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Reality Politics: The Real Republicans of the United States Congress

January 24, 2011

There are stark similarities across the growing landscape of Reality TV Programming. In comparing the antics of our legislative leaders (our elected representatives) as they speak to and perform for their national audiences, there is seemingly little difference where the lack of clear truths or responsible adult behavior is concerned. In fact it’s worse than that. It is Reality TV on steroids!

There is a very persuasive, and apparently pervasive, myth of truth in television as well as in the media on a broad scale. In observing many recent reports in the media and also as a result of conversations I have had with friends and acquaintances, it is clear to me that many people will believe most anything that they see or hear on television. Would somebody please do me a favor and check your Bibles? Is there a “Gospel According to the Fox Conservatives” or some sort of CNN or MSNBC Epistle to the Liberals?

What we are seeing and hearing in the news and on Reality TV is often so incredibly ridiculous that I am on the verge of being ashamed and embarrassed to admit that I have ever watched either. Maybe it has something to do with the “train wreck” effect. This effect is akin to that involuntary impulse which commands us to look at a car crash or a burning house when you in close proximity to such things. In my case, I suppose some of it is just mindless entertainment after a long day. For me, watching Sarah Palin or Michelle Bachman is like watching a moose ride a bicycle. No less outrageous is the behavior of one of the bimbo “Real Housewives,” who out of the blue, claims to be a singer or a cheerleader. What? No experience, no substantial or viable fan base and no actual talent or ability! But again, if you are bold enough to say it, and attempt it, somebody will always observe, listen and think “Wow, cool.” But let’s not just single out the ladies or the loonies on the right wing. The lefties in TV Land can get pretty far out too.

I can point out the obvious where some individuals are concerned, but let’s consider what happened in the U.S. House of Representatives last week. This is a matter that projects a much clearer vision of reality politics and how the unknowing get drawn into the dupe. We know that many Republican representatives were able to go on the road before the mid-term elections, breathing fire about repealing healthcare reform (or Obama Care as it is called on the right). We also know that although the Republicans now control the House of Representatives, they have no control in the U.S. Senate and they certainly do not control the veto pen of the President. So why, why would they go to the trouble of putting on such a meaningless performance? The answer is simple. Because some Americans (however few) will be entertained, convinced, and actually support the charade. More importantly, the Real Republicans want to spend time living it up and wasting time; rather than doing any real work, just like the Real Housewives!

Many Americans (without regard to political affiliation) across the nation are now beginning to enjoy the benefits of healthcare reform. That is problem number one for the “Real Republicans.” As a result, the assessment and the supporting polling numbers are beginning to show a decline in the once substantial objections to this landmark legislation. In short, it’s helping people and the costs, according to the CBO, are well within target ranges. Ultimately, the program will yield substantial savings. Is there room for expansion or improvement of the healthcare reform legislation? Absolutely. Is the campaign to repeal healthcare dying? Absolutely!

Over the course of my education I did have the occasion to take a few religion courses. I mention this because religion is largely rooted in the belief of what you are told and conditioned to believe. Interestingly, like most subjects, there was research and analysis involved in the course work, along room for interpretation. In the courses that I found to be most beneficial and enjoyable, reasonable interpretation was welcomed and encouraged. Beyond that, the only thing that was required of me was that I engage my mind. Yes, engage my mind. Think.

I’m not suggesting or encouraging anyone to do anything differently. If you enjoy watching political house fires and train wrecks on the evening news, then so be it. I personally know and understand that a little reading, a bit of critical thought and unbiased decision making goes a long way. If you don’t know a house fire or a train wreck when you see one, if you won’t even attempt to spot or uncover a lie, it is very possible that you will be a contributor to your own social and political victimization. There is more to life than Reality TV.

L. A. Walker

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