Looks Bad for Ben
I’ve been darkly amused in a small, side way over the last ten days as a certain kind of wonk, public policy advocate, or blogger demands--with mounting fury as each day passes with nothing happening--that the House pass the putridly untouchable Senate version of what’s nicely called healthcare reform. Loyalty to logic, Party, Obama, or whatever combination thereof starkly shouts for the House to pass the bill, but brutal political optics keep slamming the process shut, and a first casualty in all the flaming debacle could be Ben Bernanke.
For those not too inside baseball the incredibly long healthcare ordeal of the Senate is plain to see, and no one with any political sense wants to touch Senate healthcare now that a Massachusetts Republican Senate win finally has slammed the truth home. Demanding the House pass the Senate version is in effect to demand they pardon Charles Manson, then trust the heinous political cretins who foisted this monstrosity on them to instantly procedurally fix it so he never actually gets out.
After the knifing abuse of Joe Lieberman, US Senate, no one wants anything to do with you. After the sickening insider dealing of Max Baucus, US Senate, everyone thinks the entire body should sign up for work at the nearest landfill. After the ridiculous, utterly debasing pandering to Olympia Snowe, US Senate, no one still wants to admit how screamingly the Founders fucked up when they created you. After the gross insider deal to Ben Nelson, US Senate, all desperately search for medication or handy recreational drug to blot out the howling fucking nightmare as soon possible, God, get a clue to how loathed and clownish y’all are.
So somehow in all the disgraceful healthcare legislation evolution the Senate version is going to have to be accepted, no god damn wonder the White House advocacy for action was so tepid over the weekend, they feel the problem very well too. It seems impossible to write the words, but passage of healthcare is a shaky 50-50 as of January 25th, 2010, yes the Senate passed a version but no one can touch it or can work with it, hell, no one wants to be seen with a Senator at this point. A bill has to make it to the President this far along but, amazingly, there is no clear way forward . The clock is also clicking relentlessly, each passing days drives home more the political weakness of the stinking, reeking Senate healthcare version.
Obtuse, ego-besotted, clownishly bought and politically fat with six year terms, the flabby, groaning body of the Senate nonetheless still has outdated, glacial political instincts that occasionally flicker through the old corpse, the upcoming in-trouble nomination of Ben Bernanke being one of these rare times. Usually the elite-enabling, genial denier Republican would of course been given a pass for any accountability to his job and confirmed automatically, but even Senators are starting to realize they’ve gone too far recently and should do the right thing for once by barfing Bernanke to keep up appearances.
I felt bad for Paul Krugman this morning, who basically said yes, Bernanke missed the finance bubble and will do nothing for the unemployed (Lord am I sick of inflation weenies with the unions busted, get a clue) but he’s a nice man who hired me once, please confirm him. Sorry, Paul, understandable loyalty to your boss doesn’t work when confirming the Chairman of the Federal Reserve, not hardly.
Past readers of mine know how much I loathe the Bernanke nomination, initially for the same screaming reason I hate the Gates appointment at DOD, to place Republicans in such critical positions sullies the Democratic Party brand horribly, confuses voters, betrays liberal values and voters and then of course delivers lousy policy!
Reject Bernanke, yes, instantly because he’s a Republican, of course, all they know how to do is obnoxiously screw up. Then reject him precisely because he really screwed up and also has the nuclear gall to ignore the little people. Then hope the Obama Administration finds a good Democratic responsible populist to be Fed Chairman, I find it hard to believe Krugman could be wrong again today, it can’t be that hard, there must be one credible name out there to do the job. Oh that’s right, Paul, there’s you at right near the top.
Will the Senate really reject Bernanke, even with the latest White House push of support? If healthcare is 50-50, Bernanke has to be at 2 to 1 reject, even the Senate finally knows it can’t clank it’s way to dysfunctional obscurity forever.