Thursday, December 29, 2011

I'm Speechless....

As 2011 winds down and limps to an end, so has my blogging.

It's not that there aren't plenty of things that have caught my attention and might deserve my cunningly incisive analysis, for example:
  • The bizarre and frightening GOP/TP candidate-of-the-week-club.  Surely there are more competent and compassionate possibilities than these.....
  • The upside-down logic of the GOP/TP that the solution to our economic woes is to cut taxes on the wealthy and raise them on ordinary workers. I'm referring of course to the recent attempt of the GOP/TP to block an extension of the payroll tax cut while simultaneously fighting to retain cuts for the wealthy. (Actually, I commented on this somewhat prophetically in my blog last September, Punishing the Victims, Part Deux. )
  • The puzzling assessment in the media and by Democratic Leaders that a measly 2-month extension of the payroll tax cut finally passed by Congress is somehow a brilliant victory.
  • The stunning failure of the so-called Super Committee to produce a workable deficit reduction plan, illustrating yet again the dysfunction of our congressional leaders.
  • A recent study by University of Michigan showing that the average net worth of members of congress more than doubled from 1984 to 2009, while the net worth of the average American family declined slightly, and other research that shows the growth of income inequality has tracked very closely with measures of political polarization (see also my earlier blog about our misperceptions concerning wealth inequality in America).
 And on the international front, we have sad reminders that no matter how lousy our own political and economic situation, it is a million times better than what many people around the world have to contend with:
  • Peaceful protests in Syria continue to be brutally punished by a ruthless government.  A wrenching interview by Barbara Walters with "President" Assad revealed a man that was pathetically and dangerously out of touch with reality.
  • The pride and promise we saw in Egypt has evaporated in a new and more violent round of demonstrations by those who seem to want nothing more than to fulfill the democratic promises they thought they had won.
  • A laughably strange and crazy yet thoroughly despotic leader in North Korea dies (yeah!) but is replaced by his mini-me son who promises to be just as bad for his people and for the world (sigh).
All of these events are important developments.  But somehow I can't find the words to convey my emotional and intellectual reactions to them in any satisfying way.  The best I can do is to offer my sincerest hope that the coming year will show at least a glimmer of sanity and moderation in the world generally and in America in particular.

Happy New Year!

    1 comment:

    Anonymous said...

    Happy New Year Dick!