I have spent the last two days wading through idiotic commentary, baseless conjecture and outright stupidity when it comes to why things happened the way they did on Election day. It was not because Democrats did not address serious problems like the very real war on women or lack of money. It was not because Republicans necessarily sided with the GOP on a lot of issues. It came down to this: Obama and the Democrats have done NOTHING to help the middle class. They didn't even try. And that pissed off a lot of people.
Harry Reid was every bit the obstructionist that the Republicans were. He refused to bring up bills that wouldn't pass, but by doing so, didn't give the Democrats any ammunition to attack the right with. The right hammered democrats as being with Obama, who let's face facts, he has been a pretty bad President. He has sided with corporations on almost every subject, has attacked whistleblowers with a fury never seen before by any president, including the last dumbass in office, increased surveillance upon ALL Americans and has done absolutely nothing to help the middle class. As for all those absolute idiots out there who call Obama a Marxist or socialist, they should really look up what those words mean, because the above statement is the exact opposite of every economic policy the man has ever championed. He is yet another corporatist in a line that stretches back to Reagan. Think about that, we have had 34 years of corporate rule, gradually getting stronger and stronger and no matter who we vote for, nothing changes. Isn't this when revolution should be discussed?
People voted for Republicans in hope of some small change because the Democrats sure weren't providing any. This also means that people have such short term memory loss that they forgot how much worse they were when they were in charge. How long can we be brainwashed into thinking either party will champion for us?
The good news out of all of this is that the ballot measures in every state showed that the voting public isn't that out of step with each other. Could it be possible that the extremists are far less than we have been told, that most of us are not that far off politically than we have been led to believe? The MSM is lying to you. Once you accept that, you can take the red pill and see the Matrix for what it is: we are mostly the same.
The ballot questions and commentary I have read say that a lot of you out there are fed up with the way things are, and come 2016, if they see a Bush/Clinton matchup again, they may throw their TV through the window. Whoever moves to capture key areas will be the winner, and it won't be decided by abortion, gay rights or tax cuts for the rich. It will be whoever becomes the most populist and starts addressing thing like ending the war on drugs, having a plan that will actually create jobs and getting money out of politics. These three things EVERYONE wants.
Let's start with the war on drugs. In every state it came up, no matter how red or blue, people overwhelmingly approve of legal weed. This is a multi-billion dollar commodity that the USA for once can be on the ground floor of. It is also a huge job program as these pay good wages and will therefore help any community that has pot shops and growers as this is economic 101 of supply and demand. If people have jobs that make money, they spend it, which creates jobs. Rich people sit on their cash and hire robots when possible. It is inevitable at this point that legal weed is here to stay as everything the naysayers said would happen, didn't. Shocker.
And here's the rub. Obama could fix this tomorrow. He could instruct the DOJ to stop all weed arrests. Further, he could use a blanket pardon and release all nonviolent drug offender for weed immediately. It would seem really stupid to keep prosecuting people anywhere if the President was just going to pardon them the next day. He could work with banks, the IRS and the DEA to accept legal weed and have the democrats start using this as a wedge issue in 2016, giving them a huge leg up with younger voters who do vote in Presidential elections. So far, he has done none of that, and I have no idea why. It's like the democrats like to lose.
Same goes for raising the minimum wage. I saw almost no ads for any democrat anywhere that this would help the country and there are real world places in this country to show why doing so is a great idea. They could go to Seattle to see that since raising the minimum wage for SEA-TAC workers, there has not been a flood of job losses and shuttered businesses but the opposite actually. Local businesses are thriving because these people have more money to spend and are doing just that. Then we go to Kansas where trickle down economics has once again ruined the state, like it did the country back in 2007. Here are all the states that voted to raise the wage from payscale.com:
More than two-thirds of voters in Alaska endorsed a minimum wage increase to $9.75 by 2016. Similar margins supported a bump to $8.50 in Arkansas by 2017. Fifty-nine percent of Nebraska's voters weighed in, raising the state's rate to $9 an hour by 2016. The margin of support in South Dakota was less significant, but 53 percent of voters have elected to raise the rate there to $8.50 by next year. Additionally, more than three-quarters of San Francisco's voters have increased their local minimum wage rate to $15 an hour.
Expect to see job growth in every state that raised the wage, especially SF. No country on Earth has raised the minimum wage and watched their economy do anything but grow. Both Bolivia and Ecuador have done so over the last few years and they now have stronger growth than places like Brazil, Argentina or Columbia. The next time some idjit says raising the minimum wage will cost jobs ask where that is happening where the wage was increased and then sit back with a smug smile because such a place does not exist. People need more money and, left or right, they agree.
The other surprise was towns in Florida and MA which voted to end Citizen's United, the worst decision in the history of the Supreme Court. They overwhelmingly wanted money out of politics and I agree. Apparently Judge Roberts must be suffering from some real world delusion as if he can't see with his own eyes how damaging the ads were in the last election. We got sold out by the corporations and almost every state could see it.
Here in MA, we managed to pass the nations first mandatory sick days law that guarantees 7 days of sick leave for people with more than 11 people. The arguments from the right were terrible as always, claiming they will have to pay a temp to take over their position which is complete bull. Most companies can do without a person for a day or two, because what do they do when the person takes a vacation? They don't use temps then, so why would it matter if someone gets sick? This anti-sick days nonsense was bull from companies who didn't want to pay for it. Studies have conclusively shown that giving people time off for illness is far better than making sick people come to work where they infect everyone and drive down productivity. So much for the free market again, a lie of epic proportions. There is NO FREE MARKET. This a lie made to trick you into giving more power to corporations who in turn will screw you out of everything not nailed down. We also gave a big okay to casino which provides good paying jobs and a two to three year construction job guarantee as well as removing an ill advised automatic gas tax increase every year indexed to inflation, or a horrific idea wisely shot down.
The only place we lost was in an increase on the bottle tax for things like water and fruit drinks. The beverage and supermarket industry stood to lose a bundle on this and spent a gazillion dollars convincing people that if the law passed the sun would explode or something to that effect. It was enough to convince 70% of the public that this was a bad idea, even though it was environmentally friendly and not the drag on society the elites said it was.
The point of all of this is that no matter where you live people want things neither side is promising and that is bad for both the Republicans and the Democrats. We are coming dangerously close to a point when neither side is going to be popular and then what? Most of us won't be so stupid to keep yo-yoing back in forth between two sides oblivious to problems real people have and then maybe we may have out first independent President which may actually happen should Bush/Clinton be the next nominees. It is telling that on both left and right wing sites people gag at the thought of that which is some hope we can all hold on to.