Wednesday, January 20, 2010

What Can (Scott) Brown Do for You? If You are an Incumbent... Not So Much

They tell you not to do political posts because you are sure to peeve half your audience.  It is doubly dangerous for me, since I am an equal opportunist complainer who targets both parties and hence has the opportunity to peeve off both halves of my audience.  Boo Yah.  That said, I firmly believe most people lie in the great middle either as independents or in the soft clutch of either party, but willing to listen to any sensible person who has the greater interest of the country in mind.  Unfortunately, very few of those people are involved in politics.

Yesterday, as we were caught up in TopazGate, healthcare stocks were screaming higher on prospects for the 60 Senator Democratic posse to be broken in the MA election.  After the healthcare lobbyists did their deed writing helping to write the competing "reform" bills, healthcare stocks have been on a rampage the last few months - and yesterday was just icing on the cake ensuring profits in this industry will remain protected (remember, it's "free market capitalism" not corporate socialism) , in return for oodles of current and future political donations. The best ROI (Return on Investment) in America remains political contributions.

So I turned on the tube last night and I went to the normal screeching channels to get their viewpoints of the "landmark" victory.  On Fox, the Scott Brown victory was clearly a repudiation of the Democrats, especially President Obama - I believe that what was said; hard to tell in between the high five's going on by the impartial media.  On MSNBC the clarion call was that Mrs. Coakley was just a darn poor candidate and if she had only not taken the victory for granted, the outcome would be different.  Or the Dems should of drafted yet another Kennedy - that fixes everything. 

Both of these fair and balanced channels have it wrong - as did the political commentators on these, and many other channels.  Living in the NYC or D.C. media ivory tower's; they simply do not get what is happening "out here" on Main Street.  People are very angry...indeed I'd say frightened in many cases because they don't fully understand the big picture of how we got here.  But they know something is very wrong and it did not just start 1 or 2 years ago.  I proposed in 2007 that the conventional wisdom that America loves gridlock because at least the politicians could do no damage was now officially dogma - except on Wall Street where gridlock = secure profits for the largest of our corporations.  This current crop of politicians can do damage by doling out political favors in any formation - gridlock or no; they are just *that* talented.  I said, unlike perhaps in the 80s or even early 90s when the politicians were not helping the country but at least a somewhat bemusing sideshow - the current era politco class is like a long trail of iron spikes on the freeway of America.  They inflict monster damage with their crony corporate socialism... all the while inflicting untold damages to future generations that have not even begun to be truly accounted for. 

I expect Scott Brown - he whom I know nothing about other than his catchy sound bites that sound almost identical to every candidate before he/she heads off to Washington (I assume he is a "maverick") - to be a precusors for major incumbent carnage in 10 months.  Even with the power of familiarity in American politics, and the crime that is the cattle trading of Congressional redistricting it has now reached the point the flustered, angered, and downright exasperated US public is going to rotate new people into these roles until they find people who actually are "reprensentatives" again.  Who actually will think out 5-10-20 years and tell us things we might not like to hear but know we must. (Volcker, David Walker)  It might take 20 years, but we're just getting started on this path. 

So today the GOP celebrates as they believe they have captured the desperate independent vote ... while many of said independents wish there was a 3rd, 4th, or 5th viable party in our corrupted system.  Until then the same oligarchic system that exists in most major US industries, repeats in our political system and the "change" will have to come from within its confines.

This opinion piece by Rex Nutting at CBSMarketwatch - Dear Politicians: We are Fed Up - sums up what is going on; it would serve the ivory tower media well to get out of their little boxes and start figuring out the reality out here in the hinterlands.  As for the soon to be crop of outgoing politicos circa November 2010 - please don't shed a tear.  Their jobs as future D.C. lobbyists or high level executives at the companies and industries they handed your children's money out to is secure.  While enjoying the gold plated government benefits due to their "service" to the people.

On to Rex...
  • The people of this country have had it up to here with the way our leaders are running our country.  And while the election of Republican Scott Brown to the U.S. Senate seat held by the Kennedy brothers for nearly 60 years is clearly a repudiation of the Democrats' leadership, Republicans shouldn't get so smug about this victoryWe are fed up with the lot of you.
  • You promised to change the way Washington works, but you didn't do it. (Mark's note: doesn't every politican now say this?  I think even the people who truly believe this are simply swamped by the "system") Your answers to our problems are inadequate, or they make things worse. (Mark's vote is for "make things worse"As usual, you're taking care of everyone but us. Despite the worst economic crisis in generations, nothing has changed.
  • This country is in trouble, maybe big trouble. Our economy doesn't work for us any more. Jobs are hard to find, health care is hit or miss, and the idea of a comfortable retirement seems a cruel joke. We legitimately worry that we're bequeathing our kids and our grandkids a life that's going to be much tougher than ours.
  • You don't get it. We don't care about your campaign donations. We don't care about your political fortunes, or those of your party. We don't care who posed nude, or who's the better candidate. We don't care about 60 votes. We don't care about the big companies or the special interests who fear the future. We don't care about Senate traditions, or what those idiots on TV say.
  • We care about results. Fix our problems, or get out of the way. We know our problems aren't simple. We know the answers won't come easy. But we also know that you don't understand. If you did, you'd hide your faces in shame.
  • To the voters: You deserve better. Start demanding it.
Still a long road ahead - having 5-7-10 representatives who actually are on "the people's" side will mean little.  Only when a majority of these positions are held by these type of folk will true change happen.  Until then, let us enjoy as speculators the fortress built around our corporations - after all Main Street = Wall Street... CNBC told me.

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