Thursday, September 20, 2007

Iraqi vs. U.S. Congress: pot, have you met the kettle?

From Joel Belz in World:

For Americans to talk so disdainfully about a "dysfunctional" government in Iraq is just a little on the cocky side.

The term was already common before early September, when a Government Accountability Office report said Iraq's Maliki administration had failed to meet 11 out of 18 benchmarks. Now it is part of everybody's vocabulary when referring to the Iraqi government.

So, we hear regularly of a government in Baghdad paralyzed by partisan ideology and strife. Sound a little familiar? Substitute the U.S. Congress for the Iraqi Parliament and substitute Republicans and Democrats for Shiites, Sunnis, and Kurds, and things might not look all that different. Granted, we aren't running around blowing each other up with car bombs—but when it comes to productive legislation, can you honestly point to anything memorable coming out of Washington in the last two or three years?...

So why, I ask, are we so forgiving of our own fragmented leadership in Washington while at the same time holding the fragile new Iraqi government to such an exacting standard?...

So who's dysfunctional? When Jesus told His followers not to worry about the speck in someone else's eye until they had taken care of the log in their own, maybe He had a logjam on Capitol Hill in mind.

I don't think that the previous Congress was much better. And a congressional logjam (in tandem with a president of the other party) is an improvement over a spate of government efforts to tax, spend, and regulate. Nonetheless, Belz makes a nice point...

And it's reminiscent of this recent cartoon by Michael Ramirez at Investor's Business Daily (hat tip: HoosierPundit)...

Cartoons By Michael Ramirez


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