Understanding Political Phraseology


By: Ken Hughes

Political discourse is perhaps the cleverest disinformation the public is subject to. Just when we think we’ve mastered the terminology it changes. What was yesterday isn’t today and won’t be tomorrow. The sad thing is people who are elected to serve spend so much time and effort finding ways to deceive the public and themselves. We often wonder why this is, we are taught from infancy to tell the truth. When we reach adolescence and begin to listen to the adults around us we soon discover truth is the enemy of success at times even to our very economic survival. The art of politics is perhaps the most deceptive of all endeavors and in the long run the most damaging to our survival as a nation.

Terms we hear most often are Universal Health Care (more than 70 % of the world’s population has no health care so how can government run health care program be called universal?)

There’s the phrase Public Option. 72 % of the public is opposed to a government run health care program so how does that qualify as a public option? The real public option is leaving things as they are until there’s a consensus on what needs to be done.

There’s that oldie but goody The public demands something be done. when in fact the public has never heard of what the politicians are talking about and have made no such demands.

On the subject of abortion Roe v Wade is the law of the land , Roe v Wade is not a law it’s an opinion handed down by the Supreme Court meant to effect only the State Of Texas. The Supreme Court does not make laws they only interpret them. Abortion is still a states’ rights issue.

When we hear a president say he / she is going to do something they seldom include the real law makers in the conversation The Congress of the United Sates . Like the Supreme Court presidents don’t make laws they request congress make the laws.

By the same token when we hear congress complain how a president is spending the nation into bankruptcy Presidents have no authority to allocate public funds in any manor Congress is the only body privy to the nations check book. It’s all a good old boys game of dodge ball.

Nearly every act a president performs must have the approval of congress. By the same token every law congress passes must have the approval of the president, it’s been that way for over 200 years. President Obama’s made several exceptions to these rules and as yet hasn’t been challenged. The first year of the Obama administration and a super majority of Democrats in congress has been a disaster for the nation. There’s no way they can realistically charge these errors back to the Bush Administration and have any credibility. The last time this was done Franklyn Roosevelt rode on the back of Herbert Hoover for 10 of his 12 years as president. The other two years we were at war with a different set of problems. It took a centrist Harry Truman to clean up the mess Roosevelt made of things.

Politics slowly shifts back to the mood of the country. There was a time in the past century when Democrats were hawks on nearly everything from war to civil rights. It was Democratic presidents who engaged America troops in combat in every conflict in the 20th century until the conflicts in Grenada, Panama and the Gulf War with Iraq, each was sanctioned by congress. I might add those were minor conflicts with a minimum loss of life. The left can justifiably argue a conflict is a conflict. When the collateral damage is assed it can be argued the battles the right instigated were more humane than those of left, in part because of ideology and in part because of new technologies.

The wars in Afghanistan and Iraq are bipartisan wars signed onto by both Democrats and Republicans, funded by both Democrats and Republicans. The first thing any congress person from John Murtha to Harry Reid does when their patriotism is challenged is to fly off to the safe zones in Iraq and Afghanistan for a photo opportunity. They all come back with the same story The War Sucks our Military Rocks. Inspirational comments if we’ve ever heard them.

Perhaps the most Misunderstood Phraseology of all is the negativity practiced by politicians. It would seem logical politicians would want to portray a positive attitude encouraging the voters to think they can make things better and how. Quite the contrary instead they paint a picture of doom and gloom and expect their message to encourage people to come out and vote for them. One of the positive effects of this economic down turn is people are beginning to understand who and what caused it, this will prove its self out next November. Both political party leaders are at risk.

These same congress persons are the ones who caused the wheels to come off the bus in the first place. These same candidates spent the past year pointing a finger in any direction they think they can find a culprit. Now they are asking for two more years considering these same politicians promoted failed policies that will only deepen the rescission. Three presidents John Kennedy, Ronald Reagan and George W, Bush proved the way out of economic down turns was to reduce tax’s, in each case it put people to work and increased revenue to the treasury. Paraphrasing Ronald Reagan “Taxing isn’t the solution to our problems taxing is the problem.”

The founding fathers never intended the government be all things to all people. The Declaration of Independence begins with We the People not we the government. We the people should mean a large degree of individuality, self motivation and work not subrogation to the handouts of a government. The original Pilgrims who came to new world didn’t have a government setting down rules and handing out perks for them. America was built on the sweat blood and tears of its productive citizens. Its America’s nonproductive citizens bringing it down. Many politicians learned after the great depression of the 1930’s the paths to reelection were patronizing voters with government grants and gifts, regardless of cost. When non-producers are elevated to the same economic status as producers, the produces are brought down to a lesser economic status and lose motivation. That isn’t what made America the world’s economic leader / giant. Redistribution of wealth never works.

If we want America back as it was we all have to work to put the wheels back on the bus and remove the fools.

e-mail ken-hughes@comcast.net

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