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December 24, 2009

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Who represents the moderates in America? I know bipartisanship is gone. And now we have reached the point where the Democrats have declared the the "Far Right" is in control of the Republican Party while the Republicans contend the "Radical Far Left" is in control of the Democratic party. So the agenda of both parties has become to "Block" the other side. Not to limit damage or improve bills, programs, or the way Government works. But, to stop anything the other party promotes. Americans, year after year, vote for bipartisan action to work together to solve the immense problems we face. The whipsaw effect of switching parties in power seems to lead us to a never ending battle by the party extremes to capture just enough of the middle to justify their election. Then, once in, the "Party" leaders fail to act in a Bipartisan way and drive the voters back the other way dismayed by the arrogance and broken promises for compromise.

Can a middle party ever emerge and relegate the extremes of the current parties to minority status as they are in many other countries? Will the rise of a Middle party actually help or ensure that one extreme dominates politics for the future? Many people think Sarah Palin is headed that way but she is better suited to lead the far right Republicans than a moderate Middle party so I don't think so. It will be very difficult for a middle party to succesfully emerge although there has never been a time when Americans would vote for it than today. Just the foothold the two party system has in the government and local election systems will make it difficult. Even if some Presidential candidate emerged to pull it off he/she would be facing a hostile Congress with few of their party in place to push through the legislation needed. It is likely the "good old boys" in the Senate from both political parties would join forces to prevent the bipartisan action needed to succeed. It would take a powerful motivator of the Reagan mold to spend the first two years of their term exposing the game playing of the Congress to get their candidates onto ballots for the midterm elections and the electorate fired up enough to vote them in. A highly unlikely occurrance for the people of America unfortunately.

So, then what is the solution to this stalemate? Or is the system working? Perhaps it is. The Democrats will pass healthcare legislation. They will now find it far more difficult to end the wars they campaigned to end than they thought. International relations will prove to be far more than just making "friends" in the world. Obama's most pressing international issues? Iran, North Korea, Afghanistan/Pakistan and the return of Teror attacks on our homeland. Sound familiar? The economy is not a thing you can restart with a few Trillion dollars. People don't like either party when unemployment is high. People are smarter than politicians when debt is discussed. They know how dangerous it is. So, Obama will spend a lot of money and get a lot of things started. The moderate voters won't like it and they will change horses. And the new horses will moderate the things that the Democrats put in. Fiscal responsibility will become popular once again. And, a Ronald Reagan type will likely follow to tighten things up. Congress will pay a price for their unlimited spending. Many will be sent home. So maybe, just maybe the system is working in a weird and hard to recognize way.

Perhaps it was necessary for the Republicans to realize that they do have a responsibility to control Wall Street excesses. To recognize and work on environmental considerations. To help their fellow man have healthcare. And, when the reversal comes perhaps they'll be a little more compassionate. And by then perhaps the Democrats will learn that you cannot spend money you do not have. All the while they remind me that Clinton balanced the budget they "break" the bank. China benefits. So perhaps the two party system works in mysterious yet frustrating ways. Let's hope so because there appears to me to be little hope for a 3rd party emerging to save us. And, all of us moderates are getting the shaft from whatever party we help elect.

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