Friday, April 1, 2011

April Fools

Some days I wake up, read the paper and pray that everything I read is just a cruel April Fool’s prank.  Sadly, it isn’t.  Here are some of the people that make up this year’s April Fool’s List:

Rep. Eric Cantor:  This Congressional brainiac offered a piece of legislation in the House called the Government Shutdown Prevention Act. The bill would make H.R. 1 law if the Senate fails to pass a measure “before April 6" to fund the government for the rest of the fiscal year. H.R. 1, which passed the House but has gone nowhere in the Senate, would fund the government through the end of September and seeks to cut $61 billion in spending.

Hmmm.  Bills that pass the House, die in the Senate and do not get signed by the President do not become law by default.  Apparently, Cantor was absent the day his party read the Constitution aloud in the chamber.  I recommend recall votes for any elected official in the House who votes for this, since it is 1. unconstitutional, and 2. dumb.

Anyone following Donald Trump’s political maneuvers:  In the interest of full disclosure, I do enjoy The Apprentice (Celebrity and Original flavors), but as an HR professional, watching people getting canned is what we do to unwind.  That said, Trump’s flirtation with a presidential run is laughable, but he has parlayed it into a regular gig on Fox News (where all candidates go to raise their profiles and funds), and he is suddenly on every nightly newscast.  He is a publicity hound, and will never win a primary, let alone the nomination.  He will, however, make more money for himself, and I blame YOU if you are watching him now.

GOP Caucus Members:  If one of your elected representatives is more interested in how much gets cut without concern about what gets cut, he or she makes my list.

Karl Rove:  Yes, he is still out there, and in an interesting twist on logic, reason and reality, he offered this commentary on Fox News when asked about Trump’s endorsement of birther theories as a way to endear him to the far right base:

“The right- wing base of the Republican Party -- I'm part of that right-wing base -- is not in love with the issue of birthers. I mean, there is an element inside the Republican Party and outside the Republican Party that's fallen in love with this. But the vast majority of Republicans and the vast majority of Americans accept that he's a U.S. citizen and capable of being president. And this is a distraction. [...]

"This is a mistake. It will marginalize [Trump]. And he's falling for Barack Obama's trap. Barack Obama wants Republicans to fall into this trap, because he knows it discredits us with the vast majority of American people when they do."

Karl Rove thinks that Barack Obama has set a trap for the Republicans by quietly pushing this nonsense story in the faint hope that some desperate outlets (i.e. Fox News) would pick up the story and run with it.  Rove makes my list because I hope we aren’t all that stupid (fingers crossed).

Mitt Romney:  Here is a clip from his latest op-ed piece:

President Obama didn't cause the recession, but he made it worse and caused it to last longer. From the outset, he inaugurated the most anti-investment, anti-business, anti-jobs policies we have seen since Jimmy Carter.

Hmmm…the economy was hemorrhaging jobs in 2008; now it's gaining jobs. Unemployment was getting worse; now it's getting better.  The economy was contracting; now it's growing. The economy added roughly 1.3 million private-sector jobs in 2010 -- a little more than the combined net total of the entire Bush/Cheney era.  Corporate profits were down; now they are up at historic highs.  The stock market has rebounded from January 2009 (8100) to today’s near complete turnaround (12,100).  The auto industry in America was dead; now it is thriving. 

When does political hyperbole become just plain ol’ lying?

Rep. Tom Marino:  This Pennsylvania Republican mostly supports the actions taken in Libya, but he is concerned:

"Do we go into Africa next? I don't want to sound callous or cold, but this could go on indefinitely around the world."

Please, someone tell this guy, who sits on the House Foreign Affairs Committee mind you, that Libya is in Africa.

Rep. Louie Gohmert:  This Texas Republican is always good for a laugh.  This genius sees a connection between Libya and Obama’s secret efforts to weaken the military and institute some sort of draft, as outlined in the Affordable Care Act:

"[W]hen you find out we're being sent to Libya to use our treasure and American lives there, maybe there's intention to so deplete the military that we're going to need that presidential reserve officer commissioned corps and non-commissioned corps that the president can call up on a moment's notice involuntarily, according to the Obamacare bill."

No wonder Palin can’t get any attention.  Look at the competition.

The Tea Party Fighting Against the ACA:  Here is an excerpt from a great piece by Jonathan Cohn, in which he describes Tea Party efforts to fight the Affordable Care Act at the state level:

The idea is to oppose the Affordable Care Act not in the Congress or the courts, where they've been fighting so far, but in the state legislatures. As you may recall, the Act calls upon states to create the new "exchanges," through which individuals and small businesses will be able to buy regulated insurance policies at affordable prices. The simplest way to do that is for state legislatures to pass laws creating exchanges that conform to the Act's standards. Several states have started that process already -- and a few, like California, are well along in their efforts.

But Tea Party activists have been lobbying state lawmakers to vote against such measures and, in a few states, it looks like they're succeeding. [...]

It's a great idea for blocking the law, except for one small problem: The Affordable Care Act anticipates that some states might not create adequate exchanges. And the law is quite clear about what happens in those cases. The federal government takes over, creating and then, as necessary, managing the exchanges itself.

So in fighting government run healthcare, they will bring about…government run healthcare.  Brilliant!

Maybe it should be April Fool’s Month?

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