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Friday Talking Points [202] -- Seamus, That's The Dog, Was Outside

[ Posted Friday, March 16th, 2012 – 17:46 PDT ]

Sometimes I'm just astonished at the inability of political campaigns to do a simple web search. Case in point: the story about Mitt Romney's dog Seamus.

That's a good Irish name (pronounced: "shay-muss"), but I already wrote my St. Patrick's Day column yesterday, so I'm going to just skip right over that aspect of the situation.

Instead, what flabbergasts me is that in the whole Seamus-as-political-football fracas, nobody has yet bothered to dig out the Pink Floyd song of the same name.

This is an incredible oversight, due to the song itself. It's experimental, as many Pink Floyd songs, but not in the way that you'd think. For them, it was a rare venture into the realm of the blues. That's right -- the blues. Or maybe even bluegrass. The only way you'd know it was Pink Floyd is actually the synthesized dog howls in the background of the song. It's a short song, and the lyrics are close enough to the "Mitt tying his dog on the roof of the car" story for someone to use against him:


I was in the kitchen,
Seamus, that's the dog, was outside.
Well, I was in the kitchen,
Seamus, my old hound, was outside.

Well, you know the sun was sinkin' slowly,
But my old hound dog sat right down and cried.

That's the whole song. To me, it seems like an easy and obvious fit in this particular political dogfight. Dog lovers have been ripping Mitt for months on the subject, and David Letterman has been telling the story in graphic and extended detail pretty much every single night on his show -- for the past month or so. Now, even Rick Santorum's campaign has realized that this might be some tasty dog food to serve up on the campaign trail.

So I'm just offering a gratuitous hint to these folks: get a copy of Pink Floyd's "Seamus" and blast it over the loudspeakers as a backdrop. Oh, sure, Pink Floyd will probably quickly disavow the use of their song and demand it not be used in such a fashion. Which makes the entire song a news item, of course. Viola! You have made your point!

Just a suggestion, folks....

Moving right along, we're going to very quickly do a primary pick for the weekend. I didn't have such a good Tuesday this week, having bet on Newt Gingrich in both states in the Deep South, so I only got 2-for-4 right, leaving my rolling total for calling this year's Republican primaries so far at:

Total correct 2012 primary picks so far: 35 for 54 -- 65%.

There are two contests this weekend, but we're going to ignore Missouri, because we just made a new rule that states are only allowed to get called once in an election season, and we already did so weeks ago for their "beauty contest" vote. Seriously, states, get it together. Two votes in one primary season? What a waste of everyone's time!

Which leaves us only Puerto Rico. Rick Santorum visited the island this week, and immediately showed his utter ignorance of the Constitution and federal law by informing the Puerto Rican people that they'd better make English their official language or they'd never become an actual state. Going on this tidbit of information alone, we're going to predict Mitt Romney wins Puerto Rico over the weekend.

OK, with that out of the way, let's move along to the awards.

 

Most Impressive Democrat of the Week

In keeping with our doggy theme today, we have to applaud Vice President Joe Biden, who has been unleashed to perform the traditional vice-presidential role in the 2012 campaign: "attack dog." Biden gave a speech this week to a very friendly audience of autoworkers, where he named names and otherwise sunk his teeth into the Republican opposition. For doing such an admirable job this early in the race, Biden deserves at least an Honorable Mention this week.

President Obama gave a pretty good campaign speech himself this week, but we have to give the president his own Honorable Mention for the joke he made while welcoming British Prime Minister David Cameron to the White House:

It's now been 200 years since the British came here, to the White House -- under somewhat different circumstances. (Laughter.) They made quite an impression. (Laughter.) They really lit up the place. (Laughter.) But we moved on. (Laughter.) And today, like so many Presidents and Prime Ministers before us, we meet to reaffirm one of the greatest alliances the world has ever known.

It's not often you hear a good "War of 1812" joke these days, we have to say. Heh.

Garry Trudeau is worthy of an Honorable Mention this week, but ironically it's not for comedy (as with Obama), instead it is for scathing social commentary. More on this later at the end of the column, but check out this week's Doonesbury strips if you haven't already seen them (some newspapers ran alternate strips due to the subject matter of abortion).

But our real Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week this week is Senator Chuck Schumer, who is apparently behind the effort to bring the Violence Against Women Act up for a vote. VAWA, as it is known, used to be a bipartisan issue. Democrats have added language to strengthen the law, which Republicans seem to be objecting to (new provisions extend protection to immigrants as well as gay and transgendered people).

This is exactly the right thing to be doing, at exactly the right time. Republicans are whining that the whole exercise is meant to make them look bad. They have a point, but that is how the game of politics is played. The Republican overreach on their War on Women needs some pushback from Democrats. Democrats can't just be against all the new Republican laws against women's rights, they also have to be for positive legislation on the issue. VAWA is perfect.

For realizing this, and for pushing the issue at precisely the right time to shame Republicans into supporting it, Chuck Schumer is our Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week.

[Congratulate Senator Charles Schumer on his Senate contact page, to let him know you appreciate his efforts.]

 

Most Disappointing Democrat of the Week

We really didn't notice anyone major who was a disappointment on the Democratic side of things this week. So we were all prepared just not to hand out a Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week award at all.

But then the news came that Rod Blagojevich finally went to jail. Meaning we can award one last MDDOTW to him as he begins his over-a-decade stay at taxpayer expense. At this point, that's really all we need to say about Blaggy. Except to get snarky in the contact line, of course.

[Contact Rod Blagojevich via the official federal Bureau of Prisons inmate locator site, to let him know what you think of his actions.]

 

Friday Talking Points

Volume 202 (3/16/12)

While the Republican primary circus continues apace, we'd prefer not to get too wrapped up in it here this week, instead offering a variety of talking points for Democrats to use (mostly) outside the confines of what the Republicans are saying and doing.

Which means it's kind of a mixed bag this week. Enjoy!

 

1
   Back... in time

I hadn't noticed this when writing last week's column, but it still deserves featuring. Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm wrote a Huffington Post column which was a prime example of how to frame things correctly, a lesson every Democratic office-seeker should pay attention to. Both in the title of this brilliant article and in the first two paragraphs, Granholm wraps the entire opposition up in a nice neat package, and ties a bow on it. Every Democrat should work the key phrase into all available opportunities, for the entire 2012 campaign. In Granholm's words:

One of the battle cries of the far right is this: "We want to take our country back." Maybe you dismissed that as meaning, back from the Democrats. But you notice, they don't say, "we want to take our government back." They say... "our country."

And based on the evidence pouring out of state legislatures, that is what the Republican revolution of 2010 has set out to do -- take the country back -- back in time. Back to those golden days before civil rights and gender equality. It was so much easier back then, wasn't it?

 

2
   Linking Iran and gas prices

These two subjects are treated separately by the Republican candidates for president, and so far the media has mostly let them get away with it. Which means it is high time for Democrats to make this linkage evident.

"I hear the Republican candidates out on the campaign trail constantly beating the drums for war with Iran -- or at the very least, for bombing Iran. But what I've never seen is a reporter ask any of them is what they think the price of gas in America is going to be the day after such an attack? I've seen experts predicting anywhere from six to ten dollars a gallon, myself. The recent steep rise in prices here happened exactly the same time that all the Republicans started beating the war drums with Iran -- and yet, this fact never seems to get mentioned. So, to all the Republican candidates: What will American consumers have to pay at the pump -- and for how long -- as a result of your plans for Iran? The American people deserve to know, so why aren't you being honest with them?"

 

3
   Speculation at the pump

The price of gas is going to hurt President Obama and (by extension) Democrats all summer long. So far, the White House has been trying to get out in front of the issue, but they need some backup from fellow Democrats. One helpful thing to point out is the speculation on Wall Street.

"Wall Street speculation is also a large part of the high prices consumers are paying at the pump right now. This is what the Republicans call 'the free market' -- where speculators are 'free' to make you pay seventy-five cents more for a gallon of gas, just because they can. This is why Democrats are for regulating such markets, because laissez-faire free markets can run wild, at times. The next time Republicans talk about 'freeing' Wall Street up to play such games with the American economy, think about the 'freedom' you get to pay more at the pump to line the pockets of speculators."

 

4
   No budget? No pay!

I wrote a whole article about this earlier in the week, highlighting the effort to pass the "No Budget, No Pay Act" which would stop all congressional paychecks if a federal budget weren't in place when the fiscal year begins.

What I neglected to do in the article was to give credit to No Labels, the group behind this legislative effort. No Labels has been promoting a whole range of practical solutions to the problem of gridlock in Washington, and they have links on their No budget, No pay page to see how many senators and representatives have signed on to co-sponsor the bills.

So here is a suggestion not for Democratic officeholders or professional politicians, but rather for you. It is your own talking point, in other words, to use on them. I strongly encourage everyone to get the phone number of your own House member, and your own two members of the Senate, and make three phone calls next week. Here's my suggested text (the Senate bill number is "S.1981" and the House bill number is "H.R.3643"):

"My name is [name] and I am your constituent. I am calling to urge you to support [bill number], the No Budget, No Pay Act. If you can't pass a budget by the deadline, then I, as your ultimate employer, feel I will have to cut your pay until you do your job. I will be watching to see if you co-sponsor this bill, and if you do not, I will remember that in the voting booth this November. Thank you."

If they've already co-sponsored it, then call them anyway and thank them for their support! This bill can only become law by the power of the public to shame Congress into passing it. Which means we all have to do our part.

 

5
   Rick Santorum should read the Constitution

OK, I just can't let the week go by without at least one cheap shot at a Republican candidate. I tried, but I just couldn't make it to the end, sorry.

"Rick Santorum, in Puerto Rico, recently said the following, and I quote: Like any other state, there has to be compliance with this and any other federal law. And that is that English has to be the principal language. There are other states with more than one language such as Hawai'i but to be a state of the United States, English has to be the principal language. Unquote. It's simply astounding to me how many Republicans say they revere the United States Constitution, but they never seem to get around to actually reading it. There is no 'English-only' provision in the Constitution, and there is no federal law which requires such for statehood. You'd think a man running for the highest office in the land would take the few minutes it requires to read our founding document, but I guess Rick's been too busy -- for his entire life -- to do so."

 

6
   How can you be against VAWA?

The Violence Against Women Act is moving through the Senate right now so you can make a political point. Don't miss the opportunity to do so.

"Republicans in the Senate seem to be about to filibuster the Violence Against Women Act, because they don't like the fact that we've included protections for Native Americans, immigrants, and lesbians. Now, debating comprehensive immigration reform or the question of gay marriage is one thing, but I just can't understand why any Republican could be against a law to stop violence against any woman in America, period. Republicans scoff at Democrats when we say they're waging a War on Women, but it's hard to draw any other conclusion when they prefer to play political games rather than actually defend women against violence. How on Earth could they be against that?"

 

7
   Doonesbury gets it right

[This last one is not technically a talking point per se, but can easily be made into one.]

The relevance of the comic strip Doonesbury is a favorite debate on the Left, especially among those of a certain age. But this week, Garry Trudeau knocked it out of the park. The week's storyline has revolved around a woman in Texas attempting to get an abortion, and the obstacles which have been thrown in her path by GOP legislators. Each one has been absolutely scathing, and everyone should take the time to read the whole week's installation at Doonesbury.com.

Anyone doubting that Doonesbury can still be relevant needs to at least check out yesterday's strip, in which the doctor about to perform a transvaginal ultrasound (with "a 10" shaming wand") that the woman does not want, begins by saying:

By the authority vested in me by the GOP base, I thee rape.

-- Chris Weigant

 

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Cross-posted at: Democratic Underground
Cross-posted at: Democrats For Progress
Cross-posted at: The Huffington Post

 

42 Comments on “Friday Talking Points [202] -- Seamus, That's The Dog, Was Outside”

  1. [1] 
    Kevin wrote:

    Chris, your good taste constantly impresses me. To pick a song from my favorite Pink Floyd album, Meddle, and use it on FTP; is genius :-) And to finish the piece with reference to my idol, Trudeau,
    well I couldn't be happier. Thanks from the bottom of my heart.

  2. [2] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    It's a good day for Canadians at FTP (202nd Ed.), Kevin, in more ways than two. :)

  3. [3] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Chris,

    On a day when I have had the distinct misfortune of reading about Americans who have found a shred of common ground with bin Laden, no less, over the competency of Vice President Joe Biden, your singling him out for honourable mention here at FTP was indeed a treat.

    And, just for the record, the principal architect behind the VAWA was none other than Senator Joe Biden.

    Happy St Patrick's Day to you and Mrs Weigant! I'll be sure to raise a glass or two in your honour.

  4. [4] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Kevin -

    Yeah, everyone always forgets that there's the other (the "non-Echoes") side to that album...

    San Tropez and Seamus have to be two of the weirdest things Pink Floyd ever did... mostly because they're so normal. If that makes sense...

    -CW

  5. [5] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Liz -

    Beannachtaí na Féile Pádraig!

    Maybe I posted my Paddy's Day article too early... didn't get much attention...

    :-)

    -CW

  6. [6] 
    Kevin wrote:

    Chris- For some strange reason, I wrote my first year calculus final exam with San Tropez stuck in my head...weird, maybe just wishful thinking that I'd rather be there than in the exam room :D

  7. [7] 
    dsws wrote:

    showed his utter ignorance of the Constitution and federal law by informing the Puerto Rican people that they'd better make English their official language or they'd never become an actual state

    What's the problem with the Constitution? I don't remember anything in there against an official language.

    The only things relevant that springs to mind are, first, the full faith and credit clause: "Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each State to the public Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of every other State. And the Congress may by general Laws prescribe the Manner in which such Acts, Records and Proceedings shall be proved, and the Effect thereof." Acts, records, and proceedings have to be in some language or languages, intelligible to the other states and to Congress; and the effect of a law depends on its exact wording, to which the choice of language is obviously relevant.

    Second, there's the power of Congress over the territories: "New States may be admitted by the Congress into this Union; but no new States shall be formed or erected within the Jurisdiction of any other State; nor any State be formed by the Junction of two or more States, or parts of States, without the Consent of the Legislatures of the States concerned as well as of the Congress. The Congress shall have Power to dispose of and make all needful Rules and Regulations respecting the Territory or other Property belonging to the United States; and nothing in this Constitution shall be so construed as to Prejudice any Claims of the United States, or of any particular State. That's a pretty broad grant of power. I'm pretty sure Congress has offered statehood conditional on specified criteria. Certainly it has had unchallenged authority to bring whatever factors it chose into the decision of what territories would be granted statehood, without the need for any justification beyond politics.

    Finally, there's the necessary and proper clause. Congress shall have the power ... To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof. The rationale is basically the same as in the full faith and credit clause, except that it applies to federal as well as state laws and records.

    Of course, there have been many blatantly-unconstitutional official-language bills, including some that have been enacted and then struck down. I'm a little unclear on the context of what Santorum actually said: the first sentence has a "this" in it, with no antecedent, and whatever he said before (where there might have been such an antecedent) apparently was not recorded and is lost to posterity.

    As a matter of politics, I suspect that Santorum is right: Puerto Rico would have a better chance of becoming a state if it submitted a statehood petition containing a provision that English would become its sole official language.

  8. [8] 
    dsws wrote:

    Maybe I posted my Paddy's Day article too early... didn't get much attention.

    I don't think timing is the issue. It doesn't push anyone's hot-buttons. If you talk about history, or about any sort of abstract theory, you'll get no replies (unless they're non-sequiturs segueing to something it's easy to have an uninformed opinion about).

  9. [9] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Reply to "michelesda" at the Huffington Post -

    Sorry for the hassle, I have no idea why the Huffington Post keeps rejecting this comment. Maybe it's the Pope comment. Anyway, here is a full response to your comment on Irish pronounciation. I tried posting this comment on HP twice, and both times it immediately got deleted. Go figure.

    Every person in Ireland (not Irish-Americans, in other words) uses the pronunciation "Shay-mus" as well as "Shin-aid" (to refer to the artist who ripped up the photo of the Pope on Saturday Night Live). I've never heard anything close to the pronunciation you list, from any Irish person.

    The Irish name that gives Americans the most trouble is Siobhan, which is pronounced "Shi-vawn", and the Irish get a big laugh out of the American name Colleen, because the Gaelic word "cailín" is defined as "girl." It'd be like naming a baby in America "Girl Jones".

    -CW

  10. [10] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    dsws -

    As I read it, Santorum wasn't making the argument that it was against the Constitution to have an English-speaking requirement, but the opposite: that either the Constitution or federal law required it. Which is simply untrue. Neither, at the present time, has any such law or clause.

    It's hard to read Santorum's words any other way: "...to be a state of the United States, English has to be the principal language." It's simply not true.

    -CW

  11. [11] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    dsws -

    I actually wrote about this issue a long time ago:

    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2007/06/27/our-51st-estado/

    in which I predicted this sort of controversy.

    :-)

    -CW

  12. [12] 
    Michale wrote:

    In keeping with our doggy theme today, we have to applaud Vice President Joe Biden, who has been unleashed to perform the traditional vice-presidential role in the 2012 campaign: "attack dog."

    I was gonna comment about this, but Liz beat me to it.. :D

    The Republican overreach on their War on Women needs some pushback from Democrats.

    Actually this alleged "War On Women" (which was more of a War On Hypocrisy) actually paid great dividends for the GOP. Obama's poll numbers went down over this...

    But let's not open up THAT can o' worms, eh?? :D

    As far as Blago being the MDDOTW????

    I have a far FAR better nominee...

    Leon Panetta, for totally dishonoring our troops by forcing them to disarm before a briefing with him...

    By FAR, the better MDDOTW.....

    And anyone who tries to come back with, "Well, the general ordered it!!" I will taunt you a second time.

    Back... in time

    "Of course Americans were better off four years ago."
    -President Barack Obama

    And just because this quote is priceless.

    "If I can't turn this economy around in 3 years, I don't deserve another term in office."
    -President Barack Obama, Jan 2009

    Linking Iran and gas prices

    What will happen to the gas prices if Iran nukes Tel Aviv??

    {{{chirrrp}}} {{chhhhiiiiiirrrrrrrppp}}

    Speculation at the pump

    Wall Street attacks are NEVER a good idea for Democrats.. Because, as you have suggested before with NASCAR JACKETS, the "Wall Street Logo" would be featured large and in charge over MANY Democrat's clothing up to AND including President Obama.

    So when Obama and the Democrats pull their, "Wall Street I hate you I hate you Can you give us some more money" routine, Independents and NPAs just shake their heads sadly...

    No budget? No pay!

    This is one issue that I am firmly with ya'all on!!! 'Rabid partisan' my ass!! :D

    I don't think there is an American alive that would not support this...

    Rick Santorum should read the Constitution

    I always find it sad how politicians (Left AND Right) like to hide behind the Constitution when it suits their agenda, but totally ignore it when THAT suits their agenda...

    Hypocrisy rears it's ugly head.... :(

    How can you be against VAWA?

    Two Words...

    Special Protections Under The Law

    Why don't we add protections for nerds or geeks or Star Trek fans or fat bald guys??

    (All of the above, in case anyone was gonna ask.. :D)

    I mean, seriously.. Are women more important than men that they should have special protection under federal law?? Are gay people more important than straight people that they should have special protection under federal law???

    If someone beats up an immigrant, they should receive the same penalties as someone who beats up a Star Trek geek...

    It's funny how the Left always claims to be about diversity and that being different doesn't matter one iota, but then they turn around and make every effort to emphasis people's differences..

    Left-Wing "logic".....

    Michale.....

  13. [13] 
    Michale wrote:

    Speaking of ridiculous laws..

    Did you know that it's against Federal Law to be annoying on the Internet??

    Perspective: Create an e-annoyance, go to jail
    news.cnet.com/2010-1028-6022491.html

    Did you know that it's illegal in many states to collect rain water??

    Collecting rainwater now illegal in many states as Big Government claims ownership over our water
    naturalnews.com/029286_rainwater_collection_water.html#ixzz1pMWzQ39h

    Did you know that if you register a fake name on MySpace or FaceBook, you could spend five years in a federal prison?

    Heritage Foundation: One New Crime a Week
    foxnews.com/story/0,2933,376202,00.html

    These laws and many more ridiculous laws can be found here:

    19 Signs That America Has Become A Crazy Control Freak Nation Where Almost Everything Is Illegal
    endoftheamericandream.com/archives/19-signs-that-america-has-become-a-crazy-control-freak-nation-where-almost-everything-is-illegal

    Now, honestly..

    Do we REALLY need more ridiculously redundant laws???

    Michale.....

  14. [14] 
    dsws wrote:

    As I read it, Santorum wasn't making the argument that it was against the Constitution to have an English-speaking requirement, but the opposite: that either the Constitution or federal law required it.

    Of course I wasn't saying Santorum claims it's unconstitutional to have an official-language prerequisite. He says that there is one. De-facto, there is. You seemed to be saying that's unconstitutional. I was arguing against what I took to be your position.

    No point in arguing against Santorum. He's not here, and he's never going to agree with me on much of anything anyway.

    So, do you claim that it's unconstitutional for Congress to demand the use of English as a prerequisite for statehood?

    Also, what statutes are currently in effect regarding the application of territories for statehood? I couldn't find anything. I dimly remember, from some long-past history class or reading, that various territories were authorized in advance to apply for statehood when they met some criteria including population and something about having a government set up.

  15. [15] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    dsws -

    See the link in [11]. When I wrote that, I went down the same dead-end alley you did. I even tried reading applicable federal code, but it was so vague as to be almost meaningless. It's mostly tradition, that's what I decided after looking into it. It's like when Clinton got impeached -- nobody really had any idea what the trial in the Senate was supposed to be like, because it had been so long.

    You're right, an English-only requirement could indeed be constitutionally-laid. Mostly because (see above) everything's so vague to begin with. And there's certainly nothing AGAINST it in the Constitution, you're right about that.

    The basic process, as I remember it, is thus:

    1. Territory (or "commonwealth" in PR's case) meets minimum people requirement.

    2. People there vote on statehood, and it passes (this could be an optional step, not sure).

    3. State constitutional convention convenes, and produces state constitution. Again, possibly an optional referendum on whatever is produced, so people get to vote on it.

    4. Territory applies to Congress for statehood.

    5. Both houses of Congress vote on it (simple majority? not sure). If they vote it down, they can send the state constitution back for revision (the battle over Utah and polygamy, I think, from memory?). Eventually, Congress agrees.

    6. Not sure whether president even has to sign this or not... could be one of those things he doesn't get to sign, I dunno...

    7. Statehood!

    That's just from memory. I would look into the history of the most contentious states joining -- maybe start with the Missouri Compromise (Missouri, Maine), and maybe Kansas and Nebraska as well ("Bleeding Kansas") -- maybe there's some factual information there if you dig deep enough.

    We are now living in the longest period of US history without adding a state. The previous gap was 47 years, between... um, NM? AZ?... and HI and AK joining. We've gone, what, 52 or 53 years since then?

    What fascinates me is how the flag would change with 51. 51 is actually divisible by a handy number (17), so you could have six rows of stars, alternating between 8 and 9 stars per line.

    I own a 49 star flag, just because it's fun (one of the shortest-lived US flags ever).

    -CW

  16. [16] 
    dsws wrote:

    I even tried reading applicable federal code, but it was so vague as to be almost meaningless.

    Hats off to you for that. Trying to read statute is massively frustrating and eventually fruitless, in my experience.

  17. [17] 
    Michale wrote:

    Isn't it strange how NO ONE in the MainStream Media covered the arrest and sentencing of Adam Eugene Cox??

    And ya'all still deny that the MSM is in the bag for Obama?? :D

    Michale....

  18. [18] 
    Michale wrote:

    I know most of ya'all would rather poke out your eye with a hot poker than read FNC, but this is a REALLY good article...

    The Death Of The Political Middle
    http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2012/03/18/death-political-middle/

    It says a lot of what ya'all have been saying regarding obstructionist in such a way as it is no longer possible to deny it...

    It's a very good read that sends a message that doesn't bode well for this country..

    Michale....

  19. [19] 
    Michale wrote:

    It says a lot of what ya'all have been saying regarding obstructionist in such a way as it is no longer possible to deny it...

    That SHOULD read:

    It says a lot of what ya'all have been saying regarding obstructionist Republicans in such a way as it is no longer possible to deny it...

    No Freudian slip, I promise.. :D

    Michale....

  20. [20] 
    akadjian wrote:

    The price of gas is going to hurt President Obama and (by extension) Democrats all summer long.

    The GOP has released a series of talking points designed to "mitigate the effects" of an improving economy.

    The 3 things they're focusing on are gas prices, the deficit, and the unemployment rate.

    Your points about linking to Iran are well taken. One other way I'd like to see Democrats fight back is to point out the hypocrisy in what the GOP is saying.

    The conservative mantra: markets determine prices. Until, that is, you can score political points. Then, the rising price of gas is because of Obama.

    This makes no sense. Because it implies that Republicans would somehow intervene in the market to reduce the price of gas.

    How do we know they'd do no such thing? Because they've told us over and over.

    What I would like to see is Obama coming out and saying "Let the markets work"

    -David

  21. [21] 
    dsws wrote:

    The conservative mantra: markets determine prices. Until, that is, you can score political points. Then, the rising price of gas is because of Obama. This makes no sense.

    I thought the right-wing mantra was that markets should determine prices, and that prices in an absolute laissez-faire utopia would be wonderful, so any price you don't like must be because of government meddling. It's not true, but at least it's more or less coherent.

  22. [22] 
    Michale wrote:

    What I would like to see is Obama coming out and saying "Let the markets work"

    The problem with that plan is Republicans can simply throw back to Democrats, "Ya'all are ALL about market intervention for the greater good. So let's start intervening for that greater good."

    The problem with throwing Republican's words back at them is that Republicans can throw DEMOCRAT'S words back at THEM...

    And people like you and me will STILL be caught in the middle and STILL be scroooed over...

    By the bi... I dunno if yer still following the last FTP thread (230 comments!! Woot!!! :D) but I gave you a counter offer to your deal.. :D

    Michale.....

  23. [23] 
    Michale wrote:

    dsws,

    It's not true,

    It's a LOT more true than ya'all would like to think...

    Michale.....

  24. [24] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    What fascinates me is how the flag would change with 51. 51 is actually divisible by a handy number (17), so you could have six rows of stars, alternating between 8 and 9 stars per line.

    sounds like a possibility. it could also work with a number of other combinations, like 6-7-6-6-7-6-6-7, 7-7-8-7-8-7-7, etc.

  25. [25] 
    Michale wrote:

    sounds like a possibility. it could also work with a number of other combinations, like 6-7-6-6-7-6-6-7, 7-7-8-7-8-7-7, etc.

    You mean like this:

    sjfm.us/temp/51StateFlagNY.jpg

    Or CW's idea:

    sjfm.us/temp/51StateFlagCW.jpg

    Apparently some Democrats would prefer this:

    sjfm.us/temp/ObamaFlag.jpg

    brrrrrrrr THAT one's just creepy...

    :D

    Michale.....

  26. [26] 
    Michale wrote:

    Isn't it strange how NO ONE in the MainStream Media covered the arrest and sentencing of Adam Eugene Cox??

    And ya'all still deny that the MSM is in the bag for Obama?? :D

    Want more evidence that the MSM is in the bag for Obama??

    Father's outrage as TSA subjects his wheelchair-bound three-year-old son to humiliating search... on his way to Disney
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2116881/TSA-subject-child-wheelchair-invasive-airport-security-tests-Chicago.html

    If this had been reported during the Bush years, the MSM would be blaring it from every rooftop in the nation..

    And the Left would screaming bloody murder for days, if not weeks..

    But, since it's Obama, not a peep from the Left and only Drudge reports it....

    How ANYONE can deny the MSM is in the bag for Obama with a straight face is beyond me...

    Michale....

  27. [27] 
    Michale wrote:

    Well, it's official...

    FoxNews is hated by Obama, Democrats AND Al Qaeda....

    I wager there's a moral there somewhere... :D

    Michale.....

  28. [28] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [25] -

    Um, isn't that CW link a 68-star flag? 5 rows of 8, 4 rows of 7?

    That first one just looks weird, though.

    Mine would be only six rows total: 9,8,9,8,9,8. It may make the star field look a little long and skinny, though, I do admit.

    -CW

  29. [29] 
    Michale wrote:

    Um, isn't that CW link a 68-star flag? 5 rows of 8, 4 rows of 7?

    Yea, I did frak up on the CW flag.. I actually redid it twice, so I thought I got it right...

    DOH!!! :D

    It's actually a little weird.. In High School, I wrote an essay on a "future" newscast that announced that Mexico had become the 65th State...

    Talk about deja vu all over again... :D

    Michale.....

  30. [30] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    check out the one used by the puerto rican statehood movement:

    http://www.crwflags.com/fotw/images/u/us-51sta.gif

    is that or is that not just plain cool?

  31. [31] 
    nypoet22 wrote:
  32. [32] 
    dsws wrote:

    is that or is that not just plain cool?

    Visually, yes. For cleverness, yes. But it puts one star at the center, making it look more important than the rest, like the Lion King with all the lower-ranking animals spread out in the Circle of Life around it, kneeling and waiting to become breakfast so that their rulers could poop them out and help make grass.

    As far as I know, no American flag has ever singled out a star like that.

    CW's looks best to me. I tried an 8+3 pattern, and it looks awful.

  33. [33] 
    Michale wrote:

    is that or is that not just plain cool?

    I have to admit, it does look pretty awesome..

    But dsws' objection is valid, his colorful example notwithstanding. :D

    I would not put it past some future demagogic president to make the middle star a little bit bigger than the rest or even put his own likeness as that middle star..

    Oh that couldn't POSSIBLY happen, could it?? :D

    Michale.....

  34. [34] 
    Michale wrote:

    Regarding SuperPACs, I have another prediction...

    Ya'all will recall, after the Citizens United ruling came down from on high, Democrats up to and including President Obama and even higher (Weigantians.. :D) took to the airwaves to denounce the ruling. They (and ya'all) claimed that the ruling and the resulting SuperPACs were evil, were "a threat to our democracy" and would lead to the corporateization of our elections..

    At the time, I stated that it was all politics. That if Democrats found they could use the ruling and SuperPACs to their advantage, then the ruling and SuperPACs would become acceptable..

    Sure enough, a couple months later, Obama and Democrats did just that. They embraced Citizens United and SuperPACs...

    "We are at war with Eurasia. We have always been at war with Eurasia."
    -1984

    Now, flash forward to today. Republicans are raking in hundreds of millions of dollars in cash towards SuperPACs..

    Democrats?? Not so much... Words like "dismal" and "awful" are being used to describe the donations towards Dem SuperPACs...

    So, anyways, here's my prediction...

    Within a couple weeks (give or take), Obama and Democrats will, once again, disavow SuperPACs and SPs will, once again, become "a threat to our democracy"...

    Anyone wanna lay some bets??? :D

    Michale.....

  35. [35] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    They (and ya'all) claimed that the ruling and the resulting SuperPACs were evil, were "a threat to our democracy" and would lead to the corporateization of our elections..

    they were and are. that the president or democrats happened to say so, or whether they subsequently embraced or rejected SuperPACs, or whether or not that constitutes hypocrisy, have zero bearing on the truth of the statement.

    Within a couple weeks (give or take), Obama and Democrats will, once again, disavow SuperPACs and SPs will, once again, become "a threat to our democracy"...

    quite possible, even likely. if so, you're absolutely justified in calling foul on the individuals, but not impugning the statement itself. it is still essentially the case, regardless of which side of the issue obama or the democrats happen to stand on at any given moment.

  36. [36] 
    Michale wrote:

    they were and are. that the president or democrats happened to say so, or whether they subsequently embraced or rejected SuperPACs, or whether or not that constitutes hypocrisy, have zero bearing on the truth of the statement.

    The statement MAY be true, but in the here and now, it's in the realm of opinion...

    quite possible, even likely. if so, you're absolutely justified in calling foul on the individuals,

    It just bugs me that, for all intents and purposes, *I* am the only one calling foul..

    Especially when the "foulness" is as blatant as the day is long...

    Present company excepted, of course.. :D

    Michale.....

  37. [37] 
    Michale wrote:

    There has been a story floating around the web. The story is about the disappearance of ANOTHER story dealing with the First Kid's trip to Mexico during Spring Break...

    Why Is the Story About Malia Obama Vacationing in Mexico Disappearing from the Web?
    theblaze.com/stories/why-is-the-story-about-malia-obama-vacationing-in-mexico-disappearing-from-the-web/

    The original story IS a legitimate news story. Why on earth would the First Couple let their kid go to Mexico, when the State Department has issued a travel advisory to the pheasants...

    The story that the original story is disappearing is ALSO a legitimate news story, as it smacks of government interference..

    "Not so", say ObamaBots... "It's just people being racist again!!" say the kool-aid drinkers...

    Ahhhhh....

    But then the White House admits it exerted influence to have the story pulled and "disappeared"...

    White House Admits to Asking News Agencies to Pull Malia Obama Vacation Story
    theblaze.com/stories/white-house-admits-to-asking-news-agencies-to-pull-malia-obama-vacation-story/

    Further evidence that the MSM is, indeed, in the bag for Obama...

    Can you imagine the outcry from the Left if Bush or Republicans tried to exert such force over the media???

    Michale.....

  38. [38] 
    Michale wrote:

    Grrrrrrr Attributes... I HATE ATTRIBUTES!!! :D

    Michale.....

  39. [39] 
    Michale wrote:

    Joshua,

    A personal question if I may.. Do not feel any obligation to answer if you choose not to..

    I have noticed that you disregard the use of capitalization in your postings..

    Now, your obvious intelligence has never been nor will ever be, in question....

    I was just curious if there is a specific reasoning for it, or it's just your chosen "style"..

    Again, none of my business whatsoever.... Just curious....

    Michale.....

  40. [40] 
    Michale wrote:

    The original story IS a legitimate news story. Why on earth would the First Couple let their kid go to Mexico, when the State Department has issued a travel advisory to the pheasants...

    After further consideration, under the nearly unbearable strain of manual labor (putting up a new fence in the backyard... Even my aches have aches) I have come to the conclusion that I was wrong. At least partially...

    I still think it's utterly moronic for the First Couple to send their kid to MEXICO (of all places) for Spring Break. Surely a better spot would be Daytona Beach, for political as well as personal safety reasons..

    So, while it IS a legitimate news story, I believe that the safety of the principal is the overriding factor and therefore, it should NOT be reported...

    Following this line of "mea culpa", it's not out of line for the White House to apply influence to have the stories pulled...

    I still maintain, however, that the Left would have gone berserk if a GOP Administration would try to exert such influence...

    But the exertion of the influence was the correct course of action in this particular instance...

    Michale.....

  41. [41] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    I have noticed that you disregard the use of capitalization in your postings..

    i do capitalize professional communications, just not e-mails or on-line posting, when i remember not to. it's just sort-of my "thing." (i wish i could figure out how to stop my phone's automatic capitalization feature.)

    i know i'm not the first to intentionally forgo capitalization, e.e. cummings and lucille clifton being notable among those to do so in their poetry. in some of those contexts it has come to represent racial equality and the utopian ethos of the 60's, but for me i think it's just my little rebellion against doing things the way we all supposedly should.

    anyhow, thanks for asking.

  42. [42] 
    Michale wrote:

    but for me i think it's just my little rebellion against doing things the way we all supposedly should.

    A frame of mind that I can readily and completely agree with... :D

    Michale......

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