We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
"We make a great mistake if we believe that tonight these results are somehow an embrace of the Republican Party," said incoming Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida. A rising GOP star, Rubio seized his new role as a party leader and potential presidential candidate, casting the results as "a second chance for Republicans to be what they said they were going to be not so long ago."
This is not an endorsement of the Republican party, but much more of a rejection of the Democratic party, specifically the claims the Democrats have made since 1996 to be broad in its appeal and moderate in its policies.
Democrats built a congressional majority in 2006 and 2008 by persuading Bush voters to cross the aisle to support them, with an implicit promise of bipartisanship and moderation. The party under Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi did not deliver on that promise -- and thus they lost the support of these Republican-leaning districts.
... for all the decisiveness of the independents' shift, this election hasn't resolved the most fundamental question facing the country: What should the role of government be in the 21st century?
Instead it has simply set up what figures to be a two-year debate over that question in Washington, and ensures that it will be a focal point of the 2012 election.
Thanks to independents—along with other crucial swing blocs, such as suburban women, blue-collar workers and retirees, all of whom also shifted toward the Republicans—the GOP now has the strength to stop pieces of the Obama agenda and, perhaps in some instances, roll it back.
There are two keys to reducing budget deficits: reduce expenditures and improve revenues. This is true for anyone with a budget and I should try to do better at it myself...
Reducing expenditures does mean cutting programs that have constituencies: reducing federal spending on education, raising Social Security eligibility age, reductions in who may receive Medicaid and, possibly, some of the things Medicaid pays for. Cutting some infrastructure projects like roads and bridges.
Improving revenues starts with cutting tax rates, cutting tax rates, cutting tax rates. Works every time the "fair minded" people get stopped from raising taxes on "the rich" for "the poor". Improving revenues goes on to removing obstructions to business: excessive regulation, burdensome licensing requirements (cosmetology license to braid hair? cosmetology license at all?), liability problems and the list goes on. Finally, improving revenues means actually producing energy from federal and state lands so we collect royalties for our own treasury and not the Saudi/Venezualan treasuries. (To be fair, most of our petroleum imports are from Mexico and Canada.)