My Irish Up: How about a poll on whether the earth is flat or round?

Mike Corrigan

Mike Corrigan

By Mike Corrigan

BN Columnist

Feb. 21, 2014 — House members today reiterated that they will not vote to raise the debt ceiling because there’s only so much they’re willing to do for $172,000 a year.

Cong. Useless Smith (R-Utah) said, “We just got through canceling the shutdown. That was a lot of work. And now they expect us to raise the debt ceiling, too? We just don’t act that precipitously in the House. I’m sure we'll need to see some more compromises before we vote. Not that we’ll vote to actually do something, even then, but it’s the principle of the thing.”

“Personally, I won’t agree to move on the debt ceiling until President Obama resigns from office,” said Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky. “That’s just the start of my demands. The man’s leadership is just too divisive. Look at this mess we’re in!”

President Obama said the Republicans should just raise the debt ceiling for the budget already agreed to, since that’s their job, and if they finally do that then perhaps he would compromise by getting Vice President Joe Biden to resign, instead. “In order to get the fiscal cliff and the sequester resolved, and to get the government re-opened,” the President noted, “I have had to agree to spending cuts and reductions. Recently, I was asked to apologize for being black and for having won the presidency by an even more surprising margin in 2012 than in 2008; so to move things along, I asked the public’s forgiveness for letting them elect me. Unless I find some real principles soon, there will remain very little for me to negotiate away.”

“No, no, no, if anything goes wrong, it’s on the Democrats. They’re the ones who find it so hard to compromise,” House Speaker John Boehner countered. “The failure of the Democrats to realize we don’t need government is the real issue here. My party has worked extremely hard for several decades now to make sure that government will not work for people so that we can get to this point, and we are not about to give up all of that hard-earned animosity now.”

Recent opinion polls have swung the Republicans’ way, as GOP arguments about a lack of willingness by the left to compromise on seeing through basic Constitutional issues have begun to hit home with a public whose average mental age of ten is only twice that of your average Congressman. For example, more than half of those polled blame President Obama not only for the government shutdown, but for the fiscal cliff. They also blame Obama for not volunteering to be impeached and just getting it over with.

Polling, a recent poll indicates, has taken the place of governing in America, and also of thinking. As long as polls give people the chance to say what they have been told to think, a recent poll of Congress showed, it is no longer necessary for officials to actually follow through and act on their constituents’ wishes — or even to do the people’s business, for that matter.

Perhaps a wise position, since the people’s wishes are so mixed, or at least mixed-up. One recent poll showed 57% in favor of the Affordable Care Act, but only 38% in favor of Obamacare, a three-to-two margin against the same thing! Another recent poll showed 57% of Americans agreeing that it is “probably a mistake” for a democratically-elected government to act democratically — while 30% checked the box “I Just Don’t Know Anymore, and Anyhow, My Show’s On.”

Seventy-four percent of readers polled about this report said they hadn’t read it, but they “disagreed 100% with everything that’s probably in it.”

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