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Passions in Poetry

Politics as Usual

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Balladeer
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0 posted 06-03-2007 10:34 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Democrats hide pet projects from voters
By ANDREW TAYLOR, Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON - After promising unprecedented openness regarding Congress' pork barrel practices, House Democrats are moving in the opposite direction as they draw up spending bills for the upcoming budget year.
Democrats are sidestepping rules approved their first day in power in January to clearly identify "earmarks" — lawmakers' requests for specific projects and contracts for their states.
Rather than including specific pet projects, grants and contracts in legislation as it is being written, Democrats are following an order by the House Appropriations Committee chairman to keep the bills free of such earmarks until it is too late for critics to effectively challenge them.

Rep. David Obey (news, bio, voting record), D-Wis., says those requests for dams, community grants and research contracts for favored universities or hospitals will be added to spending measures in the fall. That is when House and Senate negotiators assemble final bills. Such requests total billions of dollars.

As a result, most lawmakers will not get a chance to oppose specific projects as wasteful or questionable when the spending bills for various agencies get their first votes in the full House in June.
The House-Senate compromise bills due for final action in September cannot be amended and are subject to only one hour of debate, precluding challenges to individual projects.
Obey insists he is reluctantly taking the step because Appropriations Committee members and staff have not had enough time to fully review the 36,000 earmark requests that have flooded the committee.

What Obey is doing runs counter to new rules that Democrats promised would make such spending decisions more open.

So much for the swamp-draining project. Even the liberal press isn't ignoring it any longer. How does Pelosi justify this one???
Mistletoe Angel
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1 posted 06-03-2007 01:39 PM       View Profile for Mistletoe Angel   Email Mistletoe Angel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Mistletoe Angel's Home Page   View IP for Mistletoe Angel

She can't.

That was the whole point I was predicting to begin with. What happened is that, in 1990 when the public, already weary of all the increasing corruption happening in Washington under a Democratic House of Representatives and Senate, saw things just going moreso out of control than ever, and when you look at polling trends at the time, the two parties had virtually equal percentages over which one was believed to be more financially corrupt, with over two times as many believing both parties were equally corrupt.

I think with the recent Abramoff and Cunningham scandals, what happened was that, when you also at the same time had an unpopular war in Iraq along with larger public pessimism about the shape of the economy at the time before the November 2006 mid-term elections, Democratic talking heads were easily able to take advantage of the situation and spin the "culture of corruption" soundbyte as something that was more of a GOP placemat rather than something that obviously taints both parties all the time. They parroted the "GOP culture of corruption" soundbyte persistently and tirelessly making it seem like corruption is more guaranteed under their majority, and obviously the propaganda worked to a great extent.

Yet, despite that, the fact is any poll you look at also shows both parties running even when it comes to having higher ethical standards. So many Americans pay a close deal of attention to this issue, even if passively, and I think most including myself had already believed it to be bologna when Pelosi said this Congress would be the "most honest and open Congress in history".

She can't get away with it because the public knows better, and it is being proven yet again that both parties have and continue to be incredibly irresponsible when it comes to ethics.

Sincerely,
Noah Eaton


"If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other"

Mother Teresa
Not A Poet
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2 posted 06-03-2007 02:04 PM       View Profile for Not A Poet   Email Not A Poet   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Not A Poet's Home Page   View IP for Not A Poet

Yep, exactly what Noah said. It is becoming increasingly obvious that neither major party can or should be trusted to run the country. How I wish for a reasonable alternative. Maybe even the Italian system, unstable as it is, might be better at least for a few elections. At least it would get us away from the "politics as usual" the government has become.
Balladeer
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3 posted 06-03-2007 05:03 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

I;m with you, Pete, and Noah, thank you for your reply which contains many pertinent points
Huan Yi
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4 posted 06-03-2007 05:05 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi

.


In the context of having just finished “Holy Madness”
by Adam Zamoyski, I have to ask: against what actual
example in history as a better benchmark do we make our criticisms?

John


PS  Italy?
.
Denise
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5 posted 06-03-2007 05:20 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

Yep, politics as usual and nothing will ever change.
Balladeer
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6 posted 06-03-2007 06:59 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

i don't disagree with you, John. In spite of all in 250 years we have become the strongest, most productive, most successful country in the world, and this takes into account the European countries (including Italy) that have existed for many centuries.

Still, one wishes that it could be better. Maybe that's what keeps it great....
Local Rebel
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7 posted 06-04-2007 06:22 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

quote:

Yep, exactly what Noah said. It is becoming increasingly obvious that neither major party can or should be trusted to run the country. How I wish for a reasonable alternative. Maybe even the Italian system, unstable as it is, might be better at least for a few elections. At least it would get us away from the "politics as usual" the government has become.



Glad to see that we're in agreement -- I've always been an advocate of divided government whenever reasonable.  It's important to remember, as I pointed out numerous times, that corruption is a human failing and not a failing of ideology.

Ideological debate always needs to held exclusively.

Mike:

I'm expecting a complete report from you on ALL earmarks that get tagged onto every bill including the ones from REPUBLICANS
Ringo
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8 posted 06-04-2007 09:21 PM       View Profile for Ringo   Email Ringo   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Ringo

quote:
It is becoming increasingly obvious that neither major party can or should be trusted to run the country.

Actually, It is not that neither major party can govern without the corruption... it is NO party that can govern without the corruption. Plain and simple, there is no course of action other than voting the corrupt party out of action so the other corrupt party can come into power for a while.
A third party would be on the level for a feew years, because the main parties of the day would be on them like white on rice in a glass of milk on a paper plate in a snow storm doing whatever possible to keep them from gaining the majority. Once the abuse stopped, and the third party started being an accepted part of the government, the corruption would start.

What would you attempt to do...if you knew you could not fail?.
www.myspace.com/mindlesspoet

Local Rebel
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9 posted 06-04-2007 11:50 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

What happens now though Ringo -- is that when an idea reaches momentum one of the 'major' parties adapts to it -- so that over time the party names are really only that.  If a third party came to power there would still be 'two' major parties -- right?  

But power is a dangerous thing in the hands of politicians.  And, as many times as we've heard it said that the world would be different if women ran it (and I'm all in favor them taking a shot), we have prime evidence in Pelosi, Clinton, et al, that a politician is a politicain -- be they male or female, conservative, liberal, libertarian et al.  
Not A Poet
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10 posted 06-05-2007 09:58 AM       View Profile for Not A Poet   Email Not A Poet   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Not A Poet's Home Page   View IP for Not A Poet

This could be a scary situation Reb. It's not often that we have agreed on anything recently. I'm starting to feel a little uncomfortable but I'm not gonna change my opinion. Hope you don't either.
Christopher
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11 posted 06-05-2007 11:35 AM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

Mike - if there were anything "usual" about politics, they wouldn't be such a controversial subject.
Huan Yi
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12 posted 06-05-2007 07:21 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi

.


Still under the influence of Holy Madness
and now reading specifically about the Paris Commune,
I wonder who does more harm once in power,
realists or romantics?


.
Brad
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13 posted 06-07-2007 10:38 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

viva la revolucion!?!?

I suspect for many of us who are democrats, the first words after the recent election, were, "Okay, now don't frak it up!"

It seems our mumbling mutterings have been ignored.

Balladeer
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14 posted 06-07-2007 11:34 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

I'm expecting a complete report from you on ALL earmarks that get tagged onto every bill including the ones from REPUBLICANS

'Fraid you missed the point, Reb. The point is not the earmarks but the fact that this was an attacking point by Pelosi that she would take care of once she was in office. The evil Republicans were using this dastardly technique to sneak things in and she wouldn't stand for it.

She is not only not cleaning up the swamp, she is pouring more waste into it.

Brad said it right. Not only Democrats but even some Republicans were thinking, "Ok, you have the reins and you've made the promises - let's see what you do."

She has proven only what you pointed out - a politician is a politician....and she's not very good at it.
Huan Yi
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15 posted 06-07-2007 01:39 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi

.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/from_our_own_correspondent/6727215.stm


Oh Yah,  . . .Italy


.
Local Rebel
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16 posted 06-09-2007 05:20 AM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

No, I understand the point Mike -- but the actual important thing is that you recognize that the Republican Congress was a swamp -- however late to the party we still have a hat and some cake for you!  

Earmarks are not swampy in and of themselves though -- it is the accompanying corruption that putrifies the process.  For some reason under the Republicans earmarks went up by over a thousand percent.

The worst thing that could happen now though -- in terms of sleazy behavior -- would be for the Dems -- in order to be politically expedient and appear to be the party of Tidy Bowl -- to do something like expell Dollar Bill Jefferson now that he's been indicted (as Republicans who if we'll recall said a prosecutor could indict a ham sandwich when the Abramoff scandal first began rocking the house) -- and not wait for due process to take it's course.
Balladeer
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17 posted 06-09-2007 11:44 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Well, reb, you have your thoughts and I have mine and seldom the twain shall meet...and that's ok

First of all, I would not be so quick to declare the Republican house a "swamp" any more than I would have called any Democratic house a swamp. Swamp is quite a descriptive derrogatory word, which I am sure Pelosi used it for shock value and little else. Second, if you don't plan on doing what you preach, why announce it? If you walk into a dirty room and state that it needs to be cleaned up and you're gonna do it - and then you proceed to throw more mud on the floor and more dirty laundry on the bed - expect raised eyebrows.

Earmarks are not swampy? Slipping things in favorable to your own particular favorites too late for them to be voted out is not swampy? Democrats are following an order by the House Appropriations Committee chairman to keep the bills free of such earmarks until it is too late for critics to effectively challenge them. That makes the Everglades look like the Avian Springs.

Jefferson? Oh, and by the way, slipping in a finger-pointing remark as subterfuge doesn't really work well...I'm sure republicans will be content to let the due process (which has gone on much too long) take it's course but the Democrats will want this over, done, out of sight and out of mind as quickly as possible. They will throw him away like yesterday's garbage (which is a fairly good description). They will not take the chance of having to explain to the general public(voters) why they would let such a criminal retain power in such important positions.....and he will be another Democratic black eye for as long as he is around and visible. Bye, bye, Billy.....another victim of the swamp
Edward Grim
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18 posted 06-09-2007 02:22 PM       View Profile for Edward Grim   Email Edward Grim   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Edward Grim's Home Page   View IP for Edward Grim

Republicans are unintelligent and Democrats are out to kill us.

“Suddenly a giant Cabbage Patch Doll jumps out from behind the shower curtain and grabs him violently.”

Brad
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19 posted 06-11-2007 05:34 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

A swamp is a swamp. Another swamp doesn't make a swamp look like anything other than a swamp.

If the current Congress doesn't remain open, vote them out of office. And the next one. And the next one. Make the HR a revolving door.

 
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