1875

Monumental legislation failed 233-193 today. Republicans failed to block new standards for light bulbs that will go into effect next year. The argument is two-fold, one, that the new twisty fluorescent bulbs are more expensive, cost prohibitive for the poor who Republicans have historically defended with great zeal and two, it’s another example of ‘big government’ Democrats taking away Americans freedom to buy bulbs that are the of same design as when invented in 1875.

Not too bright

The new bulbs cost more up front but are a significant cost saver in both the short and long term due to lower energy costs. Everyone knows this by now except maybe the people who aren’t concerned about their bills such as Rep. Barton (R) of Texas who introduced this legislation. Relax Rep. Barton, don’t lose any sleep. The poor will actually have more spending money and we all know how Republicans work tirelessly representing their interests.

Big government

The ‘big government’ charge is a bumper sticker slogan Republicans use when they have no argument. Let’s set aside the fact that a Republican president signed this into law and the hypocrisy involved. Republicans want big government too. They would tell us who we can marry, make reproductive decisions for women and substitute superstition for science in schools but draw the ‘big government’ line at light bulbs. That’s going too far.

Back to the past

Republicans would have us stay in 1875 and in more important ways than light bulbs. For example they would strip away union rights which would lead to reversing worker protection laws. State legislators of Maine and Wisconsin are leading in this endeavor. Both are waging a war on unions and both have introduced legislation to lower the minimum age to work. Without unions overtime, weekends and collective bargaining are non-existent just as it was in 1875. Republicans would swiftly do away with the minimum wage and OSHA if it weren’t political suicide.

A 99% minority

The middle class did not exist in 1875. The desperately poor slaved for the super rich. This is their ultimate goal along with forcing oppressive Victorian era religious ‘values’ upon this 21st Century society. Concentrate the wealth and allow it to trickle down to the other 99%. No matter how many times the hard lesson – that this does not work well for the 99% – is learned the same old song remains the same.

Many Republicans do advocate people carrying handguns and would be for public hangings similar to 1875. The energy saving bill is a solution to a problem, something Republicans can only seem to be against. Progress doses not fit into their 1875 utopia. Meanwhile the Republican controlled House of Reps has not submitted one jobs creation bill. Jobs must not have been on the 1875 agenda.

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