Monday, March 01, 2010

Lamentations from a Lifelong Democrat

I have been a Democrat my entire adult life. I anticipated that the last election could usher in a new time in which the peoples’ interests would at last be served. Unfortunately, the Democratic Party has demonstrated that this was an idle hope. It seems that powerful corporate interests continue to prevail. The needs of the vast majority of Americans, with many in serious economic difficulty, are treated as entirely secondary to the wishes of the one percent of the population that controls a disproportionate amount of the nation’s wealth.

This failure to represent the national interest is readily demonstrated by the way the entire health reform issue has been handled by the party that holds such a commanding majority in the legislative and executive branches. It took nearly a year of wasted and ludicrous maneuvering for the only meaningful aspect of the proposed legislation, the public option, to be summarily discarded based on the supposed power of the Republicans in Congress, who seem to march in mindless lock-step with their party’s reactionary principles. Now that the Democrats have finally come to the conclusion that they need to proceed via the route of reconciliation where a simple majority is required, the public option is nowhere in sight. If there is legislation passed, it seems likely that the there will once again be a mass transfer of public monies to private interests – this time it’s the health insurance companies who will reap the bountiful harvest.

I am also wondering aloud what happened to energy policy designed to help avert the eventuality of climate change. There is now serious mention of the use of clean coal, an oxymoron, and nuclear power and no real effort to control carbon dioxide emissions. I find it quite intriguing how the powerful always seem to get their way regardless of what party happens to be in power. This is certainly not our country and the politicians obviously do not serve us; although, that seems to be the prevailing rhetoric.

I strongly urge the President and the Democratic members of Congress to reconsider the course theyare taking, for without meaningful reform the future of our nation remains in serious jeopardy.

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