May 31 2006

The Imperial Congress

Published by at 7:00 am under 2006 Elections,All General Discussions

Tom Bevan at RCP adds salt to the self inflicted wounds:

The average American can’t smack a police officer without getting arrested. He can’t smash his car into a stationary barrier at three in the morning, get out stumbling and slurring, and then get a ride home and a pat on the back from the cops. And he certainly can’t complain to any real effect about the FBI entering his co-worker’s office with a warrant and just cause seeking evidence to support credible allegations of bribery.

Congress has been plagued for decades by the general perception that influence peddling and corruption is part of how the system works and that “everybody does it.” These days, however, the public has at its fingertips a number of tangible and quite seedy examples that fit this perception to a tee; lavish skyboxes, hookers, poker games, $2,800 dinners, free golf trips and ringside seats, and wads of cash stuffed in freezers. That’s not exactly what most Americans would consider “doing the people’s business,” if you know what I mean.

Tom thinks most in Congress are hard working good people.  Well good people would be outraged by all this smearing of their reputations – yet they remain surprisingly quiet and defensive.  And hard working at what?  Yapping at the cameras and smearing people they disagree with?  Hardly working seems more apt.  They work at getting elected, then somehow failt to produce much needed legislation – like on immigration.  But no, they sit in their Imperial Congress and say ‘our way or nothing’.  And nothing is what we got for 20 years.

10 responses so far

10 Responses to “The Imperial Congress”

  1. Rob says:

    Not happy. As a voter and tax payer I am not happy. I look out at a tough and dangerous world and what I want most is for our elected leaders to be serious. I get very little feeling that that is what is going on here. It is political games and self interest and just plain corruption. Billions of dollars will be sent to repair New Orleans, and the culture of corruption down there. The Senate is pushing another fake cure for the immigration deluge. There are common sense things (the fence is one of them) that can be done to improve security, and the economic future for both Mexico and the United States, but Ted Kennedy has focused the Senate on providing amnesty and a source of new poor voters for the sinking Democratic Party. And the House is awash in earmarks and out of control spending and has decided to defend Rep Jefferson’s right to be above the courts and the law even as his freezer overflows with bribe money caught on video. How serious is that.

  2. Carol_Herman says:

    All the President really did was FREEZE the evidence.

    I read the op-ed piece Hastert wrote that got published in the Washington TIMES. He said Jefferson’s deeds indeed have gone over the line. He had a problem with two things:

    ONE: ABC smearing him with an “in the mix” comment that might have come from Abramoff, himself. Nobody at JUSTICE was willing to say anything except that Hastert was NOT being investigated.

    From the looks of things, the news hit during this holiday weekend, which is ipso-facto, a slow MSM news cycle. The PRESIDENT then kicked the ball away for 45 days. And, put the evidence under quarentine. Frist has also entered the fray. And, it seems all that’s needed are actual WRITTEN guidelines for how the HOUSE space gets protected. PERIOD.

    Can the FBI come into the Capitol. Well, it seems when “shots were fired in the garage” (even though it turned out to be workmen with an air gun, in the elevator shaft); that the FBI showed up. And, along with the Capitol Police, the entire building went into lockdown. AND, the terror squad also came out. I’ll also bet that WRITTEN GUIDELINES exist on how terror gets handled.

    Written guidelines, it seems, were what was missing from Hastert’s mix.

    That the money’s gone up? YES! In the 1950′s, you could bribe a legislator for a mere few hundred dollars. And, you could bribe the policeman into not giving you a traffic ticket for less than $20. But times change. And, prices escalate.

    Lyn Nofziger, a wonderful man who just passed; had written his own book back in 1992. Rich in anecdotes, he said he entered government during the Eisenhower years. (When our leaders drove around in convertibles. And, prior to Ike’s ride, the FBI would stop by offices and just ask “anybody’s got a gun?” That was it, in terms of security detail.)

    Nofziger also said that PRIOR to 1968, Nixon was awash in millions of dollars in cash. Which didn’t have to be accounted for at all. Then, in 1968 the paperwork began. And, everything has a paper trail.

    Maybe, that’s what jerked the costs up?

    Was there a problem with Hastert’s “paperwork” when it comes to Ambramoff. Well, Ambramoff ran one of the best restaurants in DC. And, Hastert forgot to list it as a place he held a fund raiser. Catching the paperwork error two weeks later. And, correcting it.

    By the way, the Indians and the “gaming industry” came about when Indonesians, with lots of money, had the INDIAN RESERVATIONS FRONT the casinos. If you believe it’s top to bottom Indians, it isn’t.

    When did America become so addicted to gambling? Are we talking “illegal?” Heck, Guys and Dolls is a musical that laid bare Damon Ruyion’s stories from way back. I bet’cha we can all still hum so of those songs.

    But the real crux of the change happened when Castro (on Ike’s watch), tossed the mafia out of Cuba. THEN, Las Vegas opened those doors.

    The Indians don’t reach this until “some entity” … wise in the laws … shows them how “reservations” are Indian territory. And, not under the jurisdiction, per se, of local, or state laws. But it’s all from the Drug Cartels. Foreign money spilled back into a “business” that rolls in cash.

    Very early on, Las Vegas was seeing millions each not cross its tables. And, that’s what made it such a wonderful venture for the Drug Cartels. Why? Very large sums of money need to travel through banks.

    And, that’s another place that’s gotten to have paperwork added. (Not just Congress.)

    If you were to buy real estate, you’ve got to disclose the source of the cash portion.

    Again, it’s PAPERWORK.

    And, since Congress writes the Federal laws I’d be surprised if they invested in a system that stymies them.

    Where did Representative Jefferson go that he’s in such troubles, now? It seems, in Africa, (when Clinton was President he appointed Joseph Wilson as an Ambassador to that region) … And, the moneys pouring in for AID, and for HIV/AIDS aid has been astronomical. This is where Jefferson decided to make himself rich.

    A long time ago, when Clinton was President, he had Ron Brown on his team. And, before Ron Brown died in a plane crash, I remember reading how he set up dummy corporations … Picture it as a long hallway with many doors. Then, after the plane he was in crashed, those rumors of “Arkancide” emerged. While I thought it was just the bad luck of taking off in very bad weather.

    I’ve heard that the money that pours out of DC comes shooting out under such pressure that it’s been compared to a FIRE HOSE. It takes lots of firemen (about 8), to hold and aim a fire hose in action.

    As to what laws will come out of all of this, I have no idea. Nor do I necessarily think it’s gonna be an opportunity for the donks, come November.

    No one goes to Washington to be a saint. (And, even saints keep money. Remember duing the 1980′s, and the S&L scandals? How poor people’s savings were gone? And, one creep, whose name escapes me, gave millions to Mother Theresa. She never even returned one penny.)

    In 1929, after the Crash, Winston Churchill, who was in the USA at the time, wrote that what amazed him about America was that we had the CLEAN UP laws in place. He wrote you can’t change human nature. But in England, scandals like these, bring down governments. NOT HERE.)

    As a matter of fact, when you tighten up on the money supply, you’ve got less chances of watching economies thrive. Maybe, you can throw money at problems, after all?

  3. Carol_Herman says:

    I dunno.

    Congress wrote the laws. What was put into place was a paper trail. Before 1968, without a paper trail, politicians at the top, like Nixon, had millions of dollars in cash in their office safes.

    Hastert, by the way, just kicked the ball. And, the President “pulled it off-sides.” For 45 days. Maybe, this has more to do with timing than anything?

    The whole casino gaming industry thing is a place where the Drug Cartel goes to wash their dirty money, into cleaner, and bankable funds.

    I’ll wait and see how things develop against Jefferson. Doesn’t sound much different than what Ron Brown had set up. Where some writer said “just picture a long hallway. With lots of doors. And, behind each door another dummy corporation. Never came to light, though. Ron Brown, on some official business died in a plane crash when he demanded the plane take off in awful weather. Where did that story ever go? Clinton’s watch. Clinton’s man.

    Turns out Joe Wilson, too, became an ambassador to Gabon, on Clinton’s watch.

    And, Representative Jefferson thought he could get clean away.

    Since CONGRESS is a separate entity under our Constitution, why not believe there needs to be written procedures, first?

  4. crosspatch says:

    More Democratic “culture of corruption”. This time in the Pennsylvania legislature.

  5. carol johnson says:

    The current state of affairs in congress is shameful and demoralizing! I wake up these days with a sense of dread, but usually shake it off by getting to work with some sense of purpose. Is it too much to ask the congress to do the same? I don’t think so. Apparently they think it is too much to ask for them to get to work for their constituents. Accountability has become a four-letter word!

    And, while the Congress fight each other AND us…there are those watching this who want to slaughter us all and are just waiting for the next chance to do so. We NEED to be united in our effort to defeat them and we are about as far away from that as possible.

    I am ashamed of the Democratic Party that I had been a member of for so long and NOW I am becoming ashamed of BOTH parties!

    Carol

  6. Terrye says:

    Rob:

    If the hardliners in the Congress had not tried to make illegal entry a felony it might have gone a bit easier too. The point is they need to learn to compromise and get things done. People don’t expect perfect, but they hate gridlock.

  7. pull says:

    ‘Democracy is the worst form of government, with the exception of all others.’ — Churchill.

    Incompetent representatives of the people? Vote them out. Would you vote for this guy? Would you vote for Ted Kennedy? But, there are people who will regardless of what these slimeballs do.

    I wish I could just be mad at this one guy. I am mad at the media who whitewashes this atrocious story. I am mad at the idiots who vote this kind of slime ball in and support him.

    I am mad at the people who continue to be silent about this matter. It is despicable.

    We have an important role for the media to report and expose corruption. They do not do this. But, we do have a light in that this landscape is changing. I hope it is not too little, too late.

  8. For Enforcement says:

    Did the Cynthia McKinney incident just get swept under the rug? I haven’t heard yet what the penalty was for hitting a police officer.
    Let’s assume (and there is) protection in the constitution to keep the Executive from interfering with the Legislative. NOW HEAR THIS!!! IT DOESN’ T APPLY TO FELONIES.

  9. Snapple says:

    I don’t like to think about this. I go to work every day and work hard.
    I really earn my money.

    I don’t like to think that these highly-paid people are not doing the nation’s business but only stealing.

    I think the FBI can go into Congess. They should go anywhere the criminals are who break Federal Laws.

  10. MerlinOS2 says:

    I could care less what the party is of a congressional wrong doer. That just results is partisan fingerpointing like spoiled children.

    My disgust is that an American congressional representative has disgraced himself in execution of their public trust. Also what is even more disgusting, if they are that dollar motivated, just get the heck out of congress and go get a lobby position, the pay is better and the disgrace to congress would not have to be endured.