Friday, January 07, 2011

Room 112: The Insanity Congress, Day Two (Constitution, Reader's Digest Version)

On the second day of this Republican train wreck Congress, a redacted version of the Constitution was read aloud, once interrupted by a crazed birther in the gallery when Congressman Pallone (D-NJ) read the section about the president's citizenship requirement. (Evidently, these morons are not aware that Hawaii  is  the 50th state.) The Teabagger was removed. They never read the part about Indians and slaves considered three-fifths of a person. Or prohibition.

The fact that the 13th Amendment was superseded by the 14th, or prohibition was repealed indicates  this is a living document that changes with changing times, and is not set in stone tablets as some Tea Party activists would like, or imagine it to be. Some have even called for a return to indirect election of senators or voting restricted to white male property owners simply because it was some sort of original intent. That's absurd, for to accept original intent is to necessarily accept three-fifths of a person.

The existence of certain despicable provisions "rectified" by future amendments is a cogent reminder that the Constitution is not a sacred document produced by originalist deified Founders, but one created by fallible humans who were very much of their time. This is the beauty of the document: Its capacity to right wrongs with the passage of time and the flow of history.

But even as the Republicans wrapped themselves around the sacred, albeit redacted, document, it didn't take long for this Congress to violate it. Two Republicans skipped the swearing-in ceremony to attend inauguration parties (fundraisers?), then came back, voted, one chaired a committee hearing, ALL IN VIOLATION OF THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES. They claimed lamely that they had watched the ceremony on TV and raised their right arms. Um ... it doesn't work that way.

By the way, did the Tebaggers learn anything, e.g., that Congress has the power to raise and impose taxes? Horrors! Then, showing immense respect for the document, Boehner gave a press conference while the reading was underway. He said, incredibly, that the NONPARTISAN Congressional Budget Office assessment that repealing the healthcare reform act will add $230 BILLION to the deficit (it will save  $100 billion over 10 years, and more than a TRILLION in the out years) was their "OPINION."

The CBO's function is to SCORE legislation introduced by both sides on cost as to whether and how much it will increase or decrease the deficit. Both Republicans and Democrats accept its findings as totally honest and objective. Until now. In order to waste our time with this symbolic repeal vote to appease the ignorant Teabaggers, the House Republicans must exempt it from their OWN rule of making corresponding cuts to any legislation that increases the deficit. Oops.

Then there's the small matter of citing the constitutional basis, or section, on which any proposed legislation is based. Of the three bills introduced by Republicans this was not done. Oops. Of course, the promise of "openness" was the first to be violated by the bagman for the corporations. No debate or amendments allowed on the healthcare repeal bill (a totally political document titled a "Job Killer"). Where are the Teabaggers in all of this?

As Howard Dean said, "the Tea Party is a fraud."  And this Congress will fast become a playground for corporate influence-peddling on a scale NEVER before seen. One can already see it developing two days and some hours into this Congress of Horrors. Beginning with the new Speaker.


madame defarge said...

What a great start for a party that still claims they're the fiscal conservatives and want to end reckless spending. This Constitutional Kabuki Theatre stunt cost us taxpayers at least $1.1 million.

BTW, love your site & perspective. I lurk a lot.

Carlos said...

Thanks! This little blog may not get 100K hits, but the quality of our visitors is unparalleled.