Rights and Democracy
President Obama’s Fiscal Commission–a group of lawmakers, former officials, and other experts charged with developing a bipartisan plan to stabilize our soaring national debt–is primarily holding closed-door hearings. The commission’s co-chairman Alan Simpson, a former Republican senator from Wyoming, recently became an instant YouTube star with his rant against seniors as he exited one of the panel’s sessions. That put Social Security defenders on high alert about what’s going on in these meetings.
Readers tend to love or despise OtherWords columnist Donald Kaul. Here’s the latest on their letters.
Growing up, I always thought of America as a destination. A place where most people, regardless of where they lived, wanted to be.
The South has made more progress in providing children the opportunity to attend desegregated schools. Now, sadly, it’s also the region where re-segregation is growing fastest.
Here’s my advice to you people upset with the way things are going: Run for public office (preferably the U.S. Senate, where you only have to fool the voters once every six years). Remember, whether you’re part of the problem or part of the solution, you can extort a ton of money from corporations that want to buy your vote.
Way back in the 1960s, I held that my body was “a temple of God.” Thanks to my Christian beliefs, I wouldn’t corrupt it with mind-altering drugs. As a citizen, I saw my responsibility as finding a way to drop into government, not out of it. I made a choice to be part of a solution to the problems of war, misspent tax dollars, and racism.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s speech at the America’s Future Now conference went off-script. The Washington Post did a great job telling the story of how the California lawmaker spoke for a half an hour over the garbled jeers of more than a dozen infuriated healthcare activists in orange t-shirts, many of them in wheelchairs
I’m spending the time I can spare while not editing OtherWords’ upcoming commentaries at America’s Future Now, which runs through Wednesday in Washington. This annual progressive summit fittingly coincides this year with Arkansas’ Democratic primary runoff.
We blame the government for bad health care and for trying to improve it. We blame it for the lousy economy and wars that never end and for the education of our children, which is also lousy. We blame it when it runs a deficit and when it tries to lower the deficit by taxing us. We blame it for the high price of gasoline and the low price of corn. In short, we blame government for pretty much everything, but ourselves for nothing. Neither do we blame God.