"That's just the way things are done."
How many times have you heard that in Washington?
Like with this whole Hurricane Sandy aid package -- the first tranche of which the House approved today.
"Sure there's pork in that $60 billion aid, but what's the big deal? That's just the way things are done."
Sometimes it's human nature to act like zombies. But it's Washington's nature to all but enshrine that behavior. To calmly have us accept what should be criminally asinine. Deliberately putting up for a vote an aid package you know is a sham. But because a lot of it isn't a sham, you vote for it anyway.
No. Not good. Not fair. Not right.
I think it insults all taxpayers when politicians try and divide taxpayers. When they tell you to your face, it's better to accept the grizzle in the fat than risk getting no beef at all.
Well, I have a beef with that. I have a beef with business as usual.
I have a beef with "we've always done things that way."
I have a beef with what they're saying when they say things that.
"We've always stolen and skimmed."
"We've always taken some off the top to feed our crony friends lurking at the bottom."
"We've always lied."
"We've always cheated."
"We've always used a tragedy to do something even more tragic."
"We've always screwed victims, in the name of helping victims."
Think of that when your heart tells you Sandy victims need money, but your brain discovers it's not just Sandy victims getting that money.
The millions going to planting trees in Ohio or expanding fisheries in Alaska or building new roofs on the Smithsonian in the capital.
That is what's criminal. That is what's callous. That is what's wrong.
My friends, it's easy to call John Boehner every name in the book for initially shelving a vote on this. But I say there's everything wrong with continuing business as usual on things like this.
Because if environmentalists are right and the very liberals bemoaning the holdup in needed hurricane relief right there'll be a lot more hurricanes and a lot more need for relief. Sixty billion for this storm. A hundred billion for the next storm? And the one after that? And after that?
It's time to address this. Using storms as an excuse for continuing to do this. To continue to steal and pad your friends' pockets than ever help rebuild damaged folks' lives. Under the guise of doing good, continuing to do bad. Continuing business as usual.
No. Not any more.
If indeed we're to see more of these big storms, then it's time we stop these big lies. It's time we hold politicians accountable to their word and aid to only its intended recipients.
I know people say what's a few hundred million or even a few billion in the scheme of things?
It's a scheme. It's the worst of things.
A storm is an act of God. Leave it to Congress to act so un-godly and think we're all just clueless. We're not.
The victims of Sandy deserve better as do those of future storms.
So, Washington, before you cut a check, cut the crap and do something "unusual."
Cut business as usual.