The Stanly News and Press (Albemarle, NC)

Opinion & Letters to the Editor

September 21, 2012

The fantasy of political supremacy

Friday, September 21, 2012 — RALEIGH — Well, before Paul Ryan’s speech at the Republican National Convention, New York Times columnist Bill Brooks wrote about the vice presidential nominee and his role on the debt reduction commission established by President Obama.

Ryan ultimately voted against the commission’s debt reduction proposals. He explained his vote by saying that the plan did little to restructure Medicare, despite the program being a huge part of the nation’s ballooning debt.

Brooks called the decision “intellectually coherent,” but still a “tactical error.” He noted that had Ryan and other House Republicans on the commission voted for the plan, it would have forced up or down votes in Congress on the proposals, creating a national debt reduction plan.

The columnist’s more intriguing commentary came regarding the psychology behind the vote. Brooks concluded that Ryan was “giving up significant debt progress for a political fantasy.”

“Ryan’s fantasy happens to be the No. 1 political fantasy in America today, which has inebriated both parties. It is the fantasy that the other party will not exist. It is the fantasy that you are about to win a 1932-style victory that will render your opponents powerless,” he wrote.

In North Carolina, some Republicans appear to believe that they are about to win that kind of a 1932-style victory, vanquishing the Democrats to an afterthought.

Unlike on the national political stage, the reality here might be closer to the fantasy.

Republican gubernatorial candidate Pat McCrory has enjoyed a consistent lead in the polls over his Democratic rival, Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton. Meanwhile, some unimaginable event outside of politics would probably be required to change the balance of power in the state legislature, where the GOP now controls both chambers.

So, come next January, there is a strong possibility that Republicans, for the first time since Recon-struction, will control both the legislature and the governor’s mansion.

From Tampa, you could hear the chorus of confidence oozing from state Republicans. House Speak-er Thom Tillis talked of turning the state red, of pushing through measures like voter I.D. that were blocked while a Democrat was in the governor’s mansion.

But will the fantasy that Brooks wrote of then be true for this state? Will the other party have ceased to exist?

No, and not for reasons that have anything to do with the organized (or disorganized) state Democratic Party.

That annihilation of one party won’t have occurred because of the voters, and their closely divided political sentiments.

McCrory, should he win in November, won’t take home some 17-point victory like FDR in 1932. The GOP, should it control both chambers of the legislature again, will have done so with close legislative vote margins, in individual districts and collectively.

Since at least the mid-1990s, North Carolina has been a two-party state. Republican control of the primary institutions of political power won’t change that.

Embracing a fantasy that it has, and governing without moderation, will ultimately change the balance that matters most — the balance among the people.

 

1
Text Only
Opinion & Letters to the Editor
  • Doug Creamer Maintaining hope

    Gardeners are facing challenges with the weather this year. It seemed like we were getting great conditions in April and May. The weather was warm and we were getting some good rains. Then sometime in June the rain stopped. It got so dry that I didn’t have to cut the grass. While I enjoyed the break, the garden was not happy at all. I was having to water quite a bit to keep the vegetable garden alive and growing.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jason O. Boyd I may be a bit behind the times, but at least I can find ‘America’

    I seem to be reading about and dealing with technology a lot lately.
    I  love technology and have always been fascinated by gadgets of all kinds and the wonderful things they can do. You never seem to go through an entire day without some form of invention enhancing your life.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Brent Laurenz Meeting out in open helps negotiations move ahead

    RALEIGH – State lawmakers reconvened in Raleigh on May 14 promising a brief legislative session this summer, but as July moves along they are still in town and tackling big issues.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Larry's Sketch 7.16.14.tif They don’t give a darn for Duke University

    John “Duke” Wayne’s heirs are suing Duke University over trademark rights.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Your chocolate addiction is only going to get more expensive

    WASHINGTON - For nearly two years, cocoa prices have been on the rise. Finally, that's affecting the price you pay for a bar of chocolate - and there's reason to believe it's only the beginning.

    July 18, 2014

  • Patrick Gannon Don’t forget the losers in state lottery

    RALEIGH – Behind every state lottery dollar that goes to education is a loser.
    There’s also a winner – the teacher whose salary it pays, the student who gets a scholarship or the district where a new school gets built. But we hear about the winners in advertisements and in press releases.
    This column is about the losers.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hodgepodge Cooling an overheated hedgehog and other summer travel stories

    Anybody with a pet during the summer inevitably finds themselves facing this question: What do I do with my pet on vacation?
    There are kennels for dogs, day cares for cats. Shoot, you can even find a friend to take care of your guinea pig.
    But what do you do with a hedgehog?

    July 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • North Carolina Boasts Top Wildlife Magazine and A Success Story

    The following opinion piece was released by the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission:

    RALEIGH  — When Wildlife in North Carolina, the magazine published by the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission, was named recently as the nation’s best in its category, it reflected more than accolades as a quality publication.

    July 17, 2014

  • 130408_NT_BEA_good kids We're raising a generation of timid kids

    CHICAGO - A week ago, a woman was charged with leaving her child in the car while she went into a store. Her 11-year-old child. This week, a woman was arrested for allowing her 9-year-old daughter to go to the park alone. Which raises just one question: America, what the heck is wrong with you?

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 25 hidden secrets in "Weird Al's" "Word Crimes" video

    Yankovic's 14th album was released this week, and it warms my heart containers that he's kept up his geeky brand of humor for so long. While he has written so many incredible songs, none have spoken to my love of proper grammar.
    Until "Word Crimes."

    July 16, 2014

House Ads
Seasonal Content