In a previous post, I mentioned why I feel like I am neither a Republican nor a Democrat. Even so, I have always voted Democratic, mostly because I’ve felt it was the lesser of two evils. (For one thing, I have too many gay friends, and too many illegal immigrant friends, to vote with a party that demonizes both groups.)
Living in Austin Texas now, as I do, in a post-Tom Delay redistricted world, means that I am in the same position as our pre-Revolutionary War forebears: I have taxation, but no representation. My governor is Rick Perry, a Republican who is a typical party wheel, i.e. he’s for pretty much everything I’m not. Of our two Senators, Kay Bailey Hutchison is not too bad, but she’s still a Republican, and has voted with the Republican caucus on every single issue of importance to me, especially the Iraq war. And John Cornyn is, quite simply, your typical right-wing asshole.
Since the redistricting and the election following, “my” representative is Lamar Smith, which is, as Bugs Bunny would say, “A revoltin’ development.” Rep. Smith is very much a Republican in the mold of Delay, and needless to say he doesn’t “represent” me in any way whatsoever. His stance on basically every issue is the polar opposite of mine. I find it completely repugnant to be “represented” by this man, but this is the situation that I am stuck with.
It is further galling, because Rep. Smith is the ranking Republican on the House Judiciary committee, so not only is my “representative” someone who stands up in Congress on a regular basis and casts votes in exactly the opposite way I would have him do, but he also has a powerful platform on an important committee, where he espouses opinions on a matter that I find extremely important, i.e. the politically-motivated firing of the U.S. Attorneys by the Bush Administration. He has given arrogant speeches to the committee about this matter in which he, my representative, spewed the Republican party line about there being “no scandal” and “they serve at the President’s pleasure” and similar absurdities that, not to put too fine a point on it, make me livid. My Representative.
It is bad enough that the Republicans in Congress and the Senate are sticking to their absurd and transparently bogus arguments about these firings. They are intelligent men and women, and I know that some of them are just as aware as I that these firings stink to high heaven. But I cannot even say how galling it is to me that my representative, on the Judiciary Committee, is spewing this bullshit.
Hell, that’s not “taxation without representation;” that’s “taxation with negative representation and we slap you in the face, too.” Let’s just say that it makes me understand why me forebears in Boston heaved tea into the harbor, picked up flintlocks, and started taking potshots at Redcoats. I don’t own a gun, but believe me, I’m pretty tempted.