Sunday, October 24, 2010

New Yorker Piece Looks at Perriello the Lonely Hero

Tom Perriello (above), the 5th District Congressman who is scratching and clawing against a Republican empty suit/empty head to retain his seat, has become the poster child for what a 2010 Democrat ought to be, but most often isn't.

He is a man of principle, courage, determination and political savvy and he doesn't have his party's moral or financial support, as George Packer points out in a scorching New Yorker piece here. Packer says the Republican plan in race after race is to return to the George Bush II philosophy of wrecking government so Democrats can get elected amid the wreckage and then Republicans can blame them for the destruction, which is exactly what is happening. Cut taxes, de-regulate everything, do absolutely nothing to support good ideas because if Dems get credit, Repubs get sent to the woodshed. As Packer points out, that's not just bad government, it borders on treason.

Perriello, properly credits his party and his administration with passing a monumentally important (but still not fully sufficient) health care bill and various economic stimulus packages to try to rectify some of Bush's disasters. The health care bill is far from perfect, but the health care system is an absolute farce and any bill is better than none. The Dems have done a lot right in the past two years, but they refuse to take credit for it in the heat of Republican rhetoric that begins with the demonized Nancy Polosi's name linked to every candidate--including Rick Boucher in the 9th, who has so little in common with her that they might be different species.

In any case, Perriello, who had such strong party support two years ago, is on his own. My guess is that he's better than his party and my sincere hope is that he shows all of us--in winning--that we are smarter than it appears.

(Photo: Richmond Times-Dispatch.)

1 comment:

  1. I am about to read the NY Times article, but want to say that while I know both Mr. Perriello and Mr. Hurt personally and socially (in the case of Hurt), it is important for voters to know that the Economic Recovery Act and the changes in health care coverage that Pres. Obama has initiated (and which most poeple need) are working. I support Mr. Perriello for himself (I know what he is doing for my area of VA)and becuase he IS carrying out some of the President's best ideas for the country. Change is happening and it is helping. The people complaining about the President and anyone in his Party, have been brainwashed to react without thinking through the issues themselves. Have they forgotten, or even realized, that they already rely on some Government programs? They like their Social Security, the ability to get good [Gov.] medical treatment at the Veterans' hospitals, public schools and buses, FDIC rules to protect their $. It is tragic to see the ignorance, racism, and fear. I am sickened. In the past I have supported both Democrats and Republicans, depending on the issues and the candidates' positions. I do not vote party-line. I support Pres. Obama's initiatives because they are needed. And I am afraid now. I am afraid the USA is being taken over by ignorant people who do what they are told, by ministers, uneducated gossipers, media, tv commentators who want to build a career with sound bites. Alas. Majority rule is never good. Let everyone be heard. But let people who understand the biggest picture, know history, are educated enough to be articulate and be careful decision-makers, be elected and run things for us. Special interests are not for the good of everyone. Not everything is driven by profit. Politics should not be, either. It is not about making money. It is about running a complex country and keeping it a secure and healthy, alert, nation.