Thursday, October 3, 2013

Blatant Politics

Skip if you don't want shutdown talk. Instead, go here, for fun!

You were warned.

Before we get into the current state of shutdown, let's talk about the history of how we got here. Just a reminder on the compromises offered by Republicans:

1. Starting position: Defund ACA. This was clearly the "Never going to happen" initial offer that happens sometimes in negotiations. Especially when dealing with people with more pride than sense, which, note, means pretty much every politician ever. Yes, even that one you like.

2. Fine, we'll just delay it, since we're already delaying huge portions of the bill for a year anyway. Speaking of: How'd that Oct. 1, 2013, roll-out go for you? On the one hand, Diablo 3 had a worse opening day. On the downside, I'm comparing it to our government's roll-out of a signature piece of technology that many people will almost be required by law to use (not literally, but for convenience sake!) So, there's that.

3. Ok, whatever. If you still won't talk, let's at least say that Congress is subject to the ACA.

4. What? You won't even give us THAT? Fine, then let's at least not raise prices on hearing aids and pacemakers.

5. Seriously, you want poor people to pay MORE for medical devices? Ok, uh, can we have a week to come up with new terms?

6. Really -- you won't even do that? We give up; you win [for a given definition of winning]: Shut it down.

Now, we have the bad optics of denying veterans access to a public memorial that it is costing more to shut down than keep open. Not only that, but the Lincoln memorial is now better guarded than when the government was open and people covered it in green paint. Reid is on record basically saying who cares about life-saving cancer treatment for children? The Republicans are on record as attempting to fund it [along with the national parks and D.C., with 30-40 some Democrats signing on in a bi-partisan effort in the House.] Reid, however, scoffs at doing things that might save people's lives. Rather, he wants the Republicans in the House to capitulate entirely. I've said this in several places on the Web, and I'll say it here: When your side is FOR kids dying of cancer, Spoiler Alert: You're the bad guys.

Republicans wanted to negotiate; Obama and Reid did not. That is the biggest take-away that you need to have from this. Republicans have, again, played to the right, while being open to moderate concessions. They have been ignored. The shut down is now beyond parody; Democrats need to start putting pressure on the Senate. Reid is doing them no favors.

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