- Posted September 25, 2012 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Election 2012: Your stories
Remarkable Joint Conclusions
As you may know, the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) is a conservative think tank with a mission "to defend the principles and improve the institutions of American freedom and democratic capitalism - limited government, private enterprise, individual liberty and responsibility, vigilant and effective defense and foreign policies, political accountability and open debate." The highly regarded AEI aggregates some of the most conservative thinkers, writers and scholars, including several high level officials of the former Bush Administration.
One of its resident scholars, Norman Ornstein, has co-authored a new book entitled, "It's Even Worse Than It Looks: How the American Constitutional System Collided With the New Politics of Extremism." His co-author is another equally respected thinker, Thomas Mann, a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, another highly regarded Washington think tank whose mission is to "provide innovative and practical recommendations that advance three broad goals: strengthen American democracy; foster the economic and social welfare, security and opportunity of all Americans; and secure a more open, safe, prosperous, and cooperative international system." Brookings is non-partisan, more centrist, and certainly more liberal than the conservative AEI.
So why am I telling you this book and its authors?
Because of the remarkable conclusions that these two scholars - whose organizations hold different policy positions on many issues - have together reached in their book, "It's Even Worse Than It Looks." They have now provided the empirical evidence for something that I and others have been writing about anecdotally for the last few years.
It is why I've been encouraging those who care about our nation's governance that the best tool to bring the Republican Party back to its common sense roots, to play a useful role in American politics, is to vote an all Democratic national ticket this November. No matter what misgivings one may have about Democratic policies, or President Obama in particular, nothing is as bad as the obstructionism, disingenuousness and refusal to compromise gumming up the wheels of normal governance as the current crop of Republican office holders - especially when our nation is facing serious problems at home and challenges abroad.
But don't take just my word for it. I invite you to read the book review by Robert Kaiser in The Washington Post. At one point he writes, "Republican obstructionism and Republican rejection of science and basic facts have no Democratic equivalents."
The book's authors recommend that American voters need to "reward problem solving and punish obstruction." I agree. Vote for the Democrats who have been working to solve the problems left by the previous Republican Administration, and withhold your vote for the current crop of Congressional Republicans who have been working equally hard to obstruct and undermine virtually every Administration policy of the past 4 years - even policies that Republican Ronald Reagan himself advanced but that many of today's Republicans disavow.
My hat is off to Messrs. Mann and Ornstein for their insightful assessment that goes beyond partisanship and illuminates, as reviewer Robert Kaiser writes, "the most important political story of the last three decades: the transformation of the Republican Party."