Something very wrong

I know the US is a fairly right-wing country – or, more accurately, the right wing has a particularly privileged position there – but, seriously, a party can threaten to, and in fact for a time actually cut off welfare for the unemployed, leaving them to starve (even refuse to pass health benefits for 9/11 responders), without it being political suicide? In order to obtain tax cuts purely for the richest tiny percentage of the population? And they can gamble this and the other party will be forced to cave?


You can eat when I get to pay less tax. Oh, and thanks for voting for this.

What a horrible situation. What a place.

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81 responses to “Something very wrong

  1. Once again Obama shows what an utter disaster he is as President.

    By siding with the Republicans on yet another issue and allowing them to attach tax cut requirements to a welfare bill he has alienated real Democrats and jeopardised those benefits.

    When is he going to grow some balls and start being the President so many Americans elected him to be?

  2. Splatterbottom

    So some of the more lefty Democrats are threatening to vote the compromise bill down, cutting off unemployment benefits to millions. Horrible indeed!

    If one thing was clear after the last election, it was that people wanted both sides to compromise and work together. If the Democrat left votes this bill down they will be rightly hated by the voting public. Maybe they are just trying to get Palin elected President in 2012.

  3. To the real progressives and populists in America;

    Primarys

    go

  4. “So some of the more lefty Democrats are threatening to vote the compromise bill down, cutting off unemployment benefits to millions. Horrible indeed!”

    You mean there’s a bill where they’ve combined tax cuts for the rich with unemployment benefits for the poor, and it’s impossible to pass one and not the other?

    That’s the stupidest legislative system ever.

    Obviously the Democrats should put up the unemployment benefits bill on its own and dare the Republicans to vote against it.

    “If one thing was clear after the last election, it was that people wanted both sides to compromise and work together. “

    That wasn’t clear from the last election at all.

    “If the Democrat left votes this bill down they will be rightly hated by the voting public. Maybe they are just trying to get Palin elected President in 2012.”

    Riiiight. So you think the voting public will punish the Democrats for the Republicans preventing unemployment benefits without tax cuts for the super rich.

    Who knows, you may be right. There are clearly some very confused people out there.

  5. zaratoothbrush

    Yep, it’s all the fault of the shy kid for not wanting the bullies to beat him and his friend senseless.

    SB, have you ever considered submitting for the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory? It’s a dead certain way to find out if you’re a psychopath or not.

  6. Splatterbottom

    Jeremy polls taken after the last US elections indicated that an overwhelming majority of voters want the parties to compromise rather than to stick to their principles even if it means gridlock:

    The results of a New York Times/CBS News poll released on Wednesday showed that 69 percent of adults want Obama to compromise some of his positions in order to get things done compared to 22 percent that want the president to stick to his positions even if it means not getting as much done.

    Similarly, the poll said 78 percent of those surveyed want Republicans to compromise to get things done and 76 percent said they want the same from Democrats.

    A separate Bloomberg National Poll found that 80 percent of likely voters want the two parties to work together even if it means compromising some principles. Just 16 percent said they want the parties to stick to their principles even if it means gridlock.

    Obama negotiated a compromise with the Republicans, but the fuck-knuckle left of the Democrat party seems determined to wreck it. I am betting that the 80% or so of the electorate how favoured compromise in the polls referred to above are going to put the blame where it belongs – at the feet of hard-line ideologues who voted against the welfare payments.

    It is a classic case of the pig-ignorant political narcissism trumping basic decency.

  7. “I am betting that the 80% or so of the electorate how favoured compromise in the polls referred to above are going to put the blame where it belongs – at the feet of hard-line ideologues who voted against the welfare payments.”

    The Republicans?

    The “left” Democrats will presumably put the welfare payments back in their own bill, and dare the Republicans to vote against those.

  8. I put my faith in Mencken’s wisdom when he said that;

    Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want and deserve to get it good and hard.

    In keeping with that sentiment I so very desperately wish to see Sarah Palin as the next President of the USA.
    Cheers.

  9. I’d love to know what SB thinks the Republicans have compromised on in this “deal”. Apparently it’s only the Democrats who should “compromise”, by which he means “cave to Republicans”.

  10. It is a classic case of the pig-ignorant political narcissism trumping basic decency. You’re of course referring to the GOP’s holding welfare recipients to ransom to get the extension on the tax cuts for the wealthy, despite the fact that polls consistently show only small minorities actually want those tax cuts extended.

  11. Obama seems to be fixated on trying to placate people who hate him, and will never, ever vote for him.

    All he has achieved is to alienate Democrats, and strengthen the Repugnicans.

    Bloody stupid.

  12. Splatterbottom

    Jeremy, as I understood it the Republicans wanted the tax cuts made permanent and agreed instead to an extension.

  13. What utter sophistry. If they’re continuing for now, there’s no substantial difference – and they’re effectively “permanent” if the Republicans can get away with forcing them on the country even in the midst of those difficult economic conditions.

    I can’t wait for all those jobs they’re going to create when the tax cuts remain exactly the same as the present.

  14. Splatterbottom

    What on earth are you on about. This is fairly simple – Obama negotiated an agreement with the Republicans. The take-no-prisoners left would rather screw the unemployed than go along with the compromise. So if you want to whine about cutting off welfare, you know who to blame. The idiots with the shriveled brains and massive egos who are so ideologically pure they can’t bring themselves to compromise.

    Why don’t we have a CPRS again?

  15. You’re right about just one thing: that it is fairly simple. The Republicans held Obama to ransom by insisting on an extension of the tax cuts as a condition of the unemployment benefits being extended. So if the Democrats refused to agree to extend the tax cuts for the wealthy – and the polls show most Americans agree the tax cuts should be allowed to lapse – it would be a matter for the Republicans whether they agreed to extend the unemployment benefits regardless, wouldn’t it? Only in bizarro world could it be Obama’s fault that the GOP were to vote against the unemployment extensions unless the tax cut extensions were approved. That’s their prerogative. I think Obama should’ve told them to shove it so everyone could see how morally unscrupulous the Republican Party is – their priority is tax cuts for the rich, and they’re prepared to hold the unemployed to ransom and take the economy further into deficit if they have to in order to get what they want. It’s got nothing to do with “idiots” with “shriveled brains” and everything to do with the GOP’s fucked up priorities. “If you don’t continue these tax cuts for the wealthy against the wishes of a majority of Americans and at a time when the country is going broke already – we’ll cut off benefits for the unemployed.” That’s sick.

  16. Splatterbottom

    Buns, there was a compromise – both sides got things they wanted, but had to concede a little to the other. And now that Clinton is de facto president the compromises are going to keep on coming. At this rate the US will soon be a functioning democracy. It is enough to give tyrannical leftists apoplexy.

  17. Splatterbottom, if the Democrats vote against this package but FOR a package giving those benefits to the unemployed that the Republicans then vote down, it’ll be very clear to even the most partisan hack (hello!) who’s punishing the unemployed in favour of the rich.

    There is no logical link between the unemployment benefits and the tax cuts (except inasmuch as the latter makes the former somewhat more difficult to afford), and it’s shameless political bullshit to tie them together.

  18. Splatterbottom

    I don’t know the details of the horse-trading, which is typical of how US politics seems to function, but it is clearly the rabid arm of the Democrats that is now threatening the extension of welfare benefits.

    A lot of the more moderate Dems lost their seats in the mid-terms, leaving radicals (who would never be elected in a marginal seat, but manage to get pre-selection in seats dominated by the chattering class) in Congress. They are going to give Obama a lot of headaches from here on in.

  19. Exactly, Jeremy, and well said. But you might see things differently if you were to start with the conclusion that fuckhead leftards are the entire cause of the problem, and then work backwards from there to cobble together whatever bullshit story you can to lead to that pre-determined result.

    Buns, there was a compromise – both sides got things they wanted, but had to concede a little to the other. And now that Clinton is de facto president the compromises are going to keep on coming. At this rate the US will soon be a functioning democracy. It is enough to give tyrannical leftists apoplexy.

    Leaving aside the obvious – that there was no reason for these things to be tied together by the GOP as noted by Jeremy – there was not a lot of compromise on the GOP side. And when the tax cuts are due to expire next time, what the GOP will have learned from the current episode is that they can blackmail Obama by refusing again to consent to things that should not be contentious e.g. continuation of unemployment benefits and that he will cave to their demands.

    Recall how things don’t go this way under Republican presidents. When the president is a Republican, the GOP is in control. And when the president is a Democrat, the GOP is calling the shots then, too. It is enough to give tyrannical conservatives/right-wingers and leftard-haters a big hard-on.

  20. Let’s be clear about this, SB. There’s nothing at all moderate about giving tax cuts the country can’t afford to the very wealthiest citizens, those on more than 250k a year.

    Ps don’t you dare blame the Democrats when the country sinks further into deficit.

  21. but it is clearly the rabid arm of the Democrats that is now threatening the extension of welfare benefits.

    That’s not “clear” at all, except to people who passionately hate leftards and see them as the cause of all political problems.

    In actual fact, you have it arse-backwards: the GOP is threatening the extension of the welfare benefits, by refusing to agree to them except on the condition that the tax cuts for the wealthy get extended. This is not diffocult to understand. For fuck’s sake, it takes some extreme partisanship to give the GOP a free pass for this disgusting blackmail.

    Be sure to continue avoiding any attempt to (a) justify the extension of the tax in the face of strong public opposition and the dire state of the US economy, and (b) explain why the extension of the welfare benefits should be contentious or have pre-conditions attached to it.

    As I said earlier, the GOP position is:

    “If you don’t continue these tax cuts for the wealthy against the wishes of a majority of Americans and at a time when the country is going broke already – we’ll cut off benefits for the unemployed.”

    That is not twisting their position in any way. Are you able to explain how this is a morally justifiable stance to take? Because that is the GOP’s position, and it is sick.

  22. Exactly, Jeremy, and well said. But you might see things differently if you were to start with the conclusion that fuckhead leftards are the entire cause of the problem, and then work backwards from there to cobble together whatever bullshit story you can to lead to that pre-determined result.

    LOL buns. I think you may have nailed it.

    I completely agree with Marek’s sentiments above: bring on President Palin.

    Obama may not have delivered anything close to what he promised, but he can act as an illustration of how spineless, gutless and principle-free the Democrats have become as a modern party. The Republicans stand for something, are willing to fight for it and deserve the victory that is coming to them in 2012.

    Lets just hope the rest of the world doesn’t suffer too much as a result.

  23. Splatterbottom

    This is really simple: the President has put a compromise proposal on the table, but the troglodytes would rather pull the whole house down than to compromise. The consequences of that action will be on their empty heads.

  24. Actually, the simplicity is in understanding that the Republicans have managed to bully Obama into attaching a tax cut bill to a welfare bill.

    Obviously, SB, it suits your irrational hatreds to simply ignore that fact. That’s fair enough, although it renders your analysis of this issue effectively worthless.

    But thanks for coming anyway.

  25. Splatterbottom

    So if you choose to use the verb “bullied” rather than say “negotiated with”, that makes all the difference. I must remember that semantics wins every time with Mondo!

  26. The Republicans are now using their majority to refuse to allow any legislation through the Senate until the extension of the tax cuts is passed, as demanded.

    One thing I’ll say for the Republicans – they understand that it’s necessary to kill a few hostages if they want anyone to take their hijacking of the American political system seriously.

  27. “the President has put a compromise proposal on the table, but the troglodytes would rather pull the whole house down than to compromise. “

    A strange new definition of “compromise”.

    I suppose if the Republicans demanded the reintroduction of slavery and attached it to the unemployment benefits, it’d be the Democrats to blame for the starving unemployed.

  28. Splatterbottom

    A deal has been done between the Republicans and the Democrat president which would allow the legislation to pass. Now a bunch of creepy dead-enders wants to (a) block the legislation, and (b) blame someone else for the the consequences of blocking the legislation.

    My guess is that the public (who have indicated in polls that they prefer compromise by their representatives over principled gridlock) will not buy this bullshit and punish the Democrats when they get the next opportunity.

  29. “My guess is that the public (who have indicated in polls that they prefer compromise by their representatives over principled gridlock) will not buy this bullshit and punish the Democrats when they get the next opportunity.”

    Um, what do you call the Republicans blocking the passage of all legislation unless they get their way?

  30. Splatterbottom

    Jeremy, it wouldn’t be the Republicans calling for a re-introduction of slavery. They abolished over Democrat opposition. The example you gave is shameless hyperbole and nothing at all to do with what is going on here.

  31. Quick poll: does SB genuinely not understand the analogy, or is he just being a boring smartarse?

  32. Splatterbottom

    Jerremy, the analogy doesn’t fit: continuing the existing tax rate is not the same as re-introducing slavery. It also doesn’t take into account that the Democrat administration has already agreed to compromise on this point. Only the hardcore drongos are whining about it – and they are prepared to used scorched-earth tactics to make their point. And they want to blame everybody else for the consequences of their intransigence.

  33. So SB, what do you call the Republicans blocking the passage of all legislation until they get their way?

    Does this not also deserve to be characterised as a ‘scorched-earth’ tactic, or do you reserve that descriptor only for the Democrats?

  34. In all honesty, I’m starting to develop a grudging respect for the Republicans. They may be self-interested servants of money and power but at least they don’t pretend otherwise like the Democrats.

    And they have the guts to govern to their mandate without grovelling to their opponents. They’d rather let 9/11 rescuers go without health insurance than buckle on their demands for tax cuts for the very wealthy.

    Now that’s backbone.

  35. Splatterbottom

    Mondo, now that a compromise has been reached the focus is on the hairy-chested gorillas who want to sod the deal even if it means they don’t get their own way on the things that allegedly matter to them. The tactics on the way to the compromise are not nearly as relevant as those of the arsonists who want to blow the whole thing up.

  36. Just to be clear SB: the Republicans are now blocking the passage of ALL legislation through the senate (including unrelated bills) until the tax cut extensions are passed. These are not “tactics on the way to the compromise” with Obama, they are tactics being employed after the compromise in order to force the House to pass the compromise bill.

    But I’m guessing you won’t condemn the Republicans for this behaviour, even though it is indistinguishable from the behaviour you have derided the Democrats for. This is because you apply your political principles inconsistently.

    For the record I applaud the Republicans for their behaviour. They are standing up for what they believe in and refusing to budge on the issues that they campaigned on. It’s honest and it’s democratic – even if it is an appalling outcome from a progressive viewpoint.

  37. Not exactly honest, since they’re depending on being covered-up for by a lazy/corrupt media. And not exactly democratic, given the minority of Americans who actually voted for them, and the fact they didn’t campaign on blocking unemployment benefits or healthcare for 9/11 responders.

    I can admire their cunning, but incompetent and ineffectual I still prefer to effective but evil.

  38. And not exactly democratic, given the minority of Americans who actually voted for them, and the fact they didn’t campaign on blocking unemployment benefits or healthcare for 9/11 responders.

    True. But they did campaign on maintaining low taxes, and those that voted for them would surely be thrilled to see them pursuing that policy priority with such vigor and commitment.

    A feeling that is alien to most Democratic supporters these days.

  39. I know what you’re thinking, Mondo, but resist it. The thought of having actual representatives who fight for you is indeed enticing, but it’s not worth abandoning your principles for.

  40. jordanrastrick

    Not exactly honest, since they’re depending on being covered-up for by a lazy/corrupt media.

    By what logic can any failings on the part of the media to critically examine Republican’s policies possibly be put down to dishonesty on their part? If I openly advocate a plan to irrigate the Simpson desert for food production, and it gains popular support because no one can be bothered pointing out the obvious massive flaws with such a scheme, that hardly makes me a liar.

    And not exactly democratic, given the minority of Americans who actually voted for them

    The Republicans won a clear, absolute majority of the popular vote in the congressional midterms. So I don’t know where you get that line from.

    Actually, I do have a suspicion – namely that you don’t agree with the specific mechanics of their electoral system, in this case non-compulsory voting, so by extension that is somehow supposed to make their entire democracy completely illegitimate. At least, it does when you happen to disagree with any of the political outcomes it produces.

    Well, funnily enough, there are inescapable flaws in any electoral system, so by definition no democracies at all can exist! So we may as well all stop going through the pretense. Dibs on the third Supreme Dictator term.

    and the fact they didn’t campaign on blocking unemployment benefits or healthcare for 9/11 responders.

    They campaigned on the tax cuts. The tax cuts are a very stupid policy, one amongst many reasons that I wouldn’t have voted for the Republicans if American. Sadly, though, a majority of American voters didn’t feel the same way, and thus they have a mandate to pursue such legislation.

    As far as the welfare blocking threats go, that kind of strategic legislative maneuvering that goes on in the U.S. is an inevitable outcome of the particular procedural rules they have in place. Its hard to secure passage of significant bills through Congress, by design. This forces more cross-issue negotiation and compromise than would otherwise occur, which has both advantages and disadvantages for the overall outcomes. Its a recurring feature of the system, though, an integral part of the rules that both sides operate under; its not some novel, illegitimate trick that the Republicans have deployed just for these particular issues.

  41. Splatterbottom

    Mondo: ” These are not “tactics on the way to the compromise” with Obama”

    True enough. The compromise has already been reached. Obama championed the compromise. The Senate voted to advance it by 83-15, and the ratbags in the House are playing games with it, but in the leftist alternative universe, they are the heroes.

  42. Don’t be silly, it’s “a” compromise, not “the” compromise. Actually, it’s not much of a compromise at all – it’s the kind of negotiating expertise demonstrated by Howard with the Americans regarding the FTA.

    Jordan – you are quite correct. The Republicans do not have the support of a majority of Americans. Nor did they campaign on blocking healthcare to 9/11 responders or blocking unemployment benefits.

    How’ve they got away with it? With a compliant media. But just because they’re getting away with it doesn’t mean it’s honest.

  43. Sure SB. Holding up critical welfare legislation in order to pass tax cuts is fine, but holding up critical welfare legislation in order to oppose tax cuts is “ratbaggery”.

    But hey – you’ve always been the first to jettison the application of consistent political principle if there’s an opportunity to bash the Left.

    The thought of having actual representatives who fight for you is indeed enticing, but it’s not worth abandoning your principles for.

    Fear not Lefty, I will never support the Republicans in their current form. Their uniquely disgusting mixture of American exceptionalism, media manipulation and religious fervour makes them completely unpalatable to me.

  44. Splatterbottom

    Mondo, the only people holding up the welfare bill are the Dems in the lower house who won’t pass the compromise bill. But you couldn’t bring yourself to say a bad word about them, could you?

  45. OK SB – I’m going to lay this out very clearly as you seem incapable of grasping some very simple points:

    – there are two pieces of welfare legislation currently held up in the US: one is the unemployment benefits tied to the tax cuts and the other is a separate bill providing health benefits to 9/11 responders.

    – One of these bills is being held up by Democrats (the tax cuts bill) and the other is being held up by the Republicans (the 9/11 bill). The Democrats are holding up the first bill because they don’t want to pass the tax cuts, the Republicans are holding up the second because they want the tax cuts passed.

    – I don’t condemn either group for what they’re doing. Both are standing on political principle and both are being true to the policies that their voters put them into government for.

    You, on the other hand, are condemning the Dems for blocking a welfare bill but refusing to condemn the GOP for effectively identical behaviour.

    In other words you are being a monumental hypocrite, as usual.

  46. Splatterbottom

    Mondo, the bottom line is that there is a compromise agreed by the Senate Democrats, the President and the GOP. Once the House Democrats get with the program and honour the compromise, both bills get passed.

    Both sides are playing hardball, but it seems to me that a reasonable solution is available if the hold-out hardheads can bring themselves to join in the compromise.

  47. In the end our disagreement rests on whether we view the compromise as ‘reasonable’ or not. I do not see it that way, and apparently neither do a large number of Democratic congressmen.

    Obama’s idea of ‘compromise’ appears to be giving the Republicans everything they want. The Republicans idea of compromise appears to be throwing a hissy fit through their vassal media outlets unless they get their way.

    He is a dead duck president whose base is deserting him as he reveals himself as nothing but a well polished but spineless corporate shill.

  48. SB, your studious failure to condemn the GOP for:

    (a) threatening to block welfare payments; and
    (b) actually blocking the passage of a bill to provide health cover to 9/11 responders,

    just to get Obama to agree to extend tax cuts for the wealthy – which polls indicate a majority of Americans want to lapse – is certainly instructive about your political prejudices. This is clearly morally reprehensible behaviour by the GOP.

    Kudos to those Democrats who have stood up to the GOP over this. Knowing that the GOP’s behaviour is truly disgusting in this matter, they have an obligation to speak up against it. That is, if they have principles. There’s no reason whatsoever for them to pretend to be as spineless as Obama.

  49. Splatterbottom

    Mondo: “In the end our disagreement rests on whether we view the compromise as ‘reasonable’ or not. I do not see it that way, and apparently neither do a large number of Democratic congressmen.”

    I take it that it is in the realm of reasonableness because so many Democrats have signed onto it.

    Buns, if everyone stuck to their “principles” then little legislation would be passed in the US. Thus, in this case a compromise has beens truck between Obama, the Senate Democrats and the GOP. I take this as an indication that the compromise is something people of good will can live with. I am unsurprised to find you holed up with the scorched earthers taking every opportunity to parade your ideological purity irrespective of the practical consequences of doing so.

  50. Equally, I am unsurprised that your pro-rightwing bias prevents you from acknowledging as a matter of principle that it is morally repugnant for the GOP to threaten to withhold welfare from the unemployed and delay consideration of a bill providing 9/11 responders with appropriate health care as a condition of the extension of tax cuts for the wealthy. Morally, that beahviour is not validated by Obama’s spineless caving in to it.

  51. Splatterbottom

    Buns, you’ve got this arse-up as usual. The GOP (along with the President and the Senate Dems) support the welfare extension. It is the radleft Dems that want to block the bill that has the welfare extension in it.

  52. Morally, that beahviour is not validated by Obama’s spineless caving in to it.

    Hear hear.

  53. The GOP (along with the President and the Senate Dems) support the welfare extension.

    No, they support it conditionally. They support it provided the tax cuts for the wealthy are extended. Otherwise, they’re prepared to vote against it, apparently.

  54. Re-read my post from 4.07pm, SB. That is an accurate description of the GOP’s position – unless there was agreement from Obama/Democrats to the extension of the tax cuts, there would be no agreement to the welfare extensions. Let us know whether you find this morally acceptable: the threat to withhold welfare payments from the unemployed to leverage agreement to the extension of tax cuts for the wealthy. A simple “yes” or “no” will do.

  55. Splatterbottom

    Buns, understanding simple propositions is not your strong point.

    There is a bill before the House which grants the very same welfare reform. It has been supported by the President and passed by an overwhelming majority by the Senate. Unfortunately some bitter and twisted ideologues in the House would rather people do without welfare than vote for bill. Such is the mindset of the dog-fucking dead-enders crewing Sleazy Pelosi’s ship of fools.

  56. He won’t answer you buns, because he can’t do so without admitting his hypocricy.

  57. No, I understand that simple proposition.

    Now answer my simple question.

  58. Splatterbottom

    Buns I don’t have a simple answer to that. From this distance, I support the extension of welfare, and I support the extension of the tax cuts.

    I understand that the nature of US politics is to do deals like this and not to confine bills to discrete subjects, even though I would prefer separate legislation for separate areas of policy. But I wouldn’t go so far as to say that this is a moral issue, unless the process failed to pass the welfare reform, and there is only one group standing in the way of that right now. They have it in their hands to pass the compromise Bill.

    Where do you get your morals from anyway?

  59. So that’s “no”. You can’t condemn Republicans for threatening to withhold welfare payments to the unemployed as leverage to get the Democrats’ agreement to extension of tax cuts for the wealthy. Thanks.

  60. Splatterbottom

    Let’s see what happens? Threatening to do it is one thing, but you would have to agree that actually doing it is a whole lot worse, no?

  61. Well blow me down.

    I think SB just admitted that the Republicans’ threat is a bad thing, and that if they actually follow through with it it will be worse.

    Of course the fact that they have effectively already followed through with it by insisting the tax cut bill be attached to the welfare legislation is but a minor quibble . . .

  62. Splatterbottom

    The only people actually threatening to block the compromise bill now are the feral House Democrats. If they do that they will have blood on their hands.

  63. Rubbish. The Republicans are still threatening to block the welfare if they don’t get their way on the tax cuts.

  64. “blood on their hands” is becoming a popular expression amongst the die-hard ideologues these days, isn’t it?

  65. Splatterbottom

    One more time, Jeremy: there is a bill which has been passed by the Senate and which the President has said he is ready to sign. All it takes is for the House to pass it. What the Republicans do at this stage is irrelevant. They could have blocked it in the Senate but quite sensibly they chose not to.

    If it does not pass, that is ENTIRELY the fault of the ideologues who block it in the House.

    I guess this is where it ends when you deal with ideologues for whom power is everything, and principle is irrelevant. There is not one logical argument for the House Democrats voting against this. If they do they will deny welfare to millions, and that will be entirely their fault. They may also stop the tax cuts and achieve one last victory before the new House is seated. That would be a fitting testament to the pig-headed ideologues who refuse to compromise when everyone else from either side has.

    This is one of the few arguments here where the situation is black and white, and the motives of those trying to invert reality. The Dems are the only ones left to vote on this. If they do anything other than pass the compromise legislation, they are entirely to blame if it does not pass, and the consequences that flow from that.

    I am frankly shocked that there are some here who are trying to say that the hands of the house Dems are clean if the compromise deal falls over and there is no extension of welfare. They will be utterly and entirely blame for this, and their rabid unreasoning supporters will also share the ignominy.

    I suspect that this issue resonates here among Greens supporters because the same pig-headed ignorance is not unknown among the Greens.

  66. Splatterbottom

    Mondo: ““blood on their hands” is becoming a popular expression amongst the die-hard ideologues these days, isn’t it?”

    No. It is a description of the consequences of the actions of die-hard ideologues.

  67. Like the Republicans; who refuse to allow welfare to be paid until tax cuts for the rich are passed.

    I’m glad we’re back on the same page SB.

  68. Splatterbottom

    You are travelling fast Mondo, straight from obstinate obfuscation to la-la land. To bolster your pathetic argument, you need to ignore the fact that the sane Democrats have agreed the compromise Bill and passed it in the Senate. The Democrat president is willing to sign it into law. If then Bill doesn’t pass there is only the hold-out House Democrats to blame.

  69. If then Bill doesn’t pass there is only the hold-out House Democrats to blame.

    Or, alternately, the Republicans who refuse to allow the legislation to be passed without being accompanied by tax cuts for the rich.

  70. Splatterbottom

    The Republicans have said they will vote for the Compromise Bill. It is the only Bill on the table, and the last chance for the House Dems to show they are human beings.

  71. Fear not, SB. I’m sure if the Dems vote against this bill, they’ll put up a welfare bill without stupidly unaffordable taxcuts for the super rich. Then we’ll see if you can apply your outrage against the Republicans for blocking it.

  72. “I am frankly shocked that there are some here who are trying to say that the hands of the house Dems are clean if the compromise deal falls over and there is no extension of welfare. They will be utterly and entirely blame for this, and their rabid unreasoning supporters will also share the ignominy.”

    Not at all, although the right-wing press in the US will certainly spin it that way. It was the Republicans who tied the extension of welfare payments to the extension of the tax cuts, not Democrats. Democrats didn’t make the Republicans do that. Are you following? The welfare extensions needn’t and shouldn’t have any conditions attached to them. The Republicans have attached a condition to them, to which some principled Democrats (and a majority of the US citizenry) are opposed – namely, the extension of tax cuts to the wealthy.

    There’s nothing inherently related about those two things – the welfare payments and the tax cuts for the wealthy. The Republicans deliberately tied those things together as a wedge, so that die-hard ideologue apologists like yourself could then go around disingenuously shouting that Democrats who object ot the extension of the tax cuts want to withhold welfare payments, when that is obviously not the case. If the Republicans hadn’t tied those things together, there’d be no issue.

    You just keep repeating yourself over and over. The fact that some spineless Democrats (including Obama) have caved to the Republicans wedge tactics doesn’t make those tactics any less morally repugnant. Seriously, only a die-hard ideologue would decline to condemn that obvious political bastardry, or pretend not to understand the point that mondo, Jeremy and I are making here. Everyone here understands that the only thing stopping you from conceding this point is your strong anti-Left bias, which prevents you from seeing things clearly.

    You do understand, don’t you, that the Republicans position was that unless the Democrats agreed to the tax cuts being extended, they – that is, the GOP – would not agree to the welfare payments? Once again, are you sure you are OK with that? Because that seems very obviously to be some fucked up repugnant shit there, and anyone who has trouble condemning that has no business accusing other people of being die-hard ideologues, not human , dog fuckers and all of the other charming abuse you have levelled in this thread.

  73. SB’s ability to engage in rational discussion has diminished, somewhat, of late.

  74. Splatterbottom

    Buns: “The fact that some spineless Democrats (including Obama) have caved to the Republicans wedge tactics doesn’t make those tactics any less morally repugnant.”

    The fact that Obama and the Senate Dems have agreed a compromise with the Republicans indicates to me that they are serious about welfare reform, and that the compromise is within the realms of reasonableness.

    The fact that the House Dems are all spittle and bile about this and are prepared to sod the welfare extension rather than vote for it in the compromise bill indicates they are hell bent on winning at any cost, and couldn’t give a shit about the welfare recipients they pretend to be fighting for.

  75. The fact that Obama and the Senate Dems have agreed a compromise with the Republicans indicates to me that they are serious about welfare reform, and that the compromise is within the realms of reasonableness.

    OK, so some Dems obviously don’t think it is within the “realms of reasonableness”. You concede that if it was not within the “realms of reasonableness” as they see it, they could legitimately vote against it? So now they’re inhuman dog-fuckers because they disagree with your interpretation of what is within the realms of reasonableness?

    Or is it your position that the Republicans could tack literally anything on as a condition of the welfare extensions, and the Dems would be bound to vote for it – that the only reason that they could vote against whatever irrelevance the GOP wanted to attach to the welfare extensions would be because they want welfare recipients to starve? Think your position through.

  76. Or is it your position that the Republicans could tack literally anything on as a condition of the welfare extensions, and the Dems would be bound to vote for it?

    That is exactly SB’s position.

    As long as a bill including the welfare provisions is placed in front of the Democrats then they are dog fuckers not to vote for it.

    Lefty attempted to make this point above, but SB refused to address it.

  77. Splatterbottom

    The House has passed the compromise bill. A bunch of hard-head ideologues (36 GOP and 112 Dems) voted against it. Looks like a victory for common sense.

  78. Hardly. A victory for the super rich at the expense of everyone else.

    What’s the bet when the “compromise” expires the Republicans pull the same shit again?

  79. Splatterbottom

    1. There were some things in the Bill which even you would consider worthwhile.

    2. Super rich is an exaggeration born of the politics of envy. The economic effects of the tax cut will benefit the economy and increase employment.

    3. Increasing employment through market activity is the last thing some lefties want to see. Less victims mean they are less relevant, and the hated market gains credibility. If there was genuine concern for the unemployed the left would be doing more to make the market work efficiently. Paying people not to work should be a last resort, as it is counterproductive.

  80. 1. The bits the Republicans declared they would vote against unless they got their tax cuts for the super rich (clearly, through their actions, the absolute most important people to Republicans)?

    2. No, people on more than $200,000/year are the top tiny percentage of the population. Also, these tax cuts didn’t prevent the GFC or stop massive layoffs or save the US from the present economic debacle.

    3. Giving the rich further money to shove in their fat accounts isn’t “increasing employment through market activity”.

  81. Splatterbottom

    Jeremy: “these tax cuts didn’t prevent the GFC or stop massive layoffs or save the US from the present economic debacle.”

    Bad Monday morning, Jeremy? There are a lot of things that didn’t prevent the GFC. What is your point?

    ” Giving the rich further money to shove in their fat accounts isn’t “increasing employment through market activity”.”

    Ah, the politics of envy. In fact a lot of the money will be reinvested in small businesses thus creating jobs.

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