Thursday, December 18, 2014

GOP in Charge - Let the Looting Begin!

Mindless Bigots Bail Out GOP One Last Time
Welcome to tea party America -- stupid required.
Handing over the country for a dime on the dollar

Relax. This blog is still standing.

MeanMesa understands that the phrase "tea party America" has already been "bandied about" plenty during the corresponding "two party" terror campaigns during the election cycle. Now that nothing is left in view but the carnage languishing in the shadow of the horrible nightmares of what the future holds, we probably need to split off the term's "hyperbolic drama effect" and take a cold, reasoned look at what to expect now that the pestilence has been unleashed.

Perhaps the most positive "twist" which can applied to our unfortunate situation is that its solution lies not at the hands of the timidly invisible and largely self-castrated Democrats but at the very hands of its perpetrators. Yes, this is MeanMesa's "big picture," and it's "big" enough to already be allowing more than a little cleansing sunlight onto the wreckage.

Heh, heh.

Now the sold out GOP is facing an obstacle that not even every dollar the Koch brothers have can move so much as an inch. It now has to govern.

This has been a commonly used "talking point" for some time, and the phrase itself may have attracted a few understandable "barnacles" from its over use in the irritatingly relentless chorus of progressive laments. However, it would be an error to simply disregard the full implications of this idea because it has been so misused to express that dark political prophecy.

Let's just say that this "imaginary ogre" will be "material enough" to leave its foot prints in the mud.

Out in the light. 

All the "usual suspects" comprising the villains in the right wing's list of tawdry road weary nemeses -- the Democrats, the liberals, the black guy in the Oval Office, the "takers," welfare queens, the Communists and the "fallen from faith" -- have not been eliminated by the "majestic" new power delivered to the Congressional Republicans from above.

Further, Boehner and McConnell shouldn't be expecting much "enduring" support from the oligarchs above them or the brain addled mass of the GOP base below them, either. The oligarchs presume that their obedient new Congressional puppets will deliver what they want -- Keystone, on line gambling, legalized derivatives trading and so on. The political sentiments of the literacy challenged GOP base is now, officially, exclusively media driven, so it will require the oligarchs' media corporation to convince them that they are, in fact, getting what they wanted.

It matters almost not at all that the GOP's "majestic" mandate amounted to the around 19% of the registered voters who even bothered to go to the polls. [Voter turn out in the mid-term was 38%.]

There are, actually, a few "severely educationally challenged" Congressional Republicans who now, hours after the election victory, are still remaining ecstatic with the prospect of 24 months of unbridled, unregulated looting. That glow will probably fade pretty quickly. MeanMesa suspects that most of its shine has already passed.

What's "closing in" on this bunch? Just remember the phrase from above: "They have to govern."

Republican geriatric war monger, Gramps McCain, could barely contain a rare,  premature ejaculation when the wing nuts' obedient media characterized him as a "formidable opponent" to the President in his new role as Chairman of the Senate Armed Forces Committee. "Formidable opponent?" The only unsettling part of this is that Americans heard this and, even in a time of war, accepted it as, well, quite acceptable.

The "elephant" party has, indeed, seated itself in the Congress. Unlike the last time when "majority" was confused with "interloper," and the gang stole the House leadership with a minority of votes, this time the oligarchs have actually persuaded enough of the electorate to create a real majority. They're in.

The weary staff at the "election crimes" think tank bunkers should be starting a well deserved two week, alcoholic binge. They should grab their bonus checks, change their names and high tail it out of town before the Congressional hill billies realize what a pickle their electoral "success" has left them.

Congress Re-Enters the "Ethereal Plane"
"Ain't it great!" Up is down -- news at ten

Congress "returns to normal" [image source]
The country has officially entered a period MeanMesa likes to describe  as the "interregnum etherealeum." The "confrontation for power" has now become similar to a motley collection of lower chess pieces timidly approaching a well positioned opposing queen.

It will be a shadowy, surrealistic interruption in the democracy populated by saboteurs and other forlorn derelicts spinning uncontrollably in a looting festival the likes of which have never even been any part of the worst nightmare encountered to date.

The bizarre script will be driven by those carefully groomed voters who have been metamorphosed [GOOGLE: v: changed or caused to change completely in form or nature] into an uncontrollable horde, hypnotized into a grotesque dream like state where their embarrassingly inauthentic "opinions" have now become entirely fabrications of talking points and propaganda.

We can presume, very predictably, that the new Congress will lurch into action immediately once seated -- that is, at least as quickly as they can get their "cash registers ready for business." The Keystone proposal will dribble forth from the House and the Senate at once, but that multi-billion dollar "gift" to their patrons, the Koch brothers, will be only a beginning.

Even before January when the power officially switches, emboldened Republicans have already produced a disease laden $1.1 Tn budget thoroughly laced with an agonizing collection of "wish list" pay backs which will return the $500 Mn invested in the election ten fold to the owners of the Party.

All the President's "economic recovery" plans which have been routinely savaged by the petulant elephants for the last six years will be resurrected -- in a gaudy, yet ghastly, new form, of course -- and inflated to the status of "new, bright, shiny objects" designed to evoke "pre-programmed" sighs of relief from the now thoroughly indoctrinated, information challenged, exhausted electorate.

Those would be the cold, hungry, frightened, desperate ones waiting to vote in the rain as they try to remember exactly what FOX promised them.

The probable "list" is readily at hand.

There will be a GOP version of an "infrastructure bill." There will be a GOP version of a "jobs bill." There will be a GOP version of an "immigration bill." There will be a GOP version of "tax reform bill." The GOP has already prepared an impressive clutch of innocuous "deregulation dream bills" which have, so far, only languished desolately in the great tea bag "hope chest" amid reams of other despicable, rag eared, "un-passable" legislation.

The promise issued from the right wing think tanks is that Americans will see each one of these insults as evidence proving the "breaking of the President's strangle hold" on the mighty engines of the free market at the hands of bold, "right thinking" conservatives. The promise continues. The Americans won't see the trucks pulling away from the Treasury on their way to the Koch Industry's money bins, Adelson's casino cash bunker and the warm, cheery smiles of the over fed hedgies -- and plenty of other places where "illegal profits" and tax dollars don't belong.

The task of re-framing every one of these disasters into a "picture of sweet success" will fall to the hired guns in the think tank cellars. Dangerously, amid all this rampage of looting, national economic statistics may, actually, show temporary signs of improvement with "flag issues" such as GDP increases and better unemployment numbers, but hidden below that intentionally visible, rosy, "media coated" surface will be a rate of national debt creation so rapacious that it will make George W. Bush's economic policy look, well, conservative.

Most of this economic improvement had already been accomplished by the Obama Administration, and a frankly shocking economic resurgence was already "surfacing" in a quite impressive way when the tea bag voters threw the Democrats out of power. Those existing policy victories must now be re-packaged into some sort of arcane "I told you so" justification which can vindicate the looting that has already begun.

The pitch will inevitably be something along the line of: "Republicans are the ones who know how to recover from the depression. After all, the GOP is the 'business party.' Let's given them a chance to fix things since everything is in such a mess after Obama screwed it all up."

 Welcome to the GOP's 2014 Debt Festival
All you'll need to wear is a nice hat...
Keep an eye on your check book...

At least exploiting those "flag improvements" may have been the plan. However, presenting them to the American public accompanies a grave danger for the oligarchs. Someone might slip and compare the theatre props to the accomplishments visible in the actual Obama record at the same metric.

Oh well, there's no rest for the wicked. The jolly passengers in the GOP's clown car have had to "live through" plenty of humiliating "up is down" moments before. When actual facts are lurking in the brush, ready to pounce on the gaseous talking points, things get even dicier for the reactionaries.

It may take another truck load of high grade plutocratic "lipstick" to make these synthetic "successes" look like anything more than re-painted frog farts. These embarrassing "little imperfections" in the narrative will have to be thoroughly ironed out before the clown car savages begin to argue about which one of them accomplished all of this in the 2016 campaign debates.

Naturally, a price must be paid for all the "joy" which is to accompany this fraudulent,  unsteady blunder as it "moves forward." How great a price?  Recent history offers up a vast economic junk yard to suggest a prudent scope for this chilling estimate.

The George W. Bush Presidency increased the national debt at a rate of roughly $1.25 Tn per year. [Although Bush W's "raw deficit" increases usually amounted to around $0.5 Tn annually, the accompanying, less immediate but unavoidable, "inertial spending" was staggering.] Importantly, the "cash" attained from this astounding rate of "debt creation" was not particularly spent on any noticeably material projects, but instead, seemed to be "frittered" away in small, easily absorbed, little "under the radar" packages which wound up largely buried in the off shore pockets of the 1%.

It's important to remember that the "little proposal" the breathless, frantic, Bush Treasury Secretary, "Smilin' Hank" Paulson, handed to Congress in 2008for the bail out loaded around $20,000 of debt on every man, woman and child in the country. Adding in the "doodads" required to make the counter parties whole doubles that to at least $40,000.

If the wounded billionaires had still been insisting on cash currency for the ransom payment, the printing presses at the Fed's mints would have gone up in smoke.
Everything's swell.[photo]

While the "W's" reign was notable for its largess, it was, when viewed in a more historical perspective, only the "most recently visible tip of the iceberg" which began its modern "slow roll" in the ocean of red with President Reagan -- now famous for ushering in the first trillion dollar "national debt break through" decades ago.

While no one -- including the candidate -- in the McCain team had any idea what damage that "victory" might have inflicted on the economy, Mitt Romney's Presidential "promises" included a "job creator feeding plan" as part of his Republican platform policy which outlined his plan to increase the debt by around $4 Tn in his first term -- all after months of a painfully tedious terror campaign based on "out of control" government spending.

With all these "inconvenient truths" setting the stage for the GOP's next phase of "enlightened austerity," we can expect the "liberated" Congress to be shuffling spending bills to the Oval Office in wheel barrows. And, these are not going to be "nice, touchy, feely" spending bills which might be designed to purchase anything Americans might want, either.

 The President in Action:
Explaining the VETOs
MeanMesa's Mid-Summer's Night Dream
Don't expect too many joyful forest wraiths
 to be dancing and singing after the mugging...

Cauchemar Grotesque [image source]
Just about every American boy, sooner or later, dreams of "putting words into the mouth of the President." MeanMesa is no exception. Since there is little prospect of MeanMesa being invited to the Oval Office to watch these VETO's and listen to the President explain them, we'll just have make do with a little "MeanMesa fiction."

So, let's just indulge our innocent fantasies and put together a few scenes we think will soon be unfolding in the Oval Office.

To set the stage, MeanMesa would like to introduce just a couple of convenient "stage props" which might serve to help set the scene and "get things rolling."

Item 1: A very plush, Presidential style, crimson red, self-inking, indelible stamp that says:


in two inch Helvetica font with a little line under it where the President can sign.

Item 2: A completely average finger nail file -- one which might be purchased at a Dollar Store -- which the President can be using so as to appear totally uninterested -- if not out rightly flippant -- when "someone" from Congress shows up with the latest "looting order" for him to sign into law.

Item 3: Another Dollar Store item -- a spray can of really obnoxious air freshener. This would be the kind that gives one a gag response after a good meal.

There we have it. Nothing too dramatic or gaudy, just subtle little stage props which can, as they say on Broadway, "set the mood." Strictly out of courtesy, a nice box of  extremely cheap and rough Presidential tissue [the Dollar Store sells tissue so brutal it leaves open rashes and bruises...] might be a nice touch for the inevitable nose bleeds the Congressional crackers will experience when the black man simply dares to say "no."

Now we can start our unbridled, creative imagining at "full power." Let's script a few fictional examples of just how we'd like the President to handle these scenes.

[MeanMesa's internationally famous good taste has already eliminated a few of the most tempting "possible stage props"  from the plan. There was the idea for a "sloping chair" which renders comfortable seating impossible, but all of these dramatic vignettes will work best with the Congressman standing. And...the President sitting. Another -- clearly "over the line," of course -- element of MeanMesa's vitriolic fantasy would be a Zulu warrior outfit, complete with tribal drums and a spear -- perhaps similar to the one photo shopped onto the President as a part of the cravenly bigoted program of image destruction employed by the wing nuts for the last few years -- which Barack Obama might don for a VETO ceremony. Still, certain aspects of that image continue to have an alluring appeal.]

Lights, Camera, Action!

In each case, the latest "bipartisan" looting bill has been examined by Presidential staffers, cost estimates prepared by the CBO and the Administration's economic policy experts and the thing is laying on the Oval Office desk. The video camera is set up to record the scene and a few of the President's "VETO comments." [More about this later...]

Remember -- the corporate media won't cover any of these Presidential comments. The "news" coverage of each of these VETOs will amount to the typical, maudlin outrage about the President's "obstructionism."  The whiny "coverage" will be 1/8" deep and a mile across, inundated with "soft ball" corporate interview questions and mindlessly drawled into the network broadcasts by one of the GOP's "good ole' boy" Congressional spokesmen or some "hired gun" pundit.

The counter narrative to this well orchestrated media pretense of "fair and balanced" will, as usual, fit into a thimble. There might be contradicting voices out there somewhere, but the billionaires will make certain that they never get close to a microphone.

The faint hope of an exception to this media black out was mentioned in a recent MeanMesa post: VETO Dreams. While a string of VETOs of these Republican "gift bills" can be reasonably anticipated, something unexpected might accompany them.

The oligarch think tanks are already "hot to trot" in the predictable "re-imaging" media project in response to these VETOs, order for this premeditated propaganda stream to get traction -- even among the true believers and other hill billies in the GOP base -- the President's explanation must also be broadcast.

If Obama is to be villified by the plutocrats for what he is saying or thinking, publicly revealing what he is saying or thinking must, of necessity, be made part of the scheme. His comments, in this case, his explanation for the VETOs, would, through this approach, be made not only interesting, but hence, also available for the scrutiny of FOX's "discerning audience!"

While this may seem to be a very minor consolation amid all the inevitable PR fury, it could -- if properly executed by the President -- rapidly become a public opinion "game changer." Importantly, the "part of the game" which it might be changing will not be limited to the public audience who normally listens to the President. Because of the controversy, that audience could easily expand to include a politically "actionable" percentage of the voters who still think Ted Cruz is the Second Coming.

Just think of it as a "strategic opportunity" to "pop the bubble" and "crush the blind ambitions" of the fact free crowd. With this targeted audience firmly in mind, the formidable persuasive powers of Barack Obama might turn out to be even more potent than the billionaires' $500 Mn when it comes to establishing the subsequent national sentiment.

Let's select one of these very likely VETOs and imagine what the "script" might look like in the hands of the President. The example chosen for this fictional narrative is the GOP infrastructure bill.

A MeanMesa Fiction

The scene is the White House Briefing Room.

Where's the press? [photo]
The President: "Where is everybody? Didn't you announce that we were going to VETO this infrastructure bill today?"

Press Secretary: "Well, yes and no."

The President: "What do you mean? Aren't the Senate and House Democrats coming over for the photo op?" Looking around, he added, "And, where's the White House Press corps?"

Press Secretary: "None of the corporate networks are taking our calls. RT said they would be glad to run the video as filler if "you know who" okays it, and the NPR guy asked if we could reschedule for tomorrow afternoon. AlJazeera hasn't gotten back to me yet."

The President: "What about Pelosi and Reid? Didn't you tell them this was happening this morning?"

Press Secretary: "Mrs. Pelosi said that she would be very interested in watching the video if it went on to television, and Senator Reid's office is blocking my calls."

The President sighed: "I guess we should just go ahead anyway. Is the video equipment ready?"

Press Secretary: "Yes, sir. We're all ready to go whenever you'd like to start."

The President sat down behind the small desk, checking to be sure the VETO stamp was positioned in plain view. He reached for the single ball point pen resting beside the official copy of the legislation. Holding it up, he turned to the Press Secretary and asked "Just one pen?"

Press Secretary: "Yes, sir. I had the usual collection ready to go, but no one seemed very interested in having a momento from the signing." The Secretary reached over to straighten the President's tie as the room's camera lighting flickered into life. The video technicians quickly checked meters and sound, finally nodding to the Press Secretary that all was ready. The almost empty room was suddenly strangely silent.

The President began. "Tonight I am going to VETO the legislation from the Congress which would have authorized $400 Billion of Federal money for infrastructure spending. I know that Americans -- at least those living beyond the Washington belt way -- have been waiting for the Congress to do something about the growing problems with out nation's infrastructure for years now, and I want to explain why I am not signing this bill into law.

The first reason is because the bill allocates most of this tax money in an unfair way to states with Republican state governments.

Yes, the red states have infrastructure needs just like everyone else, but the majority of the tax money being allocated here came from blue states. Every year the red states receive more Federal tax money than they send to Washington. What the Republicans who now control the Congress have done is to take even more Federal money -- money paid in taxes by blue states -- and concentrated it on infrastructure projects in states with Republican governments.

Although we may have grown accustomed to this kind of abusive allocation of Federal tax money, it isn't fair. It also isn't good for the economy.

The second reason I am not signing this bill is because it's a bad deal.

Economic experts in my administration as well as those in the Congressional Budget Office have analysed the cost and the value of the projects proposed by this legislation. What they found was that if these projects were built with Federal tax dollars, the value of the projects when completed would not justify ever building them.

These are not 'make work' projects. Federal infrastructure spending must be directed at projects which will encourage economic growth for the entire country, and that means that projects built this way must contribute to the economic well being of the entire country, not just states with Republican governments.

The third reason this bill doesn't deserve to become law has to do with jobs. We should insist that massive infrastructure spending like this will create lots of good paying construction jobs all around the country. This bill is written to hand the contracts to construction companies which contributed to Republican Congressional campaigns in the 2014 mid-term election.

Federal infrastructure projects must be governed by need and not by politics. This isn't that kind of an infrastructure bill. This is a bill that unfairly hires the contractors who helped finance the GOP candidates and who intend to pay American workers minimum wage to build roads that will only be worth 60 cents on the dollar when they are built.

This isn't going to happen while I am President.

Thank you, and God bless the United States of America.

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