Tuesday, August 3, 2010
Sorry, but I couldn’t resist this picture that gives the congressman’s reply to a constituent who, frustrated by the b.s. from his congressman, asked him “not to pee on my leg and call it rain.” Nice, huh? It gets worse.
Fortney Hillman "Pete" Stark, Jr. (D-CA #13) age 78, is the 6th most senior representative as well as 8th most senior member of Congress –he’s been there for nearly 40 years! When our other Poster Boy, Charlie Rangel, had to resign for ethics violations Pete Stark was given the chairmanship of the Ways and Means Committee purely on the basis of tenure. But Stark was quickly pushed aside in favor of Rep. Sander Levin, D-Mich., after many Democrats privately complained that Stark was too volatile to lead such an important committee.
Stark has had his own run-in with the ethics committee, exhibiting “…bizarre behavior during an investigation…” Officials found Stark was "extremely belligerent" toward investigators from the Office of Congressional Ethics looking into his application for a homestead tax exemption in Maryland even though his official residence is in California. Long-tenured pols tend to believe that laws apply to the little people and not themselves.
Unlike most of our other Poster Children he is not a lawyer –he actually has an MBA from the University of California at Berkeley and was a highly successful banker having founded in 1963 Security National Bank at Walnut Creek and built it to $100 million enterprise within 10 years. He first ran for Congress from Oakland in 1972 and has been there ever since. He even served a couple of years in the U.S. Air Force, 1955-57. Not the background –except for the Berkeley years, that one expects for an avowed socialist.
Others we’ve posted, so far, who are fellow members of the largest socialist association in the U.S., the Democrat Socialists of America, are Henry Waxman, Maxine Waters (charged today with ethics violations), Hank Johnson, Barney Frank, Ed Markey, John Conyers, Jose Serrano, Nancy Pelosi and probably many more –the membership list is hard to get. Many in congress the longest are statist inclined which explains the ease with which Obama has passed his programs of government takeovers. When asked what limitations does the Constitution put on the federal government, Stark said “the federal government, yes, can do anything…” See him say it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W1-eBz8hyoE&feature=player_embedded People who spend the bulk of their lives in government tend to believe in big or even total government.
Stark recently mocked the idea that the borders are not secure when asked by a constituent at a town hall meeting about the federal government's lack of activity on border security. "If you knew anything about our borders, you would know …that our borders are quite secure, thank you," Stark said, drawing jeers. Then he resumed his hostile act by asking a constituent, "… I've got to know how high the wall is and I'll sell a whole lot of ladders…”
Since 95 % of incumbents regularly are reelected given advantages of incumbency he assumes reelection. The liberal San Francisco Chronicle editorialized on Stark, "Only a politician who assumes he has a job for life could behave so badly on a semi-regular basis by spewing personalized invective that might get him punched in certain East Bay taverns. Would-be challengers sometimes sense a whiff of opportunity, but the reality of taking on a 16-term (now 19-term) Democrat in solidly liberal terrain is nothing short of daunting. Surely there must be someone along the shoreline between Alameda and Fremont who could represent the good citizens of the district with class and dignity. It's not the case now.”
In an August 2008 videotaped interview with Jan Helfeld concerning the size of the national debt, Stark stated that the size of the national debt is a reflection of the nation's wealth. When pressed if the nation should take on more debt in order to have more wealth, Stark threatened Helfeld and said, “You get the f--k out of here or I’ll throw you out the window.”
Other controversies include singling out “Jewish colleagues" for blame for the Persian Gulf War. In 1995, in a meeting with Rep. Nancy Johnson (D-CT) he called her a "whore for the insurance industry" and suggested that her knowledge of health care came solely from “pillow talk” with her doctor-husband. In 1999, he said of former California Welfare Director Eloise Anderson, herself a former welfare mother, that she would "kill children if she had her way" because she advocated for welfare reform. At a hearing on abstinence promotion, he referred to Rep. JC Watts (R-OK) as the Republican Conference chairman, whose children were all born out of wedlock." He almost had his face rearranged someone commented of the incident which drew the police.
There are many other incidents of this type that could be recounted here but these should suffice to present a picture of unlimited abuse of his office. Just one more: In 2007, Stark accused President Bush of sending troops to Iraq "to get their heads blown off for the president's amusement."
What has he accomplished in Congress since 1972, you ask? Statistically, he missed 20% of all votes during his tenure and when he did vote it was 94% with the Democrat Party. He missed the vote on the Homeland Security Act but voted against the amendment to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act which gives U.S. spy agencies expanded power to eavesdrop on foreign suspects. He voted to increase taxes on oil companies and for subsidies for various “alternative” energy subsidies. He voted for increases in the minimum wage and against any spending cuts for welfare or student loans. I could find no time when he voted against any spending reduction but he consistently votes for increased taxes, opposing the Bush tax cuts and extension of them in 2006 and now. The net result of his votes have been to increase the size and scope of FedGov which is consistent with his socialist commitment.
Socialist-statist nations like the former Soviet Union, China, Cuba, Venezuela, N. Korea, et al, are not known for their concerns about pollution, global warming, the environment or of " endangered species” but Stark is for all of that. Socialists use these programs to expand the State through regulations and taxes.
We must have term limits on congress if we are to survive as Constitutional Republic. Go to www.termlimits.org and vote for Jim DeMint’s proposed Amendment to end unlimited terms in Congress. And mark your calendar for Nov 2nd to: take out the trash.