Wednesday, November 03, 2010

What does it MEAN?

OK. Deep breath. Without repeating the views on the "why?" from my previous post, here's my analysis on the "what happened?" with a small side of, to quote Yosemite Bear, "What does it mean?"

Two quick observations: 1. (Economic) Change has not come fast enough for Our impatient society. The economy, and all the metrics that define it, are what have people angry, desperate, and anti the incumbents who haven't fixed it yet. 2. The tea party is the republican party and cost the republicans the Senate (See Delaware, Nevada, and Colorado).

The Senate "gains" made by republicans (two fewer than predicted) were mostly in open seats. One vacated by the President. Three seats were vacated by retiring Senators bayh, dorgan, and specter (Was he ever a Democrat?). "Centrist"/obstructionist Democrat, Blanche Lincoln lost her seat in Arkansas. And the "worse than losing the House" defeat of the night was the one Progressive Democratic Senator, the only one to stand up to the patriot act, the Progressive Champion, Senator Russ Feingold losing. More on him and his ilk some other time. Needless to say, Senator Sanders (I-VT), you're job in the US Senate just got that much harder.

In the House... 60 seats. That's a whole lot of seats for a party to pick up. To find a larger change in the House of Representatives, you have to go back to President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's day when, shortly after the Great Depression hit, 71 seats were gained by republicans in response to the slow recovery and social security. The Democrats had such a big lead at that point the House did not switch majorities. Of course, very few of these House races were followed by the media like the crazier Senatorial and Gubenatorial candidates were. So, we may not know the local details of why Americans chose particular candidates. We can certainly think about the National trends and themes these candidates most likely used and tapped into. It all goes back to the economy, and lack of communication and individual pocket book realities, when it comes to what is being done, and has been done, to help it grow. It has been growing, ever so slowly. For a lot of people, it's just not fast enough.

Josh Marshall brought up a great point when he typed "I'm terribly surprised that everyone everywhere on the political spectrum (here and there) is using Tuesday's results as confirmation of the assumptions they've held all along." Some progressives look at the fact that half of the "blue dog" caucus was voted out, and say the Dems would be more enthused to vote for "liberals". It could also mean that the Democratic Party is losing "the center", though any "centrist" that voted for rand paul, or anyone else like him, wasn't voting with the political center. The only thing we know for sure is if the economy, and the number of JOBS (there's a word you're going to hear a lot) grew faster, and confidence in America's economy increased faster (an end to the phrase "in this economy" would help) a lot of this anger toward everyone in Washington (except the ones just sent there) would not have existed.

In other news from Tuesday's election, Iowans (with the help of outside groups, of course) voted out three judges, because of their decisions, based on standing law, pertaining to same-sex marriage. Something does not sit well with me when it comes to having the Judicial system chosen the same way policy makers are. In California, big oil's prop 23, that Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger came out so firmly against lost Big, as did legalizing pot for recreational use. Zack Galafanakas did try his best though.

So, the republicans won the House of Representatives. The Democrats held on to Senate.Candidates o'donell, paladino, angle, buck, mcmahon, fiorina, and whitman (Governor Jerry Brown!) lost. There's an openly gay Mayor in Lexington, Kentucky. Anti-civil rights act/anti-making bp pay candidate rand paul, florida tea partier marc rubio, and they're decapitating us, they're decapitating us jan brewer won. Half of the blue dog Democrats were voted out. All supporters of net neutrality were voted out. Outside money played a large role in this midterm election. Some of which was vehemently undisclosed, hiding under roberts's Supreme Court's "citizens united" ruling, in PAC's like rover's crossroad gps. Some outside money may have even be foreign (see chamber of commerce funding). We'll leave the talk of plutocracy for another web log. For now we'll just have to see what the new and old republicans accomplish governing in the House over the next two years. I wouldn't want to argue based on speculation. My guess is the debates will be about jobs and taxes.

To Progress,
david calamoneri
Hoboken, NJ USA

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