As New York Senator Chuck Schumer demonstrated to the world, Liberal politicians don’t actually have to use their brains.  The Democrat caucus does that for them by providing all their members with talking points.  Whenever a recharge is needed, the party leaders feed their members a list of words to throw out in response to any question.

The latest “talking points” are “extreme” and “Draconian.”  You could ask a Democrat member of the House if it was raining outside and you could expect to be told that the weather is “extreme.”  “Hey, did you see that NCAA final?” might elicit the response, “UConn handed Butler one Draconian beating.”

Mindlessness has become an art form within the Beltway.  Many of the members of Congress are highly educated, with a significant number having law degrees.  These aren’t buffoons and yet they sure can play one on TV. It would behoove them to investigate the meaning of the words they use and whether they’re necessary.


Draco was the first legislator of ancient Athens, Greece, 7th century BC. He replaced the prevailing system of oral law and blood feud by a written code to be enforced only by a court. Because of its harshness, this code also gave rise to the term “Draconian”.

The laws Draco laid down were the first written constitution of Athens. So that no one would be unaware of them, they were posted on wooden tablets, where they were preserved for almost two centuries, on steles of the shape of three-sided pyramids The tablets were called axons, perhaps because they could be pivoted along the pyramid’s axis, to read any side.

The constitution featured several major innovations:

  • Instead of oral laws known to a special class, arbitrarily applied and interpreted, all laws were written (some claim he wrote them in blood), thus made known to all literate.
  • The laws distinguished between murder and involuntary homicide.
  • The laws were particularly harsh. For example, any debtor whose status was lower than that of his creditor was forced into slavery. The punishment was more lenient for those owing debt to a member of a lower class.
  • The death penalty was the punishment for even minor offenses. Concerning the liberal use of the death penalty in the Draconic code, Plutarch states:
    • It is said that Draco himself, when asked why he had fixed the punishment of death for most offenses, answered that he considered these lesser crimes to deserve it, and he had no greater punishment for more important ones.

In summary, Draconian laws were intended to punish those who violated societies laws.  Clearly the punishments were generally out of perspective to the crime, but the point was punishment for an offense. Exactly what crime are the Democrats accusing someone of committing?  They use the term Draconian in relation to budget cuts.  Are they saying the cuts are some form of crime against society?  A far stronger argument would be that out-of-control spending is a crime against future generations.  Who are they speaking to when they use the term Draconian?  Since they don’t even know the origin of the term, it’s fair to say that their intended audience probably doesn’t as well.  It’s all about labels.  If I label something a Draconian cut, it gives it a sinister sound and that’s what they’re trying to convey.  The evil Republicans are forcing Draconian cuts upon the elderly and the poor.

The other favorite term of the Democrats is “extreme.” Extreme is another word like “radical.” Democrats like to use that term in relation to the Tea Party.  The Republicans are being held hostage by the radical Tea Party wing of their party.  The problem is that the term “extreme” is not nearly as mysterious as “Draconian.”  Everyone knows what extreme means, however cutting the budget amidst a 14 trillion dollar national debt isn’t going to seem extreme to a majority of the American public.

When labeling doesn’t work, the next weapon in the Democrats armory is death.  The Democrats claimed that H.R.1, the first bill passed by the House, which called for 61 billion in cuts, would kill 70,000 children.  Those evil Republicans.  Then we heard how the House Freshmen came to Washington to kill women.  Killing women and children sounds pretty Draconian, doesn’t it?  What kind of people are we to elect hired guns to wipe out women and children?

When death doesn’t work, it’s time to pull out the old tried and true image of Grandma eating cat food.  Nancy Pelosi saw that the Draconian and extreme House bill wasn’t losing enough steam, so she dug down into her Wicked Witch of the West bag and pulled out 6 million starving elderly.  Who wants to see their grandparents living off Little Friskies?

This is why Congress has approval ratings somewhere south of Genghis Kahn.  Short of dropping to the floor, kicking their feet and holding their breath, they’ll do and say anything to paint those on the other side of the aisle as mean and hateful people.  No one believes anything coming out of Washington.  Now isn’t that sad.  These are the folks “We the people” sent there to represent us and yet it’s more accusation than representation.

Please, please drop the hyperbole!  Aren’t facts enough to make your point?  If not, then your point is worthless; keep it to yourself.  If you have something valid to say, it’s enough to tell us how you feel without labels or terms you don’t even understand, and we’ll decide without the colorful rhetoric.

How much are we paying these people?