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The Best Government (Liberal) Money Can Buy

Back in 2006, at the same time the Democrats won both Houses in Congress, they also swept to power here in New Hampshire. Not only did they keep the governorship they had won two years prior, they also gained majorities in our House, Senate, and Executive Council. For the first time in a very, very long time (I don't recall precisely how long, but at least decades), the Democrats had control of New Hampshire and could push their agenda.

So, what were the first notable things they did? Astonishingly enough, the two biggest ones were ones that didn't get a lot of airplay during their campaign: they immediately passed a civil unions bill and jacked up the state budget over 16% in a single year.

The phrase "bait and switch" comes to mind, and I'm sure will be tossed around a LOT come this November.

On the national front, I see a similar thing going on. The Democrats won both houses of Congress, on a host of promises and pledges and positions -- pretty much all of which have gone precisely nowhere. Instead, we have seen a scattershot of stupidity, a whole host of ideas and initiatives and trial balloons and whatnot that seem to have one common thread: demonstrating that the Democrats running Congress are dumber than a box of rocks.

You want proof, you say? Here you go:

House and Senate committees held hearings on the high price of gasoline. They called the CEOs of the big oil companies and asked them such probing questions as "why do you get paid every year a significant fraction of what one of us spends to get elected?" and can you tell us why we shouldn't just take over your companies and run them as incompetently as we run the government?" The executives answered calmly and rationally, saying "the price of gas keeps going up because we make it out of oil, and the price we pay for oil keeps going up and up, partly because the people who sell us the oil are a lot like you."

Karl Rove has been subpoenaed to talk about how the president has "meddled" with the Department of Justice. Here's hoping that Rove opens with a reading from this letter he wrote to MSNBC's Dan Abrams, when he simply, concisely, and logically points out all the logical holes in the theory that "Karl Rove framed Alabama governor Don Siegelman," then segues into the United States Constitution, where it clearly spells out that the Department of Justice is part of the Executive Branch, and therefore answerable to the Chief Executive.

And let's not forget the recent attempt by Congress to rewrite the Constitution, where they only sent part of a bill to President Bush. This has led to some interesting speculation among Congressional Democrats that they don't need to send entire bills to the White House -- they can only send part of it, and when the president signs it, all the parts -- even the parts the president didn't sign -- come into law.

I'm just an amateur Constitutional scholar, but it's always been my understanding (largely based on this) that the way a law is made is that it starts in one House, goes to the other, and then the president has to sign it. And one key part of that is that it has to be the same exact bill -- there's even a process where the two Houses can reconcile the differences before they send it off to the White House.

As others have noted, this puts the president's "signing statements" to shame. In those, Bush is just laying groundwork for a potential future challenge to a law; here, Congress is saying that, in effect, it can pass laws entirely on its own, with no presidential involvement whatsoever -- in direct violation with the "checks and balances" provisions of the Constitution.

Next, I suppose, they will work on limiting or eliminating the Judiciary's ability to declare laws unconstitutional, to give them absolute, unfettered power. it is the next logical step, after all...

Congress has also decided that other matters are major national crises, needing their direct investigation and intervention. Matters such as whether or not the New England Patriots cheated last season or if some baseball players misused certain drugs.

There's an old saying that, in democracies, people tend to get the government they deserve.

I have to wonder just what the hell we did to deserve this current Congress.

And then I remember: we voted for them. I didn't, personally, but we, the American people did.

So let's blame them, but let's never forget that they couldn't have done a damned thing without our consent, or at least our tacit approval.

And let's especially not forget it come next November, folks.


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Comments (20)

There may be no alternative... (Below threshold)

There may be no alternatives left except boycotting upcoming elections until at least one party returns to sound principles. Every vote cast in support of a major party as it currently stands will be interpreted as an endorsement of that party's policies and actions, most particularly by that party's strategists and major spokesmen. How much more of that can the country stand?

Francis makes a good point,... (Below threshold)
Bob:

Francis makes a good point, especially when most Congressional Republicans stood firmly against their own President in voting to override Bush's veto of the bloated farm bill. If the 1994-elected Republican majority had pushed for term limits like they promised to do, maybe we could get rid of some of the lifers and get a better crop of representatives. As it is, it's getting harder to tell the parties apart. John McCain has championed some spending cuts, but he's on board with the Dems on such major issues as stopping man-made climate change, not drilling in ANWAR, amnesty for illegals, closing Gitmo, etc. ad nauseum.

Or vote for someone who is ... (Below threshold)

Or vote for someone who is running against them for their seat this fall, even if they're an unknown new player on the political field. Our elected officials don't hear a thing until it hits them in their own wallet which is why they could care less about how much we're paying for gas and groceries. We pay their car payments, their mortgages, their gas, their groceries...

Truely a pathetically writt... (Below threshold)
Jeremy:

Truely a pathetically written article that aims to distort facts. You truely are an amateur Constitutional Scholar, seeing as how you've never read it.

I'm not sure 'we the people... (Below threshold)
Scrapiron:

I'm not sure 'we the people' voted them into office unless 'we' includes millions of votes that were not cast by the people but by rigging of elections. Everytime I hear a democrats scream about the 'machines' I know they have figured out a way to make the machine total come out the way they want it to come out. It's a fact that criminals try to project their crimes onto others and the democrat party is 100% into projection of crimes. The only people ever caught breaking the seals and 'monkeying' with voting machines (during delivery to voting places) in this area were 'democrats'. It's common to hear them blame 'the machine manufacturer'.

Maybe congress needs some r... (Below threshold)
Clay:

Maybe congress needs some remedial help, and here's help from the past. Remember "I'm Still Just a Bill"?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mEJL2Uuv-oQ

It wouldn't hurt for Jeremy to watch it as well. Perhaps he can wrap his puny brain around this one, too:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q_TXJRZ4CFc&feature=related

A fair, honest, and unbiase... (Below threshold)
P. Bunyan:

A fair, honest, and unbiased (or at least equally biased) media is required for a democracy (representative, or otherwise) to properly function and thrive. Sadly we haven't had that in this country for quite some time.

The people don't deserve this government any more than they deserve to be fed disingenuous propaganda called "news".

The left has been remarkably patient, yet very comprehensive in carrying out the plans they made long ago and now we are seeing the fruits of their labors. People should have listened to Nikita Kruchev when he banged his shoe on the table and stated that "We* shall destroy you from within". He wasn't kidding.

*"We"="leftists", "democrats", "liberals", "progressives", "marxists", "communists" (pick your label, its all the same)

"Matters such as whether or... (Below threshold)
jp2:

"Matters such as whether or not the New England Patriots cheated last season or if some baseball players misused certain drugs."

I thought that was all Arlen, no?

So, scrapiron, I assume you... (Below threshold)
Max:

So, scrapiron, I assume you have evidence of these "millions" of fraudulent votes. I'd love to see it. I'm sure you wouldn't just pull a number like that out of your ass, would you? Let's see it.

And let's not forget the... (Below threshold)
Brian:

And let's not forget the recent attempt by Congress to rewrite the Constitution

Well, let's not forget the previous time, either. I'm sure you were equally critical of the Republicans when they tried to do it, eh?

Next, I suppose, they will work on limiting or eliminating the Judiciary's ability to declare laws unconstitutional, to give them absolute, unfettered power. it is the next logical step, after all...

No need. Republicans already tried it. Many times. I must have missed your opposition.

www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h109-2389
www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h108-3313
www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=s109-520
www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h109-552

Previous post got truncated... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Previous post got truncated for some reason...

govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h109-2389

govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h108-3313

govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=s109-520

govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h109-552

We should rename Brian as "... (Below threshold)
SPQR:

We should rename Brian as "Tu Quoque".

We should rename ... (Below threshold)
Maggie:
We should rename Brian as "Tu Quoque".

Ouch!

I'd rather be known for pos... (Below threshold)
Brian:

I'd rather be known for posting facts that expose the false indignation of others than for posting nothing but fact-less snark.

Perhaps, SPQR, your time could be better spent by helping Maggie. She appears to have stubbed her toe or fallen on her head or something.

We should rename Brian a... (Below threshold)
James Cloninger:

We should rename Brian as "Tu Quoque".

Which in English means "too cocky."

Perhaps literally. But appa... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Perhaps literally. But apparently SPQR doesn't realize that a tu quoque argument isn't by definition invalid, and they can be used very legitimately and effectively to demonstrate hypocrisy and shred the credibility of their target. But, that's actual knowledge, and not just snark, so I wouldn't expect him to know that.

Note to self: bookmark Bria... (Below threshold)

Note to self: bookmark Brian's last comment and save for future reference: he has just admitted that his intention was NOT to refute the argument, but to discredit the arguer -- something I've been saying for a very, very long time.

Nothing like a little "shoot the messenger," huh, Brian?

I can see the appeal. It's a lot easier than trying to rebut the points being made.

I'm just surprised you are so open about admitting that that is your intention.

J.

Indeed, Jay, looks like I h... (Below threshold)
SPQR:

Indeed, Jay, looks like I hit a nerve, eh? I think Brian "Tu Quoque" should be his permanent name.

Well gee, Jay, I didn't rea... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Well gee, Jay, I didn't realize you needed it spelled out for you. If you someday make a consistent point, perhaps I will consider rebutting it on its merits. But in the meantime, all you typically do is complain about how awful it is that Dems did something Reps did (without mentioning the latter, of course) or that they didn't do something the Reps also didn't do. Since that's all you got, that's what I respond to.

Shall I refute the argument that the Constitution spells out what the rules are for a bill to become a law? No, I shall just point out your hypocrisy for being silent about that point when it's the Reps who fumbled the ball.

Shall I counter the supposition that Dems want to limit the judiciary? Since no facts were offered, there were none to rebut. All I can do is point out how accepting of it you've been when Republicans ACTUALLY did it, instead of just hypothesizing about it.

A tu quoque argument can highlight that a person is taking a position against his actual beliefs. I'm not even sure why it's important to you to have someone rebut arguments that are clearly disingenuous to begin with.

I think Brian "Tu Quoque... (Below threshold)
Brian:

I think Brian "Tu Quoque" should be his permanent name.

Well of course you do. Since you can't hold your own when the facts are in discussion, you must resort to ad hominems. No surprise there.

Since you're so interested in nicknames, perhaps you should consider "Ignoratio" for your own.




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