Rocky Mountain Clouds wallpaper
This from RollCall, which leans right-of-center – House GOP Leaders Consider Four-Year Debt Limit Deal – So this could be a true account of proposals in the pipe-line or not. Part of it, if true could be a way to signal the base to start getting used to the idea of compromise.
With the administration’s debt ceiling deadline fast approaching, House Republican leaders are considering a four-year debt limit increase that would take the issue off the table for the rest of President Barack Obama’s presidency.
The plan would, however, come at no easy price for Obama, who pledged as recently as Monday morning not to negotiate with Republicans on a debt ceiling hike. Republicans would demand major tax and entitlement changes — the latter of which has been anathema to many Democrats — and they could also ask for movement on the sequester and an expiring continuing resolution that must be dealt with in the next three months.
The idea was one of many brought up over Sunday and Monday, as Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio and his leadership team and staff held a strategy session in Warrenton, Va.
“We have an opportunity to inject years of certainty while doing some fundamental tax reform and entitlement reform,” said Rep. Steve Southerland II of Florida, the sophomore class leadership representative, who was at the meeting.
In addition to the four-year plan, ideas for extending the debt ceiling ranged from a one- or two-year increase to one that would last only 30 or 60 days.
Still, the ultimate decision on which path to take will not be forged until the rank and file have their say at the full conference retreat, which starts Wednesday in Williamsburg, Va. It is a function of the decentralized power that Boehner holds: He sets the agenda, but it is up to his conference whether to accept it.
If President Obama sticks to his recent declarations – “They will not collect a ransom in exchange for not crashing the American economy,” Mr. Obama vowed in the East Room.” That being the case, knowing that House Democrats especially are against any cuts in entitlements like Social Security and the Democratic base generally very opposed to such cuts, the 4 year deal sounds like it is dead before it starts. Many of these same Republicans, like Paul Ryan (R-WI) voted to bail out Wall Street and the auto makers, but now think grandpa and disabled children should pay for an anemic economy. Not that what I hope has much affect on the political decisions made in Democratic circles, much less conservatives ones, but at this point I somewhat hope that House Republicans in the tea bagger zone will carry through on their threats. I tend to think they will wuss out. If there is something cheaper in America than Republican opinion, it is Republican threats. While I wish it were not the case, but in many ways everyone is already gearing up, taking stock of the repercussions of their votes on a range of issues in anticipation of the 2014 mid-terms. Who knows, certainly Boehner (R-OH), who was there is 1996, is aware of the consequences should recalcitrant tea baggers decide to push the nation off the cliff. In 1996 Republicans shut down government
Clinton’s trump card was the veto. Under the Constitution, Congress must muster a two-thirds majority to overcome a presidential veto. So Gingrich had loudly proclaimed that he had a tool to confront the veto: the government shutdown.
“He can run the parts of the government that are left, or he can run no government,” Gingrich told Time magazine reporters six months before the first shutdown. “Which of the two of us do you think worries more about the government not showing up?”
That was the first mistake the Republicans made: They appeared to be too eager for a confrontation, while Clinton constantly emphasized he was willing to compromise within reason. Then Gingrich told reporters he stopped funding the government in part because Clinton made him exit from the rear of Air Force One when they returned from attending the funeral of slain Israeli leader Yitzhak Rabin. That comment just made Republicans appear petty.
In the end, after weeks of turmoil, the Republicans meekly gave up and eventually cut a deal with Clinton that was not much different than what they could have gotten before the shutdown.
Clinton used the episode as the springboard for his successful reelection campaign, and he humiliated Republicans for it during his 1996 State of the Union speech. He singled out for praise a man seated next to First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton — Social Security Administration worker Richard Dean, who had survived the Oklahoma City bombing and rescued three people from the devastated Murrah Federal Building.
As Republicans stood and applauded Dean’s heroism, Clinton pulled out the knife, recounting how Dean was forced out of his office during the first shutdown and had to work without pay in the second one. “Never, ever, shut the federal government down again,” the president scolded.
After that, Clinton never lagged in the polls again.
Later in the 96 elections, Republicans lost 9 House seats. So please tea baggers don’t wuss out like you usually do. Go for it. As James Fellows wrote the other day the debt ceiling is not about new spending, it is about paying bills that conservatives and Democrats have already agreed to. It is Republicans who are using the debt ceiling as leverage to get unrelated concessions.
Remember the NRA said that guns don’t kill people, video games and movies kill people. As we all know if the NRA says it, it must be gospel. So why is the NRA and gun manufactures paying to have guns featured in video games for children. The age limit for one of these games is 4 years old.
14 Ways Obama Can Push Gun Control Without Congress. Forget the House of Representatives. Here’s what the White House can do right now.
1. Actually appoint a full-time ATF director: Most of the executive branch’s gun control powers require a functioning Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives—something that’s not possible without anyone to run it. The ATF hasn’t had a permanent director for six years, as a result of a deliberate reorganizing  shuffle that gave the Senate veto power over new appointees. Instead, it’s had a series of part-time directors. The current interim director, Todd Jones, commutes  to Washington from Minnesota, where he works as a US Attorney.
2. Actually prosecute people who try to buy guns illegally: Finally, some common ground. In the same press release in which it blasted the administration’s push for gun control, the NRA reiterated  its support for the “enforcement of existing laws against violent offenders to reduce crime.” It sounds straightforward, but it’s not what usually happens. In 2009, about 71,000 people who were legally prohibited from purchasing guns tried to obtain them anyway. Just 0.1 percent were prosecuted.
[ ]…4. Background checks for gun dealers’ employees: According to a survey by GOP pollster Frank Luntz, 74 percent  of NRA members support mandatory background checks for all gun purchases. But what about people who work for gun dealers? Federal law prohibits gun dealers from employing people who couldn’t pass a background check. But FBI regulations prohibit dealers from checking. The fix: Let the ATF process background check requests on the retailers’ behalf.
These are very basic legal restrictions that President Obama could put in place by way of executive order. One of the best is bringing back the Bush 43 importation of assault weapons like the one used at Sandy Hook. That MJ list includes 14 executive orders, in this report from the NYT they list 19. I’m not a fan of executive orders. They have become the toll by which the executive branch, regardless of president, has expanded executive powers for decades. Though as long as they’re a fact of life, might as well use them for good. Much like the debt ceiling wussies it would be great if this delusional conservative would follow through, Rep. Steve Stockman (R-TX) threatened to file articles of impeachment if President Obama uses an executive order to try to reduce gun violence. Contrary to Stockman’s copy of the Constitution, the highly redacted version that conservatives have reduced to fit on a plastic sealed card they keep in their wallet, the president does have the right to make some non-legislative initiatives to deal with gun violence. We know this from history and a Republican president named Bush, Executive action on gun policy
Eric Boehlert highlighted over the weekend this story from 1989.
The Bush Administration declared a permanent ban today on almost all foreign-made semiautomatic assault rifles. Imports of the weapons have been suspended since spring.
The permanent ban affects all but 7 of the 50 models included in the spring suspension. It does not affect the far larger number of virtually identical weapons manufactured domestically, nor does it affect foreign-made semiautomatic weapons already in the United States.
The fact that Bush/Quayle administration issued an executive order on guns, within its legal authority, did not mean the then-president had seized authoritarian power in a bloodless coup. The NRA didn’t like it, but Bush had the authority and he used it.
So can we stop pretending perfectly legal executive orders are evidence of creeping tyranny?
Like the examples in Sunday’s post, conservative paranoia is a profit-making machine. Sure it is bad for the country, but it is good to fatten some far Right bank accounts, Klayman Prepares for Armed Revolt; Barber Predicts ‘Second Civil War’
Judicial Watch founder Larry Klayman is once again calling for a revolution in his WorldNetDaily column, telling readers to “pray that Obama and Biden and the likes of Pelosi and Reid are so stupid as to carry through with their threats, so that the masses will finally be provoked to rise up as they did in colonial times.”
He called Vice President Biden’s gun task force recommendations, which haven’t even been released yet, “a declaration of war against the American people and our way of life” and hopes they “will in the end serve to be their own undoing and result in our liberation from their evil clutches.”
[ ]…The always-amusing Matt Barber of Liberty Counsel even predicted a “second civil war” under Obama, and asserted that liberals celebrate school shootings and argued that the National Education Association is to blame for the Sandy Hook massacre.
They could call themselves the Cowardly Keyboard Brigade. They’ve been making these threats about a new Civil War for years. Guess how Barber has made living, as public employee and as a soldier. That govmint he hates so much has paid for his housing, groceries and health care for years. An armed revolt is exactly what he and his wussie brethren need to do so the tax payers don’t have to support him anymore. Klayman and Barber can’t handle the truth about the sensible moderate regulations that are being proposed, that is why they lie so much, Nine Conservative Media Myths About Proposals To Strengthen Gun Laws.
Speaking of honest work, Indiana GOP Lets Glenn Beck Set Legislative Agenda: Introduces Bill To Fight U.N. Conspiracy Theory
You’d be forgiven for having not heard of Agenda 21. Developed at a summit in Brazil in 1992 with support from President George H.W. Bush, Agenda 21 is a series of non-binding UN recommendations for ensuring that economic growth does not undermine the environment. The agreement aims to encourage “international cooperation to accelerate sustainable development in developing countries” through voluntary actions by UN member-states. You can read the full, innocuous text here.
But right-wing Republicans have somehow come to believe that Agenda 21 contains a secret, nefarious plot to destroy American life and society as we know it, birthing a cottage industry devoted to spreading misinformation about the UN proposal. The most recent evidence of this movement’s reach is a proposal by two Indiana lawmakers to ban the implementation of any Agenda 21-inspired initiatives in the state. The Republican state legislators, Rep. Tim Neese and Sen. Dennis Kruse, proposed laws prohibiting the implementation of Agenda-21 inside Indiana. Neese worried that the document — which has no legal power to reshape American law — was a “mandate” that threatened his freedom:
More along these lines here, The Return Of Right-Wing Pro-Gun Insurrectionism (This Time Featuring Hitler). Glenn beck is worth well into the tens of millions. If he started making arguments based n facts and reality he’d have to settle for his current fortune or get a real job, doing real work. That thought probably keeps him awake at night; what if there is some kind of miracle, a national epiphany of reality based thinking, oh the horror.