Posted by: JanF | September 3, 2011

This Week’s News and Views – September 3, 2011

This Week’s News and Views looks at news stories from the past week with added commentary and perspective.

Not surprising at all this week is the “news” that 8 in 10 Americans believe that the economy is still in a recession. That is because the “recovery” is a jobless recovery and one where the haves got theirs but the have-nots are still waiting.

Hope, or at least some measure of payback, may be on the way as the Justice Department indicated that they are planning to sue the big banks for fraudulent activities that led to the collapse of the economy in 2008. Not surprisingly, some states are trying to get quick settlements to protect the banks claiming that the banks need “certainty” (read: protection against paying for their deeds) in order to stay in business. As Laurence Lewis points out:

Sure. Holding banks accountable for their crimes could hurt their bottom lines. And sending thieves to prison could hurt their abilities to steal more.

The banks “getting back on their feet”, by the way, allowed them to give out more unearned bonuses to their executives. It is past time for the rest of us to get back on our feet. The banks have shown themselves unwilling to be partners in any economic revitalization so their bottom line is no longer of any interest to us.

From the bottom of the dumpster, Dick Cheney published his memoir which The Donald called angry and nasty. Pardon me while I stop to ponder exactly what he may have expected.

And a sobering note from ThinkProgress:

August was the first month that no Americans have died in Iraq since the U.S. invaded it in 2003.

Jobs Jobs Jobs

President Barack Obama called for Congress to reauthorize the transportation bill in his weekly address. Failure to do so would immediately cost 1.3 million jobs.

Hundreds of protests have been launched against tea party Republican congressmen over jobs and taxes in an outcry reminiscent of the health care reform town halls of 2009. Except that these are real outcries, not outcries manufactured by FreedomWorks for their corporate clients.

The work of the 112th Congress relating to jobs has been remarkable (as in “attracting notice as being unusual”). They have remarkably managed to put the words “job killing” into every bill passed by the House but amazingly have not passed a single bill designed to keep or create a job. Even their claim that businesses would be creating jobs if only they had tax cuts and fewer regulations is being refuted by … businesses.

Next week, unless House Speaker John Boehner decides he needs to wash his hair, we will have a speech by President Barack Obama on Thursday, September 8th, before a joint session of Congress. The topic will be jobs, possibly the 0 jobs created in August or maybe the number of jobs a supporter of Mitt Romney bragged that Romney would be creating by doubling tripling quadrupling the size of his California home (not to be confused with his New Hampshire home or his Massachusett’s home). Psstt, Mitt. This testimonial may not be a good one to feature in a campaign ad.

Compassionate conservatives

Nothing says compassion like the outpouring from Republican legistlators when confronted with a natural disaster that results in human suffering:

House Majority Leader Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA)

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) today stood by his call that no more money be allocated for disaster relief unless it is offset by spending cuts elsewhere. “we’re just going to need to make sure that there are savings elsewhere to do so.”.

Rep. Nan Hayworth (R-NY):

Hayworth, R-Mount Kisco, said she would only vote to replenish the federal disaster fund if new spending was offset by budget cuts. She said those cuts should come from “non-defense discretionary spending.” Hayworth likened her position to a family skipping vacation if it was overwhelmed by bills. “We have to control spending,” she said

Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA)

“It’s not as though we’re unprepared for this situation. We know that at any time in this great country of ours there are storms, there are floods…” Toomey said it is “reasonable” to have a federal response, but that it should either be budgeted up front or offset by other spending cuts.

Rep. David Schweikert (R-AZ)

The political culture of the left is let’s just borrow the money and, one day in the future, we’ll have an honest discussion about that borrowing. We’re trying to tell the world and the business markets that we’re trying to turn off the spigot of debt and this will be a good symbol.

Former FEMA Director and former Arabian horse’s ass Horse Association Spokesman Michael ‘Heckuva Job’ Brown

Brown said Cantor was right to place concerns about the deficit over the need to provide help to Americans struggling in the wake of Hurricane Irene.

When we as a nation can no longer care for our citizens who are harmed by a natural disaster, we lose our soul.

It may already be too late.



  1. I am sure that what the utter lack of human compassion and decency is “telling the world markets”, in Rep. Schweikert’s words, is that the United States is no longer interested in being a bright beacon of hope. It will take generations to undo the damage the moral bankruptcy of teapartyism is doing to our country.


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