We The Sheeple
"It's far easier than you think to manipulate a nation of naive, self-absorbed sheep who crave instant gratification".
(London Daily Mail) - A new book threatens to blow the lid off of Congress as a federal legislator's tell-all book lays out the worst parts of serving in the House of Representatives – saying that his main job is to raise money for re-election and that leaves little time for reading the bills he votes on.
Mill City Press, a small Minnesota-based 'vanity press' publisher describes 'The Confessions of Congressman X' as 'a devastating inside look at the dark side of Congress as revealed by one of its own.'
The 84-page exposé is due in bookstores in two weeks, and Washington is abuzz with speculation about who may be behind it.
The book, a copy of which DailyMail.com has seen, discloses that the congressman is a Democrat – but not much else.
The anonymous spleen-venter has had a lot to say about his constituents, however.
Robert Atkinson, a former chief of staff and press secretary for two congressional Democrats, took notes on a series of informal talks with him – whoever he is – and is now publishing them with his permission.
'Voters claim they want substance and detailed position papers, but what they really crave are cutesy cat videos, celebrity gossip, top 10 lists, reality TV shows, tabloid tripe, and the next f***ing Twitter message,' the congressman gripes in the book.
'I worry about our country's future when critical issues take a backseat to the inane utterings of illiterate athletes and celebrity twits.'
Much of what's in the book will come as little surprise to Americans who are cynical about the political process.
'Fundraising is so time-consuming I seldom read any bills I vote on,' the anonymous legislator admits. 'I don't even know how they'll be implemented or what they'll cost.'
'My staff gives me a last-minute briefing before I go to the floor and tells me whether to vote yea or nay. How bad is that?'
And on controversial bills, he says, 'I sometimes vote "yes" on a motion and "no" on an amendment so I can claim I'm on either side of an issue.'
'It's the old shell game: if you can't convince 'em, confuse 'em.'
The congressman laments that politics has become a matter of picking a team by the jerseys they wear rather than looking at the players underneath.
'Things are so partisan today most folks vote the straight party line, even though they don't know s*** about who they're voting for. They just don't want the other guys to win,' he explains.
And he seemingly takes a shot at the Bill and Hillary Clinton Foundation, noting how family philanthropies can be the beneficiaries of what amounts to bribes in exchange for legislative favors.
'Some contributions are subtle,' he explains. 'Donations to a member's nonprofit foundation. Funding a member's charitable pet project. Offsetting the costs of a member's portrait to adorn the committee room he or she has so faithfully served.'
'It's all a bunch of bulls*** to get around gift bans and limits on campaign contributions. Where there's a will, there's a way.'
The mystery man reserves special scorn for Sen. Harry Reid, a Nevada Democrat who serves as Senate Minority Leader.
One chapter is titled 'Harry Reid's a Pompous A**' and says the senator is 'sometimes a bit too clever for his own good. The same goes for [Republican Sen. Majority Leader Mitch] McConnell and his pathetic lieutenants. Ditto for most of the House leadership bullies on both sides of the aisle. They wield too much dictatorial power, manipulating legislative procedures and denying members due process.'
The larger picture that emerges is one of disenchantment with the political process and the professional office-holders behind it.
Especially those in the Democratic Party.
'Our party used to be a strong advocate for the working class,' he says. 'We still pretend to be, but we aren't. Large corporations and public unions grease the palms of those who have the power to determine legislative winners and losers.'
'Most of my colleagues want to help the poor and disadvantaged. To a point,' he adds. 'We certainly don't want to live among them. Or mingle with them, unless it's for a soup kitchen photo op. ... Poverty's a great concern as long as it's kept at a safe distance.'
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