As I visit the lefty blogs on my blogroll every now and then, I am often distracted from posting here, so involved as I might get with whatever topic is at hand, and having little time at the start. But once in a while such a visit provides a topic for me upon which to opine. Such is the case with today’s topic. I checked out “A Conscious Outpost” and found Ron all a twitter over an essay entitled “Goodbye To All That: Reflections of a GOP Operative Who Left The Cult” by some guy named, Mike Lofgren, a so-called congressional budget staffer for the GOP. I haven’t been able to find anything that spells out what his duties were exactly, and that could mean that he got coffee and donuts for those doing the real work, handed out towels in the bathroom or did some serious filing. Who knows? Perhaps someone can find that out. All I found on Google was a plethora of lib sites equally impressed with his essay as was Ron.
But as I read the piece, very little of what he wrote, sounded like a conservative wrote it. That’s not to say that a conservative couldn’t be fed up with the Republican Party. Indeed, most are. But the gripes sound so very…lib-like. So could this “Republican staffer” have actually been a liberal, or a supporter of Democrat policy?
Like a lib, I saw a lot of accusations, but very little in the way of documentation and evidence. Certainly no arguments as to why what he saw as problems were actually problems, or even real events.
But let’s look at a few, if I can hold it to that.
”Both parties are captives to corporate loot.”
This is a common charge, and a favorite of Ron’s. But like Ron, he really gives no solid examples of a party or politician really being controlled by any corporate entity or lobbyist. This is not to say that such examples can’t be found, as there have been stories of such catering to donor interests. It’s just that he doesn’t provide any.
But of course, the GOP is the worse of the two, which he then fails to truly demonstrate outside of charges that are almost cliché.
”But the crackpot outliers of two decades ago have become the vital center today: Steve King, Michele Bachman (now a leading presidential candidate as well), Paul Broun, Patrick McHenry, Virginia Foxx, Louie Gohmert, Allen West. The Congressional directory now reads like a casebook of lunacy.”
It would be nice if he would give an example of lunacy by any of them. Frankly, each of the GOP candidates have said one thing or another that I’d prefer to see clarified. But “lunacy”? Such rhetoric demands explanation.
”…but I could see as early as last November that the Republican Party would use the debt limit vote, an otherwise routine legislative procedure that has been used 87 times since the end of World War II, in order to concoct an entirely artificial fiscal crisis.”
Excuse me, but as I saw events unfold, it was the an artificial crisis being put forth to justify raising of the debt limit. Remember? Social security payments, soldiers pay, and other such things could not be guaranteed should that fateful date arrive without raising the limit in order to meet our obligations. The opposition party, the Republicans, insisted that no such crisis was at hand, that we could meet our obligations for at least several months and beyond with cuts to spending. The “crisis” was manufactured by the left.
”Then, they would use that fiscal crisis to get what they wanted, by literally holding the US and global economies as hostages.”
Funny how when the prez ain’t getting’ his way, it’s the right who are holding anyone hostage. What of their inflexibility?
”Far from being a rarity, virtually every bill, every nominee for Senate confirmation and every routine procedural motion is now subject to a Republican filibuster.”
Far from being a rarity, virtually every bill, every nominee for Senate confirmation, and just about everything else the left is pushing is worthy of a forceful blockade. This whining about what may be no more than elected representatives looking out for the best interests of their constituents and the country leads to a common lefty gripe that shows up in Lofgren’s footnotes.
”But already in 2009, Mitch McConnell, the Senate Republican leader, declared that his greatest legislative priority was - jobs for Americans? Rescuing the financial system? Solving the housing collapse? - no, none of those things. His top priority was to ensure that Obama should be a one-term president. Evidently Senator McConnell hates Obama more than he loves his country.”
I can’t speak for McConnell, but by insuring Obama is not re-elected, one can improve one’s chances of solving all those issues. The fear, and a legitimate fear at that, is that by a second Obama term, those problems will surely worsen. Obama is seen as the biggest impediment to improving that national situation. So, focusing on removing the biggest impediment is indeed the adult option.
Get a load of this:
” A couple of years ago, a Republican committee staff director told me candidly (and proudly) what the method was to all this obstruction and disruption. Should Republicans succeed in obstructing the Senate from doing its job, it would further lower Congress's generic favorability rating among the American people. By sabotaging the reputation of an institution of government, the party that is programmatically against government would come out the relative winner.”
This is hardly representative of honest reporting. Such anecdotal evidence adds little to the credibility of the author and screams for names in order to prove the allegation. As it stands, it is patent crap. He calls it a cynical tactic, but not as cynical as suggesting it happened at all, or that the tactic is actually one that is actually employed. It has all the tone of your basic conspiracy theory. A few lines later he says this:
” These voters' confusion over who did what allows them to form the conclusion that "they are all crooks," and that "government is no good," further leading them to think, "a plague on both your houses" and "the parties are like two kids in a school yard."”
…apparently forgetting that he said this:
”Both parties are captives to corporate loot.”
Pot, meet kettle.
This is getting lengthy and I’ve barely scratched the surface. I’ll have to hit this in at least one more post. But read the piece and you’ll see what I mean about Lofgren’s likely true political leanings.