Freedom Caucus Terrorism

Instead of agreeing to raise the debt ceiling like responsible legislators should, Republicans would rather use it to hold the nation hostage, which has become a right of passage for the GOP anytime a Democrat is in the White House. They rubber-stamp this shit when a Republican is in there.

Newt Gingrich figured this out in 1995 and despite the fact it didn’t work out for them, the GOP has been doing it ever since.

Again, the debt ceiling does NOT create new spending. It only authorizes the government to continue borrowing to pay its bills, like military spending, bailouts to corporations, and all the shortages created by giving huge tax cuts to corporations, trust-fund babies, and billionaire assholes.

Kevin McCarthy has demanded that President Biden cut government spending before his party will agree to raise the debt ceiling…but he wants the president to find the cuts. Even terrorists are better at providing lists of demands than Republicans. Enter the House Freedom Caucus.

The Freedom Caucus is the most conservative group in Congress. They’re more far-right than actually conservative and they’re not really a policy-focused group. They’d rather ban books than read them. They’re more about culture wars and loud noises. They are also the vilest, most racist, and biggest liars in Congress. Its chairman is Scott Perry and the vice-chairman is Jim Gym Jordan. Prominent members include Marjorie Taylor Green, Lauren Boebert, Matt Gaetz, Andy Biggs, Paul Gosar, and Ronny Jackson. Former members include Louie Gohmert, Devin Nunes, Mo Brooks, Madison Cawthorn, Mark Meadows, Barry Loudermilk, Mick Mulvaney, Mark Sanford, and Ron DeSantis.

The Freedom Caucus is less about freedom and more about gooning. From here on out, that’s how we’ll refer to them, as the Goon Caucus.

The Goon Caucus has power because of the GOP’s slim majority. It was their efforts that forced 15 votes before Kevin McCarthy could win the speakership. Some of the deals he made with the Goon Caucus members were sweet committee assignments, guns on the floor of the house, removal of metal detectors to enter the House, Fucknut Fridays (everybody wears a wife-beater and gets a kazoo), and giving over 44 thousand hours of security footage to Tucker Carlson so he could edit it all down to four minutes to prove the January 6 attack on the Capitol wasn’t violent.

The Goon Caucus also played a heavy part in helping Donald Trump try to steal the 2020 election. And, many of them played a heavy part in the white nationalist terrorist MAGA attack on the capitol with Barry Loudermilk giving tours to terrorists the day before and Lauren Boebert attempting to tweet out Nancy Pelosi’s location. Several members of the Goon Caucus asked Trump for presidential (sic) pardons before he fled D.C. for Mar-a-Lago with stolen classified documents. They’re a swell bunch who probably smells like cinnamon and vanilla.

But since they do have power in the House, Kevin McCarthy has to at least patronize their demands or one of them can call for his removal. It only takes one member which is another one of those conditions he met to win the speakership thus becoming the weakest Speaker in House history. Many believe it was the Goon Caucus that made John Boehner and Paul Ryan just give up on Congress altogether.

So what are the goons’ demands to consider voting to raise the debt ceiling?

They want to revoke all new spending that helps the IRS go after billionaire tax cheats. They want to revoke all spending on climate investments. They also want President Biden to scrap his plan to forgive more than $400 billion in student loan debt, which the Supreme Court will probably do for them.

They want to cut discretionary spending back to 2022 levels and keep it there for a decade except for yearly increases of just one percent, but they want to leave out cuts to the military and veterans and haven’t specified where these cuts will come from. Economists believe cutting back to last year’s level would cause a recession which would then grant the Goon Caucus the ability to blame Biden.

They’re demanding more work requirements for welfare recipients even though there are already work requirements to receive welfare. They also want work requirements for Medicaid.

They want to recover unspent COVID relief funds. About 60 percent of what’s left is to shore up pensions for machinists and iron workers. Other remaining funds are meant for veterans’ health care and vaccine distribution and development, as well as transit funding that’s been promised to specific states and cities but is still technically unobligated. They’re not asking Marjorie Taylor Greene to pay back the $183,504 she received in PPP “loans”.

They want to cut non-defense spending to totals from five years ago. 

They want an end to all federal energy regulations. Look how well cutting regulations have done recently for the railway and banking industries.

They basically want to revoke all spending approved by Congress when it had a Democratic majority.

If the Goon Caucus doesn’t get what it wants, even if it can’t be specific on what it wants, it’ll shut down the government. And Kevin McCarthy can’t stop this. The government will shut down and the entire world’s economy may be trashed on the whims of 20 percent of the House.

This isn’t legislating. This is terrorism.

Music note: I listened to The Breeders.

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Je Suis Charlie


A lot of people think it’s an editorial cartoonist’s job to offend. I don’t agree.

Several years ago after a Dutch newspaper incited wrath and death threats from Islamist extremists for running a bunch of cartoons depicting Muhammad, my employer debated running the same cartoons.

It was our oped editor’s idea. The editor of the newspaper called a meeting of the oped editor, editorial page editor and myself (being a cartoonist he thought I might have some experience with the matter). The editor was really surprised when I voted against running the cartoons. He thought I would love any opportunity to be offensive. Not at all. I explained my position to him, which also gave him a course in what a political cartoonist’s job actually is.

I explained that running the cartoons at that point was not making a statement. Running them would only serve to offend. A good cartoonist, or any satire, is not to offend people. It’s to put out a viewpoint that makes people think and often challenge readers. If a reader chooses to be offended then that’s a byproduct, a byproduct no publication should be afraid of. If a cartoonists is only working to offend then he’s not a cartoonist. He’s a troll.

But many are afraid of offending readers.

A few months ago a client of mine in Tennessee canceled running by cartoons because they were in a military community and they received too many nasty letters. No death threats, just threats to cancel their subscriptions. The editor said he loved my work but he couldn’t continue to incite outrage among his conservative readers. I’ve received the same message from other editors (a lot in Texas). I’ve even had editors ask me if I could change my viewpoints (they’re in Arizona).

Here’s my point with this cartoon (in case it’s not clear): a lot of American publications and their editors are cowards. Death threats are rare in the U.S. But it doesn’t take a death threat to scare an American editor. Tell them you’re going to tweet something nasty.

I do continue to have clients that are not afraid of strong cartoons. Thanks to all of them. I had one in Las Vegas write me this week that my cartoons have inspired several letters recently and that I need to keep it up. I love editors like that.

Now if only more newspapers would hire cartoonists.