Reality Check: All Hail The Super Committee! James Campion November 23, 2011 Columns The Super Committee is in control. By now you know their names; if not, look them up—six Republicans and six Democrats—half of which represent the House and the other half, the Senate. They are lawmakers, members of the United States Congress. They have been tasked with pulling together what amounts to four years of wrangling over a federal budget. The democrats kicked it over to the Republicans, who then kicked it to… The Super Committee! The first of its kind; it is indeed a committee. And the super part? Well, that just puts the pressure on. Cost cutting. Revenue increasing. Debt reducing. Job creating. If the chosen few fail to cut at least $1.5 trillion from the current cost to run the business of government over a 10-year period by Nov. 23, then it triggers a draconian scourge upon both houses; slashing of entitlements, slicing of the military industrial complex. The bloat and gluttony of our federal system eviscerated. The Super Committee is in control. So why don’t we hear more about this? Where is the public debate, so prevalent in the highly-charged show biz flail-about Congress staged during the fabricated Debt Ceiling Crisis? Where is the name-calling, demagoguery, the desperate pleas to save our children and honor our forefathers? Where are the attack ads and lobbying fisticuffs? Threats? Grandstanding? Bitching like whining rat-faced jack-offs? Where is the politics? Oh, lord, the politics! This is it, folks. The big decision, the down-and-dirty face-the-facts, pay-the-piper, adults-in-the-room hard choices we’ve been promised. Ingenuity. Compromise. Steadfast determination to transform, manipulate, rescue our great nation from itself. The Super Committee is in control. Yet, on a daily bases we hear one dumbass comment after the other from Herman Cain, a dim-witted pizza salesman lifted to the brink of Everyman Savior by the spectacularly naïve; a private sector hero, the straight talkin’ charmer who ain’t no politician, bub! Shit, Cain may make for great sound bites and appears fairly more serious, if not half as idiotic, as Donald Trump, but has as much chance of becoming President of the United States as the now seven or eight women who claim he treated them like speakeasy cocktail waitresses. Trust me, Herman Cain has no power, no fucking power to affect a scintilla of your life. The Super Committee, however, does. In fact, the guy who is actually President is not even in the country as I write this. That last sentence may be considered by some to be perspective. In Washington, they call it Tuesday. May this be a warning to those who yammer on incoherently about how the President and his “policies” and influence, whether it’s this guy or the last guy, have a glint of the authority that rests in our legislative branch. It holds all the cards, bubba, and it makes the rules. Only Lincoln and maybe the half-mad Andrew Jackson before him ignored the might of the U.S. Congress. Reagan was smart, he goosed around with Congress. This is how the Gipper got things done, until the Iran-Contra gambit. Kind of left Congress out of that wild ride, but soon he wised up, just in time to avoid impeachment. Nixon didn’t care. He was gone in 14 months. Bill Clinton wagged his finger and became only the second President handed a writ of impeachment from Congress. There have been a lot of head honchos over at the executive branch turned away with hat in hand—pretty much all of them at one point or another. Large mouths and dead weight in the shadow of the Capitol rotunda. Make no mistake; Congress is the big daddy of this fancy republic. There was a Continental Congress long before its glorious body begged George Washington to figurehead all the hoopla. Those guys walked the long walk and have the statues to prove it. And they made sure that only the American people are more powerful than Congress; they can send them packing and bring in a new crowd. The President? Ha! Even the Big Time ones like FDR had to play nice. Congress makes war. Congress makes law. Congress sets economic and social structures. Amendments? You got it, Congress. And now, gulp! Congress has itself a Super Committee! Holy shit, The Super Committee is in control. Ask Newt Gingrich about the hefty weight of Congress. He was Speaker of the House once. He had a gavel and a Contract with America and he scared the living shit out of the President of the United States. After 1994, you would have thought Bill Clinton, thanks to a bleating soulless toad like Dick Morris, who was always for sale back in the ‘90s and now finds the time and the gall to write books about ideological integrity, was the second coming of Calvin Coolidge. Now Gingrich is running for President and can’t get anyone who doesn’t hate Mitt Romney to validate his parking. Ask Nancy Pelosi. She ran amok on Barack Obama’s good name and outrageous poll numbers; slap-dashing pork and earmarks all over the big-deal American Recovery Act until no one had a clue what the hell it was recovering and for what America. And then there is the National Health Care fiasco, which was lock-stock-and-barreled into law with about a third, if that, of what the President had campaigned on, proposed and backed. Let me ask you this; you think all that neo-con bullshit the Cheney/Rumsfeld cabal was whipping up would have gotten out of the dock if it weren’t for Congress handing them a blank check? Ask Hillary Clinton. That vote only cost her the Presidency. And this Congress? The 112th edition is a hell gate. Nothing that gets in has a hoot in Hades of getting out with a shred of decency left on it. These fuckers screwed the first responders of 9/11, booted veterans and held up the very integrity of the nation’s credit on a whim. Only the most untouchable government body would roll up a massive bill and then force itself not to pay it on principle. As I write this, there is a report coming from Capitol Hill that frozen pizza is now legally considered a vegetable. Next up, whiskey is a vitamin. It is an insane asylum up there, and now they have erected some kind of interminable power vacuum that even trumps an already Napoleonic sense of command. The Super Committee is in control. Sort of. When the committee is done being super, whatever comes out of it will have to get through the very Congress that stumble-bummed the damn thing into Super Committee in the first place, where it most assuredly will be masticated and spat out in a mutated gob of legalese. But that doesn’t matter to Congress. Even in failure there is the obligatory do-over, as already there are voices suggesting, nay, demanding that there will be no triggered draconian cut-a-thon. They’ll just whip up a bill, pass it into law, and presto-change-o, we’re back in business. But, hey, it never gets a chance without the Super Committee. The Super Committee is in control. James Campion is the Managing Editor of The Reality Check News & Information Desk and the author of Deep Tank Jersey, Fear No Art, Trailing Jesus and Midnight For Cinderella. 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