Archive for March 3rd, 2010
Megs, sitting comfortably in her new little house, which she seems to love. Fairly often, she’ll take a mousie and go into her house head-first, her butt sticking out on the porch, and just whale the tar out of the mouse that’s trapped at the back of the house: lots of whacking noises, the box shaking, and Megs obviously having a great time. But sometimes, as above, she just sits on the porch and relaxes.
Five years ago this month, Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.) was so desperate to let oil companies drill the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, he tried to use the budget reconciliation process to do it. "If you have 51 votes for your position, you win," he said at the time, adding, "Is there something wrong with majority rules? I don’t think so."
Today, Gregg was disgusted by the notion of using reconciliation to pass health reform.
"Reconciliation has never been used for a massive rewrite of policy like this," he said. "Adjusting tax rates is not like rewriting the entire healthcare system of the United States. It’s substantive. It’s very different."
Look, Gregg isn’t some rookie. He’s not a right-wing radio host or some random conservative blogger. Gregg is almost certainly is aware of his surroundings, understands the reconciliation rules, and realizes how the process is likely to unfold.
With that in mind, it’s almost impossible to believe that Gregg’s obvious misstatements of fact are the result of ignorance. He must know what he’s saying is false. That Gregg can repeat such lies with a straight face, as if they were legitimate, raises serious concerns about his integrity.
It’s tempting to note that reconciliation has already been used, by Republicans, on all kinds of sweeping, "substantive" issues — welfare reform, for example — but even that’s beside the point. Reconciliation isn’t being used for "a massive rewrite of policy"; it’s being used for a budget fix. The "a massive rewrite of policy" has already passed. It passed through regular order, with no reconciliation. Gregg must realize this; he was there when it happened.
My first thought, reading Gregg’s quotes, was that we won’t have to endure the talking point for too much longer — if the House passes the Senate bill, and the Senate approves a budget fix through majority rule, the notion that the huge health care reform package was passed through reconciliation will disappear.
Except, my first thought was almost certainly wrong. Even if Dems don’t pass reform through reconciliation, Republicans likely say they did. Why not? Fox News will dutifully play along — "Sure, health care reform became law, but only because Dems cheated" — and mainstream outlets will present as a he-said/she-said dilemma.
There’s no incentive for Republicans to tell the truth, just as there’s no consequences for them failing to tell the truth. So, they’ll just keep making stuff up, as Judd Gregg exemplifies.
I was riding my mountain bike yesterday and all of the sudden it just came to me. I just started thinking about how many things I’ve learned through my own personal working out (since I was a kid and playing competitive sports) as well as being a trainer (since 1998). So today I just wanted to share some of the things this 36yr old has personally learned about all things health and fitness….in no certain order….
- Pushups are the best upper body workout designed….no machine can replace that…you don’t need any equipment and you can do them anywhere.
- It’s easy to become a certified trainer (as I have seen overweight people become certified)….it’s not easy to work as one full time (hence a high turnover rate in many clubs)
- Diet is 85% of where results come from…..for muscle and fat loss. Many don’t focus here enough.
- Working out too much doesn’t lead to good results….hence most people are still struggling after years of hard effort and little return.
- Most people do not …
Continue reading. LOTS more.
Unlike many GOP governors. Zaid Jilani at ThinkProgress:
As ThinkProgress has documented, well over a hundred GOP lawmakers have voted against or condemned the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, while later touted the funding or asked for more money. The latest person to point out this hypocritical behavior is Republican Gov. Charlie Crist (FL). Yesterday, while speaking at his last State of the State as governor, he called out governors who “may have rather loudly condemned the stimulus money” but who accepted it anyway:
CRIST: A few governors may have rather loudly condemned the stimulus money, but that did not stop any of them from quietly accepting it. … During these very difficult economic times, we do a disservice to the people who elected us., the people who are counting on us, to elevate ideology over problem solving. We are here to guide our ship through a storm.
Indeed, several governors who were stimulus opponents have proudly touted its funds in their states. Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-LA), who said that he would’ve voted against the stimulus if he was still a member of Congress, presented a jumbo-sized check of federal grant money authorized under the Recovery Act to residents of Vernon Parish. He later toured the state in a “Louisiana Working” tour, handing out millions of dollars of stimulus money while simultaneously attacking “Washington Spending.” Similarly, Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R-MN) bashed the stimulus, while his top economic adviser acknowledged that there were “tangible results from this spending.”
The video in this post by Steve Benen is really, really worth watching. Many interesting points, including Sen. Charles Grassley denouncing his own proposal as “unconstitutional”. Wonder why he proposed it, then.
The Eldest called on her way home from the funeral service of a long-time friend of the family, who passed away peacefully at 85. At the service, a number of stories were told, including one from when our friend was just starting out in life. He was a reporter on the Richmond News Leader and shared an apartment with another reporter. Our friend worked the police beat, so worked nights, while the other guy worked days, so they saw little of each other.
One day the friend’s roommate said that he was leaving Richmond to take a job in Washington doing TV news.
"What’s that?" the friend asked. "Like newsreels?"
"No," the other guy explained. "I’ll read the news from a desk."
"So what’s on TV? You reading the news aloud at a desk?"
"Don’t go. It’ll never work."
But Roger Mudd decided to go anyway and give it a try.