Critically ill, democracy is dying- apathy found to be the fatal virus.

Well, the debt deal is a done deal. We can once more slip back into the everyday torpor we’ve been experiencing as life, ever since “W” was elected. The previous administration manipulated us into a cowering crowd of the confused who decided there was little or nothing that could be done about the direction into unnecessary war and astronomical debt Republicans were leading us. So apathy and citizen helplessness became normal.

Then came Hope in the person of the candidate with the strange sounding name who spoke a vision that encouraged and excited us to elect him as the first African-American President. If anyone could lead us as an earlier “I Have a Dream – We Shall Overcome” icon did, Obama could. Then came the Right Fringe of ‘birthers’ for whom a Black Man in the White House was the last straw. Knowing their ranting was ineffective in accomplishing the real goal, the dismantling of our progressive past since FDR and the establishment of the ‘Golden Rule’ {those with the gold make the rules), Tea Party pseudo-populists take over the Republican Party. With the help of right-wing ideologue, Grover Norquist, the Republican Party signs the pledge to betray our nation with the inane notion that the way to bring a nation out of near-depression and to create jobs is to reduce debt without additional revenue.

Instead of invoking the 14th Amendment’s clear authority that ‘the validity of the public debt of the United States … shall not be questioned,’ President Obama tries to effect compromise and instead of reaching a balanced compromise, is arm-wrestled to embarrassing defeat.

Continue reading the excerpts below from ‘The Nation’ and you’ll see why I think recent debt debacle is a clarion call to anger and not one more invitation to apathy. It is time to be ‘pissed off!’ If the first stage is getting angry, the second is getting even! It is time we took we take our country back from the Grand Oligarch Party!

From ‘The Nation’ the following analysis is sobering–

“For months, poll after poll has showed that rank-and-file Americans of all political persuasions believe that revenues (the nice way to say taxes) should be a part of any deal to resolve our debt crisis. Seventy-two percent of Americans polled between July 14 and July 17 said taxes should be raised on those making more than $250,000 per year, including 73 percent of independents and a stunning 54 percent of Republicans. Fifty-nine percent wanted taxes raised on oil and gas companies, including 60 percent of independents and 55 percent of Republicans. Yet Republicans refused to vote for a deal that included any revenues at all, and the Democratic leadership capitulated despite the fact that the position was exactly the opposite of what large majorities wanted.”

“In the week leading up to the vote, more than 600 rallies were held around the country supporting the passage of a clean debt-ceiling bill and protecting Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid from cuts. MoveOn.org alone made more than 125,000 calls to Congress to support a clean debt-ceiling raise. Coverage of all of these rallies was minimal at best. There was also one Tea Party rally, which, despite the impressive resources of their corporate backers, was sparsely attended. Yet the talk in Washington almost exclusively centered on what the Tea Party would accept.”

“Respected economists on both sides of the partisan divide agreed that cutting spending during a recession is all but certain to make things worse. This consensus was hardly mentioned in the debate and not at all reflected in the outcome”

“The president’s simple reminder to the American people that they can and should communicate with those they voted into office set off a firestorm of debate on cable news and news outlets about whether this was an act designed to anger Republicans and whether it was appropriate for the president to make such an ask. Andrea Mitchell of MSNBC asked Democratic strategist Bill Burton if the president should really be taking his case to the American people and if the crisis would be better solved by leaders meeting behind closed doors.”

“This combination of factors—overlooked citizen action, disregarded citizen opinion, unheeded expert warnings, uncritical press coverage that ignores the facts and denigrates participation by ordinary citizens to boot—creates conditions for a broad-scale disengagement from the processes that nominally allow them to participate in governance. In fact, when a Washington Post poll last week asked for single-word characterizations of the budget negotiations, “disgusting” was at the top of the list, along with “ridiculous” and “stupid.” Seventy-two percent responded with a negative word, and only 2 percent had positive feelings to offer. This is a far more disturbing trend than one that reflects anger and frustration. Anger moves people. Disgust and a view that government is stupid creates apathy.”

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