The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

It's Saturday and I must rant

Anyone think Obama's "Jobs Bill" is being held up by Republicans? Apparently, you aren't paying close attention. The Republicans in the Senate have been calling for a quick vote but the Senate leadership (Democrats) don't want that. It also seems that Democrats who are facing re-election next year are not warming up to the bill. Ask yourself: if the bill is really a good idea, why wouldn't you be in favor of it if you are facing re-election?

That's exactly right... because it is simply more tax and spend and won't produce anything near what is being claimed. Instead, it is being used to attack the President's political opponents.

So, on Tuesday, there was a vote for cloture (end debate) and it failed by a vote of 50-49 (with one abstention). Pretty much along party lines, as you might have figured. But there were three Democratic Senators who voted against cloture.

They were:
Nelson (D-NE)
Tester (D-MT)
Reid (D-NV)

That's right, Harry Reid the majority leader, the Democrat's head honcho in the Senate, voted against cloture.

Did I read that anywhere in the media? No, I had to dig deep and go to the source to find out who voted Yea and who voted Nay.

Oh, and that one abstention? A Republican (Coburn of Oklahoma).

I will grant that Reid's vote wasn't a tie breaker (60 votes were needed for cloture) but that is what makes it even stranger. Why didn't he vote in favor? Could it possibly be because he did not want cloture? Could it be he wanted to be sure that the Democrats could use this as "proof" that the Republicans are obstructionist?

I used to be fascinated by politics, now I am just disgusted.

I am not going to let the Republicans off the hook. They only wanted the bill to come to a vote in the Senate because they knew the Democrats did not have the votes to pass it. The fact that I am not in favor of "Stimulus II" (not so cleverly disguised as a "Jobs Bill") does not mean I am in favor of using it as a political weapon.

The only thing I am happy about in all this is that Congress (that would be both houses) isn't getting a lot done. When Congress acts, it usually costs us... Big Time. I prefer gridlock, if I must make a choice these days.

Before I retired, the primary duties I had on my job was troubleshooting. That is, I was tasked (as they say) to find problems and then find solutions to those problems. At least, that's how it was for most of the years I was employed by that huge bureaucracy we called Ma Bell. Traditionally, detecting and resolving problems was left to the individual offices. Then there was a shift in the management paradigm. The shift was toward centralization as a key to efficiency and efficacy. The theory was sound: gather the best and the brightest into a few centers and have them offer assistance to the office crews. But it was expanded (as theories often are) to include the detection aspect of the job. That is, the centers now became "in charge" of detection and repair in the offices within their region.

In addition to creating friction between the centers and the offices, it helped demoralize the office crews.

Replace "offices" with "states" and you might see a metaphor for the growth of the federal government. Granted, in "Ma Bell's" situation, a good number of the offices were run inefficiently and were not very good at either detection or resolution. But the "cure" was not a cure. People did not want to go to the centers, did not want to move, so the centers didn't get the "best and brightest". The inefficient and ineffective is what they tended to get. Because this is what was available. This was what the talent pool consisted of. The end result of all of it was the eventual sale of the "Ma Bell" to one of her better managed (and more successful) "children" (SBC).

That isn't an option for government. We are highly unlikely to turn control of the federal government to one of the states, or even to an alliance of several of them. Instead, the country will become an outdated, inefficient, and failing entity. And subject to a "hostile takeover."


The Chubby Chatterbox said...

We can only pray that you're wrong, and work hard to see that it isn't so.

Douglas4517 said...

Yes, I hope I am wrong too.