It’s no time for a ‘party’
by Frank Miele
If you are a fan of this weekly column, you probably don’t think Democrats are the solution to this country’s problems. But if you think Republicans are the solution, think again.
George W. Bush is a Republican. John McCain is a Republican. Strange as it may seem, even Arnold Schwarzenegger is a Republican! Now, stop talking about partisan solutions, and face the facts.
Republicans are not the solution — you are.
It’s up to the good people of this country to stand up and get something done — restore common sense, return to common values, and re-establish the Constitution as the common bond that all Americans share.
That means that everyday Americans can’t just be passive observers anymore. You can’t just entrust the future to one party or the other. And you can’t stand back and watch your country be run into the ground, and wonder who is going to take care of the problem. It’s up to you.
There are literally millions of Americans working to “fundamentally transform” America into a place where “social justice” is more important that individual liberty, into a place where “equal outcomes” have taken the place of “equal rights,” and ultimately into a place where — like in George Orwell’s “Animal Farm” — “some... are more equal than others.”
Sure, I know there is a sentimental attachment some people have to party designations, and you can make a case that Democrats lean a certain way and Republicans lean another way, but the facts of the past 50 years speak pretty loudly.
Since 1961, we have had five Democratic presidents and five Republican presidents. Congress has been a bit more Democratic over that long period, but you would be hard pressed to see much difference in the outcomes between times of Democratic and Republican control. Problems have continued to grow, and solutions have continued to get more distant in the telescope, no matter who was in control. The current debt crisis is just one more example of that. George W. Bush was nearly as profligate a spender as Barack Obama, and apparently thought that being a compassionate conservative meant spending more money on social programs than Democrats did.
As for President Obama, what’s his explanation for bombing Libya? How can he possibly jibe his administration’s use of war powers today with his own statement in 2007 that, “The president does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation”?
Answer: He can’t. It’s just one more example of how political affiliation is more for convenience in getting elected than a statement of values or guarantee of where you stand.
Another place where both parties have an abysmal record for acting in accord with the wishes of the people is border control and immigration sanity. Don’t forget — it was President Bush who tried to push through amnesty for illegal immigrants, with the support of many Democrats and Republicans in Congress.
And it wasn’t the Republican Party that stopped that disaster from happening; it was the American people, rousing from their slumber long enough to slam a sledgehammer of email, faxes and phone calls into the Capitol. Congress got the message — barely. The amnesty bill was shut down and people started talking about enforcing border security instead of legalizing criminal behavior.
But as always happens, the powers that be were just waiting for America to go back to sleep — Democrats kept talking about “comprehensive immigration reform,” the code words for amnesty, and Republicans kept trying to figure out how they could vote for it and still get re-elected.
A funny thing happened on the way to the re-vote that many in Congress had hoped for, however; the Tea Party movement emerged, partly as a followup to the amnesty fight and partly as a bulwark against increased government spending that was proposed in the wake of the 2008 economic collapse.
What the Tea Party realized long before most people did was that 20 million illegal aliens inside our borders are a huge drain on government services and taxpayer dollars. If we are against government spending money on citizens, we are adamant in our opposition to spending money to protect people who have broken the law to take advantage of our hospitality.
But if you think that Republicans are going to take the common sense approach to the immigration crisis, just take a look at Utah to see how wrong you are.
In a state that is arguably the most Republican in the country, a bill was recently signed into law that allows illegal immigrants to become legal residents of Utah. That’s right. Pay a fine of $2,500 and be on the road to not just a driver’s license, but also in-state tuition, safety-net benefits, and possibly even the right to vote! Talk about a path to citizenship!
Democrats are no doubt giddy over such a development, but the problem is that it would take federal approval to work — and if the feds were to allow Utah to develop its own immigration policy, it would also have to acknowledge the right of Arizona to do the same thing.
Since Arizona wants to do the right thing and send illegals aliens back to their homes in Mexico and elsewhere, that’s never going to happen!
But in the meantime, we are left with the incredibly important lesson that party membership is no guarantee of common sense, nor a safeguard against hypocrisy or foolishness. If you trust a political party to do the right thing, you aren’t paying attention.
Don’t trust Democrats, don’t trust Republicans, don’t even trust the Tea Party. If you expect anything to get done, trust yourself. Speak up, speak louder, speak until you are heard. Don’t let someone else do it — because they aren’t always speaking for you, and by the time you figure that out, it’s often too late.
Frank Miele/Daily Inter Lake