I Wonder What They’re Calling Journolist These Days?
You all remember Journolist, right? It was the secret email group whereby media personalities and their political accomplices coordinated and manipulated the news coverage to establish a meme and give the talking points a good, thorough, blanketing coverage, ensuring that the lies took hold. It’s apparently still being coordinated with the White House, whatever they call it these days (I’m thinking SociaList maybe?) and the theme of the day is captivity/hostage taking.
Right now, the House of Representatives is still trying to pass a bill that a majority of Republicans and Democrats in the Senate have already said they won’t vote for. It’s a plan that would force us to re-live this crisis in just a few short months, holding our economy captive to Washington politics once again. In other words, it does not solve the problem, and it has no chance of becoming law.
Barack Obama, July 25, 2011
The House of Representatives will once again refuse to prevent default unless the rest of us accept their cuts-only approach. Again, they will refuse to ask the wealthiest Americans to give up their tax cuts or deductions. Again, they will demand harsh cuts to programs like Medicare. And once again, the economy will be held captive unless they get their way.
“The Tea Party has an agenda,” Zakaria told host Anderson Cooper, and argued “it cannot get it thought the political democratic process.” As a result, Zakaria argues that they have said “we’ll blow up the country if you don’t listen to us. We will hold hostage the credit of the United States, the good standing of the United States and we’ll blow it up.”
Polarized Politics: How Extremists Have Taken America Hostage
Landrieu, D-La., said Republicans in the House “are holding the U.S. economy hostage” and she would support President Barack Obama’s raising of the debt ceiling without congressional approval as a last resort if a compromise can’t be reached.
“The stakes are frighteningly high,” Landrieu said in an interview with The News-Star. “The hostage isn’t in the best of health and it may not live” if the debt ceiling is not raised.
Government: Trading the debt ceiling for another hostage
That’s a fair question. But it makes me wonder whether the way to end the debt-ceiling brinkmanship is to give the GOP a different legislative hostage. [Ed: Yes, it was a double.]
The facts of the crisis over the debt ceiling aren’t complicated. Republicans have, in effect, taken America hostage, threatening to undermine the economy and disrupt the essential business of government unless they get policy concessions they would never have been able to enact through legislation.
“You know, the Chinese are looking at us right now and they are just gleeful and incredulous at the way in which one of their great competitors is imploding in itself, and it’s happening because a small group of absolutists, of extremists, who don’t understand the implications even of what they’re doing, are prepared to hold the nation’s entire economy hostage,” Kerry said Friday on MSNBC.
They called him a socialist, stonewalled every Obama initiative, and even denied his legitimacy as an American. Now, in desperation, they’ve upped the ante by holding Congress hostage to advance their reverse Robin Hood economic agenda. The end goal is for Tea Party (a euphemism for neo-right wing) conservatives to seize long-term power by not only unseating Obama, but dismantling all that he represents as well, thereby turning back the clock.
The Republican Party has been hijacked by its powerful conservative branch and held hostage by hollow promises of political longevity. [Ed: Yes, another twofer.]
The Republicans who are set on crashing our economy are captured by the Tea Party. But Republicans can’t survive without their big corporate donors.
Republicans want to hold the system hostage again next January. Democrats want this issue settled through the 2012 election so they can start talking about something else for a change.
Obama is willing to accept trigger mechanisms to cut deficits, but he and Reid don’t want reductions down the road (whether through a new “Super Congress,” as proposed by Boehner, or even a revived “Gang of Six” process) to be tied to raising the debt ceiling. Their bottom line is to decouple triggers from debt ceilings and avoid another hostage-taking episode in six months. [Ed: How about a new Thesaurus, guys?]
Dean of the House Rep. John Dingell, D-Dearborn, said the GOP’s bill, which punts another debate on the debt ceiling into next year “is holding the U.S. economy hostage to its ideological agenda once again.”
“No other president has been [stood] up, shook down or held hostage as president of the United States over this debt vote,” Jackson shouted over the pounding gavel. “This is fundamentally unfair to change the rules in the middle of the game.”
The rest of it is a nearly complete capitulation to the hostage-taking demands of Republican extremists. It will hurt programs for the middle class and poor, and hinder an economic recovery.
There will be no second hostage-taking on the debt ceiling in a few months, as Speaker John Boehner and his band of radicals originally demanded. Democratic negotiators decided that the automatic cut system, as bad as it is, was less of a threat to the economy than another default crisis, and many are counting on future Congresses to undo its arbitrary butchering. [Ed: how stale.]
“Instead of passing the legislation necessary to ensure the nation can pay its bills, as we did 18 times for Ronald Reagan, and seven times for George W. Bush, Republicans have taken our economy hostage, demanding that we end Medicare and slash services for working families, while protecting billions in tax giveaways for oil companies and Wall Street. And now, with the economy teetering on the brink, they continue to waste time with partisan theater.
What is not okay is to do this whole debate again by holding another extension of the debt ceiling hostage to the agenda of one faction of one house of Congress that does not have majority support and certainly doesn’t have bipartisan support. So that’s — beyond that, there are so many options.
What I do believe is that as more and more folks have focused this week on the kind of process we’re going through just to resolve this one time, the prospect of doing it again in just a few months — which essentially means that we’d be living with this uncertainty, steadily, from now until the next time — the prospect of trying to do this, as suggested by some stories I’ve read about how they’re fixing the measure or changing the measure, moving it — making it more partisan — that it would make it even more difficult and more impossible to essentially hold the American economy hostage to a two-thirds vote to amend the Constitution — amend the Constitution or default is a highly dangerous game to play.
And any measure that suggests we should be having this debate in a way that will require the kind of votes that we’re now talking about — when you see what’s happening in the House and the efforts to get a bare majority to pass a highly partisan measure — does anyone really think that we can — that it is plausible to hold the American economy hostage to a two-thirds vote in the House and the Senate? [Ed: Got the talking points down, Jay?]
Watching Washington hold our economy hostage the past few weeks as it refuses to reach a compromise deal on deficit reduction so we can raise the debt ceiling has been beyond frustrating. Surreal is more like it.
“Any faction in America that would put a gun to the head of 310 million people and say ‘If you don’t do it our way, we will blow your dreams away, we will blow a hole in the American economy’, that is un-American. [Ed: Van Jones, as could be expected, takes the rhetoric to a bit of an extreme.]
Republicans hold America hostage for tea party fringe (headline)
Tea partiers—the fringe element of the Republican Party who have forced John Boehner & Company to hold the full faith and credit of the United States hostage—held a rally in Washington today to protest any deal on raising the debt ceiling.
The Urban Politico, July 29, 2011: (headline)
Holding America Hostage: Why the Tea Party of Today = the Dixiecrats of Yesterday
Well, now that we’ve pretty much established that the Evil Republicans™ have captured America and held it hostage up until this point, I wonder what tomorrow’s spin will be? The Ransom of Joe Biden? And this seems like an appropriate place to put Jaded’s logo.