You don’t often see Daily Kos linked around here – well, not since it became Firebagger Central. But this Conceptual Guerilla diary is a gem, so I’ll break the habit of a lifetime and link to the place.
The gist: CG got an email from “a guy who used to call my radio show over in Jacksonville” who described every Democrat as a “communist”.
This was CG’s reply:
That’s right, Rod. Every Democrat is a communist … going all the way back to 1933 when FDR set up New Deal Communism. That would be the same New Deal communism you grew up under. The New Deal Communism that made us the richest, most powerful nation in history. The New Deal Communism that took us to the moon just 36 years after FDR was sworn in.
Let me show you the track record of those New Deal Communist Democrats.
Communist Truman left 2.5 percent unemployment to Eisenhower.
Republican Patriot Eisenhower left recession and 6.5 percent unemployment to Kennedy.
Communist Johnson left 3.5 percent unemployment to Nixon.
Republican Patriot Ford left recession and 7.5 unemployment to Jimmy Carter.
Communist Carter wasn’t able to improve much on the recession he inherited . . .
… and neither were Republican Patriots Reagan and Bush, who left recession and 7.2 unemployment to Bill Clinton.
Communist Bill Clinton left 4.2 percent unemployment to Dubya . . .
Republican Patriot Dubya left recession and 7.6 percent unemployment to Communist Barack Obama.
No Republican Patriot ever left office with unemployment under 5% …. including Reagan. No New Deal Communist ever left office with higher unemployment than they inherited …
And this is CG’s video – be warned, it contains Rush Limbaugh, but it’s brilliant:
Aw bless, Politico’s not happy :cry:
House Republicans caved to President Barack Obama’s demand for a two-month payroll tax cut extension, ending an impasse that threatened to raise taxes on 160 million Americans.
The capitulation came fast Thursday afternoon as House Republicans found themselves increasingly isolated in insisting that a full one-year extension was the only solution to the year-end crisis. The end of this debate will also come quickly – the House and Senate are expected to clear the legislation on a voice vote Friday morning.
“For the past several weeks, I’ve stated consistently that it was critical that Congress not go home without preventing a tax increase on 160 million working Americans. Today, I congratulate members of Congress for ending the partisan stalemate by reaching an agreement that meets that test.
“Because of this agreement, every working American will keep his or her tax cut – about $1,000 for the average family. That’s about $40 in every paycheck. Vital unemployment insurance will continue for millions of Americans who are looking for work. And when Congress returns, I urge them to keep working to reach an agreement that will extend this tax cut and unemployment insurance for all of 2012 without drama or delay.
“This is good news, just in time for the holidays. This is the right thing to do to strengthen our families, grow our economy, and create new jobs. This is real money that will make a real difference in people’s lives. And I want to thank every American who raised your voice to remind folks in this town what this debate was all about. It was about you. And today, your voices made all the difference.”
Now, get yourself to Hawaii Mr President:
President Barack Obama plays golf at the Kaneohe Klipper Marine Golf Course in Oahu, Hawaii, Dec. 26, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
Steve Benen: American voters clearly aren’t happy, and no one in Washington is winning any popularity contests, but support for the Republican Party is deteriorating at a surprising pace. A new CNN poll shows the GOP “had the upper hand” when it came to holding the debt ceiling hostage, but the party has “lost a lot of ground with the public” in the process.
A lot of that anger seems directed toward the GOP. According to the survey, favorable views of the Republican party dropped eight points over the past month, to 33 percent. Fifty-nine percent say they have an unfavorable view of the Republican party, an all-time high dating back to 1992 when the question was first asked.
The poll indicates that views of the Democratic party, by contrast, have remained fairly steady, with 47 percent saying they have a favorable view of the Democrats and an equal amount saying they hold an unfavorable view.
…. the Republican Party’s support is down to an embarrassing 33% — the lowest either party has seen in two decades of CNN polls.
There’s plenty of speculation about what the 2012 elections have in store, and whether President Obama can win given the larger headwinds. It’s worth remembering that it matters what voters think of the opposition party, and if the recent trends pick up, the much of the public might balk at the idea of handing a wildly-unpopular Republican Party control of the White House and Congress.
Full post here
The White House announced Tuesday morning that the President’s trip to Interstate Moving Services in Springfield, VA., where he was scheduled to talk about fuel efficiency, has been cancelled.
Instead, the President will “meet with industry officials at the White House to discuss the first of their kind fuel efficiency standards for work trucks, buses, and other heavy duty vehicles,” the White House said.
Eugene Robinson: The so-called analysts at Standard & Poor’s may not be the most reliable bunch, but there was one very good reason for them to downgrade U.S. debt: Republicans in Congress made a credible threat to force a default on our obligations.
This isn’t the rationale that S&P gave, but it’s the only one that makes sense. Like a lucky college student who partied the night before an exam, the ratings agency used flawed logic and faulty arithmetic to somehow come up with the right answer. No, life isn’t always fair.
And no, I can’t join the “we’re all at fault” chorus. Absent the threat of willful default, a downgrade would be unjustified and absurd. And history will note that it was House Republicans who issued that threat.
…. What happened this summer is that Republicans in the House, using the Tea Party freshmen as a battering ram, threatened to compel a default. More accurately, they demanded big budget cuts as the price of raising the debt ceiling. If the Senate and President Obama did not comply, the Treasury’s access to capital through borrowing would have been cut off.
…. The ratings agency should have focused instead on the one development that has direct bearing on our creditworthiness: the GOP threat to force a default. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor should never have planned to use the debt ceiling vote as “leverage.” Obama should have made clear from the start that if necessary he would take unilateral action, based on the 14th Amendment, to ensure there could never be a default. And yes, progressive Democrats who voted against the final debt-ceiling bill should be ashamed.
It’s pretty simple: If you threaten not to pay your bills, people will — and should — take you seriously.
Full article here
So, Standard & Poor’s downgrade the US credit rating after the debt ceiling saga/deal.
The Republicans blame President Obama for the downgrade.
Ah, looks like Rusty Boehner is only apportioning 2% of the blame to the President. That’s good of him ;-)
Edited for Clarity: Congress finally has a deal on the table that may pass …. So, who won? Who lost? Is it a massive cave by the President and Democrats? Or is there something more to it?
In looking at the deal, folks on the left are acting outraged. Medicare takes some cuts, there’s no revenue component, it looks like the Republicans got everything they wanted. Indeed, Speaker of the House John Boehner says he “got 98 percent of what I wanted”. But did he? Here’s some of the details that say he might have some ‘splaining to do later:
Revenues: Democrats are upset that the deal does not include increasing revenues. But that’s not accurate. In fact, it virtually guarantees a revenue increase by the end of 2012. And Boehner knows it…..
See here for details
…. An interesting battle will start next year. It will begin to pit the military industrial complex against the bankers and million/billionaires. If the rich guys want to keep their tax cuts, 50% of it will come from military spending – contractors. That’s a big lobby to fight against. It will be fascinating to see how the spin starts to work there, as Republicans find their corporate benefactors are suddenly pitted against each other, and the American people get to see where the loyalties really lie.
Medicare and Social Programs: …. The area touched here has nothing to do with individuals. It’s all on the provider side. To be sure, this could have an effect on individuals, as providers may decide they don’t want to deal with Medicare if reimbursements are reduced, and this could reduce choice. But on the subscriber side, nothing changes. More importantly, the subscriber side is sequestered from further cuts, as are Medicaid and Social Security in their entirety.
Again, this is really a trap for the Republicans. With all of those areas off the table, where will they find cuts? And remember, they still need to cut an equal amount from defense as they do for anything else. Social programs are a large part of the budget. When you take them off the table, you remove major sources of budget reduction. Which means that cuts to other areas will have to be massive to have a chance at making a difference. So Republicans will have to sell Draconian slashes to areas such as education to be able to find enough budget to cut.
…. So, What Did It Accomplish?
A whole bunch. Pell Grants have actually been increased. The default scenario has been averted until at least 2013 with a debt ceiling raise. It did not require the passage of a Balanced Budget Amendment. And the cuts that are included are backloaded, meaning that they come further down the line, when the economy is (hopefully) on a better footing.
Sure the President is taking heat on this now. But the focus can now be on jobs (on which there has not been a single piece of legislation), and Republicans who are gloating now may not be so cheerful when it comes time to make the cuts they demanded.
Full post here
Thank you Starmm
President Obama makes a statement in the Rose Garden, Aug. 2, on the passage of legislation to raise the debt ceiling
Steve Benen: ….. I’ve seen several reports on the debt-ceiling framework describe it as a “compromise” between Republicans and Democrats. That’s far too generous a term. Is this a deal? Sure. Is it an agreement? Absolutely. Can it fairly be characterized as a “compromise”? Not at all.
Republicans threatened to crash the economy, on purpose, unless a series of radical demands were met. Democrats made an effort to lessen those demands and make them less painful than intended. The result, not surprisingly, is rather ugly, which is to be expected.
The debt-reduction framework isn’t a compromise; it’s a ransom. If one were to draw up two lists – one with all the concessions Democrats made, the other with the concessions the GOP made – the one-sided image would be striking. Of course, that’s what happens when one party has a gun to the head of its hostage – in this case, the nation and its economy – and the other party wants to prevent their rivals from pulling the trigger.
…. what’s the less-bad news? There are a few noteworthy angles: (1) if the trigger kicks in, Medicaid and Social Security would be walled off and protected…. (2) triggered cuts for the 2012 fiscal year are practically non-existent, so it won’t hurt the economy in the short term; (3) a surprising amount of the overall deal targets the bloated Pentagon budget, which makes more painful domestic cuts less necessary; (4) there won’t be another debt-ceiling fight until 2013, giving the GOP one fewer hostages to grab for a while. And (5) if the deal passes, there will be no calamity this week, and everyone lives to fight another day.
….. there’s nothing in this deal to promote economic growth and nothing to create jobs … That Republicans wanted to take a huge step backwards, and Democrats negotiated to make it a more modest step backwards is cold comfort.
The Senate is likely to vote on the deal as early as this afternoon, and passage appears likely. The House vote may come tonight, and the outcome in the lower chamber is very much in doubt.
Full post here
Details on the deal here
THE PRESIDENT: Good evening. There are still some very important votes to be taken by members of Congress, but I want to announce that the leaders of both parties, in both chambers, have reached an agreement that will reduce the deficit and avoid default — a default that would have had a devastating effect on our economy.
The first part of this agreement will cut about $1 trillion in spending over the next 10 years — cuts that both parties had agreed to early on in this process. The result would be the lowest level of annual domestic spending since Dwight Eisenhower was President — but at a level that still allows us to make job-creating investments in things like education and research. We also made sure that these cuts wouldn’t happen so abruptly that they’d be a drag on a fragile economy.
Now, I’ve said from the beginning that the ultimate solution to our deficit problem must be balanced. Despite what some Republicans have argued, I believe that we have to ask the wealthiest Americans and biggest corporations to pay their fair share by giving up tax breaks and special deductions. Despite what some in my own party have argued, I believe that we need to make some modest adjustments to programs like Medicare to ensure that they’re still around for future generations.
That’s why the second part of this agreement is so important. It establishes a bipartisan committee of Congress to report back by November with a proposal to further reduce the deficit, which will then be put before the entire Congress for an up or down vote. In this stage, everything will be on the table. To hold us all accountable for making these reforms, tough cuts that both parties would find objectionable would automatically go into effect if we don’t act. And over the next few months, I’ll continue to make a detailed case to these lawmakers about why I believe a balanced approach is necessary to finish the job.
Now, is this the deal I would have preferred? No. I believe that we could have made the tough choices required — on entitlement reform and tax reform — right now, rather than through a special congressional committee process. But this compromise does make a serious down payment on the deficit reduction we need, and gives each party a strong incentive to get a balanced plan done before the end of the year.
Most importantly, it will allow us to avoid default and end the crisis that Washington imposed on the rest of America. It ensures also that we will not face this same kind of crisis again in six months, or eight months, or 12 months. And it will begin to lift the cloud of debt and the cloud of uncertainty that hangs over our economy.
Now, this process has been messy; it’s taken far too long. I’ve been concerned about the impact that it has had on business confidence and consumer confidence and the economy as a whole over the last month. Nevertheless, ultimately, the leaders of both parties have found their way toward compromise. And I want to thank them for that.
Most of all, I want to thank the American people. It’s been your voices — your letters, your emails, your tweets, your phone calls — that have compelled Washington to act in the final days. And the American people’s voice is a very, very powerful thing.
We’re not done yet. I want to urge members of both parties to do the right thing and support this deal with your votes over the next few days. It will allow us to avoid default. It will allow us to pay our bills. It will allow us to start reducing our deficit in a responsible way. And it will allow us to turn to the very important business of doing everything we can to create jobs, boost wages, and grow this economy faster than it’s currently growing.
That’s what the American people sent us here to do, and that’s what we should be devoting all of our time to accomplishing in the months ahead.
Thank you very much, everybody.
President Obama smiles briefly while approaching the podium to speak in the briefing room at the White House about the debt negotiations, July 31
Steve Benen: …. It’s done. It’s a deal. That doesn’t mean passage is a sure thing — nothing in this process is ever a sure thing — but the relevant players are on board.
… The Speaker clearly doesn’t love the plan, but in a hilarious twist, Boehner said failing to pass it would lead to a “job-killing default.” That would be the same default Boehner has been willing to pursue for the last several months.
The odds of passage in the Senate are much higher, though it’s unclear when that vote might occur and/or whether the Senate will wait for the House to act. The House remains a tougher lift, where a left-right coalition will make getting a majority very challenging.
…. To clarify something important, Boehner’s presentation gives the impression that new revenue is impossible under the bipartisan congressional commission. That’s false; new revenue is possible and will be a key goal of Democratic members. Whether the revenue is likely or not is a separate question, but for those who saw that and were concerned, Boehner’s claim is just factually wrong.
Full post here
Greg Sargent (Washington Post): So the final deal has been announced, pending approval by the House, and one of the key new pieces of the compromise is that the Congressional committee tasked with coming up with a second round of spending cuts in exchange for the later debt ceiling hike would be forced to act by the new “trigger.” In the event that the committee deadlocks, that trigger would force an even division of non-defense and defense cuts, and since the latter is anathema to Republicans, they would not have any incentive to deliberately sabotage the committee in order to force the deep entitlements cuts they want.
The White House’s argument is that even if the deal is far short of what liberals hoped for, Republicans have effectively surrendered the amount of leverage they were expected to have over entitlements cuts. Now that the committee — which is half Republicans and Dems — will all but certainly advance a package of cuts in exchange for the later debt ceiling hike, the argument is that Dems can live to fight it out another day on entitlements.
The White House is also arguing that the deal sets the stage for a relitigation of the tax cut fight, and it’s now distributing talking points to outside allies that are heavily devoted to making that case on entitlement and taxes, an argument that seems designed to quiet angst and criticism among liberals….
Full post here
A Word From Tally….
Nothing is agreed to until EVERYTHING is agreed to. The VOTE IS TOMORROW, so allowing your hair to be set on fire by the MSM, PL, & EmoProgs is POINTLESS.
While President Obama’s statement seems very reasonable, including TAXING THE F**KING RICH, I still believe there will be a CLEAN BILL, and that is what the goal is.
There is no time to write detail into any “agreement” they have floating around either house right now, much less read it, pass it around, and vote on it.
Much more importantly – the GOPTeaHadists will NEVER agree to a SuperCrongress, or any tax hike. NOT. F**KING. EVER.
A CLEAN BILL is an EPIC WIN no matter what the hysterical Pundit-Idocracy™ says.
1. NO CUTS. Cuts of any kind would be deadly in this economy. F**k, we need to give money to the FAA at this point.
2. No more holding the country hostage. This will be put to bed until 2013.
3. By doing nothing….. the BUSH TAX CUTS EXPIRE.
4. Obama can introduce an EPIC Infrastructure/Jobs bill that he can beat the GOP with from now until election day.
5. The GOP/TeaHadists have shown the world:
– just how much they hate America, their Government, their fellow countrymen, science, intelligence, math, and everything the Koch Bros tell them to.
– how insane they are.
– how willfully ignorant they are.
– how full of poison they are.
– how they are finishing the work of Bin Laden.
The Dems & POTUS are ALL well aware of this list. Everything that is happening now is theatre to allow the few adults who are left in the GOP to look respectable, and marginalize the Crazies®. So before you go jumping any Dem’s shit who votes the way you don’t like tomorrow – or think they should, or says something you don’t agree with – keep the above in mind. THAT IS THE PLAN.
And remember: Nothing is agreed to until EVERYTHING is agreed to.
At this point you and the President have done everything you possibly can given the Radical Republicans extortion tactics.
Please realize that millions of Americans are grateful.
Now, however, is the time to place the glaring light of accountability on the Radical Republicans.
Please request that the members of your respective Senate and House Democratic Caucus hold their vote until every Republican is on record with their vote. If the majority of Republicans in the Senate and House, respectively, do not support the legislation then please urge every member of your respective Caucus to vote NO.
If the Radical Republicans are not willing to overwhelmingly support the legislation they extorted then NO Democratic member of the House or Senate should support that legislation.
President Obama, duty sworn to protect and serve the Constitution, can act decisively through the Section 4 of the 14th Amendment and, even more importantly by his enforcing 31 USC 3103, to avoid default and protect the credibility of the USA.
But, under no circumstance, should the extortionists be allowed to prevail. If they are unwilling to overwhelmingly support the legislation their irresponsible actions forced to a vote, then no one should provide them any support.
Yes.We.Can. … DO.More.Together!
Thanks Bob and Tally
Craig Crawford: Why Obama Won Debt Deal – The President got what he most wanted, postponing another debt ceiling fight until after the election and without politically damaging entitlement cuts.
Everything else is eye wash. Most of the spending cuts are in the out years, which is another way of saying it won’t happen.
And one more committee to study cuts? Oh please, even if they call it a “super” committee that’s always a Capitol Hill euphemism for doing nothing. Adding so-called triggers for cuts if goals aren’t met also means nothing. Remember Gramm-Rudman?
Giving up tax increases on the wealthy is probably Obama’s biggest concession, but that fight lives for another day when the Bush cuts are scheduled to expire later on.
Even if liberals beat up the President for this deal, he wins. Nothing would help him more in his obvious effort to move to the center and appeal to independent voters for reelection.
NYT: The Obama administration has informed Democratic Congressional leaders that President Obama and Speaker John A. Boehner were starting to close in on a major budget deal that would enact substantial spending cuts and seek future revenues through a tax overhaul, Congressional officials said Thursday.
With the government staring at a potential default in less than two weeks, the officials said the administration on Wednesday night notified top members of Congress that a bargain with Mr. Boehner could be imminent. The Congressional leaders, whose help Mr. Obama would need to bring a compromise forward, were told that the new revenue tied to the looming agreement to increase the debt limit by Aug. 2 would be produced in 2012 through a tax code rewrite that would lower individual and corporate rates, close loopholes, end tax breaks and make other adjustments to produce revenue gains.