Speaker Hastert is rushing to implement new lobbying rules:
Hastert tasked House Rules Committee Chairman David Dreier (R-Calif.) to head the GOP’s effort to draft new lobbying rules. The move comes months after House Democrats, led by Reps. Martin T. Meehan (Mass.) and Rahm Emanuel (Ill.), and Republican Rep. Christopher Shays (Conn.), unveiled proposals to mandate more disclosure of lobbying contacts, ban most lobbyist-sponsored trips and lengthen the time former House members and staff must wait before taking up lobbying.
“Over the past several months, I have spoken with many members about the need for such reforms. . . . Now is the time for action,” Hastert said in a statement.
Shorter Denny Hastert- “We couldn’t control ourselves under the old rules, so now we are going to try some new ones.”
Do you really think it is possible for Congress to set their own ethics standards? Maybe someone else should be setting that oversight.
Abramoff broke the old rules. I assume that they’re intentionally missing the point, which is that we have a deficit of enforcement rather than a deficit of rules.
[pulling hand out of coookie jar] “Yeah, this thing really ought to have lock…”
The Other Steve
If you had Ethical Congress Critters, you wouldn’t need to enforce the rules because they’d be following them to begin with instead of trying to find loopholes.
Yeah, they really need to write some new laws to ignore. How hard is it to write Republican only loopholes?
The Other Steve
So really what Bank Robbers need is Bank Robbery Reform. You know, if they put better locks on the doors, bank robbers wouldn’t be so tempted to go in there and stick ’em up.
If I had wings I wouldn’t need bus fare.
We won’t have ethical congresscritters until we make it prohibitively painful for them not to be ethical. That day won’t come until the enforcement mechanism makes it overwhelmingly likely that people who sneak a cookie will get spanked.
Shorter Hastert: Look over there (switches wine glasses). Never mind. Let’s drink!
TPMCafe has an interesting posting on the terminology. The article claims that really no lobbying problem here — there’s a breach of public trust here. I think it’s a slimy argument, but I can’t quite put my finger on what’s wrong with it.
My short plan for bringing ethics and effective governance to Washington: The Anti-Incumbency Times Four Plan. The American people, fed up with the whole mess, organizes to vote out every incumbent for the next four federal election cycles. No Representative or Senator left standing, no re-elected president. Message-the ballot and the citizens, not the dollar, is in charge. Given that government excesses continue regardless of the party in the majority, this legal, bloodless revolution would meet the greater good, instead of voters continuing to being manipulated by the far left and the far right. For the good of the country, let Washington know who is in charge! Power to the people!
Two words: prisoner’s dillema. (Or, “Sweet, we get more pork than you, nyah nyah nyah.”
You’re probably right. With a limited shot at the goods, the hogs would trample the trough.
They tried the “Kick every incumbant out of office” back in ’94 during the Great Republican Reform Movement For Justice And Equality. They wiped the board of Democratic control in the House and nearly marginalized the Senate by dissolving filibuster. You got your revolution. For every crook you vote out of office, there are ten more waiting to take his place.
And over the past five years the only people who haven’t been gouging the cookie jar have been some of the stauncher incumbant Senators. Without guys like Specter haunting the Judicial Committee and Voinovich pleading sanity during the filibuster and McCain riggerously protesting torture, the lord only knows where our country would be today. *shudder*
There are some incumbants that get re-elected because they have a stranglehold on the politics of the region. And there are some incumbants that get re-elected because they are genuinely “good” politicians (I use the word loosely). The latter are alot harder to find than the former. So I don’t regret the incumbancy system.
Interesting article from the 5/6/05 edition of USA Today that is getting some blog circulation today. Discusses (rather freely) Jack Abramoff’s wide open access to the Bush White House. Looks like the White House what up for doing some bidnis in the halcyon (the mood, not the pills) days of 2001.
And of course those darned old Democrats are trying to make hay out of this tragedy. Don;t you just hate it when people play politics with the misfortunes of others? And all those words they use! Why can’t they be more like Rush and just slowly repeat the same sentence over and over again?
Hastert has also resolved to drop 20 pounds, cut down on fatty foods, and read at least one book a month.
John- I don’t think this belongs in the category of Republican stupidity unless you are talking about yourself.
Pretending to tighten up the ethics rules while making sure that you actually can’t be caught violating them. Brilliant.
Hmm, are we cynical here? Should we perhaps be voting for more Libertarians or Greens (depending on whether you are conservative or liberal) rather than continue rewarding the Republicrat oligarchy? I mean, if it genuinely doesn’t matter who you elect since they’ll all be crooks anyhow, why *not* “waste” your vote on a 3rd party candidate?
Republicrat? Have you been listening to too much Savage lately?
Is it so hard to vote for the best candidate? Not every Republican and Democrat is a worthless slug. Its blogs like this where their slugginess can be debated and determined. Delay, Frist, Hastert, Cunningham, Lieberman are all slugs, if you assemble the hodgepodge of comments into some sort of determining factor.
Sites such as dKos will give you direct insider looks into many of the contested seat elections, and I’m sure there is another on the Right somewhere that focusses on their candidates as closely, I just havn’t found it amongst all the choss.
Democrats and Republicans can be just as independent of their parties, using them to get elected, then working with the voters to stay in power. Spectre is one, McCain is kindof another. Those are the kind of people to elect.
But voting Green or Libertarian just because you hate the other 2 parties? Thats not going to work either.
Sometimes I feel for John, with all the crap he takes from us. But damn, that was funny.
Frank and ppGaz:
John thinks everyone in the world is watching politics, it appears. No one cares about Dennis Hastert, or as I like to call him “Mr. Pie”. He’s a nobody, even in the Washington circles, which is how he got his Speaker position. If he thinks he’s going to be the next Newt Gingrich and bring ethics back to Washington, he’s nuts. He could be the most honorable Republican out there (not hard to do) but no one is ever going to take him seriously on this.
This is my first visit to this blog, and I have a question for the group –
Do you think it is the anonymity of a site such as this one that causes many of the participants to act in so disrespectful and angry a manner?
Perhaps if you were to all sit in a room facing each other you’d act differently? Even if the discussion was about politics?
I can’t help but get the feeling that there is not much kindness in any of your lives.
However, familiarity breeds contempt.
So ask me the same question in a week, and see what I say then. :)
I’ve never liked you!
But that whiny nonsense from “Luminous” …. at least once every week or so we see a post like that. Somebody who just bought their first computer and just discovered that there are 500 million angry, nasty invective-filled posts out there? Or ….. DougJ?
We’d all be polite for about the first hour or so, while making small talk and nursing our drinks. I guarantee you, however, that a shouting match would break out at some point before the end of the evening.
That, of course, is assuming that everybody here is the same in person as they are online. And something tells me that that’s a false assumption.
We do get angry and disrespectful with each other, yet always manage to be willing to listen to each other when a new thread is posted…until a temper is triggered, and then all hell breaks loose once again.
Honestly, it’s all in good fun, and for the most part on this site, you’re treated the way you treat others. If you’re respectful and treat other posters viewpoints with respect (respect doesn’t necessarily mean agreement, of course), then you are usually treated in kind. If you attack, or become disdainful, you’ll be leaped upon. Follow the Golden Rule, and you’ll be fine.
Those people who engage in the nasty back-and-forth are those who have done so many times, and probably find it very invigorating.
Like any large room where folks gather, you will find all types here. Krista’s advice is most apt for those who follow the Peaceful Path.
In fact, Krista’s ability to share interesting ideas whilst always maintaining an aura of courtesy and open-mindedness (often in the face of frenzied shit-slinging) makes her one of Balloon Juice’s most beloved – by me at least – regulars.
John has a pretty thick skin. Especially in the comments in a post like this, he knows it’s [largely] good fun. Else he would stop doing it…right, John? Or do you just like pain? Squeel like a pig??? Where’d that come from…
I know that when I feel lonely and long for the fellowship of like-minded companions, Balloon Juice is always the first place I go.
Of course there are contentious and unhappy souls who seem to live for little more than discord and strife, but why would anyone concern themselves with such as they? Hell is filled with those who loudly revel in their damnation, but we who know understand that their seeming joy only thinly masks a debilitating despair that cripples and destroys.
Luminous? Welcome to Balloon Juice! I only hope the barking of some of the dogs above hasn’t discouraged you. We’re not all like that!
You’re absolutely right, LE. Not only is there no kindness is our lives, we spend our otherwise empty hours plotting, maniacally plotting, what new verbal violence we shall visit upon our BJ victims. That is, when we aren’t actually realizing our evil schemes.
Bwahahaha. And, now, you have been drawn into our web. Welcome, freshmeat. Remember, “you can check out, but you never leave.”
The Other Steve
Wow, that’s a nasty indictment.
That must mean Lou Sheldon and Pat Robertson have no kindness in their lives.
I think I’ll get a lawyer and sue some of the commenters here.
Awww…you’re so sweet! (Blushing)
One of these days I’ll have to sling shit with great vigor, just to give you guys something to chuckle at.