In Washington these days, there’s no oxygen left in the room to debate anything other than the faux debt ceiling issue. As the “deadline” draws near next week, every minute of talking head time on the cable networks is focused on the game of chicken being played between the competing plans offered by the Democratic and Republican leadership. Both plans are ineffective at dealing with our chronic spending and debt problems. Nonetheless, the debt ceiling appears to be occupying every minute of waking time in the days of the dinosaurs of political leadership currently responsible for resolving the issue.
But the key actors in this little farce remind me more of characters in Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland than political leaders of vision and courage:
The contemporary version of Alice in Wonderland we see playing out before us in the halls of power in Washington has added a third member to the Tweedle cast. Let me introduce the actors now performing their roles in our nation’s capital:
Tweedle-dee has set forward a “debt reduction plan” that will cut a grand total of $6 billion from our $1.7 trillion deficit next year. That’s less than one half of one percent of the annual deficit. There’s no debt reduction in this plan.
Tweedle-dum wants to increase taxes and refuses to cut spending in any meaningful way.
Tweedle-none has no plan other than to step up to a microphone and petulantly complain about Tweedle-dee’s plan.
These three characters are suitable for a child’s nursery rhyme, but their ascension to posts of political leadership in our republic is a sad commenatary on just how little attention the American electorate has paid to the electoral process for the past several decades.
The good news is that this all began to change in November, 2010.
The pathetic display of leadership currently offered by Tweedle-dee, Tweedle-dum, and Tweedle-none merely re-enforces the importance of common sense citizens engaging in the electoral process more heavily in November 2012. All three of these leaders are currently in their positions of power because the voters of the United States have put them there. We can, and should, remove them all in November, 2012.
But let’s be honest about this mess.
Complaining that this sophomoric trio are doing the wrong thing simply shifts the blame from our shoulders to theirs. They’re behaving exactly as we should expect them to behave.
Tweedle-dee is behaving like the establishment Republican he is. He’s simply following the time honored Republican traditions of Herbert Hoover, Richard Nixon, and George W. Bush.
Tweedle-dum is behaving like the partisan Democratic hack he is. He’s simply pandering to the special interest groups to which he owes his election.
And Tweedle-none is behaving like the hollow and brittle redistributionist ideologue he is. He’s simply out of his league, incapable of doing anything other than deliver the same monologue again and again.
In the next election, it’s time for constititutional conservatives like us to throw the whole lot of them out, and replace them with common sense people who think and act like we do. The mechanics of how this transformation can come about is a worthy topic for the next e-book in the Voices of the Tea Party series.
Michael Patrick Leahy is the editor of the Voices of the Tea Party e-book series and co-founder of Top Conservatives on Twitter and the Nationwide Tea Party Coalition. His new e-book, I, Light Bulb: A Death Row Testimonial, was published earlier this week. His new book, Covenant of Liberty, will be published by Broadside Books in spring, 2012. He can be reached on Twitter at @michaelpleahy .