Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Tale of Two Americas: Democrats vs Republicans

                                                         (Bob Englehart/Hartford Courant)
There is a tale of two Americas going on, and I’m not referring to John Edward’s campaign slogan.
Many of us, regular citizens, journalists, politicians or economists, have been witnessing the saga developing in the US for quite some time now. Grown-up men and women, smart enough to ensure their own career as politicians and to convince donors and voters, seem to have lost it completely when it comes to getting anything else done. They are Republicans or Democrats and convinced they are 100% right and the others are 100% wrong. They don't........

seem to know the skill of the artful compromise, but worse than that they represent debilitating influences in America: the incompetence of the Democrats (or is just that they like to negotiate with themselves) vs. the uncompassionate and wrongheaded Republicans.

I am talking here about the non-discussion of the debt ceiling crisis. If there ever was a better example of shooting yourself in your foot, here we have it. By the way, something the large majority of the media is happy to play along with: “ These are critical discussions for the future of America”, “A default of this great country is looming” and other non-sensical statements are made by serious and not so serious media, while they are increasing their ratings but misinforming the American public.

There shouldn’t be any crisis at the moment. The U.S. as one of the only countries in the world (Denmark is the other) has a debt ceiling. It is the annual budget where White House and Congress discuss the upcoming financial picture and which Congress then approves.  Approving the debt ceiling, which authorizes the payments already approved in the budget, should then be just a formality. By the way, since 1962 the debt ceiling has been raised 74 times, so at least more than once a year.  That can’t be such a hard thing, can it? Yes, it can, according to the Republicans –mostly – and the Democrats – which allow to let the Republicans drive the political agenda. The former see an opportunity to create chaos before next year’s elections, and the latter……..Well, I don’t know what the latter are really trying to achieve.

Bottom line is that in America there are now two political powers with no vision, or even common sense to help this country and average citizens forward. If you understand why voters keep accepting this nonsense, I’d like to hear that from you.


  1. Great commentary. I totally agree, the debt ceiling was not the issue. The dysfution in DC is the real issue!

  2. " ... since 1962 the debt ceiling has been raised 74 times ..." That is c-r-a-z-y! (And I think you're the *only* person who's pointed that out!)