Political Nutz

Observations on the pathetic state of American politics

Monthly Archives: December 2011

Ms. Bachmann: Too Busy to be President

I don’t see how Michele Bachmann can possibly be President.  She is apparently too busy to even find time to vote in the U.S. House.  She has missed a full 12% of floor votes in the last four years, one of the worst records on the Hill.  The average is just 2.7% missed votes.  Maybe all those kids around the house just take too much time.

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Another Reason Why Congress is Clueless

Today we have more evidence that as the average Joe and Jane get poorer members of Congress get richer… lots richer.  Most of our senators and representatives are millionaires with a median net worth of $725,000.  The median for the average American family is a measly $20,500.  No wonder these guys don’t want millionaires to pay their fair share of taxes.

And if you’re not already worth millions, being elected to the House or Senate is perhaps the fastest way to become a millionaire.  Over the past 25 years, congress’ median net worth more than doubled: yours and mine declined by 3%.

How can lawmakers be expected to look out for the interests of everyday citizens when the biggest issues facing them — unemployment, health care, wages — are unknown to most of those who are making the laws?
The Atlantic Wire

Contributing to the huge disconnect between the electorate and elected is the fact that many Capitol Hill millionaires have never held a regular job; many of them acquired their wealth the Wall Street way, collecting interest and dividends from  tax-privileged investments, legal-for-Congress-only insider trading and via  favors from political backers.   They have no notion of what it’s like to work 9-to-5, or  8-to-6, or hope for overtime, or worry about layoffs and health insurance.

         

Your Congressman

You and Me

So most of the folks we’ve sent to Washington to solve our problems know little to nothing about those problems.  No wonder, I guess, that their only focus is on protecting the interests of the wealthiest few Americans, a group that just happens to includes them.

You Can’t Always Get What You Want

Maybe there’s hope for the GOP.  Wisconsin Rep. Sean Duffy is quoted :

Our freshman class wanted to do a lot of things. Did we accomplish them all? No. But what I’ve come to realize is that in divided government, you don’t always get what you want.

Divided government?  How about welcome to real life, Mr. Duffy?  What kind of immature, small-minded people are these Tea Baggers who think they somehow deserve to always have things go 100% their way?  Do any of these folks have families or real jobs where compromise and negotiation are normal, reasonable behaviors? Apparently not.

Romney Joins the GOP Lies Parade

In the December 10 Republican debate, Mr. Romney stated: “Let’s not forget, only one president has ever cut Medicare for seniors in this country, and it’s Barack Obama.”  He might have more accurately said, “Let’s make up this idea that President Obama cut Medicare and ignore the fact that Ronald Reagan made cuts to the program several times.”  But the White House wannabe didn’t bother to explain the basis for his nonsensical statement.  One assumes that he’s referring the the much-maligned Affordable Care Act which, as it turns out, does not reduce current benefits.

Once again a major figure in the Republican Party just makes stuff up, totally ignoring reality.  Here’s the complete analysis from PolitiFact.

John McCain Off the Deep End: Needs Counseling

Senator McCain provides still more evidence he is an old, angry, delusional man.  Commenting on the withdrawal of the last U.S. troops from Iraq he said:

I believe history will judge this president’s leadership with the scorn and disdain it deserves.

Nine years of fighting, over 4,500 dead, another 25,000 to 30,000 disabled.  And a trillion dollars spent.  And for Mr. McCain it’s not enough.  You would think a man who has known the horrors of combat personally would celebrate troops coming home alive.  Instead, Mr. McCain continues to push for some vague, never-ending U.S. involvement with no specific definition of victory.

More GOP Lies: The XL Pipeline will Cure Unemployment

Yesterday the Republican House proposed a budget that includes approving construction of the Keystone XL Oil Pipeline. Part of the GOP justification for a fast track approval of the project is that it would create over 100,000 jobs.  Wow!  Impressive although that number would scarcely change of overall unemployment rate.  Impressive if it were true.  It turns out the 100,000 number is just made up, derived by stretching a base figure supplied by guess who?  Transcanada Corporation, the company behind the project.

A more objective estimate sets the potential number of jobs at 5,000 to 6,000, almost all temporary jobs over the two to three years of construction.  Another estimate sets the number of permanent jobs at 50 (although this may be an exaggeration in the other direction).  By GOP math I guess 50 is almost 100,000.

There are many solid reasons both to support and oppose the XL Pipeline but fabricating employment statistics doesn’t contribute anything to the debate.

Why Isn’t Jon Corzine in Prison?

I listened to snippets of Jon Corzine‘s testimony before the House Agriculture Committee yesterday.  This guy is another arrogant, clueless, greedy financial wheeler-dealer who contributes nothing to the clients he is supposed to serve.  And he ought to be in jail. Mr. Corzine told the Committee:

“I simply do not know where the money is, or why the accounts have not been reconciled to date.”

As CEO of a securities firm managing billions of dollars of other people’s money, Mr. Corzine had a legal fiduciary obligation to more or less keep an eye on that money.  Simply saying “I kind of lost tract” of $1.2 billion isn’t an adequate explanation of what happened.  If I’m driving along the highway, as CEO of my car, and I get distracted and kill a pedestrian, it’s manslaughter and I go to jail.  “I wasn’t paying attention” isn’t an adequate defense.

So Mr. Corzine and the other Wall Street crooks like him should be watching soap operas in their cells and mopping floors for a few years.  And their personal fortunes should be liquidated and the monies returned to shareholders.

New GOP Plan to Help Unemployed: Fire 200,000

The GOP rejected an extension of the payroll tax cut tonight.  OK, no surprise and there are reasonable arguments for and against the measure.  But again the Republican “logic” behind their plan to pay for unemployment benefits is mind-boggling.  Mr. McConnell and his nutcase cohort propose firing 200,000 federal employees as a way to save money.  Does he think people don’t see this as just a measure to help ensure unemployment stays high through the 2012 campaign season.

 

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