Thursday, May 26, 2005

Scenes from bumblepalooza

The President Tuesday "Participated" in a "Social Security Conversation" in New York saying, "As you -- as I mentioned to you earlier, we're going to redesign the current system. If you've retired, you don't have anything to worry about -- third time I've said that. (Laughter.) I'll probably say it three more times. See, in my line of work you got to keep repeating things over and over and over again for the truth to sink in, to kind of catapult the propaganda. (Applause.)" (emphasis mine)

Boy, I couldn't come up with it better myself. Great Fruedian slip there Mr. President.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

real reason for judicial "compromise"

All the puindits thought the senate was headded towards armagedon, so of course a compromise was reached minutes before Frist was about to begin the show.

The activists on both sides think this was a terrible cave in by their party's senators, but I really think that document isn't worth the paper on which it is written. It is filled with self-defined phrases and hollow promises on both sides. I would like nothing better than to have the whole Senate vote down Owens and Brown.

So why did this "compromise" happen? Was it James Dobson's pressure, the strong arm of George W. Bush/Dick Cheney, People for the American Way? In my view, it was none of the above. It was big business.

With religious conservatives pet peeve consuming weeks of the Senate calendar and Democrtats threatening to shut down/slow down everything but appropreations, the business community was worried about bills important to them dying a slow death. CAFTA (Central American Free Trade Agreement), Asbestos tort reform, Immigration reform, Social Security "reform," health care reform for small businesses, pension "reform," and a whole host of other bills are primed to be passed in the senate under the normal rules and procedures. But if a lone Democrat objected to a uninamimous consent rule, the whole place grinds to a halt.

One look at the US Chamber of Commerce site shows that judicial appointments are no where to be seen. They already have plenty of pro-business GOP-appointed judges on the bench. In fact, about 80% of the current federal bench was appointed by a Republican president.

To me, this whole incident just shows who is really in charge of the GOP. They may do big show events for social conservatives, denying Plan B for over the counter use, talking about a "culture of life," gay marriage constitutional amendment, Terri Schavio, Stem Cells, and Judical Nominees, etc. but given their complete control of the government and large majority of the judiciary, why haven't they overturned Roe, passed the constitutional amdendment, banned all stem cell research, etc? It is because business pays the bills. Social conservatives may provide the votes, but the real money is in being a business lackey.

All those Senators in the "mushy middle" who signed on to that judicial "compromise" I bet also voted for cloture on the bankrupcy bill. I bet many of them are also signed on to many of business' legislative priorities, like free trade, asbestos reform, immigration reform, health care reform, and pension reform. I haven't done the research, but I would love someone to prove my thesis wrong; but I bet they can't.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Bulworth=McCain 2000

Was it just me, or did that movie really seem like the blueprint for the senior senator from Arizona? I mean, other than the whole rapping/black thing, I think it is basically what Weaver advocated.

The whole "I'm a reformed corrupt politican who is going to tell it like it is" really works well. I am not saying that McCain took out an insurance policy on his life or said things nearly as inflamatory as fictious Sen. Bulworth (R-CA) but the whole similarity thing was striking.

I am thinking of this because Warren Betty seems to think that if Arnold can do it, why can't he? After all he played a politican in a movie. "I'm an opponent of (Schwarzenegger's) muscle-bound conservatism with longer experience in politics than he has" Betty told Reuters.

As an aside, I love that song "Ghetto Superstar" from the soundtrack.