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Sun Sep 29, 2013, 09:27 AM

How do we even talk about the insanity infecting the repubs in Congress?

You can't really discuss these guys in rational terms because what they're doing isn't grounded in anything remotely sane

Gail Collins, in a Sept 27th opinion piece summed it up pretty well:

<snip>

And their members found that list too restrictive. Behind-the-scenes discussion continued about more things the Republicans could demand. A ban on late-term abortions? A trillion-dollar budget cut? Bring back the gold standard? Bring back the bustle? It’s 2013 and anything is possible.

So, what do you think is wrong with these people? Thanks to gerrymandered Congressional districts and the Tea Party, we do seem to have a surprising number of elected officials who actually don’t believe that raising the debt limit so the government can pay its bills is a good plan. (“All that does is just say: ‘Well, you’ve got a little bit more credit — keep spending,’ ” Representative Walter Jones of North Carolina once told a radio interviewer.)

But there’s got to be more to it than that. Let’s try to think of three other reasons the United States Congress continues to behave as if it’s playing the Jack Nicholson part in “The Shining.” I’ll go first.

1. The Republicans are desperately, obsessively demonizing Obamacare to cover up the fact that they don’t want to do anything to Medicare or Social Security. Those used to be the party’s obsession — remember privatizing Social Security? But that was before they noticed that the entire Republican base is on Social Security.

Ranting about Obamacare, which one New Hampshire politician recently compared to the Fugitive Slave Act, is an excellent way to give the impression that you’re fighting to reduce entitlements without having to do anything about the actual entitlements.

<snip>

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/28/opinion/collins-congress-cracks-up.html?_r=0

And how is it that the small tea party effects such a powerful influence within Congress?

It's all so fucking crazy bad.

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sun Sep 29, 2013, 09:34 AM

1. Both democrats and the mainstream republicans have to start educating

voters not to support the Tea Party and the reasons why.

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Response to no_hypocrisy (Reply #1)

Sun Sep 29, 2013, 10:23 AM

2. There is no such thing as a Party called 'Tea Party' they are Republicans and mainstream as it gets.

I'm amused that you think the 'Tea Party' is real and separate from the Republican Party.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #2)

Sun Sep 29, 2013, 12:35 PM

9. A quasi-party within the party. That's why no one is in charge.

And why the GOP is going through political seizures right now.

I'm always right. When I'm wrong I admit it.
So then I'm right about being wrong.

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sun Sep 29, 2013, 10:27 AM

3. They need rabies shots

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sun Sep 29, 2013, 10:30 AM

4. How should we talk about them? Incessantly. Let the world know what the Anarchists are up to.

It is a small group of men and women in the House (and Senate too) who are doing their best to bring our Government to its knees, they fight to destroy us. We should be shouting it from the rooftops.

The right wing has and enormous and effective public voice. They have it on the airways, they have it pulsing through the cables, they have it behind the pulpits. It is normally a shrill voice of ignorance and foolishness and the only counter to that is a reply that is calm and informed. That is until we get our own FOX, Clearchannel, and Churches.

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sun Sep 29, 2013, 10:33 AM

5. It is this bad because a small group of ultra rich men,

Like the Kochs and others who have no loyalty to this nation, want our nation to fail spectacularly and for there to be so much pain and death they can sweep in with their wealth and buy all of America, including us peons whom they can work to death or take kidneys from or grind up for dog food for their dogs.

These men, and their useful idiots, want to destroy our nation utterly and entirely so they can take whatever they want for free or for pennies. Because, you know, their billions aren't nearly enough, they want the gold from our teeth and our fat for soap making and our skins for lampshades.

Go ahead and Godwin me. I don't care. This is the truth as far as I see it.

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sun Sep 29, 2013, 12:20 PM

6. A good start would be to call them by their rightful name:

Born Again Birchers.

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sun Sep 29, 2013, 12:23 PM

7. I am not giving all republicans a pass

...but, we are being driven to the brink of destruction by a comparatively small group of teabagging nutjobs (clearly with the blessing of the remainder of the repukes in the house)

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sun Sep 29, 2013, 12:26 PM

8. Like America and American killers. Gunners, starvers and other such nutfuckery.

Cowboy wannabeers.

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sun Sep 29, 2013, 12:51 PM

10. that is why negotiating with them equals enabling the disease in the system nt

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sun Sep 29, 2013, 03:22 PM

11. How to talk about it?

Say I manage to get a well paid, high profile job which is somewhat beyond usual level of employment. Instead of trying to do my best, live up to the responsibilities of the position, I work to undo the things achieved by my predecessor in the position and by my coworkers. I'm tearing down the company from within, acting as a subversive, right? Is that ethical behavior? Is it moral behavior? Am I serving in good faith? Why or why not? Is such an approach ever justified, and if so, when?

Perhaps framing it that way might get some people to think about what's being done by the Tea faction. It could easily backfire, I suppose, and end up as a discussion about unions subverting employers, or something. At that point I would introduce the topic of who holds the power in a situation, and what responsibilities come with power. Are certain behaviors or tactics more acceptable by the powerless against the powerful than vice versa? Framing in terms of responsibility, power dynamics, and ethics or morals may help some people understand what is so appalling about the current state of Republican politics.

I would perhaps also talk about how so much of this results from problems within the Republican party. The way they handle their election primaries helps groups like the Tea faction gain power. Their reliance on informal procedures like the Hastert Rule gives the Tea faction a disproportionate level of control over Congress. Gradually I would move toward topics like the Orwellian-named Citizens United ruling.

The Republicans hold immense power, but they keep trying to frame themselves as the underdogs. I think this helps justify their use of subversive tactics usually used by the powerless, even as they wield great power.

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sun Sep 29, 2013, 03:43 PM

12. It's not just congress...

Unfortunately, the current congressional fuckery is more a reflection of the increased radicalization of everyday Republican individuals. Ted Cruz is now seen as the de facto leader of the Republican party in opinion polls, and is now the frontrunner in a potential primary presidential election because of his moronic grandstanding about Obamacare. The marginally less radical voices are being overruled.

This is what the Republican base wants.

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