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  •  You are exactly correct! (116+ / 0-)

    We are awakening to this reality and beginning to stand up and say stop!  They are out of control.  It's not something I ever thought I would witness in my lifetime.

    being mindful and keepin' it real

    by Raggedy Ann on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 05:51:24 PM PST

        •  Folks this is Kabuki. (30+ / 2-)

          "Plan B" are you kidding me?

          Obama and Boehner cooked up Plan B while they were meeting which led to the faux trash talking we have seen that gives everyone inside the Beltway happy smiley Christmas cheer.  Why?  Cuz they have something to talk about.

          See these two faced a problem.  Remember, they are on the same side.  And, they knew that the current level of "crisis" was not enough of a crisis to cow the American people into accepting cuts in Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.

          Thus, there was a realization on all sides that we must go off the "fiscal cliff" (who invented that term again?) in order to create a higher order crisis which then (they hope) will be dire enough to create the need for the Social Security cuts that Obama for some reason (?) decided to put on the table.  (Yes Obama putting those cuts on the table, which do nothing to cut the deficit, is kinda like Bush invading Iraq after 9/11.)

          So, just wait for Obama v. Boehner vers 2.0.  It is sure to be a media circus.  What will you believe at that time?  Will you think the austerity is killing the economy and therefore you absolutely MUST accept cuts to cherished Democratic programs?  OR, will you realize what is going on and take action?

          Send your old shoes to the new George W. Bush library.

          by maxschell on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 08:03:27 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I fear you are exactly correct. (17+ / 0-)

            There are obviously candid discussions behind the scenes by Obama and Boehner about what each side's constituents WON'T accept, even though they both personally AGREE about what they'd like to do.  

            Which is to cut Social Security and leave as much of the Bush/Republican tax gifts intact as possible.  

            The problem is most Americans don't want that to happen.  

            So they are left to create this political theater to divert our attention from the "solution" that they already decided to force down the throats of Americans in a week or two.  

            Cutting Social Security, while leaving wealthy Americans alone.  

            I hope people will see through the smoke when that happens.

            •  No, both wrong.Thugs are simply that dysfunctional (34+ / 0-)

              They can't even agree on a postion that might limit some of the damage to their brand.  They can't even market themselves anymore.  There was zero chance 'Plan B' would be voted on in the Senate.  
              That means they had a free pass to to create a gimmck by which to claim they were not merely out for the rich at everyone else's expense.

              And they couldn't even do that.

              Stop looking for CTs when simply vanity and stupdity explains it.

              •  maybe (0+ / 0-)

                Maybe this was the R plan--to show how most Rs refused to raise taxes on anyone--to honor the "pledge."  What the middle (us) thinks is wrong, the treasonous wingers (them) see as purity worthy of reward.  Sometimes idiots are sneaky without realizing they are also transparent.

                Apres Bush, le deluge.

                by melvynny on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 05:50:41 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  BUT IT IS THE PRESIDENT WHO MUST NOT CAVE (8+ / 0-)

                  Forgive me for being such a captive to fears of a repeat of recent history, but this is usually the point at which Obama's heart goes soft and he starts giving away the store in the interests of "bipartisanship".

                  There is no bipartisanship that the present GOP will ever accept.  They will accept pushing the Democrats further and further and further towards their position.

                  Time to FUCKING STOP GIVNG IN TO THEM.

                  I'm not sixty-two—I'm fifty-twelve!

                  by Pragmatus on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:52:35 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  When has the president caved on anything? (0+ / 0-)

                    Read some of the new accounts of the Obama administration, such as The New New Deal and Showdown. They depict a president who -- caterwauling from the left notwithstanding -- generally outmaneuvers the Republicans because he plays a vastly superior long game and because he has a much better staff.

                    "There is no room for injustice anywhere in the American mansion." Lyndon Johnson

                    by pkgoode on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 10:35:31 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Public Option, "Bush Tax Cuts" extension... (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Pragmatus

                      ...two examples

                      Send your old shoes to the new George W. Bush library.

                      by maxschell on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 06:55:22 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  I like your sig line... (0+ / 0-)

                        But it would work this way too:

                        Celebrate the opening of the new George W. Bush library; come throw some old shoes at it.
                        Regarding Obama's cave-ins, Paul Krugman said it best a couple days ago, describing his MO as "negotiating with himself while the GOP enjoys the show".

                        Mr. Obama has all the cards in this game.  The GOP is trying to force him to fold a good hand, and since he has done so in the past I hope some impulse arises from somewhere to prevent a recurrence of his tendancy to above all else "get along".

                        I'm not sixty-two—I'm fifty-twelve!

                        by Pragmatus on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 11:45:10 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                    •  Wait, what?! Seriously? (0+ / 0-)

                      We went from controlling the Presidency and both houses of congress, the Senate with a "super majority", and 4 years later we're talking about cutting social security and implementing all kinds of shitty cuts to critical programs, and this is evidence of the President's excellent staff, strategy and long game?

                      Come on, now....

                •  I don't think Thugs HAVE a plan. The extreme (0+ / 0-)

                  right does, but that's just to burn everything down.

              •  This is "negotiating with domestic terrorists" (6+ / 0-)

                you can call the fallout from that CT all you want, the bottom line is that it will still affect those who can afford it the least.

                Why are there negotiations with these people? There's nothing to negotiate. Why would the President do that, and offer up Social Security in the process?

                That's insane. And while I agree with you to a point, I cannot accept that the only things driving this utter bullshit are vanity and stupidity .

                It is time to #Occupy Media.

                by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 07:54:34 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Wrong. They control the HOUSE and will again after (0+ / 0-)

                  January, for the next 2 years.  They are empowered by the Constitution.  They must be dealt with.  There is no alternative.  A ColdWar between 2 halfs of the government is a recipe for paralysis while Rome burns.

                  Think of trying to save Germany with a Nazi's being the plurality party in the Reichstag.  A party dedicated at its core to destroying the government and democracy itself.  Its getting close to that.

                  Imo BO offered chained-CPI bc the WH say it as the least harmful, least painful thing the Thugs keep saying they must have in order to do anything (entitlement reform).  We can argue about its merits, but if entitlements are the price Thugs demand - and that's what they'd been sayiing since before the election - to do anything, then the only way is to find the least damaging idea.  

                  Thugs kept claiming they had to have entitlement 'reform' for them to allow the country to work at all.  BO offered that to them.  Yet, Thugs still say no.  Bc all they want is to burn to country down.  Any D who does not pt this out is malpracticing.

                  Depsite that, tho, BO is constitutionally and morally charged required to try and fix the country's problems, to prevent another recession, to prevent tens of millions from being thrown into destitution.  That means negotiating with terrorists.  It means giving the bus and helicopter if that means getting the hostages free.  

                  It does not, however, mean surrendering.

                  But apparently it does mean years of this crap.

                  •  You keep missing the part (3+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Diane dp, StrayCat, maxschell

                    where Boehner and his sociopathic thugs are really in no position to demand anything.

                    You also keep missing the part about Social Security. That's not something that is up for negotiating as part of this "deal" when it does not have to be. Those people want to steal it outright.

                    Putting it on the table and giving them a chance to do it is BULLSHIT.

                    NONE of this had to happen. None of it. The "cliff" is a corporate construct, and all this President had to do was bid them a happy holiday and "see you on the other side of the curb" after the first of the year.

                    And then the GOP owns it. All of it. And they pay for it accordingly.

                    Instead you get this show where "surrender" is in the eye of the beholder, apparently. To me, surrendering is exactly putting something on the table that has nothing to do with this "budget crisis", in an effort to appease a bunch of seditious thieves. As if giving them what they want will somehow make them reasonable again.

                    It has A) gotten the President nowhere; B) gotten the budget nowhere and C) let the genie out of the bottle regarding "Social Security Reform".

                    To that end, all you need to do is lift the fucking cap on earnings. I'm not sure what part of that is so damnably difficult.

                    We need to stop making excuses and continue to fight it. And if that means offending a few people on a blog in the process, then so be it.

                     

                    It is time to #Occupy Media.

                    by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 11:04:38 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  and you keep missing that those nuts will have to (0+ / 0-)

                      pass a debt ceiling increase and appropriations or they close the doors on the government and no one gets anything.

                      Oh, and we have a Greater Depression.

                      Starving Americans won;t give a fig that Thugs caused it.  They'll blame POTUS, which means Ds.

                      I suspect, the only way to make this a positive for Ds is pretty much what BOs been doing: making it so clear that he's trying to get as livable and fair a deal as the batsh*t craxy Thugs will alow and keep Thugs from kicking the country into the Pit, so when they do a deal - and they will - and the voters are not starving and so might actually pay attention to who caused the disaster, they'll blame Thugs.

                      But, this is deep mob psychology, on which I am not an expert and I certainly could be wrong.  As could you.  All any of us can do is try in good faith to figure this out and what's the best thing for the most people.

                      Unlike the Thugs, who seem to have brought hoods, lighter fluid and torches.

                      •  No, I'm not (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        StrayCat, maxschell

                        because even if they have to pass a debt ceiling increase, at no time have they EVER had to do it on the back of Social Security.

                        Social Security has nothing to do with this. Making it so clear that he's trying to get a fair deal is one thing--making changes to something that has nothing to do with this, to appease economic terrorists, to try to get any deal is something else altogether.

                        This is not deep mob psychology--this is what's been  playing out under our noses.  

                        It is time to #Occupy Media.

                        by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 11:21:00 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

            •  Jeebus this is close to CT! Obama and Boehner (5+ / 0-)

              on the same side made me check to see if I'd accidentally linked to Red State.

              I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

              by I love OCD on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:21:53 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Wrong. (0+ / 0-)

                Both Obama and Boehner/Repubs have made clear they want to cut Social Security.  Remember the Catfood Commission?  They ARE on the same side.  The sooner you realize it, the better off you and your family will be.

                Send your old shoes to the new George W. Bush library.

                by maxschell on Wed Dec 26, 2012 at 11:10:33 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

          •  Obama and Boehner have a lot more in common (4+ / 0-)

            than Obama has with us.

            Government and laws are the agreement we all make to secure everyone's freedom.

            by Simplify on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:51:36 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  So we aren't HR'ing CT anymore? (26+ / 0-)
            Obama and Boehner cooked up Plan B while they were meeting which led to the faux trash talking we have seen that gives everyone inside the Beltway happy smiley Christmas cheer.  Why?  Cuz they have something to talk about.
            This is wild speculation at best and a bizarre conspiracy theory at worst but 12 people have chosen to co-sign the theory that the president conspired with Boehner to create this political failure on the House Floor.

            Those of us who are not paranoid realize the president repeatedly conveyed to Boehner that he should not waste his time or theirs with legislation that would be vetoed.

            It's the Central Limit Theorem, Stupid!

            by smartdemmg on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 01:24:35 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Shit went off the (8+ / 0-)

              rails around here a few days ago. Expect more of this.

              •  Obama went off the rails when he put SS on (20+ / 0-)

                the table.

                He didn't have to do that, and that's painfully obvious now, but he did.

                There was no negotiating with the GOP'ers, but he tried by offering to sacrifice on the temple of capitalism the poorest of America's seniors.

                How else can you describe what happened?

                Vote Tea Party Taliban! Bring the Burqa to America.

                by Pescadero Bill on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 06:50:34 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Wel The Way You Just Described It (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Imhotepsings

                  Isn't bullshit CT, which is what the commentor was asking about.

                  Too Folk For You. - Schmidting in the Punch Bowl - verb - Committing an unexpected and underhanded political act intended to "spoil the party."

                  by TooFolkGR on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 06:54:24 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  None of it is "bullshit CT" (6+ / 0-)

                    Pescadero Bill just said it better than the original poster.

                    I'm serious, I want an answer to the legitimate question Why would Mr. Obama put SS on the table at all? The fact remains, he did that.

                    How do you explain what happened? Seriously, I love the man, but elebenty-dimensional chess is not a good answer to that question. If we're to be reality-based around here, we need to do better.

                    It is time to #Occupy Media.

                    by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 07:48:09 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  No, They Said Completely Different Things (5+ / 0-)
                      Obama and Boehner cooked up Plan B while they were meeting
                      ^^^ Bullshit CT
                      Obama went off the rails when he put SS on the table.

                      He didn't have to do that, and that's painfully obvious now, but he did.

                      There was no negotiating with the GOP'ers, but he tried by offering to sacrifice on the temple of capitalism the poorest of America's seniors.

                      How else can you describe what happened?

                      ^^^ Not Bullshit CT

                      Teachable Moment: CT stands for "Conspiracy Theory."  The "bullshit" poster espoused a theory that Obama and Boehner had conspired to propose plan B, with zero evidence.   It's kind of the DICTIONARY DEFINITION of what "Bullshit CT" would be, if the dictionary included profane modifiers.

                      Too Folk For You. - Schmidting in the Punch Bowl - verb - Committing an unexpected and underhanded political act intended to "spoil the party."

                      by TooFolkGR on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 07:55:36 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Yes, you may be right (4+ / 0-)

                        but you know what? That Mr. Obama and Mr. Boehner "negotiated behind closed doors" rather lends itself to people saying the kind of things they don't read through before they post it.

                        So my point stands. Until this president stops negotiating with economic terrorists, you're going to see shit like this. And it will continue any time he does stuff like "put Social Security on the table".

                        Seriously, I don't give a damn about some "CT" on a blog. I give a damn about my future. And SS is all I have to look forward to. So pardon me if I'm a little pissed off in general. I may yet post something I regret, but rather than turn on my fellow Dems, I've fired back at the President via contacting his office. Several times.

                        The buck stops with him. The end.

                        It is time to #Occupy Media.

                        by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:06:20 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  You can read my full post below, (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          cyeko

                          but I'll summarize it thusly: a .3% per year reduction in the growth of SS payments is not an outrageous capitulation to economic terrorists. It was an attempt to stave off a second recession, extend unemployment benefits, extend middle class tax breaks, prevent automatic austerity measures that have kept Europe's economy in the toilet for 3 years, take the debt ceiling off the table in 2013 and get another round of stimulus.

                          I don't understand why these points are being ignored in people's rush to condemn Obama as to the right of Barry Goldwater. He pushing to protect the middle class and the unemployed, and get some Keynesian stimulus to boot. I understand that people are unhappy about CPI - I would not have made that inclusion, but look at the broader outlines of the deal!

                          •  Understand (6+ / 0-)

                            that I am not, nor have I ever been, rushing to condemn Obama. I have said all along simply A) I'm pissed that he included CPI because that will affect me directly and B) the buck stops with him.

                            I've taken the action to write to him--several times--and tell him to stop putting things on the table he has no right to put there.

                            What you're saying is take what you can get, even though you wouldn't have made the inclusion of a deal on SS. And I--and many many others--are saying NO, because it didn't need to be included.

                            And you still aren't saying WHY it was included to begin with, and back it up with something besides your opinion, some numbers, and some conjecture. Until you or anyone else answer the WHY question, you're going to continue to see people freaking out and attributing over-the-top theorizing to the place where the buck stops.

                            Put it all to rest. Explain why Mr. Obama put it on the table--those economic terrorists I speak of are on Boehner's side. We are lucky they didn't take him up on it. And dammit, I don't want that to happen again. That's my future they are bargaining with.

                            Thank you very much, but for once in my life, I don't give a damn about purity in blog posts.

                             

                            It is time to #Occupy Media.

                            by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:24:37 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I thought the 'why' (0+ / 0-)

                            part was obvious: to attract enough Republican votes to strike a deal and avoid the negative consequences I've listed. If it wasn't CPI, one of our other cherished programs would have to be included in a deal, and the same anger over CPI would be mustered against that compromise.

                            I don't know what else to tell you. Governance requires compromise. Republicans control the House, and we're going to see austerity + tax hikes + loss of unemployment insurance in about a week without their acceding to a deal. How I wish it weren't so.

                            You and many others don't think the deal was anywhere near worth the .3% slowing of SS benefit growth, a stance which I completely understand. Many don't want to see any deal, but to me that's unacceptable. Try telling that to someone on longterm unemployment who is going to have ZERO income on the first week of January. Pile many billions of Federal dollars being withdrawn from the economy and ANOTHER looming recession and we have a real shitstorm of economic pain about rain down on the middle class and the poor.

                            I still haven't heard anyone really address what will happen if no deal is reached. So that's my rambling answer as to 'why' Obama included SS as part of the deal when he didn't 'have' to. The position many seem to have adopted is: No deal, period. If that means taxes go up for everyone, we lose longterm UE benefits, AND slip back into recession. So. Be. It.

                            I disagree with that view point (and please correct me if you have a better solution, I just haven't heard one yet beyond staring down the Republicans and waiting for them to blink.)

                            PS/FYI: I just started collecting UE benefits, lest you think I'm looking down from the heights of economic security wishing economic pain on others :)

                          •  In other words (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            StrayCat, maxschell

                            take the short-term--unemployment--and to hell with the long-term--Social Security.

                            That last line certainly makes your perspective crystal-clear.

                            This "cliff" is a construct and those who continue to push it as necessary are short-sighted.  You do nothing and you wait until January, when we have more Dems. And then you fix this mess.

                            Period. And Social Security--which has nothing to do with this nonsense, nothing--comes off the damned table and it stays off.  

                            It is time to #Occupy Media.

                            by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 02:34:22 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  The cliff may be (0+ / 0-)

                            a construct, but it still has actual consequences which cannot be undone absent Republican acquiescence in the House of Representatives.

                            So as for my "crystal clear" perspective, yeah, I would make that trade (and its not CPI for UI trade, this includes stimulus spending, large tax increases on the wealthy, 100billion in defense cuts, no debt ceiling for 2 years, and NO SECOND  RECESSION). As I explained in another comment in this thread:

                            The deal Obama offered did focus on avoiding more short term economic hardship at the expense increased SS payments in the longterm. I would counter that by arguing: austerity now + loss of unemployment benefits + another potential recession could see many millions of people slide from the middle class into the working/nonworking poor. I would stipulate that that will have as much if not more longterm consequences than chained CPI.

                            Take the large # of americans who are just barely keeping their heads above water right now on longterm UE benefits. Take that away, and many of these people will lose their homes. How do you recover from that? What are their chance of getting a job now that they're homeless? Add to that the chances of another recession and we're talking catastrophe.

                            Just the other side of the ledger to consider.

                            I don't know why your comment was bristling with hostility towards me, as if I'm acting like a selfish prick because I think it's lunacy to willingly chuck 2 million people off long term UI benefits. Go read Transmissions' "Off the Cliff I Go. Not Laughing" diary and get back to me with your righteous indignation. I don't know why you're so ready and willing to keep immediate and severe economic hardship on the table by allowing UI benefits to lapse rather that allow a .3% slow-down in SS benefits over 20 YEARS. Something which can also be fixed 2, 3, 4 or five years down the road with basically no ill-effect.

                            As for this:

                            You do nothing and you wait until January, when we have more Dems. And then you fix this mess.
                            How? How do we fix it? Absent about 20 Republicans jumping ship, our increased House caucus means absolutely nothing Come January. Meanwhile, 2 million people will watch their income drop to zero. zip. zilch. I do not fault Obama for trying to prevent that utter calamity.
                          •  Yeah, (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            maxschell

                            in January, we need far less Republicans to jump ship. So yes, waiting it out and letting them hang themselves by themselves would have made a lot more sense.

                            I don't fault the President for trying to save UI. What I fault him for is putting up SS in order to do that when it's not a part of this "deficit".

                            I can't make it any clearer. My hostility has to do with those who would shrug and say "well, that's what we have to do" when we don't. If you can't understand that, then I don't know what else to tell you.

                            It is time to #Occupy Media.

                            by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 03:40:58 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Im not saying it's (0+ / 0-)

                            what we have to do - it was merely one proposal to get us out of this mess. There were many, many other ways a potential deal could have been struck - none of them would've been ideal. I guess that's the crux of my argument, and given the potential shortterm (and longterm!) consequences of not making a deal, it was a deal I was willing to grudgingly accept given the other progressive goals which would have been realized. It was not a decision I reached by shrugging - far from it. These are fucking dark days.

                            So I do understand what you're saying, we just have a divergence of opinion. I'm off to a Yankee swap I don't feel like attending - Peace.

                          •  One proposal? (0+ / 0-)

                            It's not just "one proposal".  It affects Americans' lives dramatically.  And the fact is this ain't no conspiracy theory -- Obama is allied with Boehner on this an he must be opposed.

                            Obama's stated position on Social Security and his appointment of idiots to the Catfood Commission makes him allies with Boehner and the 1%.

                            Which should be opposed at all costs and is definitely NOT CT.

                            It's his stated position!  Wake up and smell the shit.  Or maybe you are not affected so you can sit in your armchair and fire away.  Some of us ARE affected and we are not going to stand for it.

                            Send your old shoes to the new George W. Bush library.

                            by maxschell on Thu Dec 27, 2012 at 10:20:23 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You make an important point! (0+ / 0-)

                            As far as I'm concerned, Obama has no right to put social security cuts on the table. Not after Democrats donated money, worked their asses off, and in some cases, waited in line for hours to keep him in office. People did this, at least in part, because they considered Social Security and Medicare to be critical programs that the President promised to protect, and that the Republicans are always threatening to cut. He specifically told the AARP back in '08 that he would not support a change to the COLA formula.

                            And then he pulls some back-room bullshit with John Boehner, offering up cuts that the American people do NOT want, and the country does not need. It's anti-democratic (and against the spirit of transparency he promoted back in 2008), and if it goes through, the rest of the party is going to crash and burn because of it. Democrats in congress need to understand they're going to suffer at the hands of voters if this goes down.

                          •  Exactly. (0+ / 0-)

                            The man and his people promised no cuts to SocSec and now here he is less than 2 months after the election putting it on the table?  WTF?

                            Send your old shoes to the new George W. Bush library.

                            by maxschell on Thu Dec 27, 2012 at 10:21:51 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Well, all that didn't happen so what's so (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            lunachickie

                            darn smart about it?

                            The elevation of appearance over substance, of celebrity over character, of short term gains over lasting achievement displays a poverty of ambition. It distracts you from what's truly important. - Barack Obama

                            by helfenburg on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 10:09:57 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                        •  no the buck stops with us, and that (0+ / 0-)

                          buck includes facts, the reality of governing, the art of negotiating, an acceptance that the Progressive blogosphere is not the majority cohort in this country, and a willingness to resist setting our hair on fire the minute we fear we're not getting everything we want.

                          I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

                          by I love OCD on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:41:22 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  Can someone explain to me why Obama is not (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          lunachickie, StrayCat

                          trying to figure out how to get Democrat-sponsored legislation that solves the problem through the House with a coalition of Dems and repubs?  Why isn't he doing that? Why is he relying on Boehner.  

                          I thought Obama was so smart but that doesn't seem smart to me.

                          The elevation of appearance over substance, of celebrity over character, of short term gains over lasting achievement displays a poverty of ambition. It distracts you from what's truly important. - Barack Obama

                          by helfenburg on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 10:09:07 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                •  The caricature of the President (6+ / 0-)

                  as some twisted evil tyrant who was just waiting to "gut" SS and medicare which has been bandied about around here, and recced to the high heavens by many, many users for the past few days has been sickening.

                  I don't describe restraining the growth of SS benefits by .3% a year (with additional protections for those at the bottom) as "offering to sacrifice on the temple of capitalism the poorest of America's seniors". Especially when such a move was part of a larger deal to stave off a second recession in 4 years, extend UE benefits, take the debt ceiling off the table in 2013, AND get another round of stimulus spending.

                  You say there was no negotiating with the republicans - and you're correct. However, Obama had to at least appear to be making a good faith effort to reach a deal and avoid the upcoming fiscal disaster. Have you looked at the polls lately? Obama is enjoying one of the highest ratings of his presidency, because he's viewed as a credible leader trying to get a good deal for the middle class and make the rich pay their fair share. The Left would've cheered had Obama flatly refused to negotiate at all, but then he would appear as intransigent and extreme as house Republicans do to the majority of the country.

                  You didn't see Krugman flipping out when the deal was first announced, he was even leaning towards the opinion that this was a good deal initially (even though he disliked the CPI inclusion). I'm not suggesting his word is gospel, but he has been a champion of the social safety net and progressive economics. Compare his measured response to the collective freak out here and elsewhere on the Left, and you'll see where much of my criticism stems from.

                  •  Y'know (4+ / 0-)

                    Mr Krugman is also an accomplished writer.

                    There's a collective freakout on a blog because on this blog, we have every right to be pissed off. And we're not all professionals at blogging. So ease up. People are upset, as they damned well should be.

                    I still want to know why the man "negotiated" something that wasn't relevant to the matter at hand. That was....something.  

                    Here's hoping that's deemed 'measured' enough of a response. All someone has to do is present some facts as to why it was done. Simply answer the question, and we'll see far less "CT" around here.

                    It is time to #Occupy Media.

                    by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:12:39 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  You're as clear as can be (3+ / 0-)

                      about this CPI business. Totally gratuitous in the present circumstance and everybody knows it.  This (human!) sacrifice is supposedly what is needed for the Republicans to sell the deal to their "base", that is being asked to sacrifice their vacation to Bermuda. This is pure Beltway horsecrap - I try not to watch the Sunday talk shows, but there was David Gregory one recent morning asking some Dem, "So what sacrifice are you going to ask from your base?" as if this was some ritual throat-cutting ceremony so that two tribes could make peace.

                      Bold at inappropriate times.

                      by steep rain on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 09:42:53 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                  •  perspective (4+ / 0-)
                    stave off a second recession in 4 years
                    Short term
                    extend UE benefits
                    Short term
                    take the debt ceiling off the table in 2013
                    Short term
                    AND get another round of stimulus spending
                    Short term

                    vs.

                     the substantial long term impact on income for seniors of that .3% annual benefit cut.

                    It is not a good deal and not a good idea to go down that path. Especially while initiated by a Democrat.

                    We don't inherit the world from the past. We borrow it from the future.

                    by minorityusa on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:57:18 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  You make a valid point. (0+ / 0-)

                      The deal Obama offered did focus on avoiding more short term economic hardship at the expense increased SS payments in the longterm. I would counter that by arguing: austerity now + loss of unemployment benefits + another potential recession could see many millions of people slide from the middle class into the working/nonworking poor. I would stipulate that that will have as much if not more longterm consequences than chained CPI.

                      Take the large # of americans who are just barely keeping their heads above water right now on longterm UE benefits. Take that away, and many of these people will lose their homes. How do you recover from that? What are their chance of getting a job now that they're homeless? Add to that the chances of another recession and we're talking catastrophe.

                      Just the other side of the ledger to consider.

                      [And I know people don't want to hear that we can go back and reverse CPI in a few years with almost no ill effect, I understand people are pessimistic that this would happen. The same cannot be said if longterm UE benefits are ripped out from people for any appreciable amount of time. There's no way to go back and undo that damage a few years down the road.]

                  •  If the point is to reduce the deficit (5+ / 0-)

                    (in itself a dubious proposition when, as Europe shows, deficit reduction kills the economy), and if SS doesn't contribute to the deficit, then why should Obama put SS on the table at all?

                  •  Well then, that puts us at odds with trying to (3+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    hideinplainsight, StrayCat, maxschell

                    best understand and articulate the way in which the president has gone about the compromise process.

                    From my perspective, he's either a lousy negotiator, or he is convinced curbing SS benefits, even if by a mere .3% as you suggest (and I'm betting based on articles I've read that it will wound up being a damn site higher than that), will some how help the economy and, I suppose(?), work towards the reduction of the deficit. Yet, we all know it will do neither.

                    So, why even include the idea of the 'chained CPI'?

                    I'm asking a serious question: What are his motivations for that?

                    But, bottom line for me, it's turning out to be (again) a little frustrating having donated money to his re-election hoping he would take a firm stand on issues that I'll suggest are supported by a majority of those that donated to his campaign, and then watching as if he has to treat both sides as having legitimate interests that must be met somewhere in the middle. As if people from both sides contributed to and championed his campaign efforts. They didn't.

                    He, I'll propose, has an obligation to take a side here and do the best he can for that side, and perhaps first and foremost, to see that the government protects and aides those most vulnerable in our society. That I believe, was one of the main reasons most people voted for him. Chaining SS increases to some lousy CPI estimation flies in the face of that mandate.

                    Now, as to whether or not he conspired with Boehner behind closed doors is irrelevant to me. If he hadn't included the concept of the chained CPI in his negotiations most people here probably wouldn't even be in a diary like this if one would even need to be written.

                    Vote Tea Party Taliban! Bring the Burqa to America.

                    by Pescadero Bill on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 09:23:48 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Hi Bill, (0+ / 0-)

                      I responded more in depth above, and I'm getting tired of typing, but I'll repeat my main point. CPI was included to attract Republican votes - full stop. If it wasn't CPI, something else would need to be offered to Republicans that we would find equally distasteful and would wind up hurting middle class/working class/poor Americans (because Republicans are sociopaths who demand pain be exacted on the most vulnerable in society). If it wasn't CPI, perhaps food stamps? medicaid? School lunch assistance? Take your pick. (And I realize it won't affect the deficit, but SS does need to be tweaked longterm, though there are obviously better ways to do it).

                      Absent a deal, taxes are going up on everyone, austerity measures kick in, longterm unemployment benefits end, and another recession is likely coming. This will be happening in a few short months. Obama but CPI on the table in an attempt to strike a deal and avoid this very real economic pain which will strike the very population you seek to protect through your opposition to the inclusion of chained CPI.

                      Like I said above, if you don't think that is a tradeoff work making (.3% (or more, I guess) slowing of benefit growth longterm versus very real economic hardship shorterm), I don't begrudge that one bit. I think the President obvioulsy made a different calculation, but it was one that I believe was made in good faith, design to avoid near term economic pain, including recession, no longterm UE, no stimulus, and another debt limit showdown including the potential for a gov't shut down and an increase in future borrowing costs.

                      •  If true, extremely bad poker. (0+ / 0-)

                        The man is already considered a lousy negotiater.  Why offer up something that he PROMISED not to touch in an attempt to get a crappy deal.  Does. not. make. sense.

                        Unless, he really wants it.

                        Send your old shoes to the new George W. Bush library.

                        by maxschell on Thu Dec 27, 2012 at 10:25:22 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                    •  Not just his voters... (0+ / 0-)

                      I don't see rank and file Republican voters demanding cuts to Social Security, either. If you put this to a public vote, I'm guessing it would be at least about 70/30 against the cut.

                  •  Krugman will eat regardless.... (0+ / 0-)

                    To the extent that people here might be a bit more intense in their reactions than Krugman, the fact that Krugman will be fine either way may be a clue. I love Krugman, I think he's an excellent writer and economist, and lord knows I'd trade one Krugman for the entire Obama economic team, but this deal won't really affect him one way or the other. Of course, he's going to be a bit less passionate in his analysis than people who are dependent on some of these programs or have family and friends for whom this is a huge, huge deal.

                •  which meant Boehner was forced to (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  wader, RennieMac

                  come up with specifics, a first, derailed the building of the "Obama is arrogant in victory" meme the press were starting to tout, and revealed the weakness in the House leadership.

                  Meanwhile, there's no bill with chained CPI, No Democrat broke ranks and voted for plan B, Boehner dumped the problem on McConnell who has no majority power, the House will probably split into 2 Republican Caucuses after the Senate Bill is sent via Harry Reid's advice, and the Democrats get credit for saving the economy.

                  This is only a losing proposition if you're wedded to Obama being weak and a lousy politician.  Those of us who have seen that SS was safe despite the pressures attendant on the debt ceiling fiasco last year might just be right - Obama's a master politician who just neutered the House and may give us an improbable win in 2014.

                  I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

                  by I love OCD on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:36:15 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  why would our win (5+ / 0-)

                    in 2014 be improbable, again?

                    Those of you who think you "see" have yet to provide a clear set of facts as to why SS--something that has ZERO to do with our "budget crisis"--was put on the table.

                    I'm not wedded to anything other than my anger at the guy who put it there. And my being angry is not "setting my hair on fire" because "I didn't get everything I wanted".

                    What I GOT was a campaign promise from Mr. Obama that he would not endanger or cut Social Security. Should I have taken him at his word? In my opinion and conjecture, he just touched the third rail and he's still standing. And that does not bode well for anyone who depends on these programs--programs that came from their sweat and blood and years on the job.  

                    It was not his to bargain with. And now the genie is out of the bottle. Until I see a fact that demonstrates clearly why that needed to happen, it didn't. need. to. happen.
                     

                    It is time to #Occupy Media.

                    by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:59:34 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I depend on SS for my survival. (0+ / 0-)

                      I have some skin in this game, and I'm not freaking out about a maneuver that actually worked amazingly well.  

                      When my benefits are actually in a bill, when there's  strong Democratic support for cutting those benefits, when President Obama has actually undermined the safety net, that's when I freak out.

                      Until then I have 4 years of proof that SS, Medicare, and Medicaid are protected and sometimes improved by this president.  I guess the general paranoia about Obama is fun for some people, it isn't for me.  I'm more a Get It Done Democrat with small interest in circular firing squads.

                      I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

                      by I love OCD on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 09:59:20 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  That sounds suspiciously like (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        StrayCat

                        hindsight, talking:

                        I'm not freaking out about a maneuver that actually worked amazingly well.  
                        So how many letters did YOU write to the President? How much actual action did YOU take, given that something you depend on was put on the table when it wasn't necessary?

                        If you're going to sit there and say you saw this coming, please, do share your beneficial foresight with us. Tell us WHY he did it. And it needs to be rooted in something besides hindsight or elebenty-dimensional chess...

                        It is time to #Occupy Media.

                        by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 10:48:02 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Not a single, solitary one. I also deleted (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          wader

                          several hair on fire petitions from my e-mail.  It's not hindsight when there's a history.  It's also not foresight to assume the worst when you have no data to back the fear.  Chained CPI presented to a body that has done jackshit for 2 years is a minimal threat to my future, and unlikely to come to pass.  It's the game of politics, and Obama plays it well.  

                          It makes me laugh to read about how weak and ineffective he is.  Black guy with a funny name and a shitload of powerful enemies somehow gets elected twice with large margins, because he's weak and a bad politician?  Only on the fringes could that take root.

                          I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

                          by I love OCD on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 03:29:05 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  I'm sorry (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            maxschell

                            that you refuse to look past the end of your own nose.

                            Chained CPI presented to a body that has done jackshit for 2 years is a minimal threat to my future, and unlikely to come to pass.
                            Speaking for my future, I disagree. And I'm not the only one. And all the insinuation that such a position is somehow fringe is pathetic.

                            It is time to #Occupy Media.

                            by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 03:44:14 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Sorry. It's fringe in my book. (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            wader

                            And since it's my future on the line I make a point of collecting data, weighing actions, judging based on actions taken not rhetoric or punditry.  

                            Given the reality that President Obama has had 4 years and some really serious fiscal cliffs to surmount and the safety net is not only intact, in many ways it's stronger, I'll wait on lighting my hair on fire.  

                            You might want to ask yourself who benefits if Progressives start backstabbing the President before Inauguration Day. When will Big Ed, little Jane and the troops start recommending punishing Dems in 2014?  It worked well for them in 2010, but not so well for the country.

                            I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

                            by I love OCD on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 07:40:17 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                    •  The thing about third rails.... (0+ / 0-)

                      If I was wandering around the BART tracks at night and happened to touch the 3rd rail and not get burned.... That doesn't mean the next day I can touch the 3rd rail and be sure I won't get burned. Just putting this on the table makes it more likely for it to stay on the table, and to be placed on the table in future negotiations. It was an incredibly bad move, and one that I imagine will come back to haunt us.

          •  Bill Black UMKC (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            figbash, denise b, StrayCat, maxschell

            Let's Celebrate the Failure of 7/12 GB:

            All of this was economically illiterate. Interest rates fell, as my colleagues and economists like Paul Krugman predicted. Inflicting austerity in response to a Great Recession is a superb strategy for increasing unemployment, the deficit, inequality, and debt because it reduces already inadequate private and public sector demand and causes recessions and depressions. Even the modest stimulus policy the U.S. followed despite Obama’s and Boehner’s best efforts to inflict austerity, proved vastly superior to the Eurozone’s austerity policy that forced the Eurozone into recession and much of the periphery into Great Depression levels of unemployment. The U.S. budget deficit has fallen at the fastest rate in modern history due to the success of even the greatly inadequate stimulus program that Obama adopted before he turned against stimulus under Geithner and Daley’s influence. America’s problem is jobs, not the deficit.

            Beware of anyone who uses phrases like “down payment” when it comes to the federal deficit for they have no meaning and are designed to mislead. Reducing social spending in response to the Great Recession is austerity – not a “down payment on … deficit reduction.” Indeed, it is likely to increase the deficit by causing a recession.

            The whole piece really explains how we got here.  It's "intelligent design" lol.
          •  Absolutely do not agree! (0+ / 0-)

            That's a left tendency of the Tea Party talking. It's the paranoid style in American politics in evidence. Puh-lease!

            For if there is a sin against life, it consists perhaps not so much in despairing of life as in hoping for another life and in eluding the implacable grandeur of this life. - Albert Camus

            by Anne Elk on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 09:01:51 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  I was chastised for using that term 2 days ago. (0+ / 0-)

          You got 42 recs.  The thread where I used it was full of criticism and attacks for the President, and someone named "Paper Cup" came along to give Republicans some cover because I called them what they are.  Terrorists.  

          Now I know no one cares about such trivia.  It isn't a real big deal by any stretch of the imagination.  The big deal is that sometimes Democrats are their own worst enemy.

          "Democracy is a life; and involves continual struggle." ---'Fighting Bob' LaFollette

          by leftreborn on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 06:34:08 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  If democrats stuck to their core beliefs it would (5+ / 0-)

            help.

            Vote Tea Party Taliban! Bring the Burqa to America.

            by Pescadero Bill on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 06:56:29 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I agree that there are certain non-negotiables. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              JerryNA

              The other side has their non-negotiables and they tend to be more rigid too.  I don't see why one side, the Democrats, should give in, especially because the other side has committed some egregious "errors" that it should correct.  In other words, all Republican policy going straight back to January 1981 should be rolled back.  That's my belief.  At the same time, I can see that our "system" in its present configuration won't allow me to get past the Republicans who have a majority in the House.  I was hoping that their majority could be splintered or chipped away in the new session.  If not, then the Democrats should sit tight and refuse to negotiate or make any deals.  Period.  What I don't like is when the current problem is attributed to an individual, the President, or the Democratic leadership in Congress.  The problem is bigger than any individuals and it doesn't help when we turn on each other.  That's how the Republicans got the majority in the House in the first place, at least the way I remember it.

              "Democracy is a life; and involves continual struggle." ---'Fighting Bob' LaFollette

              by leftreborn on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 07:09:05 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  But they're (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                StrayCat

                not doing that!

                If not, then the Democrats should sit tight and refuse to negotiate or make any deals.  Period.  
                The current problem is going to be attributed to the leadership, and that starts with the President. As it should.

                You are right--they should sit tight and refuse to negotiate. So why aren't they? Why is this President making deals with things he has no right to use as bargaining chips?

                 

                It is time to #Occupy Media.

                by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 07:59:45 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Without transparency who knows what's really going (0+ / 0-)

                  on?  We haven't been screwed yet.  

                  "Democracy is a life; and involves continual struggle." ---'Fighting Bob' LaFollette

                  by leftreborn on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:08:51 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Well (0+ / 0-)

                    that's darned charitable of them, isn't it?

                    We haven't been screwed yet.  

                    It is time to #Occupy Media.

                    by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:14:41 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  MmmnNO Charity has nothing to do with it. / (0+ / 0-)

                      "Democracy is a life; and involves continual struggle." ---'Fighting Bob' LaFollette

                      by leftreborn on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:18:03 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Which is (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Heart of the Rockies

                        exactly why you don't sit back and take it during the negotiation phase. Once the deal is done, it's too late.

                        Seriously, why did the man put the chained CPI on the table? Inquiring minds are dying to know...

                        It is time to #Occupy Media.

                        by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:27:18 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  I'm the one who posted a petition against it on (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          figbash

                          the WH website and put up a diary about it immediately afterward.  It was ignored so I'm a little jaded when I see hundreds of yammerers  getting fucking nothing done.  
                          I'm far from being anyone's apologist.  I have no idea what's in another man's head.  It isn't even clear to me who put it in the offer because there are different versions of that story.  It's a waste of time to speculate anyway.  A little less talk and more action is what I like to see.

                          "Democracy is a life; and involves continual struggle." ---'Fighting Bob' LaFollette

                          by leftreborn on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:37:10 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Look, (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Heart of the Rockies

                            I've done my share of action, given my very limited resources. I don't know what else you've done besides be ignored, but frankly, this is not a tit-for-tat on who is the better, more action-oriented Democrat.

                            Until we can answer the question WHY with something besides conjecture, we should not--ever--assume "it's ok, trust us, He's Got This". That leads to speculation. If you want to see more than that, take some concrete action to determine the actual answer instead of posturing that it's pointless to speculate.

                            No, it isn't. We can't understand much at all if we don't understand what is driving this madness. Why did the President put Social Security On The Table?

                            It is time to #Occupy Media.

                            by lunachickie on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 08:45:24 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                •  Why isn't he putting together some legislation (0+ / 0-)

                  that solves the problem and working to get it through the House with a coalition of Dems and Repubs?  Why is he relying totally on some clearly bogus negotiations with Boehner.

                  That doesn't seem so smart to me anymore at all.

                  I don't understand how we got into this mess and I'm not inclined to excuse the pres completely anymore.

                  The elevation of appearance over substance, of celebrity over character, of short term gains over lasting achievement displays a poverty of ambition. It distracts you from what's truly important. - Barack Obama

                  by helfenburg on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 10:13:24 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

    •  I've never seen a president so disrespected (71+ / 0-)

      in my entire lifetime, which is considerable...They are a mean-spirited bunch of racist adolescent frat-boys, even in spite of the fact that this president was re-elected by a (still) ever-increasing margin. I can see why it would be disconcerting even now, and hard to remember some days that 'Yes, Mr. President, you do have a mandate dammit!'

      "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

      by Sybil Liberty on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 07:05:39 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Correction needed on Harding's term (31+ / 0-)

      He was in office for nearly two and a half years, not four months. But point well taken.

      "I'm up on a tightrope/One side's hate and one is hope" --Leon Russell

      by turdraker on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 07:23:58 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Quibble: Incorrect on Constantinople (32+ / 0-)

      Even at its very worst, the Byzantine state functioned better than this.  

      A better historical analogy might be the Weimar Republic or perhaps Italy in the 1970s.  You know, a place where tiny splinter groups of fanatics were able to paralyze the functioning of government.  

      Anyway, I agree with BBB that Washington has become utterly dysfunctional.  He's also completely right that Obama has to stop negotiating with Boehner.  It's time to recognize that he and his colleagues are no better than a group of thugs out to mug the American people.

      "Ça c'est une chanson que j'aurais vraiment aimé ne pas avoir écrite." -- Barbara

      by FogCityJohn on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:47:22 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  He usually is. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      blueoasis, DvCM, mightymouse

      If I was BBB I'd get just a little bit tired of being right all the time. LOL!

      If there is no accountability for those who authorized torture, we can no longer say that we are a nation of laws, not men.

      by MikePhoenix on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 01:11:44 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Here's the thing -It's Istanbul not Constantinople (0+ / 0-)

      Slow thinkers - keep right

      by Dave the Wave on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 09:07:38 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think the allusion is to the Byzantines... (0+ / 0-)

        who ruled old Constantinople... "Byzantine" is also a word meaning something along the lines of convoluted, intricate, politics with subtle complexities, backbiting, elaborate plotting, backbiting and obstruction etc....

        And anyway Istanbul is the conquerors mispronunciation of one of the names for Byzantium/Constantinople... like the French do not accept our pronunciation of  "Pair-is"... and stick with "Paree"... some hear "Istanbul" and it hits them like "Iskander" does... the Arabic version of Alexander... or Umrika for America... some pronunciations do not carry over into a different language all that well.

        The locals in "Istanbul" do use that pronunciation... and their ancestors did take over the place so they can call it what they like... but it is still a more recent mangling of the original name (or one of the original names) of a very ancient city.

        ...or as some called it way back when, when it was probably the most fabulous city in the world... "The city of the world's desire"... The Vikings or Varangians as the eastern branch that went into the Kievan Rus were called tried to take the city but could not hope to overcome the massive fortifications and instead signed on as swords for hire... the Byzantine Emperor's "Varangian guard".

        Pogo & Murphy's Law, every time. Also "Trust but verify" - St. Ronnie (hah...)

        by IreGyre on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 12:18:44 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

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