Standard and Poor’s would have better served the public had they dropped the rating of Washington politicians rather than the financial status of the United States.
Had these ineffective, whiny and dithering politicians done their jobs and took the debt burden seriously, there would never have been a need to bring the finances of America down a peg.
Today’s politicians seem to be adept at everything else but doing the job they were elected by the people to do. They sling mud, assassinate characters, regurgitate official party soundbites and play the blame game on a professional level. If there were an Olympic competition for these futile activities, our country would take home enough gold to close the very deficit the politicians can’t figure out how to resolve.
The United States was once the world’s beacon of democracy— the model for a stable, strong and productive government of, by and for the people. Now we are the world’s most dysfunctional democracy, and it seems that nobody in Washington really gives a damn.
Several polls taken during and just after the debt crisis found that President Obama’s ratings are sliding, and Congress’ approval rating has completely cratered. Less than a year after a new Congress was swept into power, a USA Today/Gallup poll found that only 24 percent of adults surveyed believed that most members of Congress deserve re-election in 2012. Even so, 56 percent of adults believed that their own Member of Congress should be re-elected.
In spite of these dismal poll numbers, the politicians—acting more and more each day as if they live completely in a bubble— continue their antics, blaming each other for the terrible faults this country currently faces, and offering no hope of ever coming together to get the job done right.
Case in point is the Congressional campaign for the vacant Ninth Congressional District seat, up for grabs in a Sept. 13 special election. The Democratic and Republican candidates—Assemblyman David Weprin and businessman Bob Turner, respectively—have filled our e-mail inbox with press releases attacking one another and spouting the standard party buzzwords and snipes one would find watching a 24-hour cable news channel on a nightly basis.
We are running “The Campaign Trail” column featuring press releases submitted by all local campaigns that offer the positions of area candidates for public office as well as their ideas. However, this newspaper will not serve as just another venue for political mud wrestling, so press releases featuring personal attacks on other candidates will not be published. We want their views on subjects that affect the district they hope to represent.
The Times Newsweekly is co-sponsoring a debate between Turner and Weprin on Aug. 29 at Bel Mondo restaurant in Middle Village. We are holding this forum as a public service for all to learn more about their next Congressman and to make an informed decision when going to the polls in September.
The political games have gone on long enough not just locally but all across the country. The United States is in deep trouble, and the proper solutions to its problems will not be found through half-baked compromises that appease partisans or mudslinging that distorts the truth and manipulates the masses.
It’s time for America to unite and save itself, or else a lower credit rating will be the least of our problems.
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