Reflections on the 2010 Election

As I have stated elsewhere, with the Republican victories yesterday we got the CHANGE, now we move into the HOPE phase. Hope that the Class of 2010 can put the cart back on the road, regardless of which ditch it is in and who put it there. Charles Krauthammer made a poignant observation last night on Fox News. He said that the Democratic sweep of Congress in 2006 and the Obama election of 2008 were anomalies on the political landscape. That they were upheavals based on huge external forces on the body politic... the Iraq War in 2006 and the Grand Depression of 2008 and that now, 2010 brings us back in line close to the status quo in the US... older people voting, youngsters and the poor staying home.

Staying home and not voting is fine with me. Those that scream "Vote or Die" are nuts. The last thing I want is an enfranchised Zombie voting for whomever is on the blue slip they are handed as they trudge into the polling place. If you cannot press, click or punch for whomever or whatever without a crib sheet, then I don't want you voting... on either side. I also don't want voting to be so easy that everyone can do it without any effort.

This election is a repudiation of sorts of the old argument that there is too much money in politics. Well, maybe there is, but it is obvious that spending $160 Million cannot buy you a governorship of a large western state. Neither can it buy you a seat in the Senate. Usually the people arguing that there is too much money in politics are the ones that don't have enough of it. I would have liked to see Meg and Carly win in CA, but their loss proves that you cannot compel a voter to vote your way just because you pummel them with a relentless onslaught of ads. Unlimited money in politics just ups the ante. It does NOT guarantee results.

I used to be for full disclosure of the source of money in campaigns, but with the way that left wing groups mine the lists for prominent donors and then find something obscure in the candidate's (or the candidate's cause) and pin this on the donor has tainted the whole 'transparency' effort. Remember: NO GOOD DEED GOES UNPUNISHED.

The Republicans are in a great spot right now. They control the House, therefore they control the purse strings. They don't control the Senate, so no one can accuse them of boxing in the President like they did in 1994. Sure, the Left and MSNBC will do it anyway, but we will all see through their charade. There are enough Republicans in the Senate to assure that nothing crazy will be rammed through and as much as the Democrats whine about the Republicans abusing the filibuster rule requiring a 60-40 majority for any legislation, the Dems were the ones who perfected the cudgel after they lost power in the 1980's. (I guess that is like the US saying that no one else should have nuclear weapons?)

Like the dog that finally caught the car he was chasing... what are the Republicans going to do with the majority in the House now that they have it? Will they handle it responsibly, or will they start sliding back into the swamp of earmarks, pork and back-slapping?

Hopefully the much-maligned Tea Party members will remember from whence they came and, in the words of gadfly, serial Virginia gubernatorial candidate in the 70's, Henry Howell, they will "Keep the Big Boys Honest."

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