We simple folk, the common folks, are always caught in the middle of the political wrangling that constantly goes on in Washington D. C.

The politicians who are at each other’s throats have been sent there by us to keep the wheels of government smoothly rolling down the tracks, but their only real concern is to get reelected; the people be hanged.

We send them there to do a job, not to fritter away their time on re-election, politics and pettiness, but all we get is frittering. As concerned citizens we have to demand excellence, or at the very least competence, from those who are supposed to be representing and leading us and we receive neither.

With the exception of the Supreme Court, no branch of the government seems to have our interests at heart until just before an election when they need our vote and I’m not too sure about the supremes.

Besides the cynicism and arrogance of the parties and our pampered politicians, there seems to be a rule that if it’s good for the party it’s good for America. That’s false and our fault.

Lots of us vote along strict party lines – never wavering, never bending and never really paying attention to the issues, to problems or solutions; if our party points us in a direction then that’s where we go. It stands to reason and common sense that one group, party or person can’t be right 100% of the time, yet some vote the party line 100% of the time no matter what.

Voting with the party, no matter what, does have one saving grace: it’s brainless. We don’t really have to think about issues, candidates, propositions or positions when the party issues its edicts; we can just go with the flow even though we may have personal misgivings.

The people that we send to Washington to represent us have got it made in the shade. We pay them and pamper them and revere them, showering them with money and aides and perks which create their illusions of invincibility.

They can do pretty much whatever they want, whenever they want without regard for the consequences of their actions or inactions. As long as they aren’t caught in a flagrant indiscretion such as – well, you know – they can plan to hang on with complete disregard for the public good and we re-elect them forever and ever.

It seems that most of our so-called leaders who have been in D.C. for 8, 10 or even 30 or more years should be a little smarter by now, but apparently the one thing they learned was how to game the system, solicit funds and get re-elected.

We assume that Democrats are always Liberals and Republicans are always conservatives, but we also know that’s not always the case and on many issues there are Liberals and conservatives on either side of the aisle.

The same holds true for us; we are liberal on some things, conservative on others, but God forbid we should vote – or even think – across the party line, “think” being the operative word.

Putting aside party affiliations and thinking objectively, do we really feel that the government’s business is being conducted in our best interests? Are we the people being properly served by those we elected to serve? Should our elected officials be living the good life while we struggle to reward them for their failures? Should we tolerate our country’s lack of moral courage and leadership? Should political shenanigans, one-upmanship and political games take precedence over the country’s welfare?

We should answer these questions in the voting booth, but we won’t because we’ll vote the same way we always do and send the same dysfunctional do-nothings back to Washington to do nothing. Or will we, the simple folks, finally get tired of being disregarded, stand up on our hind legs and inform our politicians that performance counts, results count and re-election is not a God-given right?

Yeah, probably not.

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Jock Davidson is an area resident who writes this column for The Advocate & Democrat. Contact him at jockdsmail@aol.com

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