Just Plain Stupid!

Aside from the fact that the Republicans seem intent upon trashing the public education system in this country, there are two items high on their agenda that are just plain stupid. The first is the urge to cut-taxes-at-all-cost mentality that ignores the fact that many of the programs under the axe are essential to the health and well-being of this country and its citizens. At the extreme right end of this pole are the TEA partiers who simply want to slash taxes with no thought for tomorrow. But, as a fellow blogger pointed out in a recent blog, the Democrats are not without blame, either. since they failed to support a bill that would have increased taxes along with the cuts in a 1 to 10 ratio. ” last summer’s Obama/ Boehner 10 to 1 compromise [should have passed] in a heartbeat. . . . That should have been a no brainer..” Clearly, there is waste and there should be cuts. But we must also be willing to pay for the benefits we receive and in many cases desperately need.

The second stupid item on the agenda is the attack on the environment in the name of good business. This is stupid because it rests on the false dichotomy: either we protect the environment or we save jobs. We can do both. But as a recent item in the Sierra magazine points out, this Republican Congress is “the most anti-environmental Congress in history.” It has passed 209 anti-environmental bills in the name of business, while the clean energy industry waits patiently for a sign that they will also receive some of the government’s largess.

But the news is not all bad, as it happens. The American citizens may be waking up slowly. And this is a good thing, because we may not have much time if even the most optimistic predictions of the scientific community are correct. The good news, as also reported in the Sierra magazine, is that electric cars and hybrids are selling at record rates. In addition, electricity generated from coal has “dropped to 36.7 percent in February, the lowest level since 1973.” And in “five states electricity generation from wind now equals or exceeds 10 percent. In South Dakota [of all places!] the figure is 22 percent.” Further, we read that Warren Buffett has thrown his considerable weight and influence behind investing in solar energy. There is hope, and clearly there is also money to be made in clean energy.

That is why these items on the Republican agenda are so stupid: they are short-sighted at a time when we need enlightened leadership and long-term planning to help save the planet and all life on it. The Republicans need to wake up. But so do the Democrats. It is time for the politicians in this country to realize that our priorities in the past have run their course and we need to turn in another direction before it is too late.

8 thoughts on “Just Plain Stupid!

  1. Thanks Hugh. The oil/ gas industry lobby is extremely powerful. There is too much money too be had. How else could they convince people to frack when the dangers and water drain or so apparent.? It is not an either/ or as there are lots of jobs to be had in greener industry from construction to manufacturing to development. Thanks for celebrating the successes.

  2. Two comments. I recently saw a news show in which a political pundit concisely articulated the problem in Washington. The Democrats desire to help and to change the world for the better, but are utterly feckless, while the Republicans are effective, but are mean-spirited. Seems pretty accurate. Nothing to add.
    My other comment goes back to an old TV show, The West Wing. During the re-election of Pres Bartlett, some of his aides have gathered and are discussing why they originally became his supporters. One of them (I think it was the communication director) articulate her view of the political scene. One group of politicians looks around the world and tries to find ways to respond with “Yes!” while the other group looks and tries to find ways to respond with a “No!” The reason she supported Bartlett was that he was a politician who tried to respond with a “Yes!” Again, accurate, but this seems like only half of the current situation in Washington. While the Republicans are definitely the party of No!, the Democrats no longer know what it means to effectively say Yes!
    I have read many political commentaries recently which lays all of the blame for the situation in Washington at the feet of the Republicans. While I desperately want to agree with this, I simply cannot. The Democrats need to accept their share of the blame. For one, they need to embrace the truth of their ineffectiveness as the majority party. They need to learn how to lay aside their collective egos and work together against the Naysayers of the Republican party.

  3. Never been a fan of Republican dogma and if there was a moment when I completely shut off any notion of “like” for any republican idea, it was when George W. Bush and his crew proposed selling off part of the Redwoods National Forest, to raise money for reducing the national debt. Blindness is a terrible thing…

      • It’s a syndrome of complex symptoms, The CDC calls it “The Rolling-In-It” syndrome. There’s even a special event to celebrate it, known as “GLOATING DAY.” There’s no stopping it, either… 😛

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