Partisanship Gone Too Far to be Effective
So how many of you, in between getting your presents on for Christmas, and getting your booze on for New Year’s, actually noticed the Republican complaints about MoveOn.org?
C’mon, show of hands.
That many, huh? You sure?
I see you, freshman in the back. Get your hand up.
Okay, quick rundown: MoveOn.org is a left-wing Web site that has been helping organize and fund the various Democratic candidates through grass-roots level organization. They provide a forum for people to get together, but it’s the people who actually do the organizing and campaigning.
Recently, they had a contest called ‘Bush in 30 seconds,’ where people could put together commercials that ‘tell the truth about George Bush’s policies.’
Not that they should vote against Bush, but what they feel about Bush’s policies. The winning entry will air during the week of the State of the Union address.
Now, the big hubbub is about two of the entries, which didn’t even make it to the 15 finalists.
In each entry, Bush was compared to Adolf Hitler. The Republican National Committee (motto: It’s all Clinton’s fault!) has taken this to mean that MoveOn was endorsing the idea that Bush is comparable to Adolf Hitler.
Nothing could be further from that.
By creating a contest where people can submit entries showing how they feel, MoveOn was providing a forum, not endorsing what the forum produced. The ads that were voted for (and through voting could be considered to have MoveOn’s approval) had nothing to do with Bush being compared to Hitler. But even that is beside the point.
The Repubican National Committee really has no justification for getting upset. It’s not like they haven’t pulled this kind of ad (and aired it, with their approval).
During the 2002 Senate race, Senator Max Cleland (D-Ga.) was the target of a commercial that showed his face morphing into that of Osama Bin Laden.
Furthermore, they ran a series of commercials showing their own Republican Senators and Congressmen who dared to cross the party’s will and vote against war behind a French flag.
Pot, meet kettle.
Kettle, this is pot.
I may seem a little bitter. I probably am. You see, I’m one of those silly people who thinks that the goal of the Congress and presidency should be to work to make the country a better place, not to tear down the other side. Both sides have drifted so far apart that I wonder if they’ll ever be able to work in concert again.
I mean, look at how things usually run: one party proposes something, and the other one immediately decries it while preparing their own version. It’s not how the system is supposed to work, kids.
When did our elected officials decide that toeing the party line was more important than doing what their constituents wanted.
Remember constituents, gentlemen?
You know, the little people who get you elected and who you consistently lie to because they’re complacent sheep?
All that being said, I have to admit that while I think the Democratic party has issues, the Republican party is insane. They’re following a narrow religious-based agenda that seems to have nothing to do with the core principles the party was based on. How often do you hear about the Republicans lessening government?
Reducing the size of government is not about lowering taxes for corporations, allowing them to cherry pick their legal status or reducing individual freedoms.
I thought the point of the Republican party was to lessen government interference, not to promote the conversion of this country into a police state by way of the Patriot Act.
I thought Republicans believed in a strong national defense, not becoming the bully in the playground to the rest of the world.
The Democrats aren’t much better. They’ve drifted so far from representing the people that they seem more like they’re a few miles back from the Republicans on the road to complete corruption. But at least they make the token effort still.
Can either party be truly said to represent us?
While you’re going to the pub or out to the clubs or playing video games in your dorm room or getting nicely toasted at some party, take a second to think about that, Okay?
Who is representing us? Anyone?
If the will of we, the people, isn’t being expressed, are we truly free? Maybe it’s time to think about Jefferson’s quote: ‘The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is it’s natural manure.’
Matt Davis is a fourth-year history major.