Bell Curve The Law Talking Guy Raised by Republicans U.S. West
Well, he's kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace "accidentally" with "repeatedly," and replace "dog" with "son."

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Things Fall Apart

The NY Times reports that the House of Representatives defeated a Republican $142 billion budget bill 224-209. NY Times it was the first rejection of such a bill since the Republicans took over in 1995. Two dozen Republicans jumped ship to say "no" to the bill's budget cuts and giveaways.

Meanwhile, a bipartisan group of 6 Senators including Larry E. Craig (R-ID), John E. Sununu (R-NH), and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) are threatening to block the renewal of the Patriot Act, saying that the renewal needs to include, "reasonable changes to the original law to protect innocent people from unnecessasry and intrusive government surveillance." And of course Senator John McCain (R-AZ) has been leading the charge to stop the Bush administration's policy of inhumane treatment of prisoners.

All in all, it looks like the Republican bulwark is starting to buckle under its own weight. After the Katrina, Miers, Frist/Delay, and Rove/Libby debacles--not mention the ongoing disaster that is Operation Iraqi Freedom--the Bush administration has lost its aura of invincibility, and can no longer keep the Republicans in lockstep. Is the pendulum swinging? Could there truly be hope for 2006?

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

This is really huge. It was a defeat like this over the Crime Bill in 1993 that signalled the end of Democratic leadership in the House. It means that the party is so out of step with its own members and their opinion of their own political future that they are bailing out. That means that the perception is that facts on the ground must are heavily weighing against them. It's Every Republican For Himself. 

// posted by LTG

Anonymous said...

Don't underestimate the De Lay situation's role in this. Bush is a lame duck so the White House can't impose discipline. De Lay is out so he can't impose discipline. The future leadership of the House is up in the air as far as the GOP is concerned. What happens if De Lay beats the rap? What if doesn't? What if the scandals spread?

The usual "Prussian" party discipline of the GOP is indeed in tatters. However, while this is bad news for the GOP leadership it is not neccessarily good news for the Democrats - yet. The GOP can't get their bills passed and that has to annoy the hell out of them. But they still control the legislative agenda and so they can prevent the Democrats from doing much worth crowing about.

November 2006 may change that. The conventional wisdom is that so few seats are up for grabs because of gerrymadering that the Democrats can't possibly take over. However people said the same thing about the Republicans in 1994. But they pulled off upsets in a number of districts presumed to be "safe" for Democrats. This could be about to happen again.

However, if the Democrats go off on some loopy lefty march into the land of fantasy, they'll piss away their best chance to restore semblance of democratic balance to a country that desparately needs it. 

// posted by Raised By Republicans

US West said...

I remember back to Nov 2004. I remember saying that the Republicans would self-implode. I see the signs. But unless Democrats come up with something compelling to say, they aren't going to get anywhere. I am not sure they can win by default or simply because of Republican missteps. I think the really winner thus far are moderate Republicans. McCain has vowed, by the way, to attach is rider on human treatment of prisoners to every bill that has legs. He figures the President will eventually have to sign one of them. Another defeat is Tony Blaire starting to talk about time tables for Brit troops to leave Iraq.

Since we are talking about Republicans, I would like to take the opportunity to say to those who haven't already figured it out: GWB is a total dip shit. His latest defense is to say that 1) Democrats supported the war and that they had the same intelligence as he did. Well, that can't possibly be true. Since when did the White House tell Congress about anything, much less intelligence? But shame on the Democrats anyway for going along like sheep. 2) He tries to say that he didn't mislead the American people. Well, that is a lie on top of a lie. Even Colin Powell has all but flat out said that his little show for the UN as a farce. 3) He says that those who say he mislead the American people are disrespecting the troops. Well, I hate to tell him, but many of us accusers reside among the military. In fact, his harshest critiques (at least in private) are military. That type of talk is nothing more than a return to the same crap as 2 years ago when critiquing his policy choices was treasons. In fact, even the military has become politicized. An Atlantic Monthly article from 2 years ago explained that Rumsfeld himself must approve all those aspiring to the rank of general before their star is awarded.

I take note as well that public opinion shifted when the press started to act like the press rather than a PR organization for the Administration.

So at the moment, I am glad to see a 2 term administration getting eaten up by its own- Incompetents that they are.

Anonymous said...

Well, it looks like the House voted in a budget that will cut some $50 bil over the next 10 years and it will do it on the backs of the poor. In fact, all the democrats and 14 republicans voted against and Hastert got cheers and jeers all at the same time. The noise on the House floor sounded more like something you'd hear in Parliament.

So I rest my case. Women, Children, poor, don't matter. And Hastert tries to say that we are doing children a service because we don't want to encumber them with debt. That is terribly rich coming from a party that cut the taxes of the rich. Oh, and among the funding that is being cut- subsidies for student loans. Since that was the ONLY way I was able to continue my studies, and since I have a 13 year niece that will want to go to college, this really makes me boil. Stop me now, let I start to rant.

This reminds me of the budget battles back in 1994 when they tried to do the same thing. That is the conservatice agenda. Starve government so that it is unable to serve the very people it needs to serve. Jerks.

Now we will have to see what the Senate does. But even the compromise bill will place the burden on the poor and middle class. I hope you all know how to garden. We are all being returned to the feudal state.
 

// posted by USWest

Anonymous said...

I'll just add this about that:

I posted a link to an Oxfam site that says that the USA spends about $70 Billion on agricultural subsidies. Now, the CIA World Fact Book (see link to the right) says that about 0.9% of the US population works in the ag sector. That means there are about 2.7 million Americans working in agriculture. I plugged these numbers into my calculator and got a per person payoff of over $26,300 per ag worker per year. How much of that do you think your average ag work actually sees?

Remember that $26,300 is just the government subsidy, that doesn't include revenue from the normal market activity.

Also, this doesn't count access to public water, grazing lands etc at below market rates.

Instead of cutting $50 Billion from programs from the poor, unemployed or single partents (who far outnumber the ag work force), the Government should stop paying out $70 Billion plus per year to inefficient, bloated and spoiled "Big Ag" companies like ADM.  

// posted by Raised By Republicans

Anonymous said...

I knew RBR would mention that. It crossed my mind as well! 

// posted by USWest

Anonymous said...

Does that 2.7 million include packers/shippers of food? It would make sense in the calculation to include all who benefit from the subsidies.  

// posted by LTG

Anonymous said...

I don't know if it includes packing and shipping but keep in mind that any part of the employment chain that has to do with the retail end (including shipping) would actually not be hurt and would probably benefit from ending subsidies since it would lower retail prices of ag products.

Ag subsidies are a very inefficient way to run a public assistance program. They are designed to benefit big corporate farm companies. 

// posted by Raised By Republicans