Blog Credo

The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.

H.L. Mencken

Friday, March 24, 2017

Amateur Hour

Today...maybe...I guess...Republican lemmings will plummet off the cliff that Paul Ryan and Donald Trump have led them to.  Most of them will wind up voting for a bill that an overwhelming majority of Americans disapprove of. Precisely the same sort of partisan loyalty that we are seeing from Devin Nunes will sweep dozens of GOP members of Congress off the precipice.

The desire to have a vote without really knowing what is in the bill is a great example of how Republicans have been poisoned by their own bullshit.  Seven years ago, Nancy Pelosi said that people would have to vote on the bill to find out what was in the bill.  What she meant was that the system had to be in place - providing health care for people - before you could really know how it would affect you as an individual.  Fox turned this into a lie that no one knew what was in the bill because it was a secret and/or SOOOOOOOO long.  Obamacare was debated and negotiated over for a full year.

Trumpcare/Ryancare is being forced through the system so fast there is no reasonable ability of the CBO to score it.  This is categorically not what happened with ACA, though there are a considerable amount of right wing lies on this score.    The reason it is being forced on the House is that Trump "has the attention span of a tsetse fly with a concussion."  He's bored with health care ("Who knew it could be so complicated?") and wants to get back to winning and being the best and playing golf and pretending his father and various wives really loved him.  The fact that this bill is the exact opposite of what he assured his ardent fans seems not to faze him.

Paul Ryan made the decision to push AHCA so he could get larger tax cuts in his plan to destroy the New Deal/Great Society state.  Despite his reputation as a "deep policy thinker" Paul Ryan is really no more than a typically conservative who spend too many hours as an adolescent pretending he was John Galt and masturbating to fantasies of Dagny Taggart.  He is able to project a sort of hang-dog sincerity that masks an almost sociopathic desire to strip people of government benefits, including the very sort of benefits that sent him to college.

While you should never underestimate the ability of GOP Congressmen to swallow the party line, I would be surprised if AHCA passes today.  At some point, the combination of naked self-interest and ideological rigidity will peel away quite a few votes.  It will be interesting to see whether - if the bill is headed to certain defeat - GOP members will change their votes to "no."  Why have a vote for this shit sandwich on your record?  So, it either passes by a vote or three or it might go down by 50 votes.  And if it passes, it dies in the Senate.

There you have the 2017 GOP.  They control the White House, the Senate, the House and are about to control the Supreme Court.  They have trampled the institutional and governing norms that ran Washington for centuries.  They have campaigned for 7 years against the ACA.

And they can't achieve shit.

Good job, Republicans.  Good job.

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