I have both seen and heard it said that Congress will not pass any ban on assault weapons. I find this interesting if for no other reason than why this might be so. I see no reason, logical or otherwise why private citizens should own assault weapons. The explanation they are for target practice is feeble in the extreme. The only explanation for the ownership of such weapons has to do with the belief it might be necessary to defend ourselves from our own government, a belief no more than a fantasy in the minds of the truly paranoid. These individuals argue that the Founding Fathers created the 2nd amendment so that citizens could protect themselves from their government, a belief actually quite the opposite of the truth. It is also a belief so transparent in its naivete as to be laughable. The idea that citizens armed with small caliber rifles, even grenades and rocket launchers, could defeat the federal government should that be necessary is simply ridiculous.
If it is true that Congress will not pass a ban on assault weapons it would seem to me there are only two possible reasons. First, there are enough Congresspersons who subscribe to the paranoid belief the government is their enemy (I guess we can thank Saint Ronnie for this stupid idea), or second, they are all being bribed by the gun industry to promote this idea in order to make more profits. In either case it is paranoia that drives the market. Thus we are either at the mercy of the demonstrably insane or an industry that encourages such beliefs for the sole purpose of short term profits. If Congress refuses to pass a ban on assault rifles paranoia wins and sanity loses. At the moment I think I would bet on paranoia as the idea that President Obama is after their guns seems to have been well established among the not so gently mad.
Republican arguments against the reasonable, logical, and practical proposals of the Obama administration have now become so untenable they have had to turn to more personal attacks. They have resurrected an earlier claim that Obama is too antisocial and does not do enough socializing with Congresspersons, an argument so pathetic as to be simply ignored. Not only that, they have now decided their strategy to oppose Hagel should consist of a discussion of his “overall temperament.” That is, does he have the proper temperament to run a large organization and etc., an argument not only pathetic in the extreme but entirely absurd. When you have no real arguments just bluff and obfuscate and create suspicion and confusion.
It is now being said that the Republican Party is going to have to change if it is to survive as a viable political party, change to keep up with the changing demography of our nation. I do not see how this is going to be possible given their inherent racism, homophobia, misogyny, xenophobia, and completely dysfunctional economic theories. These are deep-seated beliefs that are not going to be easily changed, certainly not in time for the 2016 elections and quite likely for a long time even after that, perhaps never (happy day).
It appears Republicans have finally realized the debt limit racket is not going to work for them this time. They are now focusing on other means of shutting down the government, causing Obama even more trouble, plotting to keep any progress from being made. It seems to me that Obama, as President, has been more than merely reasonable with his opponents and has, in spite of them, been in general pretty successful. The things that bother me about Obama, the hawkishness, drones, civil rights, and such, are not things that should bother Republicans. Thus I have to conclude their obvious, even growing hatred of President Obama is primarily racial in origin. They have not been able to overcome the basic paradigm of Western-European culture that featured the Great Chain of Being and the evolution of culture that placed white males at the very top of the scale and other races and genders below them. I suspect it will take at least two or three more generations before this insidious colonial carryover disappears.
The most important scientific revolutions all include, as their only common feature, the dethronement of human arrogance from one pedestal after another of previous convictions about our centrality in the cosmos.