That, folks, was Sen. John McCain sarcastically deriding a bill intended to help veterans get jobs. It’s kind of weird for him to do that. But it isn’t surprising anymore. The atmosphere in Washington is frankly abysmal:
Barring a burst of productivity in the lame-duck session in November and December, the 112th Congress is set to enter the Congressional record books as the least productive body in the post-World War II era. It had passed a mere 173 public laws as of last month. That was well below the 906 enacted from January 1947 through December 1948 by the body President Harry S. Truman referred to as the “do-nothing” Congress, and far fewer than many prior Congresses have passed in a single session.
And for that reason, when President Obama makes the case that Washington needs to be changed from the outside—I’m appreciating what he’s talking about. It’s not just watching what’s going on right now—it’s thinking about what we could be dealing with if we, the voters, don’t make some changes down there.
And what sits in between is the crux of the matter. Yeah, that “health of the mother” thing.
Steve Benen, now well settled into his new digs at The Maddow Blog, expands the bounds of outrageous incivility by comparing Paul Ryan when he was a humble Congressman with Paul Ryan, would-be VP:
Republican vice presidential hopeful Paul Ryan sat down this morning with Jon Delano of KDKA in Pittsburgh, offering his first detailed remarks since Todd Akin’s odious comments over the weekend on rape. What was striking about Ryan’s comments was the extent to which they were at odds with his own record.
Ryan said in the interview, “Rape is rape. Period. End of story.” And while that may sound heartening, Ryan, just a year ago, co-sponsored legislation—with Todd Akin—that would have redefined “rape” for the purposes of Medicaid funding. In Ryan’s proposal, victims of “forcible rape” would receive protections, but victims of other, undefined kinds of rape would not.
Asked to defend his own legislation, Ryan refused. “Rape is rape. Rape is rape, period. End of story,” he said. When the reporters pressed further, asking, “So that forcible rape language meant nothing to you at the time?” The vice presidential hopeful again added, “Rape is rape and there’s no splitting hairs over rape.”
As for Ryan’s stated position that the government should force women to take their pregnancy to term if they are impregnated by a rapist, the Republican congressman seemed to concede that his position has been superseded. “Well, look, I’m proud of my pro-life record. And I stand by my pro-life record in Congress. It’s something I’m proud of,” Ryan said. “But Mitt Romney is the top of the ticket and Mitt Romney will be president and he will set the policy of the Romney administration.”
Appearing on “Fox News Sunday,” Obama’s 2008 opponent weighed in on an ad by the pro-Obama Priorities USA that implies Romney was responsible for the death of a cancer-stricken woman after his company took steps that cost her her job and health insurance.
“In 2008, this president and the people around him promised hope and change, a new environment in Washington,” McCain said. “And now it’s probably deteriorated into the most negative, most unpleasant, most disgraceful campaign that I have ever observed, and I’ve been intimately involved in them since 1984.”
“I’ve got to give them credit, they have succeeded to a certain degree, of painting — with nothing but attack ads — Mitt Romney into something that’s not an acceptable alternative, because he can’t run on his record,” McCain continued.
But….but….if Governor Romney was really, really proud of his record, and it showed that he was actually better than President Obama, why wouldn’t he run on the strength of his resume? I mean, otherwise, all he has is attack ads that make up stuff about Obama’s record, right? After all, the “you didn’t built that” and the welfare work waiver things are patently bullshit attacks, so, um, what is the real complaint about negativity here? And yet, this is uniformly what the GOP is whining about. Like Reince Preibus with his “blood on Obama’s hands” nonsense, and the “stealing” of $700K (or was it $500K) in Medicare funds that had nothing to do with effecting anyone’s coverage.
As we all know, Romney really wished Obama would stop talking about his tax returns and start talking about issues. Well, I don’t know if the Obama campaign really should go that far, but in the interest of good will, they could preface the negative things they say about the Bully/Brown-noser ticket with something nice. You know, just a little compliment. Like saying, well, “I think you are a couple of very handsome guys….who want to destroy the middle class”. Or, you know, “Here are some fellows with great families…..but they have in for your grandparents.” “I’ve seen their front yards, and yes, the trees are the right height….but they’ll probably get us involved in a pointless war because they know fuck-all about foreign policy and all their advisers sound like John McCain.”
Chen took refuge at the embassy after escaping house arrest. He rejected a deal to keep him safely in China and now says he wants to leave the country. Chen has said he feels abandoned by the U.S. American officials have said they didn’t pressure him to leave.
“If these reports are true, this is a dark day for freedom and it’s a day of shame for the Obama administration,” Romney said. “We are a place of freedom, here and around the world, and we should stand up and defend freedom wherever it is under attack.”
The State Department said this week it conveyed no implicit threats and the issue of violence never came up in its discussions with Chen. They told him that China had agreed for him to reunite with his family if he left the U.S. Embassy.
Romney suggested U.S. officials were motivated by the politics of Chen’s case. He said U.S. officials “willingly or unwittingly communicated to Chen an implicit threat to his family” and accelerated negotiations for his safety because of scheduled high-level talks in the country with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and their Chinese counterparts.
And here’s what turns out to be some very sensible advice from Mr. Kristol:
The US says it expects China to allow prominent dissident Chen Guangcheng to travel abroad soon.
The US state department said Mr Chen had been offered a fellowship at an American university, and it would allow his wife and children to accompany him.
Earlier, Beijing said the blind activist could apply to study abroad - paving the way for a resolution to a tense diplomatic stand-off with the US.
So, basically, the outrage lasted about a week, would you say? At the embassy for about six days, then let out, then, voila! a perfectly reasonable and legal way for him to travel abroad appears! In real terms, this situation lasted an actual day for Mitt Romney, as in, he read a thing in the paper to criticize, pronounced it a “dark day for freedom and a day of shame” and now is just kind of looking awkward and clueless. Again.
The name of the SuperPAC supporting him, Restoring Our Freedom, kind of bothered me, but now it makes sense. I was always thinking, “Well, the future hasn’t happened yet, so, where did it go that it needs restoring?” But now I get it. Romney can’t win on his history, and he sucks at current events. So, the future it is!
The Romney campaign’s recent hire of Richard Grenell was met with a little controversy for a couple of reasons—for one, he had a bit of a mean sense of humor on Twitter (although that was easily deleted, if not entirely forgotten) and for another, he was openly gay. It looks like it was the latter detail that lead to Grenell’s resignation today, as Jennifer Rubin reports:
Richard Grenell, the openly gay spokesman recently hired to sharpen the foreign policy message of Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign, has resigned in the wake of a full-court press by anti-gay conservatives.
In a statement obtained by Right Turn, Grenell says:
I have decided to resign from the Romney campaign as the Foreign Policy and National Security Spokesman. While I welcomed the challenge to confront President Obama’s foreign policy failures and weak leadership on the world stage, my ability to speak clearly and forcefully on the issues has been greatly diminished by the hyper-partisan discussion of personal issues that sometimes comes from a presidential campaign. I want to thank Governor Romney for his belief in me and my abilities and his clear message to me that being openly gay was a non-issue for him and his team.
According to sources familiar with the situation, Grenell decided to resign after being kept under wraps during a time when national security issues, including the president’s ad concerning Osama bin Laden, had emerged front and center in the campaign.
This is really quite disappointing. The last week or so has focused attention on Romney’s foreign policy views, and Grenell might have been able to, well, do the thing he was presumably hired for and help the campaign craft a consistent message if the social conservatives could actually bring themselves to view a person based on his merits, not his identity, and if the Romney campaign wasn’t—how should I put this?
Trailer for the upcoming HBO film “Game Change,” which is based on the book by John Heilemann and Mark “Dick” Halperin:
From that snippet, it appears Ed Harris pulls off McCain’s trademark peevish, constipated affect to a tee. Julianne Moore perhaps lacks the vocal range to accurately mimic Palin’s home fire alarm-speaking voice, but in that clip at least, she nails the verbal cadence, and kudos must go to the hair, wardrobe and make-up peeps.
I read the book when it came out a couple of years ago. The most revealing insights it provided were perhaps unintentional, as it was a window into the obsessive tabloid mindset with which our stupid media has so debased coverage of US politics. But for that reason, it’ll probably make an entertaining movie.
Lady Lynn Forester de Rothschild, poster-snob for the cognac-swirling, naval-gazing, canapé-grazing, manor-dwelling, Trans-Atlantic swells, has an Opinion on Something. I was going to excerpt it. But I just don’t have the heart at Wine Thirty. Here’s a shorter instead:
Tea Party and OWS movements should exchange saliva. Capitalism, good! Obama, bad! Clinton restoration!
Look, I’m not judging you. However, it is high time you realize President Obama is not going to take you across his knees and spank you until your bottom goes purple.
I know that’s what you really want, and I’m sure you’re not the only ones who do. I mean, look at Orly Taitz. But your dream of being called a bad boy and sternly paddled by the President of the United States of America just isn’t meant to be.
Perhaps you didn’t think it was obvious. Maybe you thought your “Oo look. We’re talking tough to the President and standing up for America” schtick fooled anyone. Or at least your wives.
Sorry, I didn’t mean to laugh right in your face like that.
If it wasn’t obvious before, this Jobs Growth for Men bill you’ve been parading around has made it blatantly and abundantly clear.
Rumproast wasn’t the only blog to note that yesterday marked the anniversary of John McCain’s most damaging, cynical political act in a career notable for such degradations: Sarah Palin cult site Conservatives4Palin also noted that yesterday was the third anniversary of Snowflake Snooki’s debut speech in the blameless city of Dayton, Ohio.
One C4P operative even created the tag “Sarah Palin Day” to make a sort of official holiday of it, and the solemn event was marked there with several essays to sanctify the occasion. As an inveterate gawker at political silliness and a collector of mangled metaphors and stupefying similes, I was in hog heaven perusing the C4P offerings, which included an essay entitled “Why I’m Still Mad About 2008.” It contained this odd sentence:
Blaming Sarah Palin for blowing it in 2008, is like blaming your dog for not meowing loud enough.
Oookay then. Aside from a few grammatical quibbles, I’m not sure we can improve on that sentence, so let’s just let it stand in all its glory. The end.
Now that the Libyan “squirmish” she opposed has resulted in the apparent ouster of Moammar Gadhafi, America’s Backseat Driver™ has issued some helpful tips on handling the aftermath via Facebook:
First, the White House needs to avoid triumphalism.
Har-dee-fucking-har-har! THIS White House always avoids triumphalism. It’s you Republican jackasses who should have “Avoid Triumphalism” tattooed on your goddamned foreheads.
Second, we must be very concerned about the future government that will emerge to take Gaddafi’s place… We should work through diplomatic means to help those who want democracy to come out on top.
Ya think? I’m sure Hillary is on it, hon.
That said, we should not commit U.S. troops or military assets to serve as peacekeepers or perform humanitarian missions or nation-building in Libya. Our military is already over-committed and strained, and a vaguely designed mission can be the first step toward a quagmire.
A “quagmire” is what the president has thus far avoided in Libya, chiefly by ignoring the advice of the neocon assholes in the Republican Party like your former running mate.
Finally, we must make sure that terrorist groups don’t try to co-opt the revolution, as Al Qaeda is trying to do in Syria. We should continue to use our intelligence assets to monitor the situation in Libya to ensure that potentially dangerous weapons are secured, and that terrorist organizations such as Al Qaeda don’t gain a foothold in Libya.
I’m betting Mssrs. Petraeus, Panetta and Morell are way ahead of you, Snowflake Snooki. Along with every other sentient creature on the planet.
People of Libya, be vigilant. May this opportunity be used to build a free and peaceful country.
Don’t the people of Libya have enough worries without being lectured by this raving, egocentric twit? Yep. All of us have, come to think of it.
Now that the Gaddafi regime, which is older than Jennifer Aniston, appears to be collapsing, it’ll be fascinating to watch the post-collapse spin, given the way the conflict was framed by US politicians. Those more sympathetic toward the president tended to describe NATO’s involvement as an “intervention,” as if it featured family members surprising Libya in a room and tearfully voicing their concerns about its self-destructive behavior.
The Republicans, however, have insisted all along that it was a “war,” or, more specifically, “Obama’s war.” Modern-day Republicans are wondrously fond of war, but they made an exception for “Obama’s war.” Even the most hawkish donned love beads and headbands and created colorful “Make Love, Not War” posters to carry as they converged on the Capitol in a massive anti-war demonstration.
Why would Salon find the political opinions of bitter PUMA loser Lady Lynn Forester de Rothschild relevant? Well, she can write a big fat check, and…that’s pretty much the beginning and end of her political influence.
Lady Lynn, a jet-setting Hillary Clinton 2008 campaign bundler who ostentatiously threw her support to the McCain-Palin ticket when the peasants in the Democratic Party failed to choose her preferred nominee, once made a laughingstock of herself by issuing forth from Ascott House to call son-of-a-single-mom Barack Obama an “elitist.”
Now she provides wildly incoherent and contradictory reasons for supporting Republican Jon Huntsman against the president in 2012, including that President Obama failed to enact single-payer healthcare and is simultaneously hostile to business and the benefactor of the insurance industry. Her ultimate conclusion:
The man is lost. The man is a loser. The man is not listening to people who might help him. [Like Lady Lynn?—ed.]
There are legitimate grounds on which to criticize the president. But Lady Lynn, who backed two candidates who came up short against Mr. Obama and is currently backing a man who has approximately zero chance of winning his party’s nomination, should definitely avoid calling anyone else a “loser.”
John McCain, who is a “maverick” on the planet where “maverick” is synonymous with “weather vane,” sensed a shift in the wind and took to the Senate floor to denounce the “tea-party Hobbits” who are threatening to toss our economy into the fires of Mount Doom:
The idea seems to be that if the House GOP refuses to raise the debt ceiling, a default crisis or gradual government shutdown will ensue, and the public will turn en masse against . . . Barack Obama. The Republican House that failed to raise the debt ceiling would somehow escape all blame. Then Democrats would have no choice but to pass a balanced-budget amendment and reform entitlements, and the tea-party Hobbits could return to Middle Earth having defeated Mordor.
This is the kind of crack political thinking that turned Sharron Angle and Christine O’Donnell into GOP Senate nominees. The reality is that the debt limit will be raised one way or another, and the only issue now is with how much fiscal reform and what political fallout.
Of course, McCain neglected to mention that he attempted to foist Angle the Crackpot Hobbit off on America by campaigning for her. Nor did he allude to the fact that he elevated the Queen of the Teatards to the national stage by choosing Quitting Bull as his running mate in 2008.
Dear Supreme Ruler of the Planet of the Cream Cheese People:
Oh, I get it. Alien-sisters Cindy McCain and Callista Gingrich were causing trouble on your planet, so you decided you’d just dump them here. Well, let me tell you something, Your Excellency: Earth is not your dumping ground!
While we do appreciate the consideration you showed by discontinuing the sisters’ ability to shoot death-beams from their eyes prior to their exile, the point remains: Earth is not your dumping ground!
The sisters may be unable to burn Washington DC to the ground like they torched your capitol city of Phillyopolis, but they’re still intent on world dominion. With their death-beam capabilities neutralized, they’ve turned to Republican politics instead, hooking up with ambitious, loathsome white-haired toads to get their mitts on the White House and the planet’s most fearsome nuclear arsenal.