Sunday, September 09, 2012

There is a lot of angst these days, especially around politics. We just finished two conventions. The Republicans went first, and the fact checkers were not nice to them. Plus there was their meme, which they distorted from an Obama speech, about how "They Built It," meaning their fortunes, all while in a building paid for by tax dollars. Inside, they had that meme posted, "We Built This." Above it was the debt clock, a subject they rarely referred to. And though it was a fabricated photo, if you take away the Bush tax cuts and two warts the Republicans started and ran for almost a decade, this number isn't an issue.
Or Ryan's claim of a factory being closed in his own state of Wisconsin, which actually closed before Obama took office. Here is a link that is from this morning. Here Ryan fabricates a distortion, when fact checking reveals what a distortion it is. This is the nature of today's politics. Except for Michelle Obama's speech. Apparently it passed fact checking with flying colors.

On the other side of the aisle, here is a story about a Democrat that just couldn't handle some free expression. This story is rather interesting in the depth of effort this Democrat went though to make sure this football player was silenced. It's shameful that any person should act this way, but there you have it. From a Democrat. A Christian minister Democrat.

So what is the solution? I see two aspects that can be acted on right now. One is take over party politics at the local levels to determine the party planks of the state and then national conventions. Take for example this graphic which reveals how far on these issues the "liberals" have swung. So we need to take over the local levels to establish what we want to define as liberal and/or progressive.

Second, we need to be the change of people we want to see. In other words, from today's ranks of those at the local levels will rise the state and national level politicians of tomorrow. We need to re-instill ethics, beginning with ourselves, into politics, and more importantly, early education. I realize that's a sticky wicket with the right wing fundamentalists in America, but ethics have been taught and discussed in schools long before their brand of fundamentalism existed. This article is a good place to start questions. I noticed in the 4th paragraph this statement: "As America became a more pluralistic society, it was harder to come up with a shared notion of good behavior." That raises some interesting notions, no? "Good behavior?" I don't see that as the issue. Would bullying be considered good behavior? Yes, by some religious people here in America. Otherwise, no. Stealing? Murder? Rape? I think the issue isn't behavior, as to the changing dynamic in America as to what the foundation of that moral behavior will be. Atheists can be good without God. Many Christians are bad with god. So it's up to us to find out how to discuss ethics and leave each person to choose what foundation they will build that on. And those are the people we want in office.

It's election season, so the emotions are high. We can see that both parties aren't exactly what we want ideally. We do however, still have the power to change them. We can stop the corruption, the lies, the power trips, and make this, maybe for once, a government of, by, and for the people. We can achieve the Thom Paine sentiments I post as the header of this blog. I know that's true because we have the power to change the one thing that really matters: ourselves.