Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Farewell do-nothings

The new House majority leader, Steny Hoyer, was not someone who was giving me goose bumps. He has been nearly invisible these last few years -- quite a feat considering the turmoil this country has been roiling in lately. However, he seems to be unnerving more than a few members of Congress now that he has drawn up a schedule for the next session, which will have Congress working, good lord, five -- count 'em -- five days a week. That's quite a bump in the work load from the previous, Republican "do-nothing" Congress and has some Republicans spitting fits. But Jack Kingston of Georgia took the prize for whiniest dink in Washington this week. Kingston, who has been doing "the people's work" just two days a week these past few years, decried Hoyer's timetable:
Keeping us up here eats away at families. Marriages suffer. The Democrats could care less about families -- that's what this says.
I'm really wondering how that's going to play down in Georgia. Is King going stand up in front of the hoi polloi and whine about how he has to work -- if that is indeed the right word for what Congress does most of the time -- more than two days week?

Of course, what it really says, what King won't admit, is that Hastert and this Congress have failed to do their congressional duty by not passing several budget bills that have languished for months. And they have done this quite purposefully because it will tie up the Democrats. Congressional Republicans did, however, have time to vote on increasing offshore drilling and a "fetal pain" bill, a final salute to both their bases -- oil and Christian gas -- before marching out the door.

Since I've always been of the Will Rogers/Mark Twain school of the thought as it regards Congress; having Congress work more seems inimical to improving our overall situation. But that general attitude doesn't wash anymore. That is because this so-called "do-nothing" Congress have actually done quite a lot: barely any of it has been good. New Orleans is still a shambles. They have been rubber-stamping everything Bush wants, most of it unconstitutional. The debt has sky rocketed. Government contract abuse and fraud is unprecedented. Oversight is in hiding.

But there is one thing on which I think we can all agree and this was certainly confirmed by the past elections: this Congress, the 109th, did far less than nothing. Compared to what these fuckers have been doing in the last six years, nothing would look like a vast improvement on the situation.

[King quote via Political Wire]


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