Category: Politics

What Did Saunders Get Wrong About How A Bill Is Passed In Mr. Smith?

For AP Students who were’t paying attention during the movie and who are googling what mistakes Sauders made when describing how a bill becomes a law to Jeff Smith in Mr. Smith Goes To Washington.

The Transcript:

JEFFERSON
(laughing a little)
Oh—dinner. Yes. Well, I’m hungry,
too. I thought—maybe—we could have
something brought in—you know, like
big executives who eat off trays.
You see, we’ve got to light into
this and get it going—

SAUNDERS
Uh-huh. Well, dinner comes in on
trays. We’re executives. And we light
into this. It is dawn. Your Bill is
ready. You go over there and introduce
it—

JEFFERSON
How?

SAUNDERS
You get to your feet in the Senate
and present it. Then you take the
Bill and put it in a little box—
like a letter box—on the side of
the rostrum. Just hold it between
thumb and forefinger and drop it in.
Clerks read it and refer it to the
right committee—

JEFFERSON
Committee, huh?

SAUNDERS
Committee.

JEFFERSON
Why?

SAUNDERS
That’s how Congress—or any large
body—is run. All work has to be
done by committee.

JEFFERSON
Why?

SAUNDERS
Look—committees—small groups of
Senators—have to sift a Bill down—
look into it—study it—and report
to the whole Senate. You can’t take
a Bill no one knows anything about
and discuss it among ninety-six men.
Where would you get?

JEFFERSON
Yes, I see that.

SAUNDERS
Good. Where are we?

JEFFERSON
Some committee’s got it.

SAUNDERS
Yes. They give it to a *sub*-
committee, where they really give it
a going over—hold hearings—call in
people and ask questions—then report
back to the bigger committee—where
it’s considered some more, changed,
amended, or whatever. Days are going
by, Senator. Days—weeks. Finally,
they think it’s quite a Bill. It
goes over to the House of
Representatives for debate and a
vote. *But* it’s got to wait its
turn on the calendar—

JEFFERSON
Calendar?

SAUNDERS
That’s the order of business. Your
Bill has to stand *way* back there
in line unless the Steering Committee
decides it is important enough to be—

JEFFERSON
What’s that?

SAUNDERS
What?

JEFFERSON
The Steering Committee.

SAUNDERS
(depressed)
Do you really think we’re getting
anywhere.

JEFFERSON
Yes. Sure. What’s a Steering
Committee?

SAUNDERS
A committee of the majority party
leaders. They decide when a Bill is
important enough to be moved up toward
the head of the list—

JEFFERSON
*This* is.

SAUNDERS
Pardon me—*this* is. Where are we
now?

JEFFERSON
We’re over in the House.

SAUNDERS
Yes. House. More amendments—more
changes—and the Bill goes back to
the Senate—and *waits its turn on
the calendar again*. The Senate
doesn’t like what the house did to
the Bill. They make more changes.
The House doesn’t like *those*
changes. Stymie. So they appoint men
from each house to go into a huddle
called a conference and battle it
out. Besides that, all the lobbyists
interested give cocktail parties for
and against—government departments
get in their two cents’ worth—cabinet
members—budget bureaus—embassies.
Finally, if the Bill is alive after
all this vivisection, it comes to a
vote. Yes, sir—the big day finally
arrives. And—nine times out of ten,
they vote it down.
(Taking a deep breath)
Are you catching on, Senator?

JEFFERSON
Yes. Shall we start on it right now—
or order dinner first?

SAUNDERS
(mouth drops open)
Pardon?

JEFFERSON
I said—shall we get started *now*
or—

SAUNDERS
(weakly)
Yes—sure. Why not?
(Then, very tired)
You don’t mind if I take the time to
get a pencil?

She turns mechanically and heads for the outer office.

_______


Here’s a good reference for how a bill becomes a law.

Remember, that omitting a detail is not necessarily a mistake. Saunders was summarizing.

February 5, 2015 |  Category: Politics
Posted By The Original Golf Blogger

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Obama’s Job’s Speech

While watching President Obama’s jobs speech, I kept thinking that it’s like he sliced the first drive out of bounds, reloaded for a mulligan and then put the second ball in the same place.

September 9, 2011 |  Category: Politics
Posted By The Original Golf Blogger

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Pot’s Carbon Footprint

It’s a delicious irony that the pot smoking, long haired, maggot infested hippies who worry overmuch about man made climate change themselves hold much of the blame.

According to the Department of Energy:

The analysis performed in this study finds that indoor Cannabis production results in energy expenditures of $5 billion each year, with electricity use equivalent to that of 2 million average U.S. homes. This corresponds to 1% of national electricity consumption or 2% of that in households. The yearly greenhouse-gas pollution (carbon dioxide, CO2 ) from the electricity plus associated transportation fuels equals that of 3 million cars. Energy costs constitute a quarter of wholesale value.

And California is by far the worst offender!

This stuff is just too good to make up.

via Freakonomics.

April 25, 2011 |  Category: Politics
Posted By The Original Golf Blogger

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A Hundred And Twenty Years Of Incorrect Reporting On Climate Change

Pajamas Media has an interesting article on how the media consistently gets it wrong on climate change.

Here’s a great paragraph, illustrating why I refuse to believe the climatologists this time around after being fooled into thinking in the 1970s that there was going to be a new ice age:

On November 15, 1969, Science News quoted meteorologist Dr. J. Murray Mitchell Jr.: “How long the current cooling trend continues is one of the most important problems of our civilizations. … If the cooling continues for another 200 to 300 years the Earth could be plunged into an ice age.” On January 11, 1970, the Washington Post reported: “Colder Winters Held Dawn of New Ice Age. … Better get a good grip on your long johns, cold weather haters, the worst may be yet to come.” Fortune reported in February 1974: “It is the root cause of a lot of that unpleasant weather around the world and they warn that it carries the potential for human disasters of unprecedented magnitude.” (Sound familiar?) On June 24, Time wrote: “Climatological Cassandras are becoming increasingly apprehensive, for the weather aberrations they are studying may be the harbinger of another ice age.” Newsweek said on April 28, 1975: “The Earth’s climate seems to be cooling down. … [Meteorologists were] Almost unanimous in the view that the trend will reduce agricultural productivity for the rest of the century.”

So it looked like we were on the precipice of a new ice age with cataclysmic consequences for the world. Then, unannounced to all, the Pacific Ocean began to warm again, and so did the Earth’s temperature.


The bottom line. The earth gets cooler. The earth gets warmer. Thus it has always been. Thus it always will be.

The last line in the article is most interesting: There has been no evidence of warming in the last ten years. This goes to a second core belief of mine: that government institutions, research scientists and the media will cook the numbers to suit their immediate purposes. The global warming types say that there is a warming trend over the last 25 years or so. The latest from NASA says that lakes have warmed over the last 25 years. I believe those dates are chosen very specifically to prove their point. In contrast, what would the numbers say if we looked only at the last five, or last ten. Or what would they say if we studied the last 50? They choose the data to suit their hypothesis.

Global Warming Scientific Method: Begin with a conclusion. Gather data. Throw out data which does not support the conclusion. Ridicule those who challenge data.

December 6, 2010 |  Category: Politics
Posted By The Original Golf Blogger

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Call For A Constitutional “Repeal” Amendment

An article in the Daily Caller outlines what I think is one of the best ideas I’ve heard in a long time: A Repeal Amendment.

As proposed, it would read:

“Any provision of law or regulation of the United States may be repealed by the several states, and such repeal shall be effective when the legislatures of two-thirds of the several states approve resolutions for this purpose that particularly describe the same provision or provisions of law or regulation to be repealed.”

Thanks to the elastic and commerce clauses, the strong arm of the federal government has been encroaching for decades upon things that properly are the purview of the states. This would help to restore a great deal of the balance that the Founders intended.

You can visit The Repeal Amendment’s site here.

November 22, 2010 |  Category: Politics
Posted By The Original Golf Blogger

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