Richard (RJ) Eskow at the Campaign for America’s Future fumes:
Here we go again. Once again the “bipartisan” consensus in Washington, fueled by an intoxicating brew of conventional wisdom laced with campaign cash, has repealed some of those “cumbersome regulations” that do nothing of value — nothing, that is, except prevent catastrophes. There will be celebrating on both sides of the aisle when the President signs this bill.
And when disaster strikes a few years from now, as it inevitably will, they’ll all say “Nobody could have seen it coming.” Plus ça change, plus c’est la même crap. Creationism can’t disprove the theory of evolution — but a little time in Washington will make you think twice.
Here we are, surrounded by still-smoldering financial wreckage, and almost everyone in Washington is falling over themselves to repeat exactly the same kinds of actions that got us into this mess. Last time around it was the repeal of Glass-Steagall, introduced by Republican Sen. Phil Gramm and enthusiastically signed by President Clinton in the presence of Treasury Secretary Larry Summers.
This time it’s the deceptively named “JOBS Act,” introduced by the far-right Republicans in Congress and passed overwhelmingly by members of both parties. The President indicated his eagerness to sign the bill early on. Once again basic protections for investors, including individuals and families, are being recklessly overturned in a deregulating frenzy. Some of those protections were enacted in the wake of the Enron scandal, in which sociopathically unscrupulous business people conducted a hoax that ruined thousands of families and deprived many of their life’s savings.
We haven’t learned a damn thing. [...]
Blast from the Past. At Daily Kos on this date in 2006:
Senator Hillary Clinton has called H.R. 4437 a “mean-spirited” piece of legislation which “literally criminalizes the Good Samaritan and probably even Jesus himself.” The “Border Protection, Antiterrorism, and Illegal Immigration Control Act of 2005″ (H.R. 4437) is a Republican piece of legislation which would not only makes felons out of the millions of undocumented immigrants already in the United States, but it would also make it a crime to provide any assistance to those immigrants, if you know they are undocumented. “Mean-spirited” doesn’t come close to describing this bill.
Congressman Raúl M. Grijalva, Democrat from Arizona, made the following statement on H.R. 4437 in Decemeber 2005, when the bill was introduced on the House floor:
Though Americans continue to ask that Congress create orderly, legal venues for new immigrants and for safe and legal ways in which immigrants already here can declare their presence, H.R. 4437 does not even come close to fulfilling these requests. In fact, it promotes a shadow culture in which immigrants need and want to hide, which then puts our country at a greater security risk.
With one hasty line, this bill makes all immigrants criminals. It turns an immigration-law violation into an aggravated felony. Thus, legal permanent residents, who initially may have had an unlawful entry but were able to pursue a legal venue thereafter, would be categorized as felons and prevented from becoming U.S. citizens as the current law allows. [...]
The American people do not like this bill. These past few weeks have been marked with protests across the nation. In Arizona today, tens of thousands protested in front of Senator John Kyl’s office.