Early-30, the third morning after Election Day
By George Smith — 11/06/2020
My mind roils, as does my gut. America is hurting, its people on edge. Regardless of party, regardless of what side of which issue individuals stand, we should all want the same thing: Stability and peace for our nation and an end to the partisan rancor which has rendered our nation divided at home and impotent on the global stage.
In business terms, each party has a brand problem.
For decades, the recognizable brand for the Democratic Party could have included a photo of a working man/woman/couple, standing in front of a house with required white picket fence (“SOLD” sign prominently displayed), a vista of American the beautiful in the background with music promising a better tomorrow for all playing over the tag line: “All the people, all the time.”
The Republican’s consistent message over the same timeframe could have been: A soldier with matinee-idol looks with his perfect-from-casting family — June Cleaver-looking mom, children (one of each gender), standing in front of a house with the pretequisite white picket fence (Republican branding consultant assume the house belongs to them), the steel-blue sky slowly turning into an American flag, strains of Kate Smith’s “God Bless America” rifting in the background.
The truth is only half of Americans are buying any of it. Citizens are not buying the promises, not buying the hype, not embracing the message of the two major parties. Half, almost exactly half of the voting public, is saying “NUTS!” to both parties, leaving a divided, hurting and angry citizenry.
The hard truth is: Americans don’t fully trust either party to do the right thing for ALL of America. As this is written, there’s a strong possibility Democrats will have control of the two houses, House of Representatives and the White House; Republicans will control the Senate.
There you have it, James Madison’s belief in a government ruled by checks and balances rather than by sheer will or applied force.
With a recalcitrant Senate, a Joe Biden presidency will fail; without compromise on key issues — pandemic, economy, global relationships, national intrastructure, healthcare — there is little he can actually accomplish.
Close your eyes and hark back to the last six years of Obama. The operative word was “stagnation”. America. Stagnation.
It is against the visceral nature of today’s petty, partisan, party politicians to do a single thing, to back a single issue or program backed by the Party With Another Name.
The GOP thought is: Helping Joe Biden weakens our position in 2024.
Understood. But…but what about the residents of the nation, ALL residents of the nation? The party opposition to any idea from the opposition is tighter than Dick’s hand band.*
Simply, what are the plans to push Americans forward for the next four years?
The last six years of the Obama Administration and the last two of Trump’s reign were fraught with unseemly infighting and a “congress” of executive orders and no meaningful cooperation between elected party-oriented public servants.
That has to stop. Which should be a priority, the needs of Americans — ALL Americans. The working orders for each party has been to ensure the opposition fails on every front so “our” party is strengthened in time for the next election cycle.
The projected election outcome shows decisively that Americans don’t trust either party to do the right thing.
The infighting has already started with Senate Speaker Mitch McConnell promising that a potential President Biden better choose “good” cabinet candidates or they wouldn’t be approved by the Senate.
Sigh. BIG sigh.
It is starting to look like, regardless of who ends up as president,this country’s leaders would rather call each other names and engage in epic tongue-lashings to ensure the words make the nightly news, rather that do the job for which they were elected: Serve the people…all the people.
Stoo. Just stop already.
* Tighter than Dick’s hat band — An old southern idiom. Could be used to identify a place that is empty, a person who is wound up, or any number of situations where the word “tight” is used. Nobody seems to know who Dick was. Apparently he had a tough time keeping his hat on his head.
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