Sunday, May 26, 2013

F#15--Federal Government

In the interest of full disclosure, I should note that I am registered as an Independent.  I consider myself socially liberal (for the most part) but fiscally conservative (for the most part).  This is why I didn't register with either party when I turned eighteen.  In fact, I voted for Ralph Nader in my first presidential election.  I think I have exclusively voted Democrat since then, but would probably vote for the right Republican if I could find him/her.

That being said, my brain is starting to hurt from all the nonsense going on in Washington D.C.  Besides the fact that the two sides of our government can't get out of each other's (or their own) way to create a real budget*, the White House seems to be imploding.  Under the previous administration, I felt like they hid these gaffes a lot better; it wasn't until the end of Bush II that it became clear-ish what was going on.

I think it all boils down to miscommunication and bureaucracy.  With Benghazi, I can't believe that the President and then-Secretary of State Clinton would willingly have let soldiers and the Ambassador die to...what?  I mean, this isn't the war monger president of before.  Obama doesn't want to drop us into another conflict.  So why?  I can only suppose that the requests for additional security just got lost in the red tape that is the Federal Government.  

This IRS-Tea Party scandal confuses me because I don't know why it's a scandal.  The whole purpose of investigating charitable organizations is to make sure they are actually charitable organizations and not political organizations.  If you put the words "Tea Party" in the name of your charitable organization, that's a red flag.  I have yet to see a person/group come forward with claims of being irrationally targeted that wasn't more or less connected to the Republican party (or their crazy cousin, the Tea Party).  Most of my news comes from NPR and "The Daily Show" so you'd think I'd have heard about it by now.

And then there's the AP thing.  This is the most infuriating, because the one thing that keeps us separate from so many places is that our press can say what they want about who they want, whether we, or the government, likes what the press has to say or not.  If there's a leak in your office, don't go hounding the press.  Figure out what information is getting out and track it back to the people who would have known it.  (In light of this post, I can assume I'll have some of Big Brother's eyes on me too).

*I can't even begin to express my outrage over the gun control legislation that didn't pass earlier this year.  I am not anti-gun; I grew up in a household with firearms.  I was taught to respect the weapons; I was taught how to use them.  Several years ago, I also got my pistol permit.  I don't currently own a weapon; I did not go out to purchase one in the post-Newtown craze.  And I believe that the Second Amendment is there for a reason.  But the part that a lot of right-wing people (some of my family and family-friends included) are forgetting is that there is a phrase about "a well-regulated militia".  Well-regulated, to me, means that people are properly trained, and properly recorded, so we know who has the weapons when we need someone to have them.  This President has never asked to "take our guns" and he's not asking to do that now.  He's just saying that the civilian population doesn't need military-grade weapons, and if you haven't hit what you were aiming at with the first ten rounds, you probably need to rethink the situation.  (Yes, I realize you can reload, but that does take time.  And time, sometimes, is what we need when there's a bad guy with a gun.)