Monday, April 22, 2013
"Words for Senators Who Voted Against Background Checks? Dastardly Lily-Livered Spineless Jellyfish," a short piece by Will Durst at Truthout.org, is a short piece denouncing those in the Senate who helped scuttle the bill allowing for universal background check on gun purchasers:
"And now for a few choice words about the recent Senate vote which scuttled universal background checks on gun purchases. And the first three of those words are… Yellow-Bellied Cowards. Here’s a couple more. Gutless Craven Chicken-Hearted Invertebrates. Dastardly Lily-Livered Spineless Jellyfish with the moral compunction of inbred Piranhas crowded into a too-small tank filled with liquid meth.
"That giant arrogant pimp known as the NRA should be laughing hysterically after its lackeys trashed the ephemeral spirit of compromise that had settled over Washington like a soft dawn mist. 90% of Republicans voted against an issue 90% of the American people support. A bipartisan bill that was so watered down, it was translucent. Leaked moisture all through the Senate chamber to a depth of a half-inch. Would have easily supported 2 schools of guppies.
"The Senators that deigned to speak before scurrying down their greasy little wormholes to bunk in the nether regions of hell, whined that pro-gun forces punish politicians for votes, while pro gun-control forces don’t. Nobody mentioned the right thing to do or keeping automatic weapons out of the hands of felons or making the country or our schools safer. You know, their job.
"The NRA, itself worried about being primaried from the right by other gun associations, encouraged its well-compensated hookers to compete among themselves to see who could lie most outrageously. Numerous Senators claimed the bill would lead to a national gun registry even though the very bill they spoke of included provisions to specifically prohibit such a thing. Perhaps it needs to be spelled out in simpler language like: 'Gun Registry-Bad. Not Good. No-Go. Not Going to Happen.'
"Besides, exactly what is wrong with a national gun registry? You have to register a car. Most cities mandate bicycles be licensed. You need a card to take a book out of a library for crum’s sakes. Proving that some people are much more comfortable with guns than they are books. Which is part of the problem.
"In what was surely meant as an inside joke, Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn complained the bill would raise taxes. Why stop there? And child pornographers will camp in your back yard practicing Shariah law with uncircumcised goats riddled with Chinese bird flu.
"This time the NRA may have overreached. Perpetrated an outrage too far. A revulsion too great. Could very well have created its own Frankenstein monster. 90% is a big figure. You’d think even the most casual of voters might tend to remember when someone turns their back on the country, jumps up and down on a litter of new born puppies then parties. And it would only take a committed few to throw their allegiance to candidates who pledge loyalty to the nation rather than a lobby that focuses on weapons of mass destruction.
"Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal wasn’t kidding. The GOP’s path is clear. It is doomed to be the rich, white guy, anti- science, pro-gun, stupid Party. Destined to slowly strangle on its own gurgling incoherencies until it is no longer comprehensible or relevant. Couldn’t happen soon enough to a nicer bunch of rich white guys. And their grinning gun-toting treacherous minions.
"Five time Emmy- nominee Will Durst performs his new one- man show “BoomerAging: From LSD to OMG” every Tuesday at the Marsh, San Francisco. Go to themarsh.org or willdurst.com for more info.
(Our essays on the DINOs are here --> http://www.criminalizeconservatism.com/2013/01/blue-dogs-and-other-dinos.html, http://www.criminalizeconservatism.com/2013/01/blue-dogs-and-other-dinos-part-ii.html, and http://www.criminalizeconservatism.com/2013/01/blue-dogs-and-other-dinos-part-iii.html)
As CBS reported, "The bipartisan Manchin-Toomey amendment, a background check expansion devised by Sens. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., Pat Toomey, R-Pa., and a handful of other lawmakers, earned only 54 votes, falling six votes short of the 60-vote threshold," and "A slew of other amendments, including the assault weapons ban, a ban on high-capacity magazine clips, and a GOP-sponsored alternative, also failed to gain the necessary traction."
CBS also noted that "In the end, four Republicans voted in favor the Manchin-Toomey amendment, and four Democrats voted against it, excluding Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., who switched his vote from yea to nay for procedural reasons.
"Of the Democrats who voted against the amendment, Sens. Max Baucus, D-Mont., Mark Begich, D-Alaska, Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., and Mark Pryor, D-Ark. all are up for election next year in 2014 in "red" states, barring Heitkamp, who isn't up for re-election until 2018.
"But the pattern is not universal: Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., a "red state" Democrat, voted in its favor. Of the Republicans who voted for the measure -- Sens. Susan Collins, R-Me., Mark Kirk, R-Ill., John McCain, R-Ariz., and Toomey -- only Collins is up for re-election next year. She, Toomey, and Kirk all represent Democratic-leaning states."
One pattern we see however, is the revival of the DINO, the Democrats In Name Only, in killing legislation against their patrons' interests -- the same political dinosaurs that helped scuttle the Health Reform Bill into a corporate-friendly piece of...legislation.
From Maryland to Mississippi, and from States as dissimilar as Illinois and Hawaii, DINOs (Democrats In Name Only) have flourished. (http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democrat_In_Name_Only).
Politics has been called an honorable profession by John Kennedy and has also been described as necessarily "hard ball" by Bill Clinton, but the limits to the viciousness of the game determined by the players, who are also the rules makers.
We've discussed DINOs before, but we need to study the question from a different slant: that we should be pleased by their slowly diminishing numbers - at least of the Blue Dog variety (http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_Dog_Democrats) - but waiting on retirement and the demographics of the aging of the GOP ranks should be coupled with recruiting promising Progressives to challenge the DINO, and we're remiss there.
Robert Reich looks at the demographics of "Begich, Baucus, Pryor, and Heitkamp:
"My first reaction on hearing of the Senate’s failure to get 60 votes for even modest measures to regulate the flow of guns into the hands of people who shouldn’t have them, such as background checks supported by 90 percent of Americans, was to be furious at the spinelessness of the four Senate Democrats who voted against the measure (Mark Begich, Max Baucus, Mark Pryor, and Heidi Heitkamp), as well as the Republicans. And also with Harry Reid, who wouldn’t lead the fight on changing the filibuster rule when he had the chance.
"The deeper message here is that rural, older, white America occupies one land; younger, urban, increasingly non-white America lives in another. And the dividing line on social issues (not just guns, but also abortion, equal marriage rights, and immigration reform) runs between the two.
"Yes, I know: Plenty of people who are rural, older, and white aren’t regressives on guns, abortion, equal marriage, and immigration. And plenty who are urban, younger, and non-white are. My point is that if you want to explain what’s happening in America on these non-economic issues you have to understand what’s happening to the nation demographically — and why the demographic split is important.
"Begich, Baucus, Pryor, and Heitkamp may be Democrats but they’re also from rural, older, white America. That land has disproportionate political power in the Senate, and a gerrymandered House — which may not bode well for immigration reform over the next few months, and suggests continuing battles over “state’s rights” to determine who can marry and when human life begins. Over time, though, older, rural, white America is losing ground to a nation becoming ever younger, more urban, and increasingly non-white — a fact that threatens the former so much that it’s in full backlash against the forces of change."
For Democrats and for those who usually vote Democratic, their consolation is that while the Democratic Quislings fewer in number, the battle in the Republican Party is also over the imbalance of right-left political theory - but it's a full-blown Civil War over there.
The advantage of the unlimited wealth held by the Conservatives' sponsors over the self-evidenced truths of the non-Conservatives will continue as it always has to enable the Right to continue to chip away at our democracy so effectively: unless emergency tax measures confiscating the assets in a sound way and increasing the income tax to 95 percent (http://truth-out.org/buzzflash/commentary/item/17920-income-taxes-do-not-fully-reflect-the-low-taxation-on-the-rich-in-the-us) and Conservatism is criminalized, help to the Poor and Middle Classes will be very slow in coming.
A few references for further study:
“Women who seek to be equal with men lack ambition.”