Wednesday, May 21, 2008

I Take It Back

I've occasionally expressed my admiration for Nancy Pelosi in this blog; she seemed to me to be doing a good job, although I didn't and don't agree with all her decisions. I officially take it back with the most recent mess over the farm bill. (And when I say "most recent": the AP article is datelined about an hour and a half ago.) She may not be personally responsible for this snafu, but she's in charge, and it happened on her watch.

To begin with, I
didn't and don't support the farm bill Congress finally passed; I supported the more radical bill that Barbara Boxer introduced, which would have replaced commodity farm subsidies entirely with a disaster insurance program. (I may be hazy on the details.) I'm in the extremely unusual position of agreeing with Dubya on something: I think this bill should be vetoed.

Now to the mess. Having passed this obscene farm bill with veto-proof majorities in both houses of Congress, the idiots in charge of the process sent the White House a version of the bill to sign that was ... missing 34 pages.


That's right - they didn't collate the bill properly when they printed it on parchment, and they left out a 34 page section. So Bush vetoes the bill, as he said he would. But ... what he vetoed isn't what Congress passed. Is that constitutional? Is that even rational?

Congress is now scrambling around to arrange a second round of voting on the full bill, by Thursday (the current law expires on Friday), after which they'll re-submit it to the White House for another veto. After which they'll override it again? (Why do they need to vote on it again? They voted on the full bill, they just didn't print the full bill to send to the Pres. Or am I missing something?)

Can these people find their socks in the morning? If Congress wonders why their approval ratings are even lower than Dubya's, look no farther.


  1. Congress is in big oil's and big pharmaceutical's pockets. Hello!

    Bottom line: They'll sell you out. Pensions? Health Care? Environment? Banking reform? Education? Union bargaining? Workplace safety?

    It's welfare for the rich!

    Pelosi is a master of compromise. That means you compromise every principle you ever held or espoused. Hands across the aisle!

    It's those persnickety Republicans that are holding it all up. Shame on them!

    Soon, we'll have the choir boy in The White House, and then we'll really get something done!


  2. Anonymous12:36 PM

    Back when Reagan was president, I think, a woman at Agriculture published and article stating that the "Save the farmers" bill would not actually save the farmers as written, but would be a hell of a windfall for mega-ag corporations.

    The business of America is [big] business, with all the misguided legislation that apparently engenders.

    The farm bill is always about votes and about ConAgra/Archer-Daniels-Midland/etc., with the latter always holding the trump cards.

    Going to be interesting to see how Obama navigates those waters, and whether or not a president can actually do the most rational thing, unless votes and big business interests actually represent the most rational considerations for a president.

    Anonymous David

  3. Anonymous12:42 PM

    I forgot to mention that the Reagan administration canned her.

    Congress has a lower rating than Dubya not because of what they do or don't do, but for the same reason that people have such a low opinion of attorneys. Another reason is probably that in every election cycle we are inundated with negative ads regarding whoever is in office, and that probably becomes lodged in people's minds in a generic way. That is why people can like their own representative but abhor Congress. I happen to abhor my representative, a Tom Delay disciple.

    Anonymous David