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Because of the stalled legislative process in Congress, one cannot help to contemplate the mystery of the psychodynamics of political party affiliation, and exactly why we have stalemates in governance regarding important national, state, and community issues, when the well-being of all of us is at stake.

How a person or movement comes to a politically inflexible stance that cements belief into an unyielding position, and how that psychodynamic evolves, is interesting. Regardless of the rationality or facts that are evident which may counter one’s belief, it is rare that there will be a change in belief which will actually change position. Instead, most of us do not accept the possibility we could be wrong, and that someone else may have a better, more reasonable way of approaching a solution. Many times, we all go to great lengths to persist, even though we know our position is weak or wrong.

Inflexibility has its benefits and its drawbacks. Persistence, related to inflexibility, is lauded as a character to be often sought. Persistence beyond the evidence of contrary facts, however, can lead to disaster. Determination is another character often lauded. When persistence and determination are leading one down the wrong path, however, it is metaphorically like walking a tight rope blindfolded.

Such is the case existing now in Congress. Although it is evident factually, that policy is being purchased by powerful corporate entities through contributions to legislators, and although it is also accepted that process has prevented true and honest representation, there is little moral obligation as priority to discontinue the practice by effective campaign finance reform. Until that happens we will continue to shackle honest representation by the people we voted to represent us in Congress.

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Richard A. Damon,

Bozeman

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