The magic term in Congress, as in many other enterprises, is, simply, DEAL. Deals are things that involve selling and buying in the marketplace. In Congress, they are better described by the term quid pro quo. In both cases, money is the driver. In both cases, SLIME might be the operative incentive, remarking something done behind closed doors or passed under the table or concluded under the cover of darkness – backroom deals, for instance. Before the time of the state primaries and/or caucuses, when delegates were not sewed-up long before the quadrennial convention, a presidential nominee was often decided in the smoke-filled backroom.
A certain amount of governmental subterfuge is always both suspected and accepted in a democratic society, especially since many if not most legislators view incumbency as actually more important than lawmaking and control of Congress by the legislator’s party paramount to anything else. Regarding probably most presidents, the most important thing is the LEGACY, and most anything to make it look good is acceptable, never mind who gets hurt or what gets mangled in the process.
Never in the considerably long memory of the keeper of this corner has the Washington establishment sunk to the level on which it now resides, with regard to subterfuge, slime, whatever. Both the administration and the Congress are steeped in skullduggery that defies the imagination. This seems crazy because the players know that transparency is inevitable in this day of instant news-dissemination on a 24/7 basis, enhanced by the obvious agenda-driven efforts of the various media culminating in the “anonymous sources” telling all to their media-cronies when it’s to their advantage. The result is two-way manipulation, with both the media and the bureaucrats held in VERY low esteem by the public.
The quid-pro-quo deals outlined graphically as the health-care bill moved through the Senate, with the sell-outs to “key” senators having virtually no limit and favoring one part of the citizenry over another as seen in the Nebraska/Louisiana/Florida/Union corruptions, is enough to induce retching. To see elected lawmakers as little more than tinhorn crooks buying and selling each other for advantage makes a mockery of the process.
In the House, a razor-thin majority regurgitated a bill months ago that was designed to have the government take over in the not-too-distant future the entire health-care industry, 17% of the GDP. The president has made it clear that he intends for this to happen, if not right now, at least sometime soon. It will happen as the insurance industry is wrecked instead of just better regulated. The House Speaker and Senate Majority Leader are expected to see that this happens, else not only will the president’s first year in office be a complete disaster but his LEGACY (and power to control) will take a drastic hit, maybe even sinking his chances for a second term.
The shenanigans connected to all of this are bad enough with regard to outright corruption, but the most egregious complaint here is that these buffoons are jerking the citizens around as if they owned the country and had cornered the intelligence universe. This is the worst it’s been in decades. It’s so utterly brazen. Lawmakers have passed bills involving hundreds of billions of dollars without even reading them…something, strangely, that they admit. This is another way of saying they aren’t smart enough and know it. Yet, they expect to gain the trust of the public.
For their part, republicans are having none of it…and they’re essentially right in that. The latest ploy – connecting student-loan legislation to the health-care bill apparently in order to make it financially feasible and therefore susceptible to the reconciliation protocol – just adds to the contempt with which the public holds Congress. In the bargain, the government will eventually completely take over the loan program, part of the CHANGE from representative government to socialism, obvious in spades now as the goal of the Obama administration – the U.S. as the western-hemisphere Europe. This is not even to mention the obvious breaking of the rules of the House in order to actually escape a vote on the Senate bill, something that’s probably un-Constitutional.
The deal now seems to be that the House will hold its collective nose and pass the corruption-formed Senate bill (or illegally bypass it), making it the actual result of a Senate-House conference committee that will never have to meet. Reconciliation action to appease the House is promised to come later but surely no one believes that will happen or at least that the Senate democrats actually give a fig about what the House wants. Just as the cloture rule has already been nullified in the Senate, with its bill to be ready for the president’s signature after being passed by the House, the reconciliation actions can be mangled in any way either legislative body sees fit, assuming such actions actually happen.
Perhaps not since President Roosevelt tried to pack the Supreme Court in 1937 (using legislation instead of the amendment process outlined in the Constitution) has there been such low-life finagling in Washington as there is now. Roosevelt gave this as a reason in his speech on the subject: “because it [legislation] will provide a reinvigorated, liberal-minded judiciary necessary to furnish quicker and cheaper justice from bottom to top.” Does this sound familiar? Roosevelt wanted CHANGE…a gigantic CHANGE, a CHANGE to hopefully subvert the Constitution that had then stood, and does yet stand, the test of time.
Virtually nothing the president and Congress have done since January 2009 has worked, though the cost of what they’ve done is inordinately enormous, with the health-care bill aimed at blowing off the financial roof and plunging the country into insolvency, ultimately at the mercy of its creditors. Obama has indeed brought about CHANGE, with a complicit democrat Congress either woefully ignorant/selfish or completely insensitive to reality.