Kevin Carson’s letter [“Why Romney Never Saw It Coming,” Dec. 6, City Weekly] about the cluelessness of Mitt Romney and Republican TV pundits was very well written. It points to underlying issues in our society that need to be resolved. Power not only corrupts but deludes.
Romney is not the first to delude himself. In earlier times, as men gathered around strong leaders, leaders began to believe that their actions were not what inspired people but rather that they themselves were important. They passed power to their heirs, who, in many cases, had no ability to lead and could point only to lineage as a reason for their position. It was the concept of the “divine right of kings.” As time goes on, in any society, people in power grow more convinced of their own greatness.
Rome should be an example for us. Rome had a Senate that became dysfunctional. As Rome fell, bread and circuses kept the populace entertained. Our Senate is dysfunctional, and we have cable news to constantly keep us entertained. Many states gerrymandered their districts so that those in power will not lose it, resulting in a fight within a single party in these districts. Naturally, the contest is to see who is the most Republican or Democrat and, usually, the most radical uncompromising person wins.
So why are we surprised when we send 525 people to the House voted in on the slogan of “no compromise” that they are not compromising?
If every district were 50/50 Democrat and Republican, you would have to propose ideas that appeal to a few from the other side in order to win. Then, compromise would become more likely in Congress.
We need a resolution to the fiscal cliff. Democrats are unwilling to cut government social spending, Republicans are unwilling to cut defense. Democrats want to raise taxes and Republicans don’t. If we raise taxes too much, there is a chance of being noncompetitive in the world.
These are tough, complex issues. Instead of facing these issues head on, the leaders prance in front of the camera.
Cutting waste out of the military budget will not make us less prepared. Cutting inefficient social programs will likely hurt some, but not getting our house in order will hurt them more. Where is the line? These are the discussions we need, not the petty partisan bickering we find all around us.
Absolute power deludes absolutely. When the future history is written, I hope they will read that America walked to the brink but, unlike all the countries that came before it, was able to pull back and become stronger and wiser. Right now, the odds are not looking good.