Today’s Sunday Session features one of my all time favorite performers, Jackson Browne, performing with the group that released my favorite record this year, Dawes, during the Occupy Wall Street protests. Enjoy….
The Republican Right Wing Extremist Tea Party continues to hold the US Government hostage. No one knows what is going to happen next (my prediction). I don’t know about you but I’ve lost my sense of humor at this point so I’m not going to bore you with another stupid cartoon. Tonight it’s just the facts…..thanks to Huffington Post for the following article with the latest details from Congress……
Senate Leaders Reopen Budget Negotiations
To Avert Default After House Failure
WASHINGTON — Moments after House Republicans failed to advance a plan to end the government shutdown and avert default, Senate leaders took matters back into their own hands.
Aides to Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) confirmed the two had reopened talks that were put on hold earlier to allow the House to act first.
A Senate Democratic aide told The Huffington Post on Tuesday evening that a deal between the two was “imminent.”
The aide said the deal would hew closely to those earlier talks between Reid and McConnell. It would fund the government through Jan. 15, raise the debt ceiling through Feb. 7, and mandate both chambers appoint budget conferees to produce a broader framework for deficit reduction by Dec. 13. (The aide noted that having a deadline on Friday the 13th didn’t bode well for the framework’s chances.) A second Democratic aide, who confirmed the substance of the deal, added that because of parliamentary quirks, the budget conference language may be considered as an addendum, and not part of the deal itself.
The Senate deal also would allow the Treasury Department to use extraordinary measures to avoid defaulting should the next debt limit deadline be breached. The bill would require income-verification for those receiving subsidies under Obamacare, though that is a small change that the administration is comfortable with. There will be no delay in the re-insurance provision, which was contemplated in earlier talks and is a favored policy of both businesses and unions.
The Senate had neared completion of such a deal on Monday night, only to hit the pause button Tuesday morning when House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) announced the lower chamber would produce a bill to resolve the budget crisis on its own terms. Some Senate Republicans expressed frustration at the idea of waiting for their colleagues in the House, who have failed to coalesce around any strategy to end the shutdown as the nation moves dangerously close to default.
It took several hours for those fears to come true, after House conservatives declared unacceptable the plan laid out by their leaders. An entire day wasted was especially problematic for the Senate, where procedural hurdles abound if all 60 members don’t agree to unanimous consent.
It was for that reason McConnell had hoped Boehner could rally his GOP House conference to send a “message” bill to the Senate, that would be harder to block and thus get a vote much more quickly.
Aides said they still hoped Boehner would send a message to the Senate on Wednesday morning to expedite the legislative process. But they also were preparing to use normal procedures, which would allow a single member to delay consideration for 30 hours if he or she wanted.
The aide suggested that an announcement of a formal deal could come as early as Tuesday night.
No it’s not your imagination……my countdown timer has moved up a day. The internet is now reporting we run out of money at midnight tomorrow night, not midnight Thursday night. Things are looking desperate indeed. The Senate appears to have given up and the House…….well the House is still the House……dysfunctional as ever. It is hard to see how this is going to workout.
There is only one song that could express how I am feeling as I prepare this post and here it is…….
Ozzy – Crazy Train
Hang on…..this is going to be one hell of a ride!
So…..today it seems like the Senate might be on the verge of a deal to temporarily end the Government Shutdown and temporarily raise the Debt Ceiling. Not the long term solution that we need but one that is being touted by the media as a big break through. I don’t want to bring anyone down but I suggest that we not count our chickens before they hatch! Here’s what I predict is going to happen……
The Senate is going to reach a deal on a bipartisan bill, pass it, and send it to the House relatively close to the debt default deadline. The House will get the bill, load it up with ransom demands, and send the modified bill back to the Senate where it will not pass. Game Over……..US defaults on debt!
I hope I’m wrong but time will tell……part of my rationale for this prediction has to do with a recent statement by Mo Brooks (as reported on AL.com). Here is what he had to say……
Mo Brooks says he’s not bluffing
on debt ceiling
Congressman Mo Brooks says he is not bluffing.
If Congress does not slash welfare programs, or take steps to adopt a balanced budget, he will vote against raising the debt ceiling.
“We address the cause of the problem or else I vote against it,” said Brooks, R-Huntsville, during a phone interview with AL.com this afternoon. He said public benefits program would also include Obamacare.
Brooks, who campaigned on the issue of a balanced budget in 2010, said the nation’s greatest threat is bankruptcy.
He said he would rather face the consequences of an unprecedented federal default — which could happen if Congress fails to raise the borrowing limit within the next 10 days — than allow the nation to continue piling up long-term debt and face “total devastation” of insolvency.
“We’re down to bad choices,” said Brooks, ”due to decades of financial irresponsibility and we’re having to choose a path that does the least amount of damage to our country.”
Brooks compared the current government shutdown to a 3 or 4 on the Richter scale. A few folks felt tremors and there was some localized damage. He said failure to raise the debt ceiling could be a greater earthquake of 5 or 6, with greater economic damage. But he said insolvency would be a devastating 10.
Earlier today, Brooks told the House: “As bad as government shutdown and debt ceiling risks may be, they are relatively inconsequential compared to the economic devastation resulting from an American bankruptcy.”
During his remarks in Congress, Brooks compared the trajectory of the United States to Greece and to Detroit, arguing pensions would be lost, assets seized or left valueless in the face of a federal bankruptcy.
“No question, not raising the debt ceiling poses economic risks. No one knows for sure how much risk because America has never crossed this threshold before,” he said on the House floor. “Whatever it is, it can be overcome.”
And he did not adhere strictly to partisan lines. Brooks said he was combating financially irresponsible members of both parties. On the phone, when asked, he said it was irresponsible not to budget for wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Specifically, Brooks said he would urge Congress to reduce spending in two areas, public benefits and foreign aid.
He said he would limit public housing and food stamps and other welfare programs to the physically disabled. “The welfare programs, we don’t have the money for them,” he said, adding later: “It will force more people to work.”
He mentioned Obamacare only when asked, but added: “That is a big one.”
As for foreign aid, Brooks said he would maintain aid to Pakistan and Israel, as well as Afghanistan while U.S. troops are still present. “Outside of that, the rest of it has to go,” he said, adding: “I’m at a loss why we would borrow money to give it away.”
The only alternative to steep cuts, said Brooks, would be a long-term deal to break with the federal practice of deficit spending. The nation is approaching $17 trillion in debt and estimates show roughly $750 billion more in deficit spending this year.
He said a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution would require that federal spending cannot exceed tax revenues except during extraordinary circumstances approved by a supermajority in both houses of Congress.
When asked why now was a moment to draw a line in the sand, Brooks said it’s not. He noted that in August of 2011 he also broke with fellow Republican and voted against raising the debt limit.
Brooks had earlier shared concerns that Republicans would be blamed for the shutdown, but today he said the White House “overreach” was changing perceptions, as federal agents blocked off access to national monuments. “They are open air. You actually have to spend money to shut them down,” he said.
Thanks a lot Mo for pledging to destroy the US economy. Unless I’m mistaken that’s not what North Alabama was hoping for when they decided to vote you into the House of Representatives! So guess what…..you gotta go……
Although things look grim at this point we (all reasonable non-Tea Party Americans) all need to remember two things: 1) we have the power to change things and 2) this land is our land.
People Have The Power – Patti Smith
This Land is Your Land – Bruce Springsteen
You aren’t going to believe what this idiot said yesterday at a rally with Sarah Palin, Ted Cruze, Mike Lee and others on the National Mall. Here’s an article about his statements, a video of some of his comments, and a summary of other incendiary comments he has made recently.
At a veteran-led rally that hit the World War II Memorial, the National Mall and the White House on Sunday, one tea party rallier had choice words for President Barack Obama, blaming him for the government shutdown and calling on him to step down.
Larry Klayman of Freedom Watch, a conservative political advocacy group, said the country is “ruled by a president who bows down to Allah,” and “is not a president of ‘we the people.'”
“I call upon all of you to wage a second American nonviolent revolution, to use civil disobedience, and to demand that this president leave town, to get up, to put the Quran down, to get up off his knees, and to figuratively come up with his hands out,” he said.
Klayman was joined by a group of veterans protesting the memorial closures that followed the government shutdown earlier this month. The demonstrators, who were met by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and former Alaska Gov Sarah Palin, pushed through the barriers at war memorials and carried the barricades back to the White House, Confederate flags in tow.
“Our vets have proven that they have not been timid,” Palin said at the rally, “so we will not be timid in calling out any who would use our military, our vets, as pawns in a political game.”
Here’s the video so you can hear this nutcase for yourself…….
This isn’t the first time for Larry’s insane rants. Read the following report from the Crooks and Liars blog for earlier rants from him…..
In July, he called for the military to overthrow him [President Obama].
In September, he vowed to force the “evil tyrant Obama” from office by November 16th. Then he slid the date to November 19th.
Just last week, he sadly announced that he believed violent revolution was imminent.
He used the very same language today that he used in mid-September, except then he added some rhetorical flourishes:
“[Obama] will finally know that his time has come to leave his perverted, Islamic concept of Mecca, our nation’s hallowed capital,” Klayman concludes. “I do not advocate violence, but it is time we show Obama that we mean business. He would be well advised to ride off into his Islamic sunset, link up with 72 virgins and party on at his expense – not ours!”
These people are crazy and scary. This is the kind of people we are dealing with in the Government Shutdown/Debt Ceiling Crises…..it’t time to squash! You can’t reason with people that are insane!
The Republican Right Wing Extremist Tea Party continues to hold the US Government hostage. Looking like this could go on a while with the House crazies looking to link raising the Debt Ceiling to Obamacare. Speaking of those crazies, I though you might like the following song that describes them pretty well…………
Mo Brooks, our Congressional Representative here in North Alabama, is one of those fanatics. Hopefully that will not be the case after next year.