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On the Job (Unfortunately the Wrong One)

March 19th, 2011

I hope that all the American voters who voted out Democrats for supposedly not paying enough attention to job creation are paying attention to the kind of garbage that Republicans are wasting time on instead. Back in 2009, Democrats passed the stimulus bill right away, and while it did not solve every problem, it prevented millions of jobs from being lost and helped bring us back up to where we are now. What has the GOP done to create jobs? Essentially, got rich people loads more money by extending their tax cuts. Problem solved! Worse, the GOP, since Day One, has been spending most of their time on drivel which is as vehemently partisan as it is boneheaded and futile.

Recently, for example, the GOP wasted time trying to defund NPR as a result of a publicity stunt by a criminally irresponsible right-wing punk/prankster famous for wildly misrepresenting the truth. Despite the fact that they knew full well that this would never pass the Senate, the GOP nonetheless wasted swaths of valuable congressional time in session to what amounted to a completely insipid publicity stunt, instead of doing anything to save jobs.

Their next idiotic PR stunt? Passing a law that would turn the IRS into abortion cops:

Under a GOP-backed bill expected to sail through the House of Representatives, the Internal Revenue Service would be forced to police how Americans have paid for their abortions. To ensure that taxpayers complied with the law, IRS agents would have to investigate whether certain terminated pregnancies were the result of rape or incest. And one tax expert says that the measure could even lead to questions on tax forms: Have you had an abortion? Did you keep your receipt?

In testimony to a House taxation subcommittee on Wednesday, Thomas Barthold, the chief of staff of the nonpartisan Joint Tax Committee, confirmed that one consequence of the Republicans’ “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act” would be to turn IRS agents into abortion cops—that is, during an audit, they’d have to determine, from evidence provided by the taxpayer, whether any tax benefit had been inappropriately used to pay for an abortion.

Bad enough that the IRS would now be requiring your medical history as part of your tax returns; worse that they would then interrogate rape victims for tax purposes. More importantly, how exactly would the IRS determine that the woman in question spent “tax benefit” money on the abortion, as opposed to just money she earned? If the law has any meaning whatsoever, it would essentially treat any money spent by the woman as potentially part of that “tax benefit.” Meaning that if a woman who had an abortion got any tax break that could be called a “benefit,” she would not be allowed a medical procedure or else would be penalized in the form of higher taxes. Do I even need to mention that these are the same people who are trying to say government should get out of our personal business?

Not that any of this matters–it will obviously be DOA when it gets to the Senate. The point, of course, is that this is all just a massive waste of time, at taxpayer expense, for nothing more than a staunchly partisan attack, when people are out of work and hurting. Instead of doing work to solve any problems faced by the people, the GOP is hard at work throwing their own feces at the opposition like a pack of drug-addled howler monkeys. Not that this is any different from any other time in the past many years.

Will the voters react to this as they reacted to just the perception that Democrats weren’t doing enough to solve the job crisis? Will they get the hint that if Republicans are rewarded for their batshit-crazy routine in 2012, that this will spread to both houses and only intensify?

If history is any indication, the answer is, sadly, no.

  1. Tim Kane
    March 19th, 2011 at 23:52 | #1

    The bad news is that Obama, who was elected with a huge mandate for change on a New Deal scale, has basically surrendered -without a fight- on most material positions on the economy. Today he’s accepted the Republican’s belt tightening meme. Belt tightening means the Great Jobs recession goes on for at LEAST another 8 years.

    Our choices for 2012 will be Herbert Hoover and Herbert Hoover.

    We might have just as well elected McCain last election. The recession would have gotten much worse, the Republicans have owned the whole thing, and we’d be looking at a big lurch to the left in 2012 and finally a way out of the dark age. Not a single chance of that now.

    This is one fncked up country.

  2. Troy
    March 21st, 2011 at 08:38 | #2

    Prolly would have got the same damn health insurance reform bill if McCain were president, too.

    The one good thing is the replacement of Judge Stevens, but the court is still stacked 5-4 so that’s really not of any help in the current or medium term.

    I wonder if Japan will have me back, now.

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