Washington sometimes resembles a Merry-Go-Round, everything seems to revolve: Here they come. Ooops, there they go.
That thought should temper the Democrats elation at the 2006 election results. And the glum Republicans should not slash their wrists just yet. Twelve years ago, the results were just the opposite as Newt Gingrich & Co. handed the Democrats their most stunning defeat in 40 years. My Washington State delegation changed from 8 to 1 in favor of the Democrats to 7 to 2 Republican. (It’s now 6 to 3 Democratic again.) Just wait, your turn in the barrel is on the way … just as is your turn in the sun.
Congressional Ethics “Reform” is badly in need of reform. The methods always used when a scandal breaks don’t work. They always fix things that aren’t really broken and ignore the real culprit.
Example, the recent orgy of reform took away the $50 dinner people could still buy Members. But even corrupt members aren’t going to sell their vote for a $50 steak. Most of the other reforms were about as useful.
But where do dollars and policy really meet? At Fund Raisers which is now almost the only place you can lobby Members. And you have to bring money. Something is wrong.
You will know that they are getting serious about eliminating the temptation for corruption when they pass a simple, straightforward reform: Lobbyists may not contribute to political campaigns – ever. If there is a problem, that is where it is. Just fix it. By the way, most lobbyists would love it. But, don’t hold your breath.
In defense of “Follower-ship.” Nobody ever got elected claiming they were good followers. In the political game everyone has to at least look like a leader. But remember the old saw: Too many chiefs and not enough Indians. The hill is crawling with leaders. What we often need more of are intelligent followers. Think about it.
A Dollar’s Worth of Wisdom
“Give me chastity and self-restraint, but do not give it yet.”
–– Saint Augustine