Thursday, June 6, 2013

The State of our Politics, Part 21

I have blogged before (a lot - too many to link here, look for stuff with the label of "Tribalism") about instances in which politics have turned into an argument not over ideas, but over identities. Republicans support Republican things because they're Republican; Democrats do likewise for Democratic things. Politics of this sort resembles Dr. Seuss' Star-Bellied Sneeches, or sometimes the Drazi Green-and-Purple conflict from Babylon 5.

State legislatures seem to be particularly prone to this form of madness. This gets especially obvious when they try to micro-manage things that have no purpose other than symbolism. In Wisconsin, they seem to be going through just such an episode:
Legislators target UW-Madison and investigative journalism center
It's getting to the point where there's just not much more to say about this kind of thing. Why would legislators think that this kind effort is even worth their time? Are there really no more pressing issues in the State of Wisconsin then where a particular center puts its offices? There may be more to this than childish retribution for some imagined slights, but I frankly doubt it.

The irony - since this particular instance seems to be emanating from the Republican side of the aisle - is that Republicans are constantly calling for government to behave more like a business: strategic, hard-nosed, focused on results. This sort of nonsense is none of those things, and any business that spent much time on such frivolities would soon find itself out of business. But I gave up asking for politicians to actually listen to themselves a long time ago.

No comments:

Post a Comment