Rep. Ann Wagner (R-2) after voting to persist in the GOP government shutdown experiment yesterday:
Our message has been pretty consistent: We want to keep this government open. We want to find a solution for the people we represent and for America. It’s hard to do that when the Senate won’t come to work.
In the same vein Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-3) is upset that the Democrats won’t give in and let the GOP do an end-run around all that democratic, majority rules sort of nonsense when it comes to Obamacare, or, as he puts it, “put aside partisan politics and do the right thing for hard-working families and pass this legislation [i.e., the House’s delay-Obamacare-for-as-long-as-possible budgetary CR] as soon as possible.”
Michael Tomasky paraphrases Richard Pryor on why these representative members of the GOP House can now legitimately be considered to be part of a terrorist organization:
Back in the late 1970s, Richard Pryor had a routine where he gave a rundown on the various factions he’d encountered inside prison. There were the black Muslims, he said. They were fairly rough customers. Then there were the Double Muslims. The Double Muslims, he said, “can’t wait to get to Allah, and they wanna take a bunch of muthafukkas with them.”
Can you uess who the Double Muslims are in today’s GOP party? Another part of Tomasky’s GOP-as-terrorists argument aptly cuts through the GOP’s – in this case Luetkemeyer’s and Wagner’s – laughable efforts to escape responsibility for their irresponsible willingness to pull the pin on the grenade as long as they take lots of other, mostly innocent folks with them:
… The complete psychological profile of this GOP also must reference the totalitarian mind. Here I refer to the common totalitarian tactic of accusing the enemy of doing exactly what the totalitarian himself is doing. Every totalitarian dictator from Stalin on down has employed this tactic regularly. There’s no surer way to get away with criminality than to accuse your political opponents of exactly the criminality that you are committing, to get the people looking the other way.
And so of course John Boehner said over the weekend that the Senate, if it fails to accept the House’s terms, “will be deliberately bringing the nation to the brink of a government shutdown for the sake of raising taxes on seniors’ pacemakers and children’s hearing aids.” And of course whip Kevin McCarthy said, “We will not shut the government down.” And of course Sen. Rand Paul said: “We are the party that’s willing to compromise. They are the party that says, no way, we’re not touching Obamacare.”
You don’t even need to have read Orwell to know these are quasi-totalitarian statements that depend on obfuscation, rely on the gullibility of the listening public. The obfuscators all know very well that most Americans won’t stop to realize that their position is a scandal to begin with. They’re trying to undo a law that was duly passed and then upheld by the Supreme Court, as if that were normal in American politics, as if it should be considered an acceptable tactic on its face. And they know that … some Americans (I don’t think most, in this case) will stupidly and dismissively assign equal blame to both sides.
Oh well, at least we can console ourselves with the knowledge that the ever-refined Ann Wagner is “gratified” that the GOP leadership capitulated without a fight to the constantly expanding crazy wing of the party. I’m sure some of the lower-rung federal workers who’ll be hitting the food pantries because they won’t be getting a paycheck will be equally gratified that their suffering, along with that of others who will be sacrificed to this particular piece of GOP hubris, is bringing such peace of mind to GOP Rep. Wagner.