Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Election 2008 Happy Endings

I had the great good fortune to watch Sen. John McAyn rant on the floor of congress about the appropriations bill he guided into its present form. Sen. McAyn introduced a Continuing Resolution, that would substitute for increased spending the same rate of expenditure as the previous year.

The failed presidential candidate took issue with our President of two months for his support for appropriations representing real support of failing economy.

This reminded me of a few years ago, when the Party of Nope was in control and brought its appropriations bill to the floor of congress late at night, thousands of pages long, and the same Sen. McAyn declared that never again would he allow that to happen - most especially since a provision that allowed anyone to access individuals' IRA records with the permission of the Chairman or representative of the Chairman of the Appropriations Committee was almost passed over in the rush.

None of this was mentioned, of course, in yesterday's tirade, not even that the same thing occurred the next year despite the Senator's promise that he would never allow it again.

McAyn of the present day at no point acknowledged a basic fact, that the funded projects entail jobs. Rather, he was determinedly inveighing against things he styled as whimsical.

"If it sounds like I'm angry," the senator from Arizona explained, "it's because I am."

This disclosure hardly seemed necessary. For while McCain's topic was familiar -- he was protesting the inclusion of earmarks in a spending bill -- the source of his ire was less notable than its intensity. His pair of speeches on the Senate floor, delivered within minutes of each other, resembled a public experiment in primal-scream therapy.

McCain went after President Obama. "I just went through a campaign, Mr. President, where both candidates promised change in Washington, promised change from the wasteful, disgraceful, corrupting practice of earmark, pork-barrel spending," he said. Pounding the papers on his desk, he went on: "So what are we doing here? Not only business as usual; but an outrageous insult to the American people."

He went after Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii), the 84-year-old chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee. "We're going to spend $2 million for the promotion of astronomy in Hawaii," McCain said with disgust, glancing at Inouye. "I ask the senator from Hawaii: Why do we need $2 million to promote astronomy in Hawaii when unemployment is going up and the stock market is tanking?"

He went after White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, calling his explanation for the existence of earmarks in an omnibus spending bill "disingenuous on its face."

He went after budget director Peter Orszag, ridiculing his call to "move on" from the earmark dispute. McCain's shouts echoed in the chamber: "Nine thousand earmarks, billions and billions of dollars of unneeded and wasteful spending, and the president's budget person says, 'This is last year's business. We want to just move on.' That's insulting to the American people. . . . Does that mean that last year's president will sign this pork-barrel bill?"

Of course, he mentioned particularly offensive items such as termite research in New Orleans and honeybee research in Weslaco, TX. Right, most of us listen to the news and are aware that termites are a huge problem in the LA area, and the city's construction includes a lot of wooden structures that are being destroyed. We also know many growers are having a huge problem with the mysterious disappearance of bees that serve to pollinate their crops.

Then there was the 'pig odor' provision; that one includes research into many areas of improved production methods in pig farming, one of which is odor. Gang warfare in L.A. includes a program that erases gang tatoos which would otherwise alienate reformed gang members for life from other areas of society; to McAyn that was all tattoo removal with the prettification nature implied.

Despite having observed his paucity of rational qualities over the course of the campaign, I don't think the Senator is ignorant to the extent he pretended in yesterday's speech. On the other hand, he did prove that he is determined to appeal to those as ignorant as his speech assumed listeners are. The right wing should be on notice. Sen. McAyn wants you back.

The speech we heard yesterday was most likely a milestone. Sen. McAyn is impinging on Sarah Palin/Rush Limbaugh territory. He wants a place at the trough when it comes to the party's base, and he will use the primal scream technique to make that clear.

From comments to the article on McAyn's rant:

washpost18 wrote:
"$1.7M for pig odor research".

In reality, from http://www.ars.usda.gov/Main/site_main.htm?modecode=36-25-15-20 :

"The mission of the Swine Odor and Manure Management Research Unit is to conduct basic and applied research to solve problems in the livestock industry that impact production efficiency and environmental quality. Multidisciplinary research teams generate and integrate knowledge for evaluation and development of new management practices that minimize nutrient excretion, malodorous emissions, and the release of pathogens into the environment as well as have a positive impact on animal health."

McCain(itworse) sounds like just another Pube who's afraid of science.
3/3/2009 2:18:28 AM
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and another;

dandrbelf wrote:
Let's see. I just added up those earmarks and they amount to 0.0000000014% of a trillion-dollar budget. Not to defend so-called wasteful spending, but doesn't this demonstrate that McCain doesn't get, and never did get, the big picture? What would he be doing in the face of an economic meltdown? Reduce government spending at a time when private demand is in a freefall? McCain once criticised the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy; why doesn't he now praise Obama for wanting to roll them back? Now, those amounted to $1.0 trillion. So I would recommend that McCain do what I did: get out his calculator, realize how penny-ante this stuff is, take a deep breath, lower his blood pressure and shut up.
3/3/2009 8:31:56 AM
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and I kept it simple this time:

jocabel wrote:
McAyn fails to realize that the programs he is inveighing against provide jobs. And the appropriations are overdue. But then when did he ever show an iota of good sense?
3/3/2009 4:25:15 AM
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No, I don't read her blog, but ran across this at CNN:

One more thing: When liberals sit there and accuse the GOP convention of looking like “Nazi Germany,” you might not want to sit there, nodding your head, and respond, “I agree.”

Update: With a hat tip to John Hawkins, I re-listened to the exchange. It’s even worse than I noted. After Hughley rants about “Nazi Germany,” Steele says…”You’re right.”

Too much honesty even for the GoPervs, Michael Steele is history, I betcha.

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Blogger Meander said...

I was reminded this morning that John McCain had to apologize to Rush, too, for calling him a clown back in 2002.

To be fair, he first apologized to the clowns for the comparison.

10:26 AM  
Blogger Ruth said...

And I apologize to all the idiots but not necessarily the war criminals for including w in their numbers.

Thanks for the reminder.

12:41 PM  

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