Colson: It’s all over but the shouting, I shout | AspenTimes.com

Colson: It’s all over but the shouting, I shout

with John Colson

Tired of listening to the backwash of election whining yet?

Well, if you are, that's just too bad, 'cuz I've got a few things I need to get off my chest.

One is that we deserve the government we get, because we vote the buggers into office.

So, can we expect, over the next four years, a repeal of the Affordable Care Act, approval of the Keystone Pipeline with no strings attached, further weakening of environmental-protection laws in general (and the abandonment, in particular, of any effort to stem the pollutant tide feeding global warming), further attacks on a woman's right to control her own health care choices, more tax loopholes for the rich and higher taxes for the rest of us, the unraveling of pot-legalization efforts across the land, further entrenchment of the election-buying free-for-all that is now the political reality of the land, blockage of any and all court and bureaucratic appointments and many more wretched outcomes?

If so, we asked for it.

Of course, I can just hear the lamentations and objections from readers, complaining that "I didn't ask for any of this; I'm a liberal; I feel the same pain you do."

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My first question would be: Did you vote?

My next question would be: Did you work on behalf of progressive candidates in any way?

If the answer to either of those is a weakly mouthed "no," then you've got no right to complain over the results of the Nov. 4 election.

Those results, just to recap, gave the Republican Party control of both houses of Congress, and other victories too disappointing to recount here, in as complete a rout of Democrats as has been accomplished in some time.

The errors and omissions that led to this rout are myriad and just as enervating as the defeat itself, ranging from the unmitigated lies told in countless television ads and stump speeches by the Republican candidates themselves and their shadowy backers to too many witless and spineless demonstrations of nervous breakdowns suffered by Democrats and their supposed supporters.

The exceptions, of course, prove the rule, as too few candidates among the Dems actually stood up for their convictions. Most, instead, relied on weak protestations against Republican bad acts and near-mute appeals to the better instincts of the voters, assuming those ever existed.

A map of the U.S. election results tells it best, with blood-red dominating.

What this all represents, to me, is nothing more than an indication that the U.S. electorate wants more than anything to believe the Republican mythology that all will be well if we just let the rich get richer, allow the corporations to control everything we buy, learn, think and do, and imagine ourselves living the fat and happy life we supposedly enjoyed in the 1950s.

Never mind that a disturbing percentage of Americans were left out of that particular party at the mid-20th-century mark or that the percentage of left-outs has been creeping ever upward in the past couple of decades as the middle class shrinks, the upper class gets more bloated and a little bigger and the lower classes expand numerically.

How long can it be before the resurgent privateers in Congress renew efforts to put our much-maligned Social Security system in the hands of Wall Street fat cats, maliciously and near-sightedly ignoring the fact that if they'd had their way a decade ago our Social Security system would have foundered during the Great Recession of 2007 to 2009?

And what about Republicans' racist attacks on the Affordable Care Act, which they derisively labeled "Obamacare" as a way of subtly linking the act and the president to the other much-maligned and misrepresented federal programs Medicare/Medicaid? How long will it be before they try to repeal the only effort in decades to fix our elitist and broken health care system, pale and ineffective as that fix turned out to be?

The list of potential havoc to any gains made by progressives in recent decades is embarrassingly long and terrifying in its possibilities.

It may even be that the Republicans, emboldened by the 2014 ass-whupping they gave the Democrats, will try to impeach Obama for some imagined or mythical wrong, bringing us yet another round of bad political theater reminiscent of Monica-gate in the Clinton years.

We should never forget that it was a lying, greedy former Bush (Daddy Bush, not the Shrub) administration functionary, Linda Tripp, who latched onto Monica-gate as a potentially lucrative subject for an as-yet unrealized, tattle-telling book deal about the Clinton administration.

I can hardly wait to see what kind of red-herring scandal the G.O.P., in its zeal to get that black man out of the White House, might come up with to use against Obama.

They tried to paint Obamacare into a scandal-ridden corner, using a pack of lies and thinly-veiled racism, and that didn't work. What's next?

jbcolson51@gmail.com