Sunday, July 15, 2007

Politics, Not as Usual

I haven't talked about politics much on this blog lately. I run across interesting news items, and I open up a new entry to start a post, and then half the time, I just don't finish. I post a photo instead.

It's summer vacation. I've been distracted by my recent travels, family events and our continued work on our house. I'm battling outrage fatigue. I've been trying to do some off-line writing, and I only have so words in me per day.

I could go on. There are many reasons for my reticence, but this weekend, I've realized where it first began: with the Democratic takeover of Congress.

I had high hopes when that happened. Those were heady days. Our country's first female speaker! The Congress would finally start to rein in the Bush administration and all of their unbelievable abuses of power. Oversight would return to the Capitol. Bush, Cheney and Rove would see that our elected leaders would no longer stand by and just passively watch them stomp on our Constitution.

But that hasn't happened and I am disheartened. I am very disappointed in Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, who promised great things when they took over their leadership positions. But where are these great things? I don't know why they have failed (though speculation has raised some very scary possibilities), but I can point to one huge mistake made by Nancy Pelosi: she asserted that impeachment is off the table.

There is no denying that there are grounds for impeaching members of our current administration. And Nancy's announcement to the world that no matter what crimes these men might commit, we will never prosecute them, basically gives them free rein to continue flouting the limits on power set by our Constitution. Pelosi has made it clear that this Congress has no intention of seriously enforcing the balances of power that were laid out by the founding fathers. All she can do is bark, because she has betrayed her lack of bite. She has rendered herself impotent as a leader.

This lack of leadership has sucked away a lot of the energy I used to have for talking about national politics. I'm afraid that until Nancy Pelosi puts impeachment back on the table (whether or not we actually impeach anyone), I've got no use for her, or any of her colleagues. They have chosen to neuter themselves, and yet they want me to root for them as they put on a show, pretending to conceive? Please. I do love to root for the underdog, but not when she throws the game before it's even begun. I'll hang on to my energy and my vote and my money for now, thank you. I'll put them back in the process when it no longer feels like I'm throwing them away.

If you do nothing else this weekend, please watch this video from Bill Moyers, as he talks with Bruce Fein and The Nation's John Nichols about impeachment. It's a interesting discussion, and I'll bet it will give you some food for continued thought.


Dianne said...

I couldn't agree with you more. You've described exactly why I've become so apathetic about politics, though I can't say I had a lot of hope they would pull it out in the end (the newly elected Democrats), but I tried to be cautiously optimistic.

joe lance said...

I sympathize with your disillusionment with national politics. It is a mess.

So, indeed, is the local political scene; but there's where the average person might (could, maybe) have a bit more to do with fixing it.

With that in mind, I appreciate your involvement in your party of choice, and encourage you to forget about Pelosi and Reid, and focus on our city, county and state.

Buck said...

I cannot remember a time in my life when so many Republicans and Democrats were as disgusted with the national leaders as they are now. Everywhere people are saying to hell with both of them.

Who knows where this will lead.