Obama practicing the mushroom theory of Congressional relations
An old joke has it that keeping people in the dark and heaping excrement on them can be called the “mushroom theory of management.” But after last night’s hearings on the Bergdahl deal on Capitol Hill, members of Congress couod be forgiven for thinking President Obama is a mycologically-inclined president when it comes to them.
CBS News (!) reports:
Republicans emerged from the Monday night session incensed that 80 to 90 people in the government knew about Bergdahl's release ahead of time and not one member of Congress got a head's up, including leaders of the national security committees.
This blasts apart the administration claims that the reason Congress was not informed was that they feared a leak. It must be understood that leaders of the national security committees were informed well in advance of the Osama Bin Laden raid, which has to have been a far more sensitive secret to protect.
It’s clear that the administration is just making stuff up as they go, first citing bogus health concerns, then bogus security concerns, and that therefore it is fair to consider that they are hiding the real reasons for their shameful and illegal behavior.
As a result, another congressional investigation is going to be launched:
The House Armed Services Committee will investigate the Obama administration's swap of an American prisoner held for five years for five Taliban leaders that caused a political firestorm over the lack of congressional notification and fears the high-level Taliban could return to the Afghanistan battlefield.
"We ought to look at the price," Rep. Howard "Buck" McKeon, R-Calif., chairman of the panel, told reporters after administration officials held a tense 90-minute, closed-door briefing for House Democrats and Republicans.
Because there is bipartisan outrage over the way this was handled, as well as the substance of the deal, it will be most enlightening to see which Democrats act as point men and women. Many AT readers could have predicted:
[A]ll the Republican criticism angered Rep. Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill.
"I am so grateful to the people who were up there that we didn't leave someone on the battlefield," she told reporters. "And now, they would demonize this individual and find technical reasons why they're bad that we brought the soldier home?"
Beyond securing Bergdahl's release, she said, "the rest is extraneous." The prisoners, she added, were former Afghan government officials who've never been charged with any acts of wrongdoing by the United States. Schakowsky also compared the five-to-one swap favorably with prisoner exchanges by Israel, which has sometimes released more than 1,000 Palestinians to secure the return of one soldier.
"I find it absolutely unacceptable that we're hearing these kinds of attacks on this administration for bringing someone home," she said.
Schakowsky does not have the reputation of being among the sharpest knives in the Democrats’ drawer, and she is hanging herself out a bit. While Sgt (or Pvt as he prefers to be known) Bergdahl is so far incommunicado in Germany, that cannot be expected to last forever. Nobody, including Schakowsky, knows what he will say when he does face questions. The act that he is refusing to communicate with his family suggests he may have some surprises for us all.
His platoon-mates, no matter what slurs the New York Times may put on its front page, are highly credible, and speak to middle America from the heart. They cannot easily be demonized.
And, it is not only Congress that is experiencing the mushroom theory from Obama, it is the entire American public. Schakowsky and others of her inclination (can you hear me, Debbie?) ought to consider that when you associate yourself with a patch of mushrooms, you get covered in the same thing covering them.