Skip to comments.James Traficant Gets Beamed Up: Limitless Congressional irony
Posted on 08/03/2002 1:33:59 PM PDT by PJ-Comix
Who would have guessed that Jim Traficant would ever get his wish? Well, sonovagun! The House finally beamed him up to a place where only one man since the Civil War has gone before; out of Congress, and into the federal pokey for 8 years. The good news? Gary Condit voted not to boot Traficant. Write your own punchlines.
Technically, Traficant was convicted of tax evasion for what amounts to getting a few free chores around the house. The public cost of these dastardly crimes is somewhere between a few warm six packs of beer and a nice lobbyist dinner. Yet the House deemed it of utmost importance that Traficant receive a very public flogging.
Punishment? Yes. But the House??? Expulsion? From the same group that boasts 29 wife beaters, seven defrauders (including Dick Gephart, who lied on a home loan application), 19 check kiters, 3 assaulters and two apparent child rapists? A select club that claims 14 drug arrests, 8 shoplifters and countless drunk drivers? The same body that passively doodled while a President gave away national defense secrets in exchange for massive international bribes? Who brazenly marched half its members down to the White House to support this perpetrators right to commit these and other crimes? Yes they voted nearly unanimously to toss Traficant out.
On one hand, it's really saying something if such people consider Traficant an embarrassment. Frankly, in congressional terms, Traficant's naughtiness barely rises to "petty." But Traficant committed a far worse transgression: publicly rejecting his party's philosophical corruption. At various times, Traficant pointed out that nearly every Democrat principle is bankrupt or obsolete, nearly every Democrat program ever devised has been an immense, expensive failure, and nearly every Democrat has defended their devastating disasters by lying, cheating, stealing and ruining millions of lives. His party survives on spectacularly effective school and media indoctrination, and a federal government staffed with hundreds of thousands of primarily liberal pen-pushers whose 40 hour workweek appears to be focused on creating bureaucratic entanglements to preserve their mooch jobs.
And Traficant said so right on TV.
Despite bad suits, bad hair and bad attitude, Traficant was that little pinprick that kept opening more and more eyes, heretically nudging the most dangerous voting class: the awakened Democrat. Do you know Social Security is screwing the little guy? How about Welfare? Do you know how bad our government waste is? Did you know Dad never got a job working for a poor man? And do you know which party has caused these problems in the first place? Those are the questions that left Traficant nearly friendless at the end.
Dick Morris's new book Power Plays documents many political leaders who fell on their swords to force their party into positive changes. If Tom Daschle made these pronouncements, Democrats would fall into deep debate over the idealistic and political direction of their party, as the British Labour party did under Tony Blair. But Traficant isn't a Presidential candidate. He's a lowly Congressman. By utterly ignoring the Washington survival game, he stabbed himself too many times to resuscitate. When the opportunity presented itself, the party of political expediency wasted no time slaying the witness who's willing to speak out against their crimes. To steal a phrase from Bruce Springsteen, the House finally busted Jim Traficant for telling fortunes better than they did.
True, Traficant's entertaining rants and quirky irreverence often seemed out of place in such a hallowed institution. Yet he strangely soared over the filth that currently taints America's Congressional chambers. Sure, Traficant is a jackass. But he was a truth-speaking jackass. It's certainly a wonder why the irascible Traficant fought to stay part of a club that would have him. Now, he'll be ranting to new friends in a minimum security facility somewhere. But if Traficant is worthy of expulsion and jail, that certainly offers perspective as to just how low the bar has dropped to represent America. Even in his supposed shame, this seeming idiot-savant towers over his accusers. Isn't that sad?
The REAL reason why Traficant was convicted and expelled from the House.
Beam me up pings.
His alleged "corruption" is laughable compared to Clinton's treason.
The Loral-Hughes/Schartz-Armstrong betrayal to the PLA in 1995 of our missile guidance superiority alone should put Clinton in Leavenworth forever.
Gephardt's and Daschle's financial crimes and traitorous fifth column subversion should qualify them for the Full Benito.
But Congress has given Traficant the Full Hercules instead:
The Augean Stables Hercules Cleans Up For the fifth labor, Eurystheus ordered Hercules to clean up King Augeas' stables. Hercules knew this job would mean getting dirty and smelly, but sometimes even a hero has to do these things. Then Eurystheus made Hercules' task even harder: he had to clean up after the cattle of Augeas in a single day.
Now King Augeas owned more cattle than anyone in Greece. Some say that he was a son of one of the great gods, and others that he was a son of a mortal; whosever son he was, Augeas was very rich, and he had many herds of cows, bulls, goats, sheep and horses.
Every night the cowherds, goatherds and shepherds drove the thousands of animals to the stables.
Hercules went to King Augeas, and without telling anything about Eurystheus, said that he would clean out the stables in one day, if Augeas would give him a tenth of his fine cattle.
Augeas couldn't believe his ears, but promised. Hercules brought Augeas's son along to watch. First the hero tore a big opening in the wall of the cattle-yard where the stables were. Then he made another opening in the wall on the opposite side of the yard.
Next, he dug wide trenches to two rivers which flowed nearby. He turned the course of the rivers into the yard. The rivers rushed through the stables, flushing them out, and all the mess flowed out the hole in the wall on other side of the yard.
When Augeas learned that Eurystheus was behind all this, he would not pay Hercules his reward. Not only that, he denied that he had even promised to pay a reward. Augeas said that if Hercules didn't like it, he could take the matter to a judge to decide.
The judge took his seat. Hercules called the son of Augeas to testify. The boy swore that his father had agreed to give Hercules a reward. The judge ruled that Hercules would have to be paid. In a rage, Augeas ordered both his own son and Hercules to leave his kingdom at once. So the boy went to the north country to live with his aunts, and Hercules headed back to Mycenae. But Eurystheus said that this labour didn't count, because Hercules was paid for having done the work.
Bring back Traficant and let him clean up the Augean Stables.
Everything Traficant has done is way worse than ted "chappy" kennedy, the fat, lying, drunken, womanizing murderer ever thought about doing!
It remains to be seen whether this new-found level of moral propriety will endure in the Peoples' Chamber, and whether it will be applied to those who violate conservative sensibilities the way Blowhard did liberals'.