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Hullabaloo


Saturday, February 07, 2009

 
Minority Veto

by digby


California is in deep trouble. The state's bond rating is now the worst of all 50 states. They are furloughing workers. The place is coming apart at the seams.

And why? Because the anti-tax zealots have achieved their goal -- a government that is held hostage to conservatives whether in the minority or the majority ---conservatives who will ensure that the government can never function in a way that gives the citizens confidence that it can actually work.

It's useful to think a little bit about that as we see the federal government likewise rigged, and increasingly dysfunctional. Conservatives masquerading as centrists having veto power when the government needs to raise revenue or spend it on anything that might make government seem like a useful institution for anything other than war, prisons and (sometimes) police, is a recipe for chaos.

Last night I heard the used car salesman Bob Corker and several other Republicans parrot a common GOP talking point, which will be their fall back if the Democratic program helps turn the economy around -- they are already saying the economy is turning around on its own as part of the business cycle. Therefore, everything the Democrats are doing is wasteful pork at the expense of the deficit. In fact, John Kyl is already fretting about the recession that Obama's plans are going to create down the road:

"If you knew a bill in the U.S. Senate would cause a recession in 10 years, would you support it?" asked Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Arizona. "That's what the Congressional Budget Office, the bipartisan office that supports our efforts in the Congress, says about this legislation. ... There will be negative [gross domestic product] in this decade as a result of this legislation."



But the recession that has been going on or over a year and is getting worse as we speak isn't something worth worrying about.

Over and over again I hear how the Democrats blew thing thing by putting condoms and honeybees in the package. But let's face it, when it comes to spending the Republicans will pull anything out and call it a boondoggle. Any hope of getting the kind of help to people they need to ride out this recession is getting whittled away by sharp Republican cant --- and I see no hope that the Dems will get another bite of the apple. (The knew that, which is why they wanted to get as much relief money in this package as they could.)

So, when (if) the economy turns around, the lack of response will be seen as another example of government ineptitude. For conservatives, it's all good.

I know I'm a broken record, but the fact remains that the Democrats have to start actually running against Republican ideology and not just saying they'll be better Republicans or making promises to change the tone and the process. The people in this country don't understand that most of what Republicans say with such arrogant assurance is malignant, discredited bullshit. Why would they? Nobody ever challenges it on the merits.



Here's the result. When Republicans talk it makes "sense" to people because it's what they've been hearing for thirty years. And they figure the other side must be the ones who don't get it:


























After all the Democratic bowing and scraping, and all the phony baloney GOP sturm and drang about fiscal responsibility, the American people still think all the partisan bickering is the Democrats' fault. That's the paradox of the hissy fit.


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