Most politicians are corrupt. Every American, who is paying attention, knows this. Every bill passed by Congress is packed with provisions that have little to do with the purpose of the proposed legislation. As if we needed any further indication, the current Senate immigration bill reminds us why most politicians belong in jail. This bill – like every other bill – is packed with sweetheart deals for special interests and deliberate loopholes, which give the federal government the option of not enacting those parts of the legislation that do not fit in with its long-term agenda.
The proposed immigration legislation is, by no means, the first of its kind: The Affordable Healthcare Act, which is the legislative base for the monstrosity that we know as Obamacare, was also filled with special interest concessions and provisions for a range of new government powers that have little, or nothing, to do with affordable healthcare. Few members of Congress even knew what that bill contained, which is exactly how the Obama administration wanted it; as Nancy Pelosi – then Speaker of the House – said, in 2010 “We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it…” To be fair; this practice – which amounts to routine corruption – goes back years, and is not exclusive to either party. So it will be with immigration reform; whatever bill emerges from Congress will contain all manner of provisions, of which, the American people are not aware. In addition, it will contain payoffs and concessions for one special interest group or another. Proof of this – as if we needed any – has already emerged.
Example number 1 has its roots in the 2009 Travel Promotion Act, which set up a government-run corporation, called Brand USA. This corporation’s mission is, in summary, to promote leisure travel to the United States. The Brand USA’s budget is $10 million dollars. The Casino industry, which is, of course, centered in Las Vegas, Nevada, backed this bill enthusiastically, since it meant that the American taxpayer would be funding a massive advertising campaign, on their behalf. Nevada Senator Harry Reid got the bill through Congress and was praised enthusiastically by the Casino industry for doing so. Funding for Brand USA was assured through fiscal year 2015. Democrat Harry Reid and his fellow Senator from Nevada, Republican Dean Heller, have slipped a provision into the latest version of the Senate immigration bill which extends the funding for Brand USA “For each fiscal year after 2012.” This amounts, clearly, to an indefinite kickback to the Casino Industry – once again, at the expense of the American taxpayer. Of course, Reid knows that this will have no negative impact on his voter-base, since around 49 percent of the Country pay no income taxes and – therefore – have no reason to care where the federal government is spending the money; and that 49% includes a massive chunk of the Democratic party’s loyal supporters. Republican Heller is taking more of a gamble, but – evidently – feels that it is more important to appease the Casino industry than look out for the interests of private, tax-paying citizens.
Our second example of how the Senate immigration bill should remind us why most politicians belong in jail concerns the entertainment industry – which is, of course, an important source of campaign donations for the Democratic party. The Corker-Hoeven amendment includes measures to ensure that the movie and music industries receive preferential treatment, regarding applications for work visas and, in some cases, have their application fees waived. The text of this amendment was released Friday afternoon and will be voted on Monday; meaning, obviously, that very few Senators will actually read what they are voting on – much less stop to consider whether anything in this amendment has anything to do with the will, or best interests, of the American people.
As for the issue of border security; the proposed bill contains no solid provisions for increased border security and Democrats have already signaled their refusal to vote for any bill that requires a strengthening of the southern border.
Regardless of one’s political leanings or stance on immigration reform, there should be widespread and bipartisan disgust at the way our elected officials stuff legislation with provisions, loopholes and earmarks. As a Presidential Candidate, Barack Obama promised to go through proposed bills “line by line” to eliminate waste, fraud and abuse from federal spending. He has never, once, done any such thing. This latest legislative monstrosity, laughingly referred to as the Senate immigration bill, reminds us – yet again – that most politicians belong in jail, or – at the very least – should be paid a lot less, limited to two terms in office and banned, for life, from holding any elected office if they spend one dime of the people’s’ money on something that is not approved by the people. This would mean, of course, that the President, most of his cabinet and about three-quarters of Congress would be in jail; which is exactly where they all belong.
Written by Graham J Noble