Today: Rachel looks at the Gang of 10, chats with Melissa Harris-Lacewell about the dumbest political ad of the season, and helps you to cuddle the gay away.
Rachel started us off with a lesson on gang terminology as she discussed Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s Gang of 10, a bad-ass blend of progressive and conservative Democrats trying to bang out a compromise on health care reform.
Congressional custodians have been working overtime due to all the Republican pissing and moaning about it, but maybe they should have thought of that before they decided to spend the entire health care debate blocking progress and claiming that health care reform equals Obama sending his personal Kenyan bodyguards over to punch you in the spleen. And just try to outrun those guys.
One more thing:
Senator Max Baucus (D – Montana) recommended his girlfriend for a U.S. Attorney position but neglected to mention that there might be a wee conflict of interest.
Once they get back from their winter break, we should maybe have our Senators take a refresher course on ethics.
Except I think Baucus might know a lawyer who can get him out of it.
Wow. This is — wow.
I’m honestly sort of amazed that Rachel and Princeton University’s Melissa Harris-Lacewell are able to have a conversation about this anti–health care reform ad.
It’s so deliberately obtuse that if it were a person I’d have to just walk away from it lest I start yelling and not stop until my larynx exploded.
On the upside, now that this technique is out there, let’s all go ahead and use it.
Today at work, go ahead and whip out “If disliking Ron’s PowerPoint makes me a cannibal, then I guess I’m a cannibal.”
Don’t forget to use the eyes. Remember: You’re not angry; you’re just very disappointed.
And a little smug.
Rachel noted that the Bush administration’s view of the environment was essentially “the big blue ‘n’ green sponge where all the awl is hid” and they did their best as stewards of the earth to help oil companies poke big holes in it as quickly as possible to get all that oil out.
The earth loves that. It’s like a romantic vampire movie.
Amazingly enough, after Bush left office some of those same folks ended up working in the oil industry! Small world, eh? Maybe they ran into each other on LinkedIn.
Melanie Sloan, the executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, stopped by to talk about that amazing coincidence.
Rachel also touched on Senator James Inhofe (R – Oklahoma) and his Truth Squad! Episode I: Something’s Rotten in the State of Denmark coming soon!
Please, please let there be utility belts.
Rachel pointed out that when President Obama first announced the latest troop surge in Afghanistan, there seemed to be a pretty firm July 2011 deadline for at least starting to withdraw the troops.
Over the weekend, it has gotten less firm, and now it doesn’t seem to be a deadline at all.
Maybe it’s more of a living deadline. You have to be careful about those. They creep up on you.
Rachel also reported that we may be getting back about $200 billion more than we thought from the TARP bailout. Who wants ice cream?!
Or jobs. We might use it to create some jobs. President Obama is expected to give a big jobs speech today and I’m comfortably certain that no one will be an obstructionist pain in the butt or issue a statement that a jobs program is just the opportunity the terrorists are looking for.*
*One of the new jobs might be instilling people with an unwarranted sense of optimism.
Uganda Be Kidding Me
As a part of her ongoing series on the delightful elves who so helpfully midwifed Uganda’s kill-the-gays bill, Rachel introduced us to Richard Cohen.
Cohen describes himself as an ex-gay and a former member of Reverend Moon’s Unification Church so… Yeah, he’s been on something of a journey.
And still is. I would love to cruelly mock Cohen — he is ridiculous and actively causing harm in the world, so he certainly deserves it — but, good gravy, the man is so psychologically naked and so unaware of it that all I want to do is look at anything else at all.
Cohen thinks that The Gay can be cured by cuddling. Good thing people in the LGBT community never, ever cuddle or those spontaneous healings would get really inconvenient.
Anyway, Cohen is totally not gay and has no lingering issues about it. None. He just frequently has grown men lie in his lap and hold him. To reinforce their complete lack of gayness.
It is, without exaggeration, one of the creepiest goddamned things you will ever see. And we haven’t even gotten to the pillow and tennis racket yet.
Rachel will be interviewing Cohen tonight.
Set every recording device you have and cuddle up with a friend.