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No, we cannot all just get along!

By Scott Tibbs, August 15, 2011

If an elected Congressman or Senator believes that a policy would be harmful to the nation, why should that legislator be expected to "compromise" for the sake of "getting things done" and ending "partisan gridlock" in Washington? Should the goal of "getting things done" be the reason to implement destructive policies?

This is one of the things that drives me crazy about the mainstream media's coverage of political debates in Washington. All we hear from the mainstream media is "can't we all get along?" No, we can't base our public policy on Rodney King's words during the 1992 Los Angeles riots.

Republicans believe that Policy X is necessary in order to ensure the economic and financial solvency of the United States. They believe Policy Y, supported by Democrats, would be destructive to our future economic and financial solvency. Why should Republicans compromise with Democrats and implement part of Policy Y for the sole purpose of "getting things done" when they believe that Policy Y is destructive?

The same question could be asked for Democrats, with X and Y reversed.

I have intentionally avoided mentioning any specific policy because the point of this post is not about policy. This is about honest reporting. This is about the news media behaving as adults. The news media bemoans the idea that the political parties cannot "get things done" and cannot "work together" to solve problems, but the media dishonestly ignores the fact that there are very real philosophical differences between the parties and very real differences about what policies each party believes is helpful and harmful.

I expect my elected Congressman and Senators to work for what they believe is best for the nation, not to "compromise" for the sake of ending the dreaded "partisan gridlock." Frankly, I would much rather see partisan gridlock than destructive policy, because doing something harmful is worse than doing nothing at all. If I disagree with the policies advanced by my representatives I will vote against them.

I have much more respect for an elected official who sticks to his principles than one who compromises his beliefs for the sake of "getting things done" - even if I vehemently disagree with the policies of that elected official.

One of the reasons most people are disgusted with Washington is because of the news media's lazy "reporting" on national politics. The mainstream media would do the nation a great service by focusing on policies, the impacts of those policies and the reasons for elected officials to support those policies instead of simply whining that the two sides cannot come together and get things done.

But then again, that would require actual work and analysis. Lazy "reporting" is much easier.