Tuesday, December 15, 2009

No Joy in Mudville

QOTD, Marcus Aurelius, philosopher and writer (121-180)

Live a good life. If there are gods and they are just, they will not care how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by. If there are gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them. If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will live on in the memories of your loved ones.
Do you think the gods will welcome Joe? Or is that a rhetorical question?

In which a good progressive Senator pretends to believe in fairies. "Just clap your hands . . ."
Lieberman forcing further compromise of reform Dec. 14: Senator Ron Wyden joins Rachel Maddow to talk about the latest compromises made in the hope of convincing Senator Joe Lieberman to allow a vote on health reform and whether progressives can expect anything meaningful in the ultimate bill.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Josh Marshall: How To Deal With Joe

I mentioned this in my post last night. But the key issue senate Democrats now have in dealing with Joe Lieberman isn't his position on the the Medicare Buy-In. They need to confront the problem that Lieberman isn't negotiating in good faith. No surprise that Republicans are giddy with what a problem he's creating for Harry Reid & Co. But in my conversations with them, it's as clear to them as it is to anyone else that he's now basically mocking his Democratic colleagues by moving the goal posts every time a new agreement is struck.

This puts the Democrats in an extremely difficult, politically untenable position. Yes, they need 60 votes. But they're not going to be able to hang on to Lieberman's vote long enough to get the bill passed. That now seems unquestionably clear.

People who say that the Dems should just move to reconciliation don't necessarily realize the difficulties involved -- either procedurally or politically, in terms of losing even more Democratic votes. Personally, I'd like to see them try it. But I don't know if it's possible.

Until a couple days ago I was close to certain a health care bill would pass. I still feel relatively confident one will simply because the Dems just don't have any choice but to pass one. Once it is passed, if it is, it's definitely time for the Democratic caucus to strip Lieberman of all the benefits he receives as a member of the Democratic caucus. But that doesn't accomplish anything at the moment. The only path I can see for the Dems is that they need to try to put 60 votes together with Sen. Snowe. Yes, that sounds crazy to me too. But I think she actually has a set of policy priorities that could be met. I don't think that's true with Lieberman. So further negotiating just means more game-playing.

BarbinMD (DK): It's All Your Fault

Was there ever any doubt?

MATTHEWS: Uh, let's talk about this thing with Harry Reid and Lieberman. I call him "Joe the bummer" as in "Joe the plumber," because he's brilliantly timing this thing. 'I'm not for this, I'm not for the public option, now I'm not for the buy-in on Medicare,' the H-55. He's just killing these guys.

FINEMAN: Well, I talked to his spokesman today, I said, look, I'm going on Hardball, give me your side of the story. Okay, their side of the story is, it's a principled thing, there's many parts of the bill he believes in, the Medicare buy-in is an add-on because there's already subsidies. And the guy gave me a lot of plausible stuff. Okay. And I half believe it. I'm sorry ...

MATTHEWS: What's the other half of your beliefs?

FINEMAN: The other half is it's personal with Joe, not with Obama, 'cause don't forget that Obama, the President, supported Lieberman in the fight in the party in Connecticut. It's the grassroots left of the Democratic Party ...

MATTHEWS: That enjoyed his torture.

FINEMAN: That enjoyed his torture and this is payback to them. Obama, excuse me, the President's caught in the middle here. That's my take on it.

MATTHEWS: So he wants Markos Moulitsas to take a hit.

FINEMAN: He wants Moulitsas, he wants Firedoglake, he wants all those people who rode around on the bus of the challenger, who defeated him in the Democratic primary.

So there.

And this is the thumb-sucking baby that Harry Reid is caving to.

Lieberman tosses principles to abuse filibuster Dec. 14: Steve Benen of The Washington Monthly talks with Rachel Maddow about the use and abuse of the filibuster in the Senate and what can be done to return Congress to simple majority-rule.

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1 comment:

  1. At his blog, sgwhiteinfla said: "And I can promise you this much, liberals and progressives will not support a health care reform bill without a robust public option BUT kicking Lieberman's ass to the curb is very likely to fire up the base. Its time to drop the dead weight that is fucking up all our legislation. And overtly it can be a warning to the other jack asses in the me first caucus like Ben Nelson. Being a Democrat doesn't mean somebody has to agree with every single piece of legislation, but they for damn sure better not be standing in the way of up and down votes on legislation that has been on the Democratic platform for decades."