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AdLib On September - 18 - 2013

boehner_rectangle

Poor John Boehner, what’s a spineless, emotionally fragile, carrot-toned man to do when he signs up to lead half of a branch of government but finds that he is instead carrying the flag for a zombie invasion? What else? He fearfully marches with them so he won’t be eaten.

Despite Boehner’s casual assertions all Summer that there won’t be a government shutdown or a default on our debt, his hubris in thinking he could trick the dimwitted Tea Partiers out of their political terrorism was once again for Boehner, a crying shame (actually, “A Crying Shame” is the proposed title for Boehner’s autobiography).

After his and Eric Cantor’s very transparent stunt of having a repeal or delay of the Obamacare detachable from the budget bill failed, Boehner was faced with a critical decision. Does he stand up to the frothing-at-the-mouth anarchists in his party and say, “I won’t allow you to harm this nation of our party!” or does he say, “Well, if blowing up the U.S. economy and what’s left of the GOP is what you want, I’m willing to compromise on everything I believe just to keep my position as leader so count me in!”? If you guessed the latter, you win a box of official John Boehner brand facial tissues (they’re extra absorbant!).

There are some questionable pundits who bizarrely portray Boehner as some brilliant tactician who wants the Tea Party to have its shut down and when the public turns on them, they will be tossed out and Boehner will be rid of them in the next Congress. Now, does that sound like the John Boehner we have all come to know and loathe? In the words of John Boehner himself, “Hell no!”

What Boehner has done throughout his time as Speaker, in response to the Tea Party howling that they want ice cream for dinner right now, is to tell them that they can have ice cream for dinner tomorrow night but tonight we have to have an adult meal. Eventually, even those of limited intellect such as Tea Partiers catch on to the fact that they’re being lied to and manipulated…no doubt it has angered them as they expected to be the ones doing that.

So now, they are not accepting, “Let’s not set fire to our own House,” as a legitimate reason not to do so. They’ve been storing up the cans of gasoline and matches, they’ve been putting it off long enough, they want to commit this arson and like spoiled brats, they are not taking “But we’ll immolate ourselves!” for an answer.

So without any mature supervision in the Republican Party, this sure looks like a strong possibility to happen.

However, Boehner may be counting on the pressure from the public and the business community to push his party back from the edge. He is now standing with the extremists in his party like a battered wife and will bring to a vote a Continuing Resolution on the budget that “defunds Obamacare”…even though he knows that this won’t and can’t happen nor pass the Senate. The Senate will ignore that bill and pass their own CR that does not include the kill-Obamacare provision.

So The House, which will try to claim, “Uh-uh, we’re not shutting down the government, Obama is for not agreeing to our extortion threats!” will actually be the ones in the hot seat, with a Senate bill and Obama’s affirmation that he will sign it sitting on their desks. At that point, Boehner probably assumes that the extremists will have to fold and the CR will be passed. He may be right about that but it’s not due to any brilliant strategy on his part, it’s the result of his cowardice and the realities of the democratic process.

But what if the Tea Party loons in The House shrug off the pressure and refuse to sign a CR that doesn’t defund Obamacare? There are two possible outcomes. First, Boehner could bring it up for a vote despite ignoring the Hastert Rule…which isn’t a real rule and is a policy of not bringing anything to a vote that the majority of the party in control doesn’t approve. This is a strong likelihood as Boehner has done it before on big votes when his nutjobs won’t cooperate. That means that Dems could push the vote over the top and Boehner can claim he was serving democracy to bring it to a full vote. The other possibility is that Boehner throws up his hands and fiddles while the US economy and the GOP burns. I find that less likely but a real possibility.

Either way, the GOP is proving their disdain for the American people and democracy, trying to use extortion to force their will on a nation that clearly re-elected their President who championed the ACA, that had its Congress pass the ACA and that had its Supreme Court validate it as Constitutional.

But in the Bagger States of America, there is no majority rule, representational government or respect for the law. There is only, “I want what I want and I don’t care who I have to hurt to get it!” That is their motto yet it seems most fitting for five year olds who throw tantrums than those who swear to uphold our Constitution and serve our nation as stewards of our democracy.

Whatever happens, this only further diminishes the GOP as a party deserving of power and pursuing the best interests of the nation. They are accelerating down the path of permanent minority status (especially after 2020 and much of their gerrymandering is hopefully undone). In the meantime, the U.S. may have an aggressive Department of Homeland Security but they can’t touch the greatest threat to our nation, only voters can.

Written by AdLib

My motto is, "It is better to have blogged and lost hours of your day, than never to have blogged at all."

24 Responses so far.

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  1. agrippa says:

    There is very good chance of a government shutdown.
    I think that the Tea Party should be allowed to do it, and live with consequences as best they can.

    • AdLib says:

      With you on that, agrippa. We probably need this threat to come to fruition if we want a good shot at taking back power from these nut jobs in 2014. IMO, it’s worth it to suffer short term pain for long term gains.

  2. choicelady says:

    Thank you for this, AdLib. It is damning in detailing Boehner’s cowardice.

    He has a choice. He can put nation FIRST by ending the absurd “Hastert Rule” that demands that nothing passes unless the GOP are solidly for it. Boehner could build a coalition of more sane GOP plus Dems and pass both the debt ceiling and the CR, but he has clearly gone over to the Dark Side and is supporting the 80 extremists rather than the 138 more rational people in his own party.

    If we get shut down, NO one will forget that in 2014. However insane is Cruz claiming it’s Obama and the Dems, only the hardcore will think that’s true.

    But the chaos that could ensue form this shutdown? I shudder to think how people already hanging by their fingernails will ever survive this.

    Boehner has shown he will abet sheer evil if pushed.

    • AdLib says:

      Cheers, CL!

      A leopard can’t change its spots and a Boehner can’t change the orange streak of cowardice Coppertoned down his back. He is a weak, spineless man who would only abandon the Hastert rule out of fear and desperation, never out of courage.

      Boehner knows the reality of his position, he is not in control of anything, he is a powerless figurehead who commands no respect or influence over his party…possibly the worst Speaker in U.S. history (I don’t know Speakers that well far into the past but I can confidently say that in recent history, there has never been such a failure as a Speaker).

      If a shutdown or debt default occurs, I think it will ultimately be for the best. I think it could ensure a Dem takeover of the House and a retention of The Senate. And could you imagine how a sane House under Dem control after this period of insanity could influence a generation to never put Repubs in power in the foreseeable future? Granted, we would still have a filibuster issue in The Senate but if ever there would be a time for real filibuster reform, it would be when Obama has two years left in his last term with a Dem controlled House.

      I know that the Repub establishment still believes they can stop the Baggers from following through on this insanity, maybe they’re right and if so, the Repubs might retain control in The House in 2014.

      But the Baggers are so whipped up now, that’s not a sure thing, they could hold out because they fear a Bagger backlash that could get them primaried and to them, getting re-eected is more important than destroying the American economy.

      So, we’ll see what unfolds but I do remain hopeful that they overplay their hand, shutting down the government briefly (they won’t be able to sustain it) and dooming themselves and the GOP in 2014 and beyond.

  3. kesmarn says:

    AdLib, my favorite sentence in your fine article is this one:

    [T]he GOP is proving their disdain for the American people and democracy, trying to use extortion to force their will on a nation that clearly re-elected their President who championed the ACA, that had its Congress pass the ACA and that had its Supreme Court validate it as Constitutional.

    I’m struck again by how often in the past you have called things so accurately and sized up situations so realistically. And you’ve done it again. My ardent hope is that the President holds strong on this; and I think he will.

    I know that a no-drama solution to this whole thing would be the best option, but there’s some little part of me that almost wishes that the GOPTeaParty gets its “comeuppance” somehow in the process and that they learn the lesson that extortion is not part of the democratic process.

    Whether they are actually capable of learning anything, though, is the real question.

    • choicelady says:

      I want to give a quick summary we’ve started to use in our trainings on how to enroll in ACA.

      Here is how you can comply with the new health care laws:

      Routes to participating in Obamacare:

      1.Keep the insurance you have now from employers, private market, Medicare, whatever.

      2.Buy insurance in the private market at full market rates with its standards of coverage, deductibles etc. Your rates are not regulated but set by insurance companies.

      3.Refuse insurance and pay the fine to protect ERs and hospitals against your unpaid costs; pay all your own costs yourself accepting bankruptcy if need be.

      4.Buy private insurance in the Exchange with subsidies that vastly reduce your costs, tie your cost to your income not the market rates, and provide huge numbers of free services, excellent coverage standards, and guaranteed access no matter your health.

      Number 4 and only number 4 is actually “Obamacare”.

      Any of these options is open to you. Insurance is mandated now simply to protect us taxpayers from having to pay for your costs if you default on your medical bills.

      Government will not run your health care any more than it does in Medicare. It will simply help you pay for it in number 4.

      Now what is so scary about that?

    • AdLib says:

      Kes, thanks so much!

      I don’t know with any certainty whether the Baggers will succeed in holding out for a government shutdown or debt default but since even top Repubs have assigned responsibility to them and the GOP for any shutdown or economic disaster that they cause, their wishful thinking that Obama could be blamed for it is a waste of time.

      The GOP is already in the midst of the civil war many saw coming and the aftermath of this budget/debt ceiling extortion attempt can only end in greater internal resentments and polarization.

      All of us, including the cynical con men Cruz, Lee and Paul, know that there is no way on Earth that the Senate or Obama will agree to the Baggers extortion. So what happens next? Either the Baggers blow up the economy and turn the other half of the GOP and the majority of Americans strongly against them or the GOP Establishment prevails on stopping them…whipping up greater anger and resentment in Baggers against the GOP and a more inflamed civil war in their party.

      There is no way that the GOP comes out of this period escaping serious damage. Boehner is mortally wounded, McConnell is, Cruz will be along with Lee and Paul and the GOP itself will be trashed.

      I can tell you that I am really looking forward to the 2016 GOP Primary because that could be the last nail in the GOP coffin, as frustrated Baggers savage the GOP Establishment and vice versa, I can see that party savagely tearing itself apart in full view of the public.

      And like many other Progressives, I will be relaxing on my couch with a big bowl of popcorn enjoying that reality show.

  4. Kalima says:

    Ted Cruz may style himself as a leader, but the reality is that he and his fellow travelers are just the latest in a long line of shameless grifters. And like the presidential campaigns of Newt Gingrich and Herman Cain, this grift will continue for as long as there is money to earn, and Republican voters to con.

    The Obamacare Swindle (It’s Not What You Think)

    “Health-care reform isn’t going anywhere. But that hasn’t stopped Republicans from using it to raise money from gullible Tea Partiers who want it defunded”.

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/09/18/the-obamacare-swindle-it-s-not-what-you-think.html

    • AdLib says:

      I saw another piece on this as well on Maddow and it is just amazing how Cruz and his ilk have become such obvious con men, robbing the mindless haters on the right of their money in a cynical ploy to enrich themselves.

      It’s kind of funny, they are preying on the very people they are warning about being preyed upon by Obama and the Dems! It’s like a slaughterhouse warning cows about the dangers the outside world poses to them while churning out sides of beef.

      Hey, if anyone deserves to be ripped off and have their money taken away, it’s the racists and haters out there who are so easily manipulated by con men like Cruz who appeal to their basest instincts.

    • kesmarn says:

      Kalima, here’s a late breaking bit of news on that scam-artist Cruz. Seems his own fellow-nutters are now turning on him:

      http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2013/09/18/2646991/republican-civil-war-breaks-twitter/

      Later edit: Don’t know why that link won’t “go live” but the gist is that the House GOP is turning on Cruz and the Senate GOP for being cowards.

      • Kalima says:

        Thanks for the link kes. If this didn’t have so many consequences for the economy and many people in need, I’d say bring out the popcorn, but now I will say, sack the buggers soon and cut their wages for six months to a year. Sad excuse for elected officials anywhere, but in the U.S. an unforgivable disgrace.

      • AdLib says:

        Hey Kes, the URL was missing the http stuff at the beginning, it’s working now!

        And what a great article! Thanks!

    • Nirek says:

      Kalima, they prey on the ignorant. The very people who will benefit from the affordable care act are duped into voting for the GOP because they have hate in their hearts or are just plain ignorant.

      • Kalima says:

        Yes Nirek, isn’t this what con artists and grifters do for a living? In the real world they would be arrested for this, so why can’t these crooks face the same punishment for doing the same thing? Companies are being fined for false advertising all the time, and if this isn’t false advertising, then my name is Napoleon Bonaparte.

  5. The GOP created a monster, or I should say, let a monster into their ranks. The GOP never really had a good reputation in regards to social justice and compassion, but now, their new found vote getters are an Albatross around their power hungry little necks.

    The GOP is self destructing at a pretty quick pace, and for them to kow tow to the fanatical baggers, just makes things worse for them. I bet Boehner and a few others in the traditional GOP are wishing they could turn back the clock and rid themselves of this once welcome entity.

    • AdLib says:

      KT, add to all of this the class warfare that has heated up from the GOP side, the renewed verbal and legislative assaults on the poor, the decoupling of SNAP from the Farm Bill, the massive slashing of SNAP they are proposing along with big cuts in Head Start and all social programs.

      Yet you call them on it and they of course accuse you of declaring class warfare.

      All of this is toxifying the GOP so that only the most prejudiced, hateful and/or ignorant white people will remain party members and if they shutdown the government or default on our debt, their party will become radioactive.

      So maybe the best thing for the nation is for the GOP to do their worst.

      • Ad, I certainly understand your reasoning, and I do agree, but I have to wonder, what IS their worst? Just when you think they can’t sink any lower, they do. How much will their constituents put up with?

        The letter that Putin wrote for the NYT brought out the worst of these RW knuckleheads. They side with Putin, against their own president. They cackle about how Putin put Obama in his place and how Putin bitch slapped Obama. These cretins are so stupid and so brainwashed that they side with a man who would love to see the US burn.

        They’ve spent the last 5 years calling Obama a communist, yet they applaud a real communist thug for appearing to best their own president. Their hatred of Obama is immeasurable. These self professed “patriots,” are siding against their own nation. This so exemplifies the real danger that the RW media has brought about. These asshole “patriots,” are so god damned stupid, that they are willing to sell out their own president to a thug like Putin. This is a very serious problem. If so many idiots can be led to betray their own president, my god, where is the bottom? How much lower can they sink?

        • AdLib says:

          KT, I would have to say that using extortion that threatens to destroy America’s economy and the lives of tens of millions of Americans is about the worst anyone could be who’s a politician.

          Agreed, the Putin love fest really exposed how hollow and hateful the Repubs are. They would embrace a tyrant and murderer as long as he dislikes Obama like they do. How just plain evil does that make them?

          That is one of the things I found so amusing about this, the Repubs demonized Obama as a “commie” yet they held up Putin as glorious even though he is an actual communist (at least historically). But is anyone ever surprised anymore at the hypocrisy of the GOP? I think people would be more surprised by Repubs who show any consistency.

          I think that if they shut down government or defaiult on the debt, that will be the low mark as well as the final straw for the GOPTP. It may not happen but as I keep saying, if it did, we may suffer for a short while but we would be rid of them in 2014 and possibly far longer than that.

  6. agrippa says:

    It looks to me that there is a large faction in the GOP caucus that Boehner cannot control. At this point, he has very little actual power.

    • Nirek says:

      Agrippa, you misspelled “Bonehead”.

    • AdLib says:

      So true, agrippa. He tries to look like a leader but he has to keep looking over his shoulder to see which direction they’re marching then rushes over in front of them to look like he’s leading them.

      He really is a total sham as a leader, a total failure.

      • agrippa says:

        True, Boehner is a failure.
        We will see if he can step up to the job.

        • choicelady says:

          Although I increasingly dislike Chris Hayes and his hype. he did note that Boehner has ONE good vote left -- either on immigration or the debt ceiling. As much as I want immigration reform to pass, nothing at ALL can get done if we do not raise the debt ceiling. So let him do what NEEDS to be done. Then we must work our butts off to regain control of the House and keep the Senate and pass all the necessary laws that this nation needs. But we can’t do anything if it’s all shut down.


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