2 August 2013
24 June 2013
I have been calling our crackerjack Congress a pack of clowns…..well some other names that I prefer not to repeat…….and the recent farm bill vote is just an illustration of the antics of this circus……
In case you have been online with your bros and missed the voting on said bill….let me help out……the speaker of the House brought a farm bill up for a vote without having a guaranteed vote count and it failed….62 Repubs deserted Boehner and voted against the bill…..it seems they may have grown a conscience before the vote…..the bill in question would have cut SNAP funding drastically….SNAP that is bureaucratic speak for food stamps…….one of my favorite players in this bill was a rep named Fincher and Mr. Fincher has a vested interest in the farm bill……
You see, Representative Fincher happens to be the second largest recipient of farm subsidies in the United States Congress—which might explain why Mr. Fincher would like to decimate the food stamp budget in order to do the Lord’s work when “supporting a proposal to expand crop insurance by $9 billion over the next 10 years.”
While Fincher may only come in second amongst his congressional peers when it comes to pocketing huge sums of taxpayer money, he has the distinction of being one of the largest recipients of subsidies in the history of the great State of Tennessee.
Kinda like insider trading…..he is profiting off his membership of a committee in the House……is it legal? Probably. But it is NOT ethical and this is where the douche bag Issa needs to be looking for his investigations…..
The vote is a blow to Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and other Republican leaders who for two years have failed to move farm policy forward. The issue has badly divided Republicans.
Immediately after the vote, Republicans were apoplectic at what they characterized as a betrayal by Democratic leaders, who did not deliver the votes they promised. Yep it is the Dems fault because Boehner and the leadership did not have the votes before bringing it up……the farm bill could not pass the House…..what do you think the chances of the immigration bill?
Say what you want about Pelosi, I will probably agree on some of it, but the lady knew her stand and where her votes were……something Boehner and Cantor have yet to learn………the Repubs are looking more and more like the clowns, bad ones at that, that I have been accusing them of being……..
There are 4 of the most beautiful words in the English language that I will use anytime……..“I Told You So”!
5 June 2013
I am a Lefty and we have been accused of coming to the rescue of Eric Holder…..I want to put all that crap to bed!
Holder should either resign or be fired! Why? He has become the story and a diversion that is not needed in DC. If he is guilty and yes I said if that would be the up to the courts to decide….not the word of some megalomaniac in the House, who is all mouth and NO action, like so many of his colleagues……the whole affair has gone from newsworthy to a pathetic circus…..anything to keep from doing the country’s business…….
Sorry, I digress……I despise theatrics no matter which side is playing….it is too disgusting for words……okay, I may have found a few words to use…….
(Newser) – Eric Holder is reaching out to news executives over allegations that he and his Justice Department were too aggressive in going after reporters’ email and phone records. And Holder himself is reportedly feeling a “creeping sense of personal remorse” about his actions, particularly in regard to Fox reporter James Rosen, reports the Daily Beast. It’s way too little, way too late, writes Jonathan Turley at USA Today. “I am neither a Republican nor conservative, and I believe Holder should be fired.”
The attorney general “has done little in his tenure to protect civil liberties or the free press,” writes Turley. “Rather, Holder has supervised a comprehensive erosion of privacy rights, press freedom and due process.” Holder has long served as what DC insiders refer to as the president’s “sin eater”—a high-ranking official who shields his boss from responsibility in the grand tradition of HR Haldeman, Oliver North, and even Dick Cheney. But “these sins should be fatal for any attorney general.” Click for Turley’s full column.
I have put my name in the hat for Holder to go….and I have put my name in with those that think Issa is a self-absorbed clown that is doing all he can to keep the House from tackling important issues….he is a sad sad little person to be in charge of so-called ethics violations…..
25 April 2013
College of Political Knowledge
I have been watching the actions of our Congress both Senate and House, since the Clinton days and have seen just how dysfunctional the institution really is, at least in the near past…….the partisanship has made the organization a non-workable endeavor……its approval rating is dismal…..its bill success rate is in the toilet…….and most of the players appear to be nothing short of clowns in a circus……..
The next question should be….how can we as a nation find a way for our legislative branch to function more efficiently? Or is it possible at all to make it an institution worth saving?
One idea that was floated during the founding era, especially by Franklin, was a unicameral legislative system as opposed to what we have now, bicameral……
Franklin wrote Queries and Remarks Respecting Alterations in the Constitution of Pennsylvania to record his opposition to bicameralism.
The Combinations of Civil Society are not like those of a Set of Merchants, who club [combine] their Property in different Proportions for Building and Freighting a Ship, and may therefore have some Right to vote in the Disposition of the Voyage in greater or less Degree according to their respective Contributions; but the important ends of Civil Society, and the personal Securities of Life and Liberty, these remain the same in every Member of the society; and the poorest continues to have an equal Claim to them with the most opulent [wealthy], whatever Difference Time, Chance, or Industry may occasion in their Circumstances. On these Considerations, I am sorry to See the Signs this Paper I have been considering [the proposed Pennsylvania Constitution] affords, of a Disposition among some of our People to commence an Aristocracy, by giving the Rich a predominancy [superior power] in Government, a Choice peculiar to themselves in one half the Legislature to be proudly called the UPPER House, and the other Branch, chosen by the Majority of the People, degraded by the denomination [name] of the LOWER; and giving to this Upper a Permanency of four Years, and but two to the lower.
Franklin felt that every member of society should have an equal say in the legislative branch of government. He disagreed with the theory of bicameralism that favored one chamber for the wealthy and another chamber for the rest of society. (version can be found on Yahoo Answers)……….
There are benefits to unicameralism…..can almost hear the butts slamming shut!
1. No Duplication of Work-
Law making is done through a process. If there is one house the process is followed once only. There is no repetition of the same process. So time is saved, money is saved and energy as well.
2. No Hindrance-
The people’s will is reflected in the single chamber and there is no check on progressive legislation by any reactionary or conservative second chamber. If the legislature is bicameral in nature there will be differences in the outlook of the two houses.
3. Singleness of Purpose-
When the legislature consists of only one house, singleness of purpose will be maintained. Hence, there will be no confusion in the law making process. Benjamin Franklin said: “Legislative body divided into two branches is like a carriage drawn by one horse in front and one behind pulling in opposite direction.”
4. No Divided Responsibility-
It adds to the quality and dignity of the legislators by avoiding conflict between two chambers. The single chamber is responsible for all legislative matters. There is no divided responsibility as is found in a bicameral legislature.
5. More Representative and less Expensive-
The unicameral legislature can be composed of members who are the true representatives of the people. The composition can be simple. Because it is unicameral, double expenditure for maintenance of two houses is not necessary.
The benefits sound too good to be true…….it would streamline the process and as stated it would be less expensive, something we all should aspire to in these days of looming austerity……so I return to the beginning question……Could one house be better than two?
20 December 2012
All the hoopla about the big super duper “Plan B”……it is a waste of time and yet the House has spent 3 days and a vote on something that will NEVER make it into law……money well spent?
23 March 2012
It is that time again….the House repubs think they have ammo that they can use with this new budget offered up by Paul Ryan……it reads a lot like the budget he offered up last year or so…..and of course they (the Repubs) will offer up the excuse that Obama has not giving a budget in over 400 days, I believe or maybe it is 4000 days, who knows….no matter what it is lame, but it will be the defense…..
When I started writing this I wanted to give my readers a synopsis of the plan….but thereis no way to summarize it without leaving something important out…..so I turned to a bloggers best friend….the internet and found this from townhall.com…….
On Spending – The Path to Prosperity spends $3.53 Trillion in FY 2013, a number that grows to $4.88 Trillion by the end of the decade. It restores full military funding to pre-Budget Control Act sequestration levels, off-setting those dollars elsewhere and preventing a harmful gutting of our national defense. It reduces spending by $5 Trillion over the next ten years, compared to Obama’s budget. It restores federal spending to the historical norm of 20 percent of GDP by 2015.
On Deficits – Ryan’s blueprint reduces budget deficits by $3 Trillion over the coming decade, relative to Obama’s budget. Although it doesn’t happen immediately, and unlike Obama’s plan, this budget balances. Within the current decade window, it comes closest to primary balance by achieving a $166 Billion annual deficit in 2018 (to put that into perspective, 2010′s deficit under this president was $1.6 Trillion). The closest Obama’s budget comes to primary balance is a $617 Billion shortfall in 2017, which is still roughly double the size of President Bush’s average deficit.
On Debt – Unlike President Obama’s unflinching debt express, the GOP budget’s lowers spending and enacts crucial reforms to chart a more sustainable debt course, allowing the United States to gradually begin paying down the national debt. The plan would retire the publicly-held debt by the 2050′s. Gross debt reached 100 percent of US GDP this year, an alarming tipping point — yet President Obama’s new budget offers ever higher debt in perpetuity:
On Taxes – This proposal aims to stabilize revenues at the historical average of 18 to 19 percent of GDP. It adopts a concept endorsed by the president’s fiscal commission by drastically simplifying the tax code, reducing the complex series of income brackets to just two: 10 and 25 percent. (A large majority of Americans support a single flat tax rate; this is slightly more progressive, but is still a vast improvement). While the highest tax bracket would be 25 percent of income — a level that a healthy majority of Americans view as “fair” — the plan would also phase out and eliminate special tax loopholes and spending in the tax code. This would disproportionally affect higher-income earners. Slightly revising President Obama’s recently-introduced plan, the Ryan budget would also cut US corporate tax rates from the current sky-high 35 percent to 25 percent. (Obama’s preferred reduction would be three percentage points higher, at 28 percent). In exchange for a lower, pro-growth rate, corporations would also lose various write-offs, loopholes, and corporate welfare. In sum, the tax code would be made far flatter, more predictable, and simpler for everyone.
On Medicaid and Social Security – Like last year’s budget, Paul Ryan’s 2013 iteration would block grant federal Medicaid contributions to the states, allowing state governments the flexibility to better meet their citizens’ needs. The new Ryan budget also steers clear of committing to any specific Social Security fixes, instead requiring the president and Congress to advance bipartisan solutions. Attempting to simultaneously reform two popular but unsustainable entitlement programs is a massive political risk. Conservatives would likely prefer to see a bold plan on Social Security, too, but Ryan is picking his battles wisely. The longevity of Social Security can at least be enhanced with a few basic changes, including means-testing for income and slowly raising the retirement age to keep pace with life expectancy. By comparison, Medicare is the far bigger problem with much more red ink attached to it.
On Medicare – This was the source of so much Left-wing hysteria last year, and will again be a major focus in this election year. Democrats, buoyed by their success in upstate New York last year, have been salivating over the chance to employ “Mediscare” against Republicans in the fall. To mitigate these attacks, Paul Ryan has done something very clever. He’s significantly tweaked his previous premium support model to incorporate a bipartisan solution he co-authored with liberal Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon. Like Mitt Romney’s plan, which Ryan has all but endorsed, this revised approach maintains last year’s responsible and generous plan, but adds traditional fee-for-service Medicare as an option for future seniors. When younger workers retire, they’ll choose from among a host of private plans, plus the current Medicare model, and will be offered Medicare premiums from the government support to pay for these plans. The plans will compete for future seniors’ business. Richer and healthier future seniors will receive lower levels of support; less wealthy and less healthy future seniors will receive significantly higher support. The benchmark for premium assistance levels would be the cost of the second-lowest private plan or the current fee-for-service model, whichever is lower. (The increase in total program spending would be indexed to GDP growth, plus 0.5 percent) All plans would be required to provide the range of coverage that today’s seniors enjoy. As was the case last year, these reforms would not affect anyone over the age of 55. At all. As Democrats prepare to reprise their 2011 lie of the year by cynically claiming that Ryan’s budget “ends Medicare as we know it,” let’s recall that basic math ends Medicare, period, within the next 12 years. That’s the issue that must be addressed to save the program. Republicans are offering their solution, which is now partially based on a new bipartisan compromise proposal. Most Democrats’ position on the matter can best be summed up by Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, who offered this brave commentary on entitlement reform at a budget hearing last month:
Other notable items – The 2013 Ryan budget also repeals Obamacare (most Americans cheer) and the Medicare rationing board known as IPAB, offering a market-based alternative to take its place. It calls for a reduction of executive regulations flowing from entities such as the EPA and NLRB, and suggests an end to counterproductive moratoriums that limit safe domestic energy production. The plan ends bailouts and winds down Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The plan seeks to curb the explosion of food stamps usage, which has shot up from 28 million to nearly 47 million over the last four years alone. The Path to Prosperity would ensure that those in need would continue to receive help, but would also replicate successful welfare reform tactics such as work requirements, time limits, and aggressive anti-fraud efforts.
There you have it…read it and decide for yourself……..to me it is the same lame policies that the GOP has been throwing about for the last 4 years, probably longer……I know…A lot of info to digest but before you can make a valid judgment you need facts….whether you like them or not…….
23 December 2011
All the debate, name calling, insults and BS around Washington….the deficit, debt, DADT, abortion, public radio and the issues that divide and conquer…..the people that talk about the gridlock and all the hyper-partisanship and they inevitably think back to the mid and late 90′s….people like Mark Sanford (although he has been pretty quiet since is hiking debacle), Steve Largent, Tom Coburn and especially Joe Scarborough of MSNBC’s Morning Joe, has been the most proud of his time in the House and their accomplishments…..
To listen to these guys we would assume that they saved the world from a fiery end…..they point to welfare reform, tax cuts, balanced budget, repeal of Glass-Steagall, etc……….I will admit that the balanced budget was pretty cool….but that is where any pride in their accomplishments ends.
Sorry guys, but nothing you did helped. Your pride in welfare reform did NOTHING to help out with poverty….NAFTA ruin our economy sent millions of jobs overseas……tax cuts helped put the budget into a deficit…..and the repeal of Glass-Steagall allow the gambling by banks that have ruined the US economy….so please, tell us again just how damn proud you are of your time in Congress and the accomplishments that you have given the people.
The sad part is that there are many Americans that buy into this reactionary look at history…..the GOP revolt of the 90′s did nothing to help this country in the future ….anything they accomplished was NOTHING more that the typical short term fix and watching that damn can roll done that dismal road……PERIOD!
These people love to point to the “amnesia” by the Dems on the Iraq War and totally ignore their “amnesia” when it comes to the economy….by them I am talking about those “PROUD” Repubs from the so-called “revolution” in the House in the 1990′s…..
This is why we have a f*cked up system…..it is everybody’s fault but theirs….they were doing the people’s work…..I think that should be changed to….”We were doing the people”……..
14 November 2011
Monday and a return to the insanity we call….Politics.
In the last couple of months there has been much criticism of Obama and even to the point where bloggers like myself have written numerous posts on whether President should face a primary challenge…….even some national figures are calling for the prez to face a primary….people like Nader, Smiley/West….granted he has done a bit in the way of his promise of change and even less reason for the American people to have hope….again. But with all his failings, should Obama real face a primary challenge? You decide that one.
There have been many that think running an independent would not have a better opportunity than in the election of 2012.
At last polling, which was about 5 minutes before I wrote this piece, no matter what time you are reading it, the president’s approval rating is sinking and his challengers are even less liked by the American people….now let us say that we want someone to challenge the status quo in Washington and some poor sucker is conned into a third party run….and let us say that they are popular to the middle but only draw about 30% and that would mean that the other two parties would split the remaining 70%…..cool huh? It would show Washington that the people were fed up and willing to embrace a different way of voting….
Political Wire is reporting….
Pollster Stan Greenberg tells New York magazine that it’s inevitable there will be an independent presidential candidate.
Said Greenberg: “Somebody will run as an independent in 2012. You don’t have 80 percent of voters saying we’re on the wrong track and not have an independent candidate. In 1992, Ross Perot carried 20 percent of the electorate with a pretty well-defined bloc that tended to be younger, white, male, and non-college. But right now, independents are so diverse that it’s not obvious that anyone could capture all of them. Trump might win the ‘fuck you’ vote. Bloomberg might pick up more of the business-oriented suburban segments. I think the ideal candidate is probably a businessperson who’s not from the financial community, who has a strong anti-China current and a strong America-first current.”
Hopefully people know enough about the voting system to know that the candidate needs about 270 electoral votes to win the election…..never mind the popular vote…….it will come down to the electoral vote…….and if the votes are distributed as I have written about….that would mean that the election would be thrown into the House of Representatives for a solution and the electing of a president……
Now think back to the past couple of years……would you trust the Congress to decide who won the election…..an institution that has an 82% disapproval rating? With that much divisiveness it would be a circus…..want an example….then read about the election of 1824 and how Andrew Jackson was screwed…..and then tell me what a good deal this would be.
Well I would like to see someone challenge this system of cronyism…..I think that we had not want to push the envelope too much until we get our government back from the special interests….sad to say, but the traditional two party election may be the wisest way to choose a president….at least in this partisan world of Washington politics….
7 November 2011
Our House leadership has said that there are at least 15 GOP bills waiting for approval from the Senate….they issued this statement trying to hold back the criticism that they are doing NOTHING to create jobs and everything to help the profit of large corporations…..
But is there a group of bills, GOP bills, waiting for some action from the Senate?
I checked and found these on the site, The Gavel……
GOP’s Budget to End Medicare (
GOP Budget for Fiscal Year 2012, H.Con.Res. 34) – Instead of creating jobs, this House GOP budget is estimated to destroy 1.7 million jobs by 2014, according to economist Mark Zandi; ends Medicare, increasing seniors’ health costs by more than $6,000 and throwing them on the mercy of the insurance companies; and protects tax breaks for Big Oil, millionaires and billionaires, and companies that ship jobs overseas.
Increasing Childhood Asthma Act (
The Energy Tax Prevention Act, H.R. 910) – Instead of creating jobs, this bill weakens our ability to ensure clean air and a healthier environment for our children, by eliminating every tool that the EPA has to address serious public health threats from carbon pollution, including increased childhood asthma.
Adding Tolls To the Information Superhighway Act (
Disapproval of FCC’s Net Neutrality Regulations, H.J.Res. 37) – Instead of creating jobs, this bill would destroy jobs by overturning FCC rule maintaining America’s open Internet; the open Internet has been the greatest engine for the U.S. economy, creating more than 3 million jobs and helping the 20,000 small businesses that operate on the Internet.
Dirty Water Act (
Clean Water Cooperative Federalism Act, H.R. 2018) – Instead of creating jobs, this bill undermines the Clean Water Act, thereby undermining our economy; local economies around the country and millions of jobs in tourism, outdoor recreation and commercial fisheries depend on clean water and healthy fish and wildlife habitat.
Dirty Water Act Attempt 2 (
The Reducing Regulatory Burdens Act, H.R. 872) – Instead of creating jobs, this bill attempts to overturn a decision of the Sixth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that commercial pesticides are pollutants when used near or on waterways and would prevent protection of our waterways from toxic pesticide pollution by exempting pesticide applications from Clean Water Act permitting.
Big Bank Protection Act (
Consumer Financial Protection and Soundness Improvement Act, H.R. 1315) – Instead of creating jobs, this bill weakens, delays, and erodes consumer protections that stop unfair, deceptive and abusive practices by financial institutions and ensure credit card, mortgage, student loan, and other financial transactions are more clear, transparent, and fair to all Americans.
The Outsourcers’ Bill of Rights (
Protecting Jobs From Government Interference Act, H.R. 2587) – Instead of creating jobs, this bill would destroy American jobs – by making it easier for corporations to send American jobs overseas and weakening the rights of middle class workers – by allowing corporations to punish employees for exercising their rights to organize, demand better benefits and safer working conditions, and seek a full day’s pay for an honest day’s work.
Dirty Air Act Attempt 1 (
Transparency in Regulatory Analysis of Impacts on the Nation Act, H.R. 2401) – Instead of creating jobs, this special-interest bill guts the Clean Air Act on behalf of the utility industry, even though utilities are the largest source of mercury pollution – a powerful neurotoxin that damages the development of children’s brains; utilities are also a key source of other toxic air pollutants and the bill is projected to result in 34,000 premature deaths and 120,000 aggravated asthma attacks.
Dirty Air Act Attempt 2 (
Cement Sector Regulatory Relief Act, H.R. 2681) – Instead of creating jobs, this special-interest bill guts the Clean Air Act on behalf of the cement industry – even though the cement industry is the third largest source of mercury pollution; the cement industry is also a key source of other toxic air pollutants and the bill is projected to result in 10,000 premature deaths and 68,000 aggravated asthma attacks.
Dirty Air Act Attempt 3 (
EPA Regulatory Relief Act, H.R. 2250) – Instead of creating jobs, this special-interest bill guts the Clean Air Act on behalf of industrial boilers – even though large industrial boilers are the second largest source of mercury pollution; industrial boilers are also a key source of other toxic air pollutants and the bill is projected to result in 20,000 premature deaths and 126,000 aggravated asthma attacks.
Coal Ash Protection Act (
Coal Residuals Reuse and Management Act, H.R. 2273) – Instead of creating jobs, this special-interest bill endangers public health by preventing effective management of coal ash, even though coal ash contains significant quantities of heavy metals like arsenic, lead and selenium, and more than 65 sites in 26 states have been found where coal ash has contaminated the groundwater.
A Gift to Big Oil Act Attempt 1 (
Restarting American Offshore Leasing Now Act, H.R. 1230) – This drill-only bill grants enormous, multinational energy companies access to the Gulf of Mexico with less oversight – rushing lease sales in the Gulf with unreasonable time limits and without proper environmental review.
A Gift to Big Oil Act Attempt 2 (
Putting the Gulf of Mexico Back to Work Act, H.R. 1229) – This drill-only bill makes offshore drilling less safe, rushing the very processes that the National Commission on the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling found led to the BP disaster.
A Gift to Big Oil Act Attempt 3 (
Reversing President Obama’s Offshore Moratorium Act, H.R. 1231) – This drill-only bill mandates the most sweeping expansion of offshore drilling in our nation’s history – making broad swaths of the Atlantic and Pacific Coasts open for leasing automatically.
A Gift to Big Oil Act Attempt 4 (
The Jobs and Energy Permitting Act of 2011, H.R. 2021) – This drill-only bill repeals limitations on drilling for oil and gas that protect air quality – rushing through Clean Air permits for widespread oil and gas operations on the Outer Continental Shelf that could increase pollution and damage air quality in coastal states like California and Delaware.
A Gift to Big Oil Act Attempt 5 (
North American-Made Energy Security Act, H.R. 1938) – This drill-only bill directs the President to expedite approval of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, which is controversial as it would carry oil from the Canadian tar sands to the Gulf Coast putting U.S. water supplies in the Plain states at risk.
My fellow Americans….there are the so-called jobs bills that the GOP has sitting in the Senate awaiting action…..the truth is….the GOP HAS NOTHING! That is why they keep talking tax cuts and Obama Sucks……they have NOTHING else……
Sad part is there are still those voters that see these do nothings as true leadership…..
13 October 2011
Not a post about the website…however, it is a really good read……
As everyone who reads my stuff knows how much I like politics and the antics that go with it…..but I have always dislikes and mistrusted any politician that smirks when asked questions….that goes for every politician regardless of party or affiliation…..but recently I have seen more smirks per issue than in the past…..and the smirk-iest of the bunch is the GOP’s majority leader in the House, Eric Cantor……
Wne he sprints to the microphones after any announcement from the Obama administration to get in the first shots of the battle to come….he seems to always smirk when talking about important issues….like unemployment or the recession or……after reading a piece om political wire I now have a good grasp of the situation…..
Jason Zengerle profiles House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) noting that no one “has done more to disrupt Obama’s first term — and threaten his chance at a second — than Cantor. The two men have clashed from the start.”
He’s consolidated his own power by courting the Republican House freshman who gave his party the majority in last year’s elections. “Some veteran GOP lawmakers find Cantor’s coddling of the freshmen irritating… But Cantor has realized that, in Washington these days, being liked is not a substantial advantage. Much better to be deemed so unreasonable that your opponents ultimately feel no choice but to bend to your will.”
Also interesting: “And yet for all the loyalty many GOP congressmen feel toward Cantor, he is surprisingly unloved. Even his admirers say he lacks the social ease and natural confidence of most politicians… Cantor rarely socializes with his colleagues, and since he doesn’t golf or fish or have any hobbies, when he does find himself in social situations, he usually talks about work.”
I think we could call it….ARROGANCE. To me, his smirking illustrates that he does not take the plight of the American people as something serious and that his own personal ambitions trump anything useful for society…..