Tuesday, May 2, 2017

The Stupid Party, the rudderless president and the ongoing terminal bloat of Leviathan

The omnibus bill that establishes the government-spending path through September is as glaring an example as we'll get of two facts: Republicans in Congress have no spine and Donald Trump has no consistent worldview.

It's the same damn kind of carry-us-through-a-few-months-because-we-are-totally-unable-to-articulate-a-governing-philosophy-plus-we're-scared-to-death-of-being-labeled-as-mean spending bill we see pretty much every damn spring.

Dems are crowing, and understandably so. Planned Parenthood still gets funded. Agencies and programs that shouldn't even exist still get funding increases. No staff cuts at EPA.

And what does Squirrel-Hair have to say about it?

President Donald Trump said he’ll sign a bipartisan $1.1 trillion spending bill that largely tracks Democratic priorities and rejects most of his wish list, including funds for a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.
“We’re very happy with it,” the president said Monday in an interview with Bloomberg News. The plan would allocate some new funding for border security, though the funds couldn’t be used to build his promised wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. The president said he will sign the bill if it remains "as we discussed."
The compromise measure, announced early Monday morning, would keep the government open through the end of September. Under House procedures, a vote could be held as early as Wednesday. The plan drew howls of protest from conservatives. 
It's clear that he cannot see that this approach - the same damn approach we've had to live with for decades - negates any kind of turnaround effect from his tax plan.

But then, it's a fool's errand to be asking for that degree of rigor and clarity from the guy who let loose with this:

In an interview with the Washington Examiner's Salena Zito, Trump compared himself to President Andrew Jackson and said Jackson, if he was born later, could have helped avoid the Civil War.
And then, in comments that whipped Washington into frenzy Monday morning, Trump said he didn't understand why the Civil War had to be fought.

"I mean, had Andrew Jackson been a little later you wouldn't have had the Civil War," he said. "He was a very tough person but he had a big heart. He was really angry that he saw with regard to the Civil War, he said 'There's no reason for this.'"
"People don't realize, you know, the Civil War, if you think about it, why? People don't ask that question, but why was there the Civil War? Why could that one not have been worked out?"
Jackson, a slaveowner who once threatened South Carolina with a federal invasion if they did not abide by a protectionist tariff during the Nullification Crisis, died in 1845 and likely did not offer any direct comment on the Civil War. 
Or this:

Between this and the White House invitation to Duterte over the weekend, we now have a firm answer to the question, “Is there any foreign leader so repellent Trump won’t meet with him?” Believe it or not, Obama’s willingness to meet with foreign bad guys without preconditions once he became president was a major early knock on him as a candidate in 2007 among Republicans — and not just Republicans. Although, in fairness to Trump, he says nothing here about meeting with Kim unconditionally. On the contrary:
President Donald Trump said he would meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un amid heightened tensions over his country’s nuclear weapons program if the circumstances were right.
“If it would be appropriate for me to meet with him, I would absolutely, I would be honored to do it,” Trump said Monday in an interview with Bloomberg News. “If it’s under the, again, under the right circumstances. But I would do that.”…
“Most political people would never say that,” Trump said of his willingness to meet with the reclusive Kim, “but I’m telling you under the right circumstances I would meet with him. We have breaking news.”
“Honored” is weird hyperbole to use about someone who runs a gulag state but this may be part of a conscious strategy by Trump to de-escalate in North Korea by flattering Kim. Yesterday he called him a “smart cookie” and has made a point lately of marveling in interviews at Kim’s ability to consolidate power as an untested 27-year-old thrust into leadership after his father’s death. The uncharitable view of those comments is that Trump’s once again betraying his admiration of strongmen, especially the most ruthless members of the breed.
Not only do these word-salad blurting provide the lowest of low-hanging fruit to the Samantha Bees of the world, they confirm for Congressional Democrats what an easy mark he is, trademark scowl notwithstanding.

Thus do we get the same kind of omnibus spending bill that we've seen year after year.

And, because the complete mess that his mind is gets abated by a Republican Congress with a chronic case of Reasonable Gentleman Syndrome, the task of presenting, explaining and defending conservatism to a post-American public gets even more daunting.


  1. Yeah, no wall this year. Aww....

  2. And aww, your return to free market health care (really the casino where the "house" tries to minimize risk in favor of profit, even with situations that are anathema to it such as payment for health care for pre-existing conditions (you might have one yourself oh noble bloggie) might be failing too this year. Continue to press for the corporate freedom to gain the world but lose the losers. They supposedly belong in what they call "a different risk pool." Why? Because they're sick, I guess, denied admittance to the great corporate casinos known as insurance companies. You might have some of your investments hinging upon the continued financial success of outfits like AIG, I dunno, but you've got to protect them, right?

  3. Would you wait until your house was on fire to buy home insurance?

  4. Not the same as health insurance, Einstein. With it being tied to employment and employment being as fickle as it is these days, if you lose a job during which your sorry ass developed diabetes, say, with the next job, guess what? You got a premie!

  5. Some humans are born with pre-existing conditions that no insurance company will ever touch. Ever...!!!!

  6. Disconnect health insurance from employment. And re: the case of folks born with pre-existing conditions: How big of a factor in the overall caring for health in this country is that? The reason I ask is that it can probably be dealt with in any number of ways that doesn't involve wealth redistribution.