Friday, February 13, 2009

Are We Stimulated Yet?

I've been busy doing things that make me money (i.e., drumming up new business, making proposals to prospective clients, fixing computers), rather than things that I enjoy but don't make me a cent (e.g., blogging), so I've been quiet for a few days here. That doesn't mean, however, that I've neither been watching the news nor lack an opinion on it. *LOL*

We've got a stimulus package! Bigger than the House version, and almost exactly what President Obama asked for. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi became the Matt Yglesias' hero of the week and the staunchest defender of America's public education system, by preserving school renovation funding.

The stimulus bill passed in the House, with no Republican support whatsoever. Accompanied with lies of how they were "frozen out" by the Democrats. Look, idiots, listening to your ideas isn't the same as enacting them, and if you were in the room when the compromise was decided, then you weren't "frozen out". Good G-d, how these Repugs lie. I can't stand these rightwing bastards!

I'm beginning to agree with Paul Krugman that the bill isn't enough, but at this point, something is better than nothing. Another economic package will certainly be needed before Labor Day, I'm guessing. Why the Obama Administration made "bipartisanship" more important than an effective relief plan is beyond me. And what did President Obama get for his efforts?--The Repubs spit in his face! What with Judd Gregg suddenly realizing that he was a wingnut hypocrite "fiscal conservative" and backing out of the Commerce secretary job that he lobbied for, with the contempt shown by House Republicans, and with the lies told by Congressional Rethugs about the stimulus in particular, and the economic picture in general ("FDR caused the Great Depression" and suchlike bullshit), Obama would be well advised to abandon any further attempts at bipartisanship. As Rachel Maddow said, "they're just not into you, Mr. President."

Still, as I learned during the general election, Obama is a master strategist. More than once, I doubted an Obama decision during the campaign, only to be proven wrong, to my surprise and delight. The Republicans have been driving the media message for the last few weeks, but they also now look like "the Party of No" (thanks again, Rachel!). As recent polls show, 59% of Americans now support the stimulus, up seven points from last week. Obama needs to push harder in the media for agenda, and his recent town halls are a much-needed step in the right direction.

So, as much as it pains me, I'll continue to give Obama credit for his attempts at bipartisanship, and give him time to develop his message and his plans.

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