Jan. 14th, 2010

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By Gail Collins in the NYT today -


There are 100 members of the Senate. But as Brown is currently reminding us, because of the filibuster rule, it takes only 41 to stop any bill from passing.

U.S. population: 307,006,550.

Population for the 20 least-populated states: 31,434,822.

That means that in the Senate, all it takes to stop legislation is one guy plus 40 senators representing 10.2 percent of the country.

People, think about what we went through to elect a new president — a year and a half of campaigning, three dozen debates, $1.6 billion in donations. Then the voters sent a clear, unmistakable message. Which can be totally ignored because of a parliamentary rule that allows the representatives of slightly more than 10 percent of the population to call the shots.

Why isn’t 90 percent of the country marching on the Capitol with teapots and funny hats, waving signs about the filibuster?>>>

I've been saying the same thing all my life - I just don't have a job at the NYT.   It's also true on a state level since the 70s, that the minority here in CA calls the shots and can easily block things that the majority wants to have done.  It's truly a sick way to run a state OR a country and it is most certainly not a democracy.

Anyway, everyone is posting links today to  help Haiti.  I posted a couple on FB yesterday and donated to Oxfam myself.   There are plenty of good orgs to choose from of course - just pick one and give what you can.

As for the controversy about what that evil Pat Robertson said, he apparently hasn't read the Bible or conveniently forgot the part about how human beings are not qualified to try to interpret what "God's will" supposedly is or is not.   If I believed in devils (or in gods such as his for that matter), I would be inclined to think he is a devil himself, since he is always trying to sow hate and fear and pain in the world.




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