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Sunday, November 27, 2011

Escape from Washington [Biff Spackle]

By Biff Spackle:

It's been a long time since Commander Wingnut permitted me to post, so I will beg your forgiveness in advance for rusty sentence structure and participles which dangle. Long-suffering readers will recall that the Vicar of Vitriol usually relegates me to backoffice chores, among them cleaning the JihadShredder 3000™, photoshopping the President into even the most nonsensical of images, and dredging up obscure baseball statistics for his long-running email trivia war with George Will.

So I was truly surprised to learn that the Ayatollah of Irrationality had actually approved one of my story ideas. The last, if memory serves, was a 1965 rebuttal to President Johnson's "Great Society" which, in retrospect, proved eerily prescient. Given my employer's penny-pinching thriftiness, that post unfortunately long ago disappeared into the bit-stream diaspora when the original free blogging service -- Dave's Discount Blogspot -- filed for bankruptcy in 1971.

Ah, but that is only spilt milk. Let us return to the present and my idea. I call it "Escape From Washington".

In evaluating America's 90-year transition from a constitutional republic to a post-constitutional central government, one fact has become increasingly clear:

Too much power is centralized in Washington, D.C.

We wonder how the corporate media's blinkered worldview could be so out-of-step with mainstream America. We wonder why "conservatives" inside the Beltway are tepid milquetoasts who save their rhetorical fire for true conservatives like Michelle Bachmann, Rick Perry and Rick Santorum rather than radical progressives. We wonder how lifetime Republican politicians can't see the country sailing into the economic abyss and only oppose the liberal agenda with a vigor that can optimistically be described as halfhearted.

The answer is right in front of us: the insular collective of power, lobbyists and media inside Washington has created a fishbowl utterly disconnected from the constituents, the stakeholders and the audience they serve, respectively.

We can see the symptoms in front of us: conservatives that insist on politicians honoring the nation's highest law -- upon which they swear an oath to uphold! -- are ridiculed, pilloried and dismissed. Tea Party activists that peacefully assemble, demanding a return to the nation's first principles, are accused of racism and, that tactic having failed, fomenting violence.

It is the centralization of power that has infected politicians with greed, insulated them from their constituents, and allowed members of the media to operate in a self-perpetuating fiction bubble. It has given lobbyists a fertile hunting ground and spawned countless cases of crony capitalism and outright corruption.

An answer is forthcoming. If you'll forgive my French, it's: "Get these bastards the hell out of D.C."

And by that I mean: the Congress. And how do we keep Congress out of Washington?

• De-fund all Congressional offices and staff members except for those in each representative's home state. Ban the maintenance of said offices and employment of staffs within 100 miles of the Beltway, save those representatives whose districts reside therein.

• Slash the legislative session to no more than four days each month, except for national emergencies.

• Establish sunset provisions for all executive agencies and offices; after the first 10 years, every agency must operate on a reduced budget, year-over-year until each disappears altogether after 20 years.

• Slash the size and scope of the unelected fourth branch of government, which has grown at a phenomenal clip over the last 50 years. A good starting point would be to use the sunset provisions for all existing bureaucracies.

If we can keep these S.O.B.'s fine, upstanding Congressional representatives out of Washington, we'll reduce the nefarious impact of both lobbyists and corporate media. We'll bring the politicians closer to their constituents. And we'll begin eroding the centralization of power that has turned a constitutionally-authorized federal government into some amorphous, nationalized collection of Soviet-style, central planners.


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