Look, I'm all for President Obama seeking support from Republicans. After all, he is the president of all of the people, and Republicans are people, too. But for Chrissakes; at what point does he get that the leadership representing the Republican Party in Congress -- especially the Senate -- is made up mostly of people whose election hasn't come around yet, so they haven't had the opportunity to be tossed out on their asses. Yet. Moreover, they have no concept of what "bipartisanship" actually means, so you have to teach it to them. To them, bipartisanship means, "you do what we want." They sound very much like the biggest kids in fifth grade, who have gotten to ninth grade, but don't seem to realize all of the other kids are now bigger.
When you listen to these morons, I swear to you they're living in a goddamn echo chamber or something. They seem to be sealed off from the real world somehow; to them, 2006 and 2008 never even happened. First, the idiot Republicans in the House voted as a bloc AGAINST a stimulus package designed to relieve the current economic mess that THEY caused in the first place. And what did they choose to bitch about? I mean, besides the pennies the bill was scheduled to toss at contraceptive programs.
I kid you not! I almost fell out of my chair! Suddenly, John Boner (sp?), the House MINORITY Leader (I made the letters bigger so that he understands that's who he is now -- the MINORITY Leader), decided he finally gives a shit about the deficit, and perhaps we shouldn't add to it, because, well, it's pretty big. HIS PARTY is responsible for adding $10 trillion of the $11 trillion debt we find ourselves with, and they accumulated that debt at a time when they were declaring the economy was just humming along. Now, suddenly, after they tossed our tax money to their friends and supporters for the last eight years, they've decided we're borrowing too much, and we should really be a little more responsible with the people's money.
Bite me, Boner (sp?).
And the arrogance continues in the Senate, as they consider the stimulus, as well as several of President Obama's appointments. Yes, that's right, wingnuts; Obama won the election. So he gets to make appointments; imagine that.
As most of you know, the far-more-honorable-than-any-wingnut-Republican-questioning-him Tom Daschle dropped out of the running to be Secretary of Health and Human Services today. He felt as if he was just diverting too much attention away from President Obama's and the Senate's work on the stimulus package, which Americans need, in order to keep the economy from going completely into the toilet, thanks to the less-than-honorable idiots who dared question HIS ethics.
Seriously, these people should be embarrassed to even speak. And yet, here they are, not only speaking, but passing judgment on a guy the soles of whose shoes have less dirt on them than they do. Jim DeMint, Republican Senator from South Carolina, actually told Fixed Noise (who else?) that Obama was "losing credibility" with his statements in support of Daschle. "Part of leadership is recognizing when there has been a mistake made and responding quickly."
Oh, really?? Well, check this out.
I think all of us would agree that the Republican Party, led by former President George W. Bush, made a few, um, "mistakes" the last eight years, right? I mean, he lied to get us into war with Iraq, he botched the occupation of both Iraq and Afghanistan royally, he single-handedly killed one of the most important federal agencies in existence, FEMA, and continued to screw the people of New Orleans. And as if they needed a crescendo to eight years of the worst incompetence in the history of the United States, they put the economy into the dumper, and then threw nearly a trillion dollars at the crooks who had already raped the taxpayer for trillions.
Well, Senator DeMint must be slow to recognize a mistake, and/or he's pretty slow to respond, because he voted with his own party 93.7% of the time. Hell, that's more often than Obama voted with HIS party while he was Senator, and Obama's party didn't screw up the entire economy. (He even voted against S-CHIP, which would actually have saved everyone with health insurance a few dollars this year, the idiot.
But the greatest arrogance demonstrated by Senate Republicans seems to be reserved for the stimulus package. They are just hell-bent on insanity, you know? I mean, they keep proposing more of the crap that got us into this mess in the first place. And they're just so smug. I mean, were they hypnotized for the last eight years, and had no idea what they were doing?
A case in point is Arizona Senator Jon Kyl, who had the nerve to pipe up and say, "This isn't about playing the game, this is about doing something good for the American people." Are you laughing yet? Because it gets better. "It doesn't seem (the Democrats) were interested in the same kind of bipartisan outreach that the president was. We are too often met with this response: 'we won.'"
Wow. Can you believe the arrogance in that? Seriously.
Hey, Jon, buddy, guess what? WE WON! We're not talking about a goddamn soccer game, where you outplayed us to a score of 1-0. The American people voted, and via democratic instruments called votes, they opted to try something new. They want you to sit this one out and let the Democrats (adults) be in charge for a while. If President Obama wants to let you participate in the process, that's his prerogative, but he's under no obligation to do so. He's doing so out of the goodness of his heart.
But where was Jon while the Bushies were trashing the country? Oh, yeah; he was voting with the failed policies of his Republican Party 93.5% of the time. Yes, that's right; while Bush and Cheney were telling the Democrats to go screw themselves, and doing whatever they damned well pleased for eight years; at a time when "bipartisanship" meant doing it Bush's way or no way at all; Senator Kyl was going along with it gleefully, without giving so much as a rat's ass about how the Democrats felt about anything. Now, he's crying and stamping his feet and demanding a cookie as a reward for… what, exactly?
In the same article that quoted Kyl were the musings of Utah Senator Bob Bennett. You'll love this one; he said he simply didn't want to see the new president stumble his first time out of the block. "As an American I want to see the right thing done regardless of who gets the credit," Bennett said. "I'm going to vote against this package because it won't work."
It won't work? Really? This from a Senator who voted with his own party 84.4% of the time , while that party was screwing up the economy? He apparently thought that nearly everything George Bush wanted to do would work, because he almost always voted in favor of it. So, really; how good could his judgment be when it comes to determining how well policies work? You know what else he apparently decided wouldn't work? He decided that Fair Pay for women wouldn't work, because he voted against Lily Ledbetter. And every time health insurance for poor children has come up, he's also decided that wouldn't work, either. But every time he saw an emergency appropriation for Iraq, he voted for it, except when the bill included a timetable for withdrawal; he apparently decided that wouldn't work, either. But look at how well everything else about Iraq worked out.
Now, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell seems to alternate between making a little bit of sense, and simply sounding like a Republican lackey. On the one hand, his proposal to strip protectionism language from the bill is at least somewhat sensible, and creates a point of debate. And his proposal to offer flat 4% mortgages to "credit worthy people" makes some sense, if he means a 4% mortgage at the home's current value to everyone capable of making mortgage payments under such an agreement. But that doesn't sound like what he's proposing. He's talking about new mortgages, or refinancing the current balance of a mortgage, which doesn't help anyone.
But he can't make sense for long; he is, after all, Republican, and has to say stuff like this: "Nobody that I know of is trying to keep a package from passing. (A lie) We're not trying to prevent a package from passing. (Same lie, repeated.) We're trying to reform it. (Another lie. They're trying to get their own way.) A package that most of our members would support would be dramatically different than the one that passed the House, and frankly, dramatically different than what we currently see out of the Finance Committee and the Appropriations Committee."
See? The arrogance always shows through. Here's a clue, McChinless (kudos to SM for that one); you have 41 votes in the Senate. That's not a majority. You would need at least nine Democratic votes to even think of winning this thing, which means you'd better play damned nice. You don't get to dictate terms. Your threats of support or non-support are empty, because you cannot assure or deny passage. Got it? Here's a guy who voted with his loser party a whopping 96.8% of the time, and who led the Republican Party to a record number of filibusters and/or threatened filibusters, effectively killing as many as 200 bills proposed by Democrats when they had a slight majority. Again; here's a guy who was instrumental in leading the Republican Party while it refused to even consider anything that was actually bipartisan, or which might make a Democrat look good.
And he knows he can't filibuster this. If Republicans filibuster this bill to kill it, they will see a shitstorm of protest from the public that will permanently seal their fate as a minority party.
Oh, yeah, Senator John McCain also has an alternate stimulus proposal, but hey -- he's trying to save face, after he not only lost the presidential race, but looked like a dork the last time the Senate tried to bail out the economy. Remember that? Bush and the Republicans' last idea was to hand over nearly a trillion dollars to people who had completely screwed their companies, without oversight or even mild concern over what they might do with the money. Pardon the voters is we're a little skeptical this time around.
Look, Republicans, you had your chance. For the last eight years, you ran the show, and you pushed the country to the brink in just about every way fathomable. President Obama is offering you a chance to sit at the table and help make policy, which is more than your president or you ever did for any Democrat since 1995.
I know, as a party made up of a bunch of petulant children, it's difficult for you to play nice with the other children, but let's make something clear here. In a democratic world, the people who win could conceivably make the rules all by themselves; they don't have to include you at all. The fact that they are including you should be seen as a gift, not an entitlement. And having feedback in the rulemaking process doesn't mean you get to shout at the top of your lungs and stamp your feet until you get your way. You had your chance to be in charge and you squandered it. It's now time for the big people to run things, and to fix the damage you've done.
Look, folks. The Republican Party had their own way for most of the last 28 years, and we're going to be paying the price for a long time. President Obama is being nice, and he's allowing them to propose good ideas that might actually work. But he's not asking them for the same ideas that screwed the country up in the first place, and he's not one to simply go with the idea that happens to be shouted the loudest.
We have problems to fix, and we're not going to fix them by doing the same damned things we've been doing for the last eight years because, well, that would be the definition of insanity.
Republicans; if you can't play nice, then shut the hell up. Please. We have a country to fix.