The Supercommittee: Too Lame to Fail

The Congressional supercommittee issued a statement announcing that members couldn’t reach a bipartisan agreement on cutting the Federal deficit, automatically triggering $1.2 trillion in across-the-board cuts starting in 2013.The official statement is posted on this site.It isn’t very long, you’ve probably sent drunken emails to your ex saying how over them you are.

If you read it, you’ll see that most of it is taken up with the kind of self-congratulatory back patting only a contortionist is capable of.  At a time when the nation and the world were waiting for some sign that the leaders of the largest and most powerful economy on the planet could work together to stabilize that economy and provide safe haven for the hopes and dreams of people too afraid to allow hopes and dreams into their heart, Congress came back with, “…we got nuthin’”  This is beyond incompetence, it is reckless indifference.  Their nod to Thanksgiving was a nice touch; we don’t have to buy the turkey because they already gave us the bird.

So what’s Congress’ problem? Lack of immediate feedback with repercussions. Being in Congress means never having to say you’re sorry; there’s no penalty for being a fuck up.  If your teacher asks for a report on restoration comedy and you draw a picture of a bunny instead you get an F. If your boss asks for projected sales figures and you bring in a bunch of cookies you made yourself you get fired. But if you’re in Congress and you start a war with Kansas, your golden parachute opened the moment you were elected and you float that thing into a soft landing on a fluffy pile of money while Wichita is burning.  I don’t actually know if a pile of money is fluffy, but I imagine landing on it is better than having security escort you out of the building while you try to figure out a way to tell your spouse you got jacked.

Being elected to public office is a gateway to personal wealth and, all to often, the only way rich white kids can make it out of the lake-view ghetto.  Breaths there a frat boy whose mother didn’t tuck him in at night and tell him, “You can be anything you want to be, but for God’s sake get elected to something at least once so your father and I don’t have to worry about you.”?  Not only that, but most of the members of congress have the kind of money a lot of us can only dream of, and people like Boehner and Pelosi aren’t part of the 1%.  No.  They’re part of the .001 %.  And Kerry has the kind of money where he could kill someone on live TV and still get away with it.

So congress has, again, failed to meet its fundamental responsibility- design law.  They should be given due process and thrown from office, if not from a moving train.  At the very least, pay should be tied to performance with quarterly reviews.  Of course, that’s not realistic.  How about we make the newly elected serve their first year by working in McDonald’s or the checkout line at a grocery store.  Let them see how the other 99.999% live.

Or, we could follow Alec Baldwin’s lead and leave the country.  I’m heading to Costa Rica where pretty girls are everywhere and cocaine is free.