September 13, 2007

We Need a New Rule.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 7:53 pm


I believe that we need a new rule for Congressional/Senatorial Hearings.

The necessary and proper purpose of such hearings is to provide Congressional/Senatorial committees an opportunity to obtain information concerning an issue that is within the committees’ legislative purview, presumably to assist the committee members in considering legislative matters.

The information comes to the committees in the form of documents and testimony. The process in the case of documents and witness testimony should be quite straightforward, which is to say that committee members should review the documents and ask questions of witnesses.

Unfortunately, that is not the way it works in the case of “high profile” hearings, particularly when a “high profile” witness is testifying in televised proceedings. Instead, what we see is politicians on both sides of the aisle bloviating making longwinded statements of their own positions on an issue. They either outright make statements or preface a ten word loaded question with a 1,000 word statement.

The information gathering purpose of the hearing is lost in the political, self-aggrandizing blather, all of which is utterly irrelevant to the issue at hand – information gathering. This posturing serves no one’s interest, except for that of the bloviators themselves and a press corps that thrives on politics being a blood sport.

We need a new rule.

If I were declared to be King, the following rule would go into effect immediately.

1. The only persons permitted to speak in declarative sentences are the witness and the committee chairperson and in the case of the latter, only to enforce the rules, including, of course, King Jimbo’s Rule.

2. The only things permitted to emanate from the mouths of the committee members are interrogative sentences (i.e. they must end in a question mark), and they must be calculated to elicit factual information from the witness. This is to say that questions such as, “You’re a big, fat liar, aren’t you?” don’t pass muster. Such quasi-questions will be treated as forbidden declarative sentences.

3. The Three-Strike Rule applies. Committee members may be admonished twice for uttering declarative sentences. The third time they forfeit their remaining time. Smart Alecks who would try to sneak in a few declarative sentences at the very end of their allotted time would forfeit their time at the next televised committee hearing.

Yo, King Jimbo. Wouldn’t this be a violation of the committee members’ First Amendment rights?

Fair question, given that bullshit is indeed protected by the First Amendment, particularly political bullshit. However, King Jimbo’s rule is not unconstitutional, because it is a narrowly crafted, reasonable time, place and manner restriction on speech. The politician/committee members can bloviate to their heart’s content at press conferences, in press releases, on television “news” programs and the like. The just can’t bloviate while they are being paid by the people to gather information in a venue where their opinions are utterly irrelevant.

Alas, but I’m not the King, but one can always dream.


  1. That’s it! I elect Jimbo to be King!!! He can, from this time forward, clear out the BS in Washington. You go boy!

    Comment by Teresa — September 13, 2007 @ 9:44 pm

  2. After you’re done with Jersey, right?

    Comment by RT — September 13, 2007 @ 10:45 pm

  3. In the event the King job doesn’t pan out, we could just vote against congressional bloviators in future elections. Then again, I’ve bee doing that for years with little success.

    Comment by Enlighten-NewJersey — September 13, 2007 @ 11:31 pm

  4. How about an additional rule that if you have declared as a candidate for President,you can’t open your mouth and are only allowed to take notes with a number 2 wooden pencil.

    Comment by james old guy — September 14, 2007 @ 7:57 am

  5. You’ve got my vote. 110%.

    All Hail King Jimbo!!!

    Comment by Tammi — September 14, 2007 @ 8:45 am

  6. You forgot the part where the Sergeant of Arms is required to drag the offending windbag out after 3 strikes & shoot the SOB at the stake…..this ought to cut down on political grandstanding & eliminate the belief term limits are needed. In Teddies case , tie the SOB up , throw him in the back seat of his car & push it off of an Aircraft Carrier about 10 miles out to sea.

    Comment by dudley1 — September 14, 2007 @ 9:17 am

  7. The idea of making politics a (literal) blood sport has a certain appeal; it would certainly increase voter participation.

    Comment by DMerriman — September 14, 2007 @ 2:05 pm

  8. If I wuz the king there would be not gotdam committees

    Comment by GUYK — September 14, 2007 @ 7:54 pm

  9. Hail to the King! Long live the King!

    Comment by aithne — September 15, 2007 @ 9:30 am

  10. I declare and deem you, today and forever, King of All Things Park … eee, and/or Way … eeee!

    Comment by clintbird — September 15, 2007 @ 10:03 am

  11. Your proposed Three-Strike Rule is very well thought-out. However, in addition to “forfeiting their time,” the rule needs to have sharp teeth. To wit, it should be backed up with some sort of memorable training mechanism. Look, all we’re talking about here is a simple (adjustable) electrical charge dispersed through the chairs, with you, as King, at the controls.

    I already have the bumpersticker ordered. Jimbo For King: Voltage For Violators

    Comment by dogette — September 15, 2007 @ 10:19 am

  12. “In Teddies case , tie the SOB up , throw him in the back seat of his car & push it off of an Aircraft Carrier about 10 miles out to sea.”

    Don’t just push it off, shoot it off from the waist cat aboard the U.S.S. RONALD REAGAN, just to piss the left off.

    I chose the waist cat because then he would go off to the side instead of into the path of the ship in case his buoyancy keeps the Buick afloat. Would hate to scratch the paint on The Reagan

    Comment by MOMinuteman — September 16, 2007 @ 12:40 pm

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