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Posts tagged ‘history’

15
Mar

Where has the “Loyal Opposition” gone?

Whatever happened to the concept of the “loyal opposition?”  What that meant  was that the two-party political system we entertain here in the United States was composed of both Democrats and Republicans, who more or less took turns running the country.  The percentage of Rs and Ds varied at different times.  The “loyal opposition” meant that when members of one party had control of the governing bodies, the other party cooperated and supported the system and the Chief Executive–the President.

That is not to say that there has never been wiggle-room on major issues on which the representatives of the various fifty states disagreed…or more specifically on which their constituents had strong feelings one way or the other.  This political form allows for differences in campaign rhetoric…and for situational platforms for argument and regional points-of-view.

Recently 47 members of the United States Senate acted on their own to basically go over the head of the President and threaten a foreign power with possible political ramifications.  The key point here is that all but a handful of Republican Senators signed the obnoxious–if not treasonous–letter to Iran, warning that they could reverse any agreement or negotiations of President Barack Obama concerning Iran’s nuclear program.

The huge number of signers indicates that there was a significant volume of political pressure on Republican Senators, so pervasive and strict that only a handful–less than ten–dared to go against the party sledgehammer.   Vulnerable members of the Senate apparently had little choice, and not much to lose because of the sheer number of participants who signed the letter to Iran.  The others, the old-timer big-shots of the party and the Tea Partiers and axe-grinders, could well afford to join the vast majority and sign the letter.   No doubt these people thought that their action was a bold definitive statement, and would be accepted by the general nay-sayers and Obama-haters among their constituents.

In some quarters–such as major national newspapers–are calling these 47 Senators “traitors.”  That’s going pretty far, as obviously most of the Signers of the infamous letter to Iran are not traitors, and may have looked upon the matter as inconsequential, and a harmless thorn in President Obama’s side. One that would cause a commotion, and attempt to somehow diminish the President’s standing by building their own reputation as out-spoken and heroic firebrands.

In my opinion it was a stupid move, and illustrates just how far from common sense and good government our Senate has advanced.

Remember a few decades ago when the huge scandal that would be known forever as “Iran Contra” broke? Hmmm… Iran again… when the CIA sold guns to Iran to make money to finance the tragic yet silly fiasco  of trying to fight the Sandinistas in Nicaragua.   It could be argued I suppose, that then-President Ronald Reagan actually did have authority to approve the complicated Iran-Contra operation…and of course there was the added attraction which provided the Democrats a platform for beating the drums against the Reagan administration.

But that’s another story…

 

 

 

 

 

2
Feb

Who am I — and What am I doing here?

This introduction post has been an assignment of the blogging101 course that I just never got around to doing, so with a new course starting it’s as good a time as any. And yes, I do intend to change my header image…soon.

This is a hard thing to do, making up a sort of resume, putting the right foot forward and all that. I have written about parts of my life story, so I’ll just fill in a few blanks and say a few facts. Facts are good.

Writing is my first love…since I was old enough to hold a pencil without poking out an eye, letters and words on a page have always fascinated me. Finally learning to actually read and write was thrilling for me. I read everything available, and still remember some of my favorite books even after all these years.

I have been around for more than eighty years, but please don’t anyone hold that against me. I try really hard to avoid being obnoxious or too much of a know-it-all, and I really do work at not being rude, out-spoken, or annoying. Everyone who knows me if they are reading this are rolling their eyes and saying “yeah, right!”

Blogging is one of the best things that has ever come to my attention. I did try journaling, keeping a diary, but that got old fast. My great-grandmother was a good diarist, whose life was filled with interesting things to write about: the Goodyear blimp’s maiden voyage over Akron Ohio, the Women’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU) although I don’t think she ever wrecked any bars with an ax like Carrie Nation did…and she wrote often about her “soldier boy,” who was a Civil War cavalry man. My grandmother, on the other hand, didn’t enjoy writing much, and her entries complained about the garbage men banging up the trash cans, and the ice man dripping water all over the basement stairs, and how old her mother would have been had she lived past 93.

My work history includes having been a newspaper reporter, political hack at various times, city council clerk, and a full-time student once I hit the age of 50. I do hold a master’s degree in History, noteably United States and Latin American History, but ran short of a doctorate in History because I ended up ABD (all but dissertation) at about age 70…because I had other things to do that were more productive. Such as more writing, selling books and stuff on ebay.

My writing has found its home with WordPress, blogging satisfies my need to write about anything and everything, and I can go on and on about my life…and if anyone doesn’t want to read it they don’t have to. The story of my life history will just go on in cyberspace forever.

Five children, six grandchildren, and five great-grandchildren give me more fodder for great prose. I love CATS, nature, all kinds of needlework, collecting stuff…lots of stuff. I am a terrible housekeeper, a haphazard gardener, and a disorganized and distracted business person.

Whom do I want to read my blogs? Anybody who wants to. I would really like to write a novel…well, actually I have FOUR novels in the works. They probably aren’t going anywhere, due to procrastination and lack of concentration.

So that’s who I am.