December 2005 Archives

Spending Priorites:
Washington Post: : "The spiraling cost of post-traumatic stress disorder among war veterans has triggered a politically charged debate and ignited fears that the government is trying to limit expensive benefits for emotionally scarred troops returning from Iraq and Afghanistan."

Principle hung on by a thread in the Senate, today. It was both a sad and joyous occasion for me. Sad, because the dirty political trick of placing the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) drilling question into a Defense Appropriations Bill is standard operating procedure in D.C. these days. Republicans believed the threat of saying Democrats opposed defense spending for our troops would be sufficient to get enough Democrat votes for a Cloture vote to limit debate and allow a vote to pass the bill. This embedding of one unrelated bill inside another is sadly all too common. The good news is Democrats held firm and ANWR drilling will not be passed inside this Defense Appropriations Bill.

With the NSA spying on Americans, if Bush committed an impeachable offense in ordering it, and that is a very big IF at this point, it is pretty damn certain the House of Republicans would never conduct impeachment hearings against him. And that is how corrupt our political parties and government have become. The laws are increasingly for the rest of us, not the leadership in government.

Tonight's TV airs a day with the President as shown through interviews with Nightly News anchor and managing editor Brian Williams. Apparently, in response to criticisms of the President living in a bubble and being out of touch with the people and the world, an unprecedented sequence of videotaped interviews were granted throughout Monday by the President to Brian Williams. Unfortunately, for this viewer, it backfired, as the President in his own words admitted he is not in charge, has no policy for Iraq, and does indeed receive his information about the world 2nd and 3rd hand via his handlers leaving him out of touch and living in a bubble.

Gun and Tax Insanity

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Two very disturbing issues crossed my path this morning. Texas's attempt to replicate Florida's "Shoot First" laws and the Republican House's tax legislation which says, 'screw deficits, they don't matter to us'.

Culture Of Bribery

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The Christian Science Monitor has an outstanding article on "A Culture of Bribery in Congress" in today's edition. This articles strikes one of the most important themes held, and written about, by myself and staff of the Vote Out Incumbents for Democracy organization. The Monitor opens their article with the following two paragraphs:

Almost every US lawmaker takes big money aimed at helping private interests win favorable government action. If they stash the cash for themselves, it's illegal. If they use it to get reelected, keep their job, and help the private interests, it's generally legal.

In the Washington Post, the 2006 voter's dilemma is highlighted by David S. Broder entitled, A Pox on Both Parties. He provides an excellent summary of public opinion sentiment toward Democrats and Republicans since the Reagan years to the present, in response to each parties performance in leadership. Broder concludes asking,"When both parties have lost public confidence, where do voters turn?"


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