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poll on election priorities

National Journal:

Obama was clearly most incensed, however, by recent pledges from Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., to block any nomination of U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice as secretary of State because of her comments after an attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, that left four Americans dead. McCain has zeroed in on Rice’s contention five days after the attack that the violence resulted from a “spontaneous demonstration” over an anti-Muslim film, as opposed to a premeditated terrorist attack. He has called that characterization either a Watergate-style cover-up or “the worst kind of incompetence.”
Bitter John McCain still can't get over losing, but he's even more pissed that Obama's foreign policy was more sophisticated, nuanced, and just plain better than his own (Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb bomb Iran). Lindsay Graham is different... he'll be reasonable on immigration, but he's scared to death of a Republican primary and relishes the controversy. And no, what they say is not as important as what the president says, even if McCain goes on MTP again. Meanwhile, Republicans have nothing else to talk about that'll get (or that they want to get) press coverage.

National Journal:

The outline of an immigration deal is already there. It involves a path to citizenship for undocumented workers and tightened restrictions on the border and in the workplace so that it will be harder for illegal immigrants to live in the United States and find work.

Now all that is needed is the coalition that supports it. That’s happening too. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., who crafted similar legislation in 2006 with Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., tweeted after the election, “I agree with calls for comprehensive immigration reform.” Senator-elect Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., worked on similar legislation in the House. Both McCain and Flake rejected legalization of illegal immigrants in the 2010 tea party wave, but they have said they did so because it was not politically viable. Now it is.

Ruth Marcus:
The president’s mind-set as the “fiscal cliff” approaches is far feistier. He won reelection in a campaign that centered on higher taxes for the wealthy. Even more, in the White House view, the hazard of cliff-jumping is way less than the danger of ceiling-hitting.

So rather than extend the Bush tax cuts for higher-income taxpayers, the president is willing to risk another recession — a move he would blame, and with good reason, on Republican intransigence.

EJ Dionne:
Just as important, the voters repudiated the very worst aspects of post-Bush conservatism: its harsh tone toward those in need, its doctrinaire inflexibility on taxes, its inclination toward extreme pronouncements on social issues, and its hard anti-government rhetoric that ignored the pragmatic attitude of the electorate’s great middle about what the public sector can and can’t do. If conservatives are at all reflective, we should be in for a slightly less rancid and divisive debate over the next couple of years.

Yet Obama and his party need to understand that running a majority coalition is difficult. It involves dealing with tensions that inevitably arise in a broad alliance. Democrats won because of huge margins among African Americans, Latinos and Asian Americans, but also because of a solid white working-class vote in states such as Ohio, Michigan and Pennsylvania, particularly from union members. Obama needs to think about economic policies that deliver benefits across this wide spectrum of less well-to-do Americans. A longing for balanced budgets is not what drove these voters to the polls.

Richard A. Arenberg, filibuster defender:
The “constitutional option” could be accomplished in January (or, really, any time) if the Senate’s presiding officer decides to ignore the rules and the advice of the parliamentarian — which presiding officers usually rely upon — and declares that debate can be ended by majority vote. Republicans would appeal, but if 51 Democrats hold the line they can table the appeal, which would allow the ruling to stand as the new precedent of the Senate.

No one should be fooled. Once the majority can change the rules by majority vote, the Senate will soon be like the House, where the majority doesn’t consult the minority but simply controls the process. Gone would be the Senate’s historic protection of the minority’s right to speak and amend. In the House, the majority tightly controls which bills will be considered; what amendments, if any, will be in order; how much time is allotted for debate; and when and under what rules votes occur. Often, no amendments are permitted.

Orrin H Pilkey on rational home-building:
Hurricane Sandy’s immense power, which destroyed or damaged thousands of homes, actually pushed the footprints of the barrier islands along the South Shore of Long Island and the Jersey Shore landward as the storm carried precious beach sand out to deep waters or swept it across the islands. This process of barrier-island migration toward the mainland has gone on for 10,000 years.

Yet there is already a push to rebuild homes close to the beach and bring back the shorelines to where they were. The federal government encourages this: there will be billions available to replace roads, pipelines and other infrastructure and to clean up storm debris, provide security and emergency housing. Claims to the National Flood Insurance Program could reach $7 billion. And the Army Corps of Engineers will be ready to mobilize its sand-pumping dredges, dump trucks and bulldozers to rebuild beaches washed away time and again.

Nathaniel Persily:
Does the re-election of the first black president mean the Voting Rights Act of 1965 is unnecessary and perhaps unconstitutional? The Supreme Court’s decision last week to consider a constitutional challenge to a key section of the act suggests that a perverse outcome of the 2012 campaign may be that President Obama’s victory spells doom for the civil rights law most responsible for African-American enfranchisement.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Good morning mr pundit dude (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Morgan Sandlin, KibbutzAmiad, thomask

    I wish I had slept last night.

    Too busy yelling at conservatives on the interwebz.

    "The president was elected on the basis that he was not Romney and that Romney was a poopy-head and you should vote against Romney" -Grover Norquist

    by Wolfox on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:12:32 AM PST

  •  Only thing I ever agreed with Rove about... (6+ / 0-)

    ....was that McCain was off his rocker.

    Show us your tax returns !!!!!!

    by Bush Bites on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:16:51 AM PST

  •  And doesn't this say everything about McCain. (14+ / 0-)

    Both McCain and Flake rejected legalization of illegal immigrants in the 2010 tea party wave, but they have said they did so because it was not politically viable. Now it is.

    McCain has become just a shell of a man driven only by the motivation of "Look at me".

    Wonders are many, but none so wonderful as man.

    by Morgan Sandlin on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:16:56 AM PST

    •  I think some of this is pure political (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Amber6541

      calculation on both of them

      I'm not sure how well Flake did with latinos but I doubt it was well and I doubt McCain wants to face 2014 with angry latinos, then again he might just be primaried....

  •  Me Pundit (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541

    I think the issues of women's rights, LGBT rights, voting rights will not be immune from assault until they are secured both at a federal level, as well as state-by-state.  

    This will require an energized electorate, and such an electorate can only be favorable for Democrats.

    •  I suggest that the reason rests with (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Amber6541, Larsstephens

      incompetents, who find it necessary to target some group with aggressive exclusion in order to validate their claim to being obeyed and supported, even though they are incapable of contributing anything of value to society.
      What we perhaps need to do is persuade these people that it is not necessary to make a nuisance of themselves or threaten mayhem -- that they will be provisioned, regardless, though perhaps not at the level to which they have been accustomed and not with the air of defference they have come to expect. They can have a free lunch, but they can't choose the menu and they can't have it served on gold plates.

      We organize governments to provide benefits and prevent abuse.

      by hannah on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:02:48 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I'd seriously consider helping a teabagger... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TFinSF

    ...challenge Mizz Lindsey.

    Show us your tax returns !!!!!!

    by Bush Bites on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:19:05 AM PST

    •  Tea Party adherents realize there is a coercive (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      skohayes, Amber6541, Laconic Lib

      force afoot in the land. What they are confused about is the source. They are still firmly convinced that the elected royal -- i.e. the executive -- is in charge. They still haven't cottoned to the fact that the Congress controls the money and uses the threat of withholding or paying bribes to their corporate supporters in order to keep themselves in power. As long as there was still an abundance of natural resources to dole out for exploitation via:

      Water rights
      Mining rights
      Drilling rights
      Fishing rights
      Logging rights
      Hunting rights
      Landing rights
      etc.

      And the electorate was restricted to mostly adult Caucasian males and the women they control, not only were human rights not a concern, but power could be exercised by simply depriving the underclass of access to sustenance. People deprived of land had to work for someone else.
      Now that everyone has been hooked on using money, the deprivation is easier. Power can be exercised by depriving the indigent of access to money. Unfortunately, pension payments, health care and welfare payments are undermining the exercise of power. How can man be forced to work, if his access to food and shelter isn't threatened?

      We organize governments to provide benefits and prevent abuse.

      by hannah on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:48:57 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm pretty sure... (0+ / 0-)

        that you are going to start talking about the proletariat and such, and it is too early in the morning.

        "The president was elected on the basis that he was not Romney and that Romney was a poopy-head and you should vote against Romney" -Grover Norquist

        by Wolfox on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:22:26 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I never write about the proletariat. (0+ / 0-)

          It is not a word I use.  I am not a groupist, although I do appreciate that humans come together and associate in groups to accomplish common purposes.
          There is a difference between identifying individuals by their associates and defining association in terms of functions. Functions are the focus of people who want to do things; associates are people who just want to be a part of some group, just to be.

          We organize governments to provide benefits and prevent abuse.

          by hannah on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 07:11:56 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  SO...when you say that, do you remember that the (0+ / 0-)

        last two years of the so-called Bush administration were actually the Reid-Pelosi administration?

        Which would be when the economyu took a nose dive, by the way.

        LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

        by dinotrac on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:36:02 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I know you aren't implying (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Laconic Lib

          that because Reid and Pelosi were the majority leaders in the House and Senate starting in January of 2007, the economy took a nosedive?

          “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

          by skohayes on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:42:03 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Not at all. But...we keep seeing Bush get all (0+ / 0-)

            the 'credit' for the economy, even thought Democrats held a lot of the power for the first two and last two years of his administration -- and for the 8 years prior. It was, after all President Clinton who signed the repeal of

            Might as well issue a reminder.

            LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

            by dinotrac on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 06:23:26 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Well, two wars on Chinese credit card (0+ / 0-)

              as well as a budget surplus expected to last ten years killed in one fell swoop of tax cuts, as well as unfunded mandates like NCLB and Medicare Part D might have something to do with that, don't you think?
              And I assume you're referring to Clinton repealing Glass Steagal, except that allowing banks to underwrite mortgage securities, sell insurance and real estate had started under the Reagan administration, way back in 1987.

              On October 13, 1999, the Federal Reserve and Treasury Department agreed that direct subsidiaries of national banks (“financial subsidiaries”) could conduct securities activities, but that bank holding companies would need to engage in merchant banking, insurance, and real estate development activities through holding company, not bank, subsidiaries.[239] On October 22, 1999, Senator Gramm and the Clinton Administration agreed a bank holding company could only become a “financial holding company” (and thereby enjoy the new authority to affiliate with insurance and securities firms) if all its bank subsidiaries had at least a “satisfactory” CRA rating.[240]

              After these compromises, a joint Senate and House Conference Committee reported out a final version of S. 900 that was passed on November 4, 1999, by the House in a vote of 362-57 and by the Senate in a vote of 90-8. President Clinton signed the bill into law on November 12, 1999, as the Gramm–Leach–Bliley Financial Modernization Act of 1999 (GLBA).[241]

              http://en.wikipedia.org/...

              “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

              by skohayes on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 07:05:25 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  The federal government can issue an infinite (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Larsstephens

                of money, however much we need to mediate exchange and trade with figments of the imagination that are certified as authentic. Think of the issuance of official IOUs as comparable to issuing marriage certificates. A marriage is no less a real commitment without a certificate, but public and official recognition is worth something. Ditto for dollars. They are certificates of obligation. Nothing more. We could each issue our own IOUs, but strangers would be reluctant to credit them. Official certificates of value work better.
                Why we let banksters play middleman and decide who gets to use them and who doesn't is another question. Of course, once upon a time, we also let the written word, another figment of the imagination, be restricted to use by scribes.
                Humans are inventive and restrictive. I suspect these characteristics are usually not found in the same individual.

                We organize governments to provide benefits and prevent abuse.

                by hannah on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 07:24:13 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  Without question -- but (0+ / 0-)

                Bush did not come into a Republican Congress, and Democrats played along.  That was the root of the whole "I was against it before I was for it" or however that went in the 2004 campaign.

                Which brings up a point:

                I've seen John Kerry's name floated as a potential Secy of State, but he was one of the Senators who voted for the Iraq war.

                His position will have to be that he agreed to go to war or that the war wasn't important enough to warrant due diligence on his part, leading to his being duped by the not-very-formidable  Bush.  Either way, Kerry is an intellectual lightweight on a par with Bush.  I hope those stories are just noise.

                LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                by dinotrac on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 07:32:49 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  Clinton brought down the final wall (0+ / 0-)

                LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                by dinotrac on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 07:38:44 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

          •  I think he's implying (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            skohayes, Laconic Lib

            That the razor thin majority (if you count Lieberman) that the Democrats had should have allowed them to steamroll all opposition and overcome every obstruction in implementing their agenda.

            The conservative line is that we had a super-majority but squandered that power and thus failed. Almost as if we didn't need their cooperation. (May it become so in two years.)

        •  I actually agree that the government should (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Larsstephens

          not be involved in managing the economy. However, the fact is that throughout the history of the United States, as well as during the colonial era, the coercive powers of the state have been used to advantage commercial or merchantile interests to the detriment of the population that actually produces the material substances we need to thrive.
          Some enterprise is too complex to be carried out by individuals or family groups. So, it makes sense to organize larger bodies to carry out large projects (building the pyramids or the Aswan dam or Hoover dam come to mind), and there really isn't any practical reason why groups that come together on the basis of purchased membership (stock companies) are better suited to carry out big enterprise than groups that happen to have located in georgraphic proximity to each other (residents of political jurisdictions). I used to think it made sense to assign functions on the basis of whether the goods and services produced by the groups are welcome by the recipients as pure benefits or respond to an identified need most people would rather not have. On that basis, I'd assign fire suppressions, flood controls, defense and incarceration to public bodies. Also, public education on the elementary level because juveniles and self-centered parents don't really appreciate education that serves a larger social purpose. Besides that, it is difficult to measure the success of programs that deal with disutilities, so increasing profits doesn't work at all. (Successful medical intervention, for example, means the recipient needs no more and the profit motive leads to the provision of care the individual doesn't actually need because the provider wants to keep the patient coming back).
          More recently, considering the continuation of the myth of autonomous endeavor free from all governmental assistance, I'm more inclined to argue that we should just be honest and, if public resources are to be doled out, we should insist on imposing standards of how and when and for what purpose they are used and be done with the farce. Letting the ex-men exploit to their heart's content has not served us well because they have proved themselves ready to sell us all down the river. We have, probably inadvertently, nurtured a cadre of middlemen, who stand with their hand out like highwaymen, and have given in to their demands, without getting any benefit for ourselves. The United States have been held hostage by middlemen, the same type of people, I would suggest, as those that made fortunes shipping captives from Africa to the Americas for pieces of silver and gold. Middlemen, profiteers from the middle passage.

          I say "inadvertent" because, for some reason, their role has gone largely unnoticed in theoretical considerations of economic behavior. While they obviously sit at the intersection of producers and consumers, their predations are not accounted for, even now that we count just about everything. Maybe it's because some people just don't count -- don't like numbers, or facts.

          We organize governments to provide benefits and prevent abuse.

          by hannah on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 07:03:26 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  same here - Lindsey Graham is Whiner-in-Chief (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      spooks51

      he used to be occasionally reasonable.  Now he is afraid of his shadow, like fellow shrinking Senators Hatch and McCain.  All 3 are diminished shadows of their former selves.

  •  reality on the filibuster is that the minority (10+ / 0-)

    doesnt have to consult the majority. Which strikes me as somewhat worse.   Back in the day when senators actually cared about comity, it may have been different.  But the Rs think like House members now. If some side of a partisan divide has to be empowered, let it be the majority side.

    One piece of free advice to the GOP: Drop the culture wars, explicitly.

    by Inland on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:20:13 AM PST

  •  So the guy (6+ / 0-)

    whose immigration policy when he ran for president began and ended with "build the dang fence" is now meant to be taken seriously on this any subject?

    ....no longer in SF.... -9.00, -7.38

    by TFinSF on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:20:34 AM PST

  •  "If" John McCain goes on MTP again? (10+ / 0-)

    Shirley you meant "when" instead. McCain has something like 65 guest appearances on that show.

    The only reason he's not on this week is that his BFF Lindsey Graham is on to discuss Libya.

  •  Someone should ask McCain why should we care about (20+ / 0-)

    the opinion of the loser who picked Palin as VP?

    "Rick Perry talks a lot and he's not very bright. And that's a combination I like in Republicans." --- James Carville

    by LaurenMonica on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:23:25 AM PST

  •  Impeachment Watch (8+ / 0-)

    Just watched McCain bloviating to Matt Lauer; coming down heavy on the charge that the President lied, that there has been a cover up, yadda yadda yadda.

    Give Lauer credit for bringing up Condoleeza Rice lying to Congress about weapons of Mass Destruction. McCain says that's different because every intelligence agency in the world thought there were WMDs. McCain is having a sad because four Americans died who didn't have to.

    Right. Whose party cut State's budget for security? Whose party (and President) covered up months of warnings about an imminent terror attack on the U.S.? Whose party sent thousands of Americans (and allies) into a war of choice to be killed or wounded in Iraq?

    You know, the Democrats blew a huge opportunity to do some national housecleaning and reconciliation when they wasted two years of Congressional control and didn't have hearings on what happened in the previous 8 years.

    It's obvious the Republicans are pulling out the old playbook they used to make Bill Clinton's second term hell: create a scandal, ride it for all it's worth, and let the country go to hell while they obstruct everything.

    Mr. President? This is what 4 years of Mr. Nice Guy have got you. Time for serious hardball - they're at war with you whether you want to recognize it or not.

    "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

    by xaxnar on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:26:29 AM PST

    •  There is no evidence that Obama lied (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      skohayes, xaxnar, askew

      and everybody knows it.  McCain is just bloviating and everybody knows it.

      Impeachment attempt means that the Republican party will never carry a single African-American or Latino vote in decades to come.  

      President Obama, January 9, 2012: "Change is hard, but it is possible. I've Seen it. I've Lived it."

      by Drdemocrat on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:09:20 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  And they have cared up to this point? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        xaxnar
        Impeachment attempt means that the Republican party will never carry a single African-American or Latino vote in decades to come.  
        They figure that as long as they get elected to state houses they can impede, obstruct and plain old forge reasons to keep the black and latino vote down.

        American Television is a vast sea of stupid. -xxdr zombiexx

        by glitterscale on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 06:55:33 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  McCain is lying about WMDs. There was plenty (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      skohayes, xaxnar, tb mare, askew, Laconic Lib

      of evidence in the CIA that there was no WMDs.

      President Obama, January 9, 2012: "Change is hard, but it is possible. I've Seen it. I've Lived it."

      by Drdemocrat on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:10:09 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Anyone else notice that Obama's (6+ / 0-)

    "honeymoon" has apparently lasted for less than a week?

    I seem to recall a far longer allowance for previous Presidents.

  •  Turnout (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dalearden1942, spooks51

    Less than 50% of eligible voters voted in 2012.  Democrats need to set a goal of 80% turnout.

  •  The balanced budget is a gimmick. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skohayes, Laconic Lib

    It was a gimmick when Gore mattered about it and it is a gimmick now that Republicans are nattering about it. At least, that is, on the federal level. States and local governments are bound by the requirement to make them subservient to monied interests. It is effective on that level because those political jurisdictions don't issue their own currency. Equitable revenue sharing by the federal government is resisted because it would deprive the banksters of their steady trickle of dividends, unearned income that sustains our leisure class.
    I should note that, IMHO, the problem with the leisure class isn't their indolence, but their insistence on defining what those who support them should produce. Our indolents not only want a free lunch; they want to decide what the chef cooks and who else gets to eat.

    We organize governments to provide benefits and prevent abuse.

    by hannah on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:32:33 AM PST

  •  End the painless filibuster (6+ / 0-)

    The Senate values tradition, perhaps more than it should.  Reid does not need to change the rules so that a majority vote is all that is needed to end debate.  The Senate should end the practice of allowing a Senator to filibuster by raising a finger.  If a Senator wants to filibuster then get up and start reading the phone book.  Stop the business of the Senate.  We would see fewer filibusters, and only related to issues of real significance.

    I wonder if Reid will do even that much.  I am afraid that he will end the secret hold on nomination and leave it go at that.

    A new birth of freedom..

    by docterry on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:32:58 AM PST

    •  It needs to be much more than that. (5+ / 0-)

      They'll just read redstate articles these days.

      No, they need to make it 40 votes to affirm a filibuster instead of 60 to break one, and let whoever is holding the gavel call for reaffirmation at any time. This let's the minority filibuster if they think it's important, but theyll need 40 in the chambers at all times. No fundraising. No parties. No comfortable beds unless the leader wants to let them have them.

      I want a painful filibuster, so it's only used in important situations.

      This also gives the majority the option to play nice if the opposition is playing nice, but let's them be brutal if they're being obstructionist abusers.

      •  From what I read a few months back (0+ / 0-)

        they were talking about more votes being needed to maintain the filibuster over a period of time.
        Say the minority has 40 votes, a day later they would bring up the bill again and it would require (random number here) 45 votes to maintain. 12 hours later, it would require 50 votes.
        Something along those lines anyway.

        “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

        by skohayes on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:47:18 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  "bitter John McCain" (8+ / 0-)

    says it all.  Publicly, this guy has just degenerated into a mean old man. Pathetic.

    Victory is sweet-November 6, 2012

    by al23 on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:33:10 AM PST

  •  Arenberg is living in the past. What we have (5+ / 0-)

    now is a tyranny of the Minority in the Senate.  Actually what we have in Congress is a tyranny by Republicans, the majority in the House and the minority in the Senate.  Past time to end that.  Sorry Richard the filibuster has got to go.

    Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a Republican. But I repeat myself. Harry Truman

    by ratcityreprobate on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:34:55 AM PST

    •  So what if the Senate runs like the House? (7+ / 0-)

      I really don't understand why people have a problem with that. It was never designed by the founders to be the place where legislation goes to die. It was designed to be a legislative check on the President and on the House.

      But right now, it isn't even serving that role. It is simply a place where nothing except the most mundane garbage ever happens. Thus we get bad legislation and bad governance.

      If we want a government that functions, be it liberal or conservative or whatever, it has to actually be able to function. The filibuster has got to go.

  •  The Ball is in their court (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dalearden1942, skohayes, Laconic Lib

    The fiscal cliff nonsense would be amusing to watch if it weren't for the unemployed out there at risk of losing their benefits. Having them secured further funding would go a long way to easing their burden in the coming quarter.

    The way it looks for the GOP vs. Obama tennis match is that Obama is playing Singles while the GOP think it's a doubles match and they can't agree who gets to hit the ball. Just do something will you morons!

    "I think it's the duty of the comedian to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately." -- George Carlin, Satirical Comic,(1937-2008)

    by Wynter on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:34:59 AM PST

  •  Persily is confused. (5+ / 0-)

    Persily must be confusing the Voting Rights Act with Affirmative Action. Because I don't see the fact that we have more minorities voting as being some indicator that the South has given up on disenfranchising them from going to the polls. The Voting Rights act is meant to limit the abuse going on especially today against the minorities in those states. Any change in that act would be better to "strengthen" it instead of overturning it.

    The only reason we would even think about overturning the act would be if the Southern States finally got religion, so to speak.

    "I think it's the duty of the comedian to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately." -- George Carlin, Satirical Comic,(1937-2008)

    by Wynter on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:39:44 AM PST

    •  I think we saw (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wintergreen8694, Mistral Wind

      from the states' actions to limit early voting (Ohio), purge voters illegally (and under the table in the case of Florida) or just not count the votes at all (see Latino provisional ballots, Arizona), that these laws are needed and should perhaps be extended to other states.
      Of course, CJ Roberts has expressed disagreement with these laws and welcomes a review, so I think we can all see how this is going to turn out.

      “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

      by skohayes on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:52:43 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  SCOTUS preparing to FUBAR (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        skohayes

        Yep, it looks like Roberts is probably going to claim it's going against the constitution in some manner thus throwing it back at Congress to revamp it so that it's fixed.

        Like THAT would ever happen in CONGRESS!
        They only know how to screw things up and filibuster.

        "I think it's the duty of the comedian to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately." -- George Carlin, Satirical Comic,(1937-2008)

        by Wynter on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 06:42:13 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Filibuster Reform (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    One Opinion

    This is an example of why one of the most useful reforms would be to require somebody to actually hold the floor, in front of cameras broadcasting the show and providing public-domain footage usable for opposition ads, mocking remixes, etc. In this particular case, it makes McCain and Graham particularly and the GOP in general own the optics of "old white guy yells out cloud to keep one of Those People out of the insider's club".

    On the Internet, nobody knows if you're a dog... but everybody knows if you're a jackass.

    by stevemb on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:44:40 AM PST

  •  Lawrence O'Donnell (5+ / 0-)

    First heard it from him, and also this morning on BP Show: The attack on Susan Rice is really about getting John Kerry nominated for Secretary of State - opening up his senate seat - they want Scott Brown to run again. Wouldn't work anyway if Deval Patrick ran for the seat.

    Makes "ugly" sense. They're disgusting.

    •  absolutely- they will retake that Senate seat (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RhodaA, wintergreen8694

      if Kerry is nominated for anything.   Would be a dumb move by Obama.  GOP knows it, Scott Brown knows it.  Dems have no unifying candidate in Mass to oppose Brown in the event of a special election in the next few months (as Mass law requires).  Would undercut our GOTV efforts to grow our Senate majority.  As the witch said in The Princess Bride:  "Booo!  Booo!"

    •  That makes sense, oddly enough (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RhodaA

      I thought they were fishing for impeachment, to distract voters from the real issues (raising taxes, extending unemployment, etc).
      At this point, I think we should welcome the hearings.
      Bring it on, boys.

      “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

      by skohayes on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 06:05:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Sorry to hear that the MSM (4+ / 0-)

    is giving John McCain airtime on this ridiculous Libya/Susan Rice line. I watched the McCain, Graham & Ayotte press conference yesterday and it was embarrassing - completely cringe worthy. The fake outrage and deliberate throwing around of words like Watergate to manipulate this into something it is not was transparently silly, and I was sad for McCain until I flashed back to his Palin-picking brilliance and got over it. Heard last night - maybe on Rachel - that the party that wants to open it's tent is openly going after a potential black female appointee with manufactured bullshit. Bring it on. I guess it will continue as (for some reason) the media loves them some John McCain.
    And why the hell is Kelly Ayotte hitching her wagon to this cluster?

    I'm pretty tired of being told what I care about.

    by hulibow on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:47:37 AM PST

  •  Same old GOP... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dalearden1942

    A landslide election defeat has apparently changed nothing for the Republican Party. Americans delivered a sweeping mandate to politicians in Washington, demanding that they govern responsibly and honor the reelection of President Obama. So far, the GOP is up to its old tricks of protecting billionaires at the expense of the middle class and the entire nation's fiscal stability. When will they understand that tax cuts for the rich cannot be the answer to every policy question posed to them? It's time for these bums to shape up or get thrown out.  -  progressive

  •  Benghazigate!?! Yet another case of dead heros (5+ / 0-)

    being used as smokescreen for live cowards.

    But i guess Rich Old Angry White Males* are "entitled".

    * full disclosure: geez53 is an official Old Angry White Male

  •  Politico (5+ / 0-)
    The head of Maine’s Republican Party is claiming unknown groups of black people showed up in the state’s towns and cast ballots on election day.

    “In some parts of rural Maine, there were dozens, dozens of black people who came in and voted on Election Day,” Charlie Webster told Portland, Me.’s NBC affiliate on Wednesday. “Everybody has a right to vote, but nobody in town knows anyone who’s black. How did that happen? I don’t know. We’re going to find out.”

    http://www.politico.com/...

    "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

    by Greg Dworkin on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:58:11 AM PST

  •  of interest... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skohayes, annieli, Laconic Lib

    those secession petitions?

    http://themonkeycage.org/...

    "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

    by Greg Dworkin on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:01:08 AM PST

  •  I am actually more hopeful for immigration (0+ / 0-)

    reform getting passed than resolving the fiscal cliff.

    What does that say?

    President Obama, January 9, 2012: "Change is hard, but it is possible. I've Seen it. I've Lived it."

    by Drdemocrat on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:04:54 AM PST

    •  I honestly can't see Boehner allowing an (0+ / 0-)

      immigration bill to come to the floor of the House. Because if it hits the floor, it will likely pass and cost Boehner his Speaker position. Tea Party reps will go nuts if this bill passes.

      President Obama at Madison Rally 9/28/2010 - "Change is not a spectator sport."

      by askew on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 08:35:26 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  BP settles...should on trial for murder!! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    One Opinion
  •  No one comments on Mitt's mendacity from (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Laconic Lib

    yesterday?

    Nothing has changed.

    If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich. John F. Kennedy ( inaugural address, January 20, 1961)

    by Outraged Mom on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:14:28 AM PST

  •  Abolish the filibuster and secret holds (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skohayes

    and run Susan Rice through along straight party lines and be done with it.

  •  Why push for filibuster reform NOW? (0+ / 0-)

    We don't have the house.  So what if we force something through the Senate?  It won't move in the house.  Why not wait until we control both houses before taking such an act?

    Minority rights should never be subject to majority vote.

    by lostboyjim on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:28:27 AM PST

    •  Because we could still (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      askew, Laconic Lib

      get a lot done in the Senate- like judicial appointees and cabinet appointees.

      “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

      by skohayes on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 06:18:37 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Filibuster is Senate only and Senate Rules (0+ / 0-)

      doesn't have anything at all to do with the House.

      "I'm totally pro-choice in the matter of abortion. But of course I'm also so radically pro-life that I think every person from birth onward must have full and affordable access to healthcare." - Gail Collins

      by gritsngumbo on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 08:42:57 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Use the old school filibuster. (0+ / 0-)

    And let the GOP go down on the floor of the Senate and talk for days on end. Not the low ranking Senators, Committee Chairmen only. Make them work for it.

  •  Obama's foreign policy sophisticated and (0+ / 0-)

    nuanced?

    Drones and embassy attacks.  Yeah, I guess those are new nuances.

    Given the marvelous success he's enjoyed in furthering American interests, not so much. And, frankly, Ms. Rice hasn't exactly knocked 'em dead at the UN.  That may not be her fault -- the UN is pretty useless given the state of the Security Council.

    On the other hand, people like us more.  Except maybe the Russians, the Chinese, and pretty much all of the middle east.

    If the planet were middle school, being popular would be a Real Good Thing.  That's got to be worth something.

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:32:59 AM PST

    •  build the dang fence (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      skohayes, askew

      bomb Iran

      actually, it's far more sophisticated than the alternative McCain and the GOP presents. No contest, there.

      As usual, you rail against Obama vs perfection rather than Obama vs the alternative.

      "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

      by Greg Dworkin on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:40:04 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Do you really think we should bomb Iran? (0+ / 0-)

        The current administration isn't doing much internationally -- which is depressing because Sec. Clinton is actually pretty smart in that arena -- but I don't think they're planning to bomb Iran.

        Or, at least, I hope not.

        LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

        by dinotrac on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:42:22 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  no, that was McCain's suggestion (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          skohayes, askew

          actually, sanctions are crippling the iranian economy.

          Sanctions and not bombing = sophisticated

          "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

          by Greg Dworkin on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:54:58 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  icymi (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            skohayes, askew

            "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

            by Greg Dworkin on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:56:43 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  No, it wasn't. Shows your own level of (0+ / 0-)

            nuance and sophistication.

            You were taken in by a joke -- a parody of the Beach Boys' "Barbara Ann".

            I am more than happy to admit that I'm wrong if you can find any evidence that McCain has seriously suggested or supported the proposition that we should bomb Iran.

            I should point out that, in 8 years of Ronald Reagan, 4 years of George H.W. Bush, and 8 years of George W. Bush, the US never bombed Iran.  We did, in fact, rid Iran of it's most aggressive regional enemy in that time.

            I can't help but wonder if Democrats' fascination with bombing Iran comes from some strange repressed macho fantasy.  

            LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

            by dinotrac on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 06:29:49 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  jest but no joke (0+ / 0-)

              http://www.thenation.com/...

              explicitly bomb Syria
              implicitly bomb Iran to prevent nuclear weapon

              "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

              by Greg Dworkin on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 06:45:22 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Syria is not Iran. (0+ / 0-)

                And what Democrats imply is largely based on Democrats' biases and machinations.

                BTW -- Given that Obama was all hot to bomb Libya, and did, how does he stand on bombing Syria?

                Will Iran's threats keep him from doing that?

                Better still:

                What about Israel's next attack/counter-attack round ?

                Is Israel on the friend or foe list now?

                LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                by dinotrac on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 07:35:17 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  none of the above (0+ / 0-)

                  sophistication and nuance, something McCain sorely lacks.

                  "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

                  by Greg Dworkin on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 08:06:17 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                •  McCain is a cold warrior from the old school (0+ / 0-)
                  McCain’s speech a ‘real bell-ringer for war’

                  Chris Matthews and Rachel Maddow analyze Sen. John McCain’s speech at the RNC, where he emphasized foreign policy and possible military involvement in Iran and Syria.

                  http://video.msnbc.msn.com/...

                  and not suited for 21st c geopolitics.

                  "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

                  by Greg Dworkin on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 09:03:09 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Yes he is. But he's also an experienced hand, (0+ / 0-)

                    and probably more sophisticated and nuanced in that arena than the President ever will be.

                    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                    by dinotrac on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 09:30:30 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  hardly. (0+ / 0-)

                      he's a posturer, and lazy to boot. The guy needs to retire.

                      as it turns out...

                       he skipped his Benghazi briefing to complain on TV about Benghazi.

                      That's your modern GOP in a nutshell.

                      and yes it's every bit as bad as it looks. McCain is a bitter sore loser who's posturing for the cameras, and he was caught at it.

                      "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

                      by Greg Dworkin on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 02:19:29 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  ... (0+ / 0-)

                      "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

                      by Greg Dworkin on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 02:24:27 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

            •  That McCain would joke about the matter at all (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              askew

              Shows a flippant disregard of the drastic effects of war. Just as Ronnie's "we begin bombing in five minutes..." trivializes the effects of world-wide nuclear holocaust.

              •  Your comment shows that you know nothing at all. (0+ / 0-)

                McCain has very real and deep first-hand knowledge of the drastic effects of war, including disabilities that he will carry to his grave.

                LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                by dinotrac on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 07:46:58 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

    •  Drones are better (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tb mare, dinotrac, askew

      than sending in the military and killing even more people.
      Obama promised he would go after the terrorists, even in Pakistan, and he's living up to that promise (of course GWB made the same promise and invaded Iraq, killing hundreds of thousands of Iraqis, destroying their country and also killing over 4000 Americans, but no one wants to talk about that).
      We also had 64 (SIXTY FOUR) embassy attacks under GWB, and no one in the Republican party wants to talk about that, either.
      Funny, right?

      “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

      by skohayes on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 06:31:21 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  If that's your standard. (0+ / 0-)

        Sure, let's kill innocent civilians, enrage potential allies, and conduct "clean" wars.

        Nothing wrong with that.
        Nothing at all.

        (Unless you're a Star Trek fan: A Taste of Armageddon)

        I don't know what that 64 number means -- Mother Jones didn't provide their definition of "Attacks on diplomatic targets"

        I think the actual number of attacks on US embassies during the Bush administration was 12.  The number of ambassadors killed because the President refused to send in security: 0.
        The number of Americans arrested to cover the Predient's backside for letting an Ambassador get killed when the administration refused a request for additional security: 0.

        LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

        by dinotrac on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 06:42:38 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Innocent civilians? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          askew

          Do you know how many "innocent civilians" were killed maimed and tortured in Iraq?
          There have been less than 700 civilians killed by drone strikes since 2009, and I'm not sure why you're worried about the military government of Pakistan being enraged by our actions- they were the ones who were sheltering Bin Laden.
          By the way, there was no refusal to send in security by the Obama adminstration. The closest millitary not in Benghazi was 600 miles away in Tripoli, they arrived after the attacks were over.
          Unless you're suggesting that maybe Obama should have ordered in a missle strike from an F-16 and kill hundreds of innocent civilians who actually support the US and Obama? Surely not, after your outrage about the "innocent civilians" killed in drone strikes?

          “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

          by skohayes on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 07:20:05 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Tons, but...by whom? (0+ / 0-)

            And that's without going into the 100s of thousands killed by their own leaders prior to the war.

            But you're right...700 lives, nothing to get worked up over.
            It's not like they're people or anything.

            LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

            by dinotrac on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 07:37:31 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  Pilkey (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Laconic Lib

    Sadly, Pilkey is right to criticize rebuilding along the coasts of NJ and Long Island--but it is a fait accompli that houses are there--the economy is there-- and banning a return to their own neighborhood is cruel.  Next best choice would be secure the coast -- as is done in the Netherlands.  Returning to the conditions before Sandy is not acceptable.  We need pump priming--and new infrastructure--yet there is hardly any push in this directions.  At some point, just complaining about the dysfunctional congress makes us co-conspirators.  

    2008 showed that a financial cliff can be painful, but a relatively short term disaster-- structural cliffs kill and get worse with time.

    Apres Bush, le deluge.

    by melvynny on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:36:09 AM PST

    •  Orin has been right on this for decades (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      melvynny, Ohkwai

      He is a very good physical oceanographer and he has pointed out the fallacy of much of what we are doing to our coastlines since the '60s. This includes building on barrier islands, but also the futile and stupid ways engineers try to manage sand flow. Meanwhile, federally subsidized insurance has enabled the building of houses and condos on barrier islands where they do not belong, costing the taxpayers a lot of money and ruining precious natural habitat.  We pay more after every major storm.  When do we stop?  Barrier islands present a very difficult stabilization problem.  They are, by their very nature, ephemeral.  They move and rearrange themselves over time.  A map of the North Carolina outer banks from 200 years ago looks completely different from the current map and the Hatteras lighthouse has had to be moved in my lifetime to keep it from falling into the advancing sea.  Do we want to pay to build a floodwall from Mexico to Maine on sand that will be undermined with each coastal storm?  The ocean is already rising significantly north of Norfolk, Va. and that exacerbates these problems.  As painful as it might be, the quicker, we get houses away from these areas that are vulnerable to tidal surges, the better off we will be.

      I'm truly sorry Man's dominion Has broken Nature's social union--Robert Burns

      by Eric Blair on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 11:22:39 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  except (0+ / 0-)

        Except so many people live in these areas--often in very expensive houses--and they have clout.  If plan A is the best plan--but doomed to be ignored--we must go to plan B.  Manhattan needs a barrier--ain't gonna get moved--so barriers are the way to go.  Same is true along many coasts--the science is doable--the cost should be locally financed.

        Apres Bush, le deluge.

        by melvynny on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 12:11:27 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Only one minority is ever protected (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Laconic Lib, Ohkwai

    "Once the majority can change the rules by majority vote, the Senate will soon be like the House, where the majority doesn’t consult the minority but simply controls the process."

    Someone needs to tell Arenberg that his nightmare has already come true.  There's no "once" about the ability of a simple majority to change the rules of the Senate.  It already exists.  

    And yes, if the rules can be changed by a simple majority, that majority can control the process within the Senate.  We know this is true because a simple majority that merely threatened to change the rules avout the filibuster was thereby able to deny the Democratic minority the use of the filibuster.  This too, control of the process by a simple majority, is already an established fact, but is a tool only available to simple majorities willing to even threaten to change the rules by a simple majority.

    Arenberg is so nostalgic for a bygone, almost forgotten, era of bipartisanship, that he wilfully ignores the reality we can touch and feel and hear and see today.  The Senate is already a place where the majority controls the process -- if and only if that majority is Republican.  And then, because Democratic majorities have proven unwilling to retaliate in kind when they hold the majority, the Republicans get to block everything even when they are in the minority, a power to block that is denied the Democrats when they are the minority.

    Maybe there was a time when either party in the minority could be relied on to not so abuse every parliamentary means at its disposal to control the Senate, if only in the negative sense of keeping it from doing anything.  The minority would filibuster only the rare, isolated majority measure that it found really intolerable, or the occasional nominee who was simply unacceptable to a large minority.  Sure, there was some value in that, some value in a check on the most extreme intentions of the majority of the moment.  But now we have one party that uses the filibuster in the minority to block everything the majority tries to do, and then when iself the majority denies the other party the exercise of the filibuster by threatening to kill it by simple majority vote should the minority dare use it.

    Majority rule is vital.  The party that wins the election has to be able to get the people's business done.  Putting some minority limits on majority rule is nice to have, but not sustainable if we have one party that uses measures designed to be checks, to instead control even when it is in the minority.  Talk all you want about the supposed horrors of untrammeled majority rule in the Senate, they can't be worse than what we are already experiencing, untrammeloed minority rule in the Senate.

    However the Senate rules dictate the balance of power within that body, the ultimate control and limit on its actions has to be the will of the people.  Let the majority do what it will, let it ride roughshod over the minority in the Senate, and, you know what, that's exactly what the people intended when it sent that party into the Senate as the majority.  If the majority abuses this trust the people put in it, there's always the next election and throwing the bums out.  There's an American tradition of governance we can all get behind, majority rule and then majority accountability at the next election.  What Arenberg fails to ackowledge is that that tradition is no longer compatible with the filibuster.  One must go, democracy or the filibuster, and it shouldn't be democracy that getc canned.

    We should have destroyed the presidency before Obama took office. Too late now.

    by gtomkins on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 06:19:27 AM PST

  •  re: National Journal (0+ / 0-)

    You're right that John McCain probably is a bitter sore loser. Of course he's just playing politics. He's a politician, ergo he is a complete hypocrite.

    But what about the content of his complaint? Should Susan Rice be Secretary of State given what was, at best, utter incompetence?

    n/t

    •  how was it incompetence (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dezza, askew, Laconic Lib, Ohkwai

      she repeated the time line and info CIA supplied. is she supposed to conduct her own parallel intelligence briefing?

      What are you accusing her of, exactly? I don't get it.

      Pretty neutral exploration of that here.

      Perhaps this information could have been assembled in less than a week, and perhaps Rice should have asked more questions before she ventured onto the Sunday shows. But that still does not excuse how McCain described her comments.  

      "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

      by Greg Dworkin on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 06:40:06 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  What am I accusing her of? (0+ / 0-)

        It's pretty clear. I said that at best Susan Rice was acting incompetently by relaying false information to the American public to whom she serves. That the information she relayed was false is not even debatable at this point.

        Am I accusing her of knowing relaying that false information? I am not smart enough to know for certain, but it shouldn't be controversial that I suggest the possibility. After all, that is what all the wrangling is about. I am not some detached voice here.

  •  On the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mistral Wind, askew

    Here's my thoughts:

    Since it took 100 years to get the damned things passed, it should stay in place for 100 years.  Once that imbalance has been equalized, then we can talk about any challenges to it.

    Words can sometimes, in moments of grace, attain the quality of deeds. --Elie Wiesel

    by a gilas girl on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 07:10:42 AM PST

  •  No Recession (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541, Laconic Lib

    The so-called cliff would not lead to a recession. The economy is recovering and is more poised to take off than anything. Quite frankly, this is the time to ramp up the tax rates and change spending.

    Here's the plan (that works):

    (1) End tax cuts for the rich. They don't influence the economy, so that's free.

    (2) Cut the defense budget by $25-35 billion per year for the next ten years and put that money into sponsoring the transition of companies and jobs from military jobs to civilian jobs.

    (3) Maintain social spending more or less as it is, but extend UI benefits for people out of work.

    (4) Increase tariffs and make them uniform for all goods and services produced elsewhere and sold here. They should be about 10%. They need to go up about 1% each year until they reach at least that level. This encourages domestic production. Use the increase to fund Social Security and Medicare and to help pay for the Navy.

    There are many other things we could do to fix the economy. For example, we could move to a full publicly-funded healthcare system. That would save perhaps a trillion a year in medical expenses if implemented correctly, freeing up that money for the healthy part of the economy.

    Now is the time to make these moves. We want to do this during an up cycle, so that it doesn't trigger a recession. Increasing tariffs is the key to igniting real, long-term economic growth, so that has to be a priority. This is the ideal time to get going on this. Do it now.

  •  "Compassionate conservatism" -- finally, I get it (0+ / 0-)

    This quote from E.J. Dionne rattled something into place in my mind:

    Just as important, the voters repudiated the very worst aspects of post-Bush conservatism: its harsh tone toward those in need...

    When Dubya talked about "Compassionate conservatism" what he meant was not adding insult to injury.  He didn't seem to get a kick out of gloating to the people his policies screwed.  

    We're all pretty strange one way or another; some of us just hide it better. "Normal" is a dryer setting.

    by david78209 on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 08:18:45 AM PST

  •  EJ Dionne is right. (0+ / 0-)

    Please listen to him.  Extend unemployment benefits first.

  •  "Gone woud be the Senate's historic protection (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MrJersey

    of the minority’s right to speak and amend."

    At the end of the day, good riddance. If the filibuster goes the way of spats, the Republicans have only themselves to blame, having abused it shamelessly for the last four years.

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