As Republican ex-staffers scramble to secure whatever lobbying jobs are left, our conservative organists this week take up the burden of advising the newly minoritized GOP legislators as to just what, exactly, they should do with themselves for the next two years.
The increased reliance on supplemental spending is problematic because the lack of detail in supplemental budget requests — combined with their expedited approval process — leaves little room for congressional oversight. In addition, the reduced budget discipline for supplemental bills attracts earmarks and other projects that wouldn’t be funded on their own merits. [...]Would Republicans magically manage to pass such reforms without Democratic support? I have no idea. Maybe the Democrats would go along. After all, why wouldn't they want to give the GOP's main domestic priority a boost:
Addressing the supplemental-spending shell game that Capitol Hill and the White House have been playing for years would save taxpayers roughly $100 billion per year.
That would make it easier for the GOPs to try to make their tax cuts permanent.Former Congressman David McIntosh suggests that Republicans "should boldly propose ideas to further reduce taxes and eliminate unnecessary and wasteful government spending." McIntosh also insists that the GOP "vigorously oppose proposals that increase the size and scope of the federal government." To McIntosh, the minority is an opportunity for the Republicans to once again become "the party of ideas." No doubt the Republicans would find it refreshing to be just the party of ideas again, as those ideas haven't served them very well when they've been the party of power.
For the next two years conservatives will not be able to pass any useful legislation through the House of Representatives. Memorize that sentence. Place it on your PC screensaver. Use it as your message on your answering machine. A discreet but easily accessed tattoo would be helpful. [...]You know what? I agree with this.
Republicans in Congress need to use the first 100 days and the next two years to lose. Propose House rules that keep the present GOP requirement for a 3/5 vote to raise taxes. And lose. Propose House rules that term limit committee chairmen — the old GOP rule only applied to Republicans. And lose. Propose a tax cut. And lose. Heck, get denied an actual vote. Have a procedural vote. And lose. Propose an end to earmarks. And lose. Write welfare reform part three. And lose.
To the limited extent that they can offer amendments and alternatives, they should force the Democrats to show whether they are as “moderate” as the conventional wisdom has depicted them.Indeed. And what are these radical, loony ideas that will descredit the Democrats? Er... the minimum wage hike. And pay-as-you-go budgeting. I can hear the strains of the "Internationale"...
The story here in this great city is that President George W. Bush, leader of the vanquished Republicans, is reaching out [middle finger extended] to the triumphant Democrats on Capitol Hill. [...]Okay, I just have to stop for a moment and catch my breath, make sure everyone's paying attention here now, because this next part is just absolutely delicious. Ready? Ok.
What the Republican base might find reassurance in is that this is not a New Bush. He came to Washington believing in this sort of collegiality. He thought he experienced it in Texas with a Democratic legislature. He imagined he would experience it in Washington. My guess is that one of his greatest disappointments as president is that there has been so little consensus in Congress and so much partisanship. [No doubt Karl Rove was equally disappointed.] [...]
Mr. Bush spent most of his adult life as a businessman, not as a politician. For about two decades, as Mr. Bush was working in [failing upward through] the private sector and the likes of Nancy Pelosi and the Clintons were politicking, a growing partisanship was overtaking politics.
The Clintons and their cogenerationists were the main reason for it.Ohhhhhhh MAN that's some good stuff. Oh yeah, sorry - the subtext:
[Says the rag that made its entire name and reputation with a series of vicious Mellon Scaife-funded partisan slanders on the Clintons!!]Okay, it goes on, but I think we've seen more than enough to declare a winner.
To extend their use, Bush doesn't need the approval of Democrats, most of whom oppose HSAs. Legislation passed in the lame duck session of Congress made it easier for companies and individuals to sign up. All that's required of the president is to mount the bully pulpit to spread the good word about HSAs and promote their use.You know, this is actually legitimately dangerous. Conservatives can never kill the great liberal innovations like Social Security. But they can kill health care reform before it starts. That's exactly what Barnes is advocating.
Yet there seems to be no accountability for these pro-war pundits. On the contrary, they continue to pose as wise, responsible experts and have suffered no lost credibility, prominence, or influence. They have accomplished this feat largely by evading responsibility for their prior opinions, pretending that they were right all along or, in the most extreme cases, denying that they ever supported the war.ALSO, Steve Sailer demonstrates the dark side of communitarianism, denouncing free market social Darwinism but also American cultural diversity. It seems that people - especially brown people - just don't like each other very much. Proposed solutions: martial law, IQ tests, or universal Christian fundamentalism. Take your pick.