The World According to Congress

Imagine the following scenario:
On the first day of class in January, a professor hands you a syllabus listing a March 4 due date for a group project.
January comes and goes. Every group meeting turned into a social function – little is accomplished.
February rolls around. The group spends most of the time arguing about the best way to approach the topic – still nothing gets done.
Now it’s March. The project is due in less than a week, and the group is meeting at all hours to try and come to an agreement on the direction of the project, but a few select group members will not acquiesce to ideas they do not fully support.
The night before the due date, you request more time, and the professor graciously grants a two-week extension.
The group puts the project on the backburner, and suddenly you’re in the exact same position you faced two weeks prior. The group has made some progress, agreeing to a mutual end product, but still cannot agree on a means in which to achieve said end.
Again, you beg for an extension, and the professor grants another two weeks.
Now it’s April, and the group project has turned into Groundhog Day. The due date is looming, and no one will compromise. You find yourself staring down the due date with a mere hour and a half to go. At a stalemate, you ask for another extension – “but just one week!” – and the professor, again, agrees.
To the average person this scenario should sound absurd, even comical. Of course, this would be a lot funnier if it were not based on Congress’s actions of late.
Anyone who has dealt with deadlines in school or their workplace knows such requests for extensions are not feasible in the real world. Apparently normal rules cease to apply on Capitol Hill.
Less than an hour ago it was announced they agreed to yet another temporary extension to avoid a partial government shutdown. I believe this puts Congress at extension number 3 (just in 2011 – I won’t put as much blame on the 111th Congress).
I take offense when obstinate members of Congress declare they are standing their ground to protect the interests of their constituency. No person is 100% satisfied with every law, bill, or motion supported by their elected representatives. But that’s life. The rest of us have to deal with it, why can’t Congress?
Maybe if members of Congress stop worrying about re-election backlash if they approve Planned Parenthood funding, and start worrying about the soldiers families who won’t get paid, and the negative effect on government employees and the general livelihood of the nation’s capital, which largely depends upon Federal government operations, a compromise can actually be reached.
I’m sure most of you know the phrase, “do as I say, not as I do.” Well, rather than doing as they say, maybe we should all do as they do, which will likely result in mass layoffs. Best of luck to Congress figuring out how to work those added unemployment benefits into the budget.

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Just My Mazel