Letters to the editor: Democracy can’t exist without compromise

A new book "It's Even Worse Than It Looks" is an excellent evaluation of our dysfunctional Congress.

The authors are Thomas E Mann and Norman J. Ornstein. Mann is the W. Averell Harriman chair and senior fellow in governance studies at The Brookings Institution. Ornstein is a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. Both are fellows at the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Both are scholars, one liberal one conservative; neither are political hacks.

I will quote from their introduction " — one of the two major parties, the Republican Party, has become an insurgent outlier … ideologically extreme; contemptuous of the inherited social and economic policy regime; scornful of compromise; unpersuaded by conventional understanding of facts, evidence, and science; and dismissive of the legitimacy of its political opposition."

This kind of a position makes it extremely difficult to address the nation's critical problems.

The focus is scoring political points, not governing the country. The debt ceiling fiasco was a prime example.

All economists and financial experts warned against not raising the ceiling. Raising the ceiling is agreeing to pay existing debts, not incurring more. The country's credit rating was lowered for the first time because of the Republicans' inflexible demands.

The "gang of six," Democrats and Republicans, came up with a debt reduction plan, but when Obama embraced it Republicans said no.

Our type of democracy cannot exist without compromise.

Facts and evidence say that our financial crisis was brought on by no controls on new financial products, ending old laws and non enforcement of existing laws.

Republicans deny it.

The vast majority of the world's climate scientists say that global warming is real and man is the cause.

Republicans deny it.

Republicans have not always been this way.

Leon Logan


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