Tuesday, 11/27/12, Public Square


by | November 27, 2012 · 6:00 am

30 responses to “Tuesday, 11/27/12, Public Square

  1. Now, it seems, republicans will be pitching fits about potential rules changes in the Senate. Rules changes that may happen the first day of their next session which is about a month away.

    Heaven forbid! Doesn’t everyone know that anything that changes (especially if it affects the filibuster) could kill the ability of the Senate to work and function.

    We’ll pause here. Senate work. A concept we once knew… The very people who crippled the Senate are now complaining about making their ability to do nothing a bit more difficult?

    You really can’t make this stuff up.

    Their hissy fits will be accomplished and given great amounts of attention before they can possibly move on to things economical or fiscal (whether it be a cliff or a gradual slope). They are much more important than WE THE PEOPLE and they have things to say and complain about — in front of cameras and microphones.

    So, smile! Try not to give those who crave attention too much of same. In fact, laugh right out loud at their childish shenanigans. 🙂

  2. I’m very much in favor of the “make ’em talk” rules you laid out earlier. If you want to filibuster legislation, then you HAVE to filibuster it!

    • Me too, Zippy! I don’t care which party or anything about any other ‘qualifier.’ I’m sick of congress critters and their lack of grace, common sense, their posturing, their partisanship… There aren’t enough words to describe my disdain. I’ve been around many a two year old with more maturity and common sense than these adults in charge of THE PEOPLE’S business.

    • indypendent

      What infuriates me is the fact that they can still filibuster – that will not be changed. But since the Republicans have done nothing much but to block (filibuster) even the act of bringing a bill to the floor up to debate.

      This is what people do not understand – I think.

      Republicans have been the ones that have sat on their ability to block any and everything they do not want to even come up for a debate – let alone to vote on the damn thing.

      Remember when Republicans were yelling for an up or down vote during the GWB years?

      What’s the problem – GOP boys and girls?

      • indypendent

        As I understand this new filibuster rule – it is only to change the fact that one Senator cannot block anything they see fit to put a block on – and that is mostly even bringing these bills up for debate.

        And – IIRC – alot of confirmations of Obama has nominated are still being blocked by Republicans.

        See – things like this nonsense has got to stop.

        Just bring the issue up for debate and then vote on it. How damn hard can that be? Especially when we are paying these Critters very well and giviing them their golden benefits.

      • The filibuster has its purpose–it keeps legislation from being hastily rammed through. But, back in ye olden days, if the majority was determined and the people supported, a filibuster would fail. That’s because the senators who tried to block legislation had to stay on the floor and speak against it .

        These days, it’s devolved to Republicans refusing to shut up, a cloture motion to stop is made, fails, and everyone moves on, effectively killing the legislation.

        That’s not how it’s supposed to be. James Madison wanted the Senate to a be a “saucer” that cooled the passions of the House, not a rogue waiter throwing your meal away.

        Perhaps the best example of right triumphing over dogged opposition was the Civil Rights Act of 1957. Strom Thurmond, then a Democratic senator from South Carolina, set a record for a one-man filibuster” , “24 hours and 18 minutes of readings from the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, Washington’s Farewell Address, and various phone books. His speech set the record for a Senate filibuster.

      • P.S. My link also mentions famous filibusters by Huey Long, a defender of the poor against the rich.

      • The way I understand it the majority party may change the rules on the first day of the new session and that’s their only chance to do so. if they want to make it a requirement that someone speaks nonstop in order to filibuster they can make that a rule as it has been in the past.

        It doesn’t change the fact that the minority can demand 60 votes for a bill to pass, it just means the minority party needs to put some effort into the filibuster.

        I like it. I like it for both parties. I think filibustering a bill should happen when it’s something important and worth effort. The way it is now they filibuster everything.

      • About the “senatorial privilege” block: while I guess that idea is a bit much, Senator Chris Dodd used to temporarily block the FISA Amendments Act of 2008. So even something that arbitrary can be put to good use (but, usually, probably shouldn’t).

  3. Novelist Philip Roth recently announced his retirement. Fifty years ago he wrote that you can’t write good satirical fiction in America because reality will quickly outdo anything you might invent. Never have his words been truer or more accurately depicted as by the behavior of republicans today. They’re flooding the airways again trying frantically to connect something scandalous to the tragedy that happened at the American consulate in Benghazi last September.

    The fiscal [whatever you call it] isn’t nearly as important to these republicans as a tragedy in search of a scandal.

    • indypendent

      I still remember Romney in his press conference that morning. How arrogant. How ignorant.

      And then nobody is calling him out for saying that the stupid video is an American value and that Obama sided with the terrorists?

      Romney was just the tip of the Republican iceberg that brought the MIttanic crashing down.

      • indypendent

        Compare what Romney did to what the Dixie Chicks did during George W. Bush years.

        And how did the Republicans treat the Dixie Chicks?

        The Dixie Chicks NEVER said that their president sided with the terrorists.

        But I guess that is overlooked when you’re the $250 million dollar man with billionaires backing you in their attempt to buy the White House.

        And then to make this even worse are these Fundy Christians who actually tried to say that God is on their side.

        B.S……..nothing but pure B.S.

  4. indypendent

    Speaking of B.S. ——– Fox News shuts down an interview because the person dares to call them out on the carpet? And then turns around and says that this person apologized afterwards?

    Hey – if that apology was ever said (which is in doubt) – then invite this guy back to be interviewed again.

    Or – here’s a novel idea – why shut down the interview in the first place? Why not press the guy in further explanation of what he just said?

    Fox News is like the Church Womens Group of Gossipy Old Hens – they cackle with such delight when they are spewing their S-H-I-T – but someone dares to cross them, and out that person goes. BUT – these Gossipy Old Hens have to make things worse by saying that the person allegedly apologized to them afterwards.

    Yeah….sure…you old gossipy hens….


  5. indypendent

    Go get em’ Mr. President……the people will let you know exactly what to do with these sore loser Republicans.


    • Yes! He’s got it! He’s already got polls on his side on the modest increase in upper-income taxes. It’s just selling the public on public investment (which a greater number would support, if they understood the importance), and exploding the dishonest arguments that pretend Social Security and Medcare are relevant to our current predicament.

      Haven’t even read the article — I hope he isn’t caving on any essentials. A deal will need to be cut, but not until it’s crystal what the Tea Party is really advocating!

  6. FWIW, under existing law, “full retirement” benefits are payable at age 67, for those born in 1960 or later. Would any deal involve the gradual phase-in of age 70 as the said age for those born in 1970, e.g.?

  7. Want a banking type for Treasury Secretary who’s seen it all — and done it all — including the worst stuff — but has spent his career in government trying to undo the damage? I humbly suggest Gary Gensler.

    • A very good story. Thanks! I needed that.

      • indypendent

        This store owner reminded me of your story about Gessler’s – remember?

        Do you think it is the difference in the generations? This guy is 70yrs old and IIRC – the Gessler’s owner was around the same age.

        Were different values and priorities taught and lived back in the old days?

      • That’s a great question! I don’t know. My parents taught me what they were taught and I taught my kids the same… But then we used to live in a world where each generation did a bit better than the one before. The days when that opportunity existed to most are gone. Our country has been investing heavily in the top earners for over 40 years and the wealth inequality has left the middle class decimated. It was only a few years ago that minimum wage earnings were above the poverty level. Today earnings from two minimum wage jobs don’t get above that line. However, the executives and big wigs make a thousand times more than they did when everyone got a fair shake! They’ve done exceedingly well!

      • People used to be more willing to give back. I think greed is more prevalent in our society today.

        Even on the subject of taxes we used to think of the words of Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., which are engraved on the I.R.S. building in Washington: “Taxes are what we pay for a civilized society.” Starting with Nixon and definitely during the Reagan years and time forward most of the talk about taxes is about “cutting.” The case for what we receive from paying taxes isn’t made any longer even tho a vast majority of Americans receive social or economic security benefits from the government. You’ve heard the people who scream about reducing taxes and leave your hands off my Medicare in the same breath. The teapublicans are a movement of people so greedy and at the same time so ill informed they are dangerous — they are puppets for the Plutocrats. Too many people have bought the “cut taxes” line without even knowing they’re cutting off their nose to spite their face.

        We’ve moved a long way past the days when men who enjoyed much felt honored to contribute to the success of those coming behind them. That reaching back and offering a hand up that we’ve heard President Obama talk about isn’t seen as often as it should be, and our country suffers because it isn’t.

      • The part I’ll never be able to figure out is WHY do those who have plenty even wonder whether someone who has little might get something they perceive as being not deserved.


        Yeah, yeah. I’ve heard the story about teaching a man to fish. I just think if I have plenty and someone has little it makes good sense and it makes me happy to share. I’ve never wondered about that ‘deserving it’ part.

      • indypendent

        I agree fnord. But I would like to add one more thing – in the past 30 to 40 years – mega churches have become more prevalent – IMHO.

        As I’ve shared, I graduated from a Fundamental Baptist College in 1975 and my eyes were opened to a very scary world. This college was in Chattanooga, Tennessee – so I was this young woman from Illinois thrown in with a bunch of people who truly believed the South was going to rise again and – this time- they would win.

        That was also the place where I heard this ridiculous idea that the Bible was talking about the blacks when it referenced the ‘beasts in the field’.

        Seriiously – I am not making this up – there were alot of these young people from all over the South that were taught that very thing.

        And – as I’ve shared before – that college was filled with the biggest bunch of liars, cheaters, adulterers, and con men – so, I really did not see how this college was any more morally superior than the public college down the street that was always demonized by the leaders of my private Baptist college.

        So – that was in the mid-70’s – and we’ve seen the burst of growth of all these mega churches since that time.

        And – let’s not forget – Reagan let Jerry Falwell into the inner circle of the GOP just so Reagan could get the ‘Christian’ vote and beat Jimmy Carter (who was the real Christian – IMHO).

        It’s all about money, power and big fat egos of these mega church preachers, televangelists and their so-called political leaders .

        There is a good reason that we should have separation of church and state.

  8. indypendent

    fnord posted: Yeah, yeah. I’ve heard the story about teaching a man to fish

    But the Republicans that tout this also seem to be the ones that want certain ‘right’ folks to own all the fishing poles, own all the lakes and rivers, and then charges the ‘market price value’ of all the bait in the bait shops that the same few ‘right’ folks own.

    So – are these Republicans really wanting to teach a man to fish – or are they just trapping that man into the never-ending cycle of being held at the mercy of the few ‘right’ folks’ vulture capitalism?

    And – let’s not forget – these few ‘right’ folks also want special tax breaks and government subsidies in order to buy up all those fishing poles, waterways and bait.

    So – is this even ‘real’ capitalism? NOT in my book.

    Real capitalism is when a person uses their OWN money – or gets investors to use their OWN money – and start a business.

    I’m tired of taxpayers being gouged for all these ‘right’ folks to manipulate the system.

  9. indypendent

    I would like to add to my comment about these mega churches and their growth in the past 30 to 40 years.

    I consider most of these churches to be nothing more than Tax-Free Exclusive Country Clubs. I have to wonder if the real Jesus would even be welcomed in these mega churches?

    Jesus was a radical. Jesus did feed the hungry. Jesus did heal the sick. Jesus did not wear the finest robes nor wear the gold – and he certainly did not have any fancy golden slippers on his feet.

    Jesus was a Carpenter – not a Vulture Capitalist.

    Would Jesus even be welcomed in most of these mega churches today?

    I think not.