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It’s a familiar question. I heard it again not long ago.
 
My Republican friend/foe Jack Hawke and I were tossing partisan grenades at each other during a panel on this year’s elections.
 
When it was time for Q&A, the question was: “Can’t the two parties put aside their differences and solve our problems instead of fighting and attacking each other all the time?”
 
No, we can’t. What’s more, we shouldn’t.
 
The question rises from a well-intentioned, civics-book view of politics. But it overlooks the basic fact that politics is about differences and disagreements – often deeply held.
 
An example: On health-care reform, Democrats thought every American should be required to have insurance. Republicans disagreed.
 
There is no middle ground there, no compromise. We either require it, or we don’t.
 
So we see who has the most votes today. Then the other side gets a chance to take its case to the people for their vote.
 
That leads to a lot of fussing and fighting, fuming and fulminating, posturing and positioning.

You may not like that free-for-all. If so, there are places that don’t have it. Like North Korea.
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dap916
# dap916
Friday, August 27, 2010 5:05 PM
What has happened in our country has gone a great deal farther than what you're saying here, Gary. It's not just "fussing and fighting, fuming and fulminating (explode with a loud noise like screaming and hollering..etc., in case any of you have to do what I had to do and look this one up), posturing and positioning.

Today, it is commonplace to have one side in politics to make baseless and made-up charges of racism and hatred and bigotry against the other side. And, it has become accepted for the sides to present statements and video out of context so as to alter the truth. Most Americans now accept that the various news media...print and radio and television...will adhere to one particular political philosophy and support that with editorials and columnists that avoid presenting both sides. This comes from both sides of the political equation, of course. Used to be that media latched onto a particular candidate in mostly local races and maybe a presidential contest, but today they latch onto the entire party and philosophy.

It's not our father's political arena anymore. It has become more ugly than it has ever been. It has become more divisive than it has ever been. Both sides are to blame, no doubt. But, to infer that what we are seeing today in politics in our country is just more of the same as what we've always seen, it's not. Sure, there has always been a separation of ideals and a separation of goals and objectives for our country politically. And, sure, there has always been hate spewed between parties and candidates.

It has gone FAR beyond that now. We are more divided than ever in our history. I'm sure there is a very good argument to be made against what I said using selected examples...but I think most in our country would agree with me on this one.
Carbine
# Carbine
Friday, August 27, 2010 10:46 PM
All you've written is true. But what needs to be added is that if we the people can't tell the truth from the inevitable BS spouted by those who only want to win, or who do not themselves realize their own fallibility, then the system will not survive.

Of course, it would help if those who choose politics as a career would dedicate themselves to honest discourse rather than doing and saying whatever it takes to win. But that ain't gonna happen, is it Gary? Or Carter?
Huh?
# Huh?
Saturday, August 28, 2010 8:05 PM
People always think that their time is unique, more important, or more extreme than other times. Read you history guys. The more things change the more they stay the same.
dap916
# dap916
Sunday, August 29, 2010 2:04 PM
Wishful thinking, Huh? But, if I was in your shoes, that'd be what I'd be thinkin' and what I'd be saying.

Times are changing. That's what many folks...including you, me thinks...thought when they voted for the Obamaman. Just didn't work out that way, I'm afraid.

But, I do understand where you're coming from.

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