It’s the end of the world as we know it…

Okay, so this whole Mark Foley thing.

This is me coming out of my self-induced political coma of the past three years to see that things aren’t any better and aren’t going to get there any time soon. I made a promise to myself to avoid political rants because there no longer of any value. For one thing, no one listens. And when they do listen, they are no interested. Also, the art of real debate has likely been irretrievably lost. No one can admit to changing their minds on issues, etc., etc., blah, blah, blah. I promise to re-induce coma after this minor diatribe, so bear with me.

A few statements of fact: I am a lifelong Democrat. (I consider myself a New Deal Democrat, to be honest.) I always vote. I care about what happens (although less than I used to.

A caveat: What Mark Foley did was terrible, ugly, awful, ichy, blah, blah, blah. He should get into lots of trouble, pay fines, go to prison, etc. You get the idea.

Here is where I’m going to stir some controversy: at this point, I’m not sure who is worse, the Mark Foley, or the Democrats!

My God! I can’t believe he just said that. He just accused members of his own party as being worse than a predatory, Republican weasel who sends inappropriate email and instant messages to minors. He can’t be serious! Boot him out! Lynch him!

Minor clarification: I did not accuse Democrats of being worse than Mark Foley. I said that I’m not sure who is worse.

Second minor clarification: the Republicans are certainly no better.

One problem with American politics is that, like too many other things in American (health care, education, I could go on and on) it has taken the road of least resistance. Everyone looks for the easy win, the easy kill. Lots of smoke and mirrors are involved. Huh? Well you see, the Democrats could be using this opportunity to talk about a variety of issues and how they will address those issues when they are elected next month. Instead, however, they are casting as much light as possible on this Mark Foley thing. It might seem as though that is good political strategy because it’s basically allowing the Republican party to flay itself. But see that mirror over there…?

One has to ask why the Democrats are allowing this? Is it because they are just as essentially mean-spirited as most politicians? Nah, that’s just in their nature. It’s because it means that the Democrats gain points without having to do anything. And what’s worse, they are sitting in the backrooms wiping sweat from their foreheads in relief because if they did have to actually do something, they’d come up with a big fat zero. This Mark Foley fracus is concealing the fact that the Democratic party is essentially just as incompetent as the Republican party. The reason the Democrats are focusing on Mark Foley and not taking this opportunities to talk about how these will address important issues like education and healthcare, and this little war we are fighting, is because they have no idea how to address this issues. The bigger problem is that they are going to end up as the kid that the teacher calls on who hasn’t been paying attention, and doesn’t know the answer to the question–heck they probably didn’t even hear the question.

Am I the only one who has noticed that no one talks about issues anymore? The pretend to talk about issues but they never do. Democrats and Republicans alike take the path of least resistance. It’s easier to kick the enemy when they are down then do set about solving real problems. In fact, it’s much harder to reach out a hand to your enemey and help them up off the floor. For example: Foley annouced he is gay. This is an opportunity for Democrats to address the issue of gay rights, gay marriage and equal rights in general. But will they do it? I don’t think so. Furthermore, no one can ever be convinced to change their point of view. Debate has become meaningless because no one knows how to argue anymore (shouting is different) and because political pressure prevents those on the fence from changing their view.

It’s really all very pathetic. We should expect more of our leaders. We should expect our leaders to act like knavish, misbehaved school children. But that’s exactly what we expect and that’s exactly what we get. Something’s got to change and soon.

Loyalty is very important to me and I still consider myself a Democrat. I berate my party because they deserve to be berated for their approbrious behavior. I am ashamed of them and I want them to change for the better. It saddens me to see the state of politics. Having read a substantial amount of history, I can see where this is leading. It happened to the Roman Empire. It happened to the British Empire. Could we be next?

There is one thing that politicians needs that they currently lack: a backbone.

Find that and the rest falls into place pretty quickly.

It’s been nice talking politics with y’all but the water is much warmer back over here in my political coma. Everything is so peaceful and it’s just so much easier to ignore the issues. If our leaders can do it, well, shucks, so can I. Maybe I’ll check in again in a decade or so and see if things have improved. Good night and good luck.