Monday, February 15, 2010

Rachel Maddow eats a Republican Congressman's lunch

They had a new Republican Congressman on Meet The Press yesterday, and Rachel Maddow took his lunch, carved it up into little bite-sized pieces, dipped it in Ranch Dressing, and ate it.  This is from The Huffington Post:
A heated exchange took place during NBC's "Meet the Press" on Sunday when MSNBC host Rachel Maddow accused Rep. Aaron Schock (R-Ill.) of hypocrisy for railing against a spending bill in public while touting its benefits in his home district.

Schock was introduced as our youngest Congressman, and the first to be born in the 1980's. 

Appearing alongside each other during a panel session, Maddow pivoted from a discussion on job creation to note that Schock had appeared at an event on Friday touting a grant program that he had voted against.

Get the kids out of the room, finish digesting your breakfast, and hit that link.  Ughhh....

"You, in your district, I just read that you were at a community college touting a $350,000 green technology education program, talking about how great that was going to be for your district," she said. "You voted against the bill that created that grant. That's happening a lot with Republicans sort of taking credit for things that Democratic bills do and then Republicans simultaneously touting their votes against them and trashing them. That, I think, is a problem that needs to be resolved within your caucus. Because you seem like a very nice person but that is a very hypocritical stance to take."

Where to begin, where to begin....Let's start with the "Green Technology Education Program" concept.  Since almost all government funding for Green Technology is a massive waste, and since the word Green is now nothing but a feel-good righteousness blanket, would it not be cheaper to eliminate everything but the education component of Green programs?  Eliminate the research, engineering and manufacturing, and go straight to the indoctrination component, which is what this mess is all about?   
"Ok, kids, get ready.  I'm going to say a magic word 3 times.  Please write a 750 word essay on how righteous you feel afterwards.  'We are Green, Green, Green.'  Start typing.  Don't you all feel better about giving these nice people your money?"

A somewhat taken-aback Schock insisted that Republicans were "not consulted on the stimulus bill" and shouldn't be blamed for the lack of a bipartisan vote for its passage. This didn't really get to Maddow's point. So after some back-and-forth among the other panelists, Schock jumped back in.

"I think the argument that liberals are making is absolutely ridiculous," he said. "With all due respect, Rachel, does that mean you are going to give back your Bush tax cuts that you continue to rail against. The fact of the matter is our country operates and is governed by a majority. And I, along with almost all my Republican colleagues and a good number of Democrats, have voted against the stimulus, the omnibus and all this runaway spending. But we lost those battles in the House... At the end of the day my constituents and their children and grandchildren will be on the hook for the deficit being created by this majority and they deserve to their fair share of federal spending."

And Schuyler Colfax, Jr. was Vice President during the Ulysses S. Grant presidency, and Colfax later died due to cold and exhaustion while walking 3/4 of a mile to change trains.  What the hell does that have to do withy anything, Mr. Schock????  The Democrats dumped a fat, juicy, artery-clogging chunk of rancid, maggot-infested, greenish pork into your district.  You should have avoided it like it was Rachel Maddow's boudoir.  But instead, you had to slide up next to it, roll in it, lift your leg on it, mark it as your own, and talk about how stealing from the many for the benefit of the few was going to create jobs.  Rachel Maddow, of all people, called you out on it.  More power to her.   

New York Times columnist David Brooks -- appearing alongside Maddow and Schock -- chimed in to suggest that the argument over who should take credit for the stimulus' successes exemplified what was wrong with Washington. But that debate seems likely to only grow in prominence leading up to the 2010 elections. This past week, the Washington Times reported that a host of Republican lawmakers were doing exactly the same thing that Schock was -- only with a bit more insincerity.

"More than a dozen Republican lawmakers, while denouncing the stimulus to the media and their constituents, privately sent letters to just one of the federal government's many agencies seeking stimulus money for home-state pork projects," the paper reported.

I saw this analogy in somebody's Comment Field.  Will give credit later if I can find it: 

Think of the Republican Party as an abusive husband, and the wife has locked him out of the house.  He's now pounding on the door in the middle of the night, drunk out of his mind.  "But, honey, I'VE CHANGED !  I'VE CHANGED !  I'M A DIFFERENT MAN NOW ! ! ! " 


They don't want to decrease the size of the mega-state.  They just want to be the ones driving it. 

Regarding Schock's appearance at the green technology education program ribbon-cutting ceremony, the bill providing funds for that program was an omnibus-spending bill that Congress took up last spring. Maddow's point, nevertheless, remained the same.

"If you vote against the omnibus bill," she said at the end of the exchange, "if you complain about the omnibus bill, if you tout your vote against the omnibus bill, it is hypocrisy to then go to your district and go to a ribbon cutting ceremony for something that is funded by the omnibus bill that you voted against."

Precisely.  One cannot effectively lead The Sheeple of Illinois to believe that this behavior is wasteful by showing up for these ribbon-cuttings and touting the benefits of stolen, tainted pork.  Well said, Rachel Maddow. 
Here's a Youtube of the exchange.  You can jump to the 1:00 mark and get the general feel of the thing.  Note to Congressman Schock:  Please, please, please, don't make people agree with Rachel Maddow.  Please.  Stay home if you have to.   

Just to get this unpleasantness out of my system, here's a picture of Rachel Maddow wearing tennis shoes to interview Barney Frank.  Doesn't mean anything.  Just trying to change the subject. 


Jay said...

Politically speaking I'm opposed to virtually everything Rachel Maddow espouses. However she, unlike the Lord of Vanity ex-sportscaster that shares her airwaves, is one sharp cookie. You'll want to haul on your big boy pants if you're going to engage her in debate. This clown showed up with diaper rash.

Nick Rowe said...

Touting a plan you voted against is pretty lame, but if the government is going to confiscate income and then parcel it out, every district is due to get its share according to the spending guidelines enacted by the majority. I think that's what he was trying to explain, albeit poorly.

Like unemployment insurance, you're not getting welfare - you're getting your own money back. He just needed to be more transparent with his constituents about what he was doing and why.

I am 100% opposed to all the wasteful spending by Obama and Congress which was funded, in part, by MY tax dollars. But I am damned-well going to claw back every dollar I am eligible for.

I despise Social Security. I wrote my doctoral thesis on privatization and I see it as the only feasible solution. But when I'm 62 I'm not going to miss one rebate of my tax dollars. At my income level, I will have already lost over $200,000 to Social Security by the time I die. I'm not going to allow government to abscond with the rest of it out of some misguided and pointless exercise of principled protest. In other words, the mugger already took my wallet - I'm not going to offer him the PIN for my debit card too.

I'm shopping for a house and I will collect my $8000 tax credit if I can and take my mortgage interest deduction each year. That will BARELY cover my insanely high transaction costs and annual property taxes I have to pay in this state.

If it were up to me, though, I'd dismantle the entire Housing Industrial Complex which has contributed to numerous business cycles and housing bubbles and crashes. That's not some faux commitment to a cause I think will never happen. I'll be making that case right through the NEXT housing crisis!

I don't consider that hypocritical because, as the Congressman said, I didn't get any say about whether or not I had to contribute to this. Sure, I got my vote, it was majority rule, and I lost. But this sort of redistribution violated the Constitution.

If the government confiscated 100% of everyone's money, would you not stand in the bread lines every day (while you foment revolution at night)? You win nothing by passing up even the crumbs.

I'm certainly not going to avoid walking on the sidewalk which wastefully spent another part of my tax dollars. It's just silly.