This shutdown seems like a huge embarrassment to US politics and in particular the Republican party. Anyway, rather than try to explain why John Boehner, Speaker of the House of Representatives, would let his party find itself in this predicament let me just hand over the microphone to John himself (well as The Onion has “quoted him” anyway):
The far right members of my party are insane. I don’t know what they’re thinking, and I don’t want to know because it would be too horrifying. I’ve tried to explain it to them over and over and they don’t listen to me. They don’t listen to anybody. I say to them, nobody wants a government shutdown, Obamacare is the law of the land, the president was reelected and elections have consequences, and we are only in charge of one branch of government.
I say all of that and they just look at me with these cold, dead eyes. Christ, It’s chilling.
They haunt my dreams at night. I have this one nightmare where I’m about to ask for a vote on a clean continuing resolution and then one of them—I think it’s Steve King from Iowa—looks at me with this eerie smile and says, “No, John. No you won’t.” And then the rest of them are suddenly standing behind him and they all chant in a chilling monotone, “No, John. No you won’t.” And then I wake up screaming, “No, John!!! No you won’t!!!” and I’m crying, and my wife is crying, and I’ve sweat through my sheets.
Ha! I love it. For the full text you can find it here: Onion Article
Politicians are well known for their strong opinions and moral fibre. Oh wait, that’s not quite correct … politicians are known for taking a position which serves them well and flogging it. Yes, that sounds better.
Friday’s “The Barrel” from Platts contributed on article titled: Regardless, House Republicans stick to their story. It illustrates how an MIT report (seen as a left-leaning educational source) was used by the Republicans to flog Cap-and-Trade as overly expensive to consumers. When the author of the article pointed out that they had come to a conclusion that was exponentially off the mark they decided to … ignore the criticism and keep flogging the message.
It sure would be nice if this kind of behaviour was laughed out of existence but I’m afraid this is just politics-as-usual.
We’re also getting a glimpse into how President Elect Obama (!!!!!!) really thinks we’re going to address the global environmental crisis. Newsweek reports that Obama was caught by a live mic saying about the debates, "I often find myself trapped by the questions and thinking to myself, ‘You know, this is a stupid question, but let me … answer it.’ So when Brian Williams is asking me about what’s a personal thing that you’ve done [that’s green], and I say, you know, ‘Well, I planted a bunch of trees.’ And he says, ‘I’m talking about personal.’ What I’m thinking in my head is, ‘Well, the truth is, Brian, we can’t solve global warming because I f—ing changed light bulbs in my house. It’s because of something collective’."