New Year, New Congress, Same Bullshit!

New Year, New Congress, Same Bullshit!

January 3, 2019, marked the formation of the 116th US Congress and despite all the new congresspeople who ran on a progressive platform, Medicare for all, $15/hr federal minimum wage, free college etc, only three of these ‘progressives’ voted against the Pay-Go bill that includes a budget neutral rule, which would stop any vote on bills that are not backed by a “how we will pay for it” plan of action.

The obvious answer to how we are going to fund the progressive agenda, remove all the corporate tax loopholes from the tax code, even without repealing the Republicans 2017 tax bill, that would provide hundreds of billions of dollars for progressive, dare I say socialist programs. However, we know that the Democratic leadership will not allow that to happen, as regardless of whether a congressperson has a (D) or an (R) after their name, they are all paid off by the same corporate interests, this is a stonewall fact!

Back to Pay-Go and the progressives that voted for the Democrats’ rules for the House, which included Pay-Go. If these people were true progressives, they would never have voted for such a rules package when it goes against the platform which they ran on. Only three progressive Democrats voted against the new house rules, Ro Khanna (CA), Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY) and Tulsi Gabbard (HI).

After voting “yes” to the rules package, Pramila Jayapal (WA) has put forward legislation to repeal Pay-Go. I believe this to be a face-saving exercise after criticism for voting for a bill that creates a massive stumbling block to progressive priorities. Once something has been incorporated into the house rules, it’s very hard to overturn. We know that Nancy Pelosi and the Democratic leadership have zero interest in the progressive agenda, despite the widespread public support for such programs as Medicare for all.

After the congressional elections, I did wonder how long it would take for the incoming class of 2019 to become corrupted. In a system where being corrupt is the norm and the only way to survive past a single term, it would be hard to turn down the money. I’m pretty sure that if Koch (I Live in Kansas) came knocking on my door offering hundreds of thousands, or even millions of dollars, I would sure as hell take the money to make my family’s life better, and I suspect that most people would do the same.

After so many “progressive” congresspeople voted for something that makes pushing the progressive agenda harder, the jury is out on how progressive these new congresspeople really are. introducing legislation after the fact is not good enough, progressives need to fight for the cause from day one, as didn’t you know “progressive” is an alternative word for “communist”? a “fact” pushed by the right-wing.

Moving onto HR-1, the For The People Act, which is a bill that will supposedly take corporate money out of politics, increase ethics accountability in Congress, restore the voting rights act and eliminate gerrymandering. Which, let’s be frank, is utter bullshit, none of the incumbents want corporate money out of politics. How can a corrupt government possibly vote for a bill that would eliminate their main source of income, allowing these multi-term congresspeople to become multi-millionaires? I will be extremely happy to eat my words, should I be proven wrong, but I doubt that I will have to do so.

This bill is nothing more than lip-service to the people of America. The majority of Americans want an end to corruption in our government at the federal and local state level. Nancy Pelosi and the leadership of the Democratic party know there is no way in Hell this would pass the Republican-controlled Senate during the next two years. The objective is to make themselves look good in the eyes of voters, while not pushing for actual change in the way our government, who I remind you are public servants, is run.

I have lived in the USA for 10 years; and those 10 years has taught me that the opening line of the US constitution, “we, the people” is a fallacy in this time. Our congresspeople and senators do not, and will not ever do what is best for their constituents, because they are being paid handsomely by their corporate overlords to do their bidding, which is contradictory to what is best for the American people. The Democrats are Republican light, there is no clear line in which Democrats differ from Republicans.

Meanwhile, upto 800,000 federal workers are still working without pay or have been furloughed because of the man-child, Donald J. Trump refusing to sign any governmental funding agreement unless he gets billions of dollars for his pointless southern border wall. The orange one has even suggested using “national emergency” legislation to bypass congress to get funding for his wall. If there is a national emergency happening, ground zero is the White House, where rules and laws seemingly go to die.

Trump also went on the record, saying that the government shutdown could continue for months, or even years if the Democrats don’t fund his increasingly unpopular border wall. Federal workers can not wait for months, and definitely not years without pay, they’ll have to move onto other jobs. I find it disgraceful that congresspeople, senators and the White House have excluded themselves from the shutdown, so they still get paid, while people who cannot afford to lose a weeks pay, suffer extreme financial hardship.

Don’t believe me, check out first-hand stories from federal workers that have been furloughed or are working for free, on Twitter, #ShutdownStories, not forgetting that this is the third shutdown in a year.

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