Archive for the ‘Congress’ Category
President Barack Obama has announced that Wilhelm Freidrich Hegel, the 18th century philosopher, is his next choice for Secretary of Defense. Perhaps it was Hegel’s groundbreaking work on Dialetical Sublation and Epistimological Historicism that impressed the President enough to nominate him for this important post.
Oh, actually, after doing a little more research, it appears that Pres. Obama has nominated former Nebraska Senator Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense. My apologies. Anyway, Hagel is a Republican who has become increasingly centrist over the years (or maybe he’s held the same positions as his party has lurched farther to the right – it’s hard to tell), and is thus likely to face doggedy criticism from the Right during his confirmation process.
So what are conservatives planning to unload on this decorated Vietnam Vet (editor’s note: insert gay sex joke here)?
First of all, the GOP is convinced Hagel, like spicy food, is no friend of the Jewish people. Several years ago he inartfully referred to the power of the “Jewish Lobby” in an interview and now Sheldon Adelson and a bunch of Evangelicals are basically conspiring to have the Mossad kidnap Hagel and hold him for crimes against humanity in the Negev desert. As a Jew that pro-active search for imaginary anti-Semitism makes me proud.
Secondly, Republicans are accusing Hagel of being a homophobe. Back in 1997 (when progressive gay politics was mostly about convincing people that watching Will and Grace was not a sin), Hagel said Pres. Clinton’s openly gay nominee for ambassador to Luxembourg was unqualified for the post because of his sexuality. Hagel has since apologized for that too, both because it was insensitive and untrue – almost no country in Europe is gayer than Luxembourg. More importantly, since when have the Republicans cared about gay rights? As far as I can tell this is like wolves howling about the civil rights of sheep.
But the real reason Hagel, who as a wounded combat veteran is less than thrilled with the use of military force, terrifies the GOP is because as Secretary of Defense he might, just maybe, cut or freeze the defense budget. You see, the only spending the Right approves of is military spending, and a Secretary of Defense who doesn’t want to spend $40 billion on invisible helicopters and tank-mounted chocolate fountains and other shit like that is a threat to the GOP and their corporate masters.
Not to sound like a conspiracy theorist on this or anything. I’ll leave that up to this guy…
WORST CONGRESS EVER.
Seriously, the 112th Congress came to a close today and as we have learned it was the least productive congress in over half a century. That might be the silver lining for this Tea Party dominated Congress – its complete inability to do anything but rename post offices kept the United States from returning to the gold standard or nuking the UN’s Headquarters.
Of course, no one leaves this Congress smelling worse than America’s cat-herd in chief, John Boehner. Even Mitt Romney looks like a skilled politician compared to Boehner, who managed mostly to shepherd his caucus from one PR disaster to another. Indeed, given the mix of out-sized personalities and demented, self-destructive tendencies of the Tea Partier that dominated this Congress, the 112th would have been better run by Kardashian Momager Kris Jenner than John Boehner. At least we could have gotten a signature fragrance out of it!
The recent deal to avert the Fiscal Cliff was really the cherry on top though. Ezra Klein suggested today in Bloomberg that this Congress was like “Wile E. Coyote with his endless supply of Acme products” and when the Republican leadership “set a trap, the only sure bet was that it would explode in its collective face,” which is exactly how the fiscal cliff played out. Republicans got nothing they wanted and nearly all the blame. And, best of all, in the process Boehner managed to tell his negotiating partner Sen. Harry Reid to “go fuck himself” (Republicans have a long tradition of telling Democrats to go fuck themselves. Most recently, we saw Vice President Dick Cheney engaged Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) in this time-honored tradition, which dates back to 1894 when Sen. Henry Cabot Lodge (R-MA) told Sen. Zebulon Vance (D-NC) to “sally forth and thus unto himself perform the dubious act of self-coitous.”)
So this is how our first ever Tea Party dominated Congress is going out: not with a bang, but with a whimper. The Fiscal Cliff deal kicked the can of spending cuts and the debt ceiling down the road (allowing for ~hooray~ another spending crisis!) and a lot of these fools like Allen West can say they spent their one term in Congress accomplishing little more than savaging small amounts of discretionary spending and, umm, letting taxes go up?
113th Congress, you couldn’t have come any sooner…
Pity poor John Boehner: all those hours spent in a tanning booth and he still can’t get anyone to believe he’s the Grand Pumpkin! Or an effective Speaker of the House for that matter…
Ol’ Blubberin’ Boehner had an epic fail last night, as his “Plan B” to avoid the Fiscal Cliff was yanked from the House floor for lack of Republican support. Youch. Isn’t the job of a Majority Leader to, umm, lead the majority? You can’t just sit back and wait for that 3rd in line of succession thing to kick in, praying for a nasty bit of food poisoning at a state dinner or something.
Boehner’s plan, which was pretty tepid to begin with, crashed and burned yesterday because Boehner simply has no idea how to corral the lunatic fringe which is now dominating his party. And this isn’t the first time either: remember the Debt Ceiling debacle? Boehner couldn’t get anything done then, either. Seriously, John Boehner can’t pass ANYTHING. He’s so bad at this shit he probably couldn’t pass a blunt in the back of Rick Ross’ limo.
Of course, Boehner comes off looking like chicken shit precisely because he is trying to win over the Tea Party’s in his caucus, many of whom are so allergic to compromise they break out in hives at the mere mention of raising taxes. Everytime he fails to seek a broader coalition that would ~gasp~ include Democrats, he weakens himself further by once again placing himself at the mercy of Tea Partiers who essentially function like massive kidney stones, making the passage of bills a miserable, painful experience.
I hope you all asked for a parachute for Christmas, because thanks to Boehner and his little Tea Party goblins it looks like we might just be going off that Fiscal Cliff…
Because they’re very busy trying to avert the Fiscal Cliff, the House of Representatives voted today to ban the word “lunatic” from federal law. Interestingly, the vote to stop using this outdated word passed 398 to 1, with the lone “no” coming from Tea Party Lunatic and anchor-baby hater Rep. Louis Gohmert. Defending his lunatic vote, Gohmert said in a statement “Not only should we not eliminate the word ‘lunatic’ from federal law when the most pressing issue of the day is saving our country from bankruptcy, we should use the word to describe the people who want to continue with business as usual in Washington.” Thus marks another milestone in the House’s march towards writing all their legislation in text speak (“All medicar reMburMnts shall b paid 2 ppl n da 4m of legit chex (boobs pic)”).
Just out of curiosity, what other other banned words or phrases can Congress no longer use?
-“Slatternly Prussian Fishwives”
-“The Honorable Willard Mitt Romney”
-“That cock-juggling thunder cunt Olympia Snowe”
I could go on, but then you might suspect I was making this shit up…
Meow! Yesterday we learned that not only is he the Senate Minority Leader, but Sen. Mitch McConnell is also the most popular girl in the high school cafeteria! Ugh I bet he smokes cigarettes and gives handies to the football team behind the bleachers too.
Apparently at a briefing yesterday given by Treastury Secretary Tim Geither on the Obama Administration’s proposal to avert the fiscal cliff, McConnell “burst into laughter.” McConnell told reporters that although he laughed “he wasn’t trying to embarrass Geithner…(he was) only responding candidly to (the Administration’s) one-sided plan, explicit on tax increases, vague on spending cuts.” Oh Mitch, you’re so cool. I bet you also laughed, tossed back your hair, and asked Sec. Geithner if he was wearing that hideous necktie as like, a hilarious joke or something OMG.
Frankly, I’m not sure I buy that this event actually took place. For one thing, is Mitch McConnell physically capable of producing human laughter? I mean, I’m sure he can wheeze and chortle at the sight of, say, a single mother trying to lobby her Congressman or a Democrat trying in vain to recite the Pledge of Allegiance like a real American, but I’m not positive actual laughter is an expression of joy that the Minority Leader is able making.
This will require more study…
Narwhal Norquist is a vexing figure in modern American politics: while he shares a first name with a muppet, he and his anti-tax pledge have kept Republicans from even discussing tax hikes for many years. This may be coming to an end soon however, as members of the GOP have begun to publically suggest they’ll ignore Norquist’s pledge and consider raising tax rates on the wealthy as part of a deal to avoid the dreaded Fiscal Cliff.
Norquist, whose bare bones vision of government spending is nothing if not monk-like in it’s asceticism (except, ya know, that monks believe in helping the poor), chastized those Republicans who would dare defy his anti-tax papacy, saying yesterday that they were expressing “impure thoughts“. Sure, Norquist did seem confident that the GOP won’t budge, but when it comes down to it Washington D.C.’s most feared man might just be the biggest loser in any debt deal.
After all, who the fuck is Grover Norquist anyway? I mean, how has this fury little terror managed to single-handedly keep the United States from making even small tax increases for nearly two decades? He’s both a boogie man and a paper tiger which is not exactly a sustainable position to be in. Republicans are probably a lot more afraid of being blamed for pushing America off the Fiscal Cliff to protect tax breaks for millionaires than they are of Norquist and will thus make a deal that ends up raising taxes, no matter how much he looks like an angry badger.
So while it’s too early to write Norquist’s obituary, it looks like his days holding the legislative process hostage to his pledge might be numbered…