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Friday, May 2, 2014

GOP Calls Poor Wild Animals

GOP Senate Candidate Likens Food Stamp Recipients To Wild Animals

"They're just wild animals"   Dr. Annette Bosworth

A Republican Senate candidate equated food stamp recipients to wild animals in a Facebook post Monday.    The candidate, Dr. Annette Bosworth, is running in the Republican primary to succeed Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D.), who is retiring. Bosworth shared a viral image on her personal Facebook page criticizing the food stamp program for inviting dependency.

“The food stamp program is administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture," the graphic reads.   "They proudly report that they distribute free meals and food stamps to over 46 million people on an annual basis."

“Meanwhile, the National Park Service, run by the U.S. Department of the Interior, asks us ‘please do not feed the animals.’     Their stated reason for this policy being that … the animals will grow dependent on the handouts, and then they will never learn to take care of themselves,”  the post continues.     “This concludes today’s lesson.    Any questions?”

Former South Dakota Gov. Mike Rounds and state Rep. Stace Nelson are considered the front-runners in the Republican primary, with Bosworth trailing behind.

The Republican-controlled House of Representatives passed a farm bill in January that cut about $800 million a year from the $80 billion-a-year food stamp program.

Antony C., POLITICAL PUNDIT responds to this GOP SICKO,  Dr. Annette Bosworth

Well there it is, the Republican mindset is if you start life from a generations long disadvantage where success is harder to achieve if you are born in the wrong zip code, state, or wrong gene pool, then you are subhuman.     How does it make you feel when you cast a ballot for someone like this prejudiced hater?

Do you feel superior, even though there is a 1 in 4 chance that she means you are an animal, considering Red States are the largest drain on federal funds, with per head of population the highest numbers on the SNAP program.     Do you feel contempt towards people less fortunate than you, your friends, family members and neighbors or are you deluded enough to think that that you will never be in the position whereby your tiny world of moderate financial security might never fall apart, because your job will never be outsourced or just become no longer needed and you are left unemployed or working for minimum wages and don’t have enough money left over for the niceties of life like, say food?

It’s so disheartening to think that a single person in the US thinks like this woman yet there is a major political party and a herd mentality of self loathing haters that vote for it.     Anybody who holds such dehumanizing contempt for an entire, broad swath of the population is unfit to hold any office, as like it or not, the job entails representing the interests of all your electorate and precludes a built in bias towards the affluent and despising of those that can’t donate wads of cash towards your electoral bid.

America is by and large far better than this woman and dignity even exists in poverty, misfortune or a lack of a decent education because of bias spent on schools in affluent suburbia far exceeds the miniscule amounts of funds spent in the urban areas and rural 

She’s another entitled self serving rich person, born on third base who can’t and won’t understand that America has always been skewed towards all of the privilege going to people who look just like her, people who never went a day without enough money on hand to eat, people who never put in a full days worth of work, day in and day out and still don’t make enough money to cover their bills and have the luxury of eating too.

An animal has no conscience yet this woman displays an absence of conscience, an animal has no concept of a broader community and this woman has no connection to a broader community, she is a predator and her victims are everybody who she feels are not her equal, and with delusions of grandeur, there’s probably not many people she feels equal too.

This woman has had her humanity frozen and she excludes the ability to empathize, to imagine that there by but the grace of providence and an assured future because of birthright affluence go I.

GOP fund raises off Benghazi attack 

Because no good scandal should go to waste, the National Republican Congressional Committee has enlisted John Bolton to turn the Benghazi attack into cash for Republican congressional campaigns.

“As an Under Secretary of State during the September 11, 2001, attacks, and later as Ambassador to the UN, I saw very closely what a terrorist event looks like,” Bolton wrote in an email solicitation sent to supporters this morning.   “What’s happened with Benghazi is not how it’s supposed to be handled and I think it could be a hinge point for the Obama administration.”

Then came the ask:   “Will you give $5 to support the NRCC in their goal to hold the administration accountable for Benghazi?    Your $5 will go a long way.    Americans deserve an explanation — please help out,” Bolton wrote.

This is the second such solicitation from the NRCC, which on Friday set up a fundraising page to “demand answers” about the “coverup.”    And it seems to be working — the group said yesterday that the Benghazi page was the most trafficked in the history of its website.    Sen. Lindsey Graham, who has been one of the most outspoken Republicans on the issue, ran a Web ad on the Benghazi attack last year, and the Karl Rove-linked American Crossroads has its own Web video.

As Ari Melber asked, “If the Benghazi hearings aren’t politicizing a tragedy, why is the GOP fundraising off them?”

One might also ask how electing House Republicans almost two years from now will help get to the bottom of the Benghazi scandal now, but these kinds of non-germane nationalized issues are par for the course in political fundraising, especially for House races in off years when few are paying attention to actual candidates.

The National Republican Campaign Committee is appealing to its supporters for funds in the wake of new developments about the deadly Benghazi, Libya attacks that occurred last year.

"Benghazi was a coverup," the fundraising page reads, featuring an image of President Barack Obama and then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.   "Demand answers."

GOP Rep: I ‘Absolutely’ Voted To Cut Funding For Embassy Security

Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) said today that he voted to cut funding for U.S. embassy security amid political attacks from Republicans that the Obama administration did not do enough to secure the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya that was attacked last month.

Republicans and their allies have been trying to politicize the attack — which killed four Americans, including the U.S. Ambassador to Libya — suggesting, without evidence, the Obama administration may have ignored intelligence that the attack was imminent, didn’t properly secure the Benghazi compound and is now trying to cover it up.

But hidden beneath the GOP campaign is the fact that House Republicans voted to cut nearly $300 million from the U.S. embassy security budget.    When asked if he voted to cut the funds this morning on CNN, Chaffetz said, “Absolutely“:

    O’BRIEN: Is it true that you voted to cut the funding for embassy security?

    CHAFFETZ:  Absolutely. Look, we have to make priorities and choices in this country.    We have — think about this — 15,000 contractors in Iraq.   We have more than 6,000 contractors, private army there for President Obama in Baghdad.

    And we’re talking about can we get two dozen or so people into Libya to help protect our forces?   When you’re in tough economic times, you have to make difficult choices how to prioritize this.

    For fiscal 2013, the GOP-controlled House proposed spending $1.934 billion for the State Department’s Worldwide Security Protection program — well below the $2.15?billion requested by the Obama administration.    House Republicans cut the administration’s request for embassy security funding by $128 million in fiscal 2011 and $331 million in fiscal 2012.    (Negotiations with the Democrat-controlled Senate restored about $88 million of the administration’s request.)   Last year, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warned that Republicans’ proposed cuts to her department would be “detrimental to America’s national security” — a charge Republicans rejected.

    [GOP vice presidential nominee Paul] Ryan, [Rep. Darrell] Issa and other House Republicans voted for an amendment in 2009 to cut $1.2 billion from State operations, including funds for 300 more diplomatic security positions.    Under Ryan’s budget, non-defense discretionary spending, which includes State Department funding, would be slashed nearly 20 percent in 2014, which would translate to more than $400 million in additional cuts to embassy security.

“It’s also important to note,” House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said last week, “that the Republican appropriation in Congress gave the administration $300 million less than it asked for for the State Department, including funding for security.” 

Republicans Secretly Support Obama Care or the ACA as they now call it.

A week and a half ago, when House Republican leaders realized that their own conservative members might align to defeat legislation protecting Medicare physicians from a big automatic 
pay cut, they took the unusual step of cutting them out of the tangle altogether.

While negotiations were ongoing, the Majority Leader, Eric Cantor, darted on to the House floor and, after brief consultation with Democratic leaders, cleared the Medicare "doc fix" by voice 
vote—a procedure that's typically reserved for fast tracking uncontroversial legislation.   The yeahs and nays were not recorded.    A bill that divided the GOP conference, and might very well 
have failed in front of God and everyone under the leadership's own rules, had passed the House before many Republicans even knew what Cantor was up to. 

He and other Republican leaders have been busily making amends with conservative rank and file members ever since.   Those members were understandably furious about the breach of protocol, but some were privately grateful that the bill had passed—even if they would have voted against it had Cantor not done a shady end run around them.   Everyone wants to play the fiscally responsible part but nobody wants to answer to the doctors and the Medicare beneficiary when the bill fails, which helps explain the recent thaw. 

But I wonder how many of them knew at the time, or know now, that the leaders used the same doc fix bill to smuggle a bipartisan Obamacare fix through the House uncontested.

The tweak itself is relatively minor.   It eliminates a provision of the Affordable Care Act that capped deductibles for small-group health plans at $2,000 for individuals and $4,000 for families. 

But when the Associated Press laid it all out on Sunday—including the fact that GOP leaders sought the fix at the behest of powerful business organizations—Matt Drudge freaked out and accused Republican leaders of "expanding Obamacare."

Republican leaders rejected that interpretation, noting that what they actually did was repeal a provision of the law, in a way that redounds to the benefit of small business owners. 

But Drudge has a point, too.   The change will make expanding coverage under Obamacare marginally easier.   And to the extent that it helps small business owners, it weakens the already 
splintering coalition of interest groups and movement leaders who support repealing the law in its entirety. 

Indeed, now that Obamacare has taken root we're seeing the green shoots of conservative acquiescence cropping up all around it.   A full month ago, the House passed three minor ACA tweaks—to address the concerns of Christian Scientists, volunteer firefighters, and companies that employ veterans (who are already provided health coverage by the government). 

At around the same time, 18 House Republicans broke a silent embargo against the law by signing on to a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius asking her to make 
minor improvements to in the interest of easing enrollment.   As enrollment mounted, the center of GOP opposition began to shift away from those who believe enrollment ought to be discouraged, or at least not facilitated, toward those who take their duty to their constituents more seriously.

 R.I.P. Republican credibility:  Why their latest blatant lies show they’ve given up

From Obamacare to Keystone, here's why they're no longer a legitimate entity that deserves to be taken seriously 

We’ve long argued that the Republican Party is no longer a legitimate governing party.   Never mind whether we agree with them on any particular policy issue, they are simply no longer a 
serious organization.

That fact was underscored again this week and over the weekend, in light of the release of two different official reports, one from the U.S. State Department on the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline project and another from the Congressional Budget Office on the economic outlook in light of the Affordable Care Act.

Never mind whether you agree with the Republican position on either of those two policies.   The fact that the party feels it necessary to blatantly lie about what’s in each of those reports, 
specifically with regard to “job creation,” in order to advocate for their own policy positions, underscores yet again that these are simply not serious people are worth being taken seriously anymore …

Keystone XL Jobs Lie

If it receives approval from both the State Department and the White House, the proposed Keystone XL pipeline would ship dirty tar sands oil from Alberta, Canada, down to the Gulf of Mexico to be shipped overseas.

After years of claims by Republicans that the proposed Keystone XL pipeline would  “create tens of thousands of jobs,”  we now have some hard numbers on that, at least from the U.S. State 
Department, if you choose to believe them.

Last year, while pushing for the KXL, House Speaker John Boehner released a statement claiming that the pipeline “will create over 20,000 direct jobs and 100,000 indirect jobs.”    On Friday, 
as the State Department released its  “Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement” on the project, Boehner once again released a statement reiterating his previous claim that the 
pipeline would bring “more than 100,000 jobs.”

The trouble is, that’s not true. At least according to the actual State Department report, which was the occasion for Boehner’s Friday statement.

The report is long and in many pieces, so, naturally, it’d be too much to ask of the speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives or anybody in his office to actually read it before issuing a statement about it.   Nonetheless, it comes with a reasonably brief Executive Summary [PDF] (just 44 pages) in which it speaks directly to the issue of jobs in relation to KXL.

In the section on “Economic Activity During Construction” (page 26), the report estimates that “Construction spending would support a combined total of approximately 42,100 jobs throughout the United States for the up to 2-year construction period.”

That sounds pretty good!   Until one bothers to keep reading.   “A job consists of one position that is filled for one year.   The term support means jobs ranging from new jobs (i.e., not previously existing) to the continuity of existing jobs in current or new locations.”

Approximately 16,100 of those temporary jobs would be “direct jobs at firms that are awarded contracts for goods and services, including construction” and the rest, “approximately 26,000,” 
would be the result of “indirect or induced spending.”   In other words, that would be “goods and services purchased by the construction contractors and spending by employees working for either the construction contractor or for any supplier of goods and services required in the construction process.”

So, in addition to people who work for suppliers (where they may already be employed prior to the approval of KXL), people who work at restaurants or motels near the construction site or for any of the suppliers, also count as “jobs” in this estimate. For example, the report cites “ranchers providing beef for restaurants and construction camps.”

Fair enough.  Two years of jobs for those folks, many of whom will be able to continue working in the jobs they already have (so those jobs are not “created,” per se, by the construction of the pipeline.)

After it’s built, however, either one or two years later, according to the very next section of the Executive Summary titled “Economic Activity During Operations,” the report states quite clearly [emphasis added]:

Once the proposed Project enters service, operations would require approximately 50 total employees in the United States:   35 permanent employees and 15 temporary contractors.

That’s it.   The Keystone XL Pipeline will offer 35 permanent jobs in the U.S. for the life of the pipeline, according to the U.S. State Department’s final analysis.

That’s a far cry from Boehner’s claim on Friday, after the report came out, that KXL would bring “more than 100,000 jobs … with it.”

Of course, Boehner’s hardly the only one in the Republican Party disingenuously making such unsupported claims about KXL.   Last year, GOP Chairman Reince Priebus took to Facebook to claim 
that “The Keystone Pipeline would create thousands of jobs.”  Last week, he took to Twitter to claim that “721,000 construction jobs have been lost, #Keystone remains unapproved.”

Perhaps Priebus was referring to something other than Keystone with that 721,000 number — it’s unclear from his tweet — but if his message was unclear, that would be no accident.   His quarter 
of a million followers on Twitter heard it loud and clear.   He, like Boehner, was willing to lie to them in order to advocate for the pipeline — a pipeline that would result in 35 permanent American jobs.

Again, whether you support or oppose the pipeline doesn’t really matter.   Whether you feel temporary jobs are good enough, that’s fine.   But knowingly lying about the jobs that it will or won’t “create” is what we find grotesquely offensive here.   

Obamacare Jobs Lie

This one was a doozy.   On Tuesday, a new report [PDF] on the economic outlook for the U.S. through 2024 was released by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.   Republicans couldn’t 
wait to mischaracterize, lie about what it said.

As usual, Fox “News” led the charge on behalf of Republican officials (who repeated the lie all day), claiming that “ObamaCare could lead to loss of nearly 2.3 million US jobs, report says.”
The National Republican Campaign Committee (NRCC) was just one of dozens of other official GOP mouthpieces to echo the completely misleading claim.

For the record, other non-right-wing outlets also badly mischaracterized the report.   The Republicans were very happy about that, and couldn’t be bothered to correct the error.

No, the CBO did not claim Obamacare will lead to the loss of either 2.3 million or 2.5 million jobs, as the Republicans lied all day on Tuesday.

Viewers of Fox think they are being told the truth.    They are just that dense.

As the Washington Post’s Fact Checker columnist Glenn Kessler explained in awarding three out of four “Pinocchios” to those who deliberately mislead about the CBO’s projection on ACA-
related employment numbers, “No, CBO did not say Obamacare will kill 2 million jobs.”

“This is not about jobs,” Kessler explains. “It’s about workers — and the choices they make.”

Here’s what all the nonsense is about.    Buried on page 123 of the 182-page CBO report, it states: “CBO estimates that the ACA will reduce the total number of hours worked, on net, by about 1.5 percent to 2.0 percent during the period from 2017 to 2024, almost entirely because workers will choose to supply less labor — given the new taxes and other incentives they will face and the financial benefits some will receive.”

In other words, because premium subsidies and other incentives will be available, some workers will eventually be able to choose to not continue working, simply because they need the healthcare coverage afforded by their employment.

“Specifically, CBO estimates that the ACA will cause a reduction of roughly 1 percent in aggregate labor compensation over the 2017–2024 period, compared with what it would have been 
otherwise,” the report says.   “The estimated reduction stems almost entirely from a net decline in the amount of labor that workers choose to supply, rather than from a net drop in 
businesses’ demand for labor, so it will appear almost entirely as a reduction in labor force participation and in hours worked relative to what would have occurred otherwise rather than as an increase in unemployment.”

As White House spokesman Jay Carney explained after the report was released on Tuesday: “At the beginning of this year, we noted that as part of this new day in health care, Americans would no longer be trapped in a job just to provide coverage for their families, and would have the opportunity to pursue their dreams,” he said. “This CBO report bears that out, and the Republican plan to repeal the ACA would strip those hard-working Americans of that 

This is about people choosing to not work as long in life or as many hours.   (Moreover, those jobs could then become available to others still seeking more work.) In short, the CBO’s numbers were not about the loss of jobs, at all. It’s really not all that complicated, unless you’d like to lie to the American people about it.

Now, you are welcome to disagree with the CBO numbers, or Carney’s or Kessler’s or our interpretation of them. (As usual, you don’t need to simply trust us. We’ve given you the links to the actual reports. Read them and decide for yourself.)   You are welcome to think it’s an outrage that people might choose to work less when they are ill, because they don’t have to keep working in order to pay for healthcare.   You are welcome to hate Obamacare all you like and demand its complete repeal, just as you are welcome to call for the approval of the Keystone XL pipeline, if you like the idea of shipping the world’s dirtiest fossil fuel product across a continent of drinking water in order to ship gas to China.

But when you’ve got to lie, repeatedly, about demonstrable, independently verifiable facts, then you are not a legitimate advocate that deserves to be taken seriously.

The Republican Party has given up on advocating seriously for whatever policy positions they believe in.   They are far past that, and have now simply taken to lying in hopes of scamming 
Americans into voting for them and buying into their policies.

That is not the earmark of a serious policymaking organization, and it is for that reason that we — sadly — no longer regard the Republican Party as a legitimate political body.

That’s not good for America or for Democrats, for that matter. But it just happens to be the sad truth.

The right wing talking point machine creates the lie and Fox spends days and weeks repeating the lie, even for weeks after it has been discredited.    Republicans eat this garbage up and don't seem the least bit bothered by being lied to.    There are brainwashed ignorant republicans who even today will tell you John Kerry was a traitor and that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.   There is no hope for these simple minded members of the GOP and that is just the way the Grand Old Party wants to keep it.

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