Vexing Precipaces

It is reported today by our Advocate’s Washington Bureau’s own Gerald Shields that “Landrieu supports health care bill.” Which one? Hard to say. It morphs daily, hourly even. There’s no way she could have read the bill, being as she was so busily meeting behind closed doors, and with the president, and with constituents (not so much) and so many other people on so many other issues that there is no way on living earth that she has a clue as to what is in that bill. She is, to put it charitably, a liar if she says otherwise. She is writing her final paper on a book she never read. In a college or high school she would earn an F. She could not competently explain what is in that bill. In fact, given the mush email she sent me, which I posted as a separate page here, littered with platitudes and chock full of utter balderdash, it is clear and obvious that she has not read that bill. Or, even more horrendously, if she did read it, she is lying about what is in it. There is no other conclusion to be drawn. Not to worry, the bill is not final anyway, though she supports what is not prepared. Such a fine senator indeed, to vote for what she is unaware of. Clairvoyance that it will all work out OK? Perhaps.

Meanwhile, over at that house We own, which is being lived in by Our employee – that post partisan guy, who has apparently not seen the time to meet with the 40 Republicans who remain opposed to the bill to hear their concerns, the president is telling his Democratic friends essentially: I don’t care what the words are – bring me paper. Astounding really. For even he could not have read it. Not even on one or two of his many 8 hour flights abroad to argue for still more taxes, but this time imposed by foreign princes, murderers and rogues of every nature, or at least bowing down low to such muppets on earth as the Emperor of Japan. One would think that an American president would want to hear exactly what were the concerns of a significant minority of the people in his senate. No, they are not to be spoken too. Why, our Advocate has not seen fit to even ask our Republican Senator Mr. Vitter about why he opposes the bill. Not a word. Or is Vitter just unable to spend the time to talk to the Advocate? It cannot be said for sure if one or the other is falling down on their jobs. Perhaps both, which would be par for the course with press and politicians.

And yet, what does the president say? Bring Me Paper! So that the nation can get what the nation has not wanted for 60 years. Yes, Shields admits that “this historic accomplishment has vexed presidents and Congress for generations.” Oh, pity the poor vexed ones. The people, to whom the country belongs, have said repeatedly to such a tax and spend regime: NO. But presidents and Congress have remained vexed that We the People want nothing to do with this current incarnation of their tomfoolery and power mad seizure of vast amounts of our lives and wealth. And what do the Democrats and the President say? “Screw you people. We shall be vexed no longer!” We shall pass paper, says the Congress. I shall sign the paper, says the president. And then, long after that is done, and the taxes are started, well, then, maybe, perhaps, they will fill in those pages in a way that does not vex them so.

Still, Shields talks politics. “Landrieu, a moderate…” he writes. Yes, indeed, though a moderate what we are not sure. Moderate socialist I suppose would be the best answer. Suppose there’s a bill to raise taxes. Of which there are many today, so many to choose from that the Congress is working weekends to tax us into the poor house. Still, the choice is raise taxes or not to raise taxes. If a liberal, or leftist, or Democrat is for raising taxes, and the Republican, or conservative or rightist, does not – where is the moderate stand? Oh, so if the tax bill calls for $100 in new taxes, and the “moderate” only wants $75 in new taxes how does this moderate vote? If the bill by your party says, well, $100 it is, or nothing, and the other side, not your party, says $0 or nothing, well, then what does our moderate do? Voting for the $100 does not seem moderate at all, but just as – what? Radical? Leftist? Big Government? Call it what you will there are just two real outcomes possible – a new tax or not a new tax. There is no “moderate” stand betwixt the two positions. A moderate can either lean immoderately to one side or the other. Landrieu became immoderate towards tax and spend and socialist big government. You shall be vexed yet, Ms. Landrieu to find that the people here in Louisiana are not so thrilled with this mush.

Amazingly, this woman who chairs the Small Business Committee of the Senate (and why the Senate should have such a committee making rules, laws and regulations for small businesses is quite another matter,) says she’s going to vote for the package. “I’m ready.” That’s what she says. Like diving off the a cliff. Well, then, ’tis a good thing that the president himself said the nation “is on the precipice.” Well, yes, it is. And at the bottom of that cliff, that precipice, is utter disaster of numerous types and conditions. In fact, any time you go over a precipice there is a problem. Few willingly go off of precipices if they can help it. And if you were building something up you would not have to go over a precipice of any sort to do so. You would have to go up. You would build a staircase. Or a ladder. Or a scaffold. Off a precipice is down. How bad the last 1′ before you hit bottom is only dependent on how high up you started before you went over the precipice. A 10′ precipice does not bode very bad, it would not vex you as much as say, a free fall over the side of a 1000′ precipice. Still, with either precipice the free fall towards the bottom could be quite exhilarating. Skydiving is like jumping off a moving precipice, the plane, and the first 10,000 feet is quite a rush I hear. But that last foot or so? Well, that’s a bit different. What color is your parachute? But does the health care bill have a parachute? No, it cannot, for it is the precipice itself, over which We the People in free fall will continue. Not even our only precipice,nor the most recent, for we have gone over so many already on so many other things that we are hardly done with one precipice when the next looms perilously. Proof of that is the $2,000,000,000,000 that just days ago was added to the debt of the nation. And in a free fall drunken spending spree one can consume a lot of booze before the reality of the hangover hits. Ah, the precipice, what a metaphor for our times.

But, she’s ready! Being “ready” is like ready for your shot. For you wedding even. But a vote? She’s ready for a vote? Like eating a bit of bitter of butter she’s “ready” to pull the trigger, or bite the bullet, or whatever one yells as you charge into the valley of death. And on a bill she knows little about other than that this guy who is going to lose his seat in Nevada because his constituents are enraged at the precipice jump he is leading us over wants us to jump? Or is it because the president who has fallen faster in his approval rating and rose faster in his disapproval rating wants it? Or is it because the Congress, less respected than a used car sales man or a snake oil carny, with some 6% (yes, SIX) approval wants it? When such things come to pass another metaphor comes to mind. I alluded to it just before. Can you pick it out? Yes, — the scaffold. To build first, and chop later, as heads roll over the precipice of the scaffold.

Ah, but wait, not so fast says our steed at the barn door. Shields writes “Although she still wants to see a report on the final costs of the measure, the package has her endorsement.” Well, if she knew anything about small business, of which she should know something, if only because she does chair that very important committee on small business, though she had never run a small business herself, she would know that you cannot be FOR a proposal until you know what it costs. A small business that is “Ready” to do something knows exactly what those costs are going to be. Otherwise, when the costs do not match the reality of the proposal there is great gnashing of teeth about the utter failure of the project to be rational. But, she’s ready. Yes, into the maw of some 55% to 65% public opposition she is ready to lead us. Such vexing issues of our day.

One wonders at her fortitude, and is thankful that she has made it clear that she is selling us down the river to utter economic collapse of the nation. In sweeping measures that come so fast that one is bereft of feeling in the voting finger as trillions after trillions in new taxes, new borrowing, new spending come to America in 1000, 1500 and 2000 page bills that no one has read. No one has an earthly clue as to what they will actually do. It is vexatious indeed.

In a side note: one Jordan Blum of our Advocate’s capitol bureau makes a capital mistake in simple English and logical reasoning. He writes, in an article about giving “freedom to raise tuition” to our colleges that “Louisiana Technical College campuses could essentially double their costs under such tuition flexibility.” Um, technically – NO! Costs would not double. The price paid directly by students instead of indirectly by taxpayers might be doubled, but not the costs. The measure shifts around who pays the costs. But the Costs themselves would not rise. The price isn’t really rising either. Currently, if a student pays $1000 out of pocket, then the other $1000 is paid from the general fund of the state. The Cost is $2000. But if the student pays now $2000 then it would stand to reason that the taxpayer would not spend the $1000 portion he did, but instead it would be zero paid. The cost would be identical. The price would be identical. Who pays it is what is changing. Though if anyone thinks for a moment that if the student now paying the entire cost means that our legislatures will give us a tax break for that portion we are not paying indirectly, well, then, you would be vexed

And so, given that health care costs will remain the same, but who pays for them will be different, there will be a great gnashing of teeth when what this health care taxation and bureaucracy creation bill purports to do has absolutely nothing at all what anyone thinks it will do. But it will help to push the nation over the precipice into bankruptcy just a bit more. Don’t think so? The credit rating bureaus of the world are about to say that the 200 year reign of AAA credit of the United States is about to be downgraded to the status of a well run banana republic. That will vex us indeed.

If Landrieu is as moderate with that issue as she has shown herself in so many others, then soon the credit rating of the United States will be worth a banana by itself. And once that last foot before the squash after the precipice comes, it will only be a matter of whether the people remain squashed or scaffolds are built for political reform. For politics has been vexing the people for generations, as this Congress and President know, but don’t give a damn. I for one, think that We the People will be somewhat moderate in our scaffold usage — but we will be immoderate in our refusal to be squashed. You see, I do have hope for change, after all. And for that the president is to be given credit that he is leading the nation unwittingly into unity over the elimination of the tax and spend regime currently vexing us in its immoderate way.


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