We live in a world of diversion and distraction. It has become increasingly easy to lose ourselves and our focus as technology continues to provide us with new and better ways to communicate, be informed and entertained. Many of us can remember a time when there were fewer TV channels, games were played either outside or on a table and music and movies were played on a record player or seen in a movie theater. I’m not one of those who is suggesting that they were better times, just simpler and less distracting. However, because of the many distractions and diversions today, it has become easier to garble and often distort the facts. It has also become easier to tailor the message for a narrow segment of the population whom you have convinced to utilize your communications outlet to find the “real truth”. You also claim that those who are stating “other truths” are distorting the facts to serve their own ends. The media of today have found fertile pickings in our national landscape of ill-informed and disengaged citizenry. The GOP has utilized this opportunity to distort the truth and confuse the issues with an unprecedented lack of concern for the facts or reality.
It is no wonder then that the polls regarding the ACA are conflicting. When surveyed, a majority believe that the Affordable Care Act is good for the country, but when the same question is reworded to ask about Obamacare, a majority says it is not. You think that says something about the level of knowledge and awareness of our population? We are so ill-informed that most people can’t name their Congressman and there are those who can’t name the Vice President. Congressmen have been told to write their speeches on a 6th grade level and the President writes his on an 8th grade level. We have become easily influenced because we don’t have the knowledge to ask the right questions. It is in this environment that the GOP has been able to distort, obstruct and delay any useful or constructive legislative action. It is in this environment that the GOP-lead House has become the least productive in history.
It is therefore time to get a few things straight. While Democrats presented and passed the ACA, the GOP attempted to repeal it 42 times and the GOP governors have done everything possible to hinder its implementation. Yet despite their objections they have presented not a single alternative. The Senate has passed an Immigration Bill, yet the GOP in the House has yet to bring it to the floor. The Senate has passed an Equal Employment Opportunity Bill, yet the House has yet to bring it to the floor. The Senate has passed a budget, but the House until recently refused to participate in a conference committee to pass a budget. They have had time to hold hearings where they see possible political gain such as the contrived Benghazi, IRS and NSA “scandals”, but they seem to have had difficulty finding the time to bring forward any constructive legislation.
It is clear that the GOP is a dysfunctional and destructive partner in what up to this point had been a constructive two-party system. When the Speaker of the House can say, ” Congress should be judged by how many laws we repeal, not how many we pass” when interviewed on Face the Nation with Bob Scheiffer this fall, who can take him or his party seriously?
The mid-term elections of 2014 are coming. Let’s not be distracted or allow the others to distort. The GOP has done great damage to our nation and our system of government. Let’s make sure they aren’t given the opportunity to continue this effort for two more years.