28 November, 2008

Happy Hour Discurso

Today's opining on the public discourse.

Um. Ew:

What media genius in the Chambliss campaign approved this spot? Because nothing says "I deserve your vote" quite like inappropriate contact with a prepubescent girl.

And, um, "Big Daddy"? Geebus.

You know, it wasn't a bad ad until the end there, when he mashed his hand all over her breast buds. There's a certain age at which girls' chests become off-limits. "Vote for my big daddy" indeed. Bit o' advice to Georgia: don't.

(My NaNo-addled brain can't remember if I've highlighted the following bit before or not. If I did, just do me a favor and pretend it's fresh news, mkay?) The last thing we need if more fucking Cons in the Senate, anyway.

Everybody knows we've got a ginormous financial crisis on our hands. Everybody knows that our bailout is supposed to have some oversight, yet there is no arse in the chair that's supposed to be overseeing. The Bush regime did something nearly sane and chose Neil Barofsky, a former federal prosecutor, to sit his arse down in said chair and watch our hundreds of billions of dollars like a hawk. Barofsky's butt is needed in that chair starting now, he's one of those rare inoffensive-to-both-sides sorts, and everyone knows it's in the country's best interests to get him confirmed.

Everyone except the Cons. Here's how they put "Country first!" rhetoric into practice:

Last week, Sen. Chris Dodd, the Connecticut Democrat who chairs the banking committee, issued a little-noticed statement saying that although the nomination "was cleared by members of the Senate Banking Committee, the leadership of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, and all Democratic Senators," it was "blocked on the floor by at least one Republican member." (itals ours.)

Senate rules allow any senator to anonymously block a vote on confirmation to any federal post, for any reason.

The rationale for the move remains unclear. But a Washington Post story from a few days before Dodd's statement offers two suggestions. It notes that Barofsky supported Barack Obama, and describes an unresolved "battle between the Finance and Banking committees over which has jurisdiction over the confirmation process."

Blocking an urgent nomination because the nominee, like 52 percent of voters, supported Obama seems petty even by contemporary GOP standards. But a congressional turf war over jurisdiction seems only slightly less so. So either of these two explanations would be a pretty damning indictment of Congress's response to the crisis.

No wonder these holds are anonymous. Whichever obstructionist fuckwit is playing political games with the country's future would get their ass reamed by their constitutents, not to mention hunted down by an angry mob of taxpayers.

"Country First" my ass.

Doesn't that just make you sick? But I hope not too sick - Bush is busy ensuring people can't afford to get treatment:

As rising unemployment swells Medicaid rolls, the Bush administration issues a new federal rule that would allow states to “deny care or coverage to Medicaid beneficiaries who do not pay their premiums or their share of the cost for a particular item or service.”

In what the New York Times describes as a “sea change” in Medicaid, states will now “charge premiums and higher co-payments for doctors’ services, hospital care and prescription drugs provided to low-income people under Medicaid“:

The administration acknowledged that ’some individuals may choose to delay or forgo care rather than pay their cost-sharing obligations’…The Congressional Budget Office has estimated that 13 million low-income people, about a fifth of Medicaid recipients, will face new or higher co-payments. Most of the savings result from “decreased use of services,” it said.

Rather than the Bush administration’s approach of forcing poor Americans to pay more for health care during an economic crisis, the federal government should increase FMAP — the percentage the federal government reimburses states for Medicaid — and expand the program to allow more Americans to buy affordable health coverage.

And Karl Rove thinks our healthcare system is just dandy the way it is:

In an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal today, Karl Rove applauds Barack Obama’s appointment of a “first-rate economic team,” cheering the selections of Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, National Economic Council director Lawrence Summers, Council of Economic Advisers chief Christina Romer, and OMB head Peter Orszag.

But while issuing compliments of most of Obama’s nominees, Rove issued this back-handed swipe at Melody Barnes, who ThinkProgress first reported would be chosen to lead the White House Domestic Policy Council:

The only troubling personnel note was Melody Barnes as Domestic Policy Council director. Putting a former aide to Ted Kennedy in charge of health policy after tapping universal health-care advocate Tom Daschle to be Health and Human Services secretary sends a clear signal that Mr. Obama didn’t mean it when his campaign ads said he wouldn’t run to the “extremes” with government-run health care.

During the campaign, Barnes helped inform Obama’s health care approach — the same approach he is now promising to pursue in office. Obama pledged to bring together “doctors and patients, unions and businesses, Democrats and Republicans” together to build on the existing system and “reduce the cost of health care to ensure affordable, accessible coverage for all Americans.”

Y'see, in Rove's eyes, it's okay to talk about giving healthcare a new coat of paint (lead-based, of course), maybe duct-tape a few of the broken bits, move the potted plant over to cover up the hole in the wall, but actually fixing it - that's just extreme, that is.

Whatever Karl Rove finds unacceptable is perfectly acceptable to me. And why he thinks his opinion is worth two tugs on a dead dog's dick is beyond my ken. But apparently, both he and Bush think they still have influence, and that they know better than the majority of the country and our incoming president what's best for us.

Laura Bush is under almost as many illusions as Rove and her husband. She thinks they're leaving an actual legacy to be proud of:

The Bush family have recorded a Story Corps interview about George W. Bush's presidential legacy, and what they're most proud of. This is what Mrs. Bush had to say

Well, it’s certainly been very rewarding to look at Afghanistan and both know that the president and the United States military liberated women there; that women and girls can be in school now; that women can walk outside their doors without a male escort.


Well, then. I would have been more charitable, but since Mrs. Bush has chosen this as her legacy, allow me to introduce you to Mrs. Bush's legacy

Afghan police have arrested 10 Taliban militants involved in an acid attack against 15 girls and teachers walking to school in southern Afghanistan, a provincial governor said Tuesday. "Several" of the arrested militants have confessed to taking part in the attack earlier this month, said Kandahar Gov. Rahmatullah Raufi. He declined to say exactly how many confessed.


And how, in an occupied country where the situation was so settled that we could leave it to go to war with a disarmed Iraq, did the Taliban gain the ability to attack little girls with impunity?

For seven years, the Bush administration has pursued al Qaida but done almost nothing to hunt down the Afghan Taliban leadership in its sanctuaries in Pakistan , and that's left Mullah Mohammad Omar and his deputies free to direct an escalating war against the U.S.-backed Afghan government.

The administration's decision, U.S. and NATO officials said, has allowed the Taliban to regroup, rearm and recruit at bases in southwestern Pakistan . Since the puritanical Islamic movement's resurgence began in early 2005, it's killed at least 626 U.S.-led NATO troops, 301 of them Americans, along with thousands of Afghans, and handed President-elect Barack Obama a growing guerrilla war with no end in sight.

Violence in Afghanistan is at its highest levels since 2001; the Taliban and other al Qaida -allied groups control large swaths of the south and east; NATO governments are reluctant to send more troops; and Afghan President Hamid Karzai faces an uncertain future amid fears that elections set for next year may have to be postponed.

Nevertheless, a U.S. defense official told McClatchy : "We have not seen any pressure on the Pakistanis" to crack down on Omar and his deputies and close their arms and recruiting networks. Like seven other U.S. and NATO officials who discussed the issue, he requested anonymity because he wasn't authorized to speak publicly.

"There has never been convergence on a campaign plan against Mullah Omar," said a U.S. military official. The Bush administration, he said, miscalculated by hoping that Omar and his deputies would embrace an Afghan government-run reconciliation effort or "wither away" as their insurgency was destroyed.

And so, the Taliban regroups, little girls end up scarred for life, and we chalk up yet one more horrific example of Bush's fuckwittery.

There is nothing this man is leaving behind that isn't tainted, nothing that isn't damaged, nothing that was worth the cost. Nothing. If these people consider themselves good Christians, I'd suggest they start repenting. They should be performing penance - and not this "say a few prayers and it'll all be better" shit but real, fucking, sacrifice and suffer and work yourself to death to make it right penance.

For how long? Well, lessee... how long is it 'til the next century, again? That'll do - for a start.

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