Dems declare war on Mormon Crickets
As a result of the Democrats' quick action in Congress in the last few weeks, Americans may soon rest easy in the knowledge that we will be saved from the true terrorists in our world today - Mormon crickets.
I have certainly slept easier with this knowledge, and one can only be sure that you are comforted also.
Meanwhile, in a relatively mundane matter which certainly pales in comparison, presidents have used the veto pen 2,551 times since 1789 and many are looking forward to the 2,552nd as soon as the Iraq war supplemental spending bill hits the desk of President George W. Bush.
The first exercise of the executive veto power took place on April 5, 1792, when President George Washington vetoed legislation which would have changed the manner in which seats in the House of Representatives were calculated.
Fast-forwarding to current events, the Senate passed its version of the emergency Iraq supplemental funding bill 51 - 47 on March 29, following the House passage on March 23 by a vote of 218-212. Both bills included language which sets timetables for withdrawing troops from Iraq.
Both measures are offensive on several fronts. One, setting a date-certain timetable to withdraw troops from Iraq sends a signal to our enemies that we are about to surrender. Such a reckless declaration endangers our troops, demoralizes our men and women in uniform, and emboldens our enemies.
Nevertheless, the Democrats have certainly extended a great courtesy to the terrorists. One can only be sure that the terrorists will soon besiege our embassies for entrance visa to follow our troops home and continue their jihad against Americans on our home soil. The thought of forcing upon the terrorists the inconvenience of waiting in line to gain access to the United States is incomprehensible.
Considering the continuing tensions over Iran's taking of 15 British hostages and reports that the recent "surge" initiative in Iraq is beginning to show some success, the "surrender now" votes by a majority of congressional Democrats could not have been more untimely.
For many, the coincidence in the timing of this latest Iranian act of aggression - the hostage taking of British sailors in Iraqi waters - with the congressional votes did not go unnoticed.
At this point many of the radical Iranian decision makers must realize that just as in the 1979 hostage crisis and the other acts of Iranian aggression since, there is a great statistical probability that there will be no significant consequences for their behavior. And the Democrats behavior in Congress in recent months has only encouraged the Iranians.
This, of course, raises the stakes for the safety of our men and women in uniform in Iraq as it is feared that it is only a matter of time until the Iranians operating in Iraq take American military personnel hostage.
In order to procure a winning, albeit razor thin, margin in the voting on the supplemental budget, both the House and the Senate bills were "so loaded with pork, congressmen could die of trichinosis," quipped political commentator Don Surber.
And the numbers are staggering. President Bush's initial request was for $103 billion and yet the Senate tacked on $18.5 billion in earmarked pet pork projects, spending totally unrelated to the war effort and the House hung $20 billion onto the funding request.
A billion here and a billion there and pretty soon it adds up to real money; generations of Americans will be saddled with repaying with interest just so Democrats in Congress could score some empty political points.
In an op-ed in the New York Times last Friday Thomas Schatz explained that the Democratic leadership led the way. ". the Senate majority leader, Harry Reid of Nevada, added $20 million to eradicate Mormon crickets, and David Obey of Wisconsin, the House Appropriations Committee chairman, came away with $283 million for the Milk Income Loss Contract Program."
In response the president said: "The Democrats loaded up their bills with billions of dollars in domestic spending completely unrelated to the war, including $3.5 million for visitors to tour the Capitol, $6.4 million for the House of Representatives' Salaries and Expenses Account, and $74 million for secure peanut storage. I like peanuts as much as the next guy, but I believe the security of our troops should come before the security of our peanut crop. For all these reasons, that is why I made it clear to the Democrats in Congress, I will veto the bill."
To pay for all of this pork, the Democratic controlled Congress, just before going on their annual spring break, passed its annual budget resolutions. The president immediately called to our attention that "their budgets would raise your taxes and raise government spending in Washington. And their budgets fail to address the most serious challenge to our nation's fiscal health: the unsustainable growth in entitlement programs, like Social Security and Medicare.
"Overall, the Democrats would raise taxes by a total of nearly $400 billion over the next five years. To put this in perspective, this would be the largest tax increase in our nation's history, even larger than the tax increase the Democrats passed the last time they controlled Congress," the president said.
For those who have criticized the Democrats for reclaiming Congress last fall without a plan, we can all now be re-assured. They do have a plan: higher spending, higher taxes, investigation after investigation, and eradication of the feared Mormon crickets and safe peanuts for everyone.
But what about the terrorists, you say? Oh, that will take care of itself. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is in the Middle East right now and she'll ask them nicely to stop their misbehavior. That ought to do it.
The challenge, of course, is that if President Bush vetoes the supplemental funding, who will save us from the cricket menace?
Kevin Dayhoff writes from Westminster: E-mail him at: email@example.com