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As you may have heard, U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) has placed a hold on all Obama Administration nominees, effectively holding every Obama appointment hostage to the Senate's filibuster rule.

So what's Shelby's ransom? Basically, he wants the Pentagon contract for aerial refueling tankers to be awarded to Airbus, the European aerospace firm, instead of Boeing, the domestic aerospace giant. Why does Shelby want to award a key military contract to a foreign company? Because portions of the Airbus-built tankers would be assembled in Alabama.

Marcy Wheeler explains:

The key issue is that Shelby wants the Air Force to tweak an RFP for refueling tankers so that Airbus (partnered with Northrup Grumman) would win the bid again over Boeing. The contract had been awarded in 2008, but the GAO found that the Air Force had erred in calculating the award. After the Air Force wrote a new RFP in preparation to rebid the contract, Airbus calculated that it would not win the new bid, and started complaining. Now, Airbus is threatening to withdraw from the competition unless the specs in the RFP are revised.

Essentially, then, Shelby’s threat is primarily about gaming this bidding process to make sure Airbus–and not Boeing–wins the contract (there’s a smaller program he’s complaining about, too, but this is the truly huge potential bounty for his state).

As Wheeler argues, the bottom-line is that Richard Shelby -- a top Senate Republican -- is preparing to shut down the United States Senate to award a key military contract to a foreign company. That is a staggering fact, and Democrats should pummel him and his GOP enablers for heading down this path.

Join the discussion in calchala's recommended diary, UPDATE: GIBBS BLASTS SHELBY OVER HOLD.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:37 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

    •  More like ... (7+ / 0-)

      Putting Alabama first. Add another state to the secession list.

      The Republican brand: "Consequences, schmonsequences, as long as I'm rich"

      by D in Northern Virginia on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:40:59 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Richard Shelby and Jeff Sessions (7+ / 0-)

        Doing their best to make Alabama Number 1, in senatorial insanity.

        They still have a long way to go to catch up to Oklahoma, though.

        •  AIRBUS uber ALLES !! (3+ / 0-)

          It's Citizens United!

          And watch SCOTUS approve of foreign-registered companies lobbying here!

          The next step in neocon domination of our politics.

          They only call it class war when we fight back! ht: buhdydharma

          by ezdidit on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:00:43 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I hate to say it. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            lcarr23, Yogurt721

            But based on past behavior, our Dems in the Senate don't have the fight in them to take something like this on.  

            •  Great Dane I hate to say this (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              GreatDane

              Ed, Keith, and Rachael will not either. the only tv i do watch, i have to see the damn repigs played over and over and over.  this is damn news they won't report. I don't watch chris mat at all too many reppig on his show. plus he sucks.

          •  thanks for the nice anti-German slur (0+ / 0-)

            it really improves debate quality.

            (Yes, Airbus/EADS is some 30% German)

            As for the issue in question, while Shelby is an idiot and uses methods that show the absurdity of Senate's rules, he has a point: the new "Bidding" process is hand-taylored to Boeing's product to the effect of basically excluding Airbus/Northrop and reeks of protectionism.

            Boeing already lost that contract twice, once by gross mismanagement and corruption (Boeing execs went to jail), and the second time in a competitive bidding, which has been "annulled" by political pressure.

            Now Boeing's friends in Congress and the DoD have virtually guaranteed them a no bid contract by hopelessly rigging the process in their favor. Northrob and Airbus have pointed that one out.

            So - if you want no-bid contracts, feel free to support this farcde. Else you might take a little closer look.

      •  Scream this from the rooftops! (8+ / 0-)

        All Dems and all media, except of course wingnuts, need to TELL this to the American people.  Use the right words, like EARMARKS, which people seem to hate.  Tell the people what the results of these holds will be as far as running the government is concerned.  Use it as an example of how Republicans do not care for the people, just their reelections.....This needs to be the main topic of every outlet in the country...but it won't....I hate this crap.

        •  Better strategy (12+ / 0-)

          Shelby will frame this as "jobs for Alabama." Anticipate that and head it off by saying "extortion is not the way to get jobs for Alabama.  Supporting the President's job bill is the way to get jobs for Alabama."

          But if instead we pretend that the Airbus contract has no rationale at all, we look as untruthful as the opposition.

          This hold is, by the way, pure extortion.

          •  keep hammering the foreign company angle (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            dash888, bay of arizona, drmah, ems97007

            as that will make the most impact. The media is not covering this as far as I can tell, at least TV cable news like MSNBC or CNN...at least, not yet.

          •  Shelby is delivering for Alabama, all politics is (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            sagra, cris0000, mcartri, flitedocnm

            local.  It's a no-brainer win-win for him.

            Beg to differ, but "Supporting the President's job bill is the way to get jobs for Alabama" sounds pretty hollow.  

            And finally,now we're going to bring up and try and sell a jobs bill?  Perhaps they haven't noticed but that floor that's been so slick is wet with blood.

            Dems are just not getting it on jobs, and looking like Wile E. Coyote beyond the precipice.  

            At this point, I say make Repugs filibuster.  Throw down the guantlet and lets focus on what's happening here.  Shelby is getting jobs for Alabama.  Force his hand to get jobs for Americans.

            "There's been a little complication with my complication"

            by dash888 on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:06:01 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Who are you proposing should (0+ / 0-)

              "get jobs for Americans"?  Shelby?  Last I heard, Alabamans were Americans.  Obama?  How do you suggest he do that?

              "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

              by SueDe on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 10:51:40 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Obama should act, dems should act. You think (0+ / 0-)

                any republicans are going to side with the president on a jobs bill?

                And as congress dithers and concedes, how much good will it do anyway?

                I'm not saying Alabamans aren't Americans, I'm saying Shelby is getting a minority of the work for them at the expense of a majority of the work had Boeing won the contract.  He needs to be called on this, he needs to explain this untenable position.  Why is he allowed to let McConnell carry water for him for all this...

                The president needs to put people to work now, be it by executive order, parlimentary move, whatever, he needs to show action.

                "There's been a little complication with my complication"

                by dash888 on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 11:22:33 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Excuse me. (0+ / 0-)

                  I thought you were talking about what Obama and/or the congress might do to create jobs beyond Boeing jobs.  So far the "jobs bill" doesn't do much of anything to create demand, and giving tax credits for companies to hire employees they don't need isn't going to result in very much hiring without demand.

                  Is your last paragraph proposing Obama put people to work through direct government hiring?  Unless he hires more people for the White House, he's going to need congress's approval to put through a direct-hire program ala the WPA, and with the deficit hawks screaming at every microphone they can find, the congress is not going to spend any more federal funds to hire people.

                  "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

                  by SueDe on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 11:52:12 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

          •  Rationale = Boeing corruption (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            cris0000

            don't forget that Boeing first got the contract through corruption. And since then the contract has been victim of politics. If Airbus is the best offer, then they should get the contract.

            Obama-Biden in 2012!

            by Frederik on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:25:04 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Dems Better Give Shelby What He Wants (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bay of arizona

          If Dems don't cave for a Republican senator, the Republicans will start obstructing the Democratic agenda. I'm so afraid of what those 41-GOP senators will do to those 59-Democratic senators. It's not like Boeing is an American company.

        •  Anyone hear anything yet on the media? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          lcarr23, under the same sky

          I've been on MSNBC most of the day and heard zip about this. Not surprisd. It ain't news unless it's bad for Obama or Democrats.

          Lotsof mention of Sarah Palin and the Tea Party Convention, though.

          Corporate media at its best.

          Hannity's America is just South of Sanity.

          by DWKING on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:35:19 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Add? (0+ / 0-)

        Alabama would probably be third, after South Carolina and Alaska.

        In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there always is a difference. - Yogi Berra

        by blue aardvark on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:09:41 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Just did not say which (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NYFM, LillithMc, Predictor, MariaWr, ericlewis0

      country!  :-)

      It's alwasy $$$$$$ First!

      "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." Margaret Mead

      by TomP on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:41:22 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Hypothetical... (7+ / 0-)

      Suppose, instead of Airbus, it was Lockheed (is that an American company?  I think so).  Even if it were an American company, Shelby is asking the Air Force to adjust its specs for these tankers so the company can meet them, even though the Air Force presumably spec'ed the hardware they needed.

      At a minimum, that is anti-military.

      I can understand Shelby's calculation that a lot of his constituents work for Airbus and might be out of jobs if they don't get the contract, but I can't understand asking the military to make do with worse hardware.

      •  worth repeating over and over (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Jerome a Paris, bay of arizona

        but I can't understand asking the military to make do with worse hardware.

        "The Constitution does not just protect those whose views we share; it also protects those with whose views we disagree." -- Ted Kennedy

        by mollyk on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:55:36 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Shelby needs votes (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          mcartri

          He doesn't care about our military. He cares about Richard Shelby.

          •  Shelby is in danger in Alabama? (0+ / 0-)

             Please tell me who is challenging Richard Shelby in the Republican primary the next time he is up.  The only danger he could possibly be facing is in the primary because a Democrat will not win a senate from Alabama at this time.  In fact, the last time a Democrat held a Senate seat was . . . Richard Shelby! He switched parties back in the 1990's, but he had better luck than Parker Griffiths, the congressman who has been disowned by his new party.

            •  No, he's not in danger that way, but (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Augustine

              he is doing this for the reasons that John McCain has been attacking for years.

              I'm not even saying that Shelby is wrong on the substance. The procurement process on these refueling planes has been a disaster for years. We need to fix it. Shelby wants a fix, as in "the fix is in", not as in "this is why we need to reform military procurement".

              He would have done the country a great favor and probably gotten his state a few jobs by spearheading reform in defense procurement, but we haven't seen any attempt on his part to cooperate in any manner on this.

        •  actually (0+ / 0-)

          the airbus tanker is better in juzt about any respect.  Their problem is they are not allowed to play their strength because the new bid rules are so closely taylored to Boeing's product they can not offer a competitive one

          (Basically, the airbus tanker is more flexible and can carry more fuel, but is also larger and thus more exepensive. )

      •  sorry but you have this the wrong way around (5+ / 0-)

        The airbus design won originally on technical merit, only after boeing lost did the USAF under pressure go back and change the requirements.

        Government for the people, by the people

        by axel000 on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:04:00 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Indeed (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bay of arizona, cris0000, axel000

          Boeing first got the tanker contract and this through corruption. That lease contract was cancelled after it becamle clear that bribes were passed and the contract was given to Airbus. And since then the contract has been victim of politics.

          If Airbus is the best offer, then they should get the contract. Don't forget that if we protect our market, other countries will do the same and block our enterprises from foreign contracts.

          Obama-Biden in 2012!

          by Frederik on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:28:28 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Nobody gives out military contracts (0+ / 0-)

            like the U.S., though.  And I don't think anyone is talking about locking out foreign companies from bidding on U.S. contracts.

            Don't these contracts have any watchdogs steering them through the RFP and award processes to keep them from being corrupted by briberty and other forms of corruption?

            "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

            by SueDe on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 10:58:11 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  More important to my mind (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        demnomore

        He is trying to rig an open tendering process.

        I thought that was a criminal offence.

        Chill the f*** out. I got this.

        by ultraviolet uk on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:11:19 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Corruption (0+ / 0-)

        don't forget that Boeing first got the tanker contract and this through corruption. That lease contract was cancelled and then given to Airbus. And since then the contract has been victim of politics. If Airbus is the best offer, then they should get the contract. Don't forget that if we protect our market, other countries will do the same and block our enterprises from foreign contracts.

        Obama-Biden in 2012!

        by Frederik on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:27:25 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Jobs for the industry (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        freelunch

        I grew up in Seattle, and remember well when Boeing lost the SST bid to Concorde in 1969.  At the time,only two businesses employed huge numbers of workers:  Boeing and Sea Land (containerized shipping).  Boeing laid off over 35,000 employees and caused a recession in the Seattle area.  Remember the sign that said "Will the last person leaving Seattle please turn out the lights?".  That actually existed.

        The point is that Seattle came out better for what happened.  The city and region diversified and became less dependent on large companies like Boeing {although Microsoft ain't small).  

        That Shelby tries to protect jobs isn't the point.  Putting a hold on 70 appointments, including many important ones, is almost unprecedented.  I think this is more an act of deliberate political obstruction than anything else.

        Obama needs to use the power of recess appointments to do a blanket appointment or Reid needs to ignore the hold by Shelby and let the vote go forward.

      •  He's not asking the AF to Change (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Zinman, Augustine

        their requirements. Last time around both proposed tankers exceeded the technical requirements. The EADS-Northrop proposed tanker was larger and cost more. Boeing's offering was smaller and cost less. They placed lowering cost at a higher priority than excess capacity and the Air Force decided that the excess capacity of the EADS-NG offering was worth the extra cost, even though the RFP made no mention of excess capacity being evaluated against the increased cost thereof.

        I'm pretty sure Boeing won the original competition, but then the scandal over Boeing hiring the AF's chief procurement official, Darlene Druyan (?), very shortly thereafter, caused the AF to recompete it.

        The effects on the defense industry of this competition are an example why the DoD needs to reevaluate it's procurement practices.

        After the DoD awards this contract to one company, the other company will no longer be able to perform this work, which then gives the company who wins this award a lock on any future procurements. That is in term detrimental to the Military because the award winner can now dictate the terms of futre maintenance and upgrade contracts.

        The DoD should nationalize the integration effort that they are trying to contract out. The results of which are (1) no lobbying congress from Boeing or Northrop - the evaluation of subcomponents and laborers becomes honest, (2) the government now has the expertize of building airborne-refueling tankers, (3) the Government isn't locked into paying one company or another for maintenance or upgrades.

        Full Disclosure: Defense contractor employee

        •  Bidding rules are what they are. If the specs (0+ / 0-)

          say we want a plane that looks like X and carries Y, and costs no more than Z, that is the plan you bid on, not some other one you want to build, on the theory that there is some additional factor the bid itself did not take into account, because you are smarter than those who constructed the specs.This is about chaning the specs because the loser in the most current round didn't get credit for building something bigger than what was asked for. GAO made them do it again because the round Airbus won was not figured properly. If the specs in a public bidding process where the task is to get everything bid on for the lowest cost to the government, are now thrown out as irrelevant, we are right back to favoritist decisions of who gets big government contracts, which we always before called corruption.

    •  Translation: Get me elected first (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      docrocktex

      The dems will be spineless as usual, bet we won't hear any of them talking about this.  This shit should be on all three networks news casts.  But they prefer to cover the teabaggers and their inane idiotic chatter.

    •  you guys here are getting sillier (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bay of arizona

      all the time.  The Republicans say they will  steal, borrow and cheat for the their coporate bosses and on the way out they will destroy you liberals and you get like upset when they do.  I think Shamblis is brilliant... now if only the Dems had been brave enough to do the same for us... that is fight like hell instead of the republican's corporate bosses for a piece of crummy pie, we'd be better off.  but it don't work that way.  We got to put our own people in...that is real progressives in real elected offices.  and we got to build our own progressive corporations.... then maybe we'll have some power.  But bravo for shelby for showing you how its done. You stick it to them... do you think anyone will care if you are upset about it?  no.  

      Pass new laws to end media monopolization now.

      by john from vermont on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:56:17 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  so where is mccain on this isn't he is the guy of (4+ / 0-)

      no earmarks?

      "The Constitution does not just protect those whose views we share; it also protects those with whose views we disagree." -- Ted Kennedy

      by mollyk on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:57:30 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Leave it to the Republicans to set a true example (0+ / 0-)

      of selfless public service. I'm starting to get a lump in my throat and a tear in my eye just thinking about it.

  •  Oh Lord, please give the Dems a spine. amen nt (18+ / 0-)

    Whatever the Repuglicans say, the opposite is the truth .

    by MariaWr on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:39:41 AM PST

  •  Here's an Idea... (19+ / 0-)

    Run an ad Alabama questioning his alliance to American workers.  See if his constituents like taxpayer money going to the French

    Clings to Music and Yankee Spring Training

    by Mro on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:39:50 AM PST

    •  Alabama jobs (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bay of arizona, think blue

      Why does Shelby want to award a key military contract to a foreign company? Because portions of the Airbus-built tankers would be assembled in Alabama.

      He'll claim (with some reason) that he's protecting the interests of his constituents. From a national perspective it's bad. But it's certainly defensible from a representative democracy perspective.

      "The smartest man in the room is not always right." -Richard Holbrooke

      by Demi Moaned on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:47:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Both companies are international (0+ / 0-)

       If the contract goes to Airbus, much of the work will be done in the United States, including my home of Mobile, AL.  If the contract goes to Boeing, much of the work will be done in the United States, including the state of Illinois.
       If the contract goes to Airbus, some of the work will be done overseas.  If the contract goes to Boeing, much of the work will be done overseas.
       Neither company is 100% foreign nor domestic.
       Don't get upset at Sen. Shelby for this issue (there are MANY other things he has done to be upset about).  After all, Democratic representatives and senators from Illinois were upset when Airbus/Northrup-Grumman first received the contract.  He is working in the interest of his state and consituents, and he might have a good reason for saying that Airbus/Northrup-Grumman is a better company.  After all, Boeing has fallen short time and again on other contracts.  One reason they lost the initial contract was because they were not seen as reliable.  

  •  No, personal pockets first, under the guise of (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    deha, drmah, TomP, Losty, MariaWr

    country first.

    Seriously, I want a GAO investigation into what Grassley will get form this.

    Change. Such a small word Full of grace, it comes alive As one embraces hope. The Radical Imagination: Dreaming of the future as it might yet be.

    by Edubabbler on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:40:09 AM PST

  •  Threatening to shut down the Senate? (7+ / 0-)

    And that is different from the current situation just how?

  •  No pretense (8+ / 0-)

    There was a time we could at least pretend this was a democracy.  

    •  The rules around "holds" seem just as due (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pompatus, bigmikek7, MariaWr, axel000, Crider

      for an overhaul, as do the rules around filibusters.  This shit is ridiculous.

      "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

      by lgmcp on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:42:04 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  They can be ignired (6+ / 0-)

        And they would be if the Senate Dem leadership wanted to ignore them.

        •  What's the precedents? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Crider

          Ineed David Waldman again.

          "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

          by lgmcp on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:47:34 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Precedent? (0+ / 0-)

            Fuck precedents. Take the nomination to the floor and if Shelby protests, shut him out with 51 votes. But would the Democrats have 50 votes to overturn that undemocratic rule of just one person 'holding' a nominee? No way! They believe in that crap.

            •  How it could be done (0+ / 0-)

              A point of order is a parliamentary motion used to remind the body of its written rules and established precedents, usually when a particular rule or precedent is not being followed.
              When a senator raises a point of order, the presiding officer of the Senate immediately rules on the validity of the point of order, but this ruling may be appealed and reversed by the whole Senate. Ordinarily, a point of order compels the Senate to follow its rules and precedents; however, the Senate may choose to vote down the point of order.
              When this occurs, a new precedent is established, and the old rule or precedent no longer governs Senate procedure. Similarly, it is possible to raise a point of order and state that the standard procedure of the Senate is actually different than the current rules and precedents suggest. If this point of order is sustained, a new precedent is established, and it controls Senate procedure thenceforth.

              that's from wikipedia

    •  corporations don't fool around (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Crazy like a fox

      they knew you silly rabbits were going to get enough votes in the last election to be rabble rousers... rabble all you want... corporations come first and Republicans (and many dems) toe the line.  They make the rules... you don't.  You don't think they are going to trust capitalism's glory and ability to rip everyone off to a bunch of young people who got out the vote... hmm. Liberal base wake up... your time is over.  time now to figure out how to take power in a real way rather than silly move on ads... we need to build our own progressive corporations and begin competing with these clowns... we have  alot of capital to invest... let's invest it in ourselves.  . they made the rules to help themselves.  we don't have enough power to change the rules but we have power to build our own companies and get the corporate largesse and make sure its to benefit us and not the 1% that runs the world. lets use those rules to help us.  

      Pass new laws to end media monopolization now.

      by john from vermont on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:07:27 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  What states have a piece (16+ / 0-)

    of the Boeing manufacturing?  Where are their representatives and Senators re: this bullshite?

    •  Missouri and Illinois are big. (11+ / 0-)

      Military is located in Missouri.  World Headquarters are Chicago.  Parts are all over.

      "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." Margaret Mead

      by TomP on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:42:16 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Seattle was their main base for decades (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gchaucer2, jabuhrer, mollyk

      but their former fields and facilities are looking emptier every year.

      "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

      by lgmcp on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:43:42 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Boeing has a headquarters in (0+ / 0-)

      Chicago, Illinois.

      How do you tell a predator from a protector? The predator will eat you sooner rather than later.

      by hannah on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:13:22 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  we don't own Boeing or Airbus (0+ / 0-)

      we need our own airplane building company demanding contracts (worker cooperative owned by us in some state where we have control over our Senator.  Maybe Vermont.... then our guy says our corp comes first... the fight is with corporations... we are not in that fight cause we don't own any... we are more worried about electing some spineless dem in Indiana then figuring out how real power works in this world.  and becoming part of the real power base.  it's time to our own airplane manufacturing plant. and by the way our own health insurance company that puts us first...we need to invest in our own companies... the rules are set already and we are not taking advantage of them to take real power.

      Pass new laws to end media monopolization now.

      by john from vermont on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:18:06 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Like most defense contractors, (0+ / 0-)

      it's spread around quite a bit. There are facilities in many states.

      It's kind of interesting, Boeing is actually trying to get out of commercial aircraft manufacturing and stick with military work and (believe it or not) financing.

      Immanentizing the eschaton is a *good* thing.

      by jabuhrer on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:27:27 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Washington (0+ / 0-)

      But Boeing isn't an innocent party in this story.

      Boeing first got the tanker contract and this through corruption. That lease contract was cancelled after it becamle clear that bribes were passed and the contract was given to Airbus. And since then the contract has been victim of politics.

      If Airbus is the best offer, then they should get the contract. Don't forget that if we protect our market, other countries will do the same and block our enterprises from foreign contracts.

      Obama-Biden in 2012!

      by Frederik on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:29:25 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  That'll be popular. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jj32, gchaucer2, TomP, MariaWr

    "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

    by lgmcp on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:40:56 AM PST

    •  Though come to think it, what does he care (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MariaWr

      how unpopular he is with voters in other states? If he brings home the bacon for his constituents, they can overlook the frenchification aspect I am sure.  

      "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

      by lgmcp on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:44:50 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  What about the good news? By ... (15+ / 0-)

    ...building aerial tankers in Alabama, Airbus's U.S. subsidiary will be able to pour millions into Shelby's reelection campaign thanks to our 5-4 Supreme Court. As I am so often told about the employment report, you need to look for the silver lining.

    Don't tell me what you believe. Tell me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

    by Meteor Blades on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:40:57 AM PST

  •  As in NASCAR, (8+ / 0-)

    Shelby should be wearing his sponsor's emblems on the Senate floor.  A big tag for Airbus!

    Bought.  And. Paid. For.

    But Boeing's senators, starting with Kit Bond and Claire McCaskill, will fight back.

    The new politics is the battle between multinational corproations.      

    "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." Margaret Mead

    by TomP on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:40:57 AM PST

    •  I don't think it's new, though. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Predictor, TomP

      Just read the great new novel "Wolf Hall", about Henry VIII's plebian advisor.  Apparently international banking ALREADY had everyone by the short hairs.

      "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

      by lgmcp on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:46:08 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Except, Reid will enable him. (7+ / 0-)

    Harry Reid, The man with the backbone of Oxygen.

    Harry Reid, Mr. "Reconciliation? You must be Crazy"

    Harry Reid, Mr. They don't like it? Pass their dream bill"

    That Harry Reid will fight this?

  •  If this nation puts Republicans back in power (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Pompatus, TomP, MariaWr, axel000

    they deserve this bunch. You think they're fed up?

  •  Reid is Crooked (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Pompatus, Tom Paul

    If he didn't so strongly believe in the undemocratic Senate rules, Reid could easily ignore Shelby's 'holds'.

    Reid always pleads that his 'hands are tied'. Imagine, he would rather come across as a weakling than exposed as an enabler of the Senate shithole of undemocratic action. But that's what he is -- a crook.

  •  Where's the mention (8+ / 0-)

    of John McCain in all of this.  Better yet, where's John McCain's reaction to this?

    Sometimes we really miss on opportunities to show the country what Republicans are REALLY all about, even when it smacks us in the face, like is has today.

    •  He's trying to find an excuse (0+ / 0-)

      He doesn't have the integrity to stick with his demand to block earmarks just as he doesn't have the integrity to vote to abolish DADT when the general staff said it was time to get rid of it.

      John McCain never writes the checks his mouth promises.

      •  It's not even about earmarks. (0+ / 0-)

        McCain is chin deep in the graft involved in this tanker deal.  Over and over again he's used his power and influence within the Pentagon to steer this contract to EADS.  Everytime it became obvious that Boeing's tanker and contract were the better deal, McCain rushed in and had the criteria changed.  

        Yes, Boeing was sleazy in this entire deal, as there is always sleaze in defense contracting, but John McCain has taken it to an entirely different level and nobody has ever really said a peep about it.

        If it were not for McCain graft, Shelby's obstructionism wouldn't even be possible.

  •  The corrupt and disfunctinal congress... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Phil S 33, lgmcp, TomP, MariaWr

    ... in a nutshell here.

    The inadequate is the enemy of the necessary.

    by JRandomPoster on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:41:57 AM PST

  •  Wow, not even principles (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    deha, gchaucer2, JML9999, TomP, MariaWr, axel000

    Just pure political tomfoolery.

    How much has he gotten from Airbus?

    We're all human, aren't we? Every human life is worth the same, and worth saving. - Kingsley Shacklebolt

    by chparadise on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:42:11 AM PST

  •  Shelby - a corrupt traitor (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    demnomore, wishingwell, MariaWr, mollyk

    The good news is that Boeing won't let him get away with it even if the Senate will.

    look for my DK Greenroots diary series Wednesday evening. "It's the planet, stupid."

    by FishOutofWater on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:43:23 AM PST

  •  Looks like Sen. Shelby ... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    demnomore, JML9999, MariaWr

    Is entitled to sit in front on Airbus.

    The Republican brand: "Consequences, schmonsequences, as long as I'm rich"

    by D in Northern Virginia on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:43:43 AM PST

  •  Keep up the pressure and humilate the (5+ / 0-)

    so and so.

    Afghanistan:Graveyard to empires-It's not just a bumpersticker

    by JML9999 on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:44:10 AM PST

  •  How does this work? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell, TKO333, axel000, ericlewis0

    How does one Senator in the minority hold up Obama's nominees?  The Dems couldn't do that when they were the minority.

    Can't the majority just force it?

    Jan 20, 2009 -- I got my country back.

    by jpeskoff on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:46:00 AM PST

  •  I hope this is used to bring an end to this (5+ / 0-)

    season of Senate shenanigans.

    This should be all over the media. Anyone who cares about this country should be sickened to see this.

    Hopefully we'll now see recess appointments and significant progress on reforming the Senate.

    Hopefully we'll also see this act brought up every time the Republicans accuse Obama and the Dems of playing fast and loose with procedures etc.

    The Dems really really need to use this gift properly.

    Remember to kick it over.

    by sprogga on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:47:48 AM PST

    •  I wish I had your confidence (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sprogga

      Face it, on this site we are all the choir.  It's frustrating that so many people can see the problem and be able to do nothing about it.  

      Dammit!  I'm a proud liberal, a lifelong Democrat, a populist.  I wear a bloody "L" carved in my forehead. I've voted, campaigned, volunteered for every Democrat since McGovern.  And I'm fed up.  

      I partied all night when Dems took control of the Senate and House and elected a confident, intelligent, and pragmatic President.  Now all we see is the continual caving in by a Democratic Party that should be making history instead of mistakes!  

      You're right, Sprogga!  We should bring an end to the Senate shenanigans.  But where is the media, where is the continual hammering needed to bring our points home, where are the recess appointments and reconciliation?  Dammit, where are the Democrats?

      I will not forsake the Democratic Party, but I can't help wonder where it is going.  We can't seem to vote these b*st*rds out, so lets shame them.  Let's propose laws that are so sensible not even God would object, and then dare the Republicanische (thank you, whoever I stole that from) to filibuster.  Don't let the David Vitters, Tom Foleys, etc., get away with silence.

      Let's act like we are in charge, and get something done.

  •  Democrats? "Pummel"? In what universe? Please, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Phil S 33, MariaWr

    let me know!  

    We finally have Obama starting to confront some of the most onerous bullshit from obvious delusional assclowns and dummies, and he is still way too genteel about it.  Someone should let him know he is no longer a Senator.

    As for the rest of the Dems... only a few might do that, and they seem to be in the House, like Greyson or Kucinick.    


    We the People in order to establish Justice, Defense, Welfare, Liberty do establish the US of A. That is what America is about!

    by FightTheFuture on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:47:59 AM PST

  •  F@#k the Democrats. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    axel000

    They couldn't pummel their way out of a paper bag if the top was left open.

    Maybe it's high time we citizens take it upon ourselves to make up and run ads in Alabama to let the people there know what Shelby is up to.

    This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

    by DisNoir36 on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:48:13 AM PST

  •  We are all witnesses to History in the making. (12+ / 0-)

    This group of Senate Democrats is going to be pilloried for decades for their utter paralysis in the face of an economic catastrophe. This is but one small example of that paralysis.  Reid is going to go down in history as one of the least effective Majority leaders in history, particularly when they fail to pass any meaningful health care reform, as I suspect is becoming increasingly likely.

    The problem with governmental institutions failing is that they're not aware that they're failing, until after history renders its judgment and it's too late. By that time this crop of Senate Democrats will long since have been voted out of power, and many (like Lieberman) will have left the Senate to become lobbyists and paid pundits.  Their lives will go on, but their failure will haunt generations of Americans to come.

  •  Here's the e-mail I just sent Shelby (4+ / 0-)

    Senator Shelby: Holding up all of President Obama's nominees for vacant government posts is morally wrong. What a small minded little man you are showing yourself to be.

    And the reason? So Airbus, a foreign firm, can get a contract instead of Boeing, an American company.

    How much is Airbus paying you, Senator Shelby? At this point, we know what you are, we're just haggling over the price, right?

    What you are doing is simply this: preparing to shut down the United States Senate to award a key military contract to a foreign company.

    You disgust me.

    'If the world was perfect, it wouldn't be.' Yogi Berra

    by coachster on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:48:48 AM PST

    •  Dear Coachster (0+ / 0-)

      Thank you for your e-mail and interest in the USAF tanker program. I just got another nice fat check from Northrup Grumman so hahahaha and fuck you.

      Sincerely,
      Senator Shelby

    •  Boeing is not innocent (0+ / 0-)

      After all, Boeing first got the tanker contract and this through corruption. That lease contract was cancelled after it became clear that bribes were passed and the contract was given to Airbus. And since then the contract has been victim of politics.

      If Airbus is the best offer, then they should get the contract. Don't forget that if we protect our market, other countries will do the same and block our enterprises from foreign contracts.

      Obama-Biden in 2012!

      by Frederik on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:30:59 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  He cannot be accused of excessive (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    demnomore, wishingwell, MariaWr, mollyk, TKO333

    nationalism. He is willing to undermine the nation's economy, and undermine the functioning of the nation's government, to improve things in some county in Alabama. Why is this not the lead story in every media outlet in the USA? Why is this man able to go out in public without a bag over his head?

    We have only just begun and none too soon.

    by global citizen on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:49:01 AM PST

  •  Make it news. Send LTE's... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Hannibal, axel000

    to the newspapers and media blogs sites.
    Make it news.

    Whatever the Repuglicans say, the opposite is the truth .

    by MariaWr on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:52:10 AM PST

  •  Alabama Cornhuskers (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    demnomore, Sherri in TX, TomFromNJ

    So Ben Nelson can't win something for his state, but Shelby-- who looks like the crazy arsonist in Save the Tiger (1973)-- wants a Cornhusker Kickback-type deal for his state?

    (Breaking: Fred Williamson's "Mean Johnny Barrows" and "Death Journey" to be released by Code Red DVD-- in widescreen with director commentary-- on 3/16/2010)

    by samantha in oregon on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:53:11 AM PST

  •  Gibbs didn't blast anybody. (9+ / 0-)

    He called it silliness.  Didn't anybody watch Stewart last night?  I'm surprised Gibbs didn't eviscerate Shelby.  

    Gibbs called it silliness.  What a weak response.  Why not call it what it is in frank terms - Extortion, or even hostage taking. That language would get the MSM to take notice.

    Silliness. pfft.  

    Politics is like playing Asteroids - You go far enough to the left and you end up on the right. Or vice-versa.

    by Jonze on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:53:54 AM PST

    •  agreed NT (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Kimberley

      Watch political video at Daily Kos TV | Twitter: @jedlewison

      by Jed Lewison on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:57:03 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Nobody likes a bully (0+ / 0-)

      but they like a weakling even less.  Every time a Democrat criticizes a program, a plan, another politician (particularly a Republicanische politician), the media and Faux News (no relation), raise a stink.  Enough!  If Rahm calls liberals "fucking retards" he doesn't owe an apology to Sarah Palin.  Every time a Democrat "misspeaks" he falls all over him/herself to apologize.  Republicans just say "I apologize if you're offended", passing the onus to the aggrieved party.

      Say what you want to say.  If people's sensibilities can't handle it, that's their problem.  Be clear, be frank and stop sniveling.

  •  doesn't matter (4+ / 0-)

    the Republican base hates us more than they love the country. They'd rather destroy it then leave it to the demographically inevitable progressive multi racial future.

    Does this matter to the independents? Let's hope.

    If you didn't like the news today, go out and make some of your own.

    by jgnyc on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:55:08 AM PST

  •  I'm choking on my Freedom Fries. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Hannibal, FishBiscuit, axel000

    This isn't just a foreign company, but a company from the evil netherworld of France!!!

    Immanentizing the eschaton is a *good* thing.

    by jabuhrer on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:55:20 AM PST

  •  I don't normally (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell, ultraviolet uk

    use cuss words, but I have to say, "What the fuck is wrong with these Republican people"?

    I'm what's called, a Political Neophyte. Thankfully, I've had the good sense to acquire knowledge, politically, at the Daily Kos.......:o)

    by secret38b on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:56:23 AM PST

  •  Obama is to blame. (0+ / 0-)

    He could appoint all his nominees with recess appointments but doesn't want to because of the political hit he might take. A leader would be willing to take the hit.  

    Politics is like playing Asteroids - You go far enough to the left and you end up on the right. Or vice-versa.

    by Jonze on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:57:45 AM PST

  •  Mail him bacon (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Hannibal

    He wants pork that much let him have all he can eat.

    "Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all" Andrew Carnegie

    by pantherq on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:59:17 AM PST

  •  I don't buy the Boeing PR on this (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JohnnySacks, lcdrjsm

    From all accounts back when the original bidding resulted in Northrop winning, the A330 based Northrop design is a better plane.

    Its also built in Alabama with 60% US sourced components, even the base A330 is constructed there in an EADs hangar before Northrop converts to military spec in a secure area.

    I think Shelby is an ass and a hypocrit and this is wrong on so many levels, but I do think Northrop won the bid originally for the right reasons.  The USAF only reset the bidding after alot of Boeing led Congressional lobbying...

    Government for the people, by the people

    by axel000 on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 08:59:37 AM PST

  •  Push his fat face in it. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lcdrjsm
  •  Your Boeing vs. EADS description is inaccurate (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sherri in TX, axel000

    I won't speak to the critique of Shelby, but your characterization of this as a Boeing vs. EADS competition is not accurate, and in fact is the propaganda of one of the two parties in the dispute.  The competitors are Boeing and Northrop Grumman, both are selling Tankers with essentially the same amount of domestic content (that is, the same number of American jobs - in fact, Northrop has asserted that their offering creates more jobs and Boeing has not bothered to refute, instead just arguing on the basis of an American nameplate rather than the actual number of American jobs). Ultimately, the best deal for America will be a Tanker that provides the higest performance per dollar.

    •  NG/EADS is complaining because the new specs (0+ / 0-)

      Don't give them the advantage they had the first time, the one that was thrown out because it was poorly done.

      •  The "poorly done" unrelated to the advantage (0+ / 0-)

        The question is whether you want to optimize cost per plane, or cost per unit service.  An analogy might be if you wanted to buy a truck, and company A offered a van and company B an 18 wheeler.  Do you want to judge these by cost-per-vehicle or cost-per-unit-of-cargo moved?  That's the key issue in question.

        The "poorly done" part of the last evaluation had to do with the government not following all of their own rules they had set up.

      •  Political shenanigans and corruption (0+ / 0-)

        Boeing first got the tanker contract and this through corruption. That lease contract was cancelled after it becamle clear that bribes were passed and the contract was given to Airbus. And since then the contract has been victim of politics. Because senators from Boeing states were unhappy the government decided things should be redone once more.

        If Airbus is the best offer, then they should get the contract. Don't forget that if we protect our market, other countries will do the same and block our enterprises from foreign contracts.

        Obama-Biden in 2012!

        by Frederik on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:32:44 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  As I recall (0+ / 0-)

          the original contract was won by Boeing, but it became apparent that several of the people involved in the selection process were "ethically compromised".  The bidding process was reopened to Airbus and Boeing.  Unfortunately, after Boeing had submitted their bid, the rules were rewritten to exactly match what Airbus was offering.  Boeing complained that they had made their bid according to the rules only to have them rewritten to Airbus' specifications.  Airbus planes were too large in many cases to even land at many of the military airports, although they had greater hauling capacity.  In short, there was additional corruption taking place after Boeing put in their new bid.  

          Both manufacturers were guilty of bid-rigging, and it has been a political football ever since.  

  •  It's time for some serious transparency... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    demnomore, axel000

    Senator Shelby needs to be called out and exposed for his obstruction.  The American people need to know that their government is being held hostage by a US senator because he wants pork for his district.  

    It is time to make Senator Shelby a prime example of what is wrong with our government.  More than ever, transparency is what is needed now.  Let the sun shine in.

    Senator Carl Levin makes the case for how this obstruction is impairing the running of the government:  

    http://www.youtube.com/...

    "Now is not a time for partisanship, it's a time for citizenship." President Barack Obama (01/07/10)

    by Ladyhawk on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:04:47 AM PST

  •  Well, one of the reasons the original (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    axel000

    award was flawed and successfully challenged by Boeing is because the tankers selected were going to be too heavy for the runways in out-of-the-way bases, even the newly built ones at Balad in Iraq.  So, to realize the efficiency of holding more fuel in the plane, a whole lot of runways are going to have to be rebuilt--which means more revenue for companies that pour concrete and build runways.
    I make these points as someone who doesn't think flying gas tanks are a good idea in the first place.  Besides, on the one hand, we're setting up bases all around the globe and on the other we're arguing that in order to fly around the globe our aircraft have to be refueled mid-air.  And all because the fly-boys like to soar through the air.

    How do you tell a predator from a protector? The predator will eat you sooner rather than later.

    by hannah on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:05:35 AM PST

    •  Tankers are about efficiency not glamour (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Hannibal

      Tankers enable other aircraft much more time to be spent performing missions rather than flying back to base, landing, refueling, taking off again, etc.  

    •  Of course only after Boeing was caught (0+ / 0-)

      with the hand in the cookie jar...

      Boeing first got the tanker contract and this through corruption. That lease contract was cancelled after it became clear that bribes were passed and the contract was given to Airbus. And since then the contract has been victim of politics.

      If Airbus is the best offer, then they should get the contract. Don't forget that if we protect our market, other countries will do the same and block our enterprises from foreign contracts.

      Obama-Biden in 2012!

      by Frederik on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:33:28 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Does anyone know how many recess (0+ / 0-)

    appointments were made at this point in the Bush and Clinton administrations? Just wondering.

  •  Sounds like it's time for a sternly worded letter (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Hannibal, FishBiscuit

    from our Democratic stalwarts, followed closely thereafter by complete capitulation to Shelby's demands.

    •  Yeah! (0+ / 0-)

      The letter should remind him that only Dems can hold the US Government ransom to get goodies for their states, and only on health care reform!

      I am that gadfly which God has attached to the state, and all day long and in all places...arousing and persuading and reproaching you.-Socrates

      by The Navigator on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:17:54 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  One line summary (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    demnomore, Hannibal

    GOP blocks all appointments to give billions to French company

    That's not precisely accurate, but it will work.

    In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there always is a difference. - Yogi Berra

    by blue aardvark on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:09:08 AM PST

  •  Alabama jobs or Seattle jobs. (0+ / 0-)

    Either way, somebody benefits and somebody loses.

    Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right.

    by darthstar on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:09:23 AM PST

  •  this title should say Harry Reid holds America (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FishBiscuit

    hostage.

    If Harry Reid would have stepped up and led this would not have happened.  

    This isn't about Shelby, this is about the ineffectiveness of Harry Reid.

    When are Senate Dems going to quit being "nice guys" and actually work?

    Republicans===the party of the 1% rich people in America. Or in other words..The Party of NO!

    by jalapeno on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:12:01 AM PST

  •  Senator Shelby: Extortionist (0+ / 0-)

    When Joe Lieberman and Ben Nelson were blackmailing people with threats of supporting a Republican filibuster if they didn't get their own way...they were exposed by the mainstream national news media, which all too willingly loves to show Democrats in as bad a light as possible, while ignoring blatant corruption and dishonesty by Republicans.

    We need for every single living, breathing American citizen to be aware of this shameless act of extortion by Shelby.

    Where's John McCain and his famous promise to shine the spotlight on blatant misuses of taxpayer dollars in the form of pork barrel sending such as this?

    Where's the mainstream news media when it comes to showing blatant attempts by Shelby to extort money from the federal government, and increase federal spending and the national debt, which he and his fellow Republicans claim they want to reduce?

    Where are the teabaggers who love to pretend to be outraged by the arrogance of power in Washington?

    We need to continue to expose Richard Shelby as the shameless extortionist that he ist.

  •  Got Hysteria? (0+ / 0-)

    Shelby (agitatedly in a total act of self-interest) places administration nominees on hold and that's "shutting down" the United States? Hmmm.  Something tells me the United States can get along for a while without a few more political appointees.

    And I'm not sure what's worse...Shelby holding some appointees for ransom, or all the Dems who held health care for ransom for a few more scraps for their states.  Which one is costing lives?

    Hypocrisy is ugly.

    I am that gadfly which God has attached to the state, and all day long and in all places...arousing and persuading and reproaching you.-Socrates

    by The Navigator on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:16:44 AM PST

  •  Shelby is a hipocrit (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Scarce

    He is the same Senator who said last year about the American owned auto companies and their network of suppliers, many based here in Michigan who has been suffering a depression since the Emperor Bush II took over, should be allowed to just go broke and leave the American car buyer to the tender mercies of such high quality foreign manufacturers as Toyota! Who happens to have plants in pro-management ("Right-to-Work"] states like his. Alabama.

    Next time a hurricane hits Alabama I hope my senators put holds on legislation that would send federal help and money to Alabama until he votes for universal single payer health care. Last year my wife and I, who have a state funded "Cadillac" health benefit, still had out of pocket expenses for our health care of over $17,000! over half of our pension! Now this idiot wants to give my tax money to a foreign aircraft manufacturer, which is owned by foreign governments, because it wants to build a plant in his state! This guy is a leader of the Radical Republicans who claim they are against earmarks and this is the most blatant earmark ever seen!

    Ken near Gun Lake, A voice crying in the wilderness of Rethug Allegan County.

    by Ken the Troll on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:18:08 AM PST

  •  Richard Shelby on the abuse of Earmarks (0+ / 0-)

    From April 2009.

    He's quite proud of what he's done and makes no attempt to hide it.

    Here we are now Entertain us I feel stupid and contagious

    by Scarce on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:22:14 AM PST

  •  What a sleezy creep (0+ / 0-)

    Wise, tea-sippin' senators...

    I gotta wake my ass up at six AM every day of this week and drag myself up to Los Colinas. Yeah, I'm doing the drywall up there at the new McDonalds

    by plok on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:25:13 AM PST

  •  Who says? (0+ / 0-)

    Who says the Republicans aren't trans-nationalist?

  •  Shelby in 2005 (0+ / 0-)

    As a U.S. Senator, I believe that the review of judicial nominations is one of the most important responsibilities of the Senate, and I firmly believe that each of the President's nominees should be afforded a straight up-or-down vote. I do not think that any of us want to operate in an environment where federal judicial nominees must receive 60 votes in order to be confirmed. To that end I firmly support changing the Senate rules to require that a simple majority be necessary to confirm all judicial nominees, thus ending the continuous filibuster of them.

    Dick Shelby. Douche.

  •  Instead of bitching about this on DKos, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bwren

    we really should be taking action on this. Contact Harry Reid and the WH now:

    Washington DC
    522 Hart Senate Office Bldg
    Washington, DC 20510
    Phone: 202-224-3542
    Fax: 202-224-7327
    Toll Free for Nevadans:
    1-866-SEN-REID (736-7343)

    Web Contact form:
    http://reid.senate.gov/...

    White House Info:

    Phone Numbers
    Comments: 202-456-1111
    Switchboard: 202-456-1414
    FAX: 202-456-2461

    http://www.whitehouse.gov/...

  •  Sad, sad, sad (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    under the same sky

    All these xenophobic comments about foreign this and foreign that are presumably coming from right-wing nuts who just have so much time on their hands that they read Kos blogs.  Or are they?

    Don't you realize that the US has so much more to lose here if it wraps itself in the flag, even for a government purchase?  I am sure Boeing has sales to governments, at least in Europe.  How long will those last if this deal gets given to Boeing just on the basis of xenophobia?

    Take, for example, IBM in UK, Ford In Germany, Caterpillar in Spain, Oracle in Italy... Do you think people and/or corporations of those countries should buy products from those US companies?

    I hope you say yes.  If not, we are in for a rough ride.

  •  Where are the Boeing tankers manufactured? (0+ / 0-)

    Just curious...

    Sunshine on my shoulder...

    by pkbarbiedoll on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:49:51 AM PST

  •  This is a huge deal in Mobile (0+ / 0-)

    The whole town really wants those jobs.  This stunt and the resulting publicity will probalby help him in the state.

    Fight 'em 'til Hell freezes over, and then fight 'em on the ice. - David Van Os

    by sagra on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 09:52:54 AM PST

  •  Country First to... (0+ / 0-)

    Corporations First?  Campaign Contributors First?

  •  When I called Senator Shelby's (0+ / 0-)

    office this morning, I said, "As a concerned US citizen, I am disgusted that Senator Shelby is holding the people hostage.  Please let him know."

  •  What they should be doing... (0+ / 0-)

    Democrats should pummel him and his GOP enablers for heading down this path

    They should, but will the Dems just take the path of least resistance and praise Shelby anyway?  Then Harry Reid will talk about bipartisanship and how we all need to work together.  Meanwhile, another GOP senator will take a giant crap on the Dems.  

  •  Let's just not build any (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Zinman

    god-damned tankers and save the money. (I mean not borrow the money)

  •  Patriotic NOT (0+ / 0-)

    Why does Shelby hate America....we need American companies to succeed, especially in manufacturing. Mr. Shelby is obviously under the influence of foreign agents.

    Salmon Dave

  •  Seems to me that (0+ / 0-)

    anyone who was outraged at the special deal given Bob Nelson, the senator from Nebraska, in exchange for his health care vote should be outraged by this as well...

    The era of "the era of big government is over" is over.

    by lungfish on Fri Feb 05, 2010 at 11:37:19 AM PST

  •  Fark headline: It's to benefit a foreign company (0+ / 0-)

    Fark had a link to this dairy earlier, this is the headline they had.

    "That blanket hold Senator Shelby (R-AL) is using to extort earmarks from the Democrats? It's to benefit a foreign company   (dailykos.com)"

    •  "It's to benefit a foreign company", pt.2 (0+ / 0-)

      Fark had a link to this dairy earlier, this is the headline they had.

      "That blanket hold Senator Shelby (R-AL) is using to extort earmarks from the Democrats? It's to benefit a foreign company   (dailykos.com)"

      I forgot the link:

      http://www.fark.com/...

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