Posted on 23-12-2010
Filed Under (Politics) by Rashtrakut

As Barack Obama and the Democrats wrap up a successful lame-duck session of Congress, Republicans are howling in outrage that Congress dared do the job for which it collects a paycheck.  Then there is the allegation that the Democrats tried to cram stuff at the last minute.  Of course the last minute cramming was caused by the record number of filibusters that the Democrats had to overcome in the Senate the past two years.

Another thing the Republicans seem to forget when howling about passing lame duck legislation is their impeachment of Bill Clinton in the 1998 lame-duck session after LOSING seats (something that almost never happens to the opposition party in the sixth year of a presidency).  Enjoy the achievements of the most productive Congress in a generation.  The next two years will not be pretty.

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Posted on 21-12-2010
Filed Under (Politics) by Rashtrakut

Continuing on a theme of giving credit where it is due we come to Jon Stewart.  After the Republicans filibustered a bill to provide health benefits to 9/11 first responders because of cost (while gifting a far larger giveaway to millionaires) , Stewart responded with a take down of the GOP and the media that some have termed operatic.  The targets were some of his usual foils – the news networks who responded to yet another filibuster with silence, Fox “News” whose 9/11 outrage machine seems to have taken an early vacation and the GOP.  Videos below:

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
Worst Responders
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show Full Episodes Political Humor & Satire Blog</a> The Daily Show on Facebook

The second video is much more sober.  Stewart sits down with some 9/11 responders needing help to pay for their bills while taking some shots at John Kyl for asserting that working on Christmas was somehow sacrilegious and Mitch McConnell’s teary farewell to Judd Gregg.

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
9/11 First Responders React to the Senate Filibuster
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show Full Episodes Political Humor & Satire Blog</a> The Daily Show on Facebook

The third video is an interview with former Arkansas Governor and presidential candidate (also a Fox “News” host) Mike Huckabee who urges Republicans to vote for the bill.

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
Mike Huckabee
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show Full Episodes Political Humor & Satire Blog</a> The Daily Show on Facebook

Stewart’s rage from the bully pulpit seems to have woken up the media and shamed some Republicans.  Below is an unusual video of a Fox anchor breaking the party line and calling out Republicans for their obstruction (other Fox personalities generally blame Congress and not Republicans in the Senate) – well maybe not that unusual since it is one of their rare fair and balanced journalists Shep Smith.

Yet the grinches are still around.  Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn objects to funding the bill by closing a tax loophole and is seeking further review on a bill that has been floating around Congress for most of the year.  He has vowed to block the bill adding to conservative unease on the wisdom of continuing to block the bill.  It also hands Democrats a political softball epitomized by their new video below:

It begs the question whether all this public shaming is sufficient to force Senate Republicans to act rather than merely provide their usual vocal support for 9/11 first responders.

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Posted on 20-12-2010
Filed Under (Politics) by Rashtrakut

I am not a fan of Joe Lieberman. I had hoped for him to get his just deserts after the 2008 election.  Even though the Democrats at Barack Obama’s urging chose to forgive and forget, he responded by being a giant pain in the ass during the health care reform debate.  But to give credit where it is due, he was a driving force in helping Barack Obama achieve yet another campaign promise this past week – the legislative repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.  While my ultimate desire to see his departure from the Senate in 2012 has not diminished, I will have some charitable thoughts for Joe Lieberman this holiday season.

Lieberman’s usefulness the past couple of weeks also vindicates Barack Obama’s magnanimity towards his former foes, which at times has caused some heartburn among his supporters.  The conversion of Hillary Clinton from bitter rival to valuable ally and cabinet member is another example of this.  Unfortunately, the attempts at détente do not appear to have worked on John McCain who seems determined to cement his reputation as a bitter loser.  McCain’s full flop during the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell debate drew widespread derision from the left and some fine Jon Stewart treatment (which includes a hat tip to Lieberman).  Video below:

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
Gaypocalypse Now
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show Full Episodes Political Humor & Satire Blog</a> The Daily Show on Facebook

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Posted on 20-12-2010
Filed Under (Politics) by Rashtrakut

Haley Barbour should know better.  In the same decade that his home state Senator (and then Majority Leader) Trent Lott was drummed out of politics for praising the segregation era politics of Strom Thurmond, the Mississippi Governor has ignited a firestorm by trying to whitewash segregationist Citizens Councils of the Civil Rights era.  Barbour is the latest southern Republican tripped up by a nostalgia for the old South.  The Barbour Flap comes right after confederate revisionists in South Carolina started commemorating the sesquicentennial of the commencement of the Civil War.  With his spokesmen now reduced to denying that the Governor is a racist, it is likely that the Barbour for President campaign just took a body blow.  The other 2012 contenders must be smiling.

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