So, as we careen merrily toward a government default on billions and billions of dollars worth of loans, Ted Cruz decided to speak to an outfit called, The Values Voters Summit. While this group's values aren't actually spelled out in their title we can pretty well guess what they represent given the cast of speakers they've lined up. Besides Cruz people like Michelle Bachmann, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, and Mike Lee will show up at the microphone and in increasingly shrill voices tell the crowd, "all is well, there is nothing to fear except Barack Obama."
Cruz spoke earlier today and assured the faithful that, "We have a couple of years to turn this country around, or else we will go off the cliff to oblivion." In other words, we can't wait until you elect me in 2016. We have to stop the president right now by any means possible.
Unfortunately, the pride of Calgary may have stuck his nose in the coke bag too often and is a shade delusional at the moment. He also told those gathered that, "democrats are feeling the heat," because of the current shutdown and impending default.
The latest NBC/Wall Street Journal Poll shows republicans now have the lowest favorable rating in the party's history. In addition democrats have an 8 point lead when members of the general public were asked the question, "would you prefer a republican or democratic controlled congress?" That lead is the largest since 2009.
When it comes to Cruz himself 52% of tea party republicans view him favorably, while only 4% don't. Then things get a little dicey for the Senator from Alberta. His positive rating among non tea party republicans is only 13% while 23% view him unfavorably. 28% of the general public view him negatively and 14% see him as a positive. Barack H. Obama, on the other hand, has an 82% favorable rating among democrats and his overall favorable rating has risen from 45% to 47%.
Then there is the big conservative bugaboo, Obamacare. The poll shows the Affordable Care Act is gaining in popularity. It went from 31% approval in early September to 38% this month. In addition fully 50% of everyone opposes getting rid of the ACA by tying it to the budget and even 13% of those who want it defunded think shutting down the government over the issue is an unwise strategy.
Finally, despite Tom Coburn's sunny optimism, when it comes to the debt ceiling, 63% of everyone polled said not raising it would cause real and serious problems. Who can blame them?
In 2002 Argentina went belly up on $93 billion in external debts. Wikepedia notes that as soon as they did the inflow of foreign capital stopped and the Argies suffered through a sudden and devastating 40% inflation rate. To this day Argentina has to pay borrowing premiums of 10% which is considerably higher than similar nations and their economy, which was ranked first in South America before the default, currently languishes at fifth on the continent.
Yes, when all this is added together, it appears ol' Ted is suffering from an acute case of Karl Rove Syndrome. He either doesn't believe the numbers, or doesn't care about them. He simply continues to bay at the moon, utterly convinced he is the smartest human on the planet and if we just let him talk long enough we'll finally come to accept this obvious fact of life.
Meanwhile, on another subject, a quick check of Slate and @Gundeaths provides us with this figure, 9,199. That is the number of gun deaths in the United States the study has been able to track through media reports since the Newtown, CT shooting last December.
In February and March of 1945 U.S. marines, with naval support, fought Imperial Japanese forces on the island of Iwo Jima. It is considered one of the deadliest battles of the war in the Pacific. 6,821 American personnel were killed. That would be 2,378 fewer people than have been shot to death on our streets and in our schools during the last ten months--this despite a shocking lack of credible evidence there are elements of the Japanese army dug in on the south side of Chicago, or any place else within our borders.
Indeed. Keep a clear eye and watch out for flying chairs. The Bats are rabid and they're everywhere.
You have the con, Mr. Sulu. As always, I'll be in the bar.