“Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don’t have brains enough to be honest.” -Ben Franklin
On the very day Barak Obama was sworn in in 2009, instead of celebrating the fact that America had reached a point in time where we could resoundingly elect our first black President, a small group of Republicans were meeting to take the new President down, and the country with it. The strategy session has been recounted in ‘Do Not Ask What Good We Do: Inside the US House of Representatives’, a book by Robert Draper.
Mitch McConnell and John Boehner weren’t in attendance - politicians willing to compromise have become anathema to the new order of things; instead, there were the likes of Eric Cantor, Kevin McCarthy, and Paul Ryan, the so-called “Young Guns”.
A handful of conservatives, fifteen in all, commandeered by a group of political punks, made the decision that night – they would not allow our government to function.
The gathering was allegedly organized by conservative “wordsmith” Frank Luntz, a guy who literally leads the Republican Party around by the nose, telling them what to say and when to say it. And they obey.
Here are a few examples from a 2006 “Republican manual from Frank Luntz”:
Never say/ Instead say:
- Tax Reform / Tax Simplification
- Inheritance/Estate Tax / The Death Tax
- Drilling for oil/ Exploring for energy
You get the idea. (That slight of tongue actually works on their base.)
But what was discussed at that meeting on January 20, 2009 was not some silly word game; instead, fifteen people were deciding to stop our government from functioning. From the Huffington Post:
“The Republicans had agreed on a way forward:
Show united and unyielding opposition to the president’s economic policies. (Eight days later, Minority Whip Cantor would hold the House Republicans to a unanimous No against Obama’s economic stimulus plan.)”
We finally, fully understand the radical, foolish intransigence that has thwarted this President’s every attempt to pull us out of the Bush era mess we found ourselves in. And here are the main players:
- Cantor Quits Debt Limit Talks Over Revenues in the Deal [New York Times, 6/23/11]
- Cantor Rules Out Closing Tax Loopholes To Reduce Debt [New York Times, 7/7/11]
- Cantor Pulls Plug on Grand Bargain That Boehner Was Working On With President [Politico, 7/11/11]
- Cantor’s Attempts to Undercut Boehner Hurt Debt Negotiations [Los Angeles Times,7/11/11]
- Cantor Pushes Massive Medicare Cuts Without Any Savings From Revenues, a Poison Pill Approach [The Hill, 7/12/11]
- Cantor Takes Hard-line Position Against McConnell’s ‘Last Chance’ Option [Weekly Standard, 7/13/11]
criminals politicians in attendance:
Jeb Hensarling, Pete Hoekstra, Dan Lungren
Pete Sessions, Tom Coburn, Bob Corker
Jim DeMint, John Ensign, John Kyle
And of course, no steaming pile of Republican dung would be complete without Newt Gingrich, who told the group:
“You’ll remember this as the day the seeds of 2012 were sown.”
Here’s my school of thought on this little bit of malfeasance, just FYI:
trea·son noun \ˈtrē-zən\
Definition of TREASON
1 : the betrayal of a trust : treachery
One of the most dispicable characters in all of this is Fred Barnes, Executive Editor of the Weekly Standard who, while knowing full well what transpired at that meeting, has written articles during Obama’s Presidency such as:
“First, Do No Harm” Feb. 16, 2009, where he stated (my emphasis):
“Two facts all but forced Republicans to adopt the zero option. Partisan zeal wasn’t one of them. Republicans were ready to be pawns in a bipartisan game.”
Enemies of the White House, Mar. 16, 2009, he wrote:
“…just last week, the faint outlines of a center-right coalition in opposition to Obama’s policies–and increasingly to Obama himself–began to emerge.”
Barnes is an insult to journalism; in fact there are words for his type:
Shill, plant, stooge…
“…a person who publicly helps a person or organization without disclosing that he has a close relationship with that person or organization.”
Can a “journalist” have any closer relationship with a political party than joining some of its leaders in a strategy session, and as in Barnes’ case, remaining silent for 3+ years in the face of tremendous public frustration with Congress?
Even more disturbing is that Frank Luntz felt perfectly comfortable inviting Barnes to join the strategy session, obviously secure in the knowledge that nothing would be reported.
Here are some insights from real journalists who don’t carry water for the GOP:
“Senate Republicans are using the filibuster to limit and often derail Democrats’ initiatives, paralyzing the Senate and making it nearly impossible to accomplish even the most routine matters.”
There Is a Judicial Confirmation Crisis, and the GOP Is Causing It
“Far from being a rarity, virtually every bill, every nominee for Senate confirmation and every routine procedural motion is now subject to a Republican filibuster. Under the circumstances, it is no wonder that Washington is gridlocked…”
“Even before Barack Obama took the oath office, Republicans leaders, conservative think-tanks and right-wing pundits were calling for total obstruction of the new president’s agenda.”
The House and Senate Ethics Committees should be moving to hold hearings on this matter, and Congress should ultimately censure or expel every one of these guys. They were elected to work on behalf of their constituents; instead they decided to set their own agenda, and work against the American people, holding government hostage for three and a half years.
They have no business holding elected office. They are a disgrace to their country.