It doesn’t look like Congress is going to do anything, anytime soon. We are broke, in trouble and struggling. The food banks are overwhelmed. Cities are going broke. Higher education is unaffordable. People on the street are weathering this mess. They will survive as the song says. And all around me I hear wisdom, wit and a bit of sarcasm that at least brings some levity to the mess.
From the New York Times: “It’s been such a stunning year,” said Cecile Richards, the organization’s perpetually embattled president. “More than a million new activists joined Planned Parenthood, and our approval rating is at 68 percent. Congress is I think at 9.” (It may be time to stop pointing out that you have a higher approval rating than Congress. Really, everything has a higher approval rating than Congress. Termites. Zombies. Donald Trump.)
“The idea that we have to destroy the environment and kill workers to have a healthy economy must be put to rest. …regulations are actually catalysts of technical innovations and economic development.” Negah Mouszoon.
“A nuclear disaster is too big a price to pay for our electric bill.” Ralph Nader
From the Los Angeles Times: "The health care law is likely to put the brakes on the profit bonanza from biotech drugs.”
“Don’t blame medicare. Fix it.” Barry Rand, CEO AARP.
“...more tax breaks for the rich is only one of the symptoms of an econimic and political system that is grotesquely failing the average American.”‘ Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.)
“Instead of throwing children out of Head Start or cutting back on Community Health Centers, maybe we want to ask Exxon Mobil to actually pay taxes rather than get a refund.” Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) (GE, Exxon,Citigroup, Boeing and others have paid little or no tax.)
“You need to understand, it isn’t gridlock in Congress, it is roadblock. Gridlock happens, roadblock is deliberate.” Congressional candidate Will Moore.
When students at Flagler College in Florida were asked to balance the budget, they had the same options that paralyze Washington. The human consequences of their decisions were very much on their minds as in: “… we don’t want to throw grandma out on the street and deny health care services.” Hey, these kids are smart. They took the long view, sacrifices should be a shared responsibility. They didn’t cut education, protected the environment and didn’t touch Social Security. They froze wages for congress; used carbon tax to clean up the environment. They made sizable defense cuts, closed tax loopholes and added or raised taxes including higher gasoline taxes and a new 5% sales tax that will make their Big Macs sky-high. Across the board, they were evenhanded and sensible.
Don’t you just love it? Our kids are smarter than Congress.