The Blame Game

 

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I’m sure you’ve read the news at some point lately, or watched one of the three major news outlets. If you’ve chosen your political party, you probably only watch certain ones and don’t look at the “oppositions” news. In any case, I’m sure that whatever news outlet you watch, you’ve seen lately the game they are playing. It’s almost like a dog owner pointing and the dog looking in full trust. But there are two owners and three dogs and they keep pointing at the dogs on either side hoping the dog in the middle bites one of outer dogs noses off. Perhaps that’s not the best metaphor but it’s the best I can describe how easily the public is moved by news outlets and government officials and their biased opinions.

The Democrats blame the Republicans for shutting down the government and being unable to see reason. Oddly the Republicans blame the Democrats for the same reasons. The specifics may be slightly different, sure, but the overall complaint is the same, “They are being unreasonable and cannot compromise with OUR reasonable plan / proposal / idea / bill etc…” . The most aggravating thing I can see in this odd process of finger-pointing and foot stomping is that the dog in the middle ( that’s us ) goes along with it. If you watch MSNBC or FOX news for example, you tend to avoid the other because ” they are biased and don’t tell the TRUTH to their viewership. “. You allow yourself to be led by one single view, and then only associate with those of that same view damning any other view that does not agree. None of us truly step back and look at the whole of the situation, we love taking sides and playing the blame game right along with them.

Sadly this prevents any true progress in our society, not because we have differing opinions but because we adhere to them so tightly that we are unable to reach a middle ground of agreement. We blame the government for the shutdown, but when you ask people they blame one party over another. In all honesty, its the whole of the government that is responsible, not just one particular party and their ideals. The polarization, the constant “them vs. us” mentality is what stops the entire process from functioning in any way. They point the finger, and we follow suit destroying any potential discussion towards an actual agreement.

So as you search the internet today and see the many articles, blogs, comments and even meme’s that say, “Blame political party X for the shutdown”, please remember that both sides are to blame. I’m reminded of an old saying which sums up how I feel, “It takes two to tango”. I find this is true, but when one dancing partner has two left feet, and the other two right feet and they have ear buds in playing different music….well its no longer a dance but a contest to see who can give the other the most stubbed toes.

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Are we thinking?

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I sat and watched today as the government shut town for the third time in my life. I sat and watched as the educated, opinionated and righteously indignant elected officials of my government fought and stomped their feet in tantrum. They so eloquently confused their ideals with their responsibility and now, we collectively pay for the debt incurred. Perhaps this is what we wanted, I think to myself as I watch this unfold, we voted for them didn’t we? We watched their campaign ads, listened to their speeches and rhetoric and agreed. This is why we sent them to govern, isn’t it? We are the ones who voted and therefore are represented, aren’t we? Perhaps not, perhaps the job we hired them for is not being done after all, even though their paychecks are in the mail.

So after watching this, I realized something. These are our employees, we hired them and they “work” for us. We as a collective looked at their resumes’, interviewed and hired every last one.All of thier references, personal and business testified in various forms of media to the capability of each official now holding a position in our company gushing with praise and enthusiasm. Why wouldn’t we hire such qualified people to work in the most important office in the company, we’d be foolish not to! So after the I-9’s and drug screens are ran we place them in their corner offices and forward all pertinent tasks to our more than capable employees. The next day we come in only to find that none of the tasks have been done because the company just implemented a new health plan for all workers, but worse yet, they have started fights with existing employees, jammed the copy machine, tied up the phone lines with non-business calls and now refuse to put through essential budget paperwork that would keep the office running for the next year. You know, payroll, shipping and receiving, human resources and the like. But here is the kicker, to top it all off the new employees have banded together in defiance by putting though some paperwork to the financial department allowing them to still be paid while no one else does, and when confronted by the other employee’s they stamp their feet and cite the company mission statement jamming their fingers in everyone’s noses. Now all the employees are pitted against each other, the boss ( we the people) is busy in his office with the door shut watching reality T.V. while the company shuts down. Great place to work right?

So we know we would never EVER run a business like this, but we let the government-run like this. Why is that? Did we forget that this country is “Of, By and For the People”? We are the ones who gave them power to which they abuse and run amok with. Both parties, let’s be clear. So the pressing question is, why? I certainly can’t come up with a good answer, because the question is ludicrous. There is no good reason why we should tolerate such behavior of those who speak with our voices but don’t use our words. But here we sit, letting it go down.

Now, I sit and wonder, what would it take to move us. What will it take to make the country, as a citizenry, not as political parties, stand up and say ” You’re all fools and we are fools for allowing you to remain. ” ? The government is irrevocably broken from the inside out, the system confused and flawed and its all our fault. Its time, if it ever will be, for the citizens of this country to stand up and call a do-over. Hey, the government is shut down, all gears have stopped, this is the best time to do it. I, personally, would like to see the entirety of the government, all branches, impeached and new elections ran immediately. All funding for campaigns would be in donations no bigger than 100.00 from each person actually registered to vote (no corporate funds), campaign ads would be positive and simply state what the candidate stands for, and what they see needs to be done and NOT what the other guy’s laundry smells like. Each candidate would have to address real issues and not their ideals, and pandering would get them disqualified. Oh and while I’m at it, why not lower their pay to the federal minimum wage, allowing no raises and no health care unless they do it the way the rest of us do it. Oh, that’s right, we have that new Affordable Care Act, so they should get some decent deals. Silver lining and all. But I digress….

There will be no new elections, and things will go on as they have. My ideas will remain words on a page and hopefully, in the least, incite comment and debate in the comment section. At least, that’s the best I can hope for because at the end of this, I just want to know, are we thinking?