Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Lemon Pledge

"Across America, the people see a government in Washington that isn't listening, doesn't get it and doesn't care."

John Boehner
Introducing the GOP's "Pledge" to America

Yesterday's "contract" is today's "pledge". It's the same old bullshit with a different dessert topping. By now these ridiculous Republican photo-ops have become as predictable as they are unintentionally comical. There they were in their shirtsleeves - ties strategically removed, the women wearing casual slacks - all in a pathetic attempt to come off like real hard-workin' folks. They even staged the event in a Hardware store! They must really think that the American people are awfully stupid to fall for something as obvious as this. The very fact that so many people did swallow this nonsense without so much as a chaser proves that perhaps these politicians are onto something.

And of course, just like their silly "Contract with America" sixteen years ago, the voters will more-than-likely hand the congressional majority back to these corrupt dingbats on Election Day. And when the 112th Congress is sworn in this January, their so-called "pledge" (just like the contract of yore) will be rendered merely as dust in the wind.

The "pledge" to America is loaded with scads of nifty things that are sure to thrill the half-witted Tea Party types out there: doing away with even more of the government; the continuation of the Bush tax cuts; "rightsizing" the federal work force by means of a freeze on hiring; more outsourcing - all sorts of neat stuff! In spite of the fact that the federal workforce is now smaller than it was in 1967 (when we had one-hundred million fewer people living in the United States) it's still not small enough for these jackasses.

The fact that nearly every economist of note has stated that their policies with regard to taxation will cost this country several trillion dollars over the next four years was conveniently ignored. The simple and nasty truth of the matter is that under their plan - their "pledge" - the tax burden will fall on the shoulders of the middle class. And that class of people who already have more money than they know what to do with? They'll be sittin' pretty, baby!

"And again, I say unto you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the Kingdom of God."

Jesus of Nazareth
from the Gospel according to Matthew, 9:24

Gee, I really hate to do this. I know how uncomfortable it makes these nitwits to have the teachings of the Prince of Peace thrown in their faces. Were Jesus Christ to return to the earth today, it's a pretty safe bet that He would be more-than-a-little confused at the hypocrisy of the party that claims to hold his teachings in such high regard. I often wonder if any of them have even read the New Testament much less comprehend it. Their stated policies are a mockery to the messiah they pretend to revere.

"And now abideth, faith, hope, charity, these three, but the greatest of those is charity."

Jesus of Nazareth (Same guy!)
1 Corinthians, 13:13

"There's gonna be a lot of dues, Jim!"

Lenny Bruce

The weirdest (and funniest) aspect of their nutty "pledge" is their proposal that every law passed in the next session of congress should have a provision that proves that the law-in-question is not "unconstitutional." It's bad enough that these people are within months of taking back the legislative branch of our government. Apparently they're planning to hijack the judicial branch as well.

An insightful writer named Susan Milligan pointed out something I hadn't even thought of: If they are that intent of interpreting the Constitution - word for word - as it was put forth by the founders of this nation over two-hundred and twenty years ago, that implies that we're going to have to do away with the Air Force. As she points out, "The Constitution only provides for the creation of an Army and Navy." Also, when that document was ratified in 1789 slavery was legal in many states. More-than-a-few of it's creators were slave owners. Does this sad historical reality justify a debate over the constitutionality of slavery in 2010?

I know what you're thinking and I agree wholeheartedly: It doesn't get any stupider than this. It just doesn't.

The Republican "pledge" to America is just another right wing scam, loaded with lots of bells and whistles and pretty colored lights. Their only constituency is the plutocracy they've been acting as water-carriers for since the administration of Ulysses S Grant almost a century-and-a-half ago. Their only goal is to continue the charade for at least another two years come January. Are the American people going to be naive enough to go down this self-destructive road yet again? Barring a national intellectual earthquake the answer is, sadly, yes.

I hate to sound like a mouthpiece for the Democrats. As I've said many times before, I gave up my registration in that gutless party almost thirteen-years-ago and never - not for a fleeting moment - have I regretted it. With very few exceptions they are, in their present incarnation at least, utterly void of real political courage and insight. They are an insult to the memory of Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman and Jack Kennedy. But I also know this: They're a damned sight better than the alternative - and that's pretty sad.

Tom Degan
Goshen NY


This is totally - shamefully - off topic, but I feel bad ending this piece on such a down note. Here is a link to view the greatest, funniest television commercial ever produced. It stars the late Ann Miller and was written and directed by the great Stan Freberg. Make way for the Great American Soup:

It's a scream!


The Republican party's "Pledge" to America

That's pretty funny, too.

For more recent postings on this site, please go here:

"The Rant" by Tom Degan

Hideous, commie propaganda. Enjoy!


At 8:34 PM, Blogger Sue said...

the picture of this hideous bunch of teapublicans in the boonies, at a lumber yard, is tooooo funny for words. How embarrassing for our country to be identified with these morons!

the tide is changing Tom, GO DEMS!

At 11:43 PM, Blogger Nance said...

"'rightsizing' the federal work force by means of a freeze on hiring; more outsourcing..."

In truth, the people we have come to envying most are federal employees: a likelihood of job security and some killer benefits. Nobody else who is fortunate enough to have a job in this country can boast those two assets these days.

So, if we cut federal jobs, cut Medicare and Social Security, and deepen tax cuts, the notion is that private corporations will suddenly spend and grow and hire like crazy, right? On what motivation--pity?! They'll outsource the jobs and export the products, which leaves Americans where, exactly?

Looks like we'll get to find out, doesn't it?

At 1:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The lumberyard is a bit condescending, isn't it? I'm in no way a Dem supporter, but I don't understand how they expect me to believe them. Bush grew the Fed as much as anybody. It is a strange feeling to really not identify with either party.

At 1:53 PM, Blogger Bill_in_DE said...

Well, now we'll see if the GOP's plan has worked. After their policies almost ruined the country, I believe they threw the '08 election (the best reason I can think of for putting Sarah Palin on the ticket), because they saw what was coming, and knew NO ONE could fix what they screwed up in just two years, especially if they did everything in their power to obstruct it.
So in effect, they made the self- serving political calculation that, having already put the country in a bad situation, if they stretched it out for two more years, they could blame it on the Democrats. The sad thing is, they might be right, there could be enough stupid people who vote to make it happen.
The one dim (and I mean that literally) hope we have is the Tea Party. Historically, a party that has won both houses and the White House in an election loses one or both houses in the following midterm. The one difference in this year's midterms is the absolutely crazy people they're willing to put up for election. It seems you can be as batshit crazy as you want, and as long as you say the right codewords, these morons will vote for you. And if it subsequently turns out the candidate is even more crazy than was originally thought, don't worry, they'll defend them to the death, and claim the opposition is 'bashing' them (see Christine O'Donnell).

At 1:54 PM, Blogger Bill_in_DE said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 1:55 PM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

Here's the real pledge. Go to The Mills River Progressive's article titled, Actions Speak for Themselves, for a true accounting of what's already occurred. If this doesn't make you think twice about The Pledge to America, and the actual message that's written between the finely chosen words, then we're truly doomed to live-up to our growing reputation as the world's first post-industrial society.

Read how corporatist policies over the last thirty years have created the "Deindustrialization of America". Read it, then weep -- for your lost country and for yourselves -- because our ridiculous tendencies to think that either party will reverse this dismantling of our middle and working classes is nothing more than searching for a fool's paradise. If you haven't figured out, yet, that neither major party represents your interests -- instead of the corporate aristocracy that calls the shots -- than it's truly all over.

At 8:03 PM, Blogger charles moore said...

Wonderfully written as usual, thanks Tom. The silliness of the Pledge as Boehner explained it is that he doesn’t think the American people can handle his ideas right now, saying, “Once Americans understand how big the problem is, then we can begin to talk about potential solutions”…

So, basically we are supposed to "trust" the GOP, buy a pig in a poke and let them come up with solutions once they have been elected?

Meanwhile they are running some candidates who are simply certified crazies. Entertaining and amusing to see what craziness they spout out next, but frightening in that a lot of people will believe them and vote for them. I am constantly amazed at the number of lies that are put out and the liars do not seem to realize how easy it is to fact check things in the day of the internet.

Perhaps the most disturbing from both the Tea Party and the GOP is that they are so quick to tell us what the problems are, but they never offer any concrete solutions.

At 8:33 PM, Blogger Yellowstone said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 8:50 PM, Blogger Yellowstone said...

I agree with Bill in DE.

I am not a seer. But I had visions that the GOP intended to blow this last election off. They knew long beforehand that the situation had gone south and there was little chance of recovery - especially once Paulson wrote his very brief memo requesting an $800 billion bailout - and it was subsequently approved by the past GOP admin.

The anticipated casualties would be incalculable. One way of 'fixing' the ballot box would be to select a nonplus VP. It worked!

Now another prediction. The GOP will blow this next congressional election off as well. What other explanation could there be? Is it at all possible to find an even less qualified GOP candidate and win - maybe so.

That may help to explain the true function of the TBag bunch.

At 9:41 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What's funny is "Thug Imam in Chief" going across the country and using slave analogies. The only think missing was My Bell Michelle grinding with the people.

Harry from Mass

At 1:00 PM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

So, Harry...tell me, what's your point?

At 3:39 PM, Blogger Darlene said...

I love (?) the way the tea party is full of gray haired idiots floating around in their scooters (paid for my Medicare, by the way) and spending their S. S. checks on attending rallies while ranting at government spending too much and while wanting to do away with the government and the deficit.
They are incapable of seeing the irony of their signs and rants.

I've said it before and I will say it again, Never, never underestimate the ignorance of the American voter. Of course they will vote for the numb skulls being put forth by the Repubs. Their God has told them to.

I will remind you that I am gray haired and use a scooter (paid for by me) before someone gets upset at my comment on the stupid elders.

At 7:14 PM, Blogger PCS said...

This country is in a race to the bottom and the GOP and their corporate buddies are the coaches.

At 12:41 AM, Blogger Marty said...

Of course the pledge was made in a hardware store, that's where the shovels are. Will people buy into their rolled up sleeve delivery of bullshit? There are a lot of folks who buy cars because of color rather than performance. So who knows?
This much I do know, people will vote with their purse. The thought of losing social security will push the number of voters aged 50 and above to numbers unheard of in an election cycle. The 40 and below age group need to know if Social Security are lost, Mom and Dad will be moving in with then within 10 years. That would be enough to get even the laziest voter in the world off their ass and voting.
One last thought, a bad Democrat is a better choice than a 'good' republican in this election cycle.
This is my first visit to your well written post, I'll be back. (with shorter comments next time)

At 8:30 AM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

PCS, please don't forget the Democrats in your prognosis of blame. Both major parties are beholden to corporate interests; it's just that the Democratic Party tends to soften it a bit. It has been a more than thirty year race to the bottom, led by Republicans and Democrats alike.

At 8:30 PM, Blogger PCS said...

Jeff, I don't hear any Dems claiming mice have fully developed human brains or that drug lords are beheading Americans in Arizona or that Obama has increased the deficit more in two years than over the last 200 years. Honestly, can you find the democratic equivalents of Boehner, McConnell, Thune, Bachmann, DeMint etc. I know 6th graders that have more on the ball than those low information pols (or maybe they are just liars). Do Dems have hate mongers like Beck, Limbaugh, Hannity etc? Are Dems proposing to succeed from the Union? Are Dems proposing to do away with certain of the Bill of Rights? Are Dems proposing tax breaks for the very wealthy? Are Dems ringing the bells for a war with Iran?

At 11:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jefferson, I was just responding to one of the nut jobs who posted earlier about something being funny.

PCS, how about Maher and that prick Olbermann you fool. There is plenty more but you aren't worth it. I see that you are a professor. God help those kids.

Harry from Mass

At 3:37 AM, Blogger Bill_in_DE said...

I'm sure I can't be the only one here waiting with bated breath for Harry from Ass to post the links to videos that will show Bill Maher and Keith Olbermann doing the equivalent of supporting bitherism, 'proving' FEMA camps, or 'death panels', etc.

Oh wait....that's not going to happen, is it? Darn.

At 7:04 AM, Anonymous boltok said...

Getting biblical.

Would someone please wake the deity Obama. Matthew 8:23+

At 7:22 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Boltok the more you write here the more I realise that your as bright as a pissed on candle.

Den from Oz

At 12:25 PM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

PCS, as I mentioned, "[b]oth major parties are beholden to corporate interests; it's just that the Democratic Party tends to soften it a bit." Okay, so I'm a little negligent in my comparison. I concede. They soften it a lot. Granted, it's tough to find Democratic equivalents to your list of Republicans, but it's only because they veil their disdain for the common person better than those on the insane right. But they're all part of the same team; the team that constantly asks the American people to bend over and take it from behind. The right does it violently and without remorse; the Democrats kiss you first and tell you it's not going to hurt. Either way, the results are the same.

You're blind if you haven't been able to see this.

At 3:40 PM, Anonymous boltok said...

What your were doing to discover that analogy?

At 10:59 AM, Blogger PCS said...

Jeff, I agree that Dems are not the party they once were. They work for corporations almost as much as Republicans do. Supposedly this is because of the decline of unions. The money is no longer there, so Dems go to corporations for funding. The answer is simple. Pass a law that gets big money from corporations and rich people out of the process. Or, public funding of campaigns.

At 11:04 AM, Blogger PCS said...

Harry, I'm actually not a fool. I agree that Maher is an idiot believe it or not. But my assessment of Maher is based on his lack of scientific understanding in the medical area and the fact that he really isn't very funny.

At 11:36 AM, Blogger PCS said...

Daniel Webster, Senate candidate, (TEA Party-Fl):

"There's very clearly delineated roles for women, and those roles are all based on submission, they're based on self denial, on obedience, and respect, and even the word respect translates into 'you just take it, and with a smile,'"

At 12:45 PM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

"Pass a law that gets big money from corporations and rich people out of the process."

Well, they "passed a law", alright (more like, "created a law", but who's quibbling? We all know only liberal judges can be activists...), but it accomplished just the opposite. Citizens United just may be the death knell to American democracy. As if corporate personhood wasn't already the leprosy of our republican democracy, the patient became terminal ill on January 21, 2010.

Bow or curtsy to your new Corporate Highness, and help celebrate its installation to the new aristocracy which officially commences at its coronation on November 2nd. All Republicans and Democrats are invited to attend.

At 4:08 PM, Blogger PCS said...

We may not have to worry too much longer who controls the government. Christine O'Donnell just announce that she is privy to top secret information that China is planning to take over the USA. Seriously.

At 12:25 AM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

Judging from the origin of 95% of the products on any store shelf, I say they already have...

At 9:49 PM, Blogger Citizen Sane said...

PCS and JG, I agree with you both. There is no analogous democratic counterpart to the likes of Beck, Limpburger, Boner, Ailin', Graham-Cracker, Newt Gingrinch, and the like. Truly.
And it's plain to see both are inextricably beholden to corp-world. The difference to me is that I don't believe all dems are completely hopeless, while I can't say that about the repugs. They're fried. Done. Toast. Damaged beyond repair. Except for Olympia Snow.
I also tend to think that the repugs are capable of (and prone to) exponentially more damage.

At 3:14 PM, Blogger Bill_in_DE said...

I actually think Bill Maher said it well: "Who would you rather vote for, a friend who has disappointed you, or your enemy?"

At 3:19 PM, Anonymous boltok said...

The left has plenty of counterparts. Ed Schultz, Thom Hartmann, Olberman, R Rhodes, Couric, Lauer, Matthews, Madow, Maher, etc. The difference is the size of the audience.

At 5:35 PM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

Bill in DE: In response to your Bill Maher quote: I'd spend more time with another friend.

Unfortunately, we're strangled by a two-party system in this country, where neither has the true interest of the people in mind.

By the way, I like and respect Bill Maher. He also said, "We need more people speaking out. This country is not overrun with rebels and free thinkers. It's overrun with sheep and conformists." A more perceptive mind could never be found on the right.

Boltok: The difference in the two groups (with the exception of Couric and Lauer; and who is R. Rhodes?) is that the members of the left always attempt to expose the truth, while those of the right always try to stifle or ignore it.

That's why I'm a lefty. I abhor lying and untruthfulness.

At 6:42 PM, Blogger Citizen Sane said...

Boltok, when I said the left had no analogous counterparts to the wingnut talkers/politicos, I was referring their apparent levels of derangement, lunacy, hate, bigotry, ignorance, delusional belief systems, greed, and abject stupidity. And no one can match the right in that regard.

By the way, several of the so-called lefties you mentioned aren't even liberal. But perhaps that's part of the "liberal media" fantasy you nutbags love to froth about.

At 8:04 PM, Blogger PCS said...

Anna hits the nail on the head. Sure there are liberal pundits on TV. The difference is the language they use or actually don't use. Beck and Limbaugh use dangerous language everyday. They want to see violence in this country. They are bigoted and sexist. But Beck and Limbaugh aren't as dangerous as the new crop of no-nothing Republicans coming to the fore. Do away with SS, medicare, minimum wage. Get rid of the Dept. of education because its not in the Constitution (neither is any other cabinet department) Regulate homosexuality and make it illegal for single women to teach. Propose a budget that actually increases taxes on the middle class and cuts taxes for the very wealthy. Mice have functional human brains and all the climatologists in the world are wrong about climate change. Evolution is just a theory. Churches should have more say in politics but only if they are Christian. Many of the amendments in the bill of rights need to be repealed. The civil rights bill was a mistake. States should be allowed to succeed from the Union. What's even sadder is that a sizable portion of the citizenship actually buys this crap.

At 8:59 PM, Blogger Bill_in_DE said...

The main difference between the right and left wing talkers is the way the rightwingers feel free to invent their own facts. It's fine to have a different opinion, it's not rational to base it on your own facts.

I'm still waiting for someone to post a link of a centrist/leftist moderator espousing anything analogous to birtherism, death panels, or FEMA camps.

At 9:08 PM, Anonymous boltok said...

They are all liberal to me.

BTW: Clicked you link. Love your part of the country.

At 7:38 PM, Anonymous Bad Ass Biker said...

The only good Republican is a dead Republcican.

At 2:51 PM, Blogger The Catharine Chronicles said...

You quote the Gospel of Matthew? Really? I mean, who reads THAT guy anymore? You know, like the part where Jesus (and what has HE done lately, I ask you?) says, "And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you." (Matthew 24:4). And (relevant in light of last weekend's silliness), "But of that day and hour knoweth no [man], no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only." (Matthew 24:36).

Matthew, feh. We're all so over him... Rich folks can surely buy themselves into Heaven in this day and age.

(Today's CAPTCHA word is "wingledi", which I've decided should rhyme with "jedi". May the Force be with you, Tom.)


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