Outgoing Speaker of the House John Boehner called some congressional colleagues “false prophets” for raising unrealistic expectations about what could be accomplished during recent sessions:
“Absolutely, they’re unrealistic!” he exclaimed. “You know the Bible says beware of false prophets. And there are people out there, y’know, spreading noise about how much can get done. I mean this whole idea about shutting down government to get rid of Obamacare in 2013 — I mean, this plan never had a chance.”
Asked if Cruz was one of the “false prophets,” Boehner smirked and became coy, saying, “I’ll refer you to a remark I made at a fundraiser in August, in Steamboat Springs, Colorado,” where the GOP leader called the Texas senator a “jackass.”
Boehner was vague about just what he means to do with the weeks he has left:
The outgoing speaker pledged to try to “get as much finished as possible” before he steps down. “I don’t want to leave my successor a dirty barn,” Boehner said. “So I want to clean the barn up a little bit before the next person gets here.”
Having taken a swipe at one Senate jackass, one wonders what “clean the barn” might mean for false prophets in the House.
(Cross-posted from Hullabaloo.)
Moral Mondays leader Reverend William J. Barber II, president of the North Carolina NAACP, at St. James African Methodist Episcopal Church in Asheville, NC Friday as part of the Daily Kos Connects. Part 2 delves into strategy for moving forward.
It is my habit to refer to the extremists as the T-party (not tea party or Tea Party), but I never explained why. It comes from the Sam Neill line from Jurassic Park.
In John Boehner, T-party just claimed another kill. If Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal is any indication, T-party is still hungry:
“That’s one down, that’s 434 more to go,” said Jindal, a former congressman. “Folks, it is time to fire everybody in D.C.”
Frank Bruni comments on John Boehner’s conflict with his “pathologically self-destructive party” over his reluctance to force another government shutdown has led to his demise as Speaker of the House:
Get better, Kim and Carmen.
We undercut our own message, Barber told the crowd yesterday, when we argue that their policies are morally wrong and then call our extremist opponents “right.”
Moral Mondays leader Reverend William J. Barber II, president of the North Carolina NAACP, spoke yesterday at St. James African Methodist Episcopal Church in Asheville, NC as part of the
Daily Kos Connects weekend that continues today. Barber gave an informal talk covering some old Moral Monday ground, including the history of fusion politics and what he calls “the 3rd Reconstruction.” Plus some history behind the use of “left” and “right,” labels Barber believes progressives should avoid. For fusion politics to succeed, we have to reject arguing on our adversaries terms. (Anat Shenker-Osorio would be so pleased.) Our opponents’ policies are neither “right” not “conservative,” but “extremist.”
But to roll back the South’s new Jim Crow, the change has to come, Barber argued, from the grassroots, not from Washington. People ask him to come to their state to lead their movements. He will not. But he will come and help teach them how to lead their own.
Barber expanded yesterday into how blacks and whites and LBGTQ and other progressive partners must work together to avoid opponents’ divide-and-conquer trap. “When they ask, ‘Is it about class or race?'” Barber smiled. “It is.”
Fusion politics means we have each others’ backs. The press might come to you because your issue is racial justice. But we can demonstrate solidarity publicly by answering instead, “I want to talk about LBGTQ issues.”
The man is focused.
(Cross-posted from Hullabaloo.)
One passage that is getting less attention than those more easily spun as partisan is the section on fundamentalism:
All of us are quite aware of, and deeply worried by, the disturbing social and political situation of the world today. Our world is increasingly a place of violent conflict, hatred and brutal atrocities, committed even in the name of God and of religion. We know that no religion is immune from forms of individual delusion or ideological extremism. This means that we must be especially attentive to every type of fundamentalism, whether religious or of any other kind. A delicate balance is required to combat violence perpetrated in the name of a religion, an ideology or an economic system, while also safeguarding religious freedom, intellectual freedom and individual freedoms. But there is another temptation which we must especially guard against: the simplistic reductionism which sees only good or evil; or, if you will, the righteous and sinners. The contemporary world, with its open wounds which affect so many of our brothers and sisters, demands that we confront every form of polarization which would divide it into these two camps. We know that in the attempt to be freed of the enemy without, we can be tempted to feed the enemy within. To imitate the hatred and violence of tyrants and murderers is the best way to take their place. That is something which you, as a people, reject.
Or we would like to think so. Some Iraqis might argue otherwise.
People will hear that passage according to their own proclivities. With the international press focused on ISIS and on Al Qaida, most Americans will hear it as a warning against Islamist terror. But “any other kind” and “simplistic reductionism” are not limited to those.
The thing that most people miss about fundamentalism is this: fundamentalism is not about what you think, but how you think. Having spent many years in the American South among religious fundamentalists, having watched the Midas Cult’s callous disregard for the common good in blind obeisance to its economic ideology, and having on occasion encountered left-wing fundamentalists, I find they all have this in common: you are either with them or against them. They are rigidly ideological, doctrinaire, single-minded, obsessed with purity, and not much fun to be around. They see the world, as the pope said, in black-and-white terms: “the righteous and sinners.” They simply disagree about who is whom.
Loss of the ability to laugh at yourself is the first warning sign of fundamentalism. So when it comes to religion, or to economic or political ideology, yeah, they are pretty humorless, too.
The challenges facing us today call for a renewal of that spirit of cooperation, which has accomplished so much good throughout the history of the United States. The complexity, the gravity and the urgency of these challenges demand that we pool our resources and talents, and resolve to support one another, with respect for our differences and our convictions of conscience.
A couple of weeks ago, some volunteers showed up to do some building and grounds work at the local Democratic headquarters. Overnight, the front doors had been spray painted with “Death to the DNC.” Pretty inside baseball. Your typical wingnut would have used “libtards” or “Democracks.” Check your fundamentalism.
(Cross-posted from Hullabaloo.)
Early voting is open at the Buncombe County Board of Elections (77 McDowell St.) for the City Council Primary. GET OUT THERE! You know what to do.
Pope Francis grins and groans? Have at it.
Pope Francis’ speech to Congress is scheduled for 10:00 a.m. EDT, shortly after this posts. I hope I’ll be somewhere I can watch it live. I wonder if would-be next president of the United States Donald Trump will be live-tweeting it? He might be too busy practicing being presidential.
Or not. Trump v. Fox News erupted again yesterday:
.@FoxNews has been treating me very unfairly & I have therefore decided that I won't be doing any more Fox shows for the foreseeable future.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 23, 2015
Trump’s tweet was a lame attempt at doing The Doors’ Jim Morrison, à la “Hey, man, we just did the Sullivan show.” But he knows how to hit below the belt, right in Roger Ailes’ bottom line. Politico reported yesterday:
Pope Francis arrived in the United States yesterday and the Midas Cultists were out somewhere rending their Brunello Cucinellis. Their media toadies reacted as if the pope had stolen the Cucinellis they don’t have to rend. It might be useful this morning to revisit just why (2013, emphasis mine):
In his strongest remarks yet concerning the world’s economic and financial crises, the pope said, “Money has to serve, not to rule.
“We have created new idols,” Pope Francis told a group of diplomats gathered at the Vatican on May 16, and the “golden calf of old has found a new and heartless image in the cult of money and the dictatorship of an economy which is faceless and lacking any truly humane goal.” According to Pope Francis, a major reason behind the increase in social and economic woes worldwide “is in our relationship with money and our acceptance of its power over ourselves and our society.”
Several postmortem analyses this morning on the Great Whitebread Hope’s presidential ambitions (emphasis mine):
Short of support and cash, Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin, saying he had been “called to lead by helping to clear the field,” announced Monday that he was suspending his bid for the Republican presidential nomination.
Wow. On his way off the national stage and he comes up with a euphemism worthy of a Mike Huckabee.
The Guardian has this:
With a reputation for selling ruthless conservatism to traditionally Democratic voters, Walker was leading the primary race not just in Iowa but in national polling too, easily upstaging the awkward-looking Jeb Bush and Donald Trump’s ominous security guards.
But by the time Walker took the reluctant decision to suspend his campaign on Monday – just 71 days after its formal launch – the dream of this tough new breed of purple state Republicanism lay in tatters.
Walker’s campaign didn’t even last long enough for Walker to file a single federal election commission (FEC) report, the Guardian notes. His human bobblehead announcement speech was perhaps a portent that there was never enough there for Walker to go the distance.