Friday, September 20, 2013

Last Call For Messing With The Man

President Obama's analysis of the GOP is not wrong here.

With one vote on Friday, the Republican-led House launched the latest spending battle in Congress -- one that could bring a government shutdown in less than two weeks.

By a 230-189 tally almost strictly on party lines, the House passed a short-term government spending plan that would eliminate all funding for Obamacare.

The measure now goes to the Democratic-led Senate, which is certain to reject the provision that defunds President Barack Obama's signature legislative achievement of his first term.

The best part is that Republicans think they are perfectly reasonable burning the country's economy down.

"The American people don't want the government shut down, and they don't want Obamacare," the Ohio Republican said to applause and cheers. "The House has listened to the American people. Now it's time for the United States Senate to listen to them as well."
In a display of the raw politics of the battle, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor of Virginia called out Senate Democrats facing re-election next year by name, asking how Sens. Mark Pryor of Arkansas, Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, Mark Begich of Alaska and Kay Hagan of North Carolina will vote on the House proposal. 
"It's up to Senate Democrats to follow House Republicans and show some responsibility," Cantor said.

The President laughed that nonsense off.

Later Friday, Obama accused conservative Republicans of holding the nation hostage by trying to make passing a federal budget and increasing the debt ceiling contingent on defunding health care reforms. 
"You don't have to threaten to blow the whole thing up if you don't get your way," Obama said in a campaign-style speech at a Ford plant in the Kansas City, Missouri area, adding that legislators in Washington were focused on politics and "trying to mess with me," rather than helping the middle class.

Ding ding ding!  It does have to be said, folks:  this is about attacking the President.  That's all that the GOP cares about.  If they can't get rid of the President, they will make America so awful that they think we'll do it for them.  It's better to get rid of the Republicans, of course.  And even Republicans are starting to think this is a really bad idea.

But please proceed, gentlemen.

Un-Hammered And De-Slammered

Former GOP House majority leader Tom "The Hammer" DeLay has apparently won his appeal on his conviction in 2010 because Texas.

A Texas appellate court has overturned the 2010 conviction of former House Majority Leader Tom Delay’s (R-Texas) for money laundering.

The court said it was acquitting Delay due to insufficient evidence.

Since his conviction three years ago, Delay has remained a free man as an appellate court considered the case. 

He was sentenced to three years in prison for his alleged role in a scheme to influence elections in Texas. 

Delay was accused of laundering more than $100,000 and conspiring to commit money laundering for that amount or more during the 2002 election cycle. Those offenses would violate election laws. 

The court, however, concluded there was insufficient evidence to support the conviction

It also concluded that he was a Republican and that since the state of Texas elects appellate court judges, laws don't really apply to him.  Nice work if you can get it, and as the story mentions, he never actually spent a day in prison either.

Texas.  It's like a whole other country.  A third world one with really lousy legal systems and easily influenced judges.  Also, Shiner Bock.

Pope On A Hope

Pope Francis certainly talks a big game about social justice Catholicism, but actions speak louder than words.  Sad part is that still puts him miles ahead of the last batch of pontiffs.

In one of the first lengthy interviews he has given since ascending to the papacy in March, Pope Francis said he believes the Catholic Church has grown too “obsessed” with social issues like abortion, birth control, and gay marriage. The pope’s statement is a sharp departure from many of the other leaders in the Church, who have recently been pressuring him to take a stronger stance on those issues.

“It is not necessary to talk about these issues all the time,” Pope Francis told an Italian outlet. “The dogmatic and moral teachings of the church are not all equivalent.”

U.S. Catholic Bishops have been criticized for focusing almost exclusively on social issues — like advocating against marriage equality and fighting against Obamacare’s birth control benefit — at the expense of the Church’s other teachings on social justice issues.

But the leader of the Catholic Church said that the religion needs to “find a new balance” on the moral teachings that it prioritizes. “Otherwise, even the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards, losing the freshness and fragrance of the Gospel,” the pope explained.

On the other hand, this line of thought has basically got to be driving the rest of the hardliners insane, so I'm okay with this guy keeping up the pressure.  You do have to start somewhere to reform a church whose values long ago left a guy like me.  Or, well, anyone in the 20th century or after, for that matter.

Good luck with that, Frank.


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