Whenever my birthday rolls around, I get nostalgic and sentimental. When I think about growing up in New Jersey, invariably I think about politics, because my parents and me and my siblings were so entrenched in the Republican party.
As I observe the GOP today, I really believe with each passing day, that most Republicans in Washington today are “Republicans In Name Only” (RINO’s). The 20th century GOP that I knew bears no resemblance to the party that exists currently. Republicans in Congress behave like imbeciles that have no interest in doing anything constructive.
Republicans in the Senate have demanded changes to the immigration reform legislation, so that border security is airtight, and no one can cross the border from the south. This demand will cost upwards of $30 billion dollars a year, when the number of immigrants entering the US from Mexico is a negative number! These same Senators claim that we need to reduce government spending, as they demand more spending for this bill, which is wasteful and an outrage! In the next breath the GOP wants to cut $20 billion dollars from food stamps. It's better that people go hungry in their eyes.
Back in the olden days - - - well not that long ago really, the Republican party believed in public service, and that government could be a force for good. The GOP was known as the “party of Lincoln,” because they fought for racial equality, and didn’t believe that the impoverished should go hungry, and authored legislation that mandated affirmative action in government hiring and college admissions.
It was Republicans who started the Environmental Protection Agency after a catastrophic oil spill devastated the Santa Barbara Coast, and Co2 emissions obscured the urban skylines with pollution so bad that you couldn’t tell if a building was 4 stories high or a 60 floor skyscraper.
The Affordable Care Act (also known as Obamacare) was a Republican idea that Democrats in Congress, with President Obama, adopted when the GOP decided to disown the legislation. This same party was once driven by the idea that government could offer an outstretched hand to a family having hard times, because when the family got back on their feet, they would work hard and pay taxes, which was giving back to the government and contributing to the economy.
When Republicans lost the popular vote in the 5th national election for president out of the last 6, the few intelligent people still in the party, acknowledged that the GOP had to change, and that they had to stop talking about rape, and alienating women. They said they had to be more kind to undocumented immigrants. They said they had to do better outreach to people of color, and they acknowledged that gay marriage was inevitable, and they should build a bigger tent that was more tolerant.
Two years ago, in June of 2011, I wrote about what Republicans were up to in Congress, and noted how divisive they were then, and also discussed growing up in the Republican party. How much has changed in 2 years?
The Republicans I knew were fairly easy to support, because they stood for things like clean air and cleaning up the environment, and they supported many libertarian ideas about less government and less government regulation. They supported a woman's right to choose, promoted affirmative action and civil rights for all, and they believed in taking care of senior citizens, and the poor and less fortunate. They viewed government as an entity that was good, and effective, and a force for positive change.
Today they’re the political party known for hate, as they detest LGBT citizens, and they have hawkish views on war. Republicans created the largest budget deficits in the history of our country, and started culture wars with women, gays, and minorities, while they employed inflammatory rhetoric around equal rights and marriage equality, to fan the flames of hatred. They did this to encourage alleged Christians and evangelical voters to show up at the polls, to vote Republican and advance their cause. This is NOT the party of Abraham Lincoln!
The blame for the mortgage and banking crisis can be attributed to both parties, with the multi-trillion dollar corporate welfare that Congress allocated to corrupt wall street investment banks, on both parties backs.
Aside from the awful culture wars, the biggest travesty is the fact that Republicans want to cut taxes further, and in order to “pay” for this tax cut, and appear to reduce the federal deficit, they want to make substantial cuts in education, hospice care, student loan programs, Medicaid and Medicare.
The GOP believes it's OK to give wall street trillions, but tells the unemployed, senior citizens, the hungry, students, the disabled, and the impoverished, to pull yourself up by your bootstraps. They say the disadvantaged don’t have clout, so they don’t care about you and me.
Those same words could describe the Republican Congress today, just like two years ago. The only reason I mention it, is to illustrate that nothing has changed at all.
It's pathetic that nothing has changed in Washington, DC, and I wonder what has to happen, in order for Americans to wake up and do something about it.
The problem isn’t Barack Obama, the problem lies with Republicans in Congress.
Are the American people ready to send the Republicans a message in 2014? I hope so - because I'm beyond ready.
Today's GOP is insane.
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