Open Thread Feb. 11: The Glass is Half-Full, but With What?

Filed in National by on February 11, 2018 5 Comments

Everyone who thinks protecting the downtrodden is Job 1 for the Democratic Party is super-bummed this week because it’s becoming clear that Democrats in Congress are not going to risk their jobs for a couple of million Dreamers. This, naturally, has led to more liberal grumbling about Nancy Pelosi, which in turn leads to articles that tout her ability in the backrooms, where the real work gets done.

Other glass-half-full takes on the budget deal that left Dreamers in the cold dwell on the concessions won by Democrats in exchange for their votes (the quotes are from two different stories):

[T]he plan will fund the Children’s Health Insurance Program for 10 years and community health centers for two years; increase disaster relief funding for Puerto Rico, Florida, and elsewhere by $80 billion; include $20 billion in infrastructure spending and $6 billion in opioid and mental health treatment.

The new items include $5.8 billion for the Child Care Development Block Grant program; $20 billion in infrastructure spending, including rural broadband funds, with no corresponding cuts; and a special joint committee on fulfilling pension obligations, with the results to be voted on by the end of the year.

Disaster relief for Florida and Texas. That’s Democrats who “won” that. A joint committee on fulfilling pensions obligations — not even the promise that pensions would be funded, just that they’ll hold some talks on maybe continuing to meet their obligations. This is what we “won,” people.

You know why Democrats can’t talk jobs, jobs, jobs? Because their corporate overlords are not interested in jobs, they’re interested in profits, which necessitate layoffs, offshoring and automation. They are about everything except jobs.

Leonard Pitts is probably the country’s best living newspaper columnist. He shows why again today by boiling down the last few weeks of Republican misrule to its concentrated goo:

So apparently this is now Republican Party doctrine:
You can’t trust the news media. They’re biased.
You can’t trust the CIA. They’re hacks.
You can’t trust the Justice Department. It’s unfair.
You can’t trust the FBI. It’s disgraceful.
But you can trust Donald Trump.

In short, Republicans are now a cult of personality and nothing more. This is why, to steal a line from Cato the Elder, the GOP must be destroyed. Once Democrats regain power — and they will, old white guys die with clockwork efficiency — the Republican Party must be banned, destroyed, salt sown in its fields. Don’t say it’s un-American, either — they sure as shit did it to the communists.

I didn’t watch the Super Bowl so I missed the controversial ad in which Chrysler (now owned by Fiat) sampled an MLK speech to sell trucks. That was so off-key that people are still writing about it a week later. Far from just a one-off blunder, the ad demonstrates how capitalism whitewashes radicals for posterity .

[R]adical history is misrepresented and radicals themselves are routinely coopted. With the militancy that made them both possible denied or distorted, their achievements are instead folded into the official narrative as though challenging the establishment was, in fact, the establishment’s idea all along. What was once considered dangerous and incendiary is repackaged as obvious and inevitable.

 

Finally, and I’m not including this to be catty, but occasionally you’ll read or hear someone says things would be better if women ran them. Well, maybe not. Today’s evidence is a tabloid story about the decades-long feud between two of the stars of “Sex and the City,” Sarah Jessica Parker and Kim Cattrall. Cattrall hates Parker so much that when Parker sent condolences on the death of Cattrall’s brother, Cattrall lashed out and accused her of doing so to burnish her good-girl image. Mreow! OK, I did include it to be catty, but it was irresistible!

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  1. Paul says:

    I always thought the four Sex/City characters were neurotic. Perhaps the actresses are neurotic as well.

  2. Alby says:

    @Paul: The list of well-adjusted actors isn’t very long. The need or desire for approval runs strong in just about all of them. People who don’t need approval would never subject themselves to the potential scorn and abuse any performer risks.

  3. bamboozer says:

    “The list of well-adjusted actors isn’t very long.”, works for all creative people, trust me.

  4. Alby says:

    Yeah, musicians too, in my experience, though I know lots of people who play amazing guitar but never play out because they don’t need the applause.

  5. jason330 says:

    “You know why Democrats can’t talk jobs, jobs, jobs? Because their corporate overlords are not interested in jobs, they’re interested in profits, which necessitate layoffs, offshoring and automation. They are about everything except jobs.”

    Nailed it.

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