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xcurmudgeon

A few weeks back,
Paul Krugman of NYT wrote a column about an 18th century parliamentary practice which had brought the once-mighty Poland to its knees and which, by 1795, resulted in the 3rd and final partition, and no Poland (till November of 1918) at all. The practice was called "liberum veto" (Krugman didn't mention that) and consisted, simply, of the ability of gumming up the works by a single legislator. All the SOB had to do was stand up and yell "Nie pozwalam!" (I do not allow) and months and years of tricky negotiations went down in flames.

Krugman was writing about Shelby's "blanket block" of nominations, not the "Bunning blockade" but the principle is the same. And the fact that 21st century US would allow the dumbest-ever "Polack" practice of the 18th century is truly mind-boggling (or, "mind-buggering", as I used to say before my English improved)

It is, however, gratifying to see that, the moment Dems began to show some signs of a growing spine (however bead-needle-sized) and threatened to make Bunning filibuster "properly", in public and in front of cameras... The hissy-fit "pitcher" folded, principles an'all...  


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