The Importance of Background and Context

So far in this blog I have generally tried to interpret the actions of people in the government and the people that follow them based on the Political Science degree I earned over ten years ago. To be clear, I do not write in order to further some great mission of political savior-ism but instead with the idea that espousing my political thoughts in general to date has been an exercise in “pissing in the wind”; I figure I might as well let some other people get urine stains on their figurative clothes as long as I am doing it. With that in mind, I find it important to tell you, before you get too invested in anything that I write, that this is more like a political diary for me to relieve frustration at the actions of those around and above me and less like some altruistic attempt to “give the truth to the masses”. In other words, if you are reading this; always take my words with a grain of salt and NEVER accept them as 100% truth. I am as fallible as anyone else. I am not right 100% of the time, so if I were writing such a poorly cited blog with the intention of “telling people how it is” I would be grossly negligent in practice as I have citations to back up my claims. My goal is not to make you think like I do, or to turn you into my own political and philosophical clone, but to get you to question the actions of the government based on more than just a distaste for the party opposite the one you prefer.

In today’s political climate, I have found my faith in the rationality and intelligence of my fellow United States citizens is rapidly waning. As a group, we are easily manipulated by those who continue to exploit our strongest beliefs to their own personal benefit. As a result of losing faith in my fellow Americans, I began writing this blog. I urge anyone reading anything I write to do their own research into anything that I claim. If someone out there can verify with a credible source that I am wrong in any of my claims, I am willing to retract that claim in the comments section of the offending article. However, this flexibility is something I have not seen in my fellow citizens for some time, and this problem has grown to such an extent that we are now walking willfully toward policy shifts that are not in our own best interest based on trust in unscrupulous people who tend to display an almost Stalinist faith in the will of the political party.

In an earlier article I discussed an example of this; the lauding of Senator Kaine (D-VA) for following party line relating to his vote on the Betsy DeVos nomination and the bashing of Senator Murkowski (R-AK) for breaking party line with regard to the DeVos nomination. In truth, Mr. Kaine’s vote went against the best interest of the majority of his constituents (according to the “school choice” rhetoric of Mrs. DeVos) while Mrs. Murkowski was actually voting in the best interest of her constituents (based on the same rhetoric). It seems as if these days there is less of an emphasis on making sure a politician is doing what is best for the people who elected them so long as their actions align to the stated platform of the political party. The problem in this kind of reasoning is that the political parties, as they exist today, are more interested in what is best for the party and less interested in what is best for the people. If you need an example, take a look at what the Democratic party did to Senator Bernie Sanders in order to be able to run Secretary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election. You probably haven’t heard much about it because it has been ludicrously under-reported in the wake of the circus that is the Trump Administration, but it was revealed during the primary that the party leadership (having noted the fact that Senator Sanders was seeing a lot of grassroots support) was emailing each other discussing ways to derail Senator Sanders’ campaign for the nomination. In other words, even though Hillary Clinton eventually won the primary, she had help from biased party leadership – which calls into question the results of each individual primary as well as the legitimacy of Secretary Clinton as a candidate nominated by the people as the party has the funding available to gather cash to be funneled through a PAC to provide extra monetary support to her campaign.

In spite of the fact that neither party accurately represents the political views of the majority of the people in the United States because we are individuals who don’t fit neatly into one of two similar boxes, both parties seem to enjoy consolidated support from their bases. Why? What is there to gain from continuously electing candidates from a pair of cartels who, in action, seem to have little respect for the individuals they are elected to represent? It doesn’t matter if I’m a conservative and you’re a liberal, or vice versa, because what is the point of those distinctive personal identifiers when neither of our chosen parties are going to act in our best interest if that choice goes against what party leadership sees as best for the continued survival of the party? And even if there are two of them, isn’t acting in the best interest of the party over the people a hallmark of Stalinist Communism?

I have to end on this down note, because I do not have a good solution to this problem. The one I used to urge – that everyone choose a third party to vote for in the next few congressional elections in order to clean out the House and the Senate – is at best implausible and at worst would bring a new set of problems that would plunge the country into political chaos. So, at the moment I have no solutions, just a plethora of complaints.

Have a nice day…

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