Rebuttal, D. LaBranche: A government of the people

I am fully in agreement with the headline of the Oct. 26 Sun Journal editorial, "A change in Congress to suit Maine," but not for the same reasons.

I believe the U.S. Congress is, indeed, in dire need of change. But what it needs are more representatives like Rep. Michael Michaud. He is a congressman who not only cares about the veterans who risked their lives for this country, but also, as a former mill worker in Maine, he understands and works to serve the needs of the working men and women who represent the majority of the people in Maine, and the United States.

Having more representatives like Michaud in Congress would not only suit Maine, but the whole of the United States. It would assure the citizens of the United States, that the government is, indeed, a government of the people, by the people and for the people, as the Founding Fathers intended when they wrote the U.S. Constitution.

Donald LaBranche, Lewiston

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Comments

CLAIRE GAMACHE's picture

Partisans

Personally I think anybody who hasn't made up their mind how they are going to vote today by now should probably stay home. Voting is a privilege that comes with the responsibility of making yourself informed about the issues. Granted with all the lying and smearing and dirty tricks and corporate media confiscation going on it isn't easy but a responsibility nevertheless. If your vote is for sale then go with the corporate vote. They have the lobbyists and corporate structures in place to grab all the money they can get ahold of. All they need is a little more deregulation. If you are into war go with the neocons. They are ready to strike in Iran and in Syria. If you are of a neo-Southern confederate mentality then go and vote to put colored people and women in their place. Do not go vote to save your tax dollars or to shrink government. There is nothing in place for that to occur regardless of who wins. Also do not vote to end gridlock. That absolutely will not happen however this comes out. As for me do not waste time trying to convince me about anything. I already voted.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

That would be like trying to

That would be like trying to push a rope. 0O:-)

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Modern Version of Grasshopper and the Ant.

The ant worked hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The grasshopper thought the ant was a fool and laughed and danced and played the summer away.

Come winter, the shivering grasshopper called a press conference and demanded to know why the ant should be allowed to be warm and well fed while others were cold and starving.

CBS, NBC , PBS, CNN, and ABC showed up to provide pictures of the shivering grasshopper next to a video of the ant in his comfortable home with a table filled with food.

America was stunned by the sharp contrast.

How could this be in a country of such wealth, this poor grasshopper was allowed to suffer so?

Kermit the Frog appeared on Oprah with the grasshopper and everybody cried when they sang, 'It's Not Easy Being Green.'

Acorn staged a demonstration in front of the ant's house where the news stations filmed the group singing, ‘We shall overcome’.

Jeremiah Wright then had the group kneel down to pray to God for the grasshopper's sake.

Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid exclaimed in an interview with Larry King the ant had got rich off the back of the grasshopper, and both called for an immediate tax hike on the ant to make him pay his fair share.

Finally, the EEOC drafted the Economic Equity and Anti - Grasshopper Act retroactive to the beginning of the summer.

The ant was fined for failing to hire a proportionate number of green bugs and, having nothing left to pay his retroactive taxes, his home was confiscated by the government Green Czar.

The story ends as we see the grasshopper finishing up the last bits of the ants food while the government house he was in, which just happened to be the ant's old house, crumbled around him because he did not maintain it.

The ant had disappeared in the snow.

The grasshopper was found dead in a drug related incident and the house, now abandoned, was taken over by a gang of spiders who terrorized the once peaceful neighborhood.

Moral of the story: Be careful how you vote today!

CLAIRE GAMACHE's picture

Partisans

Guess I struck a nerve. Not exactly a non-partisan response.

CLAIRE GAMACHE's picture

Extortion

Of all the Republicans running this year Raye is the only one I thought made enough sense for me to give him a second look.. In another election, I would be tempted to vote for him. What we have in Congress right now is government by extortion. A radical group of Republicans have decided that they will effectively shut down the federal government by making it ungovernable if they don't get their way. They have voted down nearly every initiative proposed by the lawful president. They have fillibustered the Senate into a 60% majority required for all votes. When you are being blackmailed you can either give in to it and hope they won't be too crazy next time or you can say no and live with the consequences. I don't see Raye as the guy who would say no. He has taken money from the Rove PACS and I see him pretty much as much of a party line follower as Michaud. Well I say no to blackmail so I will be voting for Michaud.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Here we go again, another

Here we go again, another partisan diatribe. How about you discuss all the Obama legislation that did not even get Senate democrat support, like his budget plan and jobs bill, to paint a complete picture.

Nearly 50% of Americans don’t what Obama’s solutions because we end up footing the bill for even more government and government waste. The time is now for changing this direction.

Zack Lenhert's picture

"Here we go again, another

"Here we go again, another partisan diatribe."

Oh the irony...

 's picture

A bankrupt view

Katrina and Sandy prove the bankruptcy of the "small government" meaning no government viewpoint. While the President gazed out in bewilderment from 30,000 feet and his horse club FEMA director talked to the unelected husband of the state's Governor because he couldn't work with women and he thought the Governor's husband could tell her what to do, people died in New Orleans below. In New York President Obama cut the red tape, moved the military into position, kept in constant contact with the Governors involved, moved FEMA into position to respond, and gave comfort to the desperate people overwhelmed by the fury of Hurricane Sandy. He said your sufferring is the country's sufferring and we will make every resource we can make available to you. That's how the leader of a NATION must act in times of crisis. Small government advocates would defund FEMA, move the military to foreign wars, weaken state governments (they must be small too), fire first responders and purchase their necessary equipment only when they have to, and throw their hands up and say loudly, "we can't help you, its your responsibility" while using government waste as an excuse. Small government means small vision.
We need a strong, vibrant, National Government committed to National goals to be true to our Constitution, traditions, and our special mission in history.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

The ant worked hard in the

The ant worked hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The grasshopper thought the ant was a fool and laughed and danced and played the summer away.

Come winter, the shivering grasshopper called a press conference and demanded to know why the ant should be allowed to be warm and well fed while others were cold and starving.

CBS, NBC , PBS, CNN, and ABC showed up to provide pictures of the shivering grasshopper next to a video of the ant in his comfortable home with a table filled with food.

America was stunned by the sharp contrast.

How could this be in a country of such wealth, this poor grasshopper was allowed to suffer so?

Kermit the Frog appeared on Oprah with the grasshopper and everybody cried when they sang, 'It's Not Easy Being Green.'

Acorn staged a demonstration in front of the ant's house where the news stations filmed the group singing, ‘We shall overcome’.

Jeremiah Wright then had the group kneel down to pray to God for the grasshopper's sake.

Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid exclaimed in an interview with Larry King the ant had got rich off the back of the grasshopper, and both called for an immediate tax hike on the ant to make him pay his fair share.

Finally, the EEOC drafted the Economic Equity and Anti - Grasshopper Act retroactive to the beginning of the summer.

The ant was fined for failing to hire a proportionate number of green bugs and, having nothing left to pay his retroactive taxes, his home was confiscated by the government Green Czar.

The story ends as we see the grasshopper finishing up the last bits of the ants food while the government house he was in, which just happened to be the ant's old house, crumbled around him because he did not maintain it.

The ant had disappeared in the snow.

The grasshopper was found dead in a drug related incident and the house, now abandoned, was taken over by a gang of spiders who terrorized the once peaceful neighborhood.

Moral of the story: Be careful how you vote today!

 's picture

Claire

Who is the majority in the Senate? Democrats or Republicans. The majority sets the agenda as far as what is brought to the floor for debate and possible vote. Let me see, Democrats are the majority in the senate, so that makes Harry Reid the majority leader, so that would mean he sets the agenda. Did you know that Harry hasn't allowed a budget proposal to come to the floor in over 3 years? Come to think of it there hasn't been many votes coming out of the Senate. The one big vote I remember was President Berry's budget that was voted down 97-0.

 's picture

Not True

41 votes control what comes to a vote on the Senate floor as David is fully aware. And that has given the Republicans control of the Senate and they have used that control to sabotage the recovery, weaken the economy, and wreck the President's agenda.
Calling the President "Berry" is a sign of contempt and hatred that has been the true character of the Republican cult, its not a party, these past 20 years. To save this country, All Republicans must be defeated obstructionism must not be rewarded.

 's picture

Harrt still sets the

agenda. Nothing comes up for discussion unless Harry allows it. Your 41 only comes into play in order to allow the final vote. If the 41 isn't met it stays in discussion until the 41 is reached. Bills have died in the discussion phase more often than you think because the bills sponsors couldn't get the 41 needed for a final vote. Yes I do have contempt for Berry for what he has done, I will never hide that. The fact that so many people like yourself are blind to what he is doing is what I hate. He let you in on the socialist he really is back in July, and that should have opened your eyes, but as I see it hasn't. You still choose to drink his Cool Aid of race baiting and class envy. Look beyond his skin color and you will see what I'm talking about.

 's picture

No it doesn't

Any vote on the floor of the Senate is subject to cloture except a very few "emergency" votes. But what comes to the floor is not relevent. What passes is. So far everything that passes must pass cloture or Senatorial holds (where only one Senator may prevent bringing up a bill). Senator Reid controls the calendar not passage of bills.
What socialism. Name some actions of his. You're so biased that you can't see anything except in your particular bent. For example, the Romney campaign has run the most racist campaign since 1948 campaign of the Dixiecrats (and I can give you a long list of racist remarks, ads, and policies of the Romney campaign that are clearly racist). yet you say Obama is race biting. Absurd. What class envy? The idea that the rich should pay their fair share of the costs of government when they benefit far more than we do is not class envy. Class envy is when you act like a lap dog around the rich begging for scraps from their table that's class envy. I expect the rich to be just like the middle class and appreciate all that this country gives them and to understand that they owe it their patriotism not just on the fourth of July but every day including April 15th.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Choosing what gets put up for

Choosing what gets put up for vote is a very powerful tool. What is not put on the calendar is 100% guaranteed not to become law. You sure live is a unique reality.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Claire’s oculars have a very

Claire’s oculars have a very narrow field of view.

CLAIRE GAMACHE's picture

Blame game

So it's all the Senate's fault. All the garbage going on in Washington, all the gridlock and partisanship, all Reid's fault. That's beyond partisan it's laughable. Let's all pretend nothing happened in the House that might have occasioned a response. Let's pretend the Republicans in the Senate were not voting as a block even against their own legislation. Let's all gaze into the Limbaugh, Rove, Cantor, Fox fantasy ball and go to sleep.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Let's pretend that HBO had

Let's pretend that HBO had nothing to do with it.

 's picture

Goes to show

you don't know how your government works. You should have paid attention a little better in your civic or government classes, or did you pass on those?

 's picture

Oh by the way Claire,

the latest from Harry, "If Romney wins I will not work with him".

From the LA Times:
“Mitt Romney’s fantasy that Senate Democrats will work with him to pass his 'severely conservative' agenda is laughable,” the Nevada Democrat said in a statement Friday morning. He went on to list a series of Republican-backed measures he said Democrats would never support.

From Politico: Harry speaking from his bubble of make believe.

“Mitt Romney has demonstrated that he lacks the courage to stand up to the tea party, kowtowing to their demands time and again. There is nothing in Mitt Romney’s record to suggest he would act any differently as president. As governor of Massachusetts, he had a terrible relationship with Democrats, cordoning himself off behind a velvet rope instead of reaching out to build relationships. And in the near-decade that Mitt Romney has spent running for president, both his words and his actions have shown that pleasing the far right is more important to him than working across the aisle.”

Real by-partisan kind of guy. By-partisanship to a liberal like you and Harry, means that the other guy has to give in to you all the time and you give in none of time.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

David, that is the classic

David, that is the classic definition of "compromising" with a democrat; you capitulate and give him everything he wants. Nothing less is acceptable for a compromise.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Claire, unwillingness to

Claire, unwillingness to accept the full truth is beyond partisanship. Pointing out that the Senate Democrats are also blocking Obama legislation is not the same as the Republicans are not fillibustering.

Perhaps the conclusion should be that Obama legislation has no supporters.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

And, if and when the

And, if and when the democrats ever regain control of the Senate, they'll do the exact same thing, especially if a republican occupies the White House. You know it, I know it, and THEY know it.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

We all know it!

We all know it!

CLAIRE GAMACHE's picture

The Swami speaks?

I don't know if you have a crystal ball or if this is cynicism speaking but the fact is the use of the fillibuster in the Senate and the divisiveness in the House in the last two years is unprecedented. I'm old enough to remember when politicians could disagree and compromise to get things done and worked for the good of the people and most of all when they believed in the UNITED States of America. There's no reason to believe it couldn't happen again but it won't with the guys who are there now who appear ready to throw everybody overboard as long as they get their way.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Claire, this is a reason way

Claire, this is a reason way the other side is called the opposing parity. The system is adversarial by nature. Why are you so surprised?

Bipartisanship gets the people nothing more than more debt and more government interference in our lives – no 16 oz. soda for you.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Pure cynicism, to answer your

Pure cynicism, to answer your question. I've pretty well given up on the whole system. Time for another revolution and start all over again. Every newcomer who goes to Washington goes with intentions of tipping the world off of its axis. Then, they get swallowed up by the system and don't even know it, thus becoming bloviating blowhards like so many of them are. The system has outlasted its ability to be manageable because the managers no longer go there to manage but to postulate for their re-election. Massive changes will have to be made in order for this country to survive, and I'm not talking about the changes oBAMa promised us in 2K8.

 's picture

Mike is a back-bencher ...

... who does nothing without permission from party "leaders". It's exactly what the country does NOT need: more Chicago machine politics implemented by hacks in Congress.

 's picture

Finally

someone who sees Michaud for what he truly is. A back bencher of the same mold as Baldacci was when he was in Congress. Both are yes men.

FRANK EARLEY's picture

Bipartisanship and Democracy need to rule.....

The entire system is broke, and fixing it won't be easy. When we have officials in the GOP, such as Grover Norquist dictating on yesterday's news shows, that we don't need a Republican president who can think. We just need one with enough digits to hold a pen. He went on to say " We in the Senate know what needs to be done, we just need someone who will sign the bills". That doesn't sound like a Democracy to me, it sounds more like a back room "Right Wing" dictatorship.
I'm not blaming the Republicans or Democrats. It's the extreme right wing zealots who feel they need to run everything. We need to fix the whole system from the ground up, maybe then we can accomplish something positive. We need Senators and Representatives who are willing and able to stand up to these idiots and think for themselves. Just look at how much was accomplished while the GOP was busy trying to keep Obama a one term president. We don't need any more of that. We need independent thinkers on both sides, who are there for the people, not listening to, and supporting, Grover Norquist......

MARK GRAVEL's picture

No, we do not need to mess

No, we do not need to mess with the system, you’ll only get something that is worse. Let us all take the money out of Washington and keep it in our own pockets. Effectively neuter Washington DC.

BTW, you forgot to mention the zealots on the left. Was this accidental?

FRANK EARLEY's picture

I didn't forget the left....

I've read a lot of news reports and watched numerous video feeds. Nowhere have I read or seen anything remotely as insulting as Norquist's admission that he only needs a body in the White House to sign his bills. That is what a "Zealot" is. Its an insult to the entire process. I don't see that coming from the left, they seem to want to retain their self respect.......

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

I thought you had to once

I thought you had to once have had something before you could "retain" it.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

But the left what you want,

But the left what you want, so you turn your head and look the other way. What did they promise you to buy your vote?

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