October 27th, 2014 11:24 EST
There's Three Sides to this Government, Right?
When observing the behavior of the U.S. government, especially congress, it`s hard to see how they function. Recently, the partisanship of most members of congress appears to be limited to their own personal gain. One of the major building blocks established in our government centered on the belief of compromise. Yet, what we have been witnessing lately by members of congress, (regardless of political party) is a stubbornness to even attempt to communicate/negotiate on any issue. Most members of congress, if not all appear to be steadfast in their convictions.
Unfortunately, this partisanship serves only to prevent Congress from actually accomplishing anything substantial that would benefit the American people. Members of congress seem only too eager to exercise personal gain like maintaining their seat, than common sense. Just looking at the rhetoric most members of congress espouse, it`s clear that when it comes to certain issues, the space that separates them can sometimes unfortunately be galaxies away; I sometimes forget that Democrats and Republicans are both from the same world. I agree with a recent article published by Jon Healey when he claimed that this, ". . . posturing typifies what both chambers of Congress have been doing for much of the last three and a half years, which is a good explanation for the body`s abysmal approval ratings. If leadership is finding a way to accomplish things under difficult circumstances, then we haven`t seen much of it on display in Washington for a while."(Healey, J) At the end of the day though, congress has been growing further and further apart ideologically for decades, taking that into perspective, it`s hardly surprising that congress doesn`t cooperate.
When it comes to President Barack Obama, he seems to be operating as an effective president, especially given the actual constraints of his position. In modern day society, it`s very easy to associate negative events with the person in government who is most visible to the public. Nowhere is this more evident than the position of the President of the United States. The accountability that the general public demands from the president doesn`t always exist in the realm of reality. These unrealistic expectations always seem to manifest in a way that prevent the president from actually producing a solution that satisfies everybody. It`s not like the president has a magic wand to allow things to happen/do his will. As best said by Brendan Nyhan, "The limits of the president`s powers can be scary " as human beings we find a lack of control threatening " but the idea that they can control events is a comforting fiction, not an explanation for their success or failure." (Nyhan, B)
Just like the seasons, the powers of the president always seem to change depending on both the political conditions and of course the capacity of the occupant. Given the arsenal for control that the president is actually able to wield, most of the criticism that President Barack Obama has been dealing with recently doesn`t always seem warranted. Ultimately, no president is in control as he/she may seem, or would like to be.
Lastly, the perception of the U.S. Supreme Court varies from individual to individual. The necessity for a high court to be able to interpret the law is vital for not only government functions, but also for the functions of everyday citizens. Most of the time, when laws are crafted there is some type of political jargon incorporated into them, which inevitability produce areas of concern. In order to facilitate the clarification of laws, the U.S. Supreme Court plays a key role in resolving disputes that occur from various interpretations of a particular law as it relates to the U.S. constitution. According to David G. Savage, the U.S. Supreme court is responsible in how it ". . . require the justices to clarify the law where it is murky." (Savage, D)
The inaccessibility that most people experience when attempting to see what the court is doing typically stems from a lack of how visible some of the cases the court is debating are. Typically, the more contentious the issue is, the more visible the actions of the court are to the average American people. Also, most of the time when the court is in session, the justices on the Supreme Court largely operate behind closed doors and out of the public eye, which don`t really help in terms of the courts accessibility to the American people. On the rare occasion a justices` does speak publicly, the average citizen begins to understand the courts profile. At the end of the day though, the average person is simply not engaged, don`t know or don`t care about the complexities of government to access, let alone understand about what congress, the president, and the court does. What this inevitability produces is a government untethered by the accountability of the people in which it is charged to represent. Until the average person becomes more engaged in government, our leaders will continue to wonder to satisfy their own personal gilded ambitions, dragging us along for the ride.
Healey, Jon. Opinion: Amid pre-election jockeying, some partisan greatest hits in Congress. The Los Angeles Times, 17 Sept. 2014. Web. 19 Sept. 2014. .
Nyhan, Brendan. Obama and the Myth of Presidential Control. The New York Times, 24 July 2014. Web. 27 Sept. 2014. .
Savage, David G. Voting Rules, Gay Marriage, other issues await Supreme Court. the Los Angeles Times , 5 Oct. 2014. Web. 13 Oct. 2014. .
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