When Middle Schoolers Serve in Congress

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The 2010 election wave has unfortunately swept in a group of lawmakers that apparently have the maturity of twelve year old children.  The most powerful country in the world is being held hostage by a minority group comprised of unyielding fanatics who have no respect for compromise in government.  Nor do the fanatics and bullies care what most people want.

I guess this is what can happen when corporate billionaires can and will purchase the elections of its chosen hired hands.

As we are all acutely aware, this sort of pay to play politics has thrived and flourished in Rick Perry's Texas for ten long years.  

But I digress.

On Friday evening just minutes before midnight the Democrats and Republicans in the U.S. Congress managed to cobble together a desperate last minute effort to agree on spending cuts in the budget in order to avoid a government shut down. The Tea Party wing of the GOP is apparently not very happy about the compromise at all, mostly because Tea Party Republicans seem to be incapable of understanding the basic tenets implicit in the responsibility ones assumes when one is elected into office. In other words the Tea Publicans did not get the message that Washington no longer does it is my way or the highway politics anymore. That went out with the W. Bush era after its Administration drove our nation into a financial hell hole.

Somehow Tea Publican members of Congress seem to think their legislative ideological and intrinsically reckless decisions have absolutely no impact on the American people at all.  

Corrupting federal budget proposals with irrelevant right wing ideological riders that include 35 year old culture war hate baggage is a dumb and very unprincipled idea.    

Of course the GOP and its Tea Party people really don't care much about governing responsibly on behalf of the the people. Over the past few months we have learned that most are self serving cowards who serve an ideology that is both ludicrous and cruel.

It's unclear where the adults are, but they don't seem to be in Washington. Beyond the malice of the threat to shut down the federal government, averted only at the last minute on Friday night, it's painful how vapid the discourse is and how incompetent and cowardly our leaders have proved to be.

Republicans say they're trying to curb government spending and rescue the economy – but they threatened to shut down the government, even though that would have been both expensive and damaging to our economy.

The shutdowns in late 1995 and early 1996 cost the federal government more than $1.4 billion, the Office of Management and Budget reported at the time. Much of that sum was for salaries repaid afterward for work that employees never did because they were on furlough. There were also lost fees at national parks and museums: tigers must be fed at the zoo, even if nobody is paying to see them.

It's particularly reckless and callous to threaten a shutdown when the economy is already anemic. Among the federal workers and contractors potentially losing paychecks, some would miss payments on their homes, their credit cards or their children's college tuition.

The GOP showed its irresponsible and extremist posturing during the last Democratic Presidency and they are playing the same old re-run today. I guess the radical fanatics on the right are flat out of ideas and principles save tax cuts for billionaires, little if any government and no regulation or oversight.    

If the federal government had shut down, as the Tea Publicans had vehemently hoped it would, what would have happened to ordinary working Americans?  How would such a shut down impact our troops? Did the Tea Publicans think the consequences through at all? If they did the job killers sent a loud and clear message.  We don't care.  

Our soldiers fight without pay.

Small businesses waiting on loans to open or expand won't get them.

Thousands of workers, supporting families of their own, are suddenly sent home without a paycheck.

Home sales will stop for those awaiting FHA loans.

Passport processing will be held up. Those who have purchased non-refundable tickets will be out of luck.

Student loans will be held up indefinitely.

Meanwhile the useless and mean-spirited members of Congress who would have been responsible for the above would have been paid for not working on behalf of the people they are supposed to serve.

We must ask ourselves what members of Congress work for us and what members work for themselves?

John Boehner and his Tea Publicans. What they do. Who they enable.

The consequences of GOP embraced trickle down economics (supply side voodoo), deregulation and little if any viable government oversight.  

On the environment and the destruction of property and the health of the victims in the neighborhoods of hydraulic fracturing.

President Obama. Despite GOP obstruction, stalling tactics and filibuster the President has a record of remarkable accomplishments 2008-2010.

Paul Ryan and Eric Cantor, on the other hand have only two major accomplishments in mind.  Perpetual tax cuts for billionaires and businesses while cutting social safety nets out from under the non wealthy who need them the most.

Fortunately there is an alternative to the ludicrous and cruel motives of Paul Ryan and Eric Cantor. In addition, their radical agenda that is killing jobs is also killing futures, killing opportunities and putting the lives of the aged and sick in great jeopardy.  

Among the key points: Plouffe reiterated Obama's support for ending the Bush tax cuts on the wealthy; he said the Ryan fiscal plan is dead on arrival because it cuts key priorities and would increase health care costs to seniors down the line; that Obama's approach to reducing health care costs would be to reform the system rather than cut benefits; and that while he was willing to discuss ways to strengthen Social Security, he did not believe Social Security was a long-term driver of the nation's debt

If the extremist Tea Publicans were to take the majority again we can rest assured that they would usher in another wrecking crew of middle schoolers who would have absolutely no problem with dismantling the core foundation of our democratic Republic.  Perhaps we should rename this crew the new American Taliban.  



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