I agree with everything in this post from Gawker on the stimulus bill. A 60-vote majority should not be necessary for every piece of legislation. If the Republicans want to block something by filibuster, let 'em do it for real. Let Jim DeMint and David "john" Vitter get up there and read the damn phone book for days at a time, so there's a real cost to them for the use of the procedure.
A procedure that has its place, I might add. I would not generally support the Senate Democrats triggering the "nuclear option" to do away with it. After all, minority status may only be an election away at any given time. I think it's a good thing that the filibuster exists, notwithstanding Strom Thurmond's ugly use of it (pictured) to block the Civil Rights Act. But it's for use in cases that its invokers view as extreme. During the Bush administration, Dems weren't blocking ALL Bush judicial nominees, just a shortlist. And frankly, some bluff-calling by the Republicans might have been warranted there, even if I wouldn't have liked the outcome.
Anyway, my point is, the amount of stupidity being emitted by the GOP on the stimulus is staggering, and it must be stopped. Here are some nice examples compiled by Talking Points Memo.
Jim DeMint (R-SC): "This stimulus bill is all spending."
Guess what, Jim? Stimulus means spending, by definition.
Kit Bond (R-MO): "Mass transit isn't a long-term stimulus!"
Well, you know, it takes people (which means jobs, fyi) to make train tracks and the train things that run on train tracks, and we need more jobs (people, don't forget) in THE SHORT TERM, ESPECIALLY.
Michael Steele (new GOP Chairman): "Government has never created a job."
I think the folks at NASA, or those who worked for the Tennessee Valley Authority might beg to differ.
John Thune (R-SD): "If you stack $1T in $100 bills, it's 689 miles high!"
And the Democrats in the Senate are simply useless. Useless! They allow this to be the message! They let their party be outnumbered 2-to-1 in cable news booking discussing this issue. They allow the GOP to run the debate with their childish antics while people lose jobs by the hundreds of thousands a month. They refuse to push back on these buffoons, and they get rolled. Again and again. Including by the buffoons in their own party.
DO. SOMETHING. I like my job, and I want it to still be here in six months.