Flogging the Dead Horse Watch

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Obama Administration

The scandals are falling apart, writes Ezra Klein. He takes apart all three — Benghazi, the IRS, and the AP/DOJ mess. Regarding Benghazi, Steve Benen is Watching a ‘scandal’ evaporate before our very eyes. He adds,

There’s just nothing left. Trying to characterize this as a genuine political story worthy of attention has been a misguided partisan exercise for months, but now, it’s reached the point of ridiculousness.

But there is no sign that the Right is letting up. A Fox News guest has even compared the IRS non-scandal to Nazi Germany.

One of the many charming traits of today’s conservatives is that they never stop flogging the dead horse. There might be nothing left of the beast but hide and bones, but the Right will keep flogging, hoping to wring some more life out of it.

Greg Sargent considers who the horse flogging will hurt more, the GOP or the President.

It’s always possible that the scandal pile-up will undermine confidence in Obama’s leadership or feed a negative storyline about Obama and bigger, intrusive government, a point made by Karen Tumulty today. But it’s also possible that the scandals will be perceived as inside-the-Beltway noise and that voters won’t blame them on Obama or see in them any larger storylines about his leadership or vision. Indeed, a glance at Mike Allen’s Playbook suggests the narrative is already shifting: “OBAMA ACTS ON THREE FRONTS to calm storm.” And predictions that suddenly the voters will come to see Obama’s vision of government as dangerous, out of control, and radical have been made for literally years.

I can think of a third possibility — that most people outside the Beltway will be even more disgusted with Congress than it is already, for wasting time on this nonsense rather than addressing real issues.

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16 Comments

  1. Lynne  •  May 16, 2013 @9:46 pm

    Your last paragraph: Bingo!

  2. Bonnie  •  May 16, 2013 @10:45 pm

    Obama won’t be running for Prez again; so, what does it matter.

  3. moonbat  •  May 16, 2013 @10:55 pm

    Yahoo occasionally runs stories from “The Blaze” – which I think comes out of Glen Beck’s organization (sigh). They were breathlessly stating earlier in the week, how these scandals could “bring down the Obama administration”. Yeah, right.

  4. Swami  •  May 16, 2013 @11:14 pm

    Count me in on that third possibility…A job or even any movement toward improving the economy would be greatly appreciated..
    I guess I should be grateful to the Bush administration because in a sense they’ve rejuvenated me. I now feel like a 15 year old.. No job. no money, and no prospects.
    I just watched a video of Harry Reed talking about the recent attempt to repeal Obamacare for the thirtyish something time and the amount of time and money wasted by the repugs with their incessant political game playing. It hurts to hear it, not so much for the time and money wasted, but more at seeing where their concerns lie and how detached they are from serving the American people like they were entrusted to do. I guess it’s the nature of the political game except for many of us Americans it’s not a game.. the stakes for us is economic survival.
    When was the last time any of you people reading this spent over $800 dollars on a bottle of wine? Not as some collectable from Thomas Jefferson’s cellar, but just to swill it down on the spot while discussing ways of separating the elderly and disadvantaged from their means of survival.

  5. biggerbox  •  May 16, 2013 @11:15 pm

    OMG! OMG! My friend from college who turned into a right-wing kook has posted to Facebook about the latest scandal, which I am sure is going to BLOW THE LID off this administration.

    Apparently Obama had a Marine holding an umbrella over his head during an outdoor press conference in the rain. You’re thinking, yeah, so? But it was a MALE Marine. Still don’t get it? Idiot! The Marine Corps regulations forbid male Marines from holding umbrellas! (apparently female Marines can hold black ones, and only if they have the right hand free to salute.) And that can’t be changed without explicit permission from the Commandant of the Marine Corps!!

    (Yeah, OK. so a rational person would say, but couldn’t the Commander in Chief just order the Commandant to so order?) But you see, Obama DIDN’T!!

    No, seriously. That’s getting posted to right-wing blogs as I type.

    Un. Frickin’. Believable.

  6. Swami  •  May 16, 2013 @11:29 pm

    That article from the Fox news guest looks like a parody from the Onion.. A conservative activist from the Ohio liberty coalition feels put upon because the IRS scrutinized his social welfare agenda.. Gee, I can’t understand why. I’m sure their coalitions mission statement doesn’t read.. Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled mass yearning to breathe free.

  7. Swami  •  May 16, 2013 @11:51 pm

    biggerbox… I don’t think that scandal is gonna fly. Obama can have the Marines carrying him around all over Washington D.C. in a sedan while fanning him with peacock feathers if he so desired. In military echelon Obama is one level below God.
    I saw the Marine holding the umbrella and I was curious as to the position of his left hand. It looked like an established protocol to me.

  8. c u n d gulag  •  May 17, 2013 @4:46 am

    GOP: Benghazi! BENGHAZ!! BENGHAZI!!!
    *Crickets*
    “What the hell’s wrong with you people? It’s Watergate, Lebanon, Iran-Contra rolled into one! TIMES 100! Don’t you get it?… Huh?… They don’t get it.”

    IRS!!!!!
    *Yawn…”
    “What do half of you non-Conservatives mean, by ‘Feh…”, and the other half, “Good!”? Hitler! Stalin!! Mao!!! Castro!!!! Pol Pot!!!!! Walter O’Malley!!!!!!”

    AP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    *ZzzzzzzzzzzzzZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…”
    “What, too insidery. Don’t you watch ‘Morning Schmoe?’ He’s besides himself. What do you mean by ‘one is too many?’… They don’t get it!”
    _________________________________________________

    As a relatively poor consumer, I look for things on sale, and occasionally use coupons.

    When I see a “2-for-1″ sale, I’m kind of hesitant. Usually, thinks I, ‘The only reason they’re doing it, is the first one ain’t sellin’, so, maybe it ain’t too good. Or, it’s ‘Buy-by’ date is coming up, and they just want to move the stuff – and that’s not a bad deal, if you’ve got a decent-sized freezer.”

    The rare times I see a “3-for-1″ sale, then I know they’re desperately trying to move something pretty crappy off the shelves, and it’s “Caveat Emptor” – like chocolate-covered cicada’s, or hot-dogs wrapped in glazed donuts, or microwaveable pancake-batter mixed with sausage, topped with maple syrup, popsicle combo’s.

    The Republicans are showing their weakness with this “Impeachable 3-for-1″ scandal combo.
    And I think the public will soon see this as a chocolate-covered cicada inside a donut-wrapped hot-dog/pancake pasted on top of a pancake-sausage combo, topped with glazed maple syrup popsicle.

    Hint to Republicans: When you ask 3 girls to the prom, and they’re not interested to the point of yawning, maybe the problem ain’t them – it’s you.
    And, I think the country is starting to see, that as far as problems go – IT’S DEFINITELY YOU!!!
    And, much as you’d like to, you can’t impeach 53% of the voters.

    I’d love a job.
    So, why don’t you Republican assclowns wipe the chocolate and maple syrup off your ugly and ignorant pusses, and get to work doing the job “We the people” supposedly put you in there to do.

    I seem to remember something in the US Constitution that you ‘Constushion-lovin’ patriots have plum forgot – something about, taxes, and the people’s welfare… hmm… where is it?
    Oh, got it!
    Article 1, Section 8:
    The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;
    To borrow money on the credit of the United States;
    To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes;
    To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies throughout the United States;

    See that, assclowns?
    I know you ain’t too bright, Republicans, so, let me see if I can simplify it:
    Tax for the general welfare of the country, defend it, borrow money to do it, if you need to (and pay it back!), regulate commerce, and establish a uniform rule of Naturalization.

    So, that right there – THAT’S YOUR JOB!
    Now, why don’t you try doing it for a fucking change?

  9. c u n d gulag  •  May 17, 2013 @6:32 am

    Interesting – CBS says Republicans faked the e-mails that they’re trying to use to pump-up the dead horse that is Benghazi:

    http://editors.talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/2013/05/wow_this_is_pretty_epic.php?ref=fpblg

    When the network that is, still, arguably, the most trusted name in news on TV (take THAT, FOX ‘n Sucks!!!), that may have a ripple effect on everyone – except Jonathan Karl, and ABC, of course.
    Or, will that wake THEM up, too?

    It you thought they’d reached new low before this, think again.

    ‘We can’t go to impeachment with the e-mails we’ve got, so, let’s fake us some e-mails, and maybe the public won’t notice.’

    Thank goodness we don’t have a Reichstag, huh?
    Of course, as inept as these Republican assclowns are, they’re more liable to set themselves on fire than any building.
    So, maybe we ought to sell them some gasoline and matches, and stand back.
    ‘Please proceed, Republicans.’

  10. moonbat  •  May 17, 2013 @8:41 am

    Hint to Republicans: When you ask 3 girls to the prom, and they’re not interested to the point of yawning, maybe the problem ain’t them – it’s you.
    And, I think the country is starting to see, that as far as problems go – IT’S DEFINITELY YOU!!!
    And, much as you’d like to, you can’t impeach 53% of the voters.

    That election we had last November scared the hell out of me. No way should it have been that close.

    As for the Marine holding the umbrella – clearly, an impeachable offense. Or, one more stupid thing for the VRWC to use to keep their base’s anger up. It seems ridiculous to us, but it was all explained and dramatized in George Orwell’s 1984, in the popular practice called The Two Minutes Hate. The wingnuts have to get their daily dose of hate, as part of staying within the tribe, and as part of shutting off their brains so they can’t think. Any stupid thing will do – such as some kind of perceived slight against the Marine Corps. The hate is really an addiction, and it’s used both to keep the wingnuts in line and to intimidate everyone else.

    And it works – hence the ridiculously close election we had last year.

  11. joanr16  •  May 17, 2013 @8:54 am

    The Marine Corps regulations forbid male Marines from holding umbrellas!

    Ah, that explains why the Marine with the umbrella looked so miserable.

  12. Tom_B  •  May 17, 2013 @10:26 am

    I’m surprised the media (including NPR) are still reporting on this stuff. If I were in the IRS you “betcha” I’d look more closely at groups with “patriot” and other sanctimonious crap in their names. No crime is commited unless groups don’t end up with the tax breaks they are genuinely entitled to.

  13. E.A. Blair  •  May 18, 2013 @8:20 am

    Let’s see…

    I’m an official in the IRS who decides which groups get scrutinized…

    A veritable flood of applications for tax-exempt status are coming in from organizations whose very raison d’être is opposition to paying taxes…

    Do I just just let them slide or do I treat them with some suspicion?

    It should be a no-brainer.

    Speaking of no-brainers, these are tea partiers we’re talking about.

  14. Swami  •  May 18, 2013 @11:42 am

    It seems ridiculous to us, but it was all explained and dramatized in George Orwell’s 1984, in the popular practice called The Two Minutes Hate.

    Yeah, and now Fox News gives them 24 hrs of hate and conspiracy. They’re getting spoiled. “All things in moderation”

  15. Frank Moraes  •  May 18, 2013 @11:55 am

    There is a fourth possibility: no one outside people like us really cares. The Republicans have a major advantage in this regard: no one but their base likes them anyway. And the base loves this story. According to PPP, 74% of Republicans think that Benghazi is worse that–wait for it–Teapot Dome! Of course, 6% also think Benghazi is in Cuba.

    Death, Teapot Dome, and Benghazi, Cuba

    I think there are important issues in all of the supposed scandals–especially the AP–but none of them have anything to do the White House. For over a week, I’ve been arguing that. Even last Friday when ABC published the supposed emails, it still meant nothing. A “talking points” scandal? Really?! That’s what passes for a scandal these days? People need to do a little reading about Teapot Dome.

  16. Frank Moraes  •  May 18, 2013 @11:56 am

    PS: Magnificent comment interface!

    Don’t publish this.

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