What a week. We seem to be heading for a government shut down and only do our elected members of the government seem to miss the fact that all of us are tired of these ridiculous games. Most Americans want to be able to get on with our lives and not spend the time wondering if we will get paid, get our pensions, and how much of our retirement savings will disappear.
Why do we have such a deep division and no leadership from either side to make things work? What happened to the concept that we elect a small, elite group of Americans so they can keep the U.S. functioning? There are different ideas as to what is causing the divisiveness but it does have a great deal to do with whom we elect sit in the White House and Congress. So if the government shuts down and there are serious repercussions, all parties will be potentially blamed. Of course, the President cannot be re-elected so he really has to worry only about his place in the history books. The House members are up every two years so they seem to be only concerned with whether they’ll have a job next term. (And, of course, their pay and benefits are exempt from a shut down so they have nothing to lose.) The Senate, which could be a place for compromise, is frozen with a lack of any leadership and is made worse by having an individual who is using the microphone to promote his own goal of living at 1600 Pennsylvania in January 2017 and so uses the podium to cause chaos in his party.
Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be a solution short of an earthquake that would swallow the entire group. Now, before anyone gets upset, I admit there are a few rational people in government. The problem is that they are in the minority, which is why we are in this mess. I am certain that there is a logical way to solve issues like this in the future, and it probably has to do with the average voter changing some of the people who represent us. That will require more voters to recognize that supporting people who are extreme in any view — left or right — do not belong in positions that require a little bit of logic.
Or perhaps this whole process is inevitable and the U.S. is supposed to become like many other former great nations — bankrupt and irrelevant or non-existent. I choose to think otherwise, and the optimist in me is hoping someone or some group of people will see the light and find a way out of this current crisis. I also am keeping fingers crossed that we won’t have to keep going through these crises every year or several times a year. I also hope the voters in the U.S. make better choices in the next round of elections so that there are more responsible people in government.
Did I mention I am a total optimist?
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