Do your civic duty and vote today, or else refrain from complaining about our political system for the next two years. Vote for the party and/or candidates of your choice, but vote. And if you're not sure which way to vote, use this general rule of thumb: as long as the Democratic candidate isn't under federal indictment, vote Democratic. Unless you're a corporate executive or Wall Street tycoon, the Democrat is the one looking out for your interests, not the Republican. And while the Republican Party was already dangerously out of touch in the 2008 elections, they've become even more extreme as they pander to their tiny but vocal Tea Party minority.
A few rebuttals to tired Republican talking points from this election cycle:
+ Obama's healthcare reform is NOT a government takeover of the healthcare system. Instead it works within the existing system of corporate insurers, instilling competition that has largely dissipated while the industry has consolidated into a handful of giant players, prohibiting insurers from denying coverage for pre-existing conditions and other technicalities, and offering more affordable policy coverage.
+ The progressive political cause espoused by Obama, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi is NOT about government infringing on personal freedoms. Instead it's about bringing corporations more under control - and since consumers have increasingly been unable to do so as several decades of deregulation has reduced industry competition, it's up to the government to do so.
+ The much-reviled Wall Street bailout not only saved the financial system and our economy as a whole, the government is actually turning a profit on its investment in Wall Street banks - and news reports out this week indicate the government will likely profit from its AIG bailout as well. The only portion of the bailout that will likely lose money is the rescue of General Motors and Chrysler, but I don't really remember there being widespread calls to just let the U.S. auto industry die.
+ Obama's stimulus plan saved several million jobs while also investing much-needed billions in our physical infrastructure and educational system.
+ The U.S. economy has now expanded for five consecutive quarters. While this expansion has not yet made a dent in unemployment, it's only a matter of time before continued economic growth encourages employers to start hiring again.
Keep all of that in mind when you're trying to decide whether our Democratic political leadership should be retained. I think it should.