Thursday, October 1, 2009


A political story that has it all: stupidity, lying, cynicism, pandering, weakness. It's the perfect demonstration of everything that's wrong with our politics, and proof that there is, undeniably, no hope. Congress is failing us. Willfully. Gleefully. Irretrievably.

Unable to pass health care reform, unwilling to stop the flow of money to insurers who have no role providing care, the Senate Finance Committee nevertheless looks ready to approve the appropriation of fifty million dollars for "abstinence only" education. "It works," says Orrin Hatch.

He is, of course, entirely right. Assuming that by "it works" one means "it doesn't work." Study after study has shown its failure to change the biological call to the rutting of teenagers. Unanimously, Republicans voted for it, along with enough Democrats to pass the proposal.

So, what's the explanation? Are they too stupid to read; do they know the facts but choose simply to ignore them; is it a naked case of pandering to those in their parties who are, in fact, too stupid to read or understand? These fighters for fiscal discipline: willing -- nay, anxious -- to spend money on a discredited program. At best out of duncedom; at worst for completely cynical political reasons. Fifty million -- a drop in the bucket nowadays. But perfectly symbolic of where we are.

Fair is fair: let's not ignore the fact that Democrats, along with many Republicans, have voted to spend billions to continue building C-17 cargo planes, despite the fact that the Pentagon says they're unneeded, and despite Obama's urging to kill it. Credit to John McCain for calling them all out. (Unlike abstinence education, one can at least argue for building the planes as a jobs program. At least that would be semi-honest.)

Obama ought to veto the appropriations bill. I'm betting he won't.

Stupidity, ignorance of fact, craven playing to the craziest of one's supporters, caving to well-financed lobbyists. These stories have it all, and show, once again, why it is no longer rational to hope for good governance from Congress. This stuff was simple, binary: abstinence education -- doesn't work; more C-17s -- not needed. If they can't deal with such mindless stuff, how can we expect anything good on health care, energy, education, economy?

Answer: we can't.


  1. Sid, you bring more inflatable Stawmen than Barney Frank at a "Broke Back Mounting/Crying Game" double feature...
    Abstinence works every time its tried...just ask my daughters...umm well that and 150mg of Medroxyprogesterone every 3 months, "Trust but Verify" as Ronaldus Maximus used to say...
    Glad to see you recognize it's your own...(Umm I'd call em "Limp Wristed" but thats not bein fair to the Wrist-Impaired out there) Democrats who got this abortion voted down (I though y'all LIKED abortions??)
    And whats wrong with that Baucus guy?? looks like a Munster's character..
    Oh yeah, BTW the SecDef said Git-Mo ain't Closin-Mo-Fo...Are you sure Cheney didn't win??
    And quit bashin the C-17s..they hadn't bought any new transports since those C-5s you rode back in the 60's....Gonna need every one of em for this Afghanistan..what's it called? rhymes with "Purge"

    And I know you'll reply with some witty pithy remark, you're the king of Pith...

    Frank "Don't Pith me off" Drackman

  2. If they want to create jobs in the aerospace industry, why not give it to NASA?

    Even *that* excuse would be bad. Guess that's why there isn't even an excuse.

    I'd say "Heaven help you", but fat lot of good that'd do.

  3. "Frank "Don't Pith me off" Drackman"

    That's really funny Frank! :)

  4. If they really wanted to get it right, instead of building C17s to transport troops and/or supplies, they should send it "FEDEX". They will wrap it, pick it up, barcode it and tell you to within 8 hours when and where it will arrive. That's incentivization at it's best.

    I see Frank and Sid are still at it.


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