All for naught in the end

Brad Molna
An opinion

When my series on this not so special election started I promised “shock and awe,” because so much fire power would be brought in to support the candidates, even the Libertarian. I was wrong. It took a month for the major parties to invest in their candidates as they waited to see if either had a chance. Ginaforte because he lost the only race he had ever been in and the same issues still existed; Quist because he was Quist and not in the habit of thinking before he spoke or even before he announced. The Libertarian party said, “No more AAA ball” then went fishing with season passes to AA ball.
By the time my next column comes out the last of the ballots will be stuffing ballot boxes. The decision as to who will best represent Montana’s interests will have been determined by who had the most liens laid on them and how long it took to pay them off. Who can kill a TV monitor with a single shot at ten paces is now a critical issue.
Thankfully we were spared meaningful discussion of any issues facing America and Americans. At a minimum Greg and Rob could have had a forum on the appropriateness of government placing tax liens on people strapped financially by medical debt or financial reversals such as drought-caused late payments by farmers thus further eroding credit ratings and diminishing the possibility of paying the late assessments and private bills thus ruining others.
The “Are You Kidding Me,” award goes to a Congressional Leadership Pac ad in support of Gianforte. In it they discuss Quist’s long term financial woes and warn that “he will bury us in debt we cannot afford.” Quist is a liberal no doubt. Our $20T debt does not seem to bother him and he has plans for adding to it. But the same Republican Party and congressmen so blindly supported by the CL PAC just passed a “bipartisian” stop gap measure to keep the government afloat until September since they had spent all the money appropriated to keep them afloat just six months ago. With Republicans as far as the eye can see they spent $1.1T, which included new spending, and promised to review spending cuts to augment significant increases in September. OK, we did have to temporarily give up a shiny new wall on the U.S./ Mexican border. But, all in all, we were buried in debt we cannot afford and did not need Quist to join in the intellectual exercise. No comment from Gianforte.
For Gianforte’s part when Congress passed the heavily flawed Trump health care plan to replace the heavily flawed Obama health care plan Greg’s spokesperson, Shane Scanlon, said Greg would not comment because it was so recently passed that he had not had time to review it and as an engineer needed all the facts to be able to analyze before taking a position. That same day Gianforte was taped making a plea to possible D.C. donors and saying he was “thankful” the bill had passed. Why is this not a character flaw at least as large as being pokey with tax payments?
Perhaps, though, this does draw attention to the elephant in the room. When Obama care passed the House of Representatives then Speaker Nancy Pelosi was chastised for saying to “pass it then read it, it is the concept that counts, and you will see it again when the Senate passes it back.” So all Democrats voted yes and all Republicans voted no. In the repeal Republicans were told to pass it without fiscal review, they could analyze to their hearts content when the Senate sent it back. On the budget, a 1,665 page document hatched behind closed doors, Sen. McCain (R) Arizona asked, “Has anyone even read this thing?”
Aye, there’s the rub. Regardless, of which party is in the majority, regardless of the mix between House, Senate, and Pennsylvania Avenue, the results are always greater debt, class warfare, campaign managers becoming Chiefs of Staff, and “leaders” hiding behind spokes models. So everything shall remain about spin, party loyalty, and pleasing special interests like Congressional Leadership Pac to fund the next smear-a-thon.
Regardless of outcome the final vote count next Thursday will augment this trend not change it. Our children’s debt will be headed to $30T. We will still have shooting wars in two countries and a nuclear-armed armada sitting off the coast of N. Korea. But most importantly Congress will be focused on to whose benefit the Russians hacking of Hillary’s emails fell, and if it affected the past election.

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