Friday, May 26, 2006

That's Rich (Unless You're Poor)

Awhile back, I wrote a piece discussing the GOP's obsessive loyalty to tax cuts and how it is virtually the only thing holding an otherwise fractured Republican coalition together. So they cut and they cut, and consequences be damned (This is about justice! Except when it isn't). Today, with the GOP's hold on power faltering, I felt this snippet from Bloomberg was worth noting:
The courts' involvement may deliver a victory to tax-cutting Republicans in Washington who are running out of taxes to cut and are facing a projected $300 billion budget deficit for this year.

Whatever shall they do? They've cut so much, there is nothing left to bribe rich Americans with! Hahahaha...heh...[sob].

H/T: Kevin Drum.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Sick Again

I feel like this term has not been my most healthy. I'm feeling abysmal. It's too bad, because there is lots of good bloggable material, but I just don't have the energy. Anyway, I finally got an appointment to go to the doctors, for 5:45 today. Hopefully those miracle-workers will get me back on my feet by the start of the weekend.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Indirect Assistance

The Washington Post gave front-page billing to the investigation of Louisiana Congressman William Jefferson (D). Long and short of it, things are not looking good for the Cajun State's reputation for political integrity (snark).

Republicans are trying to use Jefferson as proof that the culture of corruption is a bipartisan affliction. Paradoxically, though, Noam Scheiber argues that even if Jefferson does go down in flames, it still might hurt Republicans more. He predicts that either that voters won't read the story deep enough to get to Jefferson's party affiliation, or if they do, the effect will be to make corruption a bigger election issue, which can't help Republicans (as Scheiber notes, it is virtually impossible to imagine someone casting a GOP vote to show how fed up they are with Capitol Hill scandal). I'd add that Democrats have shown no inclination to protect Jefferson, providing an excellent contrast to the GOP leadership, which virtually fell over itself to shield Tom DeLay from the blowback of his illicit endeavors.

As to the scandal itself, I'll say this. Jefferson looks like he's guilty, and if he is, I say throw him to the wolves. But the point of the "culture of corruption" attack isn't to say there are no corrupt Democrats. That would be absurd. What's particularly appalling about the type of corruption we've seen in the GOP leadership is how it's been institutionalized. It's not just isolated hacks out for their own gain. It was ingrained in the very mechanics of how politics has been operating on the Hill for the last few years. That's what distinguishes a lone schmuck like Jefferson, and the immense machine of the K Street project.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

You Can't Do That!

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on the prospect of civil war:
"Civil war is the red line that nobody dares cross, no matter which side they are on ... Civil war is forbidden," Abbas said.

I love that's forbidden. Preventing civil war, fiated into existence by pure force of will. I wish it were that easy. Terrorism? Forbidden! Poverty? Forbidden!

Seriously, if Abbas has that sort of power, I wish he'd exercise it more often.