Most Read: Opinions

Join a Discussion

Weekly schedule, past shows

Tom Toles
Posted at 07:20 AM ET, 10/18/2011

Not working.

As the unemployed watch their lives, families and futures grind to an excruciating standstill, the sands of time are running directly into the gearbox of America. The country is crazy divided, but we have a government designed for a country that isn’t. All we have now is the ‘faction’ that terrified the foundering fathers. And the faction has set upon the government to turn slow into stopped. We no longer make things in this country, except new ways to disable the government. Brand new way: “We can’t legislate NOW, because there is an ELECTION coming that will settle everything.”

Meanwhile, did you happen to notice how the Senate changed from one thing to another, without announcement? The Senate used to be a part of government that passed laws. Once in a rare while, some Senators would decide to flout the convention of majority rule and filibuster a piece of legislation. This was controversial and high drama and we needed Jimmy Stewart to star in it. Then, without even a small-typeface announcement in the Congressional Record, the Senate became a body where EVERY SINGLE THING gets filibustered. Sixty votes is now somehow breezily reported as the way the Senate was designed to work. Wasn’t!

But that was just not enough gridlock. The GOP demanded more. Now we have a new rule. You cannot legislate before an election. Of course, it might be noted that there IS no election this year. No matter, there is one NEXT year. You can see where this is going. Same place the country is.

By  |  07:20 AM ET, 10/18/2011

 
Read what others are saying
     

    © 2011 The Washington Post Company