I would have expected a Republican to scoff at that kind of proposal: creating an extra-Constitutional "super-Congress" composed of twelve people.
"A Super Congress would be less accountable than the system that exists today, and would find it easier to strip the public of popular benefits."
It would also find it easier to:
Raise taxesIt's a dream for Congressmen in particular, who face re-election every two years: pass the buck to someone else who won't have to worry as much about being voted out.
Impose new regulation
Pass monstrosities like ObamaCare
Okay, so you get three people from each party in each house. That means six Democrats, six Republicans, six Representatives, six Senators.
The Senators are up for re-election every six years and it's relatively easy to pick Senators from safe districts. (Think "Teddy Kennedy, the senior Senator from Massachusetts".) The Representatives can also come from "safe" districts.
The entire point of the exercise is to insulate legislators from taking responsibility for voting for unpopular measures; but saddling us with something like a "super-Congress" in order to deal with the hard questions of the current depression is only going to bear bitter fruit in the future; it can't be otherwise.
Because those self-same politicians will use that power to its ultimate to tax and spend and regulate until there isn't a shred of freedom left in the United States.
One of the main reasons we don't have European-style gun control in the US is due to the unpopularity of such legislature. The federal government has had to be very, very careful about how it regulates guns because politicians who vote the wrong way tend to lose their jobs.
But if there were a "super-Congress?" "Hey, all I could do was vote up or down on the Omnibus bill, and that bill contained vital spending for our state. I had to vote for it. I'm sorry that it emplaces a 100% tax on bullets, but there's nothing we can do about that right now. But hey! Vote for me in this election, and I'll do what I can to repeal that tax...."
Thinking: Heh heh heh...suckers.
Not just no, but "fuck no":
* * *
I'm going to have to put Market-ticker.org on the blogroll. The guy uses way too much typography for emphasis (more than me? Holy shit) but damn if his observations aren't dead on.
* * *
The new Republican plan contains more non-cuts. Folks, $1,200 billion "over ten years" is $120 billion per year. $120 billion is seven percent of the deficit; it means that instead of spending $1,700 billion more than it takes in each year, government promises to spend "only" $1,580 per year more than it takes in.
This is not deficit reduction. Okay? It's funny numbers.
...what it is, is the return of the rounding error. It's just mashed up in a wad of bullshit to make it look like the GOP is being tough on spending, when it's not.
* * *
As for me, bleah; I woke up from a dream that a volcano was erupting under the garage.
In the dream, I went to the bathroom and saw that the toilet and bathtub were overflowing. I was standing ankle-deep in water, but strangely the water wasn't flowing any farther than about halfway to the door.
I left the bathroom and told Dad about it; he said that his bathroom was the same way. Then I noticed there was a distinct lean to the floor: looking north, suddenly the floor was uphill.
So I had Dad call 911 while I tried to figure out what was going on; and as I came back through the kitchen the tilt started becoming more pronounced. The TV started rolling towards Dad, and I shouted a warning; he was barely able to dodge the thing before it smashed into the south wall.
So I finally looked outside and saw that the front yard was covered in grey ash; swearing, I grabbed my keys, ran out there, jumped into the Fiero (literally--it was a convertible in the dream) and drove it down the driveway through three feet of ash. The ash had drifted up over the cowl of the car and there's no way it could actually plow through that much ash, but it did. (In the dream I worried about getting ash in the engine. Then I figured, f it, there's an air filter. Besides, you can rebuild an engine.)
Having to leave it in the street, I ran up the driveway to get my pickup truck (?) and park it in front of the Fiero, so that when the snowplows came by to clear the street they wouldn't smack into the Fiero. The garage was mostly gone, and there was a guy in one of those silvery insulated suits taking a sample from the nascent volcano.
...woke up more-or-less there, and thought, W-T-F.
* * *
I was planning, originally, to attend Cruise Night tonight. The weather is gorgeous (it's still a bit warm outside, but pleasant) and I'm not doing anything else worth speaking of. But right now I really don't feel like doing a damned thing. Mainly I think it's a problem with inertia. *sigh*
Tonight the low is supposed to be around 65°, so I'm thinking about making mexican lasagna tonight. It's a bit of work to make it (of course) and I don't have most of the components, so I need to go to the store first. But if it's cool outside, I can bake with impunity and cool the house with outside air. And with that stuff, I end up getting about six meals out of $10 worth of food because it's pretty high-test stuff: refried beans, cheese, tortillas, a pound of hamburger; and this time I'm going to try adding a layer of spanish rice to it to see how that comes out.
Besides cooking, I've got to get after the grass. I'm going to check the back yard (once this post is done) to see how soggy the sod is, but I've probably got to do the east 40 and the front yard regardless. And it's got to be a thorough job; I've got to get the pusher out and trim, because none of it's been done since the 10th.
Well? We weren't getting any rain. Why cut it when it's not growing? That's just wasting gas, and when gas is $4 a gallon that's something to avoid.
...but it's rained a fair amount in the past few days and that means the grass is growing again, so that means cutting it.
You do what you have to do before you can do what you want to do--that's life for just about everyone. The grass needs cutting; the cruise night is a luxury, not a necessity.
But my big problem right now is how I feel. My arms and shoulders ache with fatigue, as if I'd been lifting weights all night; but the most strenuous thing I've done in the past couple of days was to change the sheets on my bed. That's why I frequently find myself wondering if I've got chronic fatigue syndrome, assuming that it actually exists.
As I said, bleah.
* * *
So, don't be surprised if I write a post later today, or tomorrow, complaining about the fact that I didn't get anything done due to laziness and lamenting the fact that I have no one to blame but myself.
This is pretty much how I feel:
I don't know if I got my "Nobody cares!" line from this WoW item, or if seeing it merely reinforced something I'd already come up with myself. There's a line in one of my stories--which predates my knowledge of this WoW item--where a guy says, "Well, the good thing is, nobody cares," when the main character informs him that he's not exactly a morning person.
The fact is, nobody is going to get on my case if I don't get anything done today. I'm going to feel kind of lazy, but even I don't care that damn much; if I did, I'd have more motivation than I do.
I suppose this is a symptom of depression, but I don't feel depressed. (0-10? 1, maybe. Maybe.) I actually don't feel bad; just tired.
* * *
I've been reading the To Aru Kagaku no Railgun manga over on Mangareader.net.
...it does not exactly inspire confidence in the translation when the romanization of the title is wrong. The translators romanized it as To Aru Kagaku no Choudenjibou, totally ignoring the furigana over the kanji that comprise the last word. You're supposed to read that kanji as "Railgun"; that's why there are little katakana characters over it spelling out REERUGAN, damn it.
Furigana: since there are about 5,000 kanji but only about 2,000 are required for fluent reading, there are many words that a Japanese person with average reading competence won't know how to read. In these cases, the words will have moji (characters from the two phonetic alphabets, hiragana and katakana) printed over them to tell the reader how to read the words. It's done all the damn time.
Okay, it's another case of translator stupidity, I guess.
My favorite example is the Maison Ikkoku final movie, where Ikuko refers to Godai as "Godai onii-san", which means "older brother Godai", but the translators heard "Godai oni-san", which they translated as "Godai the devil". In 1995 I could hear that double vowel; it was damn clear to me even though my total command of Japanese consisted of about a dozen words.
Sure, the conventional reading of those kanji is "choudenjibou", but take a gander at the cover and tell me that you can't see the furigana, which I've circled in black for the convenience of my non-Japanese-reading readers: