So, I've been thinking about why various legislators seem willing to buck the wishes of their constituencies, particularly those constituencies who are liberal.
I think that I have an explanation. The legislatures, be they state or federal (both the House of Representatives and Senate) are kind of like hte middle level management of private businesses. They hope to move up to the big money sooner or later.
If one gets fired from his or her legislative position, that is if they lose an election, they immediately go on to take a position in the very industries they were supposedly trying to pass bills to regulate. It is not a very interesting conclusion, nor is it a very edifying one, but there you have it. I do not think that there is any other explanation.
Now this is not the way it is suppose to work, and it is an incredibly corrupt system. The analogy maybe somewhat strained since middle level management types are expected to work for the benefit of the company (the country for the legislators). But then you see CEOs and other management (witness the bonuses for the bail out babies) getting huge amounts for (apparently) running their company into the ground. Further, I am sure that the legislators manage (most of the time) to convince themselves that while they may, to invoke a complete hypothetical, be preventing the vast majority of Americans from buying affordable health insurance by preventing a public option, or single payer, they are saving the insurance companies which are part of the bed rock of this country, those silly 47,000,000 who don't have insurance or the rest who don't have "good" insurance are not (part of the bed rock). What makes America great are the corporations and the wealthy, not the poor or middle class. So really they are patriots of a higher order. The fact that they get rewarded for it with obscene amounts of money is just kind of a second icing if I would be permitted to coin a phrase.
I keep going back to a scene from Spartacus the Kirk Douglas movie directed by Stanley Kubrick, Crassus and Julius Caesar are talking about Rome and Caesar points to the mob/group of people in the forum and says that they are Rome. Crassus contradicts him, no the wealthy patricians are Rome he says, these people are just a mob. (Of course, one must remember that both the book and the movie were written by dirty commies.)
There have always been this kind of tensions, but at least in this country, in the past, they were tensions now I really see no real tension. The power is where the money is and it is not going to move back to the middle class.
At any rate this post appears to bring me back to my theme this month of Cheap (or perhaps Adolescent) Nihilism.