published Saturday, December 24th, 2011

The Carolers

about Clay Bennett...

The son of a career army officer, Bennett led a nomadic life, attending ten different schools before graduating in 1980 from the University of North Alabama with degrees in Art and History. After brief stints as a staff artist at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and the Fayetteville (NC) Times, he went on to serve as the editorial cartoonist for the St. Petersburg Times (1981-1994) and The Christian Science Monitor (1997-2007), before joining the staff of the ...

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alprova said...

Never before have you been so on target as you are with this one Clay.

John Boehner drew a line in the sand today, by taking the path of least resistance. There was no way that the Republicans were going to win this one.

The Tea Party now knows just where they stand when push comes to shove, and they are not happy about it, not that it matters to the rank and file Republicans. The struggle within the Republican Party for dominance just broke out into an all-out fist fight.

This is the first of many disappointments to come for those who call themselves Tea Party members.

December 24, 2011 at 12:13 a.m.
Salsa said...

The only thing that Clay in "on" is the daily e-mail list from the DNC so he know's what he is allowed to think today.

December 24, 2011 at 12:17 a.m.
alprova said...

Yeah, yeah, yeah...I read that same charge several times a week. Can't you come up with something inspiring and original?

It can't possibly be that there are people out here who completely disagree with your points of view and do so of their own free will? As for Mr. Bennett, it couldn't be that the topic he drew is topical and conducive with the reality of the situation at the same time? Why yes it is.

It must be so disheartening to realize that the pendulum is swinging in the opposite direction and that the Tea Party movement is losing its grip on reality as well as their ability to influence the Republican Party.

The bullied members of the Republican Party are now pushing back.

I defer to Fox News for a realistic and enlightening digest of events and the impending fallout poised to take place;

December 24, 2011 at 1:10 a.m.
aidehua said...

If robbing from the Social Security Trust Fund was such a great idea, why didn't the Democrats agree to do it for 12 months instead of just two? Meanwhile the Pres and his wife take separate planes to Hawaii... The four million dollars we pay for his luxurious vacations could buy a lot of pizzas for the masses. Clay isn't permitted to report on that side of the story - it just doesn't fit the narrative.

December 24, 2011 at 4:16 a.m.
WHS1970 said...

Bush 2 took more vacation days than any U.S. President, did you complain about that?

December 24, 2011 at 6:25 a.m.
woody said...

If I may be so bold..please let me use the words of one the greatest Republican minds ever (and that, in and of itself is a heck of a statement), with one minor change, to make my point...

"You can please some of the people all of the time and all of the people some of the time, but you will never please all of the people all of the time...." (Lincoln/me)

At this 'special' time of the year, especially, be thankful for what you have and don't waste a moment ruing that which was totally beyond your control..Woody

December 24, 2011 at 6:28 a.m.
EaTn said...

It's a fact that the working middle class need and will pump the tax breaks back into the economy more than the wealthy, which will create more demand and in turn more jobs. The sad part of this is that it keeps watering down the Social Security fund which will come back to bite those who will need it most. The right thing to do would be to pay for the program with a rollback on the Bush wealthy tax break, because they still haven't said where the payroll tax money would come from.

December 24, 2011 at 7 a.m.
alprova said...

aidehua whined: "Meanwhile the Pres and his wife take separate planes to Hawaii..."

Which is not unusual for any First Family. In fact, it's been routinely done by practically every Presidential family for decades at various times throughout a calendar year.

But because the Obama family did it....

In this case, the President delayed his departure for the start of his Christmas vacation from Washington until after the passage of the Payroll Tax Bill in Congress, as he was very active in the negotiations and he needed to sign it once it was passed.

"The four million dollars we pay for his luxurious vacations could buy a lot of pizzas for the masses."

If we lived in North Korea, and people were starving, I might see some point to your whine. As it is, just about everyone in this nation finds food easily enough, so there is no need for a nationwide pizza party.

That $4 million price tag quote for their vacation that is sweeping the internet is made up off the top of someone's head. No credible news source is repeating it because it is incredible.

The difference between Obama and recent Presidents of the past is simply that the Obama's don't own any vacation property. Thus, they rent.

It doesn't matter if Obama stays in a room that costs $50 a night or $5000 a night. He is personally responsible for the lodging and food costs for his family while on vacation. The actual costs footed by the taxpayers while on vacation is comparable with those of other Presidents.

"Clay isn't permitted to report on that side of the story - it just doesn't fit the narrative."

No. It doesn't fit your narrative. There's a big difference.

December 24, 2011 at 8:43 a.m.
WhitesCreek said...

Pretty funny. And we get the added chuckle of having one comment claiming Clay marches to the orders of the DNC and another deferring to Fox News for the truth. Are people paid to be that dense? Hmmm??

December 24, 2011 at 9:01 a.m.
alprova said...

aidehua wrote: "If robbing from the Social Security Trust Fund was such a great idea, why didn't the Democrats agree to do it for 12 months instead of just two?"

I wondered about that too, and it took me an hour of sorting through several media stories to get to the bottom of it.

The two-month extension by the Senate involved proposing the funding of the payroll tax cuts and unemployment extensions by offsets through other revenue sources, mainly through a proposed 2% income tax hike on the richest Americans.

The Republican proposal for a full year made no such provisions to fund theirs, which added more unfunded spending.

So, while the Republicans, on the surface, appeared to be proposing a more prolonged approach to solving the problem, they did so in a deceitful manner, and proposed adding more to the debt in their quest to refuse to raise taxes on the richest Americans.

This battle will resume after the first of the year.

December 24, 2011 at 9:01 a.m.
alprova said...

WhitesCreek wrote: "And we get the added chuckle of having one comment claiming Clay marches to the orders of the DNC and another deferring to Fox News for the truth. Are people paid to be that dense? Hmmm??"

Did you read the Fox News story? People that know me, know that I make no bones about the fact that rarely do I consider Fox News a source to be relied upon to give people facts or the truth.

However, in this case, I found that particular story to be rather interesting, in that it was critical of John Boehner, and it laid out an interesting scenario that may or may not occur once Congress reconvenes in January.

December 24, 2011 at 9:09 a.m.
carlB said...

All of this "Hoop La" appears to be A FIGHT between the opponents of Obama and what the role of "Government" should be after the private sectors have again destroyed the US economy and then are not willing to step up to fill the void to get this Republic back on "stable ground." Thus hindering Obama by reducing the Governments' role while putting the blame on the the President and his administration for not "fixing" what the private sectors destroyed, just to get back in "power." But the question should be; What are their final objectives for reducing the role of our government back to the pre-FDR years? If there is not a government strong enough to act in preventing this Republic from falling into another great depression with anarchy as it appears some people want to happen. It seems that some people have forgotten the side affects of what can happen when the masses are hungry without any help. They are ignoring the history of our 1929 great depression before FDR's policies. In my opinion we already have people who want to separate themselves from this Republic, forming their own "little world." Where would there be any stopping the "extremes" if they had the strength and our government had been weakened enough that it did not have any "strength"? Would the Constitution of the USA continue to have any respect?

December 24, 2011 at 9:36 a.m.
carlB said...

President Obama will need to stay on "his toes" as in staying alert, because the people who live in the "upper crust" do not like to be "out smarted" and put down. There are people who will not accept this happening. Go figure. The Situation can get really Mean. It was going to be easy for Obama's opponents and it appeared to be their main objective, put Obama in his place even if they destroy this Republic. It would have been the same if Ms. Clinton had won the Presidency. The "mess" was there and needed to be fixed. The "destroyers" had worked hard to get the government into record National Debt so they could position themselves to get rid of the entire FDR's New Deal.

December 24, 2011 at 9:46 a.m.
dude_abides said...

Looks like the teabagger has just counted Virginia ballot petition signatures! Looks more like a Newt supporter.

"Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Texas Gov. Rick Perry have failed to qualify for Virginia's March 6 Republican primary. The Republican Party of Virginia announced late Friday and early Saturday that Gingrich and Perry fell short of the 10,000 signatures of registered voters required for a candidate's name to be on the ballot."

Is this the kind of Whiskey Tango Foxtrot situation we could expect if one of these pretenders got into office?

December 24, 2011 at 10:43 a.m.
shoe_chucker said...

best Christmas ever. watching the right implode.

December 24, 2011 at 11:11 a.m.
acerigger said...

Our gift to the Kenyan usurper,,,FOUR MORE YEARS!!

                    You're welcome,
                             The Tea Party
December 24, 2011 at 11:23 a.m.
limric said...

dude_abides said,

"Is this the kind of Whiskey Tango Foxtrot situation we could expect if one of these pretenders got into office?"

I think you used an erroneous definition in that statement. Revise pretenders to predators and you've got a rhetorical question the nation understands - and fears.

December 24, 2011 at 11:50 a.m.
miraweb said...

The meltdown had very little to do with Obama. The issue is a very weak speaker (Boehner) and some political friendly fire from other Republicans (especially Cantor) who want Boehner's job.

When the Wall Street Journal, Karl Rove, and the House Freshman are all begging you to knock it off, the leadership has really sailed over the edge.

December 24, 2011 at 12:03 p.m.
dude_abides said...

limric... point taken. I wish Iran would hijack one of them.

December 24, 2011 at 2:29 p.m.
emersonbigns said...

Looks like the occupy carolers are all happy now,or DNC carolers. Now that you have your 40 dollars will you go home?

December 24, 2011 at 2:34 p.m.
dude_abides said...

miraweb... forgive me if I go with Fox News' take on the "meltdown":

"It was a major yearend political victory for President Barack Obama, a big slice of humble pie for House Republicans and a blow to House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, who'll have an angry band of tea party lawmakers to deal with when Congress returns to Washington next month."

December 24, 2011 at 2:36 p.m.
dude_abides said...

emersonbigns... is your name a misogynistic statement about the women in your life, or is it referring to some man's testicles? That's the $40.00 question.

December 24, 2011 at 2:46 p.m.
miraweb said...

You're forgiven, dude!

Boehner stated one idea right - right now the country needs predictability, stability, and the government working at its best. We can only hope his actions catch up soon with his rhetoric.

Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukuh, and a Happy New Year to all!

December 24, 2011 at 2:47 p.m.
BobMKE said...

AL & the other Libs,

This is decit by Oblamea and the Democrats. OB has no intentions of a one year FICA tax cut. Why? Because he and the Dems. are in the compaign mode and have no intentions of ever settling this. Every two months he'll keep asking for another two month extension to show the people what he is doing for them because he can't run on his record.

December 24, 2011 at 4:21 p.m.
rolando said...

Y'know, I just love Christmas lights [of which there are few shown]. I love them because they remind me of those who voted for The Obama. They all hang together - half of them don't work - and the ones that do, aren't all that bright.

December 24, 2011 at 4:22 p.m.
emersonbigns said...

dude ,sounds like your 40 dollars will pay for your Obama blowup doll .

December 24, 2011 at 4:49 p.m.
DOCJGH said...

I find the vitrolic rhetoric of sue of those responding appalling. Bennet's cartoons capture the irony of political and everyday life more effectively than words ever could. In doing so, they often touch a nerve among those wishing to ignore that irony and they lash out at the messenger rather than listen to the message. There is nothing that President Obama, the Democrats and more rational republicans can do or say that they will not oppose or demean. Thank you Clay and others who have continued to be accurate chroniclers of the world around us.

December 24, 2011 at 5 p.m.
dude_abides said...

rolando... that's very clever. Speaking of dim bulbs, what do you think about Gingrich & Perry not understanding what is required to enter the Virginia Primary? Isn't that laughable? Do you think it's a reading comprehension problem, or a math problem? Who ran these clowns up the flagpole? Apparently the GOP thinks the vetting process involves parvo vaccinations, huh?

December 24, 2011 at 5:04 p.m.
dude_abides said...

emerson... Ouch! Uncle! Wait a second... now I get it... you're answering my question! Your name has nothing to do with women, does it? Being a liberal, I won't judge you on your opinion of the POTUS SCROTUS.

December 24, 2011 at 5:25 p.m.
emersonbigns said...

dude, being a liberal means that you spend your forty dollars on golf clubs like our president. I just hope you get the Christmas present you wanted. You and potus scrotus under the mistletoe.

December 24, 2011 at 6:41 p.m.
rolando said...

In the coming New Year, 2012, both the State of the Union address and Ground Hog Day will occur within a few days of each other.

This is an ironic juxtaposition of events.

The one event involves a meaningless ritual in which we look to an insignificant creature of little intelligence and even fewer innate skills to offer a grand prognostication affecting the future.

The other involves a groundhog.

December 24, 2011 at 7:10 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Man, Bennett Sucks. Same stuff, different day.

December 24, 2011 at 7:26 p.m.
rolando said...

Hey, dude -- eliminating the competition before the election worked for The Obama in why not the Presidency.

He has misused and abused the Office so badly already, a bit more Chi Politics wouldn't even be noticed.

Don't expect the media to make the connection...but then, you haven't a clue, either.

December 24, 2011 at 7:35 p.m.
GMills said...

Man, BigRidgePatriot Sucks. Same stuff, different day.

December 24, 2011 at 7:48 p.m.
alprova said...

BobMKE wrote: "This is decit by Oblamea and the Democrats. OB has no intentions of a one year FICA tax cut. Why? Because he and the Dems. are in the compaign mode and have no intentions of ever settling this."

Hogwash. Their intentions is to fund it and the only thing standing in the way of that intention are the Republicans.

"Every two months he'll keep asking for another two month extension to show the people what he is doing for them because he can't run on his record."

On the contrary. The President has amassed a fine record of achievement as President and you can look forward to learning more about it, once the issue as to who he will be going up against is settled.

December 24, 2011 at 8:40 p.m.
alprova said...

John Ross wrote: "It cost the taxpayers over $4 million dollars to move the U.S. royal family from DC to Hawaii for vacation."

Dare I ask you to back that up with credible proof? Dare I expect you to supply such proof?

It's a made up figure and it has gone viral around the web, repeated by many, but not one shred of evidence backs those figures up.

December 24, 2011 at 8:44 p.m.
lkeithlu said...

As I understand it, Obama owns no "vacation" property and therefore must rent. He has to pay for this himself, even though the gov. foots the tab for transportation and security. This does not come to 4 million though.

December 24, 2011 at 8:56 p.m.
dude_abides said...

"He (Obama)has misused and abused the Office so badly already, a bit more Chi Politics wouldn't even be noticed." -rolando

Are you really saying Obama is controlling GOP primary politics in Virginia? Are you, by extension, saying he can affect the GOP nomination process more than all the other republican contenders? If he can, we certainly don't want any of those halfwits in the Oval Office. If he's that good, we need him on our side to deal with Karzai, Zardari, Putin (maybe), Ahmedinejad, Hu and the like. Imagine Perry on the world stage. We'd be the laughing stock again. That's the truth and you know it.

December 24, 2011 at 11:28 p.m.
shoe_chucker said...

some idiot said ...most not obamist sites are now reporting the $4 million dollar tab. So alprova, prove it didn't cost $4 million.

you prove it. you are the one spouting it.

December 24, 2011 at 11:45 p.m.
shoe_chucker said...

Boehner’s office cuts off C-SPAN cameras as GOP takes verbal beating


December 24, 2011 at 11:48 p.m.
alprova said...

John Ross wrote: "most not obamist sites are now reporting the $4 million dollar tab. So alprova, prove it didn't cost $4 million."

As I stated, that figure has been widely repeated as fact, when it is nothing of the sort. You made the statement in this forum and I challenged you to back it up with credible proof.

No legitimate media source, including the top ten outlets, Fox News, or even Matt Drudge, who usually can't resist mimicking NewsMax, which originated a story containing the $4 million figure, has posted it, yet.

USA Today published a more realistic estimate of $1.4 million, and the simple fact that all anyone can do is estimate such costs, as no information is released publicly by either the Secret Service or the White House.

Whatever the true and correct cost comes to for their much deserved family vacation, one thing is for certain: It will be in line and very comparable to costs for travel and leisure that other recent Presidents have racked up.

I again reiterate the fact that every President foots the bill for lodging and meals for the entire family, while on vacation. Staffing, transportation, and protection whenever and wherever the First Family goes is an ongoing expense, no matter where they wind up, and no matter what purpose that exists for such travel.

That is a 24/7/365 Government expense that goes back to 1901, following the assassination of President William McKinley.

December 25, 2011 at 1:27 a.m.
alprova said...

Shoe_chucker wrote: "you prove it. you are the one spouting it."

John Ross and a few others NEVER back up what they write. Yet they keep on presenting points full of misinformation and outright lies.

You saw his response. Because it can be found all over the web on no-name sites, it has to be true.

Another viscous rumor floating around the web is that President Obama has logged more days of travel than any other President.

Having been in office only two years, Obama has not come anywhere close to the overall record for presidential travel. That was set by former President Bill Clinton over the course of his two terms in office. Clinton logged 233 days abroad over the course of 55 trips. Former President George W. Bush comes in at a close second, with 215 days abroad over the course of 49 trips.

Obama has now logged 55 days of official travel, surpassing former President George H.W. Bush's record of 54 days during his first two years. Bush, as we know, loathed to travel outside of the states. In total, Obama has visited 26 countries, some of them more than once, over the course of 15 trips.

December 25, 2011 at 1:43 a.m.

shoe_chucker prove it. you are the one spouting it.

I will indeed prove it for you or anyone else that may want to dispute the numbers. It cost over $181,000.00 per hour to fly air force one, so the flight alone will be more than 3 million. But with that said he has taken fewer vacation days than G.W. and the only reason they did not go together was because he stayed behind to sign the latest bill. But the numbers are accurate so trying to dispute them is simply a waste of time.

December 25, 2011 at 1:45 a.m.
alprova said...

John Ross wrote: "Sorry alprova but you are just repeating the lie perpetuated by CNN and NPR. The Progressives had control of both houses for two years and the God King sat in the White House and they did nothing to pay for anything. If they are able to rape the healthcare system they are able to balance the budget. But they refuse to."

You're wrong, as usual. In fact, there were several sources of revenue in the bill to pay for additional costs associated with Obamacare.

Medicare tax increase on high income earners - $210.2 billion

Annual fee charged to health insurance providers - $60 billion

A 40% excise tax on employer sponsored health care coverage in excess of $10,200/$27,500 - $32 billion

An imposing of an annual fee on manufacturers and importers of brand name drugs - $27 billion

An imposing of a 2.3% excise tax on manufacturers and importers of medical devices: $20 billion

More stringent reporting required on Corporate tax returns - $17.1 billion

A raising of the 7.5% Adjusted Gross Income deduction on medical expenses to 10% - $15.2 billion

A limiting of contributions to now deductible funds offered through flexible spending accounts contained in cafeteria plans to $2,500 - $13 billion

Total estimated added yearly revenue, $394.5 billion per year.

Legislation submitted by Democrats for much of this year has included the means by which to pay for any spending contained within it, in order to NOT add to the current debt.

The Democrats are not yet on board with a balanced budget amendment, and for good reason. The focus since Obama assumed the Presidency has been on avoiding further recession and getting people back to work in this nation, in order to boost revenue through personal income taxes.

When unemployment falls to a decent and manageable level, then you can bet that the Democrats will begin the process of attacking the debt. They have already proposed long term goals in that regard several times this year.

Taxes on high income earners are going to have to rise. The Republicans are fighting it tooth and nail, and everyone knows it.

The Democrats and our President are fighting tooth and nail to reduce the financial suffering by people who fall into the middle and lower income classes, and there are enough people that know that to be a fact.

December 25, 2011 at 2:15 a.m.
shoe_chucker said...

alprova said...

John Ross and a few others NEVER back up what they write. Yet they keep on presenting points full of misinformation and outright lies.

I know.

December 25, 2011 at 11:41 a.m.
rolando said...

As I said, dude, you haven't a clue.

How do you think he won the Senate seat? By his performance? [I would answer, "What performance".] Hint: Look at what happened to his challengers, all of them...]

December 25, 2011 at 3:30 p.m.
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