Early Morning Open Thread: Keep Fighting

Couple of uplifting assaults on the Conventional Wisdom to get the blood pumping. First, Paul Krugman (peace be upon His Eternal Shrillness!) uses his NYTimes space to explain, yet again, why when it comes to the trendy new deficit hawks, “Willy Sutton Wept“:

There are three things you need to know about the current budget debate. First, it’s essentially fraudulent. Second, most people posing as deficit hawks are faking it. Third, while President Obama hasn’t fully avoided the fraudulence, he’s less bad than his opponents — and he deserves much more credit for fiscal responsibility than he’s getting…

Then, E.J. Dionne Jr. in the Washington Post dumps some much-deserved scorn upon “Deficit hawks and the games they play“:

For 30 years, conservative ideologues have played moderate deficit hawks for suckers.
You’d think this might endow those middle-of-the-road deficit-busters with a touch of humility. Fat chance. They stick with their self-righteous moralism, pretending to be bipartisan and beyond ideology. In fact, they make the problem they want to solve worse by continuing to empower the tax-cuts-in-every-season conservatives.
It’s thus satisfying to see President Obama ignore the willfully naive who are wailing over deficits. He knows that new revenue will have to play a big role in deficit reduction. He also knows that House Republicans are pretending we can cut our way out of this mess and would demagogue any general tax increases…

But we know this stuff already! We don’t need to be told again! And yet, both pieces are worth reading, and then forwarding to your apolitical Facebook friends and your Fox-News-dependent relatives and all the other politely-titled “low information voters” in your circles, because repetition has a magic of its own, as the ReThugs have been demonstrating for the last 40 years…

51 replies
  1. 1
    Pooh says:

    Not to worry, Bobo is already here to tell us that Eric Cantor is providing real leadership on the issue, apparently by boldly going where every Republican has gone before…

  2. 2
    CaliCat says:

    I know this isn’t a pet thread but I need a virtual shoulder to cry on. I’ve decided it’s time to put my cancer stricken, 19-year-old kitty to sleep. This is so difficult. I officially decided today that I need to make the appointment to have it done within a week. I’m going to have a vet come to our house so my kitty will not have to be stressed or scared in her final moments. Even though this is very painful and life altering, I am at peace with this decision. I know it’s her time.

    I’ve been Cali’s mom since I was 26. I didn’t end up having kids so she is truly the baby I never had. That’s why this hurts soooo much. She has not been herself for months. She is still eating but her tumor has grown to the size of a grapefruit. It’s causing her (at best) significant discomfort and (at worst) great pain. I’m sure many cat owners would have already let her go by now. The important thing is that I now recognize there is no justification for continuing to let her decline. She deserves an easy painless death. I owe my great girl at least that much. But, oh how I hate this.

    Thanks for listening.

  3. 3
  4. 4
    Parallel 5ths (Jewish Steel) says:

    Please note that Cole’s “Things That Should Be…” thread is still staggering through its second night. Zombie thread.

    I wonder what post is the longest commented on. The Dark Side of the Moon thread that just kept generating comments long past all reason.

  5. 5
    burnspbesq says:


    What you’re going through sucks, and there is nothing anyone can say that will change that. But if you can, take comfort in knowing you’re doing the right thing, and cherish your memories of your life together.

  6. 6
    Mouse Tolliver says:

    MSNBC has dropped to third place post-KO. And it’s going to stay that way as long as it thinks making Olbermann’s time slot more fair and balanced is something to brag about.

  7. 7
    Parallel 5ths (Jewish Steel) says:

    @CaliCat: That is tremendously decent of you to have the vet come to your house. It sounds like you have given your cat the best possible treatment throughout its life. It will leave a big hole in your heart for a while, but you should be comforted that you did so well by her.

  8. 8
    NobodySpecial says:

    @CaliCat: I’m very sorry, CaliCat. I know I’m gonna fall to pieces when my baby finally slows down (22 with no serious problems, thank Ceiling Cat) At least she’ll be without pain.

  9. 9
    CaliCat says:

    @burnspbesq: Thank you. I know I’ll be bummed for a good, long while but I’ll take great comfort in knowing that she will no longer be in any pain.

  10. 10
    Anne Laurie says:

    @CaliCat: The fact that you and Cali have been together for so long is a pretty fair indicator that you’re making the right decision. Small predators are designed by stern evolution never to show pain, illness, weakness — if you feel that “it’s time” then you are no doubt reading Cali’s message along the bonds of your mutual companionship. May her passage to the next great adventure go smoothly for both of you, and may your many happy memories help you get through the sorrow of losing her!

  11. 11
    cckids says:

    @CaliCat: I’m so sorry, what a difficult decision & time for you. Hold on to all your good memories of your baby. You’re doing what is best.

  12. 12
    CaliCat says:

    @Parallel 5ths (Jewish Steel): Thank you for your kind words. I took her to a vet who pretty much said that at her age and with the type of cancer she has that treatment really wouldn’t be a good option for her. So I feel content knowing that there wasn’t anything I could have done beyond just making her as comfortable as possible.

  13. 13
    CaliCat says:

    @Anne Laurie: Thank you so much for saying that. My husband thinks Cali is “doing OK”. But I know she is definitely not doing well at all. You’re so right, the signs of pain and anguish in cats are difficult to spot because they keep it to themselves and behave stoically. I told my hubby that I know her and I know she’s suffering even if he can’t tell (I also think he’s in a bit of denial about it – he’s not good with this sort of thing). Then again, who is?

  14. 14
    CaliCat says:

    @cckids: Thanks, cckids.

    And thanks to all of you for being so nice. It really has helped me feel a bit better this morning.

  15. 15
    CaliCat says:

    @NobodySpecial: Wow, 22. That is so awesome. Give your baby a snuggle for me.

  16. 16
    Lysana says:

    @CaliCat: Not much to add except my own support for your decision.

    (Side note to Anne Laurie: I may be too 80s for Eva. Cyndi Lauper’s version remains definitive to me.)

  17. 17
    Comrade Mary says:

    @CaliCat: Oh, I’ve been there, and I think you’re making the right choice. You keep telling yourself that she’s eating, that she shows some pleasure in some things, but you know and love her well enough that you can really see what’s happening. I’m so sorry, this is terribly painful, but you’re giving her the best possible end, better than Nature alone would give her. Please be gentle on yourself. You’re already showing a lot of empathy for your husband, too, so that’s a good thing.

    I’m off for some day surgery. I should be out by this afternoon, and I’ve promised my sister, who’s picking me up to rest up at her place this weekend, that I will continue my record of not being nauseated by general anaesthesia and I won’t throw up in her car.

  18. 18
    J. Michael Neal says:

    I’m sorry to hear about it. I like the option of having a vet come to the house. I may have to look into that for Eddie. However, I had to drive my ex-wife to the vet hospital with her cat, who she thought had had a stroke. It turned out to be diabetes, and she was in a crisis that it just didn’t make sense to try to pull her out of. So she decided there to put Sasha to sleep.

    The University of Minnesota Small Animal Hospital continues to amaze me. The process was *nothing* like what I have ever gone through before. Usually, it’s been at our regular vet, and it’s cold and clinical. Frankly, I was badly traumatized for a week after we took Marie in for the last time, though that had a lot to do with it being only five months after my breakdown.

    This time, there was a warmly furnished comfort room, and they brought Sasha in after putting the catheter in, wrapped in a warm towel. Julian got to hold her until she was ready, and then through the procedure. I know the emergency room vet that was there, because she’s treated Eddie a couple of times. I’ve liked her in the past, but she was outstanding Sunday night. If I don’t have a vet come to the house, I’m never going anywhere else for euthanization.

    Sorry for rambling. And I’m really sorry for your loss.

  19. 19
    CaliCat says:

    @Comrade Mary: Thank you, CM. Best of luck with your surgery, today. Hope you make a speedy recovery.

  20. 20
    CaliCat says:

    @J. Michael Neal: Thank you, J. Michael. BJers are truly the best…And sorry for your loss too.

  21. 21
    stuckinred says:

    @CaliCat: You are making the right decision. If you read my doggie post a few weeks back you know we did the full cancer treatment on our cocker Raven. It is agonizing for the animal and the owner. Letting go is not easy but it is the second best thing you can do for your kitty and you already have done the first.

  22. 22
    CaliCat says:

    @stuckinred: I’m so very sorry for your loss. What a traumatic experience.

  23. 23
    J. Michael Neal says:

    @CaliCat: I have to confess that I didn’t experience a loss yet. I can testify to the fact that the end of life process is a lot easier to go through when it’s your ex-spouse’s cat that you never liked in the first place.

    I have one of my own like that, who I love dearly but there isn’t any reason anyone else should like at all. She’s my bitch cat and plagued with neuroses. So I don’t expect there to be a lot of sadness in other quarters when she goes (and she’s seventeen, though with no sign of health issues), but I’ll be devastated.

  24. 24
    stuckinred says:

    @CaliCat: It was 5 years ago. He was a great dog and we did what we could and then accepted what was best for him. It’s the price we pay for what they give us.

  25. 25
    CaliCat says:

    Lol, J. M. I see what you’re saying. I’m glad your bitchy girl is doing well. She sounds like a feisty one. Cali is like that too.

  26. 26
  27. 27
    stuckinred says:

    Mornin Joe is on a rampage.

  28. 28
    Elizabelle says:

    CaliCat: 99th commenter to say you are doing the best thing and for the best reasons. It’s so hard to let pets go, and you are seeing the signs.

    Best to you.

  29. 29
    Elizabelle says:


    What’s he saying?

  30. 30
    CaliCat says:

    Thanks again to all of you for your support. You really made a difference. I’m going to bed now…it’s 3am out here on the West Coast. Past my bed time as usual.

    Have a great day, everyone!

  31. 31
    stuckinred says:

    @Elizabelle: He’s railing that the Wisconsin public workers need to “play by the rules” everyone else plays by. Screaming is more like it.

  32. 32
    stuckinred says:

    “I guarantee if the Wisconsin union workers don’t want to play by these rules there are millions of people that want their jobs”.

  33. 33
    stuckinred says:

    “It’s not about ideology it’s about math.”

  34. 34
    J. Michael Neal says:

    @stuckinred: When they say it’s not about ideology, it’s about ideology.

  35. 35
    Jebediah says:

    “I guarantee if the Wisconsin union workers don’t want to play by these rules there are millions of people that want their jobs”.

    One of the rules we all play by is the right to petition for redress of grievances (at least until Scalia tells us that phrase doesn’t mean what we think it means.)
    Why is Joe so anti-American? Perhaps he should go find a quiet corner in which to fuck himself.

  36. 36
    Elizabelle says:


    My community’s school district is looking at laying off 800 teachers.

    A lot of Morning Joe’s audience has got to be looking at local situations like that while they’re listening to his hysterics.

  37. 37
    stuckinred says:

    @Elizabelle: One can hope.

  38. 38
    Martha says:

    Of course, what he is conveniently leaving out ins that they gave the concessions. They’re protesting the elimination of 40 years of bargaining protection. Asshole.

  39. 39
    bemused says:

    19 years is a good long run equal to about 90 for humans. Almost 3 years ago our sweetest kitty died at 19 and we still miss her a lot. We were happy that despite arthritis, she still was doing well right up until she had a stroke. Even though she was still alive, she really didn’t know what was going on. It was clear that it was only a matter of time and it was too late at night to bring her to the vets. I took her to the sofa and curled up with her for our last cuddle for quite awhile stroking her and listening to her breathing gradually slowing until it occurred to me that maybe I was holding her back from leaving. I wrapped her in a little blanket, said goodbye and told her it was ok to go. I fell asleep for a couple of hours and when I woke up she was gone.
    She is buried in a flower bed that she loved to sit in and I think of her when I am doing garden work there. Oh crap, I’m going to cry.
    It’s so tough to see our babies go but they do leave us with wonderful memories.

  40. 40
    Benjamin Cisco says:

    Shorter Mournin’ Joe: “They didn’t just roll over like good little non-oligarchs? Unpossible!”

  41. 41
    bemused says:

    And Joe just lurves Gov Christie who is a gigantic bully gleefully mowing down teachers and other public workers and basically flushing NJ down the craphole. No wonder Gov Walker is Joe’s new hero.
    Joe and the other obnoxious, media elitists are working triple overtime pushing Christie as the republican messiah. They make me want to puke.

  42. 42
    kdaug says:

    I honestly believe that our pets are here to teach us how to love unconditionally, and how to grieve and accept death with grace.

    We lost our 14 year old Australian Shepherd, Max, a few years back. The tumor was so extensive the vet couldn’t believe he had lived that long – said he should have been dead a year ago.

    We had gotten a Golden Retriever pup a year before.

    No one will convince me that Max didn’t push through, and beyond measure, to make sure that Murphy the pup knew the rules, what words meant, and how to be a good boy.

    Murphy is now 4 years old, a solid 100 pound tank of Golden Retriever, and the nicest dog on the planet.

    His new little sister is a 9 month old German Shepherd pup, Athena. Best friends, took to each other immediately, and his gentleness and tolerance of her puppy antics is heartwarming.

    So I guess I’m saying, in addition to love and grief, they can teach us a lot about friendship, too.

  43. 43
    agrippa says:

    Well, the ‘deficit hawks’ are just putting out rhetoric. They are just practising politics. They are not trying to govern.

  44. 44
    mai naem says:

    Aren’t unions part of the free market? Why does Morning Ho have a problem with the free market? Also too, Chris Christie is a guy who had no problem blowing $400 bucks on a limo ride as US Atty to Logan airport on the taxpayers dime because a regular cab ride wasn’y t good enough and he stayed at a very expensive hotel when he could have stayed at a cheaper one? How come Ho and Mika never bring that up? These conservative pigs are such hypocrites. I wonder if Chris Christie will give up his pension and bennies when he gets old enough to get them? Rachel had a good show on last night. Ofcourse the Wisconsin thing has to do with busting unions so that they can’t help the Dems in elections, nothing different that what they did with ACORN.

  45. 45
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Jebediah: Reserve army of the unemployed, baby.

    Cowed,compliant and contingently employed. This time around, that’s the CCC we get.

  46. 46
    Maude says:

    You don’t want to puke nearly as much as I do, living in NJ.

  47. 47
    bemused says:

    No doubt! Here, in MN, we commie liberals are so grateful we got Dayton for guv instead of Emmer or we’d be looking like Wisc now. Unfortunately, we ended up with GOP controlled legislature so they may pull the same crap here. That’s why we are rooting for the lazy, greedy gov WI employees.

    I want to gag morning Joe. He really has stick up his ass about WI and he has no idea what he is talking about. I’d like to ask him how much he thinks he should sacrifice for this country.

    I’d suggest asking Joe to comment here but I doubt he has the guts.

  48. 48
    WereBear says:

    @CaliCat: I’m so sorry, CaliCat.

    Knowing we are doing the right thing only makes the hurt; less.

    I’ve written extensively about losing a beloved cat on my blog; perhaps it will help.

    How to say goodbye to our cat

    And go ahead and cry; and cry some more. It’s how we get over things. If we don’t do it; we don’t.

  49. 49
    PWL says:

    Confirms what I have suspected–the whole budget thing is a Republican clown show, and designed to distract from the fact they and their ideas caused the meltdown, and designed to hamstring Obama (for the reasons E.J. Dionne pointed out–also a bad economy and a discontented populace will be good for then come 2012, so some very cynical politics are involved).

    Finally, of course, the Republicans see this as a way to realize their Reaganite dream of returning this country to the glorious days of the Gilded Age–“starve the beast” and let Goldman Sachs reign!

    You’d think people would catch on by now–but no, as pointed out in the article, this sleazy little game works time after time. Well, as the song says, “We get what we deserve”…

  50. 50
    Alan says:



    This is probably one of the hardest decisions one can make. But it sounds like it’s the right thing to do. Peace be with you and your little one.

    Just like many here, I feel your pain.

  51. 51
    CaliCat says:

    @WereBear: Your blog is wonderful. Thank you so much for the link.

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