Thom's blog - Wednesday December 15th, 2010

You need to know this. Congress is feverishly working to finish up business before the end of the lame-duck session. The Senate is expected to pass President Obama’s tax cut deal in a vote today. And the House seems to be warming up as well – at least Blue Dog democrats are. Despite the package costing nearly $1 trillion – at least 27 members of the Blue Dog coalition sent a letter to Nancy Pelosi urging her to bring the bill to the floor for a vote. She needs 39 Democrats on board for the legislation to even have a chance at passing – there are 54 members of the Blue Dog coalition. So as more momentum builds in favor of the bill – the more it looks like progressives will lose this fight too. In other business – the House is expected to vote on a stand-alone “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” bill in hopes that it will have a better chance of passing the Senate than the current legislation which is attached to a defense spending measure. That too could be hopeless as Republican Senator Jim DeMint is threatening to force the reading of an entire 2,000-page omnibus spending bill – a procedural tactic that’s almost never employed - but could grind the entire chamber to a halt. In response – Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid warned he would bring the Senate back into session after Christmas if Republicans continue to stall on addressing important legislation. Among the unresolved issues that could be tackled after Christmas: a START nuclear treaty – the DREAM Act – and “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” repeal. So – as the book starts to close on the 111th Congress in chaos – let's acknowledge how much good stuff did get done - and how much more could have been done if it weren't for Republicans being the Party of No for the past two years.


Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 12 years 14 weeks ago

I think that as long as the Democrats can believe that we, the voters, have no other choice but to vote for Democrats (because another Republican in office is too horrible to think about) then we will continue to be suckered into the same old lies. This all plays into the hands of the wealthy ruling matter whether we pick Democrats (who say nice things and promise us anything....then don't deliver) or Republicans (who won't compromise...because why should they when the Democrats are such wimps or sellouts). As Michael Hudson, economist, says we are headed down a road to debt peonage as parasitic finance capital in the FIRE economy completely destroys democracy and our freedoms. There will be no ghosts of Christmas past haunting these capitalist ghouls as they let all the little Timmys die needless deaths. They think the world is too over-populated anyway. They don't need to send high flying jets seeding the atmosphere with some strange unknown and unspecified death spray (as some conspiracy theorists enjoy shaking in their boots about). But maybe it is not such a questionable "conspiracy theory" that they are not roiling with beneficence in helping to preserve the lives of those they see as parasitic to the system they believe will prevent their own from exploiting. Well, the true parasite is the wealthy one who makes all his/her money off of money only and who most probably inherited his fortunes from some rich dad, who may have inherited that from his rich dad...who probably got rich by screwing other people in the first place. The real parasite is the bankster and Wall Streeter and other corporate execs who get huge bonuses for screwing people.

The only way real change will happen is the way it did in the 20s and 30s when violence against the oppression became rampant and it scared the wealthy into not being so stingy. Visions of guillotines may have haunted a few wealthy industrialist's dreams and worked on their consciences a little. So let the damn Republicans take over and our ruin will be so complete that people will finally riot in the streets. With absolutely no illusions that there will be a new Democrat that will change things, as there was with the turn-coat politician, Obama, we may finally be up against the wall and be able to blame everything totally on the Republicans and they really would not be able to blame the Democrats, like they always do, and fail miserably to keep peace and order. This might even have happened sooner had Obama not been the "hope and distraction" that deflected peoples ire when they decided to bail out the banksters. Had it been McCain and his moll, Sarah Palin, trying to pass a bill bailing out the wouldn't have gone down so easily. Obama was the smooth-talking distraction that allowed people to lose any sense of reality and to let this one by, for now, because it would have kept us from a depression.."banks too big to fail?"....yeah, right!...just delayed it so that a bigger one will happen down the road. The bubble economy seekers are high roller gamblers with no sense and don't care about long term stability and outcome. They are selling us all out for quick grab profits and to hell with everyone who can't make it.

I think we will see a rise in internal terrorism targeting certain groups that seem to be central in these anti-democratic, parasitic capitalists, and their puppet politicians. Certain actions have already started in the rebellion of groups like Wikileaks and Anonymous. Those are, so far, just internet related attacks. But other physical attacks have occurred by people frustrated by what is going on. The most recent is the guy whose wife lost here teaching job. Do you really believe that this guy was that bad a shot? Really? Do you really believe that the bullets were "magically or by the act of God" deflected from their targets? That's how the idiotic news media has played it. They take a cowering school board member, pleading for his life, and then portray him as a brave person. Well, that's the news media for you.

Namaimo's picture
Namaimo 12 years 14 weeks ago

I can't believe the Democrats are caving on renewing the tax cuts for the rich, just days after everyone in Congress was in a tizzy about the "DAMM DEFICIT". It's surreal, and totally disheartening. So much today is surreal and disheartening. I bet my liberal Dem. Rep. will vote FOR THIS!!! (And if so, I will no longer vote AT ALL).

hobiemom's picture
hobiemom 12 years 14 weeks ago

I am so upset that the Democrats gave up and passed the bill that decreases estate tax and will continue tax cuts for the most wealthy. Kudlow on the business program is expecting that Obama will decrease tax on corporations also. My opinion about why the economy is not booming is because the middle class and poor have decreasing relative wealth and the top 1% of wealthy people are becoming richer. But wall street think that the economy is booming because the stock market is rising. The Democrats somehow just can't outplay the GOP.

gmt99's picture
gmt99 12 years 14 weeks ago

I am horrified at what is happening to education. Schools are not corporations and should not be lead by business people. In the last three years I have witnessed a local school slide from a very effective community where families and faculty teamed together in the best interests of their children to a veritable prison doling out homogenous curriculum in lock-step to a schedule that allows limited creative activity for anyone involved in the "learning process."

Obama clearly demonstrated his cluelessness (or indifference?) to education by making his basketball buddy Arne Duncan secretary of education, and encouraging the firing of teachers along with the elimination of a liveable wage for future teachers. Why should he care after all when he can afford to send his own children to a private school? Why should he care about what happens to our babies with special needs when his own children apparently have no learning challenges? In the book, "The Obama Plan, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is supposed to receive increased funding, but not to improve the education of students with disabilities, rather to increase accountability.

And while his wife crusades against child obesity by eliminating junk food in the public schools, recess, music, art, physical education continue to be very low on school's priority lists as school leaders trample the future of our children in Arne's Race to the Top. The top of what??? that pile of children whose lives they're actively destroying?

standshOut's picture
standshOut 12 years 14 weeks ago

Highest priority is getting money out of politics.

Roger2L's picture
Roger2L 12 years 14 weeks ago

@Namaimo: Good, then Democrats will be less confused. I am being facitious. Do you even know your legislators and how they will vote? Not voting for them will be fine if you know, but not voting at all seems that worse will get past, Voting third party is fine, if you concede that the greater of two evils may win. Some are fine with things getting worse before they get better, but there is too much of a mix to expect those trying to make it better not to keep if from getting worse enough that something magical will happen. Check out other parties if have already participated in one or the other, but don't be a tea partier. Well I would not even say not to try them or the coffee party.

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