Thursday, January 06, 2011

On Reading the Constitution

The new Republican leadership of the House of Representatives in a nod to their Tea Party base is beginning the new Congress with a reading of the Constitution. I watched news coverage this morning of this reading - Democrats (determined not to be out-Constitutioned by Republicans) are participating in this spectacle as well. House members each read a few lines, one after the other, for about 15 seconds. It is estimated that this will take about three hours. (It actually took about an hour and a half and even Republicans left the chambers after about an hour of this performance......).

And apparently they are not reading the entire Constitution; they are reading an edited version not including those pesky reminders of slavery or prohibition, for example. Their redacted version of the Constitution parallels their redacted view of American History as well, I suspect. Texas has removed Thomas Jefferson from its history books, for example.

It is amusing to me that the Republicans are simultaneously plotting to amend more of the "peskier" aspects of the Constitution they don't like all the while posturing themselves as the great defenders of that document. They don't like, for example, that the Supreme Court is a separate arm of government empowered to interpret the Constitution. How contradictory is that?

It is all strangely disturbing. Prefacing their soon to occur attacks on the American unionized worker, the uninsured, Muslims, Mexicans, and the middle class, teachers, police officers, firefighters, the environment and education all the while enriching Wall Street, and Corporations, and the wealthiest of the wealthiest, with this spectacle of reading a redacted version of the Constitution is such pervasive cynical and hypocritical PR that I can't believe they'll get away with it.

That 15 seconds about reflects the Republican attention span to the plight of middle class working families, the millions of people who have lost their homes, the tens of millions of unemployed Americans, and the 50 million Americans who have no health insurance.

That 15 seconds also about reflects the length of time it took Republicans to break their campaign “promises” with which they hoodwinked gullible Tea Partiers with their phony populist rhetoric into voting for the Republican Corporate/Wall Street agendas.

Perhaps enough Americans will realize the “bait and switch” that took place in the last Congressional Election. Perhaps 15 seconds will be the duration of Republican credibility.

We’ll see……………


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