Posted by: JanF | August 2, 2011

Sorry about your baby

Today’s post is a bit of biblical based blogging.

As I was riveted to the debt ceiling negotiations … okay, not riveted but checking in occasionally … I was struck by the differences between the Republicans and Democrats as they negotiate.

I think the Republican position was aptly summed up by their moral leader Grover Norquist when he said this:

Bipartisanship is another name for date rape

Or maybe it was when he said this:

“[Democrats] will only become acceptable once they are comfortable in their minority status. Any farmer will tell you that certain animals run around and are unpleasant, but when they’ve been fixed, then they are happy and sedate.”

No, that was certainly too mild. I am sure it was when he said this:

“Our goal is to inflict pain. It is not good enough to win; it has to be a painful and devastating defeat. We’re sending a message here. It is like when the king would take his opponent’s head and spike it on a pole for everyone to see.”

Whatever. As you can see, negotiating in ConservaWorld always includes how much pain you can inflict and neutering your opponent or maybe raping them (I am not quite sure how you reconcile the two but I am not a biologist). But always “painful and devasting defeat”. Opponent’s head on a spike? Bonus!!

The difference in the negotiating positions of the Democrats and the Republicans reminded me of the biblical story of the Judgment of Solomon.

A dispute came before King Solomon where two women were arguing over a baby, with both claiming to be the mother. He thought about the dilemma and came up with a solution:

After some deliberation, King Solomon called for a sword to be brought before him. He declared that there is only one fair solution: the live son must be split in two, each woman receiving half of the child. Upon hearing this terrible verdict, the boy’s true mother cried out, “Please, My Lord, give her the live child—do not kill him!” However, the liar, in her bitter jealousy, exclaimed, “It shall be neither mine nor yours—divide it!” Solomon instantly gave the live baby to the real mother, realizing that the true mother’s instincts were to protect her child, while the liar revealed that she did not truly love the child.

The Democratic party is like the true mother, unwilling to let her child — the citizens of the United States — be killed simply to “win” the point. Dead is not “win”. (Really … trust me on this.)

The Republican party is like the false mother, demanding that the child be split in two, not knowing (like the teapartiers) or not caring (like the Paul Ryan/Ayn Rand Republicans) that it will kill the baby.

There is one notable difference between this story and how current (and ongoing) negotiations between Democrats and Republicans will play out in the 112th Congress.

President Barack Obama is not King Solomon. In a democracy and under our constitution, congress passes bills and the president signs them into law. He does not have a sword and he cannot step in and impose wise and sensible judgments. The best he can do is work with his party’s leaders and promote solutions and compromises. So he has to turn the baby over to the false mother … and hope and pray that the baby is not starved or abused.

My guess is that the true mother will always be silently watching and will not let her baby be harmed. And will work steadfastly towards the day when enough people see the truth and, like wise King Solomon, return the baby to its caring mother.


(A version of this was originally posted on 08/02/2011 at BPI Campus)

Advertisements

Categories

%d bloggers like this: