Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practise to deceive!
While all eyes turned on Russia and Putin and how Kellyanne sits on a couch, Congress is quickly dismantling the country. This week, we have:
H. J. RES. 83: Congress disapproved OSHA’s Clarification of Employer’s Continuing Obligation to Make and Maintain an Accurate Record of Each Recordable Injury and Illness. Disapproval of the long-winded title basically means that companies will not have to keep records of injuries or illnesses. You know… those pesky little records that document how many people have actually died in that coal mine or had their hands cut off at the chicken factory. Because we certainly wouldn’t want to hold employers accountable for unsafe working conditions, would we?!?
HR 1009: OIRA Insight, Reform, and Accountability Act
The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs is responsible for – you guessed it – regulations. HR 1009 wants to get rid of current regulations that may be too burdensome for someone. I’m all for reviewing things from time to time, but do we want to allow dumping poisons into our drinking water because it’s too burdensome not to?
“(2) RETROSPECTIVE REVIEW.—
“(C) OIRA COORDINATED REVIEW.—The Administrator shall work with interested entities and agencies, including through the processes established under subsection (d), to review the list of regulations identified under subparagraph (A) and such entities may assist OIRA and the agencies with identifying regulations or groups of regulations that—
“(i) impose significant or unique burdens on governmental entities and that are no longer justified; or
“(ii) affect a particular group, industry, or sector of the economy.
And to make it even better,
H. R. 998 – the “Searching for and Cutting Regulations that are Unnecessarily Burdensome Act” or as the “SCRUB Act” .
(h) Duties Of The Commission.—
(1) IN GENERAL.—The Commission shall conduct a review of the Code of Federal Regulations to identify rules and sets of rules that collectively implement a regulatory program that should be repealed to lower the cost of regulation to the economy. The Commission shall give priority in the review to rules or sets of rules that are major rules or include major rules, have been in effect more than 15 years, impose paperwork burdens or unfunded mandates that could be reduced substantially without significantly diminishing regulatory effectiveness, impose disproportionately high costs on entities that qualify as small entities within the meaning of section 601(6) of title 5, United States Code, or could be strengthened in their effectiveness while reducing regulatory costs. The Commission shall have as a goal of the Commission to achieve a reduction of at least 15 percent in the cumulative costs of Federal regulation with a minimal reduction in the overall effectiveness of such regulation.
- HR 861 Terminate the Environmental Protection Agency
- HR 610 Vouchers for Public Education
- HR 899 Terminate the Department of Education
- HJR 69 Repeal Rule Protecting Wildlife
- HR 370 Repeal Affordable Care Act
- HR 354 Defund Planned Parenthood
- HR 785 National Right to Work (this one ends unions)
- HR 83 Mobilizing Against Sanctuary Cities Bill
- HR 147 Criminalizing Abortion (“Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act”)
- HR 808 Sanctions against Iran
Russia Russia Russia.
And while Nero fiddles, the Democrats keep pounding Russia.
I’m not saying that having Putin and Company meddling in our elections is a good thing, but it’s certainly what we do in their elections – and the elections of any country in the world. This is the bullshit that no one ever talks about – our own culpability in the chaos and instability of governments everywhere. It’s Mad Magazine’s Spy vs Spy in real life.
It’s a population who doesn’t pay attention, who doesn’t grasp nuance, who wants immediate solutions to complex issues.
Who knew that health care was so complex?
Okay… meeting with Russians may not be the smartest thing in the world, but the guy is a businessman – who by law is not bound by the conflict of interest rule. Even the emoluments clause is shaky because he’s not getting gifts, his businesses are receiving money for services rendered. It’s a huge distraction from what Congress is doing – and not doing.
Yes, there should be an independent counsel to investigate the whole flippin’ administration and their probable collusion with Putin and his minions, but don’t hold your breath – or your hopes – on an impeachment.
Article 2 Section 4 of the Constitution states: The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.
The process is lengthy and requires five different votes.
- A member of the House presents charges to the House Judiciary Committee, usually based on a previous investigation.
- The Judiciary Committee votes to request authority from the whole House to begin their own investigation (Vote #1.)
- A majority of the House votes to authorize an investigation. (Vote #2.)
- Once the investigation is complete, the Judiciary Committee votes on individual articles of impeachment. (Vote #3.)
- Once approved, those articles are given to the entire House for a majority vote on each one. (Vote #4.)
- If the House votes to approve any of the articles, the president has been impeached.
- The president is then tried in the Senate, with the House Judiciary Committee acting as “managers,” or prosecutors, with the White House counsel defending the president, the chief justice of the Supreme Court acting as the presiding judge, and senators forming the jury.
- Once both sides present testimony, the Senate votes on each article of impeachment, requiring a two-thirds majority to convict (Vote #5.)
- Conviction results in the president being removed from office, but even if the president is not convicted they could still face criminal charges.
The odds of this happening with a Republican majority are between slim and none.
And in the meantime, the Democrats paint themselves into a Defense Budget corner because, well… Russia. How can they denounce Russia as a threat to our democracy and not support massive military spending to fight them?
Forget about health care. Forget about education. Screw food stamps. Cut those budgets so we can build bigger, better, faster, more expensive jets. And tanks. And bombs. And then hire Haliburton to manage it all because we don’t have the actual military personnel to do it, anymore. Then we bring in Betsy DeVos’ brother, Erik Prince, and his Blackwater USA group to supply the mercenaries. They have made a few billion dollars off government contracts – including billing taxpayers $240,000.00 a day in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. It pays to know people – or have your family donate to their political campaigns.
And Democrats lose at the polls, again, because they refuse to see that their adherence to Wall Street makes them no different than the Republicans in the eyes of the average voter. That their failed message of attacking the opposition without having a bold plan for change is meaningless.
Russia Russia Russia.
How about single payer health care, alternative energy, affordable college education? How about trying to make a difference instead of trying to simply make the other guy look like a bigger bogeyman?
How about listening to the millions of people who are flat-out fed up with both sides of the aisle?
How about doing your job?