Monday, November 12, 2012

I Voted For This Measure

This One Right Here

I could see why some would be opposed to it.  Personally I figured that if we're going to have a small, single house of professional "Senators" (Nebraska's unicameral has forty nine seats)  it would be better to pay them enough to make something of a living on so that people from all walks of life could realistically seek the job; phony populist fears of 'professional politicians' be damned. 

I could also get behind going completely the other way with a large, completely amateur "house".  The New Hampshire House of Representatives has 400 members.  or one for about every 3300 residents.  That's a might be a little too much, but if you were to divide Nebraska's population by two hundred you would have one rep for about every ninety two hundred people.  That would be enough for every rural two-stoplight town to have its own rep, major market towns like GI or North Platte to have one for each quadrant on this or that side of the tracks, and of course a horde of several dozen for Lincoln and Omaha.  More direct democracy is better democracy says I.

To keep costs down we could pay them little more than what they need for food and board; with maybe a bit more for caucus leaders to encourage the ambitious. This would I concede leave them more vulnerable to bribes, but then again the effective value of corrupting one out of two hundred would also be much lower.  Such a large group would also probably need to be officially partisan for organizational reasons.  I concede that many Nebraskans are proud of their non-partisan house but I would say that this is only another case of phony populism.  The people of the unicam reflect the mostly conservative nature of the state and everyone knows which way the wind blows with them.  The body was certainly willing to play the partisan redistricting game last year in a very obvious and deliberate way.  It was only their machinations that kept Omaha's US House seat red last Tuesday.  There's also the fact that the imposing of term limits has brought with it a steady stream of self-promoting abortion and nativism pimps looking to roll into Congress as the next great talk radio messiahs. In as much as it ever existed, which is unlikely, old George Norris' dream of a purely pragmatic and anti-ideological chamber is long dead.  So go ahead and let the Repubs enjoy the glory of formally controlling another statehouse in fact as well as name.  Very small constituencies will at any rate allow single-issue whackaloons total freedom to operate with no shame in their games; perfectly free from the tut-tutting of Very Serious hypocrites.  That's nothing but good old-fashioned freedom you know, and hilarious to boot.  Like I said before more democracy is better democracy.      

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