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Three of them showed up after a reporter tweeted a pix of the one Senator present at the start, Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.).

Then three more Dems showed up.

This is a hearing about solutions. 19 members of the committee. 1 cares to show up, three more, likely so they don't get embarrassed.

Now, maybe the other 15 have, by coincidence, entirely good reasons for not showing up. The flu, a niece's wedding, whatever. Still, if this isn't emblematic of how DC has been handling the massive jobs crisis -- the thing at the root of any deficit issue, at the root of any funding the safety-net issues -- ...well, damn, it IS emblematic.

More than 4.6 million Americans have been jobless for at least 27 weeks, according to the latest job figures, a rate of 3.0 percent. That's higher than at any point since World War II, including the 2.6-percent peak during the recession of the early 1980s. The official unemployment rate currently stands at 7.6 percent, down from 10.0 percent at the recession's darkest moments, although much of the reduction has been due to people leaving the workforce -- simply giving up hope of finding a job.
So what I'm talking about is exactly this: There is almost nobody in DC, almost nobody in our own Party who sees the unemployment issue as something urgent. As Top Priority Number One. More important than any other thing.

Which is inexplicable if Conventional Politics is actually the guiding frame in DC. Gallup polled that 72% of the people want a massive Federal Jobs Creation Program.

That's 91% Democrats, 76% Independents, and 56% Republicans. Now, if Conventional Politics were in play, you'd be seeing both parties vying with each other on Job Creation Ideas. And shouting their plan 24/7 from the rooftops -- and no other thing about the economy like deficits and cutting back Social Security.

That's a sure-fire vote-getter.

But the best we get is that some Trade Agreement, like the Trans-Pacific Partnership, or the EU Trade Agreements, being negotiated sub rosa, is a meaningful fix. When actually job and industry exporting follows them usually.

The DC Disconnect is something I'd hope we'd really start to discuss here at DKos, and in general.

Can anyone give me one plausible, sane, political sound, reason, that unemployment is not THE burning issue of the day?

Because I can't come up with one that is kind to our political class. Either we are seeing massively incompetent politicians, or there's something else more important to them than representing the interests of Americans and the nation. That's all I got for that.

Near 2 am ET. Off to bed. Thanks for commenting and rec'ing. Anybody wants to add statistics about unemployment, poverty, low-wages replacing high-wages, that would be appreciated. Might get to check back in around noon.

Originally posted to Jim P on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 07:56 PM PDT.

Also republished by In Support of Labor and Unions.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (206+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Blazehawkins, Lorikeet, ctsteve, Habitat Vic, Another Grizzle, NYFM, SpecialKinFlag, commonmass, Polly Syllabic, CanadaGoose, jayden, bobswern, RainyDay, The Eyewitness Muse, David54, filby, Medium Head Boy, ArchTeryx, aitchdee, Lujane, devis1, flavor411, ozsea1, Joieau, elginblt, 3goldens, zett, Gowrie Gal, Publius2008, Chaddiwicker, ericlewis0, tegrat, gloriana, ZenTrainer, Freedomfreak, Oaktown Girl, GeorgeXVIII, Danno11, TracieLynn, Zack from the SFV, suejazz, I Lurked For Years, markdd, magicsister, ontheleftcoast, lilsky, WisePiper, poliwrangler, HCKAD, freesia, mjfgates, thomask, salmo, doinaheckuvanutjob, Involuntary Exile, priceman, sceptical observer, majcmb1, La Gitane, jan4insight, yowsta, joejoejoe, Creosote, riverlover, elwior, DRo, antirove, Eric Nelson, eeff, MartyM, Burned, coppercelt, Little Flower, shypuffadder, run around, NoMoreLies, Clues, ClapClapSnap, sawgrass727, Smoh, angelajean, kyril, Brian B, dharmafarmer, Egalitare, Mentatmark, ItsSimpleSimon, bluesheep, maryabein, petulans, dkmich, ht dave, SaintC, concernedamerican, sunny skies, Book of Hearts, rapala, dave1042, eagleray, One Pissed Off Liberal, oakroyd, marleycat, annominous, Nina Katarina, mr crabby, kevin k, coldwynn, VA Breeze, sodalis, PhilJD, Lilyvt, PapaChach, karmsy, KJG52, Syoho, legendmn, HeyMikey, chrississippi, GreyHawk, CarolinW, Lonely Liberal in PA, J M F, jdmorg, puakev, TomP, cloudbustingkid, kerflooey, Cronesense, buckstop, wader, MKinTN, radical simplicity, imchange, KatGirl, StrayCat, TF in VA, onionjim, Liberal Thinking, zerelda, nother lurker, Brooke In Seattle, rasfrome, ratzo, Texknight, Youffraita, Roger Fox, Spirit of Life, no way lack of brain, stevie avebury, Dem Beans, young voter, Odysseus, dance you monster, asym, Oh Mary Oh, sostos, BB10, congenitalefty, SteveLCo, Hirodog, enemy of the people, bronte17, jwinIL14, George3, Mr MadAsHell, ruscle, Angie in WA State, Catte Nappe, The Hindsight Times, absdoggy, JerryNA, TheMeansAreTheEnd, FindingMyVoice, spooks51, joanneleon, phonegery, Shadowmage36, jobu, SheilaKinBrooklyn, sebastianguy99, JekyllnHyde, elfling, SuWho, cardboardurinal, ewmorr, New Rule, Sam Hill, Mogolori, Dodgerdog1, Wood Dragon, roses, filkertom, Jarrayy, carolanne, cececville, zmom, norwood, anonymous volanakis, ColoTim, Laughing Vergil, livingthedream, el dorado gal, srkp23, Robynhood too, NMMatt, greenbell

    Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

    by Jim P on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 07:56:11 PM PDT

  •  Jim P - unemployment is not job #1 (30+ / 0-)

    because the political will of the GOP is to slow the growth in federal government spending and they control the House and have a blocking position in the Senate. No jobs program, or any other significant new stimulus, is going to come out of Congress in the 113th Session.

    "let's talk about that"

    by VClib on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 08:01:25 PM PDT

  •  That is completely fucked up (19+ / 0-)

    But I wonder if it is because Senators have given up? I mean, when Warren was conducting her Banking sessions, weren't there like three senators present? My guess is that unless it is a crazy hotbutton issue, you'll probably be lucky just to hit quorum, let alone a full house. Most of them are probably just trying to raise funds for their next race.

  •  Why bother with the little people (17+ / 0-)

    when there is piles of lobbyist cash to suck up?

    The tent got so big it now stands for nothing.

    by Beelzebud on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 09:03:11 PM PDT

    •  You Have Described a Situation In which (5+ / 0-)

      there is no such thing as government.


      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 09:25:29 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Lots of room for debate over what "government" (6+ / 0-)

        is or means. Autocratic kleptocracy is a form of "government." Allowing semi-hereditary rulers to own everything and run everything and so on is "government" too. So too the activities of the people who gave us the memorable expression "Après moi, le déluge."

        Hierarchy, corruption and predation seem to be inevitable. The real trick is keeping the hierarchs from stealing all the marbles, keeping corruption to some tolerable level, and mobbing the predators like crows and songbirds do to survive and keep their eggs and young from being gobbled.

        "Is that all there is?" Peggy Lee.

        by jm214 on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 05:13:56 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Exactly. As long as we're mammalian herd (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          animals, someone will wend themselves to the top. And they'll expect perks whether rightly or wrongly.

          But if they start getting the herd to jump off a cliff in the process...

          There was a neighborhood in Bklyn, maybe still is, which was known Mafia controlled. Corrupt as they were, in that neighborhood there was no street crime. Nobody got burgled or mugged. So even though people knew what was up, knew ruthless criminals abounded, they still were grateful to have the protection.

          Now, our politicians shit where they eat. The "neighborhood" of the US.

          Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

          by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 11:02:29 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  The GOP has... (7+ / 0-)

    the "jobs will follow tax cuts and regulatory guts" mantra spliced to their DNA. It's a strategy that requires nothing beyond a sound bite here and there and it placates the Tea Party Tribe who are the governance equivalent of a kid with a magnifying glass burning ants on the sidewalk.

    The Democrats' heart is in the right place, but absent a clear public mandate to advance a jobs agenda I fear it'll continue to fall victim to obstruction and economic quackery from the Teapublicans.

    I also fear Democrats are becoming demoralized, or I would be if I still worked on Capitol Hill. Trying to have a conversation about investing in job creation at the same time thousands of people are being furloughed seems a tad delusional.

    All-in-all, it's pretty Goddamn depressing.

    •  But, seriously, the GOP doesn't want it, so quit? (20+ / 0-)

      How can 72% of the voters -- 56% !!! Republican -- not constitute a "clear mandate."

      How can possessing the ability to reason for five minutes not lead anyone to "must have more jobs"?

      How can a politician not care that this single thing could a) put current Republicans on the defensive, and b) be the only reasonable approach by which to take control of both Chambers, c) actually solve our financial problems?

      It's impossible, if Conventional Politics, or even simple arithmetic, is being practiced. Impossible.

      I don't think being dispirited, nor having the GOP give us the okay, is any reason we have four Senators showing up at a Hearing where solving long-term unemployment is on the table.

      There's clearly massive disconnect between our governors and our governance, and I don't see anyone trying to get connected in DC. There's no excuse for that.

      Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

      by Jim P on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 09:16:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I agree with you Jim. (8+ / 0-)

        It is utterly inexcusable for members to not show up at a jobs-related hearing. What the hell are they being paid for?

        I cannot think of anything that would please me more than to see Congress produce a jobs bill with infrastructure investment, clean energy, job training, etc.

        It has been a desperate need for years. Unfortunately, given the political dynamics, I think the only way this could happen is for there to be a giant grassroots demand to emerge.

        And by giant, I mean a relentless, unprecedented, high-tech, high-targeted, coalition-driven, advertising-heavy movement with business and labor on board.

        It is sad that it's come to this. That it would take a near rebellion to get Washington to produce something necessary that has broad support. But that's the state of play.

  •  Plutocracy is Not a Democracy. nt (13+ / 0-)

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 09:24:42 PM PDT

    •  More "Demon-crazy" than Democracy. (5+ / 0-)

      Especially when you consider the classic story about Demons and compare it to how Corporations come about.

      The ritual evocation into earthly form, offering something personal (blood on the one hand/signing a document on the other); immateriality; called into being to gain wealth and power; soulless; amoral; often immoral; a cover for one's own actions; functionally immortal; fixated on a narrow range of existence...

      You'd think the right wing Christians would be upset at this deviltry.

      Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

      by Jim P on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 09:31:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Gooserock, your words were noted ..... (0+ / 0-)

      ..... in the Top Comments diary for this evening.

      "We should pay attention to that man behind the curtain."

      by Ed Tracey on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 07:09:37 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  How about calling SF Mayor Ed Lee to testify? (8+ / 0-)

    San Francisco is growing at an exponential rate and is doing a lot of good things for the economy.  Only problem is, there are still quite a bit of people out of work but I'm hearing from many on LinkedIn that they want to move to San Francisco.  Why?  More opportunities.

    Of course, the prices in SF are increasing in expense due to the explosion of the tech scene (red hot right now).

    Anyway, I say San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee and others doing outreach in tech should be called in by the U.S. Senate to give their take on what SF is doing to get people back to work.  A lot of states should learn from SF and Mayor Lee might be able to provide insight.

    •  This is the kind of thing we need to hear more of. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      3goldens, KatGirl, imchange

      But should he come to DC to testify in front of not-even-the-ghost of a quorum? He'll sit there and play solitaire.

      Unless the DC Disconnect ends.

      Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

      by Jim P on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 09:36:06 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Here's something to keep in mind (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        salmo, imchange, Odysseus, ratzo

        The Republican Party in San Francisco is very detached from the State Republican Party and the national GOP.  Most of them are traditional conservatives and not quite like the right wing or Tea Party Republicans in other parts of California and across the country.  Mayor Lee deals with Republicans all the time, mainly in finance, investment and construction.  He's more of a pragmatic, non-partisan Mayor as a opposed to a partisan Mayor.  And rarely if ever do any of us on Daily Kos hear Lee appear on national news.  He's not attention grabbing like Gavin Newsom is.

        In fact, Newsom's best decision of his tenure as Mayor of SF (aside from making the decision in February 2004 to grant gays the right to marry) was appointing Ed Lee as Mayor to replace him.  I'm not a fan of Mayors making political appointments to the council or higher office but Ed Lee really has done a lot of great for SF.

      •  We have the technology. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Lets keep all the fed level people in the state they "represent" and use technology to bring them together.

        Makes it harder for the lobbyists to accost our reps. It will decrease unemployment because there will need to be more lobbyists. It will pretty much eliminate the DC Bubble, and we can the pres in DC. Most of the reps are missing most of the time anyway. Let them have a couple trips a year to the capitol, but the rest of the year, actually do the People's Business.

        Interesting that the best paying jobs are Banker, Stock Broker and Politician.

        by KatGirl on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 07:15:46 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  We should learn to play to empty seats while (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        imchange, Jim P


        Seems to be a better alternative to capturing the Fox Noise studios....

        Thugs do it all the time;  they wouldn't do it if it didn't work for them, so we could try to put ourselves in their audience's lap.

        I am a leaf on the wind - i hover, twirl, float,
        Weightless, frictionless, I fly

        by chmood on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 07:17:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  wait a minute (0+ / 0-)

      The only thing that I know that Ed Lee has done for jobs in San Francisco is to provide tax incentives for companies like Twitter to move here.   So now we're back to dot. com land with tech people buying up all the properties.  But other than that, I don't see how he's done much.  

      •  So (0+ / 0-)

        Do you want business there or not?

        (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
        Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

        by Sparhawk on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 06:11:03 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I don't have a problem with business (5+ / 0-)

          coming in but quite a few people who live here who have real issues with tax giveaways to business.   Businesses in San Francisco are just like businesses in most other places in this country.  They really don't pay their fair share of taxes.

          And the average person continues to get shitty public services and crazy nonsense because some idiot of the Board of Supervisors or the Mayor has some pet project that they want to use what money the city does have to guarantee their political future.   So they pay for that and don't pay to fix potholes for example----and they end up putting a measure on the ballot for a bond just to fix the potholes.  And don't even get me started about our transit system. Or our wonderful Chamber of Commerce who likes to put up ads to beat up on civil servants.  

          It would be nice for a change to see business actually pony up and pay more for public services.   But it would also be nice to see some intelligent proposals from city government.  

          I do understand why they gave the tax incentives to Twitter. They have been trying to fix up the mid-Market area since at least the 1960s and Twitter moved in there. Not sure how much that's going to help but we'll see.  I expect Twitter to leave eventually and mid-Market will stay pretty much the same as it always has been.  

          I guess I am just trying to say that the average person here is not being helped that much by tech companies coming here.  It brings in new people and that's fine but it also results in raising the rents which can make life difficult for people who already live here and don't make that much money because they work in a restaurant.

          I'm also saying that San Francisco is not perfect and that many of us find Ed Lee to be a disappointment.  I also don't think  anybody needs to go before Congress and tell them that tech companies need tax incentives and that that will solve the unemployment problem.   Because it won't.

          •  also (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            Twitter is what is creating jobs, not San Francisco.   If Twitter had moved down the Peninsula, the jobs would still be in California.   My point is that doing something to keep a company in your city may be a fine idea but it hasn't got anything to do with solving the unemployment problems in this country.  It's just keeping the jobs in one area instead of another.

            Job creation needs to be looked at on the macro level.  For example,  Dean Baker says a lot of the problem has to do with the strong dollar policy that the American government has been promoting since Rubin was Treasury Secretary.

            •  The US does not currently have a strong dollar (0+ / 0-)

              policy.  Strong or weak dollar policy largely is a function of treasury interest rates - which are currently historically very low.

              The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

              by nextstep on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 08:53:26 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  here's a recent column from Dean Baker (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                See if you find his argument convincing:  


                •  Disagree (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  In regards to manufacturing, the cost of equipment and raw materials are frequently "world prices" as they are set by a world market.  This means than if the value of the dollar decreases, more dollars are required for the input costs - so there is no net advantage over the medium and long term.  There can be a short term advantage in regards to equipment already in place and to a much lesser extent any excess raw material inventory.  

                  For manufacturing that is highly labor intensive what your link says has limited merit, but for manufactured goods -- the shift in the US is to low labor intensity (where the currency value  change is not enough for ordinary Americans to compete against workers in low wage countries), or extremely highly skilled workers (world class engineers and software developers, entertainers, financiers, etc.) who don't have a problem competing.

                  Second, many countries other than Japan, UK and Eurozone strongly peg the value of their currency to the dollar (they manage their currency to keep its value constant in terms of dollars.  While the countries that don't peg tightly,  loosely peg to the dollar.  So the net effect, of the dollar value changes is little or none because what matters is relative value of the currencies and that changes little or none.

                  The linked comment does not reflect the reality that other countries react to what the US does.

                  The real problem is that the way the US taxes is incompatible with global trade.  This is a major problem for US workers (causing lower wages, lower wage growth and higher unemployment) but largely just an inconvenience for business.

                  The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

                  by nextstep on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 09:28:17 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

        •  Another drive-by, eh? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          New Rule

          I am a leaf on the wind - i hover, twirl, float,
          Weightless, frictionless, I fly

          by chmood on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 07:18:51 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  If Ed Lee can't make it in person ..... (0+ / 0-)

      .... could they just send his mustache - like they did on the TV commercial when he ran for office?

      "We should pay attention to that man behind the curtain."

      by Ed Tracey on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 12:47:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The people got no hand. (3+ / 0-)

    "To recognize error, to cut losses, to alter course, is the most repugnant option in government." Historian Barbara Tuchman

    by Publius2008 on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 09:42:55 PM PDT

    •  but... but... democracy. If we weren't a democracy (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      3goldens, imchange

      how could we be fighting wars all over the planet? Everyone knows that when we're at War, we're a democracy.

      I don't know any other way to tell that we're a democracy, though.

      Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

      by Jim P on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:12:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I don't care. I only care about Wal-Mart and Texas (7+ / 0-)

    and Michele Bachmann. That's all I care about. I hope we take action on those items soon.

    •  Finally. Someone with their head screwed on right. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Shahryar, 3goldens, Brooke In Seattle

      Er, Left! I meant left.

      So you don't care that the media said a stupid or dishonest thing? I can't tell you how many years, and how many times on a dally basis, that I've been surprised by them doing that. And each time, it's like something new all over again.

      You should care about that. It's fun!

      Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

      by Jim P on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:49:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I only care about stuff that's on Twitter (8+ / 0-)

        that's where I like to get my in-depth analysis of what's important.

        Sorry, I don't mean to be a distraction from this diary. It's so clear that the so-called government is not a government at all but a legalized method of shoveling money in certain directions, that it is no surprise that they don't even make a pretense any more.

        And their accomplices, the media, have no reason to express any concern.

        Then I found out that this site doesn't really care, either, so I'm at a funny point. Certain diaries today have made me feel like we're in a "free speech zone", penned in like cattle, miles away from where anyone might hear us.

        •  Not a distraction at all. Exactly the kind of (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          New Rule

          thing I"m talking about. The National Disconnection Disorder, it creeps in everywhere. Like there's nobody taking politics seriously beyond enough to create plausible legitimacy.

          Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

          by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 07:57:01 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I belatedly realized you were talking (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          about the explanations of what gets featured here as far as activism.

          Wasn't aware of the context till now.

          I've long said Dkos is the place where the liberal agenda comes to get neutered.

          Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

          by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 11:06:14 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  that's not what kos said, and you know it (0+ / 0-)

      It's what he said all of us show we are interested in, by the metrics of what we diary and comment on and Tweets by referral and Facebook posting...

      all of that, all of what the community shows it is interested in by their actions? That is what the site spends time and effort working to affect change on.

      If you don't like the issues that kos told us are what it appears we have been interested in? Make some noise about what you are interested in, and get others interested in it, too - and when you are making enough noise about it, then it'll get it's share of site support (email campaigns, candidate campaigns, etc).

      "I like paying taxes...with them, I buy Civilization"

      by Angie in WA State on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 09:32:34 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Congress and the Prez got theirs - FUCK ALL YOU! (6+ / 0-)

    Completely insulated from any cares about their healthcare, retirement, housing, food, employment, criminal prosecution, personal security, family well-being, travel plans, or leisure activities they figure WHAT THE FUCK IN COMMON DO THEY HAVE WITH STUPID SLOBS LIKE US??? Nothing!!
    And laugh laugh laugh at whatever stupid political pranks they can play on each other "all in good fun" -- even if it destroys the nation.

    Ash-sha'b yurid isqat an-nizzam!

    by fourthcornerman on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:22:54 PM PDT

  •  Hey, they've already been elected. (5+ / 0-)

    They've done their hard work; they're in.  Why then show up to a bunch of boring stuff?  

    At most if there's an executive summary they might have a staff person pick that up for them.  That then goes in a drawer for a year, until the drawerful is thrown into the trash.

    Boehner Just Wants Wife To Listen, Not Come Up With Alternative Debt-Reduction Ideas

    by dov12348 on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:53:13 PM PDT

  •  If they can't pass stricter gun laws (7+ / 0-)

    with 91% of Americans in favor of it - why would they bother with jobs?  Many members of congress are not there to govern - they are there to obstruct.  When the American people stop bending over for them, maybe things will change.

    being mindful and keepin' it real

    by Raggedy Ann on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 11:40:42 PM PDT

  •  This is where Meteor Blades sig comes into play (17+ / 0-)

    They are showing us what they believe by their actions and so I don't give a shit what they say anymore.

    Thank you, JimP. This is disgusting.

    I don't negotiate grand bargains with deficit terrorists!

    by priceman on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 12:06:14 AM PDT

  •  We Aren't (15+ / 0-)

    Their constituency.

    "I'll believe that corporations are people when I see Rick Perry execute one."

    by bink on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 02:13:07 AM PDT

  •  Not a single Republican at this hearing? Was it (4+ / 0-)

    solely organized by Dems, for Dems?  If so, WTF is up with only a few straggler senators showing up?  WTF is up with there being no strategic media and publicity coordination to make sure that some highpowered people were there and that there were reporters taking names and listening to pronouncements about how there were no Republicans and about specific fixes that might help-- with a call to the public to write to their representatives and demand fixes for joblessness?

    Sheesh, even an idiot like me could figure out that that would have been a lot smarter to do than what they ended up doing.

    That's one more thing to add to my long list of small problems. --my son, age 10

    by concernedamerican on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 04:32:07 AM PDT

  •  Perhaps they were too busy trying to exempt (11+ / 0-)

    themselves from Obamacare:

    Congressional leaders in both parties are engaged in high-level, confidential talks about exempting lawmakers and Capitol Hill aides from the insurance exchanges they are mandated to join as part of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul, sources in both parties said.

    The talks — which involve Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), the Obama administration and other top lawmakers — are extraordinarily sensitive, with both sides acutely aware of the potential for political fallout from giving carve-outs from the hugely controversial law to 535 lawmakers and thousands of their aides. Discussions have stretched out for months, sources said.

    Read more:

  •  i hope you're not talking smack about murphy- (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    imchange, Angie in WA State, Jim P
    1 cares to show up, three more, likely so they don't get embarrassed.
    chris murphy is my senator- I know the guy. he works like a dog for us.

    "...i also also want a legally binding apology." -George Rockwell

    by thankgodforairamerica on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 04:49:57 AM PDT

    •  hence, the reservation of "likely" (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Thanks for standing up for what seems a good guy.

      Bernie Sanders wasn't there, and he's probably my favorite actual Democrat.

      Again, the diary is about how neatly this event symbolizes the DC Disconnect, whatever the extenuating circumstances in any particular case.

      Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

      by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 11:10:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  chris is fantastic. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Jim P

        definitely on the side of the working guy/gal.

        he's also not one of the wealthy, disconnected, "born w/ a silver spoon in his mouth" senators. financially, he actually has a negative net worth.

        from the

        Connecticut may end up electing either the richest person in the U.S. Senate or one who would be among the poorest.

        Linda McMahon would likely be the wealthiest U.S. senator if she wins the Republican nomination in the Aug. 14 primary and then goes on to win the Nov. 6 general election, Senate records show. The average net worth of McMahon and her husband, Vince, stands at $238 million.

        In contrast, the leading Democrat seeking his party's nomination, Rep. Chris Murphy, reports a negative net worth of $367,000. Right now, the sitting senator with the lowest net worth is Deborah Stabenow, D-Mich., with a negative $32,500.

        "...i also also want a legally binding apology." -George Rockwell

        by thankgodforairamerica on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 11:29:49 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I hit 4 years of being unemployed (15+ / 0-)

    next month. Can't begin to tell you what it's done to my self worth (or lack there of).  I wrote my Congressperson several months ago asking, "do I matter anymore?". This was referring to the jobless numbers that had just come out showing a decrease in unemployment. And the answer was -- put in a polite, well meaning way -- I don't. When they announce unemployment numbers, they're not counting me. They're not counting the long-term unemployed. So really, I don't matter. And the lack of attendance at this hearing just underscores that.

    Adopt a homeless cat and have a friend for life

    by dave1042 on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 05:07:35 AM PDT

    •  {{{dave1042}}} (4+ / 0-)

      Peace, my brother.

      Shirley Chisholm was right. Our Republic is in deep trouble.

      by Big River Bandido on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 07:29:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  that'll be me on June 18... 4 yrs w/out a job :'( (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dave1042, Brooke In Seattle, mayim

      except that I might actually be starting a small business this month, one which will offer me a reasonable income (full-time about $12 an hour equivalent).

      I'll be ever so grateful to be able to stop being grateful to my family who has been helping me financially for over two years, since my UI benefits ran out.

      My very best wishes and good luck to you that something good changes for you, too, in the not-too-distant-future.

      "I like paying taxes...with them, I buy Civilization"

      by Angie in WA State on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 10:05:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Haven't had a job since 9/2006. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Brooke In Seattle, dave1042, Jim P

      I gave up looking even  before the economy officially tanked.

      My Karma just ran over your Dogma

      by FoundingFatherDAR on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 11:56:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, that "officially" (0+ / 0-)

        Fact is, any one on the ground, and it was polling that way too, knew in 2005 we were in a de facto recession whatever the freakin' (cooked) graphs and charts said.

        James McMurty even wrote a song about it "We Can't Make it Here Anymore" in 2005.

        2005 this was written! We're now into a Depression

        Vietnam Vet with a cardboard sign
        Sitting there by the left turn line
        Flag on the wheelchair flapping in the breeze
        One leg missing, both hands free
        No one's paying much mind to him
        The V.A. budget's stretched so thin
        And there's more comin' home from the Mideast war
        We can't make it here anymore

        That big ol' building was the textile mill
        It fed our kids and it paid our bills
        But they turned us out and they closed the doors
        We can't make it here anymore

        See all those pallets piled up on the loading dock
        They're just gonna set there till they rot
        'Cause there's nothing to ship, nothing to pack
        Just busted concrete and rusted tracks
        Empty storefronts around the square
        There's a needle in the gutter and glass everywhere
        You don't come down here 'less you're looking to score
        We can't make it here anymore

        The bar's still open but man it's slow
        The tip jar's light and the register's low
        The bartender don't have much to say
        The regular crowd gets thinner each day

        Some have maxed out all their credit cards
        Some are working two jobs and living in cars
        Minimum wage won't pay for a roof, won't pay for a drink
        If you gotta have proof just try it yourself Mr. CEO
        See how far 5.15 an hour will go
        Take a part time job at one of your stores
        Bet you can't make it here anymore

        High school girl with a bourgeois dream
        Just like the pictures in the magazine
        She found on the floor of the laundromat
        A woman with kids can forget all that
        If she comes up pregnant what'll she do
        Forget the career, forget about school
        Can she live on faith? live on hope?
        High on Jesus or hooked on dope
        When it's way too late to just say no
        You can't make it here anymore

        Now I'm stocking shirts in the Wal-Mart store
        Just like the ones we made before
        'Cept this one came from Singapore
        I guess we can't make it here anymore

        Should I hate a people for the shade of their skin
        Or the shape of their eyes or the shape I'm in
        Should I hate 'em for having our jobs today
        No I hate the men sent the jobs away
        I can see them all now, they haunt my dreams
        All lily white and squeaky clean
        They've never known want, they'll never know need
        Their sh@# don't stink and their kids won't bleed
        Their kids won't bleed in the da$% little war
        And we can't make it here anymore

        Will work for food
        Will die for oil
        Will kill for power and to us the spoils
        The billionaires get to pay less tax
        The working poor get to fall through the cracks
        Let 'em eat jellybeans let 'em eat cake
        Let 'em eat sh$%, whatever it takes
        They can join the Air Force, or join the Corps
        If they can't make it here anymore

        And that's how it is
        That's what we got
        If the president wants to admit it or not
        You can read it in the paper
        Read it on the wall
        Hear it on the wind
        If you're listening at all
        Get out of that limo
        Look us in the eye
        Call us on the cell phone
        Tell us all why

        In Dayton, Ohio
        Or Portland, Maine
        Or a cotton gin out on the great high plains
        That's done closed down along with the school
        And the hospital and the swimming pool
        Dust devils dance in the noonday heat
        There's rats in the alley
        And trash in the street
        Gang graffiti on a boxcar door
        We can't make it here anymore

        Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

        by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 03:50:14 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Dave, your words were cited ..... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mayim, dave1042

      ..... in the Top Comments diary for this evening. And good luck.

      "We should pay attention to that man behind the curtain."

      by Ed Tracey on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 07:10:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  either/or (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    3goldens, imchange, maryabein
    Either we are seeing massively incompetent politicians, or there's something else more important to them than representing the interests of Americans and the nation.
    The incompetence meme was used up during the eight  years of Bush II.  Now it's option two- 'something else'.
  •  SHAME on the following senators who didn't show: (6+ / 0-)

    Senators who did not attend the hearing included Sens. Robert Casey (D-Pa.), Mark Warner (D-Va.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Dan Coats (R-Ind.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) and Pat Toomey (R-Pa.). Reps. Kevin Brady (R-Texas), John Campbell (R-Calif.), Justin Amash (R-Mich.), Erik Paulsen (R-Minn.), Richard Hanna (R-N.Y.), Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) and Loretta Sanchez (D-Calif.) also did not attend.

    (The names came from the first link in this diary).

  •  Ya know.... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    3goldens, imchange, Brooke In Seattle

    If only....
    If only we elected people who actually cared about their constituents.  Seems some go to congress/senate with the best of intentions (and we all know where that road goes), but they get waylaid with the dazzlement of getting filthy rich.  
    Constituents?, wha?, who me?, gotta go, we'll do lunch, 'k?, call me, too busy to talk now, unemployed? we're hard at work on that, yeah, gotta go now and do a power golf me some lobbyists to talk with, book that flight home, good to see ya!
    Perhaps quite a few of them should be unemployed....soon.  And I mean unemployment like 'we the people' get.  Long wait times, days on the phone or on line, for a welcome pittance.  Let their unemployment run out.  With NO safety nets to help them out.  
    How'd they feel about that?
    No time to go to a hearing?  Do your damned jobs.

    I think, therefore I am........................... Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose....AKA Engine Nighthawk - don't even ask!

    by Lilyvt on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 06:18:51 AM PDT

  •  Unemployment is not a primary issue because... (8+ / 0-)

    Unemployed people don't have money.

    If we want the government to serve the people, we need to remove money from the political equation.

    If all political campaigns were publicly funded, with taking a private donation as an automatic disqualification, then the government would serve voters rather than donors.

    As it is, if you don't have the money to set up a multimillion dollar superpac, you don't have a voice, as was so sharply demonstrated by the Senate gun control debacle.

    Wealth doesn't trickle down -- it rises up.

    by elsaf on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 06:28:47 AM PDT

  •  Even more broken than the economy (6+ / 0-)

    is the political system.

    ¡Cállate o despertarás la izquierda! - protest sign in Spain

    by gjohnsit on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 06:39:39 AM PDT

    •  "DC Disconnect" is meme-worthy, imo. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      We need a phrase to sum up where we are. We had Nixon's "Credibility Gap" when he was out there telling lie after lie. And you just had to say those two words and everyone knew what was being talked about.

      Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

      by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 11:12:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The Real Deficit (4+ / 0-)

    Until that 72% ring up their reps and tell them this is TEH issue they are free to go to weddings and even funerals rather than this kind of hearing. We need to make it their top priority.

    That's why I put this in all my communications to my Senators and Representative: What are you doing about jobs and wages? Never let them off the hook.

  •  1 plausible reason: both sides w microphone (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jim P, New Rule

    believe jobs are created by either rich people (R) or wall st (D).  and policy (aka unanimous consent bills at 4:30 pm on Fridays) reflects that.  

    Paul K thinks jobs are created by demand.  (In reality they all do, but there is no lever in our form of representation to get policy passed that a vast majority want, since policy is something passed late friday that dumps cash into hands of rich hoarders)

    what to do about that: IMHO, drain swamp.  there is too much influence in DC.  it'd be a lot easier to reduce the influence of DC on teh craptasitic than it would to pass more laws about how much $ they can get to pass crappy laws.  swamp draining is non-starter for progressives, except for a few

    what lincoln said

    by rasfrome on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 07:44:13 AM PDT

    •  Exactly. Neoliberals and Conservatives (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      agree that wages have to be driven down, though for different reasons. Neoliberals so we can "compete in the reality of the global marketplace" with slave and child labor; Conservatives because they're offended that anyone who works for them isn't a slave.

      But for the "little people" there's little meaning in distinction of motives.

      You can't drive wages down if employment is at a decent level. Hence, "can't compete in the global marketplace."

      Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

      by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 11:15:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Obama talks about unemployment constantly. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Republicans in Congress ignore that because they'll oppose anything Obama wants.
    The press ignore most anything progressive or positive Obama proposes.

    The netroots ignore him and hyperventilate over the outrage du jour instead. Seriously, did you realize Obama has been talking about unemployment and proposing jobs plans during the entire time everyone has been raging over chained CPI? Apparently not.

    •  Do you see it pushed even remotely as much (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Brooke In Seattle, New Rule

      as the "must fix deficit" "must compete globally (with slave- and near-slave-labor and child-labor)"?

      Why hasn't it been pushed into the dominant topic in DC, or at least the Democratic Party, while "Must Fix Deficit" goes on as topic number one in practice?

      You could point to the President's "Jobs and Competitiveness Committee" which he formed. Then appointed a top jobs-exporter to head. Which then met 4 times its first year. Zero times its 2nd year. And then disbanded with no replacement at the end of January.

      Why are the meetings with Bankers and Oil Lords, but not with people in poverty?

      Most interesting though to me is that Obama wasn't mentioned once in my diary. But somehow, that's what you heard.

      You'll deny that DC is Disconnected from the people?

      Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

      by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 08:41:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  You wrote: (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Jim P, sebastianguy99

        "There is almost nobody in DC, almost nobody in our own Party who sees the unemployment issue as something urgent."

        This isn't true. As I linked in our other conversation, Obama was talking about unemployment and poverty today. He does all the time. Why is he ignored when he does so?

        I think it's the same reason he's ignored when he talks about moving away from fossil fuels. It's not in the financial interests of the corporate press to talk about poverty or climate change.

        The netroots can respond to that in one of two ways.

        1) Help the media pretend Obama doesn't talk about poverty, unemployment, or climate change by ignoring everything he says about those issues.

        2) Highlight it when Obama does talk about those things in order to make it the center of the national conversation.

        I think option 2 is likely to be much more productive. It would force the corporate media to acknowledge those issues and maybe help get something done. Most of the netroots have chosen option 1 for the past four years and I'm not sure that's working out so well.

        •  "One" doesn't make "almost none" not true. (0+ / 0-)

          You can't point to the repeated emphasis on the increasing poverty -- increasing every year for 8 years now -- which has come from our Party.

          Again, Obama is not the Party, although many seem to not make the distinction.

          But if the President is the sum and substance of one's interest in politics, then can they see how his repeated talk of "our recovery" would undermine the urgency of talk of "poverty"? Of course, we're nowhere near recovery, in fact we're in a Depression by any objective standard.

          Most proposals for getting the economy going again rely on trade agreements -- which have unfailingly led to job and even industry exporting.

          Then the others rely on some Rube-Goldbergesque machinations which depend on the good will and patriotism and human decency of the Bankers and Corporations. Which have simply demonstrated nothing of the sort.

          At the same time, the Republican/1%s notion, now proven to be based on lying and fraudulent studies, is that we must get our deficit down to recover jobs. This has been much more the concern of the President, as shown by his oft-repeated statements -- and more importantly, actions -- about "reform" for the safety-net.

          Allowing the Republican lie to be the basis of conversation instead of insisting that Jobs be the basis of conversation, that's a clear blunder if the point is to get Poverty alleviated.

          So, if the President is your only concern, he'd do a lot to get his care about the poor and underpaid (currently about HALF of the US) featured if he wasn't undermining the point with his "must compete globally" "must involve Big Business" "can't strain the Budget" priorities, all of which undermine any real-world approach to actually changing what people are experiencing, and all of which are bound to fail.

          Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

          by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 09:14:42 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  PS: I hope you write a diary about (0+ / 0-)

            those things you've said the President has said and done to deal with Poverty. And with links and video if possible. You are right: any positive thing needs to get featured. I'm sure you'd get eyeballs with such an essay.

            Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

            by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 09:16:48 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  i will jim (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Jim P, New Rule

              The 15 million people medicaid expansion under obamacare. For example

              I will write a diary on obama and the poor. Be ready to read it.

              •  I'm particularly interested in seeing the person I (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                New Rule, sreeizzle2012

                addressed write one on the topic, as we have a 'thing' going on. I feel they'd do a very good job. (Not that you wouldn't.)

                But I'm more interested in this: since 2009 13 million people have fallen into poverty or low-income status. That's about 9,000 a day. The links are here:

                To my mind, some help of course, is good, but the systemic issue: why are there even 15 million people who NEED medicaid? is more to the point.

                If we have a program which helps people in misery: good. But if we have a politicvs which increases the number of people in misery it hard to get too "up" about that.

                Myself, because of the rules in NYS, my pittance from Social Security (which c-CPI would hurt) means I don't qualify either for food stamps or medicaid. There's a few tens of millions in my boat too. And you know what? There's going to be a lot more coming up unless the Jobs are created, and soon.

                Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

                by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 10:09:44 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  right (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Jim P

                  it should not have to come to "that"

                  You are right.

                  But part of the equation to solve that problem would require that Nancy Pelosi is speaker again.

                  She did pass 300-400 bills that was Obama's 2008 left of center agenda that society and progressives really need.

                  Sadly she is not there.

                  Also, we would need to reform that filibuster with Speaker Pelosi in charge. Obama knows that. He says that "with speaker pelosi, we will be able to get a WHOLE lot more done.

                  •  Sigh! Yes, if Reid had made the filibuster a sane (0+ / 0-)

                    instrument rather than willingly allowing a blowtorch in the hands of the Republicans, and we had majority votes, the current situation would be way way better.

                    And we'd have stood a much better chance to keep the House in 2010. But then I have to wonder about the sincerity of the party as a whole. If there were an old-fashioned filibuster would the House have passed so much that was good? I'd like to think so, but nobody twisted Reid's arm, or organized a challenge to his Speakership. So we got what we have.

                    Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

                    by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 03:56:12 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  well there is an unspoken (0+ / 0-)

                      rule that the house and senate keep their own matters and things to themselves.

                      the house, senate, and white house are kind of their own thing.

                      Reid is the problem. Obama expressed frustration to reid that his confirmations were really harmful and things like that.

                      Reid just won't listen. Reid is a big problem.

  •  Amazon only needs 1 employee (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jim P, New Rule, livingthedream, Roger Fox

    for every 1.1 million in sales.

    Think about how many people a mom & pop would employ with $1.1 million in sales.

    Yet, people on DKos were up in arms over an Internet Sales Tax bill.

    If job creation is a priority, we need to stand by the people who create meaningful jobs.

  •  Jim, drill down to this (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jim P, New Rule, livingthedream
    if Conventional Politics is actually the guiding frame in DC
    The PTB want the economy on the edge, in todays terms the status quo. Current policy transfers wealth to the top .1%, lets assume they want this to continue.

    SO suddenly groups like Fix the Debt make sense. Not changing the Senate cloture vote from 60 to 55 or 54, means proposals must include some neo lib policies. This is not an accident, it has been done on purpose, and dont let anyone tell you differently.

    Suddenly Chained CPI makes sense.

    Letsgetitdone wrote this on April 11th before the R&R spreadsheet scandal, as part of the Pushing back at the Gr5and Bargain blogathon;

    It’s false that If we keep running large deficits then we get increases to our debt-to-GDP ratio, which in turn will cause the bond markets to drive up our interest rates higher and higher, and eventually make interest on the Federal debt such a large share of the Federal Debt that we won’t have money for anything else.
    The entire dairy is a must read IMHO, as it dovetails into this dairy you wrote.

    Unfortunately if the Powers that Be, think they can maintain this economy - in this state, they are wrong, the world economy is on a knife edge, its unstable. And they ability to move quickly with a solution in a new developing economic crisis is very limited.

    I believe the major economies of the world are ripe for another downturn, and if it gets bad, people will reject the status quo, and the right wing frame. Another 1932 election if you will.

    Its as if they learned a lesson from the crash of 1929, they think they can manage affairs to prevent the economy from truly diving down to the point where there's significant political turnover and degradation of their power base in DC.

    Thats the Unconventional Policital paradigm thats been built. They've fostered generational splits, and other divide and conquer techniques have been used to break apart the old New Deal Coalition.

    History tells us things dont stay static, theres an ebb & flow to power, and the likelihood that "We" will gain power in DC over the next 4-12 years is very likely.

    Conventional Politics is not the guiding frame in DC
    And its very good news that this R&R debt study scandal has broken the MSM barrier.

    .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

    by Roger Fox on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 08:09:40 AM PDT

    •  Thanks for the comment. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Roger Fox, New Rule

      I doubt any plundering army from any time in history pulled back and thought to themselves "But wait, this is not really a sustainable way to live."

      Certainly, nobody is connected to Nature's Reality in DC; instead believing in fantasies of infinite growth and a class of experts who haven't been right for 30 years.

      Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

      by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 08:46:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  So then the "Conventional Politics" is for show, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Roger Fox

      something to engage and distract the people over to the side of the main action. That main action being a "Hidden Politics" which is really the driver of events.


      I like to raise questions so as to see how the right answer is treated by other people. You have the right answer, but I'm not seeing the recs it deserves.

      Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

      by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 11:19:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Basically. If my theory holds. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Jim P

        SO in effect, 60% want single payer, 70% Public Option, 80% Millionaires tax, 90% Uni background checks.

        BUT.....WE tried to negotiate with the GOP as adults in the room, we dont have enough votes for cloture, the GOP owns the House. All of this is geared to maintaining gridlock, er, ah, the status quo.

        We got 39.6%, they got the sequester, so its a wash, no?

        .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

        by Roger Fox on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 01:10:24 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  72%: Federal Jobs Stimulus. A democracy (0+ / 0-)

          without democratic outcomes, just like in Europe. Kabukracy?

          ??? 39.6% is a reference to...?

          If the President had vetoed the Austerity, Economy-slaying sequester, I doubt a 2/3rd majority in both houses would have overridden it. Republicans would have cried "oh, bad faith" and we could have said "look in the mirror." And saved people. Now we've guaranteed more trouble in the real world, the one outside the DC Disconnect.

          Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

          by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 04:01:41 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  11th dimensional chess is really 13. (0+ / 0-)

        .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

        by Roger Fox on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 01:17:32 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  As a party, Dems have sold out for corporate cash! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    New Rule

    A while ago, Robert Kennedy, Jr. said that the Republicans are 95% corrupt and the Democrats are 75% corrupt.  I think that the numbers are higher than when he said it, but the basic point is sound.  

    Only a small minority of the Democratic Party at a national level care about the average person.  The reason is that every elected official in DC has to spend 3 or more hoursa a day with fundraising.  The biggest source of cash is from corporations and the wealthy.  Offend them too much and the money gets turned off.  It is that simple.  

    The answer is public financing of campaigns.

  •  Thanks for catching this. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jim P, New Rule

    I think the main thing holding up job creation legislation in Congress is that the deficit hawks have completely dominated the discussion.

    So, the first step is to begin chipping away at the austerity myth - there are signs that this is happening, but those signs are still too much under the radar to do much good.  It needs to rise to a crescendo before DC sits up a listens.

    Want to reduce the deficit?  Spend now to create jobs (which on its own will reduce the deficit), then worry about long term measures to reduce the deficit and debt.

    The most violent element in society is ignorance.

    by Mr MadAsHell on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 08:57:08 AM PDT

  •  Senators need more experience (5+ / 0-)

    with long-term unemployment.

    Ever get the feeling you've been cheated?

    by ActivistGuy on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 09:17:50 AM PDT

  •  it is emblematic of how everything is handled (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    New Rule

    most hearings have very low attendance unless the cameras are rolling

    and sometimes even then as C-Span 3 proves frequently

    Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
    Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights for support in dealing with grief.

    by TrueBlueMajority on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 09:35:40 AM PDT

  •  Glad the reporter (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jim P

    sent out that tweet with the picture.  

    But it's still pathetic.

    There were very few senators at the drone hearings the other day too.

    "Justice is a commodity"

    by joanneleon on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 09:51:38 AM PDT

  •  Where was Senator Sanders? Call him out too. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jim P, New Rule

    We should hold them all to the same standard. No pass for favorites. This issue is the top issue for many people, not the deficit.

    The jobs issue is also another example of why the Left cannot translate issue polling into votes. Start with the Democratic Party's inability to talk jobs each and every time they are in front of a camera or mic. The Republicans can talk about the deficit, why can't we talk about jobs?

    Reading this comment thread is to read a loser's mentality. Yes politician are bought, but that does not mean we are absolved from working that much harder to correct that with corrective policy and politicians. I have to believe some good could come about if more people put in the same amount of effort organizing and persuading voters that they do writing about the latest villainy of others.

    More planning, more solutions, less stating the obvious please. They may be bought, and the system corrupt, but it is our duty to fix these things.

    "There is nothing more dreadful than the habit of doubt. Doubt separates people. It is a poison that disintegrates friendships and breaks up pleasant relations. It is a thorn that irritates and hurts; it is a sword that kills.".. Buddha

    by sebastianguy99 on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 10:22:07 AM PDT

    •  True. (0+ / 0-)

      At the same time, the English, French, and US revolutions started out as conversation in coffee shops.

      I don't really care about this particular hearing and who did or didn't show as much as I do about the perfect summation of the "DC Disconnect."

      I want people to start talking about it, and in that phrase.

      Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

      by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 11:23:29 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Look over here....old history! (0+ / 0-)

        I guess one cannot say anything about Senator Sanders without being shouted down.

        Well I guess The Church of Sanders will surely not tolerate dissent and disagreement!

        The politicians may be bought, and the system corrupt, but it is our duty to fix these things.

        by sebastianguy99 on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 11:41:56 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  WTF?!?! Nobody shouted you down! Why did (0+ / 0-)

          you make that up?

          The diary called out no one but the entire political class. It also said the 15 who didn't show might have had a good reason to not show up that day.

          IT MAINLY SAID the situation is emblematic of the DC Disconnect.

          As a matter of fact, you're the only one who pointed a finger at an individual in both the diary and the comments.

          Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

          by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 04:06:55 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  It's not a priority because those who can fix it (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Brooke In Seattle


    We just have to make sure that they're UNEMPLOYED after the next election.

    "I'm totally pro-choice in the matter of abortion. But of course I'm also so radically pro-life that I think every person from birth onward must have full and affordable access to healthcare." - Gail Collins

    by gritsngumbo on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 10:36:31 AM PDT

  •  Big Picture: Perhaps the Top 1% & their proxies (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Freedomfreak, Jim P

    in Government want a global pool of serfs to work their income-generating assets  in a  low-cost manner, above all else.

    High unemployment reduces labor bargaining power, because workers are desperate to get and keep any job.  This keeps wages down due to supply-and-demand.

    This mentality trickles down to those entities in national governments that they have captured (e.g., Congress ).
    See also "The Shock Doctrine", etc.

    Stalled momentum for anything that improves labor power .

    The Stumper:
    But wouldn't better employment cause economic growth, growth that would improve even the Top 1% ers wealth ?

    "..The political class cannot solve the problems it created. " - Jay Rosen

    by New Rule on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 10:51:38 AM PDT

    •  The only two friends I have with steady work (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      New Rule

      are both getting assigned tasks beyond their pay grade, as their higher-ups get dismissed. With, of course, no extra pay.

      Neither are happy, but stay at the job because... who can take the chance? They apply for other jobs they find, but then so are 1,000 others.

      As to "The Stumper":
      You've resolved it yourself. Serfs can't get uppity. Decently employed in a job-rich environment can and do. In the end a 60% profit on serfs is just as fine as a 20% profit on good wage earners. And relatively speaking, the power is much greater.

      And, hey!, where are rents and food and transportation costs going down?

      Now if the useless eaters could just die quicker...

      Actual Democrats is the surest, quickest. route to More Democrats

      by Jim P on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 04:12:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Sad sacks all of but one of them (0+ / 0-)

    these are elected people who don't give a shit about anything.

  •  Yeah (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jim P, Roger Fox

    I can't think of a more disconnected time between what the voting public actually wants and what politicians and Washington insiders see as our problems.  For politicians it's terrorism, debt, and cross-national coporate interests.  For Americans it's the lack of jobs, the lack of good paying jobs and the problem of education and health care costs going through the roof with no corresponding increase in quality or opportunities.

    Perhaps in the early parts of the Great Depression?  Perhaps during the emergence of labor as a force 30 years earlier?  At some point you would think things would shake out and we'd have a significant change.  As gay marriage has demonstrated, politicians are usually the last to react and only react in response to political pressures.  So I suppose it will take a concerted, massive political organization that forces the politicians hand.  If they see the voting public as more of a political threat than lobbyists, they may well do something different.

    •  Or a worse economic dowturn (0+ / 0-)

      Would wake up more people. The global economy is not stable, especially ours. Without stabilizing reform, expect another big recession by 2018 at the latest.

      Remember FDR was sworn in and then closed the banks, ordered Congress back into session. Ordered more money printed, then shipped by the truckload to the Fed banks. Then got on the radio and told Americans what he did and why, and under what conditions the banks would reopen.

      FDR walked in swinging.

      the 32 election was a major shift in power, the GOP had a 2 seat majority in the House and lost 101 seats.

      The Senate went the same way the GOP had a 1 seat majority, 48 to 47, which turned into 59 to 36 Dems.

      .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

      by Roger Fox on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 07:10:54 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Grrrr (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    paradise50, nomandates, smileycreek

    This made me so angry that I created a petition, based on the No Labels "make Congress work" idea.  Please sign and share:  Demand Congress Get to Work

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