Sally Kohn at CNN: "The nuclear option, an overblown term for changing Senate rules to enable judicial and executive nominees to be confirmed with just 51 votes instead of 60, will put an end to using the filibuster to block appointees. Republicans have been gumming up the works of our government, both because they ideologically favor the dysfunction of government, and because they want to fundamentally undermine the president. Proponents of the measure call it the constitutional option, in so far as it is constitutional and it would finally hold Senate Republicans' feet to the fire to perform their constitutional duty. That indeed seems a more accurate description and one that reminds us all that it was Republicans' own reckless and destructive behavior that brought us to this point."
An article in the Los Angeles Times credits the elimination of the Senate filibuster to a new class of Democrats --- the "Elizabeth Warren wing of the Party".
"While Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, and the entire Tea Party caucus in the House have all transformed themselves into political Kardashians, constantly mugging for the cameras with their latest outrage du jour, the Democrats --- particularly those in the Senate who wield actual majority power --- have for the most part sat quietly by for the last five years and endured this nonsense. When the brilliant minds at Americans For Prosperity hatched the Tea Party, they should have kept in mind Newton's Third Law of Motion."
Which is: For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.
The entire national Democratic congressional leadership, the heads of several major progressive advocacy organizations, and numerous big-time center-left media types were on hand to give Harry Reid a standing ovation for nuking the filibuster. (Here is the video at YouTube)
"What was known as the nuclear option yesterday is known as the Reid Rule today. Time will only tell if the Reid Rule is productive or destructive. But we'll leave that to the historians. As for how it became the Reid rule, it took a coordinated and sustained effort from an unlikely place --- progressive activists on the blogosphere."
The disgusting multi-millionaire and radio host Rush Limbaugh, from his Palm Beach beachfront mansion, made the preposterous comparison of Harry Reid's filibuster reform to a vote allowing women to be raped, just days after the radical right wing talk show host had referred to single mothers as "semen receptacles."
So it's imperative that this new breed of brave Democrats holds on to the Senate in 2014 (and maybe takes back the House), because if not, after seeing what the Tea Party is capable of (and after hearing what their backers such as Rush Limbaugh believes), we could be living in a very draconian country. We can only hope that going forward the next 3 years (without the GOP filibuster) will enable the Democrats to enact policies that greatly benefits the majority of voters before the next presidential election.
Given the actions of the Tea Party in the past, can you imagine if the GOP had taken control of the Senate the last time, and if Mitt Romney had been our president?
But even if Harry Reid's ultimate strategy had been to wait until after the 2012 presidential election before deciding to reform the filibuster, why did he wait so long? Now we'll have one less year to work with in implementing better policies, such as a jobs bill, tax reform, an immigration bill, election reform and a host of many other issues. (Read Senator Bernie Sanders: Budget & Petition)
Other recent tid-bits in the news:
» Waitress Fired for Customers Walking Out on their Bill. The Division of Labor Standards told her:
"Your employer cannot make any deductions or require payment out of pocket for any losses or damages. Therefore, your employer cannot require you pay the tab for customers who walk out. If they want the money, they will have to sue you in civil court. Although your employer is allowed to terminate any employee for any reason (except any reason that constitutes discrimination), your employer also cannot terminate you because you complained about a violation of the Labor Law. Therefore, since you refused to pay for the tab, which is a violation of Labor Law, and was terminated for it, you can file a complaint of retaliation with the Division of Labor Standards."
"The media (especially Fox News, obviously, but the media on both sides of the largely fictional left/right divide) feed on controversy, like parasites. And if there isn't controversy, they need to create it. It's cynicism at its finest --- manipulating the emotions of those who are easily manipulated in order to turn a profit."
» From another article in the Daily Kos, where Bill Maher is comparing JFK to Ronald Reagan:
Just last week, Sarah Palin said, "There is no Ronald Reagan on the scene today. If he was, that's who I would put my faith in." That's quite a hold on someone. After all, when Reagan was elected, Sarah Palin was barely 16, probably pregnant, but still in 3rd grade."
» Word of the Day: plutonomy
n. An economy that is driven by, or that disproportionately benefits, wealthy people --- or one where the creation of wealth is the principal goal. [Blend of pluto- (wealth) and economy.]