Skip

"October is a fine and dangerous season in America"
October 1, 2013 4:07 PM   Subscribe

Happy Political Clusterf*ck Day (U.S.)! In one corner: the first federal government shutdown since 1996, born of the House GOP/Tea Party faction's crusade to delay, defund, and destroy Obamacare (and the Democratic Senate and President's resolve to not do that). "Continuing resolutions" have ping-ponged between the two houses, fighting over language to cancel healthcare reform (plus a few other items, such as the implementation of Mitt Romney's entire economic agenda). National parks are closed, contractors are hamstrung, and 800,000 federal workers furloughed until Speaker Boehner drops the "Hastert Rule" and passes a bill the other branches can agree to. In the other corner, heedless of the chaos (though not without glitches of its own): the official rollout of the Affordable Care Act and its state insurance exchanges. The portal at Healthcare.gov is your one-stop shop for browsing, comparing, and purchasing standardized, regulated insurance coverage with premium rebates, guaranteed coverage, and expanded Medicaid for the poor (in some states). A crazy day, overall -- but peanuts compared to what might happen if the debt ceiling is breached in 16 days.

Further reading and resources:

Government Shutdown Affordable Care Act Debt Ceiling
posted by Rhaomi (2207 comments total) 214 users marked this as a favorite

 


I prefer the view from 10,000 miles away.
posted by Nomyte at 4:15 PM on October 1, 2013 [13 favorites]


A really good person to follow for this is Robert Costa, a writer for the National Review. He has enough connections with all the main Republican players to get an inside view of what's going on. Mainly that it's been a slap fight between the establishment Republicans and the Tea Party.
posted by zabuni at 4:15 PM on October 1, 2013 [13 favorites]


Our Outlaw President? Obama Should Ignore the Debt Ceiling

Even if he does, someone will sue and then nobody will know whether the bonds issued under this rationale are "real" or not until it's adjudicated, and we're back to the same ol' clusterfuck we started with.
posted by BungaDunga at 4:15 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Damn, Rhaomi, I hope there is a Poster of the Month Award.

Seriously, though, on topic, quite a few of my friends worked without pay today, and still many others had to stay home. And the Senate just adjourned for the day. No negotiations tonight.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 4:15 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


One of my favorite debt limit explanations, nicely summing up the hollowness of the whole ordeal.
posted by jason_steakums at 4:16 PM on October 1, 2013 [15 favorites]


Did the federally run exchanges ever find the missing security questions?
posted by Ardiril at 4:16 PM on October 1, 2013


My parents were supposed to visit the Grand Canyon today. #itcan'thappenhere
posted by 2bucksplus at 4:18 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Been trying to log in to my state's health insurance exchange all day, to no avail; I'm taking this to mean it's a wild success. A friend of mine, who is a government employee, and who has up to this point been excited for me (the ACA will reduce our household health insurance spending significantly) suddenly turned very negative this morning: there's no way that I'll actually get insurance! Obamacare is a disaster! I can't help but feel like that narrative of chaos and failure is actually precisely what the GOP was going for.

Still, I feel for her. The personal pressure and worry for federal employees must be enormous right now.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 4:18 PM on October 1, 2013 [4 favorites]


PhoBWanKenobi, the New York ACA website broke after 2 million hits the first two hours it was live. New York only has 2.6 million uninsured.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 4:20 PM on October 1, 2013 [13 favorites]


Amusing note: The old designation for federal civilian employees who kept on working during shutdown was 'essential.' In meetings yesterday I learned the new terminology is 'excepted,' as we are all essential federal workers, even if some of us are less essential than others.

There are also 'exempt' workers, they are those whose jobs are funded out of fees and not appropriations, they all get to keep working.

The only excepted employees in my particular governmental organization of maybe 1000 people are the deputy under secretary (acting) and some animal handlers at an infectious disease research facility.

Day 1 and loving the shutdown.
posted by pseudonick at 4:20 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


Always look on the bright side of life:

"All NSF web-based systems are unavailable until further notice, preventing submission of grant applications and progress reports."

Woohoo, my overdue report doesn't count as overdue?
posted by RedOrGreen at 4:21 PM on October 1, 2013 [8 favorites]


PhoBWanKenobi, the New York ACA website broke after 2 million hits the first two hours it was live. New York only has 2.6 million uninsured.

With healthy NY being discontinued in January, I imagine it's not just the currently-uninsured who are shopping for new insurance for next year.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 4:23 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm taking this to mean it's a wild success.

I heard a similar thing as roomthreeseventeen on the radio today. It's fine, things are just exceptionally overloaded. I'm personally peeved about the Library of Congress.
posted by jessamyn at 4:23 PM on October 1, 2013 [5 favorites]


I mean, I'm so frustrated I can hardly breathe. What's the average citizen to do? I'm sick of sending donations, signing petitions, sharing on FB, RTing. These people are holding the US government hostage as far as I can see, they are terrorists, and I'm not kidding. What's to be done?
posted by thinkpiece at 4:23 PM on October 1, 2013 [37 favorites]


a march on congress?
posted by Golden Eternity at 4:24 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


Oh, and by "wild success" I should clarify that I mean exactly that, and not something tongue in cheek--people are researching their health insurance options for next year despite scare tactics and the shut-down. This is a good thing.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 4:28 PM on October 1, 2013 [14 favorites]


800,000 people out of work; seems like a perfect basis for a march.
posted by kaibutsu at 4:28 PM on October 1, 2013 [6 favorites]


I think Kevin Drum put it pretty well a few days ago: "The Republican Party is bending its entire will, staking its very soul, fighting to its last breath, in service of a crusade to... Make sure that the working poor don't have access to affordable health care."

Just so we can keep in mind what it's really all about, when the horse race coverage devolves into talk of congressional arcana about conference committees and continuing resolutions.
posted by Joey Buttafoucault at 4:30 PM on October 1, 2013 [112 favorites]


It's also possible that GOP goons were DDOS'ing the new health exchange sites in order to create a sense of chaos.
posted by kaibutsu at 4:30 PM on October 1, 2013 [7 favorites]


I walked by the Capitol building just about an hour ago. I'm actually somewhat surprised how quiet it is around there. You'd never know such a colossal clusterfuck was underway, aside from the disgruntled tourists down the street on the Mall.
posted by C'est la D.C. at 4:30 PM on October 1, 2013


I hadn't heard about the Hastert Rule before. Good to know there's even more ways for congress to just randomly drop the ball on things than I had previously thought.
posted by ckape at 4:31 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Nice post, thank you.
posted by Short Attention Sp at 4:34 PM on October 1, 2013


From the New York site just now:

Error 500: org.springframework.core.task.TaskRejectedException: Executor [java.util.concurrent.ThreadPoolExecutor@20495dc9] did not accept task: org.springframework.context.event.SimpleApplicationEventMulticaster$1@ef7577d8

I wonder how many of those 2 million hits were people hitting refresh.
posted by Ardiril at 4:35 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Heh - kaibutsu, I was actually just wondering how many of the health exchanges had signed up for CloudFlare. I doubt any of them have, but maybe I'm wrong. I think the extremist wing of the GOP was hoping that the combined chaos of the gov't shutdown and the exchanges going live (with plenty of glitches, as should be expected on the first day of any service rollout) would be enough to get people riled up about something.
posted by antonymous at 4:35 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


My parents were supposed to visit the Grand Canyon today. #itcan'thappenhere

My parents are on a bus trip to Gettysburg, I wonder if they'll have issues too.
posted by drezdn at 4:36 PM on October 1, 2013


This post is incomplete without a section on immigrating to Canada.
posted by hellojed at 4:36 PM on October 1, 2013 [10 favorites]


I'm already in Canada (originally from the US), starting an academic job application process, and having serious second thoughts about applying to places in the US.
posted by kaibutsu at 4:38 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


At an organizational level (probably less so for individual congresspeople) the GOP benefits massively from making people hate the Government in one of its most visible forms: their representatives. Individual tea-partiers might take the fall for this, but overall this is exactly what the kleptocratic funders of the radicals want.

The original Tea Party's slogan was "No taxation without representation." This Tea Party's slogan is "No taxation. No representation."
posted by codacorolla at 4:40 PM on October 1, 2013 [24 favorites]


Don't worry everybody, the people who voted for this shit don't need to worry about their paychecks!
posted by odinsdream at 4:40 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]




Charles Pierce: Government Shutdown - The Reign Of Morons Is Here
posted by homunculus at 4:42 PM on October 1, 2013 [28 favorites]


I kinda wonder why the Democrats don't add their own rider that just automatically creates single-payer healthcare. Let the Republicans defund the ACA, and slap on full on universal healthcare. Also, repeal the Patriot act while they're at it. I can dream, can't I?

That would make me giggle.
posted by daq at 4:44 PM on October 1, 2013 [72 favorites]


I'll just go on record and say that my confidence is high the House Republicans will refuse to raise the debit ceiling and we'll go though that fiasco all over again.

Was a few reports last night of plenty of GOP Reps being quite drunk (literally). Including a FOF reporting the same about Boehner. I realize that jackass is between a rock and a hard place with his job on the line if he doesn't kowtow to the tea party, but Christ-on-a-cracker you would think after awhile he would just get sick of the house speaker-ship,(under the current crop of assholes it looks 2x as bad as the presidency) and either resign, or run things like normal. I'd bet dollars to doughnuts that if a clean spending bill was actually introduced it would pass. All it would take would be 12 R votes along with the D votes. 12. But it's not bought forward because Boehner would immediately face a leadership battle that he might lose.
posted by edgeways at 4:47 PM on October 1, 2013 [9 favorites]


It sounds like the most recent news reports are starting to predict a prolonged shutdown. I was hearing grumblings this morning that people expect this to get wrapped up with the debt ceiling issue, rather than dealing with both individually.
posted by C'est la D.C. at 4:48 PM on October 1, 2013


The shutdown is surreal. Watching from here in Europe, if I didn't know it was a real thing, I would think it the plot of some bizarre comedy movie.

Land of the Free huh? Well done Republicans, you have shown the world how spiteful and nasty you truly are. A BBC article said that a poll found that something like 72% of USians hold the Republicans responsible. Which they totally are. There is a word beginning with C, we use it a lot in the UK, however its use is somewhat frowned upon here, but it is the most apt word for these people I can think of.
posted by marienbad at 4:50 PM on October 1, 2013 [36 favorites]


via Twitter: Breaking: House fails to find 2/3 votes needed to fund veterans benefits during #shutdown.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 4:52 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


I tried to see the Jon Stewart Link but was greeted with this message instead:

Sorry but this video is unavailable from your location.
In case you can't give up free healthcare and move to America, you can watch The Daily Show With Jon Stewart at thecomedynetwork.ca
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 4:54 PM on October 1, 2013 [14 favorites]


> This post is incomplete without a section on immigrating to Canada.

> I'm already in Canada (originally from the US), starting an academic job application process, and having serious second thoughts about applying to places in the US.

Ha! Good luck, Canadian Immigration has been on strike for something like five months now.
posted by yeahwhatever at 4:55 PM on October 1, 2013


Rhaomi is not the poster we deserve, but the poster we need for this thread.
posted by Aizkolari at 4:55 PM on October 1, 2013 [8 favorites]




...but Christ-on-a-cracker you would think after awhile he would just get sick of the house speaker-ship,(under the current crop of assholes it looks 2x as bad as the presidency) and either resign, or run things like normal.

That dude is just a master-class of incompetence. The number of shit ideas he tied himself to with the news rounds this afternoon is just insane. I cannot believe he's still in office.
posted by odinsdream at 4:57 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


I keep seeing people write stuff like "wait until Wall Street/Koch Bros./Fat Cats/Plutocrats/Business get angry about the Teahadists disrupting the money flow, economy and profits - and then they'll rein in the baggers and that'll be the end of it."

That is not my take on the situation at all. All those actors may have at one time or another financed or used the Tea Party fanatics for their own purposes, may even had a hand in creating some of that astroturf. But the Tea Party is absolutely not controlled by those actors - and they never were. To the degree that they were financed by these actors, well, the monster got away from its creator. Not to Godwin, but the parallels are striking and very apt - there were plenty of financiers who thought they had all those fools in brown shirts at the beer halls in firm control... only they didn't. You can unleash forces you have no hope of controlling.

It is my firm belief that this is what is happening here. I think these are dangerous people. I don't think anybody is behind the scenes controlling things. That's part of what makes it dangerous - if they were mere puppets/marionettes controlled by unseen fat cats, there would be some natural controls in place, the moment you got to the puppet masters by hitting their interests, they'd pull strings and the situation would be resolved/controllable. But while there are opportunists feeding at the edges of this party, nobody is controlling the Tea Party. They are a natural force, and once organized and unleashed, are answerable to no one.

I keep giving this example, because I think it's apt - they are the same kinds of forces as during the Civil War, (and again, in the South, mostly). They are fanatics and rebels, but have no very clear or complex ideology - they are rejectionists, who are fighting for what they perceive as their lifestyle and power. Never mind how incoherent it is. Mob rule is rarely coherent. But it is extremely dangerous.

When they don't feel constrained by anything, they can inflict real damage. They don't understand, and don't care about the niceties of defaulting when the debt limit is not lifted - they only care about getting their non-negotiable ultimatums met. They are maximalists, and destroyers of order - radicals, not establishment-protecting conservatives. They may hark for a time that never was, but that doesn't matter, since you probably couldn't get two Teahadists in a room and have them agree on most points - it's enough that they have a clear objective: destroy the present order, Obama, the Democrats, RINOs, minorities, foreigners and a few other touchstones of Nativist lore.

They mean business, and they feel unconstrained. They are extremely dangerous, and it is just as dangerous to delude oneself that they are being controlled by anyone, including Wall Street/Koch Bros./Fat Cats/Plutocrats/Business - because we may be applying pressure along axis they are completely immune to.

They have to be fought. Relentlessly, without compromise and with absolute determination. The Civil War extracted a terrible - but unfortunately unavoidable price. I can only hope that this time there won't be blood flowing. But the politics are about to get very, very, bad. Brace yourselves - and then man the barricades.
posted by VikingSword at 4:57 PM on October 1, 2013 [168 favorites]


I kinda wonder why the Democrats don't add their own rider that just automatically creates single-payer healthcare. Let the Republicans defund the ACA, and slap on full on universal healthcare.

Perhaps one of the more savvy MeFites might clue me in because it seems to that this is spot on. I don't understand why the Democrats didn't counter-offer with something along the lines of:
You guys either need to pass a clean CR (which by the way is based on a post-sequester budget...already a loss for Dems). If you don't pass a clean CR you should expect to face a new Senate budget with all sequester concessions gone.
Republicans keep complaining that the Democrats aren't willing to compromise...I'd like to see their response to a situation where they are forced to confront what that really means.
posted by Hypnotic Chick at 4:58 PM on October 1, 2013 [16 favorites]


The media is doing a huge disservice to all in the way this is generally being reported. I've seen numerous TV reports that describe it as a "Budget Battle" or that the two parties are "negotiating". None of that is true. This really is a case of one party shutting down the entire government over an issue unrelated to the current budget debate.
posted by cell divide at 4:58 PM on October 1, 2013 [36 favorites]


via Twitter: Breaking: House fails to find 2/3 votes needed to fund veterans benefits during #shutdown.

I think this is good. I mean, not _good_ obviously, but Republicans shouldn't get to overturn the pieces of shutdown that will directly make them look bad for their base. Much like their bullshit photo ops at the WW2 memorial today.
posted by inigo2 at 4:59 PM on October 1, 2013 [9 favorites]


The US doesn't need a shut-down, it needs a reboot. A trojan process has hijacked the OS and gerrymandered the execution queue. It has persisted through a half-dozen resets; clearly, a cold restart is required. Probably need to re-install the OS. Maybe take the opportunity to upgrade to something modern.
posted by five fresh fish at 5:00 PM on October 1, 2013 [43 favorites]


From Homunculus' link, what a great summary of the situation:

"But there has never been in a single Congress -- or, more precisely, in a single House of the Congress -- a more lethal combination of political ambition, political stupidity, and political vainglory than exists in this one, which has arranged to shut down the federal government because it disapproves of a law passed by a previous Congress, signed by the president, and upheld by the Supreme Court, a law that does nothing more than extend the possibility of health insurance to the millions of Americans who do not presently have it, a law based on a proposal from a conservative think-tank and taken out on the test track in Massachusetts by a Republican governor who also happens to have been the party's 2012 nominee for president of the United States. That is why the government of the United States is, in large measure, closed this morning."
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 5:01 PM on October 1, 2013 [72 favorites]


The media is doing a huge disservice to all in the way this is generally being reported. I've seen numerous TV reports that describe it as a "Budget Battle" or that the two parties are "negotiating". None of that is true. This really is a case of one party shutting down the entire government over an issue unrelated to the current budget debate.

BBC's reporting was a bit better than that, which was a stark difference to the normal milquetoast NPR shit leading up to it. Whereas NPR was constantly presenting it as you said, BBC clearly documented it as a one-sided hostage situation, which I appreciated.
posted by odinsdream at 5:01 PM on October 1, 2013 [4 favorites]


The media is doing a huge disservice to all in the way this is generally being reported. I've seen numerous TV reports that describe it as a "Budget Battle" or that the two parties are "negotiating". None of that is true. This really is a case of one party shutting down the entire government over an issue unrelated to the current budget debate.

From the shutdown thread: Reporting on government shutdown has failed democracy
Even with a story as straightforward as the government shutdown, splitting the difference remains the method of choice for the political reporters and editors in Washington's most influential news bureaus. Even when they surely know better. Even when many Republican elected officials have criticized their own leaders for being too beholden to the more radical right wing.

Media critics — and members of the public — have long decried this kind of "he-said-she-said" reporting. The Atlantic's James Fallows, one of the most consistent chroniclers and decriers of false equivalence, describes it as the "strong tendency to give equal time and credence to varying 'sides' of a story, even if one of the sides is objectively true and the other is just made up."

New York University journalism professor Jay Rosen argues that truth-telling has been surpassed as a newsroom priority by a neither-nor impartiality he calls the "View from Nowhere."

Blaming everyone — "Congress," "both sides," "Washington" — is simply the path of least resistance for today's political reporters. It's a way of avoiding conflict rather than taking the risk that the public — or their editors — will accuse them of being unprofessionally partisan.

But making a political judgment through triangulation — trying to stake out a safe middle ground between the two political parties — is still making a political judgment. It is often just not a very good one. And in this case, as in many others, it is doing the country a grave disservice.

So no, the shutdown is not generalized dysfunction, or gridlock or stalemate. It is aberrational behavior by a political party that is willing to take extreme and potentially damaging action to get its way. And by not calling it what it is, the political press is enabling it.
posted by zombieflanders at 5:01 PM on October 1, 2013 [41 favorites]


I commented on FB:
I think that as long as the government is shut down, Congress should be locked into the building like the cardinals who choose the Pope, with only food and drink passed in through a window. After one week, meals drop to once a day. After two weeks, bread and water only.
A friend of mine commented:
Until they send up smoke. If the smoke is black they haven't reached an agreement. If the smoke is orange it's because they've reached an agreement and set John Boehner on fire.
posted by KathrynT at 5:01 PM on October 1, 2013 [144 favorites]


Someday maybe I'll understand how you could be so opposed to universal healthcare that you'd be willing to burn the country to the ground to prevent it. Today isn't that day.
posted by octothorpe at 5:03 PM on October 1, 2013 [24 favorites]


octothorpe: because racism.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 5:04 PM on October 1, 2013 [31 favorites]


If the smoke is orange it's because they've...set John Boehner on fire.

Realistically, this may happen regardless.
posted by C'est la D.C. at 5:04 PM on October 1, 2013 [6 favorites]


Someday maybe I'll understand how you could be so opposed to universal healthcare that you'd be willing to burn the country to the ground to prevent it.

Cause fuck you, got mine, that's why.
posted by inigo2 at 5:05 PM on October 1, 2013 [19 favorites]


I wish we could impeach Ted Cruz.
posted by immlass at 5:05 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


The Slate link shows that people are primarily blaming Republicans here. The shitty thing is that they've gerrymandered themselves into districts where it's really hard to punish them for it.
posted by graymouser at 5:05 PM on October 1, 2013 [7 favorites]


Catching up on the new thread still, but wanted to ask a question. I'm seeing the House Democrats shot down the mini-CRs over popular issues that Republicans decided to try, because as far as I can tell they needed a 2/3 majority to pass it to the Senate. Do all CRs need a 2/3? or was this one odd for some reason? or am I misunderstanding it?
posted by DynamiteToast at 5:06 PM on October 1, 2013


The US doesn't need a shut-down, it needs a reboot. A trojan process has hijacked the OS and gerrymandered the execution queue. It has persisted through a half-dozen resets; clearly, a cold restart is required. Probably need to re-install the OS. Maybe take the opportunity to upgrade to something modern.


America was not shut down properly. Would you like to start America in safe mode, with free healthcare and without the guns? (Recommended)

posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 5:06 PM on October 1, 2013 [158 favorites]


Borowitz is on it: Millions Flee Obamacare

"“My father didn’t have health care and neither did my father’s father before him,” he said. “I’ll be damned if I’m going to let my children have it.”
posted by fuse theorem at 5:06 PM on October 1, 2013 [13 favorites]


inigo2: "via Twitter: Breaking: House fails to find 2/3 votes needed to fund veterans benefits during #shutdown.

I think this is good. I mean, not _good_ obviously, but Republicans shouldn't get to overturn the pieces of shutdown that will directly make them look bad for their base. Much like their bullshit photo ops at the WW2 memorial today.
"

Seems like a bad idea to screw over people you've specifically trained fight... in other countries, this leads to military coups.
posted by chaosys at 5:06 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


If the smoke is orange it's because they've reached an agreement and set John Boehner on fire.

Speaking of, he's noticeably less vibrant in recent photos. I think he's really a mild orange Hulk and his power levels have been drained. Speaker John Boehner, belted by gamma rays!
posted by jason_steakums at 5:08 PM on October 1, 2013


We don't negotiate with terrorists?
posted by BrotherCaine at 5:08 PM on October 1, 2013 [7 favorites]


The Money Behind the Shutdown Crisis (NYT)
posted by argonauta at 5:08 PM on October 1, 2013 [4 favorites]


My Republican congressmen haven't even hopped on the train of donating their salaries to charity or the national debt. I almost miss having no representation every time I read their bitter, business-cozy, gun-loving emails.
posted by jetlagaddict at 5:09 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Was a few reports last night of plenty of GOP Reps being quite drunk (literally). Including a FOF reporting the same about Boehner. I realize that jackass is between a rock and a hard place with his job on the line if he doesn't kowtow to the tea party, but Christ-on-a-cracker you would think after awhile he would just get sick of the house speaker-ship,(under the current crop of assholes it looks 2x as bad as the presidency) and either resign, or run things like normal. I'd bet dollars to doughnuts that if a clean spending bill was actually introduced it would pass. All it would take would be 12 R votes along with the D votes. 12. But it's not bought forward because Boehner would immediately face a leadership battle that he might lose.

On checking, my math suggests they'd need 17 Republicans, but even so, I was not aware that it was anything near that close. Jesus babyfucking christ.
posted by kafziel at 5:11 PM on October 1, 2013


I keep hearing the extremist Right labeled as "terrorists." Don't we have processes in place for dealing with terrorists? Or do they need to be called "enemy combatants" first?
posted by chaosys at 5:13 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


So, friends of mine on the WIC program in Texas are saying the offices are shuttered today and they couldn't get their benefits.

That means pregnant/nursing women, infants and young children are going to go hungry this week.

Now, Senator Ted Cruz said YESTERDAY he'd donate his salary to charity if Harry Reid forced a government shutdown, but his office has been eerily quiet all day today, not answering calls or making media statements.

If you'd like to visit his office in Houston (or are a furloughed worker with nothing to do until October 15), here's that info, along with some local businesses offering discounts for those patrons who show their Federal ID.

You gotta walk that talk for it to count, Senator -- bloviating alone ain't gonna cut it.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 5:15 PM on October 1, 2013 [21 favorites]


The Republican party reminds me of a neighborhood kid who I played Monopoly with. He bought houses and immediately sold them for half-price. When I asked, "Why are you doing this?" all he said was, "I have a strategy."
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 5:15 PM on October 1, 2013 [24 favorites]


I thought that Chris Matthews' description of the deluded house republicans as having "kidnapped the money, then demanding that we hand over the baby" as pretty spot on.
posted by R. Mutt at 5:22 PM on October 1, 2013 [38 favorites]


Neither of my young invincibles were aware that they had to get health insurance. Thus, they were also unaware that the IRS would charge them a penalty if they didn't get it.

Both are leaning toward paying the penalty.
posted by Ardiril at 5:23 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Pony request: Rhaomi is only allowed to make one post per week.

(Because that's how long it takes me to get through every one of his amazing posts. Seriously - thanks for this, excellent post. I'll go start reading it now)
posted by triggerfinger at 5:24 PM on October 1, 2013 [6 favorites]


Neither of my young invincibles were aware that they had to get health insurance. Thus, they were also unaware that the IRS would charge them a penalty if they didn't get it.

Both are leaning toward paying the penalty.


I know a lot of people who feel this way. As I always say to them: You don't need health insurance until you do.

All it takes is one accident/cancer diagnosis/unexpected disease outbreak to make you regret not being covered...
posted by dhens at 5:27 PM on October 1, 2013 [36 favorites]


Are these idiots really stupid enough to default? Shutting down the government is political theater. Defaulting is setting off a suitcase nuke.
posted by Justinian at 5:29 PM on October 1, 2013 [4 favorites]


dhens: I've been disabled by heart disease since 2004. They are fully aware of the consequences.

Justinian: That's the problem. A suitcase nuke is not much of a deterrent.
posted by Ardiril at 5:31 PM on October 1, 2013


Are these idiots really stupid enough to default?

Is that a serious question? Of course they are.
posted by edgeways at 5:34 PM on October 1, 2013 [11 favorites]


Both are leaning toward paying the penalty.


I haven't run the numbers on this, but if I was in the insurance business, and knew there were X number of people who would pay $Y in penalties to not buy my product, I imagine I'd be interested in getting a chunk of that X*$Y money by dropping my rates.

Bonus for consumers is that the law lists out minimal requirements that insurance plans have to meet, so (it's my understanding that) insurance companies can't just start selling million dollar deductible plans for $Y-1.
posted by Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug at 5:37 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


They are stupid enough to default. My only question now is: will Obama be willing to mint the platinum coin? It's not a strategy I like, but it's better than letting the country default.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 5:37 PM on October 1, 2013 [6 favorites]


Are these idiots really stupid enough to default?

They shut down the government when polling has been clear for months that they'd take the blame for it. What was that question again?

What y'all need is a Westminster system, where failure to pass a budget immediately triggers an election. Long after this shutdown is over and various parties are blaming other parties, you'll be left with the structural aspects that made it rational for a caucus of nihilists to steer for the cliff.
posted by fatbird at 5:37 PM on October 1, 2013 [54 favorites]


I thought this whole thing was started by DeMint/Koch/Cruz and they are basically saying f-u to Obama.
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 5:38 PM on October 1, 2013


Yeah, they've been trying to lynch the President for the last six years.
posted by Golden Eternity at 5:40 PM on October 1, 2013 [16 favorites]


Pater Aletheias: "They are stupid enough to default. My only question now is: will Obama be willing to mint the platinum coin? It's not a strategy I like, but it's better than letting the country default."

Why don't you like the idea? It's legal (albeit via a legal loophole), unlike either of Obama's other options:
Failure to raise the debt will force the president to break a law — the only question is which one.

The Constitution requires the president to spend what Congress has instructed him to spend, to raise only those taxes Congress has authorized him to impose and to borrow no more than Congress authorizes.

If President Obama spends what the law orders him to spend and collects the taxes Congress has authorized him to collect, then he must borrow more than Congress has authorized him to borrow. If the debt ceiling is not raised, he will have to violate one of these constitutional imperatives. Which should he choose?
posted by tonycpsu at 5:41 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Lynch is the telling word here, ayuh. Sad.
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 5:41 PM on October 1, 2013


Both are leaning toward paying the penalty.

Try to convince them that they should at least look into how much it would cost. Especially if their chief objection is not so much invincibility as being poor as fuck. I'm no longer as young as I was but goddammit I'm still just as invincible, and only slightly less poor as fuck. That said...I could apparently get cheap shitty healthcare for, including the tax credit (which is can be applied directly to the payments, apparently) like $32 a month. (I know!) They may reconsider their stance when they see how affordable it really looks.

And that, as everyone keeps saying, is what the Republicans are so afraid of.
posted by mstokes650 at 5:42 PM on October 1, 2013 [12 favorites]


2bucksplus: "My parents were supposed to visit the Grand Canyon today. #itcan'thappenhere"

My grandpa missed out on his one chance of seeing the Grand Canyon because of the Newt Shutdown. That was the day that I started sloughing off the in-your-face Republicanism I'd carried through high school and college to that point.

(he's too frail to take, now. Really breaks my heart.)
posted by notsnot at 5:42 PM on October 1, 2013 [8 favorites]


I just started poking around healthcare.gov today and then I looked around at some health insurers' web sites and upon first blush without the hard numbers in front of me it looks like I'm going to save about $1,000 a year with Obamacare on premiums and end up with much better insurance than I have now.
posted by vibrotronica at 5:42 PM on October 1, 2013 [36 favorites]


There is a word beginning with C, we use it a lot in the UK, however its use is somewhat frowned upon here, but it is the most apt word for these people I can think of.

Off the top of my head...

Callous? Conservative? Cruel? Corrosive? Cynical? Corrupt? Corpulent? Cancerous? Complicit? Cringe-worthy? Contemptible? Cold? Capricious? Cornfed? Condemned? Childish? Confrontational? Conniving? Crass?
posted by Mario Speedwagon at 5:43 PM on October 1, 2013 [15 favorites]


I was screaming at the radio on my way home (at a stoplight): A COMPROMISE IS NOT WHERE ONE SIDE GETS EVERYTHING AND THE OTHER SIDE GETS NOTHING YOU FUCKING ASSHOLES.

I think I scared the lady in the car next to me. Sometimes I forget I have my windows rolled down.
posted by rtha at 5:43 PM on October 1, 2013 [49 favorites]


"All NSF web-based systems are unavailable until further notice, preventing submission of grant applications and progress reports."

Woohoo, my overdue report doesn't count as overdue?


Ha! You got me excited for a second, because I have a grant report due to the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs.

But there's nothing on their website about being shut down. Of course.
posted by showbiz_liz at 5:43 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Both are leaning toward paying the penalty.

I was recently talking with a group of people in their twenties who were kicking around the same idea until one of them said, "yeah, but my appendicitis surgery cost $x". Things got quiet fast.
posted by R. Mutt at 5:44 PM on October 1, 2013 [21 favorites]




"Failure to raise the debt will force the president to break a law"

... and then they impeach him? Could this be the Master Plan?

mstaokes650: If I push, they will resist.
posted by Ardiril at 5:44 PM on October 1, 2013


Sure, it's legal. But it's also far outside what anyone who wrote that law intended to be used for. Creating another trillion dollars out of thin air without any congressional authority ought to be outside what the president is able to do. American presidents have too much unilateral power already. But, I agree he is currently technically able to do it and it is better than a default. But, to me, it's one more step on the way to being a banana republic where we are ruled by technicalities and glitches instead of a functional government.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 5:45 PM on October 1, 2013 [7 favorites]


Both are leaning toward paying the penalty.

The one thing the law is missing is a legal requirement that all non-participants MUST pay for all medical services IN ADVANCE.

Or, as the Old Scrooges among the Libertarians would say: "Let 'em die".
posted by oneswellfoop at 5:50 PM on October 1, 2013


It's also possible that GOP goons were DDOS'ing the new health exchange sites in order to create a sense of chaos.

See, if it was me I would act oblivious and claim every single ping was an American interested in taking advantages of the amazing benefits of Obamacare.

Perhaps one of the more savvy MeFites might clue me in because it seems to that this is spot on. I don't understand why the Democrats didn't counter-offer with something along the lines of:

You guys either need to pass a clean CR (which by the way is based on a post-sequester budget...already a loss for Dems). If you don't pass a clean CR you should expect to face a new Senate budget with all sequester concessions gone.


They absolutely can't further legitimize the idea that the existence of the government is negotiable.
posted by Drinky Die at 5:52 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


I dunno, President Obama and his wife are both lawyers and they're both from Chicago. I'm thinking they've got this. I was sort of losing faith a while ago but really, I think it will be all right and they will stand firm against this and things will turn out just fine. I don't doubt their integrity one bit.
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 5:53 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


osf: ... or pay the penalty, in advance and out of pocket (not deducted).
posted by Ardiril at 5:53 PM on October 1, 2013




I doubt the President will go for any of the gimmicks such as the platinum coin or the 14th Amendment option. I think that even hinting that he might do that would actually undermine his leverage. If it comes to that moment and there is no compromise, there will be extra-Constitutional decisions to make aplenty. We can only hope that some shred of our constitutional republic remains when it is over.
posted by humanfont at 6:03 PM on October 1, 2013 [4 favorites]


" I have a grant report due to the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs."

Is this a posh way of saying you are going to see your dealer to get some weed on tick?*

* tick = buy now, pay later.
posted by marienbad at 6:04 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Do all CRs need a 2/3? or was this one odd for some reason? or am I misunderstanding it?

They don't all need 2/3.

These were brought up under a procedure called "suspension of the rules," which is normally used for minor legislation that has wide approval. Bills under SotR can easily bypass most of the legislative process like committee deliberation and hearings, they receive only very abbreviated debate, and no amendments are allowed. The flipside for these benefits is that a 2/3 vote is required to pass. Consideration under SotR is very common and is the primary way minor legislation -- naming something after a war hero, minor bugfixes to existing programs, other minor tweaks that are the bread and butter of legislative life -- is dealt with.

I haven't looked into it, but the obvious reason to consider under SotR would be speed and simplicity. I've seen someone suggesting that consideration under SotR instead of normal order also kept the Democrats from using procedural tricks to force a vote on a clean CR, but I haven't looked to see how much truth there is to that. There's a good chance Sarah Binder or Steve Smith will say something about it on the Monkey Cage; they're probably the best experts on congressional procedure we have.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 6:04 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


I just realized this is my 113th post, about the 113th Congress. Spooky.

Spookier: I just picked up some pasta from Domino's and ended up being order #6,666,666. WE'RE DOOMED.
posted by Rhaomi at 6:09 PM on October 1, 2013 [24 favorites]


that is both spoopy and creppy
posted by elizardbits at 6:11 PM on October 1, 2013 [7 favorites]


"Failure to raise the debt will force the president to break a law"

... and then they impeach him? Could this be the Master Plan?


I wondered the exact same thing when I read this. Could it be that Ted Cruz et al. has a longer term strategy and (don't laugh) is smarter than we're giving him credit for?
posted by triggerfinger at 6:11 PM on October 1, 2013


I wonder how many of those 2 million hits were people hitting refresh.

This. I picture hundreds of thousands of people staring at their screens, hitting reload so much that they just knocked it offline.

Still and all, coolest DDOS ever....people looking to get insurance that's now affordable in the US.

Although I guess I wouldn't put it past some GOP PAC to hire someone to knock servers offline, so anything's possible.
posted by nevercalm at 6:13 PM on October 1, 2013


The first day of Obamacare is over and I am pooped! Next time I won't volunteer for so many death panels!
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 6:14 PM on October 1, 2013 [55 favorites]


I don't comprehend how it's even possible to shut down an entire government. This is like the little hole by which they blew up the Death Star.

That being said the fact that it's even possible to shut down the goverment makes me happy I'm not on single-payer healthcare. If we were going to go in that direction the government would have to be a little more stable.

My dad's food stamps got cut to $40 for the whole month because of this shit.
posted by bleep at 6:18 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


I wondered the exact same thing when I read this. Could it be that Ted Cruz et al. has a longer term strategy and (don't laugh) is smarter than we're giving him credit for?

But the Senate is the body that tries the President if (s)he's impeached- the House can vote to impeach, but there's no way a majority of the Senate will vote to impeach.

my vote is stupidity.


PS one thing I'm vaguely amused by is the number of people who are confused as to which government services are federal and which are run by the states. Yes, friends, the DMV is still open...
posted by BungaDunga at 6:20 PM on October 1, 2013 [4 favorites]


I wondered the exact same thing when I read this. Could it be that Ted Cruz et al. has a longer term strategy and (don't laugh) is smarter than we're giving him credit for?

An impeachment would be a bit difficult with a Democratic-controlled Senate.
posted by drezdn at 6:20 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


I wondered the exact same thing when I read this. Could it be that Ted Cruz et al. has a longer term strategy and (don't laugh) is smarter than we're giving him credit for?

It would be a mistake to assume someone is stupid simply because their moral orientation is deplorable, or because their political supporters aren't necessarily critical thinkers.

The shut-down is clearly a tactical move, since there was never any chance that it would directly cause something the Tea Party/GOP wants. It could be that they're trying to force the president to break a law, certainly, although if this shut-down goes on for a while, they may also try to argue at some later point that they've proven that we don't even need the federal government! The Tea Party has made no secret of its inimical attitude toward government itself, especially federal, and so perhaps in that sense shutting it down is a way of pushing that plutocratic article of faith closer to mainstream, NYT-editorial-style respectability.
posted by clockzero at 6:21 PM on October 1, 2013 [5 favorites]


Although I guess I wouldn't put it past some GOP PAC to hire someone to knock servers offline, so anything's possible.

There was some idiotic Twitter chatter I saw last night on C-SPAN's live Twitter feed thinger where a few idiotic Tea Party wannabe freedom fighters were all "FLOOD HEALTHCARE.GOV WITH FAKE INFO TOMORROW TO BRING DOWN OBAMACARE" which, y'know, hopefully those dudes aren't their crack team because that's adorable.
posted by jason_steakums at 6:22 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


VikingSword's analysis is very apt except when he groups together "Wall Street/Koch Bros./Fat Cats/Plutocrats/Business". As argonauta's "The Money Behind the Shutdown Crisis" (NYT) link describes, the Koch Brothers are clearly in support of any crusade that would 'break the economy', and happily so. Why? Because Koch Industries is "the second largest privately held company in the United States", and "Charles Koch has stated that the company will publicly offer shares 'literally over my dead body'". They can happily give a big FUCK YOU to Wall Street and all the financial markets, and considering the mix of manufactured products their companies make, they can easily batten down their hatches and weather this financial hurricane, shutting down anything and laying off anyone involved with 'unproductive assets', knowing that they can later buy out any publicly owned competitors whose stock prices have evaporated for pennies on the dollar and laugh all the way to the bank. And when it all settles down, they might just be Kings of a land where they have no taxes to pay and no regulations to hold them back (not likely, but the pipe dream obviously is called into play). The owners of the biggest privately owned companies could well be the Last Standing in a devastated economy, except for a few like #5 Bechtel, who have a lot of government contracts. Still, the Koch Brothers are not going to be the only billionaires who can profit from an American Economic Collapse... just the most visible.
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:23 PM on October 1, 2013 [36 favorites]


But the Senate is the body that tries the President if (s)he's impeached- the House can vote to impeach, but there's no way a majority of the Senate will vote to impeach.

If it came to that, I'd put a little money on the Senate actually just dismissing the charges rather than having a trial and acquitting.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 6:24 PM on October 1, 2013


If the Republicans win the Senate next year, they'll probably attempt to impeach the President no matter what happens between now and then. It'll probably go down close to how it did when they did the same thing to President Clinton.
posted by drezdn at 6:24 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


It's all part of drowning-it-in-the-bathtub mentality. There seems to be currently in the House a sizable portion of people who simultaneous hates government while not minding taking a paycheck from it, and I swear they are doing all they possibly can to undermine the federal system for one reason or another, making it toxic and unsavory.
posted by edgeways at 6:25 PM on October 1, 2013 [8 favorites]


Because Koch Industries is "the second largest privately held company in the United States", and "Charles Koch has stated that the company will publicly offer shares 'literally over my dead body'". They can happily give a big FUCK YOU to Wall Street and all the financial markets, and considering the mix of manufactured products their companies make, they can easily batten down their hatches and weather this financial hurricane, shutting down anything and laying off anyone involved with 'unproductive assets', knowing that they can later buy out any publicly owned competitors whose stock prices have evaporated for pennies on the dollar and laugh all the way to the bank. And maybe when it all settles down, they may be Kings of a land where they have no taxes to pay and no regulations to hold them back (not likely, but the pipe dream obviously is called into play).

I'll say this for the grim dark Libertarian future, at least they give you cartoon villains to take the moral sting off your insurrection.
posted by jason_steakums at 6:26 PM on October 1, 2013 [13 favorites]


Anyway my money is on the debt ceiling not being hit. A federal shutdown doesn't cause financial armageddon- it's happened before and we know more or less how it works. I don't think a majority of the house is very likely to want to test the debt ceiling. On the other hand, apparently the gov't has not put forward a drop-dead date on default, since they can't be exactly sure when the money runs out- I worry that the Tea Partiers might push and push and then boom, default, since there's no set date.

So from that vantage point all the articles about debt ceilings are a red herring- the real damage is plenty bad without debtageddon. Honestly, I think the worst part of the damage is large portions of the country getting fed up with the Congress (and by extension, the government) as a whole. When all you hear about is bullshit posturing, you're just going to tune out (I have, partially). When, meanwhile (At least when the House hasn't shut down the government) the Federal bureaucracy is doing a fairly admiral job of managing national parks, our space program, etc...
posted by BungaDunga at 6:28 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


The shut-down is clearly a tactical move, since there was never any chance that it would directly cause something the Tea Party/GOP wants.

I honestly, honestly can't see what the benefit is to them or even what they think the benefit may be. We had a showdown over the debt ceiling two years ago and that didn't go so well for them either. The only thing I can think of is that their districts have been so gerrymandered that they stand to actually lose their seats if they don't cater to their extremist constituents.
posted by triggerfinger at 6:30 PM on October 1, 2013 [4 favorites]


It'll probably go down close to how it did when they did the same thing to President Clinton.

An intern is going to blow Obama in the Oval Office?
posted by crossoverman at 6:35 PM on October 1, 2013 [5 favorites]


House GOP logic: "To save the foetus we must kill the foetus"
posted by skepticbill at 6:36 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Because Koch Industries is "the second largest privately held company in the United States", and "Charles Koch has stated that the company will publicly offer shares 'literally over my dead body'". They can happily give a big FUCK YOU to Wall Street and all the financial markets

Just because a company isn't publicly traded doesn't mean they aren't affected by Wall Street. Since they're private, we can't see their balance sheet, but if they borrow as part of their business and the bond markets shit the bed (and they WILL if the US defaults), then they will be up shit creek with most of the rest of the economy. Wall Street is far more than trading stocks.
posted by indubitable at 6:37 PM on October 1, 2013 [4 favorites]


House GOP logic: "To save the foetus we must kill the foetus"

No, it's "To save the foetus we must kill the mother. Who needs mothers anyway? Always telling you what to do, providing nutrients and shelter! Stupid mothers."
posted by emjaybee at 6:38 PM on October 1, 2013 [16 favorites]


So what would it take to have all of the Republicans responsible for this charged with treason? They're very clearly acting out against the interests of the United States of America and its people. Charge them with treason, oust them from office, and let's get some grown-ups in here.
posted by IAmUnaware at 6:42 PM on October 1, 2013 [7 favorites]


Thanks to the government shutdown, I could wantonly discuss yesterday's baseball matches without the express written consent of Major League Baseball.
posted by Renoroc at 6:42 PM on October 1, 2013 [19 favorites]


Holy shit, let's just say that I'm really, really, really glad that federal elections aren't held on Facebook.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 6:44 PM on October 1, 2013 [12 favorites]


I should think the worst part of the damage is to the USA's international relationships. How can any other government take the US government seriously when it's hijacked by maroons? How can the US remain a world power when it's in this sort of state?
posted by five fresh fish at 6:44 PM on October 1, 2013 [6 favorites]


So what would it take to have all of the Republicans responsible for this charged with treason? They're very clearly acting out against the interests of the United States of America and its people. Charge them with treason, oust them from office, and let's get some grown-ups in here.

Why are you looking backwards, this is 'Murica, we look forwards here. Why do you hate 'Murica?
posted by T.D. Strange at 6:44 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


How can any other government take the US government seriously when it's hijacked by maroons? How can the US remain a world power when it's in this sort of state?

There you go, looking on the Bright Side.
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:46 PM on October 1, 2013 [7 favorites]


So what would it take to have all of the Republicans responsible for this charged with treason?

Holy shit, charging your political opponents with treason would be the end of the country. It's the worst idea I've ever heard short of executing them with a gunshot to the head.
posted by Justinian at 6:47 PM on October 1, 2013 [16 favorites]


Since they're private, we can't see their balance sheet, but if they borrow as part of their business and the bond markets shit the bed (and they WILL if the US defaults), then they will be up shit creek with most of the rest of the economy.

You're right, we can't see their balance sheet, we can't see what actions they've taken to insulate themselves from the bond markets, or how much.

...charging your political opponents with treason would be the end of the country.

If it were in any way feasible, the GOP would've done it before.
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:51 PM on October 1, 2013 [4 favorites]


Right now I'm hoping for this scenario, as outlined by Jonathan Chait: Basically, at least 17 of the non-crazy House Republicans break with the party and form a grand coalition with the House Democrats with a minimalist, but crisis-free, policy agenda. The closest analogue I can think of is when the left and the center-right in France banded together to keep the far-right National Front from winning the presidency. It's precisely what we need right now, and while it's rather unlikely at the moment, I have a feeling anything could happen in the next 30 days.
posted by Cash4Lead at 6:52 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Why are you looking backwards, this is 'Murica, we look forwards here. Why do you hate 'Murica?

Said the man with the knife in his back.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 6:54 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


I haven't read through the thread yet, but wanted to post a link to this NYT op-ed piece about how this puts president Obama in the position of breaking the law if the debt ceiling is not raised. (thanks to my bil)
posted by annsunny at 6:56 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Why are you looking backwards, this is 'Murica, we look forwards here. Why do you hate 'Murica?
Said the man with the knife in his
YOUR back.

FTFY.
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:56 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


You know I like Obama, he's obviously a smart dude and can surely carry an argument.

But oh dear god listening to his little speech/ACA sales announcement today from the Rose Garden, all I could help but think was can someone PLEASE get Bill Fucking Clinton over here and read the GOP the riot act like he did at the convention?

Because shit, we really need someone like Bill to get the real message out there. Like yesterday.
posted by JoeZydeco at 6:57 PM on October 1, 2013 [19 favorites]


Who's to say the House Republicans won't get their way at least temporararily? The game theory certainly suggests they will. The people who are saying that they will inevitably lose are the same people who were saying that they wouldn't do the shutdown to begin with, employing the same defective logic now as then.

Having picked their fight, the House Republicans really have to win it; losing absolutely devestates the support and confidence of their base, while there isn't one liberal voters who says "heck, those Republicans finally saw the light, I oughta vote for 'em".

By contrast, Obama and Reid can give in temporarily, and take the fight to the electorate in 13 months and ask for a mandate to fund Obamacare fully, or even go all in for some form of single payer that probably would prefer anyway.
posted by MattD at 6:59 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


I don't think giving in would be good for Obama politically. It might be better for him to ignore the debt ceiling and go through an impeachment. This would be so preposterous that it might actually activate moderates enough to vote these bozos out of congress, but who knows....

Poll Indicates GOP Has Been Deeply Damaged By Shutdown Fight
posted by Golden Eternity at 7:06 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


There is nothing left in the demands that Obama can give up, even temporarily.
posted by Drinky Die at 7:06 PM on October 1, 2013


(he might as well resign if he lets them gut the signature legislation of his Presidency)
posted by Drinky Die at 7:08 PM on October 1, 2013 [6 favorites]




The 2014 election would be a terrible time to seek an Obamacare mandate. Smaller, older, more conservative electorate, a gerrymandered House, a Senate slate full of red-state Democrats, and no incumbent president on the ticket to generate excitement and attention. Not to mention even temporary capitulation would make Obama look weak and his healthcare law not worth defending at the ballot box.
posted by Rhaomi at 7:08 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


Having picked their fight, the House Republicans really have to win it . . . By contrast, Obama and Reid can give in temporarily, and take the fight to the electorate in 13 months and ask for a mandate to fund Obamacare fully, or even go all in for some form of single payer that probably would prefer anyway.

What? No. I mean, huh? That's no... But I mean...

People are still fundamentally misunderstanding what's happening here. This isn't about Republicans vs. Democrats. This is about Republicans vs. Republicans, and by proxy it's R vs. D and R vs. American public. Close to (and probably more than) half of all Republican representatives want to send a clean CR to the Senate. But they can't, because Boehner won't allow them to vote on it. The Democrats are absolutely unified in their opposition to Republican shenanigans. All of the splintering and fracturing is occurring within the Republican Party. This is all about Boehner trying to do whatever he can to hold onto his role as Speaker. If he presented a clean CR to the House right now, it would pass with probably close to 400 votes.

The Democrats allowing the Republicans to "win" this negotiation by stopping the ACA is just not even in the realm of possibility. Which is why this whole thing is so pointless.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 7:08 PM on October 1, 2013 [71 favorites]


But oh dear god listening to his little speech/ACA sales announcement today from the Rose Garden...

Me too. It was like the prime-time Syria speech, it was like they had the event all scripted out a week ago and went through with it with only a little nod at what had changed in the past week.
posted by peeedro at 7:12 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Obama was right (haven't said that in a while) when he said negotiating is a fool's game, they'll just come back for the debt ceiling...and then for something else. They are already so far out of bounds the next step is what, demanding repeal of the rights of women to vote?

We are waaaay past negotiating, and I think a lot closer to a kind of civil war than we want to believe. If the Republicans keep going this direction, things will really start to break down. We joke about dismantling government, but what is it that's happening now but exactly that? And there is no way out of that situation without violence of some kind, which hardly bears thinking about.

He cannot let them make him go back on ACA, because that breaks our government, it breaks law; not a law, but law itself. It breaks the mechanisms (already perverted, sure) by which we make law.

I just wish he'd put up this fight earlier. He's given away far too much already. It makes me fear that he'll back down even on this, and then I will be really afraid for my country.
posted by emjaybee at 7:16 PM on October 1, 2013 [29 favorites]


We have a law (Obamacare) and these assholes are refusing to honor the law.

So why aren't they in jail yet?
posted by BlueHorse at 7:17 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


You guys have read this, right? DeMint, Shadow Speaker.
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 7:18 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


Ha, I just learned a Fun Fact About Congress - the Speaker can be anybody who gets enough votes, not just an elected Representative. I vote we replace Boehner with a random drill sergeant or inner-city school teacher.
posted by jason_steakums at 7:18 PM on October 1, 2013 [20 favorites]


There's a simple solution here. Shut down Obamacare, and implement the Affordable Care Act instead.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 7:20 PM on October 1, 2013 [11 favorites]


BungaDunga: "Yes, friends, the DMV is still open..."

Unless you live in D.C.
posted by fireoyster at 7:22 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Are these idiots really stupid enough to default?
They shut down the government when polling has been clear for months that they'd take the blame for it. What was that question again?
That polling was obviously skewed. After unskewing, it becomes clear that 83% of Americans blame Democrats, and the remaining 46% of Americans double dog blame Democrats.

Incidentally, the genius who proved that the polls were skewed has now uncovered ironclad proof that Obama is gay.
posted by Flunkie at 7:27 PM on October 1, 2013 [7 favorites]


the Speaker can be anybody who gets enough votes, not just an elected Representative. I vote we replace Boehner with a random drill sergeant or inner-city school teacher.

Round up 17 Republicans and you've got a deal.
posted by Cash4Lead at 7:28 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Flunkie, that was horrible. I mean, whoa, my brain kind of shorted out with that link.

Need to go scream into a paper bag for a while...
posted by daq at 7:30 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


Is there any chance this could split the Republication party or is that just a fever dream of someone from a place with a parliamentary system where party changing happens relatively a lot? Split moderates off to temporarily align with the Democrats and elect a right-side Dem Speaker (sorry Nancy, definitely not you!). Get through the next few months with minimal long-term damage, but also barebones legislation. Then the Dem-aligned Republicans coalesce back to the middle?

I have basically no sympathy with anyone with an R next to their name, but I can't believe most of the old time Republicans can put up with these bozos making them look bad forever.
posted by marylynn at 7:32 PM on October 1, 2013


Why Boehner doesn’t just ditch the hard right

Robert Costa is the National Review's Washington editor and one of the best-sourced reporters among House Republicans. Like many others, I've relied on his reporting in recent days about how House Republicans are strategizing around the government shutdown. But it left me with some questions, particularly around Speaker John Boehner's strategy. We spoke by phone this afternoon, and a lightly edited transcript follows.

posted by Rhaomi at 7:33 PM on October 1, 2013 [7 favorites]


Is there any chance this could split the Republication party or is that just a fever dream of someone from a place with a parliamentary system where party changing happens relatively a lot? Split moderates off to temporarily align with the Democrats and elect a right-side Dem Speaker (sorry Nancy, definitely not you!). Get through the next few months with minimal long-term damage, but also barebones legislation. Then the Dem-aligned Republicans coalesce back to the middle?

Ooh, can the Republicans just straight up kick the Tea Party members out instead of the moderates leaving the party? Blunts that little primary threat when they don't have the funding and support of the GOP to put up a challenge. It seems like a full-on schism has been coming for a while now, but they keep trying to push it off.
posted by jason_steakums at 7:39 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


We are waaaay past negotiating, and I think a lot closer to a kind of civil war than we want to believe. If the Republicans keep going this direction, things will really start to break down. We joke about dismantling government, but what is it that's happening now but exactly that? And there is no way out of that situation without violence of some kind, which hardly bears thinking about.

The intractability of the two parties keeps reminding me of the book on the Spanish Civil War I finished not long ago. The situations aren't similar - the Left had real power in the Spain of the Thirties - but what similarities there are make me want to drink as much beer as possible and read something that has nothing to do with my country.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 7:43 PM on October 1, 2013


The head of the GOP is Reince Priebus and isn't he one of those uber conservative types? So I'm guessing the moderates would have to leave.

Rhaomi's link is interesting and also answered another question I had (this time coming from the side of me that clearly has no ambition and is thus unsuited for politics): why the hell does Boehner want it so bad? It seems like a big pain the ass to me. Quit while he's ahead, take some lush speaking gigs for a while and then cash some checks from the lobbyist firm he starts while making calls from his ultra-plush tanning bed?!
posted by marylynn at 7:45 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


The intractability of the two parties...

What? The Democrats bend over before the wind even gets to them.
posted by sonic meat machine at 7:53 PM on October 1, 2013 [22 favorites]


The US Congress: When unstoppable idiocy meets incompetent objects.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 7:54 PM on October 1, 2013


Anybody notice the google logo today?

123 anniversary of Yosemite ... and we closed her down.

Ironical maybe?
posted by BlueHorse at 7:55 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


The intractability of the one party, then, which is really the problem.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 7:55 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


Unfortunately Republican moderates in the House (if any are really left) are more terrified by being primaried from the right by some Club for Growth sponsored candidate that will claim that Rep. X is soft on X which makes them unfit for office.

Because only a small number of districts are actually competitive they really don't have to worry about losing a general election because they have a safe seat so if they really want to keep riding the congress critter gravy train which is a surefire ticket to getting a K street lobbyist salary after retirement from the house it's critical for them to maintain party cohesion.

Right now there just isn't enough systemic risk to individual congresscritters for the republicans to break rank and support a clean bill.

Really the only hope is that the monied interests who actually bankroll these guys in terms of their campaigns start calling in markers because this sort of Republican brinksmanship could potential cost them billions.
posted by vuron at 7:56 PM on October 1, 2013 [4 favorites]


If the House were to fail to raise the debt ceiling, and Obama simply ignored it, it would do unimaginable harm to the entire legislative branch as an institution. The president would have far more power, for years to come. Which is why they won't let it happen. The GOP is willing to play with fire by shutting down he government, but they're not going to destroy themselves on October 17.
posted by miyabo at 8:06 PM on October 1, 2013


Well, the Republican staffers are griping now too.

Like many Americans, most Congressional staffers receive health insurance through their employer, the federal government. And like most employers, the government covers a big portion of the cost: 75 percent. The Affordable Care Act changed this, requiring members of Congress and their staff to obtain coverage via the the health insurance exchanges created by the law. But the language in the law was unclear as to whether lawmakers and their aides would be able to keep using government money to purchase heath insurance. To clear this up, the Obama administration issued a proposed rule in August stating that the government would continue to cover 75 percent of congressional health benefits. The GOP latched onto this new regulation as an "outrageous exemption for Congress" and a "big fat taxpayer funded subsidy." Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) and Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Tex.), introduced bills that would strip out those employer contributions.

"I understand it politically, and as a talking point," one rank-and-file Republican staffer says of the Vitter and McCaul measures. "But Congress literally threw staff under the bus on this…You're hurting staff assistants who are sorting your mail."

Staffers don't make as much money as you may think, he adds. "When I started on the Hill answering phone calls, I'd hear people saying, 'You're a rich congressional staffer,' and I'm like, 'you must be out of your mind.'" Some low-level congressional employees make as little as about $28,000 a year; House staff salaries are the lowest they've been since 2007. "We have folks in our office who don't make a lot of money," the GOP aide says, "and losing an employer contribution will make it hard on them."

posted by emjaybee at 8:09 PM on October 1, 2013 [11 favorites]


How would the Supreme Court even approach something like the President only having the choice of breaking one law or another?
posted by jason_steakums at 8:09 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


A constitutional crisis is a situation that the legal system's constitution or other basic principles of operation appear unable to resolve; it often results in a breakdown in the orderly operation of government. Often, generally speaking, a constitutional crisis is a situation in which separate factions within a government disagree about the extent to which each of these factions hold sovereignty. Most commonly, constitutional crises involve some degree of conflict between different branches of government (e.g., executive, legislature, and/or judiciary), or between different levels of government in a federal system (e.g., state and federal governments).

A constitutional crisis may occur because one or more parties to the dispute willfully chooses to violate a provision of a constitution or an unwritten constitutional convention, or it may occur when the disputants disagree over the interpretation of such a provision or convention. If the dispute arises because some aspect of the constitution is ambiguous or unclear, the ultimate resolution of the crisis often establishes a precedent for the future. For instance, the United States constitution is silent on the question of whether states are allowed to secede from the Union; however, after the secession of several states was forcibly prevented in the American Civil War, it has become generally accepted that states cannot leave the Union.

A constitutional crisis is distinct from a rebellion, which is defined as when factions outside of a government challenge that government's sovereignty, as in a coup or revolution led by the military or civilian protesters.

A constitutional crisis can lead to government paralysis, collapse, or civil war.
posted by Rhaomi at 8:12 PM on October 1, 2013 [6 favorites]


How would the Supreme Court even approach something like the President only having the choice of breaking one law or another?

With the Supreme Court essentially being a canny arm of the right, I can't foresee anyway that Obama wouldn't suffer some kind of loss no matter what he does.
posted by Hypnotic Chick at 8:12 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


"I understand it politically, and as a talking point," one rank-and-file Republican staffer says of the Vitter and McCaul measures. "But Congress literally threw staff under the bus on this…You're hurting staff assistants who are sorting your mail."

Staffers don't make as much money as you may think, he adds. "When I started on the Hill answering phone calls, I'd hear people saying, 'You're a rich congressional staffer,' and I'm like, 'you must be out of your mind.'" Some low-level congressional employees make as little as about $28,000 a year; House staff salaries are the lowest they've been since 2007. "We have folks in our office who don't make a lot of money," the GOP aide says, "and losing an employer contribution will make it hard on them."
Sounds like Republican Congressional staffers should form a union.
posted by Flunkie at 8:12 PM on October 1, 2013 [66 favorites]


How would the Supreme Court even approach something like the President only having the choice of breaking one law or another?

Discussed elsewhere, someone mentioned the defense of impossibility, meaning that when you cannot avoid breaking the law, it immunizes you from breaking it. That's not, in fact, "impossibility" in the context of a legal defense, but they sounded like they were getting the wrong name on the right doctrine. Perhaps a lawyer can comment.
posted by fatbird at 8:15 PM on October 1, 2013


I wonder though.. if you essentially force someone to break a law are you not also guilty of breaking a law?
posted by edgeways at 8:22 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


This tweet from Dana Perino is making the rounds. It is the sort of thing I feel the compulsion to share out of confusion and horror, like a modern goatse.
posted by dinty_moore at 8:23 PM on October 1, 2013 [5 favorites]


123 anniversary of Yosemite ... and we closed her down.

Ironical maybe?


The Statue of Liberty was shut down as well.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 8:24 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


So are Customs and TSA officials considered essential because it would be interesting if suddenly people couldn't actually make flights or get goods into the country because we don't actually have the staff necessary to man those positions. I assume Homeland Security pretty much is going to be considered essential across the board but I'm not sure how many baggage checkers are going to be willing to sit and scan bags and passengers for an extended period of time without actually getting paid before using sick time to seek alternative employment opportunities.
posted by vuron at 8:30 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


I take it people have seen this NY Daily News cover?
posted by edgeways at 8:31 PM on October 1, 2013 [10 favorites]


dinty, that tweet is like a black hole; it sucks away your intelligence just to read it.
posted by emjaybee at 8:31 PM on October 1, 2013 [6 favorites]


I wondered the exact same thing when I read this. Could it be that Ted Cruz et al. has a longer term strategy and (don't laugh) is smarter than we're giving him credit for?

Never heard of a political plan that included being down 50 points on the question in the polls.
posted by Ironmouth at 8:33 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


How would the Supreme Court even approach something like the President only having the choice of breaking one law or another?

The political question doctrine. Punt or don't grant cert.
posted by Ironmouth at 8:35 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


The President could always use the PATRIOT act to detain the Koch brothers and their henchmen / allies. It's worked in Russia.
posted by humanfont at 8:38 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


Just realized whose fault this is -- it's October, and nobody woke up Green Day.
posted by inigo2 at 8:40 PM on October 1, 2013 [6 favorites]


Flunkie: "Sounds like Republican Congressional staffers should form a union."

I want to make sweet, sweet love to this comment and cook it breakfast in the morning.
posted by tonycpsu at 8:49 PM on October 1, 2013 [18 favorites]


Fox News is calling the shutdown the "government slimdown." In the same way bulimia is a weight-loss program, I suppose.
posted by dhens at 8:51 PM on October 1, 2013 [5 favorites]


So are Customs and TSA officials considered essential

Yes, but apparently not federal aviation inspectors, which, you know, seems mildly terrifying.
posted by mostly vowels at 8:54 PM on October 1, 2013 [10 favorites]


Dana "Cuban Missile what?" Perino is a treasure. Bless her heart. Just... so.. earnest.
posted by edgeways at 9:00 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


VikingSword:
I keep giving this example, because I think it's apt - they are the same kinds of forces as during the Civil War, (and again, in the South, mostly). They are fanatics and rebels, but have no very clear or complex ideology - they are rejectionists, who are fighting for what they perceive as their lifestyle and power. Never mind how incoherent it is. Mob rule is rarely coherent. But it is extremely dangerous.
This is a great comment. From outside the United States, this whole thing just seems incomprehensible, although that's perhaps because we have our own strategies for dealing with related problems.

I hope that the Democrats refuse to buckle on their signature reform. To make another Civil War reference, in shutting down the government, elements within the Republican party have merely told us what time of day it is. It is high noon. Thank God.
posted by curious.jp at 9:09 PM on October 1, 2013 [5 favorites]


This tweet from Dana Perino is making the rounds. It is the sort of thing I feel the compulsion to share out of confusion and horror, like a modern goatse.

In the name of all that is good and holy - what the fuck? Seriously, what the fuck.

Ah, good ol' Dana "No Terrorist Attacks Under Bush" Perino.
posted by Sticherbeast at 9:10 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]




I kinda wonder why the Democrats don't add their own rider that just automatically creates single-payer healthcare. Let the Republicans defund the ACA, and slap on full on universal healthcare. Also, repeal the Patriot act while they're at it. I can dream, can't I?

That would make me giggle.


I'm really glad that they aren't; the Democrats are unanimous that if there's a fight about the ACA (which some Dems don't like), it should not be done with a gun held against the head of the Federal government. It's simple principle that seems to be gathering steam pealing off moderate Republicans. If the Dems started to do the same thing (however justified they were), it would start to play even more into the "both sides do it" news coverage.

Luckily, I think the news coverage is starting to break out of that. For every lazy front page, more and more articles of "No, it's not the same thing, and what the House is doing is insane and the Senate Republicans don't even agree". It's slowly working, though at a terrible price.

However, I want the Republicans to know that. I would love some Dem to say, "We could add the public option to the next CR . . . but of course we wouldn't because that would be misappropriating a government function for our temporary political gain. We could . . . but we would never."
posted by Lord Chancellor at 9:17 PM on October 1, 2013 [7 favorites]




If it were to come down to it, wouldn't a peacefully negotiated secession be better than a civil war? Why would we want to fight to keep the "rejectionists" in our country to hold the US back from the progress it is capable of? I like what I'm seeing in this new trend of Obama's towards diplomacy and away from war in international relations. Maybe it could work at home as well.
posted by Golden Eternity at 9:37 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


If it were to come down to it, wouldn't a peacefully negotiated secession be better than a civil war?

Is this meant to be satire?
posted by RedOrGreen at 9:43 PM on October 1, 2013 [5 favorites]


I hope so.
posted by Golden Eternity at 9:46 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


And ever more relevant, some quotes from Lincoln about political intransigence and hostage taking (through Michael Hiltzik of the Los Angeles Times) - adjust for Repub/Demo as times have changed:

"In February 1860, Abraham Lincoln gave a speech at New York's Cooper Union that many historians believe catapulted him onto the national stage and into the presidency. It may even be more pertinent today for what he said about intransigent political blocs.

A few excerpts:

Your purpose, then, plainly stated, is that you will destroy the Government, unless you be allowed to construe and enforce the Constitution as you please, on all points in dispute between you and us. You will rule or ruin in all events. [...]

Under all these circumstances, do you really feel yourselves justified to break up this Government unless such a court decision as yours is, shall be at once submitted to as a conclusive and final rule of political action?

But you will not abide the election of a Republican president! In that supposed event, you say, you will destroy the Union; and then, you say, the great crime of having destroyed it will be upon us! That is cool. A highwayman holds a pistol to my ear, and mutters through his teeth, "Stand and deliver, or I shall kill you, and then you will be a murderer!" [...]

A few words now to Republicans. It is exceedingly desirable that all parts of this great Confederacy shall be at peace, and in harmony, one with another. Let us Republicans do our part to have it so. Even though much provoked, let us do nothing through passion and ill temper."
posted by VikingSword at 9:53 PM on October 1, 2013 [44 favorites]


Can someone explain the websites to me?

I mean, I get that the IT people aren't there if things go south, but the servers, data lines, etc are.
Why shut them down?
It should be lights out operation, for the most part.

Surely, the U.S. govt. isn't on a pay-as-you-go data plan?
posted by madajb at 10:28 PM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


Why shut them down?

Like you say, the IT folk aren't working. If something goes wrong (a hack, or whatever) they'd have nobody available to fix. Easier just to take it down.

Plus, I think it drives a point home a little bit.
posted by inigo2 at 10:35 PM on October 1, 2013 [7 favorites]


I'm pretty sure that virtually all gov't websites have at least some functionality implying that there's someone on the other end doing something, such as reading "contact us" emails. Leaving it running implies services offered that aren't really available, and it's a lot easier to blank the site than to selectively disable features.

Also, I suspect a lot of federal employees are pretty happy right now that a lot of people are seeing something tangible about the shutdown and how it affects them, rather than drinking beer and making jokes about extra vacation for feds.
posted by fatbird at 10:36 PM on October 1, 2013 [6 favorites]


Elizabeth Warren
posted by Artw at 10:58 PM on October 1, 2013 [39 favorites]


(Elizabeth Warren 2016! WOO!)
posted by [insert clever name here] at 11:03 PM on October 1, 2013 [23 favorites]


If it were to come down to it, wouldn't a peacefully negotiated secession be better than a civil war?

Yes? If there is serious debate within a state or a province about secession there should be a referendum where the citizens are asked in plain language whether they wish to secede. If so, negotiations between the federal and breakaway governments over the terms of secession should begin immediately. It's really, really hard for a country to set up provisions for its own dismemberment that all sides will regard as legitimate (see the controversy over the Canadian Clarity Act) but it's possible and it's obligatory if a significant percentage of the population of any region favors separatism/sovereigntism.

Now remind me why we're talking about secession in a situation where all parties, however evil and destructive, consider themselves American and want to remain American?
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 11:26 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


I do think the attitude of the Republican extremists is "So we killed government? Well that makes this even better! When the people realize that things work fine without the federal government, they'll join us in droves!"

Honestly, if this goes on, I'm going to start worrying about whether the congressperson entrances have fun detectors.
posted by happyroach at 11:29 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Now remind me why we're talking about secession in a situation where all parties ... want to remain American?

I thought teapartiers were quite fond of the idea of secession. My bad.

teaparty.org - Secession petitions flood White House website
teaparty.org - Colorado to vote on secession
posted by Golden Eternity at 11:35 PM on October 1, 2013


I would have thought secession's desirability would closely follow a teaparty takeover.
posted by de at 11:38 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


As always the Onion says it best: Greatest Country In World Unable To Keep William H. Gross Stamp Gallery Open
posted by Admira at 12:00 AM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


Like you say, the IT folk aren't working. If something goes wrong (a hack, or whatever) they'd have nobody available to fix. Easier just to take it down.

Maybe, but if something goes wrong, then shut it down.
You could leave the links to the documents up, at the very least.

The FCC, for example, has 15+ IT folks working through the shutdown.

It honestly feels like a case of 'I'm taking my ball and going home'.
posted by madajb at 12:04 AM on October 2, 2013


I'm trying to understand Boehner's position here more carefully and have a thought. If he doesn't capitulate he's at risk of losing his speakership to an ultra-conservative. That's bad for him personally but he probably realizes that's bad for the country as well. Ultimately the best outcome for the sane republicans — and democrats — is that, via the shutdown, the ultra-Rs lose in the court of public opinion and essentially are no longer able to cohere as a voting block in the House, saving Boehner's seat and the world.

What seems lacking in all this is a strong counter-narrative to combat the crazy right. Explaining to the American people just how dangerous the game their playing is, just how immature, and explaining the dire results if things go their way (both economically and procedurally).
posted by wemayfreeze at 12:15 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Everyone on MeFi is outraged at the shutdown. Good, I'm outraged too. But is there a parallel culture who is happy about it, proud of Cruz et al risking everything to defend America? Where are they? What are they saying?
posted by Nelson at 12:18 AM on October 2, 2013


Hyundai Motor will defer payments due from US federal employees affected by the partial government shutdown.

Good for them. They are making some really nice cars right now too, love my Sonata.
posted by Drinky Die at 12:22 AM on October 2, 2013 [12 favorites]


Nelson: "Everyone on MeFi is outraged at the shutdown. Good, I'm outraged too. But is there a parallel culture who is happy about it, proud of Cruz et al risking everything to defend America? Where are they? What are they saying?"

I believe this is what you're looking for.
posted by fireoyster at 12:27 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


"For this right wing minority, hostage taking is all they have left" - that Elizabeth Warren video was very good Artw, thank you.

I also think that Lincoln quote captures my sense of the way the modern Republican party behaves.

As a matter of interest, does the US government have any mechanisms for fixing the Republican attempt to game the system? We have a party that is a minority, that is very extreme in its views and that therefore has a disproportionate influence - and is making life miserable, even impossible, for many people. What can be done to bring them back into line? Are there any legal changes that could be made?

For example, I gather that the Republicans have gerrymandered the districts for congress in such a way that they are disproportionately well represented. How could that be put right?
posted by lucien_reeve at 1:59 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Because shit, we really need someone like Bill to get the real message out there. Like yesterday.

I disagree. The more Democrats scream and shout, the more we look like we lost and Cruz et al. won. Meanwhile, the polls remain heavily in our favor, and the best strategy seems to be to play out the rope the Republicans are energetically grasping and pulling in their direction. In time, surely they will find it a noose around their necks.

It seems like a full-on schism has been coming for a while now, but they keep trying to push it off.

Well, it's interesting because it's a schism neither claque actually wants. Personally, I have come to believe that the paucity of elected Democrats (i.e. gerrymandered House districts) is actually a sign that the next step is for moderate Republicans to switch parties and run as Democrats, conservative Democrats though they may be.

This is in general more often how US electoral politics actually works due to the various constraints in the system (which have come to heavily favor two-party politics).

The end result will be an extreme, Tea-Party-beholden GOP, unable to get elected in anything but a rump of the country. It may take a couple of cycles to get there, but the demographics do not seem to favor a big-tent, diverse Republican Party in the foreseeable future.

But is there a parallel culture who is happy about it, proud of Cruz et al risking everything to defend America? Where are they? What are they saying?

Well, I've offended and/or scared off most of the Republicans I used to know, but I did encounter this little [annotated] gem of unreality on someone else's post today:
Hey Don, how many of those votes [of the 5 million margin Obama won] were duplicates, how many were from dead people? Why didn't they count deployed Veterans votes? [rumor spread by a satire website, and no, I don't know what a "deployed veteran" is, either] How is it that Obunghole lost everywhere that had voter ID. [also false, he won 4 of 11] I call bullshit! Hussien might be your Muslim in Chief but he damned sure isn't mine, as a matter of fact, he along with his whole Administration as well as all RINO'S should be hung by the neck.

As you can see, the human mind has great capacity to rationalize its own choices with sufficient supportive non-facts.

But in actuality supporters of the shutdown strategy seem to only show up in about 1/6 of the electorate if the several recent polls are any indicator.
posted by dhartung at 2:04 AM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


dh, if that quote came from somebody I know personally, I would notify the Secret Service that he had made an assassination threat, which it is. This is the sad result of President Obama's five years of efforts to 'engage productively' with an opposition that basically wants him lynched.
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:23 AM on October 2, 2013 [6 favorites]


If the House were to fail to raise the debt ceiling, and Obama simply ignored it, it would do unimaginable harm to the entire legislative branch as an institution. The president would have far more power, for years to come. Which is why they won't let it happen. The GOP is willing to play with fire by shutting down he government, but they're not going to destroy themselves on October 17.

Diane Swonk suggested in a CBC interview that the economic damage would be such that Obama would be compelled to act to prevent the US from defaulting, lawsuits over the resulting Constitutional crisis or no.

That she is a trained economist and not a political talking head makes me suspect that this is the true strategy of the Tea Party: to drive Obama into impeachment proceedings by pushing the country into default and forcing the President's hand.

To the extent that Republicans are trying to do an end run around funding legally-established laws and are happy to destroy the country in the process, I hope that those legislators responsible for this and previous debt ceiling situations are detained and arrested before October 17th, to be tried with RICO statutes covering repeated acts of extortion, securities fraud and obstruction of justice.

What Tea Party Republicans are doing would be considered (economic) terrorism in any other context, in that no one of any political stripe would tolerate the basic functionality of our system to be deliberately broken in this way.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 3:24 AM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


/takes all of america's nice things
/yes this is why
posted by obiwanwasabi at 3:58 AM on October 2, 2013 [9 favorites]


I'm getting that urge to punch Ron Christie that I get whenever stupid shit like this goes on. And I don't even think I've heard him on NPR about this. I just imagine what he'd say in his stupid smug-whine voice.
posted by angrycat at 4:16 AM on October 2, 2013



"All NSF web-based systems are unavailable until further notice, preventing submission of grant applications and progress reports."
Woohoo, my overdue report doesn't count as overdue?
posted by RedOrGreen


Bastard. I stayed up all night Saturday doing my annual NSF and ARRA quarterly reports so I'd beat the shutdown and not be out of compliance whenever it ends.
posted by spitbull at 4:16 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Blazecock Pileon: "To the extent that Republicans are trying to do an end run around funding legally-established laws and are happy to destroy the country in the process, I hope that those legislators responsible for this and previous debt ceiling situations are detained and arrested before October 17th, to be tried with RICO statutes covering repeated acts of extortion, securities fraud and obstruction of justice."

Unfortunately: "They shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest during their Attendance at the Session of their respective Houses, and in going to and returning from the same; and for any Speech or Debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in any other Place." - Art 2 § 6, U.S. Const.

Treason, felony (in a Constitutional context), and breach of the peace are all well-defined law that would be very hard to squeeze past the Speech and Debate clause.
posted by fireoyster at 4:35 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


But is there a parallel culture who is happy about it, proud of Cruz et al risking everything to defend America?
http://www.policymic.com/articles/66021/government-shutdown-8-people-who-are-actually-happy-about-it

Most of my friends are liberal, so mostly I see the outrage. But among people who don't follow politics, I see a lot of "why don't they compromise" style comments, which is exactly what the Republicans want. If they can frame hostage-taking as a legitimate negotiating strategy, then they win, because popular pressure for "both sides to give something up" means they've advanced.

Essentially the bet that's been made by the GOP in this ploy is that the voters are too stupid to notice, and/or have a short enough attention span that they won't suffer for it at election time.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 4:37 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


I am hearing the term "insurrectionists" and "neo-confederate party" used more often - that about sums up my thinking.
posted by madamjujujive at 4:45 AM on October 2, 2013 [8 favorites]


I think that those opposed to economic suicide need to press for a discharge petition from their reps on a clean debt ceiling bill and cr.
posted by humanfont at 5:01 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


About 1500 employees at my company have been issued Stop Work Orders, mostly related to Air Force work but also a few other agencies. I am not allowed to go to my cubicle on the base. The company's main campus is going to have a huge influx of people who normally work at the base trying to find seating very soon, and none of us who have been exiled have any work to do.

The whole company is about 7,000 people - I can't imagine that idling 20% of the workforce is going to be sustainable for more than a couple days. I'm betting that if this goes on past the end of the week we'll be furloughed.
posted by backseatpilot at 5:14 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Is there any way to figure out how specific Representatives have voted on these CR votes? I see lots of press coverage but no bill or joint resolution numbers. thomas.loc.gov is even more confusing than normal with all the bills and counter-bills and motions-to-suspend-the-bills flying around.
posted by fireoyster at 5:27 AM on October 2, 2013


dh, if that quote came from somebody I know personally, I would notify the Secret Service that he had made an assassination threat,

I'm pretty certain they been round-the-clock busy since 2008.
posted by Artw at 5:27 AM on October 2, 2013


See also Washington Monument Syndrome.
posted by jeffburdges at 5:29 AM on October 2, 2013


As a matter of interest, does the US government have any mechanisms for fixing the Republican attempt to game the system? We have a party that is a minority, that is very extreme in its views and that therefore has a disproportionate influence - and is making life miserable, even impossible, for many people. What can be done to bring them back into line? Are there any legal changes that could be made?

For example, I gather that the Republicans have gerrymandered the districts for congress in such a way that they are disproportionately well represented. How could that be put right?


By winning at the ballot box. By repeatedly calling our representatives on important issues. The Left's weakness in this country is it is made up of people with a life. The Right doesn't have a life and loves calling their congressmen.

In other words, to win, we have to have a more participatory Left, to counter the nuts.
posted by Ironmouth at 5:38 AM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


So much for that widely touted Republican Lockstep.
posted by klarck at 5:43 AM on October 2, 2013




How to kill ObamaCare and save the GOP
posted by Artw at 5:46 AM on October 2, 2013


That op-ed is something else. And by a guy who wrote, "The Ultimate Obama Survival Guide: How to Survive, Thrive, and Prosper During Obamageddon", no less.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 5:49 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


That op-ed is something else. And by a guy who wrote, "The Ultimate Obama Survival Guide: How to Survive, Thrive, and Prosper During Obamageddon", no less.

If they passed a law making it punishable by death to call this a government "slimdown," I mean, I wouldn't approve, but I wouldn't be out in the streets protesting, either.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 5:51 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


I dunno, I think his suggestion has some merits.
posted by Artw at 5:52 AM on October 2, 2013


I'm a little concerned that the collapse-of-empire thing is happening way ahead of schedule.
posted by forgetful snow at 6:00 AM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


There is a word beginning with C, we use it a lot in the UK, however its use is somewhat frowned upon here, but it is the most apt word for these people I can think of.

Cockney rhyming slang is your friend:

Bunch of right Jeremies...
posted by bumpkin at 6:01 AM on October 2, 2013 [6 favorites]


I dunno, I think his suggestion has some merits.

I'm not sure I understand his suggestion. He talks about "ObamaCare" like it is an actual health insurance plan. GIVE EVERYONE OBAMACARE, MAKE THEM ALL GET IT. That's not how it works; there's nothing to "give", other than subsidies and tax breaks. Feel free to re-explain what he's saying, because I really don't get it as he stated it.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 6:01 AM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


The whole company is about 7,000 people - I can't imagine that idling 20% of the workforce is going to be sustainable for more than a couple days. I'm betting that if this goes on past the end of the week we'll be furloughed.

Maybe. Depends on how your employer is funded. If you're paid for, you're paid for, and your company sure as shit ain't gonna give the money they made selling your services back. It depends on how you're funded - which is a very complicated and involved subject I barely understand, and my wife does it for a living. Some parts of the government have money set aside for them independent of the budget and fiscal year spending. Especially in the DoD, Capital Funding means some projects/departments keep going for as long as they have money in their capital funds, so some parts of the government can keep going for a few months to a few years, and in some instances, can actually be funded by their industry partners - big contractors do this to avoid losing momentum on critical projects.

Again, this is the taster. The full four courses are coming with the debt ceiling - this will not be resolved until that comes to a head.
posted by Slap*Happy at 6:03 AM on October 2, 2013


I would love to read a full discussion of who has standing to sue in the event of "illegal" bond sales to avoid default.
posted by T.D. Strange at 6:04 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm not sure I understand his suggestion. He talks about "ObamaCare" like it is an actual health insurance plan. GIVE EVERYONE OBAMACARE, MAKE THEM ALL GET IT. That's not how it works; there's nothing to "give", other than subsidies and tax breaks. Feel free to re-explain what he's saying, because I really don't get it as he stated it.

Right, you'd have to invent a single payer scheme to match his understanding of what "Obamacare" is, then implement it and wait to for the revolution spurred on by cheap accessible healthcare.

I just think the wait might be a bit longer than this guy does...
posted by Artw at 6:04 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


It makes no sense. Most Americans will keep their employer provided insurance. And large employers will actually be required to provide that insurance. So removing all exemptions means... federal employees will just keep their current federal insurance? Ok, I'm on board with that, but that can't be what the op ed is arguing for.
posted by miyabo at 6:05 AM on October 2, 2013


Ok, I'm on board with that, but that can't be what the op ed is arguing for.

I'm not sure the writer of that op ed knows what he is arguing for.
posted by Hello, I'm David McGahan at 6:07 AM on October 2, 2013 [7 favorites]


That she is a trained economist and not a political talking head makes me suspect that this is the true strategy of the Tea Party: to drive Obama into impeachment proceedings by pushing the country into default and forcing the President's hand.

As mentioned above, the House can vote to impeach, but the Senate needs a two-thirds majority to convict. Even if the GOP controlled the Senate, they don't have anywhere near the votes to do it, and IMO I think a number of GOP senators (anyone who hates Cruz, which is most of his colleagues) would vote against impeachment anyway.

TBH, I think ignoring the debt ceiling may just be the better option at this point. It's a shitty rule (only one other country in the world has a debt ceiling) that will invite disaster every year until the House GOP sheds the crazy caucus, which isn't until 2022 at the earliest. Obama can't be removed from office, and he removes a stupid trigger for constitutional crises, and despite what Americans may or may not think will be regarded as a the man who did the right thing (on this issue, at least) by the entire rest of the world and history.
posted by zombieflanders at 6:09 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


In times like this, I really wish Olivia Pope were a real person because she'd be on this shit, you guys.
posted by mostly vowels at 6:10 AM on October 2, 2013


So removing all exemptions means... federal employees will just keep their current federal insurance? Ok, I'm on board with that, but that can't be what the op ed is arguing for.

Congressional staff would have to purchase insurance on the exchanges out of pocket, and would not be eligible for any employer contribution from their employer, the federal government? That's the only "exemptions" that I can see remotely fitting, the other "exemptions" from "ObamaCare" mostly have to do with state waivers from the expansion of medicaid requirements, not the insurance market exchanges.

But no, the argument there make zero sense, as "ObamaCare" isn't really a thing in itself, rather than a system of various tax credits and subsidies for use on the national exchange markets for individual coverage from qualifying private plans. "Just give it to everyone" makes no damn sense...everyone already is eligible, and indeed required to buy coverage, assuming theyre not already covered by an employer plan, or medicaid.
posted by T.D. Strange at 6:13 AM on October 2, 2013


T.D. Strange: "Congressional staff would have to purchase insurance on the exchanges out of pocket, and would not be eligible for any employer contribution from their employer, the federal government? "

Except part of the ACA is a mandate that employers with over fifty people gotta offer insurance...
posted by notsnot at 6:17 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Maybe, but if something goes wrong, then shut it down.
You could leave the links to the documents up, at the very least.

The FCC, for example, has 15+ IT folks working through the shutdown.


And I'm sure those people have very specific jobs to do, and shouldn't be on the hook to also do the jobs (maintaining servers, etc) that belong to people not currently allowed to work. So if someone hacks into a site and replaces all the download links to Rick Rolls, there is nobody to fix that. The people that would "shut it down"? They're at home. Even if they wanted to come in and work without pay, they're not even allowed to.

It honestly feels like a case of 'I'm taking my ball and going home'.

Even if this was true, why shouldn't they? Everyone should feel the effects of these Republican party decisions, not just the federal employees having paychecks stolen from them.
posted by inigo2 at 6:17 AM on October 2, 2013 [16 favorites]


Seems a bit odd to be outraged that a goverment shutdown involves a goverment shutdown.
posted by Artw at 6:19 AM on October 2, 2013 [15 favorites]






I wondered the exact same thing when I read this. Could it be that Ted Cruz et al. has a longer term strategy and (don't laugh) is smarter than we're giving him credit for?

But the Senate is the body that tries the President if (s)he's impeached- the House can vote to impeach, but there's no way a majority of the Senate will vote to impeach.


In 1986, the President was extraordinarily popular, in his second term, and his successor was primed and ready to take over. Congress did not impeach him (though the argument could clearly be made that he had committed high crimes or misdemeanors), and the transfer of power went smoothly.

In 1998, the President was extraordinarily popular, in his second term, and his successor was primed and ready to take over. Congress impeached him (to be technical, he was already impeached once the House voted -- the Senate merely voted on whether to convict him), and the transfer of power was interrupted when that successor felt he needed to run away from the most popular living member of his party. This allowed a person who was, at best, a marginal candidate to become President and basically start everything that we're currently dealing with right now (with the exception of health care reform, though ignoring the issue for eight years didn't help).

In 2013, the President is extraordinarily popular (considering the state of the country), in his second term, and his successor is primed and ready to take over. Congress... I leave the remainder of this paragraph as an exercise for the reader.
posted by Etrigan at 6:27 AM on October 2, 2013 [12 favorites]


Ooh, can the Republicans just straight up kick the Tea Party members out instead of the moderates leaving the party? Blunts that little primary threat when they don't have the funding and support of the GOP to put up a challenge. It seems like a full-on schism has been coming for a while now, but they keep trying to push it off.

The GOP isn't the only player in GOP politics these days. The Club for Growth and the Koch brothers and Sheldon Adelson have deeper pockets and nothing to lose in the primaries, while the GOP has to save money for the general elections as well. Even in tantamount-to-election districts, every dollar spent fending off a primary challenger is a dollar you can't spend in some other competitive district.

As far as "straight up kick[ing] the Tea Party members out," it is difficult-to-impossible to restrict people from running in primaries in most places. The logic is that if they're not "real" Republicans, then the "real" Republicans who vote in the primaries will, obviously, not vote for them. Open primaries wrinkle this somewhat, but not enough to let parties simply refuse to let people run in most places (if any).
posted by Etrigan at 6:32 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


In 2013, the President is extraordinarily popular (considering the state of the country), in his second term, and his successor is primed and ready to take over. Congress... I leave the remainder of this paragraph as an exercise for the reader.

I love exercise, so I'll try: Obama can't break 45% approval, and his successor is an old but loveable doofus who has no shot of winning his own party's primary. So the analogy doesn't seem to apply.

Dammit, I pulled a hammy.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 6:33 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


I love exercise, so I'll try: Obama can't break 45% approval, and his successor is an old but loveable doofus who has no shot of winning his own party's primary. So the analogy doesn't seem to apply.

I don't think anyone believes that Biden is the successor (or ever has believed it), up to and including Biden. He was a sop to the worries about foreign policy and inexperience (see Bush-Cheney) without having to "take a loss" by letting Clinton onto the ticket.
posted by Etrigan at 6:36 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]




The unreality party: 'It's Getting Better For Us'

However, as public frustration increases, I do think that Obama and the dems need to carefully refute the "unwilling to negotiate" perception. For an administration that is so incredibly stellar at campaign messaging, the in-office messaging generally sucks.
posted by madamjujujive at 6:40 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Those Banana Republicans
posted by Artw at 6:46 AM on October 2, 2013


There is no clear successor to Obama. Biden would like the nod, but he does not have a strong national base. Clinton has her organization in place, but she may be too divisive in her own party to win the nomination - and she faces strong competition from Elizabeth Warren and Deval Patrick, just to name two.

On the other hand, the GOP bench is pretty fucking empty, with the possible exception of Chris Christie. Even an affable tabula rasa, a'la Bush II, is nowhere to be found. You have hardcore wingnuts, or you have unlikable establishment stalwarts. Either variety of candidate will be stone cold leveled by a Democrat running as a centrist.

Plus, unlike Clinton's scandal, where it can be argued he brought it on himself through his moral failures, this impeachment will be seen as an attempt at a legislative coup d'etat, and do vastly more damage to the GOP than to the dems.
posted by Slap*Happy at 6:46 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


she faces strong competition from Elizabeth Warren

Oh please please please ... I would so vote for her. Hell, I'd get out and knock on doors for her. Hilary ... meh.
posted by freecellwizard at 6:48 AM on October 2, 2013 [15 favorites]


Americans support troublemaking because the status quo has lost its legitimacy. Yes, the Tea party is racist, but Tea party voters complain about the DEA, TSA, etc. too.

All the Koch brothers, et al. have done is mold that existing disconnect into action that's harmless or beneficial to their ideology, oil interests, etc., although that's quite problematic, neutering them cannot address the underlying illegitimacy.

We need not merely a more participatory left, but a left that embraces the lefty nuts, takes a stand, causes its own rucks, and inspires people.
posted by jeffburdges at 6:48 AM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


I'm not sure I understand his suggestion. He talks about "ObamaCare" like it is an actual health insurance plan.

I think that about 2/3s of the people so worked up about ObamaCare believe that. They think it is something like the public option or a single payer plan, and that's why you get these weird complaints about "Congress exempting itself."* Of course, that's the impression you would have if all you knew was that Fox News was calling it a socialist scheme and a government takeover of healthcare. How much rage would there really be if people understood that it's just subsidized insurance plans, that you have the choice of many options, and for many people with low incomes, the government will help you pay for any plan you choose? Hard to sell that as tyranny.

It's more and more clear to me that the Democrats messed up badly by allowing the "Obamacare" nickname to catch on. It sounds like it's probably something like Medicare, which many people perceive as okay for old folks with no options, but an inferior plan to what they have now. Worse, it ties the Affordable Care Act to a particular political figure. I like to think I've pretty well informed and fair minded, but if the Republicans had passed this exact same law in 2006 and everyone called it BushCare, it would be hard to be super excited about a plan that was named for the modern president I despise the most. And that's how my cousins feel about Obama.

You'd have to do some research to determine what the best moniker would have been, but something like "TrueChoice" would have gone down smoother, emphasizing that for a lot of people, they will have a choice in health insurance plans for the first time. Even just consistently insisting on calling it "Affordable Care" would be an improvement, and has the virtue of actually being what this plan is called. But adopting "ObamaCare" was a misstep.


*Yes, of course, not only did they not exempt themselves, whatever that would mean, they gave up their employer provided plan to purchase insurance on the exchanges. It's the polar opposite of exempting themselves.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 6:50 AM on October 2, 2013 [6 favorites]


"Treason" is close, but the more precise term is "sedition."
posted by whuppy at 6:51 AM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


"Obamacare" is an awesome moniker. It will be Obama's legacy. Eventually it will be said always with gratefulness. I hope.
posted by agregoli at 6:55 AM on October 2, 2013 [16 favorites]


Ooh, can the Republicans just straight up kick the Tea Party members out instead of the moderates leaving the party? Blunts that little primary threat when they don't have the funding and support of the GOP to put up a challenge. It seems like a full-on schism has been coming for a while now, but they keep trying to push it off.

Damn, forgot to put this anecdote on my earlier comment:

I live in Michigan's 11th Congressional District. It is crazy Republican here, and was gerrymandered more so to benefit Rep. Thad McCotter (previously), who ended up kicked off the ballot for election fraud in 2012. The only remaining Republican primary contender was Kerry Bentivolio, who was... let's say "troubling" (probably yelled at kids while a substitute teacher, definitely appeared in a wackadoo YouTube video before he tried to get into politics, totally unprepared to be a United States Representative). The local and state GOP tried desperately to get someone else on the ballot, to the point of fully funding a write-in candidate who was more moderate, more experienced, and more electable. It didn't work, and the only reason Bentivolio won, even in this heavily Republican district, was racism (feel free to MeMail me for a longer explanation of why I say that). He has since spent all of his time establishing his Tea Party and Republican bona fides. His email to constituents on the shutdown was a note-perfect parody of GOP/TP talking points, except he wasn't kidding. He has voted "Yes" on every single Obamacare-defunding vote, and he is proud of that.

Rep. Bentivolio is facing a primary challenge next year. From. The. Right. Not from the establishment GOP who just want a more experienced and nuanced member representing MI-11. Not from a professional politician who thinks Bentivolio is weak. From a lawyer who's never run for anything before in his life but says, "Washington is not working and needs a leader with the common sense and courage to tell the truth. Someone who will spend time helping the constituents of the 11th district, as opposed to someone who is only concentrated on getting reelected." And he's gaining traction.

The Tea Party is straight-up nihilistic. They do not care how good you are, how smart you are, how senior you are, how anything you are, as long as you are farther right than what's currently in there. They will burn shit down if they think they can loot the ashes.
posted by Etrigan at 6:55 AM on October 2, 2013 [47 favorites]


Sounds like Republican Congressional staffers should form a union.

I think it's worth noting that the White House Office of Management and Budget considered and rejected unionization not too long ago.
posted by C'est la D.C. at 6:58 AM on October 2, 2013


I think the "Obamacare" moniker will die once he leaves office. By that point, nobody will need to call it anything; it'll just be part of the landscape.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:00 AM on October 2, 2013


I haven't heard one person outside of this mess, meaning a civilian, call it anything but Obamacare. I wouldn't be too sure.
posted by agregoli at 7:15 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


The consequences of callousness
Republicans would have the public believe that the shutdown doesn't much matter, since the federal government is an inherently awful burden that Americans neither wants nor needs. The problem, of course, is that the GOP's shutdown is causing real harm to real people, and every tragic consequence is a reminder, not only of the far-right's party's callous indifference, but of the importance of government itself.

Ned Resnikoff reported yesterday, for example, on several hundred preschool-aged children who can no longer go to a Head Start center in Alabama because its 240 employees have been furloughed without pay.

The Wall Street Journal had a related item on the shutdown's real-world effects:
At the National Institutes of Health, nearly three-quarters of the staff was furloughed. One result: director Francis Collins said about 200 patients who otherwise would be admitted to the NIH Clinical Center into clinical trials each week will be turned away. This includes about 30 children, most of them cancer patients, he said.
Got that? Children with cancer will be turned away from NIH clinical trials. Why? Because House Republicans won't take a center-right budget deal that enjoys bipartisan support.

On Fox News yesterday, a prominent far-right pundit said the shutdown is irrelevant because the "worst thing that happens is some museums close." Another prominent far-right radio host boasted yesterday that the shutdown is "a dream for conservatives."

Yes, for others, it's a nightmare.
posted by zombieflanders at 7:18 AM on October 2, 2013 [32 favorites]


Probably next will come the conspiracy theories about how any negative effects of the shutdown are either faked or rigged by Democrats.
posted by Artw at 7:22 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


What's this talking point about unions being exempted from the ACA? I keep hearing it parroted, but can't find anything about it. The opposite, in fact, Union leaders wanted a special exemption to grandfather in existing union plans and they were denied.
posted by codacorolla at 7:22 AM on October 2, 2013




On the other hand, the GOP bench is pretty fucking empty, with the possible exception of Chris Christie.
Christie obviously has ambitions, and he's talked up a lot as a possibility, but I just don't see it, really. I don't see him making it out of a national primary. I mean, I'm not claiming with anything near metaphysical certitude that he won't win, but... Chris Christie does not suffer fools gladly, and his party is full of fools.
posted by Flunkie at 7:32 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


What's this talking point about unions being exempted from the ACA?

Per Politifact, it is a Pants On Fire lie:
An ad from the Republican controlled campaign group Crossroads GPS asserts that unions are exempt from the new health care law as a political favor from President Barack Obama.

The ad shows union leaders and Obama speaking in favor of health care reform, then shows a Fox News anchor asking, "Is the Obama administration exempting some from complying with the new health care law as a political favor?"
...
Our ruling

In ruling on this statement, we understand that the Obama administration would hardly admit to it if it were giving unions special treatment. But looking at the numbers of waivers that have been given to both union and non-union groups, we don’t see any pattern that would support a case for special treatment. The number of waivers are a small sample of all health plans, and many more waivers were given to big companies and corporations. We looked for additional information or evidence on this point and didn’t find it.

But there are additional problems with the ad. The ad doesn’t mention that the waivers only apply to annual coverage limits, that they’re intended to be in place only until 2014 and that many for-profit companies have received the same waivers. It gives the impression that unions are entirely exempt from the health care law, which they are not.

Because the ad gives the impression that unions are exempt from the entire law, and because it’s evidence for special treatment is so thin, we rate this claim Pants on Fire.
posted by Etrigan at 7:34 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


"Obamacare" is an awesome moniker. It will be Obama's legacy. Eventually it will be said always with gratefulness. I hope.
Well, by some it will be said with gratefulness and misunderstanding: "Keep the government out of my Obamacare!"
posted by Flunkie at 7:35 AM on October 2, 2013 [19 favorites]


zombieflanders: "Republicans would have the public believe that the shutdown doesn't much matter, since the federal government is an inherently awful burden that Americans neither wants nor needs."

This bears repeating. All this talk about it being about Obamacare and/or the debt ceiling is just a misdirection. I have this feeling that the real goal is the shutdown and dismantling of the Federal Government, and that's why all the "negotiation" has been of the my way or the highway variety.
posted by ArgentCorvid at 7:37 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


I think the point is that "Obamacare" will go away as a term because there is no "Obamacare" health plan that you can purchase or own, right? It's just health exchanges and you're purchasing a private plan from some other provider. Once the ACA is established, it will just be how healthcare insurance operates in this country. I don't see how in ten years you would be able to claim either "thank god for Obamacare" or "down with Obamacare" -- it wouldn't make sense.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 7:39 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


The Morning Plum: Governing crisis set to escalate dramatically

In another sign Dems may well hold firm and not let Republicans escape from this predicament on terms more favorable to them, there’s now serious talk among Democrats of not accepting a GOP budget offering unless it also includes a debt limit hike if this shutdown crisis drags on.

Several Senate Democratic aides told me this morning that this is seriously being considered, confirming a report in Politico. As one put it to me: ”We are less than two weeks away from the deadline. If we were not having this shutdown fight, this is the week we would be moving a debt ceiling bill.” A second said: “It doesn’t make much sense to do a short term CR only to have to turn around and do it again with the debt ceiling.”

posted by Comrade_robot at 7:39 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]




this is the true strategy of the Tea Party: to drive Obama into impeachment proceedings by pushing the country into default and forcing the President's hand.

Maybe. But given that the GOP doesn't know whether to boast about the shutdown or blame Democrats, it isn't clear to me that they have a strategy.* Rep. King's defense of the shutdown, “Because we’re right, simply because we’re right,” isn't the remark of an man with a strategy, but of a zealot on a mission.

*"Are my methods unsound? I don't see any method at all, sir."
posted by octobersurprise at 7:42 AM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]




Has anything Americans say ever had to conform to making sense? I'll be surprised if Obamacare fades away to obscurity.
posted by agregoli at 7:49 AM on October 2, 2013


Has anything Americans say ever had to conform to making sense? I'll be surprised if Obamacare fades away to obscurity.

We can test this. Do people in Mass still say that they have "Romneycare"? Saying that you have "Medicare" makes sense -- a funded part of government, called Medicare, pays your medical bills. Obamacare is, well, it's just a law establishing certain restrictions to insurers and insurance exchanges.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 7:50 AM on October 2, 2013


Well, by some it will be said with gratefulness and misunderstanding: "Keep the government out of my Obamacare!"

"I've been on welfare and food stamps...did anyone help me?" [Craig T.] Nelson said, perhaps not realizing that welfare and food stamps are actually forms of government aid.
posted by inigo2 at 7:51 AM on October 2, 2013 [20 favorites]


I've never heard it referred to as Romneycare, so shrug? YMMV.
posted by agregoli at 7:52 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


We can test this. Do people in Mass still say that they have "Romneycare"?

Only when we're arguing with our New Hampshire Tea Party relatives about Obamacare.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 7:52 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


"I've been on welfare and food stamps...did anyone help me?" [Craig T.] Nelson said, perhaps not realizing that welfare and food stamps are actually forms of government aid.

Not An Onion Article.
posted by Artw at 7:54 AM on October 2, 2013 [7 favorites]


I think the point is that "Obamacare" will go away as a term because there is no "Obamacare" health plan that you can purchase or own, right?

I agree. After a while people will just know to go to their state exchanges to purchase health insurance if they don't get it from their employer. It'll just be called "buying insurance." As many people will know that Obama was the lead figure in health insurance exchanges as currently know that LBJ gave us Medicare. (Not many.) It's a divisive name that hurts support in the short term without conveying much long term advantage. It started with the GOP, after all. If they thought it didn't advantage them politically, they would never have used it.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 7:55 AM on October 2, 2013


Has anything Americans say ever had to conform to making sense? I'll be surprised if Obamacare fades away to obscurity.
We can test this. Do people in Mass still say that they have "Romneycare"?
Did they ever? I honestly don't know why, but I had been under the impression that the word "Romneycare" was a backformation from "Obamacare".

In any case, I tend to think that the argument "No one will call it Obamacare because there is no health insurance plan that is called Obamacare" might be parsing things a little too fine.
posted by Flunkie at 7:59 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


And my only point is I believe it will come around to hurt them in the end, using that term. People in the short term are gonna love Obamacare.
posted by agregoli at 7:59 AM on October 2, 2013


DC Unemployment, for furloughed workers in DC.

And Fed workers in MD.

And Virginia.
posted by inigo2 at 8:00 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


I honestly don't know why, but I had been under the impression that the word "Romneycare" was a backformation from "Obamacare".

Google search, Romneycare -obamacare, 2005-2007. There was some use of it, but it definitely became a bigger thing when Romney was running against Obama.
posted by Etrigan at 8:04 AM on October 2, 2013


The Washington Post live updates on the shitdown are good to follow. I just wish they would publish these as a feed.
posted by exogenous at 8:04 AM on October 2, 2013


Okay, I guess my question is: what exactly is the "it" that people will be referring to when they say "Obamacare"? Are you suggesting that Obamacare will just replace any reference to a general discussion of "the way health insurance works in these United States"? Ok, maybe? I just can't imagine how it would even be used in ten years.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 8:06 AM on October 2, 2013


I think what we have is really a kind of dysfunctional three party dynamic operating as if it was still only a two party system. The Tea Party should just run as The Tea Party, not as Republicans. But our electoral system disincentivizes the schism that actually needs to take place and so we end up with John Boehner doing a ass of a job because he really is not a competent leader-in-crisis. Under normal circumstances he may have been adequate but when the shit hits the wall it's all "er.... please don't hurt me Mr Cruz"
posted by edgeways at 8:09 AM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


OMG, could you find anything less important to argue about than what people are going to call this a decade down the line?
posted by five fresh fish at 8:09 AM on October 2, 2013 [8 favorites]


I am guessing being on "Obamacare" will come to mean anyone who doesn't get insurance through their job
posted by rosswald at 8:09 AM on October 2, 2013 [8 favorites]


@alexis_levinson Members of congress have formed a receiving line for WWII vets who are entering the memorial

So they're (still) establishing photo ops instead of working to end the shutdown. Greaaaaat.
posted by troika at 8:10 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


OMG, could you find anything less important to argue about than what people are going to call this a decade down the line?

You're allowed to keep scrolling, or even use your Back button.
posted by Etrigan at 8:11 AM on October 2, 2013 [8 favorites]




From the New Yorker article that Artw linked above:
These eighty members [who signed a letter promising to defund Obamacare] represent just eighteen per cent of the House and just a third of the two hundred and thirty-three House Republicans. They were elected with fourteen and a half million of the hundred and eighteen million votes cast in House elections last November, or twelve per cent of the total. In all, they represent fifty-eight million constituents. That may sound like a lot, but it’s just eighteen per cent of the population.
Democracy is broken when 18% of the population can hold our economy hostage.
posted by desjardins at 8:12 AM on October 2, 2013 [19 favorites]




Rick Nolan, Dem Rep, Introduces Bill Blocking Congressional Pay During Government Shutdown

A few hitches w/ the bill introduction timing, but glad to see this issue getting more mention. While we're at it, can we please kill the salaried-for-life bullshit perk, too?
posted by yoga at 8:14 AM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


Oh, and term limits, too, please.

Is this what they mean by October Surprise?
posted by yoga at 8:16 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Rick Nolan, Dem Rep, Introduces Bill Blocking Congressional Pay During Government Shutdown

A few hitches w/ the bill introduction timing, but glad to see this issue getting more mention.


For this one, it directly violates the 27th Amendment: "No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of Representatives shall have intervened." If you want it in place for the next one, maybe.

While we're at it, can we please kill the salaried-for-life bullshit perk, too?

You mean the bullshit about how they get full salary for life?

Oh, and term limits, too, please.

It's not the senior members of Congress who are causing this problem.
posted by Etrigan at 8:21 AM on October 2, 2013 [18 favorites]


This article is from 3 years ago, but I wonder if Democrats should start pressuring moderate Republicans to consider such a move, say if the Ds pledge to support a Moderate R for Speakership or somesuch.
posted by edgeways at 8:22 AM on October 2, 2013


I wonder if Democrats should start pressuring moderate Republicans to consider such a move, say if the Ds pledge to support a Moderate R for Speakership or somesuch.

It's still very much an open question as to whether there still is such a thing as a "moderate Republican". At this point the burden is on those claiming there is as much as evolution or climate change deniers, the evidence hasn't been there for years.
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:24 AM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


(Nolan is my Rep, I've met him and he's a good guy. replaced Tea Partier 1 timer Chip Craavack, who displaced looooong timer Jim Oberstar, Craavack was a joke, and Obserstar was ok, but I like Nolan better.
posted by edgeways at 8:25 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Chip Craavack

That is the name of a sci-fi lava person.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:28 AM on October 2, 2013 [31 favorites]


I stand corrected on the salary for life. At least the formal salary for life, anyway. Croneyism knows no boundaries, I would imagine.

Etrigan: Mitch McConnell and John Boehner are junior members of congress?
posted by yoga at 8:32 AM on October 2, 2013


Hey America. It's Canada, your neighbour? Sorry to bug you. You know, we've had our differences over the years - you know what I'm talking aboot - but I'd like to think that we're more than just neighbours, but also good friends.

And as your friend, I just want to say that you aren't looking too well right now. And me and the wife and kids over here, well, we're just worried about you is all. Here, my wife baked you an apple pie (your favourite) and I brought you some Timmie's too. Oh, you're only drinking tea now? That's too bad.

Anyways, just wanted to stop by and say get better soon. If you need some help around the place - maybe want us to help clean it up, take care of things for a few days while you get over whatever this thing is, we could do that. Can't promise there won't be a backyard hockey rink installed while we're at it or maybe one or two other changes (like maybe locking up all your guns), but we like to fix things and pitch in where we can.

You really do look awful. Been to see your doctor? Oh right, too expensive. Gotcha.

Well, let us know. Willing to help, but really don't want to catch what you have right now either, so maybe let's keep the conversation to the phone or internet from now on, eh? And sorry again to drop in unannounced.
posted by nubs at 8:34 AM on October 2, 2013 [19 favorites]


That is the name of a sci-fi lava person.

Yeah it is.. it's even better if you say it loud and with force...

it was quiet, too quiet then...CHIP CRAAVACK!!!

his supporters where, um, a bit loopy.
he's moved out to New Hampshire now.
posted by edgeways at 8:35 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


From Robert Costa today: "Pushing back against Reid and forcing him to cut a deal is another leadership objective. Behind the scenes, they’re irritated by his daily killing of anything the House passes and are eager to make sure he shares some of the political pain from the shutdown."

Share the political pain? Just for historical documentary purposes I want to note that children with cancer are being denied entry into clinical trials so that John Boehner can try to save face.
posted by audi alteram partem at 8:36 AM on October 2, 2013 [9 favorites]


Rick Nolan, Dem Rep, Introduces Bill Blocking Congressional Pay During Government Shutdown

A few hitches w/ the bill introduction timing, but glad to see this issue getting more mention.


I understand the emotion here, but frankly, the congress-creatures who'd be bothered by losing their ordinary paychecks aren't the congress-creatures causing the problem. I think a move like this would pressure the wrong people to do the wrong thing.
posted by tyllwin at 8:38 AM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]




I'm not sure I can handle so much condescension from a country with an electoral system that keeps putting a completely unlikeable right-winger from Alberta in charge.

Here's a deal: get an NDP prime minister in place and you can come down and install all the backyard hockey rinks you want. Fair?
posted by You Can't Tip a Buick at 8:40 AM on October 2, 2013 [12 favorites]


Anyways, just wanted to stop by and say get better soon. If you need some help around the place

Wanna trade Ted Cruz for Rob Ford?
posted by octobersurprise at 8:40 AM on October 2, 2013 [9 favorites]


From the link about post-retirement benefits for members of Congress:
Members of Congress are eligible for a pension at age 62 if they have completed at least five years of service. They are eligible for a pension at age 50 if they have completed 20 years of service, or at any age after completing 25 years of service.
That last part is so weird - there is no possible way that a member of Congress can qualify under it without also qualifying under at least one of the other parts. If they have completed 25 years of service, then they are necessarily at least 50 years old (55 if they're a senator), as the Constitution requires that a representative must be at least 25 years old, and a senator at least 30.

I wonder if it was put in as some sort of way-out-there contingency in case some future amendment says that 20 year olds can now be representatives, or if it was put there without any thought whatsoever, or if it was just some loudmouth insisting on it without understanding it's not necessary and everybody else just saying "fine, fine, we'll put it in".
posted by Flunkie at 8:40 AM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


Let me know when Reid and the Senate vote on a budget. Not continuing resolutions that keep gov't funded, an actual vote on a yearly spending plan. If you can find the law or vote on a proposed budget you can see how far apart both sides are since it has been years the Senate has neglected this basic function.
posted by brent at 8:41 AM on October 2, 2013


I understand the emotion here, but frankly, the congress-creatures who'd be bothered by losing their ordinary paychecks aren't the congress-creatures causing the problem. I think a move like this would pressure the wrong people to do the wrong thing.

I'm not entirely sure all those TPs have personal deep pockets, any more so then the average Representative. I do think it's a symbolic resolution and wouldn't pass if Boehner would let it come up. but I also don't think it's a terrible idea. 800,000 people are not getting paychecks another 535 is peanuts
posted by edgeways at 8:44 AM on October 2, 2013


Let me know when Reid and the Senate vote on a budget. [...] It has been years the Senate has neglected this basic function.

They passed a budget on March 23, 2013.

Your talking points are sadly out of date. Maybe try again?
posted by RedOrGreen at 8:45 AM on October 2, 2013 [31 favorites]


brent, I believe the Senate passed an FY2014 budget on March 23, 2013.
posted by LastOfHisKind at 8:45 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Let me know when Reid and the Senate vote on a budget. Not continuing resolutions that keep gov't funded, an actual vote on a yearly spending plan. If you can find the law or vote on a proposed budget you can see how far apart both sides are since it has been years the Senate has neglected this basic function.

Probably because the Teabagger caucus will just replace anything they pass with the Ryan budget, whats the point. Also, the budget deal from 2011 was supposed to set spending guidelines for 10 years, so, Red herring is Red.
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:47 AM on October 2, 2013


See You In Hell, Orange Man
So the conviction that Obama will eventually cave on the debt limit is what is making it possible for Boehner to walk the path Ted Cruz and Jim DeMint and their House minions have laid out for him.

Now I don’t know anything about the president’s relationship with Boehner. But it’s becoming a matter of national security for him to find some way to take him aside, maybe give the Speaker a cigarette from his secret stash, and say: “I will see you in Hell before I negotiate over the debt limit. And if you let a default happen, I will devote the rest of my presidency to making sure you, personally, bear the blame, and go down in history with our most despised traitors and criminals. For generations, little school children in Ohio will cross themselves and make hex signs when your name is mentioned. So do not, do not, go back and tell your crazy people they can win if they just stick together.”

This sort of attitude adjustment needs to happen sooner rather than later, before Boehner takes another step down the path he is currently contemplating.
posted by zombieflanders at 8:47 AM on October 2, 2013 [25 favorites]


Hey America. It's Canada, your neighbour? Sorry to bug you. You know, we've had our differences over the years - you know what I'm talking aboot - but I'd like to think that we're more than just neighbours, but also good friends.

Stop it with the condenscion already. Jeez, sometimes my fellow citizens really chap my ass with the completely unwarranted smugness.
posted by bumpkin at 8:49 AM on October 2, 2013 [9 favorites]


And that Senate vote was signed by the President to become law?
posted by brent at 8:49 AM on October 2, 2013


And that Senate vote was signed by the President to become law?

And that Ryan budget was signed by the President to become law?
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:50 AM on October 2, 2013


Wanna trade Ted Cruz for Rob Ford?


Ha ha ha ha!!!!


Umm, no.
posted by bumpkin at 8:51 AM on October 2, 2013


And that Senate vote was signed by the President to become law?

This is called "moving the goalposts."
posted by Elementary Penguin at 8:52 AM on October 2, 2013 [20 favorites]


Moving the goalposts has also been shut down.
posted by Etrigan at 8:53 AM on October 2, 2013 [8 favorites]


brent: "And that Senate vote was signed by the President to become law?"

This is a blatant case of you moving the goalposts, but I'll bite:

The Senate passed a budget, and the House passed its own budget. If you remember your Schoolhouse Rock "I'm Just a Bill" cartoon, what then happens is the two chambers meet in a conference committee to hammer out their differences. However, John Boehner has blocked this from happening despite 18 separate requests to do so.

But thanks for playing!
posted by tonycpsu at 8:53 AM on October 2, 2013 [50 favorites]


That last part is so weird - there is no possible way that a member of Congress can qualify under it without also qualifying under at least one of the other parts.

You'd have to look at the legislation and regulations, but it's at least possible that MCs with previous civilian federal service can shift that to a credit on their congressional retirement. Congressional retirement is kinda weird, but it's actually one of the standard federal packages. The other folks on the "congressional" plan are jobs where there's a substantial chance of a truncated career -- IIRC secret service agents and the like but I haven't glanced at that in forever.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 8:55 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Etrigan: Mitch McConnell and John Boehner are junior members of congress?

McConnell and Boehner are being held hostage by the new kids in town. Not that they're blameless, but they're not the root cause of this problem, which is a bunch of Tea Partiers who have spent less time in Congress than I've spent in the shirt I'm currently wearing.
posted by Etrigan at 8:56 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


The Government Can't Even Figure Out How To Shut Down Its Websites In A Reasonable Way

Duhhhhh - the government should not HAVE TO figure out how to shut down websites, reasonably or otherwise because the government should not shut down.
posted by madamjujujive at 8:58 AM on October 2, 2013 [10 favorites]


With congressional plans, is it possible military service could be included in their years-of-service? My understanding is that it is counted, for example, with USPS employees (which is obviously a separate govt structure, but possibly sharing similarities).
posted by inigo2 at 8:58 AM on October 2, 2013


Posing for photo ops with WWII vets

Ya know, mugging for the camera when you are one of the few federal employees getting paid today while the majority aren't is incredibly tacky. Get the fuck back in your office and at least pretend you're working to end this clusterfuck!
posted by cmfletcher at 9:01 AM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


OMG, could you find anything less important to argue about than what people are going to call this a decade down the line?

In this poll there is a nine point difference in support for the "Affordable Care Act" versus "Obamacare." I can't think of many strategic changes that would make a bigger difference in support for plan than being more careful about framing. The GOP is great at it. The Dems don't even try.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 9:05 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Email from a local theater:

The federal government may have shut down, but The Capitol Steps have arrived, direct from Washington and will perform tonight at the Harris Center at 7:30 PM. Who better to make sense of these current events than the troupe of former congressional staffers who have injected humor into politics for over 30 years.

To help brighten the day for those caught in the middle of the budget impasse, the Harris Center is offering TWO FREE TICKETS to this show for any currently furloughed worker - call the ticket office to reserve your seats at (916) 608-6888 and then bring your furlough notice or government ID when picking up your tickets.


A former congressional staffer comedy troupe? Doesn't strike me as a hotbed for honing your funny, but hey free tickets!
posted by Big_B at 9:07 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


It's not the senior members forcing this government shutdown, but it's absolutely the senior members maintaining our underlying problems, which inspire the Tea party.

In my lifetime, the anti-establishment right has risen up at least twice : First, Ross Perot's Reform Party was integrated back into the Republican party by Gingrich's "revolution". Gingrich conveniently ignored all their meaningful reforms, like term limits, reduced spending, and reduced military action. Second, the Tea party movement was integrated by the Kochs spending enough for electoral victories.

Imagine if all the money stopped backing Tea party candidates, like maybe the Koch bros disappear. All the Tea party candidates must either cozy up to the establishment or lose their seats. Does that solve anything? Not really. Those disaffected right-wing voters will rise up again because actual issues create them, issues growing worse during our empire's decline. And any established interest that faces a serious reality check will again manipulate them, ala Oil now.
posted by jeffburdges at 9:09 AM on October 2, 2013


A former congressional staffer comedy troupe? Doesn't strike me as a hotbed for honing your funny, but hey free tickets!

The Capitol Steps are generally pretty funny stuff (like any comedy troupe, there are some duds).
posted by inigo2 at 9:10 AM on October 2, 2013


Let me know when Reid and the Senate vote on a budget.

Ha ha ha ha ha. That one wins five Pinocchio noses.

Also, the "refuse to negotiate" and "refuse to come to conference committee" Democrats have been repeatedly rebuffed, as noted above, on requests to conference on the budget. Cite.
posted by bearwife at 9:11 AM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


The financial impact of a cancellation of Saturday's Air Force-Navy game could result in upwards of $4 million in lost revenue.

Less bad than keeping kids from cancer treatments, but way to go Boehner.
posted by inigo2 at 9:16 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


So...the Astronomy Picture of the Day site is down (operated out of the Goddard Space Flight Center, site also down)...alright, now I'm MAD. (the veteran benefits, 800,000 govt workers, museum and public parks, and children both starving and with cancer might have contributed to my mood as well)

Guillotines+Republican Oligarch Terrorists NOW.
(yes our government has ROT...it's time to cut it off)
posted by sexyrobot at 9:16 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


I see your frustrated vets visiting a closed monuments and up you with 200 sick people including 30 children who are frustrated by closed clinical trials... I don't advocate the cheap trick of dems posing for photo opps over this, but the optics would be on their side.
posted by madamjujujive at 9:19 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


The Democrats avoid framing the issues compellingly because they'd rather loose than undermine their corporate masters by spreading damaging ideology.
posted by jeffburdges at 9:20 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]





Wanna trade Ted Cruz for Rob Ford?

Pretty sure Ted Cruz has a no trade clause with Canada.
posted by nubs at 9:26 AM on October 2, 2013


And the US budget Alert has a summary of events. Yes 18 requests and the linked TPM article "Next up, the Senate will have to reconcile their own budget with the House's own budget," So at what point is a committee going to decide anything? Seems Reid is rejecting anything the House submits. Why hold a committe if neither side will budge? The same can be said for the Immigration reform of how the Senate passed a version, but yet does not contain anything from the House.
posted by brent at 9:31 AM on October 2, 2013


Chip Craavack

That is the name of a sci-fi lava person.


Maybe some kind of inhumanoid.

I just discovered this yesterday and it kind of blows my mind.
posted by curious nu at 9:31 AM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


Congressional leaders have been summoned. I so hope Obama doesn't cave.
posted by Wordwoman at 9:32 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]




brent: "So at what point is a committee going to decide anything? Seems Reid is rejecting anything the House submits."

At this point, the goalposts are out in the parking lot being thrown up on by hung-over tailgaters.
posted by tonycpsu at 9:33 AM on October 2, 2013 [17 favorites]


Congressional leaders have been summoned. I so hope Obama doesn't cave.

Oh come on, when has Obama ever caved before?
posted by entropicamericana at 9:37 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


living fist-to-mouth as a child soldier for the taliban in the cavy-caves of afghanistan, obama learned all he needed to know about caving.
posted by kaibutsu at 9:39 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Congressional leaders have been summoned. I so hope Obama doesn't cave.

@stevebruskCNN: White House official tells Brianna Keilar the president's message will be pass a clean funding bill and debt ceiling.
posted by zombieflanders at 9:50 AM on October 2, 2013


NSA says shutdown threatening national security.

...more than 70% of civilian employees of U.S. intelligence agencies have been furloughed under federal guidelines.
posted by Golden Eternity at 9:51 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


And you guys said no good would come from the government shutdown.
posted by entropicamericana at 9:52 AM on October 2, 2013 [15 favorites]


...more than 70% of civilian employees of U.S. intelligence agencies have been furloughed under federal guidelines.

I have the urge to play Cee-Lo's "Fuck You" into the phone or something.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 9:54 AM on October 2, 2013 [6 favorites]


Some in GOP Not Heeding Old Big Business Allies

You know how I know that business no longer thinks the GOP is cool? Rob Schneider just announced as a businessman, he's in favor of the Republican Party. It's like when you realized it was just you and Kevin Smith who were still wearing Jorts: big biz is taking some serious stock in where their life choices have lead them.

That, and record donations to Democratic Party candidates in the past couple of days.
posted by Slap*Happy at 9:54 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Movie Announcer: Rob Schneider is a washed-up comedian, with not much going for him. What he doesn't know is, he's about to become... a businessman!
Rob Schneider: I'm a businessman!
Movie Announcer: The business plan is hi-jinks! Rob Schneider is, A Businessman! Rated PG-13.
posted by entropicamericana at 9:59 AM on October 2, 2013 [14 favorites]


....The same can be said for the Immigration reform of how the Senate passed a version, but yet does not contain anything from the House.

Are you actually trying to defend the conduct of the US House? It has wasted it's time holding close to 50 separate votes trying to defund a law that it knows even if it passed the Senate as well would get vetoed. So, rather then trying to create jobs (remember that mantra?), it does this shit. The House who spent a YEAR refusing to meet in conference with the Senate to work on budgetary items (a year!) is now supposedly working in good faith? fuck that shit. "Obamacare" has a lot wrong with it, but it is better then nothing and was a REPUBLICAN IDEA to start with back in the Clinton years.

So strap that goalpost to your back and find a different parking lot to set it down because as much as that cowardly drunkard Boehner whines it is squarely on his shoulders as he clutches to his speakership
posted by edgeways at 9:59 AM on October 2, 2013 [19 favorites]


‘Vote Republican or I’ll never make another movie again’ threatens Rob Schneider

Can I retroactively get credit for having voted Democrat all this time for its own sake? Like, will he retract "Deuce Bigelow"?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:01 AM on October 2, 2013 [6 favorites]



Congressional leaders have been summoned. I so hope Obama doesn't cave.


I think Obama should just remain quiet and let the sane Senate Republicans do the talking.
posted by Golden Eternity at 10:02 AM on October 2, 2013


My friend’s flying to AZ today with her daughter. When she told me “the Grand Canyon is closed,” that phrase didn’t even compute at first.

The TP congress-guy from the gerrymandered district I live in (Kerry Bentevolio) sent an email targeted at the older (white) conservatives, assuring them they’ll still have their Soc. Sec. and Medicare benefits.

WHAT?! They participate in those evil Dem social programs, FDRcare and LBJcare?
posted by NorthernLite at 10:03 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


"... Rep. Tim Huelskamp, R-Kan., emphasized that point. "I'm from a district that pretty much ignores Washington," he said. "If you say government is going to shut down, they say, 'OK, which part can we shut down?'"
—"Some in GOP Not Heeding Old Big Business Allies"
Ok, first your salary, then your constituents' benefits, then any agricultural subsidies or benefits your largely rural district receives. Give it a chance, Tim. We can work something out.

Huelskamp, btw, was stripped of his position on the Budget and Agriculture Committees last year and described, by a member of the Steering Committee in an interview with Politico, as [one of] “the most egregious assholes” in the House Republican Conference.
posted by octobersurprise at 10:04 AM on October 2, 2013 [9 favorites]




More showboating at the WW2 Memorial by Bachmann. And it led to this, which I think is pretty funny: At one point, a veteran yelled "Sarah!" as Bachmann approached him.
posted by inigo2 at 10:06 AM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Huelskamp, btw, was stripped of his position on the Budget and Agriculture Committees last year and described, by a member of the Steering Committee in an interview with Politico, as [one of] “the most egregious assholes” in the House Republican Conference.

Also apparently my district's representative. oh booooy.
posted by hellojed at 10:09 AM on October 2, 2013


If you could shut down agricultural subsidies across the board all this would be done with by teatime. Sadly...
posted by Artw at 10:09 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


“I’ve been in the intelligence business for about 50 years. I’d never seen anything like this,” said Mr. Clapper.

Can anybody explain this utterance to me in light of the fact that this is not the first government shutdown in the last 50 years?
posted by nTeleKy at 10:14 AM on October 2, 2013


If you could shut down agricultural subsidies across the board all this would be done with by teatime. Sadly...

And the flight controllers and Soc Sec benefits. Shut it all down. Shut down should mean just that, none of this essential services keep running, it should all just stop cold and let them explain why grandma has to eat catfood and why iphones are piling up on the docks.
posted by T.D. Strange at 10:16 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


With no customs, maybe now I can import all the great cars that can't be sold in the US thanks to chicken taxes and DMV regulations.
posted by hellojed at 10:18 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Can anybody explain this utterance to me in light of the fact that this is not the first government shutdown in the last 50 years?

I'd guess it's due to the fact that the intelligence business has been expanded and outsourced to levels never imagined in the past 50 years.
posted by cmfletcher at 10:18 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


I was wondering what happens to furloughed federal employees' health coverage - since presumably both the employer and employee contributions to their premiums aren't getting paid.

According to the benefits section of this furlough manual from the Office of Personnel Management it sounds like their coverage continues but the accumulated premium amounts will be withdrawn from their pay whenever they start getting paid again. And they can't opt out, because there is no one to process their withdrawal from the plan.
posted by yarrow at 10:21 AM on October 2, 2013




Can anybody explain this utterance to me in light of the fact that this is not the first government shutdown in the last 50 years?

Although this is the first shutdown I have been through while working for the government, I get the impression that this time more emphasis has been placed on making absolutely sure that if parts of an agency are supposed to shutdown, they really and truly are shutdown.
posted by Quonab at 10:24 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


"Proud" to say that I'm represented by this Tea Party GENIUS, ready and willing to impeach the president asap: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/06/bill-flores-obama-impeachment_n_3881118.html
posted by mattbucher at 10:27 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


"Proud" to say that I'm represented by this Tea Party GENIUS, ready and willing to impeach the president asap: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/06/bill-flores-obama-impeachment_n_3881118.html

Call him. Tell him you're opposed to shutting down the government to defund the ACA.
posted by Ironmouth at 10:28 AM on October 2, 2013 [12 favorites]


The TP congress-guy from the gerrymandered district I live in (Kerry Bentevolio) sent an email targeted at the older (white) conservatives, assuring them they’ll still have their Soc. Sec. and Medicare benefits.

Call that congress-guy.
posted by Ironmouth at 10:29 AM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


Can anybody explain this utterance to me in light of the fact that this is not the first government shutdown in the last 50 years?

There is, on the ground at my mostly-civilian DoD agency, a genuine sense that this is not going to go away tomorrow. When you add in the sequester furloughs, the looming debt ceiling fight and the sheerly nihilistic viewpoint being espoused by the Tea Partiers (Gingrich's shutdown was bad enough, but at least he had an idea for the federal government that allowed for the possibility of compromise -- "No Obamacare, period" is not a thing where the parties can meet in the middle), this is definitely worse than 1996.
posted by Etrigan at 10:30 AM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


I thought Bill Flores sounded familiar, I voted against him in the midterm when I still went to college in Waco. I'm not there any more but I still have Ted Cruz to be ashamed of.
posted by DynamiteToast at 10:34 AM on October 2, 2013


Rob Schneider just announced as a businessman, he's in favor of the Republican Party.

What is it about the LEAST-talented former members of the SNL cast becoming 'Right Wing Wackos'? Lorne Michaels should be doing a better vetting process...
posted by oneswellfoop at 10:40 AM on October 2, 2013 [6 favorites]


Seems Reid is rejecting anything the House submits.

Yes, having passed a budget and asked repeatedly for conference on it, it is really surprising that Reid isn't willing to negotiate on whether or not to continue funding the government for a short period. After all, the House has submitted proposals to de-implement a law they have no hope of repealing and which SCOTUS has upheld, repeal a tax they have no hope of repealing, and even to fund select portions of the government in tiny little increments.

I fail to see what it is that Reid is supposed to be negotiating. The ACA? Only funding the R's favorite government agencies?

If the Rs want to negotiate a budget, they need only a) pass the clean funding resolution the Senate has repeatedly approved; b) agree to raise the debt ceiling so the U.S. doesn't default on its debts and c) say yes to a budget conference committee.

This is why the disapproval rating for the R's tactics is at 72%. This is why in the past two days so many R House members have indicated they are now willing to vote for the clean funding resolution. We can all see how utterly disingenuous this approach is.
posted by bearwife at 10:40 AM on October 2, 2013 [28 favorites]


‘Vote Republican or I’ll never make another movie again’ threatens Rob Schneider

This is the strongest endorsement of the Democratic Party I have ever witnessed. I'd vote/donate/actively campaign for a yellow dog to stop 'The Hot Chick 2'.
posted by cmfletcher at 10:53 AM on October 2, 2013 [12 favorites]


So...the Astronomy Picture of the Day site is down (operated out of the Goddard Space Flight Center, site also down)...alright, now I'm MAD. (the veteran benefits, 800,000 govt workers, museum and public parks, and children both starving and with cancer might have contributed to my mood as well)

posted by sexyrobot at 11:16 on October 2 [+] [!]


FWIW, How to follow APOD during a US government shutdown, and a list of mirror sites. Apparently unpaid volunteers do a lot of the work on APOD.
posted by ZeusHumms at 10:54 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Speaking of Senator Reid and his refusal to negotiate, here's what the Huff Post's live blog reported less than an hour ago:

Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.) wrote to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and proposed a compromise -- passing a measure funding the government and subsequently appointing budget conferees to deal with the nation's fiscal issues.
posted by bearwife at 10:59 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


So far I've sustained my "call my Representative once a day until this is fixed right" record. The staffer on the other end of the phone sounded a little more war-weary than they did at the end of last week. I hope that's a good sign.
posted by introp at 11:02 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Lawyers Guns and Money has given us OBAMACARE! the text game.

You are standing in an open field in west of a white apartment complex, with a boarded front door. There is a small mailbox here.

> e

The door is locked. There is evidently no key.

> kick door

I don’t understand that.

> chicago jackboot thug kick

I don’t understand that.

> black panther power

You don’t understand that.

> power of greyskull

Fine. By the Power of Greyskull you open the door. You are in the kitchen of the white townhouse. A table seems to have been used recently for the preparation of food. A passage leads to the west, and a dark staircase can be seen leading upward. To the east is a small window which is open. On the table is a computer open to Healthcare.gov.

> what is dot gov


It just gets better from there.
posted by emjaybee at 11:04 AM on October 2, 2013 [14 favorites]


143-year-old law has Washington treading gingerly during shutdown

One White House official said he has advised his employees not to check their email or cellphones. Under the act, even volunteering for government service is expressly prohibited.
posted by Golden Eternity at 11:04 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


One White House official said he has advised his employees not to check their email or cellphones.

One? That's the word from most everyone I've talked to.
posted by inigo2 at 11:06 AM on October 2, 2013


I have a decent amount of DC people on my Facebook; it's amazing how quickly any comment any of them makes about this situation is used as a pretext for someone to go off on a talking point copy and paste rant about how the House is representing the will of the people who never asked for government healthcare or whatever. It's different people in each conversation but it's like I'm reading transcripts from a call center, the phrases and arguments are so similar.
posted by feloniousmonk at 11:10 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Yeah, the TP folks are out in force on the web with the prescribed GOP talking points (e.g., delay individual mandate for a year, repeal medical device tax yada yada). I wouldn't mind it at all if it weren't so boring and predictable.
posted by RedShrek at 11:19 AM on October 2, 2013


We have arrived. 17 House Republicans now publicly ready to support a clean CR to fund the government.
As of Wednesday afternoon, the number of those Republicans hit 17 -- the magic number. If all 200 Democrats stick together and team up with those Republicans, they have the votes to pass a clean funding bill. Of course, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) would have to be willing to put that bill on the floor in the first place. But if he did, the votes appear to be there for passage, at which point the bill would sail through the Senate and be signed by President Barack Obama, ending the shutdown.
posted by zombieflanders at 11:20 AM on October 2, 2013 [16 favorites]


I'm not sure I can handle so much condescension from a country with an electoral system that keeps putting a completely unlikeable right-winger from Alberta in charge.

You're honestly giving Canada shit for letting unlikeable Albertans run amok?

Get that lumber out of your eye, America.
posted by Sauce Trough at 11:21 AM on October 2, 2013




The Economist weighs in from across the pond.

In sum, unless GOP party discipline somehow cracks, America is probably in for a pretty lousy political year.
posted by RedOrGreen at 11:27 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


We have arrived. 17 House Republicans now publicly ready to support a clean CR to fund the government.

No. The Hastert Rule means the magic number is 117 - a majority of the GOP's 232 majority, which is the condition under which Boehner has repeatedly said is required for his bringing a bill to a vote. So we're around a hundred lunatics and cravens shy of arriving.
posted by Slap*Happy at 11:31 AM on October 2, 2013


Yeah, I think the House GOP plan is to shutdown the government, decline to increase the debt limit, and impeach the President - pronouncing him a "dictator."
posted by Golden Eternity at 11:34 AM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


The "Hastert Rule" isn't an official rule. It doesn't require something akin to a cloture vote to waive it. Boehner just has to decide to bring the bill to a vote anyway.
posted by wierdo at 11:35 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Where is Michael Corleone when we need him?
posted by Pudhoho at 11:36 AM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


The "Hastert Rule" isn't an official rule. It doesn't require something akin to a cloture vote to waive it. Boehner just has to decide to bring the bill to a vote anyway.

And the Dems need to shout this louder and louder from the rooftops: there are enough Republicans ready to end this bullshit, but they're not being allowed to.
posted by inigo2 at 11:37 AM on October 2, 2013 [10 favorites]


Even if Boehner abides by the Hastert Rule (not a real rule), if those 17 Republicans really wanted to end this they could vote on a "discharge petition," which would force Boehner to allow the vote. I don't think they will, yet. But the power is in their hands.
posted by Roommate at 11:39 AM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]




BungaDunga: "
Even if he does, someone will sue and then nobody will know whether the bonds issued under this rationale are "real" or not until it's adjudicated, and we're back to the same ol' clusterfuck we started with.[quote]


I really can't think of anything that would fuck the US economy harder and faster than a court decision that we would never have to pay on certain bonds we issued; not just while we're wanking off about the budget, but literally making them not worth the paper they're printed on.


(Are they actually ever printed, if no one requests them?)
posted by IAmBroom at 11:39 AM on October 2, 2013


Yeah, I think the House GOP plan is to shutdown the government, decline to increase the debt limit, and impeach the President - pronouncing him a "dictator."

Yeah. I think this is the plan, too - red meat for the core constituency, and depend on gerrymandering and voter suppression to help them ride out the upcoming economic armageddon that will sweep their ideological enemies from power in the next two voting cycles. It's insane, but hey, it's the Tea Party. We're all mad here... change seats! Change seats!

Boehner just has to decide to bring the bill to a vote anyway.

Why on earth would he do that if it costs him his job?
posted by Slap*Happy at 11:40 AM on October 2, 2013


A discharge petition is pretty slow unless something is stuck in committee already. Is there a clean CR sitting in committee now?
posted by exogenous at 11:53 AM on October 2, 2013




Reince Preibus showing up at WWII Memorial to announce the RNC will keep pay for it to be open for 30 days.

I just wish a reporter there would ask if the RNC would also pay for experimental cancer treatments for children.
posted by inigo2 at 11:55 AM on October 2, 2013 [13 favorites]


They likely have a whole bunch more than 17 Republicans who would vote for a clean bill. They might even have a majority of Republicans. The Hastert 'rule' stuff could very well not even apply, in reality, even ignoring the fact that it's not a real rule.
posted by Flunkie at 11:56 AM on October 2, 2013


A discharge petition is pretty slow unless something is stuck in committee already. Is there a clean CR sitting in committee now?

I'm not sure - when did the Senate first vote on their version? Is that when the clock starts? Even so, it looks like the best case for a discharge petition still wouldn't allow the vote until the 14th. I'd really like to see this resolved by then. Although that looks increasingly unlikely, with more and more focus on the debt ceiling deadline.
posted by Roommate at 11:57 AM on October 2, 2013


The GOP are talking about funding NIH experimental care for Kids with cancer
posted by RedShrek at 11:58 AM on October 2, 2013


and fund the VA for 30 days so they can treat the health problems of these very same veterans in your photo ops.
posted by cmfletcher at 11:58 AM on October 2, 2013


Why on earth would he do that if it costs him his job?

If he makes a deal with Pelosi to whip all Democrats plus those 17 Republicans to support him in the event of there is a revolt, he won't have to worry. If the rumors are true and he's not going to run in 2014, that may sound like a very good deal to him. Sure, he'll be a pariah for the Teahadists, but they have the attention span of fleas with ADHD, and it would be better than being immortalized by the history books as the man who killed the global economy.
posted by zombieflanders at 11:59 AM on October 2, 2013


Just after WaPo started keeping a running tally of House Republicans who have publicly stated their support for a clean CR, the Club for Growth was quick to rather issue a reminder that those newly-appointed RINOs will be primaried from the right if they actually sign on: Club for Growth alludes to consequences. Creepy, eh?

Yes, the Republican Party has gerrymandered themselves into maintaining House majority rule for at least the next 7 years, but there is no shortage of effectively infinitely-moneyed organizations like CFG waiting to further radicalize as many elected positions as possible. Since so many theoretically contested seats have been deftly transacted into inarguable GOP territory, they are now safe to divert their billions of dollars from general elections into primaries, with the ultimate goal of clearing the GOP of any/all traitors who would dare have a hand in any legislation that does not further the wholesale elimination of the federal government. After that's all done, and our representative democracy has been successfully drowned in the bathtub, I guess they will finally be able to pull up stakes and move to Galt's Gulch. It's paradise.

For those of you who have yet to curse out or big up your Congresscritters, please see below.

House: Find Your Representative
Senate: Find Your Senators
the whole kit & kaboodle: Contact Your Government
posted by divined by radio at 12:04 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


The GOP are talking about funding NIH experimental care for Kids with cancer

At this rate, the entire government will be up and running slightly before the heat death of the universe.
posted by Etrigan at 12:04 PM on October 2, 2013


They likely have a whole bunch more than 17 Republicans who would vote for a clean bill. They might even have a majority of Republicans. The Hastert 'rule' stuff could very well not even apply, in reality, even ignoring the fact that it's not a real rule.

I don't understand that link. If there are really, like, 150 or so Republicans willing to vote for a clean CR, why doesn't Boehner just go to them and say "look, we all want this thing but I'm afraid the wackos will call a Speaker election. If I allow this to go to the floor, can you guarantee that you'll support it and then support me when Tea Party tries to unseat me?" Then he can go to Pelosi and strike a deal where, say, the Democrats agree to support him as Speaker for the rest of this Congress - which shouldn't be too hard, seeing as the Dems are in the minority and aren't going to have one of their own elected, anyway - in exchange for a clean CR (and maybe a clean debt ceiling increase!?) coming to the floor? Then the clean CR passes, the wackos go back to their nests, and Boehner remains the Speaker's chair - problem solved!

Either there really aren't as many Republicans willing to support a clean CR as the link implies, or Boehner is even more of spineless weakling than I ever could have possibly imagined. I don't know which it is, but damn, this shit makes no sense.
posted by breakin' the law at 12:07 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]




Ha!
via Twitter: Today on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D: 45 minutes of Agent Coulson watching Cheers on Netflix because he got furloughed.
posted by inigo2 at 12:13 PM on October 2, 2013 [20 favorites]


If there are really, like, 150 or so Republicans willing to vote for a clean CR, why doesn't Boehner just go to them and say "look, we all want this thing but I'm afraid the wackos will call a Speaker election. If I allow this to go to the floor, can you guarantee that you'll support it and then support me when Tea Party tries to unseat me?" Then he can go to Pelosi and strike a deal where, say, the Democrats agree to support him as Speaker for the rest of this Congress - which shouldn't be too hard, seeing as the Dems are in the minority and aren't going to have one of their own elected, anyway - in exchange for a clean CR (and maybe a clean debt ceiling increase!?) coming to the floor?

Two major reasons:
1 -- Any challenge to the Speakership is a long-term loss, and this particular plan would be trivially easy for the Club for Growth types to spin as "Boehner is so craven that he cut a backroom deal with Nancy Pelosi to keep his fancy office." Even if Boehner is retiring, he probably doesn't want to nuke Eric Cantor's chances at the top spot; nor does he particularly want the Tea Party to exert even more control over the next Congress.
2 -- He has to trust the Democrats with his political life. Is he willing to do that? (I am not saying the Democrats are untrustworthy, just that they may be untrustworthy in his opinion.)
posted by Etrigan at 12:13 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


The Club for Growth hasn't really looked at that list of 17 have they. Almost all of those guys are in the DC and Philly suburbs. I can't speak for Va politics but Runyan, LoBiondo, Gerlach, Dent, Lance, and Meehan are all in districts within an hour of philly and in some cases NYC as well. Those aren't gerrymandered safe republican districts and attacks from the right will put those seats on the other side of the aisle in the general election if they get their kinda guy in the race.

So yeah, I dare you to go after them from the right.
posted by cmfletcher at 12:14 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Just after WaPo started keeping a running tally of House Republicans who have publicly stated their support for a clean CR, the Club for Growth was quick to rather issue a reminder that those newly-appointed RINOs will be primaried from the right if they actually sign on: Club for Growth alludes to consequences. Creepy, eh?

Oddly, the people who would benefit the most from campaign finance reform are non-Tea Party Republicans now. That'd be a hell of a rider for a CR.
posted by jason_steakums at 12:17 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Reince Preibus showing up at WWII Memorial to announce the RNC will keep pay for it to be open for 30 days.

BREAKING: Reince Preibus has announced that in the event that the Republican party intentionally causes a financial crisis by not voting to increase the debt ceiling, the RNC promises to fulfill the US Treasury's debt obligations by presenting a few elderly veterans with giant novelty checks.
posted by burnmp3s at 12:20 PM on October 2, 2013 [7 favorites]


Oddly, the people who would benefit the most from campaign finance reform are non-Tea Party Republicans now. That'd be a hell of a rider for a CR.

Why is that? Shouldn't moderates be getting a ton of money from Wall Street to not shut down the government and crash the economy?

Those aren't gerrymandered safe republican districts and attacks from the right will put those seats on the other side of the aisle in the general election if they get their kinda guy in the race.

Could they just switch parties or become independents?
posted by Golden Eternity at 12:21 PM on October 2, 2013


What y'all need is a Westminster system, where failure to pass a budget immediately triggers an election.

Even that has its own shortfalls: I and many other mefites live in a country where the PM has shut down Parliament three times in the last five years: once to avoid the very non-confidence vote you cite, once to avoid questioning on the treatment of Afghan detainees and most recently because he has realized it is is a good way to avoid questioning by the opposition in general. As well, this new practice is trickling down to the provinces and the largest province prorogued its legislature last year to avoid difficult questions as well.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 12:22 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Justinian: "Holy shit, charging your political opponents with treason would be the end of the country. It's the worst idea I've ever heard short of executing them with a gunshot to the head."

Only slightly less stupid is impeaching a leader for some trifling technicality of legal misconduct, simply because he's from the other party.

Bad precedent and all.
posted by IAmBroom at 12:25 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Why is that? Shouldn't moderates be getting a ton of money from Wall Street to not shut down the government and crash the economy?

Because of the independent 3rd party funding mechanism(s) unleashed in the last few years, they don't need Wall Street money anymore. Jim DeMint, CFG, and other orgs more than cover the bills. And they hardly need any money! These people are now essentially unaccountable to anybody but the people in their carved out ethnic enclaves, who will vote for them out of simple tribalism.

This happened. So. Fucking. Fast.

This was theoretical end game stuff to these actions meant to become issues decades from when they were enacted. This is Frankenstein's monster for Rove and the other establishment GOPers who rode the tiger of unchecked rural stupidity to victory in 2000.

We're all fucked because of it. Thanks.
posted by lattiboy at 12:27 PM on October 2, 2013 [9 favorites]


Shouldn't moderates be getting a ton of money from Wall Street to not shut down the government and crash the economy?

I'd heard that Obama's "safe harbor for bad banks" policies had done much to move much of Wall Street away from the GOP (only to have them threaten to go back every time his administration threatens some solid reform or regulation).


"Holy shit, charging your political opponents with treason would be the end of the country. It's the worst idea I've ever heard short of executing them with a gunshot to the head."
Only slightly less stupid is impeaching a leader for some trifling technicality of legal misconduct, simply because he's from the other party.
Bad precedent and all.


That precedent has already been set and the Democrats' unwillingness to use it on GWBush shows the major difference between the two parties.
posted by oneswellfoop at 12:28 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Why is that? Shouldn't moderates be getting a ton of money from Wall Street to not shut down the government and crash the economy?

Maybe. In the next elections. But it's not a guarantee. And they already are getting that money, but it's up against the Tea Party backers who have deep enough pockets to win, in districts that are already tilted so far right that the Tea Party candidate has the upper hand.
posted by jason_steakums at 12:29 PM on October 2, 2013


1 -- Any challenge to the Speakership is a long-term loss, and this particular plan would be trivially easy for the Club for Growth types to spin as "Boehner is so craven that he cut a backroom deal with Nancy Pelosi to keep his fancy office." Even if Boehner is retiring, he probably doesn't want to nuke Eric Cantor's chances at the top spot; nor does he particularly want the Tea Party to exert even more control over the next Congress.
2 -- He has to trust the Democrats with his political life. Is he willing to do that? (I am not saying the Democrats are untrustworthy, just that they may be untrustworthy in his opinion.)


1. This is a legit issue, but the very same deal can be struck in the next Congress. Boehner can still say to Pelosi: "If we win in 2014, I want your guys to vote for me [or whoever the non-crazy candidate is, they can even negotiate about this!] as Speaker."
1a. He would certainly face those ads. But if he's retiring, who cares? And if he's not - or if they go after Cantor, or whoever else in the leadership - there's considerable political and institutional muscle behind the idea of passing a clean CR and clean debt ceiling increase. I mean, the Chamber of Commerce, who supports these things, can't blanket the home districts of the leadership with ads talking about how great they are? This is a problem, but I don't see why it's insurmountable. And that's what a leader is supposed to do: fucking lead.

2. I'm not privy to John Boehner's thoughts, of course, but I have to imagine that he doesn't view the Democrats as particularly less trustworthy than the Tea Party he so fears. He doesn't have to really trust the Democrats, he just has to think they are more trustworthy than the Tea Party.

Bottom line: Either Boehner doesn't have the votes, or he literally spends all day walking around Capitol Hill shitting his pants in fear of Michelle Bachman and Ted Cruz. I don't know why he'd see that as preferable to dealing with Pelosi; but I'd guess he does, so here we are.
posted by breakin' the law at 12:34 PM on October 2, 2013


in districts that are already tilted so far right that the Tea Party candidate has the upper hand.

I don't think we need moderates to win in far right districts, just in moderately right districts.
posted by Golden Eternity at 12:34 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]




tonycpsu: "Flunkie: "Sounds like Republican Congressional staffers should form a union."

I want to make sweet, sweet love to this comment and cook it breakfast in the morning.
"

Metafilter comment #5218171, I'm speaking directly to you.

I know he sounds all sexy and shit, but... don't.

Just don't.

He
never
calls.

I am so over him.

--Metafilter comment #5219402
posted by IAmBroom at 12:36 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


45 minutes of Agent Coulson watching Cheers on Netflix because he got furloughed.

See, if SHIELD was outside the government and beyond the police, like Torchwood, they wouldn't have this problem.
posted by octobersurprise at 12:40 PM on October 2, 2013


See, if SHIELD was outside the government and beyond the police, like Torchwood, they wouldn't have this problem.

grumblegrumbletheywereuntilitwasweirdlyretconnedgrumble
posted by jason_steakums at 12:41 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


If there are really, like, 150 or so Republicans willing to vote for a clean CR, why doesn't Boehner just go to them and say "look, we all want this thing but I'm afraid the wackos will call a Speaker election. If I allow this to go to the floor, can you guarantee that you'll support it and then support me when Tea Party tries to unseat me?"

From this link: Why Boehner doesn't just ditch the hard right
So there are 30 to 40 true hardliners. But there's another group of maybe 50 to 60 members who are very much pressured by the hardliners. So he may have the votes on paper. But he'd create chaos. It'd be like fiscal cliff level chaos. You could make the argument that if he brought a clean CR to the floor he might have 100-plus with him on the idea. But could they stand firm when pressured by the 30 or 40 hardliners and the outside groups?

[...]

When you get the members off the talking points you come to a simple conclusion: They don't face consequences for taking these hardline positions. When you hear members talk candidly about their biggest victory, it wasn't winning the House in 2010. It was winning the state legislatures in 2010 because they were able to redraw their districts so they had many more conservative voters. The members get heat from the press but they don't get heat from back home.
So while the Republican Party is not remotely in danger of losing its majority position in the House, individual Republican incumbents are certainly in danger of losing their seats to Tea Party fanatics in the 2014 primaries if they are perceived by the powers that be as having betrayed any sacred Galtian ideals. And there are no perceptible real-world consequences for being "too" radical because they operate in an echo chamber. As mentioned above, much of this comes down to "dark money" funneled from Super PACs and 501(c)(4) groups like Americans for Prosperity and Club for Growth.

Our next giant leap toward dismantling democracy as we know it will come on October 8 with McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission, in which the overall limit of individual political contributions is all but certain to be struck down by activist judges brave and principled originalists. More (spirit-crushing) information: What The Media Need To Know About "The Next Citizens United."
posted by divined by radio at 12:47 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Can you just imagine how the Right Wing Wackos would've reacted to United Nations-affiliated U.N.I.T. in the old Who?
posted by oneswellfoop at 12:47 PM on October 2, 2013




Getting rid of earmarks seemed like a really good idea at the time. But it seems to mean in this case that Boehner can't grease the wheels here by simply promising goodies to the members who would be in danger of getting primaried.
posted by miyabo at 12:56 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


I think the whole notion that earmarks are automatically bad is a bit of a myth. There certainly are bad earmarks, but earmarks have also funded a lot of really good, important stuff. It just kinda became an easy target rather than reforming the system it became kill the system.
posted by edgeways at 1:02 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


I don't think you could dig your way out of this situation with them, but the negotiations may have been able to get hammered through before we got to this point with them. People need to be able to compromise without compromising their ideals, and the earmarks gave them a justification to take a deal. (And yeah, are also just a good way to specifically fund things that need specific funding)
posted by Drinky Die at 1:10 PM on October 2, 2013


Paul Ryan said "That's what we think we need. A forcing action to bring two parties together," Ryan said. "We don't want to close the government down. We want it open. But we want fairness..."

Fairness? Fairness is voting on a fucking bill, fairness is having 2 fucking houses of congress vote, fairness is having the president sign, fairness is then having your state attys general bring a suit, fairness is having a Conservative supreme court rule IT IS CONSTITUTIONAL.

WHAT THE FUCK DO YOU NOT UNDERSTAND ABOUT "FAIRNESS".

Fuck that guy.

And fuck Bill Flores who thinks somehow that it's not "constitutional" after going through every single fucking constitutional hoop to make a law a law in the first fucking place before it is ever implemented and you're still trying to call it a bill and act as if somehow it's not a law vetted and approved by every single fucking branch of government?

FUCK YOU ASSHOLES.

I honestly think that the only way to deal with this is make the old people suffer their idiocy, and I hate that, because, 1) I know it's not only old people, but there are plenty of poor people in general who vote Republican against their own self interest. 2) I really do not like people suffering... 3) Innocents will be caught in the middle even though they do support rational political courses...

But if it's short term suffering to teach some fucking idiots some lessons (and maybe get some sanity back) vs continuing down this stupid goddamned demagoguery we have running our joint, sometimes short term pain is required to stop long term bleed-out.

So as much as I don't want people on support to suffer (and thankfully there's a lot of social support still in effect, thankfully for my moral sense, I mean), my quasi-rational (also partially vengeful sense) self says burn them to the ground and let them suffer the consequences brought on by those they elected.
posted by symbioid at 1:13 PM on October 2, 2013 [12 favorites]


I think the whole notion that earmarks are automatically bad is a bit of a myth. There certainly are bad earmarks, but earmarks have also funded a lot of really good, important stuff. It just kinda became an easy target rather than reforming the system it became kill the system.

Well, that's really the underlying basic problem, no? The easy-to-remember-bumper-sticker-length-black-and-white-soundbyte-philosophy-of-government. Taxes are theft. Social programs are evil. Etc.

It's great if you have the attention span of a gnat, but it sucks if you actually have to run a government.

It's cynical, unproductive, and nothing new. Oscar Wilde said, "A cynic is a man who knows the cost of everything, and the value of nothing."
posted by Benny Andajetz at 1:14 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Pentagon awards 94 contracts worth $5Bn the day before shutdown.

That's just a ridiculous presentation of the DoD contracting process. You could just as easily say "The Pentagon spent as much time as possible evaluating contracts, waiting until the last day of the fiscal year to award them to make sure that everything was in order."

But really, government contracts are huge beasts that take a ton of time and work to execute. Paperwork got filed right on the deadline because that's the way paperwork often works, whether you are in the government or not. Calling paperwork turned in on the day it is due a "spree" of paperwork is silly.
posted by Quonab at 1:14 PM on October 2, 2013 [16 favorites]


divined by radio: "Our next giant leap toward dismantling democracy as we know it will come on October 8 with McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission, in which the overall limit of individual political contributions is all but certain to be struck down by activist judges brave and principled originalists. More (spirit-crushing) information: What The Media Need To Know About "The Next Citizens United.""

Is this necessarily a bad thing? If we are facing a large segment of the voting public who donate a shit ton of small amounts of money and large corporate donors are prevented from pushing a lot of money, this also means that sensible billionaires (few though they may be) are prevented from shoving massive quantities of coke-tubes at this problem, which means, they are being outspent by masses of idiots who give small amounts, and "YAY DEMOCRACY" but maybe sometimes, we need fewer, hopefully wiser people, making these decisions and in this case, maybe get some sanity back into the situation by people like Gates and Buffet dropping a cool Billion or two into the shark infested waters of the Republican party just in time for the primaries.
posted by symbioid at 1:17 PM on October 2, 2013


From the WaPo liveblog: Reid clashes with CNN's Dana Bash over cancer trials

This kind of thing, what Bash is doing there, is real shitty journalism. The GOP are trying to fund the highly visible, widely loved parts of the government AND NOTHING ELSE. It's the same as the slimdown narrative. Fund the parts that the average voter gives half a shit about so the nation stops caring and the rest of the government stays shut down. The GOP gets an easy win, the media moves on, 800,000+ federal employees and contractors go on unemployment. That'll make Obama's administration look even worse. Bonus for them.

I'm surprised they haven't put forth a pandacam-specific bill.
posted by troika at 1:18 PM on October 2, 2013 [14 favorites]


Not passing a budget should automatically cause you to lose your fucking seat.
posted by odinsdream at 1:18 PM on October 2, 2013 [6 favorites]


"The federal government may have shut down, but The Capitol Steps have arrived, direct from Washington and will perform tonight at the Harris Center at 7:30 PM. Who better to make sense of these current events than the troupe of former congressional staffers who have injected humor into politics for over 30 years. "

This is (inadvertently) the funniest thing Capitol Steps have ever been involved in ever.
posted by Senor Cardgage at 1:21 PM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


This Is What They Want
posted by homunculus at 1:21 PM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


That's just a ridiculous presentation of the DoD contracting process. You could just as easily say "The Pentagon spent as much time as possible evaluating contracts, waiting until the last day of the fiscal year to award them to make sure that everything was in order."

But really, government contracts are huge beasts that take a ton of time and work to execute. Paperwork got filed right on the deadline because that's the way paperwork often works, whether you are in the government or not. Calling paperwork turned in on the day it is due a "spree" of paperwork is silly.


Yeah, the DoD was just doing what every other department had to do before the end of the fiscal year with uncertainty looming. One of our local TV stations had the FCC close the sale with new owners at the last second on Monday, too. The alternative would be to let all these deals that were 99.9% closed, with all the money and labor and hurdle jumping it took to get them there just sit in limbo so the private sector entities involved have to wait it out on emergency funds or get their own furloughs on.
posted by jason_steakums at 1:24 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Say what you want about Republicans and Conservative, stupid is a label that can't be applied to them. I admire their discipline and laser focus. In this game, only the committed win and by more than a mile, Republicans and Conservatives are more committed and have a well thought out strategy. They will win in the end anyway. Too bad for the rest of us.
posted by RedShrek at 1:25 PM on October 2, 2013


I don't think Esquire is right, homunculus. This tactic is making the President and big business into allies.
posted by bearwife at 1:27 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Say what you want about Republicans and Conservative, stupid is a label that can't be applied to them. I admire their discipline and laser focus. In this game, only the committed win and by more than a mile, Republicans and Conservatives are more committed and have a well thought out strategy. They will win in the end anyway. Too bad for the rest of us.

This has to be satire, right? They haven't had a reasonable strategy this whole time, they're just hoping the democrats fold. Not to mention that they've had 5-6 Republicans a day going on record saying at this point they'd take a clean CR.
posted by DynamiteToast at 1:30 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


The GOP are talking about funding NIH experimental care for Kids with cancer
posted by RedShrek at 2:58 PM

and fund the VA for 30 days so they can treat the health problems of these very same veterans in your photo ops.
posted by cmfletcher at 2:58 PM


I wonder if the Dems should just kind of keep tricking the GOP into funding more and more things and see how long it takes them to realize "waaaaaait....."
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 1:30 PM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


I'm with odinsdream, they should lose their seats. All of them.

You didn't do your job, and in fact you've proven you are incapable of doing so.
posted by inertia at 1:33 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


RedShrek: "Say what you want about Republicans and Conservative, stupid is a label that can't be applied to them. I admire their discipline and laser focus. In this game, only the committed win and by more than a mile, Republicans and Conservatives are more committed and have a well thought out strategy. They will win in the end anyway. Too bad for the rest of us."

The part you're missing is the part where it's "Republicans" and "Conservatives" that are fighting against each other, not against the Democrats. Remember Ronald Reagan's 11th Commandment of how thou shalt not speak ill of any Republican? Yeah, that shit's out the window. Tea Partiers consider themselves conservatives first and Republicans second. It's all about their next primary fight -- every man for himself.

DynamiteToast: "they're just hoping the democrats fold."

That's historically been a winning strategy, but in this case they have a shitty hand, and the Democrats know it.
posted by tonycpsu at 1:34 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


I'm surprised they haven't put forth a pandacam-specific bill.

Eric Cantor tweeted earlier a list of bills that the President threatened to veto which fund the various visible parts of the government.

- Open Our National Parks and Museums Act
- Provide Local Funding for DC Act
- Honoring Our Promise to America's Veterans Act
- Researching for Lifesaving Cures Act
- Pay our Guard and Reserve Act

I believe they should collectively be known as 'The Optics are Really Bad for the GOP Acts'
posted by TwoWordReview at 1:34 PM on October 2, 2013 [7 favorites]


http://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2013/10/crazy-like-foxes-even-paul-ryans.html
posted by RedShrek at 1:36 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Say what you want about Republicans and Conservative, stupid is a label that can't be applied to them.

I dunno, threatening to tank the economy for short-term gain and a tarnished reputation while completely backburnering all the effort they should have been putting in to appealing to changing demographics for mid- to long-term stability* is pretty fucking stupid.

* seriously, it's like Rubio got drymouth on camera once and they just completely gave up on that. "Whelp, we tried, pack it in and let's just go back to crazy rich white dudes."
posted by jason_steakums at 1:38 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


I'm with odinsdream, they should lose their seats. All of them.

I agree, and I want to know how I can influence this
posted by jacalata at 1:40 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Say what you want about Republicans and Conservative, stupid is a label that can't be applied to them. I admire their discipline and laser focus. In this game, only the committed win and by more than a mile, Republicans and Conservatives are more committed and have a well thought out strategy. They will win in the end anyway. Too bad for the rest of us.

This is one way of saying "if you ain't cheatin' you ain't tryin'"

Perhaps technically true, but not the way I want my government to be run. Also don't confuse short-term guile (winning this particular fight) for long term wisdom (having something left worth governing).

Also, if the goal is to destroy the government that they're running so they can sell it piece-meal to their friends, then we're talking about groups who are playing totally different games.
posted by codacorolla at 1:42 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Golden Eternity: "NSA says shutdown threatening national security.

...more than 70% of civilian employees of U.S. intelligence agencies have been furloughed under federal guidelines.
"

WHOOHOO!

OK, my fellow al Qaeda cronies, NOW is the time to act!

Achmed: I haven't called you in a long time, my bad, but the NSA was like bugging my phone. Warrantlessly! I know, right? Anyway, it's a "go" on "Operation Drive a Blue Mercedes Benz Full of LSD Into the Library of Congress" tomorrow. Say, eightish? AM, obv. Oh - and that's 8, US ET! Don't want another screwup like the time you drove that U-Haul full of fertilizer from Miami to Denver, only to arrive after everyone in the Mint had already gone home for the 3-day weekend! Ha! I know, I said I'd never bring it up again, but... really - the look on your face on the NSA vid screens - priceless!

Oh, and those should be down now, too.

Dear Metafilter Moderators: if a budget gets passed, could you please delete this post? KTHXBYE.
posted by IAmBroom at 1:46 PM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


RedShrek's link above nails it. The Republicans have already won the policy battle and don't even seem to realize it. Or maybe they do realize it, and are just riding the hot hand. Why quit when you're ahead?
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 1:47 PM on October 2, 2013


The GOP establishment worked very carefully to build a box for the Democrats with their gerrymandering and limitless campaign money. They didn't realize that it was a Pandora's Box that the Tea Party would throw wide open.
posted by double block and bleed at 1:48 PM on October 2, 2013


Republicans and Conservatives are more committed and have a well thought out strategy.

Objection! Assumes facts not in evidence!

Paul Ryan said "That's what we think we need. A forcing action to bring two parties together," Ryan said. "We don't want to close the government down. We want it open. But we want fairness..."

The same Paul Ryan who said:
"The reason this debt limit fight is different is, we don't have an election around the corner where we feel we are going to win and fix it ourselves. We are stuck with this government another three years."
They don't call him Lyin' Ryan for nothing.
posted by octobersurprise at 1:49 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Yeah, the DoD was just doing what every other department had to do before the end of the fiscal year with uncertainty looming.

No, that is not what was going on. The government is funded on a yearly basis. The contracts have to be in place before the beginning of the year or the contractors won't get paid for the work done on Oct. 1. The contracts described in the article are mostly for things like fuel and aircraft parts, hand grenades and janitorial services. These are things the DoD pays for in its regular course of business.

It has nothing to do with uncertainty or the government shutdown. These are contracts that have to be renwed year-to-year, or are new contracts replacing ones that had expired and needed to be recompeted. That article just took everyday business of the government and described it breathlessly, knowing that most people have not worked in an environment where the money appropriated for a given year can only be spent on things used in that year.

Sep. 30 was a paperwork deadline. That's why there was a lot of paperwork done that day.
posted by Quonab at 1:52 PM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


(Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates: "RedShrek's link above nails it. The Republicans have already won the policy battle and don't even seem to realize it. Or maybe they do realize it, and are just riding the hot hand. Why quit when you're ahead?"

I disagree. I loves me some Digby, but she jumped the gun on this one, as her update makes clear:
Update: Important to note that while the total numbers nearly match Ryan's budget, the composition of the two budgets is different. Ryan put back the Pentagon funding in full and slashed other discretionary spending to make up for it while the Democrats did not. So Ryan's dystopian hellscape budget remains slightly more dystopian. I'm sure he's relieved to know that. The massive cuts in government spending in a fragile economy will stay either way.
She still overstates the case in her update, because the idea that discretionary spending was cut 17 percent from what Obama originally asked for in 2009 assumes that Obama's original discretionary number from 2009 was possible to get in 2013, and I think it's clear that's a fantasy. I'm not saying the Democrats couldn't have held out for something better than the $986B they asked for, but it's folly to pretend $1.2T was doable in this environment, especially when we know which party is willing to let hostages die to get what they want, and it isn't the blue team.
posted by tonycpsu at 1:54 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


But don't you agree that the Sequester has now become the norm?
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 1:55 PM on October 2, 2013


RedShrek's link above nails it. The Republicans have already won the policy battle and don't even seem to realize it. Or maybe they do realize it, and are just riding the hot hand. Why quit when you're ahead?

Here's where it loses me:
And yet this fact is all too real: they've got the Ryan budget already. And they've already moved on to the debt ceiling, which all the Fox freaks were going on about last night. Krauthammer suggested they could get Obamacare defunded if they are willing to hold out. They all believe the consequences of a default are phony concerns made up to force them to back down and they are having none of it. That threat to back primary challenges in those gerrymandered districts against those who deviate from this dangerous delusion is quite real (or these members of congress believe it is, anyway.) So, they are going to play this all the way out.
If that's true, they're living in a fantasy. In reality, willingly and carelessly causing a default will wreck them. There's no "let the vets visit the memorial and pretend everything's just fiiine" with a default, it will touch everyone.
posted by jason_steakums at 1:57 PM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


It also makes an assumption that none of the Democrats have read that same publicly available Williamsburg strategy or that they've read it and are doing nothing with that information.
posted by jason_steakums at 1:59 PM on October 2, 2013


(Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates: "But don't you agree that the Sequester has now become the norm?"

Yes and no. A continuing resolution is a continuing resolution, not a full yearly budget, so strictly speaking this is not part of the real budgetary process. But it is true that we've been eschewing the real budgetary process and running the country on CR's for a while. Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) explained this on NPR last week:
SIEGEL: And we'll get to the debt ceiling in a second, but first, the continuing resolution. And a point where it seems Democrats and Republicans are in at least provisional agreement, is it fair these days to say that the sequestration that's taken effect, the across-the-board cuts to federal spending are the new normal and we should assume that they'll be the starting point for future spending talks just as they're reflected in the Senate Democratic continuing resolution?

MURRAY: I absolutely disagree with that. Replacing sequestration is one of my top priorities. I replaced sequestration with responsible spending cuts and new revenue in the Senate budget that we passed. That will be the vehicle that we go to conference with the House bill, which is dramatically different. But the cuts from sequestration, across the board, have hurt everything from medical research to people's salaries who are really critical parts of our government, whether they're civilian employees or they work for one of our agencies.

And we are seeing the jobs and economic loss as a result of this very bad law going into place across the board. So replacing sequestration is a top priority of ours as we go into the broader budget negotiations.

SIEGEL: Broader but not immediate for the time being. Whatever continuing resolution will continue the sequester cuts, right?

MURRAY: Here's where we are. We're not passing a budget agreement right now. We're just saying that because we have been delayed to a crisis point, we are going to keep the government open for a short amount of time to allow us to get to that larger budget deal.
I'm optimistic that this recent round of in-fighting will open a door for Democrats to push the "why haven't you passed a real budget" talking point right back on Republicans when all of this is over. We probably live with the sequester funding levels (though, again, not the same mix of spending cuts, just similar dollar amounts) for a while, but Democrats have a legitimate opening to push for restoration of funding levels, probably not to pre-sequester levels, but depending on how this GOPocalypse shakes out, maybe in a more progressive direction.
posted by tonycpsu at 2:04 PM on October 2, 2013


Best thing from Twitter:
Can I burn down your house?
No

Just the 2nd floor?
No

Garage?
No

Let's talk about what I can burn down.
No

YOU AREN'T COMPROMISING!
posted by MrMoonPie at 2:07 PM on October 2, 2013 [108 favorites]


the effort they should have been putting in to appealing to changing demographics for mid- to long-term stability*

There is no long-term hope for the GOP with the changing demographics unless they abandon their entire 'base'. The racism is way too strong. Their only long-term hope is based on what they are doing right now; take every short-run advantage they have to seize all the power they can and poison the entire system so it cannot be fixed.

Remember, even a 'clean CR' will only fund the government for TWO MONTHS. It is within their power to keep everything in Crisis Mode until the 2014 elections... maybe the 2016 elections. Seriously. And the argument to 'give it a year and more people see Obamacare is a good thing' is indeed countered by 'give it a year and more people will get used to non-functioning government' and they may be right. And as I argued earlier, the Koch boys and other owners of private corporations can weather the economic chaos of a Permanent Debt Ceiling more than most; in fact, so will a lot of 'small businesspeople' who will be delighted if the bank they owe money to became unable to collect on your debt, while they increase their 'under the table' economic activity believing the IRS can never reach them (a fallacy/fantasy, but a serious business plan in chaotic times).
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:08 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


If you, dear (American) reader, have not contacted your representatives and thoroughly chewed their ass, you are a Bad Citizen and will deserve what you get.
posted by five fresh fish at 2:21 PM on October 2, 2013


So far I've sustained my "call my Representative once a day until this is fixed right" record.

THIS.
posted by five fresh fish at 2:21 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


What's the point of chewing their ass if they aren't one of the tea party losers causing the problem?
posted by Justinian at 2:22 PM on October 2, 2013 [7 favorites]


My favorite nutball headline of the day: More personnel sent to WWII memorial than Benghazi
posted by octothorpe at 2:22 PM on October 2, 2013


Justinian: "What's the point of chewing their ass if they aren't one of the tea party losers causing the problem?"

Who's a stronger influence? The tea party, or your constituents?
posted by boo_radley at 2:23 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


you are a Bad Citizen and will deserve what you get.

Knock this off. Lots of people have been working hard to keep this shit from getting shittier. The whole idea that because crazy people decide to hold the government hostage we all "deserve this" because we're in a democracy is inaccurate and unfair.
posted by jessamyn at 2:23 PM on October 2, 2013 [52 favorites]


>brent: Let me know when Reid and the Senate vote on a budget.

They did, over six months ago. Since then House Republicans have refused to go to conference to reconcile it 18 times.

>brent: And that Senate vote was signed by the President to become law?

This statement is even dumber than you might think. The President never signs a budget resolution because a budget resolution is not a law. It has no force of law and has nothing to do with the President. Each house of congress passes a separate and different budget resolution that simply outlines their preferences for spending, to be later resolved in a conference between the two houses. The outcome of the conference is a single appropriations bill that both houses must then pass and be signed by the President. Budget resolutions do not authorize spending. Appropriation bills authorize spending.

So, no, the President has not signed the budget resolution and no President ever has or will. You know, the repetition of Republican talking points just emphasizes your ignorance.
posted by JackFlash at 2:23 PM on October 2, 2013 [34 favorites]


you are a Bad Citizen and will deserve what you get.

yo don't forget those of us that don't have a voting rep - do we deserve it, too?
posted by troika at 2:28 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


The crappy thing about calling my rep is I can't say anything to whoever answers the phone at Steve King's office that will actually get to him directly, I'd just be going off on a staffer who doesn't deserve that so I've gotta be all civil. Still gonna call this evening. He used to stop by our station in person for interviews sometimes but he stopped doing that after one of our interviews where he said some dumbass thing went viral and, y'know, he's in Washington pulling stunts right now and I'd get fired for saying anything worth saying to Steve King while at work.

Also he looks like a flesh-colored Grover. Just thought I'd get that out there.
posted by jason_steakums at 2:32 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Who's a stronger influence? The tea party, or your constituents?

I don't understand the question. If your member of Congress would happily vote for a clean CR and debt ceiling increase how does yelling at them do anything? Are they going to vote for it EVEN HARDER?
posted by Justinian at 2:33 PM on October 2, 2013 [9 favorites]


If you, dear (American) reader, have not contacted your representatives and thoroughly chewed their ass, you are a Bad Citizen and will deserve what you get.

Somehow I don't think harassing my representative is going to make things any better.
posted by aspo at 2:34 PM on October 2, 2013 [12 favorites]




Not as hard as I'd like them to vote for it.
posted by DynamiteToast at 2:34 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


RedShrek: "The GOP are talking about funding NIH experimental care for Kids with cancer"

No, unless you have a citation, the only thing I see on the interwebs is: The GOP are talking about sending another microbudget bill through to allow funding of NIH experimental care for Kids with cancer... which is the political equivalent of spitting to put out a nation-sized fire.
posted by IAmBroom at 2:35 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


If you, dear (American) reader, have not contacted your representatives and thoroughly chewed their ass, you are a Bad Citizen and will deserve what you get.

Dear FFF: Each of us has ONE representative. There are these things called Congressional Districts, and they do not overlap. My representative is Jim McDermott, D of WA, and the only thing I want to say to him about his role in this is -- keep up the good work!
posted by bearwife at 2:35 PM on October 2, 2013 [18 favorites]


Oh, yeah, maybe it's just a misunderstanding of how the system works.

The Representatives who are causing this problem are people who represent very specific districts. People who do not live in their districts have no, zero, zilch, nada influence. You can't vote for them. You can't vote against them. Unless you're a big campaign donor they will completely ignore you. And that's not wrong of them; you have your own Rep.

Yelling at your own representative who is probably just as angry at these idiots as you are won't accomplish anything.
posted by Justinian at 2:41 PM on October 2, 2013


Somehow I don't think harassing my representative is going to make things any better.

Call her and ask for advice on how you can help. ;)
posted by Drinky Die at 2:42 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


boo_radley: "Justinian: "What's the point of chewing their ass if they aren't one of the tea party losers causing the problem?"

Who's a stronger influence? The tea party, or your constituents?
"

THE CONSTITUTION!
posted by symbioid at 2:46 PM on October 2, 2013


Justinian: "Are they going to vote for it EVEN HARDER?"

Before I answer your question I need to clarify that I agree with jessamyn that not doing this does not make you a terrible person.

No, of course not, but I appreciate your sarcasm. There's a couple things to consider. (1) your VOTE EVEN HARDER representative will be getting calls (R or D) about how they need to vote no or something terrible will happen to them. So you show your support for them. "Oh, that ALEC lobbyist said I'd get my shit forefucked in 2014, good to hear all of the support from the voters" (2) You're represented by one of the people who are drawing the hard line. And then yeah, you do have some pushing to do.
posted by boo_radley at 2:47 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Yelling at your own representative who is probably just as angry at these idiots as you are won't accomplish anything.

Well, it can't hurt to tell them you stand behind them so they don't go all wobbly and give in to the terrorists. You can bet there are a substantial number who are most certainly telling them to do that.
posted by JackFlash at 2:49 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


jason_steakums: "If that's true, they're living in a fantasy. In reality, willingly and carelessly causing a default will wreck them. There's no "let the vets visit the memorial and pretend everything's just fiiine" with a default, it will touch everyone."

These are the same people who disbelieved every unbiased poll in North America, leading up to the 2012 elections.

Seriously, no joke: these are people who distrust facts, and prefer to make massive, country-altering decisions on the basis of patriotic imagery.
posted by IAmBroom at 2:49 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Yeah, but their belief doesn't make reality untrue. There are real consequences for them if they force a default, even if they believe the danger of a default is all hype.
posted by jason_steakums at 2:51 PM on October 2, 2013


There are real consequences for them if they force a default

There are most assuredly real consequences of a default, but I'm not so sure about for them. These guys are already rich and have powerful backers. They'll stay afloat.
posted by troika at 2:53 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Yeah, even if you live in a district like Pelosi's, it's still not just okay but even awesome to call and say "Keep on keepin' on!" They count things like that.
posted by rtha at 2:55 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


I am trying to figure out if sending my Congresswoman Kathy Castor a big sparkly YOU GO GIRL card would be respectful and appropriate.

I may just do it anyway, because she's sticking up for us unimportant people.
posted by cmyk at 2:55 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Right, and there were real consequences for the 2012 presidential election, like 'who controls the government.' But the belief in 'unskewed polls' didn't protect them from those consequences...
posted by kaibutsu at 2:56 PM on October 2, 2013


These guys are already rich and have powerful backers. They'll stay afloat.

These are people who laugh while children starve. They can't conceive of anyone having an experience different from their own. Remember how they used to mock Clinton for his empathy? As if the ability to feel what somebody else feels is a weakness?

Yeah, that's these guys.
posted by Joey Michaels at 2:56 PM on October 2, 2013 [14 favorites]


Woah - so... I'm in the 2nd district which I generally perceive to be "safe". Tammy Baldwin and now Mark Pocan (Lesbian and Gay Reps, respectively)... But before Tammy was Scott Klug (I think there might have been some redistricting in the meantime....).

Wiki has this to say:

At the urging of Republican leadership under Newt Gingrich, Klug presented a resolution stating that the House would not support continuing resolutions to keep government funding; this led to the United States federal government shutdown of 1995 and 1996.
posted by symbioid at 2:57 PM on October 2, 2013


It was unfair to suggest all representatives need a chewing-out.

So, yea, you should be calling to find out how to best help, if you're not represented by a cretin.

I think calling your local, state, and Senate reps is worthwhile. They all have influence.
posted by five fresh fish at 3:04 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


I'm picturing a gerrymandered, last Republican Representative, all holed up in his political foxhole after the world has moved on, and he's out there with his NRA purchased shotgun, yelling at everyone to get off his Constitution.

ONE MAN AGAINST THE WORLD. FER FREEDUM.
posted by symbioid at 3:11 PM on October 2, 2013


I think you should stop advising us, FFF. For example:

My local rep is a County Councilman. He is a Democrat and he has no influence whatever on the House Rs.

My state rep is a Democrat too. And she has no influence on the House Rs either.

My Senators -- who are not "reps" -- are Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray. They, too, are Democrats who are performing admirably.
posted by bearwife at 3:11 PM on October 2, 2013


Are you sure those people don't need to hear from you?
posted by boo_radley at 3:12 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Yeah, I'm in the same district as bearwife, and basically the only thing Jim McDermott could do to lose his job would be to give an inch to these lunatics in any way. He's on Ways and Means, he's on the Budget Committee, and he's on the Health subcommittee. I'm not sure there's another Democratic Representative who has to deal more directly with these assholes in basically every appointment, and I'm certain he hates them more than any of us do. I'm happy to tell him to keep after them, but I'm not sure he needs me to tell him that.
posted by Errant at 3:13 PM on October 2, 2013


symbioid: " ONE MAN AGAINST THE WORLD. FER FREEDUM."

I believe the correct rallying cry is WOLVERINES!
posted by tonycpsu at 3:14 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Take the headline with a grain of salt as this is a HuffPo story, but it does seem that veterans are not, as a whole, impressed by the ruse of funding just their specific interests.
posted by George_Spiggott at 3:17 PM on October 2, 2013


Are you sure those people don't need to hear from you?

Yes, very sure. Hearing from people who are either clueless about the official's job (county and state reps) or their consistent excellent votes (Cantwell and Murray) is not enlightening.
posted by bearwife at 3:21 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


[five fresh fish we appreciate that your heart is in the right place, but you've said your piece, please do not soapbox lecture in this thread]
posted by jessamyn at 3:22 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


This week i've been walking around various battlefields in Belgium.

This morning, when I arrived at the US WW1 cemetery at Flanders Fields to pay my respects to the 368 men interred within its walls, the gates were locked. The cemetery was closed due to the shutdown.

I actually find it hard to describe the disgust... the sadness... I felt - and still feel tonight - at this.

I've been visiting WW1 battlefields and cemeteries periodically for almost fifteen years now. Although every nation clothes its dead in a different setting, they are always places where love and sadness are interminably mixed.

Surrounded by sometimes hundreds, sometimes thousands, at times tens of thousands of graves for men who - in most cases - had yet to even begin to live is the most harrowing and humble experience you can ever have. In those cemeteries the horrors of the Great War, indeed of war in general, are inescapably laid bare.

Yet at the same time they are places of peace, love and comfort. This is because they are always meticulously well kept and tended to by their respective countries and - most crucially of all - they are always open.

This is important because, although it might be hard to believe after almost 100 years, they are never empty. In 15 years I have been in more of these cemeteries than I could possibly name or remember, but from the largest mass burial site to the smallest collection of near-forgotten crosses deep in the woods the only thing I can say for certain is that I have never, ever, once found myself the only person there. In every cemetery there has always been someone else there paying their own private respects, whether to a family member or simply a fellow countryman, there has always been someone else there.

The ghosts of the dead of WW1, it has always seemed to me, are never truly alone. Nor do they deserve to be.

This is why i can't really describe just how I felt this morning standing outside the gates of that cemetery. In fact I'm not ashamed to say that this Englishman almost cried at the grievous injustice that was being dealt to the undeserving dead.

That feeling of injustice then turned to anger as I stood and watched Americans turn up at those gates and find their own entry barred. If there is one experience that is now indelibly burned into my mind it is having to comfort a crying elderly American lady who couldn't understand why, after travelling over 4000 miles for the explicit purpose, she could not lay a flower on the grave of her grandfather.

There are worse effects that this shutdown is (and will) have on more people, of that I have no doubt. This morning, however, for me I witnessed the politics... no the pettiness... of the Republican political party at their absolute worst.

That experience is now burned into my mind, my opinion of America now forever tarnished by an act of sheer malignity that has affected the very people the Republican Party constantly claim to represent.

Fucking wankers. Damn all of them. Damn them to hell.
posted by garius at 3:26 PM on October 2, 2013 [90 favorites]


For many of us, contacting our congresscritter isn't a useful thing to do: bear in mind that unlike a lot of current controversies, this is pretty nearly a strict party line divide, and one of the perverse effects of gerrymandering was to make Dem strongholds even stronger.

I for one do not intend to call my Senators or my congressman for the simple reason that I would be wasting their staff resources if I did. They feel EXACTLY as I do already.

But I'm open to other "act locally" suggestions. But preferably ones don't involve engaging the morons on the comments section of my daily paper.
posted by George_Spiggott at 3:29 PM on October 2, 2013


Given the Dems history of buckling, I'd argue that calling you representative is probably a good idea. Even if it's just to say "keep up the good work."
posted by [insert clever name here] at 3:44 PM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


What The Government Shutdown Means For .gov SEO

Huh, I hadn't relaized that most departments would shut down their websites as well. Just this morning, a friend in Arizona asked on Facebook how to get info on his state exchange and I pointed him to Healthcare.gov (which, kind of scarily, he hadn't found yet)... I'm glad to see it's still up even if the bombardment of interest is rendering it nigh-unusable.
posted by psoas at 3:50 PM on October 2, 2013


This morning, when I arrived at the US WW1 cemetery at Flanders Fields to pay my respects to the 368 men interred within its walls, the gates were locked. The cemetery was closed due to the shutdown.

I went running by the National Mall this morning, and there were barricades propped up around all the entrances with signs stating "Due to the government shutdown, all National Park Service facilities are CLOSED" but they'd been shoved aside and people were wandering blithely up to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. I felt... conflicted.
posted by psoas at 3:53 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


This whole think is like the Frank Grimes scenario from the Simpsons except much worse and of course the Homer character is actually a complete asshole in reality. Grimes can't believe what he sees and what is valued and if he's earnest about it and a bit naive about how merit doesn't mean squat in this world, is I suspect how many Republicans see anyone who objects to their utter bullshit.
posted by juiceCake at 3:55 PM on October 2, 2013


Given the Dems history of buckling, I'd argue that calling you representative is probably a good idea. Even if it's just to say "keep up the good work

This and 1000x this. People generally only call to complain, but behavioral research shows positive reinforcement is much stronger then negative.
posted by edgeways at 3:56 PM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


I'm usually a pretty calm dude but I've found myself screaming obscenities at the TV and radio for the past two days.
posted by charred husk at 3:58 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


I sprained my middle finger.

Not really, but I find it popping up an awful lot.
posted by no relation at 4:00 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2013/10/the-gop-wants-to-restore-nih-funding-should-obama-allow-it/280203/
posted by RedShrek at 4:00 PM on October 2, 2013




I repeat: Grover Norquist
posted by Flunkie at 4:02 PM on October 2, 2013 [14 favorites]


Grover Norquist should be issued an injunction against using the name Grover
posted by edgeways at 4:03 PM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


Ha ha ha ha ha!

/gasps, collapses
posted by rtha at 4:04 PM on October 2, 2013


Looks like the VFW also isn't going for it. (The director of benefits for the Paralyzed Veterans of America said the same, see previous link.)
Veterans want VA programs fully funded but don’t like being used as pawns in the political fight, said Joe Davis, spokesman for Veterans of Foreign Wars, the nation’s largest organization for combat veterans.

“The VA needs to be fully funded, not piecemealed and not used as leverage,” Davis said.
posted by George_Spiggott at 4:06 PM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


Grover Norquist should be issued an injunction against using the name Grover

Voldemort and Prince would issue injunctions against him calling himself 'He Who Must Not Be Named' or 'The Windbag Formerlly Known As Norquist.'
posted by Joey Michaels at 4:06 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Flunkie, you should have included the title, 'Norquist: Cruz 'Pushed House Republicans Into Traffic And Wandered Away' - too funny.
posted by dougzilla at 4:09 PM on October 2, 2013


The Tea Party wants to stand on the wreckage of a crippled and discredited federal government and say "Let the free market clean up this mess!", since they know Americans will all be too exhausted and confused by the bullshit parade in Washington and the relentless promotion of and intellectually deflationary concession to the content-agnostic Centrism of the "truth in the middle" principle to think critically about what really happened. We get a corporatist state where legitimacy and democracy are brought to their knees by unchecked economic power, and financial might makes moral right becomes the highest principle. That's why 1.8 million workers are without pay and people are going hungry and the whole goddamn world is laughing at us in shocked horror: to put the crown of legitimacy on a Koch.
posted by clockzero at 4:09 PM on October 2, 2013 [7 favorites]


I went running by the National Mall this morning, and there were barricades propped up around all the entrances with signs stating "Due to the government shutdown, all National Park Service facilities are CLOSED" but they'd been shoved aside and people were wandering blithely up to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. I felt... conflicted.

Sadly, as is hopefully clear in the photo, the walls and gate at Flanders are quite high.

Not that boosting a sixty plus granny wasn't something I wasn't seriously considering after about five minutes of tears, mind.
posted by garius at 4:10 PM on October 2, 2013


We should take a tip from the UK and start referring to our conservatives as the Tories, given that they really don't seem to be on board with the whole "government of the people" as opposed to government by the propertied aristocracy thing.
posted by George_Spiggott at 4:13 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


So, in MN we recently had a gov shutdown when the (yes) Republicans had a hissy fit and refused to negotiate on budget issues. The next election they lost the leg, in part because of that and in part because they just where in a real mess (near bankruptcy and their top Congresscritter got caught committing adultery with her top aide), now that former aide, who sued the state, Michael Brodkorb wrote this little piece regarding shutdowns:

Lessons learned in Minnesota: Republicans should shutdown the shutdown

posted by edgeways at 4:14 PM on October 2, 2013


Or just as those shit asses with the elephant.
posted by Pudhoho at 4:14 PM on October 2, 2013


Seriously, despite their (historically laughably ignorant) cooption of the "Tea Party" label, how is the agenda of the right wing anything but a repudiation of the American Revolution at this point?
posted by George_Spiggott at 4:16 PM on October 2, 2013


uff da
posted by edgeways at 4:20 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Meet Butch Matthews, A Republican Who Came To Love Obamacare After Realizing It Will Save Him $13,000

This is a great story but this makes me so fucking angry:

[in 1997] he chose a Blue Cross Blue Shield plan for himself and his wife that charged a $250 per month premium and had a $2,000 deductible. But the price of that policy kept rising even as it covered fewer of his costs, eventually devolving into his current rate of $1,069 per month with a $10,000 deductible. At this point, it doesn’t even cover his medication or doctors’ visits — particularly concerning considering he had to have two stents placed in his heart in 2006.

That's fucking evil that they were able to do that to him, and he goes on to say that there was nothing else he could switch to. A thousand dollars a month, for essentially nothing. And this monstrous plundering of an old man's meagre savings from the business he built himself is the number one thing the Republican legislators are trying to preserve.
posted by showbiz_liz at 4:22 PM on October 2, 2013 [50 favorites]


But he had the freedom to not have healthcare and go die in a ditch!
posted by Artw at 4:26 PM on October 2, 2013 [14 favorites]


And he's still a strong Republican despite the fact that that it is the same party that employed lies, demagoguery, and all sorts of dirty tricks to kill the ACA. Gotta love it.
posted by RedShrek at 4:30 PM on October 2, 2013 [12 favorites]


"I would tell them to learn more about it before they start talking bad about it," he noted. "Be more informed, get more information, take your time and study and not just go by just what you hear on one side or the other. Actually check the facts on it."

And he's still a strong Republican? Just ... wow. I can't even process this.
posted by RedOrGreen at 4:38 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Thank the Good Lord and Ronald Reagan for that wonderful Obamacare!
posted by Flunkie at 4:40 PM on October 2, 2013 [7 favorites]


There is a big divide in the R party. That many completely disagree with the Tea Party wing doesn't make them Ds.
posted by bearwife at 4:41 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


“I still am a very strong Republican, but this… I’m so happy that this came along,” he continued. “Our home is paid for, vehicle’s paid for, this is our expense that we have. We have more expense on medical care than everything else put together, so this is going to be a great help for us.”(emphasis mine)

Gosh, he's lucky that Obamacare just... came along. From nowhere, one assumes. Just good fortune. Certainly nothing that the Republicans were involved with promoting or opposing, this is just something that happened, like a tornado or a volcano or coastal flooding or a toddler dying in a gun accident or an earthquake or a mass shooting, but fortunate. Some things just come along.
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 4:42 PM on October 2, 2013 [37 favorites]


We should be having this fight over single payer not this basterization. Don't get me wrong, all things considered I'll take it, but good lord this fight is worthy of something much more earth shaking, not a watered down market driven gift to the insurance companies.
posted by edgeways at 4:45 PM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


Oh man, bearwife, that link's great. Ted Cruz is reminding me a LOT of the joke thief in Patton Oswalt's essay about joke thievery:
Don’t worry – this story has a happy ending. Blaine and I eventually moved west. So did the thief. But when it came time for him to make the transition to television, to movies, to big-time fame and success? He had nothing. And, without going into details, he flamed out, rather spectacularly, on national television. Like, spectacularly. It was gorgeous for Blaine and I to watch. By that point we’d built solid careers for ourselves and when Kid Thief’s career hit the killing floor? It drained away through the sluice gate. I’ve never heard from him since. Kelly Oxford wrote something, during this latest joke thief debacle, about how the stealers and joke-thieves can often get themselves through the highest doors only to find, when they’re at the top and people want to hear their ideas…they’ve got nothing. Kill floor. Sluice gate. Oblivion. I don’t need to name names here. We’ve seen it happen. It’ll happen again. It’s always fun when it does.
I think Grover Norquist is a petty version of Blaine Capatch in this analogy. His complaints strike me as stemming from Cruz stealing the spotlight with the same material.
posted by jason_steakums at 5:02 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Homeboy Trouble: "Gosh, he's lucky that Obamacare just... came along. From nowhere, one assumes. "

This is precisely the willful self-delusion that has led me to give up hope that Tea Party types (who are supposed to be economic libertarians) are doing anything other than working backwards from their desire to keep all of the money (and therefore all of the liberty) for themselves, leaving none for their fellow man. There are no atheists in foxholes, and there are no small-government types with expensive medical conditions.
posted by tonycpsu at 5:04 PM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


Well hey maybe with this piecemeal funding shit the R's are trying to push through, they'll just roll out Obamacare piecemeal to individual Republican voters.
posted by jason_steakums at 5:06 PM on October 2, 2013


jason_steakums: "Well hey maybe with this piecemeal funding shit the R's are trying to push through, they'll just roll out Obamacare piecemeal to individual Republican voters."

<Oprah> "You get an MRI! You get an MRI! Everyone gets an MRI!" </Oprah>
posted by tonycpsu at 5:08 PM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


My mind just f'ing exploded a little bit. A Republican Congressman from Texas, Randy Neugebauer, confronted a park ranger at the WW II memorial AND TOLD HER SHE SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF HERSELF.

WHAT IS WRONG WITH THESE PEOPLE???

Warning 1: video autoplays.
Warning 2: some of those comments. Oh lord some of those comments.

posted by inigo2 at 5:17 PM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


Think you wanted this link.
posted by George_Spiggott at 5:23 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


I think what's wrong with those people is their senses of entitlement and arrogance take up so much room that proportion and shame had to move out.
posted by rtha at 5:27 PM on October 2, 2013 [16 favorites]


I've been thinking about Fox News replacing "shutdown" with "slimdown" and wondering whether this is betraying the long-term strategy, at least for anyone taking marching orders from Roger Ailes or Rupert Murdoch, that this "slimdown" is an unqualified GOOD thing that maybe should be made permanent 'for our health'.
posted by oneswellfoop at 5:28 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


The park police should have arrested the congress people for dirorderly condict and rioting. Ideally pepper spray, tasers and batons could have been used because that's how par police rll when you give them who just ask ows vets. Let them sit in jail for the full 72 hours because the da and others are unavailable owing to the shutdown.
posted by humanfont at 5:39 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


So he turns up for his stupid stunts and wants other people to be ashamed? For what? In what universe does that make sense?
posted by Artw at 5:40 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


I don't understand how these people can lie with such conviction. Clearly the shutdown is all about repubs fighting for fairness! *dumbfounded*

I'm already incredible disillusioned with Obama and the rest of the dems. I had such high hopes going in. Then it became clear the repubs wouldn't let anything get done. Then it became clear Obama had completely different ideas of hope and change then I did. Close gitmo? Nah, we'll keep that open. End wars? Let's start a few more and drone strike everyone else. Punish banksters for ruining the economy during my prime earning years? Nah, let's not look to the past.

If the dems fold on this they will never get another cent from me. Is there anything left to do other than start an organized campaign to move sane people into the gerrymandered tea party stongholds? It doesn't have to be directed at liberals ("leftists" to you crazies out there). Let's get some sane republicans in there too, if there are any left. Maybe have a district that isn't a safe lock for one party of the other? So the elected representatives will actually have to pay attention to what people want? Why is that apparently way too much to ask?
posted by Arbac at 5:45 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Of course, that sort of thinking in 2010 got us here now.
posted by Artw at 5:48 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


If the dems fold on this

This right here is a good reason to call up your reps if you live in a true-blue district. Thank them for not caving, encourage them to keep not caving, and tell them you look forward to voting for them at the next election because they're not caving. It only takes a minute.
posted by rtha at 5:51 PM on October 2, 2013 [7 favorites]


This right here is a good reason to call up your reps if you live in a true-blue district.

Already did. Thank you Alan Lowenthal!
posted by Arbac at 5:53 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


If the dems fold on this they will never get another cent from me.

Nah, if the dems fold, it'll be as always with Obama - the cry will go out "11-dimensional chess!". This reminds me of nothing more than the Monty Python sketch The Black Knight.

Obama's right arm gets chopped off, blood is spurting out, and the cry goes out "11-dimensional chess!". The left arm gets chopped off, blood is spurting out - "12-dimensional chess!". Left leg - "13 dimensional chess!", right leg "14-dimensional chess!", and then they cut off his head just before he's out of the office, at which point the cry goes out "just you wait! Sleepy Hollow! The Headless Horseman will return and redeem it all!" "He will strike a mighty blow and the brilliant play will be revealed!".
posted by VikingSword at 6:02 PM on October 2, 2013 [12 favorites]



Republicans are psyched about the shutdown and have been since 2010
, regardless of whatever they say in public. The shutdown was a goal for its own sake, and now they have it.
posted by T.D. Strange at 6:38 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


VikingSword, I agree with a big chunk of your analysis. The TeaParty is a real thing, an uprising of white guys who feel disenfranchised. They've had the barriers set at the lowest possible level, and still they're not feeling rich enough, powerful enough, and they're pissed. Pissed at Equal Rights for non-whites, gays and women, because that reduces their power. Pissed at the Republicans for not preserving their power, pissed at unions because who knows why, plenty of these guys have really benefited from unions, pissed about poor people getting food stamps, even though their cousin(Mom, Dad, aunt, uncle, child) uses food stamps to feed the kids after her husband took off, pissed off in general. It's the group that hates the ACA, but wants to make sure GrandDad still gets his Medicare. They love guns and the NRA/gun manufacturers play to them with ads that make them feel tough. Ever notice how many Tea Partiers wear camo, even if they've never hunted, never been in the service. They love that feeling of power and control and macho tough guy. The tea party may not be under anybody's control, but they're extremely susceptible to well-crafted marketing. Cause otherwise, why the hell do they consistency work against their own interests?

But the Koch Bros., Karl Rove and his ilk, Dick Cheney and his pals, the GOP, the gun/ defense/ banking/ megacorp lobbies, they have a plan, and they've done really well. The Republicans have become a caricature of a political party. They move in lockstep, have a strong message, cheerfully lie and distort, use scare tactics, and they are resistant to facts, common sense, common decency, and the will of the voters. They have been ridiculously successful in moving the entire nation to the Right. Obama looks liberal only in comparison. I think he's truly liberal, but also practical and smart, and is getting as much done as he can with what he's got to work with, but it sure hasn't been a liberal Presidency. I never used to be a conspiracy theorist, but I do believe there is a dedicated group bent on moving the country further and further Right. They scare the crap out of me.
posted by theora55 at 6:47 PM on October 2, 2013 [6 favorites]




psoas: “I went running by the National Mall this morning, and there were barricades propped up around all the entrances with signs stating ‘Due to the government shutdown, all National Park Service facilities are CLOSED’ but they'd been shoved aside and people were wandering blithely up to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. I felt... conflicted.”

I feel conflicted, too, frankly. Conservatives are saying the orders to do these things came directly from the White House. I feel like, at the very least, somebody thought it was a good idea to put up barricades where they really aren't needed and add extra guards where there usually aren't any. And if the executive branch was responsible for this, well – disappointment.
posted by koeselitz at 7:18 PM on October 2, 2013


garius: "Sadly, as is hopefully clear in the photo, the walls and gate at Flanders are quite high.

Not that boosting a sixty plus granny wasn't something I wasn't seriously considering after about five minutes of tears, mind.
"

I've got to admit that faced with that situation I'd be tempted to make a trip to the nearest hardware store for a crowbar/hacksaw/file/wrench or whatever would "remedy" the situation.
posted by Mitheral at 7:18 PM on October 2, 2013


inigo2: “My mind just f'ing exploded a little bit. A Republican Congressman from Texas, Randy Neugebauer, confronted a park ranger at the WW II memorial AND TOLD HER SHE SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF HERSELF. WHAT IS WRONG WITH THESE PEOPLE???”

Presumably what is wrong with these people is that they believe it's unconscionable that a park ranger obeyed the White House's petty orders to shut down a monument that normal isn't very heavily policed anyway, and that was not supposed to be part of the government shutdown. I have to say I see his side of it, even if I honestly haven't decided how I feel about all this.
posted by koeselitz at 7:20 PM on October 2, 2013


Politico: Ted Cruz faced a barrage of hostile questions Wednesday from angry GOP senators, who lashed the Texas tea party freshman for helping prompt a government shutdown crisis without a strategy to end it.

At a closed-door lunch meeting in the Senate’s Mansfield Room, Republican after Republican pressed Cruz to explain how he would propose to end the bitter budget impasse with Democrats, according to senators who attended the meeting. A defensive Cruz had no clear plan to force an end to the shutdown — or explain how he would defund Obamacare, as he has demanded all along, sources said.


Bachmann to Hannity: ‘This Is About the Happiest’ GOP Has Been in a While

posted by Drinky Die at 7:22 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Dem caller on C-SPAN: "Next thing the Republicans will be repealing the 13th Amendment to get rid of Obama."

Me: "That's a bit much."

GOP caller on C-SPAN: "Hey, I heard what that Democrat just said about repealing the 13th Amendment and getting rid of Obama - GREAT IDEA!"
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 7:27 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


koeselitz: "inigo2: “My mind just f'ing exploded a little bit. A Republican Congressman from Texas, Randy Neugebauer, confronted a park ranger at the WW II memorial AND TOLD HER SHE SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF HERSELF. WHAT IS WRONG WITH THESE PEOPLE???”

the White House's petty orders to shut down a monument
"

Citation needed.
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 7:36 PM on October 2, 2013 [6 favorites]


The staff are legally prohibited from doing their regular work, even voluntarily. I think it's a felony under the Anti-Deficiency Act. So if there can't be anyone cleaning up, maintaining safety and removing vandalism for an indefinite period of time, it makes sense to close the monuments.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 7:40 PM on October 2, 2013 [15 favorites]


East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94: "The staff are legally prohibited from doing their regular work, even voluntarily. "

But does that instruction come from the White House, or an already written law? I admit I may be wrong, but I haven't heard such direct talk until now. I would think if the directive could be tied to the White House, and the White House only, the lunatics would have broadcasted that fact a long time ago.
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 7:45 PM on October 2, 2013


me: “... the White House's petty orders to shut down a monument...”

InsertNiftyNameHere: “Citation needed.”

And I'm not very disposed to give you one, given that you've insulted me by ripping my comment out of its context apparently intentionally in order to paint me as a Republican stooge. But I'll try to give you the benefit of the doubt, if you do me the favor of going back and reading my comment, if only to note that I was stating Mr Neugebauer's belief, not my own. Note also that I was careful to say that I haven't made up my mind yet, as I don't base my opinions on handwringing on the internet, and (unlike Mr Neugebauer, apparently) I don't regard Breitbart.com as the font of wisdom.

I never said I thought the White House was being petty; nor do I believe they were. I was stating the current conservative belief.

Now: if you'd like to gander at the pile of fetid partisan dudgeon that apparently induced Mr Neugebauer to take this ridiculous step he's taken of excoriating Parks employees, you are directed here, and warned that that's a Breitbart link.
posted by koeselitz at 7:45 PM on October 2, 2013


Incidentally, that Breitbart article links directly to this, which appears to be about as trustworthy, although I've never heard of them.

InsertNiftyNameHere: “I admit I may be wrong, but I haven't heard such direct talk until now. I would think if the directive could be tied to the White House, and the White House only, the lunatics would have broadcasted that fact a long time ago.”

They've been "broadcasting" it all day, since at least noon eastern. I've been putting up with it from my conservative friends on Facebook and mostly trying to ignore them, as I usually do. That doesn't mean it's right, but it has been their narrative from the start of this fiasco. It's not really surprising, honestly; assigning blame to the other side in a shutdown seems like Hill Politics 101.
posted by koeselitz at 7:47 PM on October 2, 2013


koeselitz: "me: “... the White House's petty orders to shut down a monument...”

I never said I thought the White House was being petty; nor do I believe they were. I was stating the current conservative belief.
"

Then I sincerely apologize to you for my mistaken reading of your comment.
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 7:51 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Bachmann to Hannity: ‘This Is About the Happiest’ GOP Has Been in a While

Those lying sacks of shit, I can't even...
posted by madamjujujive at 7:52 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Looks like 31 USC § 1342 is why the parks and monuments are closed.

"An officer or employee of the United States Government or of the District of Columbia government may not accept voluntary services for either government or employ personal services exceeding that authorized by law except for emergencies involving the safety of human life or the protection of property. This section does not apply to a corporation getting amounts to make loans (except paid in capital amounts) without legal liability of the United States Government. As used in this section, the term “emergencies involving the safety of human life or the protection of property” does not include ongoing, regular functions of government the suspension of which would not imminently threaten the safety of human life or the protection of property."
posted by jason_steakums at 7:54 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Sorry, I came on a little strong there, InsertNiftyNameHere. I've just been trying to argue with conservatives about this for a while on Facebook, rather pointlessly I should add. At this point I'm just waiting to hear more before I make a judgement about what exactly is going on here.
posted by koeselitz at 7:55 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


koeselitz: "me: “... the White House's petty orders to shut down a monument...”

InsertNiftyNameHere: “Citation needed.”

And I'm not very disposed to give you one, given that you've insulted me by ripping my comment out of its context
"

Not to dwell on the issue, but, upon my re-reading of your comment it's quite clear to me now that you were, indeed, stating their position rather than your own. It was a mistake. I assure you it was not intentional, and, again, I apologize to you for my mistake. I will step away from the thread now until my blood pressure drops to a reasonable level. Once again, I'm sorry.
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 7:58 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


This is about the happiest I’ve seen [GOP] members in a long time because we're all just guzzling random assortments of narcotics
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 7:59 PM on October 2, 2013


koeselitz: "Sorry, I came on a little strong there, InsertNiftyNameHere. I've just been trying to argue with conservatives about this for a while on Facebook, rather pointlessly I should add. At this point I'm just waiting to hear more before I make a judgement about what exactly is going on here."

No worries on my end. I think we're both in very similar boats, if you will.
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 8:00 PM on October 2, 2013


But does that instruction come from the White House, or an already written law? I admit I may be wrong, but I haven't heard such direct talk until now. I would think if the directive could be tied to the White House, and the White House only, the lunatics would have broadcasted that fact a long time ago.

Introduction to the Anti-deficiency Act of 1884
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:01 PM on October 2, 2013


And make no mistake, if the administration chose to leave these places open, the same people screaming at them for keeping them closed would be screaming at them for breaking the ADA for nonessential services.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:13 PM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


Nice to see koeselitz and InsertNiftyNameHere make up. It is one of things I really like about Metafilter that when misunderstandings take place, people are OK about saying "sorry" and moving on. Very mature and adult behavior. Unlike some other people being discussed on this thread...
posted by vac2003 at 8:15 PM on October 2, 2013 [9 favorites]


It is nice but I'm still wondering about the directive. Yes, there's an 1884 law on the books, but that doesn't mean people just rush to enforce 1884 laws. Whence did the order to police the monuments and bar entry emerge?

An aside - I'm a volunteer in a National Park, and even the volunteers can't volunteer during the shutdown, not just the paid staff. We all got an email notice asking us not to show up until further notice and cancelling planned trainings.
posted by Miko at 8:40 PM on October 2, 2013


It probably happened as a consequence of the procedure described here: Meet Sylvia Burwell, the woman who ordered the government shutdown.
posted by feloniousmonk at 8:52 PM on October 2, 2013


Policing the monuments and barring entry makes sense to me. The only legit way for nonessential personnel to volunteer without violating the ADA is in "emergencies involving the safety of human life or the protection of property" and blocking off access prevents both from happening on the premises with fewer employees.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:53 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Yes, there's an 1884 law on the books, but that doesn't mean people just rush to enforce 1884 laws.

Personal perspective as a Fed: I have stuck my toe in the world of Federal contracting (on the government side) and during my week of extremely dull training, the instructors made a very clear show of how seriously the Anti-Deficiency Act (a.k.a. the Other ADA) is taken. As an individual, exposing the government to costs it doesn't have money to pay for is a huge no-no. It was also cited multiple times in my furlough letter w/r/t not being allowed to do any work while unfunded.
posted by psoas at 8:58 PM on October 2, 2013 [1 favorite]




Oh also, the Feds can be sued just like anyone else if you get hurt on their property due to employee negligence, and leaving parks and monuments open with no staff around could probably count as negligence.
posted by jason_steakums at 9:09 PM on October 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


It was also cited multiple times in my furlough letter w/r/t not being allowed to do any work while unfunded.

Oh yes. I got emails from very high ranking people in all caps and bolded stressing how important it is that I do no work. It is a violation of my contract and a fireable offense. Conversely, if my managers were to coerce me into working while furloughed, they could go to jail.
posted by C'est la D.C. at 9:13 PM on October 2, 2013


I was just thinking (sarcastically, not seriously): "Start turning the monuments into skate parks, and let's see how quickly they want those barriers maintained again."
posted by Drinky Die at 9:15 PM on October 2, 2013 [8 favorites]


No, you're right, Drinky Die. It's one thing when some sweet old vets storm the barriers to pay homage to their fallen comrades in arms. It's another when a bunch of 9th graders from Teaneck sneak out on curfew during their school trip and start tagging the Viet Nam wall or the Lincoln monument.
posted by Miko at 9:23 PM on October 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


And don't forget, it was pretty recently that someone was arrested for vandalizing several monuments; just having them open without normal amounts of patrols just isn't a good idea.

So, I repeat -- these people are fucking crazy, and the gall of that congressman to insult the park employee like that is disgusting.
posted by inigo2 at 9:43 PM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


A Republican Congressman from Texas, Randy Neugebauer, confronted a park ranger at the WW II memorial AND TOLD HER SHE SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF HERSELF.

Shouldn't that be Randy Altzerstörer?

/language humor
posted by dhens at 9:44 PM on October 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


Government Shutdown scales back search for missing woman at Craters of the Moon National Monument

One woman already found dead, and they can't find the other. By now, it's pretty well certain that Dr. Blakeslee won't be found alive.

Liars, thieves, and murderers.
posted by BlueHorse at 10:02 PM on October 2, 2013 [5 favorites]


What I don't understand is the end game here. Obamacare is not being defunded or delayed. That is not going to happen under any circumstances. None. So are the Republicans simply going to leave the government shut down permanently? Can they do that?

Because they've backed themselves into a corner. If they completely cave and pass a clean CR and debt ceiling increase they're shown to be ridiculous buffoons. But the single demand they've all hitched themselves to, the gutting of Obamacare, is never happening.

What is the end game? Maybe they don't have one? That's kind of a scary thought.
posted by Justinian at 12:06 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


I think they started off believing they could delay Obamacare. I don't think they believe that anymore. It really is: “We have to get something out of this. And I don’t know what that even is.”
posted by Drinky Die at 12:20 AM on October 3, 2013 [8 favorites]


You get nothing! You lose! Good day, sir!
posted by Justinian at 12:22 AM on October 3, 2013 [27 favorites]


I think the history of Boehner's speakership is going to be incredible to read. I try and follow it in the news but it just never makes logical sense. The dude is brilliant. He forces Obama into deals that are Republican wet dreams...but then the Tea Party tells him "No!" while Obama is screaming "Yes!"

And then when the Tea Party says "No!" he says "Fine" and gives them exactly what they want so they can never have enough cause to toss him out. The tea party goes into a rage because they didn't get what they want, but since they can't blame the guy who did what they ask, and they can't blame themselves, they just get more mad at Obama. Obama gets the credit for compromising on everything but often doesn't actually have to do it since they CAN'T SAY YES TO HIM.
posted by Drinky Die at 12:31 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


I don't think they wanted to delay Obamacare. If that was their goal, they might have been able to do so with different tactics. Once Cruz stands up in the Senate they've locked themselves into killing Obamacare or losing. I understand why Cruz did what he did. He wants the media attention and glory. I don't understand why any of his colleagues followed him.
posted by rdr at 12:32 AM on October 3, 2013



What I don't understand is the end game here. Obamacare is not being defunded or delayed. That is not going to happen under any circumstances. None. So are the Republicans simply going to leave the government shut down permanently? Can they do that


To draw on MrMoonPie's twitter analogy, the teahadists have already set the house on fire. If anything, it seems like that IS their end goal. Permanent shutdown of the federal government bar the bare bones 'essential' workers? Even better than getting rid of the ACA - if they don't get to run the government, then kill it altogether. So the question is, how long can they delay the firefighters being allowed to be called out to put out the fire? Or will they succeed in letting the whole city burn, i.e. pull the same tactic on the debt ceiling?

I see five end scenarios.

1) The democrats fold, and hand over some sort of big concessions to the teahadists to fend off a default and get the federal government running again, particularly around the ACA, but quite possibly something else big and painful for the public, and the teahadists and repubs slap themselves on the back for a job well done, and repub media blame Obama for the negative consequences. Given that would be a re-run of 2011, and set the administration up for the exact same problem every time there's a funding problem, I think the Dems have finally realised that that's a losing strategy that will cost them more than they can afford - it effectively hands control of the government to the teahadists, despite their small numbers.

2) As the shutdown continues to bite, and the threat over the default looms, and the feedback from the public blaming the repubs gets worse, enough sane repubs (for a fairly loose definition of 'sane') believe they're more at risk to losing their seats to democrats in 2014 than getting primaried by the far right. They then convince Boehner to allow a vote on a clean CR (keeping the sequester) and probably a debt ceiling hike, possibly with some sort of guarantee of a budget committee from Obama/Reid with the repub goal of a balanced budget in 10 years, aka the Williamsburg agreement. Such a vote, were it allowed to take place, gets sufficient support from Dems and Repubs to pass, despite the teahadists, and the budget fight gets stuck in for the long haul over making a budget that's not quite as nuts as the Ryan one. Boehner has allowed 4 bills to the floor previously that passed without a majority of repubs behind them, and Obama is pretty famous for handing concessions over, so it's definitely possible. The teahadists and their supporters will not be happy though, so the consequences for the sane repubs - and probably Boehner - will be stiff.

3) Either Boehner or Obama won't be budged from their respective position, and the shutdown continues right up to the debt limit crisis. Obama pulls out a trick like the trillion dollar coin - or just decides that choosing between obeying the law forcing him to spend what Congress has authorised and obeying the law that forces him not to borrow more than allowed, decides to break the law about the debt limit rather than let the economy goes down in flames on his watch. Either way, the teahadists will start impeachment proceedings, and the repubs will go along with that rather than be primaried from the right. The media blames both sides.

4) The same as 3, but Obama decides to follow the law, and the debt crisis actually happens, and the US government defaults. Teahadists are delighted as they the blame all the damage to the economy, loss of jobs, and preventable deaths on Obama, as does a good chunk of the media. A new worldwide depression is triggered, with permanent consequences for the US economy.

5) The sane repubs grow a spine, tell the teahadists to sod off, Boehner follows on, there's a clean CR without the sequester and the debt limit is raised with wide bi-partisan support, and the committee to sort out a compromise budget between the senate and congress starts like it would in an actual government that gave a shit about actually governing, without getting blocked by the repubs. This end scenario is too implausible to believe it would actually happen.

I think option 2 is the most likely, followed by 3. I fear 4.
posted by ArkhanJG at 1:19 AM on October 3, 2013 [10 favorites]


The VA gubernatorial election is in 30 days time with Tea Party hero Ken Cuccinelli on the GOP ticket. The potential of a severe voter beatdown is getting higher every day.
posted by PenDevil at 1:25 AM on October 3, 2013


The Washington Examiner article that Golden Eternity linked above makes clear how purely political this whole thing has been up to this point — and how completely clueless the controlling faction is.

I'm going to repaste the quote GE did because it bears repeating:
"This is not just about Obamacare anymore," centrist Rep. Michael Grimm, R-N.Y., said.

"We’re not going to be disrespected," conservative Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-Ind., added. "We have to get something out of this. And I don’t know what that even is."
posted by wemayfreeze at 1:32 AM on October 3, 2013 [5 favorites]


I never thought I would feel the slightest nostalgia for the days of Newt Gingrich. He was the bogeyman back in the nineties. I saw him in D.C. up close once and was tense about the possibility that his eyes would fall upon me, like Sauron, and I'd be fucked.

And now he was the *reasonable guy*
posted by angrycat at 3:41 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


> "We have to get something out of this. And I don’t know what that even is."

What do we want?

SOMETHING OR OTHER!

When do we want it?

YES!
posted by kyrademon at 4:50 AM on October 3, 2013 [35 favorites]


The VA gubernatorial election is in 30 days time with Tea Party hero Ken Cuccinelli on the GOP ticket. The potential of a severe voter beatdown is getting higher every day.

Hey buddy, no worries, they're working on that.
posted by indubitable at 5:03 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


“We’re not going to be disrespected,”

Dude, if making a compromise—any compromise—makes you feel emasculated, perhaps you should find a different line of work.

posted by 1970s Antihero at 5:04 AM on October 3, 2013 [5 favorites]


“We’re not going to be disrespected,” conservative Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-Ind., [told the Washington Examiner]. “We have to get something out of this. And I don’t know what that even is.”

OFA and the left superPACs should be preparing ads with this quote and Michelle Bachmann's "overjoyed" one to be playing every other commercial break on the major network and cable shows for the next week. Hoist these fuckers by their own petard and let 'em dangle in the wind.
posted by zombieflanders at 5:16 AM on October 3, 2013 [14 favorites]


"We have to get something out of this. And I don’t know what that even is."

Fuck. Four year olds throwing tantrums for sweets really are more reasonable. They want a fucking cookie every time they DON'T lie down in the road?
posted by Artw at 5:34 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


I don't think there's any thought-through endgame that results from a real strategic direction. I think this all about finding ways - any way - to be seen as someone happy to weaken government, which is what the nuts and their supporters think they want. Given that, it's hard to imagine a result they wouldn't spin as a positive in that light - hungry infants and mothers? Get 'em off the rolls, let faith-based aid step in. Closed parks? Eun 'em with volunteers - and police 'em with militia. And so on. I am hopeful that this will convince fewer and fewer people as the chilling moral cruelty of this philosophy becomes evident, which is one reason I'm talking to a lot of people about the "suicide caucus" and what a small minority and historical blip the people who have this worldview are, despite the outsize impact they're having right now.

I don't understand the debt ceiling well enough to predict what's going to go down there. I do think that two weeks plus is a fuck of a long time for the government to be shut down. My town is already up in arms and it's only been two days. If this goes on, I am hopeful that there'd be some high-visibility protest actions that, if they're smart and don't end up trying to bait law enforcement, could encourage public opinion to put more pressure on the R's.
posted by Miko at 5:35 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


...the bulk of FDA food inspectors have been deemed non-essential, so will inspect few if any food facilities until Congress and the president agree on a bill to fund the federal government... for every day the government doesn't work, approximately 80 food facilities will go without federal inspections. If the shutdown lasts until Oct. 17, 960 facilities may go without U.S. inspections.
Burger, anyone?
posted by Miko at 5:39 AM on October 3, 2013


Gee, Milko, let's hope Kentucky can get to the root of its recent salmonella outbreak.

Federal Government Shutdown: Impact on Food Safety May Compound Over Time
The current shutdown also means that FDA does not have personnel available to investigate outbreaks and perform tracebacks through the supply chain on foods suspected of sickening people. Of course, CDC also had to furlough its epidemiological staff, meaning the agency will not be available to support state health departments and coordinate investigations into multi-state foodborne outbreaks.
posted by madamjujujive at 5:52 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


The bastard children of Grover Norquist, "I don't want to abolish government. I simply want to reduce it to the size where I can drag it into the bathroom and drown it in the bathtub".
posted by Mister Bijou at 5:54 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


The right’s new lie about its shutdown intentions
If Ted Cruz is making John Boehner dance like a marionette, then Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., is the guy helping Cruz keep the strings untangled.

He’s the author of the House version of the famous letter insisting that Republicans make funding the government contingent upon gutting Obamacare. He didn't, and won’t get Obamacare defunded. But the signatories to that letter are a decent proxy for the group of hard-line Republicans who are holding Boehner's speakership over his head and thus making the country ungovernable.

So it was a big surprise when he told reporters on Tuesday that, really, the government shutdown has nothing to do with Obamacare.

“This fight now has become about veterans and about national guard folks that perhaps — reservists that are not getting paid,” he said. “That’s where the fight is today. Obamacare is mandatory spending that’s going on.”

Well, that’s great news! If the government shutdown fight isn't about Obamacare anymore, then opening the government back up should be a cinch. Could be done in a matter of minutes.

But Republicans have no intention of opening the whole government back up. That’s why they spent all of Wednesday passing bills to reopen its narrowest but most visible and high-valence offices. Meadows was clumsily undertaking an act of subterfuge that has united the whole party. An attempt to distract the public and the press from the totem that’s been at the center of the shutdown from the get-go. Unbeknownst to him, Meadows was challenging the press not to allow themselves to get bamboozled by distractions from the real cause of the shutdown.

When NPR’s Tamara Keith asked the obvious follow-up — if it’s not about Obamacare anymore, why not pass a complete funding bill — Meadows devolved into gibberish and scurried away.
posted by zombieflanders at 5:56 AM on October 3, 2013 [8 favorites]


zombieflanders, you're right to call the parts of government they are trying to fund "high-valence." But one thing that confuses me - even though I should be too wise by now to be surprised at philosophical inconsistencies from these guys - is that some of what they seem to think needs funding should by all rights, if you believe what they believe, be the first things to go. The National Parks, for instance - this is a total drain on government funds, nonessential, a nice thing to have but not a linchpin of survival or quality of life. There are great natural resources in there that could be put to larger profitmaking potential than parkland. A lot of Americans will never even use this resource. There is no internally consistent small-government argument that would support national parks.

But they do know what people love - on Facebook yesterday, I called the parks the charismatic megafauna of government programs, and this data shows that:
  • 95 percent of voters see "protecting and supporting the National Parks" as an appropriate role for the federal government
  • Even in these difficult fiscal circumstances, very few voters from either side of the political aisle say the federal government should be cutting back on funding for National Parks
  • posted by Miko at 6:05 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    I'm getting a bit more afraid now.

    Is defunding the ACA just a Tea Party pretense to shut down the gov't? The Maddow piece, while certainly cherry-picking the more extreme TP'ers, indicates that the long game has been just shutting the whole damn gov't down and letting the citizens see for themselves that they're better off without it.

    This can't be true can it? No, please. Just be insane about the defunding ACA, not the whole government. (Hold me.)
    posted by klarck at 6:15 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    The bastard children of Grover Norquist...

    Even Norquist is wondering what the hell Cruz is up to: ‘He pushed House Republicans into traffic and wandered away’
    posted by PenDevil at 6:26 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    “This fight now has become about veterans and about national guard folks that perhaps — reservists that are not getting paid....”

    This may be the most sincerely frightening thing I have heard in years if it's the dog whistle I have good reason to suspect it is.
    posted by digitalprimate at 6:27 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Melissa McEwan:
    House Republicans continue to do their damnedest to turn this into a story of "two sides who refuse to compromise" by passing piecemeal funding legislation, which they know Democrats will not support, only to then accuse Democrats of harming the people directly affected by that funding.

    Representative Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.) precisely called out their cynical strategy: "Any time they see a bad headline, they're going to bring a bill to the floor to make it go away." And then use the media momentum around that issue to accuse Democrats of failing the people.

    My contempt for this shit cannot be measured on a scale fathomable by human intellect.
    posted by audi alteram partem at 6:27 AM on October 3, 2013 [12 favorites]


    Conservatives really can't be trusted with power, can they? Can't they have play-doh instead?
    posted by Grangousier at 6:33 AM on October 3, 2013


    The real story of the shutdown: 50 years of GOP race-baiting
    Today, the entire government has been taken hostage by leaders elected by this crazed minority, who see in the face of Barack Obama everything they’ve been taught to fear for 50 years. Start with miscegenation: He’s not just black, he’s the product of a black father and a white mother. (That helps explain an unconscious motive for birtherism: They can’t get their minds off the circumstances of his conception and birth.) With his Ivy League degrees, they are sure he must be the elitist beneficiary of affirmative action. Steeped in Chicago politics, he’s the representative of corrupt urban machines controlled by Democrats – machines that ironically originated with the Irish and once kept African-Americans down, but which are now synonymous with corrupt black power. In Michele Bachmann’s words, Obama is a product of Chicago’s scary “gangster government,” or did she say “gangsta”?

    Leading Republicans who know better have demeaned the president with a long list of racially coded slurs. Obama is “the food stamp president,” Newt Gingrich told us. He wants to help “black people” (or was it “blah people”?) “by giving them somebody else’s money,” Rick Santorum said. Even his so-called GOP “friend” Sen. Tom Coburn insists Obama is spreading “dependency” on government because “it worked so well for him as an African-American male.”

    Where Mitt Romney’s father, George, stood up to the rising tide of racism in his party and marched in fair housing protests in the 1960s, Mitt himself embraced the birther-in-chief Donald Trump during the 2012 campaign. And when things got tough in the fall campaign, he and Paul Ryan doubled down on racial appeals by accusing Obama of weakening welfare reform – he hadn’t – and of giving white seniors’ hard-earned Medicare dollars to Obamacare recipients. And we all know who they are.

    Now we have John Boehner, elected House speaker thanks to the Tea Party wave of 2010, shutting down the government over Obamacare. Boehner has the power to open the government by bringing a clean continuing resolution to the floor and allowing it to pass with the help of Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats. Should we expect such courage? In one of his first major media appearances after becoming speaker, he refused to rebuke the birthers in his caucus. “It’s not up to me to tell them what to think,” he told NBC’s Brian Williams.

    Now he’s kowtowing to the roughly 30 House Republicans from bright red districts that also happen to be almost exclusively white, in a country that is more than one-third non-white. They want to shut down the government to torpedo Obamacare, the signature program of our first black president. Obviously, though he’s the leader, Boehner believes it’s not up to him to tell the GOP suicide caucus what to think. Although the speaker told reporters after Obama’s r-election that Obamacare was the law of the land, and that a government shutdown would be bad for the country, he changed his tune when confronted with an insurrection, and the de facto House speaker who happens to be a senator, Ted Cruz. (Cruz’s father, by the way, just joined the ranks of those who seem to believe Obama is a Muslim, telling a Colorado woman who made that claim: “[Sen. John] McCain couldn’t say that because it wasn’t politically correct. It is time we stop being politically correct!”
    posted by zombieflanders at 6:36 AM on October 3, 2013 [23 favorites]


    Shutdown delays experimental treatment for Cape patient

    National Institutes of Health director Francis Collins told the Associated Press that each week the shutdown continues, the NIH hospital in Bethesda, Md., will have to turn away 200 patients, 30 of them children, seeking to enroll in studies, often for last-resort treatments after they have exhausted all other options.
    posted by rory at 6:36 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Oh, "blah people"! I'd forgotten that one. Good times!
    posted by rtha at 6:39 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    NOT RACIST.
    posted by Artw at 6:40 AM on October 3, 2013


    3) Either Boehner or Obama won't be budged from their respective position, and the shutdown continues right up to the debt limit crisis. Obama pulls out a trick like the trillion dollar coin - or just decides that choosing between obeying the law forcing him to spend what Congress has authorised and obeying the law that forces him not to borrow more than allowed, decides to break the law about the debt limit rather than let the economy goes down in flames on his watch. Either way, the teahadists will start impeachment proceedings, and the repubs will go along with that rather than be primaried from the right. The media blames both sides.

    Obama is forced to ignore the ceiling or allow default, and the teahadists immediately impeach. They have no endgame outside of talk radio, and shutdown, default and impeachment have been the agenda since 2010. Even if the Senate will obviously never convict, the teabags secure fundraising off opposing the Great Satan Kenyan Usurper through the next several election cycles and the wingnut welfare grift train keeps on grifting on.

    This scenario says nothing about ending the shutdown, it could drag on for months, until the military starts getting upset and politely reminds the teahads who has control the largest military in the world.

    Buy guns, America is over.
    posted by T.D. Strange at 6:41 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    "We’re not going to be disrespected," conservative Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-Ind., added. "We have to get something out of this. And I don’t know what that even is."

    For some reason I am reminded of this.
    posted by Combustible Edison Lighthouse at 6:42 AM on October 3, 2013


    Is defunding the ACA just a Tea Party pretense to shut down the gov't?...This can't be true can it?

    That's absolutely what's going on, yes.
    posted by Miko at 6:43 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Now would be a good time for a little Occupy.
    posted by Miko at 6:45 AM on October 3, 2013 [14 favorites]


    Is defunding the ACA just a Tea Party pretense to shut down the gov't?

    Really it's the other way around. Shutting down the government is one of the few things that the Republicans can do to try to unilaterally force their legislation through without having to compromise. They only control one house of congress and can't override a veto from Obama, so traditionally the only way for them to get their legislation signed into law would be to compromise and let the Democrats get a lot of what they want too. But since far-right funding groups control a lot of the money that actually elects Republicans, and those far-right groups grade them on who gives in to the Democrats the least instead of who can actually get legislation signed into law, they can't compromise. That leaves them with almost no options other than trying to make sure that absolutely no legislation gets passed ever, total obstructionism.

    There are only a few things that absolutely 100% need to be passed in congress, like the budget and the debt ceiling, and the Republicans see threatening to obstruct those things as their only option to get anything done. But it's a crappy option because shutting down the government and/or defaulting on government debt hurts everyone including Republican interests, and it's transparently obvious that the Republicans are responsible for any negative impacts. It has never really worked before (pretty much every previous shutdown has resulted in either a compromise or a loss for the minority party) and has almost no chance of working now, but unless the Republicans change their overall strategy they don't have anything else they can do.
    posted by burnmp3s at 6:46 AM on October 3, 2013


    It's win-win either way for the crazy fuckers. They probably don't even know which they want themselves.
    posted by Artw at 6:47 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    My greatest fear is that their plan will work. It goes something like this:

    Part 1 - The Republicans essentially cause the shutdown. The media, in it's wishy washy "everyone is bad!" way, doesn't make this clear and just points the finger at congress.

    Part 2 - The Republicans begin trying to pass bills to fund the most public facing items so that when they don't pass or get vetoes they can scream, "The Democrats don't want to treat cancer patients!"

    Part 3 - The average joe, who only knows that "congress" is to blame, hears that the Republicans are at least trying to get something done and Obama is vetoing them. Blames the Democrats.

    Obviously anyone who is paying attention won't fall for this, but their slavering base + dupes in the middle might be all they need.
    posted by charred husk at 6:49 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Not discounting the potential ignorance of American voters and the spinelessness of American media, but so far nobody* really seems to be buying this as anything other than a GOP shutdown, do they? It's almost heartening, except for the level of shit that has to go down to make that occur.

    * crazy people on Facebook and the Wall Street Journal excepted.
    posted by Artw at 6:54 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    the long game has been just shutting the whole damn gov't down and letting the citizens see for themselves that they're better off without it.

    It's certainly the dream of a relatively small number of anti-government zealots. And there's another, much larger, faction that will abet it. But I'm skeptical that this was the plan all along (except in the sense that this is the ultimate result of years of anti-government rhetoric) in this particular instance. Rather, it looks like an opportunity grasped at without much thought given to what would happen after or finally. That's worrying because in this kind of half-assed Mexican standoff, someone's going to get shot.

    I learned last night that an in-law's in-law has a (usually) fatal illness. He'll be treated by the VA, if there's any VA to treat him.
    posted by octobersurprise at 6:57 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Your in-law^2 will get the best care anywhere. We planned for this.
    posted by klarck at 7:02 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    For some reason I am reminded of this.

    I imagine the House Republicans talking to each other more like this.
    posted by octobersurprise at 7:06 AM on October 3, 2013


    Repost of Artw's link way-upthread Geography of a suicide caucus.
    posted by panaceanot at 7:07 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    It's certainly the dream of a relatively small number of anti-government zealots. And there's another, much larger, faction that will abet it. But I'm skeptical that this was the plan all along (except in the sense that this is the ultimate result of years of anti-government rhetoric) in this particular instance. Rather, it looks like an opportunity grasped at without much thought given to what would happen after or finally. That's worrying because in this kind of half-assed Mexican standoff, someone's going to get shot.

    That's what it sounds like from the Politico story that's popped up a few times in the thread. Cruz was pressed on his endgame by fellow Republicans and it turns out he didn't have one.
    posted by jason_steakums at 7:13 AM on October 3, 2013


    NPR had a story this morning talking to the mother of a young boy with Leukemia in the NIH hospital in Maryland, who's only bright spot in life right now was every week when they brought dogs around to play with the children. His mom talked about how he liked the small dogs who could get on the bed and sit in his lap. They told them earlier this week that the dogs can't come around because they're not essential.

    The story made me tear up in the car and I'm doing it again at my desk now.
    posted by DynamiteToast at 7:16 AM on October 3, 2013 [14 favorites]


    And as per the map linked by Artw & panaceanot, I wouldn't rule out "right-wing-echo-chamber" as one of the big reasons this is happening - when your source for "what the public wants" is a significant number of your constituents writing you to tell you that blocking the Kenyan Muslim's Plan For Socialism is your Number One Job, and you and your staff are spending a lot of time on RedState and Fox News, you could start to think that blocking Obamacare really has a ton of support.

    So they instigated the shutdown genuinely believing that there would be a huge public outcry supporting them. Now that it turns out that's not the case in reality, they have no idea what to do.
    posted by soundguy99 at 7:19 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Fox News headline (no link): House Republicans Probe DC Monument Closures Amid Slimdown

    I threw up in my mouth a little bit.
    posted by Curious Artificer at 7:21 AM on October 3, 2013 [8 favorites]


    Statement on the October 1st Government Shutdown at Economic Equality and Anarchism blog
    posted by jeffburdges at 7:22 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Also, this morning on CNN (take with whatever grains of salt you feel appropriate), there's GOP moderates huddle as conservatives set agenda.

    So there are some glimmers of possibility that the moderate Republicans will break, and ArkhanJG's scenario #2 will be how this all resolves.
    posted by soundguy99 at 7:26 AM on October 3, 2013


    digitalprimate: "“This fight now has become about veterans and about national guard folks that perhaps — reservists that are not getting paid....”

    This may be the most sincerely frightening thing I have heard in years if it's the dog whistle I have good reason to suspect it is
    "

    I can hardly keep up with them these days. please elaborate.

    man, I wish there was a decoder ring.
    posted by ArgentCorvid at 7:27 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]




    I can hardly keep up with them these days. please elaborate.

    They're building a case for a military coup. That's the "Plan B" of the really way out wingnuts - they've never seen the President as legitimate, and want to use the pain of the shutdown to bring the military to the same conclusion.
    posted by Slap*Happy at 7:35 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    And do you know who else wanted to shut down the U.S. Government? That's right!
    posted by entropicamericana at 7:35 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    OK, we can just end the thread right there.
    posted by zennie at 7:38 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Obama is getting ready to speak at a construction company in Rockville, Maryland. Livestream via Washington Post.
    posted by argonauta at 7:40 AM on October 3, 2013


    This may be the most sincerely frightening thing I have heard in years if it's the dog whistle I have good reason to suspect it is"

    I can hardly keep up with them these days. please elaborate.


    I think the dog whistle might be that they're trying to rouse state guard reservists and vets against the Feds with some limp Shays' Rebellion-lite "you're not getting paid! get angry!" rhetoric? If it's anything like that I'd imagine it's really that they're actually trying to be seen as doing that, to the people receptive to the dog whistle, from behind safe cover to score risk-free disingenuous brownie points with the Confederacy and Minutemen fetishists. It would be such a dumb, dumb idea to pretend a fraction of a fraction of the national guard could go up against the actual military, this ain't the 1860's.

    They're building a case for a military coup. That's the "Plan B" of the really way out wingnuts - they've never seen the President as legitimate, and want to use the pain of the shutdown to bring the military to the same conclusion.

    If their target's convincing the entire military to back them they're barking up the wroooong tree. There are some shitty wingnuts in the services just like anywhere else, but as a whole they take upholding the Constitution as Serious Business and wouldn't play that game.
    posted by jason_steakums at 7:40 AM on October 3, 2013 [10 favorites]


    Just sent an email to my Congressman (Trey Gowdy, Republican, 4th district SC). Automated response: "Due to the current government shutdown and furlough of staff, we will respond to your email as soon as possible when normal operations resume." Ahh, bitter irony.

    I couldn't find a phone # right away, but as soon as I do he'll be receiving a call as well.
    posted by Roommate at 7:40 AM on October 3, 2013 [7 favorites]


    Statement on the October 1st Government Shutdown at Economic Equality and Anarchism blog

    ... And this just in: Both sides to blame, anarchists say; state's legitimacy doubtful.
    posted by octobersurprise at 7:43 AM on October 3, 2013 [7 favorites]


    There are some shitty wingnuts in the services just like anywhere else, but as a whole they take upholding the Constitution as Serious Business and wouldn't play that game.

    Agreed. They're risking their (considerable) military constituency if they keep pushing this, even from the extreme edges.
    posted by Slap*Happy at 7:46 AM on October 3, 2013


    Wow, Rep. Akita is a condescending grade A asshole!
    posted by cmfletcher at 7:47 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Obama's up!
    posted by PenDevil at 7:49 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    I've just been trying to argue with conservatives about this for a while on Facebook, rather pointlessly I should add.

    You can have any sort of discussion with people who come to the discussion in bad faith. It is indeed, entirely pointless. That these people have not been laughed at but have gotten power is astounding.

    I think option 2 is the most likely, followed by 3. I fear 4.

    I think 4 is unfortunately, the most likely outcome. When your view of the world is so skewed and basically insane, you won't be able to appreciate the consequences, and indeed, the consequences will be someone else's fault.

    This can't be true can it? No, please. Just be insane about the defunding ACA, not the whole government. (Hold me.)

    Key word being insane, which makes it more than likely.

    Representative Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.) precisely called out their cynical strategy: "Any time they see a bad headline, they're going to bring a bill to the floor to make it go away." And then use the media momentum around that issue to accuse Democrats of failing the people.

    Have people been calling out their bullshit from day one and the main stream media just doesn't call out bullshit but by the party line? 5 minutes of the Daily Show is worth more than a month of CNN.

    Not discounting the potential ignorance of American voters and the spinelessness of American media, but so far nobody* really seems to be buying this as anything other than a GOP shutdown, do they? It's almost heartening, except for the level of shit that has to go down to make that occur.

    This is one of the other astounding things about this and pretty much the only ray of hope.

    Rep. Todd Rokita To CNN's Carol Costello: 'You're Beautiful But You Have To Be Honest'

    You have to wonder when "the media", which clearly gives these guys a pass will get fed up with constantly being shit on nonetheless. It's like a bad marriage that goes on forever.

    "We’re not going to be disrespected," conservative Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-Ind., added. "We have to get something out of this. And I don’t know what that even is."

    A cold pop can up your ass would be just reward.
    posted by juiceCake at 7:50 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]




    panaceanot: "Repost of Artw's link way-upthread Geography of a suicide caucus."

    Looks like once again Pennsylvania is the Alabama of the northeast. Sorry about that everyone.
    posted by octothorpe at 7:57 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Not discounting the potential ignorance of American voters and the spinelessness of American media, but so far nobody* really seems to be buying this as anything other than a GOP shutdown, do they?
    I don't know about that. I've been seeing things like this Daily News picture being bandied around on Facebook, including by people who are generally progressive in their opinions.

    Spreading false equivalency to people who don't really pay much attention is a longterm specialty of Republicans and those who back them.
    posted by Flunkie at 7:58 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    See * about the idiocy of Facebook loudmouths - I don't think much can be read into that.
    posted by Artw at 8:00 AM on October 3, 2013


    I'm not talking about "crazy people" or "Facebook loudmouths". I'm talking about generally reasonable people who don't pay attention, and who get taken in by crazy people who are trying to fool them into believing in the false equivalency.
    posted by Flunkie at 8:04 AM on October 3, 2013


    Confederacy and Minutemen fetishists

    Another day, another bunch of dudes in funny hats who think it should be the time of slavery trying to lynch the black guy.
    posted by Artw at 8:04 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Ironically, perhaps, you'll note that Alabama actually only has ONE "suicide caucus" rep, compared to Pennsylvania and Indiana's 4, Ohio's 3, and Michigan's 5.
    posted by soundguy99 at 8:04 AM on October 3, 2013


    Obama just quoted Stutzman's "We're not going to be disrespected. We have to get something out of this and I don't know what that even is" line. Nice.
    posted by zombieflanders at 8:05 AM on October 3, 2013 [13 favorites]


    In case you're not able to listen, Obama's speech is really laying it out clear - he's simply asking that the Boehner allow the House vote to on the Senate bill. I actually starting clapping at one point (even though I'm listening with headphones on at my desk).
    posted by troika at 8:05 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]




    soundguy99: "Ironically, perhaps, you'll note that Alabama actually only has ONE "suicide caucus" rep, compared to Pennsylvania and Indiana's 4, Ohio's 3, and Michigan's 5."

    I was making a reference to James Carville's famous quote but yeah, you're right.
    posted by octothorpe at 8:09 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    The real story of the shutdown: 50 years of GOP race-baiting

    Not that Canada is land of zero racism but I constantly forget how much of US political insanity can be attributed to race (assuming this analysis is somewhat accurate) as it's so divorced from my regular world view. Complete bat crap insane behaviour/policy suddenly makes sense once you see it from a racist view with the goal of policy being to keep the black man down.
    posted by Mitheral at 8:09 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    TBH Living in a blue state I'd probably forget it too, if not for big national politics blow ups like this.
    posted by Artw at 8:13 AM on October 3, 2013


    (Oh, and being here for the last two presidential elections - oh, the racism.)
    posted by Artw at 8:14 AM on October 3, 2013


    My dog whistle comment was based on ideas I mentioned in 2010. Basically, by specifically mentioning the state Guards and the reservists, it might be hinting that these people who are not active federal military but with access to weapons/training/local support might be angry enough to...well I don't know exactly. Resist LEO attempts to reign in their [surely coming in their minds] protests?

    I think the fantasy endgame is radical devolution of power to the states: essentially secession by another name. The concept is that a local force could, if necessary face down a Federal intervention by active duty units.

    God I hate typing this. But I have heard people talk like this IRL.
    posted by digitalprimate at 8:16 AM on October 3, 2013


    I'm hoping this isn't just Google pandering to me, but when I check the "Republican Party" tag on Google News, the first story is that Onion article.
    posted by Peccable at 8:17 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    "We’re not going to be disrespected," conservative Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-Ind., added. "We have to get something out of this. And I don’t know what that even is."
    I'll see your quote and raise you an op-ed: former Bush speechwriter Marc Thiessen,
    The GOP flunks Hostage Taking 101
    "Let’s be clear: I’m all for taking hostages. Both sides do it all the time. But one of the first things they teach you in Hostage Taking 101 is that you have to choose a hostage the other side cares about saving ...

    Obama will not permit an economic crisis worse than 2008-09 and the 'loss of millions of American jobs' on his watch. He has no choice but to negotiate with GOP leaders and cut a deal to avoid a government default.

    ... So what’s the smart move here, Republicans? Simple: Pass a clean, short-term continuing resolution to keep the government operating at current levels and then attach your demands to legislation raising the debt limit."
    "A hostage the other side cares about saving," is a nice touch. It isn't often you get to see one of these maniacs confess to just how callous and power-crazed they actually are.
    posted by octobersurprise at 8:26 AM on October 3, 2013 [11 favorites]


    Ah, but "both sides do it". I mean, we all remember that happening, right?
    posted by Artw at 8:28 AM on October 3, 2013


    My dog whistle comment was based on ideas I mentioned in 2010. Basically, by specifically mentioning the state Guards and the reservists, it might be hinting that these people who are not active federal military but with access to weapons/training/local support might be angry enough to...well I don't know exactly. Resist LEO attempts to reign in their [surely coming in their minds] protests?

    From your earlier comment:

    Then someone I know pointed out that the National Guard, as abused as it currently is with active deployments, still retains enough assets and more importantly local geographical knowledge and support to…well you get the picture, especially if one considers the economic situation and political leanings of the average guardsperson.

    You'd be surprised at how much more moderate the average guardsperson is than the average active-duty service member. Remember, the NG and the Reserves are people who do it one weekend a month and have regular jobs out in the community the rest of the time. There's a reason that dictators prefer large standing armies with military caste systems -- it's one thing for Sergeant Snuffy III, son of Sergeant Snuffy Jr. and grandson of Sergeant Snuffy Sr., all of whom spent their entire lives in the military system, to take up arms against a civilian population in an area he's stationed in that's far from where he grew up and that he never has to deal with as human beings; it's another thing entirely for Sergeant Snuffy, son of Grocer Snuffy and grandson of Auto Plant Worker Snuffy, to take up arms against a civilian population that he went to high school with right down the street.
    posted by Etrigan at 8:28 AM on October 3, 2013 [8 favorites]


    *furiously builds time machine*

    *goes back to 1965, White House*

    "Hello, President Johnson, I come from the future. We need your help. Congress is gridlocked and we have a President who just can't quite muster the same sort of, uh, influence that you are so well known for. Will you come with me? There's a man in particular I'd like you to talk to. His name is John, and if you could, I don't know -- threaten his family? Kidnap his dog? Whatever it is you do that will make him wish he could call Saul's vacuum cleaner repairman instead of remaining in his position as-- oh, right, sorry, it's a TV show that, well nevermind about that. Are you coming? Excellent, thank you sir."

    "Oh, and sir? Your fly is open."
    posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 8:29 AM on October 3, 2013 [8 favorites]


    Ah, but "both sides do it."

    Walter White must have told himself the same thing at times.
    posted by octobersurprise at 8:34 AM on October 3, 2013


    Etrigan, I really want, "You'd be surprised at how much more moderate the average guardsperson is than the average active-duty service member" to be true. Had you asked me that growing up among them I would have 100% agreed.

    Some places nowadays, some very particular places? Pushed far enough, I'm not so sure now.
    posted by digitalprimate at 8:36 AM on October 3, 2013


    LBJ knows his fly is open. You don't have to tell him.
    posted by Flunkie at 8:36 AM on October 3, 2013 [12 favorites]


    LBJ's fly doesn't even have a zipper.
    posted by Aizkolari at 8:40 AM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    LBJ's fly doesn't even have a zipper.

    He had his reasons.
    posted by audi alteram partem at 8:53 AM on October 3, 2013


    > But I have heard people talk like this IRL.
    Bluster. Keep your eye on the ball.

    > LBJ ... had his reasons.
    Pre-existing conditions are almost a thing of the past. Not long now.
    posted by de at 8:57 AM on October 3, 2013


    * crazy people on Facebook and the Wall Street Journal excepted.

    Crazy people on facebook and the WSJ make up half the country... I don't see how you can except them.

    I dunno, I was disappointed by NPR this morning, since they sounded a bit too "neither side's willing to compromise" to me. The Daily Show has been very clear about what's happening, but they also were very cynical about the possibility that this could end well, since that basically depends on some percentage of republicans deciding to be reasonable.
    posted by mdn at 8:59 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Then someone I know pointed out that the National Guard, as abused as it currently is with active deployments, still retains enough assets and more importantly local geographical knowledge and support to…well you get the picture, especially if one considers the economic situation and political leanings of the average guardsperson.

    You'd be surprised at how much more moderate the average guardsperson is than the average active-duty service member. Remember, the NG and the Reserves are people who do it one weekend a month and have regular jobs out in the community the rest of the time. There's a reason that dictators prefer large standing armies with military caste systems -- it's one thing for Sergeant Snuffy III, son of Sergeant Snuffy Jr. and grandson of Sergeant Snuffy Sr., all of whom spent their entire lives in the military system, to take up arms against a civilian population in an area he's stationed in that's far from where he grew up and that he never has to deal with as human beings; it's another thing entirely for Sergeant Snuffy, son of Grocer Snuffy and grandson of Auto Plant Worker Snuffy, to take up arms against a civilian population that he went to high school with right down the street.


    How do we know what the political leanings of either reserves and guardsmen or of active duty people are at all? I think this is just speculation on everyone's part.

    I don't think there will be a coup.
    posted by Ironmouth at 9:00 AM on October 3, 2013


    Salon has a short interview with Rep John Culberson & the cognitive dissonance here is.. amazing. Keep your government out of my health care, but don't touch my Medicare.
    posted by zempf at 9:01 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    I dunno, I was disappointed by NPR this morning, since they sounded a bit too "neither side's willing to compromise" to me. The Daily Show has been very clear about what's happening, but they also were very cynical about the possibility that this could end well, since that basically depends on some percentage of republicans deciding to be reasonable.

    Oh wow, who would have thought NPR would give equal credence to both sides without any regard for verifiable truths? The only surprising thing is that Jon "Both Sides Are Equally Bad" Stewart didn't pull the same crap on TDS.
    posted by entropicamericana at 9:02 AM on October 3, 2013


    The only surprising thing is that Jon "Both Sides Are Equally Bad" Stewart didn't pull the same crap on TDS.

    Stewart is "both sides do stupid things" not "both sides are equally bad".
    posted by Talez at 9:12 AM on October 3, 2013 [5 favorites]


    Neither side is willing to compromise. That does not mean the Ds are equally responsible. I for one am sure that the US public gets that. The polls have clearly showed that.
    posted by bearwife at 9:16 AM on October 3, 2013


    Live mic catches Senators McConnell and Rand talking strategy
    Paul added, "I think if we keep saying 'We wanted to defund it. We fought for that and that we're willing to compromise on this', I think they can't, we're gonna, I think... well I know we don't want to be here, but we're gonna win this I think."
    posted by argonauta at 9:16 AM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    I think TDS has been very good about bringing an accurate picture of the situation. No false equivalences have been drawn.
    posted by Lord Chancellor at 9:18 AM on October 3, 2013


    How do we know what the political leanings of either reserves and guardsmen or of active duty people are at all? I think this is just speculation on everyone's part.

    I spent eleven years on active duty in the Army, including during the 2000 presidential election when my civilian friends were actually worried about a coup and my military friends laughed at the idea of it. I've spent a further eight years on reserve duty in the Army and would be putting my uniform on right about now if it weren't for the shutdown. I currently work for an Army agency. I've spent nearly all of that time being the leftiest person in any unit I was in (I have LGBT friends who were serving under DADT who are farther right than I am) and have developed a pretty keen sense of when, where and to whom I can talk politics.

    Am I speculating that there won't be a coup? Yes, just like I can only speculate that the Tigers are going to win the ALDS. But please don't imply that it's uninformed speculation.
    posted by Etrigan at 9:20 AM on October 3, 2013 [5 favorites]


    Etrigan, I really want, "You'd be surprised at how much more moderate the average guardsperson is than the average active-duty service member" to be true. Had you asked me that growing up among them I would have 100% agreed.

    Some places nowadays, some very particular places? Pushed far enough, I'm not so sure now.


    Oh, sure, there's some part-timers who are farther into wackadoo territory than any full-timer, but the real "They're coming to take our guns!" types don't generally last long. Turns out they don't like following orders from anyone.
    posted by Etrigan at 9:21 AM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    I was disappointed by NPR this morning, since they sounded a bit too "neither side's willing to compromise" to me.

    I agree. I think it was Mara Liasson's story that bothered me - she absolutely framed it this way. Disappointing. Not because it's not lefty enough for me, but because it's not journalistically objective enough.
    posted by Miko at 9:22 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    I wonder if Tropical Storm Karen will affect any of this.
    posted by troika at 9:23 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    I had to pull over and cry this morning after hearing about how NIH has had to cancel the weekly visits by comfort animals for kids undergoing cancer treatment. Also it isn't half the country at this point, it is 30% of the country at most. Voters are blaming republicans for this overwhelmingly. They are really angry and I predict a number of congressmen in red who thought they were safe will face primary challenges from their own party funded by the chamber of commerce and other business oriented Republicans.
    posted by humanfont at 9:24 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Salon has a short interview with Rep John Culberson & the cognitive dissonance here is.. amazing. Keep your government out of my health care, but don't touch my Medicare.

    I was going through emails that come in via one of our (work) site's Contact Us links on Tuesday, skimming through in order to forward them on to the appropriate staff person. We have what's turning out to be an extremely popular subsidy calculator on our site, and of course on Tuesday it completely fell down and cried mercy. One email was from someone writing from a .mil address who wrote to say that the calculator was not working and that was NO SURPRISE AS GOVERNMENT SHOULD NOT BE IN CHARGE OF HEALTH CARE. (NB: We are not a government agency, just a nonprofit policy org.)

    It's a good thing that it's not my job to write back to people like this.
    posted by rtha at 9:25 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Just for the record the IRL people to whom I referred weren't talking about a coup at all but as I said the means to support secession should it come to that.

    And I don't think it will come to that nor do I think there will be a coup. Just reporting some anecdotal experience and trying to show how it might be related to a possible dog whistle.

    I probably should have been more clear about all of that. Sorry.
    posted by digitalprimate at 9:26 AM on October 3, 2013


    Was it the Juan Williams backlash that really crystallized the current state of limp "both sides are equal" NPR reporting? It seems like that's when it became the norm.
    posted by jason_steakums at 9:26 AM on October 3, 2013


    I think Senator Paul has sadly miscalculated, as have the rest of the Rs, how dangerous it is to depend on a tag line ("won't negotiate") to save your hide when facing an enormously articulate President with a big microphone.
    posted by bearwife at 9:26 AM on October 3, 2013 [5 favorites]


    They are really angry and I predict a number of congressmen in red who thought they were safe will face primary challenges from their own party funded by the chamber of commerce and other business oriented Republicans.

    I'd be more sanguine about this, but my own business-oriented Governor (Rick Snyder, Michigan) has been letting the social-conservative wackadoos do whatever the hell they want as long as they go along with his fiscal-conservative policies (which they would have anyway). So they've been able to repeal the motorcycle helmet law, push back hard on same-sex benefits, etc. Oh, and just last month, a House committee passed a bill to deny unemployment benefits if you fail a drug test, and the Senate one-upped them by passing a bill to require welfare recipients (i.e., single mothers) to perform community service.
    posted by Etrigan at 9:30 AM on October 3, 2013


    Was it the Juan Williams backlash that really crystallized the current state of limp "both sides are equal" NPR reporting? It seems like that's when it became the norm.

    For all their talk about receiving a lot of their funding from "listeners like you" they still get a chunk of funding from the CPB which is vulnerable. I felt like the "both sides" shit was empty platitudes that they knew would be forgiven because what they really felt was revealed in the "no comfort animals for sick kids" story. But yeah the Tea Party and NPR have a longstanding animosity such that NPR is careful, I think, about the appearance of partiality in stories involving them.
    posted by jessamyn at 9:31 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    So we've been cutting spending at a faster pace than Paul Ryan wanted to when Republicans took over Congress.

    On discretionary spending at least, that's right. And that's what we're pointing out. We've already essentially adopted that Ryan budget, and obviously that was not seen at the time as a moderate approach to government spending.

    Progressives have already been soundly defeated, the Austerity movement was fully embraced by Obama and the CR numbers in question today are vastly inadequate, hundreds of billions below the president's last budget request (which he immediately ran from and never mentioned again). The Teahadists and 1% class warriors already won, the federal government was already crippled before the shutdown, operating on a shoestring budget and bleeding productive capacity in the middle of a depression, incapable of doing the barest minimum to alleviate widespread economic hardship. Obama willingly gave up the game, he did everything that they asked him to short of block granting medicaid and stealth-cutting SS benefits by adopting chained CPI, and it still wasn't enough. They want more cuts, more pain, more tax breaks, less (preferably zero) social welfare spending, and they're crashing the economy to get it.
    posted by T.D. Strange at 9:35 AM on October 3, 2013 [13 favorites]


    Slate: How the government shutdown would be described in the US media if it was happening in another country.

    The Next Six Months will determine the fate of American Democracy

    posted by Golden Eternity at 9:37 AM on October 3, 2013


    Krugman: "My bet now is that we actually do go over the line for a day or two. And what ends the immediate crisis is not Republican action but a decision by Obama to declare himself not bound by the debt ceiling. He can’t even hint at this possibility until the thing actually happens, because he has to keep the focus on the Republicans, and he has to make them demonstrate their utter irresponsibility before he can take any extraordinary action.

    But maybe I’m wrong; maybe Obama’s lawyers have concluded that there’s really nothing he can do. If so, God help us all."
    posted by T.D. Strange at 9:38 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]



    I wonder if Tropical Storm Karen will affect any of this.

    WELCOME TO 2013: Your scheduled emotion for the day is A HORRIBLE SINKING FEELING

    SUGGESTED ACTIVITIES: Staring out the window into the middle distance, holding your loved ones a little too tight for a little too long, daytime drinking.
    posted by The Whelk at 9:39 AM on October 3, 2013 [32 favorites]


    when facing an enormously articulate President with a big microphone.
    "There are enough Republicans and Democrats in the House of Representatives today that if the speaker of the House, John Boehner, simply let the bill get on the floor for an up or down vote, every congressman could vote their conscience, the shutdown would end today," Obama said in a speech in Rockville, Maryland.

    "The only thing that is keeping the government shut down, the only thing preventing people from going back to work, and basic research starting back up, and farmers and small business owners, getting their loans -- the only thing that's preventing all that from happening right now today, in the next five minutes, is that Speaker John Boehner won't even let the bill get a yes or no vote because he doesn't want to anger the extremists in his party."
    Oooh that's the good stuff. I'm really heartened to see he's opening with the most important stone-cold fact underpinning this clusterfuck and not starting on the defensive, acting like he has to win hearts and minds on this.
    posted by jason_steakums at 9:40 AM on October 3, 2013 [22 favorites]


    Well, there it is. Following NASA, the National Radio Astronomy Observatory has run out of money to safely continue all operations, and is shutting down on Friday. All the huge radio telescopes (VLA, Green Bank, VLBA) are going to mostly idle, while the (fiercely competitive) observing time is wasted. Good work, guys.
    posted by RedOrGreen at 9:47 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Neither side is willing to compromise.

    The oft cited "Obamacare" is full of compromise.
    posted by juiceCake at 9:51 AM on October 3, 2013 [7 favorites]


    Following NASA, the National Radio Astronomy Observatory has run out of money to safely continue all operations, and is shutting down on Friday. All the huge radio telescopes (VLA, Green Bank, VLBA) are going to mostly idle...

    Oh crap, we're not going to be able to spot that asteroid the size of Texas in time enough to round up a team of plucky oil rig workers now.
    posted by entropicamericana at 9:53 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Well, there it is. Following NASA, the National Radio Astronomy Observatory has run out of money to safely continue all operations, and is shutting down on Friday. All the huge radio telescopes (VLA, Green Bank, VLBA) are going to mostly idle, while the (fiercely competitive) observing time is wasted. Good work, guys.

    Science is for atheist commie liberals.
    posted by Artw at 9:53 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Please, let's not call the Tea Party Congresscritters a "suicide caucus". This compares them to the radical suicide bombers who, while even more irrationally extreme, were willing and eager to allow themselves to die for their cause. The so-called "suicide caucus" are all in some of the safest House seats in the country. No challenge from the other party, or anyone within their own party for their continuing in their comfortable seats of power for the foreseeable future. Nothing suicidal here, and the designation misleads us into believing that there is a way this crisis can end that will make them go away.

    A few Islamophobes wanted to rename "suicide bombers" as "homicide bombers". Such a change is far more appropriate here. This is the "homicide caucus".
    posted by oneswellfoop at 9:53 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Kidnapper Caucus
    posted by aramaic at 9:54 AM on October 3, 2013


    Counterproductive Caucus? Dumbass Caucus? Fuck You, Got Mine Caucus?
    posted by rtha at 9:55 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Following NASA, the National Radio Astronomy Observatory has run out of money to safely continue all operations, and is shutting down on Friday.

    "Xrblt-49, are we prepared to send the Galactic Community Welcome Message to the Earth-lings?"
    "Yes, Hnftra-37. We estimate that it will arrive at their local-calendar date of Sepp-temm-burr 28th."
    "Hm. No, let's put it off for a few of their rotational cycles. That is just before the beginning of their fiscal year. We want to be certain that there will be plenty of funding available to ensure that the large observatories we have seen will receive it."
    "I knew your MBA would come in handy some day."
    posted by Etrigan at 9:55 AM on October 3, 2013 [14 favorites]




    Progressives have already been soundly defeated, the Austerity movement was fully embraced by Obama and the CR numbers in question today are vastly inadequate, hundreds of billions below the president's last budget request (which he immediately ran from and never mentioned again).

    That's because we needed to win the 2010 election. Some people (Rachel Maddow) *cough* told progressives to stay home. This is what you get.
    posted by Ironmouth at 9:57 AM on October 3, 2013 [5 favorites]


    I wonder if Tropical Storm Karen will affect any of this.

    Oh shit. There's a storm coming.
    posted by octobersurprise at 9:58 AM on October 3, 2013 [7 favorites]


    Well, it's day 3. Only us contractors here, the government employees all were sent home on Monday. I'm surprisingly busy, configuring laptops and mobile devices. A lot of the contractors are keeping their people at home but having them telework. Some of them are having issues so they're bringing their stuff into the office, where I am to get it fixed.

    I admit to feeling a bit of "survivor guilt" over still being here and collecting a paycheck while a lot of my friends who are competent, capable, good people, have all been sent home.
    posted by smoothvirus at 10:05 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Thinking of "guilt" produced this thought in my mind...

    In a just world, Boehner and his ilk would all would commit seppuku out of shame at what they did to their country and political institutions.
    posted by symbioid at 10:06 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Obama, in his speech, railed pretty hard on Boehner. Now Harry Reid is saying the shutdown is specifically Boehner's fault. I mean, this shutdown is largely on Boehner, but it seems like the Dems have been saying "Republicans" up until now. I think Boehner may have been the only one called out by name in Obama's speech.

    I guess that meeting yesterday didn't go so well.
    posted by troika at 10:09 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Obama and Reid calling Boehner out by name is fine and dandy with me. Think about all the insults Obama and his family have had to endure from Republicans and Conservatives. What Obama is saying about Boehner is nothing and to be honest, it's true. Boehner is the Speaker so it's all on him.
    posted by RedShrek at 10:12 AM on October 3, 2013 [13 favorites]


    Also, by naming Boehner instead of Cruz, they deny Cruz any legitimacy. He's the yappy dog that his master needs to bring to heel now.
    posted by jason_steakums at 10:13 AM on October 3, 2013 [17 favorites]


    Pinning it on the fucker only seems fair after they renamed ACA Obamacare...

    I suggest BoenherBlock.
    posted by Artw at 10:14 AM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    I think being called out by name like that is going to make it worse for Boehner when/if he does end up allowing a vote on a clean bill. It makes it harder to claim victory in doing so and easier for him to be attacked from the right.
    posted by feloniousmonk at 10:15 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    He also did not name Rep. Stutzman but did read the quote “We have to get something out of this. And I don’t know what that even is.” and attributed it to a tea party congressman.
    posted by cmfletcher at 10:15 AM on October 3, 2013


    Oh, I'm not saying that calling out Boehner by name is a bad thing. Just taking note of the fact that it's happening more often and more forcefully now.
    posted by troika at 10:16 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    I think being called out by name like that is going to make it worse for Boehner when/if he does end up allowing a vote on a clean bill. It makes it harder to claim victory in doing so and easier for him to be attacked from the right.

    If there were any chance of that happening, I don't think Obama would be calling him out like this.
    posted by Golden Eternity at 10:16 AM on October 3, 2013


    Splitting the Republican party is the only way out of this mess. If Boehner is the fracture point, then now is the time to apply maximum pressure to him.
    posted by vibrotronica at 10:18 AM on October 3, 2013


    I suggest BoenherBlock.

    So what you're saying is someone needs to fall on the grenade and sleep with Boenher's fat best friend so that we can restore a functioning government?
    posted by Talez at 10:19 AM on October 3, 2013


    OMG, the graphic on the front page of Fox News!
    "Why Face This..." (white men)
    "When you can find this?" (Obama hugging a black woman)

    hahaha, that is their angle on this? Critiquing Obama for being a coward for not negotiating with the people who have taken the economy hostage for partisan concessions?
    posted by Theta States at 10:19 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    It's terrifying that someone as spineless as Boehner is second in the line of succession.
    posted by jason_steakums at 10:20 AM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    Focusing on Boehner keeps the narrative simple and within sound-bite limits.
    posted by klarck at 10:21 AM on October 3, 2013


    "Am I working? No, I'm on Boenher Break."
    posted by Artw at 10:22 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Oh man, I love that they're calling him out for leaving DC. The speech was in Rockville, Maryland, which is just outside of DC. It's so close to DC, it's on the metro.
    posted by troika at 10:23 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Focusing on Boehner keeps the narrative simple and within sound-bite limits.

    Yes, and it also gives people a specific target for their outrage, rather than the easy go-to narrative "Those Clowns in Congress What a Bunch of Clowns".
    posted by Atom Eyes at 10:23 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Splitting the Republican party is the only way out of this mess. If Boehner is the fracture point, then now is the time to apply maximum pressure to him.

    The House GOP has spent the last few years doing absolutely nothing except voting to repeal ACA. After they refuse to raise the debt ceiling, Obama will have to ignore it one way or another. They will then spend the next three years voting to impeach Obama. The only way out of this is if moderates somehow take back the GOP or the GOP wins the Senate and the Presidency - in which case they will probably immediately raise the debt ceiling and replace ACA with (if this stretches out long enough and people actually like ACA) something probably nearly identical.
    posted by Golden Eternity at 10:23 AM on October 3, 2013


    Hey troika, don't you know that there's an awesome Dave and Busters in Rockville? Obama's there playing air hockey.
    posted by RedShrek at 10:24 AM on October 3, 2013


    I was about to post the same link as troika did above, which has a video of Reid giving a pretty good speech. While I was getting my comment ready, the Post toned down the title of that update which was originally: Reid mocks Boehner: 'I'm sorry I hurt your feelings'.
    posted by exogenous at 10:24 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Wow, Fox really is exceeding itself in racist bullshit there, isn't it?
    posted by Artw at 10:25 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Now known as "RepubliCare A Lot"
    posted by symbioid at 10:25 AM on October 3, 2013


    Looks like it's just #BoehnerShutdown.
    posted by cmfletcher at 10:25 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    I wonder if Tropical Storm Karen will affect any of this.

    Republicans will draft a bill to fund FEMA trailers.
    posted by quonsar II: smock fishpants and the temple of foon at 10:26 AM on October 3, 2013


    @ Golden Eterenity,

    You're joking about moderates in the GOP right? "Moderates" and "GOP" are two terms that don't belong in the same sentence.
    posted by RedShrek at 10:26 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Oh man, I love that they're calling him out for leaving DC. Seriously. That's East Gude Drive, 20 minutes from the White House, tops.
    posted by smoothvirus at 10:26 AM on October 3, 2013


    Republicans will draft a bill to fund FEMA trailers.

    Only for people who have photo ID.
    posted by Talez at 10:27 AM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    My fellow MeFites, I rise on a question on personal privilege.

    I would like to apologize for this comment I made up-thread:

    If you remember your Schoolhouse Rock "I'm Just a Bill" cartoon, what then happens is the two chambers meet in a conference committee to hammer out their differences.

    I was operating under the assumption that the basic rules of our checks and balances are the same since 1975 when the "I'm Just a Bill" segment first aired, but it turns out there are some new rules, and, as it turns out, a new cartoon to helpfully explain these new rules.

    Having familiarized myself with these new rules, it turns out this is all Obama's fault, and he's just not fighting hard against the diamond-mounted laser satellites and apocalypse cannibal hordes.

    I sincerely regret the error.
    posted by tonycpsu at 10:27 AM on October 3, 2013 [28 favorites]


    I can still totally see this happening though: in response to being singled out, Boehner gives a series of interviews trying to paint Obama as a bully making personal attacks. Not once does the interviewer mention that what Obama's saying is true.
    posted by jason_steakums at 10:30 AM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    Now known as "RepubliCare A Lot"

    I don't know about you but Republicans staring at me intensely would just scare the fuck out of me.
    posted by Talez at 10:31 AM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    Obama tweet: Tea Party extremists caused this #BoehnerShutdown. Tell @SpeakerBoehner to end it now: http://OFA.BO/9cFiuk pic.twitter.com/WW4soKEibu
    posted by inigo2 at 10:32 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Boehner Tells Republicans He Won’t Let the Nation Default

    huh. Well, maybe I'm wrong.
    posted by Golden Eternity at 10:32 AM on October 3, 2013


    huh. Well, maybe I'm wrong.

    sometimes I'm right, sometimes I'm wrong
    sometimes I ask myself; my god what I have I done?
    posted by The Whelk at 10:38 AM on October 3, 2013 [9 favorites]


    "The only thing that is keeping the government shut down, the only thing preventing people from going back to work, and basic research starting back up, and farmers and small business owners, getting their loans -- the only thing that's preventing all that from happening right now today, in the next five minutes, is that Speaker John Boehner won't even let the bill get a yes or no vote because he doesn't want to anger the extremists in his party."

    I've been chatting all day about this with a buddy of mine and he put it this way, "Boehner is facing the choice between keeping his job, or letting 800K federal workers do theirs."

    Dude should be a speechwriter.
    posted by Panjandrum at 10:39 AM on October 3, 2013 [9 favorites]


    Golden Eternity: "Boehner Tells Republicans He Won’t Let the Nation Default"

    Well of course he won't but he can't stop Emperor Obama from doing it!
    /culled from local paper comments section
    posted by Big_B at 10:41 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Boehner's word is worth nothing, at this point. He has no power over his own caucus.
    posted by raysmj at 10:51 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    "God help us all" is generally not the outlook on the future I like to see from Nobel laureates. It sounds... bad.
    posted by Justinian at 10:51 AM on October 3, 2013 [7 favorites]


    That's because we needed to win the 2010 election. Some people (Rachel Maddow) *cough* told progressives to stay home. This is what you get.

    Some people *the President and the Democrats cheered on every step of the way by Ironmouth* passed what was at the time an extremely unpopular healthcare bill and so lost the election. They failed utterly to sell it and America hated them, not the fault of progressives who as usual showed up to vote Dem.
    posted by Drinky Die at 10:52 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Some more details on Neugebauer's confrontation with the Ranger and the people of the United States standing up to his despicable grandstanding:
    "I'm not ashamed," replied the ranger.

    At that point, a crowd of onlookers got involved. "Ask those questions of the people who aren't passing the budget," shouted a voice from the crowd. "That's who you need to ask these questions to."

    "This woman is doing her job, just like me," shouted another. "I'm a 30-year federal veteran -- I'm out of work."

    The man, wearing a bicycle helmet, at this point was face to face with the congressman.

    "Well, the reason you are is because Mr. Reid decided to shut down the government," responded Neugebauer, referring to the top Senate Democrat.

    "No, it's because the government won't do its job and pass a budget," the bicyclist responded.

    "The House did its job; it passed appropriations. The Senate hasn't," said another voice from the crowd.

    Neugebauer walked away at that point.
    posted by audi alteram partem at 10:52 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]




    /culled from local paper comments section
    On the Rockville Patch's article yesterday about Obama's visit to Rockville, someone left this comment:

    The Unicorn Prince taking full political advantage of the shutdown, but no leadership. Did you expect anything less from your Messiah?

    What does that even mean? I googled "Unicorn Prince" but couldn't find anything that would clue me in. Is that even a thing?
    posted by amarynth at 11:00 AM on October 3, 2013


    Clearly he's an alicorn.
    posted by Artw at 11:05 AM on October 3, 2013


    Some people *the President and the Democrats cheered on every step of the way by Ironmouth* passed what was at the time an extremely unpopular healthcare bill and so lost the election. They failed utterly to sell it and America hated them, not the fault of progressives who as usual showed up to vote Dem.

    I for one think it would be great if we could not have this argument for the 10,000th time. It exists, frozen in time, in tens if not hundreds of old, closed threads. If you would like to have it, please go open one of those up and read it there.
    posted by Aizkolari at 11:07 AM on October 3, 2013 [12 favorites]


    What does that even mean? I googled "Unicorn Prince" but couldn't find anything that would clue me in. Is that even a thing?

    I'm guessing it's just an offhand way to talk about how his supporters fawn over him, but it should be noted that Unicorn-dom is (ironically) a bicameral representative democracy, there hasn't been a Unicorn prince since the Virgin wars.
    posted by Think_Long at 11:09 AM on October 3, 2013 [7 favorites]


    [Don't start an Ironmouth derail, move on. Thanks.]
    posted by jessamyn at 11:12 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    "but it should be noted that Unicorn-dom is (ironically) a bicameral representative democracy, there hasn't been a Unicorn prince since the Virgin wars."

    For reasons I cannot articulate, this is the most perfect Metafilter comment I've ever read. I would like to take it to dinner at a nice place.
    posted by lattiboy at 11:13 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Yes, please, can we skip that for now? I think I'm all done with the argument between Democratic purists and pragmatists.

    If the Democrats really don't want this to happen again, they need, NEED to capture state legislatures. They need to capture governorships. They need to pass Iowa-like redistricting bills. The Democrats need to get into their ground game when it comes to things smaller than national, because this is where it ends up after a few years.
    posted by Lord Chancellor at 11:14 AM on October 3, 2013 [8 favorites]


    Metafilter: (ironically) a bicameral representative democracy, there hasn't been a Unicorn prince since the Virgin wars.
    posted by Drinky Die at 11:15 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Yes, please, can we skip that for now? I think I'm all done with the argument between Democratic purists and pragmatists.

    If the Democrats really don't want this to happen again, they need, NEED to capture state legislatures. They need to capture governorships. They need to pass Iowa-like redistricting bills. The Democrats need to get into their ground game when it comes to things smaller than national, because this is where it ends up after a few years.


    the most important thing we can do now is contact our congressmen and women. every day. As a guy whose not allowed one, I have to rely on you folks to save us.
    posted by Ironmouth at 11:22 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Dave Sim (of Cerebus fame), who knows something of crazy, wrote in "Church and State" something like "Its impossible to negotiate with a man whose humping your leg and howling at the moon."

    As always, Mel Brooks envisioned this situation (NSFW).
    posted by Joey Michaels at 11:22 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    (in this case, Bart would represent the Republicans)
    posted by Joey Michaels at 11:23 AM on October 3, 2013


    As a guy whose not allowed one, I have to rely on you folks to save us.

    I hereby grant you honorary Congressional representation in my district and authorize you to speak on my behalf to Mike Fitzpatrick's office. You have to include a request to legalize weed in every call though.
    posted by Drinky Die at 11:26 AM on October 3, 2013




    I wonder what China is making of all this. This is the kind of fail where you just want the person to get off the stage
    posted by angrycat at 11:28 AM on October 3, 2013


    NBC says "BREAKING: Capitol locked down after reports of shots fired outside building" but that's it. Let's hope it's just the usual rumormill nonsense.
    posted by feloniousmonk at 11:28 AM on October 3, 2013


    As a guy whose not allowed one, I have to rely on you folks to save us.

    I hereby grant you honorary Congressional representation in my district and authorize you to speak on my behalf to Mike Fitzpatrick's office. You have to include a request to legalize weed in every call though.


    They literally screen out calls from other districts, I learned when I worked for an astroturfing firm. I can't actually do it for you. Believe me, I've tried. its up to you.

    Have you called Mr. Fitzpatrick?
    posted by Ironmouth at 11:28 AM on October 3, 2013




    Breaking news, shots at capitol.
    posted by daq at 11:29 AM on October 3, 2013


    LukeRussert tweet: Police securing front, tourists told to run.
    posted by Big_B at 11:29 AM on October 3, 2013


    It's not rumormill nonsense; they've got Luke Russert on MSNBC talking about hearing the shots.
    posted by Justinian at 11:29 AM on October 3, 2013


    It's on CNN as well. Capitol is on lockdown.
    posted by cmfletcher at 11:31 AM on October 3, 2013


    I sincerely hope everyone is OK.

    But the closure of the entire federal government is an invitation to lawlessness and security breaches.
    posted by bearwife at 11:33 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    CNN reports Harry Reid said he was told there was one injury.
    posted by Drinky Die at 11:34 AM on October 3, 2013


    goddammit, don't these idiots know they're playing with fire?
    posted by pyramid termite at 11:34 AM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    WHAT IN THE HOLY FUCK IS WRONG WITH US
    posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:35 AM on October 3, 2013 [10 favorites]


    Have you called Mr. Fitzpatrick?

    Yeah, every day, but he's the type who could use the extra push. The local paper had a cover pointing out how much pressure he is under on this yesterday. Break those moderates and this is over.
    posted by Drinky Die at 11:35 AM on October 3, 2013


    Have you called Mr. Fitzpatrick?

    Yeah, every day, but he's the type who could use the extra push. The local paper had a cover pointing out how much pressure he is under on this yesterday. Break those moderates and this is over.


    For sure true.

    There are cop cars everywhere down here. I'm 7 blocks from the Capitol.
    posted by Ironmouth at 11:38 AM on October 3, 2013


    Yes, this is surely the first incident of violence at the Capitol. Oh wai
    posted by entropicamericana at 11:39 AM on October 3, 2013


    The U.S. Capitol police are reporting an officer has been injured.
    posted by bearwife at 11:39 AM on October 3, 2013


    NYTimes says someone was arrested.
    posted by inertia at 11:40 AM on October 3, 2013


    Here is the Washington Post liveblog for the shots fired. It only has one post at the moment, but I've found Post liveblogs to exceptionally good at handling breaking news type things.
    posted by troika at 11:40 AM on October 3, 2013


    Breaking news, shots at capitol.

    This is starting to resemble every West Wing season-ending cliffhanger ever.
    posted by Atom Eyes at 11:41 AM on October 3, 2013 [6 favorites]


    @mattyglesias: Capitol Police responding to shooting incident are working without pay today.

    @mattyglesias: To be more precise, Capitol Police will have to skip their next paycheck if the shutdown extends: http://wapo.st/17xwBl6
    posted by inigo2 at 11:43 AM on October 3, 2013 [7 favorites]


    Chris Matthews used to be a Capitol Police Officer. I bet he has some choice words today.
    posted by Justinian at 11:44 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Shooter in custody.
    posted by Ironmouth at 11:49 AM on October 3, 2013


    They literally screen out calls from other districts, I learned when I worked for an astroturfing firm. I can't actually do it for you. Believe me, I've tried. its up to you.

    How does that even work? Do they ask for your address? Because with mobile phone numbers, an area code isn't a valid way to do that, and it seems pretty legit even to be calling from out of the area because you're travelling, etc.
    posted by jacalata at 11:52 AM on October 3, 2013


    Take annunciators, emergency supply kits and escape hoods

    What on Earth is an 'annunciator' in this context?
    posted by showbiz_liz at 11:53 AM on October 3, 2013


    @ABC7: CAPITOL UPDATE: Reports say someone tried to ram White House gate w/ car, chase ensued, ended at Capitol Hill. Shots fired, unclear by who
    posted by inigo2 at 11:53 AM on October 3, 2013


    showbiz_liz: "What on Earth is an 'annunciator' in this context?"

    Megaphone?
    posted by Big_B at 11:55 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Let's not do this. Please.

    (And by "this," I mean "speculate with zero information on the motives or the effect." Not while things are still developing.)
    posted by Etrigan at 11:55 AM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    I'm also seeing twitter reports that a female suspect is dead.
    posted by bearwife at 11:55 AM on October 3, 2013


    Channel 4 is reporting this was some kind of car chase followed by a shootout. The police are looking at a wrecked black car close to the Capital building.
    posted by smoothvirus at 11:55 AM on October 3, 2013


    Rep. Tim Griffin, a Republican from Arkansas, seemed to blame Democrats for the shooting, tweeting, “Stop the violent rhetoric President Obama, Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi. #Disgusting” (via)
    posted by inigo2 at 11:56 AM on October 3, 2013


    Rep. Tim Griffin, a Republican from Arkansas, seemed to blame Democrats for the shooting, tweeting, “Stop the violent rhetoric President Obama, Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi. #Disgusting”

    A Capitol Police officer sworn to protect this guy is injured, and that's what he has to say? What a class act.
    posted by jetlagaddict at 11:57 AM on October 3, 2013 [11 favorites]


    WHAT IS WRONG WITH EVERYTHING.
    posted by inertia at 11:57 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    [Folks, please consider waiting until you have some sort of facts or information before commenting about what you think is going on here. Otherwise this thread gets ugly quickly and things aren't great already. Thank you.]
    posted by jessamyn at 11:57 AM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    "Moderates" and "GOP" are two terms that don't belong in the same sentence.

    I don't know ...

    "There are no moderates in the GOP anymore."
    "All of the moderates have been purged from the GOP."
    "When moderates try to run in GOP primaries, they are defeated by extremists."
    "Why are there so few moderates in the GOP today?!?"
    "Political pundits seem to think there are more moderates in the GOP than there really are."

    And so on. ;)
    posted by Jonathan Livengood at 11:58 AM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    inigo2: "Obama tweet: Tea Party extremists caused this #BoehnerShutdown."

    All part of the #BreakingBoehner strategy.
    posted by Hairy Lobster at 11:59 AM on October 3, 2013


    Rep. Tim Griffin, a Republican from Arkansas, seemed to blame Democrats for the shooting, tweeting, “Stop the violent rhetoric President Obama, Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi. #Disgusting”

    The Capitol Police are working without pay because of you and still defending your ass, you dirty pigfucker.
    posted by zombieflanders at 12:00 PM on October 3, 2013 [22 favorites]


    Real classy, Tim Griffin.
    posted by Artw at 12:00 PM on October 3, 2013


    Imgur link for Rep. Tim Griffin's tweet for posterity. I have no doubt this will get deleted and denied.
    posted by cmfletcher at 12:00 PM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Josh Elliott from ABC is saying on twitter that a source indicates a female suspect is dead at the scene
    posted by TwoWordReview at 12:01 PM on October 3, 2013


    Well that is at least one stereotype out of the way, now about 6 dozen more to go...
    posted by rosswald at 12:02 PM on October 3, 2013


    That tweet is at 11:30 am, yeah? Before the shooting?
    posted by angrycat at 12:02 PM on October 3, 2013


    I'm across the street from a Federal Marshall's office. When the Navy Yard thing happened they all came charging out of their garage, sirens blaring. That did not happen today.
    posted by smoothvirus at 12:02 PM on October 3, 2013


    That image does not appear to be of the verified account for Tim Griffin.

    Real one here
    posted by Lentrohamsanin at 12:03 PM on October 3, 2013


    That image does not appear to be of the verified account for Tim Griffin.

    Real one here


    That's his office's Twitter feed. The tweet apparently comes from his personal one.
    posted by zombieflanders at 12:05 PM on October 3, 2013


    OH never mind, he's got two accounts for some reason. Creep-o.
    posted by Lentrohamsanin at 12:05 PM on October 3, 2013


    The real one retweets the other one a lot.
    posted by vbfg at 12:05 PM on October 3, 2013


    That tweet is at 11:30 am, yeah? Before the shooting? - no, that's a West Coast time stamp. DC time was 2:24, 2 minutes after he tweeted reports of shots at the Capital.
    posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 12:05 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    He has retweeted his "personal" account tweets on his "official" account. The tweet in question is 40 minutes old at this time.
    posted by cmfletcher at 12:06 PM on October 3, 2013


    Ah thanks
    posted by angrycat at 12:06 PM on October 3, 2013


    WTOP is reporting that the lockdown at the Capitol has been lifted
    posted by argonauta at 12:06 PM on October 3, 2013


    “Stop the violent rhetoric President Obama, Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi. #Disgusting”

    What fucking hypocrites.
    posted by tyllwin at 12:07 PM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Tim Griffin‏
    @TimGriffinAR2
    42m
    Stop the violent rhetoric President Obama, Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi. #Disgusting

    Tim Griffin‏
    @TimGriffinAR2
    44m
    Gun shots outside the Capitol.


    No way to spin this as anything but Rep. Griffin being a complete toolbag.
    posted by Etrigan at 12:08 PM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    "Moderates" and "GOP" are two terms that don't belong in the same sentence.

    The few old school moderate Republicans I know (there's still a bunch out here in Hawaii, including former governor Linda Lingle, when she's not on the national stage) tend to fall on the "fiscal conservative/socially liberal" side of the aisle. On the mainland, most of them would probably be blue dog Democrats.

    I posted this in the other thread, but one of these moderate Republican friends ran for office (and lost) out here. We get along famously because we're on the same page on virtually every social issue (she's a big supporter of marriage equality, for example, and has fought against the local Republican party's homophobic stance). She's been furloughed and has written several scathing things about the Tea Party. Not a whiff of "Democrats fault" or "Obama's fault." She's crystal clear that this is entirely the fault of her own party kowtowing to the TPers.

    Republican and Tea Party friends have tried to disabuse her of this notion on Facebook, and she's swatted their arguments aside with links, facts and evidence. Its been kind of glorious to watch.

    Anyhow, there are sane Republicans out there who see exactly what is going on. Maybe not many, but they're there and some are pretty vocal. They just can't get elected to office.
    posted by Joey Michaels at 12:08 PM on October 3, 2013




    Oh, and also:
    Tim Griffin‏
    @TimGriffinAR2
    42m
    I am in House Cloakroom off the Floor.


    So while he was still sheltering in place (not judging that -- it's not his job to run down the shooter), he's already attacking the Democrats. Tool. Bag.
    posted by Etrigan at 12:09 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Gives new meaning to the phrase "lying on the floor."
    posted by octobersurprise at 12:11 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Latest from ABC news.
    posted by bearwife at 12:12 PM on October 3, 2013


    Let the backpedaling begin

    Tim Griffin is a terrible and inexcusable tragedy of a human being.
    posted by cmfletcher at 12:14 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]




    I just don't understand how the progressive movement can be so bad at selling itself, especially considering its prior successes. Things like Social Security, Clean Water Act, Equal Rights, and about a bajillion other things are pretty universally loved in this country, but it always seem that the next progressive idea on the horizon is an affront to our way of life. I just don't get it.
    posted by rosswald at 12:16 PM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    Let the backpedaling begin

    Tim Griffin is a terrible and inexcusable tragedy of a human being.


    Original tweet was in fact deleted, btw.
    posted by inigo2 at 12:17 PM on October 3, 2013


    Yeah.. the GOP seems to be doing a fair bit of backpedaling today. Boehner's spokesman kinda walked back John's comments about ignoring the Hastert rule regarding the debt ceiling.
    posted by edgeways at 12:18 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Original tweet was in fact deleted, btw.

    Sadly, this won't delete him from Congress. Probably getting attaboys as we speak.
    posted by zombieflanders at 12:18 PM on October 3, 2013


    I feel terrible for wondering this when people have been injured, but I'd like to know whether the shooter(s) were TP or not
    posted by localhuman at 12:19 PM on October 3, 2013


    "Two people — including a child — were removed from the vehicle."

    That has already been redacted from the article.
    posted by 1970s Antihero at 12:19 PM on October 3, 2013


    Latest from ABC news.

    Fuck, something about this image of the suburban-looking family with kid in stroller ducking and running made me tear up. This is where we are at. This will be what that kid thinks of whenever he sees the capitol building for the rest of his life. Jesus.
    posted by Sreiny at 12:19 PM on October 3, 2013


    Is the kid in the stroller ducking or is he asleep? Some kids can sleep through anything.
    posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 12:20 PM on October 3, 2013


    I feel terrible for wondering this when people have been injured, but I'd like to know whether the shooter(s) were TP or not

    No. It sounds like (initial reporting, take with grain of salt) a woman was driving suspiciously near the White House. She hit a police car. A chase ensued, and she ended up shot. There was a child in the car. Sounds like a clusterfuck to me.
    posted by Drinky Die at 12:21 PM on October 3, 2013


    Is the kid in the stroller ducking or is he asleep? Some kids can sleep through anything.

    Looks like that kid is asleep. I don't think it's physically possible to stay awake in those strollers. I miss being 4. Also, the Burger King crowns are adorable and makes the image all that sadder to me.
    posted by Sreiny at 12:22 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    I just don't understand how the progressive movement can be so bad at selling itself, especially considering its prior successes. Things like Social Security, Clean Water Act, Equal Rights, and about a bajillion other things are pretty universally loved in this country, but it always seem that the next progressive idea on the horizon is an affront to our way of life.

    Because there isn't a Progressive Movement that is advancing those and only those ideas. They're not even the realm of a single political party. When you look at only certain things as great ideas (which they are), you're leaving out all the other progressive ideas that aren't universally loved and are affronts to our way of life. "Change is good" is no more true than "change is bad."
    posted by Etrigan at 12:23 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Y'all don't get it. First you gather this information, then you wait until the "official" story comes out, then any discrepancies between the original "on the fly" reporting and fact-checked/verified story are clear evidence of a conspiracy of some kind.
    posted by symbioid at 12:23 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    "Two people — including a child — were removed from the vehicle."

    That has already been redacted from the article.


    Still in there for me, as of the 3:15pm EST update.
    posted by Panjandrum at 12:24 PM on October 3, 2013


    other progressive ideas that aren't universally loved and are affronts to our way of life.

    and which ones are those?
    posted by Golden Eternity at 12:24 PM on October 3, 2013


    Griffin admits tweet out of emotion, not helpful.
    posted by Ironmouth at 12:31 PM on October 3, 2013


    > "and which ones are those?"

    I will admit that Prohibition and eugenics both leap to mind.
    posted by kyrademon at 12:33 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    The country was ready to elect a black president. It was not ready for a black president.
    posted by Ironmouth at 12:33 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    This is where we are at.

    A cop who might not get his next paycheck running toward the sound of gunshots and a family of tourists visiting a shuttered Capitol running from them. Someone should turn it into a painting for our very own Course of Empire.
    posted by octobersurprise at 12:33 PM on October 3, 2013 [12 favorites]


    other progressive ideas that aren't universally loved and are affronts to our way of life.

    and which ones are those?


    Prohibition, eugenics and forced cultural assimilation of immigrants, back in the Progressive Era of the late 1800s and early 1900s. Franklin Roosevelt advocated a flat maximum net income of $25,000 per year. Busing of schoolchildren, more recently.

    As I say, the problem is that picking out certain things and saying, "See, progressives did these things that people love, so I don't understand why people don't love all progressive things," you're making a fairly large leap of logic. It's like asking why, if everyone loved The Godfather, why didn't they like The Godfather Part III?
    posted by Etrigan at 12:33 PM on October 3, 2013


    Picture of a police car involved in the incident. Damn........
    posted by inigo2 at 12:34 PM on October 3, 2013


    The kid with the crown made it inside!
    posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 12:36 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Prohibition, eugenics and forced cultural assimilation of immigrants, back in the Progressive Era of the late 1800s and early 1900s.

    don't forget more horse posts in front of businesses
    posted by pyramid termite at 12:37 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    inigo2's image link is pretty damn symbolic.
    posted by symbioid at 12:37 PM on October 3, 2013


    NBC News is saying female suspect in custody, not dead.
    posted by jason_steakums at 12:38 PM on October 3, 2013


    rosswald didn't say people should love all things progressive. He is talking about the demonization of all things progressive and why it is often successful.
    posted by soelo at 12:39 PM on October 3, 2013


    Griffin admits tweet out of emotion, not helpful.

    Wake me when the headline reads: GOP admits obstructivist tactics out of emotion, not helpful.
    posted by Atom Eyes at 12:39 PM on October 3, 2013 [8 favorites]


    Just saw that. Should help figure out what was going on.
    posted by Ironmouth at 12:40 PM on October 3, 2013


    It's like asking why everyone loved The Godfather, so why didn't they like The Godfather Part III?

    Not an unfair point, but I feel like you could drop congressional speeches railing against the New Deal into an anti 'Obamacare' ad. and the date would be the only clue
    posted by rosswald at 12:41 PM on October 3, 2013


    Uh, right below the headline, the NBC news article says "The suspect — who had a child in the car — was shot and killed"
    posted by Ouisch at 12:41 PM on October 3, 2013


    Local news stations were showing footage of a small african american toddler who was being reported as the child removed from the back of the suspect's car. She appeared to be upset and crying as she was carried by police officers. Now another station is saying the girl was less than a year old, so not sure it was the same toddler.
    posted by onlyconnect at 12:41 PM on October 3, 2013


    raysmj: "Boehner's word is worth nothing, at this point. He has no power over his own caucus."

    He has the power to bring the Senate CR to the floor at any time. His ability to whip the rest of the party is irrelevant as long as 17 (or is it 18?) Republicans are willing to show a bit of leadership and do what needs to be done. Given that the requisite number have stated publicly that they would indeed do that, it's reasonable to conclude that the only person keeping the government shut down at this point is John Boehner.
    posted by wierdo at 12:42 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Uh, right below the headline, the NBC news article says "The suspect — who had a child in the car — was shot and killed"

    Must've posted it right before the edit. They were definitely saying in custody.
    posted by jason_steakums at 12:43 PM on October 3, 2013


    John boehner will lose his speakership if he passes a CR with 18 GOP votes.
    posted by empath at 12:44 PM on October 3, 2013


    "No pay for Congress during the shutdown" petition at MoveOn.org.
    posted by Rykey at 12:45 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    He would probably get more that 18 if he put it on the floor.
    posted by localhuman at 12:45 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    rosswald didn't say people should love all things progressive. He is talking about the demonization of all things progressive and why it is often successful.

    "Things like Social Security, Clean Water Act, Equal Rights, and about a bajillion other things are pretty universally loved in this country, but it always seem that the next progressive idea on the horizon is an affront to our way of life" definitely draws a line saying "People like this, why do they hate that?" It's because this and that are different things, and you can't lean on the one as support for the other all by itself.
    posted by Etrigan at 12:46 PM on October 3, 2013


    If he brings the CR to the floor he'll probably lose the speaker's post and face a primary challenge next year. As was mentioned by someone somewhere in this thread or some link: He's gotta chose between 1 man keeping his job or allowing 800,000 people to actually do their jobs.
    posted by cmfletcher at 12:46 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Please don't be black, please don't be black....
    posted by RedShrek at 12:46 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Boehner: Obama Stubbornly Refusing To End Crisis I Created

    The Borowitz report has been on fire this week.
    posted by Joey Michaels at 12:46 PM on October 3, 2013


    Boehner can lose his speakership...or what? What scenario allows him to resolve this and still keep his speakership? And if it doesn't get resolved, we end up in semi-permanent crisis?

    I would feel sorry for such a bad choice, but he got himself here. Frankly I don't see why he's fighting so hard. He's a rich guy, he could resolve it, lose the speakership, and spend the rest of his life fishing if he wanted. Fishing should be looking pretty good these days.
    posted by emjaybee at 12:47 PM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    Frankly I don't see why he's fighting so hard.
    The Ancients knew why, and even had a name for it: hubris
    posted by aramaic at 12:49 PM on October 3, 2013 [8 favorites]


    He's gotta chose between 1 man keeping his job or allowing 800,000 people to actually do their jobs.

    to put it another way, he's got to choose between being a career politician or a statesman
    posted by pyramid termite at 12:49 PM on October 3, 2013 [6 favorites]


    Every time someone mentions that Congress should lose their pay, I picture the Arkansas representative from West Wing who lived in his office muttering to himself "I guess I'm eating ramen for a few days..."
    posted by DynamiteToast at 12:50 PM on October 3, 2013


    Boehner can lose his speakership...or what? What scenario allows him to resolve this and still keep his speakership? And if it doesn't get resolved, we end up in semi-permanent crisis?

    I don't see a way out for him. And there are a lot more than 800,000 jobs at stake. The entire world economy is at risk right now because of his cowardice.
    posted by empath at 12:50 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Probably getting attaboys as we speak.

    Way I read it, the Republicans are concentrating fully on not looking like the bad guys right now. Ten gets you twenty he got a full-on Malcolm Tucker.
    posted by forgetful snow at 12:52 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    He could also resolve it and keep the Speakership if a handful of Republicans back him and all the Dems want to keep the guy who they know will eventually fold. It's a majority vote for a Speaker change. Not to say that's likely, but he's not just the devil the Dems know, he's the devil they know is nothing more than a guy in a devil costume like some Scooby Doo villain.
    posted by jason_steakums at 12:53 PM on October 3, 2013


    Etrigan - when this is from the same people who brought you that, it is usually a selling point. More like asking if lots of people liked The Godfather, then why is no one even buying tickets to see The Godfather III. Directors who make good movies and then bad ones can go on to make another good one.
    posted by soelo at 12:56 PM on October 3, 2013




    Capitol Police are having a press conference at 4:15. Hoping for it to end with "Oh, and Tim Griffin can go fuck himself."
    posted by zombieflanders at 12:56 PM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    rosswald: "It's like asking why everyone loved The Godfather, so why didn't they like The Godfather Part III?

    Not an unfair point, but I feel like you could drop congressional speeches railing against the New Deal into an anti 'Obamacare' ad. and the date would be the only clue
    "

    Or Reagan's 1961 AMA sponsored screed against "Socialized Medicine"
    posted by symbioid at 12:57 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    I'm reading reports that there was no firearm found. Which would mean that the Capitol police gunned down an unarmed mother in front of her child.
    posted by empath at 12:58 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    a car can be counted as a deadly weapon
    posted by pyramid termite at 1:01 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Steakums: Interesting point on Democrats supporting Boehner for speaker and only needing those 18 Republican votes but you can't really count on a uniform vote of the Democratic party for that one and the RNC will crack down and want someone they could offer up in 2016 in that seat if Boehner has "lost the base".

    Say what you will about house Republicans but they're almost uniformly opportunistic and crave the spotlight that a position like speaker offers.
    posted by cmfletcher at 1:01 PM on October 3, 2013


    A car could very well be considered a deadly weapon if used in a threatening manner.
    posted by RedShrek at 1:01 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    It's sounding a lot more like a drunk driver in the wrong place type scenario than a terrorism scenario. Just speculation there, but she was fleeing from police and putting a lot of people in danger so if they feel they had to use force to stop the car I'm going to give them the initial benefit of the doubt on that until more facts come out.
    posted by Drinky Die at 1:02 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    That's what I was wondering. The officer was injured in the crash, not shot, but the NBC (I think) story said that she began shooting after police cars had cornered her. Also AP tweeted about 13 mins ago that she was in custody, not dead. Best wait for the press conference either way, too many conflicting reports right now.
    posted by TwoWordReview at 1:02 PM on October 3, 2013


    empath: "I'm reading reports that there was no firearm found. Which would mean that the Capitol police gunned down an unarmed mother in front of her child."

    With all due respect, she was armed with a vehicle capable of killing people by running them over. I'm all for cops using the minimal amount of force required to apprehend a suspect, but I don't think the cops should have to put themselves in more danger by letting them run into their own vehicles, or perhaps run down pedestrians, accidentally or on purpose.
    posted by tonycpsu at 1:02 PM on October 3, 2013


    OK - so, was she the shooter or is the shooter still at large?
    posted by symbioid at 1:03 PM on October 3, 2013


    Often times, initial information tends to be incorrect.
    posted by RedShrek at 1:03 PM on October 3, 2013


    Let me put it this way: Were there shots fired in the first place?
    posted by symbioid at 1:04 PM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Well that's just it. The initial reports were of shots fired outside the capitol. It could very well be just the police that had fired shots and there is/was no 'shooter'
    posted by TwoWordReview at 1:04 PM on October 3, 2013 [5 favorites]


    It's sounding a lot more like a drunk driver in the wrong place type scenario than a terrorism scenario.

    Most of the reports I've read have the event starting with her trying to ram a security gate near the White House, so I'm not sure it's simply a drunk driver.

    That said, yeah, lot of conflicting reports out there.
    posted by inigo2 at 1:04 PM on October 3, 2013


    Let me put it this way: Were there shots fired in the first place?

    It does not appear so.
    posted by Drinky Die at 1:04 PM on October 3, 2013


    Either she was armed or the police shot one of their own guys since an officer was medevaced in a helicopter which landed directly on the Mall.
    posted by Justinian at 1:04 PM on October 3, 2013


    Take a look at the photo of the crushed police car, Justinian.
    posted by Drinky Die at 1:05 PM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    A few months ago in NYC a "mass shooting" turned out to be one shooting by a civilian and then six people shot by policemen afterwards.
    posted by showbiz_liz at 1:05 PM on October 3, 2013 [14 favorites]


    MrMoonPie: "Best thing from Twitter:

    Can I burn down your house?
    No ....
    "

    So this is my congressperson on the floor of the house.
    posted by octothorpe at 1:06 PM on October 3, 2013 [13 favorites]


    Crowdsourced talking points, awesome! (not really)
    posted by symbioid at 1:07 PM on October 3, 2013


    So this is my congressperson on the floor of the house.

    Cool! I worked for Mike Doyle back in 95-96, he's good people.
    posted by zombieflanders at 1:09 PM on October 3, 2013


    Ooo I missed the car photo in the fast moving thread. Yeah, that would explain the medevac.
    posted by Justinian at 1:12 PM on October 3, 2013


    (Apologies for the snark, btw... the rest of his comments were good. I guess I fear an endless debate of internet-forwarded emails/facebook posts between liberals and conservatives).

    "I received an email that said the following, and I quote...
    'FWD: FWD: FWD: LOL - SO TRUE AND FUNNY ABOUT COMMIE SCUM'"
    posted by symbioid at 1:13 PM on October 3, 2013


    Any link to report she did not have a weapon?
    posted by Ironmouth at 1:13 PM on October 3, 2013


    The reports I'm watching are not saying that, exactly, but they're absolutely walking back in a very careful manner any implication that she was a "shooter". So I think that's pretty telling. We'll see when the cops have their press conference.
    posted by Justinian at 1:15 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    The full story from Talking Points Memo.
    posted by lattiboy at 1:16 PM on October 3, 2013


    Now, if we could get back to something else....
    posted by lattiboy at 1:17 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    That's exactly the same story we've already got, not a "full story".
    posted by Justinian at 1:21 PM on October 3, 2013


    If this is the car that "rammed" a barricade, how did that police car end up the way it did?
    posted by Big_B at 1:23 PM on October 3, 2013


    It probably lost control during a chase.
    posted by Justinian at 1:24 PM on October 3, 2013


    Uh, is there some reason to believe that was the car involved? The caption says "a black car".
    posted by Justinian at 1:25 PM on October 3, 2013


    Yah it looks like it rolled to me.
    posted by DynamiteToast at 1:25 PM on October 3, 2013


    What state is the license plate? Connecticut? Rhode Island?
    posted by Blazecock Pileon at 1:25 PM on October 3, 2013


    Kind of incredibly, I work at 14th and Penn and had no idea anything was going on outside until it popped up in this thread.
    posted by troika at 1:27 PM on October 3, 2013


    Big_B: "If this is the car that "rammed" a barricade, how did that police car end up the way it did?"

    That looks like an Infiniti badge, not a Lexus.
    posted by boo_radley at 1:31 PM on October 3, 2013


    I think that light blue fade is CT?
    posted by elizardbits at 1:33 PM on October 3, 2013


    Yeah, definitely CT plates. It's probably not the same car, but I was running an errand on my bike this morning near the House buildings on the south side of the Capitol and remember a dark car with Connecticut plates driving like an ass. Freaky.

    Also it would be nice if two weeks would go by without a national-news-level shooting going down in my neighborhood.

    Getting back on topic, I saw that the House has reconvened after a moment of silence.
    posted by exogenous at 1:35 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Oh wow, CNN is showing video of the whole thing starting. They have the car stopped and surround it with guns drawn. The car backs into a police car behind it and drives off, then they shoot and other cars chase.
    posted by Drinky Die at 1:36 PM on October 3, 2013


    Also, the front driverside corner looks like it took some damage, most likely directly rubbing against a cop car attempting a PIT maneuver. The bad thing about a PIT, though, is that if done in correctly, you can end up losing control of your own vehicle, which looks to be the case. Or even better, it could be that the driver of the black car was able to PIT the demolished police vehicle by pulling a PIT on them.

    More info: PIT Maneuver
    posted by daq at 1:36 PM on October 3, 2013




    Ok, having seen the video that does look like the car.
    posted by Justinian at 1:40 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Links to the video?
    posted by RedShrek at 1:41 PM on October 3, 2013


    Cop hit a bollard. Live video, no link yet.
    posted by Ironmouth at 1:41 PM on October 3, 2013


    Oh wow, now seeing the woman try to ram multiple police officers who had guns drawn. She was out of control personally. All live video, no links. NBC 4 DC.
    posted by Ironmouth at 1:44 PM on October 3, 2013


    RedShrek: "Links to the video?"

    There's a clip directly on cnn's homepage.
    posted by boo_radley at 1:45 PM on October 3, 2013


    Link to NBC 4 DC.
    It's live but it seems unlikely that they'll stop replaying the video for a while in case you missed it.
    posted by Hairy Lobster at 1:50 PM on October 3, 2013


    Full video including what looks like the start of the incident up at TPM.
    posted by zombieflanders at 1:51 PM on October 3, 2013


    B.J. Campbell, 69, and his wife Susan of Oregon, who were touring Washington, said they saw a black Infiniti driven by a woman year through the security checkpoint at 15th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue NW heading west on Pennsylvania Avenue. She went about 20 yards before rapids turning the car around at the concrete security barriers.

    “The Secret Service guy was just having a cow,” B.J. said. “Yelling at her and banging on the car.”

    The Secret Service guys pulled a black metal gate into her path and she slowed to try to go around it, they said. But the agent moved the gate in front of her again. At that point “she just gunned it,” B.J. said. “She ran the barricade down and the guy; knocked him up onto her hood. He rolled off into the street and she tore off down Pennsylvania Avenue.”

    The whole thing lasted about 20 seconds, they said.
    posted by Ironmouth at 1:54 PM on October 3, 2013


    Full video including what looks like the start of the incident up at TPM.

    Actually, that is seconds before the end. The incident began nearly a mile away at the White House. That's right in front of the Capitol.
    posted by Ironmouth at 1:55 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    And here comes Pat Collins. Wait for the voice.
    posted by Ironmouth at 2:00 PM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    On a side note, looking at TPM, I see that Cantor is telling the GOP to hold fast because he feels that the Democrats are going to cave in this fight. I think I agree with him.
    posted by RedShrek at 2:00 PM on October 3, 2013


    Woman driving now reported as a thirty-four year old woman from Stamford CT with a history of mental health issues.
    posted by onlyconnect at 2:01 PM on October 3, 2013


    I miss Pat Collins.
    posted by RedShrek at 2:01 PM on October 3, 2013


    On a side note, looking at TPM, I see that Cantor is telling the GOP to hold fast because he feels that the Democrats are going to cave in this fight. I think I agree with him.

    Conversely: John Boehner gives away the game (a bit)
    [W]hat seems to be going on here is that this is Boehner’s “big give,” as one Dem aide put it to me sarcastically. Boehner is signaling flexibility in the sense that he just may be willing to give Dems the “clean” debt ceiling increase they want, but only in a larger context where Dems will be expected to make concessions in exchange for keeping the government open. In other words, whether or not Boehner ends up being open to a “clean” debt ceiling vote, the larger picture will remain that Democrats will still have to hand over a series of concessions in exchange for GOP cooperation in returning us to something resembling governing normalcy.

    So in one sense, this isn’t much of a concession. On the other hand, the mere fact that Boehner sees a need to telegraph nominal flexibility to begin with could be a key tell. With Obama warning that Wall Street should take the possibility of default seriously, Boehner seems to see a need to underscore, again, that he will not allow default under any circumstances, and that keeping alive any doubts about this is politically untenable. Dems will look at this and probably only be even more encouraged to hold to a hard line on both the government shutdown and the debt limit. Boehner’s trial balloon is also useful in the sense that it makes the glaring absurdity that’s always been at the heart of his position even more glaringly absurd.
    posted by zombieflanders at 2:04 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    No identification and no weapons found in the vehicle.
    posted by onlyconnect at 2:08 PM on October 3, 2013


    Okay, ABC News is reporting that there was no identification in the car, and they're not reporting the name in case they're wrong....but they already know for sure she had a history of mental health issues. How do they know that already without even having confirmation of her name?
    posted by troika at 2:09 PM on October 3, 2013


    Okay, ABC news is reporting that there was no identification in the car, and they're not reporting the name in case they're wrong....but they already know for sure she had a history of mental health issues? How do they know that already without even having confirmation of her name?

    The FBI and Secret Service already know who it is and are apparently searching her house. If I had to guess, the same news orgs who have screwed the ID thing up several times in the last few months are being extremely cautious.
    posted by zombieflanders at 2:12 PM on October 3, 2013


    troika: "Okay, ABC news is reporting that there was no identification in the car, and they're not reporting the name in case they're wrong....but they already know for sure she had a history of mental health issues. How do they know that already without even having confirmation of her name?"

    Conjecture: The person whose name they have has a history of mental illness.
    posted by boo_radley at 2:12 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    It's not just being cautious, if she has family they have to notify next of kin.
    posted by Justinian at 2:18 PM on October 3, 2013


    Stamford Police haven't used twitter since 2010 but the Stamford Advocate may be worth paying attention to.
    posted by jessamyn at 2:18 PM on October 3, 2013


    So yeah back to the topic at hand, several people in my state government office that review work going on at federal facilities just got told to stop work. Yay.
    posted by Big_B at 2:28 PM on October 3, 2013


    Some new pictures. Sorry about linking a site called Hollywood Life.
    posted by SkylitDrawl at 2:31 PM on October 3, 2013


    NBC anchor just said that the child in the car was injured.
    posted by enn at 2:33 PM on October 3, 2013


    Tea Party darling Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-NC): "The thing of it is, I need my paycheck. That is the bottom line."

    Ellmers has an extensive history of signing onto The Crazy/Stupid™.
    posted by zombieflanders at 2:33 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    The thing with the woman in the car is begining to seem a bit like irrelevant rubbernecking now, maybe we should drop it?
    posted by Artw at 2:33 PM on October 3, 2013 [18 favorites]


    Fox a-hole of the day (and that's going some) "these people are living off our backs" - "hey, I'm fed up with this and I don't miss you when you're on furlough"

    awww, poor guy's getting tired of getting screwed.
    posted by madamjujujive at 2:37 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    NBC4 had video of the heavily damaged police car getting wrecked. It hit a retractable barricade on Constitoution as the barricade was being raised.

    As for Mr Varney I have felt for some time this whole thing is about revenge and a motivation by some on the far right to make goddamn sure that DC is turned into the next Detroit and its residents (including the the MD and VA subrubs) ruined.
    posted by smoothvirus at 2:49 PM on October 3, 2013




    What does that even mean? I googled "Unicorn Prince" but couldn't find anything that would clue me in. Is that even a thing?

    Freeper-speak, one of the kinder epithets given to Obama. I think it's kind of a meld of the "he thinks he's royalty but it's all in his mind, so imaginary royalty" and the "unicorn candy" (handouts) that he doles out to his subjects. Pathetic that I know this, yes.
    posted by madamjujujive at 2:51 PM on October 3, 2013


    I'm pretty sure they picked it up from the ironic pictures of Obama riding a unicorn that liberals tend to post. Possibly because they think we meant them as a sincere tribute. I like this one!
    posted by emjaybee at 2:54 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Varney (the Vampire) wants to "punish" federal employees? Between the likes of him and Thiessen it won't be long before they're straight out calling for whippings and hangings.

    (I really did wonder once how the Russians could believe everything Pravda told them. I was young and naive.)
    posted by octobersurprise at 2:54 PM on October 3, 2013 [6 favorites]


    What does that even mean? I googled "Unicorn Prince" but couldn't find anything that would clue me in. Is that even a thing?

    This along with the "Emperor" and "King" thing I mentioned above which started the discussion are all monikers used to reiterate that the speaker thinks his presidency is illegitimate. It's a common thing. I have an older relative that every.single.time his name comes out of her mouth it is preceded by one of these. It's maddening.
    posted by Big_B at 2:58 PM on October 3, 2013


    Tea Party darling Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-NC): "The thing of it is, I need my paycheck. That is the bottom line."

    Good thing that doesn't apply to any other federal workers, including her own fucking staffers, living high on their salaries that are less than 20% of hers. I'm really, really impressed with the self-restraint of anyone who can get within arms reach of this woman without slapping her. I don't think I could do it.
    posted by Bulgaroktonos at 3:03 PM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    How's her healthcare?
    posted by Artw at 3:04 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    The thing with the woman in the car is begining to seem a bit like irrelevant rubbernecking now, maybe we should drop it?

    I don't know, it's possible you are right, but I live in Arlington VA and this event seems like part of the shutdown story to me. A woman seems to try to essentially attack the white house, then the Capitol, with her car, then gets gunned down while her presumptive daughter watches from the back seat after she probably helps to illustrate the failure of our health care system, while our legislators sit on their hands a few dozen yards away. I wouldn't call it irrelevant, myself, but maybe I feel it more because I live right here and members of my family have been furloughed.
    posted by onlyconnect at 3:09 PM on October 3, 2013 [6 favorites]


    They're saying its a 34 year old African American resident of Stamford, Connecticut.
    posted by Justinian at 3:21 PM on October 3, 2013




    I've been streaming C-SPAN most of the day and Louie Gohmert has been talking for awhile now and everything coming out of his mouth is just the most nonsense filled crap I've ever heard. We apparently live on completely different planes of existence.
    posted by Arbac at 3:44 PM on October 3, 2013


    Louie Gohmert has been talking for awhile now and everything coming out of his mouth is just the most nonsense filled crap I've ever heard.

    Do not adjust your television.
    posted by Rykey at 3:48 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Really? You don't find him captivatizzzzzzzzzzzzz.
    posted by Drinky Die at 3:55 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]




    ZOMG NPR's collage of Fox News. It's like The Daily Show without the catharsis of humor
    posted by angrycat at 4:15 PM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    Just told by a senior senate staffer who I trust that this is Boehner's retreat from Moscow and that the Dems in the Senate are really united on this. Got a big thumbs up. "They fucked up bad" he said of the GOP.
    posted by Ironmouth at 4:31 PM on October 3, 2013 [8 favorites]


    A year and a half old, but timely: I work for Uncle Sam, and I’m proud of it
    posted by exogenous at 4:59 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    I half wonder if after this started there is now a political play from the Democrats underway to crush Boehner and ferment as much acrimony within the Republican party as possible. IF Boehner finally presents the clean bill and then faces open revolt it's going to force the party as a whole to deal with the Tea Partiers one way or the other, fully embrace it and alienate a handful of House members and many Senate members, or... who knows? In the long run the question has to be forced, how much political power does the minority hold over the majority. This may be that time, as orchestrated by the Democrats. or, more likely, it's just one big cock-up and everyone is flying blind.
    posted by edgeways at 5:04 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    "fine, then - if you won't negotiate over burning down your house, i'll burn down MY OWN!!"
    posted by pyramid termite at 5:09 PM on October 3, 2013 [5 favorites]


    Like I said earlier, Obama's play here is to split the Republican party. Obama always plays the long game. You see the same pattern play out in his opponents every time. It was the same with John McCain, Hillary Clinton, and Mitt Romney: They don't know they're backed into a corner and beaten until it's way too late. Now the key is to infuriate the Tea Party against the saner Republicans as much as possible.
    posted by vibrotronica at 5:12 PM on October 3, 2013




    Another appropriate quote:
    Senator? You can have my answer now, if you like. My final offer is this: nothing. Not even the fee for the gaming license, which I would appreciate if you would put up personally.
    posted by Justinian at 5:14 PM on October 3, 2013 [6 favorites]


    inigo2: "To be more precise, Capitol Police will have to skip their next paycheck if the shutdown extends: "

    Are they working for free or is their pay being deferred?
    posted by Mitheral at 5:16 PM on October 3, 2013


    I don't know if anyone else noticed, but in Obama's speech today, he brought up the word "deadbeats," as in, if we don't pay our bills, we are deadbeats (throwing the GOP's words back at them). And how Kentucky ordered up health care plans ("not like they voted for me"). So in effect he was calling the GOP deadbeats if they don't vote for the debt ceiling to go through. I thought it was a pretty good speech. I'm sticking by him and I think he will see this through. GOBAMA!
    posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 5:18 PM on October 3, 2013


    The last time I was in Boston the USS Constitution was closed to tours because the crew was out on a qualification cruise. This time? Government shutdown'd.

    Thanks, Obama.
    posted by Steely-eyed Missile Man at 5:22 PM on October 3, 2013


    It is sounding more and more like woman took wrong turn, paniced and was killed by an overly agressive police response.
    posted by humanfont at 5:26 PM on October 3, 2013


    I was hoping for the phrase, "deadbeat Congress." But I also knew Obama would never go that far in a speech.
    posted by meese at 5:28 PM on October 3, 2013


    From Golden Eternity's link:
    The Tea Party was born because the Republican Party would not stand up for real Americans. The Republican Party was born because the Whig Party would not stand up for all Americans.
    Those two sentences imply different ideals, you boob.
    posted by Rustic Etruscan at 5:29 PM on October 3, 2013 [6 favorites]


    Are they working for free or is their pay being deferred?

    All federal employees currently working because they are "excepted"* (which means they get an exception from furlough) will eventually receive a paycheck. But because the federal employees who process paychecks are furloughed, those paychecks will be delayed. I believe tomorrow is the end of a pay period and it may be that the payroll workers were able to process paychecks for this pay period for excepted employees, so they may get a paycheck next Friday. But after that, if the shutdown continues, they won't get paid until the shutdown is over and payroll employees are back.

    Note that those employees WILL be paid as part of whatever appropriations bill Congress passes -- they have to be paid under the aforementioned Anti-Deficiency Act. Furloughed employees have in the past also gotten back pay for days not worked while on furlough, but the received wisdom this time has been that there's no way Congress will authorize back pay for work not done. That seems to be changing, though -- I'll see if I can find the link, but earlier this afternoon, I saw a headline that suggested Republicans are coming around on this.

    *This is contrast to "exempted" employees who are employees who are paid by some funding source other than appropriations, like fees (but in some cases, even where an agency is funded by fees, those fees are deposited to the Treasury and still must be appropriated back to the agency).
    posted by devinemissk at 5:31 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Just read Golden Eternity's latest link.

    That any member of the Tea Party believes splitting off from the Republican Party is a good idea is patently absurd. Spitting themselves off reduces their legislative power to almost nothing. They will have to either caucus with and compromise with the current Republican Party or they won't even have the power to get the slightest bit of their agenda done. It would be a phenomenally stupid move that would top even threatening to crash the world's economy's stupidity.
    posted by Joey Michaels at 5:31 PM on October 3, 2013


    It would be a phenomenally stupid move that would top even threatening to crash the world's economy's stupidity.

    You know the Tea Party—always going for the gusto!
    posted by vibrotronica at 5:33 PM on October 3, 2013 [8 favorites]


    To put it another way, I double dog dare them.
    posted by Joey Michaels at 5:33 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    They don't know they aren't the majority.
    posted by Drinky Die at 5:34 PM on October 3, 2013 [5 favorites]


    That's funny, they probably don't know how to spell the word "majority" either.
    posted by Justinian at 5:36 PM on October 3, 2013


    That any member of the Tea Party believes splitting off from the Republican Party is a good idea is patently absurd.

    Don't listen, Tea Party! Splitting off is a marvelous idea!
    posted by Rykey at 5:37 PM on October 3, 2013 [11 favorites]


    The argument in Golden Eternity's link (by Justin Phillips, lets give credit where credit is due) will kill the Republican Party either way, and resulting in the Tea Party as a permanent minority party comparable to, I don't know, Golden Dawn?
    posted by oneswellfoop at 5:37 PM on October 3, 2013


    The idea that the Republic could well be brought low by a small gang of buffoons is app -

    ropriate, actually
    posted by Rustic Etruscan at 5:40 PM on October 3, 2013


    That's funny, they probably don't know how to spell the word "majority" either.
    posted by Justinian at 9:36 AM on October 4 [+] [!]

    Sure they do: W-A-S-P.

    posted by DoctorFedora at 5:43 PM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    On the other hand right now may be the perfect time for a split, for the Rs. Yeah, they'll likely lose in the mid terms, but it gives them another 2 years to recover and run non extremists for presdident and stand a good shot at it.
    posted by edgeways at 5:44 PM on October 3, 2013


    Spitting themselves off reduces their legislative power to almost nothing.

    ohpleaseohpleaseohplease
    posted by rtha at 5:48 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    In another few years there won't be a black president and the Tea Party will cease to exist.

    That people continue to think the root of Tea Party motivation goes beyond "fuck the uppity black president thinking he tells us what to do" astounds me.
    posted by XQUZYPHYR at 5:51 PM on October 3, 2013 [10 favorites]


    The fact that Obama is black exacerbates the situation; it does not cause the situation. What astounds me is the idea that the Tea Party, were it to make it to 2016 remaining as a significant player, would suddenly disappear if, for example, Hillary Clinton were elected. Or any other Democrat you'd care to name with the possible exception of Zell Miller.

    These people didn't start going crazy when a black man was elected. They started going crazier. They've been ramped up on the crazy since the early 1990s at the least.
    posted by Flunkie at 5:58 PM on October 3, 2013 [16 favorites]


    That people continue to think the root of Tea Party motivation goes beyond "fuck the uppity black president thinking he tells us what to do" astounds me.

    Oh, come on. The Tea Party uses that racial animosity instrumentally to get people angry and get them to the polls; its real purpose is to put those uncountable millions of dollars that now constitute speech to good use in deregulating finance even further (along with everything else) and trying to privatize anything and everything of value. Don't confuse the Tea Party's tactics with its goals.
    posted by clockzero at 6:07 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Seriously, what? The 1990's? I was there and there was no "OMG Blackie" sort of stuff going on then. It was "OMG Bill got a blow job!" And even that was stretch. Now it's pretty blatant racism.
    posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 6:07 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    I remember specifically when my dad went kind of nuts for this proto-Tea Party horseshit. It was the 90s. Wasn't about blowjobs. It was about everything the Clinton's did being some kind of vast conspiracy. He was illegitimate and a liar and a womanizer and Hillary was for sure a lesbian and they killed a guy, and stole money from drug dealers, and....

    Oh god. The Vince Foster articles he wanted me to read (at 13), the endless WSJ Editorials this brilliant man and Harvard/Boston College MBA swallowed up. The Limbaugh he listened to. Made me an annoying shit of a conservative up until 21 or so. I loved the man, and I couldn't have asked for a better dad, but when I think back to what a fucking loon he was when it came to politics I really do get a kind of hollowness to my memories of him.

    This "straight talk", quasi-factual, condescending shit is basically catnip for 50+ year old white guys. It provides a sense of shared fear, solidarity, a nicely packaged "other", and (very) occasionally a valid point. The fact that the guys spewing it almost always look like the people being spewed to only increases the effectiveness.

    Yeah, Obama's race has made things more repellent, but this is not new.
    posted by lattiboy at 6:10 PM on October 3, 2013 [39 favorites]


    I hear you, lattiboy, but I still don't think it was as blatant as it is now. I disagree. I think Obama's race has a lot to do with it because of his agenda, which is healthcare for all, and is seen as giving in to those on "the dole." Which are poor black people in their minds. Whatever it was in Clinton's era, it is 1 million times magnified now.
    posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 6:16 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    the spotlight

    i remember seeing copies of this in the early 80s - and god only knows what was going on before that

    the political ancestors of the tea party go back a long, long time - perhaps even as far as the know-nothing party of the 1850s
    posted by pyramid termite at 6:16 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Seriously, what? The 1990's? I was there and there was no "OMG Blackie" sort of stuff going on then. It was "OMG Bill got a blow job!" And even that was stretch. Now it's pretty blatant racism.
    • I was also there;
    • There was in fact blatant racism;
    • Ignoring that, my point was not related to whether or not there was blatant racism;
    • My point was that these people have been crazy for a long time, and the fact that Obama is black exacerbates their craziness but is not the sole driving factor in their craziness.
    posted by Flunkie at 6:18 PM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    Flunkie you're conflating the Tea Party movement with the general overarching concept of hard right nutjobs. Yes the latter will always exist. The Tea Party existed because Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh stood up and announced that Obama had to be defied; in part due to his "deep seated hatred of white people." They came to rallies with guns to show they still have power, because no scary two black guys in black berets were gonna stop us from insisting we're in charge. They foam over health care because of the air-quote air-quote air-quote freeloaders in this country, you know, THOSE people.

    A crazed angry opposition will surely exist in response to president Hillary Clinton. It will be called the Republican Party. The Tea Party as an isolated specific group will be nonexistent. It was created for, and exists as, a flagpole for anger that a specific person is president.
    posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:21 PM on October 3, 2013


    Flunkie you're conflating the Tea Party movement with the general overarching concept of hard right nutjobs.

    he's not conflating those - they've managed to conflate themselves into a mass political movement that has finally gotten a foot in the door after decades of trying

    the only way the tea party is going away is if they lose a lot of ground electorially - and maybe not even then

    it's a good, pithy brand for that kind of political movement - it's effective and they're not going to let it go just because someone else becomes president
    posted by pyramid termite at 6:26 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    I think the big difference now is they use nastier rhetoric but there's less, y'know, McVeighs, Nicholses, Rudolphs. Militias are less of a thing or at least less of a public thing. They talk like it's the same, but the Tea Party is the 90's reactionary right after moving to the suburbs.
    posted by jason_steakums at 6:26 PM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Yeah, Obama's race has made things more repellent, but this is not new.

    This is like saying yeah, possibly destroying the national debt has made things more problematic but playing hardball to push policy is nothing new.

    It really is. What we are seeing now and have been seeing over the last few years is angrier and more powderkegged than anything we've seen since the Civil War. And what's setting the antagonists off unlike anything before is obvious.
    posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:28 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Of course there was racism back then, but no one questioned Bill Clinton's birth, did they? I mean, this stuff has taken new heights. It's not like, OMG Democrats this, it's OMG we can't deal with a Black President. Must destroy at all costs. And at all costs is not something this country can afford.
    posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 6:30 PM on October 3, 2013


    Arbac: "I've been streaming C-SPAN most of the day and Louie Gohmert has been talking for awhile now and everything coming out of his mouth is just the most nonsense filled crap I've ever heard. We apparently live on completely different planes of existence."

    He's the guy who honestly posits Terror Babies... It's so amazingly ... I can't even think of the word, coherently insane?

    1) You got your fear of "anchor babies" and immigrants.
    2) You've got Muslims (note, I don't even say "Radical" because to this guy, ALL Muslims are evil and shit).
    3) You've got Madrasas and infiltrations at the highest level of Government by a Kenyan Muslim who trained at an Indonesian Madrasa...

    PUT EM IN A BLENDER... BZZZZZZZZZT

    Instant Terror Baby Puree!

    The Muslims come and have a baby on American soil (anchor baby), they then take that baby and go to a terror training camp (because, of course, that's what all Madrasas are, right/), and then they come back when they're of age, and BOOM! TERROR! JUST LIKE THAT!

    How do you even get taken seriously being part of the leadership of a country when you're that orthogonal to reality? Whatever it, it's America. FUCK YEAH!
    posted by symbioid at 6:30 PM on October 3, 2013


    You're . . . all correct? There has always been a radical rump of the right wing. The difference is that with Obama's election, that rump was absorbed and normalized by the Republican Party.
    posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 6:31 PM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    Maybe the rump needs some liposuction.
    posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 6:33 PM on October 3, 2013


    i don't understand why there hasn't been any burning in effigy though

    especially with halloween coming up and john boehner is so orange
    posted by elizardbits at 6:33 PM on October 3, 2013 [5 favorites]


    Of course there was racism back then, but no one questioned Bill Clinton's birth, did they?

    No, but they did accuse him of things like having scores of political opponents murdered. White Obama would face something similarly insane to get them going.
    posted by Drinky Die at 6:34 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    I remember my outrage back then in Clinton's era, no doubt. But this has been a whirlwind ride of skullduggery the likes of which I never thought I'd see. I'm not outraged so much as wondering when Obama will raise his finger and say, "wanna flip a coin?" Because I'd back that coin.
    posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 6:37 PM on October 3, 2013


    You also have to take the internet into account. Sure, there was Prodigy and AOL and that stuff in the 90s, but today, just about everyone has Facebook and it's significantly easier for extremist points of view to get an audience in general. Of course, this is only one part of the bigger explanation for what's going on with the Tea Party.
    posted by feloniousmonk at 6:40 PM on October 3, 2013 [5 favorites]


    (And white woman Obama would face crazy opposition featuring massive amounts of misogyny instead of racism. Haters are lazy and predictable.)
    posted by Drinky Die at 6:41 PM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    Well look at Hillary. I would have voted for her. And maybe next time we will get Elizabeth Warren. I would vote for her.
    posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 6:43 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Flunkie you're conflating the Tea Party movement with the general overarching concept of hard right nutjobs.
    Yes, of course I am. So? The idea that the current members of the Tea Party are going to up and say "Hey guys, no more black president, so let's keep on keepin' on with the crazy, but no need to call ourselves the Tea Party anymore" seems weird to me.

    Sure, maybe they won't call themselves the Tea Party anymore. But I don't see why they wouldn't, and "no more black president" doesn't cut it.
    posted by Flunkie at 6:45 PM on October 3, 2013


    I miss the Republicans who would just hate Obama for being new money.
    posted by jason_steakums at 6:47 PM on October 3, 2013 [9 favorites]


    So what do these guys have left to do? "Hey, we are going to keep the govt shut down forever."

    And then what? What's their Hail Mary? Because I don't see one.
    posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 7:07 PM on October 3, 2013


    If Obama caves on this, I'll never vote for him again.
    posted by desjardins at 7:11 PM on October 3, 2013 [16 favorites]


    I miss the Republicans who would just hate Obama for being new money.

    I miss the Republicans who would just hate Obama for beating Battletoads and Ghosts and Goblins without using a Game Genie.
    posted by RonButNotStupid at 7:18 PM on October 3, 2013 [5 favorites]


    If Obama caves on this, I'll never vote for him again.

    Shhhhh or you'll reveal our secret liberal plans to repeal the twenty-second amendment.
    posted by Talez at 7:23 PM on October 3, 2013 [5 favorites]


    RonButNotStupid: "I miss the Republicans who would just hate Obama for being new money.

    I miss the Republicans who would just hate Obama for beating Battletoads and Ghosts and Goblins without using a Game Genie
    "

    Republicans all not even knowing about how you have to beat Ghosts 'n' Goblins twice
    posted by DoctorFedora at 7:44 PM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    All federal employees currently working because they are "excepted"* (which means they get an exception from furlough) will eventually receive a paycheck. But because the federal employees who process paychecks are furloughed, those paychecks will be delayed. I believe tomorrow is the end of a pay period and it may be that the payroll workers were able to process paychecks for this pay period for excepted employees, so they may get a paycheck next Friday. But after that, if the shutdown continues, they won't get paid until the shutdown is over and payroll employees are back.

    No. Excepted employees who are working without pay will not be paid until an omnibus continuing resolution is signed or an appropriation for their particular department/agency/activity has been signed because no money has been appropriated to pay them.

    On Monday, my agency (and I assume most/all agencies) closed out payroll through September 30. We should receive pay for hours worked between Sept 22 and Sept 30 on our next payday (Oct 8). We get that pay because it was earned in fiscal 2013 when there were appropriated funds from which to pay us.
    posted by weebil at 7:50 PM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Inside the GOP: Report on focus groups with Evangelical, Tea Party, and moderate Republicans (PDF)

    Understand that the base thinks they are losing politically and losing control of the country and their starting reaction is “worried,” “discouraged,” “scared,” and “concerned” about the direction of the country and a little powerless to change course.

    posted by Drinky Die at 8:23 PM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    This ... Obama’s…just pure distilled Marxism. (Evangelical man, Roanoke) from Drinky Die's link made me laugh out loud and die a little inside.
    posted by Jonathan Livengood at 8:33 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    No. Excepted employees who are working without pay will not be paid until an omnibus continuing resolution is signed or an appropriation for their particular department/agency/activity has been signed because no money has been appropriated to pay them.

    "eventually"
    posted by empath at 8:42 PM on October 3, 2013


    from Drinky Die's link: "Obama's a Liar?" It's hard to find an opinion in any of those focus groups, even the 'Moderates', that isn't based on misinformation or DISinformation. The GOP/FoxNews/TalkRadio brainwashing program has done well...

    Of course for me, the biggest difference between the parties is the Democrats lie half the time and the Republicans lie ALL the time.
    posted by oneswellfoop at 8:45 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Something I happened to run across the other day:

    "But moral, political, intellectual improvement are duties assigned by the Author of Our Existence to social no less than to individual man. For the fulfillment of those duties governments are invested with power, and to the attainment of the end--the progressive improvement of the condition of the governed--the exercise of delegated powers is a duty as sacred and indispensable as the usurpation of powers not granted is criminal and odious...

    "But if... [the powers] enumerated in the Constitution may be effectually brought into action by laws promoting the improvement of agriculture, commerce, and manufactures, the cultivation and encouragement of the mechanic and of the elegant arts, the advancement of literature, and the progress of the sciences, ornamental and profound, to refrain from exercising them for the benefit of the people themselves would be to hide in the earth the talent committed to our charge--would be treachery to the most sacred of trusts."

    - John Q Adams, First Annual Message, 1825.
    posted by koeselitz at 8:55 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    well, John Q Adams was the George W Bush of the 1800s...
    posted by oneswellfoop at 8:59 PM on October 3, 2013


    Looks like this could be pretty bad for America's service academies.
    posted by A Bad Catholic at 9:15 PM on October 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Pediatricians Warn That Cuts to SNAP Program Will Harm Children

    "In a commentary in this week's issue of Lancet, pediatricians from Boston Medical Center (BMC) call the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly the Food Stamp Program), one of America's most cost-effective and successful public health programs in the country. According to the authors, not only does it make life much better for children and families, it also saves society money. Unfortunately they also point out that despite convincing evidence of the beneficial effects of SNAP on child health, legislators have targeted SNAP for cuts as they struggle to address the federal budget, lagging economy and the U.S. farm bill."

    "Evidence for the beneficial effect of SNAP on childhood food insecurity is strong according to the authors. SNAP benefits, when received by pregnant women, are associated with decreased rates of low birth weight. In households with children, SNAP reduces the risk of food insecurity; enhances intake of B vitamins, iron, and calcium; lowers the risk of anemia, obesity, poor health, developmental delays, hospitalization for failure to thrive, low academic test scores, and reports for child abuse or neglect. Children aged five through nine, from SNAP-participating families had better academic outcomes and less obesity than non-participating families.
    "Scientific evidence shows that SNAP is a wise investment in the brains and bodies of American children, an investment that should be increased, not curtailed," stressed Frank."
    posted by VikingSword at 9:26 PM on October 3, 2013 [7 favorites]


    It is sounding more and more like woman took wrong turn, paniced and was killed by an overly agressive police response.

    have you seen the videos? No way. Wrong turn? Have you ever been at the intersection of 15th and Pennsylvania? It isn't possible. Its like a wrong turn into Ft. Knox. It gets done, but nobody rams the gate less than 400 feet from the White House, surrounded by the police, running over a police officer, then leading dozens of police cars on a chase towards the U.S. Capitol. And what did she do when she got there? Continued to evade police, then drove towards the Capitol of the United States while the country was in a massive crisis. She then was blocked in by at least 9 police with guns drawn and a police car behind her. Rather than surrender to police, she ran over another cop, smashed a cop car and continued to evade.

    This is like a 6 minute sequence in which the person attempted, according to dozens of eyewitnesses, to ram her way into the White House. She did not slow down and ask for directions. She ran over a Secret Service Uniformed Division officer, throwing him on the hood of her car, and then sped directly for the U.S. Capitol.

    No it was not overly agressive. The driver of the vehicle was aggressive.
    posted by Ironmouth at 9:33 PM on October 3, 2013 [4 favorites]


    If I had been looking out of my office window, I would have seen the chase. I look over that part of Pennsylvania Avenue. I heard more cop cars than I've ever heard, ever. If she wasn't going to stop, she was going to have to be stopped.
    posted by Ironmouth at 9:35 PM on October 3, 2013


    oneswellfoop: "well, John Q Adams was the George W Bush of the 1800s..."

    Heh. Well, not really sure where to start with that one. He certainly had his problems (though of course not as many as his successor.) But in the bit I was quoting he was really standing staunchly against the proto-Jacksonians in favor of the national Democrat (soon to be Whig) program of national improvement - a program that entailed federal powers we take for granted today. As well we should; they're a necessary part of a Federal Republic like ours. Sometimes it seems like people want to believe that before 1930 the government was run by a few guys in Washington with some desks and a filing cabinet. No, there were plenty of people who argued stridently and successfully for the government's power to act in the benefit of the people. As it should.
    posted by koeselitz at 9:37 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    If Obama caves on this, I'll never vote for him again.

    Hamburger?
    posted by five fresh fish at 9:43 PM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    In the SA thread where I found that link about GOP focus groups someone asked for an analysis of the left and someone linked this: Left 3.0

    It's a really good read too, feel like I learned something about my own political views. Reading both of those links really helps give you a big picture understanding of the political forces that have pushed us into this crazy situation.

    With a gop-controlled House, there are limits to what a Democratic president can do. Left 3.0 is not unsympathetic. But it demands a fight. And there is an emerging corollary of considerable interest. Health care reform is once again the decisive precedent.

    The next time a Democratic president has a Democratic Congress to work with, Left 3.0 will expect major achievement to show for it. Performance on the level of what Bill Clinton achieved with a Democratic Congress (or for that matter, of what George W. Bush achieved with six years of gop control of Congress) will not be acceptable. When government is divided, you must fight as best you can; when government is yours, you must win.

    posted by Drinky Die at 10:03 PM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    when government is yours, you must win.

    You must win ... something ... "and I don't even know what that is." Yeah, this sounds like one of the forces that got us into this crazy situation, alright. I'm personally grateful if dubaya may have held off some of the crazies in his party from "winning" while he was president. I don't think it should be about winning. It should be doing what they honestly believe is best for the future of the country, and the planet for that matter, and getting a majority of people on board with it. And it should be about trying to understand and compromise with people that disagree with them, who are willing to do the same.
    posted by Golden Eternity at 10:13 PM on October 3, 2013 [5 favorites]


    Senate Chaplain Barry C. Black: "Have mercy upon us, oh God, and save us from the Madness."
    posted by tonycpsu at 10:30 PM on October 3, 2013 [9 favorites]


    tonycpsu: "Senate Chaplain Barry C. Black: "Have mercy upon us, oh God, and save us from the Madness.""

    That chaplain is my new hero. Perhaps the one thing that's good about this whole mess, is that the obstructionist members of Congress get a verbal beat down whenever they open the day's session.
    posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 10:54 PM on October 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Good god. Arguing with some dude on Facebook. He says "The ACA would never have passed if the Democrats didn't control the House and the Senate."

    No shit. The pure gall of those fuckers, promising to pass something if elected, getting elected, then passing it! How dare they!

    Good lord.
    posted by Ironmouth at 11:07 PM on October 3, 2013 [24 favorites]


    Business Week - Republicans Are No Longer the Party of Business

    “When talk of a shutdown first began, the perception among businesspeople I know was that this was just Washington being Washington again,” Gentle says. “Now they’re saying, ‘This is really getting in the way of operating my business.’ The business world is hard enough without Republicans making it even more difficult. It’s just ridiculous.”

    This an interesting comment:

    Not only will most middle class Americans pay higher premiums, many of us are also being cut hours at work. I work at a community college and all us adjuncts received a letter last spring stating that although the president has delayed the employer mandate for large companies, the college will start to implement reduction of part-timers' working hours because of Obama-care. So instead of the 15 semester credit hours I could previously teach, I now can only teach 11 semester credit hours! It seems so unfair to be cut back more hours when most of us part-timers barely made ends meet before!


    It's not like ACA won't have problems (hopefully it doesn't have big ones), but if congress were actually functional I would think things like this would be fixable. Of course the GOP isn't interested in fixing problems, they just want to see ACA fail and the President fail.
    posted by Golden Eternity at 11:15 PM on October 3, 2013




    Drinky Die, that deserves it's own FPP.
    posted by daq at 11:34 PM on October 3, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Yes it does. Wow. I read about the Disney thing but Walmart getting on board like that is on a whole other level.
    posted by jason_steakums at 12:03 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    How the White House sees the shutdown by Ezra Klein
    As the White House sees it, Speaker John Boehner has begun playing politics as game of Calvinball, in which Republicans invent new rules on the fly and then demand the media and the Democrats accept them as reality and find a way to work around them.

    ....

    Top administration officials say that President Obama feels as strongly about this fight as he has about anything in his presidency. He believes that he will be handing his successor a fatally weakened office, and handing the American people an unacceptable risk of future financial crises, if he breaks, or even bends, in the face of Republican demands.
    posted by wemayfreeze at 2:50 AM on October 4, 2013 [8 favorites]


    Obama feels as strongly about this fight as he has about anything in his presidency. He believes that he will be handing his successor a fatally weakened office, and handing the American people an unacceptable risk of future financial crises, if he breaks, or even bends, in the face of Republican demands.

    If he would get on TV every day until the shutdown ends and say that (in a decently crafted set of messages), speaking directly to the American people, I think he could mobilize a lot more support against the Republicans. No doubt, it would be spun like crazy in the wingnut echo chamber, but for the rest of the population, it would be a set of coherent points that would address the helpless sense of "What IS this bullshit?" so many people who are busy working hard and raising families feel, but don't know what to do about. But politics, I guess.
    posted by Rykey at 4:40 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    You must win ... something ... "and I don't even know what that is." Yeah, this sounds like one of the forces that got us into this crazy situation, alright.

    But I know what that is: A public health insurance option. Large investments in education, national infrastructure, and alternative energy. A tax structure that reduces income inequality and allows everyone to benefit from our nation's economy.

    "Win" is an unfortunate choice of words, but it doesn't have the same rhetorical impact of "when government is yours, you must be able set policy and national debate without being stymied by a minority that's determined to see you fail and willing to wreck the economy to make it happen"
    posted by RonButNotStupid at 5:10 AM on October 4, 2013 [8 favorites]


    I heard this on NPR this morning, and spent some time afterward thinking about how a large part of the problem, at the macro-est level, is Boehner. He's not only not good at working with the President, he's not good at working with anyone, and unable to control the situation on his side of the aisle. Completely apart from issues of philosophy of government, he seems to be just a weak leader, rigid, with poor relationships in general, and frightened to lose his position. I find myself thinking we would not even be in this position with a different Speaker.
    posted by Miko at 5:32 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Love the contrast in body language between the president and Boehner in the picture from that NPR article.
    posted by octothorpe at 5:36 AM on October 4, 2013


    Love the contrast in body language between the president and Boehner in the picture from that NPR article.

    OMG he looks like the Grinch in that shot.
    posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 5:42 AM on October 4, 2013


    Good god. Arguing with some dude on Facebook. He says "The ACA would never have passed if the Democrats didn't control the House and the Senate."

    No shit. The pure gall of those fuckers, promising to pass something if elected, getting elected, then passing it! How dare they!


    I'm beginning to think that the country is becoming ungovernable because too many people no long accept the government as legitimate.
    posted by empath at 5:49 AM on October 4, 2013 [17 favorites]


    empath, that's crazy talk. Next you'll be saying that it has to do with the president's skin color.
    posted by Aizkolari at 5:54 AM on October 4, 2013


    I know it's not kosher, but lord Boehner looks like he has a darker skin tone ten the president, especially in the hands. Which if just normal pigmentation would be, eh whatever, but dude seriously needs to stop it with the tanning booths
    posted by edgeways at 6:06 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Yeah so I'm assuming these guys fail, because otherwise, God help us, as Krugman sez, so what do they do next. Maybe if they could be distracted in some way. I volunteer to dope slap a bunch.
    posted by angrycat at 6:07 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    slapping in the face or the back of the head is not what I have in mind, namely the foot and a rather more sensitive area of the body.
    posted by edgeways at 6:10 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Completely apart from issues of philosophy of government, he seems to be just a weak leader, rigid, with poor relationships in general, and frightened to lose his position. I find myself thinking we would not even be in this position with a different Speaker.

    I've mentioned it on MeFi before, but Boehner has badly handled his Speakership because he didn't expect to be a coalition Speaker. Gingrich and Hastert only had to keep the Republican Representatives in line, but Boehner has to whip the Republicans and the Tea Partiers. Make no mistake -- they are a different party, without the courtesy of using a T after their names instead of an R. Being a coalition leader is a different skill set than being a party leader, and Boehner was utterly unprepared for it.
    posted by Etrigan at 6:11 AM on October 4, 2013 [8 favorites]


    [One comment deleted; there are other open threads for discussion of surveillance issues.]
    posted by taz at 6:11 AM on October 4, 2013


    Regarding Boehner's complexion, Obama has said: "After all, we have a lot in common. He is a person of color — although not a color that appears in the natural world."

    I am disappointed that the Post live update link seems to be borked, showing old news from last week. That was a great resource and I hope they fix it soon.
    posted by exogenous at 6:24 AM on October 4, 2013


    Looks like this is the new live updates link, though it's missing the old updates. Good news is that a bill to give back pay to federal workers already has the support of 18 Republicans in the House.
    posted by exogenous at 6:30 AM on October 4, 2013




    I'm beginning to think that the country is becoming ungovernable because too many people no long accept the government as legitimate.

    Yes, after being told for decades - often by people running for office and asking for their votes! - that government is terrible and doesn't work and is obstructionist and is ruining the lives of every Real AmericanTM and blah blah blah. A whole generation has grown up hearing this stuff not just as the talking points from the fringes of a political party, but as its foundation. I guess it never occurred to Norquist and the Republicans that this is kind of a double-edged sword. (DUH!)
    posted by rtha at 6:42 AM on October 4, 2013 [7 favorites]


    Foreign Governments Warn Against US Travel Due to Government Shutdown

    Wow, that headline is misleading at best. That article provides exactly zero examples of countries warning against travel to the U.S.
    posted by one more dead town's last parade at 6:48 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Here's a list of relatively moderate Republicans who could probably use to hear from those in their districts that they want a clean CR and that their wingnut faction is putting all of them at risk for being voted out of office.
    posted by Miko at 6:51 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Some of you might be interested that this budget thing has leaked into the My Little Pony fandom, and it perhaps presages the Speaker of the House transforming into a wicked stallion of darkness: Nightmare Boehner.
    posted by cyberscythe at 6:58 AM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


    Oh shit Rand Paul mic slip
    posted by angrycat at 7:05 AM on October 4, 2013


    "We're going to win this one"

    FUCK YOU
    posted by angrycat at 7:06 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    My House rep wasn't on the list, but I called his office yesterday anyhow. I feel bad for the poor bastard who has to weather all those calls.
    posted by Rykey at 7:10 AM on October 4, 2013


    I can't wait to see this photo of a napping house member accompanied by the headline "Republicans Asleep at the Wheel." (facebook link, no login required)
    posted by troika at 7:10 AM on October 4, 2013


    Especially since the guy answering the phone probably isn't getting paid for his effort rykey
    posted by vuron at 7:11 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Nightmare Boehner

    I thought those were supposed to stop after puberty.
    posted by backseatpilot at 7:21 AM on October 4, 2013 [6 favorites]


    The fundamental flaw in the set up of the US government is that it makes one major assumption: those in the government WANT a government. All of those checks and balances proceed from that assumption. And the problem with the Tea Party isn't that it's a bunch of Republicans infected with racism (which isn't to say that the Tea Party isn't racist - it's SUPER RACIST but at the end of the day racism isn't a structural defect, it's a moral failing) it's that it's infected with libertarianism. Which means that it's the physical embodiment of the fatal flaw. The Tea Party is America's Kryptonite.

    It's kind of amazing it took this long for someone to come up with a way to take down the country. I guess they just didn't think to do it from the inside until now.
    posted by marylynn at 7:36 AM on October 4, 2013 [17 favorites]


    Oh shit Rand Paul mic slip

    Article here.

    Stupid thing is, the mouth-breathers will buy his bullshit "But we're willing to compromise!" line (see the comments in that article). It doesn't surprise me, but I don't think it'll ever not enrage me, that a major political party can bank on the fact that a large part of the populace does not know, and does not care to know that they are being straight-up lied to. With really obvious, easy-to-verify lies.
    posted by Rykey at 7:45 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Paul: I just did CNN, and I just go over and over again, ‘We’re willing to compromise. We’re willing to negotiate.’ I don’t think [the Democrats have] poll tested, ‘we won’t negotiate.’ I think it’s awful for them to say that over and over again.

    It seems to be going over just fine? I'm actually pretty surprised at how broadly people understand that there is no negotiation to have on this, that it's just extortion. Maybe not most of the Republican base and certainly not the Tea Party base, but the Dems seem to have a good chunk of sympathy from the middle right now.

    I think the thing Paul doesn't even understand is that the Dems are in "fuck the polling, do the right thing" mode and standing surprisingly strong on that. Like Obama was saying, this is important for the precedent it sets for the next President and Congress.
    posted by jason_steakums at 7:55 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    jason_steakums: "I think the thing Paul doesn't even understand is that the Dems are in "fuck the polling, do the right thing" mode "

    I'm not so sure. The polling is with them right now -- people are blaming the GOP, as they should. If the polling were different, I'd like to believe the Democrats would do the right "damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead" thing, but when in recent memory have they done so?
    posted by tonycpsu at 8:08 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Walmart moving thousands of part-time workers to full-time status

    I clicked that link three separate times to make sure it wasn't actually a link to the Onion.
    posted by elizardbits at 8:09 AM on October 4, 2013 [9 favorites]


    4 Things to Know on Day 4 Of the Shutdown - includes a shutdown clock!
    posted by backseatpilot at 8:13 AM on October 4, 2013


    The Shutdown Standoff Is One of the Worst Crises in American History
    "What is happening in America is that [the social contract underlying its government] is being voided, largely through the initiative of rightwing Republicans from the deep South and rural Midwest. America is not likely to become Afghanistan, but it could easily become Italy or Greece or even Weimar Germany."
    posted by T.D. Strange at 8:48 AM on October 4, 2013


    Riding the Tea Party Tiger: Has it been worth it for the GOP?

    “It may be hard to understand why a person might jump off a cliff, unless you understand they’re being chased by a tiger,” McInturff said.

    “That tiger is the Tea Party.”

    posted by lattiboy at 8:56 AM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


    For a good account of the Tea Party vis-a-vis Boehner and others, I recommend When the Tea Party Came to Town: Inside the U.S. House of Representatives' Most Combative, Dysfunctional, and Infuriating Term in Modern History.
    posted by Rykey at 9:01 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Some reps from my state (Both D and R) are foregoing their paychecks during the shutdown, one who has not is Renee Ellmers, a republican. Her reason for continuing to collect her paycheck: "The thing of it is, I need my paycheck. That is the bottom line."

    Well good for her. The tone-deafness of these folks is beyond my capacity to understand.
    posted by marxchivist at 9:01 AM on October 4, 2013 [10 favorites]


    I'm not so sure. The polling is with them right now -- people are blaming the GOP, as they should. If the polling were different, I'd like to believe the Democrats would do the right "damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead" thing, but when in recent memory have they done so?

    Yeah, it's the Republicans who are flying blind here. None of this was intended by the leadership, the lemmings followed Cruz in and he had and has no plan.
    posted by Drinky Die at 9:02 AM on October 4, 2013


    Thinking about it some more, I think the Democrats should negotiate. Here's a proposal to get the ball rolling:

    In exchange for delaying the implementation of the ACA for one month, Republicans agree to tax capital gains as ordinary income.

    In exchange for delaying the implementation of the ACA for a second month, Republicans agree to remove the cap on income subject to social security taxes.

    In exchange for delaying the implementation of the ACA for a third month, Republicans agree to expand SNAP and TANF.

    In exchange for delaying the implementation of the ACA for a fourth month, Republicans agree to devote half of the annual military budget to combating anthropogenic climate change -- a budget commitment until more than 50% of climate scientists think AGW is no longer a problem.

    After that, Republicans can buy additional months of delay at a cost of an additional 5% added to the top marginal tax rate per month of delay.

    Under this negotiation plan, I would be perfectly happy to see the ACA delayed by a year.
    posted by Jonathan Livengood at 9:03 AM on October 4, 2013 [44 favorites]


    (Republicans starting a major fight with no exit strategy? Can you believe it?)
    posted by Drinky Die at 9:03 AM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Jonathan Livengood, the ACA went live on October 1. It's a done deal.
    posted by roomthreeseventeen at 9:04 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Some reps from my state (Both D and R) are foregoing their paychecks during the shutdown, one who has not is Renee Ellmers, a republican. Her reason for continuing to collect her paycheck: "The thing of it is, I need my paycheck. That is the bottom line."

    OH REALLY YOUR GOVERNMENT SERVICES ARE IMPORTANT TO YOU??
    posted by odinsdream at 9:05 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Sure. But the Republicans are still demanding repeals and delays in exchange for restarting the government, aren't they?
    posted by Jonathan Livengood at 9:05 AM on October 4, 2013




    I mean, the ACA has gone live several times in different ways, right? Passed in 2010, ruled constitutional in 2012, with various provisions being phased in all the way out to 2020. And it could, in principle, be rolled back or partially rolled back even now. Otherwise, the Republicans make even less sense than I thought they did.
    posted by Jonathan Livengood at 9:09 AM on October 4, 2013


    Renee "I need my paycheck" Ellmers' Facebook page. She is not finding much support there I tell ya what.
    posted by edgeways at 9:10 AM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Insane Fox News reporter "explains" Obamacare in Star Trek Gorn mask

    Just to be clear, as the update at the bottom says, Alex Jones is not a Fox News reporter. He is, however, insane

    And explaining Obamacare in a Gorn mask.
    posted by Elementary Penguin at 9:14 AM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Jonathan Livengood, people are sick and dying because they can't get healthcare coverage and/or cannot pay for the steep costs of healthcare without coverage. You might be able to wait a year, but many people cannot. And should not, because IT PASSED THROUGH ALL THREE BRANCHES OF GOVERNMENT. Congress passed the bill, the President signed it into law, and the Supreme Court upheld it.

    No one should have to wait any longer because the Republican party is throwing a fucking tantrum.
    posted by troika at 9:14 AM on October 4, 2013 [20 favorites]


    edgeways: "I know it's not kosher, but lord Boehner looks like he has a darker skin tone ten the president, especially in the hands. Which if just normal pigmentation would be, eh whatever, but dude seriously needs to stop it with the tanning booths"

    Cigs and Tanning Booths? Good thing he's got one of those great health care plans, and I highly doubt he's a vegetarian, something tells me he's got plenty of red meat in that diet of his.

    He's gonna end up looking like this woman if he's not careful (NSFS (sanity))
    posted by symbioid at 9:19 AM on October 4, 2013


    Artw: "Insane Fox News reporter "explains" Obamacare in Star Trek Gorn mask"

    Mmm, calling Alex Jones a "Fox News Reporter" is like calling David Icke an MSNBC Reporter (only just a wee bit closer, because Fox News actually has the gall to put Jones on the air, which... is a little disturbing).
    posted by symbioid at 9:21 AM on October 4, 2013


    IIRC he was actually a sports presenter for the BBC...
    posted by Artw at 9:25 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Politico: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid privately told fellow Democratic senators this week what he really thought of Speaker John Boehner.

    “He’s a coward,” Reid angrily said, referring to Boehner’s private push for federal health care contributions for lawmakers and their staff. Boehner later backed legislation to end those subsidies in order to win points with House GOP conservatives. “He’s a coward!” Reid exclaimed.

    posted by Drinky Die at 9:26 AM on October 4, 2013


    And it could, in principle, be rolled back or partially rolled back even now.

    Can't any legislation be rolled back? It just takes a new bill being passed into law by both branches of congress and signed by the President. Or whatever.
    posted by Golden Eternity at 9:27 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Biden Calls Park Ranger Who Was Berated By GOP Congressman: 'I'm Proud Of You'

    If Bill Clinton is the Secretary of Explaining Stuff, Joe Biden should be Secretary of Being Genial and Avuncular.
    posted by zombieflanders at 9:29 AM on October 4, 2013 [35 favorites]


    Can't any legislation be rolled back? It just takes a new bill being passed into law by both branches of congress and signed by the President. Or whatever.

    Yeah, we're not going to do that with people's health insurance.
    posted by roomthreeseventeen at 9:30 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    "This isn't some damn game!" hisses the irate hostage taker, like he's Hans fucking Gruber or something.

    These idiots are cartoons, you can't negotiate with cartoons.
    posted by Artw at 9:33 AM on October 4, 2013


    Dip. Get lots of Dip.
    posted by The Whelk at 9:35 AM on October 4, 2013 [7 favorites]


    Can't any legislation be rolled back?
    —Yeah, we're not going to do that with people's health insurance.


    That's why Republicans have worked so hard to kill the ACA in the womb. They know that once it takes effect and people start to realize it's not all medicine rations and death panels, there will be about as much chance of repealing it as there would be for Medicare or Social Security: none.
    posted by Atom Eyes at 9:37 AM on October 4, 2013 [9 favorites]




    Some reps from my state (Both D and R) are foregoing their paychecks during the shutdown, one who has not is Renee Ellmers, a republican. Her reason for continuing to collect her paycheck: "The thing of it is, I need my paycheck. That is the bottom line."

    Yeah, it's annoying how hypocritical her position is, but I am not outraged about this. I would prefer if more of congress weren't so rich that they could afford to give away their paychecks for a tiny fraction of political good will. Would be nice if they were more economically representative of the general public.
    posted by zennie at 9:38 AM on October 4, 2013 [9 favorites]


    The National Cathedral is also offering its garden for people who had planned to marry at memorials that are shutdown.
    posted by Bulgaroktonos at 9:39 AM on October 4, 2013


    Dip. Get lots of Dip.

    At least Dr. Doom was interested in creating public works projects.
    posted by backseatpilot at 9:40 AM on October 4, 2013 [5 favorites]


    Yeah, rolling it back got about 50 times harder once it started. At this point having the ACA implemented gives a pretty solid wall for the Democrats and Obama to put their backs against, the longer it goes on the thicker that wall will be.


    Ellmers' husband is a surgeon whose income already puts them in the top 2%-5%, if they are a desperate for the income as she make sit out to be they are really really bad at budgeting.
    posted by edgeways at 9:42 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    The National Cathedral has a gargoyle Darth Vader. That is all.
    posted by klarck at 9:42 AM on October 4, 2013 [8 favorites]


    Yeah, it's annoying how hypocritical her position is, but I am not outraged about this. I would prefer if more of congress weren't so rich that they could afford to give away their paychecks for a tiny fraction of political good will.

    I agree with the second half, but I'm still outraged by the hypocrisy. She's got people under her making a hell of a lot less money, let alone the rest of the federal employees. This is her bed, she can lie in it without whining.
    posted by inigo2 at 9:43 AM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


    Jonathan Livengood Thinking about it some more, I think the Democrats should negotiate.

    That would be nothing short of filling an airborne tanker with gasoline and pouring it over a raging forest fire. This isn't politics as usual. The Republicans are literally holding the nation hostage by refusing to pass boring, procedural legislation that keeps the government running unless their demands--which include the repeal or delay of a law that passed both houses, was signed by the President, and withstood judicial scrutiny by the Supreme Court--are met. That's never happened before.

    Any negotiation will establish a terrible precedent that will almost certainly have far-reaching ramifications.
    posted by RonButNotStupid at 9:43 AM on October 4, 2013 [22 favorites]


    The Wrong Side of History
    posted by Artw at 9:45 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]



    At least Dr. Doom was interested in creating public works projects.

    We bought the federal goverment so we could dismantle it.
    posted by The Whelk at 9:46 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    My weed dealer is mad about this too, which means this shit is intense
    posted by angrycat at 9:47 AM on October 4, 2013 [19 favorites]


    I get the impression that Boenher is now freaking out because something important is at stake - his career. Fuck everything else, obvs.
    posted by Artw at 9:49 AM on October 4, 2013


    Let us not forget that this ceiling is an artificial and arbitrary joke in the first place. It was only invented since 1917 -- the US has been in debt EVERY SINGLE YEAR SINCE 1835.

    It's not anything in the Constitution that says there must be a debt ceiling. That doesn't mean it's unconstitutional. Just that it's not explicitly called for, and thus, not a necessary component of how the US runs its affairs.

    It only exists at this point to use as a ploy to ring extractions out of a given party's opponents in negotiations.
    posted by symbioid at 9:50 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    The National Cathedral has a gargoyle Darth Vader. That is all.

    Designed by a third grader. In the 1980s. Ergo: This was not a work of irony; this was a work of love.
    posted by Atom Eyes at 9:51 AM on October 4, 2013 [9 favorites]


    Possibly we could also get some sweet concessions on something we want if we rolled back women's right to vote and the laws against child labor, but we aren't going to do that either.

    We are already behind where we need to be. Any more concessions will desperately weaken the foundations of our society. (I would argue they already have). Time to move into the 21st century, no matter how many tantrums and damage the Republicans do, we have to fight. We can't afford to give any more away, especially to a party that has consistently shown itself never satisfied with what they win. They want it all. Give in, and they'll just be back. Give them abortion, they come back for birth control (birth control! seriously.) Give them fewer labor unions and they come back for minimum wages and workplace safety. Give them a weakened voting rights act and the voter roll purges, closed voting places, and ID restrictions just keep multiplying.

    They don't want to allow us to keep any of the reforms of the last 100 years. None. Not a single one. And if we don't stop them, they will do their best to drag us all the way back to the misery our great-great grandparents had to endure.
    posted by emjaybee at 9:54 AM on October 4, 2013 [27 favorites]


    I got to use Darth Vader as an example in class the other day and it was the best idea. Darth Vaders for all cathedrals!
    posted by jetlagaddict at 9:54 AM on October 4, 2013


    Thinking about it some more, I think the Democrats should negotiate.

    how about in exchange for a clean CR and the raising of the debt limit, we have a functioning government?
    posted by pyramid termite at 9:56 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    The Daily Caller: Need health insurance? The Obama administration has you covered. Simply dial 1-800-FUCKYO to reach the next available health-care provider.

    Far from being a mistype, that’s the official number that Health and Human Services wants Americans to dial when seeking health care. Obamacare’s national call center really did list its number as 1-800-318-2596

    Okay, I'm laughing at this one.
    posted by Drinky Die at 9:58 AM on October 4, 2013


    ...except that 1 does not equal U?
    posted by roomthreeseventeen at 10:01 AM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


    "This isn't some damn game!" hisses the irate hostage taker, like he's Hans fucking Gruber or something.

    "I wanted this to be professional. Efficient, adult, cooperative, not a lot to ask."
    posted by octobersurprise at 10:02 AM on October 4, 2013


    ...except that 1 does not equal U?

    Yeah, the joke kind of breaks down when you actually try it on a keypad. 1-800-F1UCKYO doesn't quite have the same instant humor value.
    posted by Uncle Ira at 10:03 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    I think some people are missing the humor in Jonathan Livengood's comment above.

    The things he suggest we get in return for letting the Republicans delay funding the ACA are clearly not things they would ever go for. It was a wistful wishful-thinking joke I think ...
    posted by freecellwizard at 10:04 AM on October 4, 2013 [13 favorites]


    Yeah it's actually 1-800-F1UCKYO, not as cool.
    posted by TwoWordReview at 10:04 AM on October 4, 2013


    Thinking about it some more, I think the Democrats should negotiate.

    Why on earth is everyone treating this like a serious comment about a thing that Jonathan Livengood thinks should actually factually in real life happen and which he will personally as a powerful member of the US government cause to actually factually in real life happen?
    posted by elizardbits at 10:07 AM on October 4, 2013 [13 favorites]


    I know the general perception is that the Tea Party candidates are safe because of gerrymandering, but I wonder how safe many of the Tea Party districts really are. I'm in one, and here Steve King beat Christie Vilsack 53% to 45% in 2012, which doesn't seem an insurmountable hill to climb for a challenger, especially with so few votes involved since you can campaign up close and personal with the individual people. Jim Mowrer is running against him as a Dem next year, and his story plays well here - he's a veteran, and he grew up farming. He's already out pounding the pavement and talking to voters, and he's jumped on King's recent bullshit. I wonder how many similar districts there are for the Tea Party crew.
    posted by jason_steakums at 10:07 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    The old witch's advice referred upthread makes a pretty good case for Obama taking the offensive in the negotions. It's a pretty good read.
    posted by klarck at 10:10 AM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Well Bachmann is out next year, not running, but her seat really is pretty safe territory for the TP/GOP, without a doubt it is the worst gerrymandered seat in MN, and prob in the surrounding states as well. There are at least 3 State Goopers so far vieing for the nom, including the fellow who lost the Govs race last time out. But, am sure one of them will beat whomever the DFL puts up. We can only hope for less bad than Michelle.
    posted by edgeways at 10:13 AM on October 4, 2013


    cyberscythe: "Nightmare Boehner."

    backseatpilot: "I thought those were supposed to stop after puberty."

    Orange Nightmare Boehner is indeed a condition rarely observed in adult individuals. It is usually the result of a complex interaction between erectile dysfunction drugs and high doses of beta-Carotene (provitamin A)
    posted by Hairy Lobster at 10:14 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    angrycat: "My weed dealer is mad about this too, which means this shit is intense"

    Wha~
    posted by boo_radley at 10:14 AM on October 4, 2013


    How the hell does the same state send Bachmann and a Muslim (Keith Ellison) to congress? I don't know if I should be proud, of refer it for a psychiatric evaluation.
    posted by edgeways at 10:17 AM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Andrew Sullivan - Why They'll die on this hill

    The base Republican voters in these focus groups view themselves as besieged by minorities seeking free benefits, and see Obama as the Pied Piper of those hoping to abuse the system. They are not explicitly racist about the president or about the beneficiaries of the new goodies (though they had no such qualms during Bush’s Medicare D entitlement). But they believe they are losing an America that a Roanoke evangelical describes like this:

    Everybody is above average. Everybody is happy. Everybody is white. Everybody is middle class, whether or not they really are. Everybody looks that way. Everybody goes to the same pool. Everybody goes – there’s one library, one post office. Very homogeneous.

    This is the America they believe is being taken away from them.

    posted by Artw at 10:18 AM on October 4, 2013 [10 favorites]


    The things he suggest we get in return for letting the Republicans delay funding the ACA are clearly not things they would ever go for. It was a wistful wishful-thinking joke I think ...

    Exactly. Sorry if this wasn't obvious to everyone. Maybe if I had made the first demand be that all Republican governors resign?
    posted by Jonathan Livengood at 10:19 AM on October 4, 2013


    They would probably have the governors resign before a cap gains tax increase.
    posted by cmfletcher at 10:22 AM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    I'm in one, and here Steve King beat Christie Vilsack 53% to 45% in 2012, which doesn't seem an insurmountable hill to climb for a challenger, especially with so few votes involved since you can campaign up close and personal with the individual people.

    You also need to look at the numbers that Obama and Romney got in your district. Someone likely benefited more from the up-ticket race, so adjust your expectations accordingly.
    posted by Etrigan at 10:27 AM on October 4, 2013


    They don't want to allow us to keep any of the reforms of the last 100 years. None. Not a single one. And if we don't stop them, they will do their best to drag us all the way back to the misery our great-great grandparents had to endure.

    As posted previously. . I think this spells it out nicely.
    posted by five fresh fish at 10:31 AM on October 4, 2013


    Any negotiation will establish a terrible precedent that will almost certainly have far-reaching ramifications.

    It's goodbye to democracy and the rule of law. Law passed? Who cares! A small minority can hold the country hostage until it's repealed or weakened!

    No rule of law. No foundation for government. This is MOTHERFUCKING SERIOUS SHIT.
    posted by desjardins at 10:31 AM on October 4, 2013 [9 favorites]




    Am I remembering correctly that Alex Jones does actually believe in lizard people who control the world? And not in a metaphorical sense? Not necessarily Gorns, but close enough?

    I got a doubt that I might be misremembering when I saw the subsequent comment about David Icke, who I'm pretty sure believes in lizard people who control the world, and not in a metaphorical sense. So now I think I might be conflating the two.
    posted by Flunkie at 10:38 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Let us not forget that this ceiling is an artificial and arbitrary joke in the first place. It was only invented since 1917.

    There is actually some legislative history that explains this. Prior to 1917, every single bond auction issued by the Treasury had to be individually approved by the Congress. They had very tight reins on all spending and debt. As the size of government increased, this became increasingly impractical, so Congress gave wider scope to the Treasury to allow them to more freely and efficiently manage the budget. But they created the debt limit as remnant of their former complete control Treasury operations. It seemed like a reasonable compromise at the time. Today, the debt limit is mostly symbolic since the power to control spending appropriations implies the creation of debt.
    posted by JackFlash at 10:42 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]




    Ha, Jonathan, one of the crimes of our current political climate is that it has rendered satire nearly impossible. And thus hard to recognize. You would probably have to put something like unicorns or pixie dust in your joke to make it obvious these days.

    I've kind of gotten afraid of spouting sarcastic satire, because much like 1984, it only seems to give certain people ideas.
    posted by emjaybee at 10:49 AM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    The Democrats are going to be running a not so subtle ad during football this weekend.

    I like this, but I wish it had included something to the point of: "Enough Republicans want to vote for a bill that would pass -- but Boehner won't let them."
    posted by inigo2 at 10:50 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Drinky Die: "The Democrats are going to be running a not so subtle ad during football this weekend."

    Hoooooo-leeeeee shit, that's gonna leave a mark.

    I don't know if political TV ads have the same power they used to back in the day, but I'd have to put that in the conversation with the "Daisy" and Willie Horton ads as the most effective political ads ever.
    posted by tonycpsu at 10:50 AM on October 4, 2013


    I'm not so sure, tonycpsu. It seems to be preaching to the choir; I doubt it will convince anyone in the "both sides are being childish" camp, quite the opposite. And it'll only work the Republicans into a bigger frenzy. I agree with inigo2, it needs more substance to really push the message.
    posted by Roommate at 10:54 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Yeah, it takes away the rational high ground the Dems were holding, and plays right into the "both sides are horrible" bullshit.
    posted by Slap*Happy at 10:56 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    I love Artw's Wrong Side of History link above. I'd like this in print, not just in a blog. My favorite part:

    “Can you remember a time in your lifetime when a major political party was just sitting around, begging for America to fail?” So asked a perplexed Bill Clinton a few days ago.

    The answer is no. What kind of failure are we talking about? Not just to equity markets, jobs, the mechanics of daily life in the world’s biggest economy. The shutdown stops research on Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s, cancer treatments. Two-thirds of the employees at the Centers for Disease Control were sent home. Many food inspectors, people who train air traffic controllers, anti-terrorism experts — all furloughed. And shed a tear for Yosemite National Park on its 123rd birthday Monday. America’s Best Idea — as the parks are called — couldn’t compete with America’s Worst Idea, the Tea Party Republicans.

    And let’s never forget that these sacrifices, real and lasting, are being made for one thing: to block health care reform.

    posted by bearwife at 10:57 AM on October 4, 2013 [10 favorites]


    Some diamonds in the rough: #ShutdownPickUpLines
    posted by inigo2 at 10:58 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    I'm in one, and here Steve King beat Christie Vilsack 53% to 45% in 2012, which doesn't seem an insurmountable hill to climb for a challenger, especially with so few votes involved since you can campaign up close and personal with the individual people.

    You also need to look at the numbers that Obama and Romney got in your district. Someone likely benefited more from the up-ticket race, so adjust your expectations accordingly.


    the key is that we should never assume it isn't worth fighting for all of this. We got here because we actually, finally have been enacting our priorities. Health Care Reform. Wall Street Reform. DADT repeal. That's what generates the insane fighting we see now.
    posted by Ironmouth at 11:00 AM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


    Well, the ad is a callback to this sort of thing. The story about Newt shutting down the government because of a tantrum over how he was treated on Air Force One was a big part of the narrative of the last shutdown.
    posted by Drinky Die at 11:01 AM on October 4, 2013


    Slap*Happy: "Yeah, it takes away the rational high ground the Dems were holding, and plays right into the "both sides are horrible" bullshit."

    Ads appeal to raw emotion. Note that the two examples I cited, both judged to be extremely effective, were also nasty, below-the-belt attacks with very little substance to them.
    posted by tonycpsu at 11:02 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    In other words, while I agree this is preaching to the choir, it will probably reach some in the congregation as well, and, besides, the choir probably isn't as riled-up about this as they need to be.
    posted by tonycpsu at 11:03 AM on October 4, 2013


    I should add, despite my criticism of the commercial, I DO like that the focus is on Boehner, and not a just a general "Republicans" boogeyman.
    posted by inigo2 at 11:04 AM on October 4, 2013




    Hahahah, the Dems are attempting the discharge petition gambit. So glad they decided to take a chance and didn't let the naysayers dissuade them from trying.
    posted by longdaysjourney at 11:08 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Destroying Boehner appears to be a necessary, if not exactly ungratifying, part of the process of getting things back on track. Here's hoping this business leaves him nuclear-grade toxic even for the GOP.
    posted by Artw at 11:09 AM on October 4, 2013


    the Dems are attempting the discharge petition gambit

    "The upshot: Once the petition is filed, they will begin rounding up signatures from both Democrats and Republicans. If they can get 218 signatures, a House vote to reopen the government will happen."

    And if it fails, then they have one more concrete example to show the country how Republicans are refusing to allow their colleagues to vote.
    posted by inigo2 at 11:13 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    And what magical Republican do you see taking over as Speaker and doing a better job (read: more efficient and/or more amenable to Democratic interests) than Boehner? I don't think the guy is much of a moderate, but he's in a tough position. Yeah, I think he should fall on his sword and do the right thing here, but I also realize it might cost him his job and I'm worried about who the next Speaker would be. I can see it being a lot worse than it already is.
    posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 11:14 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Flunkie: "Am I remembering correctly that Alex Jones does actually believe in lizard people who control the world? And not in a metaphorical sense? Not necessarily Gorns, but close enough?

    I got a doubt that I might be misremembering when I saw the subsequent comment about David Icke, who I'm pretty sure believes in lizard people who control the world, and not in a metaphorical sense. So now I think I might be conflating the two.
    "

    Yeah - you're conflating the two. Alex Jones believes in SATANIC POWERS! (And DMT-entranced communication with those dark evil powers!)

    It's, like... totally different.
    posted by symbioid at 11:22 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Worse than someone too stupid and cowardly not to close the Goverment down because of some hissy fit?
    posted by Artw at 11:22 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]




    longdaysjourney: "Hahahah, the Dems are attempting the discharge petition gambit. So glad they decided to take a chance and didn't let the naysayers dissuade them from trying."

    Ahh, so they found a clean CR bill that was already filed. I wonder if one of them read my comment ;-) Could be enough leverage to persuade the Speaker to allow a vote. This is big news.
    posted by exogenous at 11:24 AM on October 4, 2013 [6 favorites]


    The Democrats are going to be running a not so subtle ad during football this weekend.

    The baby is so sad and chubby.
    posted by zennie at 11:25 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Worse than someone too stupid and cowardly not to close the Goverment down because of some hissy fit?

    Like I said, name the magic Republican congressperson who could have avoided this once Cruz pulled his stunt. I can't think of any.
    posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 11:26 AM on October 4, 2013


    It's hard to imagine any Republican doing significantly better, but what is worse? Open insurrection? We're pretty far down the rabbit hole already.
    posted by feloniousmonk at 11:27 AM on October 4, 2013


    (A)Ha(W)O, you're right that it doesn't really matter who's in the Speaker's chair, but the simple act of Boehner getting Fredo'd will look good for the blue team. There's a small chance that a Tea Party-ish replacement could acquit themselves well and put a better face on the GOP's efforts to dismantle government, but with the Democrats having the Senate majority and the veto pen, the amount of policy damage they could do is limited.
    posted by tonycpsu at 11:29 AM on October 4, 2013


    And what magical Republican do you see taking over as Speaker and doing a better job

    Charlie Dent. (We can still dream, can't we.)
    posted by Golden Eternity at 11:30 AM on October 4, 2013



    Ahh, so they found a clean CR bill that was already filed.


    And it's on a bill introduced by a Tea Partier. I feel like I've entered a parallel dimension where the Dems have balls. I'm really enjoying it here.

    And for people who were worried about the underlying bill:

    If Dems can get the 218 signatures on the discharge petition, then Dems would use a procedural move to replace the Lankford bill with an amendment: A clean CR, just like the one in the Senate. So this would not enshrine the one-percent-per-year reduction in spending, as does the Lankford measure.

    posted by longdaysjourney at 11:30 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    *shrug* - If they are all equally awful just obliterate the one Cruz has a hold over, and let one without the baggage step in. I very much doubt they will be pulling this shit twice.

    All it costs is the career of a spineless lizard.
    posted by Artw at 11:30 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    i think the problem here is that if there was another election for speaker, the tea party would dig in its heels for its own candidate, pretty much making a majority impossible

    who knows what would happen then?
    posted by pyramid termite at 11:30 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Like I said, name the magic Republican congressperson who could have avoided this once Cruz pulled his stunt. I can't think of any.

    Probably there isn't one. But I can't imagine someone, short of a Tea Party wingnut (who is unlikely to have the votes, especially after this), doing a worse job than Boehner.

    Would the next guy be just as bad? Maybe. Probably, even. But if Boehner goes down, at the very least that would serve as warning to the next Speaker that there are consequences to kowtowing to the extremists all the time. That alone makes him worth targeting.
    posted by breakin' the law at 11:32 AM on October 4, 2013


    The baby is so sad and chubby.

    I know. They should have found an uglier baby. Maybe one with a fake tan.
    posted by emjaybee at 11:32 AM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


    i think the problem here is that if there was another election for speaker, the tea party would dig in its heels for its own candidate, pretty much making a majority impossible. who knows what would happen then?

    This is our concern, Dude.
    posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 11:32 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    pyramid termite: " who knows what would happen then?"

    Worth it for the 1 in 1 billion chance at a Louie Gohmert vs. Peter King diss rap battle.
    posted by tonycpsu at 11:32 AM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    longdaysjourney: "And it's on a bill introduced by a Tea Partier. I feel like I've entered a parallel dimension where the Dems have balls. I'm really enjoying it here."

    What is with that website and its awful banner image
    posted by boo_radley at 11:34 AM on October 4, 2013


    Jonathan Livengood: Exactly. Sorry if this wasn't obvious to everyone. Maybe if I had made the first demand be that all Republican governors resign?

    I apologize for not noticing that your comment was in jest. I think my humor circuits are fried.
    posted by RonButNotStupid at 11:36 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    who knows what would happen then?

    Speaker of the House Pelosi. Which would be nuts in all the right ways.
    posted by Slap*Happy at 11:44 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    I think that ad is pretty damn tacky and it bothers me that the bar for talking sense with the public is set so low. And yet, I just picked up my lunch in a sandwich shop with the TV on, and that ad came on (right before I read about it here). A woman at a table started bursting out laughing when they identifed the baby as Boehner, and called the waitress over (I think the waitress is a friend of hers) saying "see that? The baby having a tantrum is Boehner!" They got a good chuckle out of it. I have no idea whether they were previously sympathetic, unsympathetic, or totally tuned out, but it got their attention. Maybe these things work.
    posted by Miko at 11:45 AM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Ignoring the 1% cuts business, the Government Shutdown Prevention Act that they're using the discharge petition on seems like fantastic common sense. Can't pass a budget? Fine, everything stays status quo.

    It'd be impossible for anyone to take the ball and go home, right? Or am I missing the horrible way this is going to back fire in another 10 years?
    posted by Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug at 11:46 AM on October 4, 2013


    I know everyone on here reads Media Matters anyway, but their article on the two totally dissimilar narratives for what the GOP/Fox News is putting out there is spot. On one hand, this is a "slimdown" and people are whinners, on the other hand, this is a tragedy and all Reid/Obama's fault.

    As long as the Dems stick to their guns, the GOP will be ruined by this. There's not even a lost cause narrative they can say in retrospect. This is the charge of the light brigade, but less honor and heroism and more political opportunism and tantrums.
    posted by Lord Chancellor at 11:48 AM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    It'd be impossible for anyone to take the ball and go home, right? Or am I missing the horrible way this is going to back fire in another 10 years?

    The 1% cuts kind of are the problem. It provides a backdoor way for the GOP to get its cuts and not have to argue for them, too. What incentive would there ever be for the Republicans to negotiate over the budget if their primary concern - budget cuts - just automatically happened whenever they didn't?

    That said, it's better than a shutdown and I'm glad the Dems are doing this.
    posted by breakin' the law at 11:49 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    The 1% cuts kind of are the problem. It provides a backdoor way for the GOP to get its cuts and not have to argue for them, too. What incentive would there ever be for the Republicans to negotiate over the budget if their primary concern - budget cuts - just automatically happened whenever they didn't?

    They strip out the 1% with an amendment. It won't be in the bill.
    posted by Ironmouth at 11:50 AM on October 4, 2013


    They strip out the 1% with an amendment. It won't be in the bill.

    They have done that? Or they will? Could they get the 218 signatures without it?

    [I'm legit curious.]
    posted by breakin' the law at 11:54 AM on October 4, 2013


    If they do a discharge petition on the Lankford bill, does it block a clean CR from passing before the bill "ripens"? Or can it be used as leverage to basically say "look, this is happening anyways in week or so, so just vote on the clean CR now and end the needless shutdown."?
    posted by jason_steakums at 11:56 AM on October 4, 2013


    WaPo says in the update on the bottom of the page that with 218 votes they can replace the bill with an amendment to make it a clean CR.
    posted by Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug at 11:56 AM on October 4, 2013


    Neugebauer image macro
    posted by inigo2 at 12:11 PM on October 4, 2013 [8 favorites]


    Possibly we could also get some sweet concessions on something we want if we rolled back women's right to vote and the laws against child labor, but we aren't going to do that either.
    Hey, don't take away our negotiating power. After all, Republicans actually would like child labor laws rolled back. And women's right to vote, too.
    posted by Flunkie at 12:26 PM on October 4, 2013


    Obama is just showboating at this point.

    Obama And Biden Go Out For Lunch
    posted by Drinky Die at 12:26 PM on October 4, 2013 [12 favorites]


    When asked why he and the vice president had gone out for lunch, President Obama told reporters, “Part of the reason we’re here is because we’re starving.

    The other reason we’re here is that this establishment is giving 10% off to furloughed employees. This is an indication of how ordinary Americans are looking out for one another.”

    posted by Drinky Die at 12:27 PM on October 4, 2013


    The discharge bill is a neat way to (potentially) get around the current crisis, but won't we be here again in a couple weeks with the debt limit battle? For now it seems every day that passes is another day of the GOP making fools of themselves and potentially tearing apart their party. I don't see the longer term gains in the the Dems starting up the government this way now.
    posted by wemayfreeze at 12:27 PM on October 4, 2013


    I'm kind of speechless about the gif in that linked buzzfeed article.
    posted by Peccable at 12:31 PM on October 4, 2013 [16 favorites]


    When asked why he and the vice president had gone out for lunch, President Obama told reporters, “Part of the reason we’re here is because we’re starving.

    The other reason we’re here is that this establishment is giving 10% off to furloughed employees. This is an indication of how ordinary Americans are looking out for one another.”


    The 9th Street Italian is good there. Biden picked better.
    posted by Ironmouth at 12:31 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Damn it, now I want some provolone. Not many sandwich shops around here offer it.
    posted by emjaybee at 12:33 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Yeah, I'm hungry now too, weird there are no Philly locations with that menu. :P
    posted by Drinky Die at 12:35 PM on October 4, 2013


    I really love this President. Lunch and solidarity with hard working people who aren't being paid. Done and done.
    posted by bearwife at 12:37 PM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


    I assume that one of the reasons they went out is that the White House food service menu is greatly reduced right now.
    posted by gsteff at 12:39 PM on October 4, 2013


    emjaybee: "Damn it, now I want some provolone. Not many sandwich shops around here offer it."

    What kind of cheese and sandwich shop hellscape do you live in? How is that even possible?
    posted by boo_radley at 12:40 PM on October 4, 2013 [21 favorites]


    Damn it, now I want some provolone. Not many sandwich shops around here offer it.

    ... Subway has it. What?
    posted by kafziel at 12:41 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    I don't count Subway (bleh), and in Texas, it's cheddar/swiss/monterey jack and that's about it at most places. Maybe mozzarella on an Italian.

    Uh, sorry for that derail. Back to the shutdown....
    posted by emjaybee at 12:44 PM on October 4, 2013


    Obama is just showboating at this point.

    I don't know, considering the Capitol was locked down yesterday, thousands terrified, I think taking a stroll out for lunch is a pretty thoughtful move.
    posted by thinkpiece at 12:45 PM on October 4, 2013 [12 favorites]


    Emjaybee, a shutdown ends eventually. You're living in a nightmare that is of much longer concern. You deserve provolone, especially in a state as big as Texas. This isn't the 5th century. Everyone deserves standard cheese choices.
    posted by Joey Michaels at 12:46 PM on October 4, 2013 [16 favorites]


    Suggest rename to "Freedom Cheese".
    posted by Artw at 12:48 PM on October 4, 2013 [11 favorites]


    Emjaybee, grew up in Fort Worth. Carshon's Deli. That is all. Carry on.
    posted by hillabeans at 12:53 PM on October 4, 2013


    Obama: "This shutdown could be over today. We know there are the votes."

    Aw yeah.

    ... Subway has it. What?

    So there's provolone, and then there's provolone. Which I was recently reminded when I had a great broccoli raab-and-provolone sandwich in Providence at Venda Ravioli. That provolone was thick-sliced off the round, crumbly, sharp, tangy, and real in a way I hadn't tasted in a long time.

    Also, Subway and local sandwich shop are really different things as well. It's nice to have the Provolone option on a sandwich without being beholden to the world of Subway's predictable menu.
    posted by Miko at 12:55 PM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    unfortunately i think freedom cheese is prolly the orange kind that comes in a can
    posted by elizardbits at 12:55 PM on October 4, 2013 [7 favorites]


    Thank you all for your cheese-based concern.
    posted by emjaybee at 12:55 PM on October 4, 2013 [12 favorites]




    emjaybee: "Thank you all for your cheese-based concern."

    We're you're friends and we want you to be happy. Can we send you anything?
    posted by boo_radley at 12:58 PM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


    Let's take a cheese related intermission. Now back to our regularly scheduled discussion.
    posted by Joey Michaels at 1:01 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    unfortunately i think freedom cheese is prolly the orange kind that comes in a can

    That stuff's great for getting my dog to take her pills.

    Rep. Jim McDermott on Dem strategy against GOP: "We sit here until they figure out they f**kin’ lost."

    I do wish Dems would avoid the "win/lose" language. Leave that to the republicans, and keep a constant "this is not a game" message going.
    posted by inigo2 at 1:05 PM on October 4, 2013 [5 favorites]


    McDermott didn't publish that comment, though perhaps he should be careful who he talks to. Reportedly he made that comment to Dave Weigel, who tweeted it.
    posted by bearwife at 1:09 PM on October 4, 2013


    …it might cost him his job and I'm worried about who the next Speaker would be. I can see it being a lot worse than it already is.

    Maybe that's the long-term plan. Let the extremists overthrow the Republican party, utterly destroying it. The Dems become the new right, and Occupy becomes the new left. Balance finally restored.
    posted by five fresh fish at 1:12 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    unfortunately i think freedom cheese is prolly the orange kind that comes in a can

    Boehnerkäse?
    posted by jason_steakums at 1:15 PM on October 4, 2013 [11 favorites]


    Maybe that's the long-term plan. Let the extremists overthrow the Republican party, utterly destroying it. The Dems become the new right, and Occupy becomes the new left. Balance finally restored.

    Ha, I'm not sure if consensus-based anarchists are the best choice for a new American left, but I take your point
    posted by showbiz_liz at 1:16 PM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Better than non-consensus-based anarchists on the right, n'est-ce pas?
    posted by Rykey at 1:31 PM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    With regard to yesterday's events I feel like if this had happened in, say, New York or Los Angeles or Chicago we'd be scrutinizing whether the cops had to fire thirty bullets at a mentally ill mother with a one year old child in the car. It's not at all clear to me that deadly force needed to be used here...
    posted by Justinian at 1:32 PM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


    The Dems become the new right, and Occupy becomes the new left. Balance finally restored.

    I think, if balance were restored, the Dems would look more centrist than right. It's like, if you ranked the parties on a conservative-to-liberal scale, where 0 points is the the tetra-headed love-child of Ayn Rand and Pat Robertson, and 100 points is the Barack Obama character that exists in Rush Limbaugh's imagination, the Democrats are like 52 and the Republicans are like 5. Also, Occupy never seemed very interested in electoral politics.

    Still, point taken.
    posted by breakin' the law at 1:32 PM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    She ran over a secret service agent, and tried to run through the barricade to the congress building. The officers couldn't have known that she had mental problems, or probably that there was an infant in the car. Sadly, I think the response was justified.
    posted by askmehow at 1:37 PM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    Justinian: "It's not at all clear to me that deadly force needed to be used here..."

    A high speed car chase in a crowded city is equivalent to someone firing random shots into a crowd. The chances of someone being seriously injured or killed directly by her car or indirectly by someone swerving to avoid her car (she ran several red lights) are pretty high.

    Carey's mental illness may be an explanation for her actions, but it's not a justification for them when they went from "causing a disturbance" to "threatening the lives of innocent people." There's still a lot we don't know about this, but given what we do know, I find it hard to fault cops who took steps to neutralize the danger she was causing to innocent bystanders.
    posted by tonycpsu at 1:39 PM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


    Also: the Navy Yard massacre of, what, two weeks ago? That was a mile and a half away.
    posted by troika at 1:39 PM on October 4, 2013


    Justinian: "With regard to yesterday's events I feel like if this had happened in, say, New York or Los Angeles or Chicago we'd be scrutinizing whether the cops had to fire thirty bullets at a mentally ill mother with a one year old child in the car. It's not at all clear to me that deadly force needed to be used here..."

    Mmm, maybe to you, but not necessarily to others. (I'm with you, I'm just saying that there are other people who might think differently on the matter).
    posted by symbioid at 1:43 PM on October 4, 2013


    Her car hit the bollard closest to a family member's office, in an area with a lot of pedestrians, especially children, lower level cafes, etc. Generally speaking, people who do dumb stuff at the White House do not get shot (look at firecracker guy,) but she was in the position of causing a lot of damage and potentially the loss of life. It's a sad story all around.
    posted by jetlagaddict at 1:43 PM on October 4, 2013


    "With regard to yesterday's events I feel like if this had happened in, say, New York or Los Angeles or Chicago we'd be scrutinizing whether the cops had to fire thirty bullets at a mentally ill mother with a one year old child in the car. It's not at all clear to me that deadly force needed to be used here..

    The front entrance of the White House at 15th and E isn't LA or Chicago. She literally ran over an officer there, then sped directly towards the Capitol, then when cornered by officers with drawn weapons, almost ran over another officer, rammed a second police car, then attempted to speed off again. It is the definition of imminent threat to the lives of many others.
    posted by Ironmouth at 1:48 PM on October 4, 2013 [8 favorites]


    Reports of someone lighting themselves on fire on the Mall are showing up on my twitter feed.
    posted by troika at 1:52 PM on October 4, 2013


    And what magical Republican do you see taking over as Speaker and doing a better job (read: more efficient and/or more amenable to Democratic interests) than Boehner? I don't think the guy is much of a moderate, but he's in a tough position. Yeah, I think he should fall on his sword and do the right thing here, but I also realize it might cost him his job and I'm worried about who the next Speaker would be. I can see it being a lot worse than it already is.

    There is two potential kinda beneficial outcomes here: If a deal was made amongst less extreme republicans and Democrats for a R candidate that could get at least 18 R votes and all D votes then you'd have a non TP speaker.

    or the burn it down strategy

    That is completely destroy Boehner politically so he is challenged. The next speaker will not be better in the sense he will be more willing to work with the Ds, BUT he would be better in that his political motivations will be clear and unambiguous, unlike Boehner who tends to say one thing and ends up having to do something else, and, will paint the republicans in a light that might make it more difficult to win elections. If you push them to live their values in the corner it makes the middle ground bigger for Democrats, until mainstream Republicans actually confront the rot problem.

    It really is kind of nasty politics under cover. And given the sheer poison that has arisen the last 6 years I can't completely condemn it.
    posted by edgeways at 1:53 PM on October 4, 2013


    Tea Party Leaders Announce Support For Deal In Exchange For Malia Obama

    While members of the Republican Party’s far-right wing have heretofore been resistant to any sort of deal with the White House over the issue of Obamacare, the Tea Party caucus authored and released a short, tersely worded statement this morning in which they agreed to a swift negotiation of an unstipulated spending bill if the president were to deliver “the firstling.”
    posted by Drinky Die at 1:57 PM on October 4, 2013 [23 favorites]


    Washington City Paper blog has a bit about the Mall.
    posted by emjaybee at 1:57 PM on October 4, 2013


    it bothers me that the bar for talking sense with the public is set so low.

    you are not a facebook user, i presume.
    posted by quonsar II: smock fishpants and the temple of foon at 1:58 PM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    I am but I have cut my participation down to a small, decent-thinking bubble.
    posted by Miko at 2:00 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Hahaha, classy NPR.

    I'm on Google News, and I see the following two NPR headlines right next to each other:

    "Internal GOP divisions exposed, might lead to compromise"
    PBS NewsHour

    "Does increasing division of rebel groups benefit the Assad regime?"
    PBS
    posted by symbioid at 2:01 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]




    Weird aside, I just left my job contracting to the federal government last week and I'm in the process of handing over my work to my colleagues that stayed on. It's weird to me that the contractors are still there and getting paid, but the actual employees we work with at the department are furloughed.
    posted by askmehow at 2:06 PM on October 4, 2013


    The real compromise is a TWO MONTH continuing resolution, guaranteeing that even if the Debt Ceiling bullet is dodged, we'll be right back here just in time for the holidays. This is not going to be over (not the shutdown but the whole crisis) until after the 2014 elections at the earliest (and only if the GOP suffers a bloodbath in those elections).
    posted by oneswellfoop at 2:06 PM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    DCist: "A Metropolitan Police Department spokesperson said that officers were dispatched to "reports of a man on fire" and that "he is conscious and breathing." D.C. Fire and EMS spokesman Tim Wilson said units were dispatched to the call at 4:24 p.m. and arrived three minutes later. The patient was taken by helicopter to an area hospital, he said. "
    posted by inigo2 at 2:07 PM on October 4, 2013


    It's weird to me that the contractors are still there and getting paid, but the actual employees we work with at the department are furloughed.

    Well, it's your former employer who isn't getting paid even though he continues supporting his employees. I suspect Management there is sweating in a similar-but-less-urgent way the furloughed employees are.
    posted by oneswellfoop at 2:09 PM on October 4, 2013


    If she was unarmed, then deadly force should not be used, period. We just train our cops to be sociopaths and hop them up on steriods.

    When does a car driver count as "armed"? Imho the car needs to be free to move. If you've pinned them in, as you should try to do, then you've effectively disarmed them. Also if the car is in motion then you must evaluate if the stray bullets or car pose more risk, usually the billets do.
    posted by jeffburdges at 2:09 PM on October 4, 2013 [5 favorites]


    the House started with a compromise of saying, not repealing Obamacare, but simply that it should be defunded.

    If you defunded the ACA, would you even need to put the time and energy into repealing it?
    posted by Rykey at 2:12 PM on October 4, 2013


    In Canada you can be charged with assault with a deadly weapon if you intentionally hit someone with your car. Car-Pedestrian interactions often result in the pedestrian dying so it's not a stretch at all to consider a car being driven into people a weapon.
    posted by Mitheral at 2:13 PM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    If she was unarmed, then deadly force should not be used, period.

    she was in possession of a deadly weapon - her car
    posted by pyramid termite at 2:14 PM on October 4, 2013 [10 favorites]


    If she was unarmed, then deadly force should not be used, period. We just train our cops to be sociopaths and hop them up on steriods.

    When does a car driver count as "armed"? Imho the car needs to be free to move. If you've pinned them in, as you should try to do, rhen you've effectively disarmed them. Also if the car is in motion then you must evaluate if the stray bullets or car pose more risk, usually the billets do.


    A car is a deadly weapon. Not only do people accidentally hit others with a car killing them, but they also deliberately kill others by running them over with a vehicle. This woman targeted people with her vehicle, doing so in such a way that made not just officers, but everyone else in the country think that she might threaten the President and members of Congress.
    posted by Ironmouth at 2:15 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Yeah, because a future congress could come along and re-fund it.

    That said, the whole reason defunding was the strategy, Ted "Dumbass" Cruz, is because Congress holds the purse-strings. It's what you guys do, constitutionally (remember, you carry that somewhere in your little pocket, right? Just... you know, keep digging for it, if you can't find it, I'm sure it's there *somewhere*).

    Anyways, you would think that defunding ACA would be easier to do, since it's a constitutional path that they have access to, in order to blocking implementation of said Law.

    Not that reversing it isn't possible, constitutionally, but that's a longer term goal and much harder (shit - you're having a hell of a time trying to get it defunded, let alone repealed).

    So, yeah, it's a "compromise" because that's your best shot at trying to stop it that even has a sliver of a chance (and that's requiring a complete and utter shut-down of the United States government because you can't have your way).
    posted by symbioid at 2:16 PM on October 4, 2013


    I'm usually not on the side of the cops in shootings, but this was one of those situations where I'm not sure what else they could have done. Maybe there is a better way to handle a wildly driving motorist causing that much danger than shooting them, but it's not obvious that there is.

    I can still feel plenty of anger that this woman didn't get the mental health care she needed and so her life was ended and her child's put at grave risk. That part isn't the fault of the cops, though.
    posted by emjaybee at 2:17 PM on October 4, 2013 [21 favorites]


    jeffburdges: "If you've pinned them in, as you should try to do, then you've effectively disarmed them."

    Have you watched the video? This is one of the rare cases where the cops' action wasn't over the top or unnecessary.

    On preview: what emjaybee said.
    posted by Hairy Lobster at 2:19 PM on October 4, 2013


    jeffburdges: "If you've pinned them in, as you should try to do, then you've effectively disarmed them."

    Have you watched the video? This is one of the rare cases where the cops' action wasn't over the top or unnecessary.

    On preview: what emjaybee said.


    If you see the video, they thought they had her pinned in. They could have shot her at point blank range at that second, but they thought they had her trapped by a car. She put the car in reverse, put the pedal to the floor and did a turn, knocking the police car back. She then aimed her car at a police officer who jumped out of the way at the last second and she drove off. They then opened fire.
    posted by Ironmouth at 2:22 PM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    I haven't seen the video, not possible here. I clearly noted that cars are frequently deadly weapons, like when they haven't been pinned down somehow, just depends on the situation.
    posted by jeffburdges at 2:24 PM on October 4, 2013


    i blame nader
    posted by pyramid termite at 2:24 PM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


    I haven't seen the video

    I mean.....
    posted by inigo2 at 2:25 PM on October 4, 2013 [15 favorites]


    It's certainly a horrible tragedy for all involved regardless.
    posted by Artw at 2:27 PM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    Metafilter: I Have No Idea What Is Going On Here But Let Me Tell You My Opinion Anyway
    posted by elizardbits at 2:28 PM on October 4, 2013 [41 favorites]


    DrinkyDie's Onion link was funny, but also made me profoundly uncomfortable. Somehow, satire about the first daughters always comes across to me as crossing a line. But, see, I'm old and sometimes can't judge funny anymore.
    posted by Joey Michaels at 2:28 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Yeah, could we please have a DIFFERENT thread dealing with yesterdays tragic shooting? This is confusing and annoying in here.
    posted by lattiboy at 2:29 PM on October 4, 2013 [12 favorites]


    she was in possession of a deadly weapon - her car

    Exhibit A: what happened after an argument in Manchester, UK, in August 2012... no one died, but all three men were very badly injured. The driver has just been convicted of attempted murder... the cctv is graphic
    posted by Mister Bijou at 2:29 PM on October 4, 2013


    "What is happening in America is that [the social contract underlying its government] is being voided, largely through the initiative of rightwing Republicans from the deep South and rural Midwest. America is not likely to become Afghanistan, but it could easily become Italy or Greece or even Weimar Germany."

    In a little bit of foreign news, Berlusconi recently tried to scupper the coalition government by withdrawing the ministers from his party, but there was a revolt against the move and Letta survived. Berlusconi is also likely to be expelled from the Senate after a vote today, and begin his sentence for tax fraud in a couple of weeks. Il Buffone is politically dead and hopefully Italy is entering a new era of grownup politics. It's like some kind of mirror image world going on.
    posted by Thing at 2:33 PM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


    I haven't seen the video, not possible here. I clearly noted that cars are frequently deadly weapons, like when they haven't been pinned down somehow, just depends on the situation.

    Watch it. They try to do exactly as you suggest, pin her in and not fire at her despite the fact they are literally at point blank range. She gets out anyway.
    posted by Ironmouth at 2:34 PM on October 4, 2013


    These Tea Party folks are really good at spinning their own web of reality. I just had to read two posts that blew my mind. Thought I would share:

    "I think she's half-right that Democrats and Obama are prolonging the shutdown. Republicans started this whole mess by using really stupid tactics that have totally backfired. But now that the GOP is taking the heat in the media and the public for the shutdown, the Democrats and the Obama administration will try to prolong the shutdown and make it as painful and visible as possible. There's a lot that could be done just in the executive branch to ease the effects of the shutdown, as was done in the past, but they're refusing to do anything because of partisan political motives."

    "You realize most of these 40 right wing wackos were voted in during 2010 almost solely because of their opposition to Obamacare? If there wasn't public opposition to the bill, they would never have been put into office.

    The House is totally within their rights to do this, they created a funding bill that had all the money needed to run the entire government with the exception of Obamacare, so how are they responsible for the shutdown? The bill, if passed by the Senate, would have avoided a shutdown. And the White House isn't doing their job, and is instead making the shutdown as painful as possible instead of trying to mitigate the issue. They're even asking for shutdown sob stories right now on their web site, which for some reason is considered an essential function.

    Now if I was the GOP, I would taken a different tact and just attacked specific provisions in the bill and not the entire thing. Like you could easily get rid of the medical device tax with bipartisan support, for example."



    "I'll make it real simple and go slow, Obama heads up something called the Executive Branch. This is separate from the Legislature and the fight that's going on over funding bills, by design. He and his administration are responsible for the day-to-day functioning of the government and all its billion agencies. He should be judged on how well the government is run, despite whatever bullshit Congress is up to. If Congress fails to pass funding, it is the purpose of the Executive to try to keep things up and running as long as possible. It's my opinion that the White House has completely failed to do this, and is in fact colluding with the Senate to prolong the shutdown, which is the antithesis to what it's supposed to be doing, and goes against the intent of our government and system of checks and balances."
    posted by RedShrek at 2:46 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    So... separate from by design, yet ultimately responsible for? Got it.
    posted by Rykey at 2:50 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    it is the purpose of the Executive to try to keep things up and running as long as possible. It's my opinion that the White House has completely failed to do this, and is in fact colluding with the Senate to prolong the shutdown, which is the antithesis to what it's supposed to be doing, and goes against the intent of our government and system of checks and balances."

    there's a law called the anti-deficiency act that prevents the executive from keeping anything running. I litigate against the U.S. Government nearly exclusively. They can't even negotiate right now.
    posted by Ironmouth at 3:06 PM on October 4, 2013 [6 favorites]




    Ever ready for epic right wing shitstorm. The dead woman claimed that Obama was the baby daddy and was stalking her.
    posted by humanfont at 3:10 PM on October 4, 2013


    No fucking way
    posted by exogenous at 3:12 PM on October 4, 2013


    Sweatin' to the Oldies: Vince Foster 2.0 Edition
    posted by tonycpsu at 3:13 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Gawker: Man Reportedly Sets Self on Fire at D.C.'s National Mall

    Fuck man. This week.
    posted by rosswald at 3:25 PM on October 4, 2013


    I have high anxiety that that Obama will give up the Keystone Pipeline as a way of getting this over with.
    posted by angrycat at 3:26 PM on October 4, 2013


    Ever ready for epic right wing shitstorm. The dead woman claimed that Obama was the baby daddy and was stalking her.

    FWD: re: RE: Fwd: Re: Fwd: The NEWS the #MSM doesn't want YOU to HEAR
    posted by inigo2 at 3:26 PM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    QOTD: Dennis Ross (R-Pirate Party)
    Dennis Ross (R-FL-Pirate):
    “We’ve lost the CR battle,” Ross, referring to the continuing resolution to authorize government spending, said in an interview. “We need to move on and take whatever we can find in the debt limit.”
    "Take whatever we can find." Are these people legislators or highwaymen?

    Media like Bloomberg.com are presenting this quote as straightforward politics, a sign that even Tea Partiers are relenting on the shutdown as they look forward to the debt ceiling.

    What they should be reporting on is the political dynamic on display. The Republicans took the government hostage, and Democrats didn't back down. So the Republicans "lost" that "battle." Now they're taking the debt limit hostage and hoping that Democrats will pay the ransom on that, instead.

    It must be said again: if Democrats were shutting down the government and threatening the full faith and credit of the United States in order to force a Republican president to pass gun control and tax increases, Republicans would be calling Democrats terrorists holding the nation hostage. They would be accusing the left of treason and threatening armed revolt and murder in the streets. The press would perforce take up some of that language in their reporting.
    posted by zombieflanders at 3:32 PM on October 4, 2013 [12 favorites]


    huh. a bunch of TP Congressmen said that this is not about the ACA anymore? What the hell is this about then?
    posted by angrycat at 3:33 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Soiled underwear?

    I dunno, seems as rational as anything else they say nowadays.
    posted by edgeways at 3:35 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    “We’ve lost the CR battle,” Ross, referring to the continuing resolution to authorize government spending, said in an interview. “We need to move on and take whatever we can find in the debt limit.”

    Welp it'll be interesting to see how many times Boehner flip flops on THIS issue. I think we're already up to once or twice if we count his spokesman.
    posted by edgeways at 3:36 PM on October 4, 2013


    news flash - black knight elected as speaker of the house - "he has the experience we need right now"
    posted by pyramid termite at 3:38 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    huh. a bunch of TP Congressmen said that this is not about the ACA anymore? What the hell is this about then?

    They demanded a cookie. They did not get a cookie. Now they want a different cookie.
    posted by Artw at 3:46 PM on October 4, 2013 [5 favorites]




    Ha. No exception for Issa's "Fast and Furious" lawsuit:
    There are no exigent circumstances in this case that would justify an order of the Court forcing furloughed attorneys to return to their desks. Moreover, while the vast majority of litigants who now must endure a delay in the progress of their matters do so due to circumstances beyond their control, that cannot be said of the House of Representatives, which has played a role in the shutdown that prompted the stay motion.
    posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 3:50 PM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    you know, if this were just a matter of Boehner not wanting to lose his job, wouldn't it be pretty easy to, you know, I don't know, toss him a million and he would go away? But then the crazies elect one of their own, I guess, so, oh well.
    posted by angrycat at 3:56 PM on October 4, 2013


    angrycat, it's not about money, it's about power - it always is
    posted by pyramid termite at 4:02 PM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    I would not want to go toe-to-toe with the GOP on the size of my available slush fund.
    posted by Artw at 4:05 PM on October 4, 2013


    Maybe to get provolone into Texas, we just have to put it in their language.
    posted by Flunkie at 4:06 PM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    jesus, as per folks on Diane Rehm show, 70-80% of the policy people at the Pentagon are furloughed. People working on Syria/the Middle East in general/ every other fucking thing. We doing a real shitty job of being a world power.
    posted by angrycat at 4:22 PM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]






    In case you haven't watched the Colbert performed wedding linked by roomthreeseventeen, do yourself a favor and watch it.
    posted by Joey Michaels at 4:57 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    “When you have a small segment who dictate to the rest of the party, the result is what we have seen in the last two days,” she said. “People need to stand up and not be afraid of the...”

    Let me just leave it there and let decide whether "Tea Party" or "rich fuckheads" comes after the ellipses.
    posted by indubitable at 5:13 PM on October 4, 2013


    Insane Fox News reporter "explains" Obamacare in Star Trek Gorn mask

    Clearly those guys are on a Gold Plated plan, and have been prescribed the good shit. Hopefully, they might operate some heavy machinery later.
    posted by Hello, I'm David McGahan at 5:15 PM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    On Thursday, unfurlough.us went live. It's a site designed to help connect workers who've been left out in the cold by the government shutdown connect with private sector companies in need of temporary help. As of Friday afternoon, 36 jobs were listed under the "gigs" heading, while 26 furloughed job seekers had signed up as "freelancers."
    posted by madamjujujive at 5:22 PM on October 4, 2013 [5 favorites]


    Miriam Carey was prone to making outrageous and obviously nutty statements such as claiming the government was monitoring all her electronic communications.
    posted by humanfont at 5:49 PM on October 4, 2013 [3 favorites]


    The recent NYTimes article about Steve King's district in Iowa is pretty good. It seems that folks there are angry about gubmint spending and all but aren't in general as crazy as he is...
    posted by localhuman at 5:52 PM on October 4, 2013


    metatalk
    posted by ryanrs at 5:55 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    This has got to be the weirdest shutdown story: Ku Klux Klan to meet in Gettysburg after shutdown thwarts battlefield plan
    posted by Artw at 6:04 PM on October 4, 2013


    I'm in Steve King's district...FYI. I'm pretty sure I am as crazy as he is, but in a much less bigoted way.
    posted by cjorgensen at 6:04 PM on October 4, 2013 [5 favorites]


    VikingSword: ""Scientific evidence shows that SNAP is a wise investment in the brains and bodies of American children, an investment that should be increased, not curtailed," stressed Frank.""

    Wasn't SNAP originally a direct response to the armed forces having to turn away recruits because they were too malnourished as children to make good soldiers?
    posted by Mitheral at 6:09 PM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


    I'm a little bit angry now so I'll take a break after sharing this. But What the everliving Fuck. Is. Wrong. With. People. These. Days?

    Metafilter excepted of course~
    posted by localhuman at 6:18 PM on October 4, 2013


    That New York Times piece gives me vertigo. I currently work about 100 yards from Steffen Schmidt, knew him as an undergraduate, and listen to him often on IPR. I worked in the same building as him when I was a student worker some 20 years ago, and ran into him a few weeks back and had the "Remember me?" conversation (he did).

    I worked with Kathie Obradovich from the time she was hired at the Register until recently. I saw her nearly every day for years and years and years.

    I grew up in Sioux City and now live in Ames. I half expected to see my dad or someone quoted in that story.
    posted by cjorgensen at 6:21 PM on October 4, 2013


    25 Local Front Pages That Show How The Government Shutdown Is Hurting Regular Americans Buzzfeed link, blah - but it is pretty interesting to see these from all over the country.
    posted by madamjujujive at 6:33 PM on October 4, 2013


    I'm getting pretty frustrated with healthcare.gov. The traffic excuse is wearing thin after a few days and 10 different error situations that have prevented me from creating an account every time. This is worse than an MMO on launch day. Having the site be a bit of debacle is an unfortunate mistake.
    posted by Drinky Die at 6:46 PM on October 4, 2013


    Is anyone actually able to work on it?
    posted by Artw at 6:49 PM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


    Are the people managing healthcare.gov essential employees?

    localhuman: "The recent NYTimes article about Steve King's district in Iowa is pretty good."

    So he's anti gay marriage, disaster aid, science, food safety; pro racial profiling, cock and dog fighting, and small government; and Boehner has described some of his comments on immigration as hateful and ignorant.

    Wow. Just Wow. He's like a villain's villain.

    And Iowa is a net beneficiary of federal funds vs revenue.

    The mind boggles at the dissonance.
    posted by Mitheral at 6:50 PM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


    <