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T-day News: Stand By…


Hey, there, sports fans, I’m in Harrisburg today for Thanksgiving with the fam.  I have to head out in a sec to see if I can scrounge up some last minute stuffing ingredients.  (bread cubes, sage sausage, apples, walnuts, celery, onions, chicken broth, egg and yes, I stuff the bird.  Deal with it, germophobes).  There’s a 22 lb fresh turkey waiting in the walk in fridge, aka The Garage.  This year, we’re going to try a countertop roasting device type thingy.  Never tried this before but my mom says I can’t use the oven because other people have to cook.  (???)  Hokay, whatever.

Anyway, I haven’t had a lot of time to gather news yesterday and today, what with packing and driving and shooting the breeze with the aunts and cousins and stuff.  So, this will be brief.  Make of it what you will.

For those readers who are still clinging to the idea that “Hillary wouldn’t have been any better”, check out Anglachel’s post on To the Right of Lincoln.  Lincoln, in this case, refers to Blanche Lincoln.  Anglachel dissects Obama’s tendency towards right wing policies.  Very convincing.  As for Hillary, she’s a tireless, dedicated public servant who the world admires, she’s doing a laudable job running the state department, gay state department employees and their families are serving with dignity, respect and equality, and she’s been a passionate defender of reproductive rights.  Sooooo, you Obama apologists are probably wrong.  She would have been MUCH better than Obama.

Matt Yglesias’ prescription for Obama’s next two years?  Do nothing and make Congress look bad.  Yep, even the guys that are on your side.  To do otherwise would be “politically toxic”.

Something slightly distinctive from these ideas that I would emphasize are the President’s myriad opportunities to not do anything. Scott Brown and Ron Wyden have an interesting idea about state waivers under the Affordable Care Act, and I think it’d be brilliant of the White House to do . . . absolutely nothing about this. Let Senator Brown try to build Republican support for it. Maybe he’ll succeed, maybe he’ll fail, maybe it’ll be an interesting intra-caucus fight, maybe nobody will care. Either way, the President will be doing something else and it’s someone else who’ll be associated with the legislative sausage making or the failure of the sausage to get made. Similarly, Senators Coburn and DeMint seem to be interested in provoking a fight over ethanol subsidies. The White House should . . . ignore this. With luck, they’ll succeed. Without luck, they’ll fail. But either way, the President shouldn’t get sucked into a political debate for or against ethanol subsidies.

The important thing is to understand that even though a certain number of Washington DC political professionals regard it warmly, the United States Congress is a widely (and in my view, appropriately) despised institution. The only way to get an ambitious legislative agenda passed is for the President to deeply engage with Congress, but deeply engaging with Congress is politically toxic. With John Boehner as Speaker of the House, no “ambitious legislative agenda” is ever going to pass so the White House should simply check out. Tell reporters to ask members of congress the questions about congress. Keep busy doing other stuff. Give wannabe congressional dealmakers space to make deals. Let congressional jerks go be jerks. If something terrible passes, veto it. Don’t negotiate. If you don’t want rich people’s taxes cut, don’t sign a bill that cuts don’t. Don’t hold meetings. Then go back to working on all the stuff in CAP’s report.

{{pause to let that sink in}}

Why can’t I get paid to write stupid things in The Atlantic?

So, let me get this straight: you’ve just lost your majorities because your policies are lame, the House is now run by a bunch of predators posing as hysterical drama queens who can’t WAIT to get their bloody hands on social security, 10% of your citizens are still unemployed and burning through their 401Ks to stay afloat and the advice you are given is to sit on your hands until 2012 because this is the best way to ensure your own re-election.  Do not attempt to champion policies that the public might like even if you may not eventually win the day.  Run against your own people.  This will look good to the voting public.

Because the voting public consists solely of people like Matt Yglesias??  Fine by me.  Obama doesn’t deserve a second term and this seems like the best way to ensure that doesn’t happen.

Ok, I really have to go stuff the bird now.  They’ll be all over my case if it’s not cooking by 10.  Slave drivers.

Leave some links in the comments.  I’ll check back later.

Don’t eat too much.  (Yeah, who am I fooling?)

33 Responses

  1. Sit on your behind and make the Republicans look bad is quite a strategy. Perhaps the creative class is figuring out that is what Mr President would do anyway so why not call it a brilliant strategy. He went to Harvard you know so whatever he doesn’t bother to do is a brilliant strategy. Yep, that’s the ticket. I do not think Mr President is going to have time to do much besides fight off Republican House subpoenas so might as well claim that Obama planned it that way all along.

  2. Happy Thanksgiving

  3. Unemployment Forecast Bad News For Obama

    Unemployment is set to remain higher for longer than previously thought, according to new projections from the Federal Reserve that would mean more than 10 million Americans remain jobless through the 2012 elections – even as a separate report shows corporate profits reaching their highest levels ever.

    At 8 percent, Obama will be in trouble. He’ll try to blame George W. Bush, but that won’t fly. The Republicans could help him substantially by nominating Sarah Palin, but I tend to think that won’t happen. And, if the Fed estimate is low — say, unemployment is at 9 percent — anything short of a Christine O’Donnell-Sharron Angle ticket would win.

    http://www.outsidethebeltway.com/unemployment-forecast-bad-news-for-obama/

    & on that happy note…

    HAPPY THANKSGIVING CONFLUCIANS! I am grateful for this little island of wit and sanity each day 🙂

    • Quantitative Easing 2 was a big success, NOT! Risk for nothing and more money to the banksters.

  4. Spammy ate my comment AGAIN. Can someone with technological wizardy see if there is a reason he’s been after me this week. Almost every time I post, he grabs it.

  5. Sitting on their hands and making the Republicans look bad was also their 2006-2008 strategy. I’m afraid that botho of these parties are disasterous for this country.

    3rd Pary, where are you?

  6. There are no defined progressive principles, no clear progressive leadership, no real progressive movement or party. It’s mostly about doing (or not doing) whatever it takes for Obama to secure a second term. Cynical strategy that mainly involves reacting to whatever Drudge in headlining on any given day.

    Salon has their latest blacklist of reporters they dislike. Most of them I don’t read anyway, but why should I even care at this point,

    • Great question. I don’t have a clue who put the list together but, unless it could be Greenwald, they probably should be on the list themselves.

    • Most of them I don’t read anyway, but why should I even care at this point.

      One of the few times I clicked on a Salon link because I don’t care much anymore.
      MIA’s include Tweety and the Olbermann, unless their % of crapitude is considerably lower than the first thirty mentioned.

  7. The missus got one of those roasters used at the local Good Will store for less than $20. works like a charm.
    She has it set up on the patio as I type, turkey goes in any minute now.
    Since the family is in H-burg have them send you updates on what Corbet does to the state. One of his promises is to dismantle the State Store system.

  8. Happy Thanksgiving Conflucians!!!

  9. RD, wishing you and all of Conf & Co, a very happy Thanksgiving!

  10. Is Obama undermining Clinton like Bush did Powell?

    Clinton and Obama Pulled ‘Bait and Switch’ on Netanyahu

    As Israel waits for a letter clarifying America’s guarantees in exchange for a proposed building ban for Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria, a diplomatic source has come forward saying that no such letter is on its way. United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton misled Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, and contrary to reports, the U.S. does not guarantee an end to the freeze, the source said.

    The source, a senior diplomat with inside knowledge of Netanyahu’s recent meetings in Washington, said Clinton made commitments when talking to Netanyahu, but later slipped out of them by claiming that she had not been speaking on behalf of U.S. President Obama – who, she said in the end, did not give his approval.

    If this report is true, Hillary’s credibility may take a hit.

    HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO ALL!

    • A preemptive strike for 2012 on Obunko’s part?
      Let Hillary go out on a limb making promises to the leaders in other countries then jerking the tree out from under her.
      Then, when her credibility goes down the toilet, fire her for going rouge and undermining his authority.
      You know the O-bots, and the print and broadcast media would eat it up with a tabelspoon.

      • It would stop her from even a fleeting thought of running in 2012 for anything.

        Hillary allowed the DNC to undermine her at every whistlestop, and now Obama is dealing with his lowest approval ratings….could he be counting on her unconditional support of the party/administration just so he can send the message, “see, she’s not nearly as great as her supporters think.”

    • If this was reported accurately, I doubt the White House and State, Obama and Hillary were acting without coordination. Will look for more information, if it surfaces. But so far nobody seems upset about it on this side of the Atlantic.

      • I wouldn’t expect anyone to be very upset on this side of the pond until later. If the report is really accurate, then acting in coordination could be considered deliberately deceiving an ally. That’s worse IMHO.

  11. Happy Thanksgiving to all!

    It’s also my birthday this year – and I had a surprise visit last nite from an admirer (20 years younger), so I’m feeling pretty spry!

    Can’t ruin the joy with those idiot Dems and their awful strategy of letting us all suffer for two more years – and then we can suffer some more when the Repubs take over everything.

    No, today is for feeling good. Turkey brunch at the S.F. Hyatt with daughter and son-in-law (always a blast) and then a turkey/birthday fest this evening with friends. You can be sure I’ll be bragging.

    I still got it, kids! LOL

    • Happy Birthday!

      My daughter’s was yesterday (falls on T-day about every 5 years)….and she’s about to deliver her second baby! It is a busy and exciting holiday for us this year.

      Starting with pumpkin pancakes at my dad’s house – so good!

    • Happy Birthday, mjames! My bday was on Kennedy day a few days ago. It also falls on thanksgiving every five years or so. I like that. It’s always a party. We’ll probably play balderdash and cranium later. Too much fun.

      Except that I rolled into Harrisburg at about 9 pm last night only to find out that because one of my cousins is in recovery, for about five years now, my mother had decided that this will be a dry thanksgiving. Um, no. I want a glass of gewurtz with my turkey. WTF? I was told to bring the turkey. I was not informed of the prohibition. Fortunately, cousin’s husband had stopped at a winery on way here. We are saved.

    • Happy birthday, mjames!

      djmm

  12. SF Gate:

    San Francisco District Attorney Kamala Harris made history Wednesday, becoming the first woman, the first African American and first Indian American in California history to be elected state attorney general.

  13. My birthday falls 3 days from now 🙂

  14. So much to be thankful for….life and all the trimmings !

    Turkey went into the oven 9am PST… a bit late because the separate stuffing for the vegans did not seem done enough to switch with the turkey earlier.

    I also made the cranberry sauce and bought the wine….so even if the rest of it doesn’t arrive as promised we will have the essentials, IMO.

    Happy Thanksgiving All

    • Mum makes this super delicious apple sauce with raspberries and blackberries and cinnamon. Not too much sugar (very little, in fact. *maybe* a scant tbsp) cos our family doesn’t have a sweet tooth. I had a little dish of warm sauce last night. Sheer bliss.

  15. “posing as hysterical drama queens”

    What do you mean, “posing”?

    Corrente’s Thanksgiving thread. I’m very thankful for the people doing “Plantidote of the Day.”

    • I think I signed up for an account or maybe it was the Rumpelstiltskin blog, not sure, so many questions 😆 !

      So, will the e-mail ask for my first born child? If so, said child is out of graduate school, married and lives several hours away????

    • The plantidote was inspired. Love it

  16. I’ve observed what Matt’s talking about… that the only way the Dems seem to advance politically these days is to keep their heads down and wait for the republicans to self-destruct. I however thought it something to be embarrassed about, not to actually be suggested out loud as a strategy. Jesus, how far they’ve fallen.

  17. Well, BO has experience in THAT (not doing anything, ie, “voting present”)

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