Monday, November 20, 2006
The King Is Dead... Long Live The King
Last Tuesday, there was some consternation about what would become of us as a nation following the Democratic reconquista of the United States Congress. Most of the worry was among the left-wing bloggers, along the lines of "Now we will have balanced government in the way the Constitution prescribed, with competing branches of co-equal government balancing each other with their conflicting priorities" and "There will now be a sense of perspective among our goverment leaders."
These are real fears and, I'll be honest, I shared them.
Even in its last gasps, the Republican one-party government forced upon the American people the idea of a one dollar coin. It's a good idea, really. It's more cost effective as they have to be replaced less frequently than dollar bills, works more easily in coin-operated machines and, if superheated and shot from some sort of modified firearm, can burn straight through four inches of tempered steel without even slowing down. Try that with a paper dollar.
And yet, I think the American people have spoken clearly on this issue in the past: we don't want your dollar coins. They work in Europe, sure, but that's kind of the point, isn't it? Europe is and continues to be irredeemably foreign. If we emulate them in any way, we may catch it.
Congress thought that the solution to the problem was the estrogen factor. Susan B. Anthony and Sacagawea failed... but now--a ha!--this line of coins will exclusively feature Penis-Americans. All American presidents, in order, once ever three months, providing they've been dead for at least two years. Is this just a sneaky way to FINALLY get Reagan on a coin AND screw Bill Clinton? Sure it is. But if I know that wily Clinton, he'll find a way to make himself dead between now and the time his coin comes up for striking.
Those kinds of ideas--the kind that don't really fix anything and can only hope, at best, to annoy the American people--haven't been swept away by any stretch by the return of Democrats to power in Congress. Rest assured, there is a whole raft of bad ideas pent up in Democrat lawmakers' heads. For instance, Charlie Rangel wants to reinstitute the draft. Again, it's not a BAD idea as it would address the economic disparity of those who volunteer and those who merely blog in a non-conscripted armed forces AND probably deter lawmakers from entering into voluntary wars when their kids could be sent to fight.
But then, GW Bush knows that rich people find ways around these things eventually anyway. And the last time we had us a draft, well... it just led to hippies.
For me, though, the point is that even though offices and chairmanships are changing hands on Capitol Hill, we can always count on Congress, whatever its political bent, to irritate us with pet bills and projects to bother us for no apparent reason.
I feel safer.
Although I will admit not all institutional continuity of thought is good.
This post on the Narcissus Scale: 7.2