Tuesday, April 26, 2005

FILIBUSTERS AND OTHER RUMINATIONS

My, oh my. This one got a little long, didn't it? I knew lunch hours were good for something. LOL

 

Personally, I think the filibuster is a great tool. Oregon was the home of one of the great filibusterers of the last century, Senator Wayne Morse. He was one of the few senators to vote against the Gulf of Tonkin resolution that helped expand America’s role in Viet Nam. I suspect if the senator were still with us he would be hoppin’ mad.

 

Several things are making me really nervous. First, the personalizing of political appointments. The ambassador to the UN is not representing the president. He is representing America. The judges are not the president’s judges. They are doing the people’s business. The last time I checked there was no quota system for judicial appointments. In other words, so many judges for the Catholics, so many for the Methodists, so many for the Hispanics, and so on. In my opinion, this can only lead to chaos and more fragmentation. Oh, and if these gentlemen are personal representatives of the president. HE can pay their wages out of his pocket. If I have to pay for ‘em, I want a say, through my representatives, whether they are fit to represent me.

 

Second, the blurring of the separation of church and state. I feel that these protections are as much for the protection of the churches as the protection of the state. Once the church climbs in bed with Caesar, she’s apt to find that Caesar hogs the blankets and the remote, leaves crumbs in the bed and wants to leave the windows open all night no matter how cold it gets. The radical religious right will get dropped like a hot potato when their support is no longer needed.

 

 

Oh, and a word to the pastors of these Mega churches. It’s hard for you folks to remember, looking out on your huge congregations, that you are not the majority in this country. You’re not even the majority of the folks who call themselves Protestants. Personally, I have no desire to belong to a church that has more members than the town I grew up in. Oakridge Oregon-population at the time, about 3,500. And since you’ve managed to create a safe little world where you never run into anything or anyone that disagrees with your view of the universe, you seem to have gotten the idea that the larger world has to conform to your comfort zone. Not gonna happen. No way, no how, no sir.

 

Third, and the most scary, the idea that the law is whatever the president or congress says it is on a particular day. This implies that if they change their minds tomorrow then the law changes. That is a very scary, very radical idea. The English speaking world has been working toward the idea that the law is interpreted by the judge since the time of Henry II of England. And he parked his royal pants on the throne in the 1100's. It isn't perfect and it still needs work, but it beats the alternative.

 

An independent judicial branch is absolutely vital to the survival of our government. What keeps getting overlooked is that Republican presidents appointed most of the judges they’re screaming about. There seems to be something very liberating about knowing that you can’t be kicked off the bench as long as you keep your ethical nose clean.

 

I believe what I’m trying to say here is that WE are the government. When you scrape away all the barnacles that have grown on the beauracracy over the centuries nothing has changed. Everybody in Washington from the President on down is just the hired help. I do believe it's long past the time to remind the whole sorry lot of that little truth 

 

Oh, and another thought for the day. “Where there is one, there is a majority of one.” I truly believe that our government was set up to protect all those majorities of one

4 comments:

oceanmrc said...

Well said.  You've hit the nail on the head with each point.  

Isn't it odd how the megachurches can simultaneously feel that (1) they are the majority and (2) they are miserably persecuted?

On Diane Rehm today it was pointed out that 60 of Clinton's nominees (some for district court, not all for appellate) were blocked by Republicans simply refusing to let them out of committee.  No one suggested then that we overhaul all the rules.

lisaram1955 said...

You are right, right, right (or should I say, "correct, correct, correct?"  The Christian right is getting WAY too big for its britches.  And, as you say, they will be dropped like a hot rock when their support is no longer important.

The "wartime" psyche of the American electorate seems to run toward giving the executive more power than he actually merits.  It worked with Roosevelt...but then, he wasn't an idiot.  I'll bet he could actually pronounce "nuclear."  Lisa  :-]  http://journals.aol.com/mlraminiak/ComingtotermswithMiddleAge/  

krobbie67 said...

Wow! I wish my lunch hours were so productive! Great essay!!! :-) ---Robbie

hestiahomeschool said...

I want a church where everyone knows each other....I am happy that the church Tabby is exploring is less than a block and a half away.  Church is not meant to be theatre...it is community.