It's election time, when the Republicans decide it's time to troll for votes among their lovely base by kicking the poor. Thus, Rep. Paul Ryan's back with a budget that re-brands the GOP's "War On the Poor" as "Poverty Reform."
If 43% of Democrats are now willing to call themselves liberal, it is obviously no longer a shameful label. I don't know why, but 43% of one of the major parties is a big constituency. It's a plurality, and it's growing.
Right wing ideologues are no long just preaching their beliefs and trying to persuade people to go along. They know they cannot allow facts and knowledge to be shared with the public or the results of their handiwork will be obvious to all.
I knew about Christie's little "deal" some time ago, but apparently it's just now coming to the attention of the Washington press. It's a case of the Washington establishment falling in love with a man who's willing to slap liberals around.
Elites believe that all that matters is that the possibility exists for someone to get rich. After all, that's their highest value, so it must be that for everyone. But acquiring great wealth isn't the holy grail for most people.
Conservatives are pushing back at the charge they are sabotaging Obamacare. They insist it's just imploding all on its own (despite the fact that it actually isn't.) But in one case, they're just admitting it right up front.
Why do people like the bullying tough guy types such as Chris Christie? Are they looking for someone to "take charge" in a world in which they feel a loss of control. Maybe. But can he get a majority to vote for him?
"Misfortune?" Really? I think of misfortune as getting cancer or losing your job. Getting caught for illegally using your power to punish innocent people is something else entirely.
E.J. Dionne makes an interesting argument today designed specifically for the Village. I don't know how it's going to go over. But it's good to see him making the argument, because it sounds like what I've been writing for about ten years.
It's going to take years to build up a real, universal system and much of that is going to come from work in the 50 states. It means we will be living with an unequal system for many years, but that's an old story in America, isn't it?
The fight to extend unemployment insurance may not be quite done yet. Even the misanthropic Republicans are subject to the pressure from normal people not to be cruel and ungenerous, especially at Christmas time.
Forcing people off of unemployment insurance does not result in these people becoming employed, as all the Republicans insist will happen. Instead, they simply fall off the grid and have no discernible income at all.
... introduces a very useful piece of legislation. Now, employers may very well find ways to use this information anyway. But at least it's a consciousness raising exercise that could affect some corporations. This is good stuff.
It's a tiny deal, which is always better than a big deal when you're dealing with these Republicans. But large spending cuts remain the bipartisan objective of the budget as far as the eye can see.
A nasty little Google boy gets mad and says what he really thinks: "This is a city for the right people who can afford it. You can't afford it? ... It's time for you to leave."
President Obama gave a nice speech today about income inequality --- and didn't mention cutting "entitlements," or express a spirit of compromise and bipartisanship either. The Village smelling salt concession must be all sold out.
For a lot of people, government is seen as a simple tool to take their money and give it to people who don't "deserve" it. That's how these ideas are sold to the people --- by appealing to their baser natures.
Kids, don't say Harry Reid never did anything for you. He and the Senate Democrats just ended the use of the filibuster for executive branch appointments and lower court judges. Right-wing dominance of our judicial system will be diluted.
I guess it's to be expected. When you have as much money as the upper 1% have, this stuff is just pocket change. They might as well follow their bliss. And corporations can fund their pro-corporate agenda and get a nice tax write-off.
Considering the recent performance of the U.S. economy, and the ongoing, relentless pursuit of austerity it's, an especially bad time to be making any "trade deals." So let's just table that little project for the time being, shall we?
Just a reminder here that the Grand Bargain was not conceived as a "deal" between the Republicans and Democrats to cut the "entitlements" in exchange for some "revenue." That's the "Balanced Approach" set forth by the President in the 2012 campaign.
It is a bit worrying that the White House has to explain virtually every day now that just because it sounds like White House officials and the president are putting entitlements on the chopping block doesn't mean they really are doing it.
That they voted 46 times to repeal it, and shutdown the government to delay it should make the Republicans reluctant to pretend they are worried about how the Obamacare website is working. But shameless is their name and hypocrisy is their game.
The rough Obamacare roll-out is a direct consequence of misplaced faith in neo-liberal solutions like means testing, privatization, and devolution to the states as the best ways to provide services at an affordable price.
Ruth Marcus fills us in on what constitutes "reasonable" now that the Republicans have proven themselves asses with their government shutdown. And, you guessed it, it's time for Democrats to compromise and agree to cut "entitlements."
As I watch the talking heads all clutch their pearls over the insurance exchange website, I can't help but notice that none of them seem to know what's really happening out here to people who have to deal with the private insurance.
This Thomas Friedman column is so bad,you have to read the whole thing to experience the full horror of it. It reads like something the messaging shop at Fix the Debt put together to sound like Thomas Friedman.
Maybe today's Republicans don't know that the Greatest Generation went through the depression and WWII, and their president throughout both was Franklin Delano Roosevelt, not Ronald Reagan.
The idea that the President did something wily by refusing to defund Obamacare is pretty funny. If anyone's done anything wily, it's the Republicans who deployed Nixon's madman theory. It seem to have persuaded the Democratic establishment.
Whatever happens with the current shutdown and various hostage negotiations, the fundamental definition of the Republicans as the de facto competent party --- the proverbial grown-ups --- has probably finally been shattered.
Sorting out the allegedly "moderate" GOP Senators is a good place to start the week. The dynamic may very well be different from the House, where certain Republicans hate the shutdown, but aren't rushing to end it. Let's test this in the senate too.
Remember when we all assumed that sequestration could never hold and they'd just have to pull the plug and negotiate a reasonable budget when the going got tough? Yeah, that's worked out for us.
Listening to the Republicans lie outrageously on the Sunday shows about the catastrophic effects of a program that isn't even in effect (while denying that climate change exists!) is enough to give me a headache.
Negotiating with Republicans the way parents negotiate with tantruming children in the grocery store, by giving them a candy bar, is no longer operative in light of the GOP's absurd "wish list."
What Cruz is doing is building a grassroots donor base. If he can pick up a few looney tunes billionaires,he could make a good run at it. He can't win, but it's never a good idea to allow anyone this extreme anywhere near real power.
It's nice to think that you can plan everything properly, make the right decisions, be smart, be successful. But you just don't know when life is going to toss you a curve ball that sets you off on a totally different course.
I thought I understood the right. But this meltdown over a very tepid health care reform that keeps the system fully in the hands of the private insurance companies just floors me. We are watching behavior so absurdly over-the-top that it's downright
Yes, the geniuses who brought us the financial crisis and mortgage fraud should be thanked for their service along with the "mental effort" of failing executives who get paid huge golden parachutes just to get rid of them.
Home health care workers are dramatically underpaid and overworked, and they care for some of our society's most vulnerable citizens. President Obama did something about it which was long overdue. Good for him.