Ted Cruz, The Debt Ceiling, Guns and Mental Health
September 23, 2013

 
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(Note: Theme has been changed temporarily upon finding a bug in the theme we normally use. My apologies for any inconvenience. – Mugsy)
 

“There’s something WRONG with these people.” I’ve said it. I know YOU’VE said it. Our country is being held hostage by people with a tenuous grip on reality. Paranoid delusionals that believe government conspiracies are real. They get their “news” from Conspiracy Nuts like “Glenn Beck”, “Infowars” and “World Nut News Daily”. They believe everything Fox “news” tells them without question because it simply reaffirms what they already know in their heart-of-hearts to be true, and with that “confirmation”, they reject all other evidence to the contrary. It’s a world where… when a ruthless Middle-Eastern dictator gasses hundreds of his own citizens… they see an Obama-orchestrated conspiracy designed to distract Congress from investigating “Benghazi”. It’s a world in which… when Tea Party darling and “Joe McCarthy-wannabee” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) is publicly ridiculed for repeating his insane beliefs in public… they decide he MUST be a secret Liberal infiltrator out to discredit the movement from within (despite the fact that what he says is EXACTLY what they too believe… never making the connection that that means the public has declared their own views to be “nuts”.) You know, because that’s what evil Liberals do: they run as Republicans (and win because Republicans are apparently incredibly easy to fool), vote with Republicans on every issue, and then go out and push for something The Tea Party WANTS, knowing it will draw ridicule, discrediting the movement. This is not the thinking of a sane group of people.

The Federal Government runs out of money one week from today on September 30th. If Congress does not agree to raise the Debt ceiling… something they did FIVE TIMES under President Bush (four of them under GOP control of BOTH houses of Congress)… and shuts down the U.S. government, it will do something it has NEVER done in its 237 year history: default on its debts… the result of which would be catastrophic for the U.S. economy.

Sen. Cruz is leading the charge in the threat to shutdown the government if “ObamaCare” is not repealed on the grounds that “ObamaCare will be devastating to American businesses… unlike defaulting on our National Debt. Shorter Ted Cruz: “I’ll destroy the economy if we don’t stop ObamaCare from destroying the economy!” Makes perfect sense (in Wingnutistan.)

Sorry to tell you folks, but Cruz isn’t pretending. The Tea Party really is that nuts. Check the Comments beneath any news story of Cruz’s latest insane remark (from claiming there were more declared Communists in Harvard Law School than Republicans, his recent praise for the late racist Senator Jessie Helms… who incidentally would have been no friend to a guy named “Cruz”… or his latest promise to hold the Debt Ceiling hostage if we don’t defund “ObamaCare”) and you’ll find no shortage of Wingnuts supporting him.

So, how do you run a Federal Government when 1/4 of Congress is certifiably insane? I’ve written about “Right-Wing Insanity” so often I had to give it its own Tag. In 2011… the last time we had this fight… Republicans were threatening to default on The Debt if we didn’t cut the Deficit, complaining that the government “spends too much” (the deficit will have been cut in half by the end of this year under Obama). Had we of defaulted on our debt FOR EVEN ONE DAY, we would of had to raise interest rates to convince people to lend us money knowing they might not get paid back. Do you (read: “they”) have any idea what “raising interest rates” would have done to our Debt and our economy? Just the dance up to the precipice prompted the Standard & Poors credit rating agency to downgrade our nations credit rating from “AAA” to “AA+”. And just how much money does stopping the paychecks of nearly 2 million Federal employees suck out of the economy?

And here we are again, with a whole new crop of Tea Bagger Republicans that weren’t in Congress the last time the Teanuts tried this two years ago. If it were just “the full faith & credit of the United States” that these ideologues were endangering, that would be bad enough. But it’s not:

Liberal Democrats see a guy walk into a schoolhouse and murder 20 First Graders and 6 teachers with a semi-automatic assault rifle, and feel the need to pass laws to prevent it from ever happening again.

Tea Party Republicans see a guy walk into a schoolhouse and murder 20 First Graders and 6 teachers with a semi-automatic assault rifle, and see a (“false flag”) government conspiracy orchestrated by President Obama to give him an excuse to confiscate their guns, and once disarmed, round them up and put them in Concentration Camps run by FEMA.

This is not the thinking of sane people. This is the thinking of paranoid delusionals.

On occasion, I’ve also mentioned the insane rantings of Right Wing nuts commenting on my YouTube video archive. This past week, one gadfly, an oldie but a goodie I’ve affectionately dubbed “Gasbag”… a corruption of his username… made a surprise reappearance and started ranting about “Socialized Medicine” following a report by a retired British doctor that once ran the NHS (the UK hospital system) reporting a 45% higher mortality rate among British NHS patients than in US hospitals as proof positive that the American System is superior to “Socialized Medicine”. When I started pointing out serious flaws in the report (like the fact that the NHS treats EVERYONE including the Poor, drug users, etc, where our poor may never go to the hospital due to their inability to pay, or end up in the ER to receive beyond-ordinary care), naturally he became outraged that I couldn’t see what was patently obvious to him, cursing, changing what I actually said (never could understand people who claim that you said something other than what’s clearly typed just a few paragraphs above) and attacking me for refusing to “accept facts”. Naturally, his comments quickly drifted off into rants about “lazy people on Welfare” and this absurd claim from (where else?) Fox “news” that a whopping EIGHTY PERCENT of our Federal Budget is spent on Welfare (for the record, it’s actually about 10%)… which would be 50% more than the annual cost of the Iraq War. Pointing our just how ridiculous a figure that number was, was pointless. Fox said it, and “the numbers come from the GAO”, ergo it’s indisputably true. Well, no. In fact (not surprisingly), Fox included “Entitlements” like “Social Security”, “Medicare” and “Unemployment Benefits” as “Welfare”.

I eventually received the inevitable post ending with a dismissive “Goodbye!”… which as you may have guessed… wasn’t actually his last post. He’s still at it, now desperate to convince me that “Social Security” is Welfare because some people draw out more than they put in (demonstrating not only that he doesn’t understand how Social Security funding works, but by that standard, ALL insurance programs could be labeled “welfare”.)

This is not the thinking of sane people.

For some inexplicable reason, another mental deficient, a white supremacist with delusions of grandeur (supposedly running for state office in Louisiana) seized upon a recent post of mine as the appropriate place to start ranting about “gun violence among ‘coons’ in Chicago.” I have no doubt he believes his eventual electoral victory is certain.

This is not the thinking of sane people.

We saw yet another mass shooting last week in which a man with a documented history of mental illness was able to purchase a shotgun the week before and murder 12 people in the museum-section of the U.S. Navy Yard in Washington DC. And just as they did following the Sandy Hook massacre of 20 school children, NBC’s “Meet the Press” invited NRA president Wayne LaPierre to advocate for MORE guns. When it was pointed out to him that two “good guys with guns”… the station guards… were “gunned down and killed” by the armed intruder, LaPierre defended his claim by pointing out that it was “good guys with guns” that (30 minutes later) took down the insane gunman (AFTER he had murdered 12 people in cold blood.) He argued that stricter gun laws preventing those who have been ADJUDICATED mentally-ill from obtaining firearms are necessary (yet would not have prevented this particular mass-murder… nor the Aurora or Sandy Hook mass murders). Problem is, the gun-nuts I’ve spoken to actually believe that perfectly sane people might be labeled “insane” by a government appointed psychiatrist or activist judge for no more reason than the fact they love guns… all as part of a secret plot to disarm them, and would therefore never support a law such as the one LaPierre just proposed.

This is not the thinking of sane people.

Fortunately for us, the recent rash of mass shootings by mentally ill gunmen is likely to prompt new gun laws targeting the mentally ill.

The GOP has been trying desperately for years to kill “ObamaCare”… which includes provisions for Mental Health Care. Coincidence? Crazy people don’t want Mental Health Care any more than bacteria want antibiotics (sorry, I wracked my brain for a better metaphor to no avail. I am not calling Republicans “bacteria”.) Almost as if to make the point crystal-clear, the arguments against “ObamaCare” read like a crazy-ass hit parade: paranoia over “Death Panels” where “government bureaucrats make health care decisions” instead of your insurance agent doctor, and transforming our multi-trillion dollar private health care industry into evil “socialized medicine” overnight, with “long lines” similar to “the post office” or “The DMV” as you wait for hours to see a “civil servant” doctor.

This is not the thinking of sane people.

– Mugsy
 


Postscript: According to the National Weather Service, Tropical Storm Humberto reached hurricane status on September 10th, just shy of setting the record for the longest it has ever taken to reach the first full-fledged hurricane of the season. I bring this up because FOUR YEARS AGO I told you that Global Warming would mean FEWER hurricanes, not “more”. It’s worth re-reading.

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September 23, 2013 · Admin Mugsy · 8 Comments - Add
Posted in: Crime, Economy, Guns & Violence, Partisanship, Politics, Right-Wing Insanity

Comments
  • Grant in Texas September 23, 2013 at 2:45 AM

    I’ve been concerned about the insanity creeping into the “Party of Lincoln” since the 1960’s. I was a member of YAF and an activist Republican until I saw the GOP tracking down the racist route in order to win over the electoral votes of the Old South.

    Some of my frat brothers and I got into a heated exchange in 1961 with a German exchange student whom we had often invited to sit at our big round “frat” table at a near campus bar. We liked him as he was a good drinker and had a good sense of humor. However, he got tired of us making snide “Nazi remarks” about Germans. He wanted to wager that the next great world fascist power would be the USA, NOT Germany (more than us, he was aware of McCarthyism and the budding John Birch Society coming into power). He told us that most present day German people had learned a lesson and explained what his parents had told him, how Germans had been suffering in by a bad economy and that the Nazis repaired it by firing up their military industries to put people back to work making munitions, planes, ships, tanks, etc. At the same time they were blanketed with Nazi propaganda (probably not as good as Fox News and Rush) and by the time many realized they had helped to create a monster, they discovered they could not leave Germany as their borders had been fenced in, sealed (Remember “Sound of Music”). The people either went along with the government, men forced into the military, or they went to death camps along with Jews and other hated minority groups. Many good Germans did become martyrs rather than give in to the fascist regime. They lamented they had sold out for a loaf of bread.

    Since living through Watergate and many events since like the Patriot Act, torture, etc., I have feared what the prophetic German student told us that night in 1961. There have been parallels between 1930’s German history and that of the US, especially since 2001. Thankfully, I will probably be dead before we become such a nation but I want my many nieces and nephews to have a great nation to live in. Remember we are only 300 million in a world of 7 billion. Upon the recommendation of the German student, some of us did read Sinclair Lewis’s “It Can’t Happen Here” which was a fiction from 1935 about a fascist take over of the USA. This was during the time that right-wingers plotted a coup against FDR for his “socialism”, including famous conservatives like anti-Semites Henry Ford and Charles Lindbergh, even financiers like Prescott Bush. There was enough pro-German support in the USA the time that American Nazis filled Madison Square Garden for a rally in 1939. In reality, FDR may have saved our nation from becoming an ally of Hitler, instead of a foe.

    http://www.amazon.com/Cant-Happen-Here-Sinclair-Lewis/dp/045121658X/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1379901987&sr=1-1&keywords=it+can%27t+happen+here+by+sinclair+lewis

    I will never forget the last words that night from the German student. “Watch what your government does at its borders, as the machinery set up to keep out contraband and people can easily be reversed to keep people in.” I had almost forgotten that night until a decade later when we first heard of the “war on drugs” and we began to beef up the border. After the Southern Strategy was firmly in place, the Christian Right, the so-called “Moral Majority”, assumed power under Reagan, and finally the neocons hijacked Bush/Cheney, and finally “Corporations became people”. I have never looked back and questioned my leaving the GOP as the party I grew up in under President Eisenhower is no more.

     
  • Ebon September 23, 2013 at 6:53 AM

    The piece about the NHS is highly flawed. Firstly, as you say, the NHS treats everyone, including those suffering from terminal illnesses, drug abuswers, etc, whereas private insurance can cherrypick the healthiest clients. Secondly, the NHS has been underfunded for years and is currently being part-privatised by the Tories. Thirdly, ranting about socialised medicine ignores numerous other nations which also have universal healthcare and have mortality rates lower than the UK. Fourth, the man who compiled the data (Prof Jarman) himself says it’s not proof of a particular problem with the NHS but may well be due to cultural factors. Fifth, you can still buy private insurance here. Ergo, even with an NHS-style universal care system, your disputant would still be able to buy private insurance if he wanted to.

    The NHS is far from perfect but it is a good deal better than these cherrypicked newsbites make it sound.

     
    • Admin Mugsy September 24, 2013 at 11:35 AM

      Thanks Ebon. I probably wouldn’t use the word “flawed” so much as “forgot to mention”.

      I’ll keep your post in mind the next time my crainially challenged opponent from AZ tries to explain to me the British healthcare system. 🙂

       
  • Grant in Texas September 24, 2013 at 5:25 PM

    I’ve traveled to 49 nations and even some of the poorest in Latin America, Caribbean have national healthcare. I am a benefactor of the British NHS. Three years ago tripped on cobblestone in front of Westminster Abbey while trying to take a photograph and not paying attention. I was seen immediately by 2 doctors in a small London clinic. I had 4 X-rays, was splinted/slinged and given a weeks supply of a pain killer drug. Had left my passport and wallet with Texas Driver’s License back in my hotel safe so had no I.D. on my person. They said, “no problem” and accepted my word about who I was, where I was from. I could have been “illegal” in the UK, but they were compassionate people. In contrast, right wingers in the USA are so afraid our hospitals will treat “illegal aliens”. I also had travel insurance that will pay up to $50K but alas those papers were also back at my hotel. Was told not to worry. They probably didn’t want to fight with an American insurance company overseas, do all of the required paperwork, go through any “red tape” so my healthcare was on the citizens of the UK. My right arm healed a few millimeters too short (told not the fault of the UK doctors) which threw off the range-of-motion of my hand and was giving me pain so went to a Houston surgeon (Brown Hand Clinic) to have my arm surgically re-broken and a metal expander and cadaver bone put in. My bill here in Texas was $63,000! Thankfully Medicare and my supplemental policy paid for all but $1000. Noted that the clinic in London was most basic, plain decor while the Houston office and Memorial Hermann hospital were like palaces, with fine furnishings, even artwork on the walls.

    So every time I hear Fox News and right-wingers slime the NHS, talk about waiting months to see a doctor, etc. I know they are doing what they do best…LIE!

    I don’t understand the right-wing mind. Had a classmate growing up, son of a Republican politician, who flew by float plane to a remote far north Manitoba fishing camp with friends several years back. There he suffered appendicitis and after radioing Winnipeg had an air ambulance provided to bring him to the capital where Canadian “socialized medicine” saved his life. He was never billed! He is now a retired Ball State U. professor and still a right winger, big fan of Rush Limbaugh and a hater of Obamacare.
    http://www.aarp.org/politics-society/government-elections/info-03-2012/myths-canada-health-care.html

     
    • Admin Mugsy September 24, 2013 at 6:09 PM

      In my experience, the biggest critics of “Socialized Health care” in Europe have never even set foot out of the country.

       
  • Grant in Texas September 25, 2013 at 12:05 AM

    More like never set foot out of their county! Yet they are waving big foam fingers screaming “USA! USA! We’re number one”! Once again the USA ranks way below most of the “socialist” nations of Europe on the latest “Happines Report”. In my talking to Danes, Finns, Norwegians during my many travels have found them almost bragging about paying near half of their income in taxes because they get so much in return like maternity leave, daycare for infants, eldercare for their seniors, health benefits, education from pre-K through a PhD, ample vacation time. Was told by a Finn that even foreigners get a free college education, the reason given was that since Finland is a homogenous society they want people coming there from around the world for diversity. http://www.refinery29.com/2013/09/53156/un-happiness-report-happiest-countries

     
  • Ebon September 25, 2013 at 3:28 PM

    Grant, the NHS tends toward functionally spartan decor both to keep costs down and to make cleaning easier. And speaking for us Brits, we’re perfectly happy to have paid for your arm being fixed 🙂

     
  • Grant in Texas October 1, 2013 at 6:12 AM

    Over the years in relating my story (posted above) about the argument some of us American students had with the German international student in college in the early 60’s, been told that a megalomaniac like Adolph Hitler would need to take power and that such a person is rare, may not exist. Watching the corpfascists on the Supreme Court and now Ted Cruz and his merry anarchists, I am beginning to wonder if that tyrant-in-waiting isn’t already here. We’ve got to remove the Tea Party cancer from our halls of Congress.

     
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