Saturday, February 12, 2011

Just Secede Already

If you hate the other 49 states to the point where you are willing to adopt your own currency, just leave already and let the rest of us get on with our lives, South Carolina.

State Sen. Lee Bright (R-Roebuck) says that federal spending and increased monetary intervention by the Fed have placed the entire US Federal Reserve system on a path to monetary collapse. And when the crash comes, state residents will need to rely on the stable South Carolina currency to weather the storm.

"If folks lose faith in the dollar, we need to have some kind of backup," Bright told the Spartanburg Herald-Journal on Friday.

Bright's proposed legislation states that "many widely recognized experts predict the inevitable destruction of the Federal Reserve System's currency through hyperinflation in the foreseeable future; and ...
South Carolina can avoid or at least mitigate many of the economic, social, and political shocks to be expected to arise from hyperinflation, depression, or other economic calamity related to the breakdown of the Federal Reserve System only through the timely adoption of an alternative sound currency that the state's government and citizens may employ without delay in the event of the destruction of the Federal Reserve System's currency.
The legislation calls for the creation of a joint legislative subcommittee which would study the "the need, means, and schedule for establishing such an alternative currency."

This guy would have an argument about South Carolina being more financially stable than the "doomed" Fed if it wasn't for the fact that the state receives $1.35 in benefits from Washington for ever federal tax dollar the state collects.

In other words, the rest of the country is financially better off with South Carolina gone.  I say, good riddance.  You want to make America stable?  Secede.  You're costing the rest of us good money to support you.  Your state is costing the country more than it's worth.

You sure you want to leave there, ace?

Moose Crap On Your Resume

We gather here to remember the campaign operative career of one Michael Glassner.

Sarah Palin has added a veteran Republican strategist to serve as chief-of-staff for her political action committee, Sarah PAC, CNN has learned.

Michael Glassner, an attorney and longtime adviser to former Kansas senator and presidential candidate Bob Dole, has signed on to steer the former Alaska governor's political operation as she considers a possible 2012 presidential bid.

During the 2008 presidential campaign, Glassner managed vice presidential operations during John McCain's unsuccessful White House bid.

Because getting hired as SarahPAC's Chief Of Staff means that's the last campaign job you'll ever have when Moose Lady she crashes and burns spectacularly over the next 18 months.  That's right, Palin's first choice for running her political operation is the guy that McCain put in charge of his veep search in 2008.

This is going to be awesome.

The New Schism In The Church Of The Conservative

The always dependable Matt Osborne flags down an Eric Sapp Huffpo article on the split between the religious right and the corporate wing of the GOP, and more importantly how the Democrats can leverage it.  The schism is on full display at this weekend's CPAC conference.

The media and many progressives do not understand what motivates conservative Christians and have accepted the narrative put forward by GOP leaders. They have largely ignored this tension and assumed that the Tea Party was just a new version of the old right. But the fiscal conservative/small government/libertarian wing of the conservative movement, which the Tea Party has empowered, share virtually no values in common with the religious right.

The majority of Tea Party members do not consider themselves a part of the religious right and less than a quarter of the Christian right identifies as being in the Tea Party. Add to that the fact that the majority of Tea Party members hold positions Christian conservatives consider "pro-gay and pro-choice," and it shouldn't be hard to see why these tensions that have been simmering just under the surface since the time of Reagan are now coming to a head on the Hill and most prominently this past week at CPAC.

Christian right groups such as Family Research Council, the America Family Association, Concerned Women of America and many more have been joined by the largest conservative think tank, the Heritage Foundation, in condemning CPAC, largely over the inclusion this year of the GOP gay group, GOProud. The gay issue is clearly important and has gotten most of the attention, but we also shouldn't underestimate the importance of the anti-Muslim sentiment and hatred on the Christian right for Grover Norquist. The headlining blog on Red State yesterday was about the takeover of ACU (the group that runs CPAC) by the Muslim brotherhood, and there have been grumblings for a while by Christian conservatives about Grover Norquist's Muslim money ties (ties made all the more suspect by the fact he's married to a Muslim).

The significance of the CPAC split is not that it is proof of any fall by the religious right. Remember, they still represent between 40 percent to 60 percent of GOP votes each cycle based on an average of '04 to '10 exit polls, and they control a communication empire that spends approximately $1 billion annually on communication and organizing. The story here is schism, and Democrats and progressive cannot sit on our hands and just watch this unfold. 

The battle here is between the Corporate wing of the GOP, and the Religious wing.  They both hate Democrats, but really that's as far as it goes.  The Tea Party is the new brand for the Corporate wing, the "libertarians" who want no government regulation, and no government spending.  They want to privatize as much of the day-to-day operations of America as possible, and they want to profit greatly from it personally.  They really don't care about anyone other than their net worth and credit scores.  They have no problems with gays, Muslims, minorities, or any race or creed, but if you're a net drain on taxpayers, you're on the way out.  They want to run government as a business, and that means getting rid of the poor and destitute and want to rewrite the Constitution until they can do it.

The Religious wing on the other hand has a major problem with anyone who isn't a straight, white Christian evangelical.  They're actually far more open to social and environmental spending to care for their fellow man (the straight, white Christian evangelical ones, anyway)  and don't like to see the poor abused for profit.  On the other hand, anyone who doesn't fit into their little clique can literally go to Hell as far as they are concerned.  They believe in America being a Christian nation for and run by Christians, and everyone else is a second-class citizen.

Needless to say, Sapp is correct.  The groups have very little in common, other than they both want to take over the Government and use it for personal gain.  They do intersect at some points, but not at others (look at the split over Egypt, the Corporate wing is more than happy to see Mubarak go and are licking their chops over the business opportunities he's leaving behind, the Religious guys are furious and are warning of a new Caliphate popping up in Cairo full of millions of Muslim terrorists.)

So how does Sapp plan to have Dems use this to their advantage?

We need to be drawing as much attention to this issue as possible to make sure it gets coverage, that the GOP base hears about it and wrestles with the implications, and that reporters will be pushing GOP candidates to pick sides and comment. We need to be pushing for questions of all the GOP hopefuls speaking at CPAC about whether they are concerned their failure to join the religious right boycott could come back to haunt them. Do those candidates agree with statements being made by CPAC sponsors (i.e., GOProud) that all the "real" conservative groups and groups that matter to the conservative movement are still sponsoring CPAC? 

Sounds like a plan to me.   New tag:  Conserva-Schism.

Melting The Snowe Queen, Part 2

It looks like on the heels of this week's Tea Party Patriot challenge to Maine GOP Sen. Olympia Snowe that a candidate is emerging to challenge Snowe in the primary from the (far) right, one Andrew Ian Dodge.

Andrew Ian Dodge, a Maine tea party activist, announced at CPAC earlier today that he will challenge Sen. Olympia Snowe in the Republican primary in 2012, touting his slogan "Snowe has got to go" and flaunting his birth certificate, which he said was a response to accusations by his opponents that he is not a U.S. citizen.

Dodge said he is running because he believes there "needed to be a strong grassroots voice for fiscal conservatives." He slammed Snowe for her "glee" at hanging out at the White House, and for helping get the health care reform bill out of committee. "There's a reason she's a tea party target," he said.

He also said he supports Rand Paul's much maligned call to cut foreign aid, and mentioned something he had read about an "internet bailout," though in an interview with TPM later he couldn't provide any more details. 

Well no, details are what you spring on people after you con them into electing you.   This Dodge guy is quite a character, too.

And yes, he thinks Maine's Tea Party governor, Paul LePage, needs to go after just a month in office because, surprise, LePage is supporting Snowe.

Should be a fun time, right up until Maine replaces Snowe with Rand Paul, Pine Tree State edition.

Cut To The Bone, And Then The Chainsaw Comes Out

The Tea Party has officially won the GOP budget battle, with intent to deliver deep, bloody cuts totaling $100 billion...for starters.

House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) on Friday evening introduced a revised 2011 government spending bill that the GOP said will cut at least $100 billion in spending this fiscal year, bowing to demands by Tea Party-backed House freshmen.

The continuing resolution funding the government after March 4 cuts deeply across all areas of domestic spending and singles out many programs for complete elimination.

In the CR $81 billion has been cut from non-security programs, and security-related programs have been reduced by $19 billion, compared to Obama’s 2011 budget request.

The legislation will increase funding for the Department of Defense by 2 percent over last year’s level.

“This evening, on behalf of House Republicans, Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers introduced a Continuing Resolution that will reduce spending by at least $100 billion in the next 7 months – a historic effort to get our fiscal house in order and restore certainty to the economy,” Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) said in a statement.

“At a time when unemployment is too high and economic growth is elusive in part because of the uncertainty created by our skyrocketing debt, this legislation will mark the largest spending cut in modern history and will help restore confidence so that people can get back to work. These are not easy cuts, but we are finally doing what every other American has to do in their households and their businesses, and that’s to begin a path of living within our means,” he said.

"Living in our means" to "get Americans back to work" apparently entails cutting $3 billion from the Labor Department for job training, Senior work programs, and OSHA safety inspections, not to mention laying off thousands of employees. Government workers aren't really Americans, after all.

All so we can spend even more money on defense pork and contractors. Woohoo!

COPS hiring programs and FEMA grants to firefighters for where you live? Gone. Capitol Police to protect lawmakers in Washington? They get $12.5 million more than last year. Some are more equal than others.

GOP wants to cut $79 million from DC's operating budget, including schools and police and a $7 million cut to housing for Veterans. Hey, the people who actually live here vote Democrat, screw em!

Let's cut $25 million from the SEC so they do an even worse job of regulating stocks, too. Republicans are complaining that we aren't doing enough to protect our borders! What do they want to do? Cut half a billion from Customs and Border Protection. Republicans want to cut billions from the EPA too. Clean water and air? Screw it.

And let's not forget Republicans care about people. They care enough to cut $8 billion plus from Health and Human Services and $5 billion from the Department of Education.

Remember folks, all this money is money that has already been allocated, that states and localities are counting on to meet their operating budgets. Take this money away now and tens of thousands of jobs are going to vanish, both public and private, as the people who administer these programs, and the people who are helped by them are suddenly hung out to dry.

This is how Republicans plan to put people back to work, by putting them in the unemployment lines almost immediately.

StupidiNews, Weekend Edition!

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