Congress is slow, and stuff.

Awhile ago I posted about Fantasy Congress and started a league for “Billy Ocean, Student Council Treasurer.” Just because you didn’t jump in then doesn’t mean you can’t now. Sure, you’ll be behind in points, but not by much. Why?

Because Congress does jack-all.

There hasn’t been any change in the scores in weeks (which means DJ Launchpad is still in the lead), which means Congress hasn’t done much. What do we pay them for?

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~ by mattbear on December 1, 2006.

5 Responses to “Congress is slow, and stuff.”

  1. That’s the point of Congress. The reason we have a giant Congress with slow procedures and two houses and divided powers and checks ‘n balances is because the Constitution is designed to prevent too much power in anyone’s hands. It leads to a frustratingly slow, conservative-minded, relatively stable system with many pitfalls.

  2. I disagree that the Constitution created a slow Congress. I think laziness, lobbyists, and polls create a slow Congress. Congress can be as fast and agile as they want to be, regardless of checks and balances. They just don’t want to be.

  3. I don’t believe the Constitution (which isn’t infallible anyway, so I’m ok with changing it if need be :-)) makes Congress necessarily slow. True, much of the slowness comes from rules adopted later. But much of the inefficiency in passing legislature on substantive issues is quite intentional. They can move quite fast on a declaration that today is “world beans day” or “World AIDS Day” (which it actually is) or whatnot, but bills that actually accomplish something- especially spending bills- inevitably lead to conflicts of interest that slow things down.

    And you pay them so that they’ll be less susceptible to bribes (supposedly). Man, maybe we really should stop that! 🙂

  4. There are reasons why the current Republican led-congress has been labelled the new “do-nothing” congress. Just as Bush holds the record for most vacation days taken by a standing president, the second session of the 109th congress holds the record for least days in legislative session (93).

    I highly recommend reading this Rolling Stone article: Time to Go! Inside the Worst Congress Ever.

    I have much higher hopes for (and expectations of) the Democrat-led 110th.

    Also, I recommend checking out Daily Kos’s Congressional Committees Project. Basically, people (myself included) are signing up to “adopt” a particular congressional subcommittee, track their meetings, hearings, and proposed legislation, keep the Wiki updated, and occasionally write reports for DKos on what they actually do. I’m learning quite a lot about how Congress functions by participating in this.

  5. Just signed up for Fantasy Congress. 🙂

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