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If this was a win, what do the Democrats consider a loss? Biden's version of "mission accomplished."
Two decades ago, on May 1, 2003, then-US President George W Bush declared “major combat operations in Iraq have ended” in a speech aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln, with a banner behind him proclaiming “mission accomplished”.
But, of course, the mission - as dubious as it may have been - was far from accomplished. The US would send more troops to Iraq with a peak of168,000 forces in 2007.
U.S. troops remain in Iraq today.
I was thinking of Bush’s mission accomplished blather as I listened to Joe Biden declare this week’s vote on the debt limit a win.
I was thinking about whether the 750,000 poor folks losing food stamp benefits consider the vote a win.
I bet not.
But Biden’s declaration of mission accomplished gives us a look into the soul of the Democratic politicians who voted for it.
Kudos to Chicago Democrats Chuy Garcia, Jan Shakowsky and Delia Ramirez for voting no.
Honestly though, it wasn’t a big risk to vote no.
Their votes weren’t needed to pass it. It passed overwhelmingly in both the House and the Senate.
We all would have survived if the Democrats had stood tougher and we would have all survived a few more no votes.
The many so-called progressives in Congress who bent over and grabbed their ankles, voting yes on the McCarthy/Biden deal, could have easily taken a stand for principle and voted no.
At a time when this country is rapidly moving toward Oligarchy, with more wealth and income inequality than we’ve ever experienced, I could not in good conscience vote for a bill that cuts programs for the most vulnerable while refusing to ask billionaires to pay a penny more in taxes. Wall Street and corporate interests may be enthusiastic about this bill, but I believe it moves us in exactly the wrong direction.
What a concept.
The end of the world financial calamity that some predicted if Biden stood firm on his original promise not to bargain the debt limit? It was not supported by any evidence.
But instead this is what the Democrats and Biden consider wins:
No funding for the IRS to pursue millionaire tax cheats and close some millionaire tax loopholes.
An increase in military spending which was already at a record high.
An end to the moratorium on student debt payments.
Funding for another gas pipeline - a gift to Democratic Senator Manchin.
And, as I said, cuts to SNAP benefits, throwing three quarters of a million people off the food stamp rolls.
I’ve been told this past week by defenders of the deal that negotiation is the art of compromise.
I’ve bargained too many teacher contracts not to know something about negotiations and knowing how to compromise.
But I also know never to call losing winning.
And if a union boss or a president says the mission was accomplished, it might be a good idea to ask what the mission was.
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