The Hill: Where the Nation's Problems Start, And Roll Downward to Plague Us
"There is No Distinctly American Criminal Class, Except Congress" -- Twain
"There is no distinctly American criminal class, except Congress." --Mark Twain.
Nothing seems to have changed in 100 years, except maybe the situation in Washington has gotten worse.
Most of the nation's problems start on the Hill, and roll downward until they entangle us, the citizens.
It's time to place the blame for this country's ills where it belongs, right up on the Hill.
That's what the U.S. Capitol is called by the "Beltway Boys" and other pundits in the know. The Hill. Capitol Hill, Washington, D.C.
It doesn't take much courage to sit here in Bay City, Michigan, and attack Congress, aided and abetted by the Bush Administration. But it needs to be done, and now.
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Not that the Clinton Administration was any better, mind you. It's just that We The People have to deal with these regimes one at a time, be they Republican or Democratic. There seems to be very little difference.
The latest outrage is the administration's proposal to eliminate the Commodity Food Supplement (CSFP) that serves 420,000 low income older Americans in 32 states and the District of Columbia.
This proposal is a sham perpetrated under the guise of "balancing the budget." So far, thankfully, the House Appropriations Committee appears disinclined to go along with this proposal.
Such a move would be small solace for taxpayers who are buried under a mountain of mismanagement and malgovernment, either in failure to act, acts of failure or complete and perfect corruption.
"With Congress, every time they make a joke it's a law, and every time they make a law it's a joke," quipped Will Rogers in the 1920s.
The New York Times commented this week about the looting of the federal treasury through the "earmarking" of funds for pork barrel projects:
"Thus goes business as usual on the Hill, where lawmakers refuse to properly police themselves but have the gall to rail at criminal prosecutors showing up on behalf of the public."
"The earmark cornucopia shows how the fear of President Dwight Eisenhower 45 years ago about the rise of the military-industrial complex was dead-on prophecy: "The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist."
Ike's prophetic words come back to haunt us every so often but now, as then, no one seems to know what to do to about heeding his warning.
We are in the grip of forces so overpowering that there are calls in some quarters for an entirely new political party, one that would be immune from the endemic graft that pervades the American system.
This cataclysmic change when an entirely new philosophy took over has occurred a couple of times in history, most notably when the Republican Party arose in 1860 to battle the demon slavery that had engrossed the nation since its founding.
The time is right for new thinkers to inspire the country, to correct the ills of the present system. If you have ideas on how this might happen, please send them to me.###
Columns Article 1156
Dave Rogers is a former editorial writer for the Bay City Times and a widely read,
respected journalist/writer in and around Bay City.
(Contact Dave Via Email at firstname.lastname@example.org)
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