Friday, March 14, 2008
PokerWolf sent me this one.
I've never watched or listened to Glenn Beck, for what it's worth.
Too bad, Michigan and Florida
NEW YORK (CNN) -- What do these stories all have in common?
Glenn Beck: Florida and Michigan leaders have only themselves to blame if their delegates aren't seated.
# A woman who says she lost more $1 million gambling in Atlantic City sues some casinos for $20 million, claiming they should've stopped her compulsive gambling.
# People who bought houses they couldn't afford with loans they didn't understand want their lenders to change the terms.
# Congress authorizes a war and then tries everything it can think of to get out of it.
# Our country gets addicted to oil and then blames OPEC when it doesn't like the price.
These stories prove how personal responsibility has all but vanished in America, and our government is leading the way.
Remember the kid from that interminable 1980s commercial whose father caught him using drugs? The father incredulously asked, "Who taught you how to do this stuff?" and the kid responded, "You, alright? I learned it by watching you."
Well, we are that kid and our government is that drug-using father who doesn't think that anyone notices his bad habits.
Our government is leading us by example, and I don't mean that in a good way. For years, it has spent us into oblivion, mortgaging our future for programs we can't afford, and Americans have happily followed suit, running up credit card bills and home equity loans for things they never should've bought.
Unfortunately, we're also learning something else from our government: how to avoid taking responsibility for our actions.
From Eliot Spitzer's alleged hooker craze to the revelation that Arnold Schwarzenegger commutes to work in a large private jet even as he preaches the dangers of carbon dioxide emissions, there's never been a shortage of "do what I say, not what I do" hypocrites in politics.
But that same attitude has seemingly spread from individual politicians to an entire party.
Democrats aren't happy that delegates from Florida and Michigan won't be seated at the national convention because those states broke clear party rules. Well you know what? Too bad. We don't say that enough anymore. Too bad. You agreed to the rules; you broke them. Now you've got to deal with the consequences.
"But Glenn. ... Neither Hillary Clinton nor Barack Obama will have enough delegates to win the nomination. We don't want this to be decided in some backroom by superdelegates."
"But Glenn. ... You don't understand. If we don't seat delegates from those states now, then we might lose their votes in the general election."
"But Glenn. .... The voters in these states are going to be disenfranchised if we don't let their voices be heard."
If you want to talk about disenfranchised voters, then let's talk about why just 17 percent of Americans have a positive view of Congress. Let's talk about why we still have wide open borders despite most Americans wanting them sealed. Let's talk about why we keep selling out our sovereignty and our security by borrowing billions of dollars from-less-than friendly countries, such as China.
Americans aren't disenfranchised because our leaders won't count votes in a couple of states. They're disenfranchised because our leaders aren't doing their jobs. They're disenfranchised because after working hard to support their families and to raise kids who understand the difference between right and wrong, their leaders do exactly the opposite.
In the cases of Florida and Michigan, I've patiently listened to all the moving arguments about why there should be a "do-over," but quite honestly, they're not arguments at all. They're excuses. If this race wasn't so close, or if these states offered a combined 36 delegates instead of 366, do you really think anyone would care? Of course not.
But no matter what you think should happen, you have to admit that Clinton's idea that we should simply count her "wins" in Florida and Michigan is completely ridiculous.
In fact, if you played a rimshot and a laugh track behind her every time she recited that line, people might actually agree to a two-drink minimum to see her speak. How could you possibly count the results from an election when your main opponent wasn't even on the ballot (at least in Michigan)? You can't -- unless you think the rules are simply there for your own amusement.
Last year, when the punishment against Florida was first approved, Donna Brazile, a member of the Democratic National Committee rules panel, said she hoped that the harsh consequences would "send a message to everybody in Florida that we are going to follow the rules." And Brazile knows a little something about that ... she ran Vice President Al Gore's presidential campaign in 2000.
Voters in Florida and Michigan should ask themselves one important question before they blindly follow their party: Why did no one seem to care about "alienating" them last year when the rules were intentionally broken? It's only now, when their vote really matters, that everyone is suddenly so concerned about "enfranchising" them.
Florida and Michigan have a golden opportunity to stand up and say enough is enough, to send a message that it's time to not only take responsibility for their actions but for those of our leaders as well.
After all, what would it say about personal responsibility in this country if we allow the two states that broke all the rules to end up having the biggest say of all?
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