10 February, 2010

Happy Hour Discurso

Today's opining on the public discourse.

I don't know what it is, but lately, the right-wing noise machine just seems like one droning whine.  Ah, right, that's because it is.  They never say anything new, they throw the same fits in endless minor variation, and aside from Palin's Telepalmer (thank you, Think Progress!), it's been endlessly dull.

But I have to admit, it's always nice to see a Con blink.  And while Sen. Shelby's trying to pretend otherwise, he most certainly blinked:
It was one of the more audacious gambits of the 111th Congress -- Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) placed a blanket hold on several dozen administration nominees, holding them hostage until the senator was paid off in earmarked pork.

Yesterday, Shelby backed off -- for the most part.
Senator Richard Shelby, the Republican from Alabama, today lifted many of his holds on nominations to administration posts by President Obama that require Senate confirmation.
The move may temper a threat by Democratic leaders in the Senate -- and even the White House -- that the administration would make recess appointments during next week's Presidents' Day break, bucking any notion of senators' approval.
Or it may not. Shelby released his blanket hold on all pending nominees, but he's still blocking President Obama's choices for the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force; Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics; and Under Secretary of the Air Force.

The Pentagon needs those offices filled, and can't wait for a far-right senator -- who claims to want less government spending -- to get paid off in pork. 
I do believe he realized that the optics of this situation were truly awful.  I'm disappointed, myself.  He was such fun to kick around while he lasted.

Ah, well, we'll always have Sarah.  Yes, she embarrassed herself againAnd again.  So much for motivational speaking, then, not to mention basic reading comprehension.  Good thing she uses a Telepalmer instead of a Teleprompter, eh?

Speaking of blinking, Cantor and Boehner decided they'd hold the health care reform meeting hostage to right-wing demands.  The White House looked at the list of "give up all your progress and principles and then maybe we'll talk" demands and said, "No."  Which, of course, is what they should've been saying from the beginning.  So, will the Cons then ditch the meeting?  Well, after getting called "silly" by none other than Bill Kristol, and advised that the optics of claiming to want to work on solutions whilst steadfastly refusing to actually work on solutions are a bit damaging, and seeing as how news broke of a five year-old denied life-saving cancer treatment on the grounds it's experimental only to be approved for a separate, cheaper treatment that's - gasp - also experimental, it appears Cantor and Boehner'll be going, after all.  Imagine that.  And the Administration didn't even have to give in to all their demands!

Let this be an important lesson.

Meanwhile, Michele Bachmann's been bringing on the crazy.  She sez we'll be cursed - cursed, I tell you! - if we don't support Israel.  Oh, and she wants to wean everybody off Social Security.  Because nothing sez freedom like old ladies reduced to living in boxes and eating out of the trash!

I can't believe this batshit insane freak is actually a legislator.

So what happens when Cons get called out in clear and simple terms for being baldfaced fucking liars?  Why, they demand the resignation of the man audacious enough to correct them!

Observe.  Here's John Brennan beating their talking points bloody:
John Brennan, President Obama's senior counterterrorism adviser, has, as Adam Serwer noted this morning, "become the point man for the administration's pushback against GOP criticism on national security. " That appears to be a good move -- Brennan does not suffer fools gladly.

The former CIA official was forceful and persuasive on the Sunday shows over the weekend, and has a brief-but-compelling op-ed in USA Today. It's not quite 400 words, but Brennan's piece identifies the main Republican complaints of late, and then explains how wrong they are.
And Cons screaming and sniveling:
It must be a day that ends in "y" -- a clownish far-right lawmaker is calling for another administration official to resign.
Sen. Kit Bond (R-Mo.) called on Deputy National Security Advisor John Brennan's resignation on Tuesday.
Bond said Brennan, with whom he's tangled publicly over the Obama administration's handling of the attempted bombing of a flight on Christmas, to resign.
Brennan "needs to go," Bond said in an interview with National Review Online, a stance that was confirmed later by a spokeswoman.
I can appreciate why Bond is annoyed. The Republican senator has been blatantly lying about most aspects of national security policy quite a bit lately, and Brennan has had the audacity to explain reality to the public. Imagine that.

But when Republicans wonder why it's impossible to take them seriously on matters of public policy, they should remember that the ranking member of the Senate Intelligence Committee has called on the president's senior counterterrorism adviser to resign for having committed the awful crime of being correct.
Well, geez, y'know, we can't have that.  Otherwise, people might realize that Cons are a bunch of lying, conniving fuckwits, and might get disgusted with them, and then voters might actually elect people who will do right by the country rather than try to destroy the entire fucking thing so that their super-rich buddies can feed off the carcass, and, well, that would just be awful.

And, finally, it's taken them awhile, but the Cons have finally come up with a retort to Obama's demonstrable effectiveness at hunting down terrorists:
I suppose it was only a matter of time before far-right voices started criticizing President Obama for having too much success killing terrorists. Here's former Bush speechwriter Marc Thiessen, writing, "Dead Terrorists Tell No Tales."
The CIA reportedly succeeded in killing the head of the Pakistani Taliban -- the most recent in a flurry of drone attacks the agency has launched in South Asia and the Middle East. Another strike in Pakistan reportedly took out one of the FBI's most wanted terrorists; another in Pakistan took out a master bomb-maker for the al Qaeda affiliate in the Philippines, Abu Sayyaf; and a strike in Yemen targeted a senior military leader of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the group behind the Christmas Day attack (his fate has yet to be determined).
President Barack Obama's escalation of drone strikes is one area in the counterterrorism fight where he has earned plaudits from even his most vocal critics on the right. Hold the applause. Obama's escalation of the "Predator War" comes at the very same time he has eliminated the CIA's capability to capture senior terrorist leaders alive and interrogate them for information on new attacks.
I see. The conservative line for the better part of a year is that President Obama isn't doing enough to go after terrorists. Reality shows the exact opposite is true, but for the right, this is an inconvenient detail best ignored.
If Thiessen's piece is any indication, however, the argument is now shifting. President Obama is doing too much to go after terrorists, and is taking out too many bad guys before they can be captured and tortured.

I can see the campaign slogans now: "Vote GOP: Obama kills too many terrorists."
I think I'm going to put that on my bumper this year.  Anyone have any other "Vote GOP" stickers that spring to mind?  I'll take a look at them after I'm done slamming my head into my desk.

No comments: