It's already too late. The disgusting dance that Boehner and his mental midget teapartiers have been doing, playing politics with the USA's reputation has already affected the perceptions of the US by the rest of the planet.
They see a congress that is gridlocked by crazy extremists-- not my words, though I'm okay echoing them.
They see a US that savagely allows over 50 million of its citizens to suffer without health insurance, with a healthcare system that is not even ranked among the top 20 nations.
They see a US that educates its children so incompetently or irresponsibly that students are not ranked among the top 20 nations.
They see a US that, though it led in getting the internet going, now fails to rank among the top 20 nations for broad-band access and availability.
They see a US that sees an average life-span that is not among the top 20 nations.
So it is no surprise to them to see that the fundamentalists who have partnered with corporatists and sociopathic billionaires, like the Koch brothers to trash the USA's standing in ranking after ranking of international measures have intentionally, due to malignant ideological idiocy, trashed the USA's credit rating.
Even if there's a last minute rescue, some damage has already been done. Joseph Nye has written about soft power-- the good will that a nation earns. The USA's soft power has been a valuable asset. The teaparty is to soft power what leprosy is to facial attractiveness-- tragically devastating.
Obama deserves part of the blame. It's clear, he's had a strategy here, but it's been a weak, ineffective one. Yeah, sure, he's telling people to tweet their legislators. Sorry. he has the bully pulpit and his message left out jobs, left out a strong fight for the middle class. It wasn't enough to be against private jets for CEOs. He needs to get on the train that is leaving, bringing the fight for the middle class to the front lines. He needs to draw a line in the sand and start going after, big-time, every billionaire in America. Each one should have their own IRS investigator. Every one. Just knowing that there's someone tracking them will make them be more honest.
But the bottom line is, the tea party has proven that it controls the Republican party and between them, they don't give a flying fig about the vast majority of Americans.
Finally, there's that balanced budget amendment in the Republican- tea-party budget bill. There's no other way to characterize it but bat-sh*t crazy-- totally devoid of reality.
These radical extremists are not conservatives. They are dangerous threats to the future of America. It is tragic that the mainstream media allows them to be talking about compromise, when the Democrats have given up on taxes, on revenues. No. It is worse than tragic. It is offensively obscene that the networks allow liars like Boehner, and all the tea party sociopathic corporate lap-dogs to argue that the Democrats are not compromising.
I just came from a conference on Positive psych ology, where there were scores of presentations on happiness, love, compassion, kindness-- but here, I think we need to think more about disease-- about an acute necrotizing, aggressive infectious, malignancy that has done severe damage to every American.
You know what you do with such diseases. You excise them.
As I write, Boehner is speaking now, suggesting that the bill he's sending to the senate is an honest and sincere effort. Talk about the big, humungous lie. Boehner is two heartbeats from being president. After this debacle, Eric Cantor, a more malodorous, more sociopathic tea-partier will probably take his place. The USA needs all the prayers it can get.
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