Saturday Evening Open Thread: Fighting Back

The “this time, the Democrats are going to fight back” meme seems to be taking hold, and I for one heartily approve. Here’s Greg Sargent poking at Karl Rove’s ample, uncovered… weak point:

… Rove’s latest column rips into Obama for supposedly mischaracterizing the GOP position on the debt limit. He quotes Obama saying: “We can’t not pay bills that we’ve already incurred.” And here’s how Rove responds to Obama:

The experience didn’t leave Mr. Obama with greater humility. Instead, this New Year’s Day he tartly said, “We can’t not pay bills that we’ve already incurred.” Who is suggesting we don’t? Not House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, or any other Republican leader. Quite the opposite. They want to cover the cost of the existing debt while cutting spending to prevent a fiscal catastrophe.

Who is suggesting we don’t pay our debts? Not Boehner, McConnell, or any other GOP leaders.

There you have it. Rove acknowledges flat out that Boehner, McConnell, and other Republican leaders do recognize that they will have to raise the debt ceiling. They just, you know, want to raise it while reaching a broader deal to cut spending. The game here is absurdly transparent: You mustn’t claim Republicans are crazy enough to destroy the economy to get their way, because they don’t want to do that at all — but you still must play along with the idea that the need to raise the debt ceiling (which they acknowledge must happen) still somehow gives them leverage to get the cuts they want.

And Dave Weigel, at Slate, reports that Democrats are (finally) using Repub intransigence as a weapon:

On Wednesday morning, most business reporters confirmed Barack Obama’s next choice to lead the Treasury Department: White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew. Within hours, the same reporters got a statement from Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions, ranking member of the Budget Committee and a man who’ll have some say over whether Lew gets the job…

Sessions’ outrage was manna to an unexpected group of people: Democrats. For months, a group of freshman Democratic senators have been trying to nail down 51 votes to reform the filibuster. On Jan. 22, when the Senate votes on this congressional session’s rulebook, they’ll need to keep that group together. Every time a Republican threatens an Obama nominee, their job gets easier.

“It really does highlight how the intentional paralysis of the Senate, through the use of a filibuster as a party tool, has gotten out of hand,” says Oregon Sen. Jeff Merkley, one of the authors of the reform plan. “Here are qualified people, the president has just won re-election, and [Republicans] are making it as difficult as possible to get them confirmed.”

Behold, the New Democratic Chutzpah. It shows no signs of slowing. Reporters ask the White House about a once-crazy-sounding idea—minting a $1 trillion platinum coin to avert a debt ceiling showdown—and don’t hear a “no.” Joe Biden hints that the president might take “executive action” to enhance gun laws, gets accused of enabling a “dictatorship,” and doesn’t walk it back. They wave the red cape, see how the bull reacts, and then wave the cape a little harder….

***********
Apart from cheering on the matadors, what’s on the agenda this evening?

79 replies
  1. 1

    Beer and football. Maybe scream at the wife some later.

  2. 2
    Baud says:

    Reporters ask the White House about a once-crazy-sounding idea—minting a $1 trillion platinum coin to avert a debt ceiling showdown—and don’t hear a “no.”

    They heard a “no” today, and that’s a good thing. I will never understand how that idea strengthened our position.

  3. 3

    Just FYI…

    This is how we responded to Aaron Swartz, back in the day.

  4. 4
    The Dangerman says:

    You KNOW Tebow would have won that game.

    /snark

    Seriously, Denver fans have to be puking right now; I feel for ’em. Baltimore tried hard to give that game away (special teams TD’s, etc.).

  5. 5
    Culture of Truth says:

    once-crazy-sounding idea—minting a $1 trillion platinum coin to avert a debt ceiling showdown

    what a crazy way to respond to the biannual debt ceiling crisis that began when a black was elected President.

  6. 6
    Yutsano says:

    @Judas Escargot, Your Postmodern Neighbor: Oh MAN troll flashback right there! Good ol’ UCT! I wondered if he really was DougJ.

  7. 7
    J. Michael Neal says:

    Well that was more exciting than it really needed to be. There are about five Gophers that really need to be tasked with writing a paper on “Why Penalties Are Bad.” We really only gave up one even strength goal all weekend (another was scored two seconds after a penalty expired) but we let them stay in the game today by taking a lot of dumb, obvious penalties.

    Still, any series that end with beating North Dakota twice counts as a good one. 22-0, baby. Next week: Mankato.

  8. 8
    Kathy says:

    OK, can we haz this for fotbalz open thredz?

  9. 9
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    Can’t talk. Watching Green Bay.

  10. 10
    PsiFighter37 says:

    @BruceFromOhio: I approve of the first part of that sentence, not sure about the second without context.

    Me, I’m going to exercise while watching 49ers-Packers. I wonder how Alex Smith is going to feel if the Packers win this one. I do feel bad for him, as he was playing really well before he was injured. It wasn’t the same with Bledsoe/Brady, when the former was just not playing good enough to get the job done. Smith was doing a really solid job and was the top-rated QB.

  11. 11
    Raven says:

    We love’s ya Annie but, you know. . .

  12. 12
    Schlemizel says:

    @Baud:

    Its a good thing because it takes a weapon out of President Obama’s hands making his bargaining position more difficult. Like the idea or not (and I don’t) it was never much of a threat from this President who does not go for quirky, untried, solutions. If I were negotiating for the goopers I would have bet the house he wouldn’t mint the coin and dismissed it as a threat.

    President Obama has promised he won’t let the goopers hold us hostage on this issue, but has yet to give any indication how he plans on making that a reality. My guess is he is not likely to go with a 14th solution either as that also is a leap. So what is his plan?

    To paraphrase Capt. Jack Sparrow, “The only rules that really matter are these: what a man can do and what a man can’t do.”

    And before the oh so easily offended battalion arrives to chide me for not being sufficiently obsequious to the President nothing I have said suggests any opinion of the quality of work he has done (with the exception of his willingness to bargain from a position he himself has weakened). He has done a pretty good job with the hand he has been dealt. I do wish we had better Democrats in the house and senate.

  13. 13
    Raven says:

    @Schlemizel: What’s that got to do with the Packers?

  14. 14
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Raven: Troy Aikman annoys me. He did as a player; he does as an announcer.

  15. 15
    Raven says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Yes, dey’s all bums.

  16. 16
    Baud says:

    @Schlemizel:

    Like the idea or not (and I don’t) it was never much of a threat from this President

    The coin was never much of a threat because it doesn’t hurt the Republicans in any way.

    So what is his plan?

    Congress raises the debt ceiling.

  17. 17
    General Stuck says:

    Thank you. A thread on actual current politics is rare as the dodo these days. Or almost that rare.

    When I read that letter from Reid, Durbin, Schumer, and Murray, it just struck me how far dems have come to begin to realize what we are all up against. I know it is always thought of as dems with no spine, and that has been part of it since Reagan put the fear in liberals, to even call themselves that. But is also democrats being hyper loyal to the spirit and word of our divided government.

    That letter backing Obama to go through the nutter threats to save the country, is something that marks another turning point for democrats in congress. It is both heartening and sad that it has come to this, that dems in congress are yielding this much power to a dem president, to stop the republicans reign of legislative terror. I don’t like a president sidestepping congresses plenary power of the purse, but the constitution is not a suicide pact either.

    And of course the wingnuts are going to shriek to the high heavens at dems finally pulling up to their shenanigans, that we aren’t going to be the anal actors, cleaning up your messes from using tactics that are seditious in nature relative to the financial health of the nation. So let the wingnuts shriek, they keep painting themselves into corners, thinking Obama will give in to their extra political process demands, and he doesn’t. And now dems in congress have his back and republicans cannot count on democrats to be miss manners no more.

  18. 18
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Baud:

    I will never understand how that idea strengthened our position.

    Doing something that drives, or would drive, or is calculated to drive conservatives crazy is good, because it drives conservatives crazy. That’s how.

    And before you start carping, this is very, very different from the GOP reflexively adopting any position that pisses liberals off because it pisses liberals off.

  19. 19
    efgoldman says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Troy Aikman annoys me. He did as a player; he does as an announcer.

    Yeah, he’s annoying, but much less so than Simms, or than Dierdorf was today.
    I’m waiting for Al DeRogatis to come back.
    Madden was great, too, until he got too famous for just being famous.

  20. 20
    Nerull says:

    That was almost as bad as that time the Packers tried a lateral during the return. Catch the damn punt.

  21. 21
    Raven says:

    @efgoldman: And Brick Jackhouse!

  22. 22
    MikeJ says:

    @Yutsano:

    Oh MAN troll flashback right there! Good ol’ UCT! I wondered if he really was DougJ.

    And we still don’t know if he actually showed up at the meetup or not. Unless it was me, or you would know if it were you.

  23. 23
    Roger Moore says:

    @Baud:

    I will never understand how that idea strengthened our position.

    It’s sort of like the Republicans saying that they don’t think a default would really be that dangerous: a way of telling people you’re negotiating with that you have an alternative to further negotiations if you find their demands too onerous. But, of course, that assumes that we were negotiating. If Obama is serious and the only goal is to get Congress to raise the debt ceiling as an ordinary part of doing business with no negotiations that would let the Republicans get anything in return, it’s much less valuable.

  24. 24
    Baud says:

    @General Stuck:

    A thread on actual current politics is rare as the dodo these days.

    Get used to it. We live in a post-political era, Stuck.

  25. 25
    General Stuck says:

    @Baud:

    We live in a post-political era, Stuck.

    Apparently, We have entered the Ted and Hellen era .

  26. 26
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    Open thread needs moar adorable puppeh.

  27. 27
    efgoldman says:

    I see reports hither and yon that the GOBP’s Wall Street and Corporate Overlords, including the Chamber of Commerce(!) have put out the word to stop fucking around with this thing. There is a core of House TeaHadis who are apparently in full apocalyptic let it burn mode, but I doubt its enough to block anything, especially because Nancy Smash and the Dems will certainly vote for a straight, raise-the-ceiling bill.

  28. 28
    David Koch says:

    Elizabeth warren has been strangely silent about the trillion dollar coin.

  29. 29
    Baud says:

    @Roger Moore:

    Even if you assume a negotiation, I just don’t see why the Republicans would give up anything in order to raise the debt ceiling themselves rather than having Obama do it and take on the responsibility.

  30. 30
    efgoldman says:

    @David Koch:

    Elizabeth warren has been strangely silent about the trillion dollar coin.

    Brandy-new freshperson Senators generally don’t say much about anything.

  31. 31
    General Stuck says:

    @Baud:

    They heard a “no” today, and that’s a good thing. I will never understand how that idea strengthened our position.

    It would have been the way to go if we were hoping to bribe Sylvester and spring Tweety Bird from his cage

  32. 32
    scav says:

    @efgoldman: She took a solid swing at AIG but I think you’re basically correct. Wouldn’t mind at all someone that chose their swings instead of flailing at everything, all in all. Make a change.

  33. 33
    NotMax says:

    A thread on actual current politics is rare as the dodo these days.

    If we can’t have our 21st century jetpacks and flying cars, how about a dodo cloning project using recoverable DNA from museum samples?

    By all accounts, they were pretty tasty.

    Though the McDodo doesn’t have a mouth-watering ring to it.

    Oh, and while science is at it, how about the passenger pigeon, too.

    (removing tongue from cheek)

  34. 34
    Yutsano says:

    @MikeJ: And as you are well aware, on the advice of counsel I can neither confirm nor deny the allegation.

  35. 35
    mclaren says:

    The crowning irony here? Democrats are “fighting back” by…doing nothing. All the Demos has to do is nothing, refuse to return phone calls, refuse to negotiate, if Boehner and his sociopaths refuse to raise the debt limit.

    Tragically, the Democratic party has become so bereft of spine that this is about the only way they can fight back anymore. By lying on the floor supine and not moving. By doing nothing.

    When the hell is the United Snakes of Amnesia going to get a true left-wing political party? Will the billionaires have to start raping the underaged kids of the middle class and eating live babies on camera? What the fuck does it take for left-wingers to stand up on the hind legs and show some goddamn spine?

  36. 36
    efgoldman says:

    @NotMax:

    Though the McDodo doesn’t have a mouth-watering ring to it.

    Well no. She’s become such an awful columnist, the Times really should drop her.

  37. 37
    cmorenc says:

    @David Koch:

    Elizabeth warren has been strangely silent about the trillion dollar coin.

    As a brand-new freshman senator, Elizabeth Warren is wisely holding her powder in the same smart manner Al Franken did, saving her shots for legislative work on the banking committee in the areas where she brings unmatched bona fide expertise, leaving the wider public battles to more veteran senators until she masters the ropes and pays her dues. She recognizes she is not, for now at least, the proper agent of the senate democrats to fight battles over tactics like the trillion-dollar coin, which would come across as mere showboating even among her own democratic senate colleagues. Never mind that Chuck Shumer never met a camera he didn’t love talking into about any public issue; with seniority comes permissive license to showboat that would be scorned if done by a newbie.

  38. 38
    Yutsano says:

    @mclaren:

    When the hell is the United Snakes of Amnesia going to get a true left-wing political party?

    When you stop bitching endlessly on the Internet and start the difficult work of organising one. Be the change you seek.

  39. 39
    mclaren says:

    @Baud:

    They heard a “no” today, and that’s a good thing. I will never understand how that idea strengthened our position.

    Simple. Having an option in reserve, like minting the trillion-dollar-coin, let the Democrats act as though they could walk away from negotiations with the Republicans on the debt ceiling because there was always a fall-back position.

    The key in any negotiation is to convince the other person that you are willing to walk away. That gives you the upper hand.

    Now, having foolishly abandoned this option, Obama cannot expect to convince the Republicans that he’s willing to walk away from the debt negotiations. This encourages the Republicans to believe that whatever they offer, no matter how horrible, Obama must accept, because he can’t simply get up from the table and walk away.

    Isn’t that obvious?

    Why is any of this mysterious to you?

  40. 40
    mclaren says:

    @Yutsano:

    [America will get a true left-wing party] when you stop bitching endlessly on the Internet and start the difficult work of organising one. Be the change you seek.

    The problem is that historically, there is zero chance for a third party. That’s just not how the American political and social system works. We have never had a third party emerge: typically, an existing party must first die (viz., the Whig party) and then get replaced by another one in order to get genuine change.

    For that reason, I’ve been working hard to elect the most progressive candidates inside the Democratic party. Unfortunately I got snookered by a point guard — a black guy who fakes left and then moves right.

  41. 41
    Baud says:

    @mclaren:

    Because what you said makes no sense. First, Obama has said he isn’t going to negotiate over the debt ceiling. So if the coin is the reason he’s negotiating, then he already looks a little weaker. And, as I said above, the GOP doesn’t care if Obama walks way from negotiations and then uses they coin. What they fear is that Obama walks away and the GOP gets blamed for the economy collapsing. The coin mitigated that fear. Obama is in a stronger position now that he was while people were spending all their time talking about the coin rather than about the debt ceiling and the GOP.

  42. 42
    magurakurin says:

    @Yutsano:

    you must be bored today.

    laser pen + mclaren = hours of torturelicious fun.

    And it looks like the “Obama caved on the Coin” brigade is hitting Talking Point Memos full force right now. How long before this fire base gets hit?

  43. 43
    efgoldman says:

    @Baud: Careful. Mclaren is in full “I know more about everything than all you yobs put together” mode, and it won’t stop until we’ve all been driven away.

  44. 44
    magurakurin says:

    @efgoldman:

    it won’t stop until we’ve all been driven away.

    Yeah, well, if you sup with the Mclaren, be sure to bring a long spoon.

  45. 45
    Yutsano says:

    @magurakurin: Meh. I knew what her answer would be even before she typed it. It’s just so HAAAAARD!! Whining about the blah guy in the White House is easier, so I’ll just keep doing that!

  46. 46
    magurakurin says:

    Kind of glad to find that I came down on the same side as Billmon on the Coin question. Also very glad to see that he is a regular front pager at GOS. Improves the value of that place 100 fold in my mind. Go on bite the big apple, don’t mind the maggots…

    Billmon’s latest@Yutsano:

  47. 47

    @Yutsano:
    I’m not DougJ.

    But thanks for short-circuiting what could have been a great opportunity for collective self-reflection.

  48. 48
    mclaren says:

    @Baud:

    Because what you said makes no sense.

    What I’ve said makes perfect sense. Here’s why:

    First, Obama has said he isn’t going to negotiate over the debt ceiling.

    Obama has said lots of things. History shows that he usually does the opposite of what he says he will do. Obama said the individual mandate to buy health insurance wasn’t the way to go…and then when Obama unveiled the ACA, it turned out to be based on an individual mandate.

    Since the Republicans can hear, they know that Obama has a habit of doing what he says he won’t do. So just saying something means nothing. Obama has to give the Republicans a reason to believe what he says. Saying “yes” to the trillion-dollar-coin gives them that reason.

    So if the coin is the reason he’s negotiating, then he already looks a little weaker.

    The key is for Obama to say he’ll mint the coin, and then not negotiate. I agree that Obama has already blown that one by foolishly agreeing to negotiate with Boehner and make the crazy & stupid deal he already made (which locks in lower estate tax rates and effectively makes the Bush tax cuts permanent). Obama should not have done that.

    And, as I said above, the GOP doesn’t care if Obama walks way from negotiations and then uses they coin.

    I think you’re wrong here. The GOP has good reason to fear this option, because it would effectively remove the GOP’s ability to hold the U.S. economy hostage.

    What they fear is that Obama walks away and the GOP gets blamed for the economy collapsing.

    There’s no evidence of that. Lots of Republicans in the House have made crazy statements that they welcome a default. These Republican Teahadists are so deluded that they actually think Obama will either cave in, or that the public will hate on Obama if the economy grinds to a halt because the U.S. government defaults. These clowns need to get a Drano enema of emails and phone calls from millions of enraged fearful voters to wake them up, and until that happens, I see no sign that the House Republicans can see reality through their Faux News distortion field.

    The coin mitigated that fear. Obama is in a stronger position now that he was while people were spending all their time talking about the coin rather than about the debt ceiling and the GOP.

    On the contrary: Obama is in a much weaker position now, because the House Republicans are well aware that when Obama gets pushed to the wall, he caves in. They’re expecting that this time.

    And I suspect they’re right. Without the platinum coin and without the 14th amendment option, Obama will probably cave in an agree to cuts in SS and medicare, which will fracture the Democratic party and open the door to a Republican presidency in 2016.

  49. 49
    magurakurin says:

    @Yutsano:

    You’re a better man than me. I don’t smoke, I don’t drink and I don’t troll Mclaren….well, not directly. :)

  50. 50
    Baud says:

    @mclaren:

    Without the platinum coin and without the 14th amendment option, Obama will probably cave in an agree to cuts in SS and medicare, which will fracture the Democratic party and open the door to a Republican presidency in 2016.

    Probably right. Good night.

  51. 51
    General Stuck says:

    Rule Numero Uno – Never ever get into a serious debate with mclaren on any topic. He may sound bright, serious and full of information, but sooner or later he is going to ask why you support Barack Obama barbecuing Martians on the South Lawn.

    Rule two – there is no rule two.

  52. 52
    Roger Moore says:

    @Baud:
    The assumption is that the Republicans don’t really want to crash the economy by defaulting on the debt or stopping payments on other stuff. They just want to renegotiate the last spending deal, and the debt ceiling is a convenient hostage to take and force negotiations. If Obama takes one of the options to avoid the debt ceiling (platinum coin, 14th Amendment, etc.) the Republicans might well wind up with current spending and lose the ability to hold the debt ceiling hostage in the future. That gives them a strong incentive to negotiate. If they don’t want to negotiate because they really do want to crash the economy, then the ways of avoiding the debt ceiling give the President a way of stopping them.

  53. 53
    General Stuck says:

    @Roger Moore:

    I think right now, most House republicans, and senate one’s too, are operating under threat, or fear of the threat to be primaried by a tea tard next election. They are dancing as fast as they can between looking sufficiently insane but not actually doing insane things.

  54. 54
    Baud says:

    @Roger Moore:

    I appreciate the discussion, but I’ve become too tired to participate intelligently. (Don’t say it!) Have a good evening.

  55. 55
    burnspbesq says:

    Early to bed tonight. The only football of the weekend that matters to 85 percent of the world’s population (ManU-Liverpool) comes on at 5:30 a.m. Pacific time. Meanwhile, Amir gets to watch it in prime time, the Malaysian bastid.

  56. 56
    NotMax says:

    he is going to ask why you support Barack Obama barbecuing Martians on the South Lawn.

    How gauche. Everyone knows that’s what the Truman balcony is for.

  57. 57
    Anne Laurie says:

    @Judas Escargot, Bringer of Loaves and Fish Sandwiches: Look forward, not back!

    I’m too jacked up on meclizine hydrochloride to snark, but the only approved BJ “self-reflection” is admiring one’s image in the high-gloss coating of our armored self-regard.

    We’re all tribalist on this bus…

  58. 58
    Maude says:

    @NotMax:
    I was hoping someone would have a decent quip in answer to Stuck’s Martians. A nice send off to sleep. Thanks.

  59. 59
    efgoldman says:

    @NotMax:

    Everyone knows that’s what the Truman balcony is for.

    No, they can’t put a barbecue there for the same reason you can’t on your condo balcony. Its dangerous.
    And its baby Martians, and their puppies, on the barbecue, just to support mclaren on the issue.

  60. 60
    mclaren says:

    @General Stuck:

    Rule Numero Uno – Never ever get into a serious debate with mclaren on any topic.

    There are no rules against getting into a serious debate with General Crackpot Fake Name, since he doesn’t debate: he merely hurls vacuous insults.

  61. 61
    efgoldman says:

    @mclaren: @General Stuck:

    There are no rules against getting into a serious debate with General Crackpot Fake Name, since he doesn’t debate: he merely hurls vacuous insults.

    Gee, he doesn’t do that to me. I wonder why that is?

  62. 62
    Chris says:

    @mclaren:

    “Obama has said lots of things. History shows that he usually does the opposite of what he says he will do.”

    By that logic he’ll mint the coin. And maybe use the 14th Amendment pathway, too.

  63. 63
    Kadzimiel says:

    @magurakurin:

    If you want real screams of outrage from the self-designated radical left, try the latest Kevin Drum thread announcing that Mr Platinum Coin he dead. The screeching and howling is a wonder and a marvel.

  64. 64
    Mnemosyne says:

    @efgoldman:

    I see reports hither and yon that the GOBP’s Wall Street and Corporate Overlords, including the Chamber of Commerce(!) have put out the word to stop fucking around with this thing.

    People keep demanding to know what Obama’s plan is. Simply put, the plan is to not rescue the Republicans from themselves by using a tricksy maneuver, so that the financial powers behind the Republican Party are forced to rein the teahadis in.

    This is why the tax deal passed the Senate by such a lopsided vote — the Big Money Boys were on the phone screaming at the Republicans that they’d better fucking get that shit passed or the Big Money Boys would stop funding Republican campaigns.

    That’s what a lot of people complaining right now don’t seem to get — this is a war going on within the Republican Party, and Obama is stepping aside and letting them bloody each other while keeping his fingerprints off it.

  65. 65
    efgoldman says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    This is why the tax deal passed the Senate by such a lopsided vote — the Big Money Boys were on the phone screaming at the Republicans that they’d better fucking get that shit passed or the Big Money Boys would stop funding Republican campaigns.

    OTOH, Kilgore at Washington Monthly had a piece earlier this week about how and why the TeaHadi nutbags aren’t beholden to the Speaker, or the party, or the caucus, or the usual suspects among the Corporate Overlords.

    They explain how Cotton won an open seat in Arkansas in no small part because of a sizable unsolicited Club for Growth contribution that gave him the resources to win one of the many “more-conservative-than-thou” GOP primaries. Thus he owes absolutely nothing to the NRCC or the House leadership. And Cotton does not appear to be a man interested in learning the mores and folkways of Washington, or how to “get things done.”

    http://www.washingtonmonthly.c.....42315.php@

  66. 66
    patrick II says:

    @mclaren:

    Letting someone else hang themselves is a tactic not a philosophy.

  67. 67
    Kadzimiel says:

    @efgoldman:

    Your link isn’t working, because of the extra @ on the end. This should be ok:

    http://www.washingtonmonthly.c.....042315.php

  68. 68
    jp7505a says:

    I wonder if Obama is following Napoleon’s advice of don’t interfere when your enemy is making a mistake. Let the GOP dig itself deeper into a corner where it thinks it has only 2 choices –raise the debt ceiling or default. If the GOP choses the former than Obama and the country wins. If they chose the later then Obama can just let them crawl out on the limb and then cut if off behind them. If we get to the point of default he can always bring the coin back or use the 14th amendment or just an executive order. The rational is simple – the constitution is not a suicide pact and the President has an obligation to prevent the American economy from being destroyed. If the White House talks up the coin or some other approach now that gives the GOP an out. They can push the country to the edge of default while complaining that the socialist from Kenya was planning on a power grab all along. By publicly taking these options off the table now, Obama can say, truthfully, that the GOP gave him no other choice but to act, regardless of the fine points of constitutional law. He might very well be playing chess while the GOP is playing tiddly-winks,
    Obama has a history of getting a better deal than the left thought he was going to get. Maybe not as good as the left would like but politics id the art of the possible. So lets see what he finally comes up with before ordering the tar and feathers,

  69. 69
    jheartney says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    This is why the tax deal passed the Senate by such a lopsided vote — the Big Money Boys were on the phone screaming at the Republicans that they’d better fucking get that shit passed or the Big Money Boys would stop funding Republican campaigns.

    The main reason it was lopsided was that Nancy Smash brought her troops in to pass it. In order for that to happen, Boehner had to break the Hastert Rule and put up for a vote something without majority GOP support.

    Breaking the Hastert Rule is the tell that the Teahadis are in eclipse. Once legislation can be what it needs to be to get a majority of votes in the House rather than just a majority of Goopers, then BHO knows what he needs to do to break them on the debt ceiling.

  70. 70
    jheartney says:

    One additional thought. The Teahadis wouldn’t be where they are if they hadn’t thrown the Senate to the Dems in two consecutive elections. Republican Big Money hates Social Security and Medicare, but it hates losing even more.

  71. 71
    Corner Stone says:

    @Judas Escargot, Bringer of Loaves and Fish Sandwiches:

    But thanks for short-circuiting what could have been a great opportunity for collective self-reflection.

    What is there to reflect on? ABL and her clique ran a jihad against Adam Green for having the temerity to disagree with President Obama. During that stretch of scorched earth politics they managed to drag in and smear someone who’d harmed them in no way. Who’s main transgression was in knowing Adam Green at all.
    Someone earlier asked what about this case got the DoJ so excited? Well maybe one could suggest it was the ginned up fauxrage by ABL, The Reid Report, The People’s View, et al that caused some of the pressure against him to mount?
    Given that, it’s not surprising that Yutz decided to take the least useful tack in responding to your question.

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    xian says:

    @mclaren: and when he doesn’t you’ll eat crow and stfu?

    I didn’t think so.

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  74. 74
    xian says:

    @jheartney: you do realize that Nancy doesn’t run the Senate?

  75. 75
    AxelFoley says:

    @General Stuck:

    Rule Numero Uno – Never ever get into a serious debate with mclaren on any topic.

    Is that like the rule about never fighting a land war in Asia?

  76. 76
    mclaren says:

    @patrick II:

    Letting someone else hang themselves is a tactic not a philosophy.

    When a sensible person faces the Balloon Juice commentariat, it’s a way of life.

  77. 77
    mclaren says:

    @efgoldman:

    There are no rules against getting into a serious debate with General Crackpot Fake Name, since he doesn’t debate: he merely hurls vacuous insults.

    Gee, he doesn’t do that to me. I wonder why that is?

    For the same reason flat earthers don’t criticize psychic surgeons at a “fringe science” conference.

  78. 78
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jheartney:

    The main reason it was lopsided was that Nancy Smash brought her troops in to pass it.

    Nancy Pelosi is in the House, where the vote was quite close (257-167). The lopsided vote I was referring to was in the Senate, where it was 89-8.

    Do you really think the Senate Republicans up and decided to vote a strong majority in favor of higher taxes out of the goodness of their hearts and not because the Big Money Boys were screaming obscenities at them and threatening to fund their challengers if they didn’t vote for it?

  79. 79
    jheartney says:

    @Mnemosyne: You’re right, of course. Now it wouldn’t have got to the Senate without Nancy.

    Mind you, 257-167 is what amounts to a lopsided vote in the current House on any contested issue.

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