Wednesday, November 08, 2006

The "New Direction"

It is with some relief that we report that neither the abandon Iraq faction nor the impeach Bush faction showed up for the elections Tuesday. The Libertarian candidates who, to my dismay, were the only ones representing these factions didn't even get enough votes to get honorable mention, which means, hopefully, the Libertarian Party will return to its principles, and develop its strengths. If this is the case, by 2008 voters who are disenfranchised by Demopublican politics-as-usual will lend unprecedented strength to the largest "third party" in the nation.
Meanwhile, we should not be surprised that the "Republican" faction has lost control of Congress. As has happened with any majority in Congress, they lost sight of their principles and became supportive of Big Government spending and special interests, producing a very negative reaction among the electorate. It is only the law of Karma coming into effect. Even those "Republicans" who have dutifully served their constituents and avoided the shortcomings of the party in general, were caught up in the backlash and lost their seats. Such is the way of politics.
We will not see a unified majority in the House of Representative--many of the members-elect are moderate to conservative in their political beliefs, and some are even former "Republicans" who tested the wind and switched to the "Democrat Party," which goes to show that politicians will do anything to get the easy money. Still, respected political analysts, such as Hal Bruno, point out that the "blue dog" conservative freshmen will not make that much of a difference in policy as "back benchers," at least not for the first two years.
Still, among the senior "Democratic" there is still no clear direction in several issues. The consensus view among them on Iraq, for instance, seems to indicate only that a new view of the situation must come into play. Among the myriad views, this "consensus" ranges from surrender to sending more troops. Among the in-between views are redeployment of troops to Afghanistan, involvement of neighboring states, such as Saudi Arabia, in finding a solution to the crisis, and manipulating the sovereign government of Iraq. We could see, therefore, such results as a war between Saudi Arabia and Iran, with Iraq as the battlefield, or a reinstatement of the military draft in the United States. The Democrats have not, so far, advocated leaving behind a failed or rogue state in Iraq, much to their credit. In fact, most of the Democrats have stated a desire to win in Iraq. This will undoubtedly disappoint many of the radical left who thought they were going to get something different.
Other results of the Democratic control of Congress will most likely be higher gasoline prices, as politicians attack "Big Oil," windfall profits for medical research companies, as Congress allocates taxpayers' money in the name of stem cell research, and loss of jobs and middle class family owned businesses as Congress raises the minimum wage. We sill also see a lot of unnecessary hearings, as Democrats attempt to rediscover that no one in the administration has done anything that is illegal. Oh, and Rumsfield will resign.
Still, we should not fall into a doom and gloom attitude, because it is still politics as usual, and we have survived that so far.
If we are to believe Speaker-elect Nancy Pelosi, the new direction will be one of "integrity, civility, and bi-partisanship." We'll believe that when we see it, if we can actually figure out what it really means.

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