With just a few weeks until they adjourn for the holidays, Republicans in the US Congress will try to cram in as much pettiness and vituperation as they can before heading back to their states and districts, no doubt to lead the home front in the fight against "the war on Christmas" launched this time every year by Fox News and its shock troops on talk radio. Take a look at some of their plans, including the riders congressional Republicans are contemplating for inclusion in the omnibus spending bill that must be passed by December 11. The whole mess is a Bad Santa's list of loopholes benefiting High Finance, tax cuts for the rich, and budget cuts for everyone else, even as they drive the nation deeper into debt and disrepair.
The Ohio ballot measure's victory is a big step in the right direction. It shows the citizens are in favor of fairness over partisanship. Hopefully, in a future election, a successful ballot measure will apply the same system to the U.S. House district lines as well (hopefully, this will happen before 2022).
I can see Biden's point about solving the nation's problems: If you're working toward solutions, why call an advocate of a policy you oppose your "enemy," when "my good friend across the aisle" will do? My reservation is that speaking well of the other party can drain genuinely moral disputes of authentic moral authority.
Opponents of the Clean Power Plan seem united in their belief that solving climate change is either unnecessary or should be very low on the list of national priorities. Their ideology remains fixed in a world of polluting energy. Fortunately for our children and grandchildren, the rest of us are moving forward.
We here at LivingRoomConversations.org consider ourselves "radicals." Radical doesn't mean vandal or hooligan. It means, literally and operationally, "from the root."
In most states, the legislators themselves can creatively draw districts that yield their desired outcome -- this is akin to the politicians choosing their constituents. What type of district would be best for a representative democracy? Districts drawn by the politicians themselves, or districts drawn independently according to an objective set of criteria?
It is amusing for Democrats to watch the "Ted Cruz wing" of the GOP try to defend their big DHS bill, just as it will be amusing to watch them howl later this week when it gets split in two. All a Democrat will have to do to really rub it in will be to say, "But you've been saying all along that immigration reform can only be done one tiny step at a time!"