Up, Up and Away, or Not

Updating the last post, on the Republican “repeal and delay” plan for getting rid of Obamacare — members of the House “freedom” caucus are making noises that they won’t go along.

The Republican congressman who made his name as the instigator of John Boehner’s ouster last year was set to take the reins of the House Freedom Caucus on Monday night.

And first up on Rep. Mark Meadows’ to-do list: Torpedoing GOP leadership’s tentative plans to take as long as three years to replace Obamacare.

The proposal “will meet with major resistance from Freedom Caucus members,” the North Carolina Republican vowed in an interview, calling it “the first big fight I see coming for the Freedom Caucus.”

“It should be repealed and replaced, and all of that should be done in the 115th Congress” — the two-year period starting in January through 2018 — and “not left to a future Congress to deal with,” Meadows added.

Bless their empty little hearts and clueless little heads — that would actually be principled. And, look, GOP, the shit from cutting people off from healthcare is gonna hit the fan sometime. Do you want it to be before the 2018 midterm election or the 2020 general election?

In other news, Pathology-elect Donald Trump caused an uproar when he tweeted disapproval of the alleged costs for updating Air Force One:

Experts are a tad bewildered

Boeing won the contract to build the new Air Force One in January 2015, but no plane has been officially ordered by the Department of Defense.

Aerospace industry expert Richard Aboulafia says this is “complete madness.”

“I scratched my head and thought I might be asleep and might be dreaming … but it turns out I was alive, awake, and at my computer,” he told Seattle’s Morning News.

The cost for the planes was an estimated $3 billion, according to the Associated Press, but costs have reportedly been rising. Aboulafia says this isn’t Boeing trying to make a ton of money.

“It’s actually what it costs to have two airplanes that can survive a nuclear war and transport the president in times of national emergency, and any other time for that matter,” he explained.

See also “The Inaccuracies in Donald Trump’s Air Force One Tweet.”

It’s reported the Senate found this funny, but one Senator was not so amused

One senator who wasn’t laughing was Washington Democrat Patty Murray, who’s constituents have a direct stake in the contract to build the new planes, which would replace the aging aircraft now used for presidential travel. Aerospace giant Boeing is expected to build the planes in her home state of Washington.

“The workers of my state and the workers of Boeing across this country do an incredible job and build an incredible airplane,” she said. “I hope the president-elect takes the time to talk to the Pentagon and the Air Force and Boeing about how defense contracts work before he tweets.”

But there may be something besides frugality behind Trump’s tweet. Per Josh Marshall, the Chicago Tribune published this about 20 minutes before Trump tweeted:

The brain trust at Boeing, among the city’s largest companies and a global aerospace and defense powerhouse, must cringe every time President-elect Donald Trump riffs on foreign policy, especially when it comes to dealing with China. …

…”I’m not a political pundit or prognosticator — we have too many of those — but anyone who paid attention to the recent campaigns and the election results realizes that one of the overarching themes was apprehension about free and fair trade,” he [Dennis Muilenburg, Boeing’s CEO] said.

Muilenburg argues that international trade is essential to the U.S. economy and its importance is reflected in the “large and growing percentage of our business” coming from international sales, including commercial jet orders from China.

Ooo, the giant talking yam is a tad sensitive, it seems. And, anyway, $3 to $4 billion ain’t nothin’ to the Pentagon.

The Pentagon has buried an internal study that exposed $125 billion in administrative waste in its business operations amid fears Congress would use the findings as an excuse to slash the defense budget, according to interviews and confidential memos obtained by The Washington Post.

See also Charles Pierce.

Update: See also “Did Donald Trump tank Boeing’s stock because he was mad about a news article?

20 thoughts on “Up, Up and Away, or Not

  1. Recognize the Freedom Caucus for what it is. These are true believers in conservative theology – NOT sold out puppets of the GOP corporatist wing. They believe Obamacare is evil for the socialistic threat it represents to their political belief structure. “The Free Market Will Fill ALL Needs.” That this is ridiculous is irrelevant. That features of Obamacare work and are popular is irrelevant. That going back to the old system will kill people and drive others to bankruptcy is irrelevant. But they are sincere and uncompromising.

    I have mentioned before with sincere respect that Palin did not abort when she got the report that birth defects were likely. I don’t agree she can impose that on other women, but she was consistent. Give that to the Freedom Caucus, too.

    “Tis no kindness to hang a man slowly.” Obamacare will be repealed. The GOP will have to do it and they are trying to phase in the transition, so people in red states won’t notice that they are getting screwed – in some cases to death. They’d like time to come up with a ‘plan’ that might preserve some aspects (like pre-existing conditions) without the decision driving up premiums. (Can’t happen.)

    Cruel as it sounds, the Freedom Caucus is going to help Americans opposed to Obamacare realize that without government intervention they are playing roulette with health care. And the GOP will have to own it. As far as reconciliation goes, I think the Freedom Caucus will oppose tax cuts that aren’t matched by spending cuts. So the GOP will have to own the pain they create with slashing essential services that GOP constituents rely on. ANd it will happen in Trump’s first year. The Freedom Caucus may force the GOP into sudden monetary policy changes with huge impact in red states.

    And they own it. This will be painful, but will it be bad? There are elections in 2018.

  2. Isn’t Mark Meadows a tea party wingnut who also strongly supported Trump? Kinda oxymoronic I’d think (but not that his evangelical constituent base minds). They operate out of tribal stricture and principle (at least publicly, shhh…).

    As for Boeing, they’ve been in bed with the feds for decades now. Without gubmint support that place would’ve collapsed long ago. Chauncey Gardiner stumbled into there once and wound up as one of their VPs, but I digress.

    Lets see how Meadows the staunch gun nut Christian tea party militarist handles that one.

  3. You mean Republicans are no more able to advance a coherent agenda with an absolute majority than they were with only both houses of Congress? I am shocked, shocked I tell you, that this should be the case.

  4. Don’t just use the term they like – The Freedom Caucus.
    Use their full real name: The Freedom From Rational Thought, Logic, and Empathy KKKoo-KKKoo KKKauKKKus

    And it looks like t-RUMP used his favorite source for thst $4 Billion number – his old and reliable friend, Otto MyAzz.

    He’s not even officially POTUS yet, and it’s already “Dictat by Tweet!”

    It’ll be a fucking miracle if this world survives even 2 years of a t-TRUMP presidency…

  5. “Tis not a kindness to hang a man slowly.”

    I do not want the GOP to phase Obamacare out slowly for the same reason they do – it will mask the effects on health care. The Freedom Caucus is opposed to Obamacare because it’s government for the people – but the Freedom Caucus also doesn’t want government for corporations. So the democrats are on the same side – if Obamacare is to go, make the GOP own the pain.

    Regarding reconciliation and huge tax cuts for the rich – the Freedom Caucus is likely to demand dollar for dollar cuts in spending equal to the tax cuts. Ryan will try to spin magic numbers about economic growth offsetting the cuts but I don’t think the FC will buy. They are really hyper about the deficit and the FC isn’t going to sign a blank check. Again, I predict the FC will make the GOP own the pain.

  6. Obamacare will be repealed.
    What about the Affordable Care Act? My feeling is that Obamacare was more of a rallying objective to tear down Obama’s presidency and focus the wingnut discontent than it has to due with providing health care. I suspect they’ll rebrand it with a few tweeks and claim it as their own. Perceptions are everything.

  7. Swame,
    That’s brilliant, and certainly under-handed enough for them to contemplate it.

    They can call it, “TrinityCare” – not only after the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost – and giving it a “Christian” cover – they can provide a subtext that this is an ENTIRELY new program designed by Mitch’s Senate, Ryan’s House, and Hair Furor, Heil t-RUMP!

    The rubes don’t know what’s in PPACA, so they could fall for this easily!

  8. Interesting how republicans lose all the “integrity” and “principles” they throw at democrats once one of their own is in office, however this time what they’re asking everybody to accept as the norm is way beyond the pale. Which is why democrats need to stop being suckers and taking them serious and making “reaching across the aisle” to their “republican friends” for “bipartisan support” a priority in responding to GOP nonsense when they do it, e.g. start bringing guns to these gunfights!

  9. Remember “Obamacare” was fundementally developed by the Heritage Foundation in the 90’s as a response to the Clintons abortive health plan. The FC only ever objected to the Obama part(ie the name). Call it FreedomCare or Capital Health or something like that that and they’ll be fine with it. They can’t really touch the Medicade expansion and the rest of it was just a sop to the Insurance market anyway.

  10. I just read an evangelical blog rationalization that 80% of them voted Trump because of Hillary’s nebulous answers to full term abortion questions. Does it matter to them that Reagan’s Revolution helped spur Communist China (less than 4% Christian and the abortion capitol of the world), to also become the #1 economic power, and as a result, a major world influence player?

    Probably not. Human herds move in mysterious ways.

    Or maybe The Good Ole Lord will move The Donald and his Taiwanese friends to change all that.

  11. I’d like to take this opportunity to reiterate that Trump is a big bag of shit. Thank you all for your understanding.

  12. csm, the Republicans have thrown out any principles they’ve had with Trump’s nomination and their general support (even if grudging).

    They never had character, or integrity – but now it’s shown to be the bald-faced lie it always was.

    But reaching across the aisle is a good idea *if* and *only* if it results in good legislation from the progressive standpoint.

    That doesn’t mean it’s not time to slag the Republican brand, to point out that they’re the party of the wealthy, swearing over and over again if you help the wealthy with lower taxes, and the rights to poison more air, more water, and cause more damage to the little guy, they’ll reward us with new, better jobs. It hasn’t worked – it didn’t work in the 80s, the 90s, the 00s, or the 10s, and it won’t work now.

  13. “But reaching across the aisle is a good idea *if* and *only* if it results in good legislation from the progressive standpoint.”

    LHW, agreed, and that would be operative if we had a republican party truly interested in governing to the extent they actually used compromise from time to time as a means to that end.

    But as we saw with Obama, in 8 years the GOP never supported him on anything, no matter how small or benign. Even to the extent of shutting down the government, destroying the nation’s credit, etc. They came in with the stated goal to make Obama a one term president, to not work with him and work to make sure he failed. They made at least 50 attempts, legislatively, to destroy the one somewhat progressive thing Obama was able to do, the ACA, and filed several lawsuits against it, all for naught. And in all this time, they never came up with a valid replacement for the ACA, because that’s the governing thing they really don’t give a damn about. They really don’t have a need for compromise. That’s what “normal” political parties do. But the GOP is no longer normal.

    The GOP has long since ceased acting like a political party, and more like a cultish conglomeration of loosely associated gangs, each with its own interest — abortion, taxes, social cons, etc. — with the only commonality between then is how they nurse these grudges, by ginning up their base with lies and hate while keeping ’em dumb and distracted from the fact they’re not really doing anything beyond that for them either. Harsh maybe, but its the truth.

    Given this history, dems can’t go in assuming reaching would have any possibility of bearing fruit. Sure, they can give it a shot to say they tried, but after that, they can’t keep acting like this is single shot pistols at 50 paces when they are dealing with down in dirty street fighters who’d just as soon cut you off at the knees before the handkerchief hits the ground. The GOP uses every legal/Constitutional lever, and often push the bounds of illegality it can get its hands on to obstruct, tradition be damned. If they want to have any success, democrats have to do that too.

  14. I am not sure what you call this man,
    this donald trump, and it appears
    other people are having the same problem!
    I am hoping this list, will help, and that it
    grows larger with time, let’s hope it gets bigly!
    Use it, abuse It, pass it around!!!!!!

    Orange Foolious
    Orange shitgibbon
    Tangerine Mussolini
    Hair Furor
    Grabbalotapus Rex
    Dick a la Orange
    Cantaloupe Caligula
    D.T. Barnum
    Der Failure
    Prima Donald
    Orange Baboon
    Orange Ferrethead
    Don L Ad Hoc Trump
    great orange shitbag
    Orange NIMBY
    Orange Wonder Bread
    Douche Bag Donnie
    Cheeto Mussolini
    Tweetie Turd
    Orange Excrescence
    Trump Vader
    tricky Trump
    orange Ponzi
    tangerine turd
    Pumpkin Spice
    short fingered orange despot
    Cheeto Benito
    Tangerine Shitgibbon
    Fuckface Von Clownstick
    Putin’s Bitch
    Don the Con
    Dickface Destroyer of Democracy
    America’s Wealthiest Hemorrhoid (John Oliver)
    Il Douche
    Id Vicious
    Cheeto Jesus
    Voldemoron (John Cole)
    Orange Julius Caesar (Lewis Black)
    Angry Circus Peanut
    T.A. (That Asshole in the White House)
    The Nazi Cheeto (or Cheeto Nazi)
    The Vulgar Talking Yam (Charlie Pierce)
    El Caudillo del Mar-a-Lago (Charlie Pierce)
    Der FUBARer
    He, Trump
    Accident-Elect Smallgloves (or Littlefingers)
    The Drumpf
    Trumpty Dumpty
    Tangelo Tyrant
    Tangerine Nightmare
    Ambulatory pilonoidal cyst
    Tangerini Mussolini
    The Pussygrabbing Potentate
    Semi-Sentient traffic cone
    Rabid tumbleweed
    Daddy Marmalade
    Mango Unchained
    bewigged hantavirus
    Orange Fascist Clown
    Orange Buffoon
    Texter Tubbie
    Donald Dump
    marmalade nightmare
    Kim Jong-Orange

  15. I call him the dick swinging orangutan. ( sorry orangutans nothing personal) because of his male primate dominance behavior. The Trump brand is aggression. Always bully. Wonder when someone with nukes will call his bluff?

  16. And the word jewel award of the day goes to csm

    “That’s what “normal” political parties do. But the GOP is no longer normal.
    The GOP has long since ceased acting like a political party, and more like a cultish conglomeration of loosely associated gangs, each with its own interest — abortion, taxes, social cons, etc. — with the only commonality between then is how they nurse these grudges, by ginning up their base with lies and hate while keeping ‘em dumb and distracted from the fact they’re not really doing anything beyond that for them either. Harsh maybe, but its the truth.”


  17. BTW: “See also Charles Pierce.” – the link on “Charles Pierce” isn’t set correctly.

  18. Wingnuts selected Obummer as their name winner. Come to think of it, Obummer was the only thing they could ever come up with. If the Tumpanzee can insult another’s wife, race, ethnicity, gender, religion, service…….. while doing the crybaby tweet thing whenever he gets his, I say, name on!

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