Get A New Job!
By: Patti Bankson
The current race for the White House resembles drive-time on an L.A. freeway: more traffic than the road was intended to bear, everyone jockeying for a place in the fast lane and a bit of road-rage. For people in the public eye, not making it off the 405 safely or getting caught in a political traffic jam usually depends on whether past statements or behavior catch up with them, and how they handle them if they do.
In 2002 the Senate voted 77-23 and the House voted 296-133 to authorize the attack on Iraq. Among the Senators voting â€œAyeâ€ were John Kerry, Tom Daschle, Harry Reid, John Warner and Chuck Schumer; others voting â€œAyeâ€ who are now presidential candidates are Joe Biden, John Edwards, Sam Brownback and Hillary Clinton.
Regardless of how they voted, these are some of the Presidentâ€™s loudest and harshest critics. When confronted by their change in position, the most common response is: â€œmy position hasnâ€™t changed, it has simply evolvedâ€. Good try. But, semantics aside, the end result is the same … youâ€™re staging a sit-in against something you once stood for. Thatâ€™s just one of what I expect to be many attempts to tip-toe unscathed through a field (of their own making) of political landmines. Itâ€™s already started.
Hillary Clinton . In December she said if she had known then what she knows now, she â€œwouldnâ€™t have voted that way.â€ Hey! I feel that way about a lot of my past mistakes, but so what? I did what I did and the consequences of those decisions are the consequences. That excuse doesnâ€™t work for â€œwe, the peopleâ€; why do we continue to allow it to work for â€œthem, the politiciansâ€?
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee. They voted unanimously â€“ 80 to 1 â€“ to make Lt. General Petraeus Commander of U.S. forces in Iraq. Not only does the General support the Presidentâ€™s increase in troops, but he helped create that plan. Additionally, he asked the Pentagon to study a possible troop increase above what the President wants. So … they approve the General, the President asks them to give his (and the Generalâ€™s) plan a chance and the Senateâ€™s response is to introduce a resolution stating their opposition to the Presidentâ€™s proposal. The resolution is non-binding … it means – and does – absolutely nothing, except let politicians who arenâ€™t getting their way â€œexpress themselvesâ€ again … and again.
Kansas Senator Brownback said: â€œWe canâ€™t go forward in this country with one party for the war and one party against it … one party for the troop surge, one party against it. I think we have to come together here to be able to win over there.â€
Exactly. But hereâ€™s part of the problem – he, and other self-serving Republicans in cahoots with Bush-hating Democrats think that â€œcoming togetherâ€ means â€œmy way or the highwayâ€. The other part of the problem: they donâ€™t understand that there is only one CEO, or in this case, one Commander-in-Chief. Submit your ideas? Sure. It may turn out that your plan is the one implemented. Or it may be your plan doesnâ€™t float. If that happens and the chosen direction is one that you canâ€™t â€“ or wonâ€™t â€“ support, maybe itâ€™s time to start checking the classifieds for a new job.
Patti Bankson invites your comments at firstname.lastname@example.org
© 2007 Patti Bankson
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