Cuomo: Will political parties ever invest in being better?

[CUOMO]

(NewsNation) — We need better, not just “but the other is worse.”

We do that everywhere in life except politics. We date someone because they are more attractive, not because they are less ugly than the alternative. No parent will ever not have their head explode when their kid explains their scores by saying another kid did worse. I got that one yesterday. No one will hire you because you say the other applicant is even worse.

But that is exactly what the game and politics is all about — simply who is worse. It happens all the time under the guise of principle or justice, which is really “just us,” meaning that party’s advantage.

James Comer, who would lead the House Oversight Committee if Republicans regain control of the House, says he wants to investigate Hunter Biden and his old assistant because she’s Chinese American (born and bred in Arizona by the way) and she might be a national security threat.

This is the same man who savaged Democrats for looking into national security concerns surrounding former President Donald Trump and company and their dealings with known and suspected Russian intel. I’m not talking about the dossier, but rather the meetings, the correspondence, the people promising contacts in Russian who had dirt.

There were questions, and yet Comer said, “Nothing good ever comes out of special investigations … Usually there’s not as much fire as there was smoke and the special investigator becomes overzealous. They have unlimited power to investigate anything they want.”

So now he wants more? And by the way, special Investigations are seen as having more integrity than what he wants to do, which is all politicians doing what we have watched for years. It’s almost the definition of insanity: repeating the same mistake over and over and expecting a different outcome. Except Comer’s goal is not a different outcome. Instead, he wants to show the other guys are dirty, too.

He wants to bet on the outcome of an investigation that hasn’t even started. If a judge did that, do you know what happens to a case? It’s tossed immediately. But this isn’t justice, it is “just us” — one party playing “the other is worse.”

No, do the other side, you say. I will, and not because I see the parties as equal offenders. The right has made compromises around big issues that will haunt them, but both sides play the game.

Nearly 500 literary figures have signed a letter asking for Justice Amy Coney Barret’s $2 million book deal with Penguin Random House to be killed.

The letter states, in part: “As members of the writing, publishing and broader literary community … we care deeply about freedom of speech. We also believe that it is imperative that publishers uphold their dedication to freedom of speech with a duty of care. We recognize that harm is done to a democracy not only in the form of censorship, but also in the form of assault on inalienable human rights.

“Coney Barrett is free to say as she wishes, but Penguin Random House must decide whether to fund her position at the expense of human rights in order to inflate its bottom line, or to truly stand behind the values it proudly espouses to hold. … We cannot stand idly by while our industry misuses free speech to destroy our rights.”

Misusing free speech is when you publish a justice whose decision you don’t like? Penguin can only publish what it agrees with? Is that where are?

Full disclosure, I don’t think the Dobbs ruling was right. I think reproductive rights matter and that this opened the door to the government having control over women in a way that is unjust. I think Barrett and all the other justices get on the court through a farce of a process that is all about hiding political inclinations.

Then there’s the ruse about stare decisis, which really means a matter is decided until they have the numbers and the inclination to change it. This is so true that when justices don’t decide cases the way their party wants; you know them by name.

However, we must be about the best idea winning, not censoring ideas we don’t like. If you don’t want to do it for the right reason, do it for the obvious one: it won’t work. You cant silence ideas in the digital age because there are too many ways to make media available. They just guaranteed the book does huge sales by making it something the left doesn’t want out there. You cant silence what you don’t like. Instead, compete with it and expose why you have a better idea.

These naked assaults on fairness are why the majority of this country wants out of this system. A new poll from Forbes shows that 42% of Americans would vote for a Centrist party, “in the middle between Democrats and Republicans” Only 33% would not vote for a candidate from any new political party, while 11% would vote for someone more liberal than Democrats and 11% would vote for a candidate more conservative than Republicans.

Meanwhile, 57% of independents would vote for a centrist candidate, but Democrats were more likely than Republicans to vote for one. A whopping 74% said the U.S is moving in the “wrong direction.”

That takes us to the elections a couple weeks from now, and once again it is about being worse. The focus is the economy. Bill Clinton’s guru adviser James Carville proclaimed the famous line that he would win for a simple reason: it’s the economy, stupid. That is often what matters most, but now it seems we have gone from that to “let’s hope people are stupid when it comes to the economy.”

Inflation is real. It hurts. Wages are not keeping up. Interest rates have been botched. But is that the whole picture? No, for two reasons. One, inflation is happening for a lot of reasons and many started before Joe Biden. The tax cut under Trump that wasn’t paid for that didn’t help the middle class like it was supposed to, the pandemic, the relief checks.

The middle class is doing fine, though. In March of this year, the average real wealth of the American middle class peaked at $393,300. It’s the highest it’s ever been, according to data assembled by economists at the University of California, Berkeley.

The average middle-class adult in America at that peak was more than $120,000 richer than they were when Donald Trump took office in January 2017. The March pinnacle for middle-class wealth capped a five-year period of accumulation that has been the most remarkable in the past half-century.

So, while the American middle class is facing the biggest hit to its wealth in a generation going into the midterm election, it is also entering the vote richer than it has ever been thanks to a decade of cheap money and the wealth boom it fed.

Everything is always more complicated than just who is worse. Instead, it’s about what will make us better.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author, and not of NewsNation.

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