10/19/2013 03:40 pm ET Updated Dec 19, 2013

Reflections on "the Crisis"

So much ink has been spent to express the nation's shock over the so-called debt crisis that there is little more to be said. For relief it would be useful to suggest an opportunity to read Paul Krugman's column on Friday's's New York Times Op-Ed page ("The Damage Done") and Hedrik Herzberg's column in the October 21st issue of the New Yorker ("Impeach Obama") which is not what you might think. It will give you moments to breathe and realize how we can emerge from the mess the recalcitrant Republican rebels inflicted on us for several months before being forced to shut up and realize the damage they have done to their party and the nation.

Unfortunately, they are reminders of the Dixiecrats who insulted us decades ago and sought to impose values on the American people that would have tarred us forever.

But let us breathe easier. There's no real reason to think so kindly of John Boehner, the House leader of the Republican uprising. For weeks and even months, he was portrayed as the spokesman of the GOP's extreme rightwing. To now describe him, as some of the cable television's pundits have in the past few days, as a struggling, serious politician, when instead there should have been demands for his inability to exercise leadership. Boehner should have been handed his head which would dramatize the absence of intelligent, thoughtful Republicans to lead the party out of darkness. Moreover, while President Obama has done his level best to appear as a conciliator and/or consensus builder, he should not feel relieved of pests like Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz. They will hang around the corridors of Washington to encourage the nut fringe to poison the atmosphere for time to come and insult the overwhelmingly-elected President of the United States. Shame on them!

The unanswered question is where are the responsible Republicans outside of Congress who can emerge from the various states of the Union, be they in the world of high finance, industry, academia, the armed forces or world of communications? Surely, there is a sufficient cadre of Americans who need to speak up, exert themselves and arouse the GOP back to its senses. The nation needs them. Our democracy thrives on a vibrant two party system. We have endured with it before and we need it restored again, something I am sure serious Democrats would welcome.

Finally, there is the obvious but delicate question of racism that none of the media seems willing to confront. The roster of President Obama's critics is essentially rich, lily white and decidedly hostile to any programs that would benefit all other Americans of another color. Be they African Americans, Latinos, Asians or any other people whose lives would improve immeasurably, the Republican rightwing stands in their way. It is both embarrassing and a national shame.