Democrats & Liberals Archives

A Hypothetical Extrapolation

What is the aim of those who want Obama to fail? It has been said that any true American would never wish their president to fail because if he or she did then America fails. But the rise in irrational outrage against the president, spurred on and fostered by Fox News, the likes of Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck, and proclaimed as patriotism by numerous other elements seems to imply only one inevitable conclusion to satisfy the mob; Obama’s failure. Do they simply want him to resign? Be impeached? Or is the aim worse than that.

Due to the growing level of acceptable racism against our fully de-legitimized commander in chief, assassination seems to be the glimmer of hope in so many crossed-eyes. The assassination of our president is not a matter I take lightly. This coming from someone who is still convinced George W. Bush did more to destroy America than any president before or after. And while I have always, and will always believe that he should be prosecuted for crimes against his country, I never wished to see the man assassinated. But this isn’t such a concrete assumption to be made when talking about the gnashing, foamy maw of the irrational anti-Obama mania sweeping across the country—or at least blowing through the cable news networks.

As if actual signs being held up at town hall meetings calling for President Obama’s death were blatant enough, it’s interesting to speculate about a solution that would appease these worked-up, misguided, and generally ignorant of reality people. The clue leading me to suspect assassination as a perfectly acceptable end to Obama’s presidency is in the message put forward by his extremist detractors. The people calling the president a socialist, a Nazi, or a Muslim are using very specific words to paint the president as an enemy of America. They’re not simply articulating that they disagree with his strategy to help America, they are calling him names that specifically bring to mind enemies old and new who we regard as ruthless, monstrous, less-than-human villains.

America has always hated “socialists” and for a long time it was perfectly acceptable to imagine dropping several hundred atomic weapons on whole populations of “Reds” to wipe out the “threat” of socialism from the surface of the planet. Nazi’s need no explanation at all in this context as anyone who isn’t a complete idiot, or president of Iran, has no problem visualizing Nazi’s as monsters because they were. (Those silly, but still dangerous American Nazis aren’t really Nazis) And by calling Obama a Muslim people are not drawing parallels to the similarity of his supposed religion to that of Judaism and Christianity in an attempt to bring us all closer. The wounds of 9-11 are still seeping. The idea of a Muslim being president is so threatening to most Americans that they fail to see the idiocy of assuming he would be one of those “bad” Muslims in the first place if he even were Muslim to begin with.

America has plenty of experience with presidential assassinations, and each time it wasn't a foreign national that pulled the trigger. An American has always been behind our slain presidents, and each time the vast majority of Americans felt grief over the tragedy. But I'm starting to suspect that a large percentage of Americans might actually welcome the assassination of President Obama. Some people see President Obama not just as an enemy of America, but an enemy worthy of taking out back and disposing of. As much as it pains me even to imagine the scenario it isn’t too hard to picture droves of “Americans” dancing and singing in the streets or posting celebratory YouTube videos in the event of tragedy befalling our president. Its one thing to celebrate a political victory or defeat but it is another thing entirely to celebrate, or even call for the assassination of our president. While I truly hope we never have to find out, all that has happened over the passed year has lead me to the ugly conclusion that there are Americans who want Obama dead and would think the country a better place for it.

The sickest part is that if such a thing happened the Right Wing would say that as tragic as it is it just goes to show you that Americans didn’t want the country they love to be ruined by a Muslim Nazi Socialist.

Posted by Michael Falino at October 5, 2009 5:58 PM
Comments
Comment #288949

Michael

You are setting up a straw man and in the process demonizing dissent. When liberals opposed George Bush, what did you call it then? Check back on this blog if you want to find some of the things the loyal opposition of days past called president bush.

I want president Obama to succeed. I just don’t think some of his policies will be successful. For example, I felt uncomfortable with the Bush deficits. Now Obama promises deficits three times as high. I don’t think his general economic polices are pro-growth. Unemployment is almost as high as it was in the 1980s. At that time the Reagan policies brought us back. The Obama policies are not job creating. That is just my opinion.

Concerning foreign policy, I stand with my president, whether his name is Bush or Obama. But I fear that his outreach to Russia, Iran and others will not only be rebuffed, but be exploited by our enemies. His continuation of the Bush policies in Iraq and with terrorism in general is something I applaud. I am not sure what he will do in Afghanistan. Neither is the president, so we will have to wait.

I hope you don’t find these opinions hateful. They are the mainstream right of center ideas.

BTW - we have democratic socialism (as in Sweden) which is not dangerous. I don’t think we should have it in America, but it is not threatening. Then we have revolutionary socialism (as in communism and nazism) Those are dangerous.

We should never compare American presidents to Nazis or communists. I am sure the leftists who compared Bush to Nazis feel stupid now and rightist who make similar comparison re Obama should also feel stupid. A plague on all extremists.

Posted by: Christine at October 5, 2009 9:57 PM
Comment #288950

Mike,
It’s important to differentiate and avoid going over the top when discussing a topic like this one.

Some oppose Obama’s policies. It is an honest and justifiable disagreement with his actions and governing philosophy. I don’t agree with everything either. He disappoints me when it comes to transparency in government. I wish he would drastically dial down Afghanistan, and limit our presence there to pursuing Al Qaida, and cut a deal with the Taliban, no matter how distasteful most of us find that. In regards to the collapse of the financial sector last year, I think it is a mistake to put Humpty Dumpty back together again. I’d like to see him push universal health care. Many conservative Republicans have their own wish list. We all benefit by thrashing through these issues.

As an opposition party, it is right for the GOP to oppose when appropriate. As much as it may pain liberals like myself, it is ultimately good for the opposition party to present alternatives.

Some attack Obama because they seem to believe an opposition party is supposed to oppose everything- that if it is bad for Obama, it must be good for them, even if what happens is bad for the entire country. Criticizing Obama for the rescue of civilians from Somali pirates, criticizing him for obtaining the release of two Americans from North Korea, and clapping for the Olympics going to Rio instead of Chicago fall into this category. It’s highly obnoxious and it doesn’t deserve respect, but foolish as it may be, I still don’t consider that over the top.

When it goes over the top is with the accusations of communism, socialism, nazism, being a Kenyan-born Muslim, wanting death panels for senior citizens, along of course with the expressions of outright racism.

Hey, it’s a free country. People can say almost anything they want, no matter how awful it may be. However, what puts the vitriol over the top is the hatred behind those expressions. It is dangerous. It incites the craziest of the crazies, because if they believe it to be true- that Obama is a communist, a socialist, a fascist, a Kenyan-born Muslim known for “palling around with terrorists”, then the crazies will see extreme actions as justifiable.

People like Beck, Limbaugh, Gingrich, Palin, and others have to answer for this. They should be held responsible. Do they want something awful to happen to Obama? No. They do not. Does their extreme rhetoric make it more likely something awful will follow? Yes.

Posted by: phx8 at October 5, 2009 9:59 PM
Comment #288956

Rplcns should be encouraged to self-destruct. When one half of the duopoly is gone, it will be easier to get rid of the whole crooked system. Two books on the topic at Amazon, with interesting descriptions and commentary:

Republican Gomorrah

Eliminationists

Posted by: ohrealy at October 5, 2009 11:32 PM
Comment #288957

As far as I know, no major publisher has published and distributed a novel about assassinating Obama, such as this one which fantasizes about murdering George Bush.

Nor can you go into Blockbuster and rent a movie like this one.

I can’t remember which pundit said it, but it was very apt: after spending eight years fantasizing about the assasination of Bush, the left has now turned to fantasizing about the assasination of Obama. This discussion is just that: a morbid fantasy about a distasteful topic.

Should something so awful actually occur, it would not be because there was domestic opposition to the political agenda of Obama. It would more likely be some foreign entity (similar to the Iraqi plot against the elder Bush), or the usual crazed loner with mental problems (like Hinckley).

Beck, Palin, etc on the other hand have every right to exercise their first amendment rights, as Democrats did during the Bush years, and citizens have every right to gather and redress grieveances in forums like tea parties, as the Constitution expressly grants them. If they cross a line and incite violence, there will be consequences, but cracking down on them for simply vigorously opposing the president and his party would mean that we’d be living in a police state. To Obama’s credit, I imagine that he wants to be President of a free people, not a herd of cowed subjects.

Posted by: Paul at October 5, 2009 11:34 PM
Comment #288958

Christine, I very much agree with what you said. My only response is that I’m not intended a straw man, and I in no way wish to stifle dissent. My point is that the dissent is not “legitimate” in the sense that it is being fostered not truly by policy dispute as it is racism and hatered, fear, lies, etc. There is no discussion going to help spread the ideas of all sides. Nobody is talking, and everyone is yelling. The dissent is being riled up by lies and greed.


phx8, I agree with what you said as well. You pointed out how careful we need to be when calling things certain things, and I think that along with the right to freedom of speech comes the responsibility of using it. You can never really separate the corrupting influence of dogma and ignorance from the good things in America, but when they start to tear apart our fabric and reveal ugly aspects of ourselves to the world, we need to step back and stop making ourselves a laughing stock. I mean people are marching in American streets calling for Obama to die… let’s grow up a little already.

Posted by: Mike Falino at October 5, 2009 11:36 PM
Comment #288959

ohrealy, if we only had one party rule we would have lost our democracy. You need at least two parties if you’re going to have any, but more is optimal. Of course none are even better, but one is just asking for bad news!

Posted by: Mike Falino at October 5, 2009 11:38 PM
Comment #288971

MF, we don’t need any political parties at all. They protect their own crooked members at the expense of the public. I vote Green http://www.greenparty.org/index.php now, although I don’t particular like some of their positions. We should have something more like a science or future party where sensible people could agree on solutions to problems. The Dmcrts are too stuck in supporting our government the way it is, a vast archaic employment program which doesn’t accomplish much that is beneficial to most of us.

Posted by: ohrealy at October 6, 2009 3:44 PM
Comment #288972

You’re right. The only thing we need is an organized political group that knows how to work within the system to help promote viable candidates for elected office. Technically that’s what political parties are supposed to be, but we all know differently. I think we need to get rid of them only in the sense that they would all be gone, but then there would be no organized politics. It’s sort of a catch 22 thing, IMO. the problem isn’t the parties themselves, its the corrupt monsters that use them for political gain. Unfortunately you can’t take the human element out of politics, and so political parties will always end up bastions of corruption and greed, no for the people, but above the people, and in spite of the people!

Posted by: Mike Falino at October 6, 2009 4:45 PM
Comment #288974

Michael:

I don’t doubt that there are some that want Obama to fail, just like there were people on the left that wanted Bush to fail.

I want Obama’s Health care plan to fail.(I must be a racist). Not completely, just now.

There are two huge promises that our government has made that we cannot keep. One is Social Security and the other is Medicare. We are promising people a level of retirement comfort that we all know we cannot deliver on.

Now, our government wants to add a third promise that it can not keep. Promise whatever you want, but in the name of all honesty please tell the American people the truth which is that the promise isn’t worth the paper it is written on because we are heading toward financial ruin.

Put me on board for talking about a new promise when we know we can keep our current promises.

I know I know, I’m a racist, because I don’t support Obama currently on health care, and it is Bush’s fault that Social Security and Medicare are on a non sustainable path.

But really your thread here is jumping to some pretty out there conclusions. Many people who disagree with the President are being put into convenient little boxes, which is the left’s way of not dealing with legitimate differences in policy. “It can’t be our policy so it must be racism”.

Posted by: Craig Holmes at October 6, 2009 5:21 PM
Comment #288976

I did no link everyone who wants him to fail with those who may want him dead. My point was that there is a vocal, visible segment of the American population that seems to want our President dead due to false, inaccurate portrayals, lies and fear-mongering.

Not all who want him to fail put forth this “aura” if you will. You can oppose his policies, just make sure your arguments against them are rational and based on facts. The people who truly, honestly believe Obama is a Muslim Nazi hate him, and want him to fail more permanently and more “satisfyingly” than those who want his policies to fail. I don’t believe there has ever been such a vocal, publicly accepted vilification of a president. Bush was a horrible man and a monstrous failure as a president, but all the calls against him were actually based on things he’d done, lied about, etc.

The prime message of the opposition to Obama’s policies is that he’s a foreigner trying to dismantle the country and sell us all into slavery.

Big difference!

Posted by: Mike Falino at October 6, 2009 6:08 PM
Comment #288977

Craig,

“Many people who disagree with the President are being put into convenient little boxes, which is the left’s way of not dealing with legitimate differences in policy. “It can’t be our policy so it must be racism”.”

The sarcasm rings kind of hollow when for the last 8 years those that were opposed to Bush’s policies were branded as traitors and treasonus.

Paul,

Frankly, it’s hard to get excited about an author and an English movie, neither of which I have ever heard of when people are bringing actual weapons to town hall meetings.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at October 6, 2009 6:16 PM
Comment #288978

apparently the fact that people are actually now making the effort to “exorcise” their right to bare arms is too ironic for some people. Why exactly are ammunition stores running out across the country?

The opposition to Bush, as deserved as it was, never took on this tone.

Posted by: Mike Falino at October 6, 2009 6:26 PM
Comment #288979

I am still rubbing my eyes after reading an article in the NY Times that 144,000 taxpayers in California are paying half of all the income taxes in that state. Can that be true? If so, is it any wonder folks who are ambitious and wish to keep more of what they earn are leaving the state in droves.

My objection to this president is that his policies will, I believe, lead us in the same disastrous direction that California has gone.

Should this happen nationwide…our most productive people will very possibly leave the country. Not a good idea regardless of political persuasion.

I am also very concerned about the president’s seeming inaction in dealing with rogue countries who, if left to their own devices, will cause great harm to us and the world. Just where will this president draw the line? What does he consider important enough to deem worthy of stout and robust action? Teddy Roosevelt had a “big stick” and this president has a wimpy noodle. Does he really believe the world will be impressed with his rhetoric and not notice his actions? Hardly…they know a wimp when they see one.

Mr. Biden told us during the campaign that Mr. Obama had a “spine of steel”. Have you seen that yet…I for certain have not. What I have seen is our president going to foreign countries with hat in hand and apologies for nearly everything this great country has accomplished. He is not a spokesman for this country, but rather, an apologist.

This president is too impressed with himself and his image and doesn’t realize that he has become a laughing stock in other capitals of the world. We no longer enjoy the trust of our natural allies, and why should we expect it? What has this president done to encourage any country to follow our lead? If we don’t lead we must follow. And, who will Mr. Obama follow?

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 6, 2009 6:29 PM
Comment #288980

Why are we above having to apologize. Maybe other countries will respect us again if we own up to our mistakes.

But I agree he seems prone to inaction. I am worried he will never rise up and kick the ass needed to get his policies into action. Whether they work or not, stop floundering around!

But at least, Royal Flush, you argued against him without waving a gun. That is the difference I am talking about.

Posted by: Mike Falino at October 6, 2009 6:45 PM
Comment #288981

Mike Falino writes; “Why are we above having to apologize. Maybe other countries will respect us again if we own up to our mistakes.”

I believe that if a country wishes to mea coulpa for past misdeeds they should, at the same time, ask for praise for those things which were done correctly. Why is there this need…now, to ask forgiveness? Where are the apologies from other major countries in the world for their misdeeds?

My friend, the man who goes around the world beating his breast will soon be beaten on the head. I wonder where this president received permission to offer these apologies on behalf of this country. Was this a part of his campaign that I missed?

While he may believe he is the Messiah…he isn’t. Jesus was a pretty tough cookie when it came to defending His Father’s business. This man is just a wimp.

Can anyone tell me of a war that was avoided by the eloquence of its leader rather than his strength and resolve? Why would rogue nations reform because he is making nice?

This is a very troubled world with many dangers. We put our hand out to shake the hand of our enemy and will find it cut off at the wrist. Read a little about all the concessions made to Hitler by those with great intentions. Then read what that great world leader and ultimate statesman, Winston Churchill was saying at the same time. Had the world listened to Churchill and required Germany to obey the agreement to not rearm we never would have had to endure WWII.

Just as many in Europe were in an apeasement mode prior to WWII, we find ourselves in that same loosing mode here today in the US under the leadership of Mr. Obama.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 6, 2009 7:04 PM
Comment #288983

I would have to disagree with Jimmy Carter that most of the hatred of Obama is racist in origin. However, it is a significant factor for many of those who have been out at demonstrations behaving like children. These people are predictable, they are stupid, ill-informed, nit-wits hardly worth mention. I would include some of the bigger fools in congress like Joe Wilson, Jeff Sessions, Jim DeMint and others who do not voice reasonable opposition but spew nonsense that has zero basis in reality. Fools like Glen Beck in the media belong in this category. These people are morons and probably have a problem with anyone whose skin is darker than their own, but not dangerous. I don’t think anyone expects one of these morons to act out violently.

There are racists out there that are indeed dangerous. Since racism is not based in anything resembling logic (in fact, the concept of race isn’t based on anything real to begin with) it is not a big stretch to expect that those in the grips of this irrational fear to act out in an irrational way. When these James Earl Ray types (why is it always someone who uses all three of their names?) consumes the garbage spewed by racist politicians or broadcasters they feel empowered to act. Not that any one should be held liable for spewing filth on the house or senate floor or on the airwaves if one of these psychopaths does try to act out but they helped feed into it and have a certain moral culpability for their words deeds.

That being said, politics is in a lot of ways an emotional irrational game. It always has been and always will be. Having done a research project on newspapers in the 1840s in grad school, some of the things that are being said about Obama in the press are mild compared to some of the things printed in the mid-19th century papers.

I am not sure what to do about these sad people but I am sure that restricting the First Amendment or trying to muzzle these folks is not the way to go. We have just been through 8 years of constitutional encroachment based on fear and just because it is now an administration I support in office I support our constitution more. Freedom is not always a safe business but I would argue a lot safer than if we didn’t have our freedoms.

So go ahead and hate. It is your right. Go ahead and go to rallies and stand next to folks with signs of Obama dressed like a witch doctor. Or stand silently when someone makes a racist comment. All it does is discredit those with real concerns about the current administration. Just as those who accused Bush of being behind 9-11 did for the legitimate opposition to him. It made me angry that these morons distracted from very real reasons to oppose Bush just as I am sure these current not-jobs are frustrating to those of you here that oppose Obama and the liberal agenda on grounds that are reasonable and not racist. But crackpots are a fact of life, we had to live with ours and the right now has to live with theirs. Hopefully none will act out violently.

Posted by: tcsned at October 6, 2009 7:23 PM
Comment #288984

Royal Flush,

We’ve been beating our chest and bragging to the world since WWII. From 2001 thru 2008, we quit beating our chest and began beating up the world. Perhaps a little humility will do us all good???

Craig Holmes,

>We are promising people a level of retirement comfort that we all know we cannot deliver on.

I’m sorry, but do you know anyone who can live on SS alone? Why do you think so many old folks get their heat/electricity turned off each winter? Why do you think there are so many fan drives in the hot months? Most recipients worked and paid into SS for decades, why do you assume it is some sort of ‘give-away’ program…a welfare, that is providing the high-life to undeserving people?

Posted by: Marysdude at October 6, 2009 7:30 PM
Comment #288985

tcsned, you’re very right. The only hitch is that these people’s actions don’t just discredit themselves. They only do so to those with enough brains to see it. These protests have very real power to influence world-changing events.

The Right is so concerned with how the rest of the world views us yet they encourage, foster, and promote these idiotic claims—whether they themselves believe them or are just using them for political advantage—and yet the rest of the world is looking on and seeing these buffoons who make Americans actually look like inbred, uneducated, gun-waving morons.

Posted by: Mike Falino at October 6, 2009 7:36 PM
Comment #288987

With Bush, the hatred was driven by what he did.
With Obama, the hatred is driven by who he is.

Royal Flush,
According to the latest poll, the US image abroad has seen vast improvement. We have regained our standing in the eyes of the world, especially in Europe, but also in Latin America, South America, Africa, and Asia. (Only one country saw a drop- Israel). Once again, the international community has confidence in the US and what it stands for, and it directly due to Obama. The value of this goodwill cannot be underestimated.

Bad news for Obama haters.

Better find a new talking point.

Posted by: phx8 at October 6, 2009 7:43 PM
Comment #288988

Yeah, Israel’s drop is because we’re just slightly less warmongering as we were 10 months ago! Strange…

Posted by: Mike Falino at October 6, 2009 7:44 PM
Comment #288989

phx8…surely you jest. The world now loves us because we are apologists? The insanity of such a belief staggers the mind.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 6, 2009 7:49 PM
Comment #288990

Wait, are you saying that showing the rest of the world that at least one American doesn’t think the whole country has a right to piss on the world and get away with it is a bad thing? Are you one of those people that thinks America has nothing ever to own up to because we’re actually better then all the other countries? I was always taught that when you do something bad you apologize. Maybe the rest of the world grew up and took that to heart and America is still the toddler who thinks everything is hers…

I’m not saying we have to get down and grovel, but when people start equating actually opening dialogue with other countries is the same as making America look bad and weak, that’s insane. Why are there people who think America has to have enemies? Maybe we can turn some enemies into at least begrudging allies if we stop kicking sand in their face. Maybe we could, you know, extend a hand instead of a hand grenade once in a while.

Posted by: Mike Falino at October 6, 2009 8:07 PM
Comment #288992

Mike

Most of the world’s people live under despots. Look at the way people are treated in China, India, Iran, Russia etc. And some of these are “good” countries. Most of the rest of the world certainly did not “grow up.” Most of the rest of the world is still living in that Hobbesian world of oppression.

Think of Iran. You recall how they beat and killed people for protesting a stolen election. If they are willing to do this to their own people, how will they treat others?

We are not really apologizing to “the people.” We are apologizing to crooked, corrupt and bloodthirsty leaders. Do you really want to be “friends” with the kind of people leading Iran, Libya, N. Korea etc. One reason some people think we have to apologize is BECAUSE we made friends with people like that in the past.

Let me take the Iranian example again. We would be apologizing for helping the Shah in 1953. He remained in power until 1979, when he was replaced by an even more oppressive regime. Should we apologize to that regime. Maybe we should indeed apologize to the Iranian people that tyrants like those theocrats are still in power thirty years later and we haven’t been able to do anything about it.

Indeed, we have to live with them. They don’t have to be enemies, but if president Amandinijad ever thinks the U.S. is his good friend we will have to check our morals, since we would be accomplices to the destruction of the Iranian people. Your friends say a lot about you.

We do have some moral obligations to the PEOPLE of Iran, N Korea, Zimbabwe, Sudan, Libya etc. Their leaders do not represent them. It is like befriending the abusive man who claims to represent his battered wife and kids. We should not get too close to dogs like these.

Someday, future generations will call for a future president to apologize FOR President Obama if he cozies up too close to the despots.

BTW - what do you think of our president not meeting the Dalai Lama? It insults our Chinese friends if we pay attention to the people they are oppressing.

Posted by: Christine at October 6, 2009 9:08 PM
Comment #288993

Royal Flush,
Here is an article on the NBI poll:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20091005/lf_nm_life/us_usa_status

“What’s really remarkable is that in all my years studying national reputation, I have never seen any country experience such a dramatic change in its standing as we see for the United States for 2009,” said Simon Anholt, the founder of NBI, which measured the global image of 50 countries each year… “There is no other explanation,” Anholt said in an interview, referring to the impact of Obama.”

NBI “polled “20,000 people in 20 rich and developing countries around the globe” who were asked to “rate 50 nations in categories such as culture, governance, people, exports, tourism, landscape and education.”

Christine would have you believe it is the despots of the world who admire Obama, but in fact, the greatest admiration comes from western Europe.

If you dislike the NBI poll, an article on a Pew poll shows similar admiration among the rest of the world for the US:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/24/world/24survey.html?_r=1&hp

So, I guess I might be insane, but sanity is overrated. I’ve looked up Obama as an apoligist, but I cannot find anything to support what you are saying. What is your source of information? It seems like a talking point from Beck or Limbaugh or Fox News. The US lost its standing among the nations of the world because of its invasion and occupation of Iraq, its arrogance, and its anti-science attitude in regards to Global Warming.

Posted by: phx8 at October 6, 2009 9:22 PM
Comment #288994

You make very good points Christine, and while I often speak in broad terms, yes, the rest of the world certainly hasn’t grown up. But his opposition makes it seem like Obama is having secret meetings with Bin Laden and several warlords in Africa. When I meant the rest of the world I mean our supposed “western”. Europe must look at us and laugh. Not like they live in a utopia, but at least they haven’t lost their minds.

If under Bush’s leadership it was perfectly acceptable to hang around with the Saudis and become their lapdogs, why can’t Obama try and have talks with Iran, or try and reach out to others?

Again, his actions are being blown so out of proportion and used as political fodder that people haven’t even stopped to realize that maybe just acting like an equal human being with other people might go some distance. It has to have more of a chance at helping than constant warfare, saber rattling, and chest puffing. We appease and turn a blind eye to so much atrocity in the word that maybe it isn’t so bad to “befriend” less “savory” allies than our stellar selves once in a while.

In comparison to what we let happen, opening diplomatic dialogue with “enemy” nations isn’t so bad. Does anyone realize that Iran has human beings in it that don’t deserve to be melted with atomic weapons?

We can’t just keep threatening death to all who oppose us forever. Our closest allies, being Europe, have moved on socially to a much more realistic place. At what point can we move into the 19th century to try and at least catch up?

Posted by: Mike Falino at October 6, 2009 9:22 PM
Comment #288996

Marysdude:

Every year three months before a persons birthday they get a statement from social security.

What does the “*” mean on the statement?

It says after the “*”

“Your estimated benefits are based on current law. Congress has made changes to the law in the past and can do so at any time. The law governing benefit amounts may change becaue, by 2041, the payroll taxes collected will be enought to pay only about 78% of scheduled benefits”

In other words there isn’t enough money to keep the promises of anyone living past 2041. So if longevity is roughly 80, let’s see, 2041 - 2009 = 32. 80 - 32 = 48. So roughly anyone under 50 we cannot keep our promises to.

Social Security is the program that is in the best shape. Medicare is in such bad shape it could take the whole country down.

So I am out of the debate, a “no” until Medicare and SS are fixed.

Posted by: Craig Holmes at October 6, 2009 9:30 PM
Comment #288998

phx8, its like some fool that wrote into my local paper said; Obama put us into trillions of dollars of debt! Really, he put us there? Really?

Obama is making us look bad by trying to make friends and restore respect around the globe?

Remember folks, the folks that are our closest critics have already realized that you can’t just start wars all over the place and blame everyone else. How many wars does England start? France? Spain? Italy? Scotland for jeebus sake?

The people who the Republicans “think” admire us are the same people that hate Obama as much as they do, because he’s an American, no other reason. Bin Laden didn’t come out after Obama became president and said “yay, everything’s good now”. Also, they don’t say “he’s a stupid American black man”. He’s just an American.

The people who do remotely like us are disgusted by us and the people who hate us still hate us. The Right will have everyone believe the opposite.

Posted by: Mike Falino at October 6, 2009 9:34 PM
Comment #288999

Mike:

There really isn’t that much to hate. He can’t seem to get much done.

The world loves him, but doesn’t really respect him.

Posted by: Craig Holmes at October 6, 2009 9:42 PM
Comment #289000

>So I am out of the debate, a “no” until Medicare and SS are fixed.
Posted by: Craig Holmes at October 6, 2009 09:30 PM

Craig,

Projections are made for a reason…sorry to see you go.

Posted by: Marysdude at October 6, 2009 10:30 PM
Comment #289001

Mike

Love the Iranians; hate the Iranian regime. The Iranian people are the biggest victims of the mullahs, who are holding them hostage.

We need to know that when we deal with the leaders of these countries we are talking to the warden, not the representative.

Posted by: Christine at October 6, 2009 11:58 PM
Comment #289003

Christine,

Are we to believe that you think President Obama is so obtuse he doesn’t know the difference between the citizens and the leaders of Iran?

Posted by: Marysdude at October 7, 2009 5:21 AM
Comment #289004

Marysdude:

What I mean is count me as a no for now.

Thank you for not calling me a racist and many with my viewpoint are now being called!!

However, I do hope the President’s health care reform effort fails until Social Security and Medicare are put on solid ground.

I also hope the Democratic party will start telling the truth, that we can’t keep the current promises that have been made.

Posted by: Craig Holmes at October 7, 2009 9:44 AM
Comment #289006

Craig Holmes,

You wish the DEMOCRATIC party would start telling the truth??????

We all know that our two most important social programs are on the brink of failure. We know that they have been mis-managed for decades, and that the Republican party has taken some pretty big shots at them over the years. I, for one, believe they are worth salvaging and that salvage is possible. But, and it’s a pretty big but, I don’t think either can be saved until health care costs are brought under control.

In other words, you believe the hen came first and I think it was the egg. Conservatives have had their shot…and, blew it. If liberals try and fail, it was a lost cause to you anyway. Get on board…perhaps with some support, we’ll all get through it for the better. Gloomy Gus never succeeds at anything.

Posted by: Marysdude at October 7, 2009 11:01 AM
Comment #289007

>Thank you for not calling me a racist and many with my viewpoint are now being called!!
Posted by: Craig Holmes at October 7, 2009 09:44 AM

Craig Holmes,

I don’t know you well enough to call you a racist. My thoughts revert to one of those old ‘mama sayings’, “if you lay down with dogs, don’t be surprised if you get up with fleas”. Many of your conservative bent are out-and-out racist. It is obvious from their outward aspects in signs they carry and the words they utter. I have yet to see your leadership or conservative posters on this site attempt to distance your policy concerns from that vociferous plague. Please understand that from my viewpoint, until policy differences are couched in terms other than status quo, I’ll believe there are darker motives from the right, and some of those motives have to do with the desire to see America fail, if it cannot be a CONSERVATIVE America, and some of those motives are, quite frankly, racist.

Posted by: Marysdude at October 7, 2009 11:15 AM
Comment #289009

phx8, here is a quote from the article you referenced from the polling firm NBI…

“They were asked to rate 50 nations in categories such as culture, governance, people, exports, tourism, landscape and education.”

Please point out to me the ones which would have been directly influenced by Mr. Obama. Was it tourism…landscape….culture…or what? Is it possible in just 9 short months that the president could have overhauled any of these to account for our rise in this poll?

Do you expect me to believe that a mere polling of 20 thousand person worldwide would be an accurate depiction of reality?

The use of this poll to advance the “magic” of Mr. Obama is silly. To connect the president’s proclivity at apology with a rise in this country’s popularity is an exercise in misdirection.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 7, 2009 2:08 PM
Comment #289011

To be fair, Royal Flush, every poll is trash. They’re all done with tiny numbers of people and have obscure questions, often leading, and tell us nothing. The Rigth discredits the Left-leaning surveys, and the Left discredits the Right-leaning ones.

Posted by: Mike Falino at October 7, 2009 2:36 PM
Comment #289013

*whew* I’m so glad that gergle pointed out to me that it was unthinkable that the left would label people’s options as racist without any proof to such a thing. I don’t know why I was so worried about it, this article’s comments surely haven’t proven my point in any way…

(/sarcasm)

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 7, 2009 2:49 PM
Comment #289016

I like Rasmussen’s three day averaging of the president’s popularity. It presents an honest picture and reports both the highs and lows.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 7, 2009 4:25 PM
Comment #289022

Marysdude

I am not sure he cares deeply about the difference.

Posted by: Christine at October 7, 2009 9:39 PM
Comment #289024

Rhinehold,

If I only had actually said that….:)


BTW, I’m also pro death panels and police state. (sarcasm) :)

Posted by: gergle at October 7, 2009 9:45 PM
Comment #289025

Marysdude:


http://blogs.usatoday.com/onpolitics/2009/06/poll-conservatives-still-largest-ideological-group.html

There are twice as many conservatives than liberals.

Liberals right now are promoting a myth that we on the right oppose Obama because he is black. Of course there is racism. Remember Obama’s pastor? There is a lot of racism on the left as well, and we should oppose racism where ever we find it.

Right now the left is using racism as a political tool to try to explain opposition to Obama. What is sad is that the race card is still pretty powerful. It’s easy to use to.

Posted by: Craig Holmes at October 7, 2009 10:03 PM
Comment #289026

Marysdude:

Gloomy gus huh? It’s better than a racist like many on the right are being called right now.

I agree that Social Security and Medicare are worth salvaging. The problem with getting on the bus right now is that as we debate the world is moving quickly away from the US. The dollar is falling rapidly and those that want to dump the dollar are growing louder and louder.

California’s bond rating is BBB. A bit above junk.

Some of the best economists say it is only a matter of time before the debt rating of our country is reduced.

Your side can’t promise that you will be able to continue to deliver these new promises. You can’t even promise to keep delivering Social Security!!!

Posted by: Craig Holmes at October 7, 2009 10:10 PM
Comment #289029
If I only had actually said that….:)

Hmmm http://www.watchblog.com/democrats/archives/006728.html#288900

pretending that any criticism of Obama is something liberals will attribute to racism is absurd.

*shrug*

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 8, 2009 12:24 AM
Comment #289030

Craig,

Pretty much the same things were being said about SS in the late thirties, perhaps they were correct, but think of all the lives SS has saved over the years since then. Then think of the lives it will save until it actually does fold up. Are you willing to say to the people who paid in to SS and were able to eke out a better life for it, “you did not deserve to live a longer, more comfortable life, even though you paid the premiums”? That sounds suspiciously like what the large insurance companies are saying to many policy holders now…

Was Social Security a bad idea? Was Medicare a bad idea? Did not the people who were starving deserve a more comfortable ride in their old age? Did not the sick and dying deserve treatments and surcease for their ills? How would you have handled it differently if you could have influenced the adoptions of those two programs? What arguments would you have made in the late thirties to curb the enthusiasms for a retirement stipend? What arguments would you have given in the sixties against providing reasonably priced medical insurance for the aging? Would you have argued any differently than those who were influential at the time?

Posted by: Marysdude at October 8, 2009 5:13 AM
Comment #289031

Rhinehold,

liberals as a group, not individual nut jobs.

But that would be obvious to someone without an agenda, wouldn’t it?

So your assertion is that ALL liberals ALWAYS accuse any criticism of Obama as racist? Oh, Yeah, that was what your joke said. I guess then you believe that fallacy. Nothing bigoted about that, eh?

I mean, we know you subscribe to all bigoted conservative crap, right? So you have no problem when someone drapes that accusation on you, right?

“shrug”

Thanks for the clarification.

Posted by: gergle at October 8, 2009 6:49 AM
Comment #289036

The easiest thing in the world is to not be referred to as a racist…all it takes is to quit sounding and acting like a Grand Dragon. DeMint of South Carolina should try it sometime.

Posted by: Marysdude at October 8, 2009 8:51 AM
Comment #289047

Marysdude:

I am sure things were said in the 1930’s and 1960’s. We now know Johnson and Democratic congress withheld critical information about the true cost of Medicare until after it was law.

The Congressional Budget Office currently run by Democrats says that our budget is on and unsustainable path (their words not mine). Dollar is tanking betting on health care passing.

You can pass another promise you can’t keep. Our poor children and grandchildren. Leaving them hopelessly in debt.

Posted by: Craig Holmes at October 8, 2009 7:40 PM
Comment #289049

Craig,

The CBO is the CBO no matter who is in the majority. Were your thoughts along the same line when conservatives had the helm? Come on! That’s pretty lame…you seem to be grasping for straws (strawmen?).

Posted by: Marysdude at October 9, 2009 6:44 AM
Comment #289050

They’ve drunk the Obama kool-aid in Oslo and are giving him the Nobel Peace Prize, apparently to encourage “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.” from
http://www.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/europe/10/09/nobel.peace.prize/index.html

I wonder when the pope will make him a saint, he’s been President for almost nine months. He’s certainly earned it.

Posted by: ohrealy at October 9, 2009 8:41 AM
Comment #289051

ohrealy,

Key phrase…’he’s been President’…something we haven’t had for a long, long time.

Posted by: Marysdude at October 9, 2009 9:25 AM
Comment #289052

Craig,
So, Nobel Peace Prize. Is that enough international respect for you?

Too funny. How the right wing hates this! It blows every lame talking point out of the water.

Royal Flush,
Enjoy!

Posted by: phx8 at October 9, 2009 10:35 AM
Comment #289053

I think the nobel thing is interesting. He certainly doesn’t deserve it because he’s yet to do anything, but phx8 does bring up an interesting point. If this doesn’t show he is more highly respected than the Right wants everyone to believe, nothing will.

Still, its kind of weird that he got it…

Posted by: Mike Falino at October 9, 2009 11:55 AM
Comment #289054

Mike,
Depends on where you get your news. From an international perspective, he is deserving for many reasons. The rest of the world does not see Obama the same way we do in the US. Talk of drawing down arms races and making speeches to Muslims advocating peaceful relations is viewed differently abroad from here. We’re conditioned to support militarism and corporatism.

For advocates of violence and confrontation, and apologists for war, this award is incomprehensible.

Posted by: phx8 at October 9, 2009 12:40 PM
Comment #289055

Here is a brief list:
Prohibiting use of torture, ordering the closing of Guantanamo, Signing an executive order to close CIA secret prisons, resuming Global Warming participation, initiating new SALT treaty process with Russia, easing tensions with Cuba, and perhaps the most important of all from an international perspective, the speech in Cairo addressed to the Muslim world. All that in less than one year!

Posted by: phx8 at October 9, 2009 1:04 PM
Comment #289077

I agree, phx8, that he has done some diplomatic things. And those are the things that do matter overseas, so in that regard whether or not he deserves it for his international efforts doesn’t concern me. What is interesting is that he knew enough to mention his lack of any real “action” and that he was accepting it as a call for action on such matters. But I just find it difficult to give the Nobel peace prize to someone who refuses to exit Vietnam 2.0.

I heard someone say he should give it back. Imagine what the Right would say if he did that? They’d show their hand faster than they could put on a poker face. Still, he has done a lot to restore America’s standing around the world—no matter what Righties like to pretend—so we do have to separate his inaction domestically with his action abroad. Still, refusing to end a war we have no business fighting and can’t win sort of negates the whole “peace” thing for me…

Posted by: Mike Falino at October 9, 2009 5:18 PM
Comment #289084

Phx8

Craig, So, Nobel Peace Prize. Is that enough international respect for you?

Too funny. How the right wing hates this! It blows every lame talking point out of the water.

Royal Flush,
Enjoy!

The right doesn’t hate this. The right thinks it’s hysterical!!!

Your excitment just means you are from the far left. One of yours got an award. The far left is pretty small, but it is big in the Nobel Prize committee!!

Posted by: Craig Holmes at October 9, 2009 6:46 PM
Comment #289085

Marysdude:

The CBO is the CBO no matter who is in the majority. Were your thoughts along the same line when conservatives had the helm? Come on! That’s pretty lame…you seem to be grasping for straws (strawmen?).

That is a fair comment.

The world has change fundamentally in the last year. I used to debate this thing routinely saying “we are ok the stearing wheel will turn toward fiscal reponsibility” and “America will not decide to commit suicide, I see we are on a bad path but I’m not worried, democracies change”.

What has happened since then is the steering wheel turned from irresponsibility to insanity. Borrowing a trillion dollars a year for the next ten years is insanity.

I am actually in favor “in theory” of universal coverage of some sort. But this sort. A huge tax increase in the middle of the great recession? Wow that is political and not economic.

The CBO has said for some time that we are on the road to ruin. The Great Recession made this fact change from a distant abstract to something that we can likely see in our lifetimes. The UN now wants a new world currency!!!

No, I’m not grasping at straws, I am reading reports.

The Long-Term Budget Outlook Over the long term (beyond the 10-year baseline projection period), the budget remains on an unsustainable path. Unless changes are made to current policies, the nation will face a growing demand for budgetary resources caused by rising health care costs and the aging of the population. Continued large deficits and the resulting increases in federal debt over time would reduce long-term economic growth by lowering national saving and investment relative to what would otherwise occur,causing productivity and wage growth to gradually slow.

This “strawman” as you call it uses the term “grim” to descibe the fiscal situation of our country. So the Congressional Budget Office is telling us as loud as it can that America’s future is “GRIM”. (their word not mine).

Posted by: Craig Holmes at October 9, 2009 7:00 PM
Comment #289102

Craig,

So, when the CBO says bad things about the way things are going it is a Republican CBO, and should be considered trustworthy, but when it says good things can happen, it suddenly becomes a biased Democrat controlled engine of national distruction that cannot be trusted? What strawman???

Posted by: Marysdude at October 9, 2009 11:13 PM
Comment #289121

>The right doesn’t hate this. The right thinks it’s hysterical!!!
Posted by: Craig Holmes at October 9, 2009 06:46 PM

Craig,

The right thinks it’s hysterical, and the left thinks it’s historical, that an American, in the land most of the world considers a war monger nation, is awarded a Nobel for peace…hmmm.

Posted by: Marysdude at October 10, 2009 4:11 PM
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