Monday, April 26, 2010

Republicans Do The Only Thing They Do Well... Again

Republicans do only one thing well: they vote in block. Never mind their complete lack of (good) ideas to solve the nation's problems,

When Bush was president, they steamrolled over Democrats to enact some of the most regressive policies in the nation's history, their stated goal being the piecemeal dismantling of New Deal and Great Society Policies.

Now that Mr. Obama is President, they vote in block against anything, literally anything, the President supports.

Take for example Wall Street Reform: You would think that no politician would dare vote to block reform aimed at reining in one of the two most unpopular industries at this point in history, i.e. the banking industry (the insurance industry being the other). But no, even this time Republicans were steadfast in their resolve to block the President's agenda, no matter what.

The only thing more disgusting than Repuglycans voting unanimously to prevent Wall Street reform from even coming to the floor of the Senate for debate is the Democrat who joined them: Ben Nelson, already a thorn in the President's side during the health care reform debate. That is why it is really important to elect true progressives to Congress, and not career politicians who only have their own best interest in mind, instead of the nation's.

On a related note, you might want to read The Cover-Up, posted on, written by James Kwak, co-author with Simon Johnson of the book 13 Bankers: The Wall Street Takeover and the Next Financial Meltdown. Read it, and read it to the end. Focus particularly on the last paragraph, and then ask yourself: Whose bidding are Republicans doing when they vote uninanimously to stop Wall Street reform from being debated on the floor of the Senate? Ours? Think again.

One last thought: While the Republicans who are working to stop regulatory reform are despicable, because they always do the bidding of the powerful and the wealthy while filling their mouths with words like freedom, free-market, the will of the American people, etc, too many Democrats are now squeaky-clean when it comes to their ties to the banking industry and its mindless deregulation.

In fact, as former New York Governor Spitzer suggested over a year ago, the problems that have beset our financial industry (and have had such disastrous domino effects on the lives of many people, here and around the world) could have been prevented by good people willing to use existing regulations (which also raises the question of why President Obama picked Tim Geithner and Lawrence Summers to fill in important posts rather than people like Elizabeth Warren, William K. Black and Paul Krugman, for example).

In other words, no laws will ever do the job unless there are principled individuals willing to enforce them. So the current regulatory impulse may be driven more by a desire to shield political accomplices from blame than by a serious desire to fix the system.

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