When to Stop Reading a “Non-Fiction” Article
(cross-posted from Skippy the Bush Kangaroo)
Mark Thoma sends us to Benjamin M. Friedman. Given that imprimatur, one expects precise analysis. (Mark, after all, is an econometrician by trade.)
So it was surprising to stop reading so early. Specifically, I gave up on this cretinous piece of garbage at:
especially during the president’s first year in office, when the Democrats held a filibuster-proof supermajority in the Senate
Just so you know I’m not pulling from context:
The most pressing among [other economic problems than that “roughly one in six Americans — 50 million in a population of 307 million — had no health insurance”] was, and remains, financial reform. Rather than advance its own set of proposals — especially during the president’s first year in office, when the Democrats held a filibuster-proof supermajority in the Senate — the administration largely left the matter to Congress.
So this is the usual argument. The stimulus had been passed, so “the Obama domestic agenda shifted to health care.” I consider this horseshit*, but your mileage may vary.
What is clearly horseshit though, except in the most technical of senses, is the claim that “the Democrats held a filibuster-proof supermajority in the Senate” as if that were for the entire first year of Obama’s presidency, not just from 07 July 2009 (when Al Franken was finally sworn in as the 60th Democrat) to 25 August 2009 (when Ted Kennedy died).
Less than two months isn’t even close to a year, and “a lie is a very poor way to say hello.”** It’s an even poorer way to premise the rest of your “but Obama didn’t try to deal with MY problems” article—especially when he did.
Billmon was correct ten years ago; the Washington Post should have been destroyed with fire and sword. (Indeed, Billmon just neglected to mention the need to salt the earth at 1150 15th street NW.) Jeff Bezos appears determined to continue the tradition.***
*The Administration did, after all, continue to support and argue for “financial reform”–the Consumer Financial Protection Board was founded on 21 July 2011.
**in the words of Edith Keeler and/or Harlan Ellison
***This is datapoint number 1,000,000 or so in favor of that.
“[Kennedy’s] seat was held until the [special] election [held on January 19, 2010] by an appointee, Senator Paul Kirk, a former chairman of the Democratic National Committee, who was not a candidate in the election to complete the term.”
Kirk did not go to the Senate until late Sept. Left in Feb.
Course, all of this is nonsense anyway. Anyone who considered Lieberman a Dem in 2009 has no sense.
I hope there is some discussion of this, for I couldn’t really make heads or tails of it all. This started when I read the Benjamin M. Friedman essay. My first impression was that the man was doing a fluff job on Obama, but ended with some vague (to me!) complaint Obama wasn’t doing the right stuff.
Could anybody explain to me Friedman’s exact objections?
Friedman did ruffle my feathers with his support for any and all trade treaties, including the TPP. Researching his other views very nearly was a waste of time – I just couldn’t find much! One interview strongly suggested the man wears blinders which force him to look at everything in terms of “Economics”. I found his remarks on Global Warming to be amazingly ignorant.
*** What is clearly horseshit though, except in the most technical of senses, is the claim that “the Democrats held a filibuster-proof supermajority in the Senate” as if that were for the entire first year of Obama’s presidency, not just from 07 July 2009 (when Al Franken was finally sworn in as the 60th Democrat) to 25 August 2009 (when Ted Kennedy died). ***
This ignores the fact that once the Democrats DID get their supermajority, they sat on their hands and allowed the Republicans to continue to wreak havoc with the filibuster club. Not until 2013 was the crappy practice partially curbed.
You have two log ons going for Angry Bear. Why the second one? If you do not answer, I will go back and delete the second one.
“allowed the Republicans”.
Had this discussion over at EV. I am not doing it again. I have wasted enough time on people who have no basis of knowledge on the subject, yet insist they do.
It wasn’t just Lieberman; there were also Baucus, Manchin, and?
It was more than just the ones you named and I am too lazy to go back and list the others. Dems never had a safe 60.
This will only lead to the “the Dems could have stopped the filibuster is they really wanted” tar pit.
This happened years ago, and the myths still exist and cannot be killed.
It is beyond tiring.
“The City on the Edge of Forever”
“Dems never had a safe 60.”