When Beltway politics get silly


When it comes to the absurdities of Business as Usual (BAU) in Washington, it is doubtful Tea Party activists harbor any illusions as to the depths to which those absurdities can go. Recently, two examples of Beltway BAU made their way into the news cycle that were too ridiculous to ignore.

First, a resolution put forth in the House of Representatives asserts climate change will force poor women to engage in “transactional sex and early marriage,” among other degenerate activities and awful consequences. The resolution, backed by a number of Democrats, “encourages the President to integrate a gender approach in all policies in the United States that are globally related to climate change, and ensure those policies and programs support women globally to prepare for, build resilience for, and adapt to climate change.”

Your tax dollars at work.

Less silly in the approach, but indicative of what happens when Congress rams a bill through without due process, proper debate and discussion, is this doozy:

Congress can seldom be accused of moving too quickly, but that appears to be the case with the legislation that put air traffic controllers back to work after furloughs caused thousands of flights to be delayed.

The Senate and House passed the bill at a breakneck pace late last week. President Obama had planned to immediately sign it into law, but administration officials tell ABC News he’s not expected to sign it until Tuesday — after a spelling error in the legislation  is fixed.

The culprit, apparently, is a missing ‘S’ in the bill.

The legislation gave the Transportation Secretary the authority to shift $253 million to the air traffic control system from an airport improvement fund. The Senate rushed the measure through late Thursday night without a roll-call vote, followed Friday by a 361-to-41 vote in the House.

The measure was pushed so quickly, parts of the legislation were actually handwritten, according to a copy of the bill obtained by ABC News.

You can always count on the speed and sloppiness of Congress when it comes to impressing constituents. Yet Senator Rubio and the Gang of Eight want a complex, 844-page bill to be rushed through within six weeks of being put under public scrutiny?

ABC asks the right question in closing the article:

So the case of the missing ‘S’ raises two questions: If lawmakers can act so swiftly to make frequent fliers happy – and to ensure their own flights are on time — can they move faster on other issues? And if the sequester can be tinkered with on this matter, is it really as dire and as inflexible as it once seemed?

This is exactly correct. As George Will put it on Sunday, talking about the FAA legislation:

Amazing, the dispatch with which the government acts when its stupidities inconvenience the rulers as much as the ruled.

Now a third question now arises: How can Tea Party activists make life as uncomfortable and politically unpopular as possible for politicians who don’t want to solve our debt crisis? Tell us your idea in the comments.