Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Playing the blame game....and losing.

Ok, haven't talked politics for a while, trying to focus on more important things, but with all the stuff going on right now, it has been difficult.  We've got the Occupy X movement going, the Republican candidates are vying for the nomination, Obama vying for re-election points, and that's just the big blips on the national scale.  Europe is falling to pieces economically and politically on the international scene, while the Middle East is abound with revolution, supposedly moving towards more democracy, but we will have to wait and see.
Times are rough everywhere, and just about everyone is busy looking for whose fault it is.  The OWS folks blame the "1%", Republicans blame Obama and the Democrats, Obama and the Democrats blame the 1% and the Republicans.  Sounds like a circular firing squad to me.
Too many of us are not looking at the issues through a wide enough lens.  If we did, we would have to admit that all of this stuff has hit the fan, and the blame rests squarely on the shoulders of............... us.  Why is our government full of idiots, ideologues, and muckrakers (not all of whom have a (D) behind their name, (R)'s are just as much in the sights on this issue)?  Because we keep voting them in, either by not supporting other candidates or by simply not voting.  National voter turnout runs 30-50 percent of registered voters bothering to show up for elections, and I'll wager the majority of those don't really have a clue who they are voting for and what they are voting for, just going off those letters behind the name or which one's commercials stuck out in their mind.  Look at the state right now.  Republicans are arguing over which candidate is electable, not which one has the best plans and abilities for the nation, and despite O's Bush level approval ratings and numerous failed programs, no Dems have the backbone to stand up and run against him.
That's just the national level.  How about on the state and local levels?  Do you like everything your city council is doing?  How about the county government, whatever it's title is where you're at?  Your state senators and governor?  Did you get out and cast an intelligent, educated vote last time they were up, or did you miss that one?  How many various acts have been put to a public vote in your area in the last year?  It does still happen.  Guess what, it isn't the 1% screwing the 99%, the 99 is doing it just fine to themselves.
On that note, much of the OWS furor is directed at corporate America.  There actually are a few legitimate gripes leveled by the group there, but they are drowned out by envy and laziness, with these protesters wanting all that wealth they don't have ripped away by the government and handed to them.  The sad fact is that just like our elected officials, we are simply lying in the bed that we have made.  An easy example here is that big evil Walmart.  I'm not going to lie, I'm not a big fan of Wally World, but I still pick up what needs to be gotten from them quite frequently, sometimes based on price, sometimes convenience, occasionally because there's nowhere else to get it from.  I admire Sam's business plan, creating the distribution centers which bought product in big enough bulk to get massive discounts, then shipping things around his darn self instead of making each store an island.  I also remember when Walmart had a much more significant variety of products, be it electronics, music, clothes or toys than they do now.  So how did Walmart go from a great business idea to an evil corporation?  Again, because we got lazy and apathetic.  What happened to that little shop downtown with the cool clothes?  Too many people settled for Faded Glory tshirts instead of the nifty stuff that little shop carried.  What happened to the hardware store that always had that one bolt you needed for this weekend's project?  Same thing, only now Walmart doesn't have the room for 150,000 different bolts, so you're out of luck on that project.
We The People made this mess, period.  We made by getting apathetic anLet the OWS folks think that by holding their signs and refusing to leave their camps that they are making some kind of difference.  They aren't.  Let the politicians bicker amongst themselves like they are willing to fix the issues.  History and most available evidence shows they aren't.  If America is going to get out of this hole, it's going to happen in the homes of the people.  People are going to get smart, and get tired of waiting, and get to work their darn selves, scraping together ideas and businesses.  Either that, or America will join many other great nations on the list of collapsed powers of the world.  The unfortunate fact is that if we do start to climb out, it's going to be a long hard road for everyone.  Anymore, that seems to be the hardest pill of all for so many of us to swallow.

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