In the spirit of equal time, here is the latest opinion from the defacto head of the Republican Party and conservative movement. He is also a draft dodger( not a conscientious objector, he just did not want to possibly die fighting for his country), anal cyst sufferer, drug addict, man who had his maid doctor shop for illegal drugs and serial monogamists ( currently on wife #4) Mr. Rush Limbaugh, Limbaugh: “For The First Time In My Life I Am Ashamed Of My Country”. Limbaugh Complains Media, Politicians Are Insulting Americans’ Intelligence By Warning About Sequestration. Maybe he has some inside information that Congress, the President and every respectable economist in the country does not have. If so, why not produce some documentation. Limbaugh has made millions pontificating. He has plenty of spare time and resources. He could produce an annotated research paper that will make all the politicians and experts look silly. Though Limbaugh is not in the proof business. He is in the business of hysteria, paranoia, hubris, fetid fantasy, hype, hyperbole, unsubstantiated accusations, revisionist history, class warfare, racial discrimination, gender discrimination, homophobia… he is neck deep in bull, but most of all he is not in the business of honor, truth, facts, basic human decency or using his media influence to bring Americans together. He can be ashamed of America, he can be whatever. Though why should anyone care. 57 Terrible Consequences of the Sequester…1. Air Travel Disruption, 3. Slower Extreme-Weather Forecasts, 5. Pest-Infested Crops, 6. Nationwide Meat and Poultry Shortage, 12. Neglect for Mentally Ill, Homeless, and Substance Addicted, 14. 600,000 Women and Children Thrown Off WIC, 19. No Child Care for 30,000 Kids, No Head Start for 70,000, 24. Higher Risk of Terrorism, 27. Classified Information Vulnerable to Foreign Spies, 32. 1/3 Cutback in Pacific Naval Presence, 35. 46,000 Defense Jobs Could Be Lost, 47. 1,200 Fewer OSHA Inspections, Potential for More Workplace Deaths. Limbaugh is among a few others, including one of the political “analysts” at ABC’s Note Blog that thinks the sequester is not a big deal. Congress or the president could just snap their fingers and magically make the government run as usual. That is not the case. The government operates under a legal framework defined by Congress. This plays out most directly in authorizing payments such as Navy equipment and payroll. It works in somewhat the same way a business operates. It must pay day to day operating expenses or shut down. We also know it is a big deal because conservatives are trying to come up with a plan that makes them look less like the bad guys to the public, Republicans Coalesce Around Clever Plan To Make Looming Spending Cuts Much Less Draconian.
Per the conservative National Review: “In the face of poor alternatives, it is best to accept the new spending levels for 2013, including decreased defense spending, and to focus on ensuring that the slightly smaller pool of money is managed slightly more intelligently — by, for instance, giving agency managers discretion about where the cuts come from in the near term and using the appropriations process to allocate future cuts in the out-years.”
[ ]…The GOP proposal would give the executive branch more discretion over where to make those cuts for the remainder of the current fiscal year, which ends in September. After that date, congressional appropriators would make decisions about where the specific cuts would come from, while still adhering to the sequester’s new lower spending baseline.
The irony is that in the near term, the GOP’s proposed fix would delegate a great deal of authority to the executive branch — and thus to President Obama. And for the GOP that would come with the risk that the administration would target the cuts at GOP constituencies, which would undermine the political rationale for their own plan.
This is so cute. Republicans are going to give the president and the heads of various government agencies and divisions the authority to use their funding in the most efficient way. A power which they already have in some ways – like cutting back personnel or seeking better prices for supplies. Though writing stuff like that makes the NR and Karl Rove look like they’re being very serious; and should the sequester cuts go into effect Republicans can say they came up with this very clever non-plan. The Beltway media will report that the Republicans said they had a plan and then report the Democratic reaction. Just as the same media is loath to call Republicans liars when they lie, they’ll be loathe to call the Republican plan what it is, public relations cosmetics.
When you have millions or billions you can afford a recession, Will Pete Peterson’s Half a Billion Bucks Buy a New Recession?
Pete Peterson’s Mighty Wurlitzer
One major contribution comes from the money and monomania of Pete Peterson, a Wall Street billionaire who has committed about half a billion bucks rousing hysteria about deficits and debt. On Thursday, The Nation magazine and the Center for Media and Democracy are releasing an expose of Peterson and his latest front, the Fix the Debt coalition, with a new resource detailing the background at the center’s SourceWatch.org.
Ironically, Peterson never raised a murmur about the housing bubble or the Wall Street wilding or the global trade imbalances that eventually blew up the economy, led to the Great Recession.
Peterson, Nixon’s former Secretary of Commerce, says that he “has been wailing about this (debt and deficits) since 1980.”
Peterson made his billions on Wall Street, taking the private equity firm Blackstone Group public, after benefiting from the obscene “carried interest tax deduction” that allows hedge fund billionaires to pay lower tax rates than their chauffeurs. (His former partner, Stephen Schwartzman, famously labeled the effort to end this obscenity as a war, the equivalent of “when Hitler invaded Poland.”)
One of, what should be the down sides of living in a castle with a mote, is that people like Peterson start to believe the sound of their own echo. Paul Krugamn has two charts today that show what Peterson’s vision for America looks like. It is surprisingly European for the political movement that loves to hate on Europe, Paul De Grauwe and the Rehn of Terror
Most normal people listen to themselves. Sometimes we say things that are silly or stupid, and we laugh at ourselves and learn from the experience. Scientists might want to look into the possibility that conservatives are psychologically or genetically incapable of hearing the crazy venal stuff that comes out of their mouths, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX): Voters need ‘at least 50 rounds’ in magazines to take out drones
During Thursday interview on Freedom 107 radio, host Jeff Akin asked the Texas Republican how he felt about using unnamed aerial drones for domestic law enforcement.
“It’s pretty offensive to most of us,” Gohmert opined. “Most of us think if you’re going to use a drone and fly over our homes to analyze what’s going on in our backyard — not a lot of talk’s been given — but if you can fly over in the backyard, you can use all kinds of technology to see what’s happening inside the home as well. And I know there’s been a judge, and this former judge sure thinks you ought to have a warrant to do that kind of thing.”
“But I had somebody last week in Washington from either Georgia or Alabama that was saying, ‘Look, this goes back to we have got to have at least 50 rounds in our magazines because on average that’s about how many it takes to bring down a drone.’ I hope he was kidding, I don’t know for sure.”
So this week Gohmert and his conservative friends are on the same page as some other people we’re all familiar with, Al-Qaeda’s 22 tips on avoiding drones: hide under trees and camouflage cars . al-Qaeda has fully automatic weapons and rocket launchers, and they’re giving tips on avoidance. Gohmert voted to renew the most draconian infringement on our civil liberties, the Patriot Act. Renewed without amending the most grievous parts. So it is difficult to tell how much of what he says is just a dog whistle to his wacky supporters and how much is actual cognitive impairment.
The Smithsonian’s American History Museum has a great tribute up to Lena Horn, In tribute to Lena Horne (June 30, 1917–May 9, 2010)
Lena Horne was an American treasure, a cultural icon whose career achievements and social legacy challenged and transformed America’s notions about race and culture. A Renaissance woman, she lived and entertained during an era when women and “Negroes” were constrained by limited social roles, strict conventions, and public policies that separated genders and races.
But Ms. Horne was anything but conventional. She paid dearly for her originality.
They have more pictures and some sound recordings at the link.