Sunday, November 12, 2006

Future Bleak, Dems face the Odds

With the Democrats assuming power in Washington this January, the questions have started from all sides. One that seems the most notable to me is the inevitable broad-brushing: "What will the Democrats do about Iraq?" Being a member of the Democratic party and walking with a left-of-center limp, I am terrified of the mess we've inherited from the rubber stamp Republicans. This victory is either a blessing or the last time we'll see the majority in at least 20 years. This can swing either way, the winner keeping a grip on Washington for a generation to come. I have no degree in Political Science, I've no degree in anything related to politics. My broadcasting degree simply allows me to play records. However, as a moderatly informed American citizen and father of 2 (with one on the way) I epitomize the demographic today's politicians are courting. The dwindling middle class is definately dwinding. I know that my job has paid the same wage since 1997, though it doesn't provide what it used to. I am currently working 2 full time jobs so that my family will have a fighting chance to own a home in the next few years. Not a house, mind you, most likely a town house. South Florida's real estate market is really great if you are in real estate or of a calibre of investor who can afford to dabble in the game. This is something that will not change anytime soon.

Let's now focus on what's ahead for the last 2 years of W's rule. Rep Nancy Pelosi's (D-CA) First 100 hours plan will make an attempt to address some of the issues that are foremost on my mind, and the minds of my colleagues and middle class bretheren. The current Iraq debacle is paramount, but what can really be done? I hear many different opposing opinions about how to come to a successfull conclusion there, and none of them are really that pretty. Let's discuss what this means to the country and to politics in general.

First there is the unpopular and highly politicized "cut and run" strategy which actually never really existed. Distoring Rep. Jack Murtha's (D-PA) opinion that the US is destined for failure and should set time table for withrawal. His reasoning is perfectly sound: we're creating more terrorists by occupying their land, period. In the Islamic mind, we are the infidels, we desecrate their land by our very presence and the only way they can sleep at night is if they do everything in their power to force us out. This theory, though is exactly that, a theory. It may very well be true that the re-deploying of troops to Afghanistan (remember that country?) may send the signal to the Iraqis that we are no longer watching the kids and if they want dinner they will have to cook for themselves. A horrible metaphor, but you get the idea. I sincerely hope this happens. I hope that the idealogues get the notion that a lack of American troops means that they don't have to wage the violence. But the lack of GI's will not change how the Suni's feel about the Shia! This won't change how hey all feel about the Kurds, no and not the Jews either.

Secondly, we can escalate the conflict, as in Vietnam; reinstate the draft, as in Vietnam; change strategies after 41/2 years of a failed policy, as in Vietnam. I don't want the 17-34 year olds in this country to have a considerably minute representation as do those from the Vietnam era. I don't want that, do you? Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) believes in this plan. We all know that the citizens will not vote for a draft, but it will not be up to the citizens to vote (though it may finally be an issue that would break the 32% turn-out). Imagine if the Dems vote to reinstate the draft and we succeed in Iraq! Imagine if we fail! Either way, the Dems will be villified. They will be the party of death, the party of lies, the party who promised a new direction in Iraq, but instead sent more to their inevitable demise.

We cannot win the politics, but we can win the war. The future of this country, and of Western Civilization in general hinges upon a non-partisan approach to a highly partisan issue. A polarizing, socially wedging issue like Iraq may spell the doom for the Dems regardless of the outcome. History will show that this time, much like the days of Joe McCarthy and his 'Red Scare', is a time of sacrifice. The truth will win, and it will lose. Either way, someone has to stand up, shout something that will be wholly unpopular yet entirely effective. Those who put this forward will hang for it. They will also be silently revered, secretly mourned, eventually vindicated and ultimately immortalized as patriots. Treasonous patriots will win.


Thursday, November 09, 2006

What Next?

Here we are, basking in the glow of a suprising triple democratic victory - and the talking heads are already picking it apart like coyotes after the kill. They claim that the new Dems are not the "Far left liberal wing" like Nancy Pelosi and Ted Kennedy. These are "Centrists", these are "moderates", these are "conservative democrats". I am floored as to why the media are making this not a democratic victory, but more a republican loss? I look at the winners in this election, and I see the faces of Americans. I see my neighbor who thought that we needed a new direction in Washington. I see my brother, who agreed that the Bush Administration's policy in Iraq was failed at best. I see my staunch Republican father who split his ticket and voted a Dem here and there. But again the pundits are barking the usual hate for us. They are offering an olive branch and use words like 'bipartisan' and 'compromise'. When the tables were turned only days ago, it was the democrats who were always "politicizing" the issue. Just like Tom Delay and the rest of the Neo-cons had to fly back in the middle of the night to save poor Terri Schiavo. Add in the Religious Right and the Randall Terry's of the world who couldn't get off the stump long enough to say the word "politicize". But it was the democrats who were on the wrong side of the issue, spun to be the party of death. Even now, with the dems in the majority of the House and Senate, and controlling 6 more Governor's mansions, somehow they haven't won. The American people chose the lesser of two evils. They didn't so much as vote for the dems as they voted against the GOP. Well, fellow countrymen, if we have learned anything at all over the past 12 years and even more over the past 3 - is that their machine is well-oiled, well funded, well manned and plenty loud. But the most important factor, the one thing that can throw a monkey wrench into their gears is a little thing called the truth. The truth is on our side. The middle class is on our side because we are what's left of that middle class. We are the voices of those who have been silenced for far too long. Whether or not the new dems in office are centrist, conservative or liberal - they are united with one goal: to save the middle class, something the GOP has tried so desperately to dissolve in order to speed up their race to the bottom line. Well, here's the new bottom line: the American People have spoken, spoken loud and true: "It is time for a change - we will give you a shot now don't screw it up". Madame Speaker, it's your turn - don't let us down.