But while the Democrats worry about the prospects of the Democrats and the Republicans about the well-being of the Republicans, who worries about America?

No one. Which the American people have noticed, and which adds to the dangerous alienation—actually it's at the heart of the alienation—of the age.

Instead, our national establishments deliberately allow the crisis to grow and fester, ignoring public unrest and amusing themselves by damning anyone's attempt to deal with the problem they fear to address.

Why does the federal government do this? Because so many within it are stupid and unimaginative and don't trust the American people. Which of course the American people have noticed.
The result of this failure is that Arizona is the kidnapping capital of the Unite States, due to the activities of drug cartels and human smugglers pouring across an undefended border. No matter the party of the President, the lawlessness on the southern border continues. Both parties don't want to alienate the Latino vote, which of course is very short sighted, because effective border patrol has zero impact on anyone who is already present in this country, legally or otherwise. I have been wrestling with the question of whether illegal immigration is an issue for the Tea Party movement and conclude that it is, because the movement exists to give voice to average Americans against the failures of BOTH parties.

Meanwhile, the leader from this month's Reason magazine is "We Are Out of Money" by Matt Welch. He points to the bipartisan failure to deal with ballooning federal and state budget woes.
In March the federal government created the most expensive new entitlement n four decades, even as the bond rating company Moody's Investors Service warned that debt level could soon precipitate a downgrade in U.S. Treasury bonds. The main opposition party fought the bill by decrying "cuts" to Medicare, and it has kept itself at arm's length from one of the few politicians talking seriously about long-term reform (see "Paul Ryan: Radical or Sellout?," page 18).

Commenting on Paul Ryan's plan to cut specific programs and entitlements, Reason points out that Paul Ryan is too radical for his own party.
In the current political climate, Ryan's plan will never pass. It is not merely too radical for the Democrats; it is too radical for the Republicans. But to be too radical for the party that championed an unfunded prescription drug benefit in 2003 and rang up massive deficits while in power, one need not be radical at all.

The good news in these and similar articles is that the nature of our problems are understood by more and more people, even if stupid MSM articles talk about draconian budget cuts. But the two parties have to start paying a price for their failure to look after the basic interests of the people as a whole. I would have liked to see more Tea Party primary challenges in both parties, because the only thing that motivates politicians is fear of defeat. Not to worry, even if the Republicans make gains this fall, the depth of both the hypocrisy and these problems mean they aren't going away soon. We will need a Tea Party for quite some time to come.

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