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Republicans' Contempt For Obama Continues
September 9, 2009 10:05 PM   Subscribe

Representative Joe Wilson, R-SC, shouted "You lie" during President Obama's health care speech to Congress. While it is quite 'common' to heckle the Prime Minister in the British House of Commons (yt), heckling a sitting President of the United States during a speech to Congress is simply Not Done. Until tonight (yt).
posted by andreaazure (497 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

 
Wilson's opponent in the next election, Rob Miller, has already raised $63,516 just this evening via ActBlue.
posted by stavrogin at 10:10 PM on September 9, 2009 [13 favorites]


Congratulations on doing your small part to help the media focus its attention away from the substance of Obama's proposals.

Christ, we've become a nation of magpies.
posted by felix betachat at 10:10 PM on September 9, 2009 [73 favorites]


I'm pretty sure that the expression on Nancy Pelosi's face when Wilson shouted that out translates as either a) I am going to have you killed. You know where Jimmy Hoffa went? That's where you're going; or b) Which office is he in? We've got a spare broom closet somewhere, I'm sure.

What a tool he is. I want to call his office and shout "Cite! Show me the page and paragraph!"
posted by rtha at 10:10 PM on September 9, 2009 [5 favorites]


This was posted on TPM earlier stating that this goes against House Decorum. I except that the Representative of South Carolina will be receiving a censure soon.
posted by Allan Gordon at 10:11 PM on September 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


Perhaps your pollies could harden up?
posted by pompomtom at 10:12 PM on September 9, 2009 [6 favorites]


Have they started bringing guns and misspelled signs into congress yet?
posted by Artw at 10:12 PM on September 9, 2009 [56 favorites]


see, this is what happens when republicans can't get illicit sex
posted by pyramid termite at 10:12 PM on September 9, 2009 [40 favorites]


*expect

in my defense I have the flu.
posted by Allan Gordon at 10:12 PM on September 9, 2009


It didn't last long, but the previous thread had a great cite of the specific section of the proposed bill that explicitly prohibited funding illegals' health care etc., just as Obama said.

If someone could cite that again, please, it seems like the best refutation of Wilson's nonsense and hopefully will allow us to go on and talk about the substance of the proposal, rather than what some dork Republican ejaculated about it during Obama's speech.
posted by darkstar at 10:14 PM on September 9, 2009


This just in: outlines of Obama's plan. There is no bill yet, unfortunately.
posted by andreaazure at 10:14 PM on September 9, 2009


FYI, a similar post was killed earlier tonight by mathowie for not having interesting links. And, with no disrespect intended, there's not too much of a substantial difference between this one and the other; in fact, the other poster pulled some old Senate dueling material to try to flesh out the post.
posted by WCityMike at 10:16 PM on September 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


I believe darkstar is referring to my comment.
posted by Mikey-San at 10:17 PM on September 9, 2009 [4 favorites]


But, while this one is open, I'll add, for those who didn't catch it live (such as me), MSNBC has the best recording -- CSPAN's recording of it began sputtering uncontrollably.
posted by WCityMike at 10:17 PM on September 9, 2009


Have they started bringing guns and misspelled signs into congress yet?

Some of these representatives seem about a fraction of a degree from wacky teabagger townhall whiners, don't they?

Screw this Wilson guy. Don't give his little stunt that was obviously preplanned any more attention.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:17 PM on September 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


CNN Poll: Double-digit post-speech jump for Obama plan

Two out of three Americans who watched President Barack Obama's health care reform speech Wednesday night favor his health care plans — a 14-point gain among speech-watchers, according to a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation national poll of people who tuned into Obama's address Wednesday night to a joint session of Congress.

Sixty-seven percent of people questioned in the survey say the support Obama's health care reform proposals that the president outlined in his address, with 29 percent opposed.

[...]

More than seven in ten say that Obama clearly stated his goals, with one in four saying he didn't express his goals clearly.

Three out of four say it's very or somewhat likely that the president will pass most of his proposals on health care reform through Congress, with one in four saying it's unlikely.

Seven in 10 say that Obama's policies will move the country in the right direction, up 10 points from before the speech.

posted by Rhaomi at 10:17 PM on September 9, 2009 [10 favorites]


Biden looks the most pissed. I can see him as a scrapper. Obama almost looks amused, like he's thinking "You schmuck, you are sooo on my shitlist now." Pelosi would have an expression were it not for the Botox. In her defense her mouth actuallly opens a bit.

As for the speech, I thought it was a good one. Obama seemed to cover all the bases. But I'm still confused about a few things: did he insist on a public option or merely say it'd be nice to have a public option? I wonder if this speech will actually impact the final bill that ends up being drafted...at least there was no mention of the stupid "trigger" plan.
posted by zardoz at 10:18 PM on September 9, 2009 [4 favorites]


Agreed with WCityMike. This is just as thin as the earlier post, and honestly, I don't see this event getting much meatier. The guy acted like an idiot and all the news stories are the same. He's rather unremarkable in general, so there isn't a well of amazing stuff to link. It's just masturbation material for us overthinkers.
posted by Mikey-San at 10:19 PM on September 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


Pelosi would have an expression were it not for the Botox.

Hmm. To me, she looked completely shocked.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 10:20 PM on September 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


Yeah, someone should repost all the useful comments from the old thread in here for those poor folk not using Sexy Plutor's Sexy Deleted Posts Script. Sexy.
posted by rokusan at 10:20 PM on September 9, 2009 [6 favorites]


He's already issued an apology. The GOP thought they were going to win in 2008 dancing to the tune of these crude thugs and their ugly little mobs too. As usual liberals are trying awful hard to wrest defeat from the jaws of victory, but I think this pendulum swing probably has a few more years in it at least.
posted by nanojath at 10:21 PM on September 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


(I didn't see the other thread, nor did it turn up with a search. If I've mashed toes, I'm sorry...)
posted by andreaazure at 10:21 PM on September 9, 2009


MSNBC has the best recording -- CSPAN's recording of it began sputtering uncontrollably.

It's in good company.
posted by rokusan at 10:21 PM on September 9, 2009 [14 favorites]


The approval numbers following Clinton's speech and Obama's are aboutt he same.

The cool thing is that Clinton gave his speech at the beginning of the big meltdown and was eroded significantly by the end of the process. Meanwhile, Obama's speech and approval ratings comes after the assault on reality that was this August and nearer the end of the fracas. So I have somewhat better hope about where we stand now than 16 years ago.
posted by darkstar at 10:21 PM on September 9, 2009


It's just masturbation material for us overthinkers.

MetaFil.....

Oh never mind.
posted by rokusan at 10:21 PM on September 9, 2009 [15 favorites]


$65,276
posted by CunningLinguist at 10:22 PM on September 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


Two out of three Americans who watched President Barack Obama's health care reform speech Wednesday night favor his health care plans.... Seven in 10 say that Obama's policies will move the country in the right direction.

Thank god the media will have all night to figure out how to sell this as a bitterly divided controversy.
posted by rokusan at 10:23 PM on September 9, 2009 [14 favorites]


Here, from the last thread:
You'd have a good point if there were a valid "disagreement". Instead, we have a douchebag yelling at the President and calling him a liar when in reality:
H.R. 3200: Sec 246 — NO FEDERAL PAYMENT FOR UNDOCUMENTED ALIENS

Nothing in this subtitle shall allow Federal payments for affordability credits on behalf of individuals who are not lawfully present in the United States.
Either Joe Wilson hasn't read the bill and is simply ignorant, or he's the liar.

posted by Mikey-San at 10:05 PM on September 9
posted by boo_radley at 10:24 PM on September 9, 2009 [11 favorites]


something happened
posted by philip-random at 10:25 PM on September 9, 2009


They already have, rokusan. CNN was saying the breakdown was probably due to more Democrats being interested in Obama's speech and tuning in, skewing the results.
posted by darkstar at 10:25 PM on September 9, 2009


You mention the UK. Even there, MPs are not allowed to suggest that another MP is lying:

Unparliamentary language
Language and expressions used in the Chamber must conform to a number of rules. Erskine May states "good temper and moderation are the characteristics of parliamentary language". Objection has been taken both to individual words and to sentences and constructions ‐ in the case of the former, to insulting, coarse, or abusive language (particularly as applied to other Members); and of the latter, to charges of lying or being drunk and misrepresentation of the words of another. Among the words to which Speakers have objected over the years have been blackguard, coward, git, guttersnipe,hooligan,rat,swine,stoolpigeonandtraitor. The context in which a word is used is, of course, very important.

The Speaker will direct a Member who has used an unparliamentary word or phrase to withdraw it. Members sometimes use considerable ingenuity to circumvent these rules (as when, for instance, Winston Churchill substituted the phrase "terminological inexactitude" for "lie") but they must be careful to obey the Speaker's directions, as a Member who refuses to retract an offending expression may be named (see below) or required to withdraw from the Chamber.


Source
posted by djgh at 10:25 PM on September 9, 2009 [15 favorites]


philip-random: "something happened"

what happen
posted by boo_radley at 10:26 PM on September 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


Ugh, there should be proper spacing in the last line of the first quoted paragraph. Where's my edit button?
posted by djgh at 10:27 PM on September 9, 2009


Obama is a crypto-Muslim Communist nosher? Are you saying he snacks on the bread of the people, but not the pork?

Seriously, this "it's all about racism" meme is ridiculous and not helpful. Colin Powell? Condolezza Rice? Michael Steele? While I'm sure there are many racists among republican voters (as among democrats), the national party at this point is pretty clearly judging people not by the color of their skin but the contents of their checkbook.
posted by drjimmy11 at 10:27 PM on September 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


Also, it's heartwarming to hear my home state held up by the President of the United States to a joint session of Congress as a paragon of dysfunction for the rest of the country to gawk at.
posted by Rhaomi at 10:28 PM on September 9, 2009


Clearly Obama now has no choice but to expose Joe Wilson's wife's secret position with the CIA.
posted by CunningLinguist at 10:31 PM on September 9, 2009 [59 favorites]


drjimmy, Michael Steele said that Obama only won because he's black.
posted by stavrogin at 10:32 PM on September 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


I also neglected to add ... holy shit, the last 15 or so minutes of Obama's speech was just amazing.

Ya gotta love that the GOP put up a Birther for the response.
posted by WCityMike at 10:32 PM on September 9, 2009


Parsing the President's plan causes me some worries:
* Ends discrimination against people with pre-existing conditions.... Under the President’s plan, it will be against the law for insurance companies to deny coverage for health reasons or risks.
. . . .

* Eliminates extra charges for preventive care like mammograms, flu shots and diabetes tests to improve health and save money.
But...
* Immediately offers new, low-cost coverage through a national "high risk" pool to protect people with preexisting conditions from financial ruin until the new Exchange is created. For those Americans who cannot get insurance coverage today because of a pre-existing condition, the President’s plan will immediately make available coverage without a mark-up due to their health condition. This policy will offer protection against financial ruin until a wider array of choices become available in the new exchange in 2013.


Reading between the lines, it seems that insurers won't be able to deny coverage for pre-existing conditions -- but can still make such coverage prohibitively expensive. Which means individuals still won't be able to afford the insurance, and businesses will still fire people who cause the businesses' rates to rise.

And that for four years, all we get is a high-risk pool with a really high deductible. A (e.g.) $25,000 deductible much not mean financial ruin, but that'll eat a good part of your after tax income. And with a high deductible, people won't pay for the preventative care that the plan proposes will lower costs.
posted by orthogonality at 10:35 PM on September 9, 2009 [8 favorites]


If Wilson gets censured -- it's arguable that he broke up to four rules of decorum -- it'd be the first time since 1990 that anyone's gotten that punishment.
posted by boo_radley at 10:36 PM on September 9, 2009


Not sure why paying attention to yet another Republican bigot losing his fucking mind in the face of an actual black man as president means you can't also appreciate the substance of Obama's speech. Honestly, you can't really ignore the fact that the people opposing decent, 21st century health-care in America tend to be idiot racists of the worst sort.
posted by bardic at 10:38 PM on September 9, 2009 [10 favorites]


Excuse me. Adults are talking.
posted by ColdChef at 10:40 PM on September 9, 2009 [113 favorites]


Anyone have a phone number for Rep. Wilson's office? His website is (cough cough) "Down for Maintenence" (cough cough)
posted by furiousxgeorge at 10:40 PM on September 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


Boy, I'm glad this is just a small misstep in the otherwise calm, collected, and rational realm of American political discourse. I can't even dream of a time when people could think it's reasonable to shout at their representatives regularly. It's nice to have standards.


get me out of here
posted by flatluigi at 10:40 PM on September 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


$69,739
posted by CunningLinguist at 10:42 PM on September 9, 2009


While it is quite 'common' to heckle the Prime Minister in the British House of Commons

Although, for what it's worth, it's against parliamentary procedure to call someone a liar in the House of Commons as well.
posted by Adam_S at 10:44 PM on September 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


According to Wikipedia:

Later that night, Wilson attempted to call President Obama to apologize personally but instead ended up speaking to Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanuel.[18]

Not the most pleasant person you want to talk to when you're trying to offer up an apology for boneheaded behavior. Hopefully, he got a nice lashing.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:45 PM on September 9, 2009 [23 favorites]


Heckling a speech is lame. But a good Question Period, now.... that could save the nation.
posted by rokusan at 10:45 PM on September 9, 2009 [11 favorites]


You know, this thread is getting a lot of comments that simply repeat something someone else has already pointed out upthread ...
posted by WCityMike at 10:46 PM on September 9, 2009


Not sure why paying attention to yet another Republican bigot losing his fucking mind in the face of an actual black man as president means you can't also appreciate the substance of Obama's speech.

Maybe you should make some comments about the speech.
posted by nanojath at 10:46 PM on September 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


You know, this thread is getting a lot of comments that simply repeat something someone else has already pointed out upthread...
posted by ten pounds of inedita at 10:48 PM on September 9, 2009 [23 favorites]


"You lie"? That's the best heckle anyone could come up with?
That's not how you interject. This is how you do disrespect across a Parliament.
"You were heard in silence, so some of you SCUMBAGS on the front bench should wait a minute until you hear the responses from me."
"What really amuses me and almost makes me spew..."
"They have no ideas, no integrity and no ability."
"Damn them for being the cheats they are."
"You are frauds."
"...votes for coalition members who have always been cheats, cheats, cheats and will always be cheats, cheats, cheats and will always defend cheats, cheats, cheats."
"Honorable Members opposite are a joke."
"They are irrelevant, useless and immoral."
"...they insist on being mugs, Mr Speaker, absolute mugs."
"I'm not running a seminar for dullards on the other side."
"Those opposite could not operate a tart shop"
"These intellectual hoboes"
"This rabble opposite"
"...for the benefit of the blockheads opposite"
"If the dummies opposite will just shut up"
"Shut up for a moment. If you ask questions and want to hear answers, shut up."
"How thick these people are"
"These dummies and dimwits"
"Talk about desperadoes"
"These are the absolute gutter tactics of a mindless, useless, idealistic, unprincipled Opposition."
"The Opposition is such a motley, dishonest crew"
"...the cowboys on this front bench"
"It is just a slight of hand by a dingy party"
"The Opposition crowd could not raffle a chook in a pub"
"We will be rejecting the opportunist claptrap coming from the Opposition."
"Honorable Members opposite squeal like stuck pigs"
"...small time punk stuff coming from a punk Opposition."
"The animals on the other side"
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 10:48 PM on September 9, 2009 [30 favorites]


Why are Republicans so angry all the time?
posted by Acromion at 10:49 PM on September 9, 2009 [15 favorites]


You know, this thread is getting a lot of comments that simply repeat something someone else has already pointed out upthread...
posted by Artw at 10:50 PM on September 9, 2009 [7 favorites]


Pelosi would have an expression were it not for the Botox.

Yeah, *hurf* *durf* and all that, but Pelosi had a legit jaw-drop there.
posted by Cyrano at 10:50 PM on September 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


"Those opposite could not operate a tart shop"


In all fairness, I don't think this same criticism could be leveled at the Republican opposition.
posted by darkstar at 10:51 PM on September 9, 2009 [6 favorites]


If only Obama had handled the heckler like this.
posted by bwg at 10:53 PM on September 9, 2009 [9 favorites]


Seriously, this "it's all about racism" meme is ridiculous and not helpful.

Wilson got his start in politics working for Strom Thurmond. After Wilson got elected to the South Carolina Senate, he broke down in tears while speaking against the removal of the Confederate Flag which then flew over the South Carolina Capitol building.

Look away, Dixieland!
posted by orthogonality at 11:41 PM on September 9, 2009 [48 favorites]


Acromion: "Why are Republicans so angry all the time?"
The same reason Democrats are guilty all the time: Cognitive dissonance:
Cognitive dissonance is an uncomfortable feeling caused by holding two contradictory ideas simultaneously. The "ideas" or "cognitions" in question may include attitudes and beliefs, the awareness of one's behavior, and facts. The theory of cognitive dissonance proposes that people have a motivational drive to reduce dissonance by changing their attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors, or by justifying or rationalizing their attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors.[1] Cognitive dissonance theory is one of the most influential and extensively studied theories in social psychology.

Dissonance normally occurs when a person perceives a logical inconsistency among his or her cognitions. This happens when one idea implies the opposite of another. For example, a belief in animal rights could be interpreted as inconsistent with eating meat or wearing fur. Noticing the contradiction would lead to dissonance, which could be experienced as anxiety, guilt, shame, anger, embarrassment, stress, and other negative emotional states. When people's ideas are consistent with each other, they are in a state of harmony, or consonance. If cognitions are unrelated, they are categorized as irrelevant to each other and do not lead to dissonance.
posted by boo_radley at 11:44 PM on September 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


I'd rather see him handle a heckler like this.

"Vote him out! Vote him fuckin' out! Vote him in somewhere that's good! Go represent Somalia you fuckin' idiot piece of shit!
posted by bunnytricks at 11:45 PM on September 9, 2009 [8 favorites]


One thing I was thinking of was about how, while it's certainly true that the prime minister, the head of government in the U.K get heckled, Obama is also the Head of state. In the U.K the head of state is the Queen. Can you imagine an MP heckling the queen, calling her a liar?

Anyway, Obama's speech was good but so much attention has been heaped on this asshole I really do think it might take away from what people hear of the speech. I don't know how it's playing on T.V, though.

Oh well.
posted by delmoi at 11:45 PM on September 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


someone set us up the teabagger
posted by Avenger at 11:49 PM on September 9, 2009 [29 favorites]


Avenger, I came this close to going there. I suspect you and I are twins separated at birth.
posted by darkstar at 11:55 PM on September 9, 2009


Congratulations on doing your small part to help the media focus its attention away from the substance of Obama's proposals.Christ, we've become a nation of magpies.

This rocks. Creates pwnage. It is the yin to the substance yang. And now we get to do it and win while doing tons of substance communicating.

We're in it to win it.
posted by Ironmouth at 11:56 PM on September 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


.
posted by OverlappingElvis at 12:00 AM on September 10, 2009


This rocks. Creates pwnage.
It is the yin to the substance yang.
And now we get to do it and win
while doing tons of substance communicating.

We're in it to win it. (x4)


What Guided by Voices album are those lyrics from?
posted by bunnytricks at 12:03 AM on September 10, 2009 [12 favorites]


Jane's Law: The devotees of the party in power are smug and arrogant. The devotees of the party out of power are insane.
posted by awenner at 12:03 AM on September 10, 2009


bunnytricks: Under The Bushes Under The Roves?
posted by Joey Michaels at 12:06 AM on September 10, 2009 [6 favorites]


Oh, this is good:
Boustany sued two con artists after paying them $18,500 to become a British noble and attend the Queen Mother’s birthday procession.

In 1996, Congressman Boustany and his wife sued two British men and their fake company for an amount “in excess of $50,000.” According to their complaint, the couple had paid Stefanos Kollakis and Martin Lewis $18,500 on December 20, 1994 for a fraudulent title. In April 1995, Kollakis and Lewis had pleaded guilty to forgery in a London court for carrying out the con on several unsuspecting Americans. Using false passports, bogus companies, Latin mottos and a nonexistent “Institution of Heraldic Affairs,” they had promised to turn Americans into official lords and ladies. One of the promised rewards was an opportunity to ride in the Queen Mother’s annual birthday procession.
Lord Boustany, what fools these mortals be!
posted by stavrogin at 12:07 AM on September 10, 2009 [9 favorites]


via digg

How to contact Joe Wilson's office:
The Midlands' Office • 1700 Sunset Blcd (US 378), Suite 1 • West Columbia, SC 29169 • Phone: (803) 939-0041 • Fax: (803) 939-0078
The Lowcountry Office • 903 Port Republic Street • Beaufort, SC 29902 • Phone: (843) 521-2530 • Fax: (843) 521-2535
Washington Office • 212 Cannon House Office Building • Washington, DC 20515 • Phone: (202) 225-2452 • Fax: (202) 225-2455
posted by nadawi at 12:13 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Boustany sued two con artists after paying them $18,500 to become a British noble and attend the Queen Mother’s birthday procession.

I was watching MSNBC, right after Boustany's rebuttal to the president, Kieth Olberman immediately came on and told everyone that Boustany was 1) A birther, 2) Had three medical malpractice lawsuits against him and 3) Tried to buy the British title of "Lord" from someone.

It was a bit unfair, I thought, but also funny.
posted by delmoi at 12:15 AM on September 10, 2009 [13 favorites]


Anyway, Obama's speech was good but so much attention has been heaped on this asshole I really do think it might take away from what people hear of the speech.

As the kids say, "Well, duh!" Mission Accomplished.

It was a carefully planned and completely deniable strategic move from the Republican party. The president is selling his side of the debate to a national audience and you expect them to just sit there and listen? No, they have one of their guys yell like a street protester and then play it like he was simply too "emotional" about the issue (he cared too much, sniff sniff) to control his good ol' self. And if this causes the heckler any trouble, even if he has to be apparently sacrificed to put a good face on things, he doesn't care because this move guarantees him a long-term job with the party.
posted by pracowity at 12:16 AM on September 10, 2009 [21 favorites]


And to think that a couple months ago Obama was still handing shovels to the Republicans.

Now it seems they're happy enough to dig their hole with their own bare hands.

Next: Republican representative streaks through the congress yelling "He's gunna take ur foreskin! He's gunna take ur foreskin!", thinks it was a Very Smart Move because Glenn Beck called him a hero on teevee.

(By the way, it's funny how O'Reilly now sounds like the reasonable side of the right. Half his Talking Points (yup, I read them every once in a while, for lulz) nowadays are something on the lines of "Dear crazy conservatives, STOP FUCKING DIGGING! Obama IS a socialist and is destroying America, etc, etc, but you'll get more credibility, if you, you know, stop sounding like you're fucking insane.")
posted by qvantamon at 12:20 AM on September 10, 2009 [4 favorites]


What about the promises of free cake?
posted by dirigibleman at 12:29 AM on September 10, 2009


I have a treatment I'm working on with Charlie Sheen. Bear with me, it's a little rough around the edges.

INT. U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTIN'

President Barack Obama strides up to the podium like a professional wrestler. Rock music plays in the background. Obama pauses before getting serious.

OBAMA
Shit.

President Obama looks around the room.

OBAMA
I know shit's bad right now. With all that healthcare bullshit. We're runnin' out of french fries and burrito coverin's. But I got a solution.

Camera focuses suddenly on a pack of hecklers in the House, one of whom clearly has swagger that his friends lack and something on his mind. Here enters Representin' JOE WILSON, who points his finger at President Obama.

WILSON
YOU LIE! South Carolina, what's up, yo!(*)

Wilson high-fives his Republican colleagues, laughing smugly. President Obama reaches for an automatic rifle underneath the podium and starts firing into the ceiling. Representin' Wilson shuts up quickly.

OBAMA
That's what I thought!

The President throws his rifle to the floor.

OBAMA
Now I understand everyone's shit's emotional right now. But I've got a 3 point healthcare plan that's going to fix EVERYTHING.

CONGRESSMAN #1
Break it down, Obama!

(*) No joke, the heckler in Idiocracy is from fucking South Carolina.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:34 AM on September 10, 2009 [37 favorites]



Some of these representatives seem about a fraction of a degree from [are] wacky teabagger townhall whiners (obligatory ftfy, considering Michelle 'crazy pants' Bachmann is running loose)

Seriously, this "it's all about racism" meme is ridiculous and not helpful.:

I have to disagree with the ridiculous part of this. Perhaps not all about racism, but good Christ, there is a good healthy dose of it. When the major reason Michale Steele is the GOP head is because the other guy was too much a secessionist (and Steele wasn't a prohibitive favorite), when the VP candidate is on record referring to Inuit as Arctic Arabs and Fucking Eskimos (despite her husband being 1/8th Inuit), when the R party promotes and validates the birther movement (something that doesn't rear it's head for any of the white boys running or elected), when contenders such as Huckabee jokes around about someone shooting Obama, State level officials forwarding emails of the White House lawn turned into a watermelon patch, the Obama girls being referred to as sporting ghetto fashion, or Michelle being a baby mama .. the number and level of incidents are staggering. You can not with a straight face tell me there is not a significant level of racism occurring within the Republican party. And that is one of the reasons the Rs are in long term trouble, America is getting less and less white and the Rs are getting more and more white and social conservative.
posted by edgeways at 12:35 AM on September 10, 2009 [74 favorites]


It was a jackass thing to do, but let's not delude ourselves into seeing this as an opportunity to score any "told you so" points. Dwelling on one guy who they can plausibly claim "was overcome by emotion" is going to be a lot less productive than if we actually talk about the content of Obama's speech.

Let's not be so easily baited. The sole practical goal of the speech tonight was to attempt to reframe the conversation on the president's terms. It can only do that if people talk about the speech itself instead of turning this into yet another outragefest. There'll be plenty of stuff to be outraged about later, I promise.
posted by Riki tiki at 12:38 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


I don't know, (and since we're all discussing only appearances here, which I find a very vacuous thing to do), but heckling is no (procedural) biggie in the Westminister- style of debating, or at least in India. I mean, in perhaps the most important Parliamentary debate last year in India's Lok Sabha, one that changed US-India relations and saved a government, the PM was effectively shouted down from giving his closing speech. He eventually handed his prepared remarks to the Speaker and asked that it be entered on record. He went on to win the debate, the vote and six months later, the general elections.

The Head of State is also shouted down often; by tradition, the opening remarks to any Parliamentary session is given by the President. The President's address, however, is prepared by the government du jour, and therefore is extremely political in nature; the President is supposed to give the address whether s/he agrees with the content or not. The President's Address can often get raucous, because the speech often can contain red-meat for followers and such. Remarks made in the Parliament have a certain additional privilege not granted to regular free speech; you can't, for instance, file for defamation for remarks made in the well of the House. The understanding is that since all debates happen openly, there are non-legal consequences for un-civil behaviour / talk.

Yeah, there's that Parliamentary / unparliamentary thing about exact phrases and words, but that's for more for what goes into the record (which, in these days of live telecasts, is a bit of an anachronism) I'm not sure if there are actual examples from other Westminister-style democracies, but I wouldn't be surprised if the Queen's address to the House of Commons or the Governor General's address to the Australian equivalent was booed at some time in the past; it can and will happen. The link to Keating's, ahhh, creativity, is another good example; he's at his best when he goes postal on specific people:
On former Labor Prime Minister, Bob Hawke:

"Now listen mate," [to John Browne, Minister of Sport, who was proposing a 110 per cent tax deduction for contributions to a Sports Foundation] "you're not getting 110 per cent. You can forget it. This is a fucking Boulevard Hotel special, this is. The trouble is we are dealing with a sports junkie here [gesturing towards Bob Hawke]. I go out for a piss and they pull this one on me. Well that's the last time I leave you two alone. From now on, I'm sticking to you two like shit to a blanket.
Basically, you're given a free run to what you can say in the well of a House, with the understanding that there are consequences for heckling the President or PM or the Leader of the Opposition or anyone.

Which is to say, I don't really think Wilson's heckling helps the Republican case one bit; in fact, I think there's a clear political cost for the Republicans for his behaviour. If it wasn't apparent already, there appears to be exactly one set of adults in the house now.
posted by the cydonian at 12:42 AM on September 10, 2009


METAFILTER: this thread is getting a lot of comments that simply repeat something someone else has already pointed out upthread ...
posted by philip-random at 12:50 AM on September 10, 2009


I think there's a clear political cost for the Republicans for his behaviour. If it wasn't apparent already, there appears to be exactly one set of adults in the house now.

I don't think the Republicans have been stooping to appeal to adults since sometime in the mid-1990s.
posted by philip-random at 12:51 AM on September 10, 2009 [4 favorites]


What were the packets of paper the Republicans waving around for the cameras? It was way too small to read on TV, and my Google-fu is weak for things that happened hours ago.
posted by mccarty.tim at 12:53 AM on September 10, 2009


I suspect the hysterics are because they are panicked and desperate... problem is that shit is contagious.

mccarty.tim, presumably it was the house bill.
posted by edgeways at 12:55 AM on September 10, 2009


mccarty.tim: I can't find a link to support it, but I read that they were Republican health care reform plans.
posted by Joey Michaels at 12:56 AM on September 10, 2009


oh, yeah.. it could be that. The mysterious flowchart Republican health care plans.
posted by edgeways at 12:57 AM on September 10, 2009


Republicans brought copies of their healthcare bills to wave at President Barack Obama when he accused them of having no plan of their own. Rep. Tom Price (D-Ga.) held up his H.R. 3400, which he's titled the "Empowering Patients First Act." via. google search, for the teaching of -fu
posted by wemayfreeze at 12:58 AM on September 10, 2009


Nice two-word sentence, ska-douche.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 1:03 AM on September 10, 2009


I have a deep concern that what we're actually seeing, all the media frenzy to the contrary, is Obama working hand-in-hand with the Republicans, to convince the people that he's actually making change we can believe in, rather than chump change.
posted by Goofyy at 1:06 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Rob Miller has released a statement to CNN, in part: "He owes both the President and the people of this district an apology for his embarrassing behavior during tonight's speech."

Same article says the SC Democratic Party Chair Carol Fowler said in shout out to the always lovable Mark Sanford: "Once again a South Carolina Republican has embarrassed our state."
posted by IvoShandor at 1:08 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


That was severely misunderstood. The representative was in fact referencing Obama's plan to make soap out of all the old people killed by the death panels. The actual phrase was: "You, lye!"
posted by qvantamon at 1:33 AM on September 10, 2009 [8 favorites]


$80,701
posted by Ljubljana at 1:53 AM on September 10, 2009


Rob Miller's website is out of its 503 error hell from earlier.
posted by crataegus at 2:18 AM on September 10, 2009


Keep it classy, South Carolina.
posted by mosk at 2:19 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Which is to say, I don't really think Wilson's heckling helps the Republican case one bit; in fact, I think there's a clear political cost for the Republicans for his behavior.

Only if the Democrats choose to send the bill. They *should* nail this guy. They *should* make this the talking point. The point here is to change the focus away from the "substance" of GOP claims and make it that fact that the GOP is saying anything and doing anything to stop the will of the voters. Quit defending against the substance of the attacks, since there never is any, and start attacking them about this.

Otherwise, Joe Wilson is a hero by the end of the week.

You can't win the game with defense alone in a game where the defense can't score. The goal of this should be simple -- Joe Wilson's resignation. Keep hammering on it until his own party forces him out to get this off the top of the news.

Then you send a message that such tactics aren't going to work.

I am surprised, really, that this speech may in fact be the defining moment of the Obama administration. It will define whether he will in fact ever be able to enact his policies or not. Can the Obama administration, in fact, handle a heckler?

Because if this stands? The next State of the Union will make the UK House of Commons look like church.
posted by eriko at 2:19 AM on September 10, 2009 [31 favorites]


I wish the Dems had someone whose full-time job it was to just repurpose Bush era talking points for maximum irony.

If such a person existed, they'd be on all the morning talk shows tomorrow saying "respect the office, if not the man" over and over again.
posted by rokusan at 2:42 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Rokusan, Wilson was one of those who constantly said that. It did not matter what topic you chose for a letter, email, fax, etc. sent to him. His automated responses all said that we should stand by our man. Bush may have had no public stance on the issue, but Wilson's response would always say that we should stand by the POTUS. The paranoid bit of my brain believes that Wilson did this just to make 46% of his constituents' heads explode.
posted by crataegus at 2:54 AM on September 10, 2009


Wilson will never resign. In fact, this will only endear him to his lunatic base even further. Hoping to hound him out of office over this, an office in South Carolina may I remind you, is nuts.

However, in national terms of Obama getting some more traction on a real health-care bill, this further demonstrates just how far down the rabbit-hole the GOP has gone.

On balance, it's a win for the good guys. Just don't expect southern politicians to suffer directly from the next 7 1/2 years of racist dog-whistling that they'll gleefully engage in.

We simply need to think of Republicans -- all of them -- as the Limbaugh worshiping nutters that they truly are and have been since about, oh, September 12, 2001.
posted by bardic at 3:00 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


this maybe a stupid question, but why do we have a thread about the heckler but not about the speech in itself?
posted by litleozy at 3:12 AM on September 10, 2009 [19 favorites]


I actually think the opposite. As I mentioned in my comment, Obama has been (willfully or not) handing shovels to the Republicans, and they just keep digging. Before this year, 50% of America would tune into conservative talk radio or cable news, look at the people there, and mostly say "yeah, that's a good argument... yes, I agree with that... yes, I wouldn't be afraid of being associated with that person". For the most extremist, it would go something like "well, he's a bit crazy at times, but sometimes he says it right, right there".

A few shovels later, and most talk radio/cable news hosts, a chunk of the congress, and even some conservative notable private citizens are now know by (I'd say) 75% of the population as "Those Crazy People". Where a couple of years ago most GOP moderates would still fall behind party lines on divisive issues, now those guys are eager to be seen dialoguing reasonably and compromising with the Dems, just to make sure they are associated with the "center", and not with "Those Crazy People". They managed to simply kill the plain "right", the right side of the political spectrum now jumps from "moderate/center-right" to "batshitcrazy birther right".

The dems can only benefit from this polarization. Where last year fiscal-conservatives, mainstream Christians, paleocon defense hawks, hunters, etc, would all proudly proclaim to be Republicans, these days these guys will either (at least nominally) change party, switch to unaffiliated moderate, or at a minimum qualify themselves as "Republican, but not Those Crazy People".

I say they keep handing shovels. Stutter a bit during the pledge of allegiance. Show some unusual sympathy for lizards. Say Noam Chomsky is a kick-ass linguist. With luck they'll manage to get a formal schism... otherwise we can see how deep and for how long the wingnuts can bury the GOP's name.
posted by qvantamon at 3:14 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


hm, that was directed at eriko's comment about how the Dems should try to stop the crazy stuff.
posted by qvantamon at 3:16 AM on September 10, 2009


You know. there was a lot more to that speech than those idiotic 10 seconds.

H.R. 3200: Sec 246 — NO FEDERAL PAYMENT FOR UNDOCUMENTED ALIENS

Nothing in this subtitle shall allow Federal payments for affordability credits on behalf of individuals who are not lawfully present in the United States.
Either Joe Wilson hasn't read the bill and is simply ignorant, or he's the liar.


Maybe, maybe not, it's a bit more complicated than that. The chief argument is that the bill doesn't have any enforcement mechanisms that check whether the person receiving care is an illegal alien or not.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:18 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


but why do we have a thread about the heckler but not about the speech in itself?

Because everyone loves a fight, even or especially the left leaning members of Metafilter.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:28 AM on September 10, 2009


heckling a sitting President of the United States during a speech to Congress is simply Not Done

Why not?
posted by evil_esto at 3:41 AM on September 10, 2009


Pleased none of the money is going to fund abortions, because giving girls the fundamental right to choose what happens to their bodies pales in comparison next to free speach.
posted by Samuel Farrow at 4:00 AM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


but why do we have a thread about the heckler but not about the speech in itself?

Because that's exactly how the Republicans intended you to react. It's like a thread derail. Everyone's been trolled.
posted by pracowity at 4:04 AM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


Republicans try and deflect responsibility for the inchoate rage they embody by suggesting that it is the fringe elements associated with their party. As I tried to show earlier with my uninteresting links about historical facts, it's a top down phenomenon, it has been that way for more than 100 years, and it's not going away anytime soon.

The heckler matters because from their leadship to the lowliest rank and file, the republicans are committed to delegitimizing this President no matter where it leads.
posted by minimii at 4:12 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


heckling a sitting President of the United States during a speech to Congress is simply Not Done

Why not?


because even if politics is a game, every game has rules. one of those rules is respect.
posted by litleozy at 4:13 AM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


So...What's the over/under on this Wilson guy making the rounds over at FoxNews and talk radio in the next couple of days, to be hailed as a "tell it like it is" hero?
posted by Thorzdad at 4:27 AM on September 10, 2009


The last 10 minutes of Obama's speech last night got me back to Yes We Can. Yes, the heckler sound bite is what will be played over and over today-- America will hear the President called a liar in the halls of Congress until some other shiny thing distracts our attention-- we can't stop the media's interpretation of the First Amendment to mean "dwell on the the thing we think is most likely to create a shitstorm and drive up our ad revenues."

What we CAN do is exercise that other brilliant right in the First Amendment, namely our right to petition our government. Call, email and write every member of the 5 committees drafting health care legislation, to your own Rep and Senators, to the President and to House and Senate leadership and tell them what you think. Ignore the noise machine and make your own noise; our Constitution gives us that right and we should exercise it.
posted by nax at 4:41 AM on September 10, 2009 [4 favorites]


philip-random: something happened

boo_radley: what happe
n

metafilter: shit happens

and now we're going to talk about it for 1500 comments.
posted by fourcheesemac at 4:49 AM on September 10, 2009


South Carolina? All right! Maybe they'll secede again.
posted by telstar at 4:50 AM on September 10, 2009


$92,437
posted by zerobyproxy at 5:06 AM on September 10, 2009


Not to derail, but that is one ominous looking political photograph on Rob Miller's Act Blue page. The only thing that could make it worse is if he held a flashlight under his chin. Clueless.

Also: nearing $100,000 raised. I'm guessing it will be over $200,000 by this time tomorrow.
posted by spock at 5:07 AM on September 10, 2009


Just don't expect southern politicians to suffer directly from the next 7 1/2 years of racist dog-whistling that they'll gleefully engage in.

I don't think we're just confined to the south with that.
posted by marxchivist at 5:10 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Why not?

We had eight years of Bush and no legislators heckled him during his speeches. There's a place for debate, but last night was neither the time or place. The President is there to give a speech and say his piece, not discuss your personal opinions about him.

Still, now that we have a black President, I guess Republicans don't feel like they need to behave like adults. This was just another demonstration that these racists are above reproach.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 5:11 AM on September 10, 2009 [14 favorites]


Civility has been an endangered species in America for quite a while. Incivility has been in Washington for a long while. Just not so much hollered out during nationally televised speeches. For the most part, New Lows are what society is all about these days.
posted by spock at 5:11 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Nice speech. I really thought the public option was dead, now I'm not so sure.

But if we're recounting anecdotes of Westminster style abuse, my two favourites from Australia are Paul Keating's "you're a shiver looking for a spine to crawl up" and the classic from Gough Whitlam, or Fred Daly, or one of the many others who claimed it. A member of the Nationals proudly pronounced of himself "I am a country member" to which the fabled reply snapped back "we remember!".

And Westminster itself? Probably Dennis Healey on being attacked by Geoffrey Howe that it was "like being savaged by a dead sheep".
posted by GeckoDundee at 5:23 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


At Daily Kos, people have been gnashing their teeth for weeks that of all the sub-optimal outcomes they were bracing themselves for, the one that would absolutely send them into the streets with torches and pitchforks would be the worst-of-both-worlds nightmare of a mandate with no public option. And when the President finally ends the suspense by officially announcing that as Obamacare*, all they can talk about is "How can we make Joe Wilson pay?"

So yeah, Wilson did the Dems a big favor last night.

* If you don't think the public option is dead, we'll have to agree to disagree.
posted by Joe Beese at 5:35 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


I really thought the public option was dead, now I'm not so sure.

Rahm Emmanuel wants you to think it's not dead. Rahm Emmanuel himself wants it dead, tho; you can be pretty sure of that. Dems won't get insurance company money for the next election cycle if the public option isn't dead by the end of the congressional session.
posted by mediareport at 5:39 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


While I agree food is pretty expensive and confusing, I don't know why hungry people just don't buy more food? Maybe they're lazy. We should force them to buy food, but I don't want to pay anything so some lazy, hungry slob gets food for free. That's crazy talk.
posted by The Whelk at 6:01 AM on September 10, 2009 [8 favorites]


Show some unusual sympathy for lizards.

I wholeheartedly endorse this product and/or service.
posted by elizardbits at 6:08 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


War Room reader dannyken asks: I'm in the UK, so forgive me if this is a beginner's question. It seems to me that the Democrats go out of their way to make legislation acceptable to Republicans when they're in power, but Republicans don't return the favour when they are in power. Why is this?

Preliminary studies have shown that, as children, Democratic politicians tended to be beaten up for their lunch money on a regular basis. Already cowardly by nature, they quickly learned that it was easier just to give up the money and curl into a frightened ball with little or no bladder control than it was to put up a fight.
posted by Stonewall Jackson at 6:22 AM on September 10, 2009 [6 favorites]


Rob Miller is up to $105,943 on ActBlue this morning.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 6:25 AM on September 10, 2009


mediareport: " Rahm Emmanuel himself wants [the public option] dead, tho; you can be pretty sure of that. Dems won't get insurance company money for the next election cycle if the public option isn't dead by the end of the congressional session."

This. And 10x this after the Roberts-led Supreme Court turns on the firehose of direct corporate contributions to political campaigns.

Listen to Obama address "my progressive friends" at 1:34 here. "The public option is only a means to that end." The tone of his voice tells you all you need to know about the future of the public option.

posted by Joe Beese at 6:31 AM on September 10, 2009


*Impatiently waiting for ND¢'s comments about South Carolina*
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:32 AM on September 10, 2009


I checked (pressed ctrl F and everything) and no one has said this yet:

Here is goes. I hope I don't mess up!

Christ, What an Asshole.
posted by Mastercheddaar at 6:33 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Here is what I saw on the Republican side of the aisle ( and am hoping most sane adults noticed, too):

A group of sullen-faced, sulky, backed-up old farts. Total disdain and disrespect for the President of the United States. Complete refusal to submit to traditional decorum-from Joe Dickhead's heckling to Eric Cantor's texting during the speech to grown legislators waving shit and holding handmade signs. These are all signs of a bully mentality; idiots who are more than willing to dish the shit but totally unwilling to take it.

I believe this will not resonate well for the Republicans with the average middle-of-the-road American; people who may lean conservative but believe that manners are important.

Obama's mission was pretty clear: appeal to the public and put Congress on the hot seat. I think he did both well. We'll see.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 6:36 AM on September 10, 2009 [15 favorites]


when the R party promotes and validates the birther movement (something that doesn't rear it's head for any of the white boys running or elected)

Actually...there were questions about McCain's eligibility based on the fact that he was born in the Panama Canal Zone.
posted by MikeMc at 6:39 AM on September 10, 2009


Here is it goes. I hope I don't mess up!

you messed up
posted by marxchivist at 6:41 AM on September 10, 2009


Dang! ActBlue for Rob Miller is at $114,847 right now. From $63,516 - what stavrogin posted at the top of this thread last night. Roughly 12 hours ago.
posted by dog food sugar at 6:52 AM on September 10, 2009


Dems won't get insurance company money for the next election cycle

The best solution for that, then, is to make sure there is no more fucking insurance company money. At all. Obsolete the whole damn lot of 'em, hire their employees to run the Health Care Administration, and let the management twist in the wind. They should have planned ahead, amirite? If that rejoinder's good enough for a cancer patient, it's good enough for the CEO of Anthem.
posted by Michael Roberts at 6:53 AM on September 10, 2009 [43 favorites]


FYI, a similar post was killed earlier tonight by mathowie for not having interesting links. And, with no disrespect intended, there's not too much of a substantial difference between this one and the other

except perhaps that the prior post lacked a link to the actual story in controversy but only to something that happened a century ago.

How about that GOP response? Could it have been any more lame?
posted by caddis at 6:53 AM on September 10, 2009


(repurposed from when i posted it on politicalfilter, since we'd rather talk about the speech than the outburst)

One thing that I thought was notable in the post speech discussion was David Axelrod's response to a question from Rachel Maddow. Maddow got Axelrod tripped up. She asked him about the mandate, and she wanted to know if any reforms would be in place to improve the insurance products before 40 million people were mandated to buy them.

He totally stalled out and fell into a flat spin.

The mandate is intended to increase the efficiencies of risk pools by forcing the young and healthy to contribute premiums they rarely draw back on. This is an unused resource that is being tapped... so the question is, does that resource get allotted to the existing system, or to a new system which will re-invest unspent premiums in more care (a public option) as opposed to profit. Personally, I am young and healthy, and I would love to absorb some risk from others if I felt that my unused premiums were going back to improve healthcare instead of profit commercial plans.

Because I, am a fucking patriot.

Axelrod was visibly unprepared for Maddows insight: if the goal is to correct a broken system, why force people to buy into that broken system before we know if and/or when it will be repaired? I think this illustrates a real opportunity to reframe the debate, and the crux of it may be the mandate. The mandate is more frameable than the public option is.

You can't talk about the mandate without implying either poor people (those impelled by the mandate to buy insurance) or the insurance companies (who can only consider this a windfall).

If you wanna talk about the public option, you can talk about it THROUGH talking about the mandate. Because if you are going to force healthy young people to help spread the risk, the profits should be spread as well. Otherwise, we're back to privatizing profits and socializing losses.
posted by butterstick at 6:55 AM on September 10, 2009 [34 favorites]


Here is it goes. I hope I don't mess up!

you messed up
posted by marxchivist at 6:41 AM on September 10 [+] [!]


HAHA you caught it! Now that I think about it... it really wasn't that clever.
posted by Mastercheddaar at 6:58 AM on September 10, 2009


Congratulations on doing your small part to help the media focus its attention away from the substance of Obama's proposals.

Thanks for shooting the messenger. But now that something newsworthy has caught our attention, we can focus on the details.

The fines would be the stick to enforce a proposed requirement that all Americans get health insurance, much as auto coverage is now mandatory. The penalties would start at $750 a year for individuals, and $1,500 for families. Households making more than three times the federal poverty level — about $66,000 for a family of four — would face the maximum fines. For families, it would be $3,800, and for individuals, $950.

Baucus would offer carrots as well: tax credits to help pay premiums for households making up to three times the poverty level, and for small employers paying about average middle-class wages. People working for companies that offer coverage could avoid the fines by signing up.

But the fines pose a dilemma for Obama. As a candidate, the president campaigned hard against making health insurance a requirement, saying it's too expensive to mandate. White House officials have since backed away somewhat from that stance, but there's no indication that Obama would support fines.


This is supply-side, regarding the fines. Their logic believes that insurance is the problem and not health costs and the sale of junk food.
posted by Brian B. at 7:06 AM on September 10, 2009


I can never remember for you folks... My left hand is the one that makes the 'L' shape with thumb and index fingers, my shoes are clearly marked, and its 'Righty-tighty, lefty-loosey'; Is it lean right for Republican?

Hmm. Perhaps I'll just stick with the 'Righty-tighty' and hope it works for the best.

Regardless, congratulations goes to the party that can look carefully blank while the idiots around them clamber, and clamour for attention. Unfortunately, in Canuck-land the award goes to the robotic Mr Harper. (That guy is eerie... uncanny valley eerie)
posted by LD Feral at 7:13 AM on September 10, 2009


Dems won't get insurance company money for the next election cycle if the public option isn't dead by the end of the congressional session.

Now, I'm just a simple guy with no real insight into politics, but I have been lead to believe that politicians are unable to actually accept money from anyone into their pockets. Rather, money gets donated to their campaigns, to assist them in getting (re)elected, and to pay for staff.

This certainly seems like a wager, but isn't it possible that by fixing and improving health care in the US, politicians will gain more in general support and via grassroots financing than they could possibly receive from the insurance companies? If a good program passes, running against an incumbent like Joe Wilson is as easy as "Grandma got a hip replacement thanks to Obamacare. Joe Wilson called Obama a liar in the middle of Obama's speech and voted against Grandma's hip replacement."
posted by explosion at 7:16 AM on September 10, 2009


Ok, I think we've beaten this horse enough. Let's not let a staged Republican tactic to derail the conversation work. Let's talk about the substantive issues of the Obama Plan, instead.

Here is a full transcript and video, for those who may have missed it.

Some of the really game changing aspects:

Mandates that everyone buy/have health insurance.

Proposed reforms that would stop insurance companies from capping benefits or for denying coverage based on pre-existing conditions.

Limits to malpractice awards...(even though Texas is a case study that proves limiting malpractice does nothing to lower health care costs or improve health care.)

Employers must provide coverage to their workers or pay a fine.

Public option is a disposable idea.
posted by dejah420 at 7:16 AM on September 10, 2009


This is supply-side, regarding the fines. Their logic believes that insurance is the problem and not health costs and the sale of junk food.
posted by Brian B. at 7:06 AM on September 10 [+] [!]


True if people (myself included) would be a little more preventative in their habits prices would not be as high. They are simple things too like don't smoke a pack a day or don't super size your meal or drink more water and less coke/pepsi. If we could reduce the number of cases because our of preventative measures it would make a sizable difference.
posted by Mastercheddaar at 7:17 AM on September 10, 2009


If only Obama had handled the heckler like this.
posted by COBRA! at 7:18 AM on September 10, 2009


"You dissed America; we'll dis you right the f**k back": joewilsonisyourpreexistingcondition.com.
posted by ericb at 7:25 AM on September 10, 2009 [4 favorites]


For all you Metafilter Twitter haters, here's an example to how powerful and positive a tool it can be. It really went to ball for Rob Miller last night.

I came into Mefi after the speech and didn't see a post up yet about the Joe Wilson fiasco, but on Twitter people were posting links to Rob Miller's website, how to donate to his campaign, calling out Joe Wilson and all the rest. In twenty minutes, they raised thousands of dollars for the campaign, as our own stynxno can attest.
posted by misha at 7:30 AM on September 10, 2009


Dana Milbank, Washington Post:
“As President Obama addressed a joint session of Congress on Wednesday night, the nation's rapidly deteriorating discourse hit yet another low.

…The national debate, already raw for years, had coarsened over the summer as town hall meetings across the country dissolved into protests about ‘death panels’ and granny-killing. Guns were brought to Obama appearances. A pastor in Arizona said he was praying for Obama to die.

But even by that standard, there was something appalling about the display on the House floor for what was supposed to be a sacred ritual of American democracy: the nation watching while Cabinet members, lawmakers from both chambers and the diplomatic corps assembled.

Wilson was only the most flagrant. There was booing from House Republicans when the president caricatured a conservative argument by saying they would ‘leave individuals to buy health insurance on their own.’ They hissed when he protested their ‘scare tactics.’ They grumbled as they do in Britain's House of Commons when Obama spoke of the ‘blizzard of charges and countercharges.’

When he asserted that ‘nothing in this plan will require you or your employer to change the coverage or the doctor you have,’ there was scoffing and outright laughter on the GOP side. Rep. Jeb Hensarling (Tex.) shook his head in disbelief. Several Republicans shouted ‘What plan?’ and Rep. Louis Gohmert (Tex.) waved at Obama a handwritten poster he made on a letter-size piece of paper: ‘WHAT PLAN?’ Gohmert then took that down and replaced it with another handmade poster that said ‘WHAT BILL?’

The irony was that Obama had used his speech to offer a significant concession to Republicans and to break with liberals in his own party. There was a cool silence in the chamber as the president told ‘my progressive friends’ that the ‘public option’ they treasure as part of health-care reform could be sacrificed in favor of other ideas….[more].”
posted by ericb at 7:32 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


I came into Mefi after the speech and didn't see a post up yet about the Joe Wilson fiasco...

FWIW -- there was a Joe Wilson thread, poorly presented, posted last night that ended up getting deleted.
posted by ericb at 7:35 AM on September 10, 2009


At (this) rate, he'll overtake Wilson's fundraising sometime around noon today.

Some brief but interesting background on Miller and Wilson's past and finances.
posted by CunningLinguist at 7:39 AM on September 10, 2009


Ok, I think we've beaten this horse enough. Let's not let a staged Republican tactic to derail the conversation work. Let's talk about the substantive issues of the Obama Plan, instead.

Soooo....you're going to derail a post about a derail with your own derail? Is this even allowed? Do we need to get Xzibit in here for a Yo Dawg?

But seriously, this post/thread is about Joe Wilson being a Grade-A douchenozzle. There's plenty of Metafilter devoted to the actual* topic of health care, inequality, or the Democratic Party's struggle to make reforms. If you want to discuss Obama's speech, start another post, or comment in one of the still-open threads, but let us have our little schadenfilter here.

*All links from the past 7 days.
posted by explosion at 7:41 AM on September 10, 2009


The fines would be the stick to enforce a proposed requirement that all Americans get health insurance, much as auto coverage is now mandatory. The penalties would start at $750 a year for individuals, and $1,500 for families. Households making more than three times the federal poverty level — about $66,000 for a family of four — would face the maximum fines. For families, it would be $3,800, and for individuals, $950.

My question is, when are these fines charged? Off the bat, or when I enter the system? Because despite the comparisons to mandatory auto insurance, they forget that there is an easy way around that mandate. Not owning a car.

I'm all for helping the lss fortunate but if you force me to buy insurance, i'm gonna find ways to use it, and that seems counterproductive. Also, I hate insurance companies. If I'm gonna gamble, I'll do it in casinos where the odds are better, and the drinks are free.
posted by billyfleetwood at 7:42 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Gee, Mr. Wilson: "Old white southern congressman Joe Wilson (R-SC), confused, shouts at Obama to get off his lawn."
posted by ericb at 7:43 AM on September 10, 2009


It was a carefully planned and completely deniable strategic move from the Republican party.

Uh-uh. It was a massive loser move. That's why Wilson came out to apologize minutes after the speech was over: the Republican leadership came down on him like a ton of bricks and shoved him in front of the nearest microphone.

Obama's entire political career has been built around a rope-a-dope strategy. He baits his opponents into looking like mean, angry, unreasonable people while he sits back with a "can you believe how crazy these guys are?" expression on his face. Then, once he's rhetorically positioned himself as the most responsible, centrist, even-handed person in the room, he lets loose and obliterates them. He did it to Clinton, he did it to McCain, and he's doing it to the congressional GOP as we speak.

It's why when Wilson screams "You lie," you can see the faintest hint of a smile on the president's face. It's because Wilson has just played directly into Obama's hands. You couldn't imagine a better moment in a speech aimed entirely at establishing him as the adult and the Republicans as the squabbling children.
posted by EarBucket at 7:44 AM on September 10, 2009 [34 favorites]


Hrm - this thread is getting many comments that echo something someone has already pointed out upthread...
posted by bigmusic at 7:46 AM on September 10, 2009


Boustany sued two con artists after paying them $18,500 to become a British noble

And if only Republican (no the later to be Democrats Republicans) Philip Reed had his act together Congressman Boustany would never have gotten bilked. Or perhaps been able to serve.
If any citizen of the United States shall accept, claim, receive or retain any title of nobility or honour, or shall, without the consent of Congress accept and retain any present, pension, office or emolument of any kind whatever, from any emperor, king, prince or foreign power, such person shall cease to be a citizen of the United States and shall be incapable of holding any office of trust or profit under them, or either of them.
posted by rough ashlar at 7:48 AM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


Is anyone else waiting for the backlash to the backlash? Aren't there town hallers out there who are going to think this was just awesome, that Wilson was keeping it real?
posted by Ladybug Parade at 7:54 AM on September 10, 2009


Echo comment something thread Hrm.
posted by Astro Zombie at 7:56 AM on September 10, 2009


Rachel Maddow Interviews Barney Frank About Obama's Speech & The Right Wing [10:38].
posted by ericb at 7:57 AM on September 10, 2009


Aren't there town hallers out there who are going to think this was just awesome, that Wilson was keeping it real?

From Twitter: "a man with gutsThank you Mr. Wilson I did not see these pansies crying when the dems shouted down Bush oh I guess that was ok"

There's your base, Wilson; hope you're pleased.
posted by Astro Zombie at 7:57 AM on September 10, 2009


Maybe they should name it the Kennedy-Wilson Act
"The early consensus on last night's speech is that Joe Wilson did the administration an enormous service."
posted by CunningLinguist at 7:59 AM on September 10, 2009


proposed requirement that all Americans get health insurance

1st off - no one has explained what insurance/insurance companies have to do with healthcare as I was under the impression that healthcare was what heath care companies do. And one's long term health depends on what one eats, when we gonna see changes in the farm policy to move towards better health outcomes in the future?


But I'm FAR more interested in if the government is "forcing" the insurance, will the IRS allow 100% deduction of the premium no matter your filing status? If one is a home owner WITH interest payments, you make out rather well being able to itemize, but if you don't it becomes hard to rise to the level of the standard deduction. It doesn't seem "fair" if you are being forced - shouldn't you not have to pay taxes on strong arm'n?

The only time I've seen any tax mention is when its also mentioned with death panels or about how grandma will be set on fire which leads me to believe the tax end of things hasn't been thought about yet.
posted by rough ashlar at 8:00 AM on September 10, 2009


Is anyone else waiting for the backlash to the backlash? Aren't there town hallers out there who are going to think this was just awesome, that Wilson was keeping it real?
Right-wing activists seek to reward Rep. Joe Wilson with campaign donations.

"On Fox Business News, Karl Rove and host Neil Cavuto thought Wilson shouting at the President was hilarious. 'Joe Wilson, good guy,' said Rove. 'Lovely,' agreed Cavuto"*
posted by ericb at 8:02 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Aren't there town hallers out there who are going to think this was just awesome, that Wilson was keeping it real?

From Twitter: "a man with gutsThank you Mr. Wilson I did not see these pansies crying when the dems shouted down Bush oh I guess that was ok"


Yes, if you want to (can't imagine why you would want to raise your blood pressure) view the opinions of those who supported Joe Wilson's move, use #tcot to search on Twitter (I just learned last night that tcot stands for Top Conservatives on Twitter).
posted by misha at 8:03 AM on September 10, 2009


But they are still flocking to the sporting good stores and buying up all the ammo they can, on the day it's stocked, thinking that Obama will come for their firearms the moment he socializes their health care, so can we really expect for this guy NOT to be a bit divorced from reality?
posted by Danf at 8:06 AM on September 10, 2009


Does Joe Wilson Believe the President Was Actually Lying?
"....But the thing is: Obama wasn't lying. Illegal immigrants are explicitly barred from the provisions of the legislation.

Here's what I find fascinating. There's been a ton of viral emails floating around the right-wing making the claim that the bill covers illegal immigrants, and talk radio has been whipping up the fervor as well. Wilson clearly thinks that is, indeed, the case. But he's a sitting member of Congress! One would imagine he gets his information about pending legislation from reading it itself or being briefed by his staff, not from viral emails in his inbox.

But that sums up the House GOP caucus. By and large it's made up of absolute and total wingnuts, people who are in ideology disposition and even function much more like talk show hosts or RedState commenters than they are legislators."
posted by ericb at 8:07 AM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


If the email I just got from the American Family Association means anything, the Republicans are already moving on to their next big lie. Specifically: Obama's plan will bring radical pro-abortion clinics into public schools.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:08 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Yes, if you want to (can't imagine why you would want to raise your blood pressure) view the opinions of those who supported Joe Wilson's move, use #tcot to search on Twitter (I just learned last night that tcot stands for Top Conservatives on Twitter).

Thanks (I think). Yep, suspicions confirmed. "Good for him," "Joe Wilson is an American Patriot", etc.

I'm counting the days until we start seeing "I AM JOE WILSON" t-shirts and bumper stickers.
posted by Ladybug Parade at 8:11 AM on September 10, 2009


Say it ain't so, Joe.
posted by tawny at 8:26 AM on September 10, 2009


Has it really come to this? Is it actually okay now to be openly disrespectful to the president, in the halls of congress, over the idea that everyone, no matter how sick they are, should be able to, I don't know, not die, or, at the very least, not go bankrupt over healthcare costs? What happened to 'love they neighbor as thyself'? Does that only apply to gated communities where adequate insurance is a prerequisite to home ownership?
posted by Ghidorah at 8:27 AM on September 10, 2009 [12 favorites]


Also, the Rahm-looking-out-for-campaign-finance angle is interesting. Is the insurance industry so large and influential that it can't be outweighed by all the other industries that are getting killed by premiums? Is too big to out-lobby the new too big to fail?
posted by butterstick at 8:32 AM on September 10, 2009


It's hard to get over the impression that Republicans do not now give a shit about the contents of the bill and just want to oppose it out of sheer partisan spite.
posted by Artw at 8:33 AM on September 10, 2009 [14 favorites]


White House/Obama should be doing full court press with Q&A sessions. In the same way that debates helped Obama crush McCain, the facts only help in this situation. I say crush them with the truth. I think the state of the Republican party and its current behavior is delicious and hilarious.
posted by empyrean at 8:34 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Current contributions for Rob Miller at $183,133, or an increase of nearly $70,000 in less than two hours.
posted by empyrean at 8:39 AM on September 10, 2009


Uh-uh. It was a massive loser move. That's why Wilson came out to apologize minutes after the speech was over: the Republican leadership came down on him like a ton of bricks and shoved him in front of the nearest microphone.

See, not only was the move totally deniable, but it was in fact totally denied. The national Republican party got an expendable minion (some dumbass SC representative, which I guess was as low as you could go and still be allowed in the room) to do the dirty work and then had him take the fall while they claimed they were above such things. You'll see that boy in a comfy position before long.
posted by pracowity at 8:43 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


It's why when Wilson screams "You lie," you can see the faintest hint of a smile on the president's face. It's because Wilson has just played directly into Obama's hands.

Yes, Obama knew he was about to get to the part of the speech where he dressed down the obstructionists, and Wilson, who clearly neglected to read the prepared remarks, provided the perfect setup.
posted by vibrotronica at 8:45 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


I wonder if we can get their name changed to the Cyclon Party. Sheds a whole new perspective on the Bush-Cheney era, the California Legislature, and Cyclon Wilson.
posted by effluvia at 8:53 AM on September 10, 2009


I really wished the President had stopped dead, turned to Wilson and took him on directly, first forcing Wilson to repeat to a quiet-as-a-pin room what he just said, and if it wasn't fully and completely retracted and apologized-for, pointing out clearly why Wilson's comment is untrue. Wilson should have been made to squirm on TV like a schoolkid.

Every time the right goes off like that in public, you need to shine a big light and a magnifying glass on them. They'll shrivel up like a slug in a frying pan.
posted by Artful Codger at 8:54 AM on September 10, 2009 [9 favorites]


$204,458
posted by zerobyproxy at 8:58 AM on September 10, 2009


It's hard to get over the impression that Republicans do not now give a shit about the contents of the bill and just want to oppose it out of sheer partisan spite.

More than one analyst I've heard on media has said that it will never be in the Republicans advantage to let Obama pass health care. Giving the first african-american president ever the largest victory in social program legislation since the Civil Rights bill in the 60s? Never ever will they let that go down lightly. It was a bit of a shocking analysis when I first heard it, but the longer I think about it, it is the only thing which explains the kind of fight I've witnessed over the past couple of months.
posted by hippybear at 8:59 AM on September 10, 2009 [22 favorites]


The News in the Speech

A Careful, But Clear, Defense of Government.
posted by homunculus at 9:00 AM on September 10, 2009


Wilson looked like hell on MSNBC just now. I think he knows he fucked up big time.
posted by EarBucket at 9:02 AM on September 10, 2009


I really wished the President had stopped dead, turned to Wilson and took him on directly, first forcing Wilson to repeat to a quiet-as-a-pin room what he just said, and if it wasn't fully and completely retracted and apologized-for, pointing out clearly why Wilson's comment is untrue.

Oh, and for just a moment, I thought Obama would take out the bill and read from it the exact phrase where it says that no funds will be given to those in this country illegally, and then take off his reading glasses and say directly to Wilson: "How am I a liar, exactly?"

I just cannot see where giving live television coverage to someone who is "so overcome with emotion" that they cannot keep from shouting during a Presidential speech is a good idea, but it would have been so wonderful to watch to see whether he squirmed or went into a full-on rant.
posted by hippybear at 9:02 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Yes, if you want to (can't imagine why you would want to raise your blood pressure) view the opinions of those who supported Joe Wilson's move, use #tcot to search on Twitter (I just learned last night that tcot stands for Top Conservatives on Twitter).

Anytime you want to depress yourself & read the crazy right wing response, just go to free republic, where they've been congratulating joe steadily since the speech. I thought Obama was clear, smart, tough but definitely making an effort to find solutions and work with people, and naively got hopeful that this speech would start a real conversation. Then the Repub response directly argued against things Obama had already said wouldn't be in the plan; and then I went online and saw that all the same accusations were still being thrown around.

My BF put it best when he responded to my frustration by saying, 'well what do you expect, it's not Superbowl season yet.' People just enjoy the drama; they like to watch a fight. Negotiating a contract is boring. We don't go to see movies or plays about lawyers working out a deal both parties can be satisfied with. So some people care about working out problems, but lots of people into politics are more interested in the heated, adrenaline filled, exciting "AW YEEAH" aspect, and it hardly matters what the other person says. They aren't really listening, and everything's just a potential segue to what they were going to say all along.
posted by mdn at 9:03 AM on September 10, 2009


Here is what I saw on the Republican side of the aisle ( and am hoping most sane adults noticed, too):
posted by philip-random at 9:04 AM on September 10, 2009 [5 favorites]


Not to interrupt this gloriously mutual admiration society/circle-jerk, but I seem to remember Democratic legislators heckling a certain President during the 2005 State of the Union address. I don't seem to remember anyone calling for resignations though.

Apparently times change when you aren't the one doing the heckling.
posted by valkyryn at 9:05 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


You go Joe. Put that n****r in his place!
"The Birthers, the Deathers, and now the Schoolers all have one thing in common. They have found ways to undermine the President, creating an alternate universe where Obama is not the Commander in Chief. These anti-Obama groups know that they will not be taken seriously if they discredit President Obama merely because of his race. Instead, they mask their antagonism toward America's first Black President as partisan differences. They have not accepted that President Obama is our President."
posted by ericb at 9:05 AM on September 10, 2009


Apparently times change when you aren't the one doing the heckling.

Booing is different from slander.

And for that matter, attempting to ensure that Americans have affordable health care is different from a loony, failed, protracted military boondoggle in Iraq.
posted by device55 at 9:09 AM on September 10, 2009 [20 favorites]


Giving the first african-american president ever the largest victory in social program legislation since the Civil Rights bill in the 60s? Never ever will they let that go down lightly.

Not only that, if the plan ever passed and were successful and popular, the Republican party's political future would be even bleaker than it already is. If the Democrats produced a popular, successful nationwide health plan--if something that monumental actually came to pass--the Republican's would be the minority party for decades to come.

The Republicans know it: They cannot lose this fight and retain their standing as a serious political force. Which is why it's absolutely critical that they do.
posted by saulgoodman at 9:13 AM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


I got on the computer this morning hoping to hear analysis about Obama's speech. Each online news outlet had the headline "You lie!" in bigs letters.

What did Obama talk about? Who knows, who cares, let's wrassle.
posted by Theta States at 9:20 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


I'm not interested in this at all, but I just have to correct this little bit of revisionism:

heckling a sitting President of the United States during a speech to Congress is simply Not Done

Flash back to State of the Union 2005 ("a speech before Congress", as required by the Constitution), Bush on the entitlement shortfall.

It's so easy to act like the other side's political excesses are unique, and so evidence of the other side's ignoble character. When you feel yourself making this error, you need to check yourself. But all too often you embrace it instead, just another tribal soldier massing against the enemy.
posted by grobstein at 9:21 AM on September 10, 2009 [5 favorites]


I seem to remember Democratic legislators heckling a certain President during the 2005 State of the Union address

Please name the legislator or legislators who called Bush a liar during his speech, and, when doing so, provide a clear, verifiable citation pointing to said legislator(s) comments during said speech.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 9:24 AM on September 10, 2009 [9 favorites]


It's really more of a chorus, dude.
posted by grobstein at 9:27 AM on September 10, 2009


OMG. The Republicans are right. Keep government out of health care. Private non-profit insurers are the answer. Not.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 9:27 AM on September 10, 2009


It's really more of a chorus, dude.

Fine. And that happened last night too. That's not what we are talking about.
posted by Big_B at 9:34 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Full Text of Ted Kennedy's Letter to the President on Health Care -- which Obama referenced last night.
posted by ericb at 9:35 AM on September 10, 2009


Video: 'It was spontaneous,' Wilson says.
posted by ericb at 9:37 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


I seem to remember Democratic legislators heckling a certain President during the 2005 State of the Union address

Please name the legislator or legislators who called Bush a liar during his speech, and, when doing so, provide a clear, verifiable citation pointing to said legislator(s) comments during said speech.


Calling someone a liar isn't the only way to heckle someone. While clearly this Joe Wilson fellow is a dickwad, his main sin was to keep talking loudly after the others had stopped, like someone who gives the punchline to a dirty joke as the room goes silent.
posted by Bookhouse at 9:38 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


He looks like he's about to cry. Still lying about illegal immigrants being covered by the bill, though.
posted by EarBucket at 9:40 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Video: 'It was spontaneous,' Wilson says.

That does not look like a man who executed a deft tactical coup against the president. That looks like a man who recently pissed himself and his making a statement at gunpoint.

I could be wrong, that could all be part of the act. If it is, I hope the RNC will at least buy him a new suit.
posted by Doublewhiskeycokenoice at 9:41 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Video: 'It was spontaneous,' Wilson says.

In the video the MSNBC anchors mention that reporters are looking into a Tweet Wilson sent which may indicate his heckle was premeditated. A reporter asks him that. Wilson's reply is that it was spontaneous.

Riiight.
posted by ericb at 9:42 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


This is not the 2005 State of the Union Address you are looking for.
posted by Minus215Cee at 9:46 AM on September 10, 2009 [5 favorites]


"With Obama and Wilson both apologizing, we can move on. It will be a triumph for decency all around. Good for Rep. Wilson for doing his part.

Right?"

posted by The Card Cheat at 9:49 AM on September 10, 2009


Oh, God...why do I make myself sick looking this stuff up?

"You New Yorkers and Beltway types don't understand average people.

Most people were sick of seeing Obama's proud face..."


His "proud" face. His proud face. Gee, I wonder what "proud" could be code for.
posted by The Card Cheat at 9:53 AM on September 10, 2009 [9 favorites]


This is not the 2005 State of the Union Address you are looking for.

Man, I miss those days. Obama-hate has got nothing to do with skin-color. The man just won't TELL IT LIKE IT IS.
posted by philip-random at 9:53 AM on September 10, 2009


Is this supposed to be the tweet?

"Happy Labor Day! Wonderful parade at Chapin, many people called out to oppose Obamacare which I assured them would be relayed tomorrow to DC"
posted by potsmokinghippieoverlord at 9:54 AM on September 10, 2009


This is not the 2005 State of the Union Address you are looking for.

Man, I miss those days. Obama-hate has got nothing to do with skin-color. The man just won't TELL IT LIKE IT IS.


Ooops! on preview, I just realized how badly that comment could be misinterpreted (particularly if the 2005 link isn't viewed). SORRY. My words must be interpreted through a filter of deep, dark, dripping sarcasm.
posted by philip-random at 9:57 AM on September 10, 2009


$269,888
posted by CunningLinguist at 10:04 AM on September 10, 2009


$269,888
posted by zerobyproxy at 10:06 AM on September 10, 2009


Dag!
posted by zerobyproxy at 10:06 AM on September 10, 2009


posted by Blazecock Pileon Please name the legislator or legislators who called Bush a liar during his speech, and, when doing so, provide a clear, verifiable citation pointing to said legislator(s) comments during said speech.

Democrats booing and yelling during Bush's 2005 State of the Union address.
posted by mattdidthat at 10:08 AM on September 10, 2009


Probable Beltway Evolution of Wilson's "You Lie!"
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 10:08 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Wilson got hazed like a new cheerleader. All the other GOP Reps were like "Yeah, totally, we'll all shout at the same time, you do it too, Joe." and Joe, being a lonely sort desperate to make friends, believed them. So he opened his mouth and made a fool of himself and now, in order to regain whatever status he had, has to start stuffing his bra.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 10:09 AM on September 10, 2009 [13 favorites]


Fact-checking the speech, including Wilson's "You lie!"
posted by netbros at 10:11 AM on September 10, 2009


philip-random: I occasionally rent from the same filter-provider as yourself.

/derail: The Republican party used to be fearsome and formidable. When did they become a meta-extension of the 'Interrupting Cow' joke with guns? That's just weird./derail
posted by Minus215Cee at 10:13 AM on September 10, 2009


*Impatiently waiting for ND¢'s comments about South Carolina*

I don't know about him, but I've been thinking the whole thing over all morning, and you know what, I don't have anything I can say that hasn't already been said by him, myself and all the other southern apologists who really really love this place and keep hoping it will get better only to be disappointed over and over. In spite of all the great things about this place, yeah, there's some colossal assholes. So for the first, and only time on Metafilter:

.
(I have no words)
posted by 1f2frfbf at 10:13 AM on September 10, 2009


http://www.joewilson.house.gov/ is still down due to "exceptionally high traffic"
posted by device55 at 10:16 AM on September 10, 2009


Democrats booing and yelling during Bush's 2005 State of the Union address.

Unsurprisingly, you did not read carefully:

Please name the legislator or legislators who called Bush a liar during his 2005 speech, and, when doing so, provide a clear, verifiable citation pointing to said legislator(s) comments during said speech.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:17 AM on September 10, 2009


@mattdidthat-- I think you forgot to post a link. What you posted didn't answer the request.

The original request from Blazecock Pileon: Please name the legislator or legislators who called Bush a liar during his speech, and, when doing so, provide a clear, verifiable citation pointing to said legislator(s) comments during said speech.
posted by zerobyproxy at 10:17 AM on September 10, 2009


The links to the 2005 SotU Address (parody notwithstanding) seem to imply that it was "Democrats" (which? who?) booing Bush. Actually watching the video, they seem to be booing the deficit and the need for tax increases as much as anything. They certainly didn't boo him at any time except then, and did no such thing as shouting and calling him a liar.

I could understand grumbles and harumphs to Obama stating that it'll cost us a lot, but that's not what happened at all.
posted by explosion at 10:18 AM on September 10, 2009


Please name the legislator or legislators who called Bush a liar during his 2005 speech, and, when doing so, provide a clear, verifiable citation pointing to said legislator(s) comments during said speech.

It was Rep. Henry Waxmax, who ironically enough also sponsored the The Word "Heckling" Only Means Calling Someone a Liar So If You Don't Call Someone a Liar It's Not Heckling Bill.
posted by Bookhouse at 10:22 AM on September 10, 2009


Apparently times change when you aren't the one doing the heckling.

Did I imagine it? I'm sure there was booing during last night's speech. But it's useful here to conflate booing with calling the president a liar, I suppose, even if they aren't, in fact, the same thing.
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:23 AM on September 10, 2009


posted by zerobyproxy The original request from Blazecock Pileon: Please name the legislator or legislators who called Bush a liar during his speech, and, when doing so, provide a clear, verifiable citation pointing to said legislator(s) comments during said speech.

Unsurprisingly, Blazecock Pileon is starting his usual pattern of ignoring the relevant point, which is that legislators of both parties have yelled at, booed, or heckled the president during the State of the Union address.
posted by mattdidthat at 10:24 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Boooooooooooooo!
posted by zerobyproxy at 10:24 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Businessweek seems to confirm it: It was a determined attempt to win the public—and wavering Democrats—over to his side, more so than the Republican lawmakers who have so far opposed reform efforts. Over boos and shouts from some Republicans, Obama cast many of his opponents as cynical, called some of the criticisms of reform proposals lies, pledged to keep reforms from adding to the deficit, and attempted to reassure a worried and confused public with his own determination.

I have yet to hear anybody complaining about the booing last night. But some Democrats boo back in 2005 and all of a sudden anything goes, I guess.
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:25 AM on September 10, 2009


Not to interrupt this gloriously mutual admiration society/circle-jerk, but I seem to remember Democratic legislators heckling a certain President during the 2005 State of the Union address. I don't seem to remember anyone calling for resignations though.

It's so easy to act like the other side's political excesses are unique, and so evidence of the other side's ignoble character. When you feel yourself making this error, you need to check yourself. But all too often you embrace it instead, just another tribal soldier massing against the enemy.

Democrats booing and yelling during Bush's 2005 State of the Union address.

etc. etc. etc.

So .....

If that's the case, then it's okay to descend with glee and relish into the mud with people who are your sworn "tribal soldier enemies"?

I don't get it. Golly gee whiz, I thought the GOP used to be the Party That Was Above All oif That, the party that called for uniting, not dividing.

Turns out they're just as dirty and desperate as Democrats, if not more so, when they're out of power and smarting about it.

Also from the 2005 State of the Union, quoting Mr. Bush: "In all this history, even when we have disagreed, we have seen threads of purpose that unite us."

Mr. Wilson seems to have forgotten that particular charge from the titular former head of the Republican Party. In any case, I haven't exactly heard any of you who are screaming so loudly about the horrific affronts against Mr. Bush leap to his defense during any other time since he left office with his tail between his legs.
posted by blucevalo at 10:26 AM on September 10, 2009


No, no, they weren't booing, they were saying "Boo-ush". "Boo-ush".
posted by Comrade_robot at 10:28 AM on September 10, 2009 [23 favorites]


Unsurprisingly, Blazecock Pileon is starting his usual pattern of ignoring the relevant point, which is that legislators of both parties have yelled at, booed, or heckled the president during the State of the Union address

Repeated for clarity - booing is not slander.

For the record, I'm fine with heckling or booing. Yes, it's a little red about the neck, but I don't mind, really.

The point is that Wilson's accusation is exactly 100% wrong. It is a false accusation. A "lie" if you will.
posted by device55 at 10:28 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


"... the relevant point ... is that legislators of both parties have yelled at, booed, or heckled the president during the State of the Union address. "

Even I know the difference between vocal disagreement with the POTUS, and publicly calling the POTUS a liar when, in fact, he actually wasn't telling a lie.

But don't let this spoil the fun.
posted by Artful Codger at 10:30 AM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


We have control of the House, Senate and the White House. The only reason we continue to acknowledge and engage the GOP is because it will make a useful red herring when we fail to get our act together and pass meaningful health care reform this fall.

"Uh... we would have passed healthcare reform - but they yelled at us at our town hall meetings and that one guy called Obama a liar. Sorry... we tried. Vote Democrat in 2010!"
posted by LakesideOrion at 10:30 AM on September 10, 2009


I thought the GOP used to be the Party That Was Above All oif That, the party that called for uniting, not dividing.

If anyone was taking a nap during that 15 minutes of Republicans taking the High Road, they probably missed it.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 10:32 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


"Joe Wilson is now a serious threat to Barack Obama because he dared point out that the Emperor has no clothes......we must give generously to Joe."
posted by CunningLinguist at 10:33 AM on September 10, 2009


$301,417
posted by CunningLinguist at 10:37 AM on September 10, 2009


It appears to be a meme that Rep Wilson's heckle would be acceptable in the British Parliament. It would not. If you explicitly call someone a liar in the British Parliament, you get a time-out from the speaker. And that's during a debate, let alone a speech.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 10:39 AM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


I am curious how calling the Commander in Chief a liar will go over in military circles (especially the traditionally conservative ones).
posted by batou_ at 10:41 AM on September 10, 2009


Ah, but is he the real Commander in Chief?
posted by Artw at 10:45 AM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


I am curious how calling the Commander in Chief a liar will go over in military circles (especially the traditionally conservative ones).

I was at the DMV the other day, and walked past a couple of soldiers in uniform who were there to get their licenses. One of them spotted my Obama t-shirt, muttered "Obama!" under his breath, and they both rolled their eyes and sniggered. I have a feeling that disrespecting the Commander-in-Chief isn't that big a deal when he's a black Democrat.
posted by EarBucket at 10:48 AM on September 10, 2009 [7 favorites]


I could understand grumbles and harumphs to Obama stating that it'll cost us a lot

Don't worry. Ron Paul was a predictable as ever with such a statement.
posted by rough ashlar at 10:50 AM on September 10, 2009


Palin: "So Much For Civility" With Obama's Debunking of Death Panels
posted by homunculus at 10:51 AM on September 10, 2009


Did you remind them that when they are in uniform, they are ambassadors to the armed service, and an act of publicly disrespecting their commander in chief can be interpreted as an institutional disrespect for the office, and they might want to reconsider that sort of behavior or you will be only to happy to call their superior officer to see how that sort of thing flies?
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:51 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


I have a feeling that wouldn't have played too well in North Carolina.
posted by blucevalo at 10:55 AM on September 10, 2009


I didn't bother. I thought about it, but I had a feeling it would do very little good. It also felt like I'd be emulating the Republican tactic of "ZOMG WHY DO YOU HATE AMERICA" a little too much.
posted by EarBucket at 10:57 AM on September 10, 2009


I think I wouold have just rtaken down there names and gone ahead and called whatever base they worked at. And also written a letter to the newspaper naming them and calling them out on their disrespect. Trust me, I have known military men who would not have tolerated that for an instant.
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:57 AM on September 10, 2009


I probably would have tried to produce a letter with no typos, as well.
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:58 AM on September 10, 2009


My mother taught me to act with respect in certain situtations - public events, meetings, school. Your mothers probably taght you to act with respect in certain situations, too. Republicans? Not so much.
posted by zaelic at 11:03 AM on September 10, 2009


I am curious how calling the Commander in Chief a liar will go over in military circles (especially the traditionally conservative ones).

Others are too.
"A Democratic operative with experience in South Carolina said Wilson’s treatment of the commander in chief could cost him among the district’s sizable military population.

'You have a lot of military folks who, even when they don’t agree with the president politically, have a lot of respect for the institution itself,' the operative said. 'Before the speech, I would have said Joe Wilson had that.'"*
posted by ericb at 11:03 AM on September 10, 2009


Wilson Outburst Provoked by Family Military Stress?

Oh, come on now.
posted by ericb at 11:04 AM on September 10, 2009


Wilson Is the Poster "Child" for the New Republican Party.

Yeah, Republicans have been acting shamefully like petulant children ever since Obama has taken office. They all need time-outs, so that the adults can get things done rationally and without distraction.
posted by ericb at 11:10 AM on September 10, 2009


Obama Speech Shifted Public Opinion In His Favor: Polls.
posted by ericb at 11:12 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


No surprise here:
"Wilson is a major recipient of contributions from the health care industry.

In fact, over his entire congressional career, health professionals represent Wilson’s top industry contributors, donating a total of $244,196 to his campaign, according to the Center for Responsive Politics OpenSecrets.org database. He received another $86,150 from pharmaceutical companies, $73,050 from insurance companies and $68,000 from hospitals and nursing homes.

Among Wilson’s top contributors are the American Hospital Association, a lobby group that represents the interests of hospitals and health networks, and the American Medical Association, which represents physicians."
posted by ericb at 11:15 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Does congress have a dunce cap they can make him wear in the corner for a while?
posted by SassHat at 11:16 AM on September 10, 2009


Yes, if you want to (can't imagine why you would want to raise your blood pressure) view the opinions of those who supported Joe Wilson's move, use #tcot to search on Twitter (I just learned last night that tcot stands for Top Conservatives on Twitter).

On twitter everyone snould find and follow the TCOT cat, hilarious parody and he wears a top hat!
posted by kathrineg at 11:21 AM on September 10, 2009


Miller's ActBlue page has now reached $333k. PLUS $135k on the ActBlue page specifically set up by DailyKos for the same purpose. It appears that Miller has raised nearly half a million dollars in less than 24 hours (my $10 among them).

I wonder how much Wilson's little stunt is netting him from his supporters...
posted by darkstar at 11:21 AM on September 10, 2009


You stay classy, Louie Gohmert.
posted by Ogre Lawless at 11:25 AM on September 10, 2009


Oops, sorry...I think I double counted on the Miller fundraise. The total seems to be $340k now.
posted by darkstar at 11:28 AM on September 10, 2009


You stay classy, Louie Gohmert.

Well, he spelled both words right, with punctuation even, and theres no stick figure of Obama in a hangmans noose or anything.
posted by Artw at 11:29 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Well, he spelled both words right
You're assuming that he meant to write "WHAT BILL?".
posted by Flunkie at 11:30 AM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


<>Palin: "So Much For Civility" With Obama's Debunking of Death Panels

Oh lordie, you couldn't make it up.
posted by Artw at 11:31 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Also, the Rahm-looking-out-for-campaign-finance angle is interesting. Is the insurance industry so large and influential that it can't be outweighed by all the other industries that are getting killed by premiums? Is too big to out-lobby the new too big to fail?

Industry lobbyists don't lobby on behalf of their industries, their lobby on behalf of the CEOs who run companies in those industries. Sometimes those concerns are aligned, sometimes they're not. For example, It would cost those CEOs far more money in taxes then they would make extra from stock options or whatever if the burden of healtcare were lifted (and besides, most health policy plans keep employers paying anyway, so the only savings would be in reduced costs over time)
posted by delmoi at 11:32 AM on September 10, 2009


Clearly I jinxed my markup
posted by Artw at 11:32 AM on September 10, 2009


Take this with a pinch of salt, but:

America has become a very bad joke that can only be saved by digging very deep, getting very serious, and sobering the fuck up. I mean, what *is* America anymore? What is it for?
It's like any sense of purpose crumbled with the World Trade Centre and whatever was salvageable was washed away by Hurricane Katrina. The USA is now unrecognizable, seemingly overrun by spoiled turds who've got the intelligent population on the back foot.

It's so fucking depressing, because it looks like Americans are so full of it they can't fight for their own future. It's great to be a smartass- myself- I love it- but turds are going to turn the place into a cesspit if people don't start fighting back.

It's like the joint needs to be terraformed to become a part of Earth again. It used to be America was a country that didn't give a shit about the outside world, but now it doesn't seem to care about it's own future.

I dunno. I always find a way to live in hope, but right now I'm just glad I wrote this beautiful, heartfelt, meaningful poem.
posted by Gamien Boffenburg at 11:35 AM on September 10, 2009 [4 favorites]


From Sarah Barracuda's facebook post:
Finally, President Obama delivered an offhand applause line tonight about the cost of the War on Terror. As we approach the anniversary of the September 11th attacks and honor those who died that day and those who have died since in the War on Terror, in order to secure our freedoms, we need to remember their sacrifices and not demonize them as having had too high a price tag.

So, calling out Bush for going to war in Iraq while simultaneously cutting taxes=disrespecting the victims of 9/11 somehow. Tell me again who we're supposed to be having a reasonable debate with?
posted by albrecht at 11:36 AM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


...

Rob, gets twenty. Wes gets five... and Actblue gets a ten percent tip.

Fuck Joe Wilson... fuck those who sell us wholesale.

I'm done playing nice.


Hit'em hard... and never stop.
posted by PROD_TPSL at 11:42 AM on September 10, 2009


Someone needs to remind Sarah Palin that the war in Iraq has nothing to do with September 11th.
posted by sciurus at 11:45 AM on September 10, 2009 [8 favorites]


ericb: "No surprise here"

Well, as long as we're on the subject, Obama took in $20,000,000+ from Big Health - more than twice what McCain did.

Given that Obama proposes forcing tens of millions of people to become their new customers, with additional public money forked over for those who can't afford it ("afford" being whatever the government says it is), that $20 mil looks like the bargain of the century.
posted by Joe Beese at 11:54 AM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


The USA is now unrecognizable, seemingly overrun by spoiled turds who've got the intelligent population on the back foot.

I say this as someone who deeply loves her country and finds a great amount of symbolic power from its history: I don't think there's ever been a time in American history where you couldn't get this impression.

We've always been too proud, too stubborn, too hellbent on getting what we want, and too immature to stand for long-form diplomacy. We like cowboys, we like astronauts, and we like movie stars with a devil-may-care attitude towards their own longevity.

It means we can be jerks, as a collective, and it means that at any given time, at least some of us will be grinding our teeth, foaming at the mouth, screaming for some kind of wrong-headed, ass-backwards, idiotic view of the world. It's just part of the trade-off, in order to get that head-strong, optimistic, odds-defying American Spirit that made us a country in the first place.

Or, at least, this is what I keep telling myself, over and over, to stay sane.
posted by Ms. Saint at 12:00 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Tangentially related: SC Gov Mark Sanford, who is threatened with impeachment, is about to have another of his generally wildly entertaining press conferences "to discuss recent political developments." All the SC news stations are streaming it live at 3:30.
posted by CunningLinguist at 12:01 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Obama took in $20,000,000+ from Big Health

Which side of "Big Health"? The providers? Insurance Companies? Pharma? The AMA? Tort lawyers? What's the yard strick here?

The link it at least rules out the Insurance companies, which makes sense as that is who is going to bear the brunt of the Democrats plan. That would leave Big Health to include any and all of the remaining above, which means what exactly? I'm not sure but I'd bet it's tyranical.
posted by Pollomacho at 12:05 PM on September 10, 2009


but but... it's BIG. and BIG anything is eeeevil!
posted by edgeways at 12:13 PM on September 10, 2009


'a speech before Congress', as required by the Constitution

The Constitution says, "He shall from time to time give to Congress information of the State of the Union and recommend to their Consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient." It doesn't have to be a speech. George Washington and John Adams gave speeches, but Thomas Jefferson thought a speech was too monarchical and sent a letter instead. Every State of the Union message from Jefferson's first one in 1801 to Taft's last one in 1913 was in written form. Starting with George Washington, "from time to time" has traditionally meant yearly; "the President's Annual Message to Congress" was the old term until FDR used "State of the Union" in 1935.

Incoming presidents don't always address Congress, and if they do their speeches aren't formally State of the Union addresses, so President Obama hasn't given a State of the Union address yet. He's made two speeches to joint sessions of Congress, last night's and one in February.

I love the pomp and circumstance of the joint sessions. The Sergeant at Arms of the House of Representatives introduces the president to the Speaker of the House, since the House represents the people. (The president has to be announced because the head of the Executive Branch is visiting the Legislative Branch. It's kind of like how vampires have to be invited in, but different.) I love when the Sergeant at Arms bellows, "Madam Speaker, the President of the United States." I loved it even when he was introducing President Bush, and I love it more when he's announcing the first black president to the first female Speaker of the House. Joe Biden was there in his capacity as President of the Senate, not as Vice President.

It's like any sense of purpose crumbled with the World Trade Centre and whatever was salvageable was washed away by Hurricane Katrina.

I really hoped after the Bush Administration's incompetent bungling of Hurricane Katrina demonstrated that Grover Norquist's "drown it in a bathtub" meant people actually drowning in the streets of New Orleans that we'd see a public recognition that we need a competent government that helps its citizens in time of need. Katrina completely discredited the small government/privatization line. The invisible hand sure as fuck wasn't bailing people out in the Ninth Ward.
posted by kirkaracha at 12:13 PM on September 10, 2009 [11 favorites]


Someone needs to remind Sarah Palin that the war in Iraq has nothing to do with September 11th.

BLANK CHECK NEVAR FORGET!
posted by Artw at 12:20 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


The Wikipedia Battle Over Joe Wilson's Obama Heckling -- "Rep. Joe Wilson's shout of 'You lie!' during President Obama's health care speech Wednesday set off a furious debate on Wikipedia about how to describe the incident."
posted by ericb at 12:27 PM on September 10, 2009


I'm starting to feel sorry for him:


Rep. Joe Wilson, R-S.C., is heavily leveraged and his debts may even exceed his assets, according to an amended financial disclosure form for 2008 that for the first time reveals hundreds of thousands of dollars in previously unreported loans.

posted by CunningLinguist at 12:29 PM on September 10, 2009


15:30 : $380,026

That ought to help him out...
posted by PROD_TPSL at 12:32 PM on September 10, 2009


America has become a very bad joke that can only be saved by digging very deep, getting very serious, and sobering the fuck up. I mean, what *is* America anymore? What is it for?

You lack historical perspective

Sorry
posted by kathrineg at 12:32 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Cunning, one reaps what they sow.

Let him cry...
Let him wail...
Let him lose...
Let him fail...

To Hell, with them.
posted by PROD_TPSL at 12:35 PM on September 10, 2009


Wow, check this out:
But it isn't the first time for Wilson. Back in 2003, not long after the death of Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-SC), Thurmond's bi-racial, out-of-wedlock daughter, Essie Mae Washington-Williams, came forward to say that Thurmond was her father. (Thurmond, who spent most of his career as a staunch proponent of segregation and Jim Crow, had supported the family financially for decades.) Wilson made headlines for telling The State newspaper that Washington-Williams should have kept the shameful secret to herself.
But obviously race had nothing to do with this.
posted by delmoi at 12:36 PM on September 10, 2009 [13 favorites]


THIS is how you handle a heckler (warning: very intense language). George Carlin really pwned that guy.
posted by mike3k at 12:39 PM on September 10, 2009 [11 favorites]


It's kind of like how vampires have to be invited in, but different.

No way Spike would put up with that shit, while Angel would just mope around, wondering if his hair was ok.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:41 PM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


In fairness, Spike also used a lot of hair product.
posted by Astro Zombie at 12:45 PM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Oh, more from TPM:
In 2008, Wilson was able to outspend Miller by a 2-1 margin, but still only eked out a narrow 53.7% victory in his conservative district. Until last night, the 2010 race was shaping up the same way. Wilson had raised $211k by the end of June, against Miller's $49k.

How quickly things can change. On ActBlue alone, a host of small donors appalled by Wilson's conduct have given $105k overnight, tripling his year-to-date tally. At that rate, he'll overtake Wilson's fundraising sometime around noon today. Even without any further donations, he's already a quarter of the way to what he raised during the entire 2008 cycle.

As a society, we police reprehensible conduct by imposing steep social costs. I think that Rep. Wilson is going to find his outburst very costly, indeed.
Right now we're up to $388k. Still, I don't know how great this new Dem will be. I'd rather see that money spent on real progressive candidates who would support a public option. This "bitch-slap fundraising" can be fun but is it really a good use of resources? Remember all the money spent against Michelle Bachman, who still won?

Also, Progressive Policy Polling will do a poll of Joe Wilson's district tonight. The results should be interesting.
posted by delmoi at 12:45 PM on September 10, 2009


delmoi: "But obviously race had nothing to do with this."

Obviously.

he fought to keep the Confederate battle flag flying over South Carolina. ... he's a member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, an organization teeming with white supremecists and racists.

posted by Joe Beese at 12:47 PM on September 10, 2009 [6 favorites]


Hmm, interesting:
I see a lot of commentary that compares Joe Wilson's "You Lie!" outburst with the ruckus that often happens in the House of Commons. But one thing you are not allowed to shout in the Commons is that another speaker is a liar. A lot of circumlocutions evolved to bypass this - "terminological inexactitude" is my favorite (Churchill, of course) - but the ban is for a reason. Once the opposition starts yelling "You lie!" they have essentially abandoned the deliberative process, by questioning the good faith of a speaker
posted by delmoi at 12:50 PM on September 10, 2009 [5 favorites]


"In his speech the President directly responded to concerns I've raised about unelected bureaucrats being given power to make decisions affecting life or death health care matters," Palin wrote. "He called these concerns "bogus," "irresponsible," and "a lie" -- so much for civility."

Well I think we may have pinpointed the problem here; why is the President directly responding to your concerns? Who the fuck are you? You're not a Governor any more, nor are you a journalist, You're just a b-list celebrity with a loud mouth.

That said, you channeled some crazy and got called for it. That's not uncivil, that's life. To be honest, you should be getting a lot worse for continuing to push this Deather agenda, it's disingenuous bullshit and it should be drawing a lot more flak than it is.
posted by quin at 12:53 PM on September 10, 2009 [11 favorites]


Andrew Sullivan: The College Republicans
Yes, the GOP of 2009 is the party of torture and fiscal recklessness. But as Joe Wilson's outburst last night made clear, it is every bit as much the party of the College Republicans.
...
Optics, not reality, is what matters. Everything can be massaged with a Mission Accopmlished banner, a sympathetic interview on Fox News, or a whisper campaign that your opponent is a faggot.
posted by octothorpe at 12:59 PM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


quin: "why is the President directly responding to your concerns? ... You're just a b-list celebrity with a loud mouth. "

Didn't stop him from sitting down with Charlie Sheen.
posted by Joe Beese at 1:02 PM on September 10, 2009 [5 favorites]


Remember all the money spent against Michelle Bachman, who still won?
I remember all the money raised against Michelle Bachmann, but spent? No, not really. I believe that Tinklenberg (her opponent) was actually unable to spend all the money donated to him, because it came too soon to election day.

But even so, the election was pretty close (3%). Much closer than Bachmann's previous election, and much closer than had been expected. Had he had more time to spend the money, who knows what would have happened.
posted by Flunkie at 1:04 PM on September 10, 2009


$408,489.

Decorum aside, I swear, if Wilson's childish outburst ends up putting a half million dollars into the campaign coffers of his Democratic opponent, I can only say that I'm sorry the nutbar didn't shout louder.
posted by darkstar at 1:13 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


In his speech the President directly responded to concerns I've raised about unelected bureaucrats being given power to make decisions affecting life or death health care matters," Palin wrote. "He called these concerns "bogus," "irresponsible," and "a lie" -- so much for civility."

As a Civil Servant, I love how Civil Servants have come to be painted by the right as some cadre of evil demons bent on destroying the fabric of America. Personally, when I'm not blowing off steam on MeFi (sorry about that taxpayers), I'm working my ass off for crappy pay, lousy benefits, and absolutely no respect. Why would I subject myself to that rather than take some better paying job in the private sector? Because I actually believe in America's potential and I believe what I do at my Civil Service job, serving the country, is the best way to help my country meet its potential. Incidentally, former Civil Servant until things got inconvenient Palin, I'm also a citizen and voter so shouldn't that give me at least as much say as you in the government's take in life or death health care matters? (Oh wait, I'm from DC. Nevermind.)
posted by Pollomacho at 1:18 PM on September 10, 2009 [10 favorites]


Not to interrupt this gloriously mutual admiration society/circle-jerk, but I seem to remember Democratic legislators heckling a certain President during the 2005 State of the Union address. I don't seem to remember anyone calling for resignations though.

Apparently times change when you aren't the one doing the heckling.


Valkyrn, you know a lot better than that. Calling someone a liar directly from the floor is a lot different from showing disapproval of Obama's policies. You can boo, you can do whatever, but it is dishonorable to call someone a liar.

Doubly so because the only lie was Wilson's. Every bill excludes undocumented aliens from any reimbursement benefits. Before the current crop of southern jokesters took over, the Republicans had honor. Now they lack it with conspicuousness.
posted by Ironmouth at 1:19 PM on September 10, 2009


Holy crap, half a million dollars? That's just incredible.

Hey guys! I'm, uh, also running against, um...Rush Limbaugh. He also called Obama a liar! I've got this Paypal account right here somewhere...

But seriously, this is one of the wonders of the Internet. Rather than being funded by a few large donations or "bundled" donations under the banner of an organization, we can specifically see who's donating, and why. Hell, it wouldn't surprise me to see $10,000 raised under the banner of "/b/tards 4 lulz." Good? Bad? I don't know, but it's a refreshing difference to see that you can be part of something, rather than wondering whether your $10 or $50 will actually make a difference.
posted by explosion at 1:21 PM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


$408,489.


Nope:

$412,245.


That's $4,000 in 5 minutes.
posted by Ironmouth at 1:21 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Too good.
posted by The Straightener at 1:27 PM on September 10, 2009 [6 favorites]


Wilson is fighting back on Twitter, and apparently, the Hannity show.
posted by CunningLinguist at 1:36 PM on September 10, 2009


A couple of weeks ago Joe Wilson held a town hall meeting at my local high school here in SC. I promised my kids I wouldn't go inside; they know me, I would have been shouting LIAR! all through it. Instead, I stayed outside with a few others.

We held signs. We were subjected to an incredible degree of hatred when the Wilson supporters came out, and I've been to numerous demonstrations of various kinds over the last four decades and more. One of our group, an African-American career soldier with more than twenty years in the military, was verbally assaulted by an old white couple using obnoxious racist language. I was asked how much I was getting paid to stand there with my sign; I was also told to go back to Mexico- as far as I know I have no Hispanic ancestors, but I have dark hair and I tan well.

I just moved here a few months ago from another state, the politicians here are an endless source of entertainment.
posted by mareli at 1:43 PM on September 10, 2009 [5 favorites]


@The Straightener: Holy crap, Wilson is a retired ANG Colonel? Talk about should-know-better....
posted by butterstick at 1:50 PM on September 10, 2009


Does anyone know if Wilson is getting a financial bump from his people?
posted by Mavri at 1:51 PM on September 10, 2009


There's definitely fundraising going on for him, but I can't find a good indication of how well it's going. (That ActBlue site makes it so easy to see.)
posted by CunningLinguist at 1:55 PM on September 10, 2009


The Sergeant at Arms

Pity they can't spell Serjeant correctly.
posted by cillit bang at 2:00 PM on September 10, 2009


Here's his fundraising pitch, calling himself a voice speaking out against the dangerous Dems and warning that liberals have raised $400k for his opponent today.
posted by CunningLinguist at 2:03 PM on September 10, 2009


The fact that Wilson is bitching and moaning about "liberal attacks" on his Twitter makes his apology for his rude behaviour pretty much invalid. I don't think he realises that he's digging his own grave here. What a whiner.
posted by saturnine at 2:12 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Good grief that fundraising pitch is ridiculous. Such a victim of the liberals.
posted by dog food sugar at 2:18 PM on September 10, 2009


The Sergeant at Arms...Pity they can't spell Serjeant correctly.

Huh? That's how we spell it here in the States.
"A Serjeant at Arms (also spelled Sergeant at Arms) is an officer appointed by a deliberative body..."
posted by ericb at 2:29 PM on September 10, 2009


I bet Jon Stewart is kicking himself for taking this week off.
posted by twoleftfeet at 2:29 PM on September 10, 2009 [6 favorites]


I bet Jon Stewart is kicking himself for taking this week off.

I bet Bill Maher is happy he returns tomorrow evening.
posted by ericb at 2:31 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


"I know that my voice is serving as the voice for Americans across the country who are tired of irresponsible government programs that have only worsened our situation"

Indeed. And now your voice is serving as the voice for Americans who are tired of your bullshit.
posted by mattdidthat at 2:32 PM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


@The Straightener: Holy crap x 1000!

quote:
There's one other notable exception to Wilson's tough-on-government record: In July, when the health-insurance debate just started heating up, he offered an amendment that would exempt TRICARE from any system of employer mandates in a health-care bill. It's not clear whether this is necessary, since most such bills in Congress keep government benefits exempt from the rules as a matter of course. But Wilson took the opportunity to make his stand.

"As a 31-year Army Guard and Reserve veteran, I know the importance of TRICARE," he said in a press release. "The number of individuals who choose to enroll in TRICARE continues to rise because TRICARE is a low cost, comprehensive health plan that is portable and available in some form world-wide." He went on to call TRICARE "world class health care," concluding on a personal note. "I am grateful to have four sons now serving in the military, and I know that their families appreciate the availability of TRICARE," he said.

posted by Artful Codger at 2:33 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


RNC chair Michael Steele upset that Obama read Kennedy's letter, per Kennedy's wishes.
posted by ericb at 3:16 PM on September 10, 2009


Mr. Wilson seems to have forgotten that particular charge from the titular former head of the Republican Party. In any case, I haven't exactly heard any of you who are screaming so loudly about the horrific affronts against Mr. Bush leap to his defense during any other time since he left office with his tail between his legs.

I am not a Bush defender. You are assuming that, because I am not interested in trumping up ridiculous complaints about Republican incivility or "slander"(!), I must be on the other "side." This is a dramatic and saddening illustration of my point about tribalism.
posted by grobstein at 3:27 PM on September 10, 2009


$504,317
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:28 PM on September 10, 2009


$505,122!
posted by Big_B at 3:31 PM on September 10, 2009


DOH!
posted by Big_B at 3:32 PM on September 10, 2009


I bet Jon Stewart is kicking himself for taking this week off.

It's probably just confirmation bias, but I feel like any time him and Colbert take vacations, all sorts of wacky political shit happens.

They should totally "take some time off" and when the inevitable hijinks ensue, they can jump back on the air with a "Ha! And you thought we wouldn't be here to report it! Suckers!"
posted by quin at 3:37 PM on September 10, 2009 [5 favorites]


And that, right there, folks, makes Wilson's little outburst a half-million-dollar ejaculation. I wonder if he feels like he got his money's worth.
posted by darkstar at 3:38 PM on September 10, 2009


Does anyone know if Wilson is getting a financial bump from his people?

Slatecard, an attempt to mimic ActBlue for the Republicans has an "impressive" $235 for ole Joe.
posted by edgeways at 3:48 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Redstate has also posted links fundraising for Wilson, but they are directly to Wilson's campaign site, so there's no way to tell how much $$ is being driven there.
posted by darkstar at 3:50 PM on September 10, 2009


$408,489.
Nope:
$412,245.
That's $4,000 in 5 minutes.


Liar! That's only $3756.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 3:51 PM on September 10, 2009 [4 favorites]


(I have to admit, refreshing Miller's ActBlue page every half hour has been a pleasant little diversion for me today.)
posted by darkstar at 3:51 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


And that, right there, folks, makes Wilson's little outburst a half-million-dollar ejaculation.

He shoulda just gone to town. I hear it's $20 there.
posted by vibrotronica at 3:53 PM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


"Stand with me against liberal attacks:" Joe Wilson asks for support.
posted by flatluigi at 4:11 PM on September 10, 2009


Still feeling shocked by this one. Glad the response was so strong on the floor.
posted by agregoli at 4:16 PM on September 10, 2009


What's the hubbub about? In any society worth a shit free speech should trump decorum every time. The merits of the speech and the consequences of exercising it are another matter entirely. But weren't we dying for some senator to scream "LIAR!" at Bush? I know I was.
posted by tkchrist at 4:17 PM on September 10, 2009 [4 favorites]


Shoes. I wanted more people to throw shoes at him.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 4:19 PM on September 10, 2009


Fun as it is to hate Wilson for this kerfuffle, I really do believe it was a simple mistake of timing, which I blame on the awkward nonverbal communication in these Joint Sessions. Members of Congress have to figure out when to stand and applaud and when to sit still and look grumpy, and this is not an easy cognitive load to bear. You have to see this task from the point of view of Republican congressmen who weren't paying complete attention:

OBAMA: Something something America country.
GOP (thinking): Uh, yeah, gotta stand and clap for that.
OBAMA: My success so far and something
GOP: This is a sitter-downer.
...lots of time goes by, standing and sitting.
OBAMA: Something death panels something not true.
GOP: Definitely a sitter-downer.
OBAMA: There are those who claim that our reforms efforts will insure illegal aliens. This too is false.
GOP: Now he's calling us liars. Gotta murmur disapproval.
OBAMA: The reforms I'm proposing would not apply to those who are here illegally.
GOP minus WILSON: Sit and look grumpy.
WILSON: YOU LIE!


So really Wilson just missed his cue. If he had come in on the previous beat, his comment would have been drowned out during the murmurs of disapproval. But he didn't. When he blurted out his bit the rest of the room was quiet.

It's like farting in church when nobody's singing a hymn.
posted by twoleftfeet at 4:20 PM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


In any society worth a shit free speech should trump decorum every time.

*makes note to never attend a movie, wedding or funeral with tkchrist*
posted by Bookhouse at 4:23 PM on September 10, 2009 [6 favorites]


posted by tkchrist What's the hubbub about? In any society worth a shit free speech should trump decorum every time. The merits of the speech and the consequences of exercising it are another matter entirely. But weren't we dying for some senator to scream "LIAR!" at Bush? I know I was.

Rules of Decorum & Debate in the House

MEMBERS MUST:

Refrain from speaking disrespectfully of the Speaker, other Members, the President or Vice President.

posted by mattdidthat at 4:29 PM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


What's the hubbub about? In any society worth a shit free speech should trump decorum every time. The merits of the speech and the consequences of exercising it are another matter entirely. But weren't we dying for some senator to scream "LIAR!" at Bush? I know I was.

Parliament is a special space, where different rules apply to allow debate essential to lawmaking. On one hand, the laws of libel, slander and defamation are not in force, under parliamentary privilege. On the other hand, certain conventions, such as carrying on discussions from the assumption that other parliamentarians are honest and honourable, are enforced to keep things from degenerating into a free-for-all.

Of course, it does not follow that politicians actually are honest and honourable in all cases, but it's a useful polite fiction for the purposes of parliamentary democracy.
posted by acb at 4:35 PM on September 10, 2009


it's a lie
posted by exogenous at 4:37 PM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


"I will not be muzzled": Joe Wilson posts a YouTube video
posted by CunningLinguist at 4:42 PM on September 10, 2009


Who are the smirking chimps on three sides of Wilson while he yells?

Photo here.

That doesn't look like shock or disapproval to me.
posted by rokusan at 4:42 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


On the other hand, certain conventions, such as carrying on discussions from the assumption that other parliamentarians are honest and honourable, are enforced to keep things from degenerating into a free-for-all.

Basically it's like us not having the IMG tag.
posted by Artw at 4:47 PM on September 10, 2009 [7 favorites]


In any society worth a shit free speech should trump decorum every time. The merits of the speech and the consequences of exercising it are another matter entirely.

He does have the Freedom to Speak out-- nobody is saying he should go to jail for what he did. On the other hand he should not be shielded from the consequences of speaking freely. Americans are angry about the disrespect that he showed to the POTUS and they are angry that Wilson broke the rules of conduct during a speech in the House of Congress. If speaking freely trumped decorum every time, the House would sound like a zoo with members yelling over each other and nobody would be heard.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:48 PM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


God. From the look of that new Joe Wilson video he didn't sleep at all last night. Or is he always that wooden?
posted by twoleftfeet at 4:51 PM on September 10, 2009


Rules of Decorum & Debate in the House

"Refrain from eating, smoking, or using electronic equipment, including cellular phones or lap top computers, on the floor."

Last night Rep. Eric Cantor (R - VA) was seen, head bent over, texting during Obama's speech [watch embedded video]. Called on it today, Cantor claims "he was taking notes."

Yeah, riiiight. Idiot! Next time, pay attention to our President, show some respect for the office, if not for the man, and take notes later when watching a playback of the speech in your office or at home. Asshat!
posted by ericb at 4:53 PM on September 10, 2009


Can any Republican say the word g-o-v-e-r-n-m-e-n-t? Gubmnet. Govment. Christ!
posted by zerobyproxy at 4:57 PM on September 10, 2009


posted by ericb "Refrain from eating, smoking, or using electronic equipment"

Whoa, did Apple release a new edible and smokable phone?
posted by mattdidthat at 5:00 PM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


Who are the smirking chimps on three sides of Wilson while he yells? Photo here. That doesn't look like shock or disapproval to me.

Hmmm
posted by exogenous at 5:03 PM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


And that, right there, folks, makes Wilson's little outburst a half-million-dollar ejaculation.

Is that why it's called the money shot?
posted by Pollomacho at 5:07 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


On the other hand he should not be shielded from the consequences of speaking freely.

Hence why I said consequences are another matter entirely. If he broke agreed upon rules then what ever punishments or censure is outlined in those rules should apply. However making this outburst the focus such melodramatic outrage is a huge derail from the more important and larger issues and merely soaks up bandwidth.

Americans are angry about the disrespect that he showed to the POTUS and they are angry that Wilson broke the rules of conduct during a speech in the House of Congress.

Americans? Yes I suppose it's "Americans" who are angry that Wilson broke the rules. Just like there are "Americans" who think there a Death Panels and "Americans" who thought this joker Wilson was a frigg'n hero.

There are "Americans" who believe Elvis is still alive. So what? Saying "Americans" like it means there is some silent majority of consensus is a kind of a silly appeal to authority don't you think?

Wilson is a stooge. This was a deliberate stunt. And was as predictable as it was not shocking. They are going to town hall meetings with machine guns for fuck sake. Why is everybody acting like this little mini-tirade is so shocking?

See in the event the President called THEM liars in his speech, which he did (and he is right the GOP are liars) they selected some GOP stooge to pull an "Outrage Moment" for the mouth breathers. In terms of MSM these two things now cancel each other out. However the more we breath life into Wilson the more he has something to bounce against and the bigger a hero he becomes to his base. By all means give his opponent money. That is awesome. But don't give this guy any more of his fifteen minutes than he burned up six months ago. I'm not saying ignore GOP stunts. But let's choose our targets with a little more precision.
posted by tkchrist at 5:36 PM on September 10, 2009


Redstate has also posted links fundraising for Wilson, but they are directly to Wilson's campaign site, so there's no way to tell how much $$ is being driven there.

A while back I registered at Redstate for some reason, so I get their email alerts:
Subject: Shut up Joe?

The Democrat opponent to Congressman Joe Wilson has raised over $100,000.00 since last night.

What have you given to Joe Wilson. The man spoke for America. And now we need to open our wallets for Joe.

It does no good to pat Joe on the back or give him an "atta boy." Joe Wilson needs us to open our wallets and checkbooks. Joe Wilson is now a serious threat to Barack Obama because he dared point out that the Emperor has no clothes. The left will target him. The left will target his family. The left will try to destroy Joe Wilson.

We can stop the left. But we must give generously to Joe.

Prove that conservatives are not pathetic activists. Put your money where your mouth is.

Give to Joe.

Sincerely yours,


Erick Erickson
Editor, RedState.com
posted by brundlefly at 5:39 PM on September 10, 2009


Whoa, did Apple release a new edible and smokable phone?

Soon we'll see that Mac advertisement guy talking about how you can get stoned and satisfy the munchies at the same time. (You gotta know that dude is on good terms with Mary Jane.)
posted by darkstar at 5:42 PM on September 10, 2009


Prove that conservatives are not activists by becoming one today!
posted by stavrogin at 5:43 PM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


I swear, they can't even do a fundraiser letter without sounding like it's a 7th grade raffle. How do these people continue to maintain such inordinate political influence?
posted by darkstar at 5:43 PM on September 10, 2009


That's Jim deMint on his right. I don't recognize the guy on the left.
posted by crataegus at 5:45 PM on September 10, 2009


I swear, they can't even do a fundraiser letter without sounding like it's a 7th grade raffle.

Yeah, and that guy's the EDITOR. I wonder what his job description is.
posted by brundlefly at 5:48 PM on September 10, 2009


That email from brundlefly is interesting and it got me thinking. I envision an alternate reality where in Bush's 2005 address to congress John Murtha yells and calls George W. Bush a liar and the next day I receive the following: And you know in that alternate past reality I'd probably give Murtha money and probably (given the tenor of MeFi in 2005) most of you would've too.
posted by tkchrist at 5:51 PM on September 10, 2009


$591,270!

Holy cow, it looks like Miller is going to break $600,000 in 24 hours.
posted by darkstar at 5:55 PM on September 10, 2009


You know what they say about assuming.
posted by absalom at 5:56 PM on September 10, 2009


This is still better (although less entertaining) than Taiwan.
posted by reformedjerk at 6:20 PM on September 10, 2009


"Kings may speak haughtily and tyrants cruelly, insultingly, or even contemptuously, but men who share a legislative duty because they recognize the principle of the equality of all men must adopt a mode of address that reflects a disposition to respect the interests of others." -- Walter Berns

"Government by consent requires everyone to abide by decisions made by the majority even when one is on the losing side. The assumption that this will be done rests on mutual trust and respect. Insults and abuse are inappropriate to this enterprise because they treat the enterprise as contemptible." -- Eugene Hickok

"When we undermine the general belief that the law will give protection against fighting words and profane and abusive language, we take steps to return to the law of the jungle. If continued, this permissiveness will tend to further erode public confidence in the law -- that subtle but indispensable ingredient of ordered liberty." -- Warren Burger
posted by blucevalo at 6:21 PM on September 10, 2009


"Politics is best discussed on all fours."
(Robert Anton Wilson)
posted by philip-random at 6:36 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


"Politics is best discussed on all fours."

I think you meant to comment in the Duvall thread.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 6:49 PM on September 10, 2009


$591,270!

Holy cow, it looks like Miller is going to break $600,000 in 24 hours.
*sigh*

I really wish that was being more sensibly spent. It could do a lot of good in races for real progressives around the country. It will be interesting to see how much Wilson raises, but there's no guarantee that the democratic candidate would be a good congress person, or spend that money wisely.
posted by delmoi at 6:53 PM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


"You lack historical perspective"

Yeah, that's an answer. That's a great answer. It doesn't answer anything, but oh well...
posted by Gamien Boffenburg at 6:57 PM on September 10, 2009


I really wish that was being more sensibly spent. It could do a lot of good in races for real progressives around the country. It will be interesting to see how much Wilson raises, but there's no guarantee that the democratic candidate would be a good congress person, or spend that money wisely.

Well, judging from his campaign website (google cache due to redirect), he seems to be a pretty standard Democrat, not to mention a veteran of the Iraq war. What you suggest applies to any race against an incumbent by a someone new to politics.

At any rate, compared to Joe Wilson he would appear to be the obvious candidate for Democrats to support.
posted by armage at 7:05 PM on September 10, 2009


At least with two words and a pointy action Wilson didn't fail too badly. Unlike some:

Senator McGauran today agreed the action looked shocking and apologised to those present in the public gallery at the time.
He says it may well have been the first time he'd ever flipped the bird, and indeed had been unaware of the term.
The fact he lifted the wrong digit was evidence he didn't know how to do it, he said.

posted by Fiasco da Gama at 7:06 PM on September 10, 2009


Can any explain the Democratic opposition to the Heller amendment, preferably with some links? This amendment would have required the use of certain lists to screen for illegals. If you google for it you get nothing but page after page of right wing perspective.
posted by Wood at 7:17 PM on September 10, 2009


$636,419
posted by CunningLinguist at 7:23 PM on September 10, 2009


Wood, the argument is basically that those safeguards have never caught an illegal immigrant, as people who are in the country illegally are not exactly anxious to go before a government agency and bring attention to themselves. What they have done, though, is slow down the process for citizens who are legitimately eligible for government assistance, but get tied up in red tape, delaying access to health care that's sometimes very time-sensitive.
posted by EarBucket at 7:38 PM on September 10, 2009


Wood - I believe they voted it down on 7/17. I can't find video or transcript discussing this amendment. But they might post a transcript containing discussion here within a year or two. It actually looks like the Ways and Means committee did not approve a single amendment to their bill.
posted by xorry at 7:40 PM on September 10, 2009


On top of those things not really working, those rules to catch illegals just add cost and red tape to the system. Conservatives hate that, except when it is used against brown people.
posted by caddis at 7:57 PM on September 10, 2009


Ok, this is the only thing I could find. Apologies the the big block o text. No video right now. Edits are mine.

>> MR. HELLER, YOU'RE RECOGNIZED.

>> THANK YOU VERY MUCH. [edit] THE ISSUE OF ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS IS EXTREMELY VAGUE [edit] I YIELD BACK.

>> THANK YOU, MR. CHAIRMAN. I SYMPATHIZE WITH THE GENTLEMAN, WHAT HE'S TRYING TO DO. BUT THIS AMENDMENT, UNFORTUNATELY, WE CAN WORK ON THE LANGUAGE ABOUT PROHIBITING THE -- WHAT THE GENTLEMAN WANTS TO PROHIBIT IN HIS AMENDMENT. BUT THERE'S A COUPLE PROBLEMS. SPEAKING AS CHAIRMAN OF SOCIAL SECURITY SUBCOMMITTEE, THE SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION RUNS THIS PROGRAM. AND CURRENTLY ONLY FEDERAL, STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS CAN ACCESS THE DATA BASE. THIS WOULD ALLOW FOR THE ACCESSING OF THE DATA BASE BY PRIVATE COMPANIES. BUT BEYOND THAT, THE GOVERNMENT'S ACCESS WOULD HAVE TO REIMBURSE THE SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION. WE'VE BEEN ON THE SUBCOMMITTEE, AS MR. JOHNSON KNOWS, TRYING TO SCRATCH OUT EVERY DOLLAR WE CAN TO ADDRESS THE BACKLOG IN SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY CASES, AND ALSO TO TRY TO GET DISABILITY REVIEWS, WHERE WE LOOK AT PEOPLE WHO ARE ON THE PROGRAM THAT MAYBE ARE ABLE TO WORK, AND WE TRY TO ENFORCE THE LAW AND DISABILITY REVIEWS. WE CAN WORK TOGETHER ON THIS. I SYMPATHIZE WITH WHAT YOU'RE TRYING TO DO, BUT THIS AMENDMENT DOESN'T DO IT IN TERMS OF WHAT THE SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION WANTS TO DO. SO MAYBE WE CAN WORK ON IT BETWEEN NOW AND THEN. BUT IN ITS PRESENT FORM, I UNFORTUNATELY HAVE TO OPPOSE IT BECAUSE OF THE SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION ASPECT OF IT.
posted by xorry at 7:58 PM on September 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


Sorry, going to bed without fully catching up, but I keep coming back to Brandon's comment above:

The chief argument is that the bill doesn't have any enforcement mechanisms that check whether the person receiving care is an illegal alien or not.

That seems at least a legitimate subject for discussion. So has anyone in this thread - particularly those enjoying sneering at Joe Wilson's boneheaded outburst - addressed the point that there's no enforcement mechanism in the bill Joe Wilson was referencing to ensure illegal immigrants don't get free care? I'm not saying I share his opinion that's a major worry, but it does seem if you're going to say he's wrong about it you should at least answer the actual point buried underneath his outburst.

I freely admit I might be misunderstanding or misinformed, so eagerly await a response that explains away the concern about the lack of enforcement mechanism. But it does seem to me if there is no enforcement mechanism in place, then Obama supporters are being disingenuous at best in sneering at Wilson's attack.
posted by mediareport at 8:28 PM on September 10, 2009


But it does seem to me if there is no enforcement mechanism in place, then Obama supporters are being disingenuous at best in sneering at Wilson's attack.

And I think you might have missed that much of our complaints have been rooted in the fact that he called the president a liar when he was addressing congress. If his concern was that the provisions against undocumented workers didn't have teeth, he has endless opportunity to address it. But there is a difference between rebutting the president -- which the Repubs did immediately after Obama's speech -- and interrupting him with an epithet.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:39 PM on September 10, 2009


I thought that enforcement mechanisms were really only for laws where the behavior in question was being specifically criminalized. I am not certain it is wise to start writing such statutes into the health insurance reform bill. Very few bills passed actually have that kind of clause included. Breaking law can be prosecuted, but insisting on an enforcement mechanism is sort of the equivalent of saying that you do not believe the law is going to be followed. That implication on behalf of Joe Wilson is ugly and should be recognized as having a hateful assumption at its core.
posted by hippybear at 8:40 PM on September 10, 2009


Speaking as a citizen of a country with universal public health care, I'm a little confused about the whole "illegals" issue here.

Obtaining public health care (seeing a doctor, getting admitted to a hospital, picking up a prescription from the pharmacist etc.) requires presentation of your public health care card.

These cards cannot be obtained without evidence of citizenship.

There's no "checking" whether the person trying to obtain health care is illegal or not at the hospital - the fact that in order to obtain health care they would need the (magnetic swipe) card, and that they couldn't get the card if they were illegal, is proof enough.

Surely such a system in the US would work in an equivalent manner?
posted by Jimbob at 8:43 PM on September 10, 2009


That seems at least a legitimate subject for discussion. So has anyone in this thread - particularly those enjoying sneering at Joe Wilson's boneheaded outburst - addressed the point that there's no enforcement mechanism in the bill Joe Wilson was referencing to ensure illegal immigrants don't get free care?

It's a fucking health care bill! We have ICE to enforce our immigration laws. It gets its own funding in its own bills. Are you really going to allow opponents of immigration to turn every unrelated issue into a chance to grandstand about their pet issue? I bet there are highway bills that do not allocate money to enforce that undocumented immigrants don't get to use the highways. I bet there are military spending bills that do not allocate money to enforce that undocumented immigrants don't get to take advantage of the common defense. I bet there are education spending bills that do not allocate money to enforce that undocumented immigrants do not get to enroll in the schools. I also bet that if the right succeeds in derailing health care with this stupid non-issue, it will start complaining about all of those things as well and won't be happy until you can't put up a stop sign without funding a Border Patrol agent to stand next to it.
posted by enn at 8:45 PM on September 10, 2009 [15 favorites]


$671,328.

Dude just passed two thirds of a million dollars. That's, what, TWICE what he raised in all of 2008 in his earlier run for office?

I'd love to be a fly on the wall in Miller's and Wilson's campaign offices right now, watching their respective campaign staffs plotz as that number goes higher and higher.
posted by darkstar at 8:57 PM on September 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


In other words, though the bills would prevent undocumented immigrants from receiving any taxpayer assistance in purchasing health insurance, the proposals on the table don’t do anything special to prevent an undocumented immigrant from buying health insurance with his own money. To characterize this as “insur[ing] illegal immigrants” strikes me as about on a par with claiming that Obama’s health care plans give ibuprofen to illegal immigrants. After all, nothing in the bill stops illegal immigrants from buying ibuprofen in a store! And the very same FDA regulations that assure citizens and legal residents and tourists of the safety of ibuprofen will also benefit illegal immigrants.
posted by EarBucket at 9:04 PM on September 10, 2009 [5 favorites]


I know I keep coming back to this, but as a political junkie, it's simply fascinating. Imagine being in a race against a favored incumbent. You're sitting on a measly campaign chest of a scant ten grand. You're opponent has nearly $200k socked away already and the capacity to raise much, much more.

Then, suddenly, your opponent has a one-second brain fart on national t.v. - a sort of Micro Macaca Moment - and two days later, you're sitting on a war chest that's the better part of a million bucks.

The mind boggles. It's like winning the lottery or something. And it underscores the importance of having people in place and contesting every seat, just in case even comfortable incumbents have some spectacular meltdown with a live mic or a national tv camera nearby.
posted by darkstar at 9:10 PM on September 10, 2009 [5 favorites]


Rush Limbaugh put a different spin on the issue of healthcare for illegal immigrants:
It's simply not true. It will cover undocumented aliens. Now, it may not specifically say so in the bill. But we have to know that what's coming is amnesty. They're going to be made legal. We're going to have all of this. If Obama gets his way we're going to legalize 12 to 20 million illegals, and they're going to become citizens and they're going to get coverage. And they're, at the end of the day, going to still be illegal regardless the law and amnesty and everything else. It's coming, there's no question, this is the point. This is precisely what Obama wants to accomplish.
Now, after sifting though that vile man's filth, I need to go shower.
posted by Balonious Assault at 9:28 PM on September 10, 2009


Rush is an idiot. But he's right that the health plan will cover illegal immigrants. Of course it will. If an illegal immigrant shows up at an emergency room with a serious medical problem they will receive treatment, and all of us (probably through the government) will pay for it.

The thing he's lying about... no, wait let me start again. Among the many things he is lying about is that while we will pay for health care for illegal immigrants under this plan, we already pay for illegal immigrants under the current system and we will also pay for them under any future system.

Why? Because no matter what system we implement the choice boils down to either treating illegal immigrants or requiring people to prove citizenship before receiving emergency treatment and then turning away those who can not. How many doctors are going to send somebody in the middle of a heart attack out onto the sidewalk to die with no treatment? Yeah, not very many.

We have always paid for illegal immigrant's health care. We pay for it now. We will pay for it under the plan that passes this year no matter what plan that is. The only way to avoid it is to either legalize everyone living here or have everyone here illegally deported. That's it. Or, horror of horrors, accept that we're going to pay for the treatment of illegal immigrants since the other option is to let people die in the gutter.
posted by Justinian at 9:41 PM on September 10, 2009 [18 favorites]


It's simply not true. It will cover undocumented aliens. Now, it may not specifically say so in the bill.

Why does this remind me of the Chewbacca defense?
posted by Big_B at 9:43 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Obtaining public health care (seeing a doctor, getting admitted to a hospital, picking up a prescription from the pharmacist etc.) requires presentation of your public health care card.

These cards cannot be obtained without evidence of citizenship.


There's no citizenship requirement to buy private health insurance in the U.S, and the bill won't change that. Since the public option works just like a private health plan, anyone could buy in, including people from other countries. Wealthy undocumented immigrants could buy insurance that way, however, poor undocumented workers couldn't get the subsidies.
posted by delmoi at 9:44 PM on September 10, 2009


I think I love that the picture of Rob Miller on the act blue page looks slightly surprised. I am imagining that is his reaction to this whole thing. Or maybe he doesn't even know about it yet, and come spring 2010 he starts gearing up for his campaign to find a nice little surprise. Maybe, at first he doesn't even think its real, but a computer glitch . . .
posted by [insert clever name here] at 10:14 PM on September 10, 2009


So has anyone in this thread - particularly those enjoying sneering at Joe Wilson's boneheaded outburst - addressed the point that there's no enforcement mechanism in the bill Joe Wilson was referencing to ensure illegal immigrants don't get free care?

Bringing up "enforcement" is a red herring. Especially as a means to question the entirety of a healthcare proposal.

It is only brought up in healthcare discussions of late, because the right-wing has no ideas and no proposals.

In lieu of actually doing something constructive, right-wingers are scrambling for any means to distract the public and raise doubts about any proposed plan. It wouldn't even really matter what the plan is, at this juncture.

But to get back to your question:

If it is made illegal for illegal immigrants to get free healthcare, then it is illegal for those individuals to get free healthcare. It's illegal. Period. Point fucking blank.

It's up to courts to enforce laws and rule on violations.

It's always been up to courts to enforce the laws on the books and rule on violations of those laws.

The courts are an enforcement mechanism for every law passed in the United States since 1776.

Bringing up a "lack of enforcement mechanism" is complete fucking bullshit that any two-year old with passing familiarity with how our world works should be able to see through.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:17 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Why does this remind me of the Chewbacca defense?

Go on.
posted by Partario at 10:36 PM on September 10, 2009


I would love to see a Democrat introduce an amendment for trap doors as enforcement of the no illegals allowed clause.

[enter man dressed as a Mariachi.]

Nurse: "Sir, are you a Mexican?"

MexicanMan: Si-- I mean, no.

Nurse: "Sir, I can see the yearning for our Freedoms in your eyes."

MexicanMan: Djes, I am Mexican, please give me one of your sweet, succulent livers so I can steal jobs and rape white girls.

[Nurse pulls lever opening trap door to pit of doom]

Nurse: Next!
posted by stavrogin at 10:41 PM on September 10, 2009 [5 favorites]


I don't think that's it, Blazecock Pileon.

I don't see how enforcement is primarily a court function. They can I suppose be petitioned but in the main "enforcement" is a responsibility of the executive branch under the instruction of Congress.

Ultimately I think the answer is that it's the responsibility of the executive branch to determine how to enforce this law. And it seems entirely within the bounds of our system for the legislature to provide greater specificity as to how that happens.

I believe that the whole Medicaid/birth certificate stuff happened this way, as "rule making" rather than law making. Given the controversy this seems to be something that Congress should be addressing rather than punting to the exec.

I'm genuinely conflicted about this. The best arguments against verification seem to involve either: (1) the very specific case of such-and-such nonagenarian black who was born when such-and-such Confederate state didn't allow black women into hospitals or (2) the general notion that the US doesn't have a national ID card and is that really the road we want to go down?

Isn't it the case that the countries the left points to as examplars of universal health care do by and large have national ID cards and do not provide non-emergency medical care to people without them?
posted by Wood at 10:45 PM on September 10, 2009


Son of a bitch, why is exemplar spelled with two e's?
posted by Wood at 10:47 PM on September 10, 2009


I think I love that the picture of Rob Miller on the act blue page looks slightly surprised. I am imagining that is his reaction to this whole thing. Or maybe he doesn't even know about it yet
No, he knows. He has issued a statement.

However, I also, enjoy imagining that he didn't know about it. Like, he was driving home from vacation on Wednesday, and was completely out of touch; stayed up really late night doing so; slept till 4 PM Thursday; vegged out the rest of the day.

Then at about midnight, he starts up his browser, idly checks his ActBlue page, and... SEVEN HUNDRED GRAND?!?!
posted by Flunkie at 10:48 PM on September 10, 2009 [4 favorites]


Isn't it the case that the countries the left points to as examplars of universal health care do by and large have national ID cards and do not provide non-emergency medical care to people without them?

Speaking for Australia, no, we don't have a national ID card. In fact, proposals to introduce a true national ID card have been shot down in flames. What we do have is a Medicare card, which isn't really a national ID card. You get one card for your whole family, with everyone's names on it. It purely identifies you for the purposes of health, and nothing else. Doesn't have photo ID on it, or your address. And proposals to enhance the role of the Medicare card into other areas have also been stopped.

I get the impression that the "Social Security Number" Americans already have goes beyond any national identification system in Australia, yet we seem to be able to run a public health system pretty well.
posted by Jimbob at 11:04 PM on September 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


IANAL, but presumably, if and when an illegal attempted to enroll in a public option program, it would ask for some kind of confirmation of citizenship or a SS# or whatnot. Lying on the application form would be a rather simple case of fraud, would it not? One would imagine it would be "enforced" much the same way that any other fraud would be handled. It doesn't seem like the legislation to form the health care option in question would need to stipulate special enforcement protocols for this. But that's just speculation from a layman.
posted by darkstar at 11:21 PM on September 10, 2009


Isn't it the case that the countries the left points to as examplars of universal health care do by and large have national ID cards and do not provide non-emergency medical care to people without them?

What a load of cobblers.

Why don't you name the countries of which you believe this to be true? (FYI: it's not the UK, and it's not Australia, those being the only countries I've lived in so far...)
posted by pompomtom at 11:24 PM on September 10, 2009


Jimbob, as you've described, Australia's Medicare:

Medicare was established based on the understanding that all Australians should contribute to the cost of health care according to their ability to pay. It is financed through progressive income tax and an income-related Medicare levy.
Medicare provides access to:
- free treatment as a public (Medicare) patient in a public hospital, and
- free or subsidised treatment by medical practitioners including general practitioners, specialists, participating optometrists or dentists (for specified services only)


It's also partly available to permanent residents and visitors from countries who have Reciprocal Health Care Agreements, including the UK, Sweden, Norway, the Netherlands, and Malta.

So it's not just socialist health care we have here in Australia—it's International Communism.

[dun-dun-dun-DUN]
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 11:33 PM on September 10, 2009 [4 favorites]


Bringing up a "lack of enforcement mechanism" is complete fucking bullshit

no damn kidding - where's the hue and cry about "lack of enforcement mechanism" when it's american companies hiring illegal immigrants? - who, after all, wouldn't be here if somebody wasn't hiring them

if the republicans are really concerned about the issue, why don't they ever complain about the companies who are doing the hiring?

they're not really against illegal immigration - they're against treating illegal immigrants as anything but easily expendable chattel

complete fucking bullshit, indeed
posted by pyramid termite at 12:55 AM on September 11, 2009 [5 favorites]


http://imgur.com/om8m0.jpg
posted by vbfg at 3:06 AM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


Jimbob: These cards cannot be obtained without evidence of citizenship. There's no "checking" whether the person trying to obtain health care is illegal or not at the hospital - the fact that in order to obtain health care they would need the (magnetic swipe) card, and that they couldn't get the card if they were illegal, is proof enough. Surely such a system in the US would work in an equivalent manner?

Surely you are aware of the problems within your own country about this issue?
2004, 2006, 2009
I think the illegal immigrant issue is silly, but claiming that no other country has faced similar issues or concerns is equally silly. It's simply not true that the only way a person can obtain a Medicare card in Australia is to have evidence of citizenship.
posted by Houstonian at 4:34 AM on September 11, 2009


Last night Rep. Eric Cantor (R - VA) was seen, head bent over, texting during Obama's speech [watch embedded video]. Called on it today, Cantor claims "he was taking notes."

Cantor doesn't have a staff that can take notes? I'm pretty sure we (the taxpayers) paid for him to have a staff to take notes. I wonder where the money went then?
posted by Pollomacho at 4:41 AM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


This. You can see it in the faces of the people sitting around him. This was planned, he was the sacrificial lamb. They all knew it was coming. If it had just been the passion of the moment, the people around him would have been as shocked as Pelosi was.

(apologies if dupe; didn't preview)
posted by nax at 4:49 AM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


"This" link messed up-- supposed to be the time stamp to a comment. Back in a sec.
posted by nax at 4:50 AM on September 11, 2009


Okay, proper reference link to prior comment: pracowity .
posted by nax at 4:52 AM on September 11, 2009


Interestingly, about half of illegal immigrants currently have health insurance, according to the Pew Center. They'd actually make a great addition to a public pool--you need young, healthy people paying into any insurance system to help pay for the people who receive more in benefits than they pay in premiums. No politician's going to touch that, though, regardless of how much sense it makes.
posted by EarBucket at 4:55 AM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


This was planned.

Of course it was planned. Congresscritters don't take a dump without putting it on their calendar in advance.
posted by Pollomacho at 5:20 AM on September 11, 2009


Surely you are aware of the problems within your own country about this issue?

Oh I never said it was perfect. You just can't let the perfect be the enemy of the good. And, you'll note, that while every now and again someone makes noise about turning the Medicare card into some kind of national ID card, they withdraw their comments pretty quickly and it never actually happens.
posted by Jimbob at 5:41 AM on September 11, 2009


Thanks to the folks who thoughtfully answered my question about enforcement above.
posted by mediareport at 5:48 AM on September 11, 2009


Isn't it the case that the countries the left points to as examplars of universal health care do by and large have national ID cards and do not provide non-emergency medical care to people without them?

Curious to see the replies to this one.
posted by mediareport at 5:50 AM on September 11, 2009


Isn't it the case that the countries the left points to as examplars of universal health care do by and large have national ID cards and do not provide non-emergency medical care to people without them?
I'm with Jimbob on this. It's a health card. My partner has one, he's Kiwi but is a legal resident in Australia. I'm not a legal resident there yet, but whenever possible I wait until I get to Australia to see a doctor because I don't have health insurance in the US. When calling to set up an appointment I tell them that I don't have a health card, and they sound very apologetic informing me that it's going to then cost me $55 (AUD), and that I will be unable to claim it later. I have no idea where or how I would claim it, but I happily assure them that it is not a problem.

I don't know if that's what it really costs, or if that amount is somehow subsidized by taxpayers.
posted by newpotato at 6:28 AM on September 11, 2009


This is supply-side, regarding the fines. Their logic believes that insurance is the problem and not health costs and the sale of junk food.
posted by Brian B. at 7:06 AM on September 10 [+] [!]

True if people (myself included) would be a little more preventative in their habits prices would not be as high. They are simple things too like don't smoke a pack a day or don't super size your meal or drink more water and less coke/pepsi. If we could reduce the number of cases because our of preventative measures it would make a sizable difference.
posted by Mastercheddaar at 8:17 AM on September 10 [+] [!]


I agree, but just to be clear, the entire problem should be seen as a system. People should pay extra for those items, and for everything else that pollutes or fails health or adds to the problem. We don't need to moralize the issue as a personal sin and shame soda drinkers, or even ban soda, we simply tax it to the degree we hold it responsible. The invention of money and legal rights has solved the polar-moralized preaching problem of how to get individuals to act responsibly, and instead holds the product responsible through the individual's freedom to purchase.
posted by Brian B. at 6:32 AM on September 11, 2009


Houstonian..seriously? Those links are your arguments against a health care card? Reach much?
posted by newpotato at 6:38 AM on September 11, 2009


Isn't it the case that the countries the left points to as examplars of universal health care do by and large have national ID cards and do not provide non-emergency medical care to people without them?

Curious to see the replies to this one.


The reply is singular, simple and succinct:

No. It is not the case.
posted by Shepherd at 6:38 AM on September 11, 2009 [2 favorites]


newpotato, no, I'm not arguing at all against a health care card. I'm saying it's untrue that Australia has a bullet-proof system which makes sure that everyone who receives medical care is a citizen. That's why my last sentence says, "It's simply not true that the only way a person can obtain a Medicare card in Australia is to have evidence of citizenship." Another way is to have a counterfeit or stolen card. That is not reaching; the cards have been stolen and counterfeited.
posted by Houstonian at 6:49 AM on September 11, 2009


Curious to see the replies to this one.

The reply is singular, simple and succinct:

No. It is not the case.


Since the healthcare "debate" seems to depend largely on personal annecdotes rather than facts and figures, here's mine: When I was around 12 years old our family took a summer-long vacation to the UK. My father took a temporary position with a small church in rural Devon, which left us the weekdays largely free to explore the country. One week we traveled to rural Cornwall where we were socked in by a thick pea-soup of fog for the majority of our time. One day we got a break in the fog and rain that gave me the opportunity to play outside. That is when we discovered my severe, life-threatening allergies to buttercups, the ubiquitous yellow flowers covering British lawns. I was swelling all over my body. My throat was closing. In short, I was going to die, soon. As we were far too rural for EMS to help me the B&B keeper telephoned around to find out where "the Doctor" would be that day, a church parrish hall about 20 minutes away. Off we went in a fury where the people waiting for their turn allowed me to bump the line. No questions were asked, certainly not my nationality. I was treated, life-saving drugs injected. Clearly, I am here today. No one ever charged us. No one ever even suggested we should be charged. No one even seemed at all miffed that I bumped the line.
posted by Pollomacho at 6:55 AM on September 11, 2009 [8 favorites]


Oh, and I should add that I had three, yes three follow up visits over that summer which included medications, all with out charge or question. On those I did have to wait in the waiting room for a bit.
posted by Pollomacho at 6:58 AM on September 11, 2009


I'm sorry to piggyback on this thread, but I'm frustrated about an email going around my spouse's workplace from a "constitutional lawyer" arguing that the proposed healthcare reform is "scary" and that, among other things:

The law does provide for rationing of health care, particularly where senior citizens and other classes of citizens are involved, free health care for illegal immigrants...

The Bill will also eventually force private insurance companies out of business and put everyone into a government run system. All decisions about personal health care will ultimately be made by federal bureaucrats and most of them will not be health care professionals...

This legislation also provides for access by the appointees of the Obama administration of all of your personal healthcare information, your personal financial information, and the information of your employer, physician, and hospital. All of this is a direct violation of the specific provisions of the 4th Amendment to the Constitution protecting against unreasonable searches and seizures


So, hivemind, how do I address these arguments specifically?
posted by misha at 7:09 AM on September 11, 2009


All decisions about personal health care will ultimately be made by federal bureaucrats and most of them will not be health care professionals.

I love this "argument". Even if true, first of all, so what? As I said above, Civil Servants aren't evil demons bent on destroying America or on killing your grandma. Even if this were true the Federal bureaucrats will be trying to determine what is the best course with limited resources for the publc health of America as a whole. This is opposed to our current situation where Corporate bureaucrats are rationing healthcare based on what is most cost effective to their for-profit corporation. Now, you tell me which is more frightening?
posted by Pollomacho at 7:16 AM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


I'd rather have the government make the decision that what I have right now, which is my insurance company making health care decisions for me, with an eye, always, always, on the bottom line.
posted by Astro Zombie at 7:22 AM on September 11, 2009 [5 favorites]


Isn't it the case that the countries the left points to as examplars of universal health care do by and large have national ID cards and do not provide non-emergency medical care to people without them?

Canada does not have a national identity card, does not have a national health care card, and you can get nonemergency health care in Canada without a provincial health care card through the simple expedient of paying for it.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 7:38 AM on September 11, 2009


misha, your spouse's workplace needs a stronger email-use policy. In many workplaces (mine, for instance), using email for political purposes is forbidden, as it should be.

As to your specific question, look here: Twenty-six lies about HR 3200.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 8:03 AM on September 11, 2009 [3 favorites]


misha, your spouse's workplace needs a stronger email-use policy. In many workplaces (mine, for instance), using email for political purposes is forbidden, as it should be.

Oh, I completely agree. Thanks for the help!
posted by misha at 8:07 AM on September 11, 2009


I did have to wait in the waiting room for a bit.

SEE!
posted by dirtdirt at 8:13 AM on September 11, 2009


Canada does not have a national identity card, does not have a national health care card, and you can get nonemergency health care in Canada without a provincial health care card through the simple expedient of paying for it.

Thanks. So Australia and Canada don't have prototypical "national ID cards" but they do have health cards that establish eligibility in the system. (I'd cordially point out that the page I'm on has to do to with non-emergency subsidized care.)

Look, Obama said in the big speech that he's not going to fund illegals. How? Apparently using the rule making authority of the new bureaucracy. That's what happened in Medicare and it's been a mess. There have been lawsuits and unhappy folks on the left and the right are very unhappy with the situation. Acting like this is a settled no-brainer is wrong.

This isn't my issue. I don't care about illegal immigration. I figure it's sort of like fighting the wind. But I don't see my "do nothing" viewpoint as particularly saleable and it's certainly not what Obama is saying. Unfortunately I don't think the Dems are telling a coherent strong story about this issue.

Again, google "Heller Amendment". Are you really so satisfied with your position that you don't care that someone educating themselves or forming an opinion can find nothing explaining Democratic opposition to the amendment. The all caps quote that I favorited above is actually pretty sad. The Congressman basically seems to say it's a good idea but it won't work for some hard to explain reason.

So, trolling through the right wing propaganda on the Heller amendment I actually found something very interesting.

https://www.oig.lsc.gov/legis/irca86.htm

Specific federal legislation addressing the enforcement of eligibility issues for various government programs. It is simply not the case that the legal standard has been to put in a single sentence and then throw it over the wall at the executive and the courts.
posted by Wood at 8:36 AM on September 11, 2009


"The controversy over Republican Rep. Joe Wilson's shouting out 'You Lie!' at the President over his claim that illegal immigrants wouldn't benefit from health-care reform apparently sparked some reconsideration of the relevant language. 'We really thought we'd resolved this question of people who are here illegally, but as we reflected on the President's speech last night we wanted to go back and drill down again,' said Senator Kent Conrad, one of the Democrats in the talks after a meeting Thursday morning. Baucus later that afternoon said the group would put in a proof of citizenship requirement to participate in the new health exchange — a move likely to inflame the left."*
posted by ericb at 8:50 AM on September 11, 2009


When Cantor mentions Obama, GOP rally interrupts with howls of ‘he’s a liar.’
posted by ericb at 8:51 AM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


Lying on the application form would be a rather simple case of fraud, would it not? One would imagine it would be "enforced" much the same way that any other fraud would be handled.

Yep.

FactCheck.org:
Obama said that his proposal would not cover illegal immigrants, a remark that prompted Republican Rep. Joe Wilson of South Carolina to shout ‘You lie!’
Obama: There are also those who claim that our reform effort will insure illegal immigrants. This, too, is false – the reforms I’m proposing would not apply to those who are here illegally.
The president is correct: The House bill contains a section (Sec. 246) titled ‘NO FEDERAL PAYMENT FOR UNDOCUMENTED ALIENS,’ which states: ‘Nothing in this subtitle shall allow Federal payments for affordability credits on behalf of individuals who are not lawfully present in the United States.’

However, conservative critics object to a lack of specific enforcement measures in the bill. They argue that the lack of a specific verification mechanism constitutes a loophole that would allow illegal immigrants to get benefits despite the legal prohibition. Republican Rep. Dean Heller of Nevada proposed an amendment to the bill that would have required the use of the Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements program to check the citizenship of anyone applying for federal coverage or affordability credits. SAVE is the program used by Medicaid and similar entitlement programs. That amendment was voted down along party lines by the House Ways and Means Committee.

Republicans have a point here: More could be done to enforce the ban. But it’s worth remembering that, as a spokesperson for the American Immigration Lawyers Association told us, attempting to get a health care credit would have legal repercussions. ‘Making a fraudulent claim to an entitlement program when you’re not actually entitled to it would have serious consequences for any person,’ the spokesperson told us, ‘but especially if it’s considered a false claim to citizenship, that would have serious immigration consequences that could ultimately lead to deportation.’ And Rep. Wilson certainly was out of bounds to call the president’s statement a ‘lie.’ He later issued a statement apologizing for his ‘inappropriate and regrettable’ comments.”
posted by ericb at 9:05 AM on September 11, 2009


Someone finally asks the William Hurt question: Who Took The Picture, and How?
Think about it. If you were one of the (probably) dozen press photographers in the chamber last night, generally taking pictures of the Congressmen and Senators during the speech, and if you suddenly heard a two-word, one-second outburst coming from somewhere in the chamber, uttered by one of the 535 members of Congress (okay, one of the Republicans), there is no way you could take a (well focused and neatly centered) picture of the culprit during the second word of the outburst. Whoever took the picture must have anticipated the outburst.
Reaction shot: a single tear.
posted by rokusan at 10:11 AM on September 11, 2009 [3 favorites]


They'd actually make a great addition to a public pool--you need young, healthy people paying into any insurance system to help pay for the people who receive more in benefits than they pay in premiums. No politician's going to touch that, though, regardless of how much sense it makes.

They'll still be able to pay into the pool, they just won't get subsidies. The only thing that's changed recently is that exchanges will require citizenship verification when you sign up, but only to prevent people from getting federal subsidies.
Sen. Kent Conrad (D-ND) told reporters today that while non-citizens won’t be barred, under Senate Finance Committee legislation from entering health insurance exchanges, the exchanges themselves will require all consumers to show proof of citizenship, in order to insure that undocumented residents don’t receive any federal subsidies.
“You can’t prevent someone from being able to purchase insurance,” Conrad said. “They would not get any government assistance…. What we’re trying to prevent is anybody who is here illegally from getting any federal benefit.”
--
By the way, they recently implemented a system to prevent undocumented immigrants from getting Medicare. They spent $8.3 million people and caught 8 people for their trouble. (I saw that stat somewhere recently, but I don't remember where)
posted by delmoi at 10:20 AM on September 11, 2009


It's not the money, it's the OMG BROWN PEOPLE.
posted by Artw at 10:21 AM on September 11, 2009 [2 favorites]


It's about changing the subject from health care, which the republicans think they lose, to immigration, which the republicans think they win.
posted by vibrotronica at 10:34 AM on September 11, 2009 [8 favorites]


Would you believe $780,278?
posted by spock at 10:40 AM on September 11, 2009


there is no way you could take a (well focused and neatly centered) picture of the culprit during the second word of the outburst. Whoever took the picture must have anticipated the outburst.

This is what a good photographer does, it's what makes them a good photographer. This shot wasn't even particularly hard to get, since the Republicans were already yelling "Boo" before Wilson wigged out, giving a savvy photog time to sweep the rows and find a cherry moment. I would have been surprised if no one had caught the moment, especially with as many press photographers as there were.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:50 AM on September 11, 2009


There are other photos of the incident. For example, the photo by the Washington Post's Melina Mara.
posted by ericb at 10:58 AM on September 11, 2009


14:01 786,391.
posted by PROD_TPSL at 11:03 AM on September 11, 2009


OMG, two photographers were in on the conspiracy!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:03 AM on September 11, 2009


Rep. Joe Wilson raises over $200,000 after outburst

(CNN) -- Less than a day after Rep. Joe Wilson formally apologized to President Obama over his "you lie" outburst, a campaign aide confirms that the South Carolina Republican has raised "more than $200,000" in the wake of the now-infamous moment.
posted by Comrade_robot at 11:45 AM on September 11, 2009


there is no way you could take a (well focused and neatly centered) picture of the culprit during the second word of the outburst

Focus and exposure: skill and/or a good automatic camera, and maybe photoshop.

Neatly centered: who knows how big the original file was? Good dslrs can get up to resolutions of about 6000x4000. At that resolution, you could just take a zoomed-out photo of the as much of the chamber as you can cram onto the sensor, knowing that if there's anything interesting you can crop it out later.

And besides, the dude said it a few times. A couple of seconds worth of repetition is a long time to do something physical like "point the camera at the funny noise and hold the button down," especially if you've worked to develop the muscle memory for just such occasions.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:52 AM on September 11, 2009


Maybe journalists just have all the potential crazies staked out?
posted by Artw at 11:53 AM on September 11, 2009


Poll: Joe Wilson Trails Dem Opponent Rob Miller In Wake of "You Lie!" Outburst
posted by Flunkie at 12:01 PM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


http://imgur.com/hJgSm.jpg
posted by homunculus at 12:14 PM on September 11, 2009


How Van Jones Will Help Win the Health-Care Fight: The resignation of Obama's green-jobs czar is a primer on the right's political warfare tactics -- those preparing to defend health-care reform should take note.
posted by homunculus at 12:18 PM on September 11, 2009


15:55 : 21,877 Supporters $801,756 Raised.
posted by PROD_TPSL at 12:55 PM on September 11, 2009


I was just about to link to that poll. Interesting thing about this poll: I found out that it was being done on PPP's blog, and I read the results today on PPP's blog. No one paid them to do it, as far as I know.

So much for needing the "MSM" to do polls for the blogsphere.
posted by delmoi at 1:05 PM on September 11, 2009


So, just to recap at 36 hours after the event:

1. Wilson has raised over $200k following the outburst
2. Miller has raised over $800k in the same time frame
3. Miller now leads Wilson in approval polling.

I'd say that's Advantage, Miller. Things sure can change fast in politics.
posted by darkstar at 1:07 PM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


*more accurately, Miller is now effectively tied with Wilson in the poll
posted by darkstar at 1:08 PM on September 11, 2009


I'm sorry to piggyback on this thread, but I'm frustrated about an email going around my spouse's workplace from a "constitutional lawyer" ... how do I address these arguments specifically?
posted by misha at 7:09 AM on September 11 [+] [!]


http://mediamattersaction.org/emailchecker/200909110001
(the response is on the bottom half of the page)
posted by blueberry at 1:10 PM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


So, just looking at the values given on MeFi and the times, I threw together a quick chart on Excel (feel free to point and say geek). For most of yesterday, Miller was averaging $600 a minute!
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 1:21 PM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


“‘Later that night, Wilson attempted to call President Obama to apologize personally but instead ended up speaking to Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanuel.’
Not the most pleasant person you want to talk to when you're trying to offer up an apology for boneheaded behavior. Hopefully, he got a nice lashing.”

*ring ring *
RE: What the hell? Fucking shit cocksucking douchbag fucking jag off scumbag! Son of a bitching chimpfucking piece of shit! God damned asshole fuck! Yes, hello?

JW: Uh…He..hello, this is K..K..Congressman Joe Wilson, uh…

RE: MOTHERFU….(etc)

“Seriously, this "it's all about racism" meme is ridiculous and not helpful.”

It’s a lot about racism. Lot of folks take a group of white men disparaging and yelling at a single black man as a matter of course.

But I think Obama DID handle the heckler like this
posted by Smedleyman at 1:27 PM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


A ten dollar bill laid on the guy's desk every second. For a day and a half. Pretty good scratch!

Now, how do I get some of that action?
posted by darkstar at 1:27 PM on September 11, 2009


The Gondwanaland Reunification Front has chosen sides.
posted by punkfloyd at 1:38 PM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


A Tale of Two Joe Wilsons, a Tale of Two Americas
posted by homunculus at 2:01 PM on September 11, 2009 [3 favorites]


Holy gazookas...hopefully Rob Miller can now hire a better web designer: www.robmiller2010.com
posted by punkfloyd at 2:16 PM on September 11, 2009


From homunculus' "Two Joe Wilsons" link: "Cheney is a traitor and should be rotting in jail."
Whoa, whoa, whoa, that's completely wrong.

The punishment for treason is execution.
posted by Smedleyman at 3:26 PM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


Actblue only shows $828,203, but I just got an email saying "We just hit $1 million."

Heh.
posted by Big_B at 5:22 PM on September 11, 2009 [2 favorites]


Just started reading the "Two Joe Wilsons" link and came across this bizarre sentence:

President Obama graciously accepted Wilson's subsequent apology, even though no modern president has been yelled at that way by a minor rural politician.

Emphasis added to say, huh? Rural? Do minor urban politicians yell at presidents in that way? How about major rural politicians? Minor rural toasters? Skippy, the wonderclown?
posted by xorry at 5:47 PM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


Rob Miller is getting donations through other channels.... this is a good sign. He sounds a good fellow... and if you drop by this thread... Give'em Hell, Rob.
posted by PROD_TPSL at 6:46 PM on September 11, 2009


Isn't it the case that the countries the left points to as examplars of universal health care do by and large have national ID cards and do not provide non-emergency medical care to people without them?

Curious to see the replies to this one.


Person with UK experience here, with the Hawking-murdering NHS.

The UK technically do has ID cards, but they're a) only going to be in a voluntary trial stage in one city at first b) never going to be compulsory c) highly opposed by the public.

BBC Q&A.

So in reality, no, the UK doesn't have ID cards.

Anecdotally, I have never been asked for ID when going to the NHS. You have your GP, whom you are registered with (so if you have emergency care in another place, they can get your medical records/history off this GP), and just call up to make appointments whenever suits.
posted by djgh at 7:11 PM on September 11, 2009


Hopefully Rob Miller can now hire a better web designer: www.robmiller2010.com

You haven't seen many political websites? That's far from awful, if you grade it on the curve.

They can't all be Obama GothamGov 2.0.
posted by rokusan at 7:24 PM on September 11, 2009


Canada does not have a national ID system either. Plenty of stories about Canada handling Americans in their ER rooms. OMFG UNDOCUMENTED illegal aliens!!!
posted by edgeways at 8:20 PM on September 11, 2009


"ER rooms"

I think we've got the whole ER thing covered.
posted by Wood at 8:51 PM on September 11, 2009


Do minor urban politicians yell at presidents in that way?

"Yo, Obama, up your nose with a rubber hose!" -Alderman Barbarino
posted by Pollomacho at 8:52 PM on September 11, 2009 [3 favorites]


(CNN) -- Less than a day after Rep. Joe Wilson formally apologized to President Obama over his "you lie" outburst, a campaign aide confirms that the South Carolina Republican has raised "more than $200,000" in the wake of the now-infamous moment.

Unfortunately, I'm not at all surprised. I'm appalled at the verbal support Wilson is getting locally; and, I remain a little baffled about the clown outside of Wilson's office waving a sign as I drove by on the way to work this a.m........

And, not to mention, the financial support:

Monetary support update:
Rob Miller - $1 mil
Joe Wilson - $750,000

...At least we've moved on to more "important" things here in SC than some guy f*%ing a horse!
posted by ourroute at 10:27 PM on September 11, 2009


Wilson campaign now says it's overtaken Miller in fundraising.

posted by CunningLinguist at 1:34 PM on September 12, 2009


At least we've moved on to more "important" things here in SC than some guy f*%ing a horse!

Sounds like you all have found your new governor!
posted by Pollomacho at 9:11 PM on September 12, 2009


President Obama strongly supports Public Option in speech to Minneapolis
posted by homunculus at 11:19 AM on September 13, 2009


Houstonian:

You've showed us 3 articles. One related to the forging of credit card details (utterly irrelevant), one relating to the "Australia Card", a scheme which was defeated before it started and was never implemented, and a generic "fake ID" ring.

I'm saying it's untrue that Australia has a bullet-proof system which makes sure that everyone who receives medical care is a citizen.

Well, if you want to create an impossible standard for citizenship checks - like say "there's never any ID fraud in the country", you might have a small point. Well, that is, except we get back to the same issue that the per-capita cost we incur (even include all these terrible people with fake IDs) in Australia are still far lower than those in the US.

Dear god, it's like an illegal's buffet, and we don't even NOTICE.
posted by pompomtom at 8:35 PM on September 13, 2009


Uhhhh anyone other than Politico have this "Wilson at $1 million" story? Their track record is a little lackluster.
posted by butterstick at 7:02 AM on September 14, 2009


You haven't seen many political websites? That's far from awful, if you grade it on the curve.

The company I worked for back in 2006 created a campaign website for Mike McGavick and I did a bunch of work on it. I ended up pretty happy with the result if not the candidate.

Two weeks after the launch they scrapped it and replaced it with something that looked like someone knocked it up in their shed, as our version was "too slick". So the prevailing opinion pre Obama was that you actually wanted your website to look kind of crappy and like some grassroots plumbers and soccer mums had coded it or something.

He lost of course. Though the Maria Cantwell website was a peice of shit as well.
posted by Artw at 7:16 AM on September 14, 2009


Right. I am posting this hilarious video here because vacapinta ruthlessless (and wrongly) killed the Kanye thread last night. I don't care about the VMA either, but damn, I've never walked down a street in NYC before and have everyone I pass be talking about the same thing before.
posted by CunningLinguist at 8:01 AM on September 14, 2009


Wilson Funds Reach $1 million after 'you lie' cry, aide says

Joe Wilson has raised over $700,000 since his outburst Wednesday
posted by Comrade_robot at 8:32 AM on September 14, 2009


CunningLinguist - Meta

(Not that any good will come of it, but grrrr, that annoyed me too)
posted by Artw at 9:33 AM on September 14, 2009


Joe Wilson's Strange Friends -- White Supremacists
"One of the most enthusiastic endorsements of Wilson’s histrionics came from the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV), a group that Wilson has belonged to according to his own biographical materials.

...Who are the SCV? A once-proud organization of Confederate history buffs and Civil War re-enactors that traditionally spent its money to restore battlefields and Confederate cemeteries. By 2006, however, the SCV had been substantially taken over by an organized cadre of white supremacists who sought to turn the nation’s oldest Southern historical society into what the veteran white supremacy activist Kirk Lyons called 'a modern, 21st century Christian war machine capable of uniting the Confederate community and leading it to ultimate victory,' had seized much of the SCV’s leadership positions, the Southern Poverty Law Center released an extensive list of SCV officials who belonged to 'hate groups.'

Lyons, a key member of this new leadership, had harbored dreams of creating a seemingly benign front group for a more sophisticated version of the Ku Klux Klan. 'I have great respect for the Klan historically, but, sadly the Klan today is ineffective and sometimes even destructive,' Lyons told a German neo-Nazi magazine in 1992. 'It would be good if the Klan followed the advice of former Klansman Robert Miles: "Become invisible. Hang the robes and hoods in the cupboard and become an underground organization."' With the SCV, Lyons discovered he didn’t have to go underground after all...."
posted by ericb at 2:15 PM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


House votes to rebuke Rep. Wilson
"The Office of the House Historian said the resolution, which passed 240-179, marks the first time in the 220-year history of the House that a member has been admonished for speaking out while the president was giving an address. A resolution of disapproval is less severe than other disciplinary action available to the House, including censure or expulsion.

The resolution said Wilson's conduct was a 'breach of decorum and degraded the proceedings of the joint session, to the discredit of the House.'"
posted by ericb at 2:48 PM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Roxanne Wilson, wife of controversial South Carolina Republican Rep. Joe Wilson, said her first impression of the person who interrupted President Obama's speech to Congress last week was that he was a "nut."

Reporting from Washington - The Democratic-controlled House today voted to admonish Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.) for heckling President Obama during his healthcare address to Congress last week, heightening partisan tensions in the Capitol.

...

A USA Today/Gallup national poll released Monday found that 68% of those surveyed disapproved of Wilson's outburst.

posted by Comrade_robot at 2:48 PM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


I'm really pissed that they voted to rebuke him...it seems partisan and they have other, much more important shit to deal with.
posted by kathrineg at 4:56 PM on September 15, 2009


Well, he sort of became unrepentant after his serious breach of decorum. It was still partisan, as was the fund raising challenge that ensued, and which started with the liberals. That was a mistake. The rebuke was a mistake as well. If you are going to do this, then censure is the only thing. Rebuke is so limp.
posted by caddis at 5:05 PM on September 15, 2009


I'm really pissed that they voted to rebuke him...it seems partisan and they have other, much more important shit to deal with.

Yeah ... it took just under an hour of the House's time to debate and vote. Valuable, valuable time was wasted.

Wait, what?

It was the first time "... in the 220-year history of the House that a member had been admonished for speaking out while the president was giving an address." Yeah ... we should'a let the veiled racist tantrum slide ... let it go unnoticed, go undocumented.

What else was on the docket today?

Ah, yes, very, very important stuff -- much more "important shit":
Proclaiming Sept. 16 'The American Legion Day'.

Recognizing the region from Manhattan, Kansas, to Columbia, Missouri, as the Kansas City Animal Health Corridor, and for other purposes

To amend title 39, United States Code, to provide clarification relating to the authority of the United States Postal Service to accept donations as an additional source of funding for commemorative plaques.
posted by ericb at 6:17 PM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Or, if you prefer:
"Yeah ... we should'a let the veiled racist tantrum unprecedented breach in decorum and protocol slide ... let it go unnoticed, go undocumented."
posted by ericb at 6:22 PM on September 15, 2009


Oh, it was unnoticed and undocumented? Really?

It comes across as extremely partisan and a waste of time. The last thing we need is Congressmen sitting around rebuking each other.

I have to agree with Barney Frank:

"One of the Democrats voting 'present,' Barney Frank of Massachusetts, said, 'I think it's bad precedent to put us in charge of deciding whether people act like jerks. I don't have time to monitor everyone's civility.'"
posted by kathrineg at 7:01 PM on September 15, 2009


Carter: Wilson comments ‘based on racism’
"The former president tells a crowd that the 'You lie' outburst to Obama was part of a disturbing trend."
posted by ericb at 9:14 PM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


I have to agree with Barney Frank...

I have to disagree with Barney Frank on this one!
posted by ericb at 9:18 PM on September 15, 2009


Rep. Steny Hoyer Introduces Resolution Rebuking Rep. Joe Wilson.

The vote.
posted by ericb at 9:21 PM on September 15, 2009


WATCH: Matthews Slams Joe Wilson: He Offered A Teenager's "Definition Of An Apology"
posted by ericb at 9:30 PM on September 15, 2009


WATCH: Wilson's Wife: "I Said 'Joe, Who's The Nut That Hollered Out, You Lie?'"
posted by ericb at 9:31 PM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


"Wilson’s home-state colleague, Rep. Bob Inglis (R-SC), said Joe 'broke House rules.' Inglis added, 'That problem could easily be fixed by an apology to the House. In the absence of an apology, the House could choose to police itself through a resolution of disapproval.'"

"Last week, Sen. George LeMieux (R-FL) said Wilson 'should be censured.'"*
posted by ericb at 9:41 PM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Words can/might have consequences: Tourism boycott threatened over Wilson's 'You lie' outburst.
posted by ericb at 9:50 PM on September 15, 2009


Anyone threatening a tourism boycott to all of South Carolina doesn't understand how elections work. Maybe if he were a senator and up for reelection...but he's neither.
posted by kathrineg at 9:25 AM on September 16, 2009


I'm not sure it's fair, exactly, but I think people calling for a tourism boycott of South Carolina do understand how elections work - simply censuring or un-electing Wilson is of pretty limited effectiveness when the belief is that there is a symptomatic issue, and people out-of-state don't get a vote anyway. A boycott is a way for out-of-state people to call for SC politicians to stand up and be counted against that sort of behavior. Again, it's not exactly fair, but if it were to cause some South Carolinians to re-evaluate their voting choices based on how their elected officials are perceived by other people, and for that to cascade to other seats, not just the Representatives, then it would be effective, wouldn't it? Not even to say it would end up with more Democrats getting elected, maybe just more moderate, or evenly moderated Republicans?

Note: I don't back a tourism boycott, but I think it's a fairly simplistic view to think it couldn't be effective.
posted by dirtdirt at 11:48 AM on September 16, 2009


I meant "systemic" not "symptomatic".
posted by dirtdirt at 11:48 AM on September 16, 2009


Note: I don't back a tourism boycott, but I think it's a fairly simplistic view to think it couldn't be effective.

It might be effective, but it's cruel towards people who didn't elect Wilson and whose businesses and livelihoods would suffer.
posted by kathrineg at 12:33 PM on September 16, 2009


It might be effective, but it's cruel towards people who didn't elect Wilson and whose businesses and livelihoods would suffer.

That's like saying no business should be boycotted, because employees who had no say in company policies will suffer. It's true; they will. Who has more chance of being heard in the politics of SC - people who live somewhere else, or residents who find their livelihoods affected by a Senator's stupidity?
posted by Kirth Gerson at 3:45 AM on September 17, 2009


Well that's it. I'm not going to South Carolina. Big sacrifice there.
posted by Pollomacho at 4:24 AM on September 17, 2009


That's like saying no business should be boycotted, because employees who had no say in company policies will suffer. It's true; they will. Who has more chance of being heard in the politics of SC - people who live somewhere else, or residents who find their livelihoods affected by a Senator's stupidity?

He's not a senator, he's a representative who is not voted in by the entire state, but by a portion of that state. Boycotting the entire state is ridiculous. It would be like boycotting all the businesses in the same strip mall because you're pissed at one of them.
posted by kathrineg at 8:25 AM on September 17, 2009


Fox News publishes opinion piece: "...the right-wing political machine has gone to extravagant lengths to paint Obama as an uppity, untrustworthy, and unprincipled outsider whose very existence represents a threat to the American way of life."
posted by quin at 8:59 AM on September 17, 2009


Fox News: Left concludes we're all racists
posted by Artw at 9:10 AM on September 17, 2009


Company hosting Joe Wilson fundraising site recovers from DDoS attack

Wilson Fundraising at 1.7 million after outburst

Rob Miller: $934,154
posted by Comrade_robot at 2:49 PM on September 17, 2009


Did the White House Give Joe Wilson Everything He Wanted? In a Word: Yes
posted by homunculus at 5:27 PM on September 17, 2009


Right-Wing Conference Tells Activists To Get Their Guns Ready For ‘Bloody Battle’ With Obama The Nazi
posted by homunculus at 7:47 PM on September 28, 2009


These guys would never lynch anyone, no way.
posted by Artw at 8:01 PM on September 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


Of course they are screaming 'socialism'. They've been doing that since the 50s at least. They're not talking about economic redistribution of wealth - they never have been. They've been talking about redistribution of privilege this whole time. They called MLK a communist because he wanted blacks to have the same rights as whites, and to them that was a redistribution of the privilege that whites had 'earned'.
posted by caddis at 8:31 PM on September 28, 2009


Right-Wing Conference Tells Activists To Get Their Guns Ready For ‘Bloody Battle’ With Obama The Nazi

In 1980, this same woman published her "testimony" to urge a stop to the ERA. As a good old-fashioned woman, she gave her name as Mrs. Hubert Werthmann, from Pierre, South Dakota. So, her husband is Dr. Hubert Werthmann of Pierre, South Dakota.
posted by Houstonian at 9:01 PM on September 28, 2009


there will be blood
there's already been blood
it's a uniquely American affliction
do we blame all those revenge movies?
or are they just symptoms of a founding malevolence?

steer clear of government buildings in the near future
posted by philip-random at 9:08 PM on September 28, 2009


"steer clear of government buildings in the near future"

Wait, what?
posted by IvoShandor at 1:41 AM on September 29, 2009


do we blame all those revenge movies?

No.
posted by brundlefly at 8:12 AM on September 29, 2009


Newsmax columnist: Military coup "to resolve the 'Obama problem' " is not "unrealistic".
posted by ericb at 9:02 PM on September 29, 2009




Right-Wing Conference Tells Activists To Get Their Guns Ready For ‘Bloody Battle’ With Obama The Nazi


Newsmax columnist: Military coup "to resolve the 'Obama problem' " is not "unrealistic".


Just when I think I can't be astonished by anything the Far Right has to say, I am proven wrong. How much clearer can these people be? They are calling for someone, anyone, to shoot the President and no one in MSM (as far as I know) is calling them on their shit. Freedom of Speech works best, not when we call for suppression of rabble rousing, but when the crazy talk is ridiculed, just as cockroaches scuttle away back to their dark corners when they are exposed to sunlight. What we need is some sunlight. Preferably concentrated with a giant magnifying glass.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:30 AM on September 30, 2009


Newsmax columnist: Military coup "to resolve the 'Obama problem' " is not "unrealistic".

I really, really dislike the tendency in so much of our political discourse to accuse one's enemies of being traitors. It's unfair, it's unhelpful, and it's almost always dead wrong. This, though?

This is clearly calling for treason against the United States.
posted by EarBucket at 6:54 AM on September 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


...no one in MSM (as far as I know) is calling them on their shit...

And no Democrats re calling them on their shit.
posted by ericb at 7:45 AM on September 30, 2009


Thomas Friedman in today's New York Times:
"...I have no problem with any of the substantive criticism of President Obama from the right or left. But something very dangerous is happening. Criticism from the far right has begun tipping over into delegitimation and creating the same kind of climate here that existed in Israel on the eve of the Rabin assassination.

What kind of madness is it that someone would create a poll on Facebook asking respondents, 'Should Obama be killed?' The choices were: 'No, Maybe, Yes, and Yes if he cuts my health care.' The Secret Service is now investigating. I hope they put the jerk in jail and throw away the key because this is exactly what was being done to Rabin.

Even if you are not worried that someone might draw from these vitriolic attacks a license to try to hurt the president, you have to be worried about what is happening to American politics more broadly.

Our leaders, even the president, can no longer utter the word 'we' with a straight face. There is no more 'we' in American politics at a time when 'we' have these huge problems — the deficit, the recession, health care, climate change and wars in Iraq and Afghanistan — that 'we' can only manage, let alone fix, if there is a collective 'we' at work.

...And Mr. Obama is now having his legitimacy attacked by a concerted campaign from the right fringe. They are using everything from smears that he is a closet 'socialist' to calling him a 'liar' in the middle of a joint session of Congress to fabricating doubts about his birth in America and whether he is even a citizen. And these attacks are not just coming from the fringe. Now they come from Lou Dobbs on CNN and from members of the House of Representatives." [more]
...
posted by ericb at 7:53 AM on September 30, 2009


Newsmax removes column that called for military coup to resolve the ‘Obama problem.’
posted by ericb at 7:56 AM on September 30, 2009


Military coup fantasy is latest in trend of extremist right-wing rhetoric.
posted by ericb at 7:57 AM on September 30, 2009


Right-Wing Panel Agrees Obama Is The ‘First Muslim American President’
posted by ericb at 8:05 AM on September 30, 2009


The fringe Right has always had a persecution complex about how the big-bad-government is out to get them...

Reading this, I believe it's well past the time that we give them some seriously good reasons to feel persecuted and afraid. Maybe they won't have such romantic fantasies about an administrative military occupation when they see one parked on the front lawn outside of their militia compound.

/angry at the stupid sedition.
posted by quin at 8:38 AM on September 30, 2009


I have been thinking for a while that goal behind all of this hissy fit throwing by the right has been to encourage one of their crazies to assassinate Obama, but I have not dared to say it aloud for fear that I would look even more paranoid than usual.
posted by vibrotronica at 8:39 AM on September 30, 2009


The fringe Right has always had a persecution complex about how the big-bad-government is out to get them...

Unless, that is, the big-bad-government is:

A) Building a big-bad-wall to keep out The Foreigners;

B) Blowing up brown people (note: blowing up white people unacceptable - see Bosnia); and

C) Providing them free stuff such as welfare or free VA health care (note: providing anyone else those things unacceptable)
posted by Pollomacho at 9:03 AM on September 30, 2009


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