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Pierce writes: "There has never been in a single Congress - or, more precisely, in a single House of the Congress - a more lethal combination of political ambition, political stupidity, and political vainglory than exists in this one, which has arranged to shut down the federal government because it disapproves of a law passed by a previous Congress ..."

Shutdown the Government. Really? (photo: Getty Images)
Shutdown the Government. Really? (photo: Getty Images)


The Reign of Morons Is Here

By Charles Pierce, Esquire

01 October 13

 

nly the truly child-like can have expected anything else.

In the year of our Lord 2010, the voters of the United States elected the worst Congress in the history of the Republic. There have been Congresses more dilatory. There have been Congresses more irresponsible, though not many of them. There have been lazier Congresses, more vicious Congresses, and Congresses less capable of seeing forests for trees. But there has never been in a single Congress -- or, more precisely, in a single House of the Congress -- a more lethal combination of political ambition, political stupidity, and political vainglory than exists in this one, which has arranged to shut down the federal government because it disapproves of a law passed by a previous Congress, signed by the president, and upheld by the Supreme Court, a law that does nothing more than extend the possibility of health insurance to the millions of Americans who do not presently have it, a law based on a proposal from a conservative think-tank and taken out on the test track in Massachusetts by a Republican governor who also happens to have been the party's 2012 nominee for president of the United States. That is why the government of the United States is, in large measure, closed this morning.

We have elected the people sitting on hold, waiting for their moment on an evening drive-time radio talk show.

We have elected an ungovernable collection of snake-handlers, Bible-bangers, ignorami, bagmen and outright frauds, a collection so ungovernable that it insists the nation be ungovernable, too. We have elected people to govern us who do not believe in government.

We have elected a national legislature in which Louie Gohmert and Michele Bachmann have more power than does the Speaker of the House of Representatives, who has been made a piteous spectacle in the eyes of the country and doesn't seem to mind that at all. We have elected a national legislature in which the true power resides in a cabal of vandals, a nihilistic brigade that believes that its opposition to a bill directing millions of new customers to the nation's insurance companies is the equivalent of standing up the the Nazis in 1938, to the bravery of the passengers on Flight 93 on September 11, 2001, and to Mel Gibson's account of the Scottish Wars of Independence in the 13th Century. We have elected a national legislature that looks into the mirror and sees itself already cast in marble.

We did this. We looked at our great legacy of self-government and we handed ourselves over to the reign of morons.

This is what they came to Washington to do -- to break the government of the United States. It doesn't matter any more whether they're doing it out of pure crackpot ideology, or at the behest of the various sugar daddies that back their campaigns, or at the instigation of their party's mouthbreathing base. It may be any one of those reasons. It may be all of them. The government of the United States, in the first three words of its founding charter, belongs to all of us, and these people have broken it deliberately. The true hell of it, though, is that you could see this coming down through the years, all the way from Ronald Reagan's First Inaugural Address in which government "was" the problem, through Bill Clinton's ameliorative nonsense about the era of big government being "over," through the attempts to make a charlatan like Newt Gingrich into a scholar and an ambitious hack like Paul Ryan into a budget genius, and through all the endless attempts to find "common ground" and a "Third Way." Ultimately, as we all wrapped ourselves in good intentions, a prion disease was eating away at the country's higher functions. One of the ways you can acquire a prion disease is to eat right out of its skull the brains of an infected monkey. We are now seeing the country reeling and jabbering from the effects of the prion disease, but it was during the time of Reagan that the country ate the monkey brains.

What is there to be done? The first and most important thing is to recognize how we came to this pass. Both sides did not do this. Both sides are not to blame. There is no compromise to be had here that will leave the current structure of the government intact. There can be no reward for this behavior. I am less sanguine than are many people that this whole thing will redound to the credit of the Democratic party. For that to happen, the country would have to make a nuanced judgment over who is to blame that, I believe, will be discouraged by the courtier press of the Beltway and that, in any case, the country has not shown itself capable of making. For that to happen, the Democratic party would have to be demonstrably ruthless enough to risk its own political standing to make the point, which the Democratic party never has shown itself capable of doing. With the vandals tucked away in safe, gerrymandered districts, and their control over state governments probably unshaken by events in Washington, there will be no great wave election that sweeps them out of power. I do not see profound political consequences for enough of them to change the character of a Congress gone delusional. The only real consequences will be felt by the millions of people affected by what this Congress has forced upon the nation, which was the whole point all along.

Among other things, the Library Of Congress is closed as a result of what the vandals have done. Padlock study and intellect. Wander aimlessly down the mall among the shuttered monuments to self-government. Find yourself a food truck that serves monkey brains. Eat your fking fill.

 

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+200 # MainStreetMentor 2013-10-01 11:11
A kakistocracy is a form of governance comprised of the incompetent and poorly suited. Easily 80+% of the United States House of Representatives falls into that category, and therefore have converted that specific legislative body into a kakistocracy. The most frightening thing? The Speaker of the House is the third-in-line for the ascension to the Presidency of the United States. Think about THAT!
 
 
+78 # mickeynow 2013-10-01 12:25
Ouch! And sad. And scary.
 
 
+49 # NOMINAE 2013-10-01 14:40
Quoting MainStreetMentor:
A kakistocracy is a form of governance comprised of the incompetent and poorly suited. Easily 80+% of the United States House of Representatives falls into that category, and therefore have converted that specific legislative body into a kakistocracy. The most frightening thing? The Speaker of the House is the third-in-line for the ascension to the Presidency of the United States. Think about THAT!


GREAT comment. My only quibble is with what I consider be the excessive generosity of your assessment that only 80% of the House fits the description that you provide in your very accurate premise. ;-)
 
 
-86 # ConstitutionalSam 2013-10-01 15:36
Just curious as to what percentage of the Executive Branch falls into that category.
 
 
+80 # ericlipps 2013-10-01 17:14
Quoting ConstitutionalSam:
Just curious as to what percentage of the Executive Branch falls into that category.

Fewer, I imagine. Whether one agrees with President Obama or not--and for the record, I have plenty of issues with him, starting with his reluctance to make a clean break with unclean policies of the Bush era--his administration isn't the freak show the House has become.
 
 
-51 # dquandle 2013-10-01 18:39
All of it.
 
 
+40 # bigkahuna671 2013-10-02 08:38
Under Bush, 100%. Did you serve in his administration?
 
 
-45 # dquandle 2013-10-01 18:38
The presidency is already parasitized. Changing the head on the tapeworm will have less than no effect. The White House, Senate and Supreme Court fill out the rolls in this appalling, murderous and criminal cabal.
 
 
+115 # indian weaver 2013-10-01 11:27
Just every one of the assholes in this photo are looking down their noses at us. While at the same time sticking them up their assholes.
 
 
+104 # Vardoz 2013-10-01 13:41
They should all be impeached. The debt ceiling should Never be used as a bargaining chip for a few right wing fanatics interests. They should all be indicted and arrested for misuse of power and threatening the health, safety and welfare of the American people and the Global economy!!!!
 
 
+47 # wrknight 2013-10-01 18:47
Just remember that next November.
 
 
+21 # Regina 2013-10-02 09:10
Provided we still have an election in November '14. This same ilk is finagling state election procedures and voter requirements to keep possible opponents' supporters from eligibility to vote.
 
 
+15 # JSRaleigh 2013-10-02 11:19
And in doing so, made themselves hostage to their lunatic fringe. The GOP gave the crazies unlimited veto power. It's going to get a whole lot worse before it gets better, and the GOP may not survive as a political party.

And it couldn't happen to a more deserving bunch of psychopaths.
 
 
-86 # grandone@charter.net 2013-10-01 11:52
Charles, you are wrong. The people of the United States, who in polls just days ago said they did not support Obamacare, are wise enough in today's polls to blame the Republicans for shutting down the government. The margins are the same but the composition and reasons for opposing Obamacare vary left and right. Some say it goes to far, some say it does not go far enough. Regardless, there is no division in blaming the shutdown on the Republicans, whom you so colorfully described above. The American people, collectively, can discern truth from propaganda. They saw through Romney when they voted, if not so much in their statements to pollsters. They are being lied to, but the good part is that they know it. Propaganda only works when it is aimed at the simple. We are not a simple people. Oh sure, there are sheeple out there who follow messiahs like Limbaugh and Beck, but they are a minority. Like the minority in the Republican caucus that is tyrannically controlling the majority, there comes a point where it collapses in on itself. That point either has been reached or will be reached after the 2014 primaries. The next Congressional election, thanks to the wisdom of the electorate, will cleanse Congress of these political terrorists and, yes Charles, it will go back to normal once again. You really need to have more faith in the American people!
 
 
+86 # pamelawy 2013-10-01 13:30
I'm sorry, GrandOne@charter.net, I couldn't disagree with you more. "...faith in the American people"? Really? Aren't they the ones who put those morons in their DEMOCRATICALLY ELECTED positions in the first place?
 
 
-67 # 4merlib 2013-10-01 16:42
Lamepawy - you said it so well! The American people are obviously morons. That's why they need "progressives" to make all their decisions for them.
 
 
+77 # bigkahuna671 2013-10-01 14:54
What polls are you looking at? The only parts of the ACA that are flawed are the parts that were put into it by the GOP when Prez Obama mistakenly tried to make the bill a bipartisan one. Then, the GOP deliberately set about putting in parts that actually were laughable but had to be accepted because that's the only way the Dems could get GOP support. Besides, this shutdown has nothing to do with the ACA, it's all about the GOP trying to make this President look bad. Now that they've shut it down, they want to blame him. What a joke! I agree with the author, the reign of morons is definitely here, but it started when we elected the village idiot back in 2000, then had two IQ-challenged GOP candidates run in 2008. However, at least one of them had a little common sense, even if he did have to wait until the day after the election to admit his mistake.
 
 
+65 # humanmancalvin 2013-10-01 17:38
Grandone, Jimmy Kimmel took his cameras to the street recently & asked "the man" on the street if they supported or opposed Obamacare. The consensus was no, rife with all the right pushed myths, death panels & the rest of the BS malarkey. The same folks were then asked if the supported the Affordable Care Act & the response was positive across the board.
What does this show outside of the general public being politically ignorant? That the POTUS must reframe the debate to rid the rights meme of Obamacare & the support will be overwhelming. Which by the way it will be as soon as it is widely used & begins to save lives & money.
So stop with the Fox-Non_news sound bytes & join progress as it marches through America keeping all insured.
 
 
+25 # Regina 2013-10-02 09:17
What this shows is the abysmal American education system, where critical thinking is off-limits, science always has "two sides", and the Bible is the reference against which all textbooks are judged. That's what produces the avid listeners of Faux Noise and its superstar psychoceramists (that's the formal term for crackpots).
 
 
+5 # bingers 2013-10-04 11:04
And in Kentucky where the Democratic governor accepted the ACA full blown and called it, if memory serves, Kentuckycare, it's very informative that they think Obamacare sucks but Kentuckycare rocks, since they are the very same thing.
 
 
+3 # Walter J Smith 2013-10-01 18:24
Today's polls do not an election make.

And particularly the generic poll.

No voter ever voted in a generic poll.

Elections have actual candidates. Actual candidates are unpredictable.

Charles may be a bit jaded today. But he is almost entirely in agreement with the top three US electoral pundits.

Be well, and be careful about how you read those tea leaves. Some of them are merely tea leaves.
 
 
+19 # reiverpacific 2013-10-01 18:57
Quoting grandone@charter.net:
Charles, you are wrong. The people of the United States, who in polls just days ago said they did not support Obamacare, are wise enough in today's polls to blame the Republicans for shutting down the government. The margins are the same but the composition and reasons for opposing Obamacare vary left and right. Some say it goes to far, some say it does not go far enough. Regardless, there is no division in blaming the shutdown on the Republicans, whom you so colorfully described above. The American people, collectively, can discern truth from propaganda. They saw through Romney when they voted, if not so much in their statements to pollsters. They are being lied to, but the good part is that they know it. Propaganda only works when it is aimed at the simple. We are not a simple people. Oh sure, there are sheeple out there who follow messiahs like Limbaugh and Beck, but they are a minority. Like the minority in the Republican caucus that is tyrannically controlling the majority, there comes a point where it collapses in on itself. That point either has been reached or will be reached after the 2014 primaries. The next Congressional election, thanks to the wisdom of the electorate, will cleanse Congress of these political terrorists and, yes Charles, it will go back to normal once again. You really need to have more faith in the American people!

The "Wisdom of the electorate"--?? ? Now what country would that be again???? -Normal??
 
 
+1 # bigkahuna671 2013-10-05 06:33
grandonecharter , you cite the polls saying the American people didn't support Obamacare and it makes me wonder. As we've seen on Leno and Fallon, when people on the street are asked if they'd rather have Obamacare or the ACA, they all chose the ACA and said Obamacare was terrible. If the polls you cited had used the same type of question, I wonder if perhaps the ACA would have gotten near-unanimous approval? Just a thought.
 
 
+1 # JSRaleigh 2013-10-02 11:20
Just drink the kool-aid & die.
 
 
+37 # Maturus 2013-10-01 11:52
"..its opposition...is the equivalent of....Mel Gibson's account of the Scottish Wars of Independence.." That would seem a reasonable claim given that Gibson's account was a fantasy based on a corruption of historical facts.
 
 
+133 # Guy 2013-10-01 11:54
Their wages should stop immediately.
 
 
+105 # MEBrowning 2013-10-01 12:00
This truly is The Age of Ignorance.
 
 
+67 # fredboy 2013-10-01 12:02
The purest description of the anti-America crowd that was handed the House by the drooling masses. All are to blame.

Fanatics. Buffoons. And special interest whores.

Will the Dems stand up, or stay with their six year failing attempt to appease? We need a Churchill, yet we have but a Chamberlain on a very tight Wall Street leash.
 
 
+52 # Pikewich 2013-10-01 12:03
Right.
"We did this. We looked at our great legacy of self-government and we handed ourselves over to the reign of morons."

Yeah, as long as you are willing to neglect the fact that who we get to vote against is selected for us by those who 'Frankly own the place".

And as long as you chose to ignore the barrage of lies and filtered misinformation brought to us between efforts to get us to buy stuff we would be better off without by corporate owned media.

And as long as you ignore the preferred method of voting for the lesser of evils still get you evil at an immeasurable pace

Of course there is lot more that can be pointed to under the label of "how we got here" ignored by the vapid article above, but does it matter?

As long as we play the game by their rules we can expect more of the same until the whole thing collapses.
 
 
-17 # Walter J Smith 2013-10-01 18:32
Yes, it does matter.

The vapid rant above is about as good as US mainstream journalism gets for going on four decades now.

So write the better article. Or rant if you must.

And don't forget that opposing fascism is still opposing fascism even if opposing that fascism comes as another piece of fascism and both are larded with all sorts of other things that no one can comprehend.
 
 
+20 # nickyus 2013-10-01 19:10
But ultimately the people are responsible for their government. Maybe you're off the hook if someone is pointing a gun at your face, or your family. Otherwise not. There's no point in bellyaching about the people who "own the place". Go out and take it back.
 
 
+26 # cymricmorty 2013-10-01 12:08
The delusional protohumans who elected this slobbering, drunkenly grinning group of trash to office seem to be remorseless. I made a reference on another site to those who voted for Cruz, thus inflicting the rest of us with him, and was immediately attacked by trolls. (A brainwashed troll was here, too, getting the last word on Robert Reich's latest article.)
 
 
-58 # countrycarrie31 2013-10-01 12:14
You make it sound so easy. It's simply a program to make sure everyone is insured. It is so much more than that. There is so much wrong with what is built into this bill. My opinion? Our government needs an overhaul. They have stopped listening to the people.
 
 
-14 # Walter J Smith 2013-10-01 18:34
Well, yes, Countrycarrie, and that same truth applies to almost every piece of legislation passed for the last six or seven decades.

But, alas, asking citizens to read this much history is like asking democrats to dislike Obama's fascism or asking republicans to dislike Ted Cruz's fascism.
 
 
+86 # Ray Kondrasuk 2013-10-01 12:16
Who was it that quipped... "Ah, Michele Bachmann... for those Tea Party-ers who find Sarah Palin just too intellectual... "?
 
 
+13 # EternalTruth 2013-10-02 08:13
Bill Maher
 
 
+75 # janie1893 2013-10-01 12:29
Is this the epitome of American patriotism?

The world is now laughing out loud at the country which claims it is the 'world leader'
 
 
-20 # Saberoff 2013-10-01 15:13
Don't screw with this "world leader." We can and will crush you like an ant!
 
 
+104 # allie 2013-10-01 12:59
Not every republican in the House is a member of the Tea Party. BUT every republican in the House is mighty afraid of those who are. How can so few, wreak such havoc on so many. Their stench is overwhelming and deadly. The voters who put them in office are dumber than a stump......
 
 
+54 # NOMINAE 2013-10-01 15:04
Quoting allie:
Not every republican in the House is a member of the Tea Party. BUT every republican in the House is mighty afraid of those who are. .....


Perfect analysis, Allie ! When the Kochs invented, funded, and built up the Tea Party, they purposely targeted notorious "low information voters" (aka morons) who would be sufficiently pliable and amenable to voting for whatever they were told to vote for, without the slightest possibility of knowing what they were doing. Thus we got such Tea
Bagger classic comedy howlers such as "Get your government hands off of my Medicare" !

These high profile demonstrators, clad in their clownish "patriot costumes", alike with their brethren who showed up at "town hall meetings" strapped with assault rifles, were directly funded, and promised their "15 minutes" in front of a camera, by the very "think tanks" and Super Pac organizations directly created and paid by the Koch Brothers.

This refusal to accept the outcome of legal lawmaking was not the idea of the "low information voters" who ascended to Tea Bagger Public office on the checkbooks of the Kochs.

This tactic literally comes FROM The Kochs and their like-minded ilk, in their carefully planned and intricately orchestrated bid to take over the U.S. Government.

So far, their plan is right on track.

We *WILL* see this hostage taking behavior again and again into the future, especially now that it has once been successful. Win, lose, or draw.
 
 
+3 # Walter J Smith 2013-10-01 18:38
Remember when the me-too democrats were widely panned as too-weak-to-gov ern? They still are.

But, the really good news now is that the GOP has proven itself too weak to govern even itself!

What will the too-weak-to-be- democrats do for a response?

Why, they are already following Nancy Reagan's "Just say, 'NO!'" policy.

Charming.
 
 
+45 # bikewriter 2013-10-01 13:00
Take a look at the expression on the faces of the people in the picture. They all have the expression of someone who was handed a pill and told that if they swallowed it, things would get much better for them. In the picture, they have swallowed the pill and are now waiting to see what is going to happen.
 
 
+89 # angelfish 2013-10-01 13:01
I would like to make a Citizen's Arrest of ALL the Morons who have done this, not just stupid, but EVIL thing! They are Traitors to everything that this Country, once, stood for and don't deserve to sit in our Congress a minute longer! They are guilty of High Treason and attempting to overthrow this duly elected Government and should be charged and indicted for their treachery and infliction of grievous harm to every single American! There MUST be some kind of recourse available to the MAJORITY of Americans over whom they've ridden rough-shod for the past five (5) PLUS years! They SAID their Primary and ONLY goal was to make President Obama a "one term President". Failing in that, they seek to DESTROY this country! WHAT is more criminal or traitorous than that? They are despicable and deserve NO mercy.
 
 
+14 # ConstitutionalSam 2013-10-01 13:38
I have long suspected that it is reigning morons. However, it appears that not all are in the Congress and many exist outside of elected office. Perchance even a few make their way to this site and post comments fully worth of a "Who made you king?" response.
 
 
-108 # MidwesTom 2013-10-01 13:17
If Congress and their staffs, major companies, and unions all wanted and received exemptions from the ACA, there must be some features that people do not like. Why is Obama refusing to even consider discussing or modifying anything in the act? I think that there is at let one face missing from the above picture of stubborn fools.
 
 
+68 # jmcg 2013-10-01 14:38
If you wish to contribute to the discussion here, you simply must get your information from somewhere besides Fox News or Right Wing Talk radio. Congress and Congressional staffers did not ask for and did not recieve expemptions from the ACA. Instead, they are required to obtain their coverage on the exchanges. The only question was whether they would continue to receive the level of employer contributions that they currently recieve. The unions do not want to be exempt, but they are trying to find constructive solutions that allow their members who have health coverage that works to retain that coverage. There may be major companies that want some expemtions, just as they want exemptions from taxes and environmental regulation in order to be able to maximize what are already absurd profits. Reasonable small business owners are in favor of the act because it allows their employees to actually afford health care, which in turn increases productivity and decreases absenteeism.

President Obama is not refusing to discuss or modify anything in the Act. He is refusing to be forced to negotiate with people who have taken the government hostage in an attempt to overthrow a law that was debated, passed, passed a plebicite in the form of a nation election in which the repeal of the law was a major issue, and withstood scrutiny from the Supreme Court.

So if there is a face missing from the group picture, perhaps it is yours.
 
 
+13 # jmcg 2013-10-01 22:41
Good heavens, I need a proofreader. I apologize for all the grammatical and spelling errors in my post. There is simply no excuse for my not having seen them before posting.
 
 
+14 # chomper2 2013-10-02 08:27
No apology necessary. The content of your post was clear and correct. Kudos.
 
 
+33 # Phlippinout 2013-10-01 16:17
Shutting down the government hurts families that i work for. The way to oppose something is not to hurt working people in the first place. If you dont like it fight it through the system! Giving the cold ass shaft to families is something I detest as well. Obviously Tom, your family is not being hurt by this, Bully for you
 
 
+21 # Salus Populi 2013-10-01 21:04
Well, to begin with, Congress neither wanted nor received exemption from the PPACA, either for themselves or their staffs. Fact Check gave this recurring, zombie lie four pinocchios, calling it "malicious," since it keeps cropping up on the fascist Reicht, despite numerous debunkings.

But then, fascists see nothing wrong with lying to either win an argument, get their way, or merely to deceive people into supporting their far Reicht agenda.

Also, major companies, as well as minor ones, have little to do with the Act, since it is specifically oriented toward people whose companies don't offer health insurance to their employees.

The Act is settled law. No screaming tantrums and treasonous attacks on the Full Faith and Credit of the United States, or deliberate refusal to do their job, as their Oath requires, is going to change that. There are many on the Left who think that Obama and Max Baucus sold out to the insurance cartel in tossing out the Public Option, refusing to expand Medicare to all, and not even being willing to put Single Payer on the table. These are objections that the law doesn't go nearly *far enough* in providing health care as a basic right to all citizens, "promot[ing] the general welfare."

But the Teabeggars are upset with the very idea that poor people should have health care as a right, because Ayn Rand wouldn't approve. Well, too bad. "Suck it up."
 
 
+72 # photojack53 2013-10-01 13:18
If intelligence and competency requirements were adopted before serving in the House or Senate, we'd see Republicans fail the test and drop like flies while the Democrats would retain their positions of sanity and GENUINELY serving their constituents and the best interests of our nation. The last slate of Republican presidential hopefuls is a VERY clear example of the kooks now populating that HORRID party!
I DETEST the way John Boehner, Ted Cruz, Mitch McConnell, Eric Cantor and the rest are trying to SCREW the American public. They can't defy their own constituent's best interests and expect to stay in office.
My solution is to IMPEACH them or remove them from office any way possible for VIOLATING their oath of office! Like with background checks for gun purchases, when 90% of ALL Americans and even 74% of NRA MEMBERS want this and their elected politicians deny the wishes of the electorate, they are not doing their duty to represent the people! They violated their oaths of office, plain and simple. We have solutions in place to deal with this! Write and sign petitions to remove these UNCONSCIONABLE fools, NOW!
NEVER VOTE REPUBLICAN IF YOU VALUE AMERICA OR OUR FUTURE!
 
 
+21 # hwmcadoo 2013-10-01 14:35
I certainly agree with your sentiments but you mention "impeach" and that will have to come from Congress.

We have a "fox watching the henhouse" and this will never happen.

Unsophisticated voters who believe anything on Fox news or in political ads make change almost impossible as long as unlimited money is in elections. The deciding factor for many of the sheep are TV ads which are present in numbers based on TV ad money.

The best qualified person cannot win an election because money comes from corporations and almost by definition corporations will not like the best person for America because this person will look out for the people, not the elite and will get no money and therefore cannot win an election under present conditions. Since present conditions are managed by a Congress with personal incentive to keep the status quo, I see no legal way out. Pessimistic I know but realistic.
 
 
-1 # tigerlille 2013-10-01 14:59
So we are supposed to vote a Democratic ticket instead? Please. Both parties are a conglomerate of liars and cheats, with occasional notable exceptions.
 
 
+37 # Writ 2013-10-01 13:27
There seems an insidious agenda going on backed by bankers and those who wish to bring about a world order that both Bush presidents talked about. These wealthy and corporate entities have put forth what appears to be a Nazi agenda for the world, which includes the USA which they are steadily dismantling via the Patriot Act designed to steal American citizens rights. Monsanto is genetically altering seeds so they are controlling the food source. They are creating wars and crisis and fearmongering so they can terrorize the people into believing war is necessary. Yet they are behind all these wars so they can profit and destable the Middle East for an oil grab. They don't want the people to have anything, not healthcare, not jobs, not decent housing at affordable prices, nothing. All they want to do is stress the people out and eventually corral them. These people go beyond being morons, they are demons. Very sick people who if not stopped will see us all in a police state.
 
 
+27 # zornorff 2013-10-01 18:00
With few exceptions, most of Congress is not populated with morons. Rather they are self serving, ruthless, amoral greedy sacks of shit. And the main reason for their obstruction is dislike of our president.
 
 
-26 # ConstitutionalSam 2013-10-01 13:29
Who are the most moronic? The morons thenselves or the morons who elected them? Or those who merely stand to the side in judgment. In some cultures, one persons moron is another's freedom fighter. Just saying.........
 
 
+17 # reiverpacific 2013-10-01 20:40
Quoting ConstitutionalSam:
Who are the most moronic? The morons thenselves or the morons who elected them? Or those who merely stand to the side in judgment. In some cultures, one persons moron is another's freedom fighter. Just saying.........

So what's YOUR activist resumé (or curriculum vitae if you like)?
Just askin'.
 
 
-6 # ConstitutionalSam 2013-10-02 05:23
Average guy, with no special credentials. Hippie generation west coast education, public schools BS BA Masters Economics and Business. Banker-rising to a reasonably high management level. Actually tried to REASON with ACORN. Silly me. Believed in ethics and morality in business and politics. Silly me. Believe in the rights of all people, but oppose the culture of dependency. Have little stomach for intense "I am right" points of view and some of the really stupid comments on many far right or far left sites. I am really not an activist, but merely attempt sometime to be "disrupter" and provide some food for thought. Get a lot of thumbs down numbers on this site. Don't care whether the numbers are positive or negative. Don't believe that one needs an activist resum'e to make an intelligent [or not] comment for coonsideration. In fact, many on this site who I suspect have the most impressive activist curriculum vitae have made some of the least intelligent comments [in my opinion]. In summary, I am just a largely uncredentialed average guy who probably does not belong on this site, but likes to drop in occasionally anyway. BTW, if you really want to get the negative numbers up, take a closer look at my picture.
 
 
+5 # reiverpacific 2013-10-02 09:05
Quoting ConstitutionalSam:
Average guy, with no special credentials. Hippie generation west coast education, public schools BS BA Masters Economics and Business. Banker-rising to a reasonably high management level. Actually tried to REASON with ACORN. Silly me. Believed in ethics and morality in business and politics. Silly me. Believe in the rights of all people, but oppose the culture of dependency. Have little stomach for intense "I am right" points of view and some of the really stupid comments on many far right or far left sites. I am really not an activist, but merely attempt sometime to be "disrupter" and provide some food for thought. Get a lot of thumbs down numbers on this site. Don't care whether the numbers are positive or negative. Don't believe that one needs an activist resum'e to make an intelligent [or not] comment for coonsideration. In fact, many on this site who I suspect have the most impressive activist curriculum vitae have made some of the least intelligent comments [in my opinion]. In summary, I am just a largely uncredentialed average guy who probably does not belong on this site, but likes to drop in occasionally anyway. BTW, if you really want to get the negative numbers up, take a closer look at my picture.

Ok, lets settle on "Fink".
 
 
+1 # ConstitutionalSam 2013-10-02 11:01
See-negotiation can sometimes be useful. How about "stinkard" or "explicably despicable" instead? I would readily agree to either. How much influence did the picture have on your choice of "fink'?
 
 
+7 # bigkahuna671 2013-10-02 08:49
If you're a "Freedom Fighter" like so many on the right claim, then you 1)never served in the active military and saw combat; and, 2)never read the 2nd Amendment without someone telling you what to think. The House has a majority that is being led around by the nose by a minority and they, led by John Boner, don't have the courage to stand up to that Tea Party minority, of which I suspect you are a member, in which case, one person's moron is everyone else's moron.
 
 
+2 # ConstitutionalSam 2013-10-02 10:30
WOW: I never claimed to be a freedom fighter, never claimed to be on the right, did serve active duty in the military, and have read the 2nd amendment without being told what to think. It is amazing what an image can to to formulate opinions, which might or might not be correct. I do not like the Tea Party. I do not think Senate or House leadership is doing a good job-both majority and minority of each house. I do not like zealots of either Party or of extreme progressive [liberal] or conservative idealogies I don't particularly like being told what to do and I really don't like being told what to THINK. If that fits the definition or moron, I will wear the designation proudly.
 
 
0 # bigkahuna671 2013-10-02 15:53
So you were military and read the 2nd Amendment? Hmmm...but you didn't respond to serving in combat. Guess you didn't, right? As for formulating opinions about you, it's based on what you say, so you should reconsider what you say and how you say it, otherwise, everyone will have the wrong opinion of you. If you don't care for either party, then don't sound like you're from one as you make comments on the other. No one likes being told what to think, but one party is trying to do that. It is also trying to tell us how we can do things and when. They call themselves the party of small government, but have created so many institutions to track what Americans do in private, what we think, what we say, what we read, our sexual mores, our views on life choices, etc. My goodness, doesn't sound like the party of small government, just the party of small minds. Does this definition fit you?
 
 
+1 # ConstitutionalSam 2013-10-02 16:33
" No one likes being told what to think, but one party is trying to do that." I disagree. In my opinion, TWO parties are trying to do that, not one party. As to the small minded definition and whether it fits me, you decide. Or maybe you already have?
 
 
+35 # Michaeljohn 2013-10-01 13:45
Midwest Tom,
We really don't know why those exemptions were requested. What's been absent are real examples of coverage vs cost for individuals / families in various situations. But you're missing the point. Twenty years ago, the health insurance industry and conservatives killed the Clinton health care reform plan with scare tactics that didn't work this time. The camel's nose is finally under the tent. Any problems with the present ACA structure will be resolved as implementation proceeds but count on the big money from the far Right to continue to obfuscate and make the process as difficult as possible.
Too bad. With a truly representative congress and good will on both sides, we could actually wind up with a single payer system in maybe less than another 20 years but with the present ideological civil war, it will probably take another generation or two before we get competent representation.
 
 
+3 # bigkahuna671 2013-10-02 18:03
Great response. The GOP made up its mind about Hilary's plan long before it was unveiled, making up "facts" as they went along, kind of as they're doing now. There has not been one bill passed by Congress in my lifetime that hasn't needed some tweaking, as the ACA will. Remember, this is not the bill the Dems originally presented, it's the one the GOP had the opportunity to contribute something positive to, but chose to twist and weaken. What we really needed was what you mention, the single payer system as used in countries like the Netherlands. Maybe we'll get there after the Tea-Party folks shoot themselves in the foot this time around and Democrats take over state legislatures and houses, as well as strengthen themselves in the Senate and take over the House.
 
 
+15 # Kootenay Coyote 2013-10-01 13:48
A little of that proscribed vitriol in Pierce' article, I think; & so right that it's there, too!
 
 
+31 # pamelawy 2013-10-01 13:56
There's a lot of lashing out in these comments at the ignorance and incompetence of our esteemed elected officials. I don't think that's what missing - their intelligence and/or competence. What's missing is a moral compass, one that includes compassion, the judeo/christian ethic of benevolence, kindness to one's fellow travelers, a concern for the well-being of others and for the greater good.
 
 
+12 # karenvista 2013-10-01 21:22
Quoting pamelawy:
There's a lot of lashing out in these comments at the ignorance and incompetence of our esteemed elected officials. I don't think that's what missing - their intelligence and/or competence. What's missing is a moral compass, one that includes compassion, the judeo/christian ethic of benevolence, kindness to one's fellow travelers, a concern for the well-being of others and for the greater good.


When you're talking about ignorance and incompetence you're definitely talking about our Texas Rep. Louis Gohmert! He gives Michele Bachman a run for her money. And, lookeyhere-we gave you Ted Cruz too!
 
 
+5 # opinionaire 2013-10-03 05:48
This from the state that often takes the lead in deciding what will be in the textbooks the nations children will use. Yikes.
 
 
+24 # hoodwinkednomore 2013-10-01 14:18
We ought to really pay attention to what happens in the coming days. With the government shut down (because of a bunch of spiteful egomaniacs with no sense of duty nor integrity) who knows what 'inside jobs' just might opportunistical ly occur. Watch out for drones and Wall St!
 
 
-23 # ConstitutionalSam 2013-10-01 15:25
Would it really be too bad if a drone went out of control and accidently took out John C. Beale, formerly of the EPA?
 
 
-7 # ConstitutionalSam 2013-10-02 05:30
Come on, PEOPLE! So we are going to let a government employee steal form the taxpayers, retire, take the 5th when questioned, and laugh at us. And I did say "accidently." And I did not originate the drone comment. Maybe I should change my name to Continuingtobeh oodwinked. !
 
 
-2 # ConstitutionalSam 2013-10-02 07:39
To the one thumbs up click: THANK YOU!
 
 
+19 # tigerlille 2013-10-01 14:55
But Michelle Bachmann is just so excited! Shutting down the government was just what they wanted, and now they have it! [Gag]
 
 
+2 # reiverpacific 2013-10-02 09:07
Quoting tigerlille:
But Michelle Bachmann is just so excited! Shutting down the government was just what they wanted, and now they have it! [Gag]

Maybe she's been "Praying away the government", like she and her moron-is-too-go od-a-title husband did on gays.
 
 
+17 # giraffee2012 2013-10-01 15:13
There are rules about using the first amendment. These morons are giving false reasons for this shutdown and that is equivalent to calling "fire" where there is none.

That they can go on TV or publish in papers or whatever a bunch of false statements is criminal. Where's the law - hey supremes: you ruled Obama Care was "the law" and for these morons to treat this law as if it were a "bill" to be bargaining about (their way or shut us down) is breaking the first amendment - didn't these creeps swear in after election to "uphold" the constitution? Then they should be held accountable to their sworn statements. Holder: you're the top DOJ - go after these filthy liars who are now breaking the LAW.

Reed, Obama, etc - call in the cops to make these criminals accountable. WHY THE HELL SHOULD WE PAY FOR THEIR FALSE STATEMENTS LEADING TO A SHUT DOWN (which will ultimately weaken our struggling economic recovery)?

I'll bet my life the Koch brothers and other big $$ is behind these lies - proof is "follow the $$)
 
 
+6 # Citizen Mike 2013-10-01 16:09
POHL AND KORNBLUTH WARNED US ABOUT THIS! A MORE DIRE PREDICTION THAN ORWELL'S. RE-READ THE MARCHING MORONS TODAY!
 
 
+3 # spercepolnes 2013-10-01 17:19
The people of the United States will do and parrot what the government & main steam media force down their throats....unti l it gets to the point that, as Jefferson said, "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants."
It looks, from outside, like that time is rapidly approaching. The USA is flickering like a star about to go Nova!
 
 
-40 # Roseellen99 2013-10-01 18:06
Amazing how many on the left have bought this Muslim Thugs garbage.

What? 3 years and 10 billion dollars and it don't pucking work???? No death panels needed, you will die of old age waiting to sign up to be FORCED to buy a Pucking Government Insurance Policy. What a Fricking JOKE the Obamaista Regime is!!!




Surprise! Obamacare health insurance exchange websites don’t work ==> http://twitchy.com/2013/10/01/surprise-obamacare-health-insurance-exchange-websites-dont-work/
 
 
-37 # Roseellen99 2013-10-01 18:08
I just watched the evening news in which our president said," No one party or faction of congress has the right to hijack and shutdown the government. Maybe this is a truism? Yet, two days ago our president also said, "It doesn't matter if both houses vote to stop Obamacare, I will Veto the bill and shutdown the government! So, if it is wrong for an entire group of representatives to do this, Why would it not be wrong for just one prideful man?
 
 
+7 # jon 2013-10-03 11:01
Because the Prez has the contitutional duty to veto a bill passed by both houses if they are wrong in his opinion.

That is the very plain intent of the constitution.
 
 
-9 # nickyus 2013-10-01 18:55
==>Both sides did not do this. Both sides are not to blame.

Of course they are. If Democrats would govern--or even try to govern--in a way that would serve the interests of the people, not of this stuff would happen. The corruption is at the core--the surface activities are just random symptoms.
 
 
+12 # dusty 2013-10-01 19:12
It is an insult to people of lower intelligence, the old definition of moron, to suggest that they are in some way equivalent to Republican Legislators, the GOPs nuts are ideologically driven and ignorant, something they have chosen.
 
 
+19 # reiverpacific 2013-10-01 19:13
All I can say as a "Furriner" who has lived and worked in many countries as well as this one, that this is a first for me.
I've never lived in a country, including a couple of openly Fascist ones (Supported by the US) that had been blackmailed into shutting down it's government.
So all I can add is -again- "Only in America".
Now THIS is TRULY a bit of yer much -touted and exculpatory, presumtuous "exceptionalism"!
But these suited thugs get to keep their salaries and top of the line benefits whilst denying even a tithe of them to the rest of us.
Now where is that "Shining City on a Hill" so beloved by Mr "Sleepwalking through History" Reagan and the "Compassionate Conservatism" touted by Dimwits?
Maybe this will spark just a little flame of rebellion among those also sleepwalking through their increasingly uninvolved and mundane lives under the hypnotic beacon of the owner-media's glare -but I'm not holding my breath.
 
 
+12 # MidwestPhred 2013-10-01 19:41
Excellent analysis, Mr. Pierce. I especially like how you trace this sickness back to Reagan and his "government is the problem" theme. Democrats did not counter this effectively, and as you say, encouraged it with "centrist" talk and the "third way" and similar crap.

But you have one big mistake right at the beginning: This Congress was elected in 2012, not 2010.
 
 
+19 # GravityWave 2013-10-01 20:37
#Roseellen99, spoken like a true Republican. First of all you misquoted the President. Secondly, the ACA is the best thing that has happened in America in at least 40 years. The ACA is doing really good things and it's few rough edges will be rounded off as it is fully implemented. It is making insurance companies have to compete instead of allowing them to price fix, allowing people who have no health insurance to afford it, helping small business owners to have insured employees who are more productive. It is a very different thing for a President to Veto a bill than for a gang of childish men to throw a tantrum when they don't get their way. Bills can be voted down but the GOP has not been able to do that with the ACA. Americans wanted this bill and even the Supreme Court approved it. Now at this late date if a bill came along the sole intent of which is to abolish the ACA of course the President would Veto it. That's his job. He is charged with protecting the duly established ACA from impotent men stamping their feet and trying to bully the entire Nation. And he is our duly elected American citizen President and the buck stops with him. He is our sovereign, in spite of what your Republicans want to admit & and they and you have sworn to respect him and his office. No matter if he is purple, green, or black, he is the President of the United States. And actually, he is a better man than these impotent Republican frauds.
 
 
+26 # WilliamPHalll 2013-10-01 20:43
As an expatriate American living in a parliamentary democracy, I have to say that the US Constitution has a gaping hole that doesn't provide a way out of impasses between moronic fundamentalists who would rather destroy the country than to compromise to achieve realistic ends.

Where Australia is concerned, we also have our fair share of morons in Parliament, but we have achieved a substantially higher standard of living than the US. This may be because, in part, our constitution provides for what is called a "double dissolution" of Parliament if an impasse is reached on a supply bill. If the Parliament cannot pass a funding bill after three tries, Government goes into a care-taker mode that allows normal expenses to be met, and all house and senate seats are vacated for an election that must be held for all seats within 6 weeks of the dissolving of Parliament.

First, parliamentarian s think very seriously about whether their disagreement is so fundamental that they put their own jobs on the line to win their points. Second, the people have their chance to decide fairly quickly which morons they want to throw out.

Over the last three years with a "hung" parliament, where neither major party had the majority and with our fair share of moronic right-wing extremists (Tea-Party equivalents), the government actually worked quite well (if noisily) to pass some solid legislation. Despite all their ranting, the Opposition was not insane enough to force a double dissolution.
 
 
+7 # karenvista 2013-10-01 21:33
Brilliant! But we Americans are "exceptional" and cannot even consider ideas from other countries.

The Republicans might go even more bonkers than they are now. They might even bring their "second amendment solutions" to the house and take potshots at members of the opposing party.

Best not to mention rational solutions to them...us being so "exceptional" and such.
 
 
+5 # arkee 2013-10-02 05:29
Alas, now the people of Australia have elected a PM who thinks that climate change is a liberal hoax and will probably try to break up the welfare state. Morons of the world unite and elect your beloved leaders...
 
 
+6 # reiverpacific 2013-10-02 09:14
"WilliamPHalll"
G'day mate.
I'm afraid the UK didn't get as lucky as ypu Aussies.
Cameron/Clegg's good-ol'-boy crowd hung-parliament coalition of suited thugs has been a disaster.
I take it that you Aussies have a "Vote of no-confidence" clause.
Been to OZ a few times and loved it. Almost moved there in 1984 after living in Indonesia and taking several R.& R.'s there.
 
 
+8 # giraffee2012 2013-10-01 22:59
The more I read about these t-party creeps - I realize "they want to destroy our government" --- that is their motto. We cannot let them "get away" with these continuing antics. Koch brothers want to be "king(s)" and they have funded these t-party people into office.

We know the root of their evil. Now let's do the right thing and VOTE THEM OUT
 
 
+2 # antineocon 2013-10-02 01:58
everyone seems to be missing the point that the gerrymandering by republican state houses in 2010 is what has set oin mothing Democrat candidates for the house got form more votes state by state but only 1/2 to 1/3 the seats in congress. what happened to one vote one person representation with the Robert court it will never make it fair. the cards are stacked against us. What can we do?????
 
 
+4 # arkee 2013-10-02 02:36
In 1951 “The Marching Morons,” by Cyril M. Kornbluth, was first published. It should be required reading in every school on Earth. His thesis is that since idiots have more children than intelligent people, eventually we get a world that is overrun with dummies: men and women who don’t know anything beyond their own shallow personal interests. They don’t know how their society works, or who is running it. All they care about is their personal — and immediate — gratification. The thesis is elitist and the biology is wrong, but obviously someone went out and voted these morons into a majority of the House. When Brutus ranted to Cicero that Julius Caesar was dismantling the republic, the reply was "Do not blame Caesar, blame the people of Rome who have so enthusiasticall y acclaimed and adored him and rejoiced in their loss of freedom ..." As Emanuel Todd pointed out the decline of America began with the election of Reagan. Todd, BTW, predicted in 1975, that the Soviet Union would crash in about 15 years. His book about the US, "After the Empire" is worth reading today.
 
 
+2 # janehallaren 2013-10-02 06:45
To Pamelawy, I don't believe that being an incompetent moron is mutually exclusive to not having a moral compass. On the contrary, it probably helps.
To humnamancalvin, the "man on the street" interviews have been going on since radio and are edited to preserve the most idiotic of answers. Hardly representative of anything, but sad humor.
Maybe, there is another answer for these moronic, immoral maniacs who are holding us hostage. Rachel Maddow printed some interesting tweets on her show last night which were comments from observers physically close the GOP congressional cabal saying that the smell of alcohol was filling the air around these folks. Not surprising as every time I see Boehner I just naturally assume he has just finished a scotch and a cigarette in his way to the sun bed and Marsha Blackburn looks like she's right there with him. God knows, that was what fueled Joe McCarthy and unfortunately, he destroyed the lives of hundreds before burning out.
 
 
+2 # petevokos 2013-10-02 10:23
WOW, I have never seen the sheer volume of response generated by Pierce's article.
There must be something in the water in Texas that produces so many deranged politicians like Cruz,Perry and Bush. What was Cruz attempting to do other than make a spectacle of himself.
Every time I hear a republican stand up and say it's the democrats because the president will not negotiate with us,I want to puke. What is it they don't understand,the central issue is the Affordable Health Care Act and it's the law,GET IT !!!
 
 
0 # Kathymoi 2013-10-02 16:30
I hate to say it, but isn't getting rid of government one of the goals of the republican party? All those inconvenient regulations, taxes, and public services that must be paid for! The ACA is a convenient excuse, but getting rid of government is within the plans and the platform of those who are funding the government at this time. Moral morons, yes, but not strategy morons. They have been working toward the current state of affairs for decades, have employed think tanks to help figure out deceptive and effective strategies. We the people have behaved like morons, acting as if, right up to present, all we can do is write to the senators and congressmen that they have selected for us to vote for. We definitely need to leave their political parties behind and, as a people, begin to select our own candidates, without the benefit of political bosses, party financing, tv ads, professional speech writers, public relations firms, and all that is required when the candidate is not clearly saying what he or she knows and what he or she will work for, promote and support if elected. We need to get out of our lazy habit of waiting to see who the political parties have chosen for us. We need to get busier with involvement in selecting our candidates than we have ever been, and we need to shut off the tv. We can't afford to advertise on tv, and those who can don't represent us.
 
 
+2 # Grace 2013-10-02 21:35
I've often thought that the extreme level of vitriol aimed at President Obama smacked of racism, clothed into an obstructionist hate. President Obama is the calm, thoughtful centrist. What a shame he has to work with such clowns.
 
 
+2 # giraffee2012 2013-10-03 08:26
The "influence of FAUX"

Kimil interviewed 2 people and asked them if they would approve of Obama Care - they said "NO" -- then he asked them if they would approve of the affordable Care Act - they said "YES".....

The 3rd party (T-Party) is really brain dead but is funded by so much $$$$ of those who want ALL your assets (and are taking them as we watch the clowns in the House) --- this side show is covering up the real damage these thugs are doing to get your money (and succeeding)
 
 
+3 # chibcharus 2013-10-03 10:37
This is not unexpected, as you hint, Reagan started this mentality.
However, I have read that the Tea Party members of the house come from mostly conservative districts that were gerrymandered by Republican administrations . I these districts Obama lost by very high margins. They feel secure in what they are doing, and willing to say to the rest of the country to be damned.
 

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