October 9, 2013

You've just got to love the logic over at Faux "News." Republicans shut down the government. Then they decide that it's okay to run the government a la carte, and pass one piecemeal measure after another, funding the portions of the government they like, and so they can run political ads later against the Democrats and claim they don't really love the hostages the Republicans decided to release one by one.

Then even after being warned by the Pentagon that the shutdown was going to delay members of the military receiving their death benefits, they go ahead and shut the government down anyway. And then the likes of Bill O'Reilly and his buddies Ralph Peters and David Hunt decide to blame the whole thing on Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, for not fixing their mess quickly enough to suit them.

O'Reilly also decided to cite some polls saying that President Obama's approval rating was at an all-time low, but he did his best to gloss over the record high disapproval ratings for Republicans.

Here's how ClusterFox covered the segment at their blog, Fox News Insider: Should Hagel Resign Over Military Benefits Scandal?:

In tonight’s Talking Points Memo, O’Reilly blasted the President Obama and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel for allowing payments to be stopped to the families of soldiers killed in Afghanistan. O’Reilly believes that Hagel should resign immediately. “These brave Americans sacrificed their lives for this country. And they get this? They get this?”

Following the Memo, Colonel David Hunt and Lt. Colonel Ralph Peters joined The Factor. Hunt said, “I’m ashamed of our government right now […] Now we have families suffering who have to put up with this crap in the middle of having to bury their loved ones – it’s unheard of.”

Peters agreed with O’Reilly that Hagel should resign. “If he didn’t know about it, it means he’s not in control of his department. If he did know about it and did nothing, then my God!”

O’Reilly believes Hagel must have known, but feels as though it’s plausible that the president didn’t.

Peters believes it goes beyond incompetence, and that some “political commissar at the Pentagon or the White House thought this was one more way to embarrass Republicans […] And I think it backfired on them.”

I think this chart from Steve Benen's post over at the Maddow Blog, which is linked above, was particularly informative as to the dangerous game Republicans are playing with how they're voting to fund the government:

In the eight days since House Republicans shut down the government, they've been content to pass smaller, individual spending measures to reopen very specific parts of the government. It's been a bizarre exercise to watch -- GOP lawmakers identify the parts of the shutdown people are most likely to dislike, and they agree to address just those areas in the hopes of minimizing the political impact. [...]

In case anyone's ever tempted to take this seriously, let's be clear about just how foolish -- and inefficient -- this approach to governing really is. The Center for American Progress' Michael Linden put together the chart featured above and explained that piecemeal spending is "a fundamentally unworkable method for reopening the government."

Credit: Congressional Budget Office

Never mind all that, though. Bill-O thinks this mess is all Chuck Hagel's fault and he should resign.

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