With respect to the Michael Jackson story, the Drudge Report the other day had the best headline. It read, “Michael Jackson: Never Can Say Goodbye.”

I really feel like our celebrity-obsession crossed some line in the past two weeks and I believe Bernard Goldberg when he says we have become the ‘United States of Entertainment.’

And while we were all absorbed with the never-ending news coverage and retrospectives and downloading ‘Thriller’ to our iPods, Congress was busy trying to take away our freedom and destroy businesses and jobs.

HR 2454, the bill that is very misleadingly titled, ‘The American Clean Air and Energy Security Act of 2009’ passed the House overwhelmingly, with eight Republicans joining all of the Democrats in voting for it.

Let me read you something from a website that posts the text of pending legislation on the web.

“This bill is very large, and loading it may cause your web browser to perform sluggishly, or even freeze.”

Well it did, in fact, make my web browser freeze. It took me three tries to load this bill. That’s because the bill that is only one step from becoming law runs to over 1,300 pages. And not a single member of Congress read it before voting for it. Not one.

That’s because HR 2454 was still being written as it was being debated. More than 300 pages of amendments to the bill were inserted at three o’clock in the morning before debate began at 10:00 a.m. and a vote was taken at 3:00 p.m. If you watched C-SPAN, you could see the House clerk inserting and removing pages from the bill, the text of which is required to be in the House during debate and before a vote, while the bill was being debated and voted on.

It was surreal.

We’re not talking about naming a post office here. We’re talking about the federal government reaching right in to your wallet.

Among the many pernicious provisions of HR 2454 is this one. In order to sell your house, you will be required to obtain a certification from a federal agency that says your windows meet the latest energy efficiency standards, your appliances are Energy Star certified and that you have installed an outside receptacle for charging electric vehicles, even if neither you nor the buyer of your home has an electric vehicle.

Understand this. In order to sell your home, you will have to obtain the approval of a federal bureaucrat.

Small manufacturers will have to submit to federal energy audits and if found wanting, either cease operations or invest money they may never recoup in retrofitting their plants to meet stringent and aribitrary federal guidelines.

Your electric provider will have to provide a specified percentage of the electricity you use from renewable sources, irrespective of the fact that wind and solar electricity generation are not predictable and not practical in much of the country. This mandate will have an enormous impact on what it costs to keep your lights on and your air conditioner running.

All of this will put America at a competitive disadvantage in the world and will do little to bring about energy independence and will do nothing to reduce carbon output.

As I said, the bill runs to over 1,300 pages and no, I haven’t read all of it. I’m willing to believe that no single human has read every single page of the bill. Congressional staff members have been assigned to read portions of the bill and summarize them. But no member of Congress has read the bill.

And yet, it’s on the way to the Senate where it stands a good chance of passing. And it all happened in the dark of the night and while we were all involved in the endless goodbye to Jacko.

When are we going to wake up? This is not representative government. It’s tyranny of the most insidious kind. It’s a very small handful of very powerful legislators whose party holds the majority riding roughshod over anyone who would dare speak out.

If you and I don’t start raising seven kinds of hell and start doing it soon, our property rights, our access to health care, our ability to choose what kind of car we want to drive and countless other freedoms will be taken from us.

All while we’re watching the E! Channel.

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