Thursday, January 19, 2006

Reforming Reform

Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) introduced what they call the "Honest Leadership and Open Government Act". This is supposedly reduce lobbyists influence on Senate and House commitees. If you read the article you will notice it is quite heavily slated against the GOP. Not a surprise since most of the quotes come from democrats as if corruption is exclusive to republicans. But, there are some good points brought up that should have been no brainers to begin with.

"When a prescription drug bill puts pharmaceutical companies first, senior citizens pay the price for their prescription drugs," Pelosi said. "When an energy bill gives tax breaks to oil companies already making historic and obscene profits, Americans pay the price at the pump and with record bills for their home heating oil."

Many bills get passed which are beneficial to corporations more so than "the people". It also goes back to the wastes of pork in the budget. Farmers get money from the government. Why? So they don't have to sell the farm? Let's say they did. then they would have to get a job somewhere else and the cost of whatever crop they grew would go up. So we would have to pay more. and a little further down the road, remaining farmers would get paid more for the same yield. Airliners get money from the government, too. Why? So they don't go out of business? Run the business to make a profit and you'll be fine. I know I'm oversimplifying it but, come on. Seriously!

Congress has been passing bills for decades that helped corporations get richer by giving them tax breaks. It really isn't anything new. But, it does seem to have picked up quite a bit over the last 20 years so, I guess it is finally getting so out of control that we need reform. Reform? Didn't we have reform back in the 90's? It doesn't look like it worked. Ever since then it has only gotten worse! So I guess we need a reform reform.

"Like a Republican plan laid out Tuesday, the one advanced by Democrats would stiffen disclosure requirements for lobbyists, ban privately funded trips and extend the "cooling-off period" that prevents lawmakers and senior staff from lobbying their old colleagues from one year to two."

Is one year really going to make a difference? No, because it take a lot longer to get a politician's hand out of your pocket.

"Some of it is outrageous," Lott said. "I mean, now we're going to say you can't have a meal for more than 20 bucks. Where you going to -- to McDonalds?"

Personally, it is very rare that I ever spend over $15 on a meal. They don't have to go to the most expensive restaurant in the county. If they want a $50 dinner, then they can pay for it out of their own pocket.

In the end, nothing will change. Sure, maybe a bill will pass. But, just like the last time, once the elections are over this year, the new one will be just as ignored.

It comes down to politicians who want power. The way they get power is by getting elected/re-elected. How dod you do that? With money for your campaign. Where do you get it? The voters? No, the lobbyists and private corporations. How do you get money from them? By promissing them you will help them out. What if you break those promisses? Then they wont give you money for your next re-election. What about the voters? What if the promisses you make to the voters conflict with the promisses you made to the lobbyists? Well, then just blame it on the other party or somebody else. As long as it looks like you tried, enough of the voters will believe you. It works for any office and any party. Prime examples: GWB himself and none other than our waste of space Mayor here in Detroit, Kwame Kilpatrick.

1 comment:

Tom said...

Politicians - bah!! Don't know if you've read my post on what a politician's job is yet, but we are definitely on the same page on that account. Read it here.
By the way, how did Kwame get re-elected?