Monday, July 11, 2011

The Debt Ceiling, GOP Bullpuckey, & The Amazing Race: Rethug 2012 Nominees...Really???

Tom Toles cartoons throughout- my fave Washington Post cartoonist - prolific, smart, and dead-on every time!
 Well, my fellow Politicos, I haven't been posting as regularly as I should, and I apologize for that -  thanks for all your email and tweets! (By the way, the rss feed hasn't been working since I went over to my custom domain name - will let you know when it's back in working order.)

But I have figured out why I have been so lax of late: I'm absolutely disgusted with all that's been going on for the last few weeks. I've just about had it with the GOP constantly ignoring  what's best for the country and their dogged persistence toward making things worse: simply so they can try and blame it on the present administration. It's like the doctor prescribing them antibiotics for an infection, and then never filling the prescription, let alone actually taking the meds. "But Doc, it didn't work!!!"

I know, I know, this is nothing new for the Rethugs (thus the name). But come on, people! This is obstructionism taken to its exponential max. Look at the whole debt ceiling "negotiations." I use the term "negotiations" loosely, because the debt ceiling business is not negotiation, in which each side compromises and finds common ground. No, the GOP strategy is more like a hostage negotiation, in which the captor expects us to meet all of his demands, and we just hope to get out of the room alive. Now, that's what we're dealing with here, folks.

Let's not even talk about constitutional issues, such as the following:
Section 4. The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned. (emphasis mine)
Okay, I lied. I have to talk about this. It's not rocket science, for Chrissakes...Damn, sure looks like the Rethugs are questioning big-time, if you ask me. Ask any high school civics class. You could even ask any first grader:
Me: "Hey, if I borrow a quarter from you, do I have to give it back?"
First Grader: "Um, yeah."
Me: "Why?"
First Grader: "Duh! If you don't, it's stealing!" (Looks at me as if I am an idiot...)
The debt ceiling is not about living within our means. (And I do agree, living within our means is important.) But the debt ceiling is about paying back what we've already spent. And even our forefathers, some 235 years ago, knew that, in order to sustain a country, there would be times we'd need to borrow money...and needless to say, that we'd have to pay it back. They actually spelled out in The Constitution that we had to repay our debts as a nation. What happens when you don't pay back those high-interest credit cards? They see you as a deadbeat and send collections goons after you. And when you borrow from a friend, and don't pay them back? You risk damaging or even ending your relationship with that friend. Just like the credit card company doesn't trust you anymore, neither will that friend. And neither will the U.S. have the "good faith and credit of the American government" to back up its borrowing if the GOP keeps fighting the debt ceiling discussions.

But it's bigger than that, this debt ceiling business. You all remember how when Wall Street was taking a dive and it began affecting markets worldwide? Well, imagine how us defaulting on our debt would affect the world economy, not to mention our own. But, see, that's exactly why the GOP want to screw this up for us: if they screw up our ability to repay our debts, we lose all the progress that's been made in the economy, and seriously debilitate the world economy, and then? The 2012 GOP bumper sticker will read: "Look What Happened on Obama's Watch!"  (Don't believe me? Check out this article about what Mitch McConnell calls his #1 Goal on Think Progress' blog today.)

That's why it's in the Rethug's best interest to play terrorist with our country's credit rating. That's why this obstructionism to the nth degree, the lack of bills through Congress, the hundreds of anti-abortion measures, the every-two-weeks-off schedule they decided to take for themselves (in addition to regular recesses) all play into their bumper sticker plan. "If we can make things worse while Obama's in office," says the GOP, "then we're a shoo-in for the next election!" We already know how good they are at staying on message and keeping their tin soldiers in line. As long as they are consistent, they think they can pull this off in 2012. This is simply the obstructionist plan to the extreme. And they're not about to fall shy of their goal - no matter what they have to do to get there. People who want power to preserve their money are desperate right now - the GOP will do anything to win, including sell this nation further down the river than it's ever been.
Which brings me to my favorite part of the GOP 2012 campaign: the likely nominees! See, they have to do something to make The President look bad, because they have NO ONE TO SPEAK OF TO RUN FOR PRESIDENT! Sorry for shouting, friends, but this field is a hoot, and it just keeps getting better! We are promised great hilarity over the next year or so with so many fabulously funny candidates. Let's take a look at the field, shall we?

Ron Paul: He's baaaack! Will the third time be the charm? Sadly, the guy actually makes sense at times, but has too many extreme views - just can't seem to get the GOP backing he needs. Too reasonable for the Rethugs, too whackadoo for Dem voters.

Mitt Romney: Ah, Mittens. Back once more, with your "Don't I look like Reagan?" hair and his "Remember the good times we had with Reagan? Can't you forget I'm a Mormon?" platform. Scary thing is, this guy can raise money like nobody's business. Flip-flopper extraordinaire.

Herman Cain: Well, if you can run a pizza chain, you can damn well run a nation, right??? They're so similar! Seriously, that's his whole campaign strategy. I want pizza. We could gain a lot of weight with this guy in office.

Michele Bachmann: Oh, I can wax poetic for days and days about this crackpot. She's Palin if she could put together a coherent sentence. I was just talking on twitter with a pal about how Tina Fey has plenty of job security - if you can do Palin, Bachmann is just a tiny stretch, sans glasses. Can you say "right wing nut job"?

Tim Pawlenty: 22/21 Ol' T-Paw is the guy that used to be a reasonable Rethug. He'd go on The Rachel Maddow Show and debate and discuss in a civil fashion. What happened to him in the last year? He realized that he damn well better knock off the appearances on MSNBC and start pandering to the base if he ever hopes to get the nomination.

Jon Huntsman: He's as middle of the road as it gets. Thing is, GOP won't support a moderate for president, especially if he continues to make those avant-garde, freaky campaign ads. Hope he sticks around, 'cause those are as amusing as hell! Starting to change views and court the base...dark horse, but could be in it for the long haul.

Rick Santorum: Aw, I feel sorry for Rick. Now when you google "Santorum," not only do you get something about which this blog refuses to discuss due to its high "Ewwwww!!!" quotient, but you get that a dog used him as a fire hydrant while campaigning. How do you spin all that? Sorry, Rick.

Rick Perry: One minute, Rick is fighting for his state to secede, the next he wants to run for President of the country from which he wishes Texas had seceded.
Seriously??? Make up your mind, Rick - you're either for the country or against it. Frankly, we're all rooting for you to leave and take Texas with you...Oh, and don't forget to pay back all that federal disaster aide we gave you.

Newt Gingrich: Newtie, my favorite. When he isn't giving Entrepreneur of The Year awards to, um, "gentlemen's clubs" for the mere price of $5G, he's having breakfast at Tiffany's and cruising in style.
So his campaign staff all left en problem. And, yes, the financial guys did, big whoop for Newt! He has promised to still run a helluva campaign. Oh, Newt. If we could only get you not to flaunt your wealth, you might stand half a chance.

Sarah Palin: Rarely have I mentioned this dingbat on my blog, because I think the media attention she already gets for doing absolutely nothing is obscene. Besides, as I've said, Tina Fey does a better Palin than Palin does. Quitter, illiterate, unable to speak in coherent sentences, and revisionist history writer, she seems lkie the perfect GOP candidate to me. Pleeeeease? Pretty pleeeeeeaaaase??? How about giving us Dems an early Christmas present? 

David Duke: Yes, that David Duke. The Grand Wizard of the KKK, white supremacist extraordinaire, contemplating a run against the first African-American president. And, no, I am not kidding. I wish I was. Not only that, but don't forget his prison term for mail fraud and tax evasion. When they used to say, "Any boy can grow up to be president," I'm pretty sure they didn't mean a criminal who led the KKK.

White House photo
I know exactly what you mean, Mr. President. A laughable field at best. And that's the best part of this election season: the absolute lunacy in the GOP field, the lack of a decent, plausible candidate. So you can now see why the Rethugs are desperate to cause The President as many problems as possible, to stop any forward progress on the part of the Dems.

I'd like to think that the American people are smart enough to see past that. But someone has to show them for what they are - the hostage-takers, the obstructionists. Time to start playing hardball, Mr. President, and to show these GOP fools for what they really are, to show why they are constantly shooting economic success in the foot. Time to point out these culture wars as GOP distractions from the issues and make it clear: we will stand up for the bulk of the nation's citizens, not the top earning 1%, and we will not defend the corporate interests against the middle class, and by God, we will expose the Rethuglican strategy for what it is, a plan to turn the nation into yet another corporation. As you enter into the debt meeting today, stand strong, Mr. President. No short-term solutions. Make them work for it, and do what the country needs for a change. Oh, and let loose a can of whup-ass while you're at it...we know you have it in ya!

By the way, my blogpal Kim will be premiering a liberal online radio show, A World of Progress, on Sunday, July 17th, 7:00 PM EDT. Give it a listen, or call in and have your say! Here's a link to get you started:  Please support liberal radio online! And spread the word, please. :)

And now, it's your turn, my fellow politicos! Who do you see as the front runner...or do any of them stand a chance? And should The President call the GOP's bluff on the debt ceiling? Put your two cents in here at Momma Politico!