There’s no denying that Americans showed outrageously schizophrenic behavior last week on Election Day. While progressive initiatives on things like the minimum wage and pot legalization were passed around the country, Republicans still scored big wins everywhere. Here in Michigan, Terri Lynn What’s-Her-Name got trounced by double digits and two pro-wolf hunt ballot proposals went down in flames but, outside of heavily gerrymandered, Democratic-dominated districts, Republicans won almost everywhere.
One thing that contributed mightily to this imbalance is that our Democratic candidates and Democrats in general have bought into the Republican myth that the country has gone to hell when just the opposite is true. Here’s Bill Maher, summing it up:
[T]he one I feel bad for is Obama.
- 63 straight months of economic expansion.
- A depression averted.
- A deficit reduced by two thirds.
- A healthcare law that’s working and lowering costs.
- Two women on the Supreme Court.
- bin Laden’s dead.
- Stock market at record heights.
- An unemployment rate that dropped from 10.2 to 5.9%. (If you’re a Fox News viewer trying to do the math, that’s less.)
- Gas prices are down.
Is it really that hard a record to get behind? […]
I mean, come on! Come on, Democrats, you gave people health care, not herpes! Own it! Instead of chasing polls, move them.
You can watch it here:
Sometimes it takes an outside perspective to really appreciate the situation and, in Michigan, we got that perspective in the form of a now-viral Letter to the Editor of the Detroit Free Press from a Canadian man named Richard Brunt:
Many of us Canadians are confused by the U.S. midterm elections.
Consider, right now in America, corporate profits are at record highs, the country’s adding 200,000 jobs per month, unemployment is below 6%, U.S. gross national product growth is the best of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries.
The dollar is at its strongest levels in years, the stock market is near record highs, gasoline prices are falling, there’s no inflation, interest rates are the lowest in 30 years, U.S. oil imports are declining, U.S. oil production is rapidly increasing, the deficit is rapidly declining, and the wealthy are still making astonishing amounts of money.
Obama is in for a rough ride with Congress under Republican control
America is leading the world once again and respected internationally — in sharp contrast to the Bush years. Obama brought soldiers home from Iraq and killed Osama bin Laden.
So, Americans vote for the party that got you into the mess that Obama just dug you out of? This defies reason.
When you are done with Obama, could you send him our way?
Victoria, British Columbia
Now is not the time for hand-wringing and blame-slinging. Now is the time for firing up and getting things done. So we weren’t as effective as we wanted to be? Great, let’s start the process now of figuring out how to change that and working every single day to make it happen.
But, no matter what we do, we as progressives/liberals/Democrats/insert-your-label-here need to quit being ashamed of what we’ve accomplished. If we let Republicans convince us we’re doing it wrong, that we’ve put our country on the wrong path, we’ve already lost. We DO have to own our values and accomplishments and we DO have to move the polls. The Republicans have already proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that their way is the wrong way considering that they crashed our economy. It doesn’t take a genius to figure that out.
It just takes a cheerleader or two to remind us that we’re right.
[Photo by Anne C. Savage, special to Eclectablog.]