Address our Fiscal Crises—Reduce Military Spending
Another government shut-down and debt ceiling crisis are on the horizon. Senator Grassley is a member of the conference committee charged with submitting formal budget recommendations by December 13.
Senator Grassley knows, as does every other member of Congress and every economist, that a dollar spent on the military creates far fewer jobs than a dollar spent in education, alternative energy or infrastructure. He knows that the Pentagon has never been audited. He knows that military spending constitutes over one-half of federal discretionary spending, and is fraught with waste. He knows that the U.S. spends more on military than the next ten largest-spending countries combined.
Senator Grassley should listen to what he already knows. He must insist that a substantial reduction in military spending be the first step in addressing our fiscal crises.
We must insist that he listen to what he already knows.
[BFIA Action alert: Contact Grassley]
One of the reasons that I have been thinking over the past couple of years that Chuck Grassley may be an order of french fries short of a happy meal is that many times over the past couple years he has made some outlandish statements in public. He was at it once again Tuesday when he issued what he must have considered to be a threat to Democrats but was actually much more than that.
“Many of those on the other side who are clamoring for rules change and almost falling over themselves to do it have never served a single day in the minority,” Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) said Tuesday in a floor speech. “All I can say is this — be careful what you wish for.”
“So if the Democrats are bent on changing the rules, then I say go ahead,” he said. “There are a lot more Scalias and [Clarence] Thomases that we’d love to put on the bench. The nominees we’d nominate and put on the bench with 51 votes would interpret the constitution as it was written.”
What Mr. Grassley said in that statement is that if the Dems take away the Republican option to force everything to a super-majority which is nearly impossible to attain (thus the obstruction caused by the Republicans during the Obama presidency), the Republicans will let loose more stink bombs on the country just like a bunch of petulant 13 year old junior high boys.
Invoking the names of two of the worst justices who have ever sat on the bench, Grassley threatened “There are a lot more Scalias and [Clarence] Thomases.” Scalia pulls opinions out of seemingly nowhere, making it up as he goes. He is overtly anti-gay and thus almost always a solid “NO” on any case that might advance minority rights. Clarence Thomas votes however Scalia does. In addition, he seems to think court sessions are good places for long rests. He seems to be limited to a few words a decade and even those may be garbled. But Thomas’s wife is seldom quiet. Many times her well paid political activity has come at a time when her husband is judging a case on issues she’s involved in as a partisan. Neither sees a problem with that.
I could go on, but the point is that while Chuck must have thought he was scaring Democrats into backing off from the so-called nuclear option, he was actually admitting that Scalia and Thomas were really bad, else such a statement would prevent no threat. Thus threatening to use great responsibilities, such as approving people who will have great unchecked power in our government, as judiciously as the 13 year old boy who let’s off the stink bomb on the junior high playground.
Funny no one has stepped up to defend Thomas and Scalia as the not deserving of their new status as examples of just how bad the GOP can be. If I were Scalia or Thomas I would think I would be outraged at having been inferred to be really lousy choices. But no one has stepped up to say Scalia and Thomas are good judges not even themselves. So I guess they agree with apparently nearly everyone else. I know for sure this is one time I agree with Chuck. Thomas, Scalia equal stink bombs.
Thomas and Scalia are two great examples of just how irresponsible and juvenile Republicans can be when using their awesome power of approving appointments. Thank you for pointing this out, Chuck. BTW – where in the Constitution does it say the Senate has a filibuster? Or that to move legislation or approve nominees to anything needs a super majority. No, I do not believe that Republicans are anywhere near the arbiters of the original meaning of the Constitution Grassley thinks they are.
I can hardly wait to vote for whoever runs against him. Time for him to stay home and just use one mower at a time.
I think I will call Chuck Grassley’s office today……and ask what happens when Republicans shut down the government next week?
- will Social Security payments be made?
- what about Medicare?
- what programs will specifically be affected?
We need to know and they are the party doing it so they should tell us their plans and give us an idea how to survive it. -
If Republicans can force people to work for food stamps why can’t we just create jobs for those in poverty? We did that once before and it worked well. There is plenty of work that needs to be done and would greatly benefit society, especially infrastructure. Then they would not need food stamps. OOPS – except for those working at Walmart.
Speaking Of Walmart
How do you like their new commercial to blunt the criticism that their jobs are low paying, dead end jobs. I doubt anyone is fooled – or at least those watching MSNBC where I see that commercial come on.
If Eric Snowden Wanted To Avoid Prosecution
Why doesn’t he hook on with a Wall Street banking company or hedge fund? They has stolen trillions and caused huge damage to the country, but nobody except maybe Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders and Eliot Spitzer wants to do anything to these folks.
Republicans Two Pronged Strategy
It is looking more and more like Latinos and Latinas have shown that there is power voting for an issue, immigration. This has stunned Republicans who no doubt thought they could pry some votes with their phony “family values” crap. So Republicans have launched an interesting 2 pronged strategy looking to blunt the Latino effect by coming at it from polar opposites.
The first approach is to pretend to be in favor of immigration. This is of course so against what they truly believe that they are having a hard time promoting it with a straight face and without blowback from their own party members. Plus their version of immigration reform will be so hard as to make it impossible.
So they are still pushing what was their original approach. That is to somehow stop Latinos from voting, much as they have done with blacks over the years. We don’t hear much about this anymore, but you can bet it is still in play. Of course it is an out and out racist attempt to deny the vote to legitimate citizens and an insult not only to them but to all citizens. See why they don’t want you to hear much about it?
Ways To Improve The Economy R v D
The split between Republicans and Democrats can be illustrated by their approaches to ways to get the economy moving.
Fix infrastructure which is needs repair such as bridges, sewers, electric grid.
Make education available to all and affordable. Well trained and knowledgable work forces help create inventions and innovations.
Help poor with subsidies and training programs. They buy things that in turn creates jobs because most of what they buy is necessities made in America.
Create environment for decent paying jobs for many not ultra high pay for a few.
Create environment where most money goes to a few at the top who will create jobs by buying expensive toys. This may or may not employ people. If it does pay them lowest wages possible.
Create environment where one or two players in an industry sector dominate. Thus employees will have few opportunities to move up if there is little competition for their services.
Get involved in foreign wars. This secures foreign resources for the wealthy. Pay soldiers little.
Close borders, create jobs by linng borders with low paid guards. Also build fences to keep people from experiencing our freedom.
If I May Ask
Senator Grassley, Rep. King, Rep. Latham,
Why, if you are so anti-immigration do you not introduce a bill giving harsh penalties to those who have knowingly hired undocumented workers for the past 30 years. My guess is there are many in this state. Many of them are probably your contributors.
Also, about that wide open border with Canada………
Yet another headline showing our once respected senior senator acting like a baby in front of the nation. Tuesday, Grassley complained that President Obama “doesn’t call him anymore.” During the time leading up to the passage of the health care reform bill, Obama treated Grassley as about the most important person in the world. This, despite what most in the country could see, not only Grassley dealing with Obama in bad faith but almost with scorn. Obama bent way over to work with Grassley on health care, even asking for changes to satisfy Grassley. But Grassley would have none of it.
After treating the President like a disease, Grassley wonders why he doesn’t call? Is that the way you treat people, Senator? But this is hardly the only incident with Grassley recently that has to make you wonder if Grassley is connected to the real world sometimes. Just last week, Grassley came up with a unique answer to senate Republicans’ refusal to act on Obama nominees to the DC federal court bench. That court is designed to have 11 judges. Some of the most important and intricate cases come to the DC court, especially business cases. Why they have 11 judges I do not know, but it has been that way forever and as far as I know no one has ever questioned it.
But with the senate Republicans refusing to even give Obama nominees a hearing, Grassley came up with a novel claim when he said that Obama was trying to “pack the court” by nominating justices to fill vacant seats. He then went on to suggest that Obama leave the seats unfilled and thereby reduce the number on that court. Part of a president’s constitutional duty is to fill vacancies on courts and regulatory bodies. Duty, Chuck.
Grassley is also ramping up his criticism of an immigration bill that was hammered together by a special group of eight senators, 4 Republicans and 4 Democrats. When the bill was first sent to the Judiciary committee, Grassley offered 77 amendments to the bill. He is not planning on allowing any immigration legislation, thus making those in the limbo that exists roast that much longer.
These are just a few examples of our senior senator acting sometimes like a spoiled two year old, sometimes quite arrogant, but recently mostly like a tea party member whose only mission is to obstruct anything that the Obama administration or Democratic leadership in the senate tries to do. He certainly has disdain for what Iowans care about. He voted against expanding background checks, even though nearly 70% of Iowans want background checks expanded.
I could spend a great deal of time listing things which Grassley has done over the years. But every time I hear something anymore, it makes me wonder if he is slowly losing touch with things. This recent complaint about President Obama not calling him is almost silly. In the rough and tumble of Washington politics, he wants Obama to be his friend despite the fact that he (Grassley) has made it abundantly clear to the world that he had nothing but disrespect for Obama? His recent actions and pronouncements seem to be erratic at best. Scares me to think that this guy is in charge of some of the most important committees in Congress.
It is a shame that Grassley couldn’t have been removed from office in 2010, despite his strange pronouncements that Obama wanted to “pull the plug on Grandma” and then his denials that he said it.
We get another opportunity in 2016. But we need to make sure that Iowans understand that it is well past time that Grassley be sent home to cut his grass.
In a survey released Wednesday, Politifact noted that Republicans lie 3 times more than Democrats. This is based on a study of statements only since the beginning of Obama’s second term. Although I did not see this noted, I would assume it only included actual office holders and did not include Republican sycophants like Fox News, the Wall Street Journal and most radio talk shows.
There were of course some attempt to determine how much truth was being told during the campaign in 2012. Maybe you can remember how well acquainted Republicans were with the truth last year. About the only time Mitt Romney told the truth was the night he thought he was speaking behind closed doors and safely under the rocks to a group of his peers. That was the famous 47% speech. Beyond that it is rather doubtful that Romney ever said anything that was true. Ironically his confidence in winning was buoyed by an old hand at lying who never told Romney the truth. That of course was Karl Rove. Still funny when I think about it.
Like most of you, I think Politifact was being kind. They rated only 1/3rd of Republican statements as false. I seldom hear one that is true. Even our vaunted senator, Chuck Grassley seldom says things that can be labeled fully true. Remember his continual denial that he made the famous “pull the plug on Grandma” statement despite a video of him doing so going viral on the internet.
The very beliefs that under gird the GOP is little but a pack of lies. Whatever you call “Reaganomics” whether it be “supply-side economics” or ”Chicago school” economics or whatever, events have proven over and over that it simply does not work. So as they go on and on about how great their version of economics works, history has long since proven it does not work. As an addendum, the book that their current philosophy of austerity is based on has been proven to be based on false presumptions and misuse of data. That is the now infamous Reinhart and Rogoff book that claims that once the national debt reaches 90% of GDP the consequences get bad and feed on themselves. They had to ignore a lot of data to support that claim.
In Iowa we have some of the most productive liars the Republicans have ever produced. The aforementioned Grassley who seems to be only loosely acquainted with truth. But the top prevaricator in Iowa has to go to Governor-for-life Terry Branstad who still can’t understand the concept of NET job gains. Following close behind is Secretary of State-in-training Matt Schultz who can’t seem to grasp that he must follow laws and that his job is not to make up laws out of thin air.
It is hard to believe that Republicans do not know what they are saying are lies, or if not lies certainly misleads. However, much of what they say is based on lies and misleads pushed by a propagandistic media which is mostly corporate and mostly Republican. Our media is now a sad shell of what it once was. Slanting stories, ignoring stories and leaving out nettlesome facts are par for the course for our corporate media. Republicans can use the media’s poor performance easily as a basis for their lies rather than ferreting out the truth themselves.
Most Republicans (all I am sure) claim that the very basis of their belief system is Christianity and the bible. The Bible itself is a book that seems to be full of pretty questionable accuracy. (Methuselah really lived to be 900 years old? Really?) Even beyond that there is the practice to only support a few quite selected portions of the bible and totally ignore anything they disagree with. (Jesus really did believe that we should not purposely let our fellow man starve to death). So it seems that the very foundation of Republican values is based on untruths, misleads and omissions.
I am not saying Democrats don’t lie. But certainly not on the scale of Republicans and not with the intent of causing harm. The other thing that is so distressing about Republican lies is that they lie in order to cover their true intent on what they want to do in government. If they were truthful, they would be running on a platform of lowering wages to the lowest possible point, ending all government programs that helped individuals in any way, controlling our sex lives and ending all taxes, especially for the rich. Their true platform would be one written by the rich, for the rich. It is already that but is couched in weasel words or Frank Luntz words. Were they to tell the truth no one would vote for them. And nearly everyday more Republicans are awakening to the fact that they are being lied to and lied to and lied to.
Just last week some guy named Bob Dole woke up to that fact, noting that he does not belong in today’s Republican Party.
Wednesday, May 29 and Thursday, May 30, 2013
WEDNESDAY, MAY 29
Calhoun County: May 29 9:15 AM, Rockwell City Community Center, Room C, 424 Main St, Rockwell City
Webster County: May 29 11:15 AM, Fort Dodge Public Library, Meeting Room, 424 Central Ave, Fort Dodge.
Humboldt County: May 29, 1:30 PM, Humboldt County Courthouse, Courtroom, 203 Main St., Dakota City.
Pocahontas County: May 29, 3:15PM, Pocahontas Public LIbrary, Community Room, 12 2nd Ave NW, Pocahontas.
Palo Alto County, May 29, 5 PM Iowa Lakes Community College, Emmetsburg Campus, Campus Auditorium, 3200 College Drive, Emmetsburg
THURSDAY, MAY 30
Emmet County, May 30 8 AM, Iowa Lakes Community Colege, Auditorium, Room 16, 300 South 18th St., Estherville.
Kossuth County, May 30, 10:30 AM, Kossuth County Courthouse, Assembly Room, 114 West State St. , Algona.
A liberal-leaning Jewish organization on Sunday called on Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) to apologize for linking U.S. foreign policy to the rise of Adolf Hitler. “Senator Grassley’s Hitler comparison is absolutely inappropriate,” Aaron Keyak of the National Jewish Democratic Council said. “Grassley…
In a world that seems to give us little but scary news any more the story of the young women being rescued from captivity in Cleveland was indeed great news. Three young women that had disappeared as much as a decade ago returned to their families. Certainly this is only the beginning of a new story and no doubt there will be some trauma to their readmission to society. But this can’t possibly be anything near like what they and their families have been through. We wish them our best and we truly wish that every disappearance story ended with the victim still alive. It is hell for their families for sure.
Squeeze those kids every day and be sure to let them know they are loved. And try your best to always know where they are.
Health Spending Slows Dramatically
Little noted in the main stream media is that the pace of health care spending has slowed dramatically over the past couple years. This could mean that the disastrous calculations for programs such as Medicare are way off. Such calculations were based on double digit growth forever. We are currently flatlining on medical spending growth and it looks like a trend. Read it here and be sure to read the links in the article.
Elizabeth Warren: Student Loans At Banker’s Rates
Well look here – here is a United State Senator who is willing to have our country bet on its future rather than trying to starve our future. Elizabeth Warren’s first bill will give loans to students at the extremely low rates that the Fed loans money to banks at. This sounds almost like the same concept that drove the first GI bill. We have large group of young people who lives are being screwed with. We have major major needs in this country. We need those youngsters to get educated and not be put into debt for the rest of their lives. Then we need to take on the projects that will finally push the US back into the world leadership in so many areas where we have given it up through terrible management during the Bush years. This is a good start.
Grassley Offers 77 Amendments To Immigration Bill
Can he personally stop the flood that has already happened by clogging the hole up with paper? Chuck, did anyone tell you that the reason many of these folks are here is because the captains of industry were hiring them at low wages to bust unions? I am betting none of your amendments deal with this problem. These are the guys that line your pocket with “campaign contributions” and it has always been illegal. You are becoming a caricature, Chuck. A caricature of the totally out of touch rich politician who has no idea what goes on in his state.
The Dow’s At What?
An online advertisement really made me chuckle last week. As the Dow is breaking yet another barrier, a little online ad informs me that the rich people are selling all their stock because the economy is in the worst shape ever. Huh?
And while no one was looking, our deficits are decreasing dramatically. Unfortunately the insane austerity policy will probably stop that trend. We need to get Republicans out of the way so we can let the adults run things for at least a couple years before the next election. Too bad the house districts are so gerrymandered that Republicans can lose the conglomerate total vote for the house and still get an overwhelming majority.
Background checks could get another vote. Click here to contact Chuck so he knows where Iowans stand on this issue.
The gun lobby spent $163,142 on Chuck Grassley. He voted against a reasonable background check proposal to stop gun violence, even though 88% of Iowans support it.
Click here to join Iowans for Gun Safety on Facebook