This post is actually a continuation of a conversation sparked by an anonymous comment that impugned my critical thinking ability by calling me names. Sticks and stones, yes I know, but still, it’s the most activity this site has seen in a month or two, so I figure it warrants a bit of discussion.
The topic was supposed to be John Roberts, but then it came down to the “Nuclear Option” after very little discussion. I made a comment to the effect of “I just find that the anti-nukers are an amusing bunch of people, unable to find the word compromise in their vocabulary.”
As an aside, the blog that sparked the original discussion, the Confederate Yankee, had a short post:
But back to my observation as to the lack of compromise, it’s true. The “Nuke Option” wouldn’t be on the table of the Dems in Congress weren’t being asses about losing the election last time around, and there’s no denying that. There’s a reason you don’t see Dems talking about judicial filibusters anymore – it’s not playing well with their constituents. People have the unfathomable feeling that we elected and hired these jokers to do something in Washington, and it wasn’t to prattle on about the instructions on the back of a shampoo bottle.
The facts, however, are clear. Judicial filibusters in the Senate are a rare thing, and they have never been used with such repetition and consistency as by the Democrats in this term of the Senate. Never. They just haven’t! You can spin it every which way, but you’re twisting the facts. The bottom line is that the filibuster wasn’t intended to be a tool to shut down the government. The problem in politics today is that every loophole is eventually found and then exploited to the point it becomes a drag on the government. It’s the nature of buracracy to be long and arduous, and when loopholes are found to make it more so, I think they should be closed.
I’m not the idiot on the right saying that judicial filibusters in the Senate should be eliminated in totality. There should be a limit on them, though. A number like three or five or two or some other single digit number under five. If anyone can do one at any time, we run the risk of a tyranny of the minority against the majority. Judicial filibusters are essentially mini-nukes in their own right. The real name of the Republican response to the filibuster problem should be called the “Anti-Nuclear Option” (or maybe Star Wars?).
As to John McCain, he’s quickly losing credibility in my eyes. Granted he’s a war hero, a many term Senator, and he’s probably Uma Thurman’s cousin to boot*, but he’s a camera whore, and he’ll say anything for or against the party if it gets him in front of more press. I can respect that if he’d come out and say that “Hey, America, I just love being on TV.” But he never proposes any conciliatory solutions, he just speaks out against EVERYTHING.
For that matter, I’ve not heard a viable solution from EITHER side regarding the so-called “Nuclear Option.” No one saying “we’ll change the rules to something that makes both sides happy.” No one saying “I’ll drop the issue if you will.” No one! Everyone speaks in polemic terms as if there were no option but to remove the opposite party from the face of the earth through genocidal means. Frankly, I’m sick of it.
Just like the Terry Shiavo thing. Just like the John Bolton thing. In fact, like every major issue that has come up in politics since the election – it’s all a matter of do or die, sometimes quite literally. Poltics is not a damn reality TV show. There are real do or die issues out there, but one person in South Florida’s slowly ending life isn’t one (until they push and prod it into a constitutional crisis – and then when it becomes a REAL issue of constitutionality, they leave it alone, unsolved). Whether one of our presidentially appointed diplomat’s idiocy is showing isn’t a do or die issue (they were just upset because someone who didn’t bother to hide his inbred opinions was getting a position when they had spent all that time learning how to hide their similarly idiotic opinions in diplomacy).
Seriously. Think about it. I hate to quote a stupid TV show for wisdom, but President Jed Bartlet on the West Wing said in one of his speeches that “..Most issues don’t have black and white answers, and the issues that do usually have bodycounts.” It’s true though, and with our oversimplified culture of the last 35 years or so, it’s either filibuster or nuke, it’s either put an outspoken moron in place or no one at all, it’s congressional hearings for one invalid or kill them without proper medical investigation. Does anyone remember what compromise was like?
* h/t to Chris Rock.