Overheard on CNN.com: Obstruction is not healthy democracy
Said one commenter: "Democracy is the worst form of government until you compare it to all the others."
September 30th, 2011
07:02 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Obstruction is not healthy democracy

Comments of the Day:

"Mr. Toobin, I'm sure there were some folks who thought it was just healthy discussion back in 1861, too."–Delta75

"Very well-written article. It was never the role of government to come up with solutions. It's not designed to do so. It's only role was to protect rights. It's trying to do way too much!"–harrytubman

Conflict is a feature of democracy, not a flaw

Stubbornness and lack of wit are not the cause of conflict between Democrats and Republicans, writes CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin. They disagree because they have "profound ideological differences" over whether government can be a "useful social engine to protect the environment, help the poor and build the economy." And this conflict, he writes, is part of democracy.

Some CNN.com readers disagreed that the present conflicts are a sign of healthy democracy. The rest argued over political ideology.

mooseman316 said, "What an insipid piece of claptrap. Conflict is a flaw; overcoming conflict is what our government is all about. We are not overcoming anything and that is the flaw in the system."

hippediva said, "Conflict? I think he means compromise, a word all the idealogues forgot long ago when they learned to bully their way to 'victory,' even if it means breaking the whole to satisfy the very few."

klur said, "I think that the debt ceiling debacle is a prime example of our government not working. Yes, controversy serves a purpose in a democratic government, but when there is complete obstruction of every piece of legislation proposed, the government is NOT WORKING."

1jstaffo said, "It's one thing to disagree yet compromise (many presidents and Congresses have done so); it's another to do nothing, which is what we currently have: nothing getting accomplished."

boogle said "At the end of the day, it is the duty of both parties to come up with a compromise that *most* but not necessarily all people can live with. Yes, debate is necessary but it is not the goal. There are too many conservative and liberal organizations influencing government when it's supposed to be 'for the people.'"

jboHDrider said, "Toobin is out there flapping. The reason that the govenment is broken is because the parties are pandering to special interests and not legislating to the will of the people."

maggiemom asked, "If this is just healthy debate, why are the GOP voting against ideas that are IN its own ideological framework, like tax cuts for businesses, simply because they are coming from the administration?"

reconman0321 said "Democracy is the worst form of government until you compare it to all the others...."

Bank of America to charge $5 monthly debit card fee

Most CNN.com readers were dismayed to learn that Bank of America would soon be charging customers $5 per month for debit-card purchases. Those with premium accounts, and those who don't use the card or use it only at ATMs, will not be charged. Many said they would move their accounts to credit unions, local banks, or their mattresses.

MysticRiver said, "One hundred years ago, a wise man kept his money secure in the bank. Today, a wise man keeps his money in cash, stuffed under his mattress."

CMHTed said, "Hopefully BOA customers speak with their money and leave for community banks. As for me, I turned back to cash last year and I'm loving it."

DaveHolmes said, "This is crazy. Should everyone start writing checks again? How many employees did banks let go by going automated? Bank cards and automation have saved banks billions of dollars! Yet the greedy banking industry wants more. It's not enough that they destroyed the American economy by writing bad loans. Banks should be paying us to use their services! Hopefully my credit union won't pull this.

ToTwoToo said, "Go find a CU where you're the owner and get to vote on your board of directors. Better yet... join a CU and run for the board of directors!"

clsanchez77 said, "My family banks with a local community bank. At our bank, the bank's customers are the stockholders. We do not report to Wall Street; the bank reports to us. The result: I have no fees. My checking accounts–all three of them–are free. My only requirement is direct deposit. We have an ATM on the main account, no fees. I can walk in and see a teller, no fees. I can write checks, no fees.

Monty Liss said, "This is even more sinister: B of A manages unemployment checks for EED. This means they are actually bilking unemployed Americans out of $5 every month!"

Kirk Kohnen said, "Don't get mad, get even. Go out and buy *1* share of their stock ("BAC"). This will set you back $20-$30. Then sit back while they have to send you their annual report, and their 1¢ dividend checks 4 times per year."

Some readers had their own names for BoA: ethandy said, "BoA constrictor."
jrh512 suggested, "Bank Opposed to Americans."

Do you feel your views align with these commenters' thoughts? Post a comment below or sound off on video.

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

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soundoff (80 Responses)
  1. banasy©


    Hopefully, you're nothing like Mel Gibson! 😉

    September 30, 2011 at 11:18 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Jj

    @ wil exactly on target! couldnt have said it better myself

    September 30, 2011 at 11:58 pm | Report abuse |
  3. gung hoe

    @banasy naw I dont Lee that way I know what you meant just dont see him like that hes a teddy bear till you tick him off,then hed be a big old grizzley,Man just heard what he said about the killing yesterday of alwaki that it was murder..man ron.paul is either nuts or a member of alqueda.I know call me nuts but thats what i think uh well uh well

    October 1, 2011 at 1:31 am | Report abuse |
  4. fernace

    Hey banasy, leeintulsa, gung hoe, I'm home all alone with no date either, so y'all are it! Cheers! Yes, I agree that 1 side can't fight by themselves! The way I used to think it worked was that they hashed things out in a compromising manner, & kept each side in check so as not stray too far left or right! Does that make sense? I used to think so, but now I'm at a loss! Ok, time for protests & uprisings, quit paying their salaries until they fly right! Btw, gung hoe, I'm with you on the al-Awlaki debacle! It was a clean military op in conjunction with Yemen intel! Not murder! I don't recall fellow Texan Paul mentioning murder when Bush took out Uday & Usay Hussein! He's playing politics, as I said in my earlier post! Is he al-Qaeda? gung hoe you crack me up! Have a good 1!!

    October 1, 2011 at 2:34 am | Report abuse |
  5. Pedro Sanchez.

    Strong minds of terror , don't deserve the Light of Living . Any one who influence youth man on wrong doing is evil .

    October 1, 2011 at 7:07 am | Report abuse |
  6. bigwilliestyles

    Well, what do you expect of BoA when they have a whole movement that calls what they did healthy capitalism?

    October 1, 2011 at 7:56 am | Report abuse |
  7. bigwilliestyles

    Once again banks take the lead in shoving it up the kazoo of the consumer. But why shouldn't they? They have a whole movement of people who will swear that this is only healthy capitalism, good for all. Not grateful what so ever to the taxpayers, who coffers were looted by the republican treasury secretary to nurse them after they poisoned their own supplies or nourishment in 2007. "Hey, we're stable, let us return to the same mind set (unmitigated greed) that ruined us (and the country) in the first place.

    October 1, 2011 at 8:03 am | Report abuse |

    to bad the "greed" has got outta control..

    October 1, 2011 at 8:26 am | Report abuse |
  9. leeintulsa

    I'm still a huge fan of his acting – the patriot, we were soldiers, conspiracy theory... Big fan. Him personally? Not so much..

    October 1, 2011 at 8:59 am | Report abuse |
  10. BobNAlabama

    The present state of our Congress is the best rationale for a three-party system that I've seen in my lifetime!

    October 1, 2011 at 9:09 am | Report abuse |
    • leeintulsa

      I see no reason to limit it to 3. And alabama, huh? Heard all your hispanics are fleeing the state, illegal or not. 22 percent of one school district in one day... Wow..

      October 1, 2011 at 9:42 am | Report abuse |
  11. gung hoe

    @ big willie I agree with you buddy to a extent but, your blaming the republicans for The banking debacle is totally wrong sir. The democrats were in charge of congress and CHRIS DODD AND THE TOOTHLESS WONDER GAY BOY BARNEY I SUCK GOOD FRANK WAS IN CHARGE OF THAT ONE HUNDRED PERCENT

    October 1, 2011 at 9:17 am | Report abuse |
  12. gung hoe

    Morning my buddy lee Im a okie ha ha

    October 1, 2011 at 9:21 am | Report abuse |
  13. gung hoe

    @ lee on way to work just wanted tn say hey

    October 1, 2011 at 9:25 am | Report abuse |

    the road warrior was the best mel gibson movie.. 2nd was mad max

    October 1, 2011 at 9:52 am | Report abuse |
  15. banasy©

    Hey, leeintulsa.
    Hey, gung hoe.

    Three should be a minimum. The two-system party is clearly fractured.

    Whaaaaat? Are you kidding me? 22% in one day? Whoa.

    October 1, 2011 at 9:52 am | Report abuse |
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