Rancid Prius Speaks!

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Allow me to catch you up…..Ukraine is still a head scratcher…..the plane is still missing with NO actual facts to report but the media will not let it go………

First, let me say I apologize for the title…..when I hear the chairman of the RNC’s name….that is all I can think….,funny how the mind works, huh?

Let’s move on….shall we?

It seems that for the first time in many years I find myself in agreement with the chairman of the RNC and the BS he tries to pass off as facts…….

Republican National Committee Chair Reince Priebus Tuesday didn’t merely predict that 2014 would be a wave election for Republican candidates. He predicted a political tsunami.

Speaking to reporters at a breakfast hosted by The Christian Science Monitor, Priebus said ‘I think we’re in for a tsunami-type election in 20014′ powered largely by Republicans winning six Senate seats to regain control of that chamber.

‘My belief is, it’s going to be a very big win, especially at the U.S. Senate level, and we may add some seats in congressional races,’ he told reporters. ‘But I need to and we need to at the RNC level make sure that we can capture the positives and the benefits we’ve been able to provide in 2014 and build on that to have success in 2016, which is a very different type of election.’

It is not looking good, at this point in the cycle, for the Dems in Congress…..they will have to deal with high debt, the failed rollout of Obamacare and the general wimpiness of the candidates that grows more and more with each session.

But how can this be explained?  All too many are asking this question…..and I believe there is a simple answer……..

Forgot who said this but it rings true…..”Never underestimate the power of human stupidity”…..if you do not like that answer then let me leave you with the words of Martin Luther King, Jr……”Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity”

And that my friends is….Enough Said!

Domestic Cold War

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By now even if you live under a rock you have heard all the stuff about the Repubs and their internal civil war….Party vs Tea Party, if you will……..we know, for instance that the TP is not happy with Boehner and the old guys for their kowtowing to Obama….at least if is as they see it…..what if anything can be done?

Glad you asked that all important question.

The so-called GOP civil war may be going from cold to hot. The conservative group ForAmerica tells CNN that it intends to spend six figures on a campaign it’s calling “Dump the Leadership,” aimed at deposing all the GOP’s leaders in both the House and Senate. “Time and again, year after year, the Republican leadership in the House and Senate has come to grassroots conservatives … pleading for our money, our volunteers, our time,” the group’s chairman says. “It’s been years. There is not a single conservative accomplishment this so-called ‘leadership’ can point to.” The group is vowing “significantly” more spending than the $200,000 it dropped to promote defunding ObamaCare, notes the Hill. The group says it’s got digital ads online now, but it’s unclear if those ads will attempt to convince voters to oust John Boehner, Mitch McConnell, and Co., or attempt to convince other GOP lawmakers to depose them. It’s not the group’s first swipe at leadership, either; it has repeatedlyattacked McConnell for striking deals with Democrats, once dubbing him a “chicken” for not fighting hard enough to defund ObamaCare.

Now from my perspective……is this the best idea?  I know there are many that are unhappy with Boehner and his cohorts….but removing them may not be the best idea……why?  The agenda that is being pursued is not necessarily the agenda of what the people want to be done….I know people?  Who among them gives two craps in Hell what we want done by our elected government?

This, if successful, could give them a temporary win….but in the long run they will be thrown from office….the American people are very close to that now……the people do NOT see these toads doing their jobs….only massaging the genitals of high dollar donors…..what is it that Kenny Rogers sung about……you gotta know when to hold ‘em and when to fold ‘em……..a better strategy needs to be found…a winning strategy….the course they are on now is NOT a winning one……

This is just plain silly…..they had rather beat their own leadership than a Democrat……explain the logic there please?

The Republicans’ Poverty Problem | Nikki Johnson-Huston, Esq.

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The attacks should start soon….and the GOP will need a good and clear plan for the biggest problem facing our country today….that is the increase in poverty……

The Republicans’ Poverty Problem | Nikki Johnson-Huston, Esq..

Executive Vault

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After the SOTU speech there has been lots of chatter about Obama not so veiled threat of using his executive orders to get things done……this ‘toon is great!

Executive Vault

Immigration–GOP Style

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This little issue has been hanging around of the fringes of political debate for decades….and in those days there have been many ideas on how to handle the influx of ‘illegal’ aliens into the country……I recall a few…..first there was the virtual fance armed with cameras, senors, all kinds of electronic stuff…the problem when finished it did not work and millions were flushed down the toilet…again.  Then there were some creative ones like a moat filled with alligators or a huge electrified fence or the 30 foot fence topped with broken glass and razor wire…and during all this time the same question kept popping up….what is the GOP gonna do about immigration?

And that question was answered yesterday….the GOP has a plan…….

House Republican leaders issued a set of principles today on immigration reform, and the consensus seems to be that they offer enough wiggle room to get a deal done this year. Some highlights:

  • Legal status: Many of the 11 million undocumented immigrants now in the country would be able to attain legal status, though not citizenship.
  • No ‘special path’: They would attain that legal status not through a “special path”—Republicans say that would be unfair to those who have followed the rules—but only after they “admit their culpability, pass rigorous background checks, pay significant fines and back taxes, develop proficiency in English and American civics, and be able to support themselves and their families (without access to public benefits).”
  • Citizenship for ‘dreamers’: Kids brought here illegally by their parents—often referred to collectively as the “dreamers”—would get a path to citizenship.
  • Border security: None of the above takes place until enforcement is beefed up.

There you have the ‘plan’….but wait!  Their original plan is still a priority…..border security……….NOTHING on how to achieve it.  So there is really nothing new…….

Now that they have a ‘plan’….how is it viewed?

  • Washington Post: It’s a big deal because this is “first the first time that (House GOP leaders) would be open to allowing the nation’s 11 million undocumented immigrants to live and work legally in the United States.”
  • The Hill: “The endorsement of a path to legal status for many of the nation’s estimated 11 million illegal immigrants is a significant step toward comprehensive immigration reform for a party that has long resisted policies that some deride as amnesty.”
  • Politico: It sees the move as a “modest change” for the GOP leaders themselves, but “for a Republican Party that advocated ‘self-deportation’ as recently as 2012, it’s a massive shift.”
  • New York Times: “The Republican proposal seeks to walk a fine line: offering legal status—but not citizenship, and not through a special path—to undocumented immigrants who meet certain conditions.”
  • President Obama: “I actually think we have a good chance of getting immigration reform,” President Obama told CNN.
  • Chuck Schumer: “While these standards are certainly not everything we would agree with, they leave a real possibility that Democrats and Republicans … can in some way come together and pass immigration reform.”
  • John Boehner: In releasing the plan, he sought to emphasize what the GOP won’t do. “These standards are as far as we are willing to go. Nancy Pelosi said yesterday that for her caucus, it is a special path to citizenship or nothing. If Democrats insist on that, then we are not going to get anywhere this year.”
  • The AP has the GOP principles in text form here.

I suggest that you read the full text of the proposal before you make your decision…….after that….I want to hear from my readers on this issue…..

GOP Course Change?

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I recall after the last election….you know the one where Mitt got his pants beaten off…..the GOP and its chairman, Rancid Prius (sorry cannot remember his real name and too lazy to use Google) stated that the GOP was gonna take stock and try to reach out to those disenfranchised voters…you know like women, Latinos, working folk, etc……

An excellent idea and I for one was looking forward to some substance to their issues and not just “we hate Obama” rhetoric…..this was the perfect opportunity for them to be successful…….many Americans were getting weary of the Obama admin and their sluggish policy machine….the voters were there for them to reach out to and hopefully convert……but…….

So far NOTHING has changed…they are NOT reaching out to new voters……they remain with an aging white base….they allow the idiots of the party free and unhampered access to spout all sorts of insulting rhetoric and falsehoods…….and policies….where are the NEW ideas on policy prep?

At the winter meeting of the RNC the chairman made some amazing statements……

We’ve come a long way since we gathered in Charlotte and vowed to renew our party, to grow, and to win.

As you’ve seen these last few days, we’re making great progress. We’re meeting our goals. We’re ‘making it happen.’

On all these things, I could go into greater detail. But you’ve heard and seen most of the numbers by now. So I just want to underscore the big picture. What we’re doing together is unprecedented for the RNC, for any party committee. We already have more people in the field than we do in headquarters. That’s unheard of in an off year. In some cases, that’s unheard of in an election year.

And we’re accomplishing these things because we’re united.

There are also people who want to turn the healthy conversations we’re having into headlines. They want to make a family discussion look like division. But we’re not going to let that happen, either.

I think it’s a good thing that we can have honest discussions on policy. A robust party should take time to debate the right solutions, and the right tactics. But there shouldn’t be any question: We’re united on our principles…

…yes, our party has come up with multiple ways to protect Americans from the consequences of Obamacare. But does anyone doubt that we’re united in saying that America deserves better than the Unaffordable Care Act?

Enough!  I could go one with his comments but why?  His comments are those of a delusional prick.  I have seen NOTHING new or anything that could be clled a success….with the exception of ACA (Obamacare for those haters) and that had NOTHING to do with GOP policy but rather a failed roll-out of the program…..very fortuitous for the GOP.

The RNC is already investing in a strong ground game for the 2014 elections, having already recruited more than 8,000 precinct captains. The committee has one of the largest, most diverse staffs it has ever had, officials said last week, and it has restructured its operations so they are data-driven. The committee is investing in all 50 states while eyeing some states where they could invest more substantially ahead of the 2016 election cycle.

But what good is a ground game if you have nothing to offer perspective voters?

The one area that has the GOP most concerned is the so-called “war on women”….but they have a plan…well sort of…….

The RNC is also considering a tactical defense against the Democrats’ “war on women” attack that in 2012 brought down candidates like Missouri’s GOP Senate candidate Todd Akin. The committee will consider a new resolution that states the RNC will not support the “strategy of silence” when it comes to Republican candidates and the issue of “life,” urging candidates to defend their positions and fight back.

Let me help them with this one issue….if you do not want it to appear as though there is a war on women then put a muzzle on the morons…..every time they open their mouths they feed that perception…..they can defend their position without using stupid statements to make their point….you know like “legitimate rape” or “biblical authority” or (pick one…they are not hard to find)…….as long as your candidates go off script the harder it is to reel they comments back…..just a suggestion……

I am a political philosopher and believe me when I say that I would love to see a new and improved GOP……… would make for a much better political stage….but so far all they have is….well NOTHING!  They have the same mindless twaddle from mental midgets……the people with an intellect are move to the fringe and told that they are NO longer political pure….there can NEVER be a strong GOP as long as these types of thoughts are allowed to blossom and bear fruit…….it is just that simple.

Moderates In The Weeds

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The day after the State of the Union speech……have you had enough?……….it was, as I anticipated, a yawn…..a petty bunch of pathetic individuals trying to bully the opposition….that needs to be the last SOTU if that is what it has come down to…….but as long as I am posting on politics let’s go crazy….shall we?

Personally I think the state of the union speech is worthless and a waste of time……all presidents promise and seldom deliver….why bother?

Since everyone will be focusing on some random speech…..I think I will have a hodge podge day…..I usually try to have a theme of the day and post relevant pieces to that theme…..but from time to time I like to break character and do something whimsical…..a hodge-podge day.

Awhile back a study said that many Americans were centrists…..then there was one that said that we were becoming more liberal….and now it is something about moderates….or some such……

If one follows politics then one would think that the ‘new’ Right, the radical Right, was the coming storm….that we would be in for many years of gridlock, fake scandals, meetings, and less congressional work than ever……but you know that is only in the media, at least as far as my experience goes …..I have found many on the Right are actually well versed in the politics of the day……some of the older GOP members are talking with more than half their brain….people like Steele, Shultz, Sullivan….I mean they still cling to some of the out-dated crap but for the most part they see what the party needs to do to win national elections.

I have also found that while I know many Tea Party advocates I still see them as reasonably well educated in their party…..when dealing with them one on one they speak coherently and to the point and even some have ideas……while I do not think they will work to get our country back on track….,.at least there is ideas and just mindless rambling on subjects long dead……

I bring this up because I read a piece written by David Brooks and I find him dead on…at least in my opinion……check it out for yourself…..

You wouldn’t know it to listen to Republican politicians, but there’s a new eminently reasonable brand of conservatism brewing, based on the principle of “skeptical reform,” writes David Brooks at the New York Times. Current Republicans have defined themselves as anti-government, leaving them “no governing agenda for people facing concrete needs.” This new breed of thinkers instead focuses on remedying specific social ills—even if that means using government as a tool. “Government is not the only solution, but it is not the only problem.” These thinkers acknowledge “that the world is too complicated to be centrally planned,” and hence strive to harness markets—instead of dictating them like ObamaCare. But unlike today’s often too-fervent Republicans, they’re skeptical of their own solutions as well, so they aim for gradual, mindful reform. Brooks thinks this school will catch on, because “the Republican style of recent years has produced a vacuum where concrete proposals should be.” When Republicans need policies of their own, they’ll “find there is no other game in town.” For examples of these kinds of policies, see the full column.

The only problem I foresee is that of desire…….does the Party truly desire a national win or will they succumb to the mind numbing crap of the rabid Right?

McCain’s A Liberal?

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Just how far will they go to be more moronic than they are now?  I have called McCain many things, some not so nice, but I have never called him a liberal or that he was too liberal to be a Repub……but guess what!  The state GOP of Arizona has gone to the far Right in recent weeks……

Seems John McCain is getting too liberal for Arizona conservatives—so liberal that the state’s Republican party has formally reprimanded the senator for his “disastrous and harmful” record, Politico reports. At a party meeting in Tempe yesterday, the party hammered McCain for assisting Democrats on immigration reform, ignoring a GOP plan to defund ObamaCare, and criticizing conservative Republicans while keeping “eerily silent against liberals.” Not only that, he kept telling a rather unkind joke about Congress, the Atlantic Wire reports. Congress “can’t get lower in the polls,” the joke goes (thanks, Atlantic Wire). “We’re down to blood relatives and paid staffers now.” But the censure sounds like no joke: The state GOP vowed to “no longer support, campaign for, or endorse” McCain until he backs the party platform. McCain’s office had no comment, but former Sen. Jon Kyl, another Arizona Republican, spoke up for him: To say McCain “doesn’t have a conservative voting record—that’s just baloney,” he told the Arizona Republic. “I’ve gone to dozens of these meetings and every now and then some wacky resolution gets passed.” At this meeting, some 1,600 committee members also voted to abolish a Constitutional amendment allowing the direct election of senators by the voting public, Reuters reports.

Okay, I am NO fan of McCain’s……but this is pushing the envelope……and then there are those in the GOP that say there is NO purity test that candidates must adhere to…..looks like the Arizona twats missed that memo…….

Could It Be? The GOP Sees The Light?

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It seems that our political brethren, the GOP, have bitten the bullet and decided it would be in the best interest to acknowledge the growing problem of inequality….after many election cycles and a whole lot of denial…they may have seen the light…(how fortunate with an election looming on the horizon)…….

Republicans seem to have shifted thinking about income inequality and the plight of poor people, writes Doyle McManus in the Los Angeles Times. Conservative stalwarts Paul Ryan and Marco Rubio are among those pitching proposals to help low-income Americans make ends meet, perhaps learning a lesson from Mitt Romney’s “47 percent” comments in the last election. That’s smart, writes McManus, because President Obama is keeping the issue of income inequality front and center, and Republicans have figured out that it’s not enough to argue that lower taxes and reduced federal debt will be a cure-all. “The stagnation of middle-class incomes and the growing gap between rich and poor aren’t by any means partisan issues,” he writes. “Republican voters worry about them as much as Democrats do.” GOP candidates will no doubt have different approaches toward solutions, but McManus thinks it’s promising that they’re even discussing the need for them. “The two parties have agreed on a basic premise: that the federal government must do more to help the poor, especially low-income workers, clamber out of poverty,” he writes. “And that’s progress.” Click for his full column.

Now with the problem in sight….the next question is….what to do….what to do?

Believe it or not there are some ideas coming out of the GOP on how we can move past poverty and make a better country for our citizens…..really….they have some ideas….and here they are…..

1. Don’t raise minimum wage: Rubio said we shouldn’t raise the minimum wage to $10 because no one wants a job that pays $10. “Raising the minimum wage may poll well, but having a job that pays $10 an hour is not the American dream.” It is not clear how not raising the minimum wage translates into people getting jobs that pay more than $10 an hour. The current minimum wage is $7.25 an hour, an amount so low that people working full-time can’t afford to pay rent in any state, never mind buy food. People making the minimum wage actually qualify for food stamps and other government assistance. A bill currently before Congress to lift the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour would lift 4.6 million Americans out of poverty.

2. Give subsidies to employers instead: Instead of raising the minimum wage (higher wages mean less money going into the pockets of those at the top of the corporate ladder) Rubio proposes to replace the Earned Income Tax Credit with a direct wage subsidy. He would give government money to companies to “supplement wages.” He says this would “encourage and reward work.” This would mean the money companies are not paying out in higher wages would continue to go to the top few and government would make up the difference: a direct government subsidy of inequality.

3. Turn programs over to states: Rubio proposed turning federal anti-poverty programs over to the states in a single “flex-fund” block grant, in order to let the states decide what to do with the money. Note that  24 states are currently refusing the federal Medicaid expansion, leaving 5.4 million people without health coverage even though it comes at no cost to those states. So the record on turning things over to the states as a way to help the poor is not good.

4. Marriage: Rubio’s  big proposal is marriage (but not gay marriage). He said, “the greatest tool to lift children and families from poverty is one that decreases the probability of child poverty by 82 percent. But it isn’t a government spending program. It’s called marriage.” Rubio says that government subsidies to increase wages (instead of just raising the minimum wage) makes men more “marriageable.” He also said we need to “remove the marriage penalties in safety net programs.” This is typical Republican dog-whistle politics, used to evoke images of “welfare mothers” – single black mothers having lots of babies so they can get more welfare.

Along these same lines Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX)  recently said the reason he ran for Congress was “because he was outraged that single women were having as many as 15 babies and getting welfare checks.” Perhaps his proposal to stop all the women who have 15 babies (if there are any) from getting welfare checks will fight poverty, perhaps not. It should be noted, however, that “welfare” largely ended in 1996. Even with this program the amount given for nutritional assistance for children is extremely low, while the “reform” of this assistance has left millions in desperate straits. A 1997 Rutgers study compared birth rates between women receiving welfare who were receiving these benefits and a control group of women on welfare who were not found identical birth rates.

5. Make them move: Rubio also proposed giving unemployed people “relocation vouchers” so they can move to places with low unemployment.  Erika Eichelberger at Mother Jones talked to Mike Konczal of the Roosevelt Institute, who pointed out that this idea would just move the problem around. “States with low unemployment are often small states that are heavily agricultural,” he says. “There is not a lot of dynamic turnover… There are already unemployed people there who want those jobs” that are open.

Other Republican Proposals

Republicans have thrown a few other anti-poverty proposals into the mix recently.

6. Volunteer: Paul Ryan, chief cutter of budgets for things government does to make our lives better, is trying to distance himself from Republican (and his own) branding as insensitive to the poor. According to the Washington Post, “His idea of a war on poverty so far relies heavily on promoting volunteerism and encouraging work.” This is not the “volunteerism” of his famous photo pretending to wash dishes at a soup kitchen during the 2012 campaign; this is people showing up at soup kitchens, etc., and working without pay. While all of us should be helping out at soup kitchens, shelters and other programs that help others, it’s no substitute for the kind of resources government would be able to apply if Ryan was not so effective at gutting the government.

7. Get rid of public schools: Representative Eric Cantor of Virginia, the House majority (Republican) leader  says that education reform broadly, and “school choice” in particular, is the surest way to break the “vicious cycle of poverty.” It is not clear how getting rid of public schools and using tax dollars to fund private schools-for-profit will fight poverty. The Education Opportunity Network explains that “education reform… seeks to impose on schools a governing methodology favored by business executives and policy technocrats” and in another post, that “access to good public schools is a critical civil and human right… corporate reform is characterized as a “market-based system” emphasizing “competition—as opposed to collaboration” that imposes a “system of winners and losers” in which “vulnerable children become collateral damage.”

8. Get rid of child labor laws: Maine’s Republican Governor Paul LePage  says child labor laws “are causing damage to our economy.” “We don’t allow children to work until they’re 16, but two years later, when they’re 18, they can go to war and fight for us,” LePage said. “That’s causing damage to our economy. I started working far earlier than that, and it didn’t hurt me at all. There is nothing wrong with being a paperboy at 12 years old, or at a store sorting bottles at 12 years old.”

(Thanx to Salon.com for the list)

There you have the ideas from the party that gave you Ted Cruz and Newt……..I could be a prick and make all kinds of insulting comments about their ideas to end poverty but I will take the high ground…..I am by no means an economist but to me, with my limited training in economics, these sound about as successful as the now defunct idea of trickle down economics…..WAIT!  Some of the programs are thinly veiled steps in trickle down…..they never stop trying to use that piece of manure as a base for economic growth.

I ask my readers to weigh in on these ideas…..one by one if you like….I want to see if I missed something………

The Price of GOP Obamacare Sabotage In One Chart

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A subject that has been much maligned…..a subject that normal mortals do not understand…only what is regurgitated by talking heads……

Shall we read?

The Price of GOP Obamacare Sabotage In One Chart.

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