Tag Archives: Congress

Permanent Daylight Time?

Well, kids … we sprang forward overnight, an event that produced the usual ration of griping — some of it good-natured — about the loss of an hours’ sleep and showing up late for some appointment this morning.

To be honest, I’ll stipulate that the time change — from Standard Time to Daylight Saving Time — doesn’t bother me. I’m manic about setting clocks the night before. So, when the alarm goes off on Day One of Daylight Time, I usually am ready to get the day started.

All that said, I am wondering if the Texas Legislature ever will finish the job it tried to finish in its 2019 session when it ran out of time before referring a time-change measure to Texans that fall.

You might recall that the Legislature was pondering a three-choice option for voters. We were supposed to get a chance to state whether we wanted to shift to permanent Daylight Saving Time, permanent Standard Time or keep it the way it is, with a twice-annual time switch.

I stated then that if given a choice, I would prefer to go to a permanent Daylight Saving Time. I like the extended daylight at the end of the day. A permanent Standard Time setup would put the sun down too early in the evening for my taste.

But … as I noted, switching back and forth is not a big deal for me.

There might be a congressional push to make it a federal law, simply taking this entire matter out of the states’ hands. A few states already have forsaken Daylight Saving Time, preferring to not monkey around with switching clocks.

This whole concept has been around for a while. Switching to Daylight Saving Time was intended to save energy, allowing Americans to avoid turning on their lights in the late afternoon. I’m fine with that, too. So, why not make it permanent?

Eschewing the time-switch would be a nod to those who dislike the government mandating such behavior. Switching to a permanent time system would satisfy conservatives; hey, we seem to agree on something! How about that?

This debate is likely to flare yet again in Congress. I say “flare” because that’s what always seems to happen in that sharply divided body. Maybe they can put their partisan differences aside — finally! — and agree on this simple idea.

Or, they can simply let the states decide. Well, Texas legislators? Will you do it?


‘Pork-barrel spending’ has vanished?

Whatever happened to the term once used by budget hawks to vilify politicians who spend money “recklessly”?

That would be “pork-barrel spending.” It has vanished, seemingly, from the contemporary glossary of verbiage in today’s contentious political climate.

I remember when a former U.S. senator from Texas, Republican Phil Gramm, would boast about “bringing home so much pork, I was afraid I would come down with trichinosis.”

“Pork” is the term that refers to special project appropriations that members of Congress sneak into legislation. You know what I mean: money for bridges, airport control towers, road-and-highway improvements, federal office complexes. The late Sen. Ted Stevens of Alaska, another Republican, once was vilified for his “bridge to nowhere” for which he managed to get money appropriated.

I am not entirely opposed to “pork-barrel spending” if the project that the Congress member is pushing actually does some good for the public. I mean, these men and women, do work for us. We demand certain things from our lawmakers and, as always, it takes money to make those things appear in our states and congressional districts.

In Collin County, Texas, we have a first-term Republican, Keith Self, representing our interests. I don’t hear much about his work to ensure federal money to improve our infrastructure. Instead, I hear him talking about “election integrity,” and a whole array of social issues that, frankly, mean next to nothing to me.

And our state’s two GOP U.S. senators — John Cornyn and Ted Cruz? They, too, are busy condemning Democrats to concentrate on matters of more immediate concern to their state.

If the MAGA crowd among the GOP congressional caucus is interested in controlling federal spending while they threaten to renege on our national debt — a truly catastrophic proposal — then they will resurrect “pork barrel spending” as a fiscal talking point.


Will this tragedy move Congress?

The question is being asked all across the country: Will the Michigan State University slaughter of three students and the wounding of five others produce meaningful legislation that will curb gun violence?

I believe I have the answer.

It is no. It won’t. Too many members of Congress are too beholden to the gun lobby to enact any sort of semi-aggressive legislation that would stem the epidemic of gun violence.

The latest shooting in East Lansing, Mich., is the 67th such “mass shooting” in 2023. Yes. That is correct. The number of shootings so far have outstripped the number of days in the year.

This latest goon was a 43-year-old moron with no apparent ties to the school. All of the victims were — and are — students. One individual, a young female, happened to live through her second mass shooting in a decade. She was one of the children who survived the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in Newtown, Conn. Think about that for a moment, about any individual who can live to talk about two such national tragedies, having seen them both up close.

Congress is too full of political cowards for the body to enact legislation that could keep guns out of the hands of those who shouldn’t have any access to such weaponry.

Shameful … simply shameful.


Just quit, Rep. Santos!

What you see with this brief blog post is an example of just why a disgraced Republican member of Congress should no longer serve in the People’s House of Representatives.

George Santos lied his way to election from a New York congressional district. Now we hear he might be guilty of campaign fraud and assorted other crimes.

It is no “crime” to lie to your constituents. Still, that this nut case — who lied about every aspect of his personal, professional and educational life on his way to winning a 2022 congressional election — would continue to serve as a member of Congress is offensive on its face.

Furthermore, he cannot be taken seriously, as this meme suggests. It is just one of countless such pictures depicting this fraudulent member of Congress being someone he clearly is not.

Resign from Congress, George Santos … and go far, far away.


Why the interest in the liar?

Why are so many Americans continuing to be interested in the happenings of U.S. Rep. George Santos, the individual who lied his way into public office?

By all rights, it shouldn’t really matter how a piss ante politician from New York got elected. I, for instance, live far away from the Republican’s district.

But … it does matter! Why? Because this fraud is now able to propose and vote on laws that have a direct impact on you and me, regardless of whether we are his constituents.

The dude has become a laughingstock. He is the subject of hilarious social media memes and late-night comedians’ jokes. Santos lied about damn near every aspect of his professional, educational and personal life. No one on this good Earth can believe a single word that flies out of the liar’s mouth.

That’s just part of it. Now comes word that he is under investigation for defrauding charities, stealing money from GoFundMe accounts.

How does this guy govern, even if he is just one of 435 members of the House of Representatives? The answer: He cannot!

Republicans are turning on him, which is good. Democrats, for their part, cannot take this idiot seriously at any level.

He will continue to be a major-league distraction every minute he sits in Congress, drawing his six-figure salary and making policy statements that impact our lives.

Therein lies the reason for the interest in this moronic liar.


Speaker’s deal may prove costly … to him!

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s deal with the GOP “devils” well might come back to take a huge chunk from his backside.

Consider what he has done. He has allowed some of the most radical members of his party’s caucus to take seats on key committees assigned to protect our nation’s secrets. Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene and Paul Gosar will serve on the House Oversight Committee …sheesh! Then we see that Rep. Lauren Boebert, another QAnon princess, will gain a key committee assignment after voting against McCarthy’s bid to become speaker.

Let’s not forget that McCarthy also has seated Rep. George “Serial Liar” Santos on committees, too … never mind that he lied to the voters in New York who elected him about every aspect of his personal and professional life.

Get this, too: Many of these MAGA cultists insisted on power to remove the speaker at the behest of just a single House member. What will happen when he pisses one of them off enough to call for his removal?

All of this seems to provide demonstrable evidence that McCarthy very well might be the least intelligent individual ever to serve in an office that is second in succession to the presidency.

God help us!


Vengeance could be costly

Congressional Republicans’ vengeance agenda as the new Congress gets underway well could prove seriously damaging to any hope of the GOP maintaining control of the legislative branch of the U.S. government.

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy — who will be remembered forever as the man who needed 15 ballots to eke out a victory for the speakership — takes office as the weakest and most feckless speaker in recent House history.

So … what does he do? He vows to kick Democrats off of key committees merely because of their vocal opposition to Donald J. Trump during his two impeachments and subsequent Senate trials.

Then he says he might consider “expunging” the record of Trump’s impeachment.

Then the House has announced a plan to form a committee that will investigate Congress’s earlier investigations of conservatives who ran afoul of the rules and possibly broke the law.

Oh, and now GOP members want to investigate whether the classified documents found at a D.C. think tank and at President Biden’s home violated the same rules that Donald Trump has all but admitted breaking when he spirited highly classified documents from the White House to his Florida mansion.

Then the House will consider whether to impeach President Biden, the homeland security secretary, the attorney general … along with finding dirt to fling at Dr. Anthony Fauci.

If there was a compelling message that voters delivered in the 2022 midterm election, it is that they want Congress to govern. They want positive results coming from Capitol Hill.

If Congress doesn’t deliver what voters want and instead gets hung up on ways to stick it to Democrats and to Joe Biden, well … the 2024 election could mean the GOP kisses its newfound power goodbye.

That damn karma is a real bitch … you know?


NY GOP finds its … jewels

Well … it turns out the local Republican Party that formerly backed a lying sack of sh** who got elected to Congress has discovered some courage after all.

The Nassau County (N.Y.) GOP promised a “big announcement” today regarding Rep. George Santos. It delivered the goods.

How? By demanding that Santos resign from Congress immediately because he is a serial liar who made up his personal and professional record and pitched it to gullible voters who elected him to the House of Representatives.

Not surprisingly, Santos said he isn’t quitting. He will continue to represent the people who elected him.

My own question from far away is: Which George Santos is going to represent them?

This clown has no business serving in the People’s House, which belongs to you and me, not to a nimrod such as Santos who fabricated his educational background, his professional history, his family history, his personal life and hell, maybe even his dog’s name for all I know.

What we’re going to witness for every single day this disgraceful liar serves in Congress is a parade of reporters pressing him for details on why he lied the way he did and how he can possibly be expected to tell the truth on anything.

Does that remind you of anyone else in politics these days? Hmm. Let me think. Oh yeah, that would be the Serial Liar in Chief who served as president from 2017 until 2021.

I’ll just have to accept this fact: I won’t believe a single word that flies out of George Santos’s mouth. The idea that someone such as this would enact laws that affect all Americans makes me sick.


Social media: celebrity makers

Social media have this way of making me crazy, as in they tend to make celebrities out of politicians who in another line of work would be relegated to sitting on stools with dunce caps on their noggins.

Consider, if you will, the current crop of Republicans serving in Congress. I want to direct your attention to the MAGA types in particular, the dim bulbs who believe they toss out pearls of wisdom when in reality they spew bullsh**.

Yet the media glom onto their sanctimonious drivel. We are treated on the nightly news and throughout the day on cable news networks to the spewing of the likes of those who — pardon the candor — cannot find their rear ends with both hands.

Yet there they are. Calling attention to themselves, as if they are important enough to have their words actually matter. Well … they don’t matter. Yet we hear from loudmouth numbskulls such as Marjorie Taylor Greene, Lauren Boebert, Matt Gaetz, Paul Gosar and any other right-wing dipsh** with an opinion. As the saying goes: Opinions are like a**holes … everyone has ’em.

I continue to long for the day when we can return to a political culture that mandated that congressional newbies keep their thought to themselves and step aside while the wise men and women of both congressional chambers speak for their respective bodies.

There used to be a saying that a member of Congress had to serve at least two terms in the House and half a term in Senate before being allowed to make speeches from the floor.

Given the intelligence level of many of the MAGA blowhards, that notion is sounding more appealing all the time. Perhaps by the time they get some actual political seasoning they might wise up to the way government is supposed to work.


Can they work together?

Hakeen Jefferies says he and Kevin McCarthy can work together when it matters. Count me as a skeptic … for the time being at least.

Jefferies is the newly minted U.S. House Democratic leader is the equally newly minted speaker of the House. Oh … McCarthy also is a Republican who had to fight through 15 floor-vote ballots before eking out enough support to get the speaker’s gavel.

Jefferies says he and McCarthy get along just fine, that they can “agree to disagree without being disagreeable.” Indeed, McCarthy said some pretty angry things about former speaker Nancy Pelosi, who in turn fired some nastiness at McCarthy.

Jefferies and McCarthy need to work together to craft legislation that President Biden can agree to sign into law. I fear that the task might be hampered by the MAGA crowd within the GOP House caucus that is intent on impeaching everyone who carries the title of Democrat.

Well, I will hold out a sliver of hope that the party leaders can forge a working relationship that puts country ahead of partisan concerns.

Many of us are watching you, gentleman.