Wednesday, August 06, 2008

A test

We are facing a grave test in this nation today, and soon we will know if we have passed it, and are worthy of nobler things, or if we have failed it, and are doomed to mediocrity.

Just a short time ago, the Republicans decided they weren't going to take defeat this year lying down. No, they were going to try to turn this election year around by creating a Big Issue. And, praise the lord, there was an issue: gas prices.

And so, George W. Bush challenged the Congress to allow offshore drilling. He wasn't going to rescind the executive order banning offshore drilling, no, he wasn't sure that it would be popular yet. But he was going to challenge them to revoke the Congressional ban, so he could complain when they didn't.

But not even Bush could handle the doublespeak required to maintain his ban while challenging the Congress to revoke their own, so now he's revoked his ban, and McCain and other Republicans have decided it's a potentially winning strategy. Some even have the audacity to blame the Democrats for not allowing drilling in the past, as if there hasn't been widespread opposition in both parties to offshore drilling.

"See, we care about gas prices," they're saying, even though they're pulling an election year stunt over an issue they hadn't given a damn about in years past.

It's gotten to the point that the House Republicans are staying trying to kick up a fuss in the House chambers during the recess, hoping that it will become sufficiently newsworthy if they throw a long enough tantrum.

It'd be impressive, if they were actually trying to accomplish something for the American people, rather than pulling a transparent stunt, which, if it works, will do nothing but increase oil company profits.Because we know that the oil companies have no plans to supply enough oil to lower prices enough to hurt their profit margins, and the Republicans know it too.

So it's not just a stunt, it's a dishonest bit of gamesmanship.

And that's our challenge, our test... are we wise enough and cynical enough to see through such bullshit?

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