Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The Power Of Porkbusters

Via Beltway Blogroll:
Instapundit Glenn Reynolds found a reason to boast in the State of the Union address that President Bush gave last night, and with good reason:
Okay, I have to gloat just a bit: Bush led off with earmarks. His actions aren't as bold as I'd like, but still -- back in 2005 when PorkBusters started, nobody in Washington cared and members of Congress were bragging about pork. Now the State of the Union leads of with an attack on earmarks, to thundering applause. Yeah, a lot of it's a sham. But hypocrisy is the tribute vice pays to virtue, and this kind of hypocrisy indicates that the anti-earmark momentum is growing.
I've been tracking the power of the blog here at Beltway Blogroll since June 2005, and as my days at National Journal come to a close this week, I can say unequivocally that Porkbusters is the most successful demonstration I have seen of that influence. It is also the one with the greatest staying power.

It's true that pork is still a problem and will remain one as long as Americans choose to elect panderers rather than statesmen. As I noted in November 2005, it's next to impossible to catch the the greased pig in Congress.

But you simply can't deny that pork is a prominent policy issue now because of Porkbusters. Until bloggers across the political spectrum started ranting about pork after Hurricane Katrina, nobody outside of Republican presidential candidate John McCain, television broadcaster John Stossel and groups like Citizens Against Government Waste seemed to care -- and all of their outrage went unheard by Washington's powerbrokers.

Now the president is tackling the issue in the State of the Union. That is blog power, my friends.


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