our congressman was the guy who blamed a park ranger for shutting down a park, when, to the rest of the world, it seemed like the tea party and the republican congressmen from places like texas, were in fact behind the government shutdown. in his defense, i will say that 1) he genuinely feels that obama and the park service are in cahoots, to close down a lot in order to make the taxpayers mad at the tea party; 2) he apologized for blaming a park ranger for something that was clearly not the ranger's decision; 3) he defends his reaction on the basis of feeling that the park was excluding some veterans and not others, or that the park itself took very little government funds to begin with, etc. In the end he claimed to be standing on his "principals" which made me laugh since i have an old problem with people who have one kind of principal and not another.
when it first happened, i called him an idiot (see below), because, out of context, it seemed he was blaming a park ranger for something he had done himself. i understand his motives a little better now, but i still barely believe it. i can use the situation, though, to study lubbock itself. the guy ran virtually unopposed; only a libertarian ran against him, and that guy got maybe 18%. no democrats ran at all. could he be that popular? i figure that most of that libertarian vote was protest vote; i believe i voted for that libertarian, because i'd rather have no government than a government like this, all paralyzed by mutual blame. but 81% gladly voted for him and presumably would do it again. He goes out and makes a big show for these veterans because that's really big around here. he appears to be delivering up to his constituents exactly what they want: teabag voting. he gave us a constituent survey that said, in effect, do you believe government spending is extremely wasteful, or just very wasteful?
to him the third amendment is the right to opt out of obamacare; the first two both have to do with guns. well, i take that back, i'm not sure what he thinks of those amendments. or maybe, the first is, the right to go to a veteran's memorial, any time.
he's in the fire now, for his comments, and i believe he has taken more grief this term than usual. i think he's been identified, either as more of a leader (having been around for years), or just plain more tea-bagger than most, a tea-bagger's tea-bagger, or whatever. when texan congressmen refused aid for victims of sandy, he was right there in front. he just doesn't believe in emergency aid, or government aid, for anyone, except oil boys and ranchers. and veterans, of course.
it appears to be fine with the people of lubbock. they didn't go out of their way to, say, find some democrat to run against him.
when it's all said and done, i'm wondering: how do these congressmen think it goes over, that they can just pay everyone while the government is shut down? that they can shut down parks and then go and blame the park for shutting down? ok, so you voted to pay this poor ranger, i guess now you can insult her. but there still isn't a budget? how is this going to work now? i can see why washington is a little edgy these days.
i generally try to stay away from this stuff on this blog, which is really more of a personal exploration of a personal journey. but as i say, it's related to that; here this guy is, representing our district, happily, and i don't hear a whole lot of complaint. it's like that one judge who thought he'd have to get out tanks if obama was re-elected...he's still in office, i think, even though it was pretty obvious he was imbalanced. and if 18% was actually on his right, why then, this congressman is just liberal, on the moderate side, just civilized enough to go to a place like washington.