This Train is Dead

John Kasich, the governor-elect of Ohio, declared “this train is dead” after being elected, and mocked the slow speeds the train was expected to travel

Ohio and Wisconsin’s loss of $1.2 billion in federal stimulus money for rail projects will be California, Florida and 10 other states’ gains, federal officials said on Thursday.

Ohio and Wisconsin were among the biggest winners of federal stimulus money this year to build new rail lines in their states; officials in both states had lobbied aggressively for the money in the hopes that it would create thousands of jobs and improve their transportation systems. But that all changed last month when both states elected Republican governors who vowed to kill the train projects, arguing that they were boondoggles that would leave their states on the hook for subsidies each year to operate the trains.
Now both states, which have been hit hard by the economic downturn, are losing the money. The federal Department of Transportation announced Thursday that it was taking back the $810 million that had been awarded to Wisconsin to build a train line from Milwaukee to Madison, and the $385 million that was awarded to Ohio to build a train line linking Cincinnati, Columbus and Cleveland. The money will be redistributed to 12 other states, with the biggest winners being California and Florida, which are building high-speed trains.

The other states that will get Ohio and Wisconsin’s money will be Washington, which will get up to $161 million; Illinois, which will get $42.3 million; and New York, Maine, Massachusetts, Missouri, Oregon, North Carolina, Iowa, and Indiana, which will all get less than $10 million.

I’m pleased they’re reallocating the rail money, and I live in Ohio, and I wanted a train.

Elections have consequences, and the consequences should be swift and unambiguous.

I spoke to an honest Republican the other day. He knows I’m a Democrat. He drives a gravel truck. He leaned in and told me in a sort of conspiratorial, just-between-you-and-me manner that he would have been out of work the last two years without stimulus-funded road projects in this county and the three surrounding counties.

Go figure. You just look at these people in absolute wonder. What can they be thinking?

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212 replies
  1. 1
    PaulW says:

    What can they be thinking?

    Fuck Obama. Fuck the commie hippies.

    It’s all about winning. They Win: Everyone Else Loses.

  2. 2
    Rhoda says:

    They’re not thinking.

    Not a lot of thought went into this election and a lot of corporate money flooded the zone to make sure that simple facts didn’t become relevant.

  3. 3
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    At one level, as a Wisconsin resident, this sucks. At another level, good. My state voted against the train when it did not elect Tom Barrett. We should have to deal with it. Fucking idiots.

  4. 4
    Culture of Truth says:

    What can they be thinking?

    They’re selfish, short-sighted, hypocrites.

  5. 5
    Punchy says:

    High-speed FAIL.

    I love that Iowa is getting money for trains. Iowa. To connect one grain silo to the next, I figgers.

  6. 6
    steviez314159 says:

    @PaulW:

    You’re wrong. For them, everyone loses is good too. They don’t even have to win. As long as Obama doesn’t.

  7. 7
    aimai says:

    Yeah, my republican sister in law is surviving as a part time public school teacher and on money my brother in law is making as part of a stimulus project. If people can’t add one plus one and make two then we are doomed. But, apparently, they can’t.

    aimai

  8. 8
    Kay says:

    @Punchy:

    We were gonna connect the whole midwest, Punchy. Try to have some vision, would you?

  9. 9
    Balconesfault says:

    They’re thinking that if they start talking about Democrats in any terms other than PaulW lays out above, that they’ll be ostracized in their church groups, that their Chamber of Commerce cohorts will start cutting them out of business, and that nobody will want to sit next to them at the HS football game Friday night.

    The GOP has done a good job of demonizing liberals, while a lot of Democrats stood up either held their tongues or echoed them, hoping that would bring good feelings and the GOP would be nice to them.

  10. 10
    amk says:

    You reap what you sow. Enjoy the rethugs, ohio and wisconsin. (and michigan). Having a butthurt because of a black dem prez could lead to all sortsta pain.

  11. 11
    Dennis SGMM says:

    What can they be thinking?

    The dumbshits who voted for them will be thinking that it’s Obama’s fault that their states’ economies are in the tank.

  12. 12
    MTiffany says:

    Go figure. You just look at these people in absolute wonder. What can they be thinking?

    Ahem: “It’s called the White House for a reason.” That’s what some of them are thinking, and that’s the charitable phrasing.

  13. 13
    PaulW says:

    @steviez314159:

    You’re wrong. For them, everyone loses is good too. They don’t even have to win. As long as Obama doesn’t.

    To the Republicants, “Everyone loses” still counts as a Win.

  14. 14
    Kay says:

    @aimai:

    The local public school people are like “oh, this is going to baaad!”

    Jesus. It’s just head-shaking. This county goes 65% R. One would think they’d consider these things when they mob the polling places, in an incoherent fit of rage.

  15. 15
    stuckinred says:

    Walker called the decision a “victory,” in a meeting with reporters in Pewaukee, because he called the rail line a symbol of excessive government spending.

  16. 16
    pattonbt says:

    This makes me happy, mad and sad all at once. These states are already on uncertain footing and the idiots who people elected to help them just helped them cut off their nose to spite their face.

    I really, really want to pull out Nelson Muntz here and go “Ha, Ha”, but it just kills me that this is where the US is now.

    Addendum….

    What I do fervently hope for is that when these asshole Tea Patriers come crawling back in the middle of the night quietly requesting the funds (and they will) that they are made to grovel in public and are humiliated before anything is given. One can wish.

  17. 17
    Dennis SGMM says:

    @PaulW:

    To the Republicants, “Everyone loses” still counts as a Win.

    They would cut off their own dicks with a broken beer bottle if they thought that would prevent Obama’s re-election.

  18. 18
    stuckinred says:

    The administration also turned down Kasich’s alternate proposal, to use the money to pay down the federal debt. According to the Department of Transportation, there was no other choice, because by law the high-speed rail money had to be spent on high-speed rail.

  19. 19
    c u n d gulag says:

    And don’t forget the next Republican President, Chris Christie in NJ!
    He decided against the rail and car tunnels from NJ to NYC.

    I think there should be sign as you drive into and out of NY from Jersey that say, “You can thank the traffic and your rail delays to the amibitions of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie!”

  20. 20
    dms says:

    OT:

    Seems like the “professional left” and the DFHs weren’t the only ones to get their fee-fees hurt.

    Here.

  21. 21
    WereBear says:

    @Balconesfault: they’ll be ostracized in their church groups, that their Chamber of Commerce cohorts will start cutting them out of business, and that nobody will want to sit next to them at the HS football game Friday night

    That’s the picture they see. Not, BTW, the Big One.

  22. 22
    russell says:

    What can they be thinking?

    They’re not.

    The money is going to go elsewhere, maybe it will end up building some good stuff, maybe folks in OH and WI will see that and will say “crap, that coulda been us!”.

    But probably they will simply continue to respond to the big “GOVERNMENT BAD” light that flashes intermittently in their brains.

    The government is going to take their money and piss it away, mostly by giving it to somebody else, and probably somebody they don’t like.

    That is tatooed on the inside of their eyeballs, and it takes the place of thought.

  23. 23
    Kay says:

    @stuckinred:

    because he called the rail line a symbol of excessive government spending.

    Here I was, thinking it was a rail line.

    Oh, sure, symbolism. Because that’s what we need.

  24. 24
    BB says:

    OK so elected Republicans are hypocrites and selfish and all manner of terrible things. As Peggy Noonan would lecture, we know this. We know these things.

    However, I got a chance to watch Scott Walker, the Governor-elect of Wisconsin on Fox News (bien sur!) the other day talking about his rejection of the rail money.

    Walker had been in Washington and cornered Secretary LaHood to make the case that even though he didn’t feel like using those hundreds of millions for rail improvements, his state should be allowed to keep the money for road improvements and the like. I just about tipped over in the La-Z-Boy that is requisite for Fox News viewing.

    Can you imagine the balls of making the case that even though you’re pissing away your state’s chance to revolutionize its city-to-city transportation you should still keep the money, y’know, for whatever. Like Congress sat down and decided to drop a giant bag of cash totaling nearly $1 billion on Wisconsin’s doorstep with a note that send “Congrats on the turn to wingnuttery! Spend wisely!”

    No. Kudos to LaHood for shrugging off Walker’s BS ideas and giving the cash to those who will use it for its purpose.

  25. 25
    pattonbt says:

    @Dennis SGMM:

    Unfortunately, this.

  26. 26
    aliasofwestgate says:

    Michigan’s governor elect, Snyder hasn’t said nay to the high speed rail project yet. But we’ll see what happens. He’s an R, but i’m hoping he has enough sense to keep the project here. Trashing it would be beyond stupid in terms of jobs and money for the state. But he IS a rethug, so i’m not counting my chickens either.

  27. 27
    Sammy says:

    Those who criticise the good people of Wisconsin are racists. It will be their fault when the African American community stays home in 2012.

  28. 28
    jwb says:

    Yes, and here I was this morning, minding my own business in the local coffee shop, when at the table next to me a group of local teabaggers went on and on about how Obama is just destroying this country, that he’s the greatest evil inflicted on this country since its founding, yadda, yadda, yadda. I haven’t heard them this animated in a good long time. It was actually quite comical, as of course none of them could really point to anything in particular that proved he was so awful, though I think what precipitated the outrage was the sense that their boys got rolled by Obama in the tax plan. The teabaggers really don’t like the Deal at all, and it will be interesting to see how the politics of this whole thing play out.

  29. 29
    Davis X. Machina says:

    What can they be thinking?

    Will I get to keep my guns?
    Will every knee bend at Jesus’ name?
    Will someone different from me be worse off than me?
    Will it piss liberals off?

    At this point they’re sacrificing, gladly, their own children and their children’s future to the idols they worship. It’s a cold Civil War, and it’s reached the Masada/cliffs of Saipan stage.

  30. 30
    Culture of Truth says:

    Who wants a big, noisy train only black people are allowed to ride?

    Wait, that is what Obama was proposing, right? I’m sure I heard that on Fox news…..

  31. 31
  32. 32
    trollhattan says:

    The Republican brilliance is in convincing most of their party members (everybody but the very rich, so let’s say 95%) to vote contra their best self-interests–going back to the Nixon southern strategy. I guess it’s most clearly manifested by the endless supply of Kultcha Wars.

  33. 33
    Mike E says:

    You just look at these people in absolute wonder

    ..and think, “Do they possess souls?”

  34. 34
    McWaffle says:

    Damnit, that train was going to be super useful. I’m in Madison, and don’t drive. It’s a pain in the ass for me to get to Minneapolis, Milwaukee or Chicago. Whatever, I’m probably going to have to evacuate this country like a damn refugee within 5-10 years anyway. Madison is top on the list for the upcoming Inquisition, I’m sure.

  35. 35
    jwb says:

    @Kay: incoherent fits of rage usually have the effect of blocking cognitive functioning so it’s not surprising, unfortunately. The worst of it is that the situation is likely to enrage them even more, further diminishing the cognitive functioning (as they also seek out anyone but themselves to blame), so it’s likely to get worse.

  36. 36
    kdaug says:

    Because these people vote on how they feel, not on what they think. It’s easy to get people riled up enough that they’ll vote against their interests – a couple of months of talk radio telling them to be scared of [x] will be enough to get them to the polls, because fear and anger are more powerful motivators than logic to a lot of people. And the opposite push to rationality just feels boring to them, the same way Dancing With The Stars has 10x the ratings of the PBS Newshour.

    To wit, Jethro Tull: “I may make you feel, but I can’t make you think”.

  37. 37
    Violet says:

    What can they be thinking?

    They’re thinking Obama didn’t fix the economy and give everyone a pony in 18 months so Democrats Suck.

    And that maybe having a black president wasn’t such a good idea.

    And that Obama is too intellectual and Not One of Us, so anyone who ‘pals around with him’ (see: any Democrat) must not be able to be trusted either.

    And that things were good under Reagan, so Republicans must know what they’re doing. (Whether they were good or not or said individual was even alive when Reagan was President.)

    And that Democrats “got us into this mess by taxingandspending too much.”

    And “I didn’t like Bush all that much, but at least I had a job when he was President.”

    In other words, they aren’t thinking about it all that much. They’re hurting and they want it to get better. They’re grasping about for whatever might do that. Democrats didn’t, so might as well try Republicans.

  38. 38
    Punchy says:

    @Kay: I would have a hard-on that rivals Yttrium if I could just one day catch the 5:40 Southbound from Ankeny to Lamoni.

  39. 39
    johnsmith1882 says:

    I’m sure the gravel truck driver voted for Kasich and whatever other yahoos you got in Ohio last month. So he’s an honest hypocrite, good for him.

  40. 40
    danimal says:

    California thanks you.

    You know, our new, old governor may be able to parlay high speed rail into some significant job growth and infrastructure development.

    Sorry that the truck drivers and construction workers that would have been working in WI and MI will be out of work, but them’s the breaks…

  41. 41
    El Cruzado says:

    @jwb: They don’t like the fact that a deal of any kind was made. Any sort of compromise is equal to capitulation.

  42. 42
    kindness says:

    Kay, did you ask your Republican friend if he voted republican this last election?

    Just wonderin’, that’s all.

  43. 43
    retr2327 says:

    Correction. Kasich actually said “This Brain is Dead.”

  44. 44
    debbie says:

    More ominiously for Ohio, Kasich this morning said that the election had given him all kinds of discretion to do what he wanted.

  45. 45
    Dave says:

    There’s another interesting tidbit at the bottom of that story. Rick Scott, the incoming GOP FL governor, is “rethinking” the train from Tampa to Orlando. That could be another $2B taken back and redistributed.

  46. 46
    JimF says:

    Oh well we can just loop the line from Mpls-Stp to Iowa City to Chicago. Hmmm provided Canada goes along it then heads NE across Michigan through Canada to Buffalo having bypassed Ohio altogether.

  47. 47
    jwb says:

    @Violet: I don’t think most of them were even thinking that much. I think it was more along the lines of: “this sucks, let’s try something else. Anything has got to be better than the status quo.” They don’t actually recognize that, yes, it can actually get much worse.

  48. 48
    amk says:

    @Violet: Wow, violet. You win the squaring the hole award.

  49. 49
    Allan says:

    I believe the state of California should follow up by launching an ad campaign targeting business owners in those states, recruiting them to relocate their companies to a state with better-funded and more forward-thinking investment in the needed infrastructure to make their businesses more productive, efficient and competitive.

    Nice big ads in the major newspapers, with a picture of a high-speed train and a headline like

    Your tax dollars at work… in California.

  50. 50
    J.W. Hamner says:

    Out of curiosity, does anybody know what is the CATO approved libertarian post hoc justification of Republican tribalistic (Suburbs vs. Cities) opposition to trains? I can guess it’s something Invisible Hand Wavy that ignores subsidies of highways and driving, but do they have any serious argument for why the government should not be involved in the creation of rail infrastructure?

  51. 51
    Face says:

    Walker called the decision a “victory,” in a meeting with reporters in Pewaukee, because he called the rail line a symbol of excessive government spending.

    Cannot wait to see what happens when he outright rejects all federal highway funds (cuz he will, of course, so as not to be a hypocrite), and Wisconsin builds roads with gravel and dirt. And horse and buggy are the only way to traverse them.

    Stay 19th century, Cheeseholes.

  52. 52
    debbie says:

    I can’t figure out why Republicans like Kasich and Christie expected they would be able to get the money to use for anything else. What kind of a way is that to run a business?

  53. 53
    danimal says:

    Sorry, Ohio is the state that elected the idiot Kasich. And, for the second time today, FYWP, for not allowing me to edit my comment.

  54. 54
    Tony J says:

    Go figure. You just look at these people in absolute wonder. What can they be thinking?

    That even though it – looks – like they’re hacking away at the roof while the rain comes down and everyone is getting wet, what they’re – really – doing is making everyone so sick of leaky roofs that they’ll credit them for their foresight when the sun finally comes out.

    Real Americans ain’t scared to get a little wet in a good cause.

  55. 55
    ant says:

    The Wisconsin residents that agree with our Governor about not building the rail line consider this a victory because they feel that the spending will all go to the “liberals” in the state.

    It’s like a football game to them. Their team won the play, in keeping the niggers in the whitehouse from giving all that white money to the niggers in Madison and Milwaukee. The work of the good white folks is still not finished you see, cause the niggers ended up just giving the white money to other niggers in other states. That’s why our economy is so bad. We need more war to stimulate the economy.

  56. 56
    ruemara says:

    Thinking? Surely you jest.

  57. 57
    Libby says:

    Relative to that last bit about the truck driver, the Wonk Room posted a chart showing the percentages of “wealthy” versus the unemployed in states represented by Republican Senators. And in this chart wealthy means earnings of $200K or more. Which makes me wonder how the hell these GOPers get elected in the first place.

  58. 58
    jwb says:

    @El Cruzado: What was striking to me was how raw the anger was. If this group is any indication, the teabaggers are as upset by the Deal if not more than the firebaggers. They really sound betrayed. Yet, I notice a difference, or rather a similarity: whereas our fine firebaggers go after Obama for selling the progressive ideals out, the teabaggers go after Obama for succeeding in getting a Deal. That is, the anger of the teabaggers at the moment was not directed at the Republican congresscritters except incidentally. The rage remains focused outward, toward the political opponents.

  59. 59
    D-Chance. says:

    I’m pleased they’re reallocating the rail money, and I live in Ohio, and I wanted a train.

    Anyone knows a train built in Ohio is, by definition, a train to nowhere…

  60. 60
    Marmot says:

    @Dennis SGMM: More importantly, people whom they trust will tell them that it’s Obama’s fault that their economy’s in the shitter. They’re not all plain stupid, just too invested in their whole Us versus Democrats and Muslims and gays and France and welfare freeloaders thing. I guess it’s a special kind of stupid.

  61. 61
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:


    Keeping out of trouble moving on the double
    Got a feeling that this tunnels got an ending soon
    Feel like i’ve been hanging on a lead balloon
     
    Standing to attention sitting by the engine
    Got to get a uniform to go with the good news
    Better even buy some brand new shoes
     
    I just got off a long gone dead train

  62. 62
    Libby says:

    The irony is the reason they made the rules so strict on how the money could be spent was in response to the GOPers wailing about how the stimulus money was going to be rife with graft and fraud. Of course, on the negative side that’s also why it got disbursed so slowly it didn’t really boost the economy as it might have.

  63. 63

    i have been writing to ray lahood, cc-ing my senators, my mayor, my state reps, and my city council members encouraging his “go pound sand” approach. each letter is published at my place for your entertainment.

    My only regret is that Philadelphia didn’t get a share, and we really deserved it: we delivered PA to the president, and we REALLY need the funding.

  64. 64
    jwb says:

    @Face: Hey, we all know how much better life was back in the 19th century.

  65. 65
    trollhattan says:

    @J.W. Hamner:

    Charlie Crocker and Theodore Judah showed insufficient fealty to Republican and libertarian ideals, back in the day. Also, too, they probably didn’t donate enuf.

    The wounds take time to heal, you know.

  66. 66
    Face says:

    There’s another interesting tidbit at the bottom of that story. Rick Scott, the incoming GOP FL governor, is “rethinking” the train from Tampa to Orlando. That could be another $2B taken back and redistributed.

    Serious (sorta) question — isn’t this is exactly how it’s supposed to work? If you run on “mah gubbmint suxxors!”, then you ought to refuse all gov’t help. All fed assistance, period. And then live with the consequences.

    If you’re not wingnut and you enjoy the assistance, you should be entitled to it. Eventually, MS, TN, AL, GA, TX, etc. will realize the folly of their voting proclivities when they’re making phone calls with cans and string and getting their mail via Pony Express.

  67. 67
    Triassic Sands says:

    @PaulW: @steviez314159:

    I think the idea that everyone loses is OK with the GOP is not correct. They are focused on a tiny sliver of the American people, and they will do almost anything to keep the wealthy from losing (anything).

    Look at the current debate. The Republicans could live with an end to tax cut extensions for the middle class, because they can easily pin that Obama. So, if all that mattered was to have Obama lose, they shouldn’t be fighting the end of the extensions so hard. But they are. And the reason they are is because they don’t want the tax cuts for the rich to end. On top of that, the changes in the estate tax will help no one but the very richest Americans.

    So, despite all their rhetoric (about deficits and debt, for example), the Republicans are willing to trade a deal, which could benefit Obama, for more money for the wealthiest among us. Republicans are willing to engage in a scorched earth policy as long as they are assured that the rich are safely ensconced in asbestos houses. However, if the rich are threatened, then all bets are off.

    Of course, Republican policies could lead to the destruction of the US economy and society, but that is OK because a quick look at the Third World informs us the rich will survive. After all, these people have enough money to move anywhere they want. And if their investments in the US economy begin to fail, they can invest in China or any other thriving economy.

  68. 68
    gnomedad says:

    @Punchy:
    Y’know, I used to be more willing to listen to critiques of liberal sacred cows before the Repubs went batshit insane.

  69. 69
    geg6 says:

    Good. Excellent. Glad to see this.

    Too fucking bad for Wisconsin and Ohio, I guess. Actions (elections) have consequences, eh? Boofuckinghoo for your GOPer friend, too. How’s he feel about his heroes who, when he loses his truck driving job, also want him to starve and beg for sheckels on the street corner?

  70. 70
    Huckster says:

    Frankly I wish the President could yank all federal funding from the red states. elections have consequences indeed!

  71. 71
    WereBear says:

    I was thinking the other day that the core thing the propagandists at the heart of the Republican party have grasped, with all the enthusiasm a dead cold hand can muster, is a deep vein of pride.

    This is why they tell people that they should “do things on their own” and “don’t come crying to the government all the time” because “that’s what those shiftless people who deserve to be poor” do.

    It’s really insidious, and it works like a charm. Why can’t these people use their own helicopters, anyway?

  72. 72
    Marmot says:

    @pattonbt:

    What I do fervently hope for is that when these asshole Tea Patriers come crawling back in the middle of the night quietly requesting the funds (and they will) that they are made to grovel in public and are humiliated before anything is given. One can wish.

    Ha. That isn’t going to happen. We Democrats don’t want to criminalize politics! That kind of vituperative, nasty politics is beneath us, and way too partisan.

    /hippie punching

  73. 73
    jwb says:

    @Face: “Eventually, MS, TN, AL, GA, TX, etc. will realize the folly of their voting proclivities when they’re making phone calls with cans and string and getting their mail via Pony Express.”
    Have you lived in the South? Those would just be further signs of how the North is scheming to keep the South in its place.

  74. 74
    agrippa says:

    It is illogical to expect them to be consistent or logical.
    Nothing to figure, they are who they are.

    Can you teach your dog to drive down to the store and buy bread and milk? Why expect them to make sense?

  75. 75

    Thanks, guys.

    As a Californian, I look forward to the economic boost your money will provide, and the reduced traffic on our congested freeways.

    @J.W. Hamner:

    We should privatize the roads, end the gas tax and taxes for transportation costs, and each pay individually to use the roads we need to use, and presumably, the free market will ensure that the roads remain well-maintained.

    Also, I’m pretty sure the anti-rail line stance comes from the fact that rail lines typically have to be centrally planned and reduce the freedom of movement and individuality represented by a car.

  76. 76
    Ep1phany42 says:

    Schadenfreude is a dish best served cold.

  77. 77
    djheru says:

    @Culture of Truth: I heard they were going to build the tracks so that the trains would pass by the bedroom and/or bathroom windows of all the purty white wimmen, too!

  78. 78
    freelancer says:

    The only real litmus test for conservativism is “Does it piss off libruls?”

  79. 79
    DJShay says:

    spoke to an honest Republican the other day. He knows I’m a Democrat. He drives a gravel truck. He leaned in and told me in a sort of conspiratorial, just-between-you-and-me manner that he would have been out of work the last two years without stimulus-funded road projects in this county and the three surrounding counties.

    And they’ll keep supporting and voting for GOP retards just the same.

  80. 80
    ChrisS says:

    Good morning, America, how are you
    Don’t you know me, I’m your native son
    I’m the train they call The City of New Orleans
    I’ll be gone five hundred miles when the day is done

  81. 81
    eemom says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    Will I get to keep my guns?
    Will every knee bend at Jesus’ name?
    Will someone different from me be worse off than me?
    Will it piss liberals off?

    Heh. The other day I was at a red light behind an idiot who had one of those “I’ll keep my freedom, my money and my guns, You can keep the ‘change'” bumper stickers. I saw him looking at me in the rearview, so I pointed at his sticker and made “Stoopid” faces and snickered.

    Childish of course, but it was fun.

  82. 82
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @geg6: Developed a mean streak, haven’t you? The people of Madison and Milwaukee sure as shit did not vote for Walker or against the train.

  83. 83
    Legalize says:

    Wow, Kasich is fucking us even BEFORE he’s actually governor. It is funny, sad, and pathetic to hear my local morns whining about how Obama is punishing Ohio for taking away the $400 million that was supposedly wasteful in the first place. These are largely out-of-work local morons, mind you, with Palin stickers on their piece of shit pickups.

    Southwestern Ohio really is an illustrative, condensed example of everything stupid about this country.

  84. 84
    trollhattan says:

    @Comrade Dread:

    Seconded. Thanks, dudes and dudettes! Please enjoy the complementary lutefisk and PBRs.

    Here it is already:

    http://blogs.sacbee.com/capito.....m-ohi.html

  85. 85
    The Other Chuck says:

    I would lean in and in the same whispering tone, say “Just between you and me, if you vote for a Republican again, they will do as promised and _put you out of a job_”

    Simple messages, repeated: “Republicans will put you out of a job.” That’s really all it takes.

  86. 86
    Violet says:

    @eemom:
    You’re brave. I’d never do that because I figure they’d pull out their gun and shoot me. Maybe it depends where you live.

  87. 87
    Zifnab says:

    @D-Chance.:

    Anyone knows a train built in Ohio is, by definition, a train to nowhere…

    If only the newly elected Governor had said more shit like this right before the election, they’d have kept their train.

    Ironic…

  88. 88
    burnspbesq says:

    @BB:

    No later than January 5, a Republican congresscritter from one of the states that has turned down money for high-speed rail will introduce legislation authorizing the rail money to be repurposed for highway construction, and will characterize it as an essential stimulus measure. The bill will pass both houses. I wish I had more confidence that Obama would veto it.

  89. 89
    Tax Analyst says:

    @Dennis SGMM:

    Paul W:

    To the Republicants, “Everyone loses” still counts as a Win.

    Dennis SGMM:

    They would cut off their own dicks with a broken beer bottle if they thought that would prevent Obama’s re-election.

    I usually don’t wince too much or twitch in discomfort at on-line imagery, but that one made me sit up straight real quick. Ouch.

  90. 90
    Dennis SGMM says:

    @Comrade Dread:

    Also, I’m pretty sure the anti-rail line stance comes from the fact that rail lines typically have to be centrally planned and reduce the freedom of movement and individuality represented by a car.

    I would add that the anti-rail people were bolstered by the GOP’s years-long attacks on AMTRAK subsidies. They conveniently glossed over the fact that airports, freeways, and seaports are also subsidized. This was another instance where the Democrats simply ceded the argument to the Republicans to the extent that “rail is bad because it has to be subsidized” is now an article of faith.

  91. 91
    Mogden says:

    Why should someone in California pay for a train in Ohio, or any other state? Is there something magical about the federal government that makes it better at allocating rail resources than a more local government?

  92. 92
    RosiesDad says:

    @Kay: I think these people need to feel the real pain of Republican policies for a little while. They put them in office, they should get to experience enjoy the consequences.

  93. 93
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Libby:

    Which makes me wonder how the hell these GOPers get elected in the first place.

    Because rich and middle-class people vote in much higher numbers than poor and working-class people.

    This big Republican triumph didn’t happen because Democrats stayed home (or, at least, not because they stayed home in unusually large numbers for a midterm election). It happened because old scared white folks turned out in droves. Their numbers were much higher than usual for a midterm (and they’re the ones who normally turn out for midterms), which is what swamped everyone else.

  94. 94
    BGK says:

    @Dave:

    Sadly, yes. I think the only reason Icky Ricky hasn’t killed HSR already (well, aside from the fact he hasn’t been inagurated yet) is that Disney really really wants HSR (though they’re more interested in phase 2 to Port Canaveral and SE FL) and have the wherewithal to feed him to a wood chipper if they so desired.

  95. 95
    The Moar You Know says:

    Elections have consequences, and the consequences should be swift and unambiguous.

    They sure will be for this child.

  96. 96
    Throwin Stones says:

    @debbie: I heard that too.
    I believe he said he’s looking into privatizing toll roads and prisons, for starters.

  97. 97
    Marmot says:

    @ant:

    The Wisconsin residents that agree with our Governor about not building the rail line consider this a victory because they feel that the spending will all go to the “liberals” in the state.

    For serious? I’d love to see someone spell this out, if you’ve got a link of any kind.

  98. 98
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Mogden: It is supposed to be a rail system, like it’s a highway system.

  99. 99
  100. 100
    Dennis SGMM says:

    @Mogden:

    Why should someone in California pay for a train in Ohio, or any other state?

    Because it’s the United States of America?

  101. 101
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Mogden:

    Is there something magical about the federal government that makes it better at allocating rail resources than a more local government?

    It’s not that it’s “magical.” It’s because the federal government has the luxury of looking across the whole country to see what will benefit everyone and not just people in your local area.

    The Madison/Milwaukee train was supposed to cross the state line to Chicago. Do you really think it would be more efficient to have two separate states build their own separate lines up to the border, or is it more efficient to have one entity build both halves?

  102. 102
    Mr Furious says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    Moar, that’s an awesome (awful) link. That baby shoulda statyed in the womb, and it could have whatever the fuck it wanted.

  103. 103
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Marmot: I think the logic is that it benefits Madison and Milwaukee, where all the “commies: and “darkies” live. Rural and small town Wisconsin is not particularly sophisticated.

  104. 104
    geg6 says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Nope, not mean. Just telling them to accept the consequences of their actions. And the people of Madison or Cleveland who didn’t vote for these asshats for governor have my sympathy, but it’s not my fault their Teatard fellow citizens outnumber them. You think it would be any different here in PA if we had gotten any of that sweet, sweet high speed rail money (one of my fondest dreams is high speed rail service between Pittsburgh and Philadelphia) and our new GOPer gov did the same as OH and WI? And do you really think I’d have any more pity for my state’s horrid choices? In fact, do you think I have any pity now since I’m sure Governor Corbett is going to royally fuck over every poor, working class, and middle class citizen in PA over the next four years?

    Nope. I have nothing but pity for my fellow PA Dems, but nothing but complete and utter disdain for anyone anywhere in this state who voted for Corbett and Toomey and I hope they suffer every day for it. Every.single.day.

  105. 105
    garage mahal says:

    What can they be thinking?

    Obama needs WI and OH in 2012. Walker and Kasich will both say “Obama and his thugs car-jacked that money he promised our states!”.

    Or some variation of that.

    Wisconsin: Backwards and Beyond!

    I can say that. I live here.

  106. 106
    cathyx says:

    I know I’m late to this party, but WOOHOO for the west coast. I hope we get high speed rail along the entire west coast.

  107. 107
    Mr Furious says:

    @Dan: Someone should just tell Kasich and the GOopers in Ohio that the train would filled with tax cuts, and to just stand on the tracks to collect theirs.

  108. 108
    themann1086 says:

    @MTiffany: Also, brown-skinned immigrants are stealing our jorbs, and gay people are ruining marriage. Too.

  109. 109
    Cain says:

    I just called the democratic party, my House representative and now sending a note to John Kitzhaber to make a play for that federal stimulus. Every blue state should be grabbing it while blowing a raspberry at the rest.

    Then have a press release every other day about how people are working in their state.

    Oregon wants rail, we want it bad. High speed corridor between San Francisco and Vancouver B.C baby and maybe extend Max all the way to Salem.

    While I was at it I hero worshipped my reps. Yay.

    cain

  110. 110
    cathyx says:

    Oh, and mid-west dumb republicans are west coast democrats gains.

  111. 111
    BGK says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Because rich and middle-class people vote in much higher numbers than poor and working-class people.

    Exactly. My town of ~130,000 is about two-thirds working poor through just-about-middle-class. We’ve also been in the top five for forclosures for about three years running now. Democrats should be stomping Republicans into the dirt with extreme prejudice at all levels of government.

    Ha ha, no. The retirees turn out 80%+ every time, and we get The Crazy from stem to stern.

    What’s most disheartening is not that the working poor don’t register or vote, or even that they don’t automatically buy the Democratic message. It’s that they’ve been thoroughly convinced/brainwashed that “both parties are the same,” or “they’re all crooks,” and can’t even be moved to participate. Nothing I said during canvassing, phone banking, registration drives, et cetera, seems to shake this. “Government is the problem” is a feature, not a bug…

  112. 112
    cathyx says:

    @Cain: I believe Oregon is getting some of that money.

  113. 113
    Mike Kay (Team America) says:

    Go figure. You just look at these people in absolute wonder. What can they be thinking?

    That obama is black.

    It’s that simple.

    If palin or bush had funded rail, they wouldn’t have opposed, but since it was obama, they had to cut off their nose to spite obama.

  114. 114
    Zifnab says:

    @DJShay:

    And they’ll keep supporting and voting for GOP retards just the same.

    Run up until they get their government cheese yanked. Then they’ll stay home or vote libertarian, in a huff.

  115. 115
    Dave says:

    @Dan: That is the idiocy of the modern GOP in its purest form.

    In Wisconsin, a Spanish train company (Talgo), whose staying was predicated on the new rail work, is considering leaving the state.

    In Illinois, Nissan is building a new rail-car facility because that state is dedicated to upgrading rail.

    In New York, over 130 rail cars are being built in Elmira, NY, creating over 500 new jobs, to fill an Amtrak order.

    What’s Kasich’s plan to bring money and jobs to Ohio?

  116. 116
    Throwin Stones says:

    @burnspbesq: Voinovich wrote to Obama and maybe LaHood asking if Ohio could use the money for roads and bridges.
    Guess not.

  117. 117
    dr. bloor says:

    @brendancalling:

    My only regret is that Philadelphia didn’t get a share, and we really deserved it: we delivered PA to the president, and we REALLY need the funding.

    Makes you part of the base. Pound sand, sucka.

  118. 118
    artem1s says:

    @BB:

    Kasich tried the same asshattery. he wants to build more roads.

    I’ve been watching them expand the freeway system around Columbus for 30 years now and not one widening of I-71 has made a difference to the amount of traffic. In fact its gotten worse. Sunday after Thanksgiving trying to leave the city, I-71 was backed up 40 miles outside the 270 OUTERBELT. it’s fracking ridonkulous. they whine about the rail proposal not being FAST when what Columbus desperately needs is a local slow/commuter system that gets all the asshat GOPers out of the capital building and Nationwide Center at rush hour. But of course OH has become the new AL. We elect pretend weekend Nazis to the state senate and want to use stimulus money to asphalt over the entire state. “If its not a mall make sure its covered in concrete” should be the new state motto.

  119. 119
    Dennis SGMM says:

    @Dave:

    What’s Kasich’s plan to bring money and jobs to Ohio?

    Tax cuts, baby. That and dismantling the social safety net, starving education, and harassing brown people to create a more business-friendly atmosphere.

  120. 120
    Dan says:

    Meanwhile, you can bet that if the feds were offering the money to build a highway and not a rail system, Kasitch would be all over it.

  121. 121
    martha says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: You and me both. I’m just so depressed right now I could scream. He’s such a complete idiot. I realize that I’m lucky in that I own a small business that does very little work for the state. But still. Longer term, I have no interest in living/working/supporting a state that strives to be the Mississippi of the Midwest.

  122. 122
    Tax Analyst says:

    @Kay:

    @stuckinred: because he called the rail line a symbol of excessive government spending.

    Here I was, thinking it was a rail line.

    Oh, sure, symbolism. Because that’s what we need.

    Maybe he thinks Ohians (?) will be able to hop aboard that symbolism to get where they need to go. “All aboard the Symbolic Express, next stop, Columbus!” Good luck on that.

    Yeah, although it might seem great sport and fun to treat ones racial prejudices as though there were actually real events or actions powering them and voting accordingly at the polls, it turns out that elections often have actual, real consequences. Sadly, it seems that many folks who do this respond to the zero-sum results by assuming a stance of either grumbling resentment or aggressive denial (or alternatively both, depending on the company they are in).

    Snubbing the needs and well-being of your community by voting for some posturing ass-wipe who opposes positive public works because they don’t like the color of the hand offering to pay for them demonstrates just how hollow the politics of bitter resentment really are. But hey, Whocoodanode?

  123. 123
    KevinA says:

    BTW: DADT repeal DEAD. Collins and Lieberman thought they had a deal. Reid says NO. Will be killed shortly.

  124. 124
    Mike Lamb says:

    I wish someone would knock on my door and offer me an exorbitant amount of money to purchase/build some new form of transportation that would get me from Point A to Point B faster.

  125. 125
    Marmot says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Yeah, I got that, but were there folks actually arguing that the train would help liberals over “the rest of us”? (I mean, sure there are racist connotations and all, but I’m not interested in that.) I’m curious about these arguments from conservatives and I collect them.

  126. 126
    kdaug says:

    @Face: Actually, Texas is one of those few states that sends more money to the Federal government than it gets in return.

  127. 127

    @stuckinred:

    Walker called the decision a “victory,” in a meeting with reporters in Pewaukee, because he called the rail line a symbol of excessive government spending.

    Wait. I’m confused. I read Atlas Shrugged and I thought that rail lines were symbols of capitalism and free enterprise. Oh, and big penises too.

  128. 128
    Legalize says:

    @Mogden:
    Maybe because by definition, the thing is designed to be, you known, “interstate” in nature.

  129. 129
    And Another Thing... says:

    @ant: Would you please, pretty please stop throwing the n word around? Thank you.

  130. 130
    johnsmith1882 says:

    Triassic,
    You are missing an important part of this, namely why do the rubes keep voting against their own interests.

    WI, OH, NJ,
    As a non-elected non-representative from the state of Illinois, I would like to take this time to thank all the rubes who made this possible.

    ps. WI, how did a retard like Ron Johnson defeat Russ Feingold?

  131. 131
    Martin says:

    @Dave: Bring it. There’d be a high speed rail stop about 3 miles from my house. SF in 3 hours. That’s comparable to doing it by plane (considering security line etc) and nobody would have to touch my junk.

  132. 132
  133. 133
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @artem1s: When I lived in Columbus, I lived downtown, German Village and behind the main library. When I would leave town for a holiday weekend on my way to central WI, I would drive on secondary roads until I got to London, and then get on I-70. I would go slowly, but I would be moving forward.

    @martha: My family is here. I will always have a connection, but, if this right turn is not an aberration, I will not be disappointed to move away when my wife finishes her PhD.

  134. 134
    martha says:

    @Marmot: In WI, it’s become very polarized and some of it is geographic: Madison (evil liberals) versus Milwaukee (the suburbs of which are NOT and elected Scott Walker the governor). For them, it’s all a game. But what they forget is that it’s Madison, with the university, state government, and technology/start-ups/corporate base that supports the state. If Madison and Dane County are not successful, the state isn’t successful. When you give entrepreuneurs and younger people the message that you’re going backwards, they choose other places to go (Chicago, Minneapolis)…because they aren’t going to Milwaukee.

  135. 135
    Tax Analyst says:

    @kdaug:

    To wit, Jethro Tull: “I may make you feel, but I can’t make you think”.

    Not to mention that “Nothing Is Easy”.

  136. 136
    Suffern ACE says:

    @nhoj: Cloture or the actual bill? I forget where we are with this thing? Are we still at 15 amendments and 30 hours of debate?

  137. 137
    KevinA says:

    @nhoj:

    No, it’s being killed right now.

    Durbin for Maj. Leader! Reid=Fail

  138. 138
    Suffern ACE says:

    @martha: They can go to Minneapolis or Chicago, but if they ever want to take a train from Minneapolis to Chicago, they’ll be out of luck.

  139. 139
    Mike Kay (Team America) says:

    @KevinA: how is it reid’s fault?

  140. 140
    KevinA says:

    @Suffern ACE:

    No, no deal at all. Dead, done, buh-bye.

    But hey, Reid gets to blame someone, so it’s good, right?

  141. 141
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Suffern ACE: Not if they run it through Iowa.

  142. 142
    Cain says:

    @cathyx:

    @Cain: I believe Oregon is getting some of that money.

    Awesome. Right now the plans are only to build a rail corridor from Portland to Salem as the other states got more of the money. I hope they revise the plan.

    It looks like if the other red states give up stimulus there will be even more for us. Yay.

    Btw, I’m an o-bot, and the “O” stands for Oregon or Obama ;)

    cain

  143. 143
    Pangloss says:

    @Mogden: I don’t have kids, so why should I pay to send your kids to school?

    /selfish shortsighted wingnut

  144. 144
    Dan says:

    Ohio’s best shot is for global warming to flood the eastern seaboard so that it gets a coastline and a climate like Southern California.

  145. 145
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @KevinA: Where do you see the vote count indicating it is not going to pass?

  146. 146
    Dave says:

    @Martin: I’m with you. I can walk to the train station at my town in Maine and hit Boston in two hours. I’d love to trim that time down. Of course, 37% of this state just voted a moron into the governor’s office, so we’ll have to see if we keep our limited money…

  147. 147
    Marmot says:

    @martha: I’m familiar with that dynamic. It’s a whole rural/suburban vs. urban thing. Same here in Texas, if you look at the county-level voting maps. But I’d really like a link to a politician or even a person on the street making the “trains help liberals (or even Madison)” argument. Video, text, I don’t care.

  148. 148
    martha says:

    @Suffern ACE: They can take Amtrak’s Empire Builder now! But it’s only once a day.

  149. 149
    Corner Stone says:

    @Marmot: It’s an article of faith that all jobs for HSR are going to unions, who are obviously liberals.
    My wingnut friends here in TX all tell me this very same thing, “No more political paybacks for your union cronies!”
    So I know it’s being spread somewhere along the wingnut manure trail.

  150. 150
    johnsmith1882 says:

    kdaug,
    Texas is the only _Republican_ state to send more money to the federal government than what it receives.

    http://voices.washingtonpost.c.....ipoff.html

    All the others are those damn tax-and-spend librul states.

  151. 151
    KevinA says:

    @Mike Kay (Team America):

    Seems like Collins wanted 15 ammendments and four days. Breaker, apparently, is Reid wanted to pick which GOP ammendments were voted on.

    My reading: Reid was looking to blame someone all along.

    Greg Sargent on Twitter is good reading right now.

  152. 152
    Corner Stone says:

    @Mogden: This isn’t even a very good attempt at spoofing.

  153. 153
    Cain says:

    David Wu’s office told me that the Dream act is dead too in the senate. I guess we have to blame Obama for that as well.

    chootyas’. (look it up.. it is an indian slang)

    cain

  154. 154
    Violet says:

    @Martin:

    Bring it. There’d be a high speed rail stop about 3 miles from my house. SF in 3 hours. That’s comparable to doing it by plane (considering security line etc) and nobody would have to touch my junk.

    Don’t count on it. The TSA is keeping an eye on trains and buses too. Nudie scans aren’t just for air travelers anymore.

  155. 155
    Dennis SGMM says:

    @Mike Kay (Team America):
    Apparently, Reid broke off negotiations with Susan Collins, who was disposed to vote for repeal if Reid allowed 15 amendments (10 R, 5 D) and agreed to four days of debate.

  156. 156
    TR says:

    @KevinA:

    But hey, Reid gets to blame someone, so it’s good, right?

    But hey, you get to blame Reid, so it’s good, right?

    This may stun everyone, but neither Harry Reid nor Barack Obama has the power to make Susan Collins do exactly what they want.

    You want to blame someone? Blame the Maine “moderate” who sat in the hearings reading stories from the troops about how they didn’t mind if their fellow soldiers were gay and how they already knew some of them were, only to turn around and tell those soldiers their opinions didn’t matter.

  157. 157
    burnspbesq says:

    @Throwin Stones:

    Not under current law. That’s correct.

  158. 158
    KevinA says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Just failed. We even lost Manchin too. With no deal on process, this was DOA. Reid knew that.

    I know, OBAMA’s FAULT!

  159. 159
    Midnight Marauder says:

    @And Another Thing…:

    Would you please, pretty please stop throwing the n word around? Thank you.

    I’m pretty sure there was nothing contextually wrong with ant’s use of nigger in their comment.

    It’s like a football game to them. Their team won the play, in keeping the niggers in the whitehouse from giving all that white money to the niggers in Madison and Milwaukee. The work of the good white folks is still not finished you see, cause the niggers ended up just giving the white money to other niggers in other states. That’s why our economy is so bad. We need more war to stimulate the economy.

    I mean, this is pretty representative of the mindset of a great deal of conservatives and Republicans. This is the kind of sentiment that results in ginned up outrage over nonexistent “voter fraud.” And to be perfectly honest, there is no such thing as “the N word.” That is just a cowardly rhetorical maneuver for people who don’t want to confront the fact that the word should always be one that creates an unsettling feeling. Nothing is gained from relegating it to some mythical status where it can’t actually be spoken, even though everyone involved with the conversation implicitly knows that the term hangs ominously over all racial dialogues in this country.

    There are a lot of people in this country who would blame their problems on niggers, whether they call them as such explicitly or not. There’s no reason to dance around that fact just because it makes you uncomfortable.

    It should make you uncomfortable.

  160. 160
    Mike Kay (Team America) says:

    @Dennis SGMM:

    @KevinA:

    Why would you guys take susan collins at her word?

    On an hourly basis, we are told by left to never deal with the republicans, rather to fight them on every point, no concessions, no deals, that you would rather lose but go down fighting, than compromise and win. now you guys are mad because reid didn’t make concessions.

    I mean, really. Collins has placed the importance of some crap parliamentary procedure ahead of segregation and you wanna take her side.

  161. 161
    trollhattan says:

    @Pangloss:

    Recalling that teabaggers want to do away with publicly funded ed you kay shun, it all fits.

    Christ on a cargo barge, from canals to railroads to highways to airports, what transportation infrastructure hasn’t the gummint spearheaded? Took 53 years for a private company to orbit a spacecraft, and even that was launched from the Cape.

  162. 162
    Paris says:

    @c u n d gulag: And now NY has the money to make and install that sign – a big $10 million solar powered neon extravaganza as big as Christie’s ass.

  163. 163
    nhoj says:

    Hah! Collins aye just to twist the knife.

  164. 164
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @KevinA: Collins just voted yes. Weird. She gets to break the process, but still vote on the good side.

  165. 165
    Dennis SGMM says:

    @Violet:
    You just gave me a great idea. Obama can have unemployment down to 1% in less than six months. All he has to do is have TSA hire everyone who’s out of a job. They can screen us on the train, they can screen us on a plane, they can screen us at the mall, they can screen us in the hall.

    And the Republicans won’t be able to say jack shit because nothing is more important than keeping us safe from terrorists.

  166. 166
    Marmot says:

    @Corner Stone: Well, that gives me a little more to feed to Google, at the very least. I love collecting conservative arguments that boil everything down to an Us versus Them, and the “trains help liberals” thing sounds like a genre classic. It’s simplified and unsubstantiated, and probably an own-goal on the part of most conservatives.

  167. 167
    Citizen_X says:

    Oh yes, because if there’s anything the midwest doesn’t need right now, it’s to invest in technologically-advanced infrastructure. And, in answer to Kasich’s idiocy (re: Dan’s comment), transportation nodes are never sites of economic development, are they? Except in all of human history, of course.

  168. 168
    KevinA says:

    Farce. Collins Votes YAY on Cloture, but Manchin votes Nay. Nice head-counting Reid, nice job.

    Got 59 votes.

  169. 169
    Violet says:

    Sorry, forgot the link: You Are No Longer Free To Move About the Country. We are already living in a police state.

  170. 170
    martha says:

    @Marmot: If you visit the comment section of any train-related article in the online version of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, you’ll get your fill. But I do recall that some of the past articles include quotes from politicians making those statements as well. The Rs are going to show us how it’s done!

    ETA: link didn’t seem to work, here it is; http://www.jsonline.com/

  171. 171
    KevinA says:

    @Mike Kay (Team America):

    Give her NO CAUSE to vote NO. If she does anyway, fine, that’s ON HER.

    But pulling this, as Sargent pointed out, meant NO CHANCE of passage. I’d rather have given it a real shot than this crap.

  172. 172
    nhoj says:

    57% just not good enough for civil rights.

  173. 173
    KevinA says:

    Vote still open though. Lieberman working Murkowski?

  174. 174
    kdaug says:

    Failed. 57-40

  175. 175
    SpotWeld says:

    You just look at these people in absolute wonder. What can they be thinking?

    “I Got Mine”

  176. 176
    Dave says:

    @kdaug: Who didn’t vote??

  177. 177
    KevinA says:

    Nope. All done. 3 short.

  178. 178
    The Other Chuck says:

    @Dennis SGMM:

    They would cut off their own dicks with a broken beer bottle if they thought that would prevent Obama’s re-election.

    We need to start convincing them that’s the only way. For the next generation’s sake.

  179. 179
    Marmot says:

    @martha: Cool. This is awesome in its stupidity. It’s like … well, imagine if some people were more worried about wasting money on economic stimulus for the undeserving rather than getting the economy going again! That’d be crazy.

  180. 180
    Mike Kay (Team America) says:

    @KevinA:

    but as you may already have seen, Collins justed VOTED for the repeal.

    see, it was always a trick. she was for it, before she was against it, before she was for it.

    I mean, aren’t part of the faction always talking about lucy pulling the football from charlie brown. you guys gotta keep your talking points straight.

  181. 181
    Zifnab says:

    @KevinA: That’s some quality kabucki

    Everybody break out the “Democrats Fault!” bumper stickers. I can’t wait for another round of gay friendly Republican rule in ’11.

  182. 182
    Zifnab says:

    @kdaug:

    Failed. 57-40

    Only in the fucking US Senate.

  183. 183
    The Other Chuck says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Where do you see the vote count indicating it is not going to pass?

    This is the Senate. What makes you think it’s going to come to a vote at all?

  184. 184
    Dave says:

    @Zifnab: The rest of the world must laugh at us. Nervously, though. Like you laugh at that weird guy who mumbles to himself about the Amero but you know has a M-60 in his basement.

  185. 185
    Corner Stone says:

    It’s awesome to see something fail with 57 votes.

  186. 186
    kdaug says:

    Not sure who the not voting senators were.

    @Zifnab:

    Only in the fucking US Senate.

    My thoughts exactly.

  187. 187
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @The Other Chuck: Well, since the vote was going on at the time I asked the question, I just sort of assumed that they were voting. You know, what with the fact that they were voting and all.

  188. 188
    Chyron HR says:

    Republicans want to filibuster? Reid should hold the vote anyway! Force them to get on record with their No votes!

    Wait, there was a vote? What the hell did Reid do that for? What an idiot.

  189. 189
    scarshapedstar says:

    What can they be thinking?

    Some variant of “at least the n***ers ain’t gettin’ any!”

  190. 190
    kdaug says:

    Anyone else get the sneaking suspicion that “filibuster reform” will end up redefining a “supermajority” to a 90-10 vote?

  191. 191
    johnsmith1882 says:

    @kdaug:
    Sounds like one of Obama’s patented preemptive compromises. Maybe _this_ time Republicans will see what a swell guy he is.

  192. 192
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    @Zifnab:
    To paraphrase the late great Steve Gilliard, fuck the fucking Senate

  193. 193
    kdaug says:

    @johnsmith1882: Obama doesn’t control the Senate. Neither does Reid. We don’t know the names of the people who do. And with Citizens United, we likely never will.

  194. 194
    Mike Kay (Team America) says:

    see, the dirty little secret is, no senator wants parliamentary reform, because under the current rules, every single one of them can use the current system to take hostages.

    And in the end they care more taking hostages for some earmark for south dakota or Louisiana then they do about general legislation that benefits the entire country.

    it’s the ultimate in every man for themselves.

  195. 195
    Marmot says:

    @martha: Hmm.

    U.S. Rep. F. James Sensenbrenner, a Menomonee Falls Republican, said, “It is to the Wisconsin taxpayers’ benefit that they will no longer be required to pick up the additional tab for a high-speed train that the majority of residents will never ride.”

    My feeling from Sensenbrenner (who wants the money to be used on the deficit! Haw haw) and some of the commenters is that they oppose it because they don’t already use the train and can’t imagine doing so. Most people drive, right?

    Sigh. No vision, just provincialism. Anyway, if anyone sees “the train will help liberals” argument made somewhere, I’m in the market.

  196. 196
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Collins just voted yes. Weird. She gets to break the process, but still vote on the good side.

    Not weird at all. She cast her “yes” after there were already 40 “no” votes. Now she gets to claim that she really wanted it to pass, but the votes just weren’t there, too bad, so sad.

    I still would like an explanation why the threshold to break cloture stays at 60 when there aren’t 100 Senators present and voting. That’s just fucked up.

  197. 197
    JoXn says:

    One reason Iowa might be getting rail money is that the California Zephyr goes through Iowa.

  198. 198
    And Another Thing... says:

    @Midnight Marauder: Wow, I never knew that there are racists in America who blame/hate darkies, thanks for the insight/lecture..

    It’s possible to discuss the dynamics of the current cultural/political environment without using the most offensive words.

    Act could just as easily made his/her comment without a rather promiscuous use of the n word.

  199. 199
    Karen says:

    I will say right off the bat that I’m a white female.

    That said, am I the only person who is uneasy with people who have the N word spelled out in their posts? I understand that they’re trying to make a point but I see no reason why it needs to be fully spelled out. After all, we all know what it is.

  200. 200
    Triassic Sands says:

    Elections have consequences, and the consequences should be swift and unambiguous.

    Why? Election results are seldom if ever unambiguous.

  201. 201
    Jay in Oregon says:

    @El Cruzado:

    They don’t like the fact that a deal of any kind was made. Any sort of compromise is equal to capitulation.

    Or, to quote Dick Armey: “Bipartisanship is another name for date rape.”

  202. 202
    Midnight Marauder says:

    @And Another Thing…:

    Wow, I never knew that there are racists in America who blame/hate darkies, thanks for the insight/lecture..

    Yep, because that was my entire point. It most certainly wasn’t discussing a type of cultural rhetorical cowardice in terms of sweeping the ugly history of racism under the rug in standard issue conversations. Nope, just that there are racists in America who hate darkies (which i’m guessing you do not find offensive, or not as offensive as nigger.)

    It’s possible to discuss the dynamics of the current cultural/political environment without using the most offensive words.

    Sure, it’s possible, but again, my entire point was that following such a route is not the most honest and effective strategy to having a constructive dialogue. That’s the entire issue. You can have the conversation without acknowledging all of those ugly words, but how legitimate and credible is that dialogue. Ta-Neshi Coates wrote about this subject a little while back and I think he hit the nail right on the head:

    I respect this, and generally respect the motivations of white people who don’t say the word. But I think, at some point, this really should end. I also think that point is now. Let me be honest–like many African-Americans, I recoil a bit whenever I hear a white person say “nigger” in any situation, and any setting. It’s the hurt of an ancient wound. But I actually recoil more at all the profound, escapist variations–n**ger or “n-word” or whatever. The old hurt is still there–I know what they’re referring to–but it’s compounded by a sense that I am, evidently, someone who lacks the rudiments of critical thinking.
    __
    A significant part of understanding language, is understanding the context it’s used in. The chair of a meeting, is not the same as the chair in your living room. Moreover, “You motherfucker!” is not “You’re a motherfucker,” is not “He called you a motherfucker,” is not “That’s my motherfucker, right there.” The last is collegial and complementary, and works, at least in part, by irony. The same is true when black people use nigger, as a positive descriptive. It works because of a kind of intra-group irony.
    __
    I would not lobby for white people using such irony, anymore than I’d lobby for my right to positively describe a gay man as a faggot, or compliment a woman by calling her a bitch. I can’t justify that by pointing out that gay men and women use those words, anymore than I can justify calling some a woman on the street “honey” because her husband calls her that. Words depend on relationships. My departed grandmother used to call my father “Billy.” I would sooner call the coroner than call my Pops “Billy.”
    __
    But that’s about how words are used, and not a total ban. At some point we have to start accepting that black people have the critical faculties to distinguish between someone trying to insult us (“Niggers go home!”) and someone trying to describe something to us (“The sign said “Niggers go home!”) I actually believe that a lot of black people are already there.
    __
    I pulled this out because I’ve noticed commenters using “the N-word” or “N***r.” I don’t want to speak for other black folks, but I find it grating. I think, like so much in life, common sense will light the way.

    I added emphasis to the portion that I think speaks directly to our divergent opinions in this situation.

    Act could just as easily made his/her comment without a rather promiscuous use of the n word.

    But would it have even been the same point anymore if they made those changes?

  203. 203
    Amanda says:

    To: Ohio & Wisconsin Republicans and Independents who voted GOP

    From: A transit-loving hippie in Massachusetts

    Woohoo! Bring on the transit money! We need every penny we can get! Our overburdened transit system and all its riders thank you. Thanks for the early Xmas gift!

  204. 204
    And Another Thing... says:

    @Midnight Marauder: Frankly I thought that act’s post felt a lot like the Laura Schlesinger incident when a caller mentioned being offended by the use of the n word and then Dr Laura responded by using the word multiple times, and unnecessarily so.

    And of course darkie is offensive. But appropriate to the condescension in your posts, after all, you and you alone aren’t antebellum like the rest of us.

    I don’t think that using the n word makes the discussion more honest, it just makes it more brutal and frankly inflammatory.

  205. 205
    Midnight Marauder says:

    @And Another Thing…:

    Frankly I thought that act’s post felt a lot like the Laura Schlesinger incident when a caller mentioned being offended by the use of the n word and then Dr Laura responded by using the word multiple times, and unnecessarily so.

    And I thought it was a pretty accurate representation of the mentality and worldview a lot of conservatives and Republicans have. I suppose we see the comment from two very different perspectives.

    And of course darkie is offensive. But appropriate to the condescension in your posts, after all, you and you alone aren’t antebellum like the rest of us.
    __
    I don’t think that using the n word makes the discussion more honest, it just makes it more brutal and frankly inflammatory.

    Well, yeah, I guess I’m not. I have a very different approach to the word nigger than you do, and a great deal many other individuals. I don’t think that’s condsescension; that’s just a philosophical difference in how we approach this matter. Nigger is not a word that I use in daily conversations, and when I do use it, it’s for the rare comment that is ironic and comedic in nature.

    But I am acutely aware that the word, by its very nature, is a brutal and inflammatory word. And I am not someone who believes that referring to it as “the N word” or as “n****r” somehow defuses the word of its brutal and inflammatory nature. I would actually argue that people who resort to using terms like “the N word” grant the term even more of an inflammatory nature, because the word becomes so verboten that it cannot even be said out loud. Even though everyone in the discussion knows exactly what word you are saying without explicitly saying it.

    Also, when I say it makes the discussion more honest, I think I should clarify what I’m saying. Primarily, I am speaking about the fact that when someone says “the N word,” they are still putting the word “nigger” into the conversation and into their recipient’s head, but they are making a conscious decision not to associate themselves with using the word. The word and all of its history suddenly becomes a part of the conversation, it’s just that the speaker would rather not have the unseemly task of uttering the actual word out loud, because that would create too raw of a dialogue.

    I understand where the impulse comes from, I just think it does a disservice to efforts to strengthen the nature of dialogue on race in this country.

  206. 206
    ant says:

    I meant it to be inflammatory. This is how these people talk and think.

    Group loyalty gets highest priority in their moral compass. Every political thought gets broken down to us verses them.

    It’s also why trains will never be built in America to any significant degree, despite the fact that it’s the only logical choice in a post peak oil era.

    Trains benefit people that live in population centers.

    So why should “we” pay our tax dollars to benefit all them faggots that live in the city?

  207. 207
    Sister Inspired Revolver of Freedom says:

    @pattonbt: They already asked to keep the funds so they could build more roads. Permission denied! Yes, indeed, elections have consequences.

  208. 208
    icantsay says:

    I am sad to say that I have hit the nihilistic phase of my grieving. Fuck ’em all. I too live in Ohio (SW Ohio) and I’m just sick of it. I hope Palin gets elected and I hope this country turns into the exceptionally ignorant, exceptionally backwards, exceptional 3rd world blot on the globe that these people want, because that’s what these assholes – and, yeah, I’m looking at everyone who didn’t vote as well as everyone who voted for Kasich – deserve. Yeah, sucks for me and my kids, but hopefully they’ll be out of here and in Europe or Canada by the time this all goes down.

  209. 209
    MarkJ says:

    The worst part is that Michigan just got $150 million in high speed rail funding in October. So that rail will presumably run West to Chicago through Indiana from Detroit and East to er, well, the Ohio border.

    So Ohio just screwed over everyone from Michigan and points West who might want to travel east by high speed rail, and everyone from the East who might want to go through Ohio to points West.

  210. 210
    Stogie says:

    To all the folks in Ohio And Wisconsin. You guys voted for those wing-nuts, we will take your money.

    Thank You. The Stogie in Tampa.

  211. 211

    […] Had It Coming, Kay writes at Balloon Juice. “Elections have consequences, and the consequences should be swift […]

  212. 212
    Cool Rational One says:

    This was my first visit to this web site. I have been amazed at how irrational and mean most of the comments have been. This place should be a kind of giant butterfly net to enable someone to capture people who need a course in anger management. Maybe my little short course, too, on “How you lie to yourself and let others lie to you with statistics.”

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