Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Posing at the Rotunda

The American governmental system is one that is a good idea. Its principles of bicameralism and discussion are ones upon which other countries have based their governments on or had forced upon them. Some of its ideas are not very good (Electoral College), but, on the whole, it is a generally good system. For the system to work, there have to be people who are willing to play together in the sandbox of Washington, D.C. Today, The New York Times ran two articles on two specific issues that the government has been fighting over: election reform and the war in Iraq.

The Republicans and Democrats, on both of these issues, are engaged in a very, very innocuous game of Chicken. The Republicans are insisting that there are huge election fraud issues that need to be solved with things like the Read ID Act. There are not. There are issues of disenfranchisement, but those happen through ridiculous acts such as those of Kenneth Blackwell in Ohio in 2004 as Secretary of State mandating 120-lb index paper thereby disallowing the thousands of voter registration applications that were printed in state papers such as The Cleveland Plain Dealer and people being turned away at the ballot box due to their name being removed from the voter roll. For the record, Blackwell is a Republican. These issues do not ADD people to the voter roll as the Republicans suggest.

The War is one that has divided this country on multiple lines. What is right? What is wrong? What is right is supporting the troops. What is wrong is playing politics with their lives. Both parties are playing politics with the lives of the troops. Bush is unwilling to recognize the fact that Iraq is engaged in a civil war with Sunnis killing Shi'ites and Shi'ites killing Sunnis while the American troops sit in the middle and are killed as well. The Democrats are just as guilty of playing politics. While I do not disagree with their position, I do believe that the lives of troops is more important than making an ideological, "i told you so" stance to Bush. They need to give the money to the troops so they can assure that they don't get killed because they were improperly protected.

War is not the time to play politics. Bush needs to accept that we will have to end this war soon because it is going nowhere. The Dems need to understand that the way to play politics is not with the lives of young Americans. Hopefully, everyone can work on this and get it done.