Arizona Sing-A-Long: Reading is Fun

Reading might be fun, but unfortunately due to our fetid schools no one is taught to do it any more. Especially when they are Democrats.

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  • This is something new?

    In his award-winning film, Fahrenheit 9/11, Michael Moore showed that members of Congress hadn't read the "Patriot Act" before voting to approve it.

    The Patriot Act wasn't the first time, and the Arizona immigration law won't be the last time, when politicians rely on their staffs to let them know what's in a piece of legislation.

  • In reply to CrazyLiberal:

    Now we've found something we agree on IF, that is, we can agree that our representatives should not be voting on something they've never bothered to read?

  • In reply to publiusforum:

    Well we're not going to agree completely, but on the broader point I think we do.

    As I said, "politicians rely on their staffs" to summarize legislation for them. And given the complex language in many bills, often required to help ensure it will be interpreted as expected by the courts, I think this can be a better use of an official's time than reading every word of a bill.

    The key words are "can be". My guess is that most corporate executives do not read every piece of paper they are called upon to sign. They rely on trusted subordinates to summarize things so the execs can make decisions - and those subordinates may be shown the door if the summaries they provide are defective in some way. Ultimately, the execs themselves should be held liable, of course.

    The same standard should apply to government. Let's have our elected officials make the best use of their time by relying on trusted aides for legislative summaries. But let's hold them accountable when they don't seem to understand what's in a bill.

    Of course, even after gaining an understanding of what's in the Arizona law, it's possible for people to disagree about its impact.

  • In reply to CrazyLiberal:

    You are 100% right that pols rely on their staff to write and understand legilslation they sign.

    But, to me that is one of the ways our system has been warped and has gone astray. What we used to have is a Congress that concerned themselves about legislation and broad principles (as well as political machination), but now we have representatives that only worry about the next election as their staffs do everything else. We are a government run by staffs not our elected officials.

    In my opinion, it should be a rule that ALL members of a Congressman's staff should be fired and sent home when the office changes hands. All too often (especially when that office stays in the same party) staffs stay on from one politician to the next.

    But, one of the main reasons this is all the case is because our reps add on so much garbage to a bill that has nothing to do with the main bill. So many addons and earmarks. It makes it impossible to even know what IS in the bill even for the staffs.

    Oh, and on your last paragraph: I agree on that in principle. After all, opinions can legitimately differ on many things until reality proves the final word.

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