Can Repubs tell the truth about anything? They're totally in charge, yet act like feisty victims | Wis.Community

Can Repubs tell the truth about anything? They're totally in charge, yet act like feisty victims

The latest GOP spin is that the party won a great victory in the trumped-up battle over the debt ceiling (it wasn't really about the debt ceiilng) because, in the words of one Republican appartchik, "Republicans only control one half of one third of the federal government, but the American people agree with us."

Oh, really?

Actually, the Republicans control one HALF of Congress directly, as in the House it has a supermajority of 252 members to 193 Democrats (2010 election result, with minor adjustments for since-departed members). House Democrats are powerless to stop the Republicans from doing anything.

And, the Republicans have a WORKING majority in the US Senate, since they have taken advantage of long-standing but not Constitutionally mandated rules requiring that the true-majority Democrats there usually have a supermajority of 60 votes, which they do not, at least without GOP votes. And never mind other rules, like the one where a single GOP representative, such as Sen. RoJo (R-Wis) can completely prevent action on stuff like, you know, confirming Obama judicial appointments.

And so the Republicans can be seen to have a working majority of TWO THIRDS of the federal government, meaning Congress and the White House.

But even that's dishonest, because it completely ignores the judiciary, where Republican conservatives dominate, all the way up to the US Supreme Court.

So to be accurate, Republicans have literal or working control of two of the three MAIN branches of government -- the dual-chamber Congress and the judiciary but not the White House.

But even that is not fully accurate, because it doesn't count the so-called "fourth estate" of government -- namely, the press, where fat cat publishers, conservative columnists and liberal-averse editors and even reporters abound. Add in that GOP advantage and it's far more accurate to say the GOP controls three of the four "branches" of government.

Yet even that measure fails to account for blue dog Democrats who are functional conservatives, which widens the GOP stranglehood even farther.

Plus, let's not even get into GOP dominance in statehouses around the country.

Yet those same Republicans still continue to pretend they are an outmatched, outspent, aggrieved minority that's working for the average American's interests.

And despite overriding functional control, Republicans still had to fight tooth and nail -- threatening world economic collapse and taking the US economy hostage -- in order to extract a good measure of their demands. So, the real wonder is that Republicans achieved so little, and took such a big public opinion hit in doing so.

This won't be a salve to cure all the itching of progressives who again have been totally frustrated, but it's worth keeping in mind. Democrats and especially progressives need to have much greater representation in government before the plutocrats can routinely be stymied when they seek yet another boon.

So sit back and consider just how steep our cilmb is and remains, and how much Democrats with progressive prodding actually have been able to achieve despite formidable resistance from the Reckless, Power-drunk Party. Democratic ennui doesn't help, but that's not most of what's behind this latest outcome.

Published

August 3, 2011 - 10:15am

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