Wednesday’s Word of the Week

2 Feb

I take great pleasure introducing Lex Kahn as a regular contributor to The Solipsistic Me.  Lex will now be doing his regular Wednesday’s Word of the Week.  I’m certain you will enjoy it as much as I.

WebWordWarrior’s Wednesday Word of the Week:

This week’s word is BIPARTISAN. It seems like such a friendly word, doesn’t it? We use it to imply that there is some sort of cooperation happening. But what does it really mean?

of, relating to, or involving members of two parties (Merriam Webster Online)

Well, that doesn’t mean much at all! Our Congress certainly has two parties, so their actions are, by definition, always bipartisan. A few members of Congress, like the recently retired Arlen Specter, are even bipartisan all by themselves.

Fortunately, we have a colloquial definition that implies some level of cooperation is involved. That’s why we hear “bipartisan” used so often, especially by the Republicans in Congress. Unfortunately, there is a vast divide between the use of the word and the practice of the speakers.

One need only look at the behavior of the Republicans in the Senate to understand that when Mitch McConnell says he wants a bipartisan solution, he really wants the Democratic majority to give in to the wishes of the Republicans. Sure, two parties are involved, but there is no real negotiation or compromise. Instead, needed legislation is watered down to meet the demands of a party that isn’t interested in that legislation in the first place.

Sadly, we now have a truly bipartisan Congress, with each chamber controlled by opposing parties. That should lead to real dialogue, shouldn’t it? The Republican-controlled House must carefully consider the legislation it passes on to the Senate and vice versa. Sadly, no. House Republicans have made their agenda quite clear: to spend two years blocking progress and making President Obama unelectable in 2012.

An election putting the Republicans back in full power would take the “bi” out of bipartisan. What does that leave us with?

Partisan: a firm adherent to a party, faction, cause, or person; especially one exhibiting blind, prejudiced, and unreasoning allegiance

Now that sounds a lot like the Republican method of governance.

Mitch: You will do as I say! Harry: Teamwork makes decisions easy.

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4 Responses to “Wednesday’s Word of the Week”

  1. webwordwarrior February 2, 2011 at 6:24 am #

    Thank you, Michael, for letting me be a small part of your great work. I’m proud to be a member of The Solipsistic Me! – Lex WebWordWarrior Kahn

  2. jenny68 February 2, 2011 at 7:36 am #

    I really enjoyed that Lex- I think you’re a great writer and I especially liked another piece of yours that Michael shared. I look forward to more

    Jenny

  3. webwordwarrior February 2, 2011 at 8:34 am #

    Thanks, Jenny. I’m glad you liked the piece it was fun to write. I’m looking forward to dissecting more words. – Lex

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