Hope vs Cynicism…

July 14, 2014

2014-07-09_08-34-43WASHINGTON AP — To hear President Barack Obama describe it, there’s a creeping case of cynicism setting in across the country, leading Americans to suspect that not only is Washington broken, it’s beyond fixing.

If that line of thinking continues, it could become a self-fulfilling prophecy with dire long-term ramifications, Obama says. If compromise-minded Americans get so frustrated they just tune out, lawmakers will feel even less pressure to work together for the good of the country.

SOURCE: How ‘hope’ became Obama’s fight against cynicism – Yahoo News.

Hope vs cynicism? Of course everyone wants to be on the hope side of that choice. But in order to be there we must be able to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Yes, someday I “hope” we get over all this extreme partisan bickering and get back to a healthy dose of compromise. I really hope that but I am very doubtful that will happen until we run off the cliff so to speak.

I dread the possibility of a totally Republican controlled government. To me that would mean abandonment of almost everything I hold dear. All brother’s keeper issue would be flushed down the toilet. We would likely become a nation intolerant of any religion except Christianity. The rich would get even richer while the poor were left to the scraps of the table.

No, I don’t see a lot of hope on America’s horizon. I have maybe another decade on this earth and I “am” hoping that we can hold it together for at least that long so I don’t have to see the consequences of going down the tube. It won’t be pretty. But I still hold out hope that we can, like we have done several times in the past, get to the edge of the cliff and then manage to step back instead of forward.  We have had a good run of luck in that regard but as always luck, however you want to define it,  eventually runs out.

I am holding out hope that someone will come along to lead us to a better way. I am now convinced that the black intellectual person currently in office is despite his hopeful rhetoric is unable to do that. Maybe there were just too many prejudices in his baggage to ever make that possible? Hillary is part of the problem in this area due to her own baggage. If she is elected the Republican establishment will likely get even more stubbornly in opposition than it is now, if that is even possible.

Just give me a slight glimmer on the horizon and I will try to grab onto some form of hope. Just give me a glimmer….. please…..

9 responses to Hope vs Cynicism…

  1. 

    If you look at your “Post tags” you will notice that you tend to speak in the negative when addressing politics. Things you are anti about stick out. Where are your ideas of hope?

    Hope is a place in your heart. You start from it and move forward. Most people do not want the destruction of a country. They think they are doing the best thing for it. People are not born Republican or Democrat- they are simply people. They look at the same problem in different ways. Isn’t that what we teach children in school?

    I grew up in Phoenix. That was the community of the strident Goldwater Republicans. You may think it would be a hopeless place but it was anything but. My neighbors were Jew- both Reformed and Orthodox, Mormon,United Church of Christ and Unitarian. I dated a Hispanic young man.- who is now a leading ER doctor.
    Together our community help build one of the first large food banks- http://www.firstfoodbank.org/learn-more/our-history. John, the founder, was an alcoholic whom I ate meals with more often then I can remember.
    My dad helped establish the first “boys ranch” for the kids who were stuck in the system because their parents did not want them. I grew up learning service from a man who was considered “rich” in the eyes of the community.
    Dad’s funeral was packed with people we did not know. The people were from every walk, because hope reaches out (much like you do) and does not see class or party line. Hope draws people in to help others.

    I only wish that the media would not draw these silly lines and together we could build a country that we deserve to have- all of us. Helping to confirm those lines with anti one party or the other attacks, simply destroys hope and prevents change – In my opinion – of course. That is so “Eastern in view”. I have hope. I have hope for change. So did Dad- one of those terribly evil Republican “rich” people.
    Maybe hope is defined differently in your area of the country?

    • 

      Thanks for the comments Janette. Yeah you are right I am a cynic when it comes to politics. I had such high hope that Mr. Obama was the one to turn us around but of course the political establishment proved too much for him.

      But then again maybe you just don’t see those places where I do hold out hope…..

      And no, I don’t think all Republicans, or rich people are evil. I reserve that category for just a very small handful. Misguided, maybe or too fixated on material things, for sure…

      But then again I criticize not to tear down but to improve and I think ALL of us can stand some improvement….

  2. 

    Sorry, I am way too passionate and verbose in the morning. I forget you don’t like long responses. Back to my corner :)

  3. 

    I think I agree that all this rhetoric can result in a self-fulfilling prophecy. Negativity is like a virus…it’s caught and spread around. If we’re all convinced that government and business is totally corrupt and unfixable then would ever come forward who is honest and sincere? There is always light at the end of the tunnel. Throughout history people in dire situations have held on with hope. So…. Obama didn’t work out as well as we hoped. He’s a blip in history. So, we move on to the next guy….maybe a Republican or and Independent or another Democrat. There are decent and well meaning people in all those parties, are’t there? Maybe the pendulum needs to swing left and then right to end up at the middle ground which we can all live with. If one doesn’t work out we move on to the next and the next. It beats having a dictator or president who has a life term like elsewhere.

    We are in the best place in the world we can be. Why on earth would you think it’s hopeless? The “people” of the US are not just Dem or GOP….like Janette said they are simply “people”. We may have to struggle through incompetence and corruption but struggle we will and although our country may look different in years to come I am confident it will still be the best place in the world to live.

    Sorry, but I’m not so sure constant criticism is useful or that it improves much. Although, I am as guilty as the next person, I am making a concerted effort to lighten up and think positively.

    • 

      Thanks Jane for coming in here. Yes I certainly realize and see much good in the country once you leave the Washington beltway. I had two of the regular guys show up this morning to help in the soup kitchen. One has been coming for over three years now and the other for a little over a year. On top of that 10 colleges kids from the inter fraternal council came to help. There is certainly hope in the country.

      But the problem is that most of the decisions regarding spending a trillion bucks a year comes from that gridlocked place in DC. There is so much hate there now as to taint what is happening elsewhere. They are the “deciders” on how we as a country do our business and they have decided to viciously argue about everything. You are right in that the news people push much of the cynicism into the rest of us. So, should we just stick our head in the sand and ignore the problems currently swirling above our heads?

      I do agree that the U.S. government is the worst except when you compare it to everything else. Maybe I am just an old guy looking back at how it was once so much easier to get the people’s business done. Mark Twain went to his deathbed a totally cynical person. I certainly don’t want to follow in his foot steps.

      Enough for now….

  4. 

    I have recently come to the conclusion that I’m watching too much cable TV. You know, the place where the animosity in Washington, DC is amplified and brought into our living rooms. I think it’s true that if we tuned that out, we’d find we could agree on some middle ground for solutions to problems. The thing is, we elect politicians to do this for us and they aren’t. They have just spent years posturing. So I get why you’re cynical.

    So I guess we do what we can in our little part of the world (like you are doing at the soup kitchen, like I am doing to help people get health insurance) and hope those people in Washington don’t screw things up too badly while we are actually working to get things done.

  5. 

    Well said Syd. I was just a young kid when the McCarthy hearings were going on but I remember them. It seems there are a lot of similarities to today. McCarthy (who Ted Cruz reminds me a lot of) just wanted all the attention and for the most part he got it. He died a penniless alcoholic but that is another story.

    McCarthy was taken down by the words “Have you no sense of decency?” I am just waiting, actually praying and waiting for similar words to be spoken today or at least similar results. Something needs to break this gridlock. It has been going on too long.

    To tell you the truth I gave up on cable news about six months ago. I haven’t seen more than a few snippets since then. I do watch the PBS News Hour but it is much less vitriol. I also get my daily dose of news from my morning views of the Internet (avoiding all the comments!!). As you say all it seems we can do is to do what we can to ameliorate some of that viciousness in Washington at our grass roots level.

  6. 

    Ted Cruz is less then a blip in the road. Don’t worry about what he says or is said to him. No one else does- even the Republicans :) Looking forward to a good set of candidates for Presidential runs!

    • 

      I’m not worried about Ted Cruz, I’m just saying he reminds me of McCarthy in both his extreme narcissism and his appearance. Blip on the radar; I hope so….