Wednesday, January 05, 2011

A bit rich

The political malaise that wrapped itself around me back in November hasn’t gone away, but it doesn’t prevent me from seeing gross hypocrisy and crass attempts to spin reality among the incoming Republican leadership of the US House of Representatives. Naturally, I won’t let that pass unchallenged.

Rational people all knew that Darrell Issa, the incoming chair of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, was a loose canon, but it turns out we were distracted by the venom he spewed toward President Obama. In the lead up to the November elections Issa pledged a flurry of subpoenas to “investigate” the Obama Administration for one imaginary thing after another. When Republicans won control of the US House, he seemed to back off that somewhat, unleashing the fury of the Teapublicans. So, he was soon back in full irrational flight.

Recently, he said that the Obama Administration was the “most corrupt” in US history. It turns out that his relentless attacks on the Obama administration were a smokescreen to allow him to pursue his real agenda: Advancing corporatism.

It turns out that Issa sent letters to industry and corporate lobbying associations to ask what regulations they wanted him to work to repeal first. The list isn’t surprising: Allow corporations to pollute more, and specifically to emit more toxic gases; also, weaken worker safety rules and remove protections so that Wall Street can again be as corrupt as it was before the crash.

So in Issa we see the hypocrisy typical of Republican Congressional leaders, and on two fronts: First, claiming that the Obama Administration is “corrupt” while turning a completely blind eye toward the actual crimes of the Bush/Cheney regime. Second, by pretending to be advancing a Teapublican agenda when he’s really all about doing the bidding of corporations.

Meanwhile, the new Majority Leader, Eric Cantor (who is truly vile for many reasons), declared that the Republicans’ top priority—a pointless vote to “repeal” healthcare reform—will be done because, as he put it, "This was litigated in the last election."

Cantor’s either delusional or a liar (or both) because that’s clearly utter nonsense. Exit polls showed without question or dispute that creating jobs and tackling the deficit were what voters were concerned about. On healthcare, polls show that a majority of voters actually support healthcare reform or even want to expand it! Only 37%—not “most people” as Cantor claimed—oppose healthcare reform because it’s “too liberal”. Put another way, Cantor is 100% wrong. Of course, that’s not the first time Cantot’s misrepresented the truth, but that’s another topic.

So, this new Republican leadership is actually the same as it’s always been: Hypocritical, dishonest and determined to ignore the needs of mainstream Americans in order to serve the needs of the cooperate elites. It’s more than a bit rich for them to claim to be anything other than that.

It’ll be an interesting two years.

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