For all the talk of "changing the culture in Washington," it appears to be business as usual ... only more so. Things are done – when, and if, they are – by people who play a tough inside game with no spectators. Washington will soon be working on revisions to the tax laws – since, obviously, they are insufficiently complex and contain too few breaks for special interests – and the heavy lifting will be done by the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, Max Baucus, and some people who have a special relationship with him.

As Eric Lipton of the New York Times reports:

At least 28 aides who have worked for Mr. Baucus, Democrat of Montana, since he became the committee chairman in 2001 have lobbied on tax issues during the Obama administration — more than any other current member of Congress, according to the analysis of lobbying filings performed for The New York Times.

There, in a nutshell, is your "culture" of Washington. And good luck on getting it to change on its own. Why would it want to?

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