Thursday, January 22, 2015

3/5s of Texas Senate unlikely to approve of this blog post

-- Chris Hooks, Texas Observer, on the demise of the two-thirds rule in the state's upper chamber yesterday.  Just go read the whole thing.  The Chron has the fallout.

Democrats strongly opposed the change, arguing it will bring unintended consequences: Instead of 21 votes, just 19 will be required to cancel public hearings on bills, to waive public notice of committee meetings, to waive cost estimates known as "fiscal notes" that are required on bills, even to waive a rule that now requires bills to be held for 24 hours before they come to a vote of the full Senate.

"It will also be easier to waive a rule that bars lobbyists from the (Senate) floor, that allows us to take action against a senator who accepts bribes," said state Sen. Kirk Watson, D-Austin. 

Yep, elections have consequences, and those who sat the last one out are in the canoe going over the falls along with everybody else.  Things will just have to get a whole lot worse before they get better.  If po' folks and women and minorities are willing to let old, white, property-owning slaveholders conservatives do all the voting for everybody, then they get what they deserve.  On some level the whining about "my vote doesn't matter" is just a poor excuse for being too stupid/lazy to pay attention to what's important.

We're waiting for 71% of Texans to figure out they're getting fucked over, and I'm afraid they may not ever do so, no matter how much they get pestered with proof.  Idiocracy is turning into a documentary, and not five centuries in the future but right before our eyes.

If someone who doesn't vote finds themselves in jail because they took out a payday loan they couldn't afford, or finds herself pregnant with no option other than giving birth, or slowly realizes that the school his kids go to is shit, or suddenly notices that everybody at the mall is walking around strapped with a gun, then why should I care about those concerns?  Why should I spend my spare time in the spring and summer and fall calling them and visiting their house, begging them to vote?  Why should I care more about them than they do for themselves, their families, their children?

Let them go play games on their phones or work three jobs at $7 dollars and change an hour or wear a $200 jersey to a $150 football game (that's on the low end, mind you).  They want to take a stand about deflated footballs as if that's the most pressing national issue today?  Go ahead on.  The worm has turned for everybody now.  Who am I to object if they want to dress up in a different costume every weekend and play pretend?  Maybe that is better than focusing on what's going on in the real world, after all.  

It's okay by me if they think they need both a Redbox and a Netflix subscription AND went to see American Sniper last weekend (to cheer).  Come the next war, it won't be any of my kids having to fight it because they have no other career options.  It's a free country, somebody said.  PT Barnum was right about the birth rates of suckers.  It's on them to figure out who's the screwer and the screwee, and which one they are.

On a more humorous note...

--Alan Grayson and his ex are, ah, in the news for all the wrong reasons.

A trial to determine whether U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson's wife committed bigamy when she wed the congressman has been delayed because she required emergency surgery to remove breast implants.

I would have thought that Grayson was more intelligent than to have married someone like that.

-- A bill to ban abortion after twenty weeks in the United States (you know, same as it is now in Texas) failed in Congress last night because some Republicans objected to the rape clause it contained.

But they ran into objections from women and other Republican lawmakers unhappy that the measure limited exemptions for victims of rape or incest to only those who had previously reported those incidents to authorities.

The rebellious lawmakers argued that that would put unfair pressure on women who often feel shame or fear retaliation if they report those assaults.

In a complication GOP leaders were not able to resolve, they then ran into objections from anti-abortion groups and lawmakers when they discussed eliminating the reporting requirements.

See, it's the old "honest rape", "legitimate rape", forcible rape definitions bunching them up.  If a 12-year-old gets pregnant from being raped by her uncle but doesn't tell the police about it, then she cannot get an abortion after 20 weeks.  That's what they got stuck on.  Really.  Some GOPers actually think that's wrong.

It turns on a very simple premise for conservatives: it is God's will that she conceived after being raped, and defiance of God's will not to give birth to that child.  Strangely enough, there seem to be some Republicans elected to Congress in 2014 who disagree.

Elections. Have. Consequences.  I think I can get a supermajority to support that.

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