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View Diary: What the Hell Is Wrong With Al Franken? (326 comments)

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  •  Earmarks and/or pork is why, imo. (0+ / 0-)

    The earmarks put into these bills (authorization/approps) is astounding.  That puts every Senator in direct conflict between the right thing to do and keeping promises to constituent interests.  And Obama probably won't veto it, for similar reasons.

    It explains his vote on the Udall Amendment, and his vote for the larger bill when the Amendment failed.

    The real travesty, to me, is that something as earth shattering as this expansion of the AUMF was contained within, and masked by, the Defense Authorization bill.  By a Dem.  That could not have been unintentional.

    This stake to the heart of the Constitution should have been debated and voted on separately.

    •  Pork alone (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Terra Mystica

      cannot explain these deplorable votes. Congress has a 9% favorable rating and that's among all of their constituents. the only interest they are voting for are the owners of the place, and their enforcers the MIC/security state. they are throwing out the rule of law for the unfettered anti-democratic 'theory and implementation of oligarchical collectivism', as Orwell called it. Udall just gave the Vichy  Dems a lame cover which is pathetic, just bad kabuki.

      •  Totally agree on the top-level concept of kabuki, (1+ / 0-)
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        who it serves, and everything else you said.  I was just reflecting on the fragility of the cloistered politics of earmarks.  Once they're negotiated and in the bill, no one wants to revisit the process.

        It's weak and cowardly, but a real influence on behavior (perhaps because of the weak and cowardly part...).

        I also think you're gracious on the 9% figure.  After this, very, very few are going to "approve" of the job Congress is doing.  In my little circle of staunch Rs and lib/progressive Dems, everyone is upset about this.  Outside that circle, with people who's politics I don't know, when I bring it up they're angry (and ask for the bill number).

        This may be the proverbial "straw"  that gets everyone to wake up.  Maybe.

        •  The few conservatives (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Terra Mystica

          I know or are related to are not at all happy with what's going down. Their solutions and explanations are usually upside down and ass backwards however.  Strangely the only people I hear defending this horror show are the die hard Democratic Obama fans,  'moderates' who refuse to look at the reality they are supporting.

          One couple we know who were apologist's for this administration and Obama, changed their tune when their son a college student and liberal, got arrested and roughed up in an Occupy Portland 'eviction'. They watched what went down on live stream and they now are not talking 'it's the Republican obstructionists' or any other of the lame reasons given for the Democratic, bi-partisan  collusion.    

          •  Not to digress overly, but what you describe is a (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            case for the draft.  I don't know your feelings about the draft in particular, but the general concept of "it's happening to all of us" or actual shared sacrifice is potent.

            Rs used to have a "meme" about a liberal is a conservative who's never been mugged, or something to that effect.  If we ever get into a scenario where we really are in a position, together, of shared sacrifice, watch out DC.

            The Occupy "movement" (the organizers say it's not a movement) has the potential to make that happen.

            To better times...

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