If Andy Jackson saw the House of the People taken over by lackeys and lobbyists, he’d round up a few brave hearts who were with him in the Battle of New Orleans and lead a charge through the Capitol rotunda, horseshoes and all.
If a fancy-pants lawyer threatened to sue Teddy Roosevelt for trust-busting, Teddy would chase him up and down Capitol Hill while applying a bullwhip to the pettifogger’s backside.
If Dwight Eisenhower saw a military-industrial complex threatening the land that he defended against military fascism abroad, he would draw up a plan and drop paratroopers on the ramparts of Wall Street to scatter the slithering money-grubbers to the four winds.
Times have changed. Our Statue of Liberty now turns toward the southwestern part of her country. She can see the child-refugee flood. She weeps with shame as Washington tries to erase her inscription:
“Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses, yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.”
Listen and you can hear her tears falling into the harbor. But not even that gentle splashing brings forth sane deliberations.
Fanciful or not, it’s not clear who’s looking out for the people in a system that strangles the middle class to divert more capital to wealthy citizens. John Sherman, younger brother of Civil War General William Tecumseh Sherman and the force behind the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, would fall down laughing at the idea that corporations are persons. But, now that Mitt Romney and the Supreme Court have established that corporations are persons, how long will it be until a fundamentalist lawyer gets to the Supreme Court with a suit to establish that corporations (being persons) are also created in the image of God? It’s possible. John McCain referred to some Republican colleagues as “Wacko-birds.”
Who will stem the stupidity? Point the finger at your mirror. Open season is coming on elected, self-styled patriots who claim to know what the people want but continue to block progress toward anything positive. Will the people vote against their own interests or will we vote out the sitting false prophets, showing that we the people still rule?
House Speaker John Boehner and Senator Mitch McConnell, Minority Leader for almost a dozen years, are the head sheepherders for a motley assembly of Congressional woolies who don’t even have the humility to back up to the pay table to collect their fat salaries after doing nothing but complaining; day after day, month after month. Their number-one goal “was to make sure that Barack Obama is a one-term president,” as McConnell put it. If that’s not enough of a pathetic (failed) goal, then it will do until they dream up something even more pathetic.
Meanwhile, politicians grow richer, the people wait and the world smolders. We are at the mercy of witlessness. Where have all the Teddies, Dwights and Andies gone? We need their diplomatic equivalents to run foreign affairs and to shape domestic policy. The world has grown too small and our time is far too brief to abide more ignorant bickering among the intellectual midgets that dominate the House of Representatives. It’s still the People’s House, but it sorely needs a good fall cleaning AND a fumigation.
• • •
This column represents alternative thoughts to other published columns in the Crossville Chronicle. “We the People” is published each Wednesday. Opinions expressed in “We the People” columns are not necessarily those of the Crossville Chronicle publisher, editor or staff. For more information, contact John Wund, coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org.