Link

White people who wear cowboy hats while profiting from government subsidies just don’t fit the stereotype

“American conservatism used to have room for fairly sophisticated views about the role of government. Its economic patron saint used to be Milton Friedman, who advocated aggressive money-printing, if necessary, to avoid depressions. It used to include environmentalists who took pollution seriously but advocated market-based solutions like cap-and-trade or emissions taxes rather than rigid rules. But today’s conservative leaders were raised on Ayn Rand’s novels and Ronald Reagan’s speeches as opposed to his actual governance, which was a lot more flexible than the legend. They insist that the rights of private property are absolute, and that government is always the problem, never the solution.”

Paul Krugman

the Grand ol’ teahadi tantrum

Why did the government shut down? The blame lies entirely with a radical Republican minority, and the Speaker of the House who flinches from every threatened strike of the tiny balled-up fists of America’s lil’ Taliban.

the Atlantic:

  1. If the House of Representatives voted on a “clean” budget bill — one that opened up the closed federal offices but did not attempt to defund the Obama health care program — that bill would pass, and the shutdown would be over. Nearly all Democrats would vote for it, as would enough Republicans to end the shutdown and its related damage. (And of course it has already passed the Senate, repeatedly, and would be signed by the president.)

  2. So far House Speaker John Boehner has refused to let this vote occur. His Tea Party contingent knows how the vote would go and therefore does not want it to happen; and such is Boehner’s fear of them, and fear for his job as Speaker, that he will not let it take place.

James Fallows, for the Atlantic The Two Basic Facts That Should Be in Every Shutdown Story

Who are these radicals that wield this influence over the Speaker of the House and we the people of the United States? From an interview by Ezra Klein of Robert Costa:

EK: So how do House Republicans end up convincing themselves of unrealistic plans, particularly when they’ve seen them fail before, and when respected voices in the Republican and even conservative establishment are warning against them?

RC: When you get the members off the talking points you come to a simple conclusion: They don’t face consequences for taking these hardline positions. When you hear members talk candidly about their biggest victory, it wasn’t winning the House in 2010. It was winning the state legislatures in 2010 because they were able to *redraw their districts so they had many more conservative voters. The members get heat from the press but they don’t get heat from back home.

Ezra Klein & Robert Costa, for the Washington Post Why Boehner doesn’t just ditch the right

Succinctly summarized in Derek Thompson for the Atlantic’s follow-up to the Two Basic Facts, The Third Basic Fact That Every Government Shutdown Story Should Include:

So, by one close observer’s count, less than 10 percent of the House of Representatives is preventing the government from opening unless the White House defunds its signature legislation. Not a 51-percent majority. Not a 41-percent “filibuster majority.” A 10-percent “bully majority” that has prevailed upon another 10 to 15 percent of the House.

wat

This small group of extremists aren’t interested in a dialog on policy and they have no plan for America. They are not willing to listen to reason, and they never give even the illusion of being open-minded about anything. They dismantle and destroy everything they touch and are unrepentantly dividing a divided House and country even further in the process. They have demonstrated over and over again that they are complete failures at legislating and accomplishing anything constructive in Congress for their country, and the one thing they aren’t monumentally inept at is manipulating their districts back home so that they can poison the well at the voting booth in order to troll the entire country into engaging with them on their completely idiotic ideological positions and throw epic shitfits that they’ve wrapped and ribboned in fairness.

Their goal is to finish what Neocons started over a decade ago: run up an endless tab using our Country’s full faith and credit as collateral in order to bankrupt the entire nation. They believe Government is ineffective and wasteful, so they must make it ineffectual and wasteful in order to gaslight the other 90% of the country into believing their self-fulfilling prophecy is anything more than the deranged sounds of lunatics that are in over their heads.

the “stand-off”

Reports of a bi-partisian break-down that took us to Government Shutdown 2013 are fabricated. The Government has shut down because a cell of radical teahadi extremists have hijacked our plane. They are demanding that the Romney/Ryan Failboat set sail despite the fact that Romney/Ryan themselves campaigned on it and failed to win the Presidency. Desperate for attention and arrogant beyond words they are making demands that they have no business making before they’ll let the doors open, and they have the audacity to stand in front of cameras and every microphone within a hundred miles pretending that it’s the other side that aren’t willing to compromise? Haven’t you heard?

We don’t negotiate with terrorists.

Link

You gonna eat that?


Who should set standards for food safety and enforce them? Consumers, or shareholders?

The Washington Post reported on Monday that documents and interviews showed that a plan to allow hog plants to replace federal USDA inspectors with their own private employees had produced “serious lapses that included failing to remove fecal matter from meat” in three of the five plants that had participated in a pilot program for more than a decade.

The best part is, pork is just the beginning:

A similar plan for chicken and turkey plants is expected to be finalized later this year.

It’s a splendid idea, really. Who better to protect us from contaminated food than the people that produce the contaminated food, right? Must we settle for tiny little chunks of fecal matter in our tenderloin or cutlets? With no more nosey inspectors and wasted tax dollars on that flavorless and shitless slurry! All those freeloading neutral third-party commies and thugs are finally going to be out of the way of bringing us what we want: real letter-graded meat.