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Friday Talking Points [206] -- "Mommy Wars" Versus "War On Women"

[ Posted Friday, April 13th, 2012 – 16:28 PDT ]

First, a happy Friday the Thirteenth to everyone.

The biggest political news this week was that Rick Santorum quit his increasingly-desperate attempt to win the Republican presidential nomination, and will soon (through clenched teeth, no doubt) be endorsing Mitt Romney as his party's standard-bearer, in the hopes of becoming the "Next Guy In Line" in 2016. Republicans almost always nominate the NGIL, so it's understandable that Rick quit before he faced the embarrassment of Pennsylvania voters rejecting him once again. Go out on a high note, instead of in disgrace -- a good tactic in politics.

Republican Allen West appears to be channeling the spirit of Joe McCarthy, stating that over 75 Democrats in the House are card-carrying "members of the Communist Party." Boy, that really takes you back, doesn't it? Nothing like some good, old-fashioned Red-baiting to get the juices flowing on the Right, eh? The problem is, these days, we're buddies with Red China (our economy would collapse without them, so who really did win the Cold War, one wonders...), we trade with the folks who beat us in Vietnam, and (other than Cuba) we have no problem with cozying up to Godless Commies around the globe. It's not exactly Dr. Strangelove times, in other words. West's comments got a hearty laugh all around (even from the Communist Party USA itself), and were quickly forgotten in a haze of Joe McCarthy and House Un-American Activities Committee jokes.

The big political distraction at the end of the week was a reopening of what used to be called the "Mommy Wars," by Democratic insider Hilary Rosen. This came about largely because the political chattering class was bored, now that their GOP nomination horserace is all-but-officially over, and they needed a new toy to blow up with metaphorical firecrackers. Of course, they leapt at the chance to do so with all the fervor of a nine-year-old with a pocketful of Black Cats and his sister's Barbie doll, heading into the woods for some pyromaniacal fun.

Now, this tempest in a teapot has many facets, most of which have been explored in great detail by others. I, for instance, am going to refrain from commenting on the Mommy War aspect itself, since I am not now (nor, in true HUAAC fashion, have I ever been) a Mommy. The entire question of staying at home to raise children versus having a career is one that I am not competent to weigh in on (if you're looking for this core discussion, please see: the entire rest of the blogosphere). But, having said that, as much as we'd love to ignore the entire subject, we're going to use it as a case study in today's Talking Points section, as an example of how a talking point can go horribly wrong.

 

Most Impressive Democrat of the Week

Both President Obama and Vice President Biden have been doing a great job in the past few days of giving rousing speeches on their economic agenda, even if not many people are paying attention at the time. Being incumbents this time around, Mitt Romney will have one advantage over the White House team, and that is he's been honing his campaign skills for a very brutal primary season which has taken up most of the last year. Obama, on the other hand, hasn't had a primary challenger to fend off, so it is good to see that he's also getting some practice rounds in on the stump. The "Buffett Rule" is not going to pass the Senate next week, but it will be a major issue in the campaign, so these early speeches may held the Obama team sharpen their message.

Hillary Clinton was impressive last week, and showed all other politicians (of either sex or party) how this whole "charisma" thing is done. These two guys started a spoof site about Hillary, it took off online, and so Clinton's staff just called the two guys up and invited them to meet her in person. Hillary even played around with putting out a real/fake message in the site's style.

Now that is class. That is also incredible political savviness. For such, Clinton is awarded an Honorable Mention this week.

In fact, in a normal week, this probably would have been enough for Hillary to pick up the coveted Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week award. But this was an extraordinary week for a few Democratic politicians.

Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin was chased by four bears around his own backyard, and emerged unscathed (Shumlin was reportedly attempting to defend his bird feeders). That's either pretty impressive or pretty reckless, depending on how the average person would see it. Or depending on the "av-er-age bear," to quote Yogi.

OK, we just couldn't resist that one, and we apologize to all concerned, especially all bears. Ahem. We'll just hand Shumlin his own Honorable Mention and move along.

But this week's real MIDOTW winner is none other than the mayor of Newark, New Jersey, who heroically ran into a burning building and saved a woman's life. That is not a misprint or any sort of joke -- Cory Booker ran into the flames and hauled a woman out of a building who likely would not have made it out on her own.

There are only two things worth saying about this story, because the story simply speaks for itself. The first is to point out once again, as I have always maintained, that true heroes never call themselves such, and deny being such afterwards. Instead, he said "I did what any neighbor would do -- help a neighbor." One of the hallmarks of being a hero is always to deny it.

The second thing worth pointing out is the truly defining point of heroism, though. Booker selflessly ran towards danger to save another. That is heroism, plain and simple. He pushed aside a security detail "who tried to hold him back by his belt." Heroes don't stand around wondering what to do, or why anyone else isn't doing something. Heroes act.

Cory Booker is, without any dissention, the Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week. And a hero, to boot.

[Congratulate Mayor Cory Booker on his official Newark contact page, to let him know you appreciate his efforts.]

 

Most Disappointing Democrat of the Week

This one is pretty easy, this week. Democratic operative Hilary Rosen is, quite obviously, our Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week this week.

The entire Talking Points section contains our full explanation of why we feel this way. It boils down to a simple fact: Rosen is supposed to be a professional at political/media communications. She's supposed to be an expert at this stuff. She gets paid money to do this for a living. She's not even some hapless politician caught on a live microphone in an embarassing gaffe -- she's supposed to be the one training politicians not to make on-air gaffes.

In other words, she has no one to blame for choosing the wrong phrase to make a larger point but herself. For that alone -- not even for what she said -- Hilary Rosen is our Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week award-winner.

[Contact Hilary Rosen via her company's contact page, to let them know what you think of her actions.]

 

Friday Talking Points

Volume 206 (4/13/12)

Once again, we find ourselves distracted here from larger political issues. I wrote, earlier in the week, a column which went on offense rather than defense, on how Democrats from Obama on down should start using the phrase "Reagan Rule" instead of "Buffett Rule," but it was immediately lost in the uproar. So if you're looking for a more talking-point-ey column, I'd advise reading that one instead. Because we're going to play defense here, today.

The remarks which put Democrats on the defensive were uttered by Hilary Rosen, on Anderson Cooper's political show on CNN. Here is the entire quote, when asked about why the Romney camp shouldn't be reaching out to women on economic issues:

Well, first, can we just get rid of this word war on women. The Obama campaign does not use it. President Obama does not use it. This is something that the Republicans are accusing people of using, but they're actually the one spreading it.

With respect to economic issues, I think actually that Mitt Romney is right, that ultimately women care more about the economic well-being of their families and the like. But there's -- but he doesn't connect on that issue either.

What you have is Mitt Romney running around the country saying, well, you know, my wife tells me that what women really care about are economic issues. And when I listen to my wife, that's what I'm hearing.

Guess what, his wife has actually never worked a day in her life. She's never really dealt with the kinds of economic issues that a majority of the women in this country are facing in terms of how do we feed our kids, how do we send them to school and how do we -- why do we worry about their future?

So I think it's -- yes, it's about these positions and, yes, I think there will be a war of words about the positions, but there's something much more fundamental about Mitt Romney. He seems so old-fashioned when it comes to women.

And I think that comes across and I think that that's going to hurt him over the long term. He just doesn't really see us as equal.

This was immediately truncated to the soundbite: "[Mitt Romney's] wife has actually never worked a day in her life." Her larger point was completely lost, at least to the chattering class in Washington, to focus solely on Rosen's "attack" on Ann Romney.

But, as I said, we're going to leave most of that sort of thing to others to discuss -- where on the sliding scale of "Momminess" this sort of opinion should be pegged.

Instead, I would like to go off on three separate tangents: the politics of Rosen's comment, the victimhood "card," and whether Ann Romney is politically "fair game" or not.

The politics were disastrous for the Democrats. The White House team, and Obama himself, quickly disavowed any support for Rosen's comments. Snarkmeister Jason Linkins wrote the funniest line of the week on Huffington Post, summing up this quick damage-control:

Washington, D.C.-area commuters are advised that all buses have been rerouted today to drive over Hilary Rosen, by order of the Democratic National Committee, so expect service delays.

Heh. But even with all the loud disavowals, Democrats may have been hurt politically by this kerfluffle. Up until this point, the "War on Women" charge was resonating very effectively throughout the electorate. The only counter to it that Mitt Romney had managed to come up with were some very misleading statistics which weren't exactly doing him much good. Now, however, Mitt can stand up for Moms across America, and champion the conservative feminist backlash position of "stay-at-home Moms." It was like a gift from Heaven for Romney, and you can bet he will exploit it for all its worth.

The most interesting thing to watch in the debate was the speed of both election teams in jumping all over the issue. Ann Romney was on Fox so fast it made your head spin. Barack Obama himself weighed in on the issue before the news cycle was half over. In other words, both campaigns are already well in gear for the general election. This sort of dueling-statements thing will happen on many other distracting non-stories over the course of the campaign, and both sides can feel good about the fact that nobody on either side seems to be letting the grass grow under their feet -- both candidates' teams seem fully up to speed.

The ironic thing for Democrats is that Republicans have, by now, perfected a tactic which used to be the sole purview of Democrats: playing the "victim" card. The politics of victimhood goes back (on the Democratic side) to the 1970s and 1980s (some might even argue the 1960s), and it used to confound Republicans no end, because they just didn't have any sort of effective response that didn't somehow come off coldhearted and mean. Long about the 1990s or 2000s, Republicans finally figured out how to turn the victimhood charge back on Democrats and manufacture their own faux outrage. Here's a quick example: "Democrats are unfairly playing the 'race card,' why are they discriminating against me in such a racist fashion?"

So now we find ourselves in the showdown: "Mommy Wars" versus the "War on Women." Which phrase will resonate more politically is anyone's guess at this point. I'm betting on the War on Women, since it has more factual legislative ideology (concrete laws Republicans are attempting to pass) behind the slogan (such as the war on Planned Parenthood, just to name one). The Mommy Wars springboarded off a comment by one Democrat who isn't part of any campaign, and who was repudiated by most other Democrats immediately, which doesn't seem like it'd have any staying power, but in today's political world, who really knows?

Now, a word here about the predicament Hilary Rosen finds herself in. While it's hard not to sympathize with anyone who is caught up in the "Gotcha!" game the media plays of ignoring your main point in favor of obsessing over one phrase you used, at the same time it is also hard to extend such sympathy to such a political/media insider. Rosen makes money advising politicians on communications skills -- in her own online bio, she calls herself: "A nationally recognized strategist who skillfully navigates the intersection of communications, media and politics in Washington DC." CNN lists her as a "CNN Contributor," which I assume means she also makes money by being an on-air Democratic strategist. To put it another way, she's supposed to be a professional at opinionating on national television. The problem with this job is that you have to also be interesting and entertaining at political commentary, or else you don't get asked back very often. Which can lead to saying things you might regret later, when removed from any context.

I'm certainly no on-air expert myself. If I regularly appeared on television spouting political opinions, there is a near-certain chance that eventually I would say something really stupid which would come back to haunt me. I can state this certainty would likely approach 100 percent, the more I was on television. I'm a writer, and used to going back and editing (most) stupid things out of what I write. Unedited -- and most likely in search of a cheap laugh -- I would doubtlessly screw up sooner or later. So it's hard for me to moralize too much about others' lapses, knowing this sort of thing.

Rosen did have a good point to make, and when you edit out the one line everyone's focusing on, she did a reasonably good job of making that point: being married to Mitt Romney and raising five children is a lot different than many women's experiences. It was another way to paint the Romneys as horrendously out of touch with the average middle-class American. But the point was lost in the fracas (even though Rosen did try to steer the conversation back to it, right before she offered up an apology for her original gaffe), and now it'll be hard to make any sort of similar point in the future -- at least about Ann Romney -- because the Rosen quote will always be brought up by the other side.

Which brings me to my final point: is Ann Romney a valid target for political commentary? President Obama and his First Lady unequivocally said "No," but then you'd expect them to. As far as they're concerned, spouses and children of politicians are always off-limits.

But are they? Or should they be?

My own feeling is that wives, husbands, children, and other extended family members make this choice themselves. Family members are campaign props -- this is just a fact of American political life. Family members are going to appear on stage with their candidate. But even this doesn't make them "fair game," politically. To put it another way: Sarah Palin was right to complain about attacks on her children and husband, even though she dragged them on stage as often as she could manage. Todd Palin, or even Bristol, never became political spokesfolks until after the 2008 election, at least that I recall. Making them off-limits, politically, right up to that point.

But after the election, Bristol Palin astonishingly started taking money to be a spokesperson for abstinence, because there was some group out there willing to pay her to be a "bad example," and she was willing to tell her story and make lots of money doing so. This immediately made her a valid political target on the entire sex/sexual hypocrisy issue.

Amy Carter, likewise, became fair game to go after when she started getting herself arrested to protest apartheid.

This isn't a perfect yardstick. There are grey areas, I should mention. Right now, Mitt Romney's sons fall into this grey area, and so I have to give them the benefit of the doubt and declare them off-limits. Mitt's sons have indeed acted as official campaign spokespeople (such as traveling to U.S. island territories in an effort to whip up primary votes), but mostly off the national stage, as surrogates for Mitt. To me, this walks up to the line of being a "public political figure" in your own right, but doesn't actually cross it.

Ann Romney, however, I would call "fair game." At least for the past month or so. Up until this point, she was not a valid political target, however, as she had limited herself to mostly appearing on stage in front of crowds, and occasionally introducing her husband in the adoring language that only a spouse can truly get away with. Again, to me, this walks up to the line, but doesn't actually cross it into "fair game" territory.

But once Mitt realized he had two big problems, Ann began taking on a bigger role. Mitt's problem is he is not so good at the whole "human being" thing (which most political people call "charisma"). He's not the guy most voters would pick to "have a beer with," to put it another way. Then, a few weeks ago, the Republican anti-women's-rights campaign became a major issue and -- coincidentally -- his poll numbers among women voters went over a cliff. So Mitt had a problem connecting to average voters, and an even bigger problem connecting to women voters.

This is where the Romney campaign sought to redefine Ann. She became Mitt's go-to "consultant" on women's matters, and she started giving her own speeches. Putting Ann in the spotlight, the campaign figured, would "humanize" Mitt.

But what it also did was make it entirely fair and reasonable for Mitt's opponents to bring Ann into the political conversation. She is now (or was, three days ago) "fair game."

To the Democrats' dismay, however, the first person to take on Ann's new persona happened to be Hilary Rosen. And her effort backfired in an enormous way. The Right began howling that Rosen was attacking "stay-at-home-Moms" and conservatives' beliefs that choosing motherhood over a career is a valid (indeed, "the correct," to listen to them) lifestyle choice for any American woman to make. Rosen's point about how Ann Romney had the luxury of making this choice, knowing that her family would not suffer financially as a result, was entirely lost.

What else is likely lost is the chance to ever contradict Ann Romney in any way for the entire rest of the campaign. Barack Obama immediately jumped into the fray (which was the right thing to do -- get your response out as fast as possible) and declared Ann Romney and the Romney boys off-limits for Democrats. Period.

This will free the Romney campaign up to deploy Ann in whatever fashion they choose, full in the knowledge that she will be completely immune to any official contradiction from the Obama campaign whatsoever. That is a very large price to pay, when the general election campaign is less than a week old.

I think Ann Romney isn't going to get all that much traction out of keeping the pressure up on the "Mommy War" front. I think that women who see things through this lens are already likely going to be voting for Mitt this year. Independents will either ignore the whole fray, listen to what both sides are actually saying, or seriously compare the life Ann Romney has led with their own (and draw their own conclusions). So I really don't think this is all that big a weapon in the larger "War on Women" theme which is going to run throughout this entire campaign. I could be wrong about all of that, but that's how I feel at the moment.

The Obamas decided to take the moral high road and declare wives and children off-limits. This may pay off for them later, because they will be able to call on Mitt Romney to denounce any attacks leveled at Michelle Obama. First Ladies can indeed be political targets, but usually this is restricted to their chosen issues -- and Michelle trying to keep kids healthy and fighting hard for military veterans doesn't really present many opportunities. But Barack can cut off any such talk before it has a chance to spread, thanks to his reaction to this controversy.

But what this means is that both Michelle Obama and Ann Romney may enjoy a certain immunity for the rest of this election cycle. Whether this was worth it or not remains to be seen.

-- Chris Weigant

 

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Cross-posted at: Democratic Underground

 

29 Comments on “Friday Talking Points [206] -- "Mommy Wars" Versus "War On Women"”

  1. [1] 
    dsws wrote:

    So Romney can bring up his wife by saying, "what women really care about are economic issues. And when I listen to my wife, that's what I'm hearing." But even after he's the one who brought her into the discussion, it's off-limits to point out that she was born with a silver spoon in her mouth and has never had to worry about "kitchen-table economic issues" one tiny bit, ever?

    I'll never, never understand politics.

  2. [2] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    with respect, i think hilary rosen's mistake was not that she went too far, but that she didn't follow through all the way. by attempting to backpedal a comment she had already made, she inadvertently created a narrative to cast romney as a high class victim. if rosen had just stayed on the attack, she could have salvaged the moment. the "apology" should have been to all the stay-at-home moms in america for somehow implying that mitt romney's informant on all women had to work as hard as any of them.

  3. [3] 
    GlynnisI wrote:

    Chris, I'd missed Linkins' funniest quote re DC transit, so thank you. While for you it was "Heh", for me it was ROTFLMAO/a howler. :) And I needed a laugh.

    nypoet22- I wish Rosen had explained her true point better rather than just falling into the mommy pit that she did, but don't think further attack would have worked. Some things are treated as 'sacred' by the GOP and upper/middle class mothers at home are on that list.

    I AM a stay-at-home mom, a Christian, and a Southerner. I'm also a Democrat. I know that I'm fortunate that through hard sacrifice my family is able to manage on one income. I agree with Ms. Rosen's point that it seems unlikely that Mrs. Romney understands how painful some choices and sacrifices are for other stay-at-home moms. I can't imagine having even 1 million dollars, much less the fortune(s) the Romneys have.

    One of many reasons I support President Obama is that he's able to articulate and ACT ON his own positions regarding women's issues. He doesn't have to turn to his wife to translate 'woman speak' for him. He gets it all on his own.

    Really the whole "stay at home" mom crisis leaves me exasperated. There aren't that many of us left. A majority of wealthier sahm's seem to vote Republican. I don't think it's a broad enough demographic to overshadow all the Republicans do (transvaginal probe, anyone? nuisance fair pay act?) to denigrate women. Also, Chris Hayes scored big points on this subj. on his program this morning. See Romney's statements RE welfare moms needing work outside the home to experience "the dignity of work."

  4. [4] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    GlynnisI -

    Yeah, Linkins is a riot and a half when's he's on top of his form...

    :-)

    I wrote on a comment over at HP that the longer this squabble goes on, the more people notice Rosen's main point -- that Ann Romney is not exactly your prototypical SAHM. The question which devastated John McCain was a simple one: "How many houses do you have?" A similar question could be used for the Romneys: "How many servants do you have?"

    -CW

  5. [5] 
    Michale wrote:

    A similar question could be used for the Romneys: "How many servants do you have?"

    One can ask the same thing of Obama??

    How many servants does HE have, eh? :D

    Romney pays for his own servants..

    You and I pay for Obama's servants.

    I'm just sayin'....

    Michale.....

  6. [6] 
    Michale wrote:

    I wrote on a comment over at HP that the longer this squabble goes on, the more people notice Rosen's main point -- that Ann Romney is not exactly your prototypical SAHM.

    Rosen says that Ann Romney is not a "real" SAHM, so her opinion doesn't count..

    One could easily say that, since Rosen is a lesbian, she is not a "real" woman so her opinions on women's issues doesn't count..

    Once you start quantifying people's "qualifications" based on some arbitrary, prejudicial and politically motivated set of parameters, where does it end??

    Michale.....

  7. [7] 
    Michale wrote:

    For the poll people out there...

    Independents/NPAs are swinging towards Romney, 45% to 39%....

    Obama has a tough row to hoe as he cannot win with us Independents/NPAs.... :D

    Michale.....

  8. [8] 
    Michale wrote:

    Obama has a tough row to hoe as he cannot win with us Independents/NPAs.... :D

    Grrrrrrr....

    Obama has a tough row to hoe as he cannot win withOUT us Independents/NPAs....

    Michale.....

  9. [9] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    Why would Independents be drawn to Romney or, for that matter, to any Republican calling for a return to failed Republican economic polices?

  10. [10] 
    GlynnisI wrote:

    Elizabeth,
    I don't post here a lot, so please excuse me if this is already obvious to you and you are just having fun... but don't even bother reading Michale's posts. It's just troll-speak.

    Agree with your point, fwiw. :)
    G

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz,

    Why would Independents be drawn to Romney or, for that matter, to any Republican calling for a return to failed Republican economic polices?

    Probably because it's been clear that the Democrat economic policies are much much worse..

    Don't take my word for it....

    "Of course Americans were better off four years ago than they are today."
    -President Barack Obama

    "The choice in this election is between economy that produces a growing middle class and that gives people a chance to get ahead and their kids a chance to get ahead, and an economy that continues down the road we are on..."
    -Obama Spokesman David Axelrod

    Face the facts. Democrats have failed this country.. They had a virtual lock on all facets of government and made it worse...

    And you think that four more years of Democrat rule will actually IMPROVE things???

    Seriously!???

    GlynnisI,

    but don't even bother reading Michale's posts. It's just troll-speak.

    Of course.. It's much easier to simply disregard facts and evidence you don't like, rather than actually have to THINK that you might have made some bad choices..

    It's called an echo chamber.. But I don't have to tell you that. You are obviously quite comfortable in such surroundings...

    Gods forbid you should actually think for yourself. It's easier just to spout propaganda and call people names...

    I feel sorry for you...

    Agree with your point, fwiw. :)

    Of course you do...

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

    Michale.....

  12. [12] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    I'm afraid to say that you are flat out wrong.

    All you have to do is look at a simple comparison of how Democratic policies under the Clinton administration versus those of the Bush administration have impacted the economy.

    And, when you have completed that task, compare and contrast where the US economy is today - steadily recovering after the worst global financial crisis since the Great Depression - to where it was three and half years ago - circling the drain, as I recall - when Obama was sworn into office.

    Any Independent worth his or her own salt should be able to successfully complete this analysis - in their sleep, for God's sake! :)

  13. [13] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    GlynnisI,

    I don't believe we've been properly introduced. Welcome to CW.com, the premier site in the blogosphere for intelligent political discourse, when Michale is on holidays, that is.

    I'M KIDDING!

    Seriously, this IS the premier site for intelligent political discourse around the internet(s) and you will soon learn that Michale is an integral part our little community here, keeping us all honest and at the top of our debating game.

    Personally, I cannot imagine this place without our Michale, our fearless leader in the comments section. You will come to understand that and all that it means if you should decide to stick around and to post here more often. Which I sincerely hope you will do!

    And so, if you've come here to debate the issues, then you had better come prepared - for rhetorical battle and for the most fun you've had or will ever have at any other political blog, bar none!

    Cheers!

  14. [14] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz,

    I'm afraid to say that you are flat out wrong.

    I respect that opinion. I just don't happen to agree with it. :D

    All you have to do is look at a simple comparison of how Democratic policies under the Clinton administration versus those of the Bush administration have impacted the economy.

    Clinton had the Dot Com bubble. Any attempt to draw a conclusion on the Clinton era would be tainted by that outlier.

    And, when you have completed that task, compare and contrast where the US economy is today - steadily recovering after the worst global financial crisis since the Great Depression - to where it was three and half years ago - circling the drain, as I recall - when Obama was sworn into office.

    I am just going by Obama's and Axelrod's own words..

    I am also constrained to point out that it's likely the economy would be in even BETTER shape had Obama not made some really bonehead moves..

    Giving Stimulus Funds to companies based on political connections, rather than on merit or business acumen is one of his more obvious ones.

    Obama is a politician, which is about the worst possible thing I could say about anyone. :D

    I don't believe we've been properly introduced. Welcome to CW.com, the premier site in the blogosphere for intelligent political discourse, when Michale is on holidays, that is.

    And the ref takes a point away!!! :D

    Personally, I cannot imagine this place without our Michale, our fearless leader in the comments section. You will come to understand that and all that it means if you should decide to stick around and to post here more often. Which I sincerely hope you will do!

    Yer sweet.. :D Thanks

    GlynnisI,

    You would be taken a lot more seriously, if you didn't resort to name-calling, just because you disagree with someone's political perspective.

    I am also constrained to point out that it's obvious that you don't even know the definition of an Internet Troll, as your use of the term is completely inaccurate..

    But far be it from me to deny you the pleasure of your own political bigotry. :D

    You have the right to believe what you wish. Even if it is totally incompatible with the facts. :D

    Michale...

  15. [15] 
    GlynnisI wrote:

    Chris,
    Thanks again for the laugh. My son was in the hospital all last week, is still seeing lots of docs for diagnostics, and I really did need it.

    Elizabeth,
    Thank you for the welcome. You are very kind.

    Michale,
    I called you a troll because you spend a lot of time on a liberal site arguing and baiting people for fun. You resort to name-calling on a regular basis (ie your above comment that Hilary Rosen is not a real woman... and your... verbose "welcome" to me). I don't confuse quantity of posts with quality. Also, without reading more than one paragraph of my words, you assume you can sum up my life's experiences to a narrow & unchallenged sphere & that I am a bigot. Your statement "You have the right to believe what you wish. Even if it is totally incompatible with the facts. :D" seems to be your personal motto and raison d'etre on this site.

    Nice to meet you, too. As a Southerner, I'll say, "God love ya."
    Glynnis

  16. [16] 
    Michale wrote:

    GlynnisI,

    I called you a troll because you spend a lot of time on a liberal site arguing and baiting people for fun.

    Actually this site is a reality based site, not liberal. :D As far as "baiting people for fun" this would imply you know what is in my head, which you surely don't..

    You resort to name-calling on a regular basis (ie your above comment that Hilary Rosen is not a real woman... and your... verbose "welcome" to me).

    I never claimed Rosen wasn't a "real" women. I was using that as an example. But it pissed ya off, eh? Now maybe you can understand how Right Wing women feel when they are castigated, demonized and attacked by the Left, eh??

    Also, without reading more than one paragraph of my words, you assume you can sum up my life's experiences to a narrow & unchallenged sphere & that I am a bigot

    Yes, your words clearly show that you suffer from political bigotry..

    I don't think it's a broad enough demographic to overshadow all the Republicans do (transvaginal probe, anyone? nuisance fair pay act?) to denigrate women.

    You claim "all the Republicans" do to denigrate women..

    What about Democrats who denigrate women?? What about all that Democrats do??

    But that doesn't count because it's REPUBLICAN women being denigrated, right?? It's OK if Ann Romney or Sarah or Bristol Palin is denigrated, right??

    When you can get as angry when an Ann Romney or a Sarah Palin are attacked as you do when a Hilary Rosen is "attacked", then you will have shown that you are not suffering from political bigotry.

    You mention that "nuisance fair pay" act. Yet, we come to learn that Obama's White House pays women less than men..

    According to the 2011 annual report on White House staff, female employees earned a median annual salary of $60,000, which was about 18 percent less than the median salary for male employees ($71,000).
    http://townhall.com/tipsheet/katehicks/2012/04/11/awkward_obama_white_house_pays_women_less_than_men

    Do you still want to discuss how Obama's "Acts" on what he preaches??

    These are those "facts" that I mention that show maybe what you believe is not in keeping with reality..

    When you can honestly say, "Ya know, Democrats really frak'ed things up on Issue A and the Republicans really got it right." then you will show that you don't suffer from political bigotry.

    But, when you start with the conclusion that Republicans are always wrong and then work from there... Well, what else CAN it be called other than political bigotry??

    I have no love for the Right Wing... Everything you can say about them is likely true, as far as I am concerned..

    *MY* only beef is the belief around here that, some how, some way, Democrats are better than Republicans.

    This, despite an overwhelmingly large amount of factual evidence that proves that it just ain't so...

    Now, if my pointing out this blatant fact is what you call "spending a lot of time on a liberal site and baiting people for fun" well that's your opinion.. I respect it... I simply show (with facts) that your opinion is not in keeping with reality..

    Michale.....

  17. [17] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    Oh, you are going to have to come up with something better than that to demonstrate that the economy would be in better shape.

    I challenge you name one substantial economic policy that Obama/Biden/Geithner put in place that made things worse.

  18. [18] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ya know yer in trouble when Jay Leno starts knockin' ya... :D

    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2012/04/17/jay_leno_even_obama_is_doing_worse_under_president_obama.html

    Michale....

  19. [19] 
    Michale wrote:

    I challenge you name one substantial economic policy that Obama/Biden/Geithner put in place that made things worse.

    It's not a one-off issue..

    And, as the facts show, things are slowly (VERY slowly) getting better. So, there isn't ONE thing I can point to that made things "worse"..

    But I can point to MANY things that were done that have SLOWED down things getting better. I even mentioned one in the previous comment.

    All the Stimulus money that Obama gave to political cronies that rewarded Party Obedience over actual business smarts...

    Solyndra is the best example. They got hundreds of millions because they supported Obama, NOT because it was a good company to invest in..

    I can point to MANY companies that followed this same trend.. Companies that were given taxpayer dollars for political connections rather than for being a good investment. And then went bankrupt and the tax payers are left holding the bag..

    If those billions and billions of dollars had gone to companies that actually had a good plan, then our economy would be a LOT better today... This is undeniable...

    My point isn't that Obama has made things worse. Although he has and even HE admits it..

    My point is that if it weren't for Obama making some really bone-headed moves and rewarding political loyalty over business acumen, this economy would be a LOT better today than it is..

    And that is simply undeniable...

    Michale.....

  20. [20] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I knew you couldn't do it! :)

  21. [21] 
    Michale wrote:

    "You must ask the right questions"
    -Dr. Alfred Lanning, I ROBOT

    :D

    Michale....

  22. [22] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    Perhaps it would be easier for you to come up with one substantial economic policy that Obama/Biden/Geithner put in place that made a great improvement to the health of the economy and/or the financial system.

    Whatever you come up with, I can guarantee you that the congressional Republicans and Mitt Romney were and are opposed to it. That is because, unlike you, they don't care about the health of the economy or the financial system or of the well-being of the nation itself. Their destructive behavior over the course of the last three years has quite amply demonstrated that, in no uncertain terms.

  23. [23] 
    Michale wrote:

    Perhaps it would be easier for you to come up with one substantial economic policy that Obama/Biden/Geithner put in place that made a great improvement to the health of the economy and/or the financial system.

    Nope.. Not a damn thing. :D

    All the political clout that Obama wasted on CrapCare was well and truly wasted..

    Imagine what Obama might have accomplished if he had used his clout and placed his emphasis on the needs of the country instead of the needs of the Democratic Party...

    Obama would likely be heading for a landslide victory in Nov, instead of the ignoble defeat that is likely...

    Michale.....

  24. [24] 
    Michale wrote:

    We could always discuss the GSA and the Secret Service.. :D

    Frankly the Secret Service "scandal" is a load of crap. Unworthy of the label...

    But the GSA?? Couldn't have come at a worse time for Obama....

    Michale....

  25. [25] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    Just for the record, I am in complete agreement regarding your MDDOTW award..

    It's been a while, eh?? :D

    Michale.....

  26. [26] 
    Michale wrote:

    "This president has brought us out of the dark and into the light."
    -Michelle Obama

    Oh my gods, the religious fanaticism and demagoguery is so thick it's sickening...

    ALL HEIL BARACK THE FIRST!!!

    Gag me with a spoon....

    Seriously, people??? No red lines yet???

    Michale....

  27. [27] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    glynnis,

    name-calling is not unique to the right, it's a well-traveled propaganda technique. that aside, you're far from the first to mistake michale for a troll, because he frequently uses the same language and tone you'd find on fox. the difference is that regulars here are generally able to back up their points of view with evidence. if not, they get called on it.

    a troll continues to argue every talking point the same no matter how much hard evidence is stacked against it. some of us may be a bit stubborn, but when presented with a superior argument we do eventually change our minds, michale included. but he also follows the same principle that ms. rosen would have done well to remember. until the conclusion of the argument, stick to your guns, and don't walk it back except in the face of overwhelming evidence that you're wrong. hilary rosen was right in her comment, and she should have argued more like michale. (except perhaps for the tv/movie quotes)

    "Oh stewardess! I speak jive."
    June Cleaver, Airplane!

  28. [28] 
    Michale wrote:

    hilary rosen was right in her comment, and she should have argued more like michale. (except perhaps for the tv/movie quotes)

    I would concede that the point that Rosen likely formed in her brain (a stay at home mom with billions of dollars and servants etc etc is unlikely to know how a stay at home mom who lives paycheck to paycheck) is probably a true and correct point.

    But to come out and say that a stay at home mom never worked a day in her life?? I can't believe that somewhere along the synapses of Rosen's head circuitry, a RED ALERT wasn't sounded at all before the thought got to her lips...

    I guess what I am saying is that her comment WASN'T right. It was dead wrong..

    However, I will concede that the thought process behind the comment was likely a good point.. Rosen just presented it in the WORST possible manner..

    Rather than attempt to defend the indefensible, as she had done, she should have immediately corrected herself with something along the lines of:

    "I said that poorly. I don't mean to say that SAHMs don't actually work. Everyone knows it's damn hard work raising kids. What I meant to say is that a woman raising a family who has billions in assets and servants galore is not really equipped to address the concerns of a woman who raises a family while living paycheck to paycheck."

    THAT's what Rosen should have said...

    Her comment was wrong in so many ways. But I will concede that what she was likely TRYING to say was accurate..

    "Oh stewardess! I speak jive."
    June Cleaver, Airplane!

    I'm soo proud.. {{sniffle}} :D

    Michale.....

  29. [29] 
    Michale wrote:

    Speaking of bonehead things to say.. And ONLY speaking of bonehead things to say...

    "There is not a one-shot solution to all of this."
    -Michelle Obama, when asked about the racism aspect of the Trayvon Martin shooting.

    I mean.. Honestly.. "one-shot solution"???

    Surely, the First Lady could have come up with a better idiom...

    Jeeeeesh..

    Michale.....

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