Democrats & Liberals Archives

The Functionalist Manifesto, Or, Why Romney's Attitudes are Pennywise and Pound-Foolish

It’s always cheaper upfront to coast on the legacy of those who came before you. But the consequences of doing so is often to invite the expense of having to fix what you neglected when it breaks, or lose the economic value of what you allowed to break down. Government isn’t about creating dependency. Dependency already exists in our nation, a consequence of an advanced, urban and suburban civilization in which division of labor is ever more specialized and technical. Government is about preserving what we depend upon.

MItt Romney, trying to argue to the right of a bunch of Right-wing firebrands who were outpolling him, effectively said that putting an end to FEMA would be a good thing, and privatizing it would be even better!

Ah, but now it comes back, even as one of the worst storms in American history rages through the Northeast, having left its tire-tracks on the Eastern Seaboard's back. And wouldn't you know, as is his habit, Mitt Romney's not even answering questions about it, telling people what he really believes.

Would people even believe him?

I became a stauncher supporter of the Democrats, in no small part, because I was horrified by the mismanagement of a war. In times past, I was content to follow events, and maybe leave a comment here and there. This was 2004, which some might not remember was the beginning of blogging, when there wasn't exactly a lot of outlets out there to give a person like me the chance to write on the subject.

But the war wasn't the subject of my first posting. The subject of it, actually, was conservative fiscal policy. We were paying for two wars and a new benefit on the credit card. Some people say spending's the real problem, but if that's the case, why can Mitt Romney buy caviar without a problem, while Mitt Smith in West Virginia can't?

Simple answer is cashflow. Isn't it mysterious how that cashflow gets reduced, and suddenly Republicans are up in arms about spending?

Or they go the other way and slippery slope their argument to a ski jump of a conclusion, that we just want to tax the country into the dust!

Never a word about one truth: that what makes a deficit is a negative difference between what we take in, and what we spend. It doesn't matter what side of the equation you're on. It's a question of spending vs. revenue, not one or the other in isolation. It's a system, and the system doesn't work if you forget to get both sides right, together!

We had that system right, but Republicans had their own ideas, and they ran with them. They like to blame Obama for the deficit being over a trillion, but the truth is, we're simply seeing the consequences of spending as much as the Republicans did, taxing as little as they did, and then having the economy drop out from under the whole system.

Now, NOW, in the midst of the worst economic crisis since the one the greatest generation endured, the Republicans decide that it's time to tighten our belts.

Apparently, nobody told him that American belts are already tightened, and that resolving the deficit now is an exercise in economic irresponsibility. Austerity cannot replace necessity. You cannot starve a nation into economic success.

You cannot allow its infrastructure to decay, because the cost of that decay is economic activity, and the replacement costs, often on short notice, for the infrastructure that collapses. You cannot cut the government that keeps Wall Street accountable, and expect our recent economic disaster not to happen all over again.

You cannot simply let America drift in the morass of globalized trade, simply letting itself get blown about, naively letting other nations practice protectionist policies while we leave our economy, our jobs wide open to outsourcing. We need a trade policy that actually favors us, not one that hastens a decline into being a secondary economic power.

Do I believe those things because I'm especially liberal? Well, folks who aren't especially liberal elsewhere object to their jobs getting outsourced, or taken up by illegal aliens, or whatever. I don't think you have to be especially to the left to find the break down of our advantages alarming, to understand that we need to reinforce them.

No, I believe these things because I believe my nation should function well, should prosper. Any special reason? Do I think of my nation as a bright shining light on a hill? Well, I think it can be, at its best, but that's not what drives me to take up politics.

I remember C.S. Lewis talking about the four loves in his book of the same name, and talking about how patriotism compels us to act to protect our nation. He said, though, you can strip off all the other motivations people give as just frippery, that in essence, you would protect your country from invaders for the same reason you would punch a burglar in the nose if you found him rooting around. Not from some high minded ideal, but from the plain notion that this is your home, and this man there is a threat to it.

I can be very intellectual about the reasoning that surrounds it, and stack reams worth of evidence and information on top of it, but if you want the core emotional foundation of my writing here, it belongs in the heart of the statement that this is my home, and I want my home to be the best place possible. I want the economy to work. I want the infrastructure to work. I want clear rules that prevent misbehavior in the economy, especially that which could endanger it. I have no problem with a strong military, but it should be one that we can sustain, and those who give it missions ought to pick them well and wisely.

I could go on, but the simple point is, I believe there is no excuse, not a belief that government doesn't work and always fails, nor whatever self-indulgent belief you have in the indispensability of your party, for bad policy. That's not to say bad things won't happen, or scandals won't occur, or that magically corruption and political dishonesty would go away, if I got everything I wanted. Hell, my notion of things isn't even dependent on me getting everything I want!

Strict interpretation of the Constitution isn't so important to me as wise interpretation. The constitution isn't perfect, nor is it divine revelation that ordinary mortals cannot understand. It's a document by ordinary men, for ordinary men, who by a combination of chance, and a brand of patriotism that sought unity and consensus, found a way to have both their freedom from tyrannical government and a way out of the pitfalls of a weak government. They centralized more of its functions, but not all of them. They expedited majority rules, but did not make it the sole means of our government. They departed from the classical, proper notion of Democracy, as a pure plebiscite, but at the same time, they didn't cut it out, and they left much to local and state authorities.

They created a functional government, though not a perfect one, and the imperfections, including tolerance for slavery as an institution, would be the source of many conflicts, but could, and often would be handled by further amendment.

They wanted a government that worked, that could tax and legislate, and defend the country. It may not have been as active or interventionary of a government, but it was certainly more than the Articles of Confederations afforded, and besides, "big government" is something the nation grew into, even as it grew into the changes, both technological and social, that made us the country we are today.

A close reading of history shows that many of these nations we see as constants of the modern world are actually younger than ours. France, Germany, Italy, and many other countries have seen radical changes in who and what runs their country. Why have they changed, while our nation has remained the same?

Well, actually, we did not remain the same. But our change was managed change, that citizens could undertake, for the most part, without violence against one another. We had release valves for the pressures that could and did tear other countries apart.

We are a technologically advanced country with a large an prosperous middle class, even now after everything has happened. But the advanced nature of our society, and its prosperity might end up being things of the past. It's happened before to great nations. All you have to do is buy into the notion that you are inherently great, that you don't need to invest in the future.

Or, as is the case here, guard against disaster. Even the great cities of the world eventually suffer disasters. They fall to wars, to plagues, to changes in geography and geology. A government falls, and a great capital becomes a backwater. Or they ignore a problem until it become fatally overwhelming.

At some point, somebody drops the ball, or we all drop the ball, and then our time on top will be at an end. I would like this to be a someday thing, not a thing of today, but looking at the breaking of a city like I did over seven years ago, with New Orleans inundated as the levees broke, I can't see allowing such a disaster to happen would encourage our fall as a society to become a someday thing.

Republicans hype the problem of our debt, despite the fact they helped create it with impractical fiscal policies, and then they question how and why we should help a city recover, or have the federal government overseeing what is essentially a multi-state mess. What Romney said was meant to appeal to folks who want that kind of devolvement, but is that kind of delegation really a smart idea?

Yes, some things should be delegated to state authorities who know their state best. But nature doesn't conveniently observe borders, and economy doesn't grant the economies of scale or the debt-financing power to a state government that it does to a Federal government.

If nothing else, our federalist system was designed to help handle situations where multiple states needed to be coordinated in an effort. Interstate commerce also rears its head here, and why not? The economy of one city, especially New York City, Financial and Business capital of the world, or any number of the other Eastern Seaboard cities, is crucial to the economy of others. We can't pretend, especially after Sept. 2008, that we don't depend on those markets to do business

How much of the trouble we find in bringing back New York City, in bringing back New Jersey as a whole, is going to be made tougher as we confront all the hard decisions and expensive choices we put off about infrastructure? How much value are we willing to lose for our economy, for the sake of pretending we are rugged individualist living in Antebellum America?

We are no longer the country we were back in the early 1800s, and really we can't afford to live in that past, or any past any longer. We are a nation of the twenty-first century, and the problems we keep having to deal with are those of here and now, as well as those that the future holds over us.

I can remember hearing many times about the vulnerability of both New Orleans and New York, that they could flood, and that it would be catastrophic. How many other warning signs are we ignoring, so we can pretend to be nice little money savers now? How many problems are getting short shrift for the sake of some idiot proving his political bona fides?

There's supposed to be some other point to what is done in Washington, than to just provide a stage to a bunch of preening jackasses. They are supposed to have a job to do. We can either resign ourselves to dysfunction, and through dysfunction decay and decline, or we can make the smart choices, do the smart things, the wise things.

We need to get serious about governing America, and stop pretending that it's either all dysfunction, or somebody sitting in the Oval offices, magically warding off all problems. The choices we make that are necessary to running this country properly are complex, and no political dogma can completely encapsulate the right answers.

Mitt Romney thinks looking Presidential is about changing the name of a political event he runs, and gathering a bunch of telegenic goods for a photo-op. But the reality is, the relief organizations aren't looking for that, but money donations instead. Clothes and food require transportation and sorting, before they get to those they help.

Somebody could have looked that up for him, as they could have for so many other things. It's just one more demonstration of a lack of substance on Romney's part, but that's not what worries me the most.

This administration is not perfect, but they are accessible, and you can correct them to some degree. Romney has shown what was so dangerous in Bush: the willingness to put avoiding political embarrassment above actually figuring out how to do things the right way. He would let things become dysfunctional, in order to try and walk between the rain drops. Unfortunately, it also seems that despite all the trouble they earned for it, Republican voters are still willing to rationalize what they need to rationalize in order to avoid having to deal with defeat.

Rather than let the consequences of bad policy teach them to do better, today's Republicans are willing to let things go pretty far awry, just so they can maintain the ideological command they've held since Reagan got elected.

It used to be that Republicans acknowledged that bad things happened when responsibilities were not taken care of, but nowadays, they just try and sweep it under the rug.

Until they abandon that idea, a functionalist like myself cannot support them. Until they allow reality to moderate their tone, their policies, they don't deserve my support.

We do not need more policies like those Mitt Romney has spoken of. We do not need a wider gap between what we're paying and what we're spending. We do not need to be leaving the states to their own devices, or failing to register the consequences of failing to remediate a disaster.

We need to take responsibility for our nation, and make it work, just like the Framers did. We need to pay attention to our nation's needs, our citizens needs, and fill them as best as government can. We need to maintain the systems that make our modern life possible, and we need to acknowledge when science is telling us that risks are possible. This kind of nightmare scenario, with a storm hitting New York, flooding the subways, was not a unforeseen disaster. The question we should ask, if nothing else, is how we prevent this from happening again, and what weakness in our infrastructure exist that could make choose the wrong time and wrong place to break down?

Disasters become catastrophes, often enough, not just because nature gives us blows we can't handle, but because, all too often, we allow the weakness and problems that seem harmless or too expensive to deal with when things are okay to stick around until some disaster of this scale wakes us up to how precarious our position is.

American needs better leadership, better government, and that government needs to be the size necessary to get the job done. The arbitrariness of politics won't change the stubborn persistence of reality. You can't deny your way out of a disaster.

Posted by Stephen Daugherty at October 30, 2012 3:14 PM
Comments
Comment #355801

Stephen

Government has become so big and bloated that it is not longer very good at infrastructure. The government’s main response to the crisis has been to shut down.

Think about how an organization should work. If it requires personal intervention from the boss, i.e. Obama, it is seriously dysfunctional.

Re “American needs better leadership, better government, and that government needs to be the size necessary to get the job done.” True that. Four years of Obama and we have made no progress. Get the bums out and get some real leaders in.

Posted by: C&J at October 30, 2012 6:06 PM
Comment #355806

I wonder how many people will actually read Stephen Daugherty’s essay before commenting. My eyes glazed over and my mnd went blank so I may just come back with something off topic. Stephen’s post are just rehashed liberal talking points and Romney attacks anyway.

Posted by: Frank at October 30, 2012 6:50 PM
Comment #355809

SD writes; “Apparently, nobody told him that American belts are already tightened, and that resolving the deficit now is an exercise in economic irresponsibility.”

Not true according to this weeks Time magazine. Americans are spending again and their debt load is lower than a year ago. Unlike the feds, Americans have been paying down debt, working hard, investing wisely, and now feel free to spend more.

SD writes; “We need a trade policy that actually favors us, not one that hastens a decline into being a secondary economic power.”

Correct…obama has done nothing in the last four years…and it’s getting even worse under his inept policies regarding trade policies.

After spending $6 trillion more than we had, employment is still less than when he took office. And, he will spend another $6 trillion or more in the next four years should he be reelected. And, we won’t be any better off for all the money squandered.

Federal government revenues of 20% of GDP is enough to do the things that they should be doing. The dems took a real blow in 2010 because of their spendthrift ways, and I believe will take another walloping come November.

All the rest of your weary writing was pablum for the uninformed. You certainly don’t have a monopoly on common sense.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 30, 2012 7:19 PM
Comment #355811

SD writes; “We need a trade policy that actually favors us, not one that hastens a decline into being a secondary economic power.”

SD means like the GM takeover; I wonder if the unions have figure out Obama screwed them yet?

“General Motors is planning to build cars in China and import them into the United States, a strategy that could trigger further job losses and union anger in the US.”

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/transport/general-motors/5323274/GM-plans-to-export-cars-from-China-to-the-US.html

Or this one:

“WASHINGTON — Top Democratic fundraisers and lobbyists with links to the White House are behind a proposed wind farm in Texas that stands to get $450 million in stimulus money, even though a Chinese company would operate the farm and its turbines would be built in China.

The farm’s backers also have close ties with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., who, at the height of his hard-fought re-election bid this fall, helped blunt congressional criticism over stimulus dollars possibly going to create jobs in China by endorsing a proposal by the Chinese company to build a factory in his home state. Although his campaign received thousands of dollars in donations from the wind farm’s backers and Reid stood on stage with them at a campaign event they hosted, his office declined to answer any questions about the wind farm’s organizers or their plans for Nevada.”

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/40565987/ns/business-going_green/t/wind-their-backs-powerful-democrats-help-chinese-energy-firm-chase-stimulus-money/

Posted by: Frank at October 30, 2012 7:45 PM
Comment #355814

“Not true according to this weeks Time magazine. Americans are spending again and their debt load is lower than a year ago. Unlike the feds, Americans have been paying down debt, working hard, investing wisely, and now feel free to spend more.”

Royal Flush,

Now, how did that happen? Think about it. If the private sector has been deleveraging from excessive debt which imploded in 2008, who was left to spend money into the economy and provide the opportunity for saving by the private sector? In a debt driven monetary system, who was the borrower of last resort? When the Federal Reserve cannot stimulate borrowing, who is left?

The recovery in the GDP and the maintenance of some growth is clearly due to federal deficit spending. While the private sector has been healing its balance sheet, federal deficit spending has filled the gap. They offset themselves. Otherwise, there would have been a dramatic drop in GDP and a severe recession or depression. There would be no opportunity for the private sector to manage its debt problem.

Now, that doesn’t mean that the federal government should continue in the long run with excessive deficit spending. However, as the conservative chairman of the Federal Reserve has repeatedly state, federal deficit spending in the short run is essential to maintaining and expanding the economic recovery. The private sector economy has gone from from being on life support to a guarded recovery. The issue of the short term needs to be clearly separated from the intermediate and long term.

I have always been struck by how the huge deficit spending and debt rung up by Reagan at the time of a severe recession didn’t lead to a fiscal disaster. Rather, they are correlated with a vigorous recovery. However, they eventually did lead to a major fiscal problem that partly caused GH Bush to lose his job because he fought for tax increases and proposed additional tax increases (“Read my lip’s problem). Clinton eventually passed a large tax increase on upper incomes and a substantial, across the board, decrease in government expenditures. That had a significant impact on the fiscal condition of the US gov. as well as spurring private sector growth.

My point is simple, there is a time for deficit spending and there is a time for fiscal consolidation. It depends upon the circumstances. That is a debatable issue.


Posted by: Rich at October 30, 2012 9:07 PM
Comment #355825

Frank-
Another stunning example of your failure to check your facts. Did you happen to take note of the date?

May 2009. That’s before the bailout deal was actually finalized. Put another way, this was an idea that never actually took hold, a plan that didn’t come to fruition. Instead, US automakers increased production and exports of your vehicles domestically, adding many of the jobs that your side seeks to alternative take credit for or pretend never happened.

This the pattern: put out stuff that gets people scared, but leave out key details.

For example, a recent Romney ad takes your side of the Argument, with a couple problems. One particular claim, that a Chinese company was going to build hundreds of turbines, collapsed long ago with the deal. Of the 33,000 wind generators in America, only three could be confirm of Chinese make. And the report that the other source makes? regardless of whether some money went overseas to foreign firms The Stimulus created 51,000 jobs here in America on their account. Additionally, American companies currently aren’t equipped to deal with the demand.

The question becomes, can we make our nation more independent on this matter? Yes, but not without more government promotion here at home. The Chinese government isn’t resting on its laurels.

So, do us a massive favor, and actually read ****. Read multiple sources, so one source’s mistake doesn’t become your whole story. Read my arguments, so you know what to respond to. I read yours, and so, I knew what to respond to.

You know why I do so, when I could easily just bloviate aimlessly in return, and save myself the scowling at all your blatant insults?

It’s because, quite simply, there’s nothing to nail you down in an insult. Nothing by which a reader could see this as anything else than a pissing match between the two of us. They’ll know, at the very least, that while I have a distinct point of view, there is something people can grasp on to that makes my opinion more than mere opinion.

I want you having to visibly squirm and lie your ass off, if you don’t properly confront my argument in return. I want to project an image of reasonability, even as you project an image of strident partisanship.

Or, I want you to stop being part of the problem, and start being part of the solution.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 30, 2012 11:29 PM
Comment #355827

You got to be freaking kidding me:

Former FEMA director Michael Brown, who was heavily criticized for the agency’s failure to prepare for Hurricane Katrina, has criticized President Obama for responding to Hurricane Sandy too early.

In an interview with Denver Westword, Brown said, “One thing [President Obama’s] gonna be asked is, why did he jump on [Hurricane Sandy] so quickly and go back to D.C. so quickly when in … Benghazi, he went to Las Vegas? Why was this so quick? … At some point, somebody’s going to ask that question.”

Brown said the president may have had a more positive effect had he waited until Sunday afternoon to address the storm instead of holding a press conference that morning.

Brown’s insinuation that Obama responded too early is a gutsy move considering his role in the 2005 disaster. Brown, who was famously called “Brownie” by President George W. Bush, was seen as a symbol of government failure to protect and evacuate people from the path of Katrina.

In emails he wrote that later became public, Brown came off as inexperienced and uncaring. On the morning of the hurricane, Brown wrote, “Can I quit now? Can I come home?” to Cindy Taylor, FEMA’s deputy director of public affairs. Later, in a separate email, he wrote, “I’m trapped now, please rescue me.”

Brown resigned from his FEMA position a short time later. He now co-hosts a program on Denver talk radio.

Tell me this is just an Onion article? No? For the love of God, Michael Brown, just up and go away.

Posted by: Adam Ducker at October 31, 2012 12:03 AM
Comment #355830
My eyes glazed over and my mnd went blank so I may just come back with something off topic.

I for one am not the least bit surprised, Frank, that you are unable to read anything that doesn’t have pictures. It sure explains the ignorant comments you continually make as well as the off topic propaganda you post here.

Posted by: j2t2 at October 31, 2012 1:52 AM
Comment #355936

j2t2, I find some of the posts on WB to be completely boring. If you will go back and check the archives, you will find it is when I or others like myself inject thoughts, the discussions become expanded. Stephen and other liberal posters simply try to rehash the same old democrat talking points, much like Obama’s latest arguments talking about Bain Capital again. This is a dead issue and nobody cares anymore, except for the far left. So j2t2, you can actually thank me for making SD’s and DA’s posts interesting.

Stephen Daugherty, not insults…simply facts…should I call you a DA, or would you rather me call you one ignorant SOB? Either way, you are the king of liberal apologists on WB.

Re/the date; I know the date of my links.

Re/you Media Matters link; come on Stephen, you can do better than to link to one of the most liberal hack sites on the web. We all know what your response would be if I linked my proof of an argument to the Rush Limbaugh or Glenn Beck site.

Let’s try this again Stephen:

“General Motors is planning to build cars in China and import them into the United States, a strategy that could trigger further job losses and union anger in the US.”

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/transport/general-motors/5323274/GM-plans-to-export-cars-from-China-to-the-US.html

Of course I never even mentioned the fact that Fiat is moving the production of Jeeps to China, in order to “sell Jeeps in China”, sure they will…

Of course the stimulus was successful (sic), by the way Stephen, how did Fiat end up owning Chrysler?

Stimulus successful…Obama talking point…Stephen continues to parrot talking point.

Posted by: Frank at October 31, 2012 6:11 AM
Comment #355938

Frank-
Like I said before, look at the dateline: By Malcolm Moore in Shanghai
11:47AM BST 14 May 2009

May 14th, 2009. Before the structured bankruptcy. What became of these plans? Well, so far, a hell of a lot of jobs have been created in the Midwest instead. Not to mention the fact we don’t have millions of jobs killed as a result of the collapse that would have come of an unbacked bankruptcy

You also never mentioned the myth that production is being moved to China, it’s not. The CEOs of these companies are flat out denying it.

Jobs are being ADDED in Ohio.

Facts. Not merely talking points. A talking point isn’t automatically a lie. It can be selective, it can be oversimplified, but it can also be true, and you simply don’t account for that. You just want people to believe that if a lot of liberals are arguing this, it must be wrong. And that, by the way, is a logical fallacy in and of itself!

I could argue all the time, like you do, that something is wrong because a conservative is arguing it. But you know what? There would be nothing there to actually nail you down. That’s why I go for facts, because any idiot can argue that the other side is automatically wrong, and that any argument they make is contaminated by that wrongness. And you know what? Any independent, less partisan audience member we have could look at that, and simply say, “They’re both just taking their own side.”

I go for facts, because facts can nail down things, exclude some arguments, and strengthen others.

For example, that idiotic commercial with some guy lecturing in China about how America fell due to taxing and spending. I can take that on simply by saying it’s wrong and it’s conservative hogwash, but where have I moved the argument?

Instead, I point out that this commercial completely overlooks China’s own debt-driven stimulus. It also overlooks the fact that we’re doing a lot better than many of the country’s that prioritized austerity, including Greece. It also overlooks the fact that much of our deficit comes from a tax cut, not merely spending.

That’s the thing. It’s not taxes or spending by itself. It’s not fiscal matters and economic matters by themselves. These things work together. They must! Nobody is taxing and just not doing anything with the money. Nobody is simply spending out of a magic fairy dust account. They are part of the same system. If we see a budget, you can create a deficit by spending more than you take in, or taking in less than you spend. If you both reduce spending and increase revenues, you’ll reduce the deficit faster than either means alone. Why? Because you are reducing the difference from both ends.

Bush’s problem wasn’t merely spending, it’s that he spent more, and deliberately took in less. The budget deficit was increased from both sides.

And then the economy plummeted. That killed revenues, took them back to FY2000 levels, only with spending that was much greater.

The commercial ignores the action China took, and takes a biased look at what should be simple math. It also ignores the fact that reducing spending reduces economic activity when you have a deficit. There’s no taxes you can give people back without making the deficit worse, so it’s not like handing people back a surplus, where the net effect on economic activity is nil.

It’s just propaganda. It’s emotionally driven belief without the benefit of mathematics. Spending cuts have not produced economic prosperity where they’ve been attempted Austerity doesn’t work.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 31, 2012 8:01 AM
Comment #355939

Frank, before you break your arm patting yourself on the back…..

If injecting off topic propaganda and conservative blathering is your idea of expanding the discussion then so be it. But I fail to see how name calling the writer adds to any intelligent expansion of the discussion. It seems to me it shows more the commentators inability to argue the validity of the “talking points”. Calling them talking points doesn’t make them any less valid.


Posted by: j2t2 at October 31, 2012 8:33 AM
Comment #355940

j2t2:

I don’t mind people going off topic. In fact we’d probably never talk about much of anything if everyone just stayed on topic. I do mind people who’s only reason for commenting is to denigrate the author, to call names, and to blather on like they have some vital role in the community.

We’re on auto-pilot here as far as moderation goes. The best approach is for all of us simply to ignore Frank until he learns to no longer be a name calling bully and a troll or else finds a new place to potty.

Posted by: Adam Ducker at October 31, 2012 8:54 AM
Comment #355941

Ya know Frank I also don’t see where calling Romneys stance on FEMA to be a rehashing of old talking points. It seems pretty relevant right about now. The flip flop due to the storm, while expected, shows the lack of character he has become known for. How on earth can you guys talk conservative principals and Romney in the same breath? How can conservatives fall for this once again, don’t you guys ever learn?

It also appears that Romney has actually tried to pull one over on the American people by calling his campaign rally a “storm relief” rally. As a conservative do you not question Romneys lack of character or is it alright to deceive the public to further the movement cause?

Don’t you think this re-naming of the political rally is something to consider about Romney. It seems timely to me, not a talking point at all despite your claims. It just seems your “talking points” analysis is just wrong, Frank.

Posted by: j2t2 at October 31, 2012 9:11 AM
Comment #355944

I disagree. Everything the Feds take over becomes inefficient and more expensive. Bush’s FEMA did not perform well; neither has Obama’s. Grants (our tax dollars) to privately owned companies are ridiculous, as are dole outs to study the mating habits of sparrows. Defense spending is way too high and infrastructure repair and development is way too low.

We need tax reform with deductions reduced and loopholes blocked. We need federal government oversight of fresh water, electricity, carbon based fuels, and health insurance. Banks should be forced to go back to being lenders, and investment houses should not be able to hedge on products they don’t ever take possession of.

Doesn’t sound very Republican does it? It’s not. It’s how the large mass of independents in the middle feels about the direction we need to take. The only things keeping us from these sort of changes are people like Stephen and Adam, and their counterparts on the far right who polarize everything.

Since I lean to the right, I’m here to police what I deem to be ridiculous far left blather. It’s not hard to find because some of the threads are 5,000 words long and could be reduced to several hundred if they had a competent journalism professor.

Obama has had his chance to get us moving. He has not. He has failed to work with party leaders toward compromise. He has basically given up and retreated to the Oval Office and Air Force One where he accomplishes nothing. When has a President who does not control both Houses gotten so little done? When has a President who did control both Houses failed to fulfill so many campaign promises?

It’s time for Romney to take over. He has at least shown he can work in a hostile environment and get things accomplished. He will also move more toward the middle when elected and win many of you lefties over. With Obama we just get more of the same, and that is a scary thought for small business owners like myself.

Posted by: John Johnson at October 31, 2012 10:49 AM
Comment #355945

John Johnson,
Romney has never shown an ability to work in a hostile environment. Never. While Gov of MA he cast over 800 vetoes. The Democratic Legislature simply overrode everything he tried to stop. Romney did not veto Romneycare, but remember, that was considered a conservative idea at that time.

Posted by: phx8 at October 31, 2012 11:02 AM
Comment #355946

“Government is about preserving what we depend upon”

Our differences come about with what we depend on. The further left you go, the more you depend on material things being given to you. The further right you go, the more you depend on your individual rights being preserved.
This is why people in poor ‘red’ areas, you know, the people your people say vote against their own best interests, base their vote on their individual rights, while people in poor ‘blue’ areas base their vote on entitlements given to them.
You can spin away about how people need to let their rights be re-interpreted away in the name of “progress” all you want, but that does nothing to get them to vote for your people.

“Why have they changed, while our nation has remained the same?”

Because of our Constitution and the history and culture it created for our nation. The governments of the nations you love and praise are younger than ours because they are not stable, Stephen. A people dependent on government has no other choice but to revolt when that government can no longer provide for them.

“Well, actually, we did not remain the same…”

Yes, we have changed ALOT. We now resemble those “great” European nations more than ever before.
Funny how that change runs parallel with greater dependency, more division and our loss of rights.

“All you have to do is buy into the notion that you are inherently great, that you don’t need to invest in the future.”

No, Stephen, all you have to do is to buy into the notion that you no longer need what made you great in the first place.
Our nation hasn’t lasted so long because we did not “invest in the futrue,” it has lasted so long because we remembered what made us great as we invested in the future.

“At some point, somebody drops the ball, or we all drop the ball, and then our time on top will be at an end.”

Which brings us to the division our nation now suffers. A division created by the desires of some, and the rights of all.

Posted by: kctim at October 31, 2012 11:06 AM
Comment #355948

Phx8…guess you did not see the interview with MA’s Democratic Speaker of the House who tells the story of Romney coming to his house, knocking on the door, and asking if he could come in and talk over some things. He said this was the start of moving things forward. Maybe you weren’t aware of this. Check it out.

Posted by: John Johnson at October 31, 2012 11:20 AM
Comment #355949

“I like vetoes; I vetoed hundreds of spending appropriations as governor.”
Gov Romney during 2008 campaign

Over 800 vetoes. In 2008, Romney bragged about this achievement. Conservatives liked that kind of talk back then. And again, the health care reform would have passed wether he ‘cooperated’ and signed it or not.

Now, Romney claims he will sit down with Democrats on Day One and talk. Oh. And repeal Obamacare.

Over 800 vetoes. There’s just no way to sugarcoat it.

Posted by: phx8 at October 31, 2012 11:27 AM
Comment #355951

Did you research what the Democratic MA Speaker had to say about Romney, or not? Yes or no? It seems to make your “yeah, but” 800 veto argument somewhat moot. Things did get done. Things moved forward.

Posted by: John Johnson at October 31, 2012 12:04 PM
Comment #355952

I’m sure a Democrat would do the same if they had to work with 87% republican state congress, phx8.

Posted by: KAP at October 31, 2012 12:07 PM
Comment #355956

phx8

Romney worked in a state that is among the most Democratic in the USA. That he got something done indicates his ability to work with Democrats.

Posted by: C&J at October 31, 2012 12:24 PM
Comment #355957

I would also add that both Romney and Ryan were elected in states with strong preferences for Democrats (in the recent past at least), while Obama comes from Chicago, which has virtual no members of the opposition anywhere nearby. Maybe that is why Obama is so confused & befuddled and unable to work well with others.

Posted by: C&J at October 31, 2012 12:27 PM
Comment #355958

Re/Obama and FEMA; how come Obama warned the feds to by-pass the red tape and get something done? Is Obama telling us that the fed has a habit of stalling everything with red tape?

If we had presidents that vetoed more often, we would have a national debt of 16 trillion.

Posted by: Frank at October 31, 2012 1:11 PM
Comment #355960

What a pompous ass we have sitting in the Oval Office of the WH. Why don’t he shows us what was going on in the situation room when Americans were calling for help and after being refused, dying in Benghazi? We can’t get rid of this Chicago thug fast enough.

“U.S. President Barack Obama (R) receives an update on the ongoing response to Hurricane Sandy during a meeting with administration officials in the Situation Room of the White House in Washington, in …”

http://news.yahoo.com/photos/u-president-obama-receives-ongoing-response-hurricane-sandy-photo-191257871.html

But let’s get back to the polls. I was wrong; I have to admit the polls are showing overwhelming support for Obama…in Russia:

http://rt.com/politics/obama-romney-election-us-russia-putin-576/

Here is something I posted in the previous post and did not receive one single attack on the poll; so I will post it again. It is also interesting that not one single word of this poll has reached the MSM. Correct me if I am wrong, but hasn’t the early voters been the winning factor for Obama? Haven’t the workers on the left been bussing democrats to the polls for early voting? According to Gallup, the early voting is leaning Romney by 7 points. What say you polls experts?

“Romney Leads Among Early Voters, Similar to His Likely Voter Lead

Thus far, early voters do not seem to be swaying the election toward either candidate.

Romney currently leads Obama 52% to 45% among voters who say they have already cast their ballots. However, that is comparable to Romney’s 51% to 46% lead among all likely voters in Gallup’s Oct. 22-28 tracking polling. At the same time, the race is tied at 49% among those who have not yet voted but still intend to vote early, suggesting these voters could cause the race to tighten. However, Romney leads 51% to 45% among the much larger group of voters who plan to vote on Election Day, Nov. 6.”

http://www.gallup.com/poll/158420/registered-voters-already-cast-ballots.aspx

“Romney’s early voting lead in Gallup may not jive with the CorruptMedia narrative, but it does with actual early vote totals that have been released and show Romney’s early vote totals either beating Obama in swing states such as Colorado and Florida or chipping away at the President’s advantage in the others. For example, here’s what we know about Ohio’s early voting numbers, thus far:

But here is what we do know: 220,000 fewer Democrats have voted early in Ohio compared with 2008. And 30,000 more Republicans have cast their ballots compared with four years ago. That is a 250,000-vote net increase for a state Obama won by 260,000 votes in 2008.

Something else in this Gallup survey also helps shed some light on what we’re seeing in these sometimes counter-intuitive state polls. As the headline states, Gallup is showing that only 15% of the public has already voted. Moreover, they’ve broken down early voting by region and show that in the Midwest only 13% of voters have already voted. And yet, many polls in places like Ohio show a much higher percentage of early voters, some as high as 30%, which you can bet skews the data. In other words, those polls can’t be correct.

Other than the fact that this is Gallup, another reason to embrace this poll is due to its very large sample size of 3,312 registered voters.”

http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2012/10/29/Gallup-Shock-Romney-Up-7-with-early-voters

“At this point in an election cycle, many campaign staffers are busy fighting the press on what they call “process stories.” The candidates and their staffs want to talk about their plans and policies while reporters covering them find their audiences demand a play-by-play of the horse race.

The result is constant overstuffing of campaign metrics and polling that only serve to muddy the waters for most political observers. In a close race, such as we have today, there is often plenty of data for both sides to use to their favor. One poll says this, another says that.
This makes it especially surprising to see the piece put out by President Barack Obama’s field director this week on early voting in Ohio. When things are ugly for a campaign, these types of memos can start flying. It is troubling for the president’s supporters that they could not come up with at least a handful of positive data points in Ohio. I worked as director of strategy at the Republican National Committee during the difficult 2006 election cycle — I know firsthand how hard it it is to come up with positive data in a negative cycle.

There are normally three signs you know a campaign metrics memo is purely spin.

1. Anecdotes: “We have seen groups as big as 100 voters going to vote in Athens, Ohio.” Only 604 democrats have voted in person in the entire county and no more than 40 in a single precinct (that would be Athens 3-5, for those scoring at home).

2. Unverifiable Data: “Precincts that Obama won in 2008 are voting early at a higher rate”: This is unverifiable and misleading because there is no such thing as an “Obama precinct.” Every ten years, the entire country rebalances its voting districts based on a constitutionally mandated census. In 2010, this process redrew the lines of reportable voting areas that were used in 2008. So this year, we have entirely new precincts, thereby making it impossible to validate their claim.

3. Cherry-picking random sub-poll data: “Time poll shows the President up 60-30” among early voters. That sub-sample was asked of 145 people and was one of many of similar ilk (with a huge variation in results). Their central data argument is that 43 more people told Time’s pollster over a two-day window they supported Obama. If that is their best claim to a lead in Ohio, it is a troubling picture for the president.

I have always been a believer in data telling me the full story. Truth is, nobody knows what will happen on Election Day. But here is what we do know: 220,000 fewer Democrats have voted early in Ohio compared with 2008. And 30,000 more Republicans have cast their ballots compared with four years ago. That is a 250,000-vote net increase for a state Obama won by 260,000 votes in 2008.

http://dyn.politico.com/printstory.cfm?uuid=FCC5F49B-2E15-4227-8322-3D644B43C2D4

Posted by: Frank at October 31, 2012 1:37 PM
Comment #355961

John Johnson-
Bush’s FEMA didn’t perform well, but Obama’s FEMA has generally been praised. It’s biggest problem is folks trying to cut its budget because they need discretionary spending cuts to make themselves look good.

FEMA’s problem wasn’t that it was big government, FEMA’s problem was it was being run by a Horse Judge, not a disaster relief professional like the current head.

I don’t think you tackle matters of waste and inefficiency well if you take the approach that the problem is already unsolvable from the get-go. There is a solution.

Your second paragraph includes many items I would support. But then the third says something pretty obnoxious: that I’m in the way. Hell no! I’d support it. Your main problem is that Republicans won’t. In fact, many are so steeped in “sound science” BS that they can’t even get the facts straight.

In short, it’s not me you need to work on, it’s them, and I promise you it will be tough, since having a moderate view on those subjects has become forbidden in much of the GOP. If you get out of such a conversation without being called a liberal dupe or a socialist, you’ll be doing pretty well.

I don’t want polarization. I want function. I want folks in charge who actually know what they’re doing, and aren’t simply pushing an agenda regardless of what the facts may be.

Obama’s gotten us moving, but he has an entire Republican Party in his way and in his face at all times, blocking bills with literal record breaking obstruction, and a complete unwillingness to make compromises until circumstances (like the looming deadlines in the debt crisis last year) force their hand. And even then you have these parcels of morons who STILL vote against a compromise.

With Republicans doing what they can to scuttle any legacy for this Presidency, the facts of what he’s done are simply amazing. And he’ll do more, given the chance.

Romney? Romney’s doesn’t have the spine to stand up for what you want, even if he wanted it, too. It’s time to face that there is absolutely no point in blaming Obama for failing to moderate the Republicans. The Republicans have made it a point not to be moderated, not to listen to folks like you within the party, who hold more moderate views.

Democrats are willing to get things done. Republicans are not. And that is the simple arithmetic of why I oppose Republicans so fiercely nowadays.

kctim-
Take a look at nine-tenths of what we changed from the beginning of the 20th century, and you will see a reason for it in terms of what people suffered, or were outraged by. People experimented with your libertarian ethic, and found it wanting.

We can’t afford to pretend like we’re a country stuck in the 1700s. For one thing, we’re very little like them, even when we try to imitate them. For another thing, they could be so laissez-faire, because they did not have the concerns we have, thanks to how the world and modern technology changed.

We try that, and our society will go out of control, because it’s driven by more powerful engines.

C&J-
Like Romney, you can’t seem to be on one side of an argument. Months ago, as I was decrying the endless filibustering of the Obama agenda, the way they never even tried to negotiate palatable laws to them, you were saying, “tough ****, Stephen, but we think we have to do that for the good of all”. Yet now you say, “Oh, Obama must have been so incompetent, not to be able to get compromise.”

Wait a second here, mister, you were telling me months ago that this endless, obstinate opposition was necessary, and now you’re pretending that it was simply Obama’s lack of skill in getting compromises?

Bull****! Even the most skilled negotiator can’t get past people who’s only answer to any offered compromise is no. I mean, how can your people be saying “we’ll never compromise with Obama and his socialism”, and then you turn around blame Obama for that.

Nobody’s fooled who doesn’t want to be fooled. Republicans have made it a policy to mindlessly oppose the President. Republicans have decided not to work with him, not to compromise, not to use their power to run the government properly, in compromise with the other part of Congress and the other branches of government.

Republicans are staging the almighty political temper tantrum of all time, and refusing to acknowledge that the peak of their dominance is past. Obama cannot be blamed for your party’s lack of maturity and unwillingness to compromise, not when that’s the deliberate strategy.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 31, 2012 1:40 PM
Comment #355962

Go away, Stephen. You don’t know what you’re talking about. The larger the number of words does not equate to higher validity. If so, you would be the heralded “guru” of watchblog.

Obama went into hiding during the BP spill because FEMA was getting crucified by Gulf Coast states, and especially Louisiana, because they had a gameplan they wanted to implement to keep the estuaries from taking on oil and FEMA held them up. Remember?

They specifically wanted to dredge and build berms in between the oncoming oil and the shallow salt marsh estuaries and them knock them down once the oil flow was stopped and the oil skimmed off? Remember, Stephen?

The Feds told them they couldn’t do it until after the oil had already made its way into the areas they wanted to protect.

Pull your head out kid. Get it right. Quit writing just for the sake of writing.

Posted by: John Johnson at October 31, 2012 1:57 PM
Comment #355963

Romney’s disaster response after doing away with FEMA as he has stated he would is sure to look much like the non-response to Katrina. (Or even worse.)
Doing away with FEMA and putting everything in the hands of the states is a ridiculously unwise approach to disaster response and relief for this nation. A state’s apparatus can be easily overwhelmed during a disaster (and/or they can act incompetently), and the people who make a state’s apparatus run can easily be freaking out themselves, or find themselves far more concerned and preoccupied with their immediate families welfare, over everyone else in that state (such as when the police totally abandoned their jobs during Katrina).
Having a federal agency full of people who actually specialize in disaster response and who organize and work with governors and state government and law enforcement during any crisis is in fact absolutely necessary and the only intelligent thing to do.

Unfortunately Republicans lack of reason and intelligence on this matter is frightening, and they endanger all of us by attempting to impose their state-sovereignty political ideologies in place at any cost — including when life and limb hangs in the balance.

I was raised in New Jersey and still have many family members living there. And while I’m happy to say that my immediate family and extended family are all fine following the hurricane, some friends and many other people in the state have not been so fortunate. That’s why I’m incredibly glad that Obama is the president and taking charge, and that FEMA under his control is working exactly as it should be.
I also must applaud Governor Christie for his praise of Obama’s competent, intelligent leadership during the aftermath of the hurricane. Funny how in an emergency situation what actually matters most suddenly becomes crystal clear, and political BS seems incredibly silly…

As for Romney’s response to the hurricane? How low can this phony, lying political opportunist go? Unfortunately, this low:

Romney bought $5k of food for people to “donate” back to him at phony “hurricane” rally

So Pathetic.

Posted by: Adrienne at October 31, 2012 2:32 PM
Comment #355965

SD

Nice. Rather than face the obvious, that it is possible to hold on to our rights as we advance into the future as a society, “you choose to go the other way and slippery slope the argument to a ski jump of a conclusion, that we just want to” live as if we are still in the 1700s.
A very typical and expected response from those of you who find the founders ethic “wanting.”
Perhaps if your people had more of that ethic, you wouldn’t be so wanting from government.

Posted by: kctim at October 31, 2012 3:07 PM
Comment #355966

John Johnson-
The berms were more sucessful at restoring ground lost for those barrier islands than they were at capturing oil, and that may have been the point.

Governor Jindal’s berms were a colossal waste of money at their stated purpose. 220 million dollars to catch 1000 Barrels out of 5 million.

Why support it, then, if you want to make a critique about wastefulness and ineffectualism?

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Independence of thought requires being able to get information from sources beyond the people you’re trying to get independent of.

As for FEMA, people do regard it as well improved. It would be one thing if Republicans considered taking government seriously a virtue, but instead, they want great results, but with cut budgets, hired cronies, and inordinate deference to business interests.

We can do better, if we’re willing to consider that possible. Republicans don’t. They rule out doing things the right way, then turn around and complain that government isn’t doing all that well. It’s a racket: cripple government, then complain it can’t do anything right.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 31, 2012 3:10 PM
Comment #355967

Adrienne, I’m surprised you aren’t rejoicing at the 1% who lived in the affluent areas of NJ; who lost everything? Don’t tell me that after all your support of OWS and your comments about the 1% and the 99%, that you are part of the 1% of New Jersey.

I want to know why Obama’s responses to the devastated are not faster. The left expected Bush to have the Katrina victims back to normal life within 2 days, so we should expect Obama to do the same thing.

Regarding Romney’s plan to stop campaigning in order to collect aid for the victims, good for him and the left’s attacks are sour grapes. Perhaps someone could explain why Obama flew AF1 to Florida on Sunday, for a campaign stop; cancelled the event, spent the night, and flew back on Monday. Did someone in his cabinet advise him to get back to DC? Did someone advise him that a campaign event taking place while a hurricane was hitting the NE would not look presidential? Didn’t the WH know how bad the coast was going to be hit? So many questions and so few answers.

Posted by: Billinflorida at October 31, 2012 3:22 PM
Comment #355968

Adrienne….go get in the corner with Stephen. You have to stay there until you start paying attention.

FEMA had short comings under Bush, but it was the stupid decisions that LA governor and NO mayor made that started the downward spiral. They came to depend on Momma Fed to make everything better and had no contingency plans of their own. A 15 yr old kid was smart enough to steal a school bus from the hundreds parked in a flooding lot and drive himself and others without transportation to safety in Houston. All the rest of the buses sat there are got covered up because the kid didn’t take the time to call the mayor and gov to tell them what to do.

Each state should be making their own plans and implementing them with money supplied by the Feds. Other states and the private sector will kick in. They always have.

As to your statement about how well FEMA is doing now with Sandy. You don’t have a clue. It’s way too early to be applauding them. Let’s hope, since it’s election time, they have their act together.

Posted by: John Johnson at October 31, 2012 3:33 PM
Comment #355969

Obama is cutting $900 Mil from FEMA as part of Sequestration.

Posted by: Billinflorida at October 31, 2012 3:52 PM
Comment #355970

kctim-
Taking your view is not a prerequisite for respecting and admiring the Framers and what they did. I think they had better ethics, or at least a better sense of political necessity than the current crop of conservatives, who are so self-indulgent of their politics that they’re willing to strangle recoveries and upset the credit-rating of the nation to get their way.

Politics under Republicans have become uniquely destructive, and unhealthily partisan.

Frank-
If you take a look at polls in Ohio, they’re consistently better for Obama. Consistently. And these are likely voter screens, which tend to discount Obama’s demographics.

Oh, by the way, you do realize that Ohio doesn’t have normal party registration? You are tagged with the last presidential primary you voted in. So, if a bunch of people decided to make strategic votes in the last Republican Primary, given there wasn’t much of a Democratic one…


Precincts, by the way, change much less than congressional districts.

I could go on. But the point is, Your author is making several bad assumptions, and he’s going up against multiple polls that say the same thing, not to mention consistently positive poll numbers for the President (apart, of course, from Rasmussen).

You need GOP talking points to make your argument. We just need the poll numbers.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 31, 2012 3:53 PM
Comment #355972
Adrienne, I’m surprised you aren’t rejoicing at the 1% who lived in the affluent areas of NJ; who lost everything? Don’t tell me that after all your support of OWS and your comments about the 1% and the 99%, that you are part of the 1% of New Jersey.

What an idiot you are to spout such total nonsense.

I want to know why Obama’s responses to the devastated are not faster. The left expected Bush to have the Katrina victims back to normal life within 2 days, so we should expect Obama to do the same thing.

Tell it to Governor Christie — he thinks the president and FEMA is doing a great job with disaster response following the hurricane. Yet you callous, viscous, small-minded Republicans actually seem to be wishing the response to the disaster wasn’t good, and just so you could use it as campaign fodder.
This makes me so sick.

Regarding Romney’s plan to stop campaigning in order to collect aid for the victims, good for him and the left’s attacks are sour grapes.

Romney DIDN”T stop campaigning for a minute. The “aid collection” was FAKE since they bought most of it. The Romney campaign was forced to ADMIT that their event was staged only for political purposes after reporters who were there immediately began an avalanche of criticism since the political opportunism was embarrassingly obvious. And, the Red Cross DOESN’T WANT the kind of food donations Romney’s lame-ass rally was collecting (buying themselves). The Red Cross website specifically asks people NOT to give those kind of donations, but only money.

Posted by: Adrienne at October 31, 2012 3:57 PM
Comment #355973
Adrienne….go get in the corner with Stephen. You have to stay there until you start paying attention.

Go f*ck yourself, you trollish son of a b*tch.

Posted by: Adrienne at October 31, 2012 4:02 PM
Comment #355976

Adrienne if you would link to reputable sources maybe you would be taken more seriously, but the things you link to are nothing more than left wing BS.

Posted by: KAP at October 31, 2012 4:22 PM
Comment #355977

Billinflorida-
Sequestration would not exist if it were not for your friends in Congress. Not finished? Well, the GOP proposed discretionary spending cuts could take as much as 40% out of that budget, if every budget in discretionary budgeting is treated the same.

You really don’t want to start asking who’s cutting budgets for disasters, not with several votes on the GOP’s record denying increases in funding, or tying them to economically harmful spending cuts. Republicans are employing ideology and politics to make decisions that practical experience and science should be used for. That is why they create such monstrous screw-ups with their policies, because their politics is built on what they imagine, and what people imagine is always wrong in some aspect.

John Johnson-
Well, make us. Oh, you can’t? Well, then just sit here telling us to get off your lawn.

You’re talking to the guy who can make every one of your comments disappear, and who doesn’t because he really does love the idea of free and frank discussion. Even when some people abuse it for the sake of being insulting jerks.

You can say it was the state’s fault on matters, but FEMA could have done a better job. According to recent reports, it is.

Why? Because, to paraphrase another article, we prepare for the worst, and hope for the best, rather than the other way around. The conservative tendency to underestimate out of the ordinary events, the so-called black swans, has become exaggerated to insane degrees. America needs leadership that understands the dangers of the world, rather than sticking its head in the sand about them, and hoping for the best.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 31, 2012 4:34 PM
Comment #355978

KAP, I’m not surprised that you want to defend your craven phony candidate. I mean, what else can you do but try to ignore that they’ve admitted to buying 5,000 worth of food for their fake, totally staged, “relief event”? Ignore the fact that every single one of the reporters who were there easily called it out as such.

Posted by: Adrienne at October 31, 2012 4:35 PM
Comment #355979

Adrienne, Show where I defended him, I just pointed out that the use of your link would be like me linking to Rush, the use of far left BS links is no better than useing far right BS links. Try a more reputable source then I will take you more seriously, even Huff post or MSNBC might be more believable.

Posted by: KAP at October 31, 2012 4:41 PM
Comment #355982

Republicans are staging the almighty political temper tantrum of all time, and refusing to acknowledge that the peak of their dominance is past. Obama cannot be blamed for your party’s lack of maturity and unwillingness to compromise, not when that’s the deliberate strategy.
Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 31, 2012 1:40 PM

It strikes me as strange when SD proclaims that obama is doing the public will and looking after Mr. and Mrs. America yet chastises Republicans for following the wishes of voters who returned a large number of Republicans to the house in 2010 giving them a huge mandate to oppose obama’s policies.

America elected obama in 2008 and obviously changed their minds just two years later when they got a closer look at his “hope and change”.

Since he is running for reelection on the same promises and hope that gave him victory in 2008, which was repudiated in 2010, I fail to see the logic in expecting to see him win in 2012.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 31, 2012 4:58 PM
Comment #355983

Royal Flush-
What was the mandate? Jobs. What was the result? The fiscal cliff.

I would argue that Obama created more jobs on account of his mandate than the GOP did on its mandate. Obama’s doing his job, while the Republicans aren’t doing theirs. Democrats worked more dependably to do good things for the average person, while Republicans just went back to business as usual, with an added helping of ideological intensity. That wasn’t what people wanted. People weren’t looking for an especially ideological policy, they were looking for cooperation.

I’d say that would do some damage, except Republicans have been hard at work gerrymandering their states in order to reinforce their advantage.

The question is, how long can this imbalance stand, before the tides of public opinion start running against them, and reform becomes a mandate.

Obama’s done a better job of leadership than the Republicans have. That’s why the President’s numbers have bounced back, while Congress’s have sunk to record lows.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 31, 2012 5:05 PM
Comment #355984

Buzzfeed broke that aspect of the story, so naturally Buzzfeed now becomes a highly objectionable link.
Surprise, surprize.

Try a more reputable source then I will take you more seriously, even Huff post or MSNBC might be more believable.

Huffington Post already nailed how phony Romney’s “relief event” was:
Mitt Romney Cancels Campaign Events, Campaigns Anyway

So did USA Today:

Romney held an event at an arena here Tuesday that was initially scheduled as a rally, but the campaign insisted it was now a “storm relief” event. Still, it bore a very strong resemblance to the rallies he has conducted across the country — complete with a biopic of the Romneys that has been a campaign staple.

It seems that few reporters failed to see the craven opportunism of Romney’s phony staged relief event.

And the glaring fact is, if Romney truly wanted to “help out”, and show that he cares, he and his five sons would right now be in New York and New Jersey lending a hand when at this moment there are many people still trapped in their homes, in very cold temperatures, with flood waters all around them. Where is he today? Campaigning in Florida.

Posted by: Adrienne at October 31, 2012 5:09 PM
Comment #355985

Mitt Romney Disaster Relief Position Faces Scrutiny

“Every time you have an occasion to take something from the federal government and send it back to the states, that’s the right direction,” Romney said at a debate last June. “And if you can go even further, and send it back to the private sector, that’s even better.”

Asked by moderator John King of CNN whether that would include disaster relief, Romney said: “We cannot afford to do those things without jeopardizing the future for our kids. It is simply immoral, in my view, for us to continue to rack up larger and larger debts and pass them on to our kids.”

“I believe that FEMA plays a key role in working with states and localities to prepare for and respond to natural disasters,” Romney said in a statement supplied by his campaign Wednesday. “As president, I will ensure FEMA has the funding it needs to fulfill its mission, while directing maximum resources to the first responders who work tirelessly to help those in need, because states and localities are in the best position to get aid to the individuals and communities affected by natural disasters.”

Wednesday’s statement came after the candidate ducked a spate of opportunities Tuesday to personally clarify his position and the statement essentially endorsed the current disaster aid system.

Flippy-Floppy-Phony Mitt.

Posted by: Adrienne at October 31, 2012 5:25 PM
Comment #355986

No Adrienne, he would be in the way and would make him look worse. Staying out of the way and letting the disaster relief people do their thing shows better judgement. Even Obama is’nt campaigning in those states instead he is doing what he is supposed to do as president for the first time, being Presidential. The best that can be done by both candidates is to stay out of N.Y and N.J. and let the people get their lives back. By the way I don’t see Obama and his wife and girls lending a hand.

Posted by: KAP at October 31, 2012 5:27 PM
Comment #355987

This is great, hahahaha….I’m accused of being to hard on SD because he’s a DA, and her we have the lady of WB speaking:

“Go f*ck yourself, you trollish son of a b*tch.”

Posted by: Adrienne at October 31, 2012 4:02 PM


Since Stephen Daugherty can link to MediaMatters as evidence of his “FACTS”; I guess I am free to link to:

“This Quinnipiac poll in Ohio, by the way, has a plus-eight Democrat sample. Don’t forget, now: Both Gallup and Rasmussen say that the Republicans on Election Day next Tuesday are gonna have a plus one to plus two turnout advantage. And, by the way, Rasmussen was the most accurate in 2008. That’s a big spread. Quinnipiac/CBS in Ohio, they’re sampling 8% more Democrats than Republicans to come up with their number here…

How do you set it up that the election has been stolen from you? How do you set it up that there’s been fraud and you need lawyers in there? Well, you have all these polls that show Obama up five in Ohio with a plus-seven Democrat sample. And let’s say the real returns shows that Romney wins Ohio. Well, bango! You’re gonna have every Democrat in the country thinking Ohio was stolen from ‘em, ‘cause they believe the polls more than they believe actual vote counts.”

http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/daily/2012/10/31/up_to_the_minute_limbaugh_polling_analysis

Read the whole article Stephen, you might learn something. I guess m links are just as ood as yours.

I have nothing to lose because I don’t care, but you Stephen Daugherty are a writer on WB and you have made a bold boast that Obama is winning in these states. I will be the first to tell you what you are next Wednesday.

Posted by: Frank at October 31, 2012 5:29 PM
Comment #355990

SD wrote; ” People weren’t looking for an especially ideological policy (during the 2010 election), they were looking for cooperation.”

Well, that belies logic don’t you think? If voters wanted more congressional cooperation with obama they would have given dems more seats. Is this too politically sophisticated for you to understand?

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 31, 2012 5:36 PM
Comment #355991

We’ll, Stephen, looks like my last response did not show up. Going to censor my posts now to keep little Adrianne from having a stroke? You decide to do that with this one and I’ll just go over to the other side and announce what you’re doing. It’s what I would expect from people who can’t take heat.

Posted by: John Johnson at October 31, 2012 5:37 PM
Comment #355992

By the way I don’t see Obama and his wife and girls lending a hand.
Posted by: KAP at October 31, 2012 5:27

KAP…I understand that the first lady and her children are harvesting vegetables from the WH garden and will personally deliver them to the stricken areas via Air Force One. The motorcade is expected to tie up traffic as much as the storm.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 31, 2012 5:43 PM
Comment #355993

It is rather confusing to me as to how easy it is for the media to have full access to the situation room and obama during the aftermath of the storm, but no access at all in the situation room of the murders which took place in Libya.

Could it be that one emergency situation is good for the president’s public image…and the other is not?

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 31, 2012 5:47 PM
Comment #355994

John Johnson, in the past Mr. Daugherty has also deleted my comments. The ones he didn’t like.

On another topic, I just read that Biden is worth $215 million. I wonder if Adrienne would consider him a 1 percenter. I realize I am taking the chance of being cussed out.

Posted by: Billinflorida at October 31, 2012 5:49 PM
Comment #355995
The best that can be done by both candidates is to stay out of N.Y and N.J. and let the people get their lives back. By the way I don’t see Obama and his wife and girls lending a hand.

The people will get their lives back by receiving the help they need following this disaster. And the first step in that direction began today:
President Obama And Chris Christie Tour Storm Damage

The president and the New Jersey governor toured the absolutely devastated New Jersey seaboard from Marine One Wednesday.

Frank:

we have the lady of WB speaking:

“Go f*ck yourself, you trollish son of a b*tch.”

That goes for you, too.

Posted by: Adrienne at October 31, 2012 5:51 PM
Comment #355996

“KAP…I understand that the first lady and her children are harvesting vegetables from the WH garden and will personally deliver them to the stricken areas via Air Force One. The motorcade is expected to tie up traffic as much as the storm.” Royal Flush

Good one Royal…

Maybe she can deliver them some of the public school food she promotes, you know, bean sprouts and tofu.

Posted by: Frank at October 31, 2012 5:53 PM
Comment #355997

Hmmm…I wonder if Adrienne learned such colorful language while living in a tent at an OWS rally. Makes one wonder what else she may have picked up there.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 31, 2012 5:54 PM
Comment #355998

Adrienne, that’s Mister Frank to you.

Posted by: Frank at October 31, 2012 5:55 PM
Comment #355999

Master Frank and Mistress Adrienne…has a nice ring.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 31, 2012 5:58 PM
Comment #356000

Back off, Frank. If you hurt someone’s feelings here, you will have your next post yanked. It just happened to me when I asked Adrianne if she felt better after her blow up. Is she someone special? Something I should know about her? I understand she’s a 1%’er. Does that get you some sort of special protection from harsh words and tough retorts?

Posted by: John Johnson at October 31, 2012 5:59 PM
Comment #356001

Is it my imagination, or are we seeing a meltdown of the left on WB?

The left, the president, and the MSM are singing the praises of Chris Christy. I wonder how long that will last. I remember when McCain was the darling of the MSM, at least until he ran against the messiah.

Posted by: TomT at October 31, 2012 5:59 PM
Comment #356002

John…perhaps your missing comment is in the same dark hole that conceals what happened in Libya.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 31, 2012 6:02 PM
Comment #356003

John Johnson, I can’t really say much about the “Lady of WB” because I have on occasions called Stephen Daughtery a “Dumbass”, for obvious reasons.

Posted by: Frank at October 31, 2012 6:03 PM
Comment #356004

Adrienne, That is exactly what Obama and Christie should do is just tour the damage No Campaigning.Keeping out of the way is the best thing both candidates can do. As I said this is the first time Obama is looking Presidential.

Royal, Good One!!!!!!!!!!!!LOL

Posted by: KAP at October 31, 2012 6:03 PM
Comment #356005

“Hmmm…I wonder if Adrienne learned such colorful language while living in a tent at an OWS rally. Makes one wonder what else she may have picked up there.”

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 31, 2012 5:54 PM

Hmmm…Royal, I’m wondering what you meant by that:)

Posted by: Frank at October 31, 2012 6:06 PM
Comment #356007

Tom asks; “…are we seeing a meltdown of the left on WB?

I believe so Tom. Mr. Daugherty is losing his title as “Fact Checker in Charge” and Adrienne no longer uses charming adjectives to sweet-talk us into her camp.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 31, 2012 6:09 PM
Comment #356008

Stephen is strangly missing from the conversation; me thinks he he is composing a lengthy response on MS Word, using spell and grammar check.

Posted by: Billinflorida at October 31, 2012 6:10 PM
Comment #356009

Hmmm…Royal, I’m wondering what you meant by that:)
Posted by: Frank at October 31, 2012 6:06 PM

Use your imagination Frank. If I had spent time in a tent with my fellow OWS protesters, I would be checking for sudden, unexplainable rashes.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 31, 2012 6:12 PM
Comment #356010

I can’t top that one, hahahahahaha, busting a gut. I had to read that to the misses.

Posted by: Frank at October 31, 2012 6:14 PM
Comment #356012

Frank…we conservatives do have a sense of humor after all. Say Howdy to your wife for me.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 31, 2012 6:17 PM
Comment #356013

It’s all fun and games until some gets their eye put out. Sorry, that was my line for the BB gun. I have to get off, Bret Baier is on and I never miss Bret Baier on Fox News.

Posted by: Billinflorida at October 31, 2012 6:18 PM
Comment #356014

Ugh.
Trolls.

Posted by: phx8 at October 31, 2012 6:18 PM
Comment #356015

WHERE???

Posted by: Frank at October 31, 2012 6:20 PM
Comment #356016

Stephen

You assume that Republicans were 100% united. Then we saw that they were not during the election. Obama was unable to find common ground with any of the Republicans and left out many Democrats.

The only thing consistent in all Obama’s bad relationships is him. It is Obama’s lack of skill.

It was his job to find a way, just as Reagan, Clinton, Bush and Romney did.

Obama just sucked at negotiating or understanding the needs of others.

For the first half of his term, Obama enjoyed super majorities. He couldn’t even get his own party to go along on all his plans. What does that tell you?

The problem is that you guys have an educated fool in the presidency. You will be surprised at how well things go when he does.

Posted by: C&J at October 31, 2012 6:39 PM
Comment #356017

John Johnson: “We’ll, Stephen, looks like my last response did not show up.”

Most of the time the comments don’t show because of server glitches, not because someone deleted it. Was your comment after this comment of yours:

Adrienne….go get in the corner with Stephen. You have to stay there until you start paying attention.

If so it never submitted.

Posted by: Adam Ducker at October 31, 2012 6:45 PM
Comment #356020

The problem is that you guys have an educated fool in the presidency. You will be surprised at how well things go when he does.
Posted by: C&J at October 31, 2012 6:39 PM

Succinctly and intelligently written…

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 31, 2012 6:55 PM
Comment #356021

All

Re not being posted - It does get messed up sometimes. I don’t think Stephen purposefully deletes unfavorable comments. Shit happens.

Posted by: C&J at October 31, 2012 6:58 PM
Comment #356022

obama said…I will allow no red tape to get in the way of our efforts in this disaster.

I suspect that the red tape he refers to is of his own making.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 31, 2012 7:05 PM
Comment #356023

The major problem with Obama is that he was spoiled child and it has stuck with him to adulthood. No one has ever told him “NO” and when he hears it, he can’t handle it. He believes he is above negotiating with the other side. As a community organizer, he simply threatened the other side with legal action or as Jessie Jackson has done, blackmail. He is campaigning, but he doesn’t really want to campaign; he believes campaigning is beneath him and by all rites another 4 years should just be given to him. I personally think he is totally lost and has no idea what he is doing. Someone said the other day, when describing the mentality of the left, liberals have goals to implement government programs and let government run them. Once the program is implemented, they don’t care if it works or not. They just move to the next goal. Obama and the Dems passed Obamacare; it doesn’t matter that it won’t work or that it will cost jobs, increase costs, or put companies out of business. The goal was to pass it, and the liberal mindset cannot, CANNOT, understand why America does not love it. Obama does not care if it works…just move on to the next liberal goal. The 2010 election was a mandate against Obamacare, and the 2012 election will be a mandate against Obamacare.

Posted by: Frank at October 31, 2012 7:07 PM
Comment #356024

“The problem is that you guys have an educated fool in the presidency.”

C&J,

Well, this “fool” brought us back from the brink of absolute economic disaster. A disaster visited upon us on during the watch of your “fool.”

Can you not see how destructive and juvenile such characterizations are?

Posted by: Rich at October 31, 2012 7:29 PM
Comment #356027

Frank-
First, because their samples are random, polls often get unrepresentative numbers in terms of party/ideological identification. They allow for that. So, if they had a +8 sample from their random sample, they probably weighted the results to cancel that out. Otherwise, why publish the bias of the sample?

Who cancels out your bias? Rush Limbaugh is good at making right-wingers like you happy about being on the right. He puts bandages on your candidate’s gaffes, and spins everything to make the right wing look good, so long as it stays far to the right.

But is this sort of conservative cheerleader what you need all the time? Flatterers have a way of making those they butter up oblivious to looming problems. The left blogosphere is almost pathologically aware of its frailties, and as a result, we’ve gotten tighter, more disciplined.

The Right? it’s gone nuts. Because conservatives and Republicans are inherently less rational? No, because their media set up keeps them caught up in a feedback loop of propaganda that deprives them of the opportunity to come up for air in a media environment not set up to flatter their sensibilities, and protect them from nasty realities.

Being confronted by uncomfortable truths makes us stronger, because we learn to deal with problems, rather than let them fester.

As for that other crap? I work for a living, so I also commute. I think some on this site are too old to remember, but working means you can’t spend all of your time replying to folks.

C&J-
You take a pervasively negative view of Obama that doesn’t seem to get shared by those who actually work with him. The truth is, Obama is not the problem. I mean, he could please them by basically agreeing to everything they want, but really, why? He wasn’t elected to be a doormat, and trying to negotiate with Republicans is a big part of what knocked his ratings down. Since he’s become firmer in his politics, people have gravitated back to him.

As for the first half of the term, it’s a simple matter of math: there were only six months where Obama had a sixty vote majority, from the time that Franken was seated and Specter flipped parties, and even then, he had to get EVERY Democrat he had to go with voting for cloture, including some rather conservative ones.

But none of this would have been necessary if individual Republicans had been willing to agree to cloture from time to time. Instead, in a move that can only reasonably be described as organized strategy, they voted against cloture in lockstep almost every time. Without folks in the party willing to vote for cloture, the President didn’t have the ability to break the filibusters, even if he wanted to.

I was very aware of this, and this is why I have never bought your argument! Democrats, even in the best of situations, had to work in unanimity in order to get stuff passed. Republicans, worked in unanimity to prevent passage of legislation.

And you praised them for it. Supermajorities mean nothing if the rules stipulate a greater supermajority than you have in one house, and the other side is organized for their own political advantage.

Your party sold out the American people’s recovery so you could win this election, and it will give me a certain savage satisfaction if all this evil you’ve done to our system gets paid back in in a humiliating defeat once again. Then maybe you will realize that Congress is a deliberative body, meant to operate by majority rules on most matters. Then maybe you’ll realize that the Tea Party was nothing more than amphetamine high, and that what your party really needs is to rest and regroup, figuring out how to deal with a country that is tilting back towards the left.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 31, 2012 9:11 PM
Comment #356031

Dick Morris predicts landslide win for Romney. President Obama’s speech writing staff starts constructing his second inaugural address.

Posted by: Adam Ducker at October 31, 2012 11:06 PM
Comment #356070

Adam Ducker; Morris is correct.

Stephen said:

“Rush Limbaugh is good at making right-wingers like you happy about being on the right. He puts bandages on your candidate’s gaffes, and spins everything to make the right wing look good, so long as it stays far to the right.

But is this sort of conservative cheerleader what you need all the time? Flatterers have a way of making those they butter up oblivious to looming problems. The left blogosphere is almost pathologically aware of its frailties, and as a result, we’ve gotten tighter, more disciplined.”

Stephen, do have the intellect to understand I can say the same thing about your link to Media Matters? Every silly comment you make can be applied to you own thinking. The “left blogosphere is almost pathologically aware of its frailties, and as a result, we’ve gotten tighter, more disciplined.” What world do you live in??? You guys feed off the crap that is written on MM, Huffpost, or the Dailykos. Example: Adrienne is one of you, she represents your thinking, and she consistently links to the most far left sites as proof of her comments.

“The Right? it’s gone nuts. Because conservatives and Republicans are inherently less rational? No, because their media set up keeps them caught up in a feedback loop of propaganda that deprives them of the opportunity to come up for air in a media environment not set up to flatter their sensibilities, and protect them from nasty realities.”

Same drivel as above remarks; they can just as easily be applied to te left.

“Being confronted by uncomfortable truths makes us stronger, because we learn to deal with problems, rather than let them fester.”

This is total BS, your side cannot accept “uncomfortable truths”. “Deal with problems”; this is a joke. We will see how you are dealing next week, when you are crying the election was stolen, as you did in 2000 and 2004. When you side has the lawyers lined up to tie the elections up in the states. You’re going to have a hard time with this one Stephen, but next week is going to be a Republican sweep. It will be like 2010, and you will be in denial. The past 4 years you have been an Obama apologist will be 4 wasted years of your life that you will never get back. Your always on the wrong side of the American people.

“But none of this would have been necessary if individual Republicans had been willing to agree to cloture from time to time. Instead, in a move that can only reasonably be described as organized strategy, they voted against cloture in lockstep almost every time. Without folks in the party willing to vote for cloture, the President didn’t have the ability to break the filibusters, even if he wanted to.
I was very aware of this, and this is why I have never bought your argument! Democrats, even in the best of situations, had to work in unanimity in order to get stuff passed. Republicans, worked in unanimity to prevent passage of legislation.
And you praised them for it. Supermajorities mean nothing if the rules stipulate a greater supermajority than you have in one house, and the other side is organized for their own political advantage.
Your party sold out the American people’s recovery so you could win this election, and it will give me a certain savage satisfaction if all this evil you’ve done to our system gets paid back in in a humiliating defeat once again. Then maybe you will realize that Congress is a deliberative body, meant to operate by majority rules on most matters. Then maybe you’ll realize that the Tea Party was nothing more than amphetamine high, and that what your party really needs is to rest and regroup, figuring out how to deal with a country that is tilting back towards the left.”
Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 31, 2012 9:11 PM

Stephen, what part of “Representative” government don’t you understand?

Posted by: Frank at November 1, 2012 5:30 AM
Comment #356089

I heard a great example of socialism by a local radio host this morning. His children dressed up for Halloween and went trick or treating last evening. When they got home, he and his wife checked their bags of candy. The older child had a larger bag of candy than the younger, so he took candy out of the larger bag and placed in the smaller, in order to make things even. The older child was upset, and the parents explained it wasn’t fair for one to have more than the other. The older child said it’s not fair, “I went to more houses and walked faster to get more candy”. Welcome to the world of the socialist liberal; take from those who achieve and give to those who do not achieve. I wonder how the Hollywood crowd, like George Clooney, and rich politicians, like Pelosi, would feel if their bank accounts were divided up with the poor? Or is it only fair, when it’s someone elses money?

Posted by: TomT at November 1, 2012 7:03 AM
Comment #356092

Frank-
I linked to Media Matters not merely to get their opinion, but also to get the fact I was looking for. You do realize, though, that the fact that you folks posting Rush Limbaugh links also works as a license for me to use less than neutral sources, right? So, door swings both ways.

However, I like well sourced information, so maybe next time, I hunt down the actual article. But it remains a fact that Obama created tens of thousands of jobs in that particular industry, even if not all parts were made here. Also, more parts could be made here, if we invested in the technology at a federal level. Why can the Chinese subsidize their industries to their advantage, and we can’t? Globalism from our side seems to be all about letting the other sides of our trade relationship take government action to their advantage in different industries, while we just let them win.

You want to disqualify anybody who doesn’t toe your line, but the fact is you aren’t right about everything. In fact, in the midst of your party’s desperate flailing, not much of what you’re pushing as the truth is actually real.

I have a number of partisan sources I regularly check in on, but I don’t restrict myself to those sources, and the so-called liberal media? It’s just the media to me, and they buy your BS just as much as they agree with us. The difference is, they don’t operate to flatter us. They’re willing to make reports we tear our hair out about, stuff that plays into your strategies, in a way that FOXNews would never allow for their GOP.

In short, the journalism is much less ideological, much more centered on facts and figures. I like that actually, because I get to make the interpretation, rather than having it spoon-fed to me.

As for the election? I doubt you’re going to get your sweep. I’m not going to count my chickens before they’re hatched, though, because I know elections can be uncertain, and my sources, both partisan and non-partisan have a fact driven approach that tells me I shouldn’t be too certain about things. A false sense of certainty might have certain political advantages, but it has political disadvantages, too.

As for the last four years? It will not have been wasted We’ll have shown that if people want it, they can get change. And the next four years? If we don’t win, people will find out why we should have. Unlike you, I don’t think that losing an election is the end of the world. I might not feel all that bright and chipper the next morning, but I’m not going to go nuts. If you doubt me, just look at my response to 2010 or 2004. It’s you Republicans and Conservatives who have gone insane over your losses. I didn’t adopt trutherism after 2004, but Republicans like you seem to have adopted all kinds of crazy things as your beliefs.

As for what part of representative government do I not understand? I think people would have liked to have seen Congress do more to help them, and I don’t think they fully realized how much any failure to do so related to the other party, rather than to the Democrats themselves. It’s an ironic rhetorical question for you, given what your people did, because that prevented representative government from operating as it typically has for the last two hundred years, and all to create the kind of frustration that I think helped you win all those seats in 2010.

Your people clawed your way back to power on the backs of Americans whose recovery they sabotaged, and they forced this president to try and deal with dozens of crises with one hand tied behind his back. Democrats never did this to Bush, because we thought it would reflect negatively on us to be seen a perpetual obstructionists. We instead used filibusters to get better deals. But Republicans never used the Filibuster as a negotiating tool, but rather as a bludgeon to beat down people’s will to change things.

TomT-
So, does a CEO making millions a year mean they did thousands of times more work, expend thousands of times more effort? I wonder how many people really think that Wall Street types these days actually earn what they make, that their behavior and the behavior of corporations in general, represents a fair exchange of value.

That’s another place where that analogy breaks down, because there are plenty of people working their asses off, trying to keep roofs over their heads, and their families fed, and who is it who gets the short end of a stick, often enough, when some guy in a suit wants to make more money on his stock options? The person whose done everything you’d ask of them, the hard work and everything.

You idealize our system, and pretend that the way you talk about things working out is the way it works out. But people out there in the real world experience something different on a daily basis. You expect that the people with power over workers lives will use it judiciously. Me? I’ve got a lifetime of experience that tells me that this isn’t so. It’s not enough to just let the market work things out, because the market has no empathy, no sense of fairness. It’ll do monstrous things in the name of expedience. What I want is a society where laws constrain this side of the market. What I want is for people to be able to bargain with their employers with some clout behind them, to at least push their interests further than they otherwise would be. What I want is not that we put all the rich people’s candy in everybody else’s bag, but that the older brother here doesn’t end up abandoning his younger siblings to get more candy, as they go around Trick or Treating, just so he can get more candy.

The world can’t be built entirely on this Ayn Rand Heroic Sociopathy model, and actually work, because people who care for nothing but themselves actually take worse risks, and do more destructive things, to self and others, because they just don’t care about the consequences. They want theirs, screw everybody else.

I want to apply standards that are as ancient as they are essentially human. Read your bible, especially in the prophets and the gospels, and you’ll find that the problem of economic fairness was not a issue first raised by Marx. Republicans and Conservatives, in their zeal to oppose the left here at home, and the extreme left that communism represented, have twisted their vision of capitalism, their vision of traditional society into a selfishly twisted version of what actually existed once. As much as people talk about rugged individualism, people used to depend a lot more on neighbors in the old days. Hospitality was once very important because everybody had an experience of what being truly alone, without the help of other parts of society, really was. Folks todays don’t often realize how much they depend upon others.

What I push isn’t merely about ideology, it’s about a society that I’ve learned heavily depends on others acting in our interests. Now they don’t do that out of selflessness. They expect us to do something in their interests in return. And with corporations having risen up over our history, we’re no longer simply one person asking a blacksmith to shoe our horses, we’re customers who are dependent on parts manufacturers, and if they’ve got a major defect in their wheel rims, who do we turn to ask for a redress of our greivance?

Folks are naive if they think the market alone prevents problems, because the market can encourage people to cut corners, to treat problems and defects like bumps in the road, and just hope they make their money before somebody notices.

We need government to keep expedience in business, and dishonesty in finance from undermining the functionality of our nation. We need to spend less money on products that are going to break, and more on those that will do their job. If the best products cannot be guaranteed, if the manufacturers can’t be forced to honor that unwritten commitment, then we are wasting huge sums of money, that prevent us from really doing what we want or need to do.

Fairness isn’t about taking from those who have more and just evening everything out. It’s about making sure that for the effort we expend, we are properly reward, and for the costs we pay, we get a fair return in value. It’s about real efficiency, overall, as opposed to the expedience that benefits a few.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at November 1, 2012 8:18 AM
Comment #356094

“Frank-
I linked to Media Matters not merely to get their opinion, but also to get the fact I was looking for. You do realize, though, that the fact that you folks posting Rush Limbaugh links also works as a license for me to use less than neutral sources, right? So, door swings both ways.”

Once again Stephen, you make the most dumbass comments; “sings both ways”, are you kidding? You, Adrienne, and the rest already link to the most leftist sites on the web. What more can you do?

Once again Stephen, you make comments that the word “liberal” could just as easily be substituted for “our side”, whatever that means.

“If we don’t win, people will find out why we should have. Unlike you, I don’t think that losing an election is the end of the world.”

The reason being; if we win, America will be on its way to recovery and healing. If I were a liberal, I would have the same optimism as you do about a Romney win.

“As for what part of representative government do I not understand? I think people would have liked to have seen Congress do more to help them, and I don’t think they fully realized how much any failure to do so related to the other party, rather than to the Democrats themselves. It’s an ironic rhetorical question for you, given what your people did, because that prevented representative government from operating as it typically has for the last two hundred years, and all to create the kind of frustration that I think helped you win all those seats in 2010.”

And Stephen, pray tell, just how did we “prevent” a representative government from working as it has for the past 200 years? Do you mean by calling and emailing our representatives and senators and telling them to block Obama and the socialist who are controlling the Democratic Party? It’s not a rhetorical question when we did exactly what we are supposed to do. Stephen, you live in this fantasy world that whatever socialist liberals do is best for the country. The 2010 election was about “Obamacare” and the fact that the democrats shoved it down our throats with NO bi-partisan vote. It was your baby and you paid the price of outraged voters. You will see the same thing next week, and your side will lose again. And Stephen, when it happens, I want you to understand the outrage of Obamacare has not receded.

“Your people clawed your way back to power on the backs of Americans whose recovery they sabotaged, and they forced this president to try and deal with dozens of crises with one hand tied behind his back. Democrats never did this to Bush”

Bullshit Stephen, your side attacked Bush starting on day one, for 8 years; and then your dumbass president continued to blame him for another 4 years. You personally attacked Bush for 8 years, you continued to blame him for the past 4 years, and you continued to apologize for Obama’s failures. You are so full of it. I will be happy when Obama is sent packing next Tuesday, and for at least a short respite you will shut up you socialist rhetoric. I want you to understand something Stephen, I know you won’t be able too, but when the election is finished next week, and Obama is beat terribly, it will be a clear mandate that Americans do not like Obama or the left’s socialist agenda. Do you HEAR Stephen, a clear mandate.

Posted by: Frank at November 1, 2012 8:51 AM
Comment #356106

Frank-
Let me start out by pointing out how often Dick Morris has been wrong. Often.

Let’s start with Hillary Clinton. He predicted she would lose the Senate race in New York. She won. He then predicted 2008 would be Hillary versus Condoleezza Rice. Condi never ran, Hillary lost to Barack Obama!

He predicted North Korea and Iran would cave early in the last decade. We’re still trying to deal with them now.

He predict Trump, that black hole from which attention doesn’t have the escape velocity to avoid, would run for President. He never even ran in a primary.

And in 2008? Let’s try this alphabetically. Arizona, which Morris put as blue went to McCain by 8.5% He won Arkansas, which Morris had as deep blue by almost 20% Georgia, which he had as a tossup, went to McCain by 5.2% Indiana, which Morris had as leaning McCain, went to Obama. Louisiana, which he had as a tossup, went to McCain by almost twenty percent. Missouri was not deep blue, but went to McCain by a recount level slim margin. Tennessee, which he had leaning to Obama, was won by 15.1% by McCain. West Virginia, which he had Lean Obama, went to McCain by 13.1%.

In other words, Morris couldn’t electoral vote predict his way out of a wet paper bag.

As for this dumbass comment? To quote Inigo Montoya, I do not think you know what this word means. If your party was all about respecting mandates, we would not see a record number of mandate-denying Filibusters, and mandate-denying rhetoric to go with it. We won the Congressional side of the election by huge numbers, and yet, your side claimed that nobody wanted our “socialist” agenda.

But I think we were very plain about what we were offering people. We said we would encourage renewables, and we did. We said we’d help the economy recover, and we did. We said we would keep taxes low on the Middle Class, and we did. We said we would push letting the taxes on the upper class rise, and we did. We said we’d put in more rule of the road on business, and we did. There should have been nothing shocking about what we did, apart from the insane bull**** your side flung into the national discussion. I mean, ****ing death panels!

We had a clear mandate, which we had earned by promoting a clear agenda. The main people muddling everything up, were on your side, and it’s what they’ll do these days, since we’re not as horrible as you need us to be, and you are nowhere near as good at policy as people want their leaders to be. Your side said that the Auto Rescue was socialism, a permanent takeover. You actively discouraged people from buying GM cars. Yet now you support a candidate who vacillates between peddling howlers about Obama sending auto jobs overseas, and claiming that the very successful auto rescue was all his idea.

I mean, could you do me a favor? Let’s say the man wins, for the sake of argument. What the **** is Romney’s mandate for, a tougher approach to Iran, or the same policies already in place? The tax cuts he promoted in the primaries, or the huge mess of violated mathematics he calls his current fiscal plan? Is he for vouchers, or keeping every thing the same, as one poor voter thought?

The fact that you’re calling Obama’s agend socialist should be a dead giveaway what kind of fantasy you’re locked in.

I think if we had wanted to, we could have gotten healthcare done long before the disastrous 2009 summer. But we wanted Republicans on board. Only thing was, the Republicans basicaly stalled for time, and gave us nothing. At some point, when we got enough votes and lost enough patience, we basically pushed through something, without your help.

But even before then, your side had abused Senate Procedures, filibuster or otherwise, in order to stall Obama’s entire agenda. It’s a matter of public record, so despite the fact that you’re going to deny it, it’s the truth: your side obstructed Congress more than any other congress in history. Hell, you obstructed it so many times that all the filibusters up to about the 1960’s put together couldn’t equal the number your people inflicted on us.

How can a party that’s done that dare to talk about being the healers. Because you’ll release the nation you’ve been keeping hostage now that they’ve got Stockholm Syndrome attachment to you? Cute.

Your problem is that I’m not a dumbass. Your bull**** is pretty ****ing transparent to me, and it’s always been.

As for Bush? Look, Bush didn’t get off with others people on the right foot, not with the way his people handled the 2000 election. It felt wrong to many people to have a man who lost the popular vote have the Supreme Court stop a recount that was actually required by law, thanks to his low margin of victory.

So when this jackass starts off acting like he won a landslide… well, that’s not a good start. Then, when opportunity presents itself, and he seems to become a good leader under such pressures, does it stick? No.

No, because he immediately proceeds to forget who it was he was going after in the first place, and turns to another war. Then he persuades America with information that later turns out to be dubious, to get into another war, and then proceeds to screw that one up, starting out by failing to capture the enemy leader until three quarters of that year later. The next year, he blunders his way into an ill-advised siege of a number of insurgent strongholds, gets spooked by huge election year war casualties into withdrawing, and spends the next several months allowing these hotbets of activity to simmer and fester.

This, by the way, while he passes America’s only wartime tax cuts, which end up doing precisely the opposite of what was predicted. Record deficits return.

He basically gets re-elected and builds up his lead in Congress by making ideological war on Democrats, using the war he’s so miserably executing as a cudgel to bash our politics, impugn our dissent, and justify an increasingly right-wing agenda. He divides the country in the process of trying to hang onto his job.

And that, my fine fellow, is just the first term. The Second term brings us one stupendous ****-up after another, one blow to American credibility and prestige, economic fortunes and foreign policy positions after another. It brings us Katrina, the inflation and the collapse of the Housing bubble, the economic crash, the devolution of Iraq into full blown civil war, and so on and so forth.

You can point to all kinds of right wing fantasies about what Obama’s done wrong, I can and did point to dozens of terrible realities as to what Bush did wrong. I am not contradicted by dozens and dozens of statistics the way you are. I am not at a loss for real, red-meat sort of scandals, the way you are. You have these elaborate conspiracy theories as to what Obama has done or is trying to do, including the notion that he’s some kind of socialist. And you cling to all this with white knuckles and torn nails, not wanting to acknowledge that this country has drifted even a few notches over towards moderation and, towards the centrists and the leftists, and away from you.

Do you feel betrayed? Does it feel like some sort of weird nightmare? I wonder, will you have all that great of an opinion of America, if your party doesn win this Tuesday? I get the feeling not, because the GOP has become a party of sore losers. It’s become a party that’s got too much ego to accept that there will be down times as well as up. I’ve endured some pretty tough elections, and pretty much picked myself up and dusted myself off. The reason I have nothing to regret from the Obama Administration is that I know we did our best. The reason you have nothing to regret from the Bush Administration is that you were never in touch with reality.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at November 1, 2012 11:56 AM
Comment #356108

SD: Harry Reid has control of the Senate. Change the rules to require only 51 votes for most measures. I believe you are unwilling to do that, because you want the option open for Democrats to block legislation should the Republicans have the majority in the Senate.

It doesn’t seem productive to wish that Republicans should “go along” with things in which they don’t believe, just so you can get your agenda passed and preserve your option to block legislation in the future. You can’t have it both ways.

Either change the traditions/rules of the Senate (a bad thing IMO), or elect more Democrats.

Posted by: Mike in Tampa at November 1, 2012 12:55 PM
Comment #356110

Stephen Daugherty, you are a bloviating idiot and I think I’ll just wait until next Tuesday before I communicate any more with you. There comes a time when I have to say to you, “if a man wants to be ignorant, then let him be ignorant”.

Posted by: Frank at November 1, 2012 1:38 PM
Comment #356111

Mike,

“…because you want the option open for Democrats to block legislation should the Republicans have the majority in the Senate.”

The republicans had the same option when they controled everything, and didn’t do it for exactly the same reason.

Your whining rings hollow.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at November 1, 2012 1:39 PM
Comment #356115

Rocky: Not whining, just commenting on SD’s whining. I’m perfectly happy with the system we have now in the Senate.

Posted by: Mike in Tampa at November 1, 2012 2:02 PM
Comment #356124

Mike in Tampa-
I remember Republicans howling that the Democrats’ use of the filibuster was an offense against Democracy.

Fast forward several years, and Republicans are repeatedly explaining why America is not a Democracy, and why it isn’t hypocrisy that they almost doubled the previous record, and then proceeded to repeat about the same number.

See, if it benefits Republicans, they’re for it. If it works against them, they’re against it. Democracy is great, and filibusters are awful if Republicans are leading the Senate. Otherwise, they flip flop. Now you could accuse Democrats of the same, except for one difference: Republicans didn’t see almost 80% of their legislation killed by this extraconstitutional procedure. Democrats have. And if you know what’s good for you, you’ll support filibuster reform, so that it once again becomes a means of protest and a starting point for negotiation, instead of becoming a universally practiced means of ensuring dysfunction for all but the most overwhelming majorities.

Frank-
So sorry I hurt your feelings, but you know what? I’m tired of your party’s crap. I’m tired of the lies and paranoid propaganda. I’m tired of watching my nation decline so your party can claw its way to the top. If it takes utterly kicking the **** out of Republicans to get things done, that’s what I’ll do. But if some of your people can come to their senses and realize that having America operate as a functioning country means more than having their party win the next election, then I’m all for it. But one way or another, I want what’s best for my country.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at November 1, 2012 3:46 PM
Comment #356127

Stephen

“it’s a simple matter of math: there were only six months where Obama had a sixty vote majority”

There has not been a time in our memory when any Republican has anything close to this type of majority. Last time this happened was in the 1920s. Clinton never enjoyed such majorities. In fact the last president of any party to have such power was Carter, an interesting parallel.

If Obama couldn’t make progress with those tools, it is on him. A poor workman blames his tools. That is Obama.

Re our nation’s recovery - Obama passed his stimulus when he held all the cards. It worked not well.

Posted by: C&J at November 1, 2012 4:02 PM
Comment #356131

SD: Perhaps Harry Reid should grow a set and really make people stand up and talk for the filibusters.

Posted by: Mike in Tampa at November 1, 2012 4:40 PM
Comment #356132

The top 10 poorest big cities in America based on the percentage of people living below the poverty level.

Detroit, MI – 32.5%
Buffalo, NY – 29.9%
Cincinnati, OH – 27.8%
Cleveland, OH – 27%
Miami, FL – 26.9%
St. Louis, MO – 26.8%
El Paso, TX – 26.4%
Milwaukee, WI – 26.2%
Philadelphia, PA – 25.1%
Newark, NJ – 24.2%

All of these large cities that are in the top of the nation for the largest percentage of people living below the poverty level have one thing in common – Democratic mayors. Some of these cities have had a Democratic mayor for nearly 100 years, but all have been ruled by Dems for at least twenty plus years.

Despite all the parsing by liberals they can’t deny the fact that dem city governance is not producing positive results.

Posted by: Royal Flush at November 1, 2012 4:58 PM
Comment #356133

Doughboy wrote; ” If it takes utterly kicking the **** out of Republicans to get things done, that’s what I’ll do.”

You must stop doing this boy. You’re threats of violence are just too funny. You are beginning to sound like Mr. Adrienne or Mr. Jane Doe?

Posted by: Royal Flush at November 1, 2012 5:06 PM
Comment #356134

BS Royal, and the ‘functionalist manifesto,’ which basically says nothing more than big government good, Republicans bad, proves you wrong!

And if that isn’t good enough for you brainwashed, hateful, racist rednecks, then it’s Bushs’ fault!

Posted by: kctim at November 1, 2012 5:18 PM
Comment #356136

Stephen said:

“Mike in Tampa-
I remember Republicans howling that the Democrats’ use of the filibuster was an offense against Democracy.”

So is the dumbass admitting that Democrats filbustered too???

“Republicans didn’t see almost 80% of their legislation killed by this extraconstitutional procedure. Democrats have. And if you know what’s good for you, you’ll support filibuster reform,”

Once again, the dumbass can’t understand that Republican Senators are doing what their constituents want them to do. The dumbass is so used to Democrat politicians ramming crap down their throats, he forgot, they work for us… By the way, I have no problem with the filibusters and have no desire to see them done away with; but then, I’m not a whinny democrap.

“Frank-
So sorry I hurt your feelings,”

You haven’t hurt my feelings dumbass. I’m just amazed at your ignorance and desire to be Obama’s water boy.

“If it takes utterly kicking the **** out of Republicans to get things done, that’s what I’ll do.”

Stephen, I don’t think you could whip your way out of a wet paper bag. I agree with Royal, your attempts at being a tough guy are hillarious. Anyone who still lives with mommy and daddy….

Posted by: Frank at November 1, 2012 5:22 PM
Comment #356137

Frank…from the language the libs are using one gets the sense of their desperation come next Tuesday’s election. I noticed today that “Real Clear Politics” has Romney and obama exactly tied in national polls.

We all know that a tie, for a sitting president, is the kiss of death. I know my lib friends will disagree now, but wouldn’t have in 2000 or 2004.

I have it on good authority that obama is searching for a site to place his library. Both Las Vegas and Atlantic City are competing for the honor as they view him as the ultimate LOSER.

It is too late for obama to recover and he will lose the election. The only question now is how many seats the Reps will pick up in the Senate.

Posted by: Royal Flush at November 1, 2012 5:37 PM
Comment #356140

I wonder if the obama’s will thrash the White House before they leave in January as the Clinton’s did.

Posted by: Royal Flush at November 1, 2012 5:44 PM
Comment #356141

OH, before I forget, Mitt told me that he plans on asking the Brits to return the Churchill bust so it can once again have a place of honor in the White House.

Posted by: Royal Flush at November 1, 2012 5:46 PM
Comment #356144

CORRECTION: “We all know that a tie, for a sitting president, is the kiss of death. I know my lib friends will disagree now, but wouldn’t have in 2004.”

Posted by: Royal Flush at November 1, 2012 5:49 PM
Comment #356145

Royal, I have never heard so many famous conservative politicians say the same thing. They are predicting a complete blowout for Romney. Well over 300 electoral votes. Would that be considered a mandate; or will we have to listen to 4 years of “but if the blacks, Hispanics, single women, and college students had voted”…Obama would have won. We will hear their cries and wailing throughout the land of the free and the home of the brave.

I personally think that Romney should call in Franklin Graham to come to the Oval office and perform an exorcism to drive out all the demons of hell.

Posted by: Frank at November 1, 2012 6:01 PM
Comment #356146

Frank…you are soooo baaaad. LOL

Posted by: Royal Flush at November 1, 2012 6:06 PM
Comment #356152

C&J-
Sixty votes required to break a filibuster, we only had that for a certain time, rest of the time your party was basically voting in unison to keep that obstacle there. You tell me, if my party did that, and never, never even offered to negotiate, if my party made it to where most legislation died on account of this and secret holds, then you tell me what the bipartisan path is.

I repeat: there was never any offer made in good faith to negotiate bills that would be acceptable to Republicans. it was simply get sixty votes or nothing passed, and that only meant anything when we had all sixty votes we needed.

And that was only one eighth of the time we spent as majority in both house.

The constitution is clear: without passage of both houses, nothing passes. You tell me what the brilliant strategy for getting past that. You might need it if our people don’t enact filibuster reform in January, and you someday win the senate. Do you have any idea how badly your people have ****ed up the precedents, just for the sake of one goddamn election?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at November 1, 2012 6:49 PM
Comment #356154

Stephen

And I repeat, Obama SHOULD have been able to get at least some Republicans. They were not that united. They only remained united because of Obama’s inability to find common ground.

Obama had complete control for a time. After that, he would have to persuade only one or two Republicans to go along. Some of these Republicans had a history of working with Democrats. Some were on the outs with their own party. It was Obama’s fault if he could not do something. Republicans were not that united, as they showed in the primary season.

You and I both know that Obama had lots of trouble with his own party. Maybe it was not that 535 people were unreasonable. Maybe it was just one - Obama.

Posted by: C&J at November 1, 2012 7:15 PM
Comment #356155

Stephen is now taking the Lod’s name in vain…it must be terrible to always be on the losing side.

When the Republicans once again take control of the Senate, we will see Democrat Senators willing to work with Republicans. It’s been a fearful thing for for Democrat Senators to face the wrath of leaders like Harry Reid.

My guess is that Romney will hit the ground running and repair the damage Obama has done.

Posted by: Frank at November 1, 2012 7:16 PM
Comment #356156

Frank and Stephen

Right. Romney will get things done because he knows how to work with people who disagree with him. Obama always lived the privileged life, where everyone wanted him to succeed. He is unaccustomed to opposition of any kind.

Posted by: C&J at November 1, 2012 7:20 PM
Comment #356157

The right sure is confident in this thread of a Romney victory. Some of you’ve been talking Romney landslide. The problem is to win at this point Romney needs every poll to not just be wrong, but epically, historically wrong. As an Obama supporter I’m feeling pretty confident about the president’s chances going into Tuesday. That confidence is built on data though, not on the opinion of people like Dick Morris and Karl Rove.

Posted by: Adam Ducker at November 1, 2012 7:53 PM
Comment #356160

Stephen

“From the day he took office in January 2009, Mr. Obama hasn’t lacked for opportunities. His first initiative was an economic stimulus package. After he told Republicans that he wanted their input, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor personally handed him a one-page list of pro-growth proposals, including a 20% tax cut on small business income and a reduction in the two lowest income-tax rates. “Eric, there’s nothing too crazy in here,” Mr. Obama said after looking over the list.

“But when the administration’s $831 billion stimulus bill was introduced three days later, it contained none of the Republican ideas. Would the pro-growth tax cuts have made the bill more stimulative? Yes. Would the economic recovery have been stronger? Most likely, but how much stronger is unknowable.”

Posted by: C&J at November 1, 2012 8:20 PM
Comment #356165

Adam, your confidence is in flawed data. There is news coming out daily about the Benghazi murders and NONE of the MSM news outlets are dealing with it. That tells me the media is completely in bed with the Obama administration. Their goal is to get him re-elected, no matter what. These are the same media outlets that are gathering the polls. I don’t believe them.

Posted by: Frank at November 1, 2012 9:05 PM
Comment #356168

“It’s been a fearful thing for for Democrat Senators to face the wrath of leaders like Harry Reid.”

The Wrath of Harry Reid?? This is a joke, right? Or is it the title of a new Metallica song?

Posted by: bill at November 1, 2012 9:13 PM
Comment #356186

bill, flushed and frank…..what a complete triple threat to sanity and common sense. The three of you put together don’t have a brain of a gnat to get you anywhere.
It doesn’t take intelligence of any degree to bully, provoke and terrorize others….in fact it takes just a couple of b b’s in a barrel to make a crap-load of meaningless noise….feat accomplished!

Posted by: jane doe at November 1, 2012 11:13 PM
Comment #356194

C&J-
Why SHOULD He? If the whole point of what they’re doing is that it’s an organized strategy, anybody who defects gets punished, because they’re going against the leadership. Just ask Olympia Snowe. You could have asked Arlen Specter, who ironically became our sixtieth vote, when he got pushed out of his party. Both were punished for giving in, in February 2009, and making a deal with the President.

The GOP deliberately created a toxic environment for Bipartisanship, and then blamed the President for it.

As for this Privileged life thing? You really need new material. This tiresome parroting of Democratic talking points in reverse is so ridiculously transparent its not funny. Do you think I miss the basic structure of your argument, or the fact that you offer it, often without any data to back your play?

Obama had people who wanted him to succeed, helped him to succeed. But a lot of his success depends on the exact same qualities you’re in denial about, qualities that make Obama a different class of politician from most.

Today’s politicians are too obsessed with manipulating messages and perceptions. In my opinion, they waste a humongous amount of effort doing that, and don’t expend near enough effort doing the kinds of practical things that basically generate the good fooling people want from voters as a free collateral effect.

I think If Obama wins as many are predicting he is going to, it will be because his controversial policies, the stimulus and the auto company rescue actually turned things around. Obama did what was good and right for people, and people rewarded him.

When, like Romney, you depend upon propaganda and public relations to generate your image, then you run into the fact that such images are easily sidelined by reality, and easily discounted by those who don’t buy into the previous efforts.

Facts change people’s minds faster than words or images. What people know to be true will be more powerful than what you try to persuade them of.

Frank-
You consider it flawed, but you rely on the predictions of a man whose data was often flawed by double digits. As for any tension, It’s with folks who don’t register just how unwise their policies have been.

Just consider it. Without any reform of the filibuster process, even if you win the Senate, which is now considered unlikely, you would be subject to the same obstruction. If you get the House, the Senate, and the White House, despite all that, you will have shown us how to cripple your agenda in turn.

Can you give me any reason why that’s a positive? You might go on now about stopping Obama’s policies as this wonderful thing, but do you think Democrats will shed many tears over putting a monkey wrench in Romney’s agenda, whatever that might be?

The so-called healing is just people meeting the demands of the hostage takers. Give us back the government, and it can work again! Of course, it will have to operate as a conservative government, right? Regardless of what people want!

You’ve taken the voters of America for granted, instead of keeping yourself in touch with what they wanted. I wouldn’t give up all hope now, if I were you, but indulging in fantasies will keep you from analyzing things with a clear head. A GOP that cannot admit its mistakes cannot learn from them.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at November 2, 2012 1:51 AM
Comment #356201

Stephen

These examples you mention show that the Obama folks could have been more effective. Specter is a good example. He was not in trouble for supporting Obama. He was in trouble for being himself. Obama could have found common ground with a guy like that right away.

Re privilege - we have not seen Obama’s undergrad transcripts. He keeps this data from us. But think of what we DO know. We have a kid who went to great private schools but who by his own admission liked to play sports and smoke pot more than study. If you had this history, what do you think your chances would be of getting into any Ivy League school, much less get a scholarship? Kids with perfect 4.0 GPAs are turned away.

IF Obama wins, it will be by a smaller margin than his first win. This is very bad. This has never happened before.

Obama didn’t get the word. He should have seen that he needed to correct course after the 2010 election, as Clinton did in 1994.

The Obama strategy was despicable. His main plan was to trash Romney. It is really strange when a president runs for a second term by trying to talk about the other guy instead of his own accomplishments.

The one thing that is true that if Obama is reelected, he can honestly blame the incompetence of the guy who was in office during the previous term.

Posted by: C&J at November 2, 2012 6:10 AM
Comment #356208

C&J-
Actually, Obama did find common ground with Specter almost from the start, and Specter with him. The trouble is, your side punished him for that, and sent a message to any other moderate that they weren’t going to tolerate any negotiation with the President that resulted in a change in those cloture votes.

The problem with Obama and bipartisanship is that his potential partners were unwilling or unable to cross the aisle. Obama can’t be bipartisan by himself, no matter how accommodating he is.

As for the rest, you should be ashamed of yourself. In the absence of proof, you’re speculating. Yes, he admits he wasn’t too serious when he started college. I’m sorry to say that I have the advantage on you, in that I actually read his books, and in his books, yes he admits to starting out as a poor student, but later on, he got more serious. He describes leading an almost monk-like existence after he transferred to Columbia. He put hard work into it.

Nobody asked for Mitt Romney’s transcripts, so why is that a privilege?

As for winning by a smaller margin? That’s not bad, considering that the other party dedicated themselves to eradicating his Presidency. As for correcting course, he did correct towards your side, and what he found is that as he stood up to you less, he became more unpopular. It was only after he started playing hardball more that he regained popularity. Perhaps you folks misread the message of 2010.

As for accomplishments? We’ve got plenty, you just discount every one we mention.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at November 2, 2012 9:06 AM
Comment #356209

“Government isn’t about creating dependency. Dependency already exists in our nation, a consequence of an advanced, urban and suburban civilization in which division of labor is ever more specialized and technical. Government is about preserving what we depend upon.”

What does this gibberish mean? We’re all dependent to some extent, and the example of teaching a guy to fish instead of handing him a fish each day seems to have escaped you.
What you hear many in the welfare line saying is, “I don’t want to be a fisherman. That’s hard work. I want to be a doctor but I didn’t get a fair shake in high school and couldn’t pay for college, so I’m just going to take my check, foodstamps, free medical and monthly checks for each child and stay at home.”

Posted by: eyeswideopen at November 2, 2012 9:20 AM
Comment #356210

Stephen

Nobody says that Romney came from nowhere. Romney was a man from a privileged background, but so was Obama.

Re Obama’s monk like existence - I understand that. Like Obama I started off not working hard. I didn’t do drugs like Obama, but I drank all the time and got bad grades. After my first year, I too worked hard. I had a 4.0 average in my senior year, and I did very well in grad school. But they still held my earlier profligacy against me, despite my coming from a background less auspicious than Obama’s. The problem is that for every prodigal kid, there are five or six who have worked hard the whole time and just have better grades and scores. Do they not deserve fair treatment.

The fact is that he got his scholarships because of racial preference. There is no way this could have happened otherwise. That is why he hides his transcripts.

I think racial preference is a bad thing. But even if you don’t, the facts still point to a privileged existence that pushed young Barack ahead of others.

There are more people qualified for success than can achieve it. I don’t doubt that Obama is smart and that he worked hard. But he got the opportunity to do those things in spite of, not because of his record.

Posted by: C&J at November 2, 2012 9:40 AM
Comment #356213

eyeswideopen-
You focus on welfare, but sidestep the whole real argument. In the past, you were likely to be a subsistence farmer. You’d dig your own well, or directly employ somebody to do it. You’d grow much of your own food. You could buy things from other people, but theoretically, you could survive on your own out on the frontier.

In this day and age, though, if you get meat, you get it through a chain of companies in an industrialized process, where we have documented evidence of a problem with foodborne illness. Energy is no longer what you feed your horse or ox, which could be grown domestically, but oil that is pumped out of the ground, and priced on a commodities market where the potential for market manipulation is high. It’s also power plants and a power grid that are not only vulnerable to similar market manipulations, but whose weaknesses can cause disruptions to whole regions of the country.

Modern men and women are dependent on processes beyond their direct control, dependent on businesses to do the right thing in finance and consumer products if they aren’t going to end up wasted huge sums of money, altogether, feeding companies that aren’t giving them the value they’re paying for.

The market can curb some excesses, but I think the truth is plain from the evidence: the market cannot and will not curb all excesses, until things come to a head, and unsustainable behavior brings on its reckoning.

C&J-
You say “the fact is”, but where’s your proof? Nobody’s saying he graduated summa cum laude at Columbia. He admits he started out a fairly poor student. But he matured, spent a few years doing community work, and then went back to school to earn a law degree. Now, whatever chances he was given, he seized the opportunity, and made the best of of it.

The point of this whole controversy is to beat down Obama’s image as a smart man. Same thing as the Teleprompter horse****. Republicans are deliberately lowballing anything and everything that could make him admirable, in an effort to elect folks with less substance than he’s got.

The flip side of that is, well, you’ve got a lot of mediocre politicians on your side who are just good at saying nasty things about other people. Now, you may accuse the President of running a negative campaign. Trouble is, he’s constantly out there touting his achievements, while Romney is perpetually running a negative campaign, basing most of his case for being president on how the President has fallen short.

Except he hasn’t and that’s what keeps Ohio and other Midwest states, which by all rights he should have been losing a couple years ago, in his corner in the polls. The President took a considerable gamble, and won. He took risks that weren’t necessarily popular, but showed good judgment, and now things are better than they were when he took office. If anything, the country would be recovering faster if Republicans were trying to win on the merits as well, and were working with the President to create acceptable legislation to them, instead of procedurally blocking every major bill he presented.

Democrats have an advantage over Republicans: they can be more creative. Republicans these days have convinced themselves that they have the answers, and that they don’t need to try anything else but what they consider wise and good. The trouble is, they’re only human, so if what they like doesn’t work out, they’re going to spend quite a bit of time rationalizing staying with one policy, while using all kinds of fallacious tactics to avoid the natural shift to another policy.

Republicans have to prune back the briar patch their party politics has become, so they stop being pierced by so many thorns of poor judgment, and clashes with today’s social and economic values. Republicans are not avoiding crippling controversies, but embracing them like a man stepping in front of a bus with his arms wide open.

You probably have some sense of this, but you fear losing to us more than you do failing to deal with this problem. Well, I got news for you: failing to deal with these problems is why the Republicans are losing when they don’t have to.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at November 2, 2012 10:40 AM
Comment #356215

“What does this gibberish mean?”

Eyes, it is nothing more than another weak attempt to make excuses for those who choose not to be responsible for themselves.
Over the last few years, the left has been on a mission to convince people that nothing can be done without some kind of government intervention, and Stephen preaching that we accept dependency as the new way of life, is par for the course.

What leftists refuse to acknowledge though, is that the greater burden people are on government, the less effective their holy government can take care of them.
Natural disasters are a perfect example of this. Rather than acknowledge the possibility of a disaster happening and being prepared for it, people choose to do nothing because they wrongly expect government to take care of them.
This is why people in large urban areas complain about government not being prepared, while having to wait in huge lines for the basic needs they themselves chose not to be prepared with.

Posted by: kctim at November 2, 2012 10:45 AM
Comment #356217

Yep!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! well said kctim.

Posted by: KAP at November 2, 2012 11:52 AM
Comment #356280

Stephen

“Now, whatever chances he was given, he seized the opportunity, and made the best of of it.” Yes, but he got the chance that you would not have received with exactly the same record.

Posted by: C&J at November 2, 2012 8:05 PM
Comment #356332

C&J-
I will divide my response into two segments. First, what if for the sake of argument that Obama came in with poor grades, and had to go affirmative action to get in when he went to Harvard Law. Well, unless you’re accusing the staff at Harvard Law of academic fraud, then it’s readily apparent that Obama made the best of it, that he did have the skills and smarts to take advantage of his opportunity

Second, is there anything besides an admittedly mediocre undergraduate career that tells us that this has to be true, much less any number of claims to the effect that Obama was A) a foreign student, or B) was actively helped by the faculty at the school to not only get in, but make good grades?

Really, you have no conclusive evidence of this purported problem. None. What possible reason should we have for feeding this theory you have so profoundly failed to prove with your own reporting and research?

I mean it’s like “I’ve got this really partisan and defamatory theory of the current president, but I haven’t bothered or been able to gather evidence to prove it. Would you hand me the President’s private records so I can go on a fishing expedition for what I need?”

No. You don’t get to go on a fishing expedition. If you can’t prove the President to be an affirmative action beneficiary, you shouldn’t be making the argument, not merely because it’s an argument you can’t verify, but because making the argument represents a reckless disregard for the kind of evidence that such extraordinary claims require. You folks say things that are meant to gut people’s reputations, disparage their skills and qualifications. So you’ve been making many of these claims lately.

And why, because you have the proof? No, because you need the bar very low to push the kind of incompetent ideologues you’ve got in place. You’re trying to force your way past what people want, in your mind for their own good. But this system was meant to put the decision of what is for people’s own good in the hands of those whose good is being discussed.

Sooner or later, people will get it, and the problems of your party are going to be unmistakeable even to those who don’t have my intense interest in politics or yours.

And what will your side have been doing all this time? just digging itself deeper into delusions about everybody and everything else, not taking care of its practical problems.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at November 3, 2012 9:35 AM
Comment #356337

Stephen

Lots of people could make good if they had the opening. We like to point to these cases. Obama is a smart guy. He took the opportunity and made good, as many others could have done given similar opportunities.

My point is that Obama had a life of privilege. He has been pushed ahead and praised. This has affected his outlook. He is surprised when people oppose him and it makes him take it personally. That is why he talks of revenge.

Re evidence of Obama’s poor undergraduate record - we don’t have evidence because Obama refuses to provide it. He is like the kid who kills his parents and then wants clemency because he is an orphan.

I think affirmative action, as generally practiced at U.S. elite universities, is immoral. I don’t blame Obama for taking advantage of it, however. But I do point out that Obama had lots of breaks that you or I would not get. He thinks he is entitled to what others had to work harder to get.

Posted by: C&J at November 3, 2012 9:51 AM
Comment #356376

“I think affirmative action, as generally practiced at U.S. elite universities, is immoral. I don’t blame Obama for taking advantage of it,…”

C&J,

Huh! How do you know that Obama was admitted to Harvard on the basis of affirmative action rather than merit? He graduated from an elite preparatory school, did two years of his undergraduate work at one of the most prestigious liberal arts colleges in the nation (Occidental) and graduated from an Ivy League university (Columbia). That’s a pretty good academic track record.

The bottom line is that he graduated from Harvard Law with magna cum laude honors. That honor is only afforded to graduates in the top 10% of their graduating class. There was no higher honors awarded for his graduating class.

Posted by: Rich at November 3, 2012 7:06 PM
Comment #356385

Rich

In his books Obama said he was more interested in sports and pot than studying.

We don’t know if Obama got in by preference. It seems like a guy who by his own admission messed around in HS and the first part of college might not have an easy time.

The evidence is and remains in Obama’s hands. Since he won’t release them, we might assume he has something to hide.

I was very dumb and lazy my first two years in college. Then I got smarter and worked harder. But I know that those who got 4.0 averages the WHOLE time would out compete me. Harvard has lots of such people. This would not have included Obama.

BTW - Occidental is a good private and expensive college. Obama is the product of elite schools from HS through law school. No matter how he got in, he is the child of privilege.

Posted by: C&J at November 3, 2012 9:30 PM
Comment #356393

C&J-
I’ve told you before, and I’ll tell you again: until you have the evidence, your allegation should not be taken seriously, much less be taken seriously enough to force the publication of the President’s grades in school.

You have to demonstrate this claim of yours. We don’t have to help you demonstrate it, and Obama sure as hell doesn’t have to. Nobody else was asked for their college transcripts, and nobody else was accused of being an affirmative action graduate.

You’re naive if you think that your people aren’t implying that he’s really a moron, by the way. That’s the whole point of this attack: to make him look like somebody who just successfully manipulated the system into making him look smart based on white guilt.

But he didn’t. The President comes across as smart because he is smart. It’s time to stop kidding yourself that you’re not facing a formidable opponent.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at November 4, 2012 8:53 AM
Comment #356406

Stephen

I told you before, Obama is holding the evidence. He can prove people like me wrong any time he wants. The fact that he does not do this indicates that he either likes to keep the issue simmering or the grades would prove our points.

Re Obama manipulating the system, I believe he did. I don’t hold it against him. He came into a game where his particular background was a net benefit. He was dealt a good hand, which he played well.

My point is not and never was that Obama is dumb or dishonest. MY point, the one I made originally and repeated, is that Obama has had a privileged life, which is why he finds it difficult to work with opposition. He is unaccustomed to it.

Posted by: C&J at November 4, 2012 12:52 PM
Comment #356413

C&J-
Yes, he’s holding some of the evidence. What justifies intruding on his privacy to procure more? What is your probable cause, so to speak?

As for privilege? Your use of the term fits some of your more recent odd usage of terms. Obama got loans. Loans aren’t privilege. Privilege is something you are given beyond what others are afforded. Whether that’s wealth or family connections, Romney easily exceeds Obama’s. Obama simply got loans. Romney likely never had to pay back his “financial aid.” like Obama or I would.

As for working with the opposition, stop lying. the Republicans have shown a deliberate unwillingness, back by a consistent, party-line use of procedural blocks, to work with the President. The President, though he drives harder bargains than Clinton’s has shown a willingness to reach out his hand to Republicans. In fact, if he hadn’t, the town hall attacks would have been meaningless.

You can’t both celebrate the party-line blockade of liberal policy, and then turn around and blame the President for not reaching out. Not when your side hasn’t called for much of any negotiation to work out the differences. There are many points at which you could have accepted some kind of negotiation, but the whole point of what Republicans did was to deny a paradigm shift the chance to happen. So, negotiation was and is still out.

Sooner or later, though, things will change. They’ll have to. Americans will not tolerate a congress that fails to represent its more liberal views forever.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at November 4, 2012 3:23 PM
Comment #356417

Stephen

Nobody doubts that Romney had an easy time in early life.

We pretend that somehow Obama had it tough. I just doesn’t look like he did. He went to elite private high schools and universities. Maybe it is true that he is so,so smart that every one of these institutions would just like to give him a free ride. I suspect that his ethnic background helped him. I am an opponent of such things, but I do not blame the individual recipient. But don’t tell me about Obama’s challenges.

Re opposition - Obama held all the cards for part of his presidency. No Republican in either of our lifetimes has ever enjoyed such a bonus. Obama DID succeed in pushing through two really big things: his stimulus and Obamacare. This shows his priorities. These are the things he pushed through. He should run on this success.

Every other president managed to work with opponents in Congress. Roosevelt got Republicans to support SS. A majority of Republicans supported Johnson’s civil rights legislation (although a majority of Democrats did not), Reagan got Democrats to come along on is tax cuts, as did Bush on his programs. Clinton worked with Republicans on hard issues such as welfare reform, NAFTA and NATO. How is it that every president since George Washington was able to work with the opposition, but Obama cannot?

Now let’s look at the Republicans. Many of them were the SAME guys who worked with Clinton. They didn’t like them, but they and Clinton found common ground.

Now lets apply a simplicity test. We have dozens of Republicans who worked with Clinton, who they disliked, and cannot seem to agree on much of anything. But they suddenly cannot work with Obama. Is it them or maybe is it Obama that maintained the breech?

When you hear Obama talking about revenge, you see the sort of guy he is and it doesn’t give much hope for the future.

Posted by: C&J at November 4, 2012 4:24 PM
Comment #356422

C&J,

You suspect this and that about Obama’s educational career. However, what you actually know is that he attended an elite preparatory school, two elite universities and the most prestigious law school in the country where he graduated magna cum laude. So, whatever your affirmative action fantasies, he achieved at the highest academic level at the most competitive professional graduate school in the country. That is the bottom line.

By the way, Republicans didn’t work with Clinton during his first term, particularly when they were in the minority. Take for example the Deficit Reduction Act of 1993. It was passed without one single Republican vote. It was perhaps the most important piece of legislation proposed by Clinton during his presidency.

Posted by: Rich at November 4, 2012 7:11 PM
Comment #356427

Rich

Obama is a smart guy. He is also a man of privilege. That is the point I am making and have been making. I don’t have a problem with his elite education; I am just reminding you all that he did indeed have an elite education. He is not one of us anymore than Romney in this respect.

My side point is my dislike of affirmative action. But I will write again, that I have no problem with people like Obama taking advantage. They are playing the hand they have been dealt. Obama has been dealt a great hand, which he played well.

He has had an easy time in life. My opinion is that this explains why he has so much trouble dealing with opposition. He was not exposed to much of it during his charmed life.

Posted by: C&J at November 4, 2012 8:20 PM
Comment #356434

C&J-
Does it even phase you anymore?

I keep on getting these counterfactual, counterintuitive arguments from you that you must be thinking are pretty clever. But I know this guy’s biography. From being in a broken home, to having to adjust to a number of major moves, to having dealt with drug addiction, he’s had his share of trials. The fact he had to pay back student loans tells you he wasn’t so rich that he could just sell some of his stock to pay for college. Nobody argues that his whole life was lived in poverty, but he is not a child of privilege.

As for opposition, I have never seen an opposition this hostile, and neither has anybody else. Your level of obstructionism is literally unprecedented. Your party never intended to make any deals it wasn’t forced to.

As for not having to deal with opposition? What do you think the 2008 election was? What do you think community organizing meant? You talk about him using Saul Alinksy’s rules, but did you bother to read them so you could understand that they are all about dealing with opposition, and winning?

What is he, really? I think you folks decide on a regular basis depending on what agenda you’re trying to push at the moment. Right now, you’re trying to obscure the differences between Obama and Romney, in terms of Romney’s ability to negotiate. Well, the problem is, Romney’s not a reconciler, he’s just a bloody political coward who doesn’t have the guts to actually stand for something. He doesn’t have the intellectual clarity to define his beliefs as they really are.

I have the feeling that the 47% Romney is pretty close to the real one. You can say he worked with Democratic legislators, but you sort of forget the little political campaign he ran, trying to get many of them replaced, or the dozens of vetoes that Democratic legislators overruled.

Long story short, you, like Romney, fail to realize that anybody who looks close enough at the facts will find that Romney’s story gets easily excluded as the truth by the constraints of what the real facts define as true.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at November 4, 2012 9:42 PM
Comment #356435

“I am just reminding you all that he did indeed have an elite education. He is not one of us anymore than Romney in this respect.”

C&J,

On this we agree. Both candidates have had an elite education. Both performed exceptionally in their graduate programs. Lets leave it at that.

Posted by: Rich at November 4, 2012 9:54 PM
Comment #359354

goldson’s absence opens door for plans b and c

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Comment #378778

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