Wednesday, January 04, 2006

The Year Of Living Duh-ly

"The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn."

-Alvin Toffler

If you could nickname 2005 any name at all...what name would you choose? Personally, I think 2005 should be known now and forever as the, "Duh" year. At every turn there seemed to be one, "duh," moment after another especially when it came to Washington politics. From the ridiculous to the downright dangerous, the mentality of our elected officials reached record lows for their conduct, while in office. Do you remember a year quite like 2005?

With the words, "I plead guilty your honor," Washington lobbyist, Jack Abramoff, accepted a plea bargain and admitted his guilt in what may just prove to be the farthest reaching political scandal to hit congress in our nation's history. How far will it reach? We will certainly be finding out in the coming days. How dirty will it get? Plenty dirty. Will it be one political party feeling the ill winds of this scandal...certainly not. As I was sitting here reading the story about Abramoff's day in court, I couldn't help but wonder who I admire at this moment, will be among those caught in the fallout.

We already know one of the people who will more then likely be on the list is Tom Delay. Good. The more they can find on him the better. I know I seem to be a bit harsh, but am I really? He knows what his responsibility is and what the consequences are for his actions. What has he done since being indicted last autumn? His first move was to seek to have the judge assigned to his case removed. See, the judge was a Democrat and therefore may not take to kindly to him. He would rather have a Republican judge handle his case. What does that say for corruption within the Republican party? It seems like some twisted logic to me. After all aren't most Republican judges thought to be much more harsh on the accused then Liberal Democratic judges? At least in theory. Personally speaking...I think it is a case by case thing, but in the case of Tom Delay, I find it hard to tap into my usual liberal compassionate nature.

Because he is a Republican gone bad...nope. I think I would feel the same if I watched a member of any political party trying their best to get by with illegal activities. Which is not to say I am completely without compassion for the likes of Delay and Abramoff. I feel sorry for anyone staring down prison time because they had a personal agenda that was more important then the trust of honest working people who believed in them. The names haven't been released yet, but I will say it now before it happens..."SHAME ON YOU, IF YOU ARE ON THE LIST."

So far the only name appearing on a list of the guilty, at least in speculation,is Rep. Bob Ney of Ohio. He apparently accepted a golfing trip to Scotland in 2002, knowing that the trip was being paid for by the lobbyist's Indian gaming clients. While Nay's name is not directly mentioned, his idenity is implied from the description of his committee chairmanship. Before it is all said and done, there could be at least two dozen members of congress implicated.

I think the quote of the day belongs to White House spokesman, Scott McClellen, "What he is reportedly acknowledging doing is unacceptable and outrageous. If laws were broken, he must be held to account for what he did." McClellen had no answer as to whether or not President Bush had ever met Abramoff. I guess time, and Jack Abramoff will tell.

So, I am going to refer to 2005 as the "Duh" year, but Alan had a different idea for what to call it. "I think it should be known as ,2000 of 2005, for the loss of the 2000th soldier in Iraq." Wow! Brings it all into focus doesn't it? Sigh. So tell me, what would you dub the official nickname of the year 2005?

"Elvis Looking On"
Virginia City, Nevada
October 24th, 2005


Karen Funk Blocher said...

Well, I'd call it the Disaster Year, and not just because of Katrina. I personally had a pretty good year, but the world did not.

I was thinking this morning about my glee at the fix some of these Republicans are in. I think it's largely because of the arrogance of these people that I want them to be caught and punished. I don't especially want to see anyone go to jail, but I do want very much to see the public disgrace of people who lie and cheat and pretend moral superiority when they are in fact greedy and corrupt.


Dave said...

I'd call 2005 the "wow, I didn't see that one coming" year. That was true politically and with nature's fury.

In all honesty, we'll probably look back on 2005, and call it the "thank God it's over" year.

fdtate said...

It looks like the Abramoff case might reach deep into the Republican Party and even into the White House. Abramoff was a Bush Pioneer and raised a lot of money for the prez's campaign.
2005 might go down in history as the calm before the storm.