The Demon Pass and Its Self-Executing Slaughter Solution

"Sacrificers are not the ones to pity. The ones to pity are those they sacrifice."
  -Elizabeth Bowen, The Death of the Heart, 1938
In war, theologically driven fanatical leaders see their sacrificial soldiers as martyrs. A secular warlord would view them as cannon fodder. In the game of chess, they're known simply as pawns. But no matter how inglorious a label is applied, it's the same idea: those deliberately sent to die for "the cause" in a much larger ideological and political conflict.

This is exactly what the fanatical left-wing leaders in Congress are inexplicably doing to many of their members right now: forcing them to commit political suicide and fall on their swords in a brazen attempt to wreak destruction on our nation's health care system via the weapon of mass deception known as ObamaCare.

When the Democrats lost the Battle of Massachusetts in December 2009 with the election of Scott Brown, and along with it their filibuster-proof supermajority in the Senate, they simultaneously lost their unfettered ability to impose their ideological will on the people of the United States through the normal constitutional order of the legislative process. Nevertheless, Democrat leaders surely wouldn't let a little thing like the checks and balances and ideals of the Constitution stand in the way of "fundamentally transforming" America.

Enter the "Slaughter Solution," named for Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY), which is a parliamentary device proposed by the House to "Deem and Pass" (say that phrase fast three times) the Senate's version of its health care bill without the House members actually voting on it as the Constitution explicitly requires (Article 1, Section 7). This is done via a "Self-Executing Rule" (appropriately named), which allegedly enacts a litany of fixes to the Senate bill to reconcile the House's objections to it. When the Democrats thought they needed it, they were ready to use it. As of publication time, reports are that they will not use it. The House believed that this would have allowed them to move the legislation forward while avoiding taking on any personal liability for a recorded vote for it.

Unfortunately, the result of the Slaughter Solution functions the same as if the Devil himself or one of his Demons were to say, "Here's a special Pass that exempts the bearer from going to Hell for his sins. To use it, just wait over there in the Lake of Fire for all eternity, and please disregard any personal discomfort and just ignore the sounds of all the wailing and gnashing of teeth." Let's call it a "Demon Pass." The Demon Pass promises to technically allow the beneficiary to be officially "off the hook" in the official record for the commission of an utter abomination...although the fine-print disclaimer on the back states that the consequences are pretty much the same. (Note: Demon Passes may not be used in conjunction with any other offer, inclusive of 72 virgins.)

Does the Constitution allow for execution of the Slaughter Solution? Not according to the Senate Parliamentarian and many constitutional scholars. But their opinions shouldn't be needed to answer this commonsense question. The very concept of the existence of a "supermajority" in parliamentary procedure is predicated on the fundamental idea that there are some matters of such grave importance and lasting consequence that they warrant some reasonable levels of broad consensus to rightfully become the law of the land.

By definition, a supermajority vote threshold is the mechanism established to protect the rights of a minority from the tyranny of a majority. The very existence of the Senate itself was architected by our founding fathers to serve (not rule) as the "more deliberative" legislative body with higher thresholds of consensus required for the most important matters, for the expressed purpose of serving as a check and balance to the "simple majority rule" of the House. 

Thus, the notion that a massive institutional reform that affects every citizen in the republic and one-sixth of our entire economy can be decided on a purely partisan "simple up or down vote" -- or worse, enacted with convoluted parliamentary chicanery because even achieving a simple majority isn't possible -- is patently absurd. Everyone knows it, even the fanatics, but that doesn't matter. They're all in. Win at all costs!

For these extremist activists, their underlying progressive cause is sacrosanct, and even the death of individual political careers, and perhaps even the downfall of the entire political party they hijacked years ago, is a worthwhile price to pay for achieving their ultimate ends. It's the Rules for Radicals (dedicated to Lucifer), Saul Alinsky way, where the end always justifies the means, no matter how pernicious, even if they have to lie, cheat, and steal (and bribe) to make it happen -- which they are demonstrably doing, in broad daylight, with not an iota of shame.

Is blatant hypocrisy and compromise of honor and integrity at every turn any ethical or moral impediment to achieving their goals? Clearly not. (See: Reprobate.)

Are they going to continue to betray their sworn oath to uphold and defend the Constitution in absolute lawlessness and in defiance of the expressed will and consent of the governed, in oblivious tone-deafness to the tidal wave of outrage from the American people? (See: Treason.) Apparently so, even if they lose control of one or both houses of Congress.

Speaker Pelosi herself recently proclaimed that achieving their goals "by any means necessary" is more important than "perpetuating the careers" of her party's members. Translation: Members are expendable as long as they obediently seize this "historic opportunity" to win their ultimate progressive prize. That would be an irrevocable lurch toward tyranny a century in the making: the ultimate centralized power and control over every American citizen's life.

The political carnage in November will surely be breathtaking to behold, but recognize clearly that the body count has already begun with the resignations and announced retirements of several congressmen justifiably fearful of the harsh judgment of their constituents. Senator Mendez from New Jersey is facing a recall petition. Several other states have recall statutes at their disposal. Watch for similar actions to be initiated as the conflict intensifies in the coming months.

It seems a foregone conclusion now that the remaining House Democrats will sheepishly submit and do as they're told to lawlessly enact the abomination of ObamaCare, despite the fact that the Senate will surely betray them in the convoluted Faustian bargain of their Demon Pass solution, thus condemning them to face the implacable wrath of self-executed electoral slaughter.

Indeed, a historic, fundamental transformation of unprecedented magnitude is close at hand, but not the one the progressives were hoping to achieve. For when sheep are led to slaughter, that's exactly what happens to them.

Robert Gelinas is a technology executive (JPE Inc. Consulting), publisher (ArcheBooks Publishing), and the author of The Mustard Seed and five other novels.
"Sacrificers are not the ones to pity. The ones to pity are those they sacrifice."
  -Elizabeth Bowen, The Death of the Heart, 1938
In war, theologically driven fanatical leaders see their sacrificial soldiers as martyrs. A secular warlord would view them as cannon fodder. In the game of chess, they're known simply as pawns. But no matter how inglorious a label is applied, it's the same idea: those deliberately sent to die for "the cause" in a much larger ideological and political conflict.

This is exactly what the fanatical left-wing leaders in Congress are inexplicably doing to many of their members right now: forcing them to commit political suicide and fall on their swords in a brazen attempt to wreak destruction on our nation's health care system via the weapon of mass deception known as ObamaCare.

When the Democrats lost the Battle of Massachusetts in December 2009 with the election of Scott Brown, and along with it their filibuster-proof supermajority in the Senate, they simultaneously lost their unfettered ability to impose their ideological will on the people of the United States through the normal constitutional order of the legislative process. Nevertheless, Democrat leaders surely wouldn't let a little thing like the checks and balances and ideals of the Constitution stand in the way of "fundamentally transforming" America.

Enter the "Slaughter Solution," named for Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY), which is a parliamentary device proposed by the House to "Deem and Pass" (say that phrase fast three times) the Senate's version of its health care bill without the House members actually voting on it as the Constitution explicitly requires (Article 1, Section 7). This is done via a "Self-Executing Rule" (appropriately named), which allegedly enacts a litany of fixes to the Senate bill to reconcile the House's objections to it. When the Democrats thought they needed it, they were ready to use it. As of publication time, reports are that they will not use it. The House believed that this would have allowed them to move the legislation forward while avoiding taking on any personal liability for a recorded vote for it.

Unfortunately, the result of the Slaughter Solution functions the same as if the Devil himself or one of his Demons were to say, "Here's a special Pass that exempts the bearer from going to Hell for his sins. To use it, just wait over there in the Lake of Fire for all eternity, and please disregard any personal discomfort and just ignore the sounds of all the wailing and gnashing of teeth." Let's call it a "Demon Pass." The Demon Pass promises to technically allow the beneficiary to be officially "off the hook" in the official record for the commission of an utter abomination...although the fine-print disclaimer on the back states that the consequences are pretty much the same. (Note: Demon Passes may not be used in conjunction with any other offer, inclusive of 72 virgins.)

Does the Constitution allow for execution of the Slaughter Solution? Not according to the Senate Parliamentarian and many constitutional scholars. But their opinions shouldn't be needed to answer this commonsense question. The very concept of the existence of a "supermajority" in parliamentary procedure is predicated on the fundamental idea that there are some matters of such grave importance and lasting consequence that they warrant some reasonable levels of broad consensus to rightfully become the law of the land.

By definition, a supermajority vote threshold is the mechanism established to protect the rights of a minority from the tyranny of a majority. The very existence of the Senate itself was architected by our founding fathers to serve (not rule) as the "more deliberative" legislative body with higher thresholds of consensus required for the most important matters, for the expressed purpose of serving as a check and balance to the "simple majority rule" of the House. 

Thus, the notion that a massive institutional reform that affects every citizen in the republic and one-sixth of our entire economy can be decided on a purely partisan "simple up or down vote" -- or worse, enacted with convoluted parliamentary chicanery because even achieving a simple majority isn't possible -- is patently absurd. Everyone knows it, even the fanatics, but that doesn't matter. They're all in. Win at all costs!

For these extremist activists, their underlying progressive cause is sacrosanct, and even the death of individual political careers, and perhaps even the downfall of the entire political party they hijacked years ago, is a worthwhile price to pay for achieving their ultimate ends. It's the Rules for Radicals (dedicated to Lucifer), Saul Alinsky way, where the end always justifies the means, no matter how pernicious, even if they have to lie, cheat, and steal (and bribe) to make it happen -- which they are demonstrably doing, in broad daylight, with not an iota of shame.

Is blatant hypocrisy and compromise of honor and integrity at every turn any ethical or moral impediment to achieving their goals? Clearly not. (See: Reprobate.)

Are they going to continue to betray their sworn oath to uphold and defend the Constitution in absolute lawlessness and in defiance of the expressed will and consent of the governed, in oblivious tone-deafness to the tidal wave of outrage from the American people? (See: Treason.) Apparently so, even if they lose control of one or both houses of Congress.

Speaker Pelosi herself recently proclaimed that achieving their goals "by any means necessary" is more important than "perpetuating the careers" of her party's members. Translation: Members are expendable as long as they obediently seize this "historic opportunity" to win their ultimate progressive prize. That would be an irrevocable lurch toward tyranny a century in the making: the ultimate centralized power and control over every American citizen's life.

The political carnage in November will surely be breathtaking to behold, but recognize clearly that the body count has already begun with the resignations and announced retirements of several congressmen justifiably fearful of the harsh judgment of their constituents. Senator Mendez from New Jersey is facing a recall petition. Several other states have recall statutes at their disposal. Watch for similar actions to be initiated as the conflict intensifies in the coming months.

It seems a foregone conclusion now that the remaining House Democrats will sheepishly submit and do as they're told to lawlessly enact the abomination of ObamaCare, despite the fact that the Senate will surely betray them in the convoluted Faustian bargain of their Demon Pass solution, thus condemning them to face the implacable wrath of self-executed electoral slaughter.

Indeed, a historic, fundamental transformation of unprecedented magnitude is close at hand, but not the one the progressives were hoping to achieve. For when sheep are led to slaughter, that's exactly what happens to them.

Robert Gelinas is a technology executive (JPE Inc. Consulting), publisher (ArcheBooks Publishing), and the author of The Mustard Seed and five other novels.