The Stuff of Satire
Michelle whispers a sweet something that will be ignored by those to whom it’s directed:
Pssst. Someone tell the Senate Democrats who larded up the Senate stimulus bill with $75 million for smoking cessation that they need smokers to keep buying cigarettes to pay for the S-CHIP universal health care Trojan Horse! Maybe they should reallocate the $75 million to subsidize smoking continuation. After all, someone’s got to look out for the smokers the Dems need to pay all those higher cigarette taxes in order to subsidize more families whom the Dems want to shift off of private health insurance plans and onto the government-run S-CHIP program.
Extend the Bush tax cuts for those making less than $250,000 (couples) or $200,000 (single)
I would consider this promise to have been compromised if he signs the S-CHIP extension into law since those income tax cuts will be needed by smokers, the majority of whom would be considered lower- and middle-income earners, in order to pay for it.
Why do Senate Democrats hate children?
Then, of course, there is the digital cable TV transition, in the works since 2005, that is supposed to happen on February 18. To help, the government was providing vouchers, for the purchase of the appropriate equipment, to those who were still running their TVs through the analog process being phased out. Guess what? In the typical manner of an inept government operation, they ran out of money. Not only that, many of those vouchers had expiration dates, and a large number who received them never used them prior to the vouchers expiring (for a variety of reasons; some couldn’t find the equipment locally, some were lazy). So the Senate put forth a bill, S. 328, to delay the transition for four months.
Are they nuts? Do you know how many TV commercials have been put out, by the government, to notify everyone of the transition and when it was going to happen? Maybe they spent too much money on making the different commercials, along with purchasing the airtime to show them, instead of, you know, the vouchers. Here’s the better part; since this is a Senate bill, there aren’t any appropriations (those can only be initiated in the House of Representatives), and the Senate is relying on the FCC to spend money neither it nor the rest of the federal government has to get the few people who didn’t, for whatever reason, get the necessary equipment.
The Senate passed S. 328 by unanimous consent, then sent it on to the House. Before a bill gets passed in the House of Representatives, certain rules have to be adhered to before a vote on the bill takes place; the bill passes or fails by a simple majority. The House does provide for exceptions if something needs to be passed quickly, and can suspend the rules in order to have the full vote taken right away. But as is the case with a cloture vote to end debate in the Senate, a super-majority is needed for the bill to be passed in this manner, 290 Yeas. Wouldn’t you know it, enough smart members of the House saw through this charade by the Senate (Democrat Jay Rockefeller, the bill’s initial sponsor, in particular) and said nope, let the transition date stay as it is.
Even though the transition is four years in the making, I have to ask, where in the last two years was all that great oversight by the Democratic-controlled 110th Congress? Where was Mr. Oversight, Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA)? Oh that’s right; on fishing expeditions, over 600 of them, into the "criminality" of the Bush administration. And these clowns expect we the people to trust them with running health care? Only if I had already gotten a lobotomy. On the public’s dime.