Today: Ana Marie Cox and the exciting Counterbudget Countdown.
G. D’oh! P.
Rachel led us off with the exciting news that House Republicans have given us The Republican Road to Recovery, a new “budget” that features innovative ideas like a gargantuan tax cut for the rich.
The tax cut section is the only part of the budgetlike object that has numbers in it. The part where the numbers get filled in — presumably titled The Republican Road to Recovery, Paved — comes out next week
The Huffington Post’s Ryan Grim seemed to be thoroughly ticked off about getting dragged in for an urgent conference about information that is not actually going to be revealed until Wednesday, but Rachel could not have been happier.
Thus, her new Republican Budget Countdown Clock, puckishly labeled “Minor(ity) Details”.
I’ll Stop the World and Melt with You
Switzerland and Italy are redrawing their Alpine border. It used to be the glacial ridgeline, which worked great until we got the cosmic hair dryer fired up.
The new border will be based on rock.
The Red River and the Missouri River are expected to rise beyond all previous records this weekend, and
both are choked with car-sized chunks of ice that are forming into jams the size of top-tier Republican tax cuts.
Rachel checked in with Jay Gray of NBC news, who reported on the incredible rise in the rivers and the impressive work that the good people of North Dakota are doing with the sandbagging. Send some warm and dry thoughts their way.
The Obama administration is expected to release its plan for Afghanistan on Friday. Rachel promised that she and her staff will be exactly as nutball about picking them apart as you’ve come to expect.
Rachel also brought up the offhand mention in the New York Times that Baghdad is being turned into a modern medieval walled city. There had better be a budget for a jester and some troubadours. And a camelopard. Can we get a camelopard in there?
In less moaty news, the DEA bought three new “experimental” planes, and, good lord, apparently they were experimenting on whether it’s OK to attach the windshield with chewed-up sticks of Fruit Stripe.
On the other hand, if you really want to strike fear into drug lords, I’m guessing that roaring around in planes that have random parts flying off all the time earns you a pretty bad-ass reputation.
Rachel brought us up-to-date on the continuing story of the President’s media blitz, for which she had to use a title crawl to cover the full scope of his Obamnipresence.
In tragic contrast, she next showed us what seems to be shoe-cam footage of Sarah Palin giving a speech for the Alaska Republicans and the now-famous clip of Michael Steele saying that anything he ever did wrong was secretly part of a brilliant Machiavellian scheme to see who is truly in his corner… by saying things he doesn’t really believe… which his true friends should support… even though part of the plan is to say those things are wrong later…
Look, just go with it, OK? Or are you on the other side of the chessboard?!
Speaking of that chessboard, Rachel is merciless when it comes to publicly carving up overstuffed metaphors. (I would use a simile here to describe it, but I’m afraid that she’d show up at my apartment and mock me into a weeping puddle. Then she’d find out that I don’t keep vermouth on hand and nobody would ever find my corpse.)
At any rate, we must have all eaten our vegetables, done our homework, and revamped our infrastructures this week, because we got another visit from Air America’s Ana Marie Cox. Yay!
GOP in Exile
Rachel noted that Obama’s budget has so frightened some Republicans that they are alternating flipping out and calling him a socialist with flipping out and calling him a fascist.
Aww. I feel fonder of them now that I know they swing both ways.
Peace Plan II
In a genuinely moving segment, Rachel interviewed Jehan Sadat, widow of Anwar Sadat and author of My Hope for Peace.
Anwar Sadat saved uncountable lives by defying odds, expectations, and just about everything else to broker a peace treaty between Egypt and Israel that has lasted for thirty years. As Rachel said, realizing what he did and the climate in which he managed to do it will “upset your sense of what is possible.”
Jehan Sadat made the simple and important point that if we sincerely want peace in the Middle East, we can and must find a way to talk to all nations. She also spoke about the importance of understanding each other’s cultures, and quashed the idea that terrorism has anything to do with true Muslim faith.
Until next time, keep your budgets vague and your metaphors tidy.