Final week is over, grades are in, and I’ve had more time to read the news. That’s obviously a mixed blessing.
There are so many things I just don’t understand.
There’s a toaster that embosses the face of Jesus on each piece of bread as it toasts. It is evidently selling briskly.
There’s Newt Gingrich.
And then there’s the House GOP. Even the Senate GOP is scratching its collective head over them. After the Senate passed one of the few genuinely bipartisan measures that has emerged this year, extending unemployment benefits and the payroll tax reduction for two more months, the House Republicans are refusing to go along. No coherent reason why has yet emerged, although John Boehner has seemed particularly teary.
Think about this: Christmas is coming. So the House GOP wants to raise taxes on America’s dwindling middle class and its working poor, while continuing to insist that the historically low taxes on the rich cannot move up an inch. Ignore, for the moment, the moral poverty and economic danger of that position. Think about the political obtuseness of the message they’re sending.
Even they must recognize that this is not the way to popular acclaim. The New York Times reported this morning that “rather than have a straight up-or-down vote, the House will implement a procedural maneuver in which they will “reject” the Senate bill while requesting to go to conference with members of that chamber in a single measure, protecting House members from having to actually vote against extending a payroll tax cut. During the conference meeting among Republican members, some members expressed concern about effectively voting for a tax increase on the eve of an election year, said some who attended.”