Congratulations and thanks to President Obama, Nancy, Steny, Jim, John and the rest of the gang!
It was a long, strange fight but tonight the House of Representatives took the first step towards America joining the rest of the world community in taking care of the health of our citizens. We have a long way to go to do it better, but this is a great first step. Cheers to the Democratic Party!!!!
Wooooohooooooooo, health care reform is here. Rickie Lee Jones is one of my all time favorites, I’ve never heard anything come out of her mouth that I didn’t like. I hope you enjoy this, it has a guest appearance by Brian Setzer.
From CNN and NBC, we now have the votes to pass the bill, wooooooo hoooooooo. What a proud day for America and I hope a lot of Republican heads explode because of it. Jane Hamsher, Firedoglake and all the other haters……..BITE ME!
I saw this live the other morning and my love for Anthony Weiner grew even more, he is so good at ripping Republican talking points and batting down the bullshit. I’ve watched it several times, I love it so much. And I’m glad Howard Dean came to his senses and is now helping to promote the bill, even though it isn’t perfect, he understands the politics of it…..if if fails, the democrats lose any mandate that might be left and more than likely lose control of one or both of the houses of congress in November. ANY TRUE LIBERAL OR PROGRESSIVE MUST SUPPORT THIS BILL IF THEY CARE AT ALL ABOUT THE PROGRESSIVE AGENDA! Roll tape……(there is some commentary from whoever posted this, it’s good though).
In the longer version, it’s pretty funny that Peggy Noonan and Scarborough whine about Anthony yelling or raising his voice. Joe S. never does that, no, he never talks over people in a loud voice, he never cuts anyone off or changes topic when he’s losing…….
Bob Cesca posts about this exchange too, go see it here. Joe Scarborough is the most hypocritical person on television, he’s also very slippery in how he pretends to be moderate, concedes a few points to make himself look reasonable and then spews his propoganda. I can’t remember who it was the other morning, it might have been Anthony Weiner, but he brought him on and introduced him and then turned to his right (both literally and figuratively) and asked someone else a question about Obama’s ratings in the polls, the old change the subject routine.
Morning Joe is the worst kind of propoganda on television, it’s a platform for Joe and his Republican buddies and so called moderate buddies like Harold Ford Jr., Mort Zuckerman, Mike Barnicle, and those Politico guys who seem to show up every morning with the Obama smear of the day….the list can go on. But what is so bad about it is the amount of time that is given to just repeating the same meme over and over and over again and that type of technique basically brainwashes any viewers who aren’t tuned into the reality of the topic or just kind of listening with it in the background. Dangerous stuff in a democracy.
Why do some people take actions that go against their own self interests? It happens on the left and the right, a lot of the time it can be put in the hypocrisy column and other times it seems to be caused by some emotional reason that is overriding that person or organizations own goals and beliefs. Some of the folks over at Firedoglake, Jane Hamsher, Jon Walker, Emptywheel, David Dayan and others, seem to contort their own beliefs to justify their opposition to the health care bill. They are using very similar tactics as Republicans like using trite phrases, narrow interpretations, denial, suppositions that are false, clinging to old talking points that are no longer true, vilifying people and corporations unfairly and using that vilification to help bolster their flimsy reasoning and narrow agenda.
The biggest example of this is watching the “Hamsher Gang” talk as if we live in a socialist country all of a sudden. They talk from a premise that suggests that democrats somehow have 60 very liberal, progressive votes in the Senate. There is major denial going on in their camp about what is possible with the current makeup of the House and Senate. They expect President Obama to dictate to the congress single payer health care or at the least the public option as if all he has to do is say “you must do this now, I am King Obama.” Well, that ain’t how it works folks. I’ve visited FDL on occasion to try and figure out what their thinking is and have found in the comments section mostly right wing people who simply attack the President personally, attribute ideas and thoughts to him much like the tea partiers do, based in suspicion, rumors, hatred for Rahm Emmanuel and the president and basically no engagement on the issues at all. Sure there are some who are liberal or progressive who have chosen one anti corporation mentality that guides everything they think. When you challenge them on any point, they throw out the fact that insurance companies will make money off having more people covered. No acknowledgment that those people covered might actually get health care, they only focus on the potential money the insurance companies might make due to an increase in people covered.
I’m not a fan of big corporations that have gotten away with all sorts of things during the Bush/Cheney and to some extent the Clinton/Gore administrations, but I’m not one who thinks they are inherently evil, they are driven by profit in a capitalistic society…uh, it’s been that way for quite a while in this country. Did these folks just wake up from a lifelong dream of living in a socialist country. Did they just now realize that we are a capitalist country? Our country isn’t going socialist anytime soon, get over it people. I personally wish we were more socialistic, a delicate balance between being profit driven and exacting controls on them that protect the public. This balance was tilted far to the right during the W years and needs to be tilted back very quickly. Regulations need to be enforced, they are there for a reason.
I was challenged at FDL with a series of questions that asked about liberal principles and I answered them as I would, very liberally. I was then asked if Obama were to do the opposite of one of my answers, phrasing it as “throwing me under the bus”, and I realized that they are admitting that they are choosing one principle and holding firm to it. Now that idea isn’t necessarily bad, but when sticking to that principle causes you to lose all sense of perspective, all views of the bigger picture and the overall goal of a progressive movement, then it becomes self serving and really just plain stupid. When people can actually type “oh, the old people will die argument” and poo poo it as if people dying isn’t important. Now that is when I know that sticking to that principal has made them go off the rails.
Shot by Extreme Liberal about 30 years ago!
From Steven Weber over at Bob Cesca’s Awesome Blog, go read the whole thing, it’s pretty short. Here is my favorite passage.
It must be a nightmare, clinging to beliefs that are regularly refuted by empirical facts, embracing myths of a country which only exists in the febrile Right Wing imagination, cringing in fear of contrived boogie men and having the world look upon you with a mixture of amusement and pity.
Because that is the reality of being a Republican today.
In order to maintain a semblance of relevance, a Republican must ignore the haunting truth behind their desperately embraced identity: fear of becoming obsolete in an increasingly progressive world. Clinging to those dependable dinosaurs Guns and Religion (as well as dinosaurs themselves—the ones that walked the earth 6000 years ago) the modern Republican party is a veritable curiosity shop of bygone beliefs, the kitsch without the cute.
The latest pack of lies that the Republicans and their minions are pushing is about the procedure that is rumored to be under consideration for passing the health care bill. The Wall Street Journal led the charge with their lies and misinterpretations. One of the lies going around is that Democrats are avoiding voting on the bill. From Marc Ambinder at The Atlantic…
In fact, they ARE taking an up or down vote on the Senate health care bill. They’re just doing it AT THE SAME TIME as they’re passing the reconciliation language, which countermands several controversial provisions. That is: House Democrats still have to vote for the so-called “Cornhusker Kickback,” and the “Gator Aid” provisions, but they’re going to do so while simultaneously passing the reconciliation fix that removes them. The two bills will essentially be merged into one vote.
It’s a procedure that’s been used many times by both parties, once again the Republicans have selective amnesia and the media just plays along with it for the most part. Norm Ornstein sums up their tactics pretty good…
Any veteran observer of Congress is used to the rampant hypocrisy over the use of parliamentary procedures that shifts totally from one side to the other as a majority moves to minority status, and vice versa. But I can’t recall a level of feigned indignation nearly as great as what we are seeing now from congressional Republicans and their acolytes at the Wall Street Journal, and on blogs, talk radio, and cable news. It reached a ridiculous level of misinformation and disinformation over the use of reconciliation, and now threatens to top that level over the projected use of a self-executing rule by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. In the last Congress that Republicans controlled, from 2005 to 2006, Rules Committee Chairman David Dreier used the self-executing rule more than 35 times, and was no stranger to the concept of “deem and pass.” That strategy, then decried by the House Democrats who are now using it, and now being called unconstitutional by WSJ editorialists, was defended by House Republicans in court (and upheld).
Did you catch the fact that Republicans used it 35 times between 2005 and 2006, it worked well for them, heh. That liberal bastion, The Washington Post, cough….even weighed in on the misinformation with a blazing headline. Here is an excerpt from a story in the New Republic.
But the way that some journalists are describing it, you’d think the House Democrats were willing a bill into law by magic. “House may try to pass Senate health-care bill without voting on it,” blared a Washington Post headline. The Post’s only explanation of the tactic came from Nancy Pelosi, who said, “It’s more insider and process-oriented than most people want to know.”
Tell me if you’ve ever faced the following situation. You want to carry two things upstairs. You are holding one, but because of the awkward shape of the second item you can’t pick it up without putting the first item down. In other words, you picked these two items up in the wrong order and you have to start over by picking the second item up first and then the first item after that. Has that ever happen to you?That’s the basic situation that the Democrats in the House are facing with the health care bill. They want to just vote on the reconciliation part of the bill because it doesn’t include the crappy stuff that is in the Senate bill. In fact, the reconciliation bill explicitly eliminates the crappy stuff in the Senate bill. Unfortunately, they have to carry both bills up the stairs and they can’t carry the reconciliation bill until they have first picked up the more awkward Senate bill.
I can’t believe how juvenile the Republican leadership has been, or maybe they really have no leadership and the fools are running the ship.
They are almost parodies of themselves, they lie unabashedly even though we can “roll tape” and expose their lies. They then just ignore the response and continue to lie, the media plays along, calls it an opposing view or something. They keep on lying….someone takes a poll to find out how well the lie worked. Bingo, the idiots are answering their phones for the pollsters and spewing forth the lies they heard Rush, Glenn, Bill O., and basically the whole cast of Fox News and the right wing radio cesspool spew forth.
We are living in a National Lampoon movie, I swear.
Every morning I torture myself by watching Morning Joe while I drink coffee and shake out the cobwebs. It helps to get my blood flowing in the morning, sometimes it gets it flowing better than others. This morning they dedicated almost an hour to bashing the health care bill. They had Jim Cramer on to spew his fear of tax increases and big government. Lawrence O’Donnnell then joined the group and although being a democrat, Lawerence is the know-it-all kid on the block who worked for a Senate committee for ohhhhhhh, 2 years…and therefore considers himself the leading authority on how the Senate works. 2 whole years as a staffer on the Finance Committee…..wow, that’s a long time. For a while, we had Joe Scarborough who is an EXPERT on the House of Representatives because he served for ohhhhhhhhh, 6 years and then stepped down abruptly, which I’m sure had nothing to do with the intern that was found dead in his Florida office, suspicious circumstances for sure. Google it if you are curious.
Lawrence is Mr. Senate Procedure guy after working for the Senate for, did I mention 2 years. He claims that the Democrats are pulling something that is unprecedented and is the lone voice saying it’s not going to work, moving from conference to reconciliation mid-bill. The thing that sticks out to me as being unprecedented is the way the Republicans have been stalling our government, stopping every single thing that is attempted, even things they agree with. Unprecedented times call for unprecedented maneuvers. From what I’ve read and heard, the way the dems are going is well within the rules of the Senate, just like all the crap the Repugs are pulling. Two can play that game and when you are in the majority, you have an advantage in the game.
Joe Scarborough, who loves to cut off Lawrence when he’s defending people’s rights, but when he’s helping Joe pimp his conservative storyline, he lets Lawrence ramble on and on and you can just tell that Larry loves that spotlight on him. Larry loves to be the lone voice within the party, bucking the party and going rogue with his very narrow opinions. If I had time, I would dig up some of his previous pronouncements that never came true. But it is very revealing about Joe S. that he lets Larry go when he agrees with him, cuts him off and calls him crazy when he doesn’t. Gotta love propoganda in the morning, heh?
Shot by Extreme Liberal at Bryce Canyon
Shot by Extreme Liberal at Zion National Park
I thought I was the only one who was noticing a lot of folks flirting with treason. The group Oath Keepers whose members include cops, sheriffs and military people say they are going to resist the tyrannical orders that are sure to come from President Obama. They see him as the embodiment of all the fears that have festered since the “Red Scares” of the first half of the 20th century. Republicans have been stoking those embers for a long time, keeping them hot enough so when they need to throw some kindling on them, they are ready to flame up at any time. It’s dangerous business to be messing with, because if push comes to shove, our government must fight any insurrection. The media is playing a large role in this growth of anger too, FOX News and CNN willingly spread their messages with MSNBC showing some restraint, but still doing their part to get their messages out. Mother Jones has an article on this scary phenomenon.
But righteous anger is one thing. Manufacturing fear, dare we say terror, is another—and over the past year, we have seen cynical politicians and talk-show demagogues increasingly willing to traffic in it. It’s no longer just handfuls of militia types trading overheated conspiracy theories; it’s America’s most popular cable news network giving gobs of airtime to people who all but advocate armed insurrection. It’s the man who is now our newest senator chortling, on live TV, that maybe Barack Obama was born out of wedlock—don’t you wish guys still had to face an affaire d’honneur for comments like that?—a scurrilous point we take note of only because it indicates that Scott Brown gets his talking points from extreme-right sites like WorldNetDaily (WND).
When people in positions of great power play footsie with those who advocate treason—or claim that the elected commander in chief is a bastard foreigner with no claim to the office—they are not just engaging in a lively debate. They are actively negating a fundamental principle of American politics: that the government, no matter how much you might disagree with its representatives, is of, by, and for the people.
When George W. Bush basically had the presidency given to him in 2000 by the Supreme Court, democrats plugged their noses and accepted that he is the president, sure they protested and fought and tried to use all legal means to have all the votes counted, but there was NO threats of arming themselves or overthrowing the illegitimate government. And in this case there actually was a basis for that belief. The politics of “No” fits right into this movement, and it’s really causing great damage to our republic. More from Mother Jones…
This is the true danger of condoning rhetoric like Oath Keepers’: It’s not just that it might push some from the paranoid fringe to the terrorist fringe. It’s that the political debate becomes corroded to the point where we as a nation no longer have enough common ground to agree to disagree. When one side’s goal is to stonewall and destroy rather than discuss and engage, we get paralysis—it takes two to tango, but only one to stonewall. (And stonewall-and-destroy is by no means a strategy unique to Republicans—yes, kill-the-health-care-bill lefties, that means you.) There are many ways to attack democracy, and one of them is to slowly, cynically undermine the founders’ mandate: to work together toward a more perfect union.
I’ve been fascinated by the influence of the Church of Scientology for a while. The have a “Celebrity Centre” for Christ’s sake…oh wait, not Christ, I think it’s Xenu, right? I’ve seen the scary Tom Cruise videos that were leaked, if you want to see Tom Cruise in his scariest role ever, take a look.
This article by Laurie Goodstein in the New York Times is excellent and sheds some new light on the inner workings of that strange religion that to me seems like a cult. When there are punishments for leaving the church, contracts, giving up life savings, and all the other odd ways they keep their flock together it makes me think cult. Here is a snippet from the article.
CLEARWATER, Fla. — Raised as Scientologists, Christie King Collbran and her husband, Chris, were recruited as teenagers to work for the elite corps of staff members who keep the Church of Scientology running, known as the Sea Organization, or Sea Org.
They signed a contract for a billion years — in keeping with the church’s belief that Scientologists are immortal. They worked seven days a week, often on little sleep, for sporadic paychecks of $50 a week, at most.
But after 13 years and growing disillusionment, the Collbrans decided to leave the Sea Org, setting off on a Kafkaesque journey that they said required them to sign false confessions about their personal lives and their work, pay the church thousands of dollars it said they owed for courses and counseling, and accept the consequences as their parents, siblings and friends who are church members cut off all communication with them.
Now that’s an enlightened thing to do, isn’t it?
From one of my all time favorite bands YES! The first part of the song wasn’t on the live Yessongs video, so the first part shows other footage from the show with the whole song from the CD or record album.
Rush Limbaugh in younger days, before he started waxing his UNI BROW!
From his radio show today 3/9/2010, courtesy of Media Matters for America.
Rush saved his most inflammatory remark for last, closing today’s show with a slavery joke. A caller asked for Rush’s comment on the possibility that New York Gov. David Paterson would appoint a replacement for Rep. Eric Massa; Rush responded: “For the first time in his life, Paterson is gonna be a massa.”