I checked the definition for congress: n. formal meeting of delegates for discussion. Then I looked up discuss: n. talk or write about, converse about, review. This led to the noun, discussion: conversation, talk, chat, dialogue or debate.
Today’s Congress of the United States spends far less time in discussion than their forebears. This group spends more and more time posturing, primping, preening and engendering a greater awareness of their individual and collective attractiveness for their audition for higher office.
Representatives want to be Senators. Senators want to be Ambassadors and statesmen. And, if the planets align properly and their Gods are supplicated correctly they may be chosen to be Vice President or (may almighty Wahoo so allow); President of the United States.
It’s a showcase of unbridled egotism running rampant in this circular Iditarod we call government.
But is this dogsled competition more a three ring circus populated with clowns and sideshow freaks what we want? Or, do we want our representatives taking into consideration our views, postures and feelings as they pertain to the quality of OUR lives? Do we want a legislature willing to accept ideologies directive of policy to assure the proponents of that ideology gain the MOST benefit? Or, do we want statesmen speaking to the issues, debating the pro and con of law, procedure and its effect on the people?
We’ve become a nation directed by the few, in favor of those with the funds, to direct the course of national interest toward being a nation disinterested in its people. When did we stop being a nation of the people, by the people and for the people as the Founding Fathers first developed it?
Where did we go so wrong?
It’s easier to wax philosophical and ponder the greater questions of life than it is to stand in the breach and risk being impaled on a bayonet. It’s easier to think the thoughts and silently ask the questions in our minds we all ask; than it is to step into the light and let the main actors in this theft of our national identity as Americans be made aware of: WE KNOW WHAT YOU’RE DOING AND IT WILL NOT STAND.
Because it’s natural to fear those elements larger than we are. It’s easier to think, than to act. But, we must act NOW to prevent the loss of those Constitutional protections Americans have fought and died for since the declaration of our independence. We’ve stepped away from directing our national discourse to being sheltered from the actual participation in the maintenance of that governmental process.
Otto von Bismarck said: “The less people know about how sausages and laws are made, the better they’ll sleep at night.”
We as a people have been lulled into a state of well-fed, sleepy inactivity. It’s like we’ve grown fat and happy and only want to take a nap after the labors we all successfully conclude. The shepherd wants to rest. And he takes it for granted the dogs he left to guard the sheep aren’t wolves awaiting his inattention. That’s what happened to us as a nation.
Only the wealthy or those connected to wealth, may run for office. Only those best trained and indoctrinated in the intricacies of political endeavor can participate and hope to win. Only those willing to sacrifice their integrity to the faceless, shapeless mass we know as political ideology can rise to a position of eminence and leadership. The little guy is boxed out and must settle for what’s been selected for him, and spoon-fed to him, as being his best hope for representation.
The saddening part is that we’ve come to accept this as the new normal. We’ve become acceptant of the position we’ve been assigned as second class in an allegedly classless society. We run near mindlessly behind the lead dogs, stepping and floundering in the lead dog’s droppings along the trail. We mutter our complaints into our food dish. We snap and fight like sled dogs fighting over the morsels left behind by the musher driving us relentlessly to meet his goals.
We need to lose this sled dog mentality. NOW!
Thanks for listening.