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Congress Is a Confederacy of Dunces


#1

Congress Is a Confederacy of Dunces

Michael Winship

Already we’re deep into September and Congress has reconvened in Washington, prompting many commentators to compare its return after summer’s recess to that of fresh-faced students coming back to school, sharpening their pencils, ready to learn, be cooperative and prepared for something new.


#2

If anyone remembers their history, they know that D.C. was built on a swamp. I'd say it's got to be in the water. There is something in the water there that deludes some but not all. Geez, remember Teddy The Rough Rider? He was a republican and if you think about it real hard like you might see that even my friend Bernie looks like milk toast compared to Teddy. Yep, it's the water, in the swamp, it's being used to make the coool-aideeee.


#3

Just a small comment.

Winship should have accredited the Southern writer John Kennedy Toole, graduate of Tulane, for the title of his most excellent and entertaining novel, "The Confederacy of Dunces", which lampooned the idiots who guided the political and social state of the City of New Orleans. The title reflects a line from J Swift:

"When a true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in confederacy against him."

Politics in the Good Ol' USofA is awash in idiots and knaves, and virtually devoid of geniuses.


#4

RichSmith:

The difference between genius and idiocy, as someone once remarked, is that genius has its limits.


#6

Have you noticed? All the dunces in Congress are conservatives!

"Conservatives are not necessarily stupid, but most stupid people are conservatives"
John Stewart Mill


#7

Yes, and his mother went from publisher to publisher to get that special book in print, after her son's tragic death.


#8

"The House and Senate sprinted off to vacation a few weeks ago with much undone, and thus have returned to a series of difficult deadlines that need to be addressed before the end of the month."

A few weeks? How about all of August and the first week in September. Now they have deadlines to meet? The United States House of Representatives will be in session all of 132 days in 2015, up 20 days over 2014, giving these hard working pols 233 days off, nice deal if you can get it. They have deadlines?


#9

I notice that on these establishment-liberal sites, we are supposed to bemoan conservatives and then just leave it at that, as if nothing can be done. To heck with that. It's time to stop finger pointing and start demanding a total overhaul of the mess called the U.S. government. Don't even bother to worry about the presidential election. It's not important anyway and nothing significant will change for the better regardless of who is elected. That's how the system is wired. We need a total rewrite of the Constitution -- or something equally dramatic -- to streamline the federal government, preferably into a small, one-house legislature, a powerful executive and a supreme court made up of young activists instead of doddering old fossils. That's unlikely to happen as long as the American Left is spliintered into myriad groups and causes. Of course, that's exactly how the big-money interests have shaped our society over the years, and why being a "liberal" in America means being someone who looks at society, wrings his or her hands for a while, and then falls asleep while watching PBS. Alas, I'm afraid any real change for America will have to be imposed from the outside, and that's likely to be very unpleasant.


#11

At least we know where the village idiots are staying.


#12

And replace them with what or who?


#13

"For this particular Congress to cooperate and do something new would
require a miracle on the order of loaves and fishes — perhaps Pope
Francis can do something about that when he’s on the Hill next week. His
Holiness may be the only hope."

For Michael Winship to proclaim the solution to political gridlock is going to come from the the pope, any pope, who is head of the most morally corrupt church in existence shows both his naivete and the total lack of credible leadership by anyone from anywhere in the US. Who will be our next miracle worker, Ban Ki Moon or maybe we could get Marlon Brando back from the dead to reprise his role as Don ("I'm going to make you an offer you can't refuse") Corrleone.


#14

If their chronological age matched their emotional maturity, a disturbing proportion of these congress critters would probably be today's middle-school shooters.


#17

Correction

The conservative DINOS are nearly as bad.


#18

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#19

If the outside forces you refer to are the growing movements for social, economic, and environmental justice, then I pretty much agree with you, at least in spirit. The problem with SCOTUS isn't the age of the justices but the fact these are highly politicized 'lifetime' appointments to a Court, which allows five unelected people to write law or overturn democratically created law. The Court is responsible in large part for where we find ourselves today. It created the doctrine of corporate personhood by granting corporations 14th Amendment rights (equal protection clause passed to protect freed slaves) in 1886, which corporations have used to gain First, Fourth, Fifth Amendment rights, and commerce and contract clause corporate rights. The Court went on to establish money as protected political speech, which opened the floodgates for candidate campaigns until the gates finally came crashing down in 2010 with the Citizens United decision. Addressing SCOTUS issues is a must, and younger voices should be part of it, along with other diverse voices, but the problem with the Court is not age, it's structural.

All around us revolution is underway. Occupy, Black Lives Matter, pro-democracy, anti-fracking/pipeline/offshore drilling groups, to name a few, are making waves that the public is responding to. Bernie Sanders is doing his part, too. Change is hard and often unpleasant to those who like or are entrapped in the status quo. But life will surely get much more unpleasant under corporate rule if we citizens, the sovereigns of this nation, do not protest, resist, and support revolutionary change to the Constitution beginning with an amendment to repeal the absurd notions of corporate Constitutional rights and money as protected political speech. Sign the Motion to Amend petition.