Elkhorn Creek Lodge

European Statism and the Death of the Filibuster

Posted in democratic party, medical by Eugene Podrazik on March 29, 2010

The greatest damage of Obamacare is not the legislation itself, but the destruction of the filibuster.

The United States Senate is a rather unique institution in the annals of parliamentary governance.  It only analogue and, indeed, model is the House of Lords; similarly destroyed by a charismatic socialist.  While parliaments the world over institutionalize the concept of majority rule, the Senate is designed specifically to protect the rights of the individual against the tyranny of the majority.  It was a brilliant concept, one of several in the United States Constitution to “district” elections.  A method of forcing a candidate to win not just a majority vote but a majority of several electoral districts.

Hitler won his election as chancellor.  And, to him went the spoils.  All of them.  Within the paradigm of German governance at the time, what Hitler did to the Jews was ‘legal.’  It was this precise event that our Founding Fathers anticipated in coming up with a bicameral legislature; in particular, the Senate.  For, in general, the best default status, legislatively, is to do nothing.  This may be frustrating to some inspired reformer, but the it is far better to do nothing than to charge off a cliff in pursuit of some ‘brilliant’ (at least in the eyes of the reformer) ‘change.’

And, over it two or so centuries of its existence, the Senate developed traditions and methods of doing business that enhanced it ability to fulfill its role as protector of individual rights.  One of those  tools is the filibuster.  It is but one of a variety of methods to gives, literally, a solitary Senator the power to delay the business of the Senate.  But, the filibuster is the crown jewel of those tactics; to create the need for a supermajority for doing business.  It is a double edged sword, a godsend when you’re in the minority, but frustrating as hell when you’re in the majority.

Last week, in engineering the passage of Obamacare, Obama, Reid and Pelosi threw out the protections of the filibuster.  Arguably, the Democrats, at least until last summer indeed had a mandate to wring the sort of change that Obamacare represents.  Arguably, the GOP perhaps had no right to sit at the table.

But, with the angry townhalls of last summer, the elections of two GOP governors in New Jersey and Virginia (both states carried by Obama in 2008) changed that dynamic.  Finally, the election of Scott Brown to the US Senate, last January gave the GOP the crucial 41st vote.  It is at this point the GOP earned its right to sit at the table of deliberations; particularly over the final shape of Obamacare.

In doing so, this was going to upend the entire health bill if it went through ‘regular order.’  But, Scott’s election wasn’t a bolt out of the blue.  For the better part of six months public polls, two governor’s elections and the town hall protests already tipped off the Democrats that this bill was not wanted and did not carry any mandate with the very people whom Congress is supposed to serve.

So, the philosopher kings in the Democratic congressional leadership with our messiah-complexed president needed a method to shove legislation past all opposition.  The entire exercise of passing the Senate bill in the House and following with a reconciliation bill was to avoid the filibuster and completely circumvent the Senate’s true role of serving as a check, in the name of individual rights, the tyranny of the majority.  It was to lock out the minority’s ability–though supported by a majority of the electorate–to serve in its role to place a significant check on the majority’s will.

The result is the reduction of the Senate to another House of Commons.  A style of governance that flies in the face of the intent of the US Constitution, designed to prevent permanent majorities to develop thereby run rough shod over individual rights.  And, it furthers Obama’s style of governance, honed in Chicago, in which a coalition of a favored 50 percent plus one gets to loot the hard work of the out-of-favor 50 percent minus one.  Maybe there are wiser heads in the Senate Democratic caucus that appreciate the damage that was done because they are going to have to repair the damage before the November 2010 elections.

Because after the mid-term elections filibuster is gone.  I doubt that McConnel, as majority leader, is going to take the likes of Durbin or Schumer at their word that they will respect the filibuster when they get back into the majority.  Reforming filibuster as being proposed by a number of the Democratic Senators is meaningless.  Every legislative road block by the minority will be ‘reconciled.’  But, given the damage of Obama’s policies the GOP is going to have its hands full ‘reconciling’ Obama’s damage out of existance.

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Obama Hates America

Posted in economics, mccain, obama by Eugene Podrazik on March 25, 2010

Congratulations.  You just won the election and you’re president of the United States.  Now, quick, where’s your birth certificate?  That folded over piece of paper, probably with a coffee ring where someone set a mug down.  Maybe under a stack of other papers in your safe deposit box?  You get the point.

The problem is that the paper, except on rare occasions like getting a passport, is irrelevant.  Irrelevant since most of us have live here in the US and have a lifelong track record of being American.  It’s in your fiber and your being.  The way you dress, the way you talk, the way you approach life’s problems.  Its a uniqueness that makes us stand out like Americans in foreign countries.  Its a uniqueness that makes American soldiers in combat different from other armies; and particularly lethal as a result.

Then you have Obama.  And, this is where the birthers have a point.  Obama is foreign.  Oh yes, his mom got knocked up in Hawaii and he’s got a birth certificate to prove it.  Probably.  But, the manner in which Obama acts and speaks.  The way he carries himself, his mannerisms all mark him as a foreigner.  The way he dresses.  I’ll bet, when Obama bowed to the Saudi king last year that the protocol people at the State Department never even thought to brief Obama on the subject because, those protocol people, as Americans, never even dreamt that Obama would bow so low that his lips were six inches from, um, the royal crotch.

But, Obama, spent the first ten formative years of his life in Singapore, raised as a Muslim.  Unlike McCain, who lived abroad with his parents as a Navy brat, you have a man totally cut off from anything American.  By contrast, though in a foreign country, McCain never had any doubt, living on Navy bases, accompanying his mother to countless base commissaries and exchanges, that he was an American, living in a piece of America at the behest of America.

Obama, spent his first ten years of his life soaking up a culture and ideology that completely suppressed the individual for the benefit of some leader’s of group-think.  He was imbued with an Islamic ideology (I’ll call it a religion when it starts to act like one) that is completely contrary to the underlying principle of our founding documents.  Ideologies opposed to the supremacy of the rights of the individual and the existence of the state to promote and protect those individual rights.  Opposed to the concept of American Exceptionalism.

It didn’t get better since the foundations of an anti-American third world cabinet minister soon had his anti-American prejudices fortified in the halls of our elite Ivy League institutions.

And so, this third world cabinet minster then moved to Chicago to marinate in the tyranny of the majority that is the Chicago Democratic Machine; marinate in the philosophies of Saul Alinsky in the pay of ACORN; marinate in the anti-American, anti-Semitic rants of Reverend Wright.

And, now we have a man with the power of the Presidency who want to put America in its place.  Apologizing and trash talking America at any foreign venue is not enough.  So, we come to socialism.  Socialism is a country killer; socialized medicine is the crown jewel in the pommel of this dagger.

Look at the fates of countries such as Germany, France and Great Britain.   These countries were major players in world affairs–a century ago.  They all were significant military powers; each capable of war making capabilities to make world war possible.  More importantly, these were major economic powers of great vitality and innovation.  In 1900, an American physician wanting to make a mark in medicine would travel to Europe to further his medical education.  Now the reverse is true.  A Brit doctor wanting to rise in his profession in the National Health Service come to America.  Come to get his BTA, been to America.

Look at the bluest of the blue states.  They have degenerated into fiscal black holes lurching from fiscal crisis to fiscal crisis trying to gin enough revenue to pay off their favored constituencies by trying to further fleece any and all groups who happen to be successful by dint of hard work.

All of these political entities, Europe or our own black-hole states share a common trait of ceasing to actually address what is the real purpose of government.  Instead of pursuing such agenda as external security (national defense), internal order (crime, infrastructure, property rights, contracts) and an honest buck (economic policies that allow for business formation and economic growth).

These entitlements grow to dominate everything in sight.  They dominate debate and policy decisions.  They dominate to push out considerations of other equally pressing matters.  Like tax revenue loss because business is being driven away.  And, in the case of national defense, you come to the case where there is no guns versus butter debate.  The fat of butter pushes out even the most essential national security priorities.  Europe is about to come under the pall of a nuclear armed Iran.  Other than ‘soft’ power, there is little else they can do because they are, in fact, powerless.  I doubt that Britain, of the mightiest navy on earth, could do little to defend the Falkland Islands should Argentina make another grab.  And, unlike Reagan, Obama’s not going to lift a finger.

Obama, knows all of the above.  This is why he threw every other priority overboard for the last 14 months to get this health ‘reform’ bill into place.  He need the perfect weapon to run this country into the ground because Obama hates the concept of American individualism.  He hates the concept of American Exceptionalism.  He needed, because of his foreign, anti-American animus, to craft a policy that will forever put a permanent crimp into America’s and Americans drive for excellence.  The drive to create a even better standard of living for the next generation.

His vision is a diminished America.  Our children, what few we’ll have since will be using tax dollars to abort them, mired in debt unable to create the wealth to make for a better future because all that will be taxed away to pay our foreign creditors.  Here it is, our Manchurian Candidate, now in the Oval Office who with his own hands just signed into being the perfect country killer, socialized medicine.

Reconciliation Fraud

Posted in abortion, medical, politics by Eugene Podrazik on March 4, 2010

Reconciliation won’t happen.  It is a fraud; the ultimate bait and switch to allow Nancy Pelosi to whip up enough votes to get the Senate version of health care “reform” through the House and on to the President’s desk.  It is an inducement to get the Blue Dog Democrats to vote yes.  After which, they will be abandoned having served their role as cannon fodder in Obama, Reid and Pelosi’s great cause to recast America as a socialist paradise.

Before any reconciliation bill can even be crafted, the Senate version of health care “reform” must pass the House completely unchanged.  Nancy has no leverage in modifying even the most obscure preposition in that bill.  All she can do is promise is a whole slew of fixes on a companion bill.

But, if she succeeds in scaring up enough votes to pass the the Senate version, a bill will have passed both houses of congress and can proceed to the Oval Office to be signed into law.  At that moment, health care “reform” will be the law of the land.  And, with that presidential signature, all incentive to compromise will evaporate.  Because, for all its “imperfections,” that bill, that law will go a long way to expropriating, banana republic style, one sixth of the economy.  What isn’t directly in the hands of the federal government, will now be tightly controlled by a vast, newly-created federal bureaucracy.  What’s left will be taxed to death by this same said bill.

For the hard left partisans of Obama, Reid and Pelosi, what’s not to love.  More taxes, more government, more regulation.  Even a back door to publicly fund abortions.  Public option?  Who cares.

And, what deficiencies will be corrected?  If anything, sans the limitation of a sixty vote super-majority, a companion reconciliation bill will be used to pile-on.  It certainly won’t be used to “reach across the aisle” in the name of bipartisanship; that was written all over Obama’s face at the health care summit of last week.  Reconciliation won’t be used to reward the Blue Dog Democrats foolish enough to go along and take yet another bullet for Nancy and vote yes.  With back door abortion funding in the Senate bill, what’s the incentive to make Bart Stupak happy?  In fact, Nancy can take huge electoral losses next November.  All she need is to re-elect 218 Democratic representatives and she and her hard-left allies who control the key chairmanships will remain with their power intact.

But, why even bother with reconciliation and give health care “reform” another thought?  Obama, Reid and Pelosi have so much else to do to gin up all sorts of pork laden spending bills to buy votes for the coming November elections.  The Blue Dogs are expendable.