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Perhaps I’ve been too harsh on congressional Republicans.
I had assumed that their vitriolic attacks on even the meekest of proposals to restrict the tsunami of secret corporate cash slamming into our elections stemmed from a hallucinogenic mix of partisan self-interest and Koch-induced plutocratic ideology. But I’ve since learned that they might simply need medical help.
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Take Scott Garrett, a New Jersey Republican who recently came unglued at a public hearing before the House financial services committee. Mary Jo White, Chairwoman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, had been summoned by GOP inquisitors to answer to a modest, straightforward proposal involving the disclosure of corporate political donations. Actually, it is not her proposal, but a citizen petition – signed by a record half-a-million people – asking the SEC to require that corporate executives reveal to shareholders how their money is being spent in elections.
That’s entirely reasonable – unless, like Garrett, you’ve got the political temperament of a live grenade. He exploded on Chairwoman White, demanding in a bullying manner that she “refuse to be bullied by these outside radical groups” who submitted the petition. He insisted that she declare, then and there, that the agency would not even consider the citizens’ proposal.
Yes, Garrett is a corporate toady, but that can’t explain his foam-at-the-mouth hissy fit. Then I learned about a new medical report about how conflicts at work cause some people’s brains to release hormones that prompt them to fly into a rage and even threaten others. These corrosive hormones can make blood platelets stickier, causing the brain to go “boom,” creating angry outbursts of stupidity.
This is Jim Hightower saying… So maybe Scott’s problem is not merely toadyism, but sticky platelets in his brain.
“Angry outbursts raise risk of heart attacks,” Washington Post, May 21, 2013.