Starting 2013 with failure


I woke up yesterday morning disappointed. Not because of anything happening with my own personal life, but because, for some reason, only one chamber of our government was able to get something done on the fiscal cliff before the self imposed deadline. For some reason, the House of Representatives, the “people’s house,” the house that has so much power and voice in government (but is still checked, mind you, but it was envisioned to be the true hammer of the people), couldn’t seem to get it together, as usual. . So we didn’t make the deadline. Yesterday, my husband and I watched some of the arguments on the floor and were amazed by the grandstanding and nonsense. I couldn’t believe that I went to bed last night (around 10) and a vote still had not happened. It wasn’t until I woke up at 3 to a screaming baby did I see the headline on my phone. The bill passed the House, it’s going to the President.

But we’re still going to lose money next year thanks to some of the compromise. I’m happy to pay (not really) if it means that the economy will keep growing.

But here is why I’m really disappointed: We voted for 90% of these people to be sworn in as the 113th Congress tomorrow. Same people, same positions, same bullshit.

So I woke up disappointed yesterday because, though Facebook wants to convince me otherwise, I’m not optimistic that 2013 is going to be any better: For me as an individual, for the nation that we live in, or for the world that we supposedly lead. If our greater economy doesn’t do better, my personal economy can’t do better. If our greater economy doesn’t do better, the world economy can’t do any better (and then it just becomes a fantastically horrible echo-chamber of failure).

And I can’t lay this totally at the feet of Congress. I’m going to give some of this to my Beloved President too. I’m ride or die for him, but when it comes to insanity like this, I need him to do better. I need him to communicate better with me and with leaders. I need him not to be so calm. I need to hear stories about him strong-arming tea-party idiots into doing what we need them to do. I need to hear him banging on a desk demanding “country first.” I love my President, I’m sure that he did some of that stuff, but sometimes I think that the “cool” exterior comes off as a little too light-handed. I think that, in this case, (and in a few others in the past), the “angry Black man” persona would have been helpful. Because as prices continue to rise, our income continues to stagnate, and our prospects of home ownership and getting ahead diminish, I’m going to be one hell of an angry Black woman.

Government failure isn’t a racial issue or a gender issue, though, when government fails, the fall out seems to hit people of color and women especially hard. The only people who can hold government to account for their failings are the people, and as we learned in November, the people are browner by the day. Maybe we shouldn’t cast out lot with Democrats who can’t seem to take the mandate and run with it. Maybe we shouldn’t allow to the renegade and the racist within the alternative party to be the reason why we won’t even consider their views. Maybe, since third parties are so in vogue, we should consider being a little noisy ourselves.

Don’t worry, I didn’t go all Black Panther on you. I’m just saying that I’m frustrated. We can’t afford another year of white-knuckle politics. My wallet and blood-pressure can’t take it.

I hope to find some optimism between now and my Friday post.

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