"According to polls, Rick Perry has now fallen to fifth place. You know who is in fourth place? Carrot Top." –Jay Leno
9. 'It's a shame he didn't live long enough to promote himself above colonel'
I’m liking rank-and-file Republicans better and better. Earlier this month
we learned that they favor Obama’s plan to tax the rich. Now we learn that a 55
percent majority of them think Wall Street bankers and brokers are “dishonest,”
69 percent think they’re “overpaid,” and 72 percent think they’re “greedy.”
Fewer than half (47 percent) have an unfavorable view of the Occupy Wall Street
protests. Thirty-three percent either favor them or have no opinion, and 20
percent haven’t heard of them. Also, a majority favor getting rid of the
Electoral College and replacing it with a popular vote. After the 2000 election
only 41 percent did. Now 53 percent do. How cool is that?
Every one of these positions puts the GOP rank-and-file at odds with
their congressional leadership and field of presidential candidates.
The proposal on the table seemed like a no-brainer. The public sector has been hemorrhaging jobs, dragging down the economy, and undermining the quality of public services. The White House and congressional Democrats came up with a pretty straightforward solution: direct $35 billion to states in order to protect/create 400,000 jobs for school teachers, police officers, and firefighters.
Sensitive to budget constraints, Dems agreed the bill shouldn’t increase the deficit at all, so they agreed to finance the plan with a 0.5% surtax that would only affect millionaires and billionaires — and even that wouldn’t kick in until 2013.
The public is demanding Washington act on the jobs crisis, and this proposal enjoyed very strong support from the American mainstream. A CNN poll released this week found that 75% of the public — and 63% of self-identified Republican voters — endorsed this jobs proposal, and 76% agreed with the financing plan.
In these divisive times, 75% of Americans don’t agree on much, but they all wanted Congress to pass this bill. It’s tempting to think elected officials would be committing political suicide by fighting to kill a popular jobs plan during a jobs crisis. And yet, here we are.
For the second time in 10 days, the Senate on Thursday rejected Democratic efforts to take up a jobs bill championed by President Obama.
The vote to advance the bill was 50 to 50. Democrats needed 60 votes to overcome a Republican filibuster.
Keep in mind, the GOP’s filibuster last night was on the motion to proceed — they blocked the Senate’s ability to even discuss the jobs bill.
How many Republicans broke ranks and agreed that the proposal deserved an up-or-down vote? Zero. Not even one alleged “moderate” mustered the courage to give a wildly popular jobs bill a chance to get a vote.
Three conservative members of the Democratic caucus — Ben Nelson, Joe Lieberman, and Mark Pryor — sided with Republicans.
The outcome didn’t come as a surprise, which is probably why it isn’t a bigger story in the media, but that shouldn’t make the developments any less scandalous. Do conservative senators not realize there’s a jobs crisis in America? Or is it more likely they’re aware of the problem and simply prefer not to act?
I keep thinking about something Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) said this week, while she was lecturing Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner about the importance of improving the economy. “Something’s gone terribly wrong, and what I hear over and over again is that there is no tempo, a tempo of urgency,” she said. “I don’t know who you’re talking to … but you need to talk to the average person. Rome is burning.”
That was on Tuesday. Just 48 hours later, Snowe joined the right in blocking a popular jobs bill.
Something has gone terribly wrong. There is no “tempo of urgency.” I don’t know who Republicans are talking to, but they need to talk to the average person and explain why they care more about preventing a tiny tax increase on the wealthiest of the wealthy — an extra half a penny on the dollar for millionaires and billionaires — than hundreds of thousands of jobs for teachers and first responders.
A middle income household making between about $64,000 and $110,000 would
get hit with an average tax increase of about $4,300, lowering its after-tax
income by more than 6 percent and increasing its average federal tax rate(including income, payroll, estate and its share of the corporate income tax)
from 18.8 percent to 23.7 percent. By contrast, a taxpayer in the top 0.1% (who makes more than $2.7 million) would enjoy an average tax cut of nearly $1.4
million, increasing his after-tax income by nearly 27 percent. His average effective tax rate would be cut almost in half to 17.9 percent. In Cain’s world, a typical household making more than $2.7 million would pay a smaller share of its income in federal taxes than one making less than $18,000. This would give Warren Buffet severe heartburn.
“The City’s agreement with ParkMobile does not allow for promotional emails
or texts to be sent to registered users,” Admin & Regulatory Affairs
spokesperson Christopher Newport tells Swamplot”.…
“Good catch,” Newport says: “This is something that should have been
excluded from ParkMobile’s Houston users terms and conditions. ParkMobile is
updating their terms/conditions today to remove any reference to promotion or
marketing materials that pay by cell customers may receive either by text or
email. Pay by phone users will not be spammed, and neither ParkMobile nor the
City will sell information to marketers.”
I love how when people watch, I don't know, David Attenborough or Discovery Planet-type thing, you know, where you see the absolute phenomenal majesty and complexity and bewildering beauty of nature and you stare at it and then ... somebody next to you goes, "And how can you say there is no God? Look at that." And then five minutes later you're looking at the lifecycle of a parasitic worm whose job is to bury itself in the eyeball of a little lamb and eat the eyeball from inside while the lamb dies in horrible agony and then you turn to them and say, "Yeah, where is your God now?"
Be glad of life because it gives you the chance to love, to work, to play, and to look up and see the stars.
-Henry van Dyke (1852-1933)
I must have flowers, always, and always.
-Claude Monet (1840-1926)