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Friday, November 05, 2010

The Election: My Late Thoughts (In Case You Care)

My original intention was to do a long post about what exactly went wrong for Democrats, with bullet points and the like laid out and organized appropriately.  But then I realized that doing that would mean this post would be extraordinarily long, and unnecessarily so.  Besides, if you want to see some interesting opinions on the election, Scalzi has fairly detailed ones here.

But I do want to throw out my two cents, in contracted form, for those that actually care about my political opinions.  Considering the outcome, I am not surprised.  Democrats got exactly what they deserved.  I hate saying it, but it's true.  That's not to say that they haven't done anything good since taking control of the Presidency, the House, and the Senate.  They have, albeit not to the extent many of us had hoped, but they've also taken an extraordinary amount of power and squandered it by trying to appease an opposition who publicly declared that they were essentially going to be the party of obstruction (anything Obama was pretty much not a-ok with them).  Democrats allowed Republicans and Tea Baggers to control the dialogue and turn public opinion around based on false information and half-truths, and the result was exactly what I thought would happen:  Democrats would lose power.

At the same time, though, the election didn't go as poorly as I had thought it would.  Democrats
barely control the Senate, which means that even if a Republican were our President, hardly any major Republican policies woiuld make it through (assuming the remaining blue senators have the spine to stand up for Americans over corporate interests).  There's a glimmer of hope there, and maybe Democrats will have learned a lesson about what happens when you don't control the dialogue and point out your opposition's lies.

So, on the one hand, I'm disappointed.  Despite pulling in over 800,000 jobs this year (paltry as it may be compared to the 8 million lost) and the announcement that the recession is actually over (which is different than saying that the economy has fully recovered), people decided that the party that claimed to want to change things was better than the party that said the same thing two years before with an actual plan of change, but who didn't do that at all.  The fact that Republicans are essentially running on an economic platform that prizes trickle-down economics hasn't registered with many voters, perhaps because we constantly hear about how great the system is without also paying attention to the fact that it doesn't work.  It sucks, but I also understand it.

There's good news, though.  Several Tea Bagger crazies lost their races (like O'Donnell, who lost by 17% to Coons).  Amendment 62 in Colorado was shot down something awful (71% against) and almost 75% supported providing tax benefits for military service men and women in Florida, which is pretty damn awesome in my book.  The one thing the election reminded me of is that there are things that we can agree on (like benefits for soldiers, etc.).  So, it's not all bad, and you better bet that I'm going to latch onto the good as things go quickly into the toilet.

So, that's how I view the election.  What about you?

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