“Nullification through Extortion”, the GOP’s Go-to Tactic

No way are the Republicans going to stop trying to defang the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Adam Serwer reports at Mother Jones:

A little more than a week after Senate Democrats decided not to weaken the filibuster, Republicans are vowing to filibuster President Barack Obama’s nominee to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau unless its powers are reduced, Reuters reports….

Senate Republicans want three big changes before they’ll stop blocking Cordray. First, they want the CPFB to be by Congress rather than the Federal Reserve. Subjecting the bureau to the congressional appropriations process would compromise its political independence. Second, Republicans want the range of financial institutions the bureau has authority to regulate narrowed. This would leave unsupervised some of the problematic institutions the bureau was created to regulate. The GOP also wants to replace the single director with a board of directors, which would hamper the ability of the bureau to make decisions. Finally, the GOP is demanding that other bank regulators—the same ones who failed to prevent the 2008 financial meltdown—be allowed to chaperone the CFPB by “verifying” that its rules “would not harm the safety and soundness of banks.” This would let regulators who turned a blind eye to exploitative practices in the past because they were profitable tell the CFPB what to do—and the more different regulators have to approve of a rule, the more convoluted and less effective it is likely to be.

Blocking Cordray could leave the CPFB without most of its powers to regulate the very financial institutions whose practices helped lead the country into near-economic collapse in 2008. That’s just how Republicans want it. Having failed to prevent the financial regulation law from being passed, they are now seeking to nullify it through procedural extortion.

Dave Weigel at Slate fisks the GOP argument, such as it is, and finishes:

This is cant, but previous Republican ideas, like attorney-client privilege for bureau research, fit into this rubric and would have—sensing a pattern now—weakened the bureau. But the entire premise of the letter is flawed. How do you pass these reforms, given that Democrats control the Senate? You don’t. How do you stop the White House from doing another end-run around the Senate and appointing a new director? You can’t. But you can controversialize the CFPB by forcing the president to staff it via “tyrannical” means. And given that Obama’s won two presidential elections, and that the last blocked CFPB director has won a Senate election, denying a mandate takes innovative thinking.

Alex Pareene, at Salon, thinks Harry Reid should get some of the blame as well:

It was very fitting that pretty much immediately after Harry Reid ended the possibility of filibuster reform in the more-sclerotic-than-ever U.S. Senate, a Republican appointee-run court effectively killed the recess appointment. Reid cut a “deal” on filibusters that actually strengthened the 60-vote threshold, by legitimizing what had been widely seen by non-senators as unprecedented abuse of Senate rules. All the deal does is speed up the process of breaking a filibuster with 60 votes, making the act of forcing a 60-vote threshold on all Senate business — something that rapidly became the new normal — even more painless than it was before….

In other words, 43 Republicans — not a majority of the Senate, at all — have pledged to block the appointment of someone they have no real issue with, because they are demanding the right to change the structure of the agency entirely before they will allow it to function. A small minority in one of America’s two congressional bodies is demanding the right to fundamentally rewrite, on their own terms, a law passed by both houses and signed by the president, because they really dislike it. That’s not normal, “what are you gonna do?” politics. That’s setting an insane precedent…

The idea of changing Senate rules by simple majority vote is usually referred to as “the nuclear option,” because forcing the Senate to operate as nearly all other legislative bodies in the world do is considered an act of provocation so extreme that it would force the minority to retaliate by any means necessary. But they would actually have to think pretty creatively to find new ways of totally obstructing all Senate business, because right now they are doing a very good job obstructing most of it, as their response to the Democrats’ shamelessly “winning elections” and “attempting to pass legislation and appoint judges and regulators.” While forcing a Senate rules change has a nickname highlighting how incredibly unprecedented it would be, there is not yet a press-friendly term for the Senate minority trying to force legislation to be rewritten to its specifications by blocking an agency from functioning until they get their way, so maybe someone should get on that so people on “Meet the Press” care.

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94 replies
  1. 1
    eemom says:

    Y’all ought to get your FP scheduling shit together sometime.

    I mean, bad as FDL sucked in its many splendored ways, it never had this one boring ass post up for 15 hours, followed by 15 posts on each other’s asses in 15 minutes, type situation that occurs here with increasing frequency going for it.

    Juuuussssayinzall.

  2. 2
    A moocher says:

    “Will no one rid me of these troublesome senators?”

    The Republicans are playing with fire. But they think, and they are probably right, that no Democratic power sources exist with the balls to stop them. So their coup may well succeed.

  3. 3
    A moocher says:

    @eemom: and how much are you paying for this service, ma’am? What’s that you say, “nuttin'”? S’wot I thought. Your plight moves me, almost, to tears.

  4. 4
    Ted & Hellen says:

    Harry Reid should get some of the blame.

    Gee…ya think?

  5. 5
    Yutsano says:

    They can certainly keep obstructing. An Obama can just keep naming interim directors until the cows come home. And nothing at the agency will change. So do they even have a point or it’s just stop THAT ONE by any means necessary?

  6. 6
    NotMax says:

    there is not yet a press-friendly term for the Senate minority trying to force legislation to be rewritten to its specifications by blocking an agency from functioning until they get their way, so maybe someone should get on that so people on “Meet the Press” care.

    The Bartleby Gambit.

    “We would prefer not to.”

  7. 7

    This is where a firebrand senator or two might help shine a light on what the Republicans are doing. They can get away with this stuff because no one really knows it is happening or what it means.

    The Republicans are trying to gut the consumer protection agency so their Wall Street banker buddies can rob old people of their retirement money. Or words to that effect.

  8. 8
    Mandalay says:

    @A moocher:

    and how much are you paying for this service, ma’am?

    So your point is that nobody should make any comments or criticisms about BJ because we are not paying to use it?

    GFY.

  9. 9
    I am not a kook says:

    @James E. Powell:

    a firebrand senator or two

    I’m coming up blank here.

  10. 10
    RobertDSC-iMac G5 says:

    Call them what they are: domestic terrorists.

    Round them up, ship them to Gitmo, and throw away the key.

  11. 11
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @I am not a kook: My guess is that, while not a firebrand per se, the senior senator from MA might have something to say about this.

  12. 12
    Anne Laurie says:

    @eemom: Half a dozen Open Threads, and you can’t wait to jump in & derail one that isn’t.

    What you did there, it has been noted.

  13. 13
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    From the Alex Pareene piece:

    Numerous Democrats want to keep the filibuster, because they believe they’ll need it next time Republicans control the Senate and the White House.

    If they keep on enabling the Republicans to obstruct the administration and to continue to gridlock the Senate then that is a self-fulfilling prophecy.

  14. 14
    SatanicPanic says:

    there is not yet a press-friendly term for the Senate minority trying to force legislation to be rewritten to its specifications by blocking an agency from functioning until they get their way, so maybe someone should get on that so people on “Meet the Press” care

    This sounds like a job for the Juicetariat. Any ideas?

  15. 15
    patroclus says:

    I don’t exactly see how Harry Reid should get blamed for the Republicans’ ridiculous behavior – it seems like some false equivalency to me.

    But I do see why Ray Lewis should get blamed for his bizarre religious OJ-like defense for the 2000 double murder with an ever-so-compliant Shannon Sharpe.

  16. 16
    piratedan says:

    @SatanicPanic: call it High-chair tyranny if you wish, besides, the press is NEVER around when the GOP needs a diaper change.

  17. 17
    YellowJournalism says:

    OMG, someone get Michelle Rhee off my TV. Not only is she promoting her damn book, she reminds me of a classmate at college I had who talked like she was eating her own face.

  18. 18

    @Anne Laurie: She hasn’t had her fun if she hasn’t whined about the FPers.

    ETA: It’s SERWER, not SERVER.

  19. 19
    eemom says:

    @Anne Laurie:

    Half a dozen Open Threads, and you can’t wait to jump in & derail one that isn’t.
    What you did there, it has been noted.

    Srsly….half a dozen?

    And teh strict “derailment” rulez, also too?

    Your lack of capacity for original thought has been noted too, many times. But don’t worry — no one’s notified Charlie Pierce’s copyright attorneys. Yet.

  20. 20
    Anne Laurie says:

    @The prophet Nostradumbass: Fixed, thanks.

  21. 21
    Alison says:

    @YellowJournalism: If that was a Don’t Tell Mom, The Babysitter’s Dead reference, I <3 you for it.

  22. 22
    TheMightyTrowel says:

    @SatanicPanic: I can think of a number of terms, most are unprintable and certainly un-say-able by the jerk offs on press the meat.The least profane I can think of is probably Topping from the bottom.

  23. 23

    @eemom: Wow, that was original. I bet you think you’re a real wit there. Unfortunately, you’re only half right.

  24. 24
    eemom says:

    @The prophet Nostradumbass:

    heh. no worries — seems like the mighty AL has all halves of your ass covered.

  25. 25
    YellowJournalism says:

    @Alison: Mama Celeste face up, it is. Mama Celeste face down, I actually came up wih something that was not a film reference.

    (But it is the perfect description of Rhee and my old dorm buddy. Plus, I use the phrase “butt crack of dawn” quite often.)

  26. 26
  27. 27
    Alison says:

    @YellowJournalism: That movie is the best. I won’t even admit how many times I’ve used “I’m right on top of that, Rose!” (nor how few times people have gotten the joke because WTF WITH ALL THESE PEOPLE WHO HAVE NEVER SEEN IT).

  28. 28

    When people talk about filibuster reform, and suggest that Harry Reid was being “gutless”, or whatever other synonyms you want, I think they’re missing the boat. I bet Reid didn’t really want it himself, and it has nothing to do with partisanship, and everything to do with a dingdong who’s more interested in preserving a privilege he may want to use in the future.

  29. 29
    YellowJournalism says:

    @Alison: I know! I first saw it at a slumber party. My sister loves it, too, and we’ll toss out random quotes at each other like, “The dishes are done, man.” It has some very useful quotes. I actually used a paraphrased version of the conversation she has with the layed-off textiles guy when talking to a friend who got fired from her job. She didn’t get the reference. Good thing she wasn’t that good of a friend, or I would have come up with something better. Plus, it was a job at Walmart.

  30. 30
    Alison says:

    @YellowJournalism: One time when a coworker was complaining about part of her job she didn’t like, I said “At least you’re not stuck cleaning the fat vats” and she just said, “Uhh…yeah.” What’s funny is usually my movie references didn’t work with friends because they were all from older movies – Young Frankenstein, Some Like It Hot, etc – because I grew up with those, whereas none of my friends had ever seen them. But then somehow the main movie from my own growing-up time I’d quote from also didn’t work.

  31. 31
    Starlit says:

    “Controversialize?”

    Swing the hammer, damnit, and show us what some consumer protection would look like. It’s not as if the GOP are ever going to respect that as a premise of business. Their poor fee-fees are already hurt because they can’t buy elections outright and hurl us back into the 1800’s.

  32. 32
    Joseph Nobles says:

    @SatanicPanic: Oligarchy works for me.

  33. 33

    This may sound odd for some of you, especially those of you who came to the thread late, but I’m going to say it anyway:

    I hope that, if you get to the point where you’re elderly, and you may need some help with some things, you have a son or daughter who is willing to help you out. If you find that to be a source of humor, or a weapon to insult someone, you really should examine your own value system. Seriously, go fuck yourself.

  34. 34

    I guess I killed the thread. Sorry.

  35. 35
    Alison says:

    @The prophet Nostradumbass: Hmm. I’m on your side in this but I’m not sure what this is stemming from…?

  36. 36

    @Alison: Well, there was a comment that was deleted, from the first commenter in this thread, who appears to have been (temporarily) banned from the site.

  37. 37

    @Alison: The idiot seemed to have thought that caring for your elderly mother is the same thing as being as a child who needs his momma to tuck him in. In short, a fucking idiot.

  38. 38
    Alison says:

    @The prophet Nostradumbass: Ahh. That would be nice, at least as a temporary “go sit in the corner” kind of thing.

    And what kind of fuck thinks it’s funny for people to need help in older years? I mean…that’ll be pretty much all of us eventually. And if your parents were any kind of decent ones, you should be happy to be there for them when they need you. I know I am.

  39. 39
    Joey Maloney says:

    o/t, can we get Randinho in here to comment on the story that hundreds of football matches worldwide have been fixed?

    The extent was staggering: some 150 international matches, mostly in Africa, Asia and Latin America; roughly 380 games in Europe, covering World Cup and European championship qualifiers as well as two Champions League games; and games that run the gamut from lower-division semiprofessional matches to contests in top domestic leagues.

  40. 40
    The prophet Nostradumbass says:

    @Joey Maloney: that would be interesting. Unfortunately, the BBC’s American broadcast decided that Tommy Smyth was someone who isn’t a complete gobshite.

    ETA: why does the BBC talk to an ESPN idiot about soccer?

  41. 41
    MikeJ says:

    WTF happened to patheos.com, the site that hosts slacktivist? Did they sell out to music x ray? Get domainjacked?

    Weird. If you click on terms of service you get a page from the religion site. I wonder if they’re just throwing out the dozens (hundreds?) of indy bloggers they host with no warning.

  42. 42
    MikeJ says:

    @The prophet Nostradumbass: BBC America’s news is every bit as bad as other American newscasts. You can get actual BBC on the web (or at 3am on BBCA) and they’re mostly more competent.

  43. 43
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Joey Maloney: Maybe email him directly with a prod to put up a post? He’s listed in the contacts.

  44. 44
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Thanks to Harry Reid and other spineless Senate Dems, this is where we are. I thought Harry had a handshake agreement with McConnell.

  45. 45
    gex says:

    @Alison: You don’t even need to be old. Just saw what kind of care needs someone has near the end of life. And I can imagine how fucking horrible it would have been for Kate if she didn’t have someone to care for her. It would have been sheer fucking hell.

    Fact of the matter is, if someone you love needs lots of care, you want to be there to advocate for them. Not having an advocate to help you with many things will result in considerably worse care even if you go to the same providers and facilities.

    I suspect that whomever finds this sort of kindness mock-worthy will get plenty of opportunity to find out what it is like to be alone in difficult times.

  46. 46
    Schlemizel says:

    @eemom:

    I always thought of it as part of the charm . . . you may have to look that word up.

  47. 47
    Schlemizel says:

    @patroclus:

    Harry gets a share because he could have killed the filibuster, or at least injured it enough to get some work from the Senate. But he tried to be collegial and he took the word of a group of known liars who have never dealt straight since they fell into the minority. He got suckered by known con men, so yes he deserves some of the blame.

    See: story of Frog and Scorpion

  48. 48
    Keith G says:

    I hope the Senate GOP filibuster everything in sight. Maybe that will shake up the fog of putrid complacency that hangs over the Senate’s Democratic caucus. Maybe it’s time that Dick Durbin be encouraged to step up to be more of an activist in leadership.

  49. 49
    Schlemizel says:

    @eemom:

    You seem really unhappy here. Might I suggest you relieve yourself of the terrible stress and suffering we all have put you through by never coming back – that would teach us all a valuable lesson.

  50. 50
    Elizabelle says:

    @gex:

    Good morning Gex and all.

    Agreed re your comment 44. Makes all the difference.

    Waiting for Raven to show up and comment on Morning Joe. I hit the remote before Harold Ford had been onscreen for even a minute.

    They’re discussing the use of drones in taking out suspected terrorists.

    Apparently there is no difference whatsoever between that and torture.

    We’re all Bush-Cheney.

  51. 51
    Schlemizel says:

    @The prophet Nostradumbass: @The prophet Nostradumbass:

    AH. That explains it. Both your rather obtuse original comment and the general improvement in the thread.

    Having watched my own parents decline I know how painful it was for them to accept my help to do things they could no longer do. We all know what that really means, the approaching end, but the pain of not being independent is very real.

    It does not surprise me that the troll eiter does not understand human beings or thought that would certainly get the sort of response trolls live for

    And it also made my previous comment superfluous!

  52. 52
    Raven says:

    @Elizabelle: ugh

    eta. Joe blabbered endlessly about what would happen when Obama walked in the door and was handed the briefings on what was really going on out there. Now that Obama is doing what Joe knew he would do Joe is shocked.

  53. 53
    GxB says:

    Let them filibuster, but make them actually do it old school. Get out the freaking DC phonebook and plop it in front of McConnell, McWalnuts, Graham, (plus the phonetically spelled version for moRon Johnson and Paul amongst others) – and make them fucking READ it into the record. Post it on C-Span, shut the freaking joint down and make damn sure the MSM meat puppets know why taxpayer money is being pissed away on frivolous obstinacy. Stop giving these assholes a free pass. Christ almighty…

  54. 54
    TheMightyTrowel says:

    good morning and goodnight. Knowing the state of US tv news can i suggest we dub the ongoing senate power struggle ‘filigeddon’.

  55. 55
    Keith G says:

    @Schlemizel:

    never coming back

    I remember during the seventies my Uncle Harold took on the “America, Love It or Leave It” mentality.

    Uncle Harold, is that you?

  56. 56
    Baud says:

    @Elizabelle: @Raven:

    Is Joe advocating for the repeal of the AUMF? If not, who cares what he says?

  57. 57
    JPL says:

    On CBS Nora O’Donnell asked Cantor about immigration reform support and he bloviated for a few minutes. She said “excuse me was that a yes or no”? Hot air still came out of his mouth but at least she tried.

  58. 58
    amk says:

    @Patricia Kayden: You can always rely on boneless dems to be played by the rethugs. Gotta hand it to the gop. They sure know how to drive the msm narratives.

  59. 59
    mir13 says:

    So the GOP hopes to stave off their impending extinction by actually hastening their extinction? Dead brilliant that. Just fucking awesome. And Harry Reid is a spineless idiot for handing them the keys to their own destruction? Exactly who in the GOP braintrust is outsmarting Obama and Reid here? ‘Cos I hear a lot of whinging about it, but the GOP geniuses are never revealed, and Obama marches on.

    Same as it ever was. C’mon people, big kid undies today.

  60. 60
    jibeaux says:

    Of course Harry Reid deserves part of the blame. They had the chance for real filibuster reform, they passed, so now when the Republicans pull this bullshit they’re complicit. Filibustering agency heads to try to extract concessions — whocoodanode?

  61. 61
    aimai says:

    Ah, its morning in america.

    Glad I missed the kerfuffle over elder issues. Having been a mother, and being a daughter, I take the attitude that we are all only “temporarily abled” and we all need and deserve help to function to the best of our capacity. Curb cuts are good for parents with strollers and also people in wheelchairs. Slowing things down, taking time to help people in and out of your family–these are also good things for us as a society. I get into dustups on the internet all the time but, damn, what’s the point starting off with a chip on your shoulder?

  62. 62
    gex says:

    @aimai: It’s just so short sighted, that attitude. I could see how scared Kate was to be in the hospital, obviously with good reason. The idea to live in that room to provide whatever comfort I could whenever it was needed was a no-brainer. I hope that I will have that kind of support when it is my turn.

  63. 63
    MikeJ says:

    @jibeaux: Reid didn’t have 51 votes to get anything passed.

  64. 64
    Raven says:

    @MikeJ: Motherfuckers went off the rails when I said that.

  65. 65
    NotMax says:

    Incredible, wildly open-ended and twisting language and law into a configuration that puts pretzels to shame.

    …the confidential Justice Department “white paper” introduces a more expansive definition of self-defense or imminent attack than described by Brennan or Holder in their public speeches. It refers, for example, to what it calls a “broader concept of imminence” than actual intelligence about any ongoing plot against the U.S. homeland.

    “The condition that an operational leader present an ‘imminent’ threat of violent attack against the United States does not require the United States to have clear evidence that a specific attack on U.S. persons and interests will take place in the immediate future,” the memo states.  Source

  66. 66
    jibeaux says:

    @MikeJ: I don’t think he tried especially hard, but yes, I should have said Reid + Senate Democrats. I feel sorry for the kid who gets beaten up every day by the bully, but less sorry for the kid who won’t stop giving the bully a rock to throw at him.

  67. 67
    matt says:

    I don’t think Reid had the votes to significantly curtail the filibuster. Then again, I don’t think Reid spent any political capital trying to get those votes.

  68. 68
    bemused says:

    @JPL:

    I saw bits of Cantor on MJoe. The new tactic seems to be deliver the same screw you ideology
    by sweet talk. I was torn between hilarity and horror at the sight of Cantor smiling without his usual sneer speaking in soft, reasonable sounding tones trying to reassure people that they truly want to ‘help’ average Americans.

  69. 69
    NotMax says:

    What a godawful proposal for a state slogan.

    All it brings to this mind is “Visit us and get the living sh*t beat out of you.”

  70. 70
    Lurking Canadian says:

    I think Obama should run his horse in the special Senate election in MA. That might at least get on the Sunday shows.

  71. 71
    Ash Can says:

    And on the general topic of giving economic fraudsters what they deserve, the DoJ has finally — finally — filed suit against Standard & Poor’s for slapping triple-A ratings on shit a few years ago. This should warm the cockles of Cole’s curmudgeonly heart; I know it does mine.

  72. 72
    JPL says:

    @NotMax: Some folks probably kick ass at the creationist park. How many asses did Noah bring on that ark?

  73. 73
    Schlemizel says:

    @Keith G:

    There are literally millions of places to visit on the Intertubes. Many of them I don’t like, so I don’t visit them. Since the party in question is never happy here and show no signs of having the ability to ever be happy here perhaps it would be best for them to not stop by here and be constantly unhappy.

    I have relatives I don’t like much. I could stop by their place every so often & list ways they disappoint/irritate/fail or otherwise make me unhappy to be with them. OR I could just not visit them. I’m happier & they are not going to change.

    It seems rather pointless to me to constantly be at odds with someone (or someblog) to no end but to kvetch about them when the answer is so simple – leave us to our failed lives without the benefit of your vast wisdom.

  74. 74
    Schlemizel says:

    @MikeJ:

    Yes so lets all make fun of GOS for trying to elect better Democrats.

  75. 75
    Schlemizel says:

    @NotMax:

    Kick ass?!? More like Jackass.

    More states should adopt “We gots what plants need” as their motto

  76. 76
    chopper says:

    @eemom:

    your blog is waaaaay better.

  77. 77
    MikeJ says:

    @NotMax:

    All it brings to this mind is “Visit us and get the living sh*t beat out of you.”

    Really? You seem to be unfamiliar with colloquial American english. “Kicks ass” is an incredibly common euphemism for “is very good”. Surely you’ve heard it somewhere before.

    If you want to say that it’s a stupid slogan, I wouldn’t argue with you. I’ve never heard an advertising slogan for a state that wasn’t, the worst being Washington’s, “Say WA?” campaign.

    Stupid or not, surely nobody is so cut off from the rest off the word that they would see it as meaning violence. If you are, perhaps you should go outside for a little while.

  78. 78
    Ash Can says:

    @NotMax: Being one of a multitude of parents endeavoring to instill basic manners in her child, all this slogan brings to my mind is “Kentucky is nothing but a bunch of ignorant hicks who have no respect for anyone.”

  79. 79
    MikeJ says:

    @Schlemizel: KOS ran somebody against Boxer?

  80. 80
    Mark S. says:

    @Joey Maloney:

    The bombshell:

    Still, one new tantalizing detail did emerge: the revelation that one of the suspicious matches uncovered involving the Champions League — the most prestigious annual soccer tournament in the world — was played in England in the last three or four years.

    Everyone is used to an Italian match-fixing scandal every five years or so, but if it happened in the Premier League, that would be huge.

  81. 81
    NotMax says:

    @MikeJ

    This word euphemism you use, it does not mean what you seem to think it means.

    Definition of EUPHEMISM
    : the substitution of an agreeable or inoffensive expression for one that may offend or suggest something unpleasant; also : the expression so substituted citation

  82. 82
    Kay says:

    @YellowJournalism:

    OMG, someone get Michelle Rhee off my TV.

    Not a chance she’s going anywhere. The school privatizers are in full panic mode. The investors in the for-profits are getting nervous, so Rhee is out (along with Jeb Bush) to reassure them. There’s been a LOT of bad press at the state level. I think it’s reaching critical mass, where national media jump in and follow.
    The NYTimes editorial page has basically been selling for-profits for the last ten years. Even they published a piece critical of the privatized school results, although they are not yet ready to address the grifters and rampant corruption, apparently, but, baby steps!

  83. 83
    Schlemizel says:

    @MikeJ:

    No because there is no chance of unseating her. They did however work very hard to unseat that hideous Joe Lieberman and many people here have never forgiven them for trying.

    Of course Joey had the support of both Sen Clinton & Obama and he paid back their loyalty in spade – NOT.

  84. 84
    Amir Khalid says:

    @MikeJ:
    From the sidebar story:

    Although he says he can see the logic of “Kentucky Kicks Ass” as a brash, in-your-face statement, [associate professor of marketing at Cornell University Chekitan] Dev isn’t sure it communicates much about what makes the state unique.

    “I think it would be more favourable from a resident’s point of view,” he says. “As a visitor, it makes me think, ‘I don’t want to go to Kentucky and get my ass kicked.'”

    I don’t think anyone who habitually uses the phrase is unaware of its positive meaning. But I still think Professor Dev has a point. I might have gone with something like “Kentucky: the kick-ass state”.

  85. 85
    Marc says:

    there is not yet a press-friendly term for the Senate minority trying to force legislation to be rewritten to its specifications by blocking an agency from functioning until they get their way

    The Confederate Option?

  86. 86
    patroclus says:

    @Schlemizel: Under your theory, George Mitchell gets the blame for failing to pass HCR in 1994 and LBJ gets the blame for failing to enact the strongest possible civil rights law in 1957. The actual opponents apparently aren’t blameworthy; just the majority leaders who supported the legislation. You have an interesting view of history.

  87. 87
    Bulworth says:

    The GOPteabag party’s hatred of consumers is bizarre.

  88. 88
    Keith G says:

    @Schlemizel: But this isn’t a home or a place of business. This seems to be a place where the “witted” and the witless, and even the boorish, gather to interact.

  89. 89
    ShadeTail says:

    @Keith G: And so, when someone acts like a shithead and contributes absolutely nothing of value, we can’t tell them to fuck off? Wrong. We can and we will. Deal with it.

  90. 90
    Keith G says:

    @ShadeTail: It seems that we all have a desire to type things that we feel are impotrtant.

  91. 91
    ShadeTail says:

    @Keith G: Ah, no wonder you’re embarrassing yourself by siding with the trolls and the shitheads who want to derail mature discussion. You’re one of them.

    Fuck off, brat.

  92. 92
    Jay C says:

    @Bulworth:

    The GOPteabag party’s hatred of consumers is bizarre.

    Not really: The Senate Republicans’ jihad against the CFPB has fairly little to to with the “C” part, and virtually all with the “F” – for Finance, as in Big Finance (i.e. Wall Street). One of the biggest industries in the country; who have made uncounted billions of dollars for themselves (which, of course, they have more than too happy to share with friendly legislators!). Wall Street knows that a CFPB with teeth is going to cut into their lucrative racket of bilking consumers out of their money with misleading ads, financial double-talk and legalistic trickery. Not to mention protecting their cash stream from those other uncounted billions they rake off every year from the gambling speculative transactions in poorly-regulated markets that they manipulate play in (and rely on taxpayers’ money to get bailed out when they go sour).

    This is a big-bucks game; and it should be no surprise that the Senate GOP (and, probably, not a few Dems as well) would try to bend the game more to their liking. That they’re doing it via “confirmation extortion” has been SOP for a while (since Obama’s election, funnily enough!)…no surprise.

  93. 93
    Ed Drone says:

    @Marc:

    The Confederate Option?

    Senatorial Gullification

    The Do-Over Option

    Taking a Mulligan (with the Law)

    ‘Tain’t Over Till We Say It’s Over

    GOP Take-Backs

    Filibusted Do-Over

    I’m trying to come up with something involving “King’s X,” but nothing comes to mind that isn’t wordy and nerdy.

    More later, if something comes to mind.

    Ed

  94. 94
    Adam Lang says:

    @Ed Drone: Droit du Senateur?

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