Pass the Treacle, Please
This is the image accompanying the report in The New York Times this evening about the House vote on the deficit/debt limit deal. Let's get a couple of things straight at the outset. Giffords is still a sworn member of the Congress; so she has every right to be there and cast her vote even if, as it turned out, her vote was superfluous. Second, nothing I say here is meant to downplay the horrors of the attempt to assassinate her or the suffering of those who died or were injured in that melee.
That said, when I saw this photograph I nearly blew a gasket. Tonight is not a feel-good moment. The Giffords appearance does nothing to alter that. The House was voting on a piece of legislation drawn up under pressure of extortionate tactics embraced by reactionaries in the Congress. These are reactionaries of the same ilk as those who drew bull's eyes on the targeted districts of Democratic Representatives - including Gabrielle Giffords - during the last electoral cycle. In other words, the legislation that she came back to vote on is distinctly not a "compromise." It will pay off enormous deficits - run up, remember, by successive Republican administrations - on the backs of the poor and the working and unemployed classes in the United States. This bill stinks and I would have been among the 161. The Giffords intervention would've been way more impressive - and newsworthy - if she'd voted no!