The Corner

Now Who’s Thrown Under the Omnibus?

My column today is on the omnibus bill. I woke up this morning to discover that the omnibus bill failed, thus nullifying my column. Some might say that the breaking news gods are punishing me for my hubris. But I prefer to think that it was the incredible force of column that caused the Democrats to crumble. The idea’s utter lack of plausibility makes it all the more appealing.  Next column topics: DREAM Act, START etc.

Here’s the opening of the column:

The gold standard in contemptuous politics remains Emperor Caligula’s appointment of his horse, Incitatus, to the Roman senate. Well, Harry Reid (D., Nev.) is getting some long-delayed senatorial payback.

Figuratively speaking, Reid plans to drop on the president’s desk a steaming pile of what Incitatus used to deposit on the stable floor. This sack of non-Shinola goes by the technical name of an omnibus spending bill, which the White House has indicated President Obama will sign. It wraps together all the bills to fund government operations beginning January 1 into a single $1.2 trillion monstrosity so laden down with spending grotesqueries that it comes out to more than $623 million a page — and it’s 1,924 pages long. By my rough estimate, that’s about $3.1 million per word.

It’s a bold gambit by Reid and the Democrats, who have failed to pass a single appropriations bill this fiscal year — a historic first. Now, a lame-duck Congress that shouldn’t be convening at all wants to use a looming deadline for a vote on raising the national-debt ceiling to cram through legislation that will make the budget and the deficit continue to balloon like Marlon Brando in his later years.

Like Lloyd Bridges in Airplane! picking the wrong week to stop sniffing glue, the Democrats have chosen a bad moment to stick to their old ways. We had this thing called an “election” just over a month ago, in which the American people said no more of this horse-stable-filler.

Saint Augustine famously said, “Lord, make me chaste, but not yet,” and that’s the basic rationale driving Reid. This is one last trip to the fiscal cathouse before he joins the monastery — which is why this mess comes with $8 billion in earmarked trinkets for the trollops.

 

Update: John Cornyn agrees! I just got a mass-blast email from his office. It begins:

Dear Jonah ,

You did it. Facing pressure from you, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced Thursday night he was withdrawing the Democrats’ last-minute, 2,200 page-long, $1.1 trillion spending bill. He withdrew it from the floor because he didn’t have the votes. And he didn’t have the votes because you didn’t relent ….

 

 

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

Broward’s Cowards

It is impossible to imagine circumstances under which Broward County sheriff Scott Israel could attempt to perform his duties with the confidence of the public. He should resign immediately, and if, as he promises, he refuses to go quietly, then he should be shown the door by the people he professes to ... Read More
Culture

Courage: The Greatest of Virtues

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is Jonah Goldberg’s weekly “news”letter, the G-File. Subscribe here to get the G-File delivered to your inbox on Fridays. Dear Reader (Or Listener), As the reporter assigned the job of writing the article about all of Sidney Blumenthal’s friends and supporters told his ... Read More
Immigration

My American Dream

This morning, at 8 a.m., I did something I’ve wanted to do for as long as I can remember: I became an American. I first applied for a visa in early 2011, and since then I have slowly worked my way through the system — first as a visa-holder, then as a permanent resident (green card), and, finally, as a ... Read More
Politics & Policy

CNN’s Shameful Town Hall

CNN recently hosted an anti-gun town hall featuring a number of grieving children and parents from Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., who aimed their ire at the National Rifle Association, politicians peripherally associated with the NRA, and anyone who didn’t say exactly what they wanted to hear. ... Read More
U.S.

The Gun-Control Debate Could Break America

Last night, the nation witnessed what looked a lot like an extended version of the famous “two minutes hate” from George Orwell’s novel 1984. During a CNN town hall on gun control, a furious crowd of Americans jeered at two conservatives, Marco Rubio and Dana Loesch, who stood in defense of the Second ... Read More