Democrats & Liberals Archives

Are We Better Off? You Bet Your Sweet Donkey We Are.

The mistake often made when asking this question about Barack Obama is treating the situation of Jan. 2009 as if it were simply sitting there like a bump on a log. The situation was not static, it was dynamic, and the dynamic was the better part of a million jobs being destroyed a month because of the policies that came before.

Obama was not handed a functioning economy. He was not handed an economy capable of keeping the people employed that it had employed. Republicans would like you to believe that the jobs that were lost thereafter were consequences of Obama's changes. However, if you look at the actual statistics, far more than half of those jobs would be destroyed in the first six months. By the end of Obama's first year, 92% of the job losses that would occur, had occurred.

The question is not whether we are better off than we were. Where we were was hip deep in the quicksand, having already stepped off into it in late 2008. That wasn't going to remain stable whether Obama was elected, or McCain. And if we had done nothing? The estimates of where we would be would have the unemployment peak at 11.5%

The question is not whether you are better of than you were four years ago, the question is, whether you are better off with Obama having been President, than with him not being so. If some October surprise had made McCain President, and the stimulus had never occurred, what economic advantage would we have gained from starting 1.5% or worse deeper in the hole?

Hoover largely let the economy play out, relying on charities to take up the slack. Because of that, the damage of the Great Depression became worse, the dynamic started by the crash, of pancaking investments and bank runs taking its terrible toll, without getting any better.

There's a concept in science called "metastability" Essentially, it means that not all systems have just one point of equilibrium, one place where they will return to if you knock into the system with some force. It's like rolling a ball of rock through a bumpy, hilly landscape. Most of the time, you push on the ball, and it will settle back down into its current favorite niche.

If you push it hard enough, though, it will roll out of that, and keep going with its momentum until it finds its next point of equilibrium (climate often works like this, so watch out when the change start happening.) Then it will settle there, and it will take work to get the system into any other point of equilibrium.

There's a very good argument for saying that this has happened with the job market. Why won't people hire? Because there aren't the customers around to justify it. Why aren't there customers? Because unemployment and indebtedness are high, so people aren't spending like they used to. The effects of unemployment are reinforcing unemployment.

Question: if Obama hadn't saved or created all those jobs with his policies, by saving GM and pushing through the stimulus, where would the economic force have come from to set the economy right? What would have shown up to push the economy out of that niche?

Private investment? The banks were paralyzed. Savings? The average person is in debt, deleveraging from all the credit cards, student loans and mortgages. Interest rates? 0. Below that, you're paying interest to the bank for your own savings!

Confidence? For what reason? Invest in businesses! Oh, sorry, they're not getting any customers, no return on investment. What was true about customers at 10.0 percent was going to only be more true at 11.5 percent. And really, who was going to trust their brokers or their bank after all the fiascos. Confidence, under these conditions, only means con games, and America doesn't need more of those, more bubbles of little underlying substance.

Reduce regulation?

Were the people who suggested that asleep during the last decade? The Bush Administration went on a drive-by rampage of regulation, replacing much of that with Business friendly policy- friendly in the sense that it let people leading the companies make more money. But much of that meant giving them more room to be deceptive, more room to experiment with exotic financial products that even their PhD programmers half understood. America doesn't need more obscurity, "innovation", and complexity in its markets. It needs a system human being are actually capable of managing.

Tax cuts?

Although I would volunteer that in hard times you don't take back tax cuts from the middle class and poor (people are short of cash as it is), there are limits to what tax cuts can actually do, especially when you funnel them mainly to people who were already accumulating cash they weren't spending. I mean, really, if the engine isn't burning the fuel it's got already, why is it suddenly going to work harder when you feed more in?

Studies have indicated that Bush's tax cuts were saved, rather than spent, which helps explain why the Bush Years were the worst years for Job creation in decades. We have more than enough saved money out there.

Letting the rich have a lighter and lighter burden is not going to magically grant us more jobs. There isn't this pent-up demand out there, there's mostly just people trying to recover from the last greater economic downturn.

Had Republicans been in charge, the economy would be worse than it is now, and stuck in a much lower gear. Obama and the Democrats made a choice, and that choice improved the outcomes we are experiencing now.

The President's policies changed the dynamic of our economy, and even if that economy has not fully recovered, we should not blind ourselves to the fact that millions are employed now who otherwise wouldn't be.

Had the recession been allowed to continue unabated, had the job losses not been countered, and turned around, we would be much, much worse off than we were four years ago We might still be on our way down, as folks were during Hoover's administration, rather than growing, and getting better.

Are we better off for having Obama as President? Yes.

Are we better off for having the Republicans in charge of the House? No. Is it some odd coincidence that the string of months of job growth was broken by the GOP's debt-ceiling game?

Again, no. Talk about creating uncertainty. Uncertainty in U.S. Treasury Bonds, uncertainty in the sanity, much less the trustworthiness of America to pay its debts. Uncertainty, of course, about what kind of fiscal austerity they could extort from people who would otherwise be unwilling to rock the boat in this economy.

The promised, confidence-fueled recoveries have not shown up in Europe.
The spending cuts and tax increases on the average person meant to show that governments were being responsible have instead saddled each economy these measures have been attempted on with greater economic downturns, and in turn, greater debts due to losses of revenue.

The fiscal balance of a nation is not some separate, unaccountable process. It pays into the economy, it takes out of the economy, it borrows on the future growth of the economy. Folks continue to buy treasury bounds as a safe investment, even with negative real returns, because they know that this nation is good for it. They don't doubt America as much as those on the Right do.

Why? Simply put, because they know our economy is powerful, even when it's trying to rise from its knees. The most substantial difference between the Bush fiscal situation and the Obama one isn't the policies, which Republican obstructionism and sheer political inertia kept largely the same, but instead the economic downturn.

Because that downturn began so ostentatiously under Bush, most people hold him, not Obama accountable for it, though that's not for lack of trying on their part. As such, they do everything to highlight Obama's post-crisis spending. After years of saying that their tax cuts were stimulus measures, and that it was necessary to run a deficit for the good of the economy, rather than try and balance the Budget, Republicans have taken an even more severe recession, and essentially flip-flopped on what they said before. The only reason that brings any consistency to this otherwise contrary shift of opinion is pure political expedience.

When they are in power, the deficits are unavoidable, consequence of an economy (even though Bush's first recession was extremely shallow). When they are out of it, it's those damn Democrats burning through money they don't have.

You'll hear them lecturing us and moralizing about it to us, snidely commenting on what spendthrifts we are. But they're not only no better, but vastly worse, especially since their partisanship won't allow them to recognize the problem with their pet budget items.

They won't recognize that with a truly deep economic problem like this, austerity is putting the cart in front of the horse, that a positive economic dynamic makes it easier and simpler to solve the fiscal problem.

It's like getting a better paying job when you're paying back debts. Not only do you have more money available to pay them back, but you don't have to make choices between things that are necessary to survive and make money, and your debts.

America needs to keep on recovering, not to become obsessed with righting its current fiscal situation. We need a President willing to help this economy, not one whose political ideology would have him getting the economic troubles backwards.

We are better off now, four years after the worst crash since the Great Depression, than we would have been without Obama, and that is the reason to re-elect him.

Posted by Stephen Daugherty at September 5, 2012 11:16 AM
Comments
Comment #352210

Stephen, what you keep wanting people to forget is that while the President was a Republican, both the House and the Senate were run by Democrats from 2006-2008, basically during the crash. Then you want them to forget that the mismanagement of the ‘crisis’ was done by the democratically controlled congress at the time. This is why the Republicans lost the presidency and the House was by the Democrats in 2010. And it is quite possible that they will lose the Senate in 2012.

Maybe one day one of the two major parties will actually own up to the things they have done to the American people, not just point fingers at the other and basically say ‘We suck, but we aren’t as bad as ‘those guys”.

As Steve Martin would say… “NAH!”

We are better off now, four years after the worst crash since the Great Depression, than we would have been without Obama, and that is the reason to re-elect him.

That’s an interesting suggestion, care to prove it?

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 5, 2012 4:18 PM
Comment #352216

It seems that Mr. Daugherty forgets who votes. obama had all he needed his first two years to curb unemployment, encourage investment, and and instill confidence in Americans. He did none of this and squandered his first two year complete control by fixating on obamacare. He had to bribe and threaten members of congress to even pass that.

In 2010 Americans realized they had made a mistake and gave the house back to Republicans with huge gains. Two years ago voters expressed their non-confidence with what they saw obama and the dems doing.

Two years later, Americans are even more upset with all the failed policies of this administration and will throw those bums out.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 5, 2012 4:50 PM
Comment #352217

Tonite is the NFL regular season opener between the Cowboys and the Giants. I anticipate this game will draw millions of viewers away from the Dem convention games to this game.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 5, 2012 4:55 PM
Comment #352220
He had to bribe and threaten members of congress to even pass that.

You should clarify this to point out that he had to threaten and bribe members OF HIS OWN PARTY to get it passed.

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 5, 2012 5:01 PM
Comment #352221

Rhinehold-
Let’s go through some reasons why folks shouldn’t blame the Democrats for the situation.

Let’s start with the fact that Democrats don’t get inaugurated until the year after the 2006 elections. So, starting from December 2007, you essentially miss the peak and the beginning of the decline of the Housing industry

The problem with the banks results largely from assets accumulated before the Democrats even got in, and the consequences roll on from there. The Democrats weren’t in office four months before the largest subprime lender went into bankruptcy. Another four months after that, American Home Mortgage and Countrywide Financial Corporation file for bankruptcy. Why? Because their assets had already turned south, and people weren’t buying mortgage securities like they were.

So you tell me, what do the Democrats do? And do take into account who the current occupant of the White House is.

And the fact that Republicans in the Senate had already begun their campaign of endless obstruction, ostensibly to save dear President Bush from having to veto things people might like.

Long story short, it seems like we’re supposed to take the blame simply because we were there. That’s why, likely enough, we took the hit in 2010. That doesn’t change why things crashed, or why our economy tanked.

It doesn’t change when the events occured, and whose policies allowed them to occur.

We were willing to do the bailouts, to do what was necessary to save the economy. Republicans had these hangups about government intervening, even if it meant unleashing the full dynamic force of the crash on each and every American, with all the consequences involved.

Royal Flush-
You cannot block 80% of legislation, and then accuse the Democrats of doing nothing. The Republicans enforced idleness, just so they could ask this question, just so they could accuse him of not doing his utmost to create jobs.

Unfortunately for you, the flipside of this is that the Republicans have done absolutely nothing to create jobs, other than wretchedly trying to exploit the troubles of the American people to push agenda items under the cover of calling them jobs bills.

As for how upset people are, Obama maintains numbers near fifty percent, despite your side having howled his way his entire term. The upset seems to be a product of continued fearmongering and angry, paranoid rhetoric, and as time has worn on, the persuasiveness of your side’s fear, hate, and anger at Obama for not being a Republican has worn away.

All you have left is a poorly hidden agenda of attempting to guard and restore the Bush status quo. Other than that, your side is bankrupt of any ideas, since you’ve decided you all know the perfect solutions to America’s problems despite your discrediting Bush-Era failures.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 5, 2012 5:04 PM
Comment #352222

Royal, you are right, I’ll be watching football. This election has been one of the worst I’ve seen in my history, and I’m old enough that that has been a long time. So much about nothing, neither party saying anything positive, just lying and negativity. This is not the election of ‘hope and change’, it is the election of ‘scare and manipulation’. The Democrats wailed about lies during the RNC, but don’t expect to see a fountain of truth coming out of the DNC…

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 5, 2012 5:07 PM
Comment #352223
Let’s start with the fact that Democrats don’t get inaugurated until the year after the 2006 elections. So, starting from December 2007, you essentially miss the peak and the beginning of the decline of the Housing industry

And at that time, we are still not in a crisis, nor is it something that can’t be dealt with. You also fail to point out just WHO was responsible for the housing bubble, the person directly responsible for that is STILL in his job…

The problem with the banks results largely from assets accumulated before the Democrats even got in, and the consequences roll on from there. The Democrats weren’t in office four months before the largest subprime lender went into bankruptcy. Another four months after that, American Home Mortgage and Countrywide Financial Corporation file for bankruptcy. Why? Because their assets had already turned south, and people weren’t buying mortgage securities like they were.

Yep, and what was the Democrat’s response to these things happening? Nothing? Ok, let’s let them continue with their way of running things then.

Long story short, it seems like we’re supposed to take the blame simply because we were there.

AND DID NOTHING

That’s why, likely enough, we took the hit in 2010. That doesn’t change why things crashed, or why our economy tanked.

We’ve gone round and round on this, you know. The economy didn’t take because of a housing bubble that burst, that damaged it but we would have been able to survive it. It was the inaction of the Democrats running congress to relax ill-conceived laws that caused billions in assets to be wiped off of the bank’s books when they weren’t really gone.

We were willing to do the bailouts, to do what was necessary to save the economy.

NO. No you weren’t. The Democrats sat on their hands until AFTER THE ELECTION because they WANTED the economy to tank in order to swing the presidential election their way. McCain was up in the polls, if you remember right, just before the FMs took a huge dump. And the Democrats, instead of doing what they eventually did do in the spring of 2009, did NOTHING in order to win the election.

THEN, they attempted to solve the problem by borrowing more money to replace the ‘accounting loss’ that the banks had taken. When the banks were finally able to report their assets in a more rational manner, they gave all the TARP money back to the government who, instead of using it to pay back the money they borrowed in the first place, tried to use it to patch up the damage they did when they didn’t act in the first place, trying to make themselves look like heroes.

You cannot block 80% of legislation, and then accuse the Democrats of doing nothing. The Republicans enforced idleness, just so they could ask this question, just so they could accuse him of not doing his utmost to create jobs.

Stephen, they are NOT blocking 80% of legislation, the Democrats are willing participants in that blocking by not actually holding the Republicans to their threats of filibustering, OR ending filibustering all together, as they had the power to do several times. This is, of course, ignoring all of the bills that the Republicans have passed on the House side of the aisle that never get brought up for votes in the Senate. But that’s not ‘obstruction’ when the Democrats do it, is it?

As long as this inane agreement continues, both parties are going to use it to their advantage until someone finally says enough. Unfortunately, both sides are getting something out of this fracturing that they are agreeing to participate in, and you reward them by not calling out your own side when it is wrong.

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 5, 2012 5:21 PM
Comment #352224

Royal Flush-
You cannot block 80% of legislation, and then accuse the Democrats of doing nothing. The Republicans enforced idleness, just so they could ask this question, just so they could accuse him of not doing his utmost to create jobs.
Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 5, 2012

Excuses are a dime a dozen SD. The dems controlled both chambers of congress with a dem president for two years. If that is not enough power, blame the electorate for not giving them a super majority rather than blaming Republicans for standing up for their beliefs.

Do you honestly believe that house control changed in 2010 to Republicans because voters wanted more democrat ideas? If voters were upset with what you call “obstructionism”, would they not have voted more dem members into congress to get their policies passed?

It is a fact that dems were voted out of office in droves in 2009. All your great ideas about what the public wanted falls and shatters on the floor when you recognize what voters did to your party. And, the voters are not finished showing obama and the dem/libs just how disappointed they are. I expect a Republican gain in the Senate, the house to remain substantially the same and the Oval Office to be in the hands of Romney.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 5, 2012 5:23 PM
Comment #352225

Stephen

“The question is not whether you are better of than you were four years ago, the question is, whether you are better off with Obama having been President, than with him not being so”

Excellent question. Answer is no. A more competent president would have done some of the same things Obama did for less money and with more effect.

Think of Obama like a guy at work. He has been on the job for four years with mediocre results. So he continues to blame the guy who held the job before and claims his co-workers are mean to him. He says that despite the fact that conditions have not changed, he might do better in future. When asked why he thinks that, he trashes others trying to find the job.

Posted by: C&J at September 5, 2012 5:34 PM
Comment #352226

So much dishonesty here on the right. But what else is new, eh lefties? People on the right are intentionally forgetting where we were in 2008, and just how far we have come back from the precipice.
Maybe this will jog some memory cells out there (but more likely the lies will simply continue):
Retroactively invisible…. That 2008 economic collapse? Never happened.

Four more years of Obama? Yes, please.

Posted by: Adrienne at September 5, 2012 5:36 PM
Comment #352229
Four years ago this week, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac went into conservatorship. Four years ago next week, Lehman Brothers went into the largest bankruptcy in US history, and shortly after that AIG and Washington Mutual collapsed, and virtually every other major US financial firm would have collapsed absent a federal bailout. Are we better off today than we were four years ago? Four years ago, we were in total economic collapse. Today, we’re in our 31st consecutive month of private sector job growth.

— Hardy Callcott

Posted by: Adrienne at September 5, 2012 5:41 PM
Comment #352230
virtually every other major US financial firm would have collapsed absent a federal bailout.

… specifically created by the inaction of the Democratic controlled congress and senate to relax ill-conceived accounting rules until after their presidential candidate was elected.

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 5, 2012 5:43 PM
Comment #352231

Great analogy C&J

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 5, 2012 5:43 PM
Comment #352236

I just listened to the sound clip of the Dem convention delegates voice vote on whether or not to once again have the name of “God” and the city of “Jerusalem” reinserted into their party platform after both had been excluded. It took three voice votes before the chairman decided the issue in favor of once again having language which included these two names.

Unbelievably, the nay voices booed loudly because they lost the vote. Can anyone imagine delegates to the democrat convention being so callous, hateful, self absorbed and anti God and anti Israel as to boo this affirmative vote? Does this really reflect the opinion of ordinary democrats who will go to the polls in November? I just can’t believe it does.

If it doesn’t reflect the view of ordinary Democrats, why would delegates act so disrespectfully to those who believe in God and recognize how important Israel is to our national security?

I am hoping that Mr. Daugherty can explain this shameful action to us all.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 5, 2012 6:27 PM
Comment #352239

I definitely think they should have left “God” out of the platform. Separation of Church and State is a foundational principle of government in this nation.
Those who booed are probably sick to death of how religion keeps being injected into government — something which is unnecessary, exclusionary, and obnoxious.
Besides, people who are religious shouldn’t feel the need to see that word being repeated everywhere in order feel they’re acknowledging and performing maintenance on their faith.

recognize how important Israel is to our national security?

Whatever gives you this idea? America doesn’t depend on Israel for our national security. Although, having American support is no doubt considered important to Israel’s national security.

Posted by: Adrienne at September 5, 2012 6:46 PM
Comment #352241

I just read on the HuffPost that it was at obama’s insistence that the language about “God” and “Jerusalem” was reinserted into the Democrat platform. Good for him and shame on those atheist loving, Israel hating delegates who booed.

The HuffPost also suggested that this shameful act by some of the Democrat delegates will become part of many Republican ads. Since there are only a handful of atheists and anti Israeli democrat voters in the nation, perhaps some democrat can explain this action to us. Is this a vote attracting position for the party to officially adopt?

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 5, 2012 7:02 PM
Comment #352242

Rhinehold-
Ill-conceived accounting rules they asked for!

Besides, your concern about accounting rules misses a fundamental problem the accounting rules were merely a messenger on: that the banks had so overleveraged themselves with assets of such complexity that they didn’t know what the real value of their assets were.

You want to blame government for things. Why isn’t it an acceptable explanation for you that big business can screw things up just as easy?

As for housing bubble, the responsibility for that goes to the industry. They didn’t have to take the mandate to diversify homeowners as a mandate to use that property as the basis for insanely complicated derivatives and financial schemes, nor did they have to take it as a mandate to employ predatory and/or overly lax and risky lending practices.

I mean, really, for the sake of promoting your ideology you are fixating on a few points of what happened, and conveniently jettisoning everything else.

I bet you buy into that BS that a couple of Democratic Congresscritters could prevent the heroic Republicans in Congress from properly regulating Freddie and Fanny, right? I bet you believe that Freddie and Fannie were majority contributors to that market, too, right?

This is what gets me. I researched this topic, and yes, it leads to some uncomfortable places for my people, even the ones you’re trying to scapegoat for the whole affair. But the whole effort seems calculated at selectively forgetting what was a violently obvious truth at the time: that Republicans were front and center, period, on leading the economic policy. Clinton’s whole Schtick, and that of the moderates who helped him, was to follow the GOP’s lead on “the free market”. And Republicans were constantly reminding people whose liberalizing of the economy (in the deregulating sense) was responsible for economic good times.

It’s not until the party crashed, until things fell apart that suddenly everything was the fault of one Senator, one Congressman, and one company that was selling a minority of the subprime loans at the time, with a better than average record of risk.

I mean, with a memory like mine, it’s an insult to my intelligence to see so many people scrambling to rewrite history. I remember what Republicans and libertarians were saying in the day. I remember McCain and others echoing the notion that “the fundamentals of the economy were strong”

So when you come around telling me all these lies, whether they’re your lies, or what you pass on from others, I have little reason to believe a thing you say. I have little reason to change my mind.

You cannot turn around a market overloaded with trillions upon trillions of dollars in uncertain investments in FOUR ****ING MONTHS, or even eight. What could they have passed in the way of a relief plan that wouldn’t have been vetoed by Bush, or filibustered by the Republicans in the Senate, who had, if I’m not mistaken, 47-48 seats with which to block everything.

What do you seriously propose they could have done?

When the time came, and the Republican finally woke up to the scale of the cluster**** descending on the economy, they did what they could. Even then, there was delay, because the the Republicans voted party-line against TARP. Markets went into a nosedive, and their half-hearted passage of a new relief program after that failed to prevent further bleeding.

By then, it was too late.

As far as filibusters go, a few Democrats were willing co-conspirators. Many of them ended up losing their seats in the aftermath, which is ironic since they thought they were armoring themselves against the charge that they were THOSE kinds of Democrats. As it turns out, nobody in the GOP gives a crap how conservative you are, if you have a D by your name. But one thing should be pointed out: without the deliberate, strategic procedural unity of the GOP, that 80% figure would have been impossible.

This wasn’t a spontaneous, occasional reaction. This was Mitch McConnell’s plan to make Obama a one term president, and he actually said as much.

Ask yourself, then: what explains their unwillingness to make deals? Simple. With a political strategy like that, there is no advantage to any compromise. It was full bore or nothing.

You can talk about both parties, but the very same people you point out helped make it possible would have been very willing to engineer deals, and Obama, who’s always prided himself as being the adult in the room who will listen to both sides, would have prided himself on getting the deal.

And he would have taken credit, rightly so, for being bipartisan, and for getting the legislation through. Obama gets things done!

So, to make it look otherwise, to make Obama look like the one demanding too much, they deliberately obstructed, and blamed Obama for provoking them to do so. This is also the reason that folks like Frank and Royal Flush have been sold that line of BS about Socialism and Obama’s plan being a government takeover, and so on and so forth. It helps them justify what would otherwise be a sociopathic political strategy, in actual context. Keep the nation impoverished, millions unemployed, just so a Republican can get elected, and not Obama to a second term.

Oh, yes, and spread that BS that both sides are doing it. I mean, we absolutely should expect a Democratic President to committ political suicide by essentially wholesale ratifying and enacting the Tea Party agenda in law.

Compromise isn’t Democrats getting ****ed and pretending to like it. Republicans were not even pretending to try and meet us halfway. They simply insisted that we compromise by completely betraying our constituents to give theirs the pure red meat they wanted.

I think if people don’t want a party in power that’s willing to burn the country down to rebuild it as they please, they better vote for the Democrats, the folks who actually care nowadays about preserving, repairing, and improving the institutions they depend upon. Republicans are no longer capable of taking hints. You either run them out of office, or you prepare yourself to watch the country rot from the inside out as they try to sabotage the system to make their rivals look bad.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 5, 2012 7:07 PM
Comment #352243

SD writes; “I think if people don’t want a party in power that’s willing to burn the country down to rebuild it as they please, they better vote for the Democrats, the folks who actually care nowadays about preserving, repairing, and improving the institutions they depend upon.”

Look back to the 2009 election for the mood of the country that prevails today. obama and the dems in congress are not going to get a “redo” by the electorate.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 5, 2012 7:24 PM
Comment #352244

Whoa. Not sure if this is a hoax or not, but it looks like Anonymous strikes again? By hacking in and allegedly holding Romney tax returns for ransom???
PricewaterhouseCoopers On Romney’s “Ransomed” Tax Returns: We’re Working With The Secret Service

Posted by: Adrienne at September 5, 2012 7:29 PM
Comment #352246

Sounds like this might be for real. Hackers Claim Romney’s Taxes Ransomed for $1M

Posted by: Adrienne at September 5, 2012 8:48 PM
Comment #352247

Royal Flush-
Look, in 2008, we were running against the legacy of a president who had about 30% popularity in the polls. You? You’re up against somebody who’s close to 50%.

If I were you, I would treat Obama as the difficult opponent he is. But you aren’t me, and so you will once again underestimate Obama.

The mood is not sufficiently against Obama to make your task easy, nor is it sufficiently for Romney to make his election a foregone conclusion.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 5, 2012 8:50 PM
Comment #352250
Ill-conceived accounting rules they asked for!

Who asked for? If you mean Republicans, just because Republicans enacted the law originally doesn’t make it any less ill-conceived. You keep forgetting I’m not a Republican and don’t vote for them either…

The rules were wrong, at the very least they should have been relaxed as soon as the derivative market crashed because they were illogically taking money out of the economy that wasn’t actually gone…

Besides, your concern about accounting rules misses a fundamental problem the accounting rules were merely a messenger on: that the banks had so overleveraged themselves with assets of such complexity that they didn’t know what the real value of their assets were.

Actually, no they hadn’t. Most banks had enough cushion to absorb a reasonable drop in market prices. But by the rules they had to mark them to near zero, these were mortgages backed by real houses. They were definateley worth more than they were having to be marked down to.

The evidence of this is the immediate flush of money the banks had to pay back TARP funds as soon as the rules were relaxed in the spring of 2009. Had the congress (most leaders were the same ones leading in 2008) called for the relaxation of those rules in 2008 when the derivative market crashed then we would never had needed TARP or the bailouts. And yes, they were being asked to do just that, but they rejected it repeatedly until AFTER the election.

You want to blame government for things. Why isn’t it an acceptable explanation for you that big business can screw things up just as easy?

‘Big Business’ can screw up. But when they screw up because of bad regulations by the government, trying to turn a blind eye to those very things and blame business doesn’t cut it. The problem is that its much easier to screw up government because there is nothing guiding it other than politics. At least businesses are usually run by economic rules that does balance itself out over the long run, government is just force directed by political whims. That’s when they start getting into trouble. More often than not they actually make matters worse.

As for housing bubble, the responsibility for that goes to the industry.

That’s what you say, but the reality is a bit different. Derivatives were suggested a decade before they were implemented, but they were rejected because they were too risky for the amount of profit they could provide. But when government (via the Fed) artificially kept insurance rates so low for so long, they made derivatives more appealing to banks who were looking to keep operating.

I mean, really, for the sake of promoting your ideology you are fixating on a few points of what happened, and conveniently jettisoning everything else.

Are you SURE you aren’t talking about yourself here?

I bet you buy into that BS that a couple of Democratic Congresscritters could prevent the heroic Republicans in Congress from properly regulating Freddie and Fanny, right?

Nope. The Republicans were in control of the house and congress for years and did nothing about the FMs. They are on the hook for those things that they did. Again, in your zeal to push blame you error… If the democrats can’t be held responsible for the FMs up until 2006 (after which they did nothing to solve the problem) then how can the republicans be held responsible for what the democrats did 2006 to 2010?

I bet you believe that Freddie and Fannie were majority contributors to that market, too, right?

Nope, never said any such things. Debate what we are debating, making shit up doesn’t get us anywhere.

This is what gets me. I researched this topic, and yes, it leads to some uncomfortable places for my people, even the ones you’re trying to scapegoat for the whole affair.

Unfortunately you didn’t research hard enough IMO. You blame this or that but don’t go into the reasons WHY those things were done, what they were trying to accomplish or how it could have been handled differently. I in no way let the Republicans ‘off the hook’ for their part, but this is the first time in all of our discussions that you suggest that the Democrats *MIGHT* have played a *SMALL* part. You don’t mention what, so I still have a hard time believing you actually do, but at least that is progress.

But the whole effort seems calculated at selectively forgetting what was a violently obvious truth at the time: that Republicans were front and center, period, on leading the economic policy. Clinton’s whole Schtick, and that of the moderates who helped him, was to follow the GOP’s lead on “the free market”.

Oh nO! ‘The Free Market’. You know, Stephen, I genuinely believe that you accept that ‘the free market’ is singlehandedly responsible for creating the most free society that has existed in the world ever. But for some reason you have such an instilled desire to trash it at every opportunity it makes me cringe. It could appear to others that you are more of a statist than a free market supporter, which I don’t think you really want people thinking. Unless you do, then well that explains a lot.

And Republicans were constantly reminding people whose liberalizing of the economy (in the deregulating sense) was responsible for economic good times.

But they WEREN’T ‘deregulating’. They were still regulating, but just badly. There has been so little actually ‘deregulation’ that your use of the word is astounding. The increased regulation, by Democrats and Republicans, after Enron and other scandals, or the S&L collapses, etc, can be pointed to as causes for many of the things that caused our current situation, including the Fed’s artificially lowering the interest rates that was directly responsible. Those aren’t ‘deregulations’ at all.

I mean, with a memory like mine, it’s an insult to my intelligence to see so many people scrambling to rewrite history. I remember what Republicans and libertarians were saying in the day. I remember McCain and others echoing the notion that “the fundamentals of the economy were strong”

I don’t think so… But the great thing is that I can use the wayback machine (www.archive.org) to ACTUALLY see what was being said.

So when you come around telling me all these lies

Sorry, nothing I have stated is a lie. Please, point out the lies I have told if you are going to come out and accuse somebody of something like that, you had better have your facts in hand to back them up.

You cannot turn around a market overloaded with trillions upon trillions of dollars in uncertain investments in FOUR ****ING MONTHS, or even eight.

It wasn’t about ‘turning around a market’, it was about limiting the damage from that market collapse. Had the mark-to-market rules been suspended (or not in place to begin with, replaced with a better solution that uses the previous 4 quarters to denote value, not just the last market close) then the collapse of that market would have stayed IN THAT MARKET. Banks would have lost some money, but they would not have been brought to their knees, they wouldn’t have needed bailing out and TARP would have been unnecessary. But no one wanted to listen to the people who knew what they were talking about (most notably William Isaac, the FDIC chairman during the S&L crisis) at the time who were screaming for action to be taken and being ‘ignored’. Instead, the Democrats, trying to lay the blame directly at McCain, trotted out the Gramm-Leach-Bailey Act, trying to suggest it was responsible, when factchecking that assertion proves this to be, as factcheck.org says, bogus.

What could they have passed in the way of a relief plan that wouldn’t have been vetoed by Bush, or filibustered by the Republicans in the Senate, who had, if I’m not mistaken, 47-48 seats with which to block everything.

I explained exactly what they COULD have done, several times. In addition to this they could have at least made an attempt to call upon the Fed to stop artificially keeping interest rates too low. There are a number of things they COULD have done, maybe even let people know there was a problem and were being blocked from doing anything (even though they were in control and we already established that isn’t a good enough excuse). But they didn’t see the problem either, didn’t try to do anything. And when it hit the fan, they refused to listen to sound advice to minimize the damage in order to win an election.

As far as filibusters go, a few Democrats were willing co-conspirators.

? I don’t think you understand the depths of the problems with the threats of filibusters… This is AT THE CURRENT LEADERSHIP, simply put. The leadership of both parties have agreed to accept a THREAT of a filibuster as good enough so that no one has to stay in the capital and can go about doing other things. If the Republicans were actually made to filibuster, it would last for a few days and then end (they can’t last forever) and then business would continue. Instead, they allow the threat to be recorded, the legislation put aside and ignored. As long as it is that easy to block legislation ad infinitum, in a sort of ‘filibuster limbo’, the use of it by the minority party will continue to increase, no matter who is in charge of the congress. That’s the real problem, Democratic leaders want to keep it in order to use it when they are no longer in power. The increase of use started after the agreement was made in the 90s and has increased every year since.

Of course, that’s not the ONLY way to block legislation, being the majority of one house completely rejecting to bring to the floor any bills that the majority of the other house votes for is another way. This Democratic congress is very guilty of that as well. But again, we don’t hear anything about that from you or the left, do we? As an example, the audit the Fed bill that was passed in the House, and was SUPPORTED for DECADES by Harry Reid, was shelved…

Ask yourself, then: what explains their unwillingness to make deals? Simple. With a political strategy like that, there is no advantage to any compromise. It was full bore or nothing.

Because 1) the deals they were getting were crap and 2) they didn’t have to take them. The Democrats have not called them on ANYTHING, as is their RESPONSIBILITY as the majority leaders of the Senate. They have abandoned their responsibilities, why you think they should be given more time to govern is beyond me, since they are that ineffectual.

Stephen, it is the goal of EVERY congress that is in control while the other party has the presidency to make that president a one term president. Why you think that is something new, with your great memory, is beyond me.

The fact is, if the Democrats don’t like the filibuster they could have eliminated it (or modified it to only be used a few times a year) several times since taking control of the Senate. But they haven’t. They could call the right on their threats of filibustering and make them do it. It would end the practice pretty quickly, but they haven’t. Why do you want people in power that are willing to give up their responsibilities? Why do you continue to support those that are so bad at leading and legislating that they can’t do anything when they do have power?

You want to give them MORE power? What good would that do?

You can talk about both parties, but the very same people you point out helped make it possible would have been very willing to engineer deals, and Obama, who’s always prided himself as being the adult in the room who will listen to both sides, would have prided himself on getting the deal.

I don’t think you are watching the same country’s politics as I am… I hear ‘talk’ of wanting to be bipartisan, but the rejection of anything close to that whenever it is actually discussed. Saying something and doing something are two different things, I’m not a fan of two-faced people and so far the Democrats, including Obama, have shown me little else. And yes, I can give you dozens upon dozens of examples…

Republicans were not even pretending to try and meet us halfway.

Halfway? LOL! Give me some examples of when the left was willing to meet the right ‘halfway’ on anything in the past 4 years…

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 5, 2012 10:22 PM
Comment #352252

A conversation between Bill O’Reilly and Dick Morris:


“Bill O’Reilly: I think that Bill Clinton wants Barack Obama reelected. Would you disagree with that?

Dick Morris: Oh, absolutely. I absolutely.

O’Reilly: Do you think he wants him to lose.

Morris: I guarantee you, based on what I know that Bill Clinton wants Obama defeated.

O’Reilly: But it’s easier for Hillary to step in after Obama’s 8 years than it would be if Romney gets a shot and does well. Come on.

Morris: No. Because after 8 years of Obama no Democrat will get elected for the next 100 years.”

Posted by: BIF at September 5, 2012 10:33 PM
Comment #352255
Unbelievably, the nay voices booed loudly because they lost the vote.

No, that is not why they booed… They booed because after *3* votes, which required a 2/3 majority which was never received, the chair claimed it was passed anyway.

It’s pretty amazing, actually.

http://reason.com/blog/2012/09/05/dnc-chair-villaraigosa-declares-super-ma

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 5, 2012 10:47 PM
Comment #352258

Someone else has put my thoughts on the president being able to ‘will the economy into action’ to ‘paper’ and did a pretty good job of it…

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2012/09/05/the_hubris_of_central_planners_115340.html

President Obama, a hybrid reincarnation of Kennedy and Roosevelt according to his fans, came into office with similar misconceptions. Controlling the White House, the House, and the Senate, his team of propeller-heads insisted that if we passed exactly the stimulus they wanted, the unemployment rate would top out at 8 percent and would be well below that by now.

They waved around charts and graphs “proving” they were right, like self-declared messiahs insisting they are to be followed because the prophecies they wrote themselves say so.They got their stimulus. They were wrong.

They say in their defense that’s because the downturn was so much worse than anyone realized. Okay, but that just demonstrates the folly of their confidence in the first place. If I jump off a building because I am sure I can fly (“I wrote a study that proves it!”), it’s of little solace, and even less of an excuse, if I sputter out my last words from the bloodied pavement, “The pull of gravity was so much worse than I realized.”

Obama similarly defenestrated his own credibility, but he’s still insisting he knows exactly what to do. Now he argues that if we just do what Bill Clinton did — raise taxes on the top earners plus pass the so-called Buffett rule, which would raise taxes on investment income — we can have the economy Clinton had. The Buffett rule would pay for 11 hours of government spending in 2013, as Mitt Romney correctly observed — or 18 hours, according to Democratic reckoning. Anyone believe that would make the economy roar to life?

Obviously, Bill Clinton — and the Republican Congress that forced him to balance the budget — deserves some credit for the 1990s boom. But last I checked he didn’t invent the personal computer, the Internet, or biotechnology. Nor did he end the Cold War. The notion that there would have been no “roaring Nineties” if George H. W. Bush had been reelected is simply preposterous.

[..]

Clinton ran out in front of a parade of free-market successes and, like Ferris Bueller, acted as if he was leading the parade.

In his manifest hubris, Obama believed it was just that easy. He, too, could simply will a vibrant economy into being through sheer intellectual force. But, unlike Bill Clinton, he wouldn’t sully himself by playing “small ball.” Obama would be “transformative.”

For the ancient Greeks, hubris described the sort of arrogance that offends the gods and precedes the fall. In the current context, it certainly tests the limits of my sympathy.

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 5, 2012 11:45 PM
Comment #352259

Ah, conservatives, my heart goes out to you. This must be such a tough time for you. Tuesday night, MSNBC scored great ratings with its coverage of the convention. Michelle Obama gave an amazing speech. Guess that Princeton and Harvard Law education wasn’t wasted on a female after all, eh Rhinehold? The urge for Royal Flush & Frank & C&J and others to change the subject to anything, anything else at all, anything other than what is happening RIGHT NOW, must be overwhelming, because tonight, Bill Clinton gave a great speech too.

Clinton’s speech was even better than the speech by George Bush… Oh.

Stephen,
I can’t believe the GOP thought it was a good idea discuss the question ‘Are you better off today than you were four years ago?’ Apparently some talking heads were tossed that question on Sunday and somehow flubbed it, or seemed unprepared. Some nitwit in the GOP thought ‘Ha! Now we’ve got them! After all, that was a question asked by Reagan, so it must be a good idea.’

I can’t help but wonder if it was a trap. I mean, how stupid can Romney’s people be? It invites- no, it begs- a discussion of George Bush and the end of the last administration. What can these people be thinking? I know Romney and his campaign have a reputation for micromanagement, for being so deep in the weeds they respond almost hourly to every development. It’s a tremendous vulnerability, because, to throw in yet another metaphor, they can’t see the forest from the trees. They’re head is down, and without a sense of the big picture, they keep walking into every trap.

The Obama campaign deserves credit, of course. They have analyzed the weakness and used it.

Or maybe Romney and his people are just incredibly inept. They have no policies to run on. No big idea. No unifying theme (other than “Hateseses Obama! Hatseses him, my precious!”).

Seriously, a Republican would have to be out of their mind to ask the question ‘are you better off now than four years ago.’

Posted by: phx8 at September 6, 2012 12:19 AM
Comment #352260
Guess that Princeton and Harvard Law education wasn’t wasted on a female after all, eh Rhinehold?

?

Not sure why this was directed at me, perhaps you could explain it.

because tonight, Bill Clinton gave a great speech too.

I don’t think anyone ever said that Bill Clinton couldn’t give a good speech. That isn’t the same thing as governing to most people though, just Democrats it seems…

BTW, since I am sure you wanted to factcheck Ryan, let’s give the President’s speech some checking! See, the former President trotted out the old line about Republicans v Democrat administrations that is, well, less than truthful…

claim was based on research by Princeton University political scientist Larry Bartels. But according to a recent study by State University of New York at Buffalo political scientist James Campbell, it’s not true. In fact, he says, Democratic and Republican administrations correlate with roughly equal economic outcomes once you adjust for the impact of prior administrations.

Writing in the April 2011 issue of the applied politics journal The Forum, Campbell says Bartels failed to take into account the fact that Democratic presidents generally have bequeathed economies that were in or near recession to their Republican successors. If anything, Campbell suggests, Democrats’ policies may have contributed to the poor economic conditions that led to their ouster.

“Once the lagged effects of the economy in the six months leading into a year are taken into account,” Campbell concludes, “there are no significant differences in the records of Democratic and Republican presidents with respect to economic growth, unemployment, and income inequality.”

But, let’s be honest, Democrats have never let FACTS get in the way…

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 6, 2012 12:42 AM
Comment #352261

Oh, and let’s not forget the real story of the Clinton economy that tanked the last year he was in office, eliminating the unfactual claim of a surplus long before Bush ever entered the Oval Office. I don’t remember seeing any mention of that in the speech.

Now, as I have pointed out, the president really can’t to too much to ‘help’ the economy, but he sure can damage it. But we give them way too much credit. I don’t blame Clinton for the .com bust that threw the country into shambles that we were just about to recover from when 9/11 hit. But in the same token, trying to give him credit for the .com boom/y2k spending is beyond laughable.

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 6, 2012 12:46 AM
Comment #352262

phx8,
Wow! I’m honestly wondering if it is possible that Clinton just completely buried Romney/Ryan? Just by clearly laying it all out for America in his truly understandable/comprehensive/wonky/charmingly Southern way? Seriously, that was an incredibly powerful and most importantly, an incredibly informative speech! Dazzling. The old guy has still has that enormously priceless ability to be communicative, yet down to earth, AND palpably compassionate — all at the same time.
Amazing. Truly amazing. Bravo! Bravo!

Still, after shaking off at least a portion of that colossally enormous political charisma, I’m always deeply aware of just how much farther to the left I actually am in comparison. And then I can’t help but think about how much MORE GREAT this nation could truly be if a whole lot more of us shared the kind of rock-bottom convictions I’ve always had! If Americans were willing (as I am) to fight like dogs the way that true, determined old-school Progressives once did! We were unstoppable then!

And we can be again!

LOL! That’s my very best quality! Despite all obstacles I have somehow always managed to still raise my fist and keep hope alive!
:^)

Wishing everyone a very Good Night!

Posted by: Adrienne at September 6, 2012 1:22 AM
Comment #352263

Adrienne,
Right on!

Rhinehold,
Campbell is lying about the equivalence between Democratic and Republican administrations when it comes to job creation. Clinton said that, since Eisenhower, Democratic administrations have created 42 million jobs, the GOP 24 million. No one disputes that. But Campbell claims the numbers will even out by sliding them around. Even if you accept the idea of changing the units of measurement, it’s obviously not true. The first few months of the Obama administration all by themself destroy the hypothesis, since all those losses would be hung on Bush.

Posted by: phx8 at September 6, 2012 1:41 AM
Comment #352277

Adrienne

I might consider voting for Clinton. As I have written many times, he did good things like reform welfare, encourage free trade and shrink government. We should go back to the size of government we had in 1999 and we can tax enough (no more/no less) to support that level.

One big difference between modern progressives and the ones of the past is that modern ones are “to fight like dogs” to get more from the efforts of others, while the progressive of the past were also willing to work like dogs.

You call yourselves by the same name, but you guys want to take and distribute what others have earned, whereas they wanted to enable those who worked and produced to keep more of what they made and have ability to make more. That is one reason progressives hated socialists. In many ways, progressives of old wanted to help the working class (although few progressive leaders belonged to it) while the new “progressives” main constituency is the non-working class.

Posted by: C&J at September 6, 2012 6:38 AM
Comment #352278

BTW, Clinton once gain displayed the great slight-of-hand that earned him the nickname ‘slick willie’.

He has always had a keen nose for the political trends of the moment, and here the former POTUS was reborn as fact-checker-in-chief.

That’s not to say he got all of his facts right. On Medicare, for example, he argued that ObamaCare’s Medicare cuts extend the solvency of Medicare — which, as I noted recently, is only true if you double count the savings, using them to pay for both an extension of Medicare’s trust fund and ObamaCare’s new insurance subsidies. He went after Mitt Romney’s campaign for attacking the Obama administration’s assertion of new, legally dubious authority to grant waivers to welfare’s work requirements. “The requirement was for more work, not less,” he said. Not wrong, exactly, but not the best truth. The requirement was to move 20 percent more people from welfare to work — and an easy way to do that is to increase the program’s rolls, thereby increasing the number of people who successfully move on from the program. He bragged about the higher number of jobs created by Democratic presidents, a comparison that, as Ron Bailey last night, is less favorable depending on how you perform the count.

All in all, though, the speech was more substantive and policy-focused than any convention speech so far — and that’s at either convention. And some of Clinton’s attacks were dead on: He hit Romney for budget math that doesn’t add up, and it doesn’t. He knocked Romney’s telling lack of policy specifics, which is a legitimate problem. He called out GOP VP candidate Paul Ryan for attacking Obama’s Medicare cuts after proposing the same cuts in his own budget. Like so many modern media personalities, Clinton played multiple roles: the pundit, the explainer, the fact-checker, the arbiter of what is true and false — and he did it well.

But what Clinton’s speech gained in policy substance, it lacked in a compelling governing vision. The whole speech was a masterful bit of sleight of hand: He touted his own economic record, attacked the Republicans for their hypocrisies — and then concluded that the correct response is to vote for Obama. Essentially, he tried to transfer his own economic record to the current president.

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 6, 2012 8:16 AM
Comment #352279

BREAKING NEWS!!!!!

Zero chance of rain in Charlotte today…

http://www.weather.com/weather/hourbyhour/graph/Charlotte+NC+USNC0121:1:US?pagenum=2&nextbeginIndex=6

BREAKING NEWS!!!

“Ark. lawmaker pleads guilty to election charge”

http://www.fox16.com/news/local/story/Ark-lawmaker-pleads-guilty-to-election-charge/qjc8PtXwfkC8frDCgwLNrg.cspx

Posted by: Frank at September 6, 2012 10:13 AM
Comment #352280

Frank, I’m not sure what that link was supposed to suggest, but it appears there is a 30% chance of thunderstorms until 10PM tonight… Where do you see a 0% chance?

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 6, 2012 11:12 AM
Comment #352282

Frank: “Zero chance of rain in Charlotte today…”

Still 30% as Rhinehold pointed out. The weather has cleared up for part of the PM and could clear out more for the time of the speech as well but so far it’s still not looking clear for the event. Even if it does get clear what does that prove though? All week the forecast for tonight has been for thunderstorms. It’s been raining off and on all week. This is an outdoor event.

“Ark. lawmaker pleads guilty to election charge”

Another case of fraud that would have been stopped had Arkansas had a voter ID law in place, right? Oh. No?

Posted by: Adam Ducker at September 6, 2012 11:55 AM
Comment #352291

Democrats Lose Their Grip On Reality

But we know that Democrats have a monopoly on caring and a solid grip on a larger moral truth. It frees them up to offer some, um, poetic truths. You know, like, Mitt Romney opposes poor people’s owning homes or Paul Ryan wants seniors to be denied medical care and he’s all for allowing pregnant women to die in the emergency room. In your hearts, you know it’s true.

Outright lies? There were many. For example, the claim that the auto bailout was paid back. Or the claim that Romney-Ryan’s Medicare plan would cost seniors $6,400 per year and force them into voucher programs. There is no study—not even one authored by an Obama aide—that backs such an assertion. Ryan’s plan allows seniors to stay on the traditional Medicare program if they choose—but we all know that choice only works in tandem with government guidance.

And when Castro, Michelle Obama, Deval Patrick, and Rahm Emanuel assert that the president created 4.5 million new jobs…also not true. If a person were to be extremely generous and pretend that government created productive jobs, he’d still be hard-pressed to avoid the very real fact that though 4.5 million new jobs have been created during the Obama administration, 5.1 million jobs have been lost. As Clinton told us Wednesday night, sometimes we have to use arithmetic.

You know the other accusations: Republicans want to privatize, deregulate, voucherize, embrace unfettered free markets, and cut government down to the bone. And boy, do I wish any of that were actually true.

Democrats say that things are a lot better than they used to be. And if you believe all the things we’re hearing, you might wonder: How did we survive in this Godforsaken place before 2008? Were children really left to die on the slab? Were college kids forced to pay for their own journalism degrees? Were people expected to head over to the CVS and buy their own condoms? Did we really suffer through year after year of 5 percent unemployment?

Were we really so immoral before He showed up? Apparently.

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 6, 2012 12:53 PM
Comment #352294

Stephen if you think you are better off under Obama, I’d like to know what it was like for you before Obama?

Posted by: KAP at September 6, 2012 1:32 PM
Comment #352295

Adam Ducker, tell you what clown, I’ll send you the radar link and you show me a thunderstorm in Charlotte:

http://www.accuweather.com/en/us/south-carolina/weather-radar?play=true

They canceled the stadium event because they couldn’t fill the stadium. After Obama’s gaff with removing God and Jerusalem as the Capital of Israel from their platform, and the being forced to CREATE a 2/3’s majority to put it back in; Obama may have trouble filling the convention hall. There was an old some from the 60’s I believe, “The Thrill is Gone”; and it discribes the attitude of the Democrats towards Obama.

“Another case of fraud that would have been stopped had Arkansas had a voter ID law in place, right? Oh. No?”

Posted by: Adam Ducker at September 6, 2012 11:55 AM

You said it.

Posted by: Frank at September 6, 2012 2:10 PM
Comment #352296

The Romney campaign has pulled spending from PA and now MI.

The ADP survey showed good employment numbers. Dow soaring.

Posted by: phx8 at September 6, 2012 2:15 PM
Comment #352297

Frank: “Adam Ducker, tell you what clown, I’ll send you the radar link and you show me a thunderstorm in Charlotte”

You’re old enough by now to know how weather works. The only one acting like a clown about this is you, old man. I don’t know that there will be a storm cell near Charlotte during the event but the chance for one remains.

“They canceled the stadium event because they couldn’t fill the stadium.”

No evidence, no proof, no problem, right Frank? And you call me a clown? Good stuff.

Posted by: Adam Ducker at September 6, 2012 2:23 PM
Comment #352298

Phx8: “The ADP survey showed good employment numbers. Dow soaring.”

Strongest in a long time for ADP. Gallup unemployment at 8.1%. I wonder what happened to the folks on here that thought that source was better than BLS now that Gallup’s figure is lower than BLS?

Posted by: Adam Ducker at September 6, 2012 2:26 PM
Comment #352300

Romney campaign has already pulled spending from WI. So much for Ryan.

Posted by: phx8 at September 6, 2012 2:51 PM
Comment #352301

Phx8: Where are you getting info on spending?

Posted by: Adam Ducker at September 6, 2012 3:01 PM
Comment #352302

“Strongest in a long time for ADP. Gallup unemployment at 8.1%. I wonder what happened to the folks on here that thought that source was better than BLS now that Gallup’s figure is lower than BLS?”

Posted by: Adam Ducker at September 6, 2012 2:26 PM

Question, can we believe any polls that come out in Obama’s favor?

“The Daily Caller’s Matthew Boyle reports that emails between senior officials at The Gallup Organization, show senior Obama campaign adviser David Axelrod attempted to intimidate the polling firm when its poll results found Mitt Romney leading President Obama.

According to Boyle, after Gallup declined to change its polling methodology, Obama’s Department of Justice hit it with an unrelated lawsuit:

“Since Gallup first roused Axelrod’s ire, Obama’s Justice Department revived old allegations against the firm that, according to now former Gallup employee Michael Lindley, the polling company violated the False Claims Act by over-charging the federal government for its services.”

In a very Nixonian abuse of power the Obama/Holder Justice Department announced it was joining the lawsuit on August 22, 2012. The announcement also indicated that the Justice Department plans to assert additional claims related to Gallup’s subcontract with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). During most of the two weeks before the announcement, Gallup’s tracking poll showed Romney leading Obama 47 to 45 percent.

Contrast team Obama’s treatment of Gallup to that of Nate Silver. As Buzz Feed Politics reports, team Obama was more appreciative of silvers work and rewarded him.

“Obama’s polling analysts, Issenberg writes, wanted to test their internal polls against Silver’s model. And so — in an unusual step for the closely-held campaign, and for the analyst, who was then running his own website, FiveThirtyEight.com — the Obama campaign offered Silver access to thousands of its own internal polls, on the condition Silver sign a confidentiality agreement, which he did. (Silver, who now writes a widely-read blog for the New York Times declined to comment on the arrangement.)”

You really must go to the Daily Caller and read some of what is in the emails. Here is a teaser:

“In response to that email, a third senior Gallup official said he thought Axelrod’s pressure “sounds a little like a Godfather situation.”

“Imagine Axel[rod] with Brando’s voice: ‘[Name redacted], I’d like you to come over and explain your methodology…You got a nice poll there….would be a shame if anything happened to it…’”

In a second email chain titled “slanderous link about Gallup methodology,” another senior Gallup official noted that a Washington Examiner story on Axelrod’s anti-Gallup tweet was “on [the] Drudge [Report] right now,” before writing that the episode was “[s]o politically motivated, it’s laughable.”

“As they say in b-ball: he’s trying to work the refs,” that official wrote to other senior Gallup staffers. “What a joke. Axel’s had a bad week. He got in the middle of the Ann Romney thing. Then said the country is going in the wrong direction. (Oops!) Now he’s swinging at us….””

The Axelrod vs. Gallup story is more evidence that Obama is losing and the campaign is desperate. The Good news is that Gallup did not cave in to the attempted “intimidation” and now the story is public. Does the Axelrod vs.Gallup story explain why we have seen so many skewed polls during this campaign?”

http://www.redstate.com/2012/09/06/emails-confirm-obama-campaign-adviser-david-axelrod-tried-to-intimidate-gallup/

The question is how many other pollsters have been compromised by Obama’s Chicago style politics? What is the reason for Obama trying to influence the polls? Can he change the outcome of an election? Yes, if he can falsely stir up his base, which is failing him; or if he can discourage those on the right by causing them to believe Obama is a shoo in, thus discouraging the right into not voting. It appears very few polls can be believed.

“You’re old enough by now to know how weather works. The only one acting like a clown about this is you, old man. I don’t know that there will be a storm cell near Charlotte during the event but the chance for one remains.”

Yes, I am, and I have also been around long enough to know that I don’t remember a time in history when an NFL football game was cancelled over a 20-30% chance of showers. This is another Obama scam and the truth will eventually come out; the truth that they could not fill the stadium with Obama worshippers. So tonight, we have no ballons and we have no fireworks. This DNC convention is blah, even the press is bored.

“CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — President Barack Obama will lay out his vision for a second term, even as advisers say they don’t anticipate a big bounce in the polls following the Democratic National Convention.”

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_CVN_OBAMA_EXPECTATIONS?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2012-09-06-08-24-13

Posted by: Frank at September 6, 2012 3:12 PM
Comment #352303

Adam,
The news about the withdrawal of Romney campaign spending in MI was reported by MSNBC, but I think they withdrew a while ago. The news about WI & PA was re-posted today on DailyKos from the Detroit News.

The most recent polls show a 5 point spread in MI for Obama, one point in WI, and 11 in PA. VA is probably out of reach due to a right wing candidate making the ballot who will take away one or two points from Romney in a state where he is already down.

Posted by: phx8 at September 6, 2012 3:24 PM
Comment #352304

Frank: “The question is how many other pollsters have been compromised by Obama’s Chicago style politics?”

Of course they’re all rigged. Just keep telling yourself that.

“Yes, I am, and I have also been around long enough to know that I don’t remember a time in history when an NFL football game was cancelled over a 20-30% chance of showers.”

I’m still wondering what NFL football has to do with the biggest speech of the year for President Obama and the Democratic Party. I also wonder if you’ve seen the weather report lately. We have a 75% chance of rain at 6 PM, 100% chance at 7, 55% at 8, 30% at 9 PM. Other than that it’s all clear!

Posted by: Adam Ducker at September 6, 2012 3:27 PM
Comment #352305

Where else do liberal leftists get their information?

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/09/06/1128509/-Team-Romney-concedes-PA-MI

What phx8 failed to mention is that Obama has cut spending in these states too:

“There are no presidential campaign ads of any kind airing in Pennsylvania and Michigan, according to information provided by media trackers to the Associated Press.

One reason the Romney forces may have pulled money out of Michigan is President Barack Obama’s campaign and a political action committee supporting his re-election aren’t spending here either, said Rich Robinson, director of Michigan Campaign Finance Network.

“You don’t spend money if you know you’re going to win or you know you’re going to lose, and Obama hasn’t spent five cents” in Michigan, Robinson said.

In other battleground states, such as Ohio and Florida, the race is more fluid than in Michigan where Obama’s lead in the polls has remained “status quo,” said GOP political strategist Greg McNeilly.”


From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20120906/POLITICS01/209060394#ixzz25ifM4GKb

Why would Romney drop states when he is outraising Obama in funds, unless Romney knows something about these states that we don’t.

“Romney’s Fundraising Juggernaut Tops Obama’s for Third Straight Month”

http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2012/08/mitt-romney-july-fundraising-101-million

Posted by: Frank at September 6, 2012 3:33 PM
Comment #352306

phx8, these are the RCP poll averages:

MI: Obama +2.4; WI: Obama +1.4; PA: Obama +7.7; VA: Obama +0.6;

Most within margin of error; but these polls have been moving in the direction of Romney.

Posted by: BIF at September 6, 2012 3:50 PM
Comment #352307

BIF,
Interesting RCP info. One thing to be careful about with RCP- if I recall, they average polls for results. This runs into trouble because one organization in particular, Rasmussen, puts their finger on the scales to influence polling. If the bias of Rasmussen this election in presidential polling matches their bias from last one, they favor the GOP candidate by 3.8% They were wrong by that amount, measuring their polls during the last three weeks of the 2008 election with actual results. And if you compare Rasmussen polls with five other major pollsters this go around, you’ll find that 4% margin checks out pretty consistently. When the other pollsters all show Obama with, say, a one point lead, Rasmussen alone will show Romney with a three point lead.

Gallup shows the next most bias, a slight GOP bias, but it is not nearly as bad as Rasmussen. The four most reliable ones are PPP, Quinnipeac, Survey USA, and Mason-Dixon. And the usual caveat applies… These are polls, and only polls.

Some, like Purple Strategies, are too new to evaluate. In the case of Purple Strategies, it is run by a Republican operative, Alex Castellanos, and it seems to present a lot of wonderful news for Romney, so that seems like a doubtful resource.

When it comes to politics, there’s always someone out there anxious to influence opinion with slanted information. All we can really do is use it with caution…

Posted by: phx8 at September 6, 2012 4:11 PM
Comment #352309

Frank-
That would be positively devastating (snark) if the lawsuit hadn’t extended back to 2009, the e-mails hadn’t been directed to the White House, not the campaign, and Axelrod long gone from the White House before the e-mails had been sent.

Your people tend to be sloppy. The kind of eagerness that sometimes gets mainstream reporters in trouble is endemic on your side, only people don’t get fired for getting things wrong on a regular basis, they get radio shows.

The questions you ask are always conspiratorial, always trying to allege something you can’t prove, but which you want people to take seriously anyway.

Nobody should take you seriously, though, and many people have simply stopped doing so.

You can quote Romney’s numbers on ads and everything, but let’s be blunt: Hollywood movies regularly spend tens of millions of dollars on ads per film, and the big films get the market flooded on their behalf.

And movies like that still flop.

Nobody sets out to create a flop, some people just fail to create work that relates to people. The Republicans, all too smugly, are trying to capitalize on dissatisfaction, without really registering how little people might be satisfied with them.

Don’t you get that? Look at Congress’s numbers, and even if you don’t have the whole Congress, you’ve gone out of your way to identify people with it.

Your brand is connected to the gridlock and partisan corrosion of function. Ours, however disappointing, is at least connected to a struggle to improve things. There’s a difference between promising and falling short, and promising, and not even trying to do anything constructive.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 6, 2012 5:28 PM
Comment #352311
which is why I’ve laid out how I’ll pay for every dime—by closing corporate loopholes and tax havens that don’t help America grow. But I will also go through the federal budget, line by line, eliminating programs that no longer work and making the ones we do need work better and cost less. — President Obama at last year’s DNC.

I am betting dollars to donuts that we don’t hear a peep about this call for austerity and many other failed promises while he promises all kinds of new things for next time, that he’ll keep this time, not just ignore or, more often than not, do a complete 180 on…

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 6, 2012 5:57 PM
Comment #352312
There’s a difference between promising and falling short, and promising, and not even trying to do anything constructive.

The problem is, Stephen, that you are unwilling to recognize that plans you disagree with are ‘anything constructive’. There have been many many bills passed by the Republican House that will never be taken up by the Senate (obstructionist much?) because of political disagreements.

Sounds like the left is trying to write it’s own narrative as well, agreeing to all of the threats of filibusters AND not bringing up any opposing party bills as a way to pin all of the failures onto the opposing party. The truth is somewhere in the middle, and deep down I think you know that…

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 6, 2012 6:01 PM
Comment #352313

C&J,
Lies, lies, lies. Oh well, what else is new? Btw, I know your nasty attacks aimed at me are due to the fact that at the moment you can find nothing else to do. Bill Clinton’s wonky-but-perfectly-understandable speech just delivered truly stunning blows to your sad, confused, nonsensical, yet loud and angry political party.

Bill Clinton’s Stunning Jobs Claim At DNC Actually True

Democratic policies create jobs.
Republican policies simply don’t.

I’ve also noticed that no one here even dares to comment on how some hackers might well be holding all of Mitt and Ann Romney’s tax returns — and has chosen to hold them for ransom. They claim that by September 28th if Mitt Romney hasn’t coughed up a million dollars that they’re going to release those returns to the entire American public.

I find the whole idea more than a little hilarious!
I mean, what an incredibly damaging state of affairs for Mitt Romney — and this is true no matter WHAT actually happens!

First of all, they simply couldn’t be held for ransom unless there was lots of truly terrible or embarrassing things in them! Secondly, if Mitt does pay these hackers the ransom, this would only show how desperate and guilty the Romney’s must be of cheating on their taxes, or worse. Thirdly, if the Romney’s do not choose to pay the ransom, the release of those returns might end up becoming one hell of an October surprise! The memo that appeared online said: The years before 2010 will be of great interest to many.”

And fourth — even if this whole story is entirely false, simply the fact that this is now in the news only draws renewed attention to the fact that Romney adamantly refuses to share his financial info with the nation he is running to lead. And this probably because he’s a really dishonest guy who has tons of stuff to hide from the American people.

Posted by: Adrienne at September 6, 2012 6:11 PM
Comment #352314

Adrienne

“Lies, lies, lies. Oh well, what else is new?” I understand that you are unhappy with what I wrote, but what can you possibly think is a “lie”?

I think you might be referring to someone else?

Posted by: C&J at September 6, 2012 7:08 PM
Comment #352320

Phx8, so we shouldn’t pay any attention to RCP polls because they may be influenced by Rasmussen; and we shouldn’t pay any attention to Rasmussen because they try to influence they try to influence the election; and we shouldn’t pay any attention to Gallup because they are biased and run by Republicans; but we can trust “The four most reliable ones are PPP, Quinnipeac, Survey USA, and Mason-Dixon” because? Why???

“Public Policy Polling (PPP) is an American polling firm based in Raleigh, North Carolina.[1][2][3] PPP was founded in 2001 by businessman and Democratic pollster Dean Debnam, the firm’s current president and chief executive officer.[1][4] The company’s surveys use Interactive Voice Response (IVR), an automated questionnaire used by other polling firms such as SurveyUSA and Rasmussen Reports.[5]

PPP’s polls have been described as having both a Democratic Party “house effect” and a liberal bias.”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_Policy_Polling

“The press release for Quinnipiac University’s National Poll leads with the findings that “American voters say Iran sanctions aren’t working. … 50 percent say bomb Iran if sanctions don’t work.” But an examination of the polling questions reveals some surprising bias and outright misstatement of facts by the pollsters.”

http://thinkprogress.org/security/2011/11/23/375997/quinnipiac-poll-inaccurate/

“According to a snap poll from Survey USA of 754 registered voters who watched the final night of the convention, they may have switched 10% of the vote with the effort:
1,211 adults were interviewed statewide 08/31/12, after Romney, Florida’s Marco Rubio and Clint Eastwood spoke to the convention 08/30/12. Of the adults, 1,100 were registered to vote in Florida. Of the registered voters, 754 heard the convention speeches. Of the convention speech watchers:
* 66% did not change their mind.
* 16% switched from “undecided” to Romney.
* 6% switched from Obama to Romney.
* Adding those 2 together, that’s 22% who switched TO Romney.
* 10% switched from “undecided” to Obama.
* 2% switched from Romney to Obama.
* Adding those 2 together, that’s 12% who switched TO Obama.
* Comparing the 2 aggregate numbers: 22% switched TO Romney, 12% switched TO Obama.”

http://hotair.com/archives/2012/09/01/new-florida-poll-shows-vindication-of-eastwood-strategy/

Since Survey USA vindicates Clint Eastwood and his speech, I assume you will want to put Survey USA in the Republican Biased category.

“When National Journal buries a lede, man, they really bury it. A new poll from Mason-Dixon in Missouri of 625 likely voters shows what everyone already suspected — that Todd Akin had blown a five-point lead in Missouri’s US Senate race and now trails by nine, 50/41 [see update], to Claire McCaskill. But what many didn’t expect was that the crash-and-burn of Akin would not damage Mitt Romney at all. In the 9th paragraph out of ten, we find out that Romney leads Barack Obama in the critical swing state, and it’s not all that close:

McCaskill’s lead is a testament to the damage caused by Akin’s remarks. She remains less-than-popular, as slightly more voters view her unfavorably (41 percent) than favorably (39 percent). And, despite worries that Akin’s remarks could also harm the candidacy of presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, the former Massachusetts governor leads President Obama, 50 percent to 43 percent. Obama’s favorable-unfavorable split of 38 percent-48 percent is worse than McCaskill’s.”

http://hotair.com/archives/2012/08/25/mason-dixon-mo-poll-romney-up-5043-over-obama/

Perhaps you would want to make Mason-Dixon biased too?

Phx8, could you give me the name of a poll that is not run by a Democrat or a Republican?

Then you say:

“And the usual caveat applies… These are polls, and only polls…

When it comes to politics, there’s always someone out there anxious to influence opinion with slanted information. All we can really do is use it with caution…”
Posted by: phx8 at September 6, 2012 4:11 PM

So in your vast knowledge of polls and that polls are only polls, and cannot really be taken seriously; why did you make this original comment:

“The most recent polls show a 5 point spread in MI for Obama, one point in WI, and 11 in PA. VA is probably out of reach due to a right wing candidate making the ballot who will take away one or two points from Romney in a state where he is already down.”

By making this comment, based on polls that cannot be taken seriously, are you simply being “anxious to influence opinion with slanted information?

Posted by: BIF at September 6, 2012 8:57 PM
Comment #352321

This site is becoming a circus; we now have Stephen Daugherty linking to Media Matters and Adrienne linking to the Huffpost as proof for their arguments. Two of the most left leaning, liberal, hate mongering sites on the Internet. Talk about conspiracy theorists.

Posted by: Frank at September 6, 2012 9:07 PM
Comment #352322

Frank,
I’m not sure I undertand your point. Are you trying to say the Romney campaign has a secret, grand planto stop spending in swing states where it is behind, only 60 or so days before the election, because it is actually going to launch a blitz that will turn the tide? Good luck with that.

BIF,
Polls may be produced by Dems or Reps, but their bias can be measured. One way is to compare the presidential polls within three weeks of an election with actual voting results. By this standard, the polls I mentioned acquited themselves honorably in 2008. Rasmussen? No.

Any single poll may be an outlier. That happens. I’m not sure about your comments on polls re Eastwood. Some of the GOP audience liked the convention. No problem. Some Republicans liked the sight of an old man scolding a chair. I’m good with that. Slap yourself on the back.

Enjoy the election.

Posted by: phx8 at September 6, 2012 9:18 PM
Comment #352329

phx8

As I wrote before, if Democrats feel so confident in their imminent victory, good. I know that there are plenty of probable Democratic voters who would rather stay home and drink beer or watch TV than to bother to get out to vote. I hope your confidence encourages them to do so. After all, another can of Cold 45 is sure better than going all the way to the polls when your vote doesn’t count.

Posted by: C&J at September 6, 2012 11:05 PM
Comment #352331
Phx8, could you give me the name of a poll that is not run by a Democrat or a Republican?

Reason-Rupe

http://reason.com/poll

One way is to compare the presidential polls within three weeks of an election with actual voting results. By this standard, the polls I mentioned acquited themselves honorably in 2008. Rasmussen? No.

Hmmm

According to Politico, “Rasmussen’s final poll of the 2008 general election — showing Obama defeating Arizona Sen. John McCain 52 percent to 46 percent — closely mirrored the election’s outcome.” In reference to the 2008 presidential election, a Talking Points Memo article said, “Rasmussen’s final polls had Obama ahead 52%-46%, which was nearly identical to Obama’s final margin of 53%-46%, and made him one of the most accurate pollsters out there.

Slate Magazine and The Wall Street Journal reported that Rasmussen Reports was one of the most accurate polling firms for the 2004 United States presidential election and 2006 United States general elections. In 2004 Slate magazine “publicly doubted and privately derided” Rasmussen’s use of recorded voices in electoral polls. However, after the election, they concluded that Rasmussen’s polls were among the most accurate in the 2004 presidential election. According to Politico, Rasmussen’s 2008 presidential-election polls “closely mirrored the election’s outcome”.

At the end of the 2008 presidential election, there were eight national tracking polls and many other polls conducted on a regular basis. Polling analyst Nate Silver reviewed the tracking polls and said that while none were perfect, and Rasmussen was “frequently reputed to have a Republican lean”, the “house effect” in their tracking poll was small and “with its large sample size and high pollster rating [it] would probably be the one I’d want with me on a desert island.” After the election, Rasmussen’s poll was rated as the most accurate, when compared to various other final pre-election polls.

In the January 2010 special election for the Senate seat from Massachusetts, Rasmussen Reports was the first to show that Republican Scott Brown had a chance to defeat Martha Coakley. Just after Brown’s upset win, Ben Smith at Politico reported, “The overwhelming conventional wisdom in both parties until a Rasmussen poll showed the race in single digits in early January was that Martha Coakley was a lock. (It’s hard to recall a single poll changing the mood of a race quite that dramatically.)” A few days later, Public Policy Polling released the first poll showing Brown in the lead, a result differing from Rasmussen’s by 10 points.[53] Rasmussen’s last poll on the race found Coakley with a 2-point lead, when she in fact lost by 5 points, a 7-point error.

A quote from Larry Sabato of the University of Virginia posted on the Rasmussen homepage reads, “Rasmussen produces some of the most accurate and reliable polls in the country today.”

Journalist Mickey Kaus said, “If you have a choice between Rasmussen and, say, the prestigious New York Times, go with Rasmussen.”

So, do you want to revise your statement and find another reason to dismiss Rasmussen?

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 6, 2012 11:13 PM
Comment #352332

The DNC turned into a religious costume party.

Posted by: BZA at September 6, 2012 11:16 PM
Comment #352333

C&J,
Cheer up. Today, the DJIA closed at its highest level since Obama took office.

Rhinehold,
“After the 2010 elections, the New York Times statistics wizard, Nate Silver, analyzed the polls produced by various polling organizations, including Rasmussen Reports, which is the house pollster for Fox News. Silver’s analysis covered only polls taken during the final three weeks of the campaign and compared them to the actual election results. For polls taken much earlier, say in June, no one knows what the true sentiment of the electorate was, so there is no way to tell if the polls were accurate or not. Also, any pollster deliberately falsifying the results for partisan advantage would be advised to reduce the bias as the election neared. After all, no one can tell if a June poll is accurate but everyone can tell if a poll released the day before the election is accurate.

Silver analyzed 105 polls released by Rasmussen Reports and its subsidiary, Pulse Opinion Research, for Senate and gubernatorial races in numerous states across the country. The bottom line is that on average, Rasmussen’s polls were off by 5.8% with a bias of 3.9% in favor of the Republican candidates.”
electoral-vote.com

http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/11/04/rasmussen-polls-were-biased-and-inaccurate-quinnipiac-surveyusa-performed-strongly/

http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/11/06/when-house-effects-become-bias/

Rhinehold, my information covers the most recent elections and trends. Your information refers to earlier elections. If you follow this current cycle, you will notice reality matches what I am saying; Rasmussen polls consistently show a strong GOP bias. For presidential polls, Rasmussen generally shows a bias of about 4% compared with other presidential polls.

There are individual exceptions and outliers. There are exceptions, but the rule holds true.

Posted by: phx8 at September 6, 2012 11:28 PM
Comment #352334
my information covers the most recent elections and trends. Your information refers to earlier elections.

No, I quoted specifically what you said. I’ll requote it again.

“One way is to compare the presidential polls within three weeks of an election with actual voting results. By this standard, the polls I mentioned acquited themselves honorably in 2008. Rasmussen? No.”

So, I proved you wrong, yet you want to deride me by changing your criteria to 2010. Typical tactic, so let’s play your game.

Your whole basis of your criticism of Rasmussen is from one person, Nate Silver. Let’s see some facts regarding that one…

Silver named Quinnipiac University Poll as the most accurate poll of the election cycle. However, according to RealClearPolitics, in the three Senate and gubernatorial toss-up races where both Rasmussen Reports and Quinnipiac polled, the Rasmussen Reports final poll was closer to the mark in every race. Both Rasmussen and Quinnipiac projected that Republican candidates would do better than they actually did. The two firms projected the same candidate to win every race but the Florida gubernatorial race, where Rasmussen correctly projected Rick Scott’s victory, while Quinnipiac showed Alex Sink with the lead.

Of course, part of the problem is that not all polling firms are polling the same races during the same times of the year. That is why when you compare Quinnipiac with Rasmussen on those races where they both polled together, Rasmussen was more accurate but still had some major gaffs in races where others did not poll.

I wonder why Nate Silver would want to call out Rasmussen? Hmmmm…

Silver also criticized Rasmussen for often only polling races months before the election, which prevented them from having polls just before the election that could be assessed for accuracy. He wrote that he was “looking at appropriate ways to punish pollsters” like Rasmussen in his pollster rating models who don’t poll in the final days before an election.

Anyone else you want to use to go against Rasmussen besides Nate Silver? Nate has a huge dislike for Rasmussen’s methods, and he makes some points with those criticisms, but perhaps Nate is letting HIS biases get in the way?

Rasmussen polls consistently show a strong GOP bias.

Even Nate Silver has admitted that in 2012 (you are wanting to talk more recent, right?) the ‘house effect’ wasn’t as strong as it had been in the past. Your labelling it as ‘strong’ is misleading considering it is within the margain of error for any poll…

In June 2012, Silver wrote that “Rasmussen Reports, which has had Republican-leaning results in the past, does so again this year. However, the tendency is not very strong – a Republican lean of about 1.3 points.”

So, what we have is a polling firm that was the most accurate in 2004, 2006, 2008, had some errors in 2010 but was still more accurate when directly compared to most others, and is only diverging 1.3% from other polls in 2012…

Who you choose to believe is your decision, I have no dog in this hunt. My only concern is for actual facts and the truth behind them. I’m very against people dismissing anything that they disagree with just based on source or party affiliation. Debate the facts and admit when you are wrong, it’s a much better solution than trying to win every single debate by any means necessary, including the use of well established fallacies.

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 7, 2012 12:08 AM
Comment #352335

The most recent Rasmussen tracking poll shows Romney d Obama 47 - 44. The Gallup tracking poll shows Obama d Romney 47 -46. Four points, if you do the math. Just a wild coincidence, eh?

Let’s observe reality for the next two months. Let’s watch the agreement or deviation of Rasmussen from the other polls. What better way to determine truth and the facts behind it? I’m scarce Saturdays and Mondays, & I will be in Canada in mid-September, but otherwise I do look at this stuff daily. You game?

Posted by: phx8 at September 7, 2012 12:44 AM
Comment #352336

C&J,
No, I was talking to you. Your “arguments” aren’t worth engaging in since all you do is lie about Progressives and progressivism. Very obviously this is because you can’t stand either.


This site is becoming a circus; we now have Stephen Daugherty linking to Media Matters and Adrienne linking to the Huffpost as proof for their arguments. Two of the most left leaning, liberal, hate mongering sites on the Internet. Talk about conspiracy theorists.

You know what’s even more circus-like? People who are so incredibly thick that they aren’t able to follow links that are glaringly provided. Links which happen to be conveniently highlighted in bright glowing red — so people can automatically follow the source of the info. Hey, how easy is that?!!!

So for instance, in my HuffPo link, hey look, what do you know! There’s a link to Bloomberg!

Private Jobs Increase More With Democrats in White House

So, I’ll reiterate:
Democratic policies create jobs.
Republican policies simply don’t.

Tragically, time and again it is proved that Low Info Rightwingers have a great amount of difficulty navigating and understanding the internet — or as I believe they may prefer to call it “the series of tubes.”

Posted by: Adrienne at September 7, 2012 1:08 AM
Comment #352340

Good article: The 3 Themes That Defined The Democratic Convention

I direct the above link strictly to those on the left in the Blue column. Not to the right who obviously can only offer their ridiculous criticisms and insults.

Posted by: Adrienne at September 7, 2012 2:20 AM
Comment #352341

Adrienne, just curious, have you ever heard of the cum hoc ergo propter hoc logical fallacy? Or more commonly known as Correlation does not imply causation?

Since you are a great navigator of the interwebs, I’ll give you a link to help you get started…

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Correlation_does_not_imply_causation

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 7, 2012 2:23 AM
Comment #352342

LOL, Adrienne, that’s some cahones to accuse the ‘right’ of ‘ridiculous criticisms and insults’ of the DNC after your same treatment of the RNC here on these pages…

I’ll give you some more interweb links…

http://factcheck.org/2012/09/democratic-disinformation-from-charlotte/
http://factcheck.org/2012/09/day-2-more-convention-canards/
http://factcheck.org/2012/08/a-campaign-full-of-mediscare/http://factcheck.org/2012/07/whoppers-of-2012-early-edition/

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 7, 2012 2:25 AM
Comment #352343

It’s useless to try to determine the future of this election based on today’s percentages. It’s going to be a close one and the numbers are going to shift many times before all is said and done.

Posted by: BZA at September 7, 2012 2:45 AM
Comment #352345

Rhinehold,
I’m not interested in your links, or in your endless nitpicky arguments. Feel free not to be interested in what I post — I honestly don’t care.

Posted by: Adrienne at September 7, 2012 3:20 AM
Comment #352360

Adrienne

What “lie” did I tell about progressives?

Where does the primary “progressive” constituency lie today? You all complain that the white working class is no longer reliable and if only they voted, Republicans would almost always win. The most reliable “progressive” groups are teachers unions, rich celebrities and people dependent on government assistance. It is just not the old days.

I liked the progressives of the old days and think they did lots of good things. The good ones split off from the others in the 1960s. What you call progressive is a motley crew of people with grievances who want to get more from the government w/o engaging in anything that smack of effort beyond rallies and demanding.

I was and have remained on the side of those who work and produce. Government has a very important task to create conditions by which the people can build prosperity. It should protect people’s right to improve and in the process improve society. It is morally wrong, IMO, to subsidize failure.

Posted by: C&J at September 7, 2012 7:50 AM
Comment #352363

Frank-
Right, right. A source dropkicks your argument to hell, you don’t even try to deal with the facts, you just denounce it as conspiracy theory. Did you notice what you were peddling?

You are alleging things for which the connections are dubious at best. Can you dispute when Axelrod left the White House? Can you say that the DOJ wasn’t already looking into the complain long before the fact?

Your story doesn’t fit together, and you are too lazy to do real analysis. Perhaps you think it’s below you, what little nerds living in their parent’s houses do. But without it, there is no mechanism by which the skeptics can gain trust in what you say. I use what logic and facts I do, because they give me a way of extending my reach beyond just those who would have agreed with me anyway.

Your whole party has become turned in on itself, only feeling it has to justify things to itself, and as a consequence, it’s losing the fight to offer a vision to the rest of America to the Democrats. At best, they can only crap on other people’s ideas. Crapping on other people’s ideas, though, is not a vision. If you’re not coming up with your own, it’s just jealosy and envy.

Rhinehold-
I find it interesting that you bring up the post hoc fallacy, despite having bought into the narrative that Democrats are responsible for the financial crisis, despite having been inaugurated past the housing boom and its bust, and only a few months before the lenders started going bankrupt.

There is no problem in saying that something happened as part of a logical chain of events. The problem comes in saying that just because something happened after folks were elected, they were responsible for it.

As far as Rasmussen goes, I would say that part of the problem with them as a pollster isn’t merely the house effect, but the fact that they often word questions in a GOP friendly way, leaving out details other pollsters don’t. Scott Rasmussen, as a matter of fact, has gone on cruises for conservatives where he’s a star presenter.

I don’t know now now many times people have tried to insist that Rasmussen, and only Rasmussen results be used to indicate the popularity of things. Why is that?

The problem with liberal media bias theory, besides its untruth, is that it provokes an equal and opposite reaction among Republicans to the perceived bias. In other words, it helps conservatives and Republicans create a media bias in their favor, most heavily in their own boutique media outlets. And unfortunately people have embraced it so zealously that it’s almost as if they’re stuck in a parallel universe. Almost. The facts remain what they are, and no matter how the GOP cheerleads certain policies, they still often are failures.

Failures that the other side cannot admit, for fear of bursting the bubble. The GOP at this point is like the capital markets were before 2007, it’s value vastly overrated. Hopefully, they’ll come back to reality when they figure out they can’t simply obstruct their way to victory.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 7, 2012 8:40 AM
Comment #352364

SD:


“The problem with liberal media bias theory, besides its untruth,….”

That statement reminds me of the joke, “who are you going to believe, me or your lying eyes”.

I am a subscriber to the St Pete Times. They regularly wet themselves over any of the liberal/Democratic Party/progressive agenda, and provide opinion pieces as “news” articles. Even their fact checker (Politifact) regularly will slant the results of the fact checking. If you really can’t see this, (or only see slanting from “Faux News”), you are deluding yourself.

Posted by: Mike in Tampa at September 7, 2012 8:53 AM
Comment #352367
I find it interesting that you bring up the post hoc fallacy, despite having bought into the narrative that Democrats are responsible for the financial crisis, despite having been inaugurated past the housing boom and its bust, and only a few months before the lenders started going bankrupt.

I’m not sure why you are being think on this one, Stephen, you know perfectly well what I was saying. I made it quite clear that the housing boom was the fault of the Fed, who purposefully kept interest rates low until it could no longer be sustainable. However, it is also quite clear that once the bust started, the Democrats were asked to do something that would have limited the damage to the firms that participated in the derivatives market and instead allowed it to spill over into the banking and other areas of the economy.

Either you are having me on (in which case you got me (bazinga), you didn’t really understand what was being discussed to begin with or you don’t quite get the fallacies in question.

I don’t know now now many times people have tried to insist that Rasmussen, and only Rasmussen results be used to indicate the popularity of things. Why is that?

I have no idea, no single polling source should be ‘gospel’ for anyone. It can be useful as a starting point for discussion or investigation, but anyone who knows anything about statistics would know better than to do that.

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 7, 2012 10:00 AM
Comment #352369

IMO, the reason Rasmussen is more accurate is because they poll “Likely Voters” and not “Registered Voters”; now why would this be important? Simply for what C&J said, there are many Democrats who will stay home and drink beer rather than go to the polls and vote. The reason…they are disheartened and discouraged about Obama.

Adrienne:
“Links which happen to be conveniently highlighted in bright glowing red — so people can automatically follow the source of the info. Hey, how easy is that?!!!”

Then perhaps Adrienne could explain why she doesn’t use the original links, instead of the liberal spin sites; where the original links are reduced to a few liberal talking points. Not only do we have to go to Adrienne’s leftist link sites, but we then have to decipher the talking points from the original sites; and in the mean time Adrienne has moved on to a new set of accusations based on more leftist liks.

Stephen said:

“Your whole party has become turned in on itself”

Yes Stephen, I saw a party that has turned on itself just a couple of days ago when the Democrat’s were evenly split on including God or Jerusalem in their platform. I saw half of the Democrat delegates screaming, “NO GOD, NO JERUSALEM” and I saw the embarrassed leadership of the convention call a 2/3 rd majority in the affirmative when it clearly was not.

Posted by: Frank at September 7, 2012 10:02 AM
Comment #352373

Factchecking the President and Vice-President

http://factcheck.org/2012/09/factchecking-obama-and-biden/

President Obama boasted that his plan would cut the deficit by $4 trillion over 10 years, citing “independent experts.” But one such analyst called a key element of the plan a “gimmick.”

Vice President Biden quoted GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney as saying “it’s not worth moving heaven and earth” to catch Osama bin Laden. Actually, Romney said he’d target more than just “one person.”

The president said U.S. automakers are “back on top of the world.” Nope. GM has slipped back to No. 2 and is headed for third place in global sales this year, behind Toyota and Volkswagen.

Biden said “the experts” concluded Romney’s corporate tax plan would create 800,000 jobs in other countries. One expert said that. She also said the number depends on the details, and foreign jobs could grow without costing U.S. jobs.

Obama quoted Romney as saying it was “tragic” to “end the war in Iraq.” What Romney was criticizing was the pace of Obama’s troop withdrawal, not ending a war.

Biden claimed Romney “believes it’s OK to raise taxes on middle classes by $2,000.” Romney actually promises to lower middle-class taxes.

Biden said Romney and running mate Paul Ryan “are not for preserving Medicare at all.” Actually, the plan they endorse would offer traditional Medicare as one option among many.

Obama said his tax plan would restore “the same rate we had when Bill Clinton was president” for upper-income taxpayers. Not quite. New taxes to finance the health care law also kick in next year, further burdening those same taxpayers.

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 7, 2012 11:33 AM
Comment #352374
Then perhaps Adrienne could explain why she doesn’t use the original links, instead of the liberal spin sites; where the original links are reduced to a few liberal talking points.

She could also explain why she thinks everyone should go to her links but refuses to follow the links that anyone else that has a different opinion of hers post?

I doubt we hear a logical explanation of that though…

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 7, 2012 11:36 AM
Comment #352381

Rhinhold

She is not capable of evaluating evidence beyond a partisan spin. You will probably get some vulgarity from her for appealing to logic.

Posted by: C&J at September 7, 2012 12:27 PM
Comment #352383
Then perhaps Adrienne could explain why she doesn’t use the original links, instead of the liberal spin sites; where the original links are reduced to a few liberal talking points.

I link to liberal sites because that’s where I go to read news I might otherwise miss. After all, I can’t read everything every single day, so it’s good to know that there are web journalists scouring the news and putting it up where people on the left may find it. And, to do my part, I too also pass along info or articles which catch my attention and alert the people at several of my favorite websites.

Not only do we have to go to Adrienne’s leftist link sites, but we then have to decipher the talking points from the original sites; and in the mean time Adrienne has moved on to a new set of accusations based on more leftist liks.

Do you think you can control this entire site with your b*tching and nastiness? Dictate everything that everyone can post? I’m in the BLUE column. I am politically LEFT. If people don’t like my links, they simply don’t have to read them.

She could also explain why she thinks everyone should go to her links but refuses to follow the links that anyone else that has a different opinion of hers posts?

I doubt we hear a logical explanation of that though…

I don’t think everyone should go to my links — I only come here now to share things with people on the left. I may occasionally make a comment, but I’m pretty much through with arguing. There’s just no point, and I’ve completely had it with the endless trolling and/or incivility of the rightwingers and tea baggers in this blog. Therefore, I don’t care if those people read the things I link to here, and I’m definitely not interested in whatever you’re linking to.
I doubt you’ll act as if you can understand such a logical, perfectly honest explanation. No doubt all of these comments will call forth more trolling/incivility, as usual.

Posted by: Adrienne at September 7, 2012 12:49 PM
Comment #352393

Jesse Walker does a good job here talking about the Democratic Party’s vision…

There was a moment at this week’s Democratic convention that seemed to encapsulate the party’s stunted vision. It came during the remarks of Maria Ciano, a Colorado woman who presents herself as a former Republican distressed by the modern GOP. “I still believe in small government, but I no longer believe in the Republican Party,” she said. “Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan want the government to have a say in my family planning. They want employers to decide what kind of birth control coverage I have — or if I can have it at all.”

It’s an interesting sleight-of-hand that allowed Ciano to get from praising small government to defending a new government mandate in just three sentences. But that’s not why I’m quoting her. I’m bringing her up because it’s useful to think about why Ciano’s employer would have a role in her birth control purchases in the first place.

The answer comes in two parts. First, because the law requires a woman to get a prescription before she can buy the pill, and it requires her to get an invasive and frequently unnecessary medical exam before she can acquire that prescription. Eliminate those controls, and insurance coverage would be beside the point; the pill would be cheaply available over the counter. Second, because changes to the tax code in the 1940s and ’50s have channeled us into a system where Americans overwhelmingly get their health insurance through their jobs. Eliminate those incentives, and far fewer people would be dependant on their employers for insurance at all, substantially reducing the relevance of the boss’s opinions about birth control.

It goes without saying that Barack Obama has displayed no interest in rolling back the FDA’s birth control rules. Nor has he moved away from the policies that push people into employer-based health coverage, or, more broadly, from a system where so many medical services are purchased via insurance in the first place. Indeed, his signature accomplishment is a law requiring people who don’t have health insurance to buy it.

If you can’t afford to buy it, you may qualify for financial assistance. That’s the Democratic Party’s promise: We won’t end the policies that empower big institutions and raise the cost of living, but when they send you the bill we might help you pay. You saw the same idea at work when various speakers this week invoked student loans: The Democrats will lend you money for college, but they’ll do nothing to end the legally enshrined credentialism that makes so many professions off-limits without a degree. And if those subsidies end up inflating the cost of tuition and health care even more…well, then the pols will just call for more subsidies.

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 7, 2012 3:00 PM
Comment #352397

Adrienne

We would hate to lose you. You do so much to illustrate our points about leftists. Please continue to comment in your own illimitable way.

You may think that you “only come here now to share things with people on the left” but we on the right and center appreciate having leftist views so ably accurately illustrated by those links, examples and colorful language you use.

Rhinhold

You got it right. Sometimes I wonder if it is all a big conspiracy. I heard a saying the your should “talk left but live right”. It sometimes seems that if you want to defend entrenched and inefficient businesses and methods, the best way is to talk left, as if you really meant to change these things.

Posted by: C&J at September 7, 2012 3:25 PM
Comment #352402

Adrenne:

“I link to liberal sites because that’s where I go to read news I might otherwise miss. After all, I can’t read everything every single day, so it’s good to know that there are web journalists scouring the news and putting it up where people on the left may find it. And, to do my part, I too also pass along info or articles which catch my attention and alert the people at several of my favorite websites.”

God forbid that you would actually read the news; instead, just let a liberal hack read it for you and then point out the liberal talking points. I hate to be the one to tell you this Adrienne, but there are no liberal web journalist “scouring the news”. The news people on the left get their news from the AP, which they read online and then like you, they retell it. So your part is to pass along what passes for real news on the left.

I love this one:

“Do you think you can control this entire site with your b*tching and nastiness?”

Case in point, checkmate…


Why does Adrienne call everyone who disagrees with a troll? I think Adrienne is the troll and flamebaiter, smply by the fact she never talks logical, never answers a question, and always leads her conversation with liberal hack talking points. Actually, Adrienne is much like every other liberal on WB.

Posted by: Frank at September 7, 2012 4:30 PM
Comment #352427

If Americans purchased food in the same way they purchase their medical care what do you think would happen to food prices? Why…they would skyrocket of course.

Employers would decide what food was allowed to be purchased by their employees and purchase insurance to cover the cost of that food. Let’s just say that your food insurance allowed you to purchase as much food as you wish as long as that food was on the covered list. Would anyone care what the food cost? Of course not.

Over time, some liberals would surely notice that steak isn’t on the approved food purchase list. Well, that would be discrimination as the wealthy get to eat steak as often as they wish.

Others might demand Twinkies even though only a few insureds actually purchase them and they don’t want to pay for them out of their own pocket.

Well…one can easily understand that soon food would be very expensive with more and more people demanding that the food they prefer be added to their insurance. More food covered…higher premiums, higher food costs.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 7, 2012 7:07 PM
Comment #352545
There are no data to support the idea that the president’s policies have helped Americans rebuild or even preserve a portion of their wealth since the nearly 40 percent decline in household net worth began in 2007. Most of the worst economic effects took place after Obama took office, and most of those after the ostensible end of the recession. These include but are not limited to another decline in personal savings rates; an acceleration of the long-term decline in the equity portion of real estate owned; a 7 percent drop in household income (that’s just since the technical recovery began in June 2009); cumulative inflation of more than 10 percent during the longest period of sideways economic growth since at least the 1970s; a below-population-growth rate of private sector hiring that has been credibly tied to federal recovery spending; and most famously, an unemployment rate that has not gone below 8 percent since Obama’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) was signed in February 2009.
Posted by: Rhinehold at September 10, 2012 11:48 AM
Comment #352722

Rhinehold-
more than 73% of the jobs were lost in the first six months. I would bet you that much of what follows, economically, is an inevitable consequence of that.

We also have to remember that before Obama stepped into office, almost 4.5 million jobs had already been destroyed, 77.9% of those in the six months before Obama got into office.

You don’t lose eight million jobs, then inhibit further work to recover them, and not get consequences.

And what is this “credibly tied” credibly by who, and how? There’s no way to check to see whether this is just sources that the author considers authoritative.

Oh, by the way, I added up the consumer price index increases and decreases for Obama’s first term, and they came out to 7.6%. Under Clinton, during months that correspond to his first term, the total was 9.5%, and under Bush, during those same months, the total was 7.3%. So core inflation isn’t a real problem here. In fact, we could use a bit more inflation, because having to little, or negative price inflation can create a terrible economic trap, as those who went through the depression can tell you. Inflation should be around two or three percent on a yearly basis. We’ve barely had .6% on the CPI this year, and the CPI for June and July was unchanged.

Yes, food prices and gas prices are unstable and getting to be a problem, but that’s not tied to monetary problems. That’s tied to a combination of an energy policy that is still reliant on expensive fossil fuels, environmental problems that are killing and stunting crops, and the ethanol policy, which politically intractible as it is, nonetheless is a problem.

Trying to tie it to the monetary markets ignores all the price signals, including yields on treasury notes and core inflation, which would be spiking right now if we weren’t constantly fighting the deflationary aspects of our economy. The month Obama was elected, last time, we saw a 1.8% decrease in the CPI in one month. I looked back in the records, and there wasn’t a decrease of that size in the whole archive, going back to 1947.

There is a disturbing tendency for the proponents of laissez faire economics to treat this like a normal recession scaled up. Events like this, though, behave significantly different from their more mild versions. We also have to consider that a move towards a middleman economy, an economy that outsources good paying jobs, and leaves people with just service jobs for the most part, has made it much harder to cycle back a general economy recovery into a job recovery.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 11, 2012 2:29 PM
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