Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
March 30, 2015

Abstract of the Week

Rick Hasen has an intriguing essay exploring the pitfalls of significantly altering the US political system via constitutional reform to deal with current gridlock.

“I briefly examine four arguments against making constitutional change to deal with current political dysfunction. The first two arguments contend that the current governmental system is not that dysfunctional. First, the current political stalemate may reflect the preferences of the median voter or the public at large. Second, the current political system actually produces a good amount of legislation, and a parliamentary democracy might produce too much rash legislation. The third argument accepts the premise that the current system is dysfunctional, but contends the dysfunction could be cured by sub-constitutional change, such as eliminating the filibuster or adopting additional open primary systems to produce more moderate candidates. The fourth argument also accepts the premise that the current system is dysfunctional, but sees that dysfunction as temporary, and expects dysfunction to be self-correcting as voters reject the current Republican Party far from the median voter, leading the Republican Party, and then Democrats, to move to the center.”

  • Siegfried Heydrich

    The problem is not the system. The problem is that one party has drunk the poison of madness and greed and is now in the process of dying. It has fractured into three distinct factions united only in their hatred for a black president.

    You have the mainstream republican establishment (RINOs, which is a misnomer, as they actually ARE the republicans). Their interest consists of maintaining their power to transfer wealth to their patron who reward them. They are not ‘conservative’, they are simply greedy and amoral in their pursuit of power & wealth. They will sell whatever is needed to gain their objectives

    There is the Tea Party which was created for the sole purpose of defeating Obama in last years election, which failed. It is now feared by the RINOs who seek to destroy it lest it destroy them, and in response the Tea Party base now wars with the RINOs for supremacy and survival. They are true believers in conspiracies and dark forces about them. They have morphed into an apocalyptic death cult which seeks to bring down what they see as an evil and corrupt government so they can rebuild the nation in their image from the wreckage they cause.

    Then there are the Libertarians, a small but growing faction which the party has tried to purge. They are young, idealistic, inexperienced, and the most likely to be crushed by the cynical RINO gamesmen and their deep pocket patrons. They could possibly be the future of conservatism if not driven out and eviscerated by the monied interests. They offer a form of rebirth for the GOP, though their lack of worldly skills makes them as lambs for the slaughter.

    I don’t see this ending well for the GOP. They have no future, having alienated pretty much everyone other than their base of older, rural white evangelical christians. They are old, getting older, and are dying off far faster than their numbers can be replaced. They have purged themselves of the rational, the civil, and the reasonable, who now comprise the ‘Independents’ which have left the party in utter disgust at what it has become. They have alienated the young, hispanics, blacks, orientals, and most especially women. They see their coming doom, and by the simple nature of the conservatism they embrace, they are incapable of adapting to the changing demographics and conditions that could lead to their survival.

    The question is now whether or not they take the country down with them. I fear so, and their ‘end times’ mentality makes the destruction of all a very attractive option; they see the nation as being unworthy of survival if the nation rejects their vision. Those who are consumed by hate and have no hope or future resent those who do . . .

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