If Republicans plan to deliver exactly zero votes for Obama’s stimulus bill, then why does the bill still have compromises in it? Screw them. Put the family planning stuff back in, take the tax cuts out. If we know for sure that passing a crappy bill won’t win any more votes then just pass a better bill. They won’t scream any louder. The political cost won’t be any greater. Also, and pay attention because this is the important part, a better bill is more likely to succeed.
There is literally no longer any reason to weaken the bill with provisions that only exist because otherwise baby Rick Santorum might cry.
They’re children. If they can’t at least pretend to give a crap, leave them in their playroom and ignore them.
Most of the moderate Republicans either came over to the Democratic Party or were voted out of office.
All that’s left is a hardline right-wing rump. Why listen to them for anything? It’s gives their extremist views far too much credibility.
Democratic leaders don’t yield to Republicans because they have to, but because they want to.
Family planning stimulates jobs how? Sodding the White House mall stimulates the economy how?
I agree. If they want to crow about not voting for it then remove any influence they have on the bill.
Let them eat crow instead of being crows.
Edit: Sammy, you lost. Get over it.
it would be nice if the democrats offered a clear and transparent plan in unison on their own terms for a change
seconded. get rid of the stupid tax cuts allowing corrupt businesses to write off their debts going back years, and instead add in funding to help the public relieve their own debt levels. banks will be fine if people could just pay their own debts and bills. people can’t pay right now, and that’s why there’s no liquidity, to a large degree. the government should, just this once, directly underwrite private debt for citizens.
The family planning funding isn’t actually federal family planning funding. It’s giving states money earmarked for their EXISTING budget lines. States can’t run deficits so these things get cuts to avoid raising taxes. The money in this bill goes to the state budgets to prevent them from having to make budget cuts in these areas. This prevents job loss and allows continued growth.
I don’t know anything about sodding the mall. Maybe you meant sodomy? That makes less sense, but it’s you…
When they bring the bill up for a vote, they should call all the republicans first.
If nobody votes yes, bring up a second, different bill and pass it with no republican support.
Then go to the media and say that we tried bipartisanship, and they voted no.
Good question. I suspect it’s because the Republicans are, get this, the elected representatives of their constituents. In other words, even though they’re largely assholes, Obama still listens to their ideas and criticisms, and picks among them, as a form of respect for the people who voted for those representatives, if not for the reps themselves.
I’m not crazy about those compromises, and it doesn’t mean we stop fighting against them, but I have some respect for Obama’s approach.
It still has to win over a couple of Senate votes. And, to be fair, some of these provisions were in there specifically to be bartered away.
What’s more, tax cuts have a place in the stimulus package to a degree. They hit the economy the fastest, even if they don’t have as much bang for the buck as infrastructure or health care. And they’re a winner in the conservative voting community even if they don’t win any conservative congressmen. When Boehner goes back to Ohio, he’s going to have to explain to his constituency how he voted against tax cuts over and over again, just because they weren’t big enough.
Family planning means your 18 year old son or daughter is using contraception and doesn’t get knocked up, dragged out of school and added as yet another financial burden on your household. It keeps family planning clinics open (sustaining jobs that may be lost in a recession) and reduces the cost burden of contraception on families that could use their money to keep paying their mortgages.
Well, for starters, you’re paying people to do the sodding. You really want me to go into the economics of "how sodding a yard stimulates the economy"? I mean, how does building a bridge stimulate the economy? How does reducing health care costs stimulate the economy? How do tax cuts stimulate the economy? If your answer to all those questions is "I DON’T KNOW!" then you’re not really adding to the conversation.
>>I agree. If they want to crow about not voting for it then remove any influence they have on the bill.
Hopefully, this is exactly what will happen in conference committee.
I suspect it’s because the Republicans are, get this, the elected representatives of their constituents. In other words, even though they’re largely assholes, Obama still listens to their ideas and criticisms, and picks among them, as a form of respect for the people who voted for those representatives, if not for the reps themselves.
I am sympathetic to this view…however, its not the main issue…the main issue is whether or not to compromise with a party that repeatedly fails to negotiate in good faith…how many times do you reward bad behavior?
That’s right. Only Congressional Democrats could come up with the tactic of paying off people who will vote against it anyway. Please, pleeeaaassssseee like me!
off topic: anyone encounter problems on TPM today? I’ve been there twice and encountered unannounced killer downloads. Hadn’t clicked on anything, saw my modem lights flashing, harddrive locked at 100%, had to pull the battery to restart, and my ethernet port got shut down both times. Virus scan showed nada.
@Samuel: Christ on a cracker. Are you that dense? Latch on to a clause for a few million dollars (maybe) in a several hundred trillion dollar bill, good job Rep. Boehner.
Will it directly create jobs? Probably not, but it will help people control their own bodies. Giving people control over their bodies gives them the ability to work when they want, which gives them an income, which they can then spend/invest/light cigars with. And of course reducing unwanted pregnancies helps people who have no desire to have kids for whatever reason, perhaps an inability to feed them, which any moral government would help them with. Or would you rather those dumb poor people have 17.3 kids that all require government aid? Or I’m sure you’d rather those kids just go hungry. That’s a valid long-term interest being met.
Sorry, didn’t mean to feed the trolls.
I was wondering the same damn thing.
I expect we’ll be seeing more of this kind of thing: a Republican Congressional office claiming stimulus money going to transgender beauty pageants.
Why cave to them on anything when they play these kinds of games?
S’ok, as long as you’re smacking ’em good and hard in the back of the head with your other hand.
Obama appears to be playing the ‘Thugs for suckers, and I suspect he’ll succeed, but, frankly, I’d prefer to see him just say, "f y losers" and let the chips fall where they may. If the stimulus package succeeds, they’ll say, "see, our changes made it successful". If it fails, they’ll quickly toss in the "see, we told you so" shit.
As FountainHead pointed out, the family planning provision exists to help states avoid budget shortfalls and/or bankruptcy. Since states, unlike the federal government, cannot legally run deficits relieving their fiscal stress is among the most important parts of the stimulus.
That is a very blog-ish allusion.
If Republicans plan to deliver exactly zero votes for Obama’s stimulus bill, then why does the bill still have compromises in it? Screw them.
You’ve overlooked a long term effect of this, which strengthens your argument. If GOPers know that features they like, and Dems don’t, will disappear from bills that they refuse to support, they may be become a bit less stubborn in the future.
As Zifnab points out, sod doesn’t magically appear. Repairing the damage done to the National Mall (not the White House lawn) by 2 million people trampling it this month creates jobs for people just as much as other spending does.
I looked for the part about how the family planning inclusion is a good idea, or helps the stimulus.
Did I miss that part, or that post?
Sorry, I’m one of those "real" liberals … I was pro choice before Roe v Wade. What is family planning doing in the damned bill? I call bullshit.
Yeah, this is Bull.Crap. It’s an excuse to slide liberal policy money into the stimulus package. Period.
This is the kind of thing that makes people hate politics. If this is a good idea, put it in some other bill. People need to have faith in the notion that the stimulus is about stimulus, not about throwing liberal — or conservative — pork into the damned bill.
Except that they’re running around saying they weren’t allowed to make any input into the bill. I say we don’t want them to be liars, so we’d better strip out all the provisions put in for Republicans, and restore all the provisions stripped out for them.
The Moar You Know
Somebody please inform the Gropenator and the California Senate and Assembly of this. They seem hellbent on closing down the state AND leaving a 42 billion dollar debt in its place.
entire article via freerepublic:
Rush For President
Seriously. Why not? Rush Limbaugh’s already the de facto head of the Republican party. Why not its formal leader as presidential candidate in 2012?
Imagine it’s 2011. The economy continues to stumble along. All we have to show for our $2 trillion in spending [the Dems added another trill in 2010] is a crushing indebtedness. Abroad, Pres. Obama’s openness has been interpreted as weakness by our enemies, with one of them inflicting a Carter-esque humiliation on our country.
Now comes Rush, with his vice-presidential running mate of . . . David Petraeus.
Why couldn’t Rush be to Obama what Reagan was to Carter in 1980?
I didn’t know control was ever taken from us…When did this happen? Thanks for the enlightenment….
Great. So those bankers, accountants, operations people, secretaries, bookeepers, etc…will get in line waiting for a job to sod the Washington Mall…BRILLIANT!
@TheHatOnMyCat: Henry Waxman indicated yesterday on the House floor, that family planning money will get passed in another bill later this year….
No, if it fails, they’ll say, See, they were never serious about creating jobs. They were just looking for an excuse to give away more condoms!
And unfortunately, they will be exactly right.
People are not stupid. They want to see job creation, not a condom distribution scheme.
Whoever put that stupid item in there should be sent to Political Gitmo, forever.
A lot of politics is symbolic and salesmanship. This is bone stupid. Worse than bone stupid. This is Republican stupid.
You know what really helps someone who has lost their job? An unplanned pregnancy! ! !
Good, the Republic is still safe … the blogs are not charge.
Glad to hear it.
Strip the stimulus package of every lightweight pork-flavored item and make it scream JOBS in every line of the bill.
If it doesn’t create a job in 2009-10, take it out.
@Samuel: Here’s a tip — with a name like yours, don’t EVER say this around women. Your ass will be soundly kicked.
Shorter Sammy: "I like playing stupid."
We’ve noticed. You’re pretty damned good at it too.
It annoys but does not surprise me that Samuel and ppgaz/whatever both focused on Zifnab’s response, which was wrong, and ignored two correct responses on the same thread.
Well, there are two ways I see this playing out:
1) The bill passes, with some Republicans breaking ranks and voting for the stimulus. Boehner and Cantor look weak and unable to control their own caucus.
2) The bill passes, with no Republican votes. The GOP looks like a bunch of partisan obstructionists, and Obama has freer reign in the future to focus on liberal priorities.
And speaking of stimulus, Andrew Sullivan asks a good question: Why is the GOP so obsessed with sex?
Uhhmm, yeah. This:
The important thing to remember here is that this is an EXISTING program (that had bipartisan support) and it is not even being EXPANDED.
@TheHatOnMyCat: Alright, I’ll confess its a stretch. I wasn’t sad to see it pulled either. That said, if you want to ask the question, "Which benefits the economy more? Tax cuts for John Thain or cheap contraception?" I’m going with the contraception.
I’d be much happier seeing contraception in a health care bill. I’m glad Waxman pulled it. And, all in all, I think this is a lot of whining on both sides over nothing. But when you’ve got a wanker on the boards screaming that personal ignorance is an argument against funding, then we are truly delving into the realm of the shitting bull.
As for the actual topic at hand, I’m not so sure about that "zero votes" prediction. Checking the links, it looks more like this was just a convenient sound bite tossed off by some backbencher. Now, if Boehner himself were to get in front of the cameras and microphones and make the same prediction, well, whaddya know — we’d all but have the Republican Party saying, "Count us out of the action." And then, like Tim says, there would be no reason not to go full speed ahead.
@Tim F.: Well, I don’t like you either. :-p
Check this out.
The Republican congressman who criticized Limbaugh issued an apology.
His website is itself a parody. Check out the right margin — a picture of an American flag with the caption "Our flag."
I’m amazed that the Republicans have decided they want to become the party for people who don’t believe in contraception. I mean, opposing abortion is one thing, but if you’re now going to throw out anyone who doesn’t think contraception is evil, pretty soon you’re going to have to start holding your conventions in a broom closet.
I’d say, "Fuck you, that’s a completely false dichotomy."
I don’t want to ask that question. Period.
I want the stimulus to be focussed like a laser on jobs, so that any eighth grader can see the connection.
If contraception is a good idea … good. The congress has plenty of slack time for passing all the family planning measures it desires to pass. Let it do so …. later, outside of this package.
Sure, but the thing is I’ve seen on various blogs at least 3 different rationales for how it is stimulus spending…the replacement income for the states is definitely the most compelling, but if even the kind of people who read liberal blogs repeatedly question it, and then the answers vary, it may not be either politically or practically the best use of funds. I mean, this was the official response yesterday on Ezra Klein’s blog:
I’m not even sure what that *means*. I’m sure I’m a little slow-witted, but to me that does not explain at all how the funding is supposed to be stimulus.
I think Obama’s giving them enough rope to hang themselves with, since he knows they can’t vote for it without screwing themselves politically (no matter whether or not it’s good for the country).
Obama: Here’s my plan.
GOP: Boo! We hate it! It needs X!
Obama: Okay, here’s X.
GOP: Uh… wait! It needs Y!
Obama: Understandable. Here’s Y.
GOP: Wait! I mean Z! We need Z! And Q! And ponies!
Obama: I’m very sorry to hear that. I suppose we’ll have to pass the plan as is. Though we’ll leave in X and Y, and tell CNN that we gave you X and Y but sadly you still can’t support stimulating the economy.
GOP: Er… that’s not bipartisan!
Obama: :raises eyebrow:
Approval Ratings: :go up five more points:
In the hands of anyone else, I’d say this plan is doomed to failure. But I think Obama’s a good enough politician to pull it off.
How is this hard to understand? The biggest problem every state in the union faces right now is that they don’t have the money and they can’t just print it up like the Fed can. Therefore, the fed can step in and literally, line by line, earmark funds for states to use in their existing budgets, freeing up EXISTING state funds to fill the gaps elsewhere. This prevents job-loss (as, if not more important than creating jobs) and prevents important programs, like Family Planning, from growing stagnant because of dramatic underfunding by state governments. This is all net positive and doesn’t give the states the ability to take the money and spend it any which way they please, which is usually a disaster!
Scott, no argument from me on that point. However, whether it’s in good faith or not, some of the R’s objections will play among their constituents, and some of those objections might even have merit, whether politically or as policy.
For example, Obama requested that family planning be pulled from the stimulus package due to R objections. Personally, I think that wasn’t a good move. But Obama apparently made the decision that was politically wiser to respond to that concern – most likely because it is playing well with both R constituents and some moderates.
Maybe that’s a smart political move. (Again, I don’t think so, but…) If it is, then Obama gets more credit, more political capital, for playing it as a compromise than as just making the smart move.
The Moar You Know
@NickM: Ha, that is twelve kinds of awesome. "Our Flag".
However, I quibble with the title of the news release. Instead of:
"Gingrey comments on Rush misunderstanding"
It should be:
"Gingrey drops to knees; begs forgiveness, promises to blow El Rushbo anytime he wants"
The Moar You Know
@John S.: No, you’re just not seeing the possibilities. Cheap contraception for John Thain’s parents would have benefitted the economy more than anything.
Do you really think John Thain’s parents believe in contraception?
While job creation is obviously more important, I’ve no problem with both. Does that make me stupid? Of course not: that’s just genetics.
Which, in perfect Jonah Goldberg fashion, only strengthens my point.
That said, I don’t really care if family planning comes in this bill or a later one.
Mike from DC
I think the reason that the Dems were willing to compromise with the Republicans is less about garnering Republican votes, but more to 1) set the field up for later and B) to demonstrate to the public their willingness to cooperate with the republicans. If they put the bill as-is to a vote, and receive zero Republican votes, the dems can later snub the republicans in legislative negotiations, claiming (with some legitimacy) that the Repubs won’t cooperate/compromise while the Dems are.
Or… at least… I HOPE that’s what their plan is. Otherwise, it’s as Atrios describes as Lucy pulling the football away from Charlie Brown once again. And if that’s the case, then the dems deserve to lose the majority.
(caveat: I think the tax cuts are foolish, and the medicare family planning was fine in the bill)
@TheFountainHead: They do now.
Weren’t they already?
I’m actually coming around a bit. A bill to extend benefits for family planning should certainly be passed. It literally pays for itself over time, and what conceivable reason could their be (beyond religious insanity) to pursue a policy that will result in more unwanted pregnancies at any time, let alone during a financial meltdown? At a time when we are shoveling hundreds of billions of dollars into banks whose officers are passing out huge bonuses and considering the purchase of corporate jets and lavish offices, are Republican’s really going to argue that it’s shameful to support family planning for people who can’t afford it? Well yes, of course they are, they went after a kid who spoke up on behalf of government health insurance that helped him, but is that going to be a political winner for them?
But it’s reasonable to argue that the stimulus should only be focussed on items that are intended to stimulate the economy as effectively as possible. Then if and when the Republicans vote it down then, (actually when they vote it down), it will be clear they opposed the stimulus itself, and it wasn’t some principled position to Democrats playing politics. There’s no reason support for family planning can’t be passed in another bill; we surely have the votes by now. Just let the Republicans try to filibuster that, and show how deep in the stone age they actually are.
I’m a little less sanguine about removing bankruptcy reform from the bill. Perhaps that’s not a stimulus, but it directly addresses the financial meltdown. But I suppose (hope) that can be passed separately as well. Frankly, opposition to that at this point is pretty much insane. The financial collapse has gone beyond the housing bubble bursting, but it did trigger it, and it makes sense to do whatever we can to help stabilize it.
Maybe not, but I bet the (gasp) landscapers who were put out of business when the housing market crashed and new housing construction essentially stalled completely will be lining up to bid on that job.
But, if it doesn’t help bankers, it’s not stimulus, right?
Isn’t it obvious? The closet cases that run the party need the Christian breeders to keep popping out the Republican voters of the future. I mean, duh.
The Moar You Know
@TheFountainHead: Shit, if my kid ended up a douchebag like that, a lamprey attached to the genitals of society the way he did, I’d build a fucking church to contraception.
After reading the Fountainhead’s post, I think I need to backtrack. Funding states so they don’t have to cut services is the quickest way to get money into the economy. So from that point of view, support of family planning does make sense. Presumably without the money, people working in family planning would lose jobs, or the states would make other cuts to offset that, also costing jobs. At this point I don’t know enough to have a firm position, but I can kind of see the arguments on both sides.
@Zifnab: As with most right wing realizations: Too little way too late.
Well, of course they are against contraception, because access to contraception means that teenagers will have no choice but to have pre-marital sex. There are numerous studies showing that "no contraception = no pre-marital sex"; unfortunately, I cannot locate the links, but I am certain that The Google can point you to them on the interwebby-tubes. Without the temptation of pre-marital sex, teenagers can become good Christians and get married right out of high school. They can then start procreating and have their God-ordained eighteen children by the time the wife hits menopause. Because God wants each family to have this many children, there is no need for contraception during marriage either; otherwise, you are killing harmless sperm. No access to contraception also means that there will be no temptation for the husband to stray during marriage with those temptress liberal women (or those temptor gay men, damn them!) during the 90% of the time his wife is pregnant. Again, use The Google to find these studies (what, you want me to do all the work). Then, of course, after the wife hits menopause, there is no need for contraception because the wife cannot get pregnant and the couple no longer needs to have sex in any case. Really, banning contraception is not enough, as long as people can still get vasectomies or tubal ligations. Those must be outlawed as well
Let this natural progression play out for a few generations and the United States will one day be a Stong, White, Christian nation of over one-billion people in small towns (no evil cities) representing small-town American values.
The Grand Panjandrum
OT: Here you go Tim–Looks like climate change denier Inhofe has posted this letter on the committee website blog. You should have some fun with it.
On the other hand, tax relief via revising the AMT really is an extraneous idea not designed to create jobs like a laser that the senate has thrown in (reportedly over Obama’s objections). I imagine it would have passed in any event, but it really doesn’t belong in this bill. And unlike family planning, it really does cost a considerable amount of money; 70 billion dollars.
The Moar You Know
They’ve been that party since at least the early 1980s, they just did a good job of hiding it until recently.
Mainly because the "get big government off our backs" wingers want couples not actually performing government mandated breeding to practice government mandated chastity.
Unless one of their kids or their mistresses happens to get knocked up, that is.
The Grand Panjandrum
These moves make a lot of sense politically. First, contraception has nothing to do with economic "stimulation" as it were. Second, the tax cuts do bring real relief to people who need it. This is a tax cut for middle and lower income people. By placing these items in the bill the administration and Congressional Democrats are loading a very powerful weapon to be used against Republicans. Essentially, the Republicans are giving it the middle finger and the Democrats can rightfully say that no matter what they did, short of making a completely Republican bill, the House Republicans were not going to support it. In other words the Democrats DID in fact compromise and the Republicans only gave compromise lip service.
The House Republicans don’t really get it. They are betting that the average American will see it as waste and turn away from the Democrats again. That is a miscalculation on their part plain and simple. At a time when most Americans want some government action the Republicans trot out that tired ass dog and pony show of being obstructionists. Besides a large enough majority of Americans do not believe any of them are fiscal conservatives any more than they believe the moon is made of cheese.
I say leave the bill as amended and let the Republicans put on their own cement shoes for that long trip to the bottom of the cesspool.
Besides if they were really serious about stimulating the economy they would go to serious healthcare reform and make it single payer or something akin to it. That would be much larger than any tax cut that could actually get through the Congress. Imagine what business could do if relieved of that expense.
Maybe Republicans will sign on to the contraception provision if each prescription or condom box comes with a voucher for a handgun! (Domestically produced, we hope)
The Moar You Know
Every child is a sacred gift from Jeebus. Unless it’s a Negro. Or a Mexican.
Think it through, for God’s sake! How else are we supposed to maintain our God-given dominance against the Brown Terror unless we start popping out kids at a rate that would terrify an alley cat? Get with the program, Christian America!
Drill here, drill now ain’t about the oil, bitches.
I’m with TZ on this one. Adding condom distribution to a stimulus bill might induce some chuckles but probably gives the wrong message. :-)
There is already another bill on the way. Considering that the stimulus is for a more short term span it might be better to remove it to at least. We’re going to get the family planning stuff, not to worry, we just don’t have to do it in this bill. So I think Obama was right to remove it and at least give the impression that he’s listening and responding on something that in the scheme of thing is small.
Exactly how does family planning funding NOT stimulate the economy? It may or may not, but it would be nice for the case to be made on some grounds other than idealogical ones (even from persons that would otherwise support FP). It seems to me that jobs are jobs and preventing the loss of jobs is as important as creating new ones. Jobs in family planning may not be idealogically correct, but they are jobs nonetheless.
Further, can we have a rule that if you even allude to "pork" with respect to the stimulus package, that you provide a concrete definition of the word? Recall that for many politicians, the definition of pork is "money not spent in my district", which is not particularly useful in the current context.
Yeah, I know this is the internet, but I like to pretend that there is more than mere balloon juice on offer here. ;)
Yes, but we’re trying to get the most bang for our bucks. So if a dollar into construction creates twice as many jobs as a dollar in family planning, direct the money towards infrastructure. The general argument here is that the budget proposal for contraception is aimed at shoring up existing state funds. I don’t know whether that is more or less effective than pouring the money into the "shovel ready projects" or even just dumping it into tax cuts.
I think Robin G. got it. The Dems/Obama can afford to be generous–they can pass the bill anyway, and every time the Pubs vote ‘no’ in lockstep, they demonstration obstructionism rather than prudence and bipartisanship.
Look at it a year from now: The Dems keep passing bills, Obama keeps going to the Pubs to ask for their support, Pubs keep voting no on everything. Obama and the Dems are getting things done, and the Pubs are reduced to a mere speedbump that impedes nothing looks ineffectual. It’s good politics.
This was anticipated in a scene from the West Wing: The Pubs filibuster a budget bill, shutting down the gov’t. Bartlett walks to the Capitol Building to meet with Halfley, who’s so thrown off that they won’t open the door for him. Bartlett waits for several minutes, and then walks back to the White House saying "I came to them humbly, and they wouldn’t even open the door. They’re the reason things aren’t getting done, not me." Later, Halfley comes crawling to the White House, realizing the situation they’re in.
The Pubs will come around to bipartisanship once they realize that they’re accomplishing nothing but marginalizing themselves. It won’t happen at once–a trickle of Pubs will become a steady stream, and Boehner will be left to preside over an increasingly small number of diehards. RIP Boehner.
Damn y’all. This aint about handin out jimmy-hatz, it’s really about easing a fiduciary responsibility of the states, who then are less likely to fire staff to pay for 3000 uninsured shit-machines. In that context, it helps keep peeps employed and helps da ekonomy
You all are missing the essential motive for the rethugs bitchin about family planning. Those people are democrats, I bet 99.9% of em. Purer than Ivory soap.
It’s pure win for the rethugs.
Mike from DC
Another thought is that this is a continuation of a trend that became obvious during the Terry Schiavo brouhaha. What’s popular with the Republican base is unpopular with the American public. So, the Republicans are in a bad spot, where they can do the popular thing, and not be supported by their base during the primaries (in which they may lose), or they can play to their base, and lose popularity with the public, and, depending on the make up of their constituency, this might cost them in the next election. Of course, if their constituents are a bunch of wingnuts, then they’re safe playing to their base, but I’d bet that isn’t the case for most of them.
Yeah, that provision is just crazy! America should just wait & let its family-planning centres shut down due to funding shortfalls so it can spend twice as much to reopen them again later. Ah, that Yankee ingenuity.
You might love seeing a more "pure" bill right now, not to mention flipping the bird at the GOP … but look at the big picture here: Obama’s got them firmly by the short hairs on this one. Didn’t take him very long, did it? Just think of how stupid Boehner et al are going to look being butthurt over a bill that includes signifigant parts of their wish-list … sour grapes are SO sexy right now from (employed with fat salaries, top-quality benefits & perks aplenty) pols, after all … & damn, I’d sure hate to have to try to explain to my increasingly hard-up constituents why I opposed giving them a tax-break in a deep recession. This retarded grandstanding is going to come back to haunt them in the mid-terms.
Piss off your voters, or piss off the RNC – & "none of the above" is not on the menu. No matter which way they vote, their pooch is screwed.
The first paying job I had was laying sod for a soccer field, so I guess I’m biased. It’s supposed to be about jobs … & yes indeedy, those are jobs. Unskilled jobs, that usually pay in cash – exactly what is needed right now.
We went our spending to be as effective as possible, to get as many jobs and as possible and as much infrastructure built as we can for each buck. Spending money to avoid cutting worthwhile jobs is going to be very effective; there’s little overhead as you’re to not having to spend the money to create the new position; it’s already there. From that perspective, supporting the states spending on family planning (along with a boat load of other stuff) makes perfect sense. Furthermore, Republican opposition is based, I believe, on the culture wars. We’re forcing to pay people money to support irresponsible lifestyles. In this day and age I don’t think this argument has much weight outside the reddest of red states, but it’s not worth arguing. Take it out, pass it separately, in the interests of doing everything we can to play this straight.
If the federal government is going to provide millions of condoms, I hope they are printed with flags and the "Gift of the American People" language you see on the sacks of wheat shipped for famine relief.
@Zifnab: I’m not going to say that a dollar for FP gets one more bang for the buck than a dollar spent on construction, but I’d like to see how you or those that feel this is the case have come by this opinion. Construction is definitely more tangible, so I can understand the argument, but so far the only concrete evidence of the efficacy of stimulus spending I am able to see is that giving banks money doesn’t do much for the economy in a positive, bang for the buck sense. Like FP, giving money to banks seems to have intangible benefits that are deemed credible enough to warrant spending $700B. Why not spend a few 10’s of millions on FP? The intangible benefits of FP seem a bit more concrete than promises of a banker to help us out.
Just sayin’ . . .
I can’t decide if they’re going for spectacular failure, or catastrophic success.
In any case, these limited compromises in the bill are not for the House Goopers, but to keep the blue dogs in line. Watch for a complete rewrite in the conference – what will come out will be almost exactly what Obama wants, and the blue dogs will vote for it, and Olympia Snow and Judd Greg will vote for cloture, and it will get done, even if it provides free marital aids to every voter in New Hampshire and Maine.
While everyone is watching Obama’s diplomatic kung fu, Rahm is getting it done.
blue dogs, blue dogs, blue dogs……………………………
Um, unless you through in some optics, a laser beam diverges—it’s not focused by itself.
I picture him walking around the capitol, shining up his brass knuckles, and singing a little song:
"Someone’s crying, Lord
Someone’s crying, Lord
He’s such a dick. It warms the cockles of my heart.
@Comrade Scrutinizer: You can focus incoherent light, but coherent light is not focussed?
Your reality is screwing up my rhetoric. Stop it.
The advantage to spending money on the states in general so that they don’t have to make drastic cuts is that the benefits (or perhaps the absence of harm) is felt quickly. Republicans have been complaining about how the money being spent won’t get into the economy quickly enough. If you decide to build new roads, you have to spend time planning before you can begin the actual construction. The quickest way to get money into the economy is to spend it on a program that already exists so that it doesn’t have to be cut. There’s no delay due to having to plan a new project, it’s already there.
We need both long term and short term spending; this is not looking like a short term event, but we want to start getting some money into the economy as quickly as possible.
Something I didn’t appreciate originally before reading Digby. It’s not just the Republican’s, it’s the blue dogs.
the bill is a boondoggle
It’s more than just that. Taking families that are already in a state of economic stress (they’d have to be, they’re on medicaid) and then adding to that stress either through 1. horniness or 2. adding another baby is just downright damaging to everybody in that family. That’s a recipe for what was a family that was stable but in financial distress to tip over the edge. Imagine the kind of financial situation you’d have to be in for your budget not to stretch to getting a pack of condoms this month and the stress you’re probably feeling just contemplating the idea of buying groceries on thirty dollars a week and if the alternator on your 12 year old car goes again will you be able to keep your job? and that’s the stress these folks are living in day in, day out. Taking away stress-relieving sex or adding a stress-inducing baby, that’s the thing that happens a month before child services gets called. Which is a lot more expensive and does devastating harm to those kids.
Frankly, adding 300Million for birth control for medicaid recipients is going to save you billions in medical bills, foster care, and – the sad truth is, if they get stuck in the system – eventually, jail for the kids already in that family.
Does no one here read the actual policy? The bulk of the tax cuts are Democratic taxcuts. The single largest item is the fulfillment of an Obama campaign pledge that the Republicans hate.
Compromising usually means you’re giving something to the other side instead of enacting your own priorities.