Darrell Castle talks about torture and its continuing practice.
The Republican victory on November 2, 2010, was a lot more comprehensive than taking control of the U.S. House of Representatives and making gains in the U.S. Senate.
Here’s a quick look at some real numbers from the election:
- In the U.S. House, Republicans went from 178 to 240 and Democrats from 238 to 189, with 6 races undecided at this time.
- In the U.S. Senate, Republicans went from 41 to 47 and Democrats from 59 to 53.
- In the Governor races, the Republicans went from 24 to 29 and Democrats from 26 to 19, with Minnesota undecided.
- Republicans gained 675 State Legislature seats nationwide and now control a large majority of redistricting states. The State Legislatures reflect a more grassroots local flavor and are not so affected by national media.
It should be obvious that November 2nd sent a message, which should have been heard loud and clear by those in government: that the American people are very dissatisfied with the direction in which they believe the country is headed.
Have those in power heard them, and will they change direction? Will the Senate ultimately pass S.510, the Food Safety Bill, in a lame duck fashion, despite widespread opposition, just as they passed the bailout bill and Obama Care despite widespread opposition?
If so then the Senate and Congress have not gotten the message that the American people want to be a self-governing people again.
What about the Bush tax cuts? Should this lame duck session rescind the tax cuts it would mean that the current six income tax rates of 10 percent, 15 percent, 25 percent, 28 percent, 33 percent and 35 percent would be replaced by five rates of 15 percent, 28 percent, 31 percent, 36 percent and 39.6 percent? The increasing rates and income reduction would strip points from the small amount of growth still in the economy and reduce consumer spending even further.
What about the new Congress scheduled to be installed on January 3, 2011? Will the new Congress concern itself with trivia or will it address the serious problems that confront the nation, such as the out-of-control spending, the increasing debt, the Federal Reserve, the wars spreading all over the world, the increasingly dangerous confrontation with China, and many others?
Perhaps this Congress will be the one that regains some of its Constitutional authority which was previously ceded to the executive branch. Thanks to George W. Bush’s assertion that the president is above the law and not subject to the subpoenas of Congress, and the meek acceptance of that position by Congress, impeachment is the only remedy Congress has left for an out-of-control president. When, in response to presidential admissions of violations of the international laws against war crimes and crimes against humanity, the speaker of the House of Representatives says “impeachment is off the table,” then Congress is toothless indeed.
Were the new Congress to seriously address any of these problems, I would be impressed, but there is very little reason to be optimistic. It’s hard to imagine any Congress rolling back presidential usurpations of Constitutional power or attacking the Federal Reserve. But until one does, nothing will change except to get worse.
Have the Republicans gotten the message this time or will it be more of the same? Time will tell.
- Darrell Castle