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Sunday, December 20, 2009

December Rambling

I've become fascinated with the fascination over Joe Lieberman re: the health care debate. This example from a New York Times colummnist is a perfectly good example: Let us contemplate the badness of Joe Lieberman.

Who would have thought that this holiday season we’d be obsessed with the senator from Connecticut?


I guess it's the fact that people seem surprised by his intransigence, that it is he, rather than 40 Republicans in the Senate holding bill hostage. I am reminded that he is a DINO (Democrat In Name Only). He got all "mavericky" by supported his "good friend" John McCain over the Democratic nominee last year. In 2006, Connecticut Democrats realized that he was no Democrat and booted him from the ticket when he was running for re-election. He ran and won as a Liebermanist.

Oh, and re: those from the GOP: Republicans, religion and the triumph of unreason: How do they train themselves to be so impervious to reality? This came out in August, but is no less true today for that.

But as Paul Krugman said: A message to progressives: By all means, hang Senator Joe Lieberman in effigy. Declare that you’re disappointed in and/or disgusted with President Obama. Demand a change in Senate rules that, combined with the Republican strategy of total obstructionism, are in the process of making America ungovernable. Butut in his defense of the bill on the table, he says:

Bear in mind also the lessons of history: social insurance programs tend to start out highly imperfect and incomplete, but get better and more comprehensive as the years go by. Thus Social Security originally had huge gaps in coverage — and a majority of African-Americans, in particular, fell through those gaps. But it was improved over time, and it’s now the bedrock of retirement stability for the vast majority of Americans.

Look, I understand the anger here: supporting this weakened bill feels like giving in to blackmail — because it is. Or to use an even more accurate metaphor suggested by Ezra Klein of The Washington Post, we’re paying a ransom to hostage-takers. Some of us, including a majority of senators, really, really want to cover the uninsured; but to make that happen we need the votes of a handful of senators who see failure of reform as an acceptable outcome, and demand a steep price for their support.


At the same time, I was surprised by the attack by Mike Madden on Keith Olbermann's announced intent of civil disobedience: Wrong, Keith: Olbermann's prescription for protesting the insurance mandate -- don't buy insurance -- is nuts. I think these fights are almost always taken on at multiple levels. So if a bill is passed, and a number of people REFUSE on conscience, to abide by said law, sometimes - sometimes - the laws get changed.
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And speaking of laws DC Council Passes Gay Marriage Bill; On to Mayor for Signature. Interesting that Congress - yes, the U.S. Congress - gets final say in this matter. I keep forgetting that the District of Columbia is a protectorate of the United States. But, from the tone of this and other stories I've read, it appears that the Democrats in Congress have enough political muscle to pass this; I'll wait until the actual vote, thank you.
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The 10 Best Web Sites of the Decade
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For those who follow movies, Box Office Mojo has production cost, foreign & domestic box office, and DVD sales in the initial period.
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The resurrection of Josie and the Pussycats?
ROG

1 comment:

Arthur (AmeriNZ) said...

The problem with Krugman's admonition is that the Senate bill is no "social insurance program"—far from it. With a conservative majority in the Senate, though, it's probably the best there can be.

As for DC, remember that Congress doesn't have to vote on anything. It has 30 Congressional business days to veto the law, but there's no requirement that they even consider doing so. However, technically, since DC is a mere colony, Congress can vote to overturn it at any time, a tactic dead Jesse Helms used to use all the time.