Insane Voters

One definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. One might say the same thing about politics, i.e., insanity is voting for the same politicians over and over and expecting different results. This year, Americans voted against the establishment when they voted for the President. But what did they do when they voted for their Congressman? They re-elected 97% of all incumbent Representatives and 27 of the 29 incumbent Senators who were running for re-election. I.e., they voted for the establishment. And this is not the first year this has happened. It is a long established pattern that Americans disapprove of their Congress (Congressional approval is presently 13%) and yet they re-elect the same old politicians year after year after year.

Now why does this matter? One must assume that the anti-establishment vote for Trump meant that voters were unhappy with the status quo and were seeking change. But re-electing the vast majority of Congressmen can only be interpreted as voting for the establishment and opposed to change.

The problem with this is that the real power in our country is in the Congress, not in the Presidency. Congress, not the President, writes the law. The president manages the administration and can only operate within the law. A case in point is the November 22 decision by a federal court to block Obama’s (Department of Labor) rule to increase employee eligibility for overtime compensation which would benefit a large number of employees. In this case, the court blocked the rule based on the definitions of eligibility that Congress wrote in the law (Fair Labor Standards Act) and stated that Obama’s administration lacked the authority to revise those definitions.

So not only does Congress tell the President what to do, but also ties his hands on how to do it. As I said, Congress is where the true power lies, and if you really want to change the status quo, that’s where you have to make the change. But do we do that? No. Instead, we re-elect the same old politicians to Congress who have been robbing us blind year after year after year, and still we expect something to change. Now if that doesn’t fit the definition of insanity, nothing ever will.