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The Expansionist
Monday, October 22, 2012
246 Filibusters = Obama Policies Blocked, Republican Policies in Place
I sent the following message today, via feedback form, to the Obama Campaign:
"137 filibusters in 2009-2010 — and 109 since 2011 — means that OBAMA'S policies are NOT in place and cannot be blamed for the economic mess we suffer. You MUST stop letting the Republicans pretend that they cooperated in bipartisan harmony, and the Democrats could have passed anything they wanted in 2009 and 2010. That is a lie. Why are you not CALLING them on that shameless, brazen LIE. You can LOSE unless you tell the people that what we have today are REPUBLICAN economic policies, not Democratic, because Republicans have used the filibuster 246 times during your Presidency to thwart everything you tried to do. ATTACK: demand an END to the filibuster, "holds", and everything else that has given us MINORITY — Republican — rule."
I don't think the general public appreciates in the slitest how many filibusters the Republicans have launched since President Obama took office. People know that Congress has been gridlocked, but the Republicans have, astonishingly, been successful in blaming both parties for a failure to work in bipartisan fashion, when it is only the Republicans who have refused to cooperate. Democrats have bent over backwards in trying to win Republican participation in finding real answers, broadly acceptable, to the Nation's shared problems, only to be kicked in the face over and over again. Is it any wonder that the Democrats are a toothless tiger? Almost all their teeth were kicked out when they were smiling nicely at the enemies of humanity, the very center of evil in the Western world, the Republican Party.
The U.S. Senate website has an information page about how many filibusters were mounted in each 'Congress' (two-year session of Congress between elections). It shows that in the 111th Congress (2009-2010), there were 137 filibusters. There were only 91 attempts to break those filibusters, which means that 46 times, the Democratic majority didn't even TRY to overcome Republican obstruction. Of those 91 tries, only 63 succeeded. 63 from 137 = 74 times Republicans succeeded in blocking Senate action: 54% of the time (74 ÷ 137).
In the 112th Congress, which is still going, the figures, so far (Congress can still act — or refuse to act — until just after the New Year, January 2nd), the numbers are 109 filibusters, 68 votes, 37 cloture votes that did shut down the filibuster; 109 – 37 = 72 times the Republicans succeeded in blocking Senate action, which = 66% of the time!
So why aren't the Democrats placing the blame for Congressional gridlock and failed economic policies exactly where it belongs: on the Republicans? Why is the President not proclaiming to the world:
My policies are not in place. My policies are not to blame for the economy, because MY policies have been blocked by Mr. Romney's party. What we are suffering from now is REPUBLICAN economic policies: just let the Recession play out, and everything will be fine. Let every company that might go bankrupt, GO bankrupt. Let everyone who might lose their house, LOSE their house. That's the way the free market works, and it is the best of all possible economic systems, so you just have to rise during the booms and fall with the busts, because you can't do anything about the free market — because if you intervene, it's no longer the free market, and the blessings of the free market are so great that we have to accept the bad to get the good.
At the very end of the last debate, Mr. Romney made the astonishing admission that "Government doesn't make jobs." His campaign has asserted this over and over again, and it's even on its website. The assertion is even more astounding on the website: "Hard-Working Americans Are What Create Jobs, Not Government". Think about that: "hard-working Americans" — not the idle rich. But Romney wants to cut taxes on the idle rich!
Out of one side of his mouth, Mr. Romney says, "Government doesn't create jobs." Out of the other side of his mouth, however, Mr. Romney says "I will create 12 million jobs". How, if Government cannot create jobs? Oh, that's easy, just "get Government out of the way" and the magic of the marketplace will bring prosperity to everyone! If you believe in magic, vote for Romney. If you know that all "magic" is a con, vote against "magical" solutions to real problems.
The unfortunate fact is that the last time Republicans were in charge of the Federal Government, they pushed Government so far out of the way that it did not regulate the insanely, irresponsibly risky behavior that produced a housing bubble and financial bubble, both of which burst, each making the other's fall faster, farther, and longer than either would have experienced alone. We can't get Government out of the way, because crazy, irresponsible rich people will destroy the economy again.
Such people, thru their servants in Congress, have worked to prevent us from reining in the abuses that produced the Great Recession. Republicans have willfully done everything they could to OBSTRUCT my policies for the express purpose of prolonging the Great Recession — which they CAUSED in the first place — and deliberately hurting the working poor and middle class, so they could blame me and get this black man out of the White House.
Don't be fooled. Republicans WANT ordinary people to be miserable. They want the poor and middle class to lose their jobs, lose their healthcare, and lose their houses, because Republicans are MONSTERS who cannot feel good about their lives of plenty and luxury — and indolence — unless other people are crushingly poor. They can't be happy unless YOU are UNhappy. And that goes for poor and lower-middle-class people in Red States at least as much as in Blue States. If anything, plutocratic Republicans hold the poor and economically distressed people of the Red States in GREATER CONTEMPT because they are so easily misled, by race-baiting, into voting against their own OBVIOUS interests. Don't play their game. Crush THEM, for a change.
If the Democrats REFUSE to make that case, it is very hard to believe anything but that they want to LOSE this election because they see horrendous things happening in the next year or two, for instance, (1) a second, worldwide, (Very) Great Depression that no one in the White House or Congress can do anything to stop, because its causes are outside our borders, and outside the reach of U.S. power; or (2) a nitemarish great war that Israel will start and attempt to drag the U.S. into, against Russia and China, with cyberwarfare attacks reaching deep into the heart of the U.S. "homeland" (that Fascistic term), wreaking vast disruption to power systems, banking networks, air-traffic control, and everything else that can be disrupted via the Internet — in every American home, business, and government office at every level, that is connected to the web. Perhaps security experts have advised that Israel will not pay any attention to U.S. demands that they not launch an attack that could produce World War III; and that the measures taken to date and that can be implemented before Israel attacks, will not protect us from cyberattacks of the most devastating sort. So it's better NOT to be in power when the you-know-what hits the fan than to be held accountable for things no one in the U.S. Government can prevent.
If the Obama campaign permits Republicans to continue to blame "Obama's policies" for the prolongation of the Great Recession, you need to be worried. Very worried. Because the Obama campaign could win by a landslide, but seems not to want to.

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