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General News and Politics
By Jim Barber, Camp Verde, Arizona
Current news and political discussion
Wednesday, July 17, 2013


 The Barber Shop

A favorite description of the Immigration Bill in the Senate is that it is an "overhaul" of current law. American Heritage dictionary defines "overhaul" as "To repair thoroughly." The word "reform" is described as "A change for the better, an improvement." I suspect that neither of these definitions will be evident when the actual details are examined - if and after the bill is passed. The Senate version exceeds 1000 pages. I can hear Pelosi now, "We have to pass it in order to find out what's in it." I, for one, am tired of surprises. Let the public see the details now.

Reader Comments

Posted: Saturday, July 20, 2013
Article comment by: itsy bitsy Spider

You apparently haven't waded through the original and tried to keep up with the amendments, Mr. Bassett. Let me tell you, from the pov of someone rooting for real reform, it's heartbreaking. I'll count the ways after I've hauled myself out of my pit of dark despair. The length just allows the complexity that accommodates game-breaking set-asides and makes it harder to scream before it's too late.

You're right about Republicans' selective outrage, though. Look at the Omnibus Crime Bill they shoved under Bill Clinton's nose in his first hundred days. Look at the Patriot Act. To name just a couple more intentionally gargantuan time bombs.

Posted: Saturday, July 20, 2013
Article comment by: M J

I like this one better.....
"we have to pass the bill to know what's in it" - speaker of the house Nancy (the mental giant) Pelosi

It goes along with the whole liberal mind set.....
1 don't read a bill because it's too hard for the liberal to understand.....
2 don't read a bill because it has soooooooo many words in it .......
3 don't read a bill because .... heck..... we are just toooooo lazy.....
4 don't read a bill because our (liberals) time is just so soo sooooo valuable
5 don't read a bill because it just doesn't make any sense

I'm going with all 5 reasons

p.s. I do have to give you credit for something.... at least you gave credit when you used another persons work.... I guess we can call that progress.... CONGRATS!

Posted: Saturday, July 20, 2013
Article comment by: Bill Bassett

I know all y'all conservatives can't stand Mother Jones but this is an interesting commentary on the old size-doesn't-matter issue. Maybe Mr. Barber just has a case of bill envy.


Immigration Reform Bill Has Too Many Words (But At Least They're in English)
óBy Kevin Drum| Mon Jun. 24, 2013 9:40 AM PDT

Is the Senate's immigration reform bill really a mammoth 1,200 pages long? Paul Waldman tries to tell us it's not: "Bills in Congress are printed with huge margins and double-spaced, with lots of indentations to boot....So you can say 'It's 1,200 pages long!', but that probably equates to about as many words as a book that's 3 or 400 pages long."

That's....just not going to work. I suspect that even Paul agrees it's a hopeless argument. But the real question is why this has become such a favorite gripe from the tea party set. I mean, who cares how long a bill is? If you don't like immigration reform, you don't like immigration reform. You still wouldn't like it if the bill were 20 pages long instead of 1,200. So why the newfound obsession over bill length? Here are a few guesses:

They're convinced that the only reason a bill could be so long is to hide stuff in the nooks and crannies. A 1,200-page bill probably has a clause in there giving immigrants free Obamaphones for life, but it's so cleverly disguised that no one will ever notice.
It's part of the general tea party longing for a simpler age. Laws didn't used to be so long, after all, and America got along fine. Hell, the entire Constitution fits on one page!
Generally speaking, a long bill does more than a short bill. It provides more hooks for government regulation and expansion of federal power, both of which conservatives oppose.
It just sounds good.
Of course, it's worth pointing out that conservatives were also pretty unhappy with the original TARP bill, which clocked in at a svelte three pages. It was, they said, a "blank check." (Lots of liberals agreed.) Given this, you can conclude either (a) there's a sweet spot of about 100 pages that tea partiers consider a Platonic ideal for bills, or (b) they don't like certain bills, and length is just a red herring. I'm going with option B for the moment.

Posted: Saturday, July 20, 2013
Article comment by: Mary Jane

Get ready for the influx of millions and millions of Democrat voters Jim!

That's what you're really afraid of, isn't it?

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