You Do It To Yourself
Let me jokingly offer the theme song for the Republican National Convention, with a quite appropriate video.
Why can't Republicans shake the troubles that have assailed them?
Most people know General Custer as the guy who got himself and his men killed in a foolish confrontation against the Lakota and Cheyenne in Montana. What a legally required meeting between the governor and New Mexican Native Americans would mean in the context of his memory, most would not venture to say.
This guy ventured.
Is that the worst thing? No, and neither is Mitt Romney's recent Birth Certificate joke. Oh, he says the crowd loved it. Oh, he says, it doesn't mean anything.
Romney reiterated to CBS that he does not agree with those who question the president's birthplace and denied that the line was a "swipe" at Obama.
"No, no, not a swipe," Romney said. "I've said throughout the campaign and before, there's no question about where he was born. He was born in the U.S. This was fun about us, and coming home. And humor, you know, we've got to have a little humor in a campaign."
Problem is, one, he brought up the Birth Certificate. He never had to do that (that is, bring up Obama's certificate). Two, if they loved the joke, got the joke, why? With polls showing large numbers of Republicans believing that crap, even after repeated release of documentary proof, loving that joke doesn't speak well of the party. Brave, Brave Sir Romney, has certainly not confronted those who have bought into this BS, preferring instead, up to this point, to drop in the boilerplate "of course I believe he's a citizen" rigamarole...
And then makes a joke whose whole premise was what a nice, all-American boy he his compared to Obama, a reference to a birth certificate the President had to produce in an effort to shut up the idiots in Romney's party.
Leaders like Romney should have long ago stamped this out. It's one of the primary things that Democrats point to to make Republicans look like they're living in a parallel reality, but the trouble is, the GOP needs people who are that dedicated to believing the worst in their opponents. They don't want to lose votes when they do stupid things, so they make the truth an optional notion in these arguments.
Or as in Rep. Todd Akin's case, they look for information to support their position, and only that which supports their position. They ignore that "Liberal/Socialist" media, and come up with a theory that by its sheer archaic misogyny, stuns the voting public. Then despite some pretty subtle prodding from his party, and at last the Republican nominee for President, he decides to stay in the race.
That could very well hand the seat over to Claire McCaskill for another term, and if it doesn't, you have the person who lacked so much common sense that they made that remark back there in the Senate to make even more remarks, and make the party look even worse.
And of course, the fact that the party establishment wasn't able to push him out shows that the GOP is pretty weak in that regard, and the Tea Party is hardly a majority in their Congressional delegation. People, in fact, supported him just for that reason.
Lots of people in the GOP love they Tea Party, love the fact that they appear to be quite willing to finally force the policies that the GOP has been hyping to them all along. Just a few problems.
The first is, they don't yet have the numbers in Congress and the Presidency to fulfill the constitutional requirements for passing a law. Bills don't set policy, laws do, so the net effect of the Tea Party on policy has been limited to, say, the so-called fiscal cliff, which economist say will kick the economy in a sensitive place sometime in 2013. Gee, thanks. And you only got that by almost sacrificing America's ability to borrow at an affordable rate and crashing the world economy.
The second is that, as in the above example, Tea Party policy actually scares people. I know Tea Partiers think its the liberal's fault (they think EVERYTHING is our fault), but the truth is, in their zeal, they've lost perspective on just how radical they've become. They're so sure they're right, and so sure that the other side has gone completely whacko, thanks to the complete whackos they've listened to, that they can't judge people's responses properly anymore.
Let's take mild example: Ryan's budget last year. Ryan and others were proud to be so unremittingly conservative. But this radical budget, which turns Medicare into a voucher plan, Social Security into a stock market crapshoot, and guts many other parts of the budget concerning the poor wasn't exactly a hit. When you lose the Catholic bishops, not exactly raging Marxists that lot, you might have gone a bit too far. Don't care what they think? Then listen to the majority of Americans, who had only months before elected the Republicans to a majority.
Worse than that, the opposition among seniors was pronounced, as in 74% against. Didn't matter that they were excluded from the change.
Even now, you ask whether people would support a voucher based program over the current system, and you get an answer of sixty three to nineteen against.
Any wonder why Democrats were pleased to see Ryan on Romney's ticket?
And it's not something the liberal media does. I know many conservatives want to believe that, because it comforts them with the notion that if they really got the chance to push their agenda, everybody would love it, and tip-toe through the tulips with them. But what if that's not the case? What if even if they support the notion of some of their stands, they don't like the consequences. The dogmatic GOP, and the even more dogmatic Tea Party won't even consider that possibility. They hope that if they bombard people with enough propaganda, folks will change their thinking.
I remember the Republican response in 2008 to the growing crisis. They knew it was unpopular to bailout the banks, to bail out Lehman Brothers. So, when the first opportunities came to do it, they failed to do it. In the case of the latter, it was the straw that broke the camel's back. In the case of the former, it hardly helped them build credibility among voters, and it meant that they got to it too late. The results were not good for the Republicans. The Tea Party only rose to prominence after the establishment had burned its economic credibility in 2008.
But did their vision of things necessarily coincide with the rest of America? The Debt Ceiling, coupled with the Ryan Budget, turned the Tea Party's fortunes around, and in the wrong direction. They saw people willing to crash the economy, and radically remake entitlements in a way that scared most people about their future, and shocked those who were concerned about the morality of the policy. Congress is unpopular with 82% of Americans, who aren't exactly grateful for the way things have gone down. That Congress came in with promises of jobs, and while they've tried to blame the President for the impasse, Republicans get the blame more, by 47 to 30% in a January NYT poll.
Obama maintains consistently higher number for being willing to reach across the aisle, for being friendlier, for supporting Medicare and Social security policies, and so on and so forth. And why? In no small part because he doesn't take his popularity or his connection to voters for granted. The GOP and the Tea Party have been taught to think of themselves as God's gift to the voting public, and are caught off guard by the President looking good. They blame the liberal media, but the fact of the matter is, Obama makes an effort to connect with voters beyond their party on a calm, reasonable basis, while Republicans and Tea Partiers rely increasingly on fear tactics and oppositional politics.
In other words, Republicans, in loudly and openly refusing the compromise, refusing to dial back their policies to more moderate levels, in basically eradicating moderates in their party, have built the image of being radicals, loudmouths, and mouth-breathers that they so despise. And they feel very little incentive to change that. They feel they have a winning strategy, and in some parts of the country they do. But the reality is, when they refuse to moderate themselves, this is where it ultimately leads.
There's something of value to being in touch with reality. In order to keep Republicans loyal voters despite all the scandals and screw-ups, the GOP's allowed its members to indulge what I could only call a political version of paranoid schizophrenia. I'm serious. These are the sorts of things you would hear out of somebody having paranoid delusions. UN troops invading North Texas. The President leading the way if he's re-elected. A tax increase to pay for a militia. This is what you're getting out of a lot of local Republicans across America. Whatever you thought was bad at the national scale is positively horrible on the local.
And why do these people win? Because career politicians, after years of hyping up the threat of liberalism, after years of counting on outlandish propaganda to keep Republicans voting Republican, are now reaping what they sow, and afraid to confront voters who have gone off the deep end. Especially now. Without the Tea Party, the Republicans don't have a majority. But with it, how long do they get to keep it, the way they're talking?
I've kept my eye on the GOP for quite some time now, and one thing has become obvious to me: they are so entrenched in their oppositional politics, that they won't back down from anything for fear of looking weak. Unfortunately, their inability to moderate policy or politics, rhetoric or propaganda has become a weakness in and of itself.
Posted by Stephen Daugherty at August 24, 2012 11:23 PM
Stephen, You sure are quick to complain about what Republicans say and quick to defend the MORONIC comments of “Ole Uncle Joe” Worry about your own party and their stupid comments.
I don’t have to worry about old Uncle Joe peddling some ridiculous conspiracy theory, and when he does say those occationally nutty bon mots, I can be confident that the Obama White House will be quick to rein him in.
From the looks of it, Akin’s comment will cost them a Senate seat.
There’s a difference between wanting the gaffes of the left and the right to have equal effect, and having them be that way.
Personnelly Stephen, I don’t care about Akin, it’s Mo. responsibility to elect him or not. I don’t see why you worry yourself with what dumbass republicans say, If I were you I’d worry about what some dumbass Democrat would say. Besides Republicans alienated themselves from Akin, but even Rangle was miffed by Biden’s remark.
“Leaders like Romney should have long ago stamped this out.” When you stamp out the “taxers”, the “doggers”, those people who say Romney killed the woman with cancer, those who claim he is a felon, those who say he wants to take away people’s medicare, or the class warfare or the Democratic war on women; when you all clean up all these things, talk to me about a joke like Romney made.
Dog-eating Obama made a comment recently about Romney’s dog. I suppose it was meant as a joke. I suppose Biden’s use of black dialect was also a joke. You have your share of funny guys.
We got you guys beat on the big ideas. We will transcend you and leave the ankle biters behind.
So yap about the joke or the slip, whatever you want to call it. Make a big deal of it, if you can.
Indeed, IF you can make this election small enough for Obama to win, I suppose we deserve to have four more years of the Obama failure. I have more confidence than America than to think that will happen.
First, let me point something out: the factual position that Obama was born outside of the United States has been disproven. “Birther” is a label much akin to “Truther”, with one big difference: however much Democrats hated Bush, they ruthlessly suppressed the Truthers in their ranks.
In other cases? A woman argues that if Romney lied on certain forms about being in charge, he would have committed a felony. That, as an alternative to Romney still being in charge of his business as it says on the SEC forms.
Nobody disputes that Romney roof-racked old Seamus. As for the woman who died of Cancer? People readily admit there’s not a direct connection, but the facts of what happen when people lose their jobs are painfully clear, and Romney’s flack didn’t help things by suggesting that under Romney care (Obamacare on a state level) She might have lived.
As for Big ideas? What, a return to the Gold standard, withdrawing from the UN, outlawing abortions even in the case of rape or incest? Or are we talking more tax cuts like the ones that have failed to raise the middle class for the last few decades, more cash to already cash-flush corporations and wealth individuals? Most people want tax policy to be more tilted towards the middle class, yet all your policies go right the other way, in fact increasing the burden.
As for Obama’s failures? Well, where Obama had the chance to do something good, like with the Stimulus, the GM rescue, he’s mostly done good. People have seen him trying. What they’ve seen as well is a ideologically bankrupt party, that even when given a chance to do better just falls back to being lazy, politically obsessed agenda checkers.
They’re against that Congress by 82%. That’s the unfavorables.
And Mitt? Only 32% of Americans like him, compared to 54% likeability numbers on Obama’s behalf.
Romney and the Republicans started small. They’re unwilling to put forward anything big, one because they don’t want to have to argue about it, and two, because most of what they would suggest would give people second thoughts if not reflexive revulsion to electing and reelecting Republicans. They’ve based their entire campaign on Obama’s supposed failure (that despite the fact that they’ve fought to make a lot of the shortfalls happen), and just hoped that nobody would ask what the GOP was for, amidst all that they were against.
If Republicans want to be the alternative, they have to prove themselves the better alternative, not just the available one.
Stephen writes; “The first is, they don’t yet have the numbers in Congress and the Presidency to fulfill the constitutional requirements for passing a law. Bills don’t set policy, laws do,…”
This was true until the Tyrant obama became president and proceeded to ignore the law. The most recent example that comes to mind is the federal lawsuit filed in Dallas by 10 ICE field agents against the agency. They claim that their superiors made it known to them that they were not allowed to enforce the deportation of illegals found here.
Their superiors forced these agents to decide whether to uphold the law they pledged to uphold and be punished, or ignore the law and please their superiors.
obama changed work requirements for receiving unemployment compensation, and changed rules for some illegals in this country. All of this was done without congressional approval and against existing law.
Given another term in office obama will accelerate his tyrannical bent and it’s any one’s guess what outrages he will perpetrate against Americans.
As for Stephen’s attempt at psychoanalysing Republicans, Conservatives, and the TEA party, he is a total failure. It makes one glad that his views sway no one.
Stephen writes; “Nobody disputes that Romney roof-racked old Seamus.”
And, nobody disputes that obama ATE old “Seamus”.
As for big plans by a Romney administration and republican congress, you simply haven’t looked. I do understand why you know nothing of their big plans. It would scare the hell out of any liberal Marxist.
Stephen is so “Emotionally” excited that Obama is ahead in the likability polls. I wonder if the American voter will be thinking about how much they like Obama when they step into the polling booth. Or will they be thinking about 8.3% unemployment, no jobs, government spending run amuck, Obama’s promise that their energy prices would go up, gasoline at $4 a gallon, food prices climbing each month in the grocery stores, health insurance costs going up, people losing the homes, 50 million Americans on food stamps, the shutdown of drilling for oil and shutting down the Keystone pipeline, the wasted tax money to failing auto companies, green energy, union pensions, democrat cities and states, the hiring of 16k new IRS agents to make sure Americans pay their obamacare taxes, the obamacare that no one wanted, and the list could go on and on.
Stephen is trying to paint a smiling face on the real problems of Obama’s re-election.
Sorry Stephen, Obama’s likability is a dumbass argument.
“As for the woman who died of Cancer? People readily admit there’s not a direct connection, but the facts of what happen when people lose their jobs are painfully clear, and Romney’s flack didn’t help things by suggesting that under Romney care (Obamacare on a state level) She might have lived.”
This is pure BS and the Obama folks are acting shamefully for not directly saying so. There is no direct connection. There is no indirect connection. It is a hateful thing.
I have criticized birthers. Romney was either making a slip or a bad joke, but he was not endorsing birthers. In fact, he has come out against them. When you guys lay off the hate, you can ask us to lay off the jokes.
Re dogs - Obama ate them. Most dogs like to stick their heads out of windows and feel the air. I don’t suppose any of them like to be made into hotdogs.
Re Mitt’s likeable - Obama has spent a lot of money and time attacking with lies and half truth. The balance will change this Monday. Now the Republicans will have the cash. Wait for it. It will not be pretty for you all to get a taste of what you are dishing out.
Frankly, I will not enjoy the crap you are about to endure. I don’t believe in eye-for-an-eye. But I do believe you have it coming.
We will soon transcend your smallness. It will not be pleasant for you, when we start talking real issues instead of the little crap about who ate whose dog.
The tyrant Obama? You’re so funny. Intentionally or not.
Kris Kobach is representing the agents on behalf of Numbers USA, an anti-immgration outfit. And by that, we mean anti-legal immigration, as well. They want to lower all legal immigration to 200,000 people a year.
These agents don’t want to pursue the policy Obama recently announced, focusing ICE efforts, manpower, and budget on dangerous criminals as opposed to all illegal immigrants, in particular those who came as children, and through no fault of their own aren’t citizens, despite being raised for much of their life here.
As I understand it, Kris Kobach is an informal advisor to Mitt Romney. You want to comment on Mr. Kobach’s and the agents insistence that we focus immigration efforts, already deporting record numbers, on students and young folks who lack merely a domestic birth certificate in terms of being an American?
As for views, if they are not compelling, why do you need to outright state they will convince no-one? Why aren’t you focusing on the argument I made, as opposed to the matter you brought up?
If I were in your position, I would be looking for another avenue of approach here.
As for the dog matter? C&J took the approach of equating those who keep on ridiculing Romney over the roof-racking with birthers. Except we can prove Romney roof-racked Seamus, and your people can’t prove Obama wasn’t born here. You at least are going after Obama for something he admittedly did.
One problem: mentioning that Obama was once served dog meat as a kid doesn’t change the character of Romney’s carrying of the dog on the roof. It’s a defensive tactic that concedes the point, even while it attempts to paralyze the criticism.
As for this liberal marxist thing? You keep on telling yourself that. Trouble is, we’re not the extremists here, you are. That’s why your budget even knocked the Catholic Bishops out of supporting you. I think your side is going to be disappointed in this years results, perhaps even devastated. I think your side needs to relearn the fine art of distinguishing when your policy pushes have overreached public support.
Oh, Frank is waving the dumbass wand again, whatever will I do?
Oh, that’s right, I’ll think.
Let’s start with employment. Why doesn’t Obama get the blame, like you would like him to? For one thing, he’s actually done things. The best argument isn’t that his actions killed all those jobs- it’s not as if people were asleep during the last year of the Bush Administration. No, the best argument is that his policies weren’t good enough.
But with all he has done, from bringing back GM to aiming policies at hiring right here, he’s done more than the Republicans can be said to have done. The Republicans can’t really claim much credit for anything that has worked, so their only approach to competing with Obama has been to badmouth his economic successes as much as possible, and prevent anything else from being done.
But that’s no substitute. That is perhaps the big reason why Romney was brought along. Unfortunately, Romney’s claim to job creation are rather thin. He wasn’t really a corporate boss in the way we think of them most positively, a captain of industry running a business and being responsible for them. Instead, he was a speculator who specialized in financial trickery, that often lead to people losing their jobs, and business being used as debt-financed dividend generators, before being dumped back on the market as overleveraged junk.
As far as government spending run amok, there hasn’t been a time in the last fifty years where its run less amok, the rate of outlay increase beating Eisenhower’s.
I could go on, but the truth is, much of what you claim is about as accurate as your claim of 16000 new agents. Factcheck.org called your party on this BS. The Keystone pipeline segment going between Cushing and the Texas gulf coast is going through, and much of what’s creating the high food prices is related to the old Bush ethanol plan.
I don’t need to paint with much more than facts to correct your BS. You’re just too trusting of certain fat men with gold mics.
Aren’t we forgetting something? Obama didn’t produce that ad, isn’t even allowed to coordinate, by law, with their group. So, you’re complaing about indirect connections to those who don’t have much in the way of a connect.
As for your people talking about hate? I’m called a marxist socialist every day. I get compared to a Nazi. Your people are saying stuff about Democrats that reflect schizophrenic levels of hatred, paranoid BS about invading UN armies. I just had to debunk a piece of BS about 16000 armed IRS agents.
As for this monday? Money can’t buy you love. Romney’s been defined, and his party is out of his control, making statements and doing things that will make them look stupid. You can talk about transcending smallness, but after all your attempts to buy the election, you’ll still lack the charm that will make that money work for you.
Obama and his folks studiously avoided criticizing it. Beyond that Obama folks introduced the main character to the guys who made the add.
Re Money - money can’t buy you love, but money has succeed so far in making Romney look bad. I don’t know if this can be reversed by money. I regret to tell you, however, that I bet Obama will be looking a lot worse when the big bucks are deployed against him.
I dislike negative campaigns. But Republicans have to pay back the Obama folks in the coin they understand.
What exactly are you counting on? Some knockout punch?
I took a course during college called “The Diffusion of Innovations.” Basically, when you hear the words “Early Adopter”, that’s where it’s from. Anyway, the idea is that you push out your innovation, and first it gets experimented and tinkered with by the few, then once it’s been tested and made real enough, it goes into the early adopter phase, then it spreads and goes mainstream, and finally, you pick up the last few potential customers, and finally the only people left are the ones who weren’t much interested, and perhaps finally break down and get it.
I can’t always say that I’m on the early part of the stage. I was hardly among the first to get a cell phone, an iPhone, haven’t got an iPad yet. But I’m often in the know about these things before they happen, thanks to my various interests in science and technology. In a way, I’m part of a different diffusion cycle.
But instead of a technology that can be held, what we have is information, but meaningful information to be precise. Regular old vanilla information is ridiculously easy to come by, what we want is to know about things, be a part of things that add value to our lives. We want to see good movies, not just diverting ones, and definitely diverting over “checking my watch” or “walking out of the room/theatre/website” bad.
Meaningful communications have their own kind of diffusion cycle. You should ask yourself where you are on the cycle of hitting at Barack Obama. Why? Because I think if you look at what’s going on, you’re at the saturation point for many of your attacks. It feels effective to you, because this is the sort of thing you like. Just as watching Superman, or a good Obama speech might make me smile, you’re going to get that smile out of watching Romney, hearing somebody online saying, “Oooh, it’s going to get real now!”
But step back for a second! I know there are still people who say “Obama hasn’t been vetted.” But you know what? Many people, if not in so many words, are going to say “the hell he hasn’t been vetted.” Their sense is going to be that Obama is targeted by the Republicans for what he is- not a black man, not a liberal, but a Democrat who is in that office instead of a Republican. Their sense might just be, “oh, another one of those commercials? Is that the fifth or sixth one this night?” Marketers are paid to be pushy, and the question becomes when they’re not pushing a firm audience or customer base, but instead just knocking up against the upper part of that diffusion curve.
When does the media assault become background noise?
Republicans have had a long time to destroy Obama’s likeability. He’s at 54% in the most recent Gallup poll. What is Romney going to do in the next three months that is going to fatally harm his likeability?
What is he going to say that dozens of Republicans haven’t said, and that he can afford to say without looking fringe? Will more TV Commercials have more of an effect, or just a different effect? I think at some point, it’s going to come back around to the fact that there is no real new idea in the Romney campaign, a disadvantage that Obama doesn’t share.
When I picked Obama to back, way back in 2008, I did so because I felt that what we needed was somebody who could sell new ideas organically, rather than somebody who was more comfortable selling the status quo, or who sold the new in a rather off-putting way. If you want my opinion, Republicans have had to pull out all the stops, and have had to keep up a constant tempo of attacks simply to neutralize that one advantage.
And did they succeed entirely? I don’t think so. Romney, on the other hand, might have the flexibility to do new things, but he’s having to waste all that to satisfy Republicans who, despite the political facts of a country that is ideologically mixed in real world composition rather than purely one way or the other, expect their candidates to say all the same things, and take the same hard line, no matter what district they’re in.
Romney could have started out an innovator on policy, but he wasted his considerable efforts trying to play the chameleon, fooling absolutely nobody that he’s a real conservative. People will vote for him not because he enthuses them, but because he is compliant and Republican.
And that will only go so far.
This is not to say that the headline two or three months from now is that Obama wins. This is to set the stage, and to explain why I don’t fear the ad barrage. I think you’ve had more than enough chances to define Obama, and the fact that it hasn’t taken should tell you that three more months might not do the job you want.
What I am counting on is Romney being able to explain himself. IMO, his time at Bain is a big plus. Your propaganda has made many people think it was a horrible thing. Although we know only outlines, it looks like Romney’s tax plan will actually end up making “the rich” pay more than they do now by closing loopholes mostly unavailable to the poor. Your propaganda has made it seem the opposite. Neither Romney nor Obama plans as currently formed will “save” medicare of SS. Your propaganda has managed to persuade many that somehow ONLY Romney will create threats.
On the other side, I believe Obama just is not competent to be president. He doesn’t understand that basics of economics and doesn’t know how to be a leader. His Attorney general is a hack who uses racist criteria to try to manipulate elections. Obama has tried to divide Americans into hostile groups. I think he really believes this is how the country works, but I think he is wrong.
I know that you probably believe that most of what I said above is wrong. We disagree. The difference is that you point of view has had its way for the past months. Soon it will be our turn to dominate the debate.
In fact, if you think of this as a debate, your side went first. This has lots of advantages. But you cannot declare a winner after the first gambits.
There are two things working (well more but I will mention two). The first is turnout. Both sides want to fire up their own side and depress the other. I believe many of Holders putative attacks on voting changes are designed mostly to pull up black votes for Obama and Obama’s TEMPORARY deferral of deportations is meant to get out the Hispanics. This will work. It depends on how much. On the other hand, Tea Party has shown its ability to get out conservative votes. Choosing Ryan has fired them up. In 2008, there was no TP. Beyond that, last time you had Sara Palin, loved by the conservatives but easily caricatured by the left as dumb and inexperienced. You cannot do this to Ryan, who (IMO) is significantly smarter than Biden and even Obama.
The other issue is the undecided. They already know Obama and don’t much like him. The Obama strategy, so far effective, was to make them not like Romney either. But this impression can be overcome.
I think there are two possible scenarios. If Dems get out the vote and keep independents off balance, Obama wins. But he wins dirty and he wins small. If Republican strategy works, Romney wins by a few percentage points. It will not be close if Romney wins; it will be more like 1980
IMO it is very close now. I think Obama has a slightly better chance. I believe that an Obama reelection will be harmful for our country, since it will give us four more years of incompetent leadership. Worse, I believe Obama is vaguely hostile to free markets. I am not saying he is socialist, but he has that generalized distrust you find in elite law schools. I also think that he and his advisers believe in the divisibility of America into groups. This is another pernicious characteristic of the academic environment where Obama lived and thrived.
SO I don’t think Obama is a bad guy. But he is not competent to be a good president and his attitudes about American are wrong for the future.
As I said, I am sure you disagree with almost everything I wrote above. But please give me the respect to understand that I am writing this as what I think is true. This is not a polemic. Those come later. I am answering your question.
The problem that the Romney campaign is facing is that what makes negative campaigns effective is at defining the opponent. For better or worse, Obama is defined. There’s nothing really new of substance to go after him on that is not been out there before. Romney got defined by the Obama team because there was much about him that was unknown by the non politi-geeks out there. Also, he has, as of yet, really talked about any specifics of what he would do and has trumpeted his experience at Bain but has not talked any real specifics there either. That left him open to being defined by the other side. That’s why the Obama team spent so much money early on with these negative ads. They worked. Romney has been on the defensive the whole time. He nominated a supposed policy guy who has been apparently directed not to talk about policy because his policies are disasterous and anything but budget conscious. Campaigns relying on vaguery are open to attack. Both sides whine about negative ads but they can really work. I’m not advocating them at all, but they work.
The right has tried its best to define Obama as “the other” he’s too liberal, he’s socialist, he’s communist, he’s facsist, he’s foreign, he’s Muslim, etc. They really did nothing else in the last three and a half years. If it hasn’t worked by now, it ain’t gonna. All it has done was to make the GOP look like mouth-breathing, knuckle-draggers and deservedly so.
I agree that the Obama folks got a lot of distance in defining Romney. But much of it was untrue and/or not really relevant. The Obama folks attacked Romney the man, not Romney the leader. This was very nasty, but I am not sure of its staying power.
I have never met Romney but I know people who know him and I have been following his career. He is a very honorable and humble man, honest and competent. When voters see the real Romney, they may well question the character of the man - Obama - who tolerated or at times even unleashed such dishonest attacks on an honest man.
I have confidence in the good sense and fundamental fairness of the American people. When faced with a clear choice, I think they will make the right one.
Jack, Regardless of how you imagine it happened, America is and has been very much divided into groups for a very long time. The only difference now is that it is more apparent. No one needs the voice of a politician to make that clear. One very defining statistic exists that can not not be ignored. The rapidly increasing wealth gap between classes. One side of he equation continues to gain while the other continues to lose. The losing end of course gets very little support from the gaining end and are expected to cover the costs of continuing that disadvantage by those on the right.
The people of this country were severely abused by greedy free market capitalists to the tune of the worst economic condition in our lifetime. People have every right and imo an obligation to remain suspicious of and vigilant against those who would so carelessly upset the lives of millions for personal gain. Capitalism is a wonderful thing provided everyone is required to play by the same set of rules. Unfortunately for the right they don’t seem to think rules need to be adhered to or even exist in some cases. Romney belongs to that group that lives by a different standard and expects that the rules for them should be different. Anyone who is willing to ignore that reality for the sake of appearing as a united people regardless of class divisions is IMO a fool and deserving of the abuses that come their way.
I understand differences. We have to keep trying always to make e pluribus unum more a reality. But I dislike it when politicians appeal to blacks, whites, Hispanics etc, when they should be appealing to Americans.
I commonly vote against my group economic interests because I believe America is more important than my own narrow interests and I have confidence that in the long run what is better for America will be better for me too.
I disagree that the “people of America have been abused by the greedy …” There have been lot of factors that have led to greater gaps in wealth. Among them are a poor public education system that produced poorer results even as more money was poured in. Among them has been massive immigration, which helped the economy but brought in new people that need to work up the ladder. We have also seen globalization, which has brought more people out of poverty than any time in the history of the world, but brought in international benefits and competition.
The narratives that things just have been getting worse is wrong. Real income for middle-income households rose by roughly 30% from 1983 to 2005. The recession ended this, but Obama made it worse. Since Obama took office the median family lost $4,019 in income.
Some of this you can “blame” on Bush, but even if even if you start counting when the recession ended in June 2009 and the Obama policies started to come on line the median household income is down $2,544, or nearly 5%.
Presidents do not control the economy, as Obama implied when he made his big and unfulfilled promises four years ago. But there are things that can be done. Obama has done it wrong. We need to return to the good times we experienced during the 22 years after 1983. Obama doesn’t know how to do that.
BTW - The last time incomes fell this fast was during the ill-fated single terms of Jimmy Carter. Is there a parallel?
Paint it anyway you like, Romney’s birth certificate dig was a wink to the “hey, we have a n_____ as president of our country and we have to ‘take it back’”.
Communist, socialist, welfare distributor, business hater, un-American, Ugandan, foreigner, terrorist-lover, war monger, appeaser, apologist, ….
Geez… what haven’t Romney and the right called the elected leader of our country. Less than 6 months into office the right made a concerted effort to label the national recession as “the Obama economy”. Then claim to be patriots as they banded together to block as much (nearly all) of the prescriptions the current administration wanted to help the economy get a foothold.
This bickering back and forth with a relatively small (and often small minded) group of “informed” citizens is a scary enough example of where we stand as a country. The general population is much less informed than the bloggers here. Both left and right are misinformed, lied to, and fed the most god-awful propaganda - with the full knowledge of the politician/propagandists who put it out that it is BS and undermines our country.
Blame the poor if you want for our nation’s troubles, but I see the culprits as the wealthy and well connected who KNOW BETTER yet pander to the uber-wealthy and/or manipulate the laws and policies to fill their personal coffers.
Until we all decide on a common direction achieved through compromise… it won’t matter who wins this election…. we are all doomed.
Build the brick walls around your houses and put armed guards around your properties. I see things getting really bad before they get better.
Hard liners = hard headed. We do indeed do it to ourselves.
I don’t agree with you re the birth certificate thing, but assume that it is true. Is it any worse than Obama’s invocation of class warfare?
Re the Obama economy - Remember Reaganomics? Liberals called it Reaganomics until we achieved a robust economy and then called it that no more. Had Obama succeeded, he would have been in this same happy place. Of course, you all blamed Bush for the downturn in 2001.
Just curious - when would it indeed become Obama’s responsibility?
Re blaming the poor - I don’t “blame” the poor or the rich. Economies have good and bad periods. It is important to get the structures right and to keep updating them. The structures that work allow the market to function with reasonable regulation.
The best way to help the poor is to make conditions prosperous so that they have chances to become not poor. At the start of the last period of economic prosperity (1983) I was desperately poor. The next twenty years gave me the opportunity I would like to give to others.
But if we target help to “the poor” as a class, we will perpetuate their sorry state and exacerbate their misery, as happened with the culture of poverty in the 1970s, when well-meaning programs created horrible and dangerous projects that made being poor not only more miserable but also very dangerous.
You talk about smallness. Romney’s small. He lies remorsely, even when caught, not admitting anything. He doesn’t take stands until events force him to.
As for his plans, and how they’re not like anything we say?
You can’t prove that. He hasn’t released the details. That’s why the fact check sites won’t gainsay Obama’s description of his tax policies as giving tax breaks to the wealthy and tax hikes to everybody else.
Your side made serious errors, and despire the rhetoric, has utterly failed to forsake the mistakes.
Over my lifetime, it’s gone from a belief to a cultish dogma, and Republicans have become less and less able to exercise power responsibility.
As far as smallness goes?
Over the course of my lifetime, it seems, the leadership of the right has lead Americans to greater and greater doubt of their own abilities, to working more for less, to having to accept greater and greater restrictions on their freedom by corporate entities.
America has gotten smaller it seems. We turned to a low earth orbit space truck, instead of taking long journeys into the solar system to follow up the moon landing. Instead of taking the moral high ground on torture and dealing with security, we’ve been lead towards the dark side, whose seductive promises did not prevent Abu Ghraib and other humiliations.
Republicans seem to have governed over decline, as Democrats governed over America’s rise. I think it’s time to realize that while Republicans milk the nation’s greatness for all its worth, Democrats are actually willing to do the things the help make the country prosperous, capable of defending itself, and able to win the economic competitions out there. What Republicans boast about, we do.
Obama has been running the country for four years. What are the details of his energy plan? Obama has been running the country for four years, what are the details of his plan to reduce the deficit? What is the Obama budget plan?
The irony is that Obama, who has ruled the country for four years has less of a plan than the guy just trying to get the job.
re limiting freedom - this is a liberal thing, not ours. I don’t want a top-down system ruled by government officials. I want innovation by the people, which is what we have had. What are the top firms today? Are they the same ones who were on top in 1982? If the conservative plan is to protect established firms, we have not done a very good job over the past thirty years.
“We turned to a low earth orbit space truck, instead of taking long journeys into the solar system to follow up the moon landing.” Tell that to Obama who cut out much of the space program. Or decided that NASA has as a big job to increase the self-esteem of Muslims.
I love government. The irony of the liberal government is that it bloats with entitlements but cannot fix roads or build dams in reasonable times at reasonable costs. You guys know how to spend money but not how to get things done.
I agree with Stephen Daugherty. All corporations are evil and should be taken over by the government. They are responsible for the 1% getting rich and for keeping the 99% in poverty in America.
You have to be careful with irony. There are people here who actually believe what you wrote.
“As for his plans, and how they’re not like anything we say?
You can’t prove that. He hasn’t released the details.”
Exactly! This is what the editors of the Economist magazine had to say about Romney” plans in their recent editorial entitled “So, Mitt, what do you really believe:”
“In practice, it [Romney’s economic plan] ignores virtually all the difficult or interesting questions (indeed, “The Romney Programme for Economic Recovery, Growth and Jobs” is like “Fifty Shades of Grey” without the sex). Mr Romney began by saying that he wanted to bring down the deficit; now he stresses lower tax rates. Both are admirable aims, but they could well be contradictory: so which is his primary objective? His running-mate, Paul Ryan, thinks the Republicans can lower tax rates without losing tax revenues, by closing loopholes. Again, a simpler tax system is a good idea, but no politician has yet dared to tackle the main exemptions. Unless Mr Romney specifies which boondoggles to axe, this looks meaningless and risky.”
“Mr Romney may calculate that it is best to keep quiet: the faltering economy will drive voters towards him. It is more likely, however, that his evasiveness will erode his main competitive advantage. A businessman without a credible plan to fix a problem stops being a credible businessman. So does a businessman who tells you one thing at breakfast and the opposite at supper. Indeed, all this underlines the main doubt: nobody knows who this strange man really is.”
What are Obama’s plans? He has been in office four years and he is still vague about the future.
The Economist asks great questions. We should ask the same of Obama.
Let me answer C&J:
Re/energy plan; Obama’s plan is nada, shut down coal, shut down oil, shut down natural gas. Spend tax dollars on failed green energy companies.
Re/deficit plan; this is a tough one, are you talking about his plan when he was running in 2008, or now. The plan in 2008 was to accuse Bush of deficit spending, but today, the plan is to spend $1+ trillion a year.
Re/budget plan; Obama’s budget plan is to send a budget plan to the Senate that “ZERO”, “NADA” , “NO” Democrats will vote to pass.
Re/roads and bridges; Democrats also keep spending on education and education keeps going down the tubes.
Re/liberal leadership; check the murder rates in Chicago, Obama’s home town, Obama’s headquarters, and one of the toughest cities in America on gun laws. This is a great example of liberal leadership. Oh, I’m sorry, Emanuel asked the gangs to stop killing children…just like Obama asks foreign countries to be fair with the US. He even asked the Europeans to continue bailing out Greece until after the election.
It sounds like Stephen has an admirer in Phillip; perhaps someone should explain to Phillip and SD that corporations create jobs and without them we are nothing more the Obama’s home country of Kenya. You know the country where Obama wants to take the US.
I am not defending Obama’s campaign. What I am saying is that the right’s position that Obama is the one going negative is like the pot calling the kettle black.
I still do not understand the right’s plan to mend the economy. Lowering tax rates won’t cause people already loaded with money to start businesses that sell goods and services to the masses that don’t have the cash to buy. The wealthy didn’t get wealthy being stupid. They need cash paying customers. The “job killing regulations” are mostly the myth of the right. The few meaningful regulations that have changed are not stopping people who want to make money from starting new businesses. Furthermore, you cannot prove your point that they are.
Romney and Ryan have no more of a plan to fix the economy than has Obama. But I will vote for Obama because at least he understands that until the middle class has more folding money in their pockets to spend, we ain’t fixin’ nothin’.
Compromise is our only hope. I see some willingness on the left. I see no move to compromise from the right. Another reason to vote for the Democrats.
Brooks had a great editorial in our local paper this morning. Too many of the politicians holding on to their ‘values’ are living in a fantasy land. No party is going to have enough power to shape policy exactly like it wants it. We must learn to do what is best for the nation and not for our own party.
Too many nut cases in our Congress. They have their constituents. I live around and among them.
What is the purpose of a Democrat or Republican Convention, other than the obvious, to choose a candidate and VP? Isn’t it to come up with a platform or a plan? Why don’t these whining liberals wait until the convention is over and then we will have a plan? Surely, the left can wait a few days before they begin their obnoxious attacks? Of course, the liberals will have to watch the convention of Fox News, since the MSM is trying to get out of covering the Republican Convention.
Obama’s plan…to continue to have the most evil, most derisive, most personally destructive attack plan ever, what else?
Too many nut cases in our Congress. They have their constituents. I live around and among them.
Posted by: LibRick at August 26, 2012 7:09 PM
Are you saying the representatives are nutcases because they listen to their constituents? Aren’t representatives supposed to listen to their constituents?
“Romney and Ryan have no more of a plan to fix the economy than has Obama. But I will vote for Obama because at least he understands that until the middle class has more folding money in their pockets to spend, we ain’t fixin’ nothin’.” LibRick
A couple things can be noted here; first liberals ALWAYS begin to blame both parties when they know their own party is at fault. And secondly, Obama has had 4 years to increase the money in the pockets of the middle class and has not. In fact the middle class is losing wealth:
“Back in Febuary 2009 President Obama told Today Show host Matt Lauer that he’d be a one-term president if he didn’t fix the economy in three years.
“I will be held accountable,” Obama said. “I’ve got four years and … A year form now, I think people are going to see that we’re starting to make some progress, but there’s still going to be some pain out there … If I don’t have this done in three years, then there’s going to be a one-term proposition.”
“PRESIDENT OBAMA said Sunday that he had earned another four years in the White House — even if the U.S. economy is still on the mend.
“I deserve a second term, but we’re not done,” the President told NBC’s Matt Lauer in a pre-Super Bowl interview.”
Would the real Obama please step forward?
“Compromise is our only hope. I see some willingness on the left. I see no move to compromise from the right. Another reason to vote for the Democrats.” LibRick
“Obama also offered a glimpse of how he would govern in a second term of divided government, insisting rosily that the forces of the election would help break Washington’s stalemate. He said he would be willing to make a range of compromises with Republicans, confident there are some who would rather make deals than remain part of “one of the least productive Congresses in American history.”… If Republicans are willing, Obama said, “I’m prepared to make a whole range of compromises” that could even rankle his own party. But he did not get specific.”
So is Obama saying he didn’t try to compromise during the first 4, but now he’s willing? Too little too late.
“Brooks had a great editorial in our local paper this morning. Too many of the politicians holding on to their ‘values’ are living in a fantasy land. No party is going to have enough power to shape policy exactly like it wants it. We must learn to do what is best for the nation and not for our own party.” LibRick
Sorry LibRick, the Tea Party is here to stay, and we will demand our representatives represent us and if they won’t, their history. I know the taker over of the Republican Party by conservatives scares you, but in the long run you will appreciate it.
First of all, Obama does have specific budget and revenue plans. He submitted a budget to Congress specifying his plans. You do also remember the “debt ceiling” negotiations where he provided a plan for long term debt reduction that was rejected by Republicans resulting in the potential automatic cuts and tax increases, i.e., the fiscal cliff. They are not the policies of some loony socialist.
But, quite frankly, it doesn’t really matter. In this age of tribal politics, each side believes what it wants to hear. In the case of conservatives, we can cut taxes but increase tax revenue by eliminating certain deductions, increase defense spending and save the entitlements for all. What a deal! Except, what deductions are they proposing to close? If you close major deductions used in any significant way (i.e., mortgage costs, state taxes, etc.) aren’t you actually raising taxes? How are they actually going to “save” the entitlements? The devil is in the details.
Kudos, though, to Romney for his chameleon abilities. Flip flopping his way to a presidential candidacy. Let the electorate define his policies. They apparently are too dumb to realize or don’t care that he has changed his position on almost all major issues during his political career.
What is the desire on the left to compromise? Obama’s idea of compromise is to let Republicans join his team.
What we really need is to transcend all this stuff and I suppose we will.
IMO Obama is not a bad guy. He wants to do the right thing; he just doesn’t know what that means. His world view slices America into sections, each of which to be courted with concessions. I see the bigger American picture.
He’s not practicing irony. Subtlety would be involved.
He’s had a plan for some time, Republicans just like to hear themselves say things like that, even if they don’t have any evidence for it.
That seems to be a lot of things. You say he exploded spending. Not so. You say he stole from Medicare recipients, when in fact his plan mainly cut the fat from compensation to insurance companies in the Advantage program, Pharmaceutical companies in the drug program, and hospitals and healthcare companies elsewhere. Benefits aren’t touched. The CBO said he extended the life of the program by nine years.
You say he was invalidating the work requirement for Welfare, which was such a bald faced lie everybody but FOXNews stomped the claim.
Your candidate can’t seem, for either reasons of incomptence or expedience, to find a positive argument for his Presidency, but worst yet, even when he’s negative, he’s not even bothering to attack Obama on things that are real. He’s making things up. So what’s this escalation he’s doing to do after the Convention, is he just going to lie even more?
“That seems to be a lot of things. You say he exploded spending. Not so. You say he stole from Medicare recipients, when in fact his plan mainly cut the fat from compensation to insurance companies in the Advantage program, Pharmaceutical companies in the drug program, and hospitals and healthcare companies elsewhere. Benefits aren’t touched. The CBO said he extended the life of the program by nine years.”
“And I’ve proposed reforms that will save Medicare money by getting rid of wasteful spending in the health care system and reining in insurance companies — reforms that won’t touch your guaranteed Medicare benefits. Not by a single dime.”
Grace-Marie Turner said:
“The Affordable Care Act assumes deep reductions in payments to doctors, hospitals, nursing homes, and Medicare Advantage program, totaling $716 billion over ten years. By paying providers less, the trust fund may last a bit longer, but it means seniors will have a harder and harder time finding a doctor to see them as they drop out of the program or stop taking new Medicare patients. The law may not explicitly cut benefits, but it certainly will impact access to care. What good is a Medicare card if you can’t find a doctor? That is precisely the problem that patients on Medicaid — the program for lower-income Americans — face today, forcing them to go to hospital emergency rooms for even routine care. Do seniors want that?
And they certainly don’t want the Independent Payment Advisory Board, the unelected, unaccountable board of 15 bureaucrats charged with keeping Medicare spending down. The main tool the IPAB will have is an ax to cut Medicare payments even further, which will reduce access to care even more.
Worse, the president’s health-care law harms tomorrow’s taxpayers by spending that $716 billion in alleged Medicare savings twice! It uses the money again to create a vast new entitlement program to provide generous taxpayer subsidies for health insurance through the new exchanges.
If the president wants to use the Medicare-savings provisions to extend the life of the Medicare trust fund– and not to fund the new entitlements created by the law — the CBO estimates the fiscal impact would be a “net increase in federal deficits of $260 billion” through 2019.
Medicare actuary Richard Foster has written that the Medicare provisions in the law “cannot be simultaneously used to finance other Federal outlays (such as the coverage expansions under the PPACA) and to extend the [Medicare] trust fund, despite the appearance of this result from the respective accounting conventions.” Even President Obama himself admitted this irrefutable logic in a 2010 interview, when he admitted that “you can’t say that you are saving on Medicare and then spending the money twice.”
And just to drive the point home: The CBO said that the Medicare reductions in Obamacare “will not enhance the ability of the government to pay for future Medicare benefits,” because those savings will be used to fund the new exchange entitlements.”
re medicare - if you take $716 billion from something, it doesn’t help. You can say it would have gone to pay providers and it was overpaying. Good, then refund the money to the people who paid it. We all know it is robbery.
Or IF Obama found an extra $716 billion, why not leave it in the system to extend the life even more?
The work requirement is complicated. You don’t want to mess with that. We need to keep that work wall strong.
Vague? You call that vague? That’s just one subject.
Obama’s proposals have been detailed all around. The Energy document is six pages all by itself.
Romney, on the other hand, is so vague about everything, it’s aggravating. After all the grief that Republicans gave Speaker Pelosi about saying “you have to pass it to see what’s in it.”, the Romney campaign’s essentially pumping sunlight up the public’s ass and tell them that they’ll have to elect them to see what their actual policies are.
And the worst thing is, the guy doesn’t seem to have an ounce of shame about bouncing back and forth like a ping-pong ball.
Romney, though he says he’ll end Obamacare, he’s gone back to touting Romneycare.
I mean, what is it, you feed the guy too much sugar? I mean, does this guy bump into himself going through revolving doors?
What is your big ****ing compelling positive reason for electing Romney for all those other people out there who aren’t dedicated Republicans? I mean, once Obama’s gone, it’s going to be Romney’s show, and no matter how much your side’s media goes back into magic ass-kissing mode, Romney’s going to have to deal with the real world, with more than just being not Obama.
If all you’ve done is taken somebody you think is incompetent, and replaced them with somebody who really is incompetent, who doesn’t need a rival party hounding him to screw things up, then all you’ve done is begun the process again of discrediting your own party. And I must say, given Romney’s characteristics, it seems like the Republicans are just doing their damnedest to re-elect George Bush. They want a rich speculator, who will just rubber stamp all their agenda items. They forget that person has to govern, and when they don’t govern well, it reflects badly on the party.
Republicans just don’t want to learn any lessons. They think they have a good bead on everything, and they don’t take telling from anybody. But somehow, they’ve managed to botch elections, botch huge, critical policy matters like wars and economic regulation, but not absorb the depths of their mistakes.
Which means you folks would make them all over again, even as you pump out your propaganda. In this, you’re like the Soviets, another bunch of people too besotted by ideology and propaganda to understand what deep **** they were in.
No, I don’t think much of the Soviets. This might not be obvious to you, with your blinders on, but I think those people ran afoul of one of the critical reasons why governments like ours are kept in check by elections and freedom of speech: Because government have a tendency to fight to preserve their own power, even when they’re screwing up with it.
We need people who acknowledge their mistakes. Folks can get pretty insular, only feeling accountable to their own, and can begin to care less about real world results in any direct sense, and more about the ideology they’ve convinced themselves is key to generating those results.
The Soviet’s problem is that they thought they could talk themselves out of their problems, all in order to preserve their revolutions. Trick with revolutions is that they ought to end at some point, and be replaced by a natural process of renewal of both ideas and policies. Anything else ensures a lot of bull**** flying around as people try to rationalize the need to deal with problems problems within an ideological structure that restricts their choices.
Republicans are falling prey to the same problem. They think they can avoid facing that not all of their policies work, or are well liked, but at some point, the efforts to convince people of things fail, and you’re not going to get any better of a response.
These are Federal Documents. Bush had them too. What does Obama want to do in the longer run, beyond the next fiscal years.
Beyond that, Obama talks about lots of energy policies that don’t exist.
Obama’s EPA is fining firms for not mixing cellulosic ethanol with their fuels. BUT not a drop of cellulosic ethanol has ever been commercially produced. It is another example of Obama hope versus actual experience.
So, are you saying that I should pay full price for a pair of sneakers, because otherwise I’m stealing? I agree that if you need to pay something to get something, you pay it. That’s why I’ve supported a permanent doc fix before.
But the 716 billion dollars were savings out of money Americans taxpayers should have never been charged, for the most part, subsidies that did nothing to provide benefits, excessive payment that bargaining power on the drugs, or at least a better deal, might have prevented.
You talk about waste, fraud, and abuse, but when we turn around and actually make the system more efficient than the Republican Congress left it to us, you call it stealing!
This is why Republicans don’t balance budgets: they’re living in fiscal fantasy land, at the same time they’re trying to use issues like these like political footballs. Y’all have lost site of what’s important.
McClatchy Newspapers regularly report that the Galen Institute, which she helps lead, is funded by medical and pharmaceutical organizations.
Conflict of interest. She gets her funding from those who get money from the taxpayer.
Obama in February 2009 thought he’d get a more cooperative Republican Party, read to deal after losing two straight elections. Instead, he got people trying to obstruct their way into making him a one term president.
Mr. Daugherty, I take it, by your attacks on the source of my link, you are in complete agreement with what was said or you would have disputed the facts?
What is your big ****ing compelling positive reason for electing Romney for all those other people out there who aren’t dedicated Republicans? I mean, once Obama’s gone, it’s going to be Romney’s show, and no matter how much your side’s media goes back into magic ass-kissing mode, Romney’s going to have to deal with the real world, with more than just being not Obama.”
Stephen, is it possible for your brain to conceive that fact that this is what Obama is doing now? We are watching the Obama show and no matter how much the liberal media protects Obama, he has to face the fact its more than being not Bush.
“They want a rich speculator,”
What we want is someone who has enough sense to understand how the economy works. You know, someone who has done more in life than be a community organizer, whose goal is to figure out how to redistribute the wealth of a nation.
“In this, you’re like the Soviets”
The Soviets were socialists, and socialism is your game Stephen.
Stephen, you say a lot of nothing.
Stephen, why would Obama think he was going to get cooperation from the republican party in Feb of 09? He had a dem controlled house and senate, he was ramming thru HC with no republican input, and the American people were mad as hell about it. The constituents of republican and democrats were calling in and saying no to HC, stimulus, bank and auto bailouts, with the promise of consequences in the next election cycle. Which took place in 2010. Your claim that Obama thought he would have cooperation with the republicans is silly. There was never anything to back that claim. But I may be wrong, so why don’t you provide me the link to the facts that republicans promised to help Obama? Or perhaps it was a figment of Obama’s imagination, much like many of your comments. But I will try to make it easy for you Stephen; provide me a link to where Obama said he thought the republicans would support his agenda for America?
I know it is hard for liberals to understand, but all the money in America should not be at the disposal of the government.
Re your sneakers example - if you ask you mother for $100 specifically to buy sneakers, but then you go to the store and pay only $50, do you just keep the extra money?
Let’s go to the your next sentence - “But the 716 billion dollars were savings out of money Americans taxpayers should have never been charged” - notice the term “AMERICAN TAXPAYERS” i.e. us NOT Obama.
Medicare is collected for a specific purpose. It is not supposed to be part of general tax revenue. If Obama “saves” money (and we know that in reality he won’t) he should spend that money on what he was told to or give it back. He should not just use it for his own things.
RE making the system more efficient - he did not do that. He simple told providers to take less, BUT has not yet got them to actually do that. To return to your sneakers example, you have told the store that you want the same shoes for half the price. See if you get them.
Amazing how a group promoting the beliefs and values of our founding documents and those who wrote them are now labeled “radical,” while those who detest them now claim to be our saviors.
Those who gave us our rights are condemned and those who wish to take away those rights are embraced.
With this type of thinking, there is no doubt that a small majority of Americans will once again vote for dependence. The tyranny will only get worse as our lives continue to change for the worse.
I’m pointing out that she’s the head of a thinktank with the express purpose of pushing a certain point of view, funded by people who would benefit from the expression of that view in policy. So, what reason would she have not to say that it would all end in tears? To say otherwise would go against her thinktank’s mission, and against her sponsor’s vested interests.
The fact that this isn’t disclosed to most people is indicative of the fact that the institute she belongs to doesn’t want people to realize who is offering this opinion.
Obama was willing to keep a number of Bush policies going, even though it wasn’t popular with the party. Why is it with baseless turnarounds on accusations and the Right?
As for Romney understanding how the economy works? There were hundreds, thousands of people just like Romney running our companies, running our banks, managing the hedge funds and everything.
And those stupid SOBs crashed the economy. Don’t give me this unfounded BS that because Romney raided companies for a living, and according to his financial forms makes and keeps much of his fortune trading derivatives, that Romney understands the economy.
As for Soviets? Your movement has become arrogantly indifferent and hostile to any outside checks, balances, or accountability. But that hasn’t made you more competent in the bargain, so inevitably, you’re going to screw things up worse, for being so wrapped up in your own political dreams. Even if you win every political battle you set out to win, you will not get the utopia you believe would come.
Your sequence is wrong. Healthcare was not the big issue in Feb 2009, the stimulus was, the auto bailout was. The thinking was that Republicans would be practical. Republicans decided to be political instead.
As for your question, he was willing to bargain with Republicans in order to get the Stimulus passed, and managed to get Arlen Specter, Olympia Snowe, and Susan Collins on board. To do that, he made a number of compromises on the size and form of the Stimulus.
The problem is, your party wants to maintain policies it can no longer offer merits to justify. The crash demonstrated that deregulation didn’t work. Your tax cuts were discredited by the Presidency following it being one of the worse for job creation in decades.
But you won’t heed that, because, like Yoda might say, your mind is always on the future, always on what your policy might do if it’s allowed to exist in its purest form. It’s not on empirical data in the here and now.
Obama tried to get Republican cooperation on many issues. Republicans made that impossible, in the name of making him a one term President.
Oh, you must be getting a little tense if you’re resorting to propaganda. Oh, you’re not? Well, just then point out to me where I stated that the federal budget should encompass all 15 trillion dollars of GDP. No?
This is a way of you trying to avoid a reasonable, calm discussion on the 716 billion dollars, or in annual terms, 71.6 billion dollars, which is half of one percent of fifteen trillion.
I find the Republicans trying to avoid a lot of reasonable, calm discussions these days.
We were paying that money anyways, paying it with no improvement in beneficiary care. So, to pay for getting even more people covered for their healthcare, we made that system more efficient, and passed the savings on to the new program.
We did that, as opposed to putting the whole thing on the national credit card. Your side did that, and this whole government growth thing didn’t become a concern for most Republicans until Obama was elected.
As for where it’s funding comes from? You might have a point if we were talking strictly the Hospital Insurance Fund, but the Supplementary Medical Insurance fund, as of 2006, was 76% financed by the General Fund, making up 40% of the total for the regular medicare Benefits.
Medicare Advantage is paid for out of all three of the other parts, A,B, and D (Hospital, regular healthcare, and Drug Benefit), and much of the Part D money comes from the General Fund. In fact, we’re talking 81% coming from the general fund, as of FY2008.
General fund means regular taxes and other revenues, and therefore any existing restriction on the use of Medicare or Social Security funds would not be applicable. If they exist.
If you continue to press the “illegal use” notion, you’ll have to get more specific, and you’ll also have to show that the changes weren’t internalized within the program- that is, Medicare savings used to improve coverage elsewhere, such as closing up the donut hole.
I think you’re just wanting to disparage and discredit the Democrat’s policies, because your people weren’t fiscally conservative enough to pay for your healthcare reform. How much more in deficits do we suffer, how much less time does the Medicare trust fund have, because of the way your people set up the financing and everything?
You don’t have a real issue to use against Obama here, so you’re just making stuff up.
Nobody would argue with somebody supporting the saving of Kittens, but if they do by taking flamethrowers to shelters that euthanize cats, especially with the risks to the animals, we could call them radicals.
You argue that you’re the saviors of the Constitution, but many of us look at what you consider unconstitutional, and disagree. So do the courts. This is Democracy, and nobody died and gave you additional privileges for interpreting the law that the rest of us don’t have.
So quit patting yourself on the back for being such heroes. Many other people don’t buy your intepretations, and they aren’t, as you suppose in your arrogance, bad people looking to trash the constitution. Stop equating dissent to your position to rejection of the Constitution.
What’s the matter Stephen, did I hit a nerve? I love how you guys consider keeping the Constitution as it was, to be “radical.” I love how you think you are so correct in believing it to be so unconstitutional, but you have to sneak around and re-interpret it to get change, rather than follow it to get change.
Of course some of you think the Constitution is radical and want to change it, that is the difference between wishing to be dependent and wishing to be free. The difference between left and right.
“Stop equating dissent to your position to rejection of the Constitution.”
I am not the one wishing to change it, Stephen, your people are. I don’t know about where you are from, but around here, if you wish to change something, it is usually because you reject its current form.
The Tea Party preaches about the Constitution, leftists preach about changing the Constitution so that we can “progress” as a society.
I stand by my initial post: it is a sad day for this country when people and ideas to the left of the founders are considered “radicals.”
Stephen Daugherty, Let me back up and see if I can understand what you are saying. I presented a link to NRO with an article written by Grace-Marie Turner, who is the president of the Galen Institute.
She presented an argument pertaining to the ACA and Medicare and presented her reasons and facts. This is what you wrote back to me:
McClatchy Newspapers regularly report that the Galen Institute, which she helps lead, is funded by medical and pharmaceutical organizations.
Conflict of interest. She gets her funding from those who get money from the taxpayer.”
Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 26, 2012 10:12 PM
I went to the Galen web site and this is what I found about their support:
“The Galen Institute receives funding from a variety of sources, including philanthropic foundations, individual donors, and companies both inside and outside the health sector. The Galen Institute is a 501(c)(3) organization and contributions are tax deductible. We will gladly provide a copy of our IRS certification letter.”
So the support of Galen comes from many places. But that is beside the point; it doesn’t matter where her support comes from. If support is the test for whether a link is viable or not, then what does that do to your links to the Daily Kos or the Huffington Post? The financial support of a web site does not affect the truth of their blogs, does it? Secondly, you make the statement that McClatchy Newspapers regularly report that the Galen Institute is funded by medical and pharmaceutical organizations. Why would they regularly report this about Galen, does McClatchy newspapers have an agenda? I then responded to you:
“Mr. Daugherty, I take it, by your attacks on the source of my link, you are in complete agreement with what was said or you would have disputed the facts?”
Posted by: TomT at August 26, 2012 10:51 PM
Because I believed you should answer the charges rather than attack the link; to which you replied:
I’m pointing out that she’s the head of a thinktank with the express purpose of pushing a certain point of view, funded by people who would benefit from the expression of that view in policy. So, what reason would she have not to say that it would all end in tears? To say otherwise would go against her thinktank’s mission, and against her sponsor’s vested interests.
The fact that this isn’t disclosed to most people is indicative of the fact that the institute she belongs to doesn’t want people to realize who is offering this opinion.”
Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 27, 2012 12:52 PM
Stephen, do you ever post material that originated in liberal thinktanks as proof for your argument? I believe we all push an agenda or a point of view. I believe the real question is, why didn’t you deal with her points of view rather than just dismiss her because her agenda is different than yours? Stephen, you write reams of material in your rebuttals, but none of it ever answers questions presented to you. You simply rattle on and on with incoherent babble. Either try to answer the questions, or stop linking to sites that have an agenda.
First, the Constitution isn’t as it was. Second, neither is the country. But third, your idea of what the constitution was seems suspiciously modern to me, the projection of today’s politics in an all but transparent fashion onto the mythology of yesteryear.
It’s a fiction, and it has nothing to do with actually accomodating the real spirit of the law in the constitution to the modern age, or to modern needs.
It’s a fiction that also denies a crucial aspect of the change the Constitution represented: that is strengthened and more clearly defined the Central government. The Predecessors of the Democrats resisted it because of that concentration of power, with the Bill of Rights their price for going along with the ratification.
Besides, do you really think it was the position of the framers that they wanted the government hidebound by tradition, and the government of the past? The framers created a government that would, by design, drift away from what they wanted, and conform itself to what the people would want over time.
Besides, there is one crucial thing in play that you didn’t have in place when the Framers started out, something that came out of the 14th Amendment: today’s legal basis for corporations as legal persons.
The framers said nothing about that, could speak nothing to the dilemmas that created, for how that change interstate commerce and remade America, beause that was several decades in their future.
You think that I advocate ignoring the Constitution, and frankly that’s a crock of ****. I advocate paying attention to its full extent, not just that which was in place in the 1790s, and I advocate interpreting it- and scrupulously so- in order to properly deal with today’s America, today’s challenges, today’s legal situation.
Stop equating dissent to your position with rejection of the constitution.
“Grace-Marie Turner is president and founder of the Galen Institute, which is funded in part by the pharmaceutical and medical industries.”
You know, if they said that without a proper basis in fact, she could sue them over it. The Institute describes itself as free market oriented, which despite calling itself bipartisan, lends itself strongly to appealing to conservatives.
So, why should we trust the word of somebody who is paid to produce pseudo-academic work in the service of a prescribed point of view?
As for my sources, I tend to prefer sources that have independent backup, even if they are partisan in character. What was her evidence that Obamacare would cause devastating reductions like she claimed?
Her claims are the same claims that have been debunked elsewhere. She also neglects to mention that the CBO estimates that the length of full funding to the program has been extended by 9 years, and that the overall bill, not just certain parts cherry-picked for effect, is better than fiscally neutral. The fact that this is being published in the National Review should be a warning sign that the claims of non-partisanship are empty. No true non-partisan would be publishing opinion pieces in a stridently partisan publication like that.
The scumbag part of this is the lengths to which people like her go to avoid being rightly pegged for who they associate with. These folks are trying to get in the way of the informed part of informed consent.
As for your latest comment?
Do you base your belief on evidence, or source?
The primary source is the GOP, then Politico (which has no overall leanings), and then TPM. The folks at TPM merely had the kindness to point out that the GOP’s language in their draft platform basically said that they were for, in so many words, changing from today’s medicare, to Ryan’s voucher plan, or something like it.
Are you going to dispute that on the evidence?
Her basic assertion is that these cuts to the compensation side of Medicare are going to be so draconian as to make those dealing out these services drop out of the business. She says this basically as the representative of an industry that stands to lose a lot of money from what they’ve been paying.
She goes on to complain about the IPAB board. But that board is specifically barred by law from “recommending any policies that ration care, raise taxes, increase premiums or cost-sharing, restrict benefits or modify who is eligible for Medicare.”
What is required?
•Congress then has the power to accept or reject these recommendations. If Congress rejects the recommendations, and Medicare spending exceeds specific targets, Congress must either enact policies that achieve equivalent savings or let the Secretary of Health and Human Services follow IPAB’s recommendations.
That’s the “Axe”, and Congress can keep it from falling. I could go on, but the fact is, your supposedly independent expert isn’t acting so independent, and her talking points seem ripped out of the GOP playbook.
Meanwhile, Even if TPM is a fairly liberal cite, it’s one that puts a premium on journalism, and links to facts when it makes its claims. And the facts here? Based on a platform that the Republicans themselves accidentally posted to their site.
So, how exactly are you going to claim that the GOP had nothing to do with this, that the facts here are false?
Obama was willing to keep a number of Bush policies going, even though it wasn’t popular with the party.”
I wonder why Stephen; could it be he found that things were different when in the hot seat, than they are when flinging baseless accusations?
“As for Romney understanding how the economy works? There were hundreds, thousands of people just like Romney running our companies, running our banks, managing the hedge funds and everything.”
Stephen; Obama is either ignorant o how the economy works or his goal is to totally screw up everything. Whichever, but he is doing a great job of it.
“And those stupid SOBs crashed the economy. Don’t give me this unfounded BS that because Romney raided companies for a living, and according to his financial forms makes and keeps much of his fortune trading derivatives, that Romney understands the economy.”
First, Obama managed to find positions in his cabinet for many of the very “stupid SOB’s” who were involved in crashing the economy. Secondly, you really need to back off from you hatred of those who are successful. I think you have beat this dead horse of Romney at Bain to death, it’s kind of like the Bush dead horse. You really sond silly.
“As for Soviets? Your movement has become arrogantly indifferent and hostile to any outside checks, balances, or accountability. But that hasn’t made you more competent in the bargain, so inevitably, you’re going to screw things up worse, for being so wrapped up in your own political dreams. Even if you win every political battle you set out to win, you will not get the utopia you believe would come.”
When you say “Your”, are you talking about me, or are you talking about the Republican Party. I personally am not a Republican; I am a registered Independent and I vote conservative. So I’m not quite sure what you are talking about.
I don’t believe we are trying to create a “utopia”, I think we are just trying to get Government off our asses and out of our business and wallets.
Jack, in response to comment #502”. All those ethnic groups you mention are American. All have suffered at the hands of abusive or negligent policy. All have specific concerns and issues that do not necessarily apply to ALL Americans. They deserve a voice and as much individual attention and recognition as any billionaire, group of millionaires or angry bigoted power oriented white men.
The GOP simply does not provide for all. They deceptively cater to the few with the promise to all that doing so will be beneficial. At the same time they attack those who suffered the most at the hands of the few and demand that they give back more of what they never received to begin with. To top it all off they refuse to participate in the governing process unless it goes exactly their way. There is nothing democratic or American about that approach. It is selfish, irresponsible and potentially catastrophic to the checks and balances that are supposed to keep us on a fairly even keel.
You can deflect ftom the reality of your parties sad state of governing principle all you want. Still the fact is that they remain the protectors of those who never accepted an ounce of responsibility or accountability in creating our current situation. Your inability or perhaps that should be unwillingness to recognize those faults reflects directly on your true character as an American. Your incessant need for obfiscation renders you a prisoner to your politics. You are allowed no vision beyond the singular because your politics demand that you do not stray from defined parameters. If that is what defines the modern day AMERICAN then the very last thing any real American should want to be is a new age conservative.
Your statement that you aren’t a Republican is a joke. When’s the last time you disagreed with a major Republican Party platform?
You’re independent from the Republican Party, but not from the Conservative movement. You might pride yourself about being an independent, thinking that you can be pure where the party has failed to be, but I have yet to hear from you anything I haven’t heard from Republicans. You’re not an independent thinker. So what’s the point of being a registered independent? Your ass isn’t in the GOP, but your head might as well be.
As far as Bush policies go, if he really continued all of Bush’s policies, we wouldn’t be having this conversation. No, he changed quite a bit. But Obama was willing to learn from experience. Question is, will Romney? Will Ryan? Will you? My sense is that today’s GOP is far too unwilling to take a different course when their approaches don’t work. The dogma of the party all too often overrules acknowledging the results of the policies, especially when a core conservative believe is at stake.
As for those who are successful? I look at those who are successful based on how they got that way. Al Capone was successful. He was also a brutal mobster. Should we disregard the second fact because of the first?
I care how people succeed, whether they do so ethically and humanely. You don’t. You call that “feelings”, and I say that’s not something we ought to dispense with, if we don’t want to wallow in misery as a society. When we reward expedience, when we look the other way on those who wield power improperly, we don’t get happiness and prosperity in return.
The key question for the GOP’s future is whether it will moderate itself, or whether brutal reality will moderate it instead, perhaps to the point of losing its place as a major party.
blacks, whites, Hispanics etc - “All those ethnic groups you mention are American.” - yes. I see the whole, however, while you want to look at the divided parts.
IMO we have more things to unite us as Americans than to divide us into groups. I prefer not to divide us into groups and turn us against each other. The Obama strategy is to divide and bribe. I hope that unite and challenge works better. We will see.
You want to pretend that integrating people long shut out of the system will just happen if we magically just let things go.
So, what do you have to say about the guy who was ejected from the GOP convention for throwing nuts at a black woman and saying “this is how we feed animals?”
You talk about how divisive we are, just because we point out the things that your people say or do to be divisive yourselves. You say we’re playing the race card whenever we bring up discrimination, or God help us, civil rights legislation.
Long story short, you’re in denial about your party’s behavior.
“So, what do you have to say about the guy who was ejected from the GOP convention for throwing nuts at a black woman and saying “this is how we feed animals?””
I would say that the GOP did the right thing by ejecting this guy. Do you disagree?
Civil rights legislation was very important when we were kids. We can credit it with making the U.S. a much different place than it was in 1950. It is, however, a much different place. Let’s recognize the immense progress.
RE “my” party and civil rights - a majority of Republicans voted for the civil rights legislation in 1964. A majority of Democrats voted against it. It could not have passed w/o Republicans. Put another way, if only Democrats had voted, it would have lost.
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