Most of us have good enough short and long term memories to remember the life under Republican rule just a few years ago. Between then and how they had multiple tea nut breakdowns and continue with their shrill public victim-hood. The conservative movement and President who brought us unprecedented grabs at executive power, utterly irresponsible management of the nation’s wealth, new heights of corruption, lying us into one war while bungling another, are back. In 2009 after about five minutes of inner reflection on where they went wrong they declared they lost sight of their “core values”. The values they never had or did not resemble anything a person of reasonable intelligence or temperament would call values in the first place, got a new adjective attached. Rinse and repeat with the new improved no solutions formula. Since Nate Silver and others say the odds are the craziest crop of wing-nuts ever are about to win a majority in the House of Representatives we’ll get at chance to see them fumble around like blind mice at a cheese factory very quickly – Post-Election Strategy For Congress
The most powerful IED on the road ahead is timed to explode some time this spring. Last February, Congress raised the ceiling on the national debt from $12.4 trillion to $14.2 trillion. Since then, the debt has risen to $13.7 trillion — which means Congress will have to raise it yet again within a few months.
A failure to approve one would, technically, bar the government from borrowing more money. In other words, we would not have the cash to pay our bills.
And yet Tea Party candidates and their fellow travelers in the GOP have vowed to oppose further increases in the legal debt ceiling.
Are they going to stick to that idea when faced with the reality of default?
What are the scenarios resulting from Republicans adhering to their pledge to not rise the debt ceiling? The worse case is another financial crisis. Or a deepening of the one we’re already in with the subsequent loss of perhaps millions of jobs. The crisis could deepen to the point where safety net programs like unemployment insurance and food stamps are overwhelmed. programs which Republicans will refuse to provide more funding. Say hello to beggars, bread lines and new tent cities. That is not a certainty, but one possibility. I like Jacob Weisberg’s columns at Slate and he is correct more often than not. He thinks Republicans are faking Right and will govern from the center. This is one time when I think he’s wrong, but hope he’s right. One thing is for sure it will be more difficult than ever to pass any but the most basic spending bills to keep the government running. Unfortunately it is not as big an issue for many Democrats as it is for right-wing Republicans, but we may actually see no new presidential appointees that require advise and consent from Congress or new judicial appointments ( excepting a Supreme Court opening). Hard to tell with all the other political noise going on, but we’re in the middle of a federal courts crisis. There are not enough federal judges to hear cases, i.e. give citizens their day in court.
Those new core values are eerily similar to plain old conservative values when it comes to influence peddling ( Republicans use the code word “pro-business” when they talk about the subject in public) – Ex-senator tries new K Street venture
A day before his party is expected to make huge gains at the polls, former Republican Sen. Rudy Boschwitz announced a rather novel business venture: playing matchmaker to K Street.
The former two-term Minnesota senator has begun marketing his ability to connect clients looking for Washington representation with the right lobbying firms.
“If you are doing – or want to be doing – business with the federal government, or impact legislation or regulations, call us. … It is our business to find the right person or the right group to represent and enhance your interests. That’s the business,” Boschwitz wrote in a Monday email to several hundred associates, adding that he usually charges the lobbying firm a commission for his work.
In his pitch, Boschwitz touts his political connections and fundraising prowess, saying he was one of former President George W. Bush’s top money raisers. Boschwitz and his son, Gerry, will run the new venture, which hasn’t been named yet.
With so many lobbyists offering their services, “finding the right people to handle specific problems takes some knowledge of the playing field,” Boschwitz said in an interview with POLITICO.
But prominent government watchdog Craig Holman of Public Citizen said the arrangement, which he called a “brand new wave of business,” raises “serious questions.”
“Clearly, the primary objective in setting up this lobbying consulting firm is to avoid disclosure and to avoid lobbying ethics rules. That is what Rudy Boschwitz is doing here,” Holman said.
Republican corruption is like a hydra, you can cut off one head and two grow back. One of the reasons corruption is so deeply entrenched into American politics is because Republicans have managed the Orwellian task of making an evil appear patriotic.
Rumors of Republican plans for endless hearings that eat up tax payer funds and screw the public seem to be on the eminent horizon – Darrell Issa’s Agenda
The second list: Food Safety, Homeland Security, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Health care reform oversight, stimulus spending, the Minerals Management Service, and Climategate (which Issa’s staff calls “Politicization of Science”).
That’s a pretty good guide to the issues that would be targeted if John Boehner picks up the speaker’s gavel. As to the ACORN issue, I’m reliably informed that there won’t be hearings on ACORN per se — it stopped existing — but possibly hearings on ACORN’s splinter groups and voter registration fraud in general.
So Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Ca.) basically plans to be Andrew Breitbart and Fox News sock puppet in pursuing scandals where there are none.’ I read a right-wing column just the other day by the same Thomas Sowell who claimed president Obama was a Nazi still trying to lay off the blame for the housing bubble on Barney Frank. This Fannie May-Barney Frank myth may seem unimportant, but it’s propose is to deflect blame away from financial regulation, the lack of enforcement of same and Wall Street’s maleficence. Who is powerless to take up for themselves? The working class families who were the victims of predatory lending and Wall St experimenting with exotic derivative trades – the Street’s losses were indeed socialized. The only Socialism America has seen in the last 24 months has been some corporate socialism Republicans overwhelmingly voted for.
American business is really suffering under a Democratic administration, right? Gosh next thing you know we’ll have the horror of millionaires washing their own Mercedes. Those Anti-Business … Republicans?
So the Kenyan Socialist we have in the White House is so anti-business that America’s corporations are now facing record high corporate profits and undergoing mild criticism for their off-shoring practices. Luckily, Republicans are already itching to restart coordinating policy with the business lobbying community — after they punish any company that tried to work constructively with the Democrats, that is.
Jon Chait calls it the return of the K Street Project, which you may remember was an effort to line up corporate lobbyists behind House Republicans, punishing those who worked with Democrats and rewarding those who didn’t with special access to the legislative process. I imagine Tim Carney will find some way to frame this as virtuous free-market Republicans punishing the corporatist firms who sought to unfairly suckle off the government teat.
I just can’t wait for the Tea Party to realize that, should the Republicans experience great gains today, they’ll have successfully returned the GOP of 2000-2006 to power in Congress. Unpaid-for tax cuts? Sure. Serious about cutting spending? Not at all. Working with the business community to advance their agenda in return for political support? Absolutely.
The link to Motherjones notes the one awful hurtful thing President Obama has done to business – offed some very faint criticism of off-shoring so many American jobs. Obama is not against all off-shoring only that it seems lopsided. Profits are at record highs and yet business still has many of its products made in Asia. For this they rate their rage at Obama a ten. Only America’s spoiled silly business class with all its tax breaks, tax incentives and an army of lobbyist that writes every piece of business related legislation would be so unabashedly petulant and childish.
Things you probably don’t know already: The Affordable Care Act has a tax credit for small business and, thanks to that credit, more small businesses are already starting to get health insurance for their workers.
From Janet Adamy at the Wall Street Journal:
The number of small businesses offering health insurance to workers is projected to increase sharply this year, recent data show, a shift that researchers attribute to a tax credit in the health law. Many small businesses, however, remain opposed to the law.
Some small businesses are benefiting from portions of the law, which includes a tax credit beginning this year that covers as much as 35% of a company’s insurance premiums.
According to a report by Bernstein Research in New York, the percentage of employers with between three and nine workers and which are offering insurance has increased to 59% this year, up from 46% last year. The report relies on data from a September survey by the nonprofit Kaiser Family Foundation.
A full tax credit is available to employers with 10 or fewer full-time workers and average annual wages of less than $25,000. The credit phases out gradually and has a cap at employers with 25 workers and average annual wages of $50,000. The White House estimates that 4 million employers will qualify for the credit.
This is the narrative of the Obama administration and the soon to be history of a Democratic Congress – no good deed they have done goes unpunished. Business gets credit which helps them and their employees. It also helps business attract and keep good workers. What’s their reaction? Democrats must be punished. It reminds me of all the states and their Republican representatives and governors who have taken Affordable Care Act money and taken credit for projects financed by the Recovery Act.