Democrats and liberals believe that people are basically good, but that we still need big government to make sure that people behave properly. Republicans and conservatives, on the other hand, think that people are basically bad but believe that if we have little or no government things will work out just fine.
Andy Rooney said something very similar to the irony above back about 1978. At the time I was not much into politics but when I heard his statement my mind went “k’ching” as I knew I’d heard the truth. Over 35 years later the impasse in our nation’s political system has just gotten worse. Both political parties have become more of what they were in 1978—more and more political and less and less likely to compromise. I’m pretty old, and also a fairly serious amateur student of history, and I think, “Has it always been this bad?”
It does not seem so.
I believe that things have gotten worse because of the take-no-prisoners approach of fanatics like Rush Limbaugh. His shtik plays well on the radio but its a disaster for our country because it rules out compromise. I recently saw a meme on Facebook that said something like: “We need to stop being Republicans, and stop being Democrats, and start being Americans.”
I’ll drink to that.
The party of Eisenhower and Reagan has become nothing more than a mean-spirited caricature of “compassionate” conservatism. Its stand on immigration reform is legalistic and impractical, and I think the only one of its leaders who has any understanding of the gospel of Jesus at all would be Mike Huckabee—and that would be part of his job description as a Baptist preacher. The GOP doesn’t get our country’s changing demographics and their stance on immigration will insure their status of a minority party for the rest of this century.
But don’t get me wrong. The Dems have moved as far into some squishy leftist swamp as the Repubs have moved to the arid right, and as for my money the only thing Obama has shown competence in is being a sanctimonious narcissist and planning great vacations. Harry Truman would no longer recognize his party.