Just a few thoughts from the bouncing mind inside my head …
I had to laugh when I read in a news aggregator that with both Senate and House back in chambers, we should prepare for what “… could be a frantic couple weeks of legislative action.” Legislative action??? In today’s inert Senate??? Who do they think they’re kidding? The most action we are likely to see from the United States Senate in the coming weeks are them posturing on various news shows and faux news shows to trash talk the other side. If any meaningful legislation comes out of the Senate anytime soon, I will be in shock.
The Senate has been discussing the infrastructure bill for months now. It is allegedly now a bi-partisan bill that the Republicans insisted be pared down from its original status, but even then, it doesn’t have enough Republican support to overcome the damn filibuster. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is trying to move things along and asking for a cloture vote on Wednesday, and the Republicans want to know what his big hurry is! As I said, they’ve been playing tiddly winks with it for months … meanwhile, roadways, bridges, water and sewage facilities and more continue to deteriorate. WHAT THE SAM HELL do the Republicans think they’re doing? Nothing … that’s what they’re doing. Not one damn thing. Oh wait … they ARE still collecting their paychecks, so I suppose that qualifies as doing something. That amounts to a minimum, by the way, of $6,692 twice monthly. Do any of you make that kind of money for sitting on your patooties all day? No, I didn’t think so, but you ARE paying these jerks!
Meanwhile, the For the People Act seems to have been all but forgotten … I haven’t heard mention of it from any member of Congress recently. FOR THE PEOPLE! Even its name should stir some tiny shred of conscience among our elected officials, but what are they doing? Playing games … with our lives! How many of them have appeared on Fox News in the past month? They have time to go preen their ugly mugs, but not time to give serious consideration to a bill that would protect this nation from autocratic bigots!
I read last night about some of the arguments that lawyers are using to attempt to keep their clients who infiltrated the Capitol on January 6th out of prison. Leave it to high-paid lawyers to twist words and infer motives. One guy’s lawyer says he shouldn’t be found guilty because his mother says he has “an amazing work ethic” and that he bought clothes and shoes for the residents of a nursing home where he worked as a nurse’s aide. Never mind, I guess, that he is a member of the radical militia group the Three Percenters, and never mind that he entered the Capitol on January 6th wielding a baseball bat and a noxious chemical spray.
Overall, the lawyers are blaming everyone except their clients, the people who perpetrated the crimes. Among those they blame are the media, naivete, trauma, unemployment, the pandemic, Washington elites, and their clients’ childhoods. Sorry, fellas, it doesn’t pass the smell test. These were people old enough to know better, so forget all the excuses. They did what they did despite knowing that it was illegal, that it was likely to result in injuries or death … as in fact it did. In my book, every single person who entered the Capitol without just cause that day should serve a minimum of five years in prison, no exceptions. Those whose violence ended in property destruction or injury to others should serve 20 years in prison, no quarter given. End of story. Make an example of them so that next time, people will think long and hard before participating in an insurrection.
Nicholas Kristof is one of my favourite New York Times columnists, and I have shared his work more than once here on Filosofa’s Word. A Pulitzer Prize winner, Kristof has written an op-ed column about international human rights and the disenfranchised for the New York Times for two decades. Rumour has it that Kristof is now considering running for governor of Oregon, his home state, to replace the current governor, Kate Brown, who will reach her term limit in 2022. So far, it’s just a rumour, but rumours have a way of becoming reality. Kristof has the right sentiments, but I’m not sure he has the right temperament for the job. Politics is dirty business, but … hey, it would be good to see a man of conscience, a man with an actual functioning brain and heart, in a position of power.
Thumbs up to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for rejecting two of the five Republicans chosen by Kevin McCarthy to participate on the committee that will be investigating the events of, and those leading up to, the January 6th attack on Congress and the Capitol. The two she rejected are Jim (aka Gym) Jordan from Ohio and Jim Banks from Indiana. Both voted against certifying the election on January 6th, which in my mind is reason enough to keep them off of this committee. I know more about Jordan than I do Banks, but Jordan is a real piece of work that I wouldn’t trust to clean up the dog poop from my yard, let alone trust with something this important. There is no doubt in my mind that McCarthy’s purpose in selecting these two Jims was obstruction. Personally, I’d like to see him choose Adam Kinzinger and Liz Cheney … republicans that have shown they have a conscience, that they put country before party.
Well, I think I’ve shared enough of the thoughts from my bouncy mind for now. Have a great afternoon!