Friday, October 13, 2006

Legislators' Disease

I'm really starting to wonder what happens to men and women when they get elected to the legislating body of a country, like our Congress or the French Assemblée nationale.

"Tout pays se grandit en reconnaissant ses drames et ses erreurs," M. Chirac declares, happily in synch with the members of France's legislative branch. A nation only become greater when it recognizes
its wrongdoings and its mistakes.

Vraiment? J'ai comme un doute. Unless I've forgotten how to read French or even English, I think the members of the Assemblée nationale just recognized some other country's wrongdoings and mistakes....

But Legislators' Disease seems to present in a different form when it strikes American legislators. An essential part of the soul atrophies, deadening the nerve endings that would normally send pangs to the conscience. Subsequently --or simultaneously in really acute cases-- the parts of the brain that recognize basic human requirements, such as the right to dignity, also die out. How else to understand the passage of a law allowing torture and suspension of habeas corpus?

At present, the only known cure is a complete legislatorectomy and transplant... removal of the entire individual from his or her lawmaking position and replacement with a new one.

Well, in the US we've got elections coming up soon ... hope some good quality replacement organs are found.

...et un gros merci à Enrico pour l'inspiration!

2 comments:

  1. Il y a une dérive assez bizarre lorsque la loi commence à figer l'Histoire et son interprétation. Mais je suppose qu'en France, c'est devenu une nécessité, car contrairement aux Etats-Unis, les tabous historiques durent infiniment plus longtemps qu'ailleurs. Un exemple: pendant très longtemps on a refusé de dire que la guerre d'indépendance de l'Algérie était une guerre. Il s'agissait officiellement d'"incidents". Le parlement français a donc voté solennellement une loi pour requalifier les événements en guerre il y a quelques années seulement.

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  2. Oui, et notre guerre au Viet-Nam s'appelle officiellement the Vietnam Conflict. Et la guerre de Corée, c'était une "police action."

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