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5 Ways The GOP’s Obstruction Is Unprecedented

Memo Pad Politics

5 Ways The GOP’s Obstruction Is Unprecedented

Memo Pad, GOP, Obama, Filibuster, Politics, Obstruction, Senate

The central fallacy of politics is “both sides do it.”

Both sides increasingly delay judicial appointments when the other party is in power. Both sides use procedures like reconciliation in the Senate to get what they want (though Republicans used it in the case of the Bush tax breaks to add trillions to the deficit, the exact opposite point of reconciliation). Both sides operate by prioritizing their donors’ needs over those of average citizens.

But the clouds of gray inevitable in a political process that has from our founding required ugly compromise are helping shade the unprecedented measures Senate Republicans began taking when the Democrats took over the Senate, and escalated into overdrive as President Obama assumed office.

From the night of the president’s inauguration, the GOP has plotted to deny Obama any successes, even as the country languished in a recession made worse by eight years of policies that had the effect of purposely exacerbating income inequality.

The tactics the GOP is using are all reminiscent of previous ways smaller-scale obstruction has taken place. What’s new is the unyielding consistency and a complete disconnect with the wishes of all except the most vocal part of their base that enforces extremism by threatening primary challenges. This is how you get a House that can barely pass a farm bill, even when all the “extraneous pieces” like help for 47 million Americans who rely on food stamps are stripped out.

The Washington Post‘s Greg Sargent calls it “sabotage governing.” The New York Times simply says that the House GOP is engaged in a “Refusal to Govern.” Whatever it is, it’s something that has never been seen in modern American politics.

Here are five ways the GOP’s obstruction is unprecedented.

Photo: Gage Skidmore via Flickr.com



  1. JD Mulvey July 12, 2013

    Had today’s Republicans been leading us when our nation was founded, we’d have crumbled from within and been destroyed from without. They are not patriots.

    1. InsideEye July 13, 2013

      What are the benefits of Obama care that has to be advertised, the jsame number will be subsidized as they are being subsidized today. Then they will be forced to pay a penalty that they can not afford also…more subsidization for that also. This is going to create a Department of Subsidization ….all of the middle class is paying for this already. If we place a tax on all PAC monies , we can pay for everyone’s health care….this one of the biggest available untapped resources….we should use it, before Congress realizes it is there.

      1. Elizabeth M. Lane July 13, 2013

        what Ethel implied I’m stunned that anyone able to make $5088 in a few weeks on the internet. did you see this website w­w­w.K­E­P­2.c­o­m

        1. artiecab@aol.com July 13, 2013

          This is total bullshit!

      2. charleo1 July 14, 2013

        Frankly, I don’t think you’ve been listening to advertisements
        promoting the benefits of ACA. I think you’ve been listening to
        ads aganist ObamaCare. None of those ads mention any need
        to change anything, do they? They don’t mention the old system
        was in a death spiral. Every year more employers dropped their
        insurance. Every year those that didn’t, them and their employees
        paid more for policies that covered fewer prescriptions, had higher
        out of pocket costs before their coverage started, and higher co-
        pays, when it did. And since insurance cos. were not allowed to
        exclude older employees with a health problem or two. It was
        the norm to offer the employer 2 prices. One with, and one without
        the older employees. So, did the ads mention how an unemployed
        57 year old with pre-existing health problems, was going to be able
        find another job in a catastrophic recession? Because, as an individual, he was now uninsurable. Well, not uninsurable, exactly.
        The insurance cos. just refused to do it. Did the ads you’ve been watching say how this man, that had done everything right. Worked
        hard, paid his taxes, obeyed the laws, raised his family, not a dime
        of public assistance. Could now be treated in such a way? Or how he was to protect the retirement account him and his wife had carefully prepared over a lifetime, from being wiped out, if he had a major health event or injury, before he was eligible for Medicare?
        I’m writing you, because I want you to think for yourself on this.
        Just a big subsidy thing. Ought to create a Dept. of Subsidization!
        Well, how was it that most people use to have insurance, before
        all the subsidization? Employers provided it as part of the pay package. Right? Well, what do you think happened? No, it wasn’t
        ObamaCare. The number of employee based plans started to
        fall about 1979, ’80. I know because I was in the insurance business.
        So, I sold a lot of policies to working people who’s companies had
        dropped their plan. It is still a voluntary thing. So why did employers
        offer health insurance in the first place, do you think? Didn’t have
        to. Could have put the money in their pocket. Why didn’t they?
        Just nice? No, it’s never worked that way. So, why did they do it?
        I could tell you. But, I’m already hoping your patients hasn’t already
        ran out. But, when you find the answer to that question. You will
        find the reason we must have health reform. Doesn’t have to be
        ObamaCare. But we have to have something.

        1. InsideEye July 15, 2013

          On worked in health care all my life and , yes we all had healthcare paid for by our employers , especially if one actually worked for a hospital. . It was a way of attracting employees. Then eventually we had to pay more into the benefit from our own pay.
          Since you we’re in the insurance industry, what would you propose to save your industry and have a viable insurance system for everyone, pre- existing conditions etc. there should be no pre- conditions for obtaining insurance. I know for myself working in a medical school environment I would never say to anyone, that you can not have surgery or care, I would do it gratis. The insurance industry made all sorts of rejection rules for payments, it hurt the “optics” of the industry. You guys are so good on actuarial data….you should have actuarilized these outliers into the cost of doing business….everyone would be therefore competitive. I am in favor of a one payer system, with EVERYONE , paying into the system, similar to
          Medicare, SSN. It could be administered by Insurance companies, since they already are set up..”EXCHANGES” no ….that the government has yet to create. A National sales tax could be used to pay for all of these Social Services. Payment for services now rely on the WORKING TAX PAYER, of which there are fewer and fewer , even corporations hardly pay up. A sales tax would require anyone who buys , sells, or provides a service to pay / tax for it. All monies going into the healthcare, SSN POOL, The problem is the notion that some are getting a free ride. Fairness, fairness fairness.

          1. charleo1 July 15, 2013

            I thank you for you time donated to my comment. And I could not be more surprised, or impressed with your response. The
            preliminary attempt by the government to address what is a
            rapidly growing crisis in all areas of our healthcare system,
            I agree, has been less than what is required. Much more complicated, and less cost effective than it should be. And reveals, like all the other programs, solutions, regulations, or lack thereof. A government in a near state of helplessness to respond to any issue, if that response triggers the opposition of a lobby of any sort. If it does, the long accepted way it was dealt with, was to pay off the offended party. Cut them a larger piece of of the pie. Heck! Make them their own pie. And rather than offend the other recipients with a smaller piece, simply increase the size of the pie, until all could
            return to their benefactors with a better deal than had been originally thought possible going in! You don’t purchase a history like that, balancing budgets. Or, as we’re finding out, reforming healthcare on the cheap. I am not one who believes a public option was possible. Not at this time.
            We’ve come a long way down this path, we can no longer afford to travel. That is, without trading away a good portion
            of what the great majority of Americans have come to
            expect. Of course, there are those who have too many ears
            of the Congress, that insist we must. That to change the
            healthcare system, is no less than a surrender of our Capitalistic economy itself! Others say, the old ways of paying off the powerful, at the expense of those that now directly
            feel the effects of those deals. must change. One will win out. And we’ll have our public option, or we won’t. But, I see ObamaCare, as an important preliminary response. Seldom, is the path clear on a difficult climb. But, never do we reach the top, by turning around because there may be obstacles we may not be capable of overcoming.

          2. InsideEye July 15, 2013

            Tis true, we have the best medical devices and care in spite of supposed corruption and fraud…and it is expected / wanted by users to continue and to be that way. We have been compared to Costa Rica , a rating ,that is one notch hire on the approval scale. As mentioned elsewhere , gringos can go there and get cosmetic surgery for less but these procedures are batched for efficiencies , paid for privately, with concierge resorts for recuperation and airfare. The routine population health care is financed by sales taxes, payroll and just printing money, like us? The country is at the edge trying to keep up paying. It was amusing to find that a major reason for shortfalls is……Nicaraguans crossing the border for health care and education needs, without contributing to the financial upkeep of the system. Musingly, “where did you ever hear of this going on”?!’ My point is everyone should contribute, to be fair. What is that system??? Thanks for your remarks ,Charleo1

  2. catnip2430 July 13, 2013

    The current GOP is collectively acting like 4 year old throwing a temper tantrum just because they can’t get their way. It’s as if they think the have the right to be in charge regardless of the outcome of past elections. They lost the Senate in ’06 then the WH in ’08 and they act as if the will of the majority of voters has no meaning and if they hold their breath long enough till they turn blue they will get their way, just like a 4 year old who wants what they cannot have. Time to GROW UP GOP and stop acting like babies, you lost, deal with it.

    P.S. I would like to apologize to any 4 year old’s who maybe offended by the comparison to the GOP.

    1. jointerjohn July 16, 2013

      Republicans nullify the results of elections they lose by telling themselves that they and their voters are superior. To them, their supporters are true blue patriotic Americans while democrat voters are takers, welfare bums, the 47%, and dead people in Chicago. Their capacity for delusions of grandeur is limitless and has now become septic throughout their ranks.

    2. Tod Greenfield August 3, 2013

      Yes and the other party is so mature also……..take the plank out of your own eye

  3. Dominick Vila July 13, 2013

    Heated political debates are not new, and sometimes they should be welcomed as they often result in better approaches to solve a problem or fill a void. Unfortunately for our country, what is going on now has nothing to do with folks having different ideas on how to achieve a common goal or solve a problem. What is happening today is overt obstructionism, often at the expense of our well being and national security, for no other purpose than deny Barack Obama victories, and to achieve personal and party objectives.

    1. Allan Richardson July 13, 2013

      There are no common goals in the first place; the Democrats want what is best for all of us, including the rich (maybe not perfectly, but generally), while the Republicans want to “grind the faces of the poor in the dust” for the benefit of the wealthy, to use a Biblical phrase. And by the way, the Biblical passage just quoted was NOT an approving description of the behavior of wealthy Israelites.

      1. Dominick Vila July 14, 2013

        The common goal is that both parties believe they are pursuing what is best for our country. One believes that helping the elite and our corporations prosper, and expanding market share by whatever means are necessary, is the way to accomplish that goal. The other believes that improving our quality of life by putting in place social programs that help our most vulnerable citizens, educating the young, and promoting equality is the best way to achieve the same goal.
        The difference is in the approach rather than the goal.
        I am not a fan of the GOP, in fact, I cannot believe some of the things they propose, their actions, and the bizarre statements that so many of them make, but with the exception of the Tea Party I don’t believe they are inept, intent on harming our society, or evil.

        1. Allan Richardson July 14, 2013

          As a group of voters, I agree that they do not wish to harm our society. However, there is a small group who do not so much WISH to do us harm, as to acquire more and more money and power for themselves, with no limit, and do not CARE whether this harms the country or not. They have the majority of well meaning Republican voters indoctrinated, and Republican elected officials intimidated, into working FOR THEM. The old tradition of both party mainstreams MODERATING their views and compromising has gone away, and it is not “liberals” who have killed it. However, many Democratic office holders have also been intimidated, and discouraged from voting against this faction, especially since the “evil” Republican minority have tied their economic “theories” in with fanatical religion and cultural prejudices. Unless more voters of BOTH parties challenge the party line and vote for their own and everyone else’s best interest, this country will not be a democracy much longer.

        2. Independent1 July 14, 2013

          Dominick – I’m having quite a struggle with your comment “The common goal is that both parties believe they are pursuing what is best for our country.” I don’t see how a party that comes out and publicly states that it is going to do everything in its power to see that a newly elected president becomes a one-term president (read fails in moving America forward and therefore becomes unelectable for a 2nd term) can in any way be construed to indicate that said party is “pursuing what is best for the country.”
          The Republican party has clearly become a party that is hellbent on ensuring that the wealthy, who have already sucked up the vast majority of the available wealth from within the country, are allowed to continue without any abatement – sucking up more of the country’s wealth. And the GOP is clearly willing to do virtually anything that it takes, regardless of what that means to America, to ensure that the wealth transfer continues to happen. I have seen absolutely nothing being proposed by the GOP over the past 30 years that can in any way be construed to be working for the betterment of our country. Even adding the drug benefit to Medicare was more an attempt by the GOP to channel more money to wealthy billionaires in the drug industry that it was in really wanting to do something good for our Country’s elderly. Else, why would the GOP have demanded that the legislation include the provision that the government could not negotiate drug prices?
          I’d greatlyappreciate if you, or another poster on the NM could bring up for me, even one piece of legislation that the GOP has promoted over the past 30 years, legislaltion which the majority of the party has been behind, not just the GOP president (Reagan and Bush may have pushed for a couple of issues that could be classified as benefiting the country – but which was not backed by the majority of the GOP (e.g., Bush pushing for immigration reform).

          1. Dominick Vila July 15, 2013

            It was not my intent to suggest that what the GOP has been doing since Barack Obama was inaugurated in January 2009 is in the best interest of the country, my point is that in the minds of both parties they are doing what they believe is best for the USA. In the case of the GOP, under pressure from the Tea Party, making sure Barack Obama was a one term president and derailing his agenda was in the best interest of the country.
            Engaging and supporting wars against countries that did nothing to harm us, irresponsible tax breaks that eliminated a budget surplus in one year, deregulation and supporting policies to ensure 1% of our population accumulates more wealth at the expense of the remaining 99%, giving subsidies and putting in place loopholes that help a few at the expense of many, and other such policies are, clearly, against our best interests, but in their minds that is the way to go. They are convinced they are doing the right thing, in spite of the fact that evidence emanating from the consequences of their policies and actions prove otherwise.

          2. Independent1 July 15, 2013

            I hear what you’re saying – but, personally, I don’t think “what’s best for the country” ever enters into the equation when a GOP legislator or president is determining how to vote or support an issue. I believe Reagan thoroughly distorted the mindset of a lot of Americans by creating the myth that the wealthy are “benevollent benefactors” and will magically see to it that all t he peons below him and her are taken care of. When in reality, there are few things that are further from the truth. So it’s my sense that it’s individuals who totally buy into Reagan’s fairytale that gravitate to becoming a GOP presidential candidate or legislator; such that, every decision is based on two things – how will this legislation or objective effect my chances for re-election and how will it effect MY POCKETBOOK.
            I’m sure this sounds hard hearted but I fail to see how anyone that truely cares about “what’s best for the country”, could in all good conscience vote to pass 2 unfunded tax cuts when the country was already running up 2-300 billion dollar deficts; or how a sitting president could have not recommended a tax increase when the country was fighting two wars and running up high deficits; nowing full well that he would be forced to cut back further each year on federal subsidies to the states for federal government mandated programs that HE KNEW would result in further degredation of the country’s infrastructure, and would create much greater suffering of millions upon millions of the elderly and needy citizens. And which by the way, I’m convinced is what drove many of our states to the verge of bankruptcy.
            I think it’s very honorable of you to ASSUME that GOP legislators care one iota about what’s best for the country; but as I mentioned in my first post, I’ve been unable to come up with ANY EVIDIDENCE that that is true. Aside from Ike pushing for the interstate highway system in the 1950s, and Ike was not really a Republican, the GOP has DONE ABSOLUTELY NOTHING TO BENEFIT THE COUNTRY AS A WHOLE, since Teddy Roosevelt championed developing America’s national parks and wild places. As a matter of fact, there isn’t enough room in this blog thread for me to start listing all the complete opposite – issues that the GOP has either fought tooth and nail against or for, that have been absolutely detrimental to this country.

          3. Dominick Vila July 15, 2013

            Well, you don’t need to try very hard to convince me that GOP policies are the root cause of most of the problems we have encountered since the Reagan era. I agree. However, at the risk of being considered naïve, I believe many conservatives are convinced that tax trickle down economics is the way to go, and that theirs is the correct and only approach to solve all our socio-economic and global problems. Why do they ignore evidence that proves otherwise? Ideology is a powerful influence in our decision-making process.

      2. Tod Greenfield July 30, 2013

        Democrats want what is best for their constituency and their largest political donors, pretty much just EXACTLY like the republicans…Term Limits, voter ID, tax all donations to political parties or politicians at the 75+ level……..then you may have a republic back to the people.

        1. Allan Richardson July 31, 2013

          Have you noticed that the “special” interests who vote for Democrats are the MAJORITY OF THE PEOPLE? Any group which actually NEEDS help, or which wants what is good for the people, is a “special interest group” to Republicans; and how is the oil industry, or the drug industry, or the for-profit hospital industry, or the insurance industry, or the banking industry, NOT a special interest? Conservatives NEVER refer to CEO’s as “bosses” even though that is what they ARE; but they refer to the volunteer officers of labor unions, elected by their members to work for the workers, paying their own way (or part of it) to union business meetings, as “union bosses” ????? If there were an election between Jesus and Pilate, the GOP would be on Pilate’s side, and they would talk about the “special interest lobbies” of peasants, beggars and lepers (and don’t forget Samaritans)!

          The GOP has two constituencies: the very wealthy who ACTUALLY benefit from their policies, and the misled middle class who are being TOLD they benefit, while the true GOP constituency has been rolling back the progress of the New Deal since before 1980. It’s like the fox convincing the hen that she would LOVE to be the fox’s dinner, and the hen BELIEVING it!

          1. Tod Greenfield August 3, 2013

            So rich Democrats do not benefit from Democrat Policies, like Al Gore, Sorros, Buffet, Gates, FACEBOOK IPO RIPPOFF Zucker? Unions (who do not have to contribute to Obamacare) GE, Boeing, GM??????

  4. FT66 July 13, 2013

    We have all watched the republicans obstructions. BUT is it enough or rather helpful to keep on complaining? We can all remember how smooth it was for the President and those governing before 2010 midterm election. I can image what progress Pres. Obama could have done up to now, if the trend could be the same now. Whether you complain or think otherwise, you need to do something come 2014 election. Make sure that you hand Pres. Obama the tools he needs in order to make miracles. Republicans are there not for the good of the nation. Only buying time!

    1. Tod Greenfield July 30, 2013

      Fiction…………when you do not negotiate you cannot call that obstruction when no one votes for something both sides are at fault in this to deny that is to deny the world is round………you may as well be a flat earther or a 911 denyer.

      1. Allan Richardson July 31, 2013

        When the negotiating position of one party is to prefer destroying the nation’s economy rather than let the other party get credit for doing something good. that is NOT “both sides” at fault. The President should NOT make a Munich appeasement to the Big Business lobby.

        1. Tod Greenfield August 3, 2013

          Hmmmmmmmmm filibuster proof majority first year in office owned congress last two years of bush basically last four years again take the plank out of your own eye…..

          1. Allan Richardson August 3, 2013

            Did you forget that the filibuster proof Democratic majority in the Senate only lasted a month or two until the death of Ted Kennedy (do you celebrate that anniversary every year, by the way?) and his replacement by a Republican?

          2. Tod Greenfield August 3, 2013

            So having control of congress is somehow not enough either? and a filibuster proof majority how many times have the republicans had that? Please you are biased………..and a hypocrite enough said even I voted for Obama his first term and am a registered independent with yes, moderately conservative views but you are a nut as much so as any on the right or left can be…….you vote party I vote person, you are the bigot, but are ok with it if your bigotry is connected to half the population of the USA the conservative half, which is probably the tax paying 80%.

  5. Bill July 13, 2013

    None of this is surprising, what is surprising is that regular people still support the GOP when everything they do is for the rich and big business and by doing so they are only hurting themselves.

    1. Independent1 July 15, 2013

      By “regular people” I assume you’re referring to all those clueless GOP lovers who haven’t got a brain in their head and just blindly vote the Republican line because they don’t know any better, or because their misguided preacher told them to. Unfortunately, in my book, they’re far from “regular people” – they’re sheeple – people who are easily led by a false shepard.

      1. ddrddrddrddr July 16, 2013

        I’m pretty sure that describes “regular people”.

      2. Tod Greenfield August 3, 2013

        As are you obviously by your bigotry…….

  6. artiecab@aol.com July 13, 2013

    After the next election, I hope mcconnell (small caps) spends the rest of his life smoking weed and sitting on his front porch staring at the horizon.

  7. howa4x July 13, 2013

    The part that is left out of this story is the recent history of the wimpy democrats. They have backpedaled since gaining power and bent over backward to accommodate republican congress members. This 60 vote rule is only there because the democrats fear of loosing power one day and want to protect their backside. Obamacare is only in trouble because the senate and house democrats ran from it and refused to defend the many benefits in the law. This is why they lost the house, because they went into hiding. Harry Reid has to be the weakest and most timid majority leader in history. He has let the republicans make a spectacle or of law making. Until the democrats act forcefully and not as timid sheep, the republicans will continue to obstruct their agenda.

  8. charleo1 July 14, 2013

    Senate Minority Leader, and former art institute model, Tippy the Turtle, Mitch
    McConnell was on Meet the Press this morning, claiming with this amused smile,
    there was no Republican obstructionism! “Spirited debate,” sure, Tippy said.
    But all of President Obama’s nominations have been confirmed. And faster than
    Democrats approved President Bush’s! He claimed. Host David Gregory, his usual
    accommodating self. And perfect example of what’s gone so horribly wrong with
    news journalism in America. Let the outrageous lies stand. And the viewer to
    discern, I guess it’s just politics as usual in Washington. Well, it’s not. For a second
    there, I had flashbacks of Dick Cheney, and Condi Rice claiming, there was no
    doubt, Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction! Remember the press
    on that one? Not, well how can you be so sure? It was, we are going to have
    reporters embedded right there with the troops, as they invade the Country!

  9. Jack White July 29, 2013

    LOL, yeah because Democrats approved everything Bush wanted in 2007 and 2008.

    1. Tod Greenfield August 3, 2013

      Actually I think Bush signed off on everything Democrats approved and put on his desk to sign.

  10. Tod Greenfield July 30, 2013

    Typical hit piece by a biased partisan part of the problem. The problem is politicians not just GOP or DNC both sides EQUALLY are to blame and to deny that is a just a lie and part and parcial of the problems in Washington. We don’t need more propaganda like this fictional article. We need leadership and we need term limits, we need voter ID to ensure the integrity of our republic that those ONLY those that are legally eligible vote and only once per election not foreigners here illegally not felons who lost their right to vote. We don’t need career politicians we need to get rid of the politicians causing the issues and that is virtually all three term plus senators and 6 term plus congressman………make it a two term senate and a six term max congress…………no one past twelve years as a senator or congressman. That easy. Want to fix it even more? Tax ALL ALL political contributions at the 75% level flat no matter where they come from or to any one party.

    1. Allan Richardson July 31, 2013

      There has NEVER been any significant number of people voting more than once, or illegal aliens voting; this is a RED herring to gain support for the laws that require NEW and REDUNDANT identification in order to suppress the votes of people who are either too busy earning a living or too poor or unhealthy to visit faraway state offices, wait for hours (in the case of a nursing home resident, she would have to pay an ambulance driver and a paramedic or nurse to take her and wait with her ON THE CLOCK) and pay new fees, just to vote they way they have been voting for years. Not to mention those who have had NO problem voting for decades, but were born in the country and whose births were not registered, or their registrations burned up in courthouse fires years before modern data backups, or were born in a faraway state and cannot get their birth certificates without travel beyond their means… in other words, anyone likely to vote for Democrats.

      1. Tod Greenfield August 3, 2013

        OK Florida threw out over 7,000 voters on the roles in the last general election. Most were felons, your views are part of the problem. You say red herring and if someone in your political party says it’s fake without any evidence you regurgitate it like a good lemming. The bottom line there are HUNDREDS of incidents during every election and if it’s a democrat area they ignore it never investigate. Just as a simple (for your benefit) example. Of the 911 Hijackers half were illegally registered to vote. Was this an anomaly? Please……….To me ONE is too many because ONE disenfranchises one LEGAL voter and costs us more money and costs us more work ……..but to you Ehhhh so what fake my party says so. Some liberal rag says so…ignore it. But wow big deal for hanging chads……or someone that cannot figure out a simple butterfly ballot then it’s oh you are stealing the election. Again if you cannot see the plank in your own eye……..and actually fix the problem.

  11. Tod Greenfield July 30, 2013

    If we ever become a country of only one political party we become Nazi Germany or the USSR…………if any one party removes the other from complete viability we are lost as a nation and the problem is we do not hold politicians accountable. What is needed is term limits, voter ID, a voter ID database and taxation on all political donations…….

    1. Allan Richardson July 31, 2013

      We had essentially one party between the fall of the Federalists and the rise of the Whigs, and between the fall of the Whigs and the rise of the Republicans. When one party loses viability, its members organize another one. But if only one party’s members CAN vote, as in the pre-1965 South, those people who are denied the vote can be oppressed by the majority.

      And by the way, term limits would not eliminate “safe” seats for the PARTIES. They would allow “new” politicians to run on the same platform as their predecessors but pretend to be “reformers.” And donations to legitimately political groups are NOT tax exempt to the donor, although phony “non-political” groups exist to get around that restriction. And the party that currently benefits most from them calls it a “scandal” that the IRS investigates THEIR phony groups, even though it also investigates the other party’s groups.

      1. Tod Greenfield August 3, 2013

        Your attitude is part and parcel of the problem. If you cannot see the PLANK sticking out of your own eye for the splinter in some one else’s then you are pretty much a lemming koolaid drinker period. You are the problem…………..if you cannot see both sides are at fault then you are the problem as much as the skunk politicians including those from a Chicago sewer a city that is clearly a failure in every regard why would you seek it as a resource for politicians on a national level hell they have one of the top murder rates, teen pregnancy, teen dropout, lowest GPA, financially almost insolvent, some of the highest taxes and most severe gun control but it is always SOMEONE else’s fault not their own………(are you from Chicago?)

        1. Allan Richardson August 3, 2013

          As a matter of fact, I am from Florida … the part of Florida that is often referred to as South Georgia, where they STILL have a public high school named for the founder of the KKK, which ironically has a majority of black students (sort of like sending Jewish kids to Adolf Hitler High School, right?). Yes, both sides are at fault and not blameless, but the myth you are perpetuating is that the way to fix the problems of the LESS guilty party is to TURN THINGS OVER to the MORE guilty party.

          I do not know what you have against Chicago. Yes, it has had some crooked politicians, but so has every big city. You cannot see the corruption of Republican politicians, past or present, because they achieve the harmful results YOU believe to be helpful. I assure you, their POLICIES, that is, the things they OPENLY say they want to achieve, before accounting for their thefts behind the curtain, are NOT in your best interest or mine unless you are a multi-millionaire, and in that case your (short term) best interest would be achieved at the expense of everyone ELSE (which may be OK in your own moral code, but not in mine).

          If you were born into a neighborhood which the legal authorities treated as an occupied foreign country full of rebels (like Roman Judea in the New Testament), with little or no investment in creating good jobs close enough to walk or take the bus to, surrounded by the kinds of social problems you mentioned, and the kind of poverty that prevents you from getting a good education or good medical care while growing up, you would have about a 1 percent chance of escaping FROM that neighborhood and getting a middle class living standard … 30 years ago. Since the schemes of the evil subset of rich people to move jobs overseas and cut wages to third world levels, that might be half a percent now, because FORMERLY middle class people are falling into poverty. The ORIGINAL cause was racism, but after “official” racism left power, the combination of social and economic inertia and “unofficial” racism makes the neighborhoods resistant to change without outside assistance. In a few eras of our history, we have tried halfheartedly to render that assistance, and when it didn’t work at first, we gave up and went back to rendering “negative assistance” such as lowering middle class wages, benefits, and pensions, while making it harder and harder for the poor to achieve their first job with even THOSE levels of middle class prosperity.

          City budgets are not necessarily under the control of the city government itself, because when the high-valued tax base moves outside the city limit, but the areas needing the biggest investment just to maintain public safety need even more from the city, there are only two alternatives: raise the tax RATE on property still in the city (resulting in the remaining property owners, primarily slumlords, raising the rents and cutting the maintenance, which their poor tenants are financially unable to challenge individually — that’s one of the reasons for the “community organizers” you despise, namely self defense), or cut the SALARIES and NUMBERS of essential public workers such as teachers, police, fire fighters, and paramedics (which results in the best ones leaving and the worst ones taking bribes from criminals). It is not mismanagement of what the city treasury HAS, it is the REMOVAL of revenue which is outside their control, that causes cities to go bankrupt. In the case of Detroit, for example, the state OWES the city enough to take it out of bankruptcy, but REFUSES to pay this debt (which was already incurred). When the city tried to challenge this in court, the state used its emergency manager law, which was repealed last year by the voters, then rewritten with language that the voters could not repeal (real honest politics, huh?), to NULLIFY THE WILL OF DETROIT VOTERS and put the Governor’s man in charge of the city, removing the legal powers of elected officials, then file the bankruptch paperwork.

          Health care: to me, some kind of universal health care is demanded by MORAL imperatives even if costs more; but it does NOT cost more, as every other industrialized nation has proven over the years. In the US you can get the best medical care in the world, IF YOU HAVE MONEY; if not, you can only get last resort ER care which does NOT include any long term treatment or medical supervision. Studies show that 45,000 people DIE prematurely every year because they cannot get needed treatment because of lack of insurance and inability to pay the exhorbitant monopoly-driven costs of self-paid care. That is equivalent to 15 TERRORIST ATTACKS ON THE SCALE OF 9/11 EVERY YEAR. And this does not include people who linger in poverty because the medical care that COULD have made them stronger was denied (remember the 50 year old man who finally saved up enough money from his low paying job to fix the cleft palate he was BORN WITH? which kept him from becoming a lawyer because he could not talk properly? the same applies to glasses, hearing aids, crutches, prosthetics, etc.).

          Obamacare will prevent a good part of this suffering, but it is only a start. Going back to pre-Obamacare will KILL PEOPLE and KEEP PEOPLE SICK who could be helped.

          Yes, some things people suffer ARE their own fault. Others are the result, directly (as in congenital diseases) or indirectly (as in poverty, lack of education, or prejudice of the economic gatekeepers) because they did not win the “sperm lottery.” Your philosophy, in effect, says that you are responsible for not making a “good choice” in when, where, and to which parents you were born. A good society takes care of its weakest even while honoring its strongest. Therefore, a good society cannot be based on hate, which your post seems to exude between the lines.

          I will be praying for your soul.

          1. Tod Greenfield August 3, 2013

            NOT WHAT I SAID AT ALL, the fact is you do need voter ID give it free to those that whine they cannot buy it (but buy a driver’s license and buy liquor with ID or fly) and have a database to keep felons who lost that right (some who took it away forever from others through murder manslaughter injury) and term limits get rid of the essentially partisans of the max like Pelosi Reed McCain………You to me are the harmful……..to democracy and to honesty. Crooked republicans get booted out by their own party, crooked Democrats get reelected in most cases…..need I point ten to one any you mention? You are probably the same type that says White republicans make up 80% of serial murderers? I had that argument with another ideologue like yourself, for every one she named I named Twelve………….who were democrats.

          2. T.Thomas Lewis July 27, 2014

            You obviously don’t know the history of Detroit!

      2. Tod Greenfield August 3, 2013

        And pre1964 south was democrats. And the other myth you can regurgitate is they later all became republicans which is a lie. Fact is of 21 Southern Democrats that voted against the civil rights act of 1964 all but ONE remained democrat and that civil rights act would not of passed except for republicans (when the parties actually talked worked together under Kennedy which eludes Obama possibly because he is such a non partisan HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAH

        1. T.Thomas Lewis July 27, 2014

          You’re a special kind of dumbassz!

  12. jake October 23, 2014

    Fact,if Democrats in the Bush years,had acted like Republicans are acting today,Conservatives would be yellinf “TREASON!!!” and calling for their heads. So,it is okay for Republicans to sabotage the nation,but nobody else.


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