Open Thread

One of the arguments made against term limits is that by thrusting inexperienced people into legislatures every few years, we’d really be turning over power to the un-elected legislative staffers. These staffers, with their years of legislative experience, would simply buffalo the legislator’s into voting for whatever the staff wanted. Ok, fair enough.

How is this different from what we have now?

Do you think any of the career politicians in Congress actually read and understand the bills they vote on?

What this thought has led me to is a wonder as to whether or not institutions actually work? Outside of dogmatic governed religious bodies (most notably, of course, the Catholic Church – though you’ll note various problems there), I don’t think they really do. The only one I can think of which had at least some long-term track record of success was the German General Staff. And it cost Germany two World Wars. But you do have to hand it to them – over those two World Wars they squeezed out the maximum amount of military power Germany could provide and applied it to Germany’s enemies in the most effective way possible – thus accounting for the rather lopsided Kraut to Non-Kraut casualty ratio (not counting Holocaust, it is like 5 non-Krauts killed for every Kraut they killed). But if that is our standard of “working”, I’d rather have more failures.

I’m not quite sure what we do here – but there has to be turnover, of that I am sure. As we can’t apply dogma to non-religious bodies (we have no one who would be universally respected to define dogma and thus heresy), the only defense mechanism I can think of is term limits. And to answer the charge that this would leave the permanent officials in charge – they have to have term limits, too.

It is one thing when a corporate bureaucracy becomes ossified, quite another when a government bureaucracy does. Because the government bureaucracy can jail and kill us; so, lots more serious. Just as we must find a means of ejecting politicians from office, so we’ll have to find a way to eject bureaucrats from office. Maybe we’ll eventually have to enact an amendment which says that you can’t serve, elected or appointed, in the federal government for more than 20 years?

Here’s a story saying that NYC cops may be opting for retirement at the first opportunity. I’ve seen other stories like this. Bottom line, if I was a cop in a blue jurisdiction, I’d be out, pension or no pension. You know for certain that the police and government officials will not back you up and if something you do winds up in a viral video then regardless of the facts of the case, you will be fired and very likely prosecuted. Just not worth it. And even if you think you’ll just turn a blind eye in certain areas of town (as is happening – in “George Floyd Square” in Minneapolis, it is getting very wild west), you still run the risk of having to make an arrest of someone non-white and each time you do that, you are at risk of being the next viral video. I can’t see any pension being worth that risk. And I don’t see a real way out of this – the blue city officials have staked out the position that BLM/Antifa are right and the cops are wrong. I don’t think you can re-cork that bottle and now say that the cops are right.

Joe’s first speech to Congress will be to empty seats. GOPers should place cardboard cutouts of themselves in the seats just to highlight the absurdity of this corrupt, senile, old fool being installed in the White House.

The children of Chernobyl aren’t showing any significant damage. Not really surprised – the radiation levels are probably set much higher than public safety really requires.

The Washington Post would like you to know that Senator Scott (R-SC) isn’t black enough.