RIP John Boehner

Right now, the minority of Republicans who are in or supporting the Tea Party mentality are in complete control of the party.  And, as long as John Boehner and other (relatively) sane GOP Reps don’t find sufficient stones to stand up to them, they are the tail that wags, not just the GOP dog, but the entire country.  The shrinking group of non-fanatic members of the GOP are terrified that, if they displease this dogmatic, absolutist group of reactionary ideologues even once, they will find themselves “primaried” in the next election.  The Right keeps its rule by fear because it can summon up many millions of dollars from right-wing oligarchic billionaires to finance primary challenges against any Republican from a candidate far to the right of the incumbent. After 36 years in the Senate, in a seat that was such a shoo-in that Dems sometimes didn’t even bother to run an opponent against him, Senator Richard Lugar (R-IN) will be leaving the Senate in a couple of days having lost a primary to an unknown Tea Party loony named Richard Mourdock by 61/39%.  Mourdock went on to make a major embarrassment of himself, and was beaten by the Democrat Joe [More...]

Are we being ‘jobbed’ again?

When President Obama was re-elected, he stated that JOBS would be his ‘job’ one. Yet, the moment the celebration ended, he turned back to fencing with the Republicans (though with a much stronger hand, now) over debt and deficit reduction (aka ‘Austerity’). Deficit reduction will NOT create the necessary new jobs, nor will it make the economy healthier, whether with Obama’s mild (relatively speaking) approach, or with the GOP’s vicious austerity measures (rejected in the election and by even 67% of Republicans in the last poll dealing with taxing the rich and reducing or delaying benefits and entitlements from Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security). Hasn’t anybody inside the Beltway realized that EVERY attempt to get out of a recession through austerity tactics (specifically attacking the deficit and overall debt) has failed miserably. It not only has driven numerous European economies deeper into joblessness, but has heightened their recessions. Before FDR (in the pre-Keynsian days), this was tried again and again, producing the various “Panics of …” every 10 years or so in the 19th century, culminating in the Stock Market collapse of 1929 and the Great Depression. From 1933 through 1980, Keynsian economics, which dictates that, in a recession, you [More...]

Good Debt vs Bad Debt

Republicans are always whining about the federal debt and telling the rest of us that we should live within our means as do businesses and families.  The Republicans believe that putting a former business executive into the White House would be enough to solve the problem. Note:  Both Herbert Hoover and George W. Bush were ex-CEOs and they presided over the Great Depression and the Great Recession.  So much for business’s contribution to federal fiscal responsibility. Even Malcolm Forbes of Forbes Magazine recognized the vast divide between running a business and running a society’s government when he warned: “Few businessmen are capable of being in politics, they don’t understand the democratic process, they have neither the tolerance or [sic] the depth it takes. Democracy isn’t a business.” Almost every family and business carries a debt load.  It is impossible for all but a few to function without it.  Whether it is the young couple buying a home with a mortgage, a farmer borrowing from the bank to buy seed, fertilize, and machinery in the Spring so that he can produce a crop large enough to pay off the loan in the coming Fall, or the company that borrows to expand [More...]