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View Diary: Hijacking of American democracy (27 comments)

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  •  no, i meant nothing ever got into or out of (0+ / 0-)

    committee without the ok of a small clique, some of whom weren't even in leadership positions.

    i read a piece on it in time magazine once -- & i mean one time! -- & was shocked at how perverted the process had become.  apparently rahm would give newt or whoever a call & say "these are our terms" & the guy on the other end of the line would say "ok" or "these are our terms," they'd agree to whatever it was & the vote would go down without any debate or hearings or anything.  incredible.

    i know what you're saying about old school politics but this wasn't every once in a while, it was every single fucking thing that happened in the govt & not just legislation.

    •  Read up on LBJ while he was (0+ / 0-)

      Senate Majority Leader. It's long enough ago for some decently dispassionate analyses. If you think Rham or Newt ramrodded Congress you're in for an eye opener.

      Try to shout at the right buildings for a few months.

      by nickrud on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 07:52:27 AM PDT

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      •  i spent many (too many for my taste) yrs in texas (0+ / 0-)

        (born there, as a matter of fact) so i'm no stranger to lbj's style of politics.  the point i was trying to make (& apparently mangled badly in the process) was there was no longer any discussion/debate on the floor of congress, even if it was just for show, as happened in lbj's day.

        decisions were made w/o any consultation, & the wh was completely shut out of the loop, even tho clinton's own party held congress.

        i know in the 20th century it was common practice for republican administrations to cede power to republican congresses & then go to sleep for the rest of the prez's term, but for a democratic administration to do that was bizarre to me.

        •  heh (0+ / 0-)

          I spent too many years in texas for my taste as well (.975 years, to be exact :). LBJ's style wasn't something new - he was taught it.

          LBJ ceded a great deal to Congress. For example, he was pretty much hands off when it came to shepherding the Civil Rights legislation. Magnusson did the work and LBJ took the credit.

          More recently Reagan and O'Neal would set things up behind the scenes and there'd be kabuki on the House floor. There hasn't been meaningful debate in Congress, where members were actually on the floor, listening and responding to one another, in decades. Mostly it's come in, give your speech to an empty chamber, and leave. Sometimes back benchers will do some back and forth but it's not the British Parliament. I would love a Question Time, myself.

          Try to shout at the right buildings for a few months.

          by nickrud on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:35:47 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  agree. i was reading some of gore vidal's quotes (0+ / 0-)

            right after he died, & one of them was:

            congress doesn't pass budgets or declare wars anymore, so the idea of the us being a republic is pretty much dead.

            so (unfortunately) true.

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