Once again, I want to strongly recommend an article to you. This one is an interview by Leslie Thatcher, an editor at Truthout with Mike Logfren, a Republican Congressional staffer for thirty years who finally became so disgusted that he quit his position. I don't believe that I have ever read anything which sums up, in such a small space, what I believe to be true about the political situation in the country today. Here are some excerpts:
"The primary purpose of the GOP these days is to provide tax breaks and other financial advantages (such as not regulating pollution and other socially costly externalities) to their wealthy donor base. All the rest of their platform, all the culture wars stuff, is simply rube bait..."
"Since the GOP is loath to tell the public in straightforward terms what their economic agenda is, and the media are not exactly forcing the GOP's hand, and, finally, the people are operating in a knowledge deficit, Republicans respond by sleight of hand: "We're more American than that Kenyan socialist in the White House!" Or "The Obama administration is riddled with Muslim extremists." Or "Planned Parenthood is taxpayer-subsidized murder." Or "Obama wants to take away your guns." Even "Obama raised your taxes," when in fact he lowered them. Stuff that is not terribly persuasive to well-informed people, but a lot of people are surprisingly ill-informed, and very few institutions - the corporate media least of all - have any interest in their being well-informed..."
"Realistically, a country with a $15-trillion debt, failing infrastructure, and very mediocre world rankings in terms of life expectancy, social mobility, and poverty, simply cannot afford the extravagance of reckless interventionism combined with a fiscal policy that hollows out the country in order to reward rich political contributors. Yet what is definitely not in the long-term national interest certainly is in the short-term selfish interest of the people who got rich from scamming us in the first place..."
"We can devise all the clever schemes imaginable to clean up politics and get money out of campaigns, but it won't work until the American people collectively give up on certain fond illusions: the Horatio Alger myth, American Exceptionalism, and the whole mass of magical thinking that boils down to the belief that God loves America because we're so virtuous, handsome, and smart, and that we, too, could win the lottery. Well, we're not necessarily any of those things. The truth is that we lucked into adverse possession of a mostly empty continent in a temperate zone with lots of resources, and straddled east and west by two huge moats. We had firearms and resistance to smallpox, and the original owners didn't. Virtue had very little to do with it."
Perhaps I should apologize for quoting at such length from this interview, but believe me, there is plenty more there that is just as straightforward and honest. It is really an exceptional read.
And if you want to read further, Mr. Lofgren has just published a book entitled The Party Is Over-How Republicans Went Crazy, Democrats Became Useless, and the Middle Class Got Shafted. I was so impressed with this interview that I immediately bought an e-book copy of the book.