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Friday Talking Points [209] -- Anniversary Week

[ Posted Friday, May 4th, 2012 – 16:36 PDT ]

If you've been hiding under a rock somewhere all week, you may have missed the fact that an anniversary just happened. One year ago this past Wednesday, special operations forces killed America's "Enemy Number One," Osama Bin Laden. When it happened, it was a time for some sober reflection -- and some unsober and spontaneous celebration on the streets. Whether such was a good thing or not, it is what happened.

This week, we marked the milestone in two notable ways. The first was President Obama's campaign team releasing a political ad which suggested Mitt Romney wouldn't have made the same decision Obama did. The second was (shudder) Brian Williams being invited to the White House Situation Room in order to fill our television screens with schmaltz.

I have to admit, I have not yet seen the hour of BriWi (as I like to call him) doing his thing. I did tape it, so I may have the stomach to watch it later, but after approximately 15 seconds of retch-inducing self-congratulation by Williams, I had to leave the room. This sounds like an exaggeration or hyperbole, but sadly, it is not.

I knew what to expect, because I did sit through BriWi's one-year anniversary show on Hurricane Katrina, which was (at least in my book) the absolute worst broadcast television news show in all of recorded history. The highlight (or "lowlight") was Williams being driven around New Orleans, clutching a crate of cans of beans, which he helpfully told us he had brought along with him -- in case he had to use them to bargain for his very life with the crazed rioters.

You simply cannot make this stuff up. It was like watching Geraldo, but with a more Midwestern accent. On one level, this gives us an equation that is quite useful to refer to, whenever attempting to watch NBC news shows: Brian Williams' life is equal to a small hill of beans. As I said, you just can't make stuff like this up.

I will probably go back and watch the interviews BriWi did (in what I just know he's going to refer to as "the Sit Room"), but only because it'll be very easy to fast-forward every time he opens his mouth. I am indeed interested in hearing what people like Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton had to say about that day, if I can avoid BriWi pretending he is some sort of journalist. Thank all that is holy for fast-forwarding, to put it another way.

Which brings us to the president himself. His campaign attack ad on the Bin Laden killing certainly got some attention this week. Pundits from all sides roundly criticized Obama for using the Bin Laden killing in partisan politics. I must admit, when I first saw the ad, I got a bit of a sinking feeling myself, kind of a "did he really just go there?" moment.

Well, yes... yes, he did. And, upon reflecting on it for a week, I'm taking a "wait and see" attitude on the subject. Yes, this is a cop-out (one that I rarely take), but there it is.

Allow me to explain. Pretty much ever since Barack Obama got into the Oval Office, commentators from the Left have been suggesting, begging, admonishing, and yelling from the rooftops that Obama needed to show some political fight. Throughout the long tenure of Rahm Emanuel, we all (I definitely include myself in this bunch) screamed at the White House until we were hoarse that Obama needed to stand up for himself, for his party, and for his goals.

Yet many of those same voices were horrified at the Bin Laden ad. Now, not everyone was clutching at their metaphorical handkerchiefs -- Bob Cesca wrote a wonderful article supporting the ad, which ends with "more like that, please." But after hearing some very prominent Democratic voices express disappointment with Obama over the ad, I was left with the feeling that Obama must be thinking "damned if I do, damned if I don't" about such voices. Maybe I'm finally feeling Rahm Emanuel's pain or something (now there's a scary thought).

In the last truly bold move Obama made -- the last fight he picked, politically -- I was one of those handkerchief-clutchers swooning over the possible negative ramifications of taking on the Catholic Church over the issue of birth control. I was wrong. Massively, completely wrong. Instead of boomeranging, the entire thing has become one of the strongest campaign issues of the election season: fighting against the Republican "War on Women."

Which is why, this time, I am more cautious. I am going to wait and see on this. It is so strange for a Democratic president to even be in this situation -- where he can attack Republicans from a position of strength on one of their traditional strong points, national security. Usually, Democrats fight a defensive rhetorical battle on this issue, except when they go into full retreat and flee the field. This time, it's the Democrat out in front, and it's the Republicans who are on the defensive. So we'll have to wait and see how it all turns out, because recent history is no guide at all.

Is the ad itself "fair game" or not? That's a tough call, because it can lead right into Democrats insisting on Marquess of Queensbury rules while in a fight with a guy with two knives and a set of brass knuckles. That's what recent history has shown us, again and again. When Democrats take this particular high road, they often get creamed by their opponents.

Maybe it's just psychic numbness, after watching an entire decade of Republican ads on the subject of September 11th. I did get a laugh out of Rudy Giuliani solemnly advising President Obama to avoid such political attacks, because it was just so damn ludicrous. This is the man famously described, when he was running for the job Obama now holds, as being nothing more than "a noun, a verb, and 9/11" -- and now he's got the gall to be some sort of hall monitor on what is politically acceptable in America? Puh-lease.

Barack Obama is stronger on foreign policy and national security than any Democratic president since the 1960s. We're going to see a different sort of campaign, because of that. It will be interesting to watch, because it will be such a novel occurrence. While I do admit I was somewhat shocked to see Obama's ad last week, I wonder now what watching this tectonic shift is going to be like for the next few months. Obama seems to be planning on running the campaign that John Kerry really should have attempted (instead of getting "swiftboated"). Obama (to use the metaphor from one year ago) not only just "spiked the football," he then did a dance in the end zone, picked up the ball again, signed it with a Sharpie, and handed it to a kid in the stands.

We'll have to wait and see how it all turns out. But for those who have been telling Obama to get up off the mat and fight for three solid years now, my only advice is to take a deep breath and sit back -- because it's now too late to "be careful what you ask for."

 

Most Impressive Democrat of the Week

President Obama's campaign has been rather fascinating to watch for the past month or so. Agree with their tactics or not, you've got to admire the strategy, because on issue after issue, the Obama camp is playing offense, and forcing the Republicans into a defensive crouch. This bodes well for the rest of the year. It's hard to remember after over three years of President Obama, but Candidate Obama was pretty impressive back in 2008, so we're looking forward to the 2012 campaign truly getting into gear.

This week, though, we're going to award the Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, for a statement she released, which began:

Access to medicinal marijuana for individuals who are ill or enduring difficult and painful therapies is both a medical and a states' rights issue. Sixteen states, including our home state of California, and the District of Columbia have adopted medicinal marijuana laws -- most by a vote of the people.

I have strong concerns about the recent actions by the federal government that threaten the safe access of medicinal marijuana to alleviate the suffering of patients in California, and undermine a policy that has been in place under which the federal government did not pursue individuals whose actions complied with state laws providing for medicinal marijuana.

Maybe it's just that I wrote about this issue earlier in the week, but I was impressed that Pelosi had such strong words on the subject of medical marijuana, and the continuing crackdown by the Justice Department. Maybe she's been reading my columns, who knows?

Pelosi is from one of the most liberal districts in the country (San Francisco), so she can show leadership on this issue and it will actually help her at the polls, not hurt her. For showing such leadership, she has earned the MIDOTW this week.

[Congratulate House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi on her House contact page, to let her know you appreciate her efforts.]

 

Most Disappointing Democrat of the Week

Occupy Wall Street held a May Day protest, but it kind of fizzled in the mainstream media, which was disappointing (but not entirely unexpected).

John Edwards is trying to defend the indefensible, which is always disappointing to see.

In other legal news, a D.C. council member was sentenced to over three years in federal prison for embezzling hundreds of thousands of dollars that should have gone to youth programs, which surely earns Harry Thomas a (Dis-)Honorable Mention, at the very least. They should force him to work on the same programs he stole from, as a fitting punishment.

But our Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week this week comes from a story which -- by intent -- flew under most people's radar this week. The Department of Health and Human Services very quietly gave its nod of approval to an "abstinence-only" program of sexual education for schoolchildren. The details are pretty grim (Salon, thankfully, covered the story).

This is extremely disappointing. The Obama administration is supposed to have changed to a "science-based" approach to all sorts of government issues like this (and like medical marijuana), but has fallen far short of that lofty goal.

So our MDDOTW this week goes to the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, for continuing to use government dollars in such a disgraceful fashion, due (one assumes) to outright political cowardice.

[Contact Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on the H.H.S. contact page, to let them know what you think of this action, or (since their contact page leaves a bit to be desired) just go ahead and let the White House know your thoughts on the matter.]

 

Friday Talking Points

Volume 209 (5/4/12)

While a lot was happening around the edges this past week, we're going to mostly ignore it all and concentrate on Obama's campaign messaging. The general election is underway, and the Obama folks are busy crafting the language he's going to use to run on. They've already rocked the Republicans back on their heels with the whole "War on Women" issue -- which needs to be continually brought up, just to make Republicans squirm and dig the hole deeper on their "We're not waging a 'war on women,' we're just legislatively trying to make every woman's life miserable" stance (which I have to admit, is downright hilarious to watch).

This is only the start of the campaign season. I say this in my own defense, because these messages are going to get better and sharper as time goes on, and as the national media focus on one particular political obsession after another. So the list of talking points today is a wee bit generic, but that will get better over time.

The first five of this week's snippets are suggestions for Obama's team, and the last two are there, just because.

 

1
   Forward!

As a foreword (OK, I just couldn't resist that one), we take a look at the one-word campaign slogan the Obama team just rolled out. Now, following up "Hope" (and "Change") was always going to be a difficult task, politically. But "Forward" isn't bad, I have to admit. It conveys exactly the right tone: we're making progress, don't change horses midstream, and let's not go backwards (where Romney would take us). I'd give it about a seven out of ten, just for sheer versatility.

"Barack Obama has taken us forward from a very dire situation, and we are making progress as a country. This progress hasn't happened fast enough, but it would be crazy to turn around and head backward to the policies which caused the mess in the first place. We've got to go forward for the next four years, and not back to the Bush era. Continue the progress we are making, and look forward to the future with Barack Obama."

 

2
   Osama Bin Laden is dead

This one's a two-parter, and Joe Biden has so far been doing a great job of getting it into the news. The next two talking points really do comprise the best bumpersticker for the Obama campaign I've heard yet.

"Osama Bin Laden is dead. President Obama has done more to successfully defeat Al Qaeda in three years than was done in the previous eight. Obama promised us he would not take his eye off the ball, and he would not back away from making the tough decisions, and that is exactly what he has done. Obama has gotten us out of Iraq, and he is getting us out of Afghanistan. And he got Osama Bin Laden as well."

 

3
   GM is alive

This one is going to be the key to winning the crucial swing state of Ohio for the Obama campaign.

"Today, General Motors is alive and well. Instead of letting Detroit die -- as well as the millions of jobs which support the auto industry in other places -- Barack Obama rescued this important pillar of the American economy. Republicans were against the idea -- they sneered at it as a 'bailout.' The most astonishing thing is the cluelessness of Mitt Romney, who at the time advised that Washington just let two out of the Big Three automakers go into bankruptcy with no help -- when the credit markets were frozen solid. Romney has never explained where, exactly, the money would have come from to save Detroit if not from the federal government, which is downright astonishing because he's running on his supposed credentials of knowing how the private market works. If Detroit had followed Romney's advice, millions of jobs would have been lost -- forever. Instead, the leadership of President Obama has saved Detroit, and built an even-stronger auto industry than existed before the crisis hit. Who are you going to vote for? The man who wanted Detroit to die, or the man who saved GM? Obama bet on American manufacturing know-how, while Romney would have sold it off as scrap, and sold out the American worker."

 

4
   Unemployment getting better

This one is a tough sell, today, I realize. But the attempt must be made.

"Today's unemployment figures were a disappointment, but at least progress is being made on bringing the unemployment rate down. While 8.1 isn't good enough, it is a lot better than 9.1 or even 10 -- where it was a few years ago. We're heading in the right direction, and we would be getting there a lot faster if Republicans weren't blocking every jobs bill possible in Congress. Mitt Romney says he knows how to create jobs, but his record in Massachusetts says otherwise. Barack Obama has been steadily getting unemployment down and people back to work. We need to move forward on this front, and not backward to the times when we were losing 750,000 jobs per month."

 

5
   Gas prices coming down

This one is risky, because the prices always jump up for the "summer driving season," but the connection must be made now in people's minds.

"A few months ago, there was a large hue and cry to just go ahead and bomb Iran, from some very hawkish politicians. Due to this loose war talk, the price of gas went through the roof. Now that diplomacy is working and the war drums have died down a bit, the price of gas is beginning to come back down as well. There is a direct relationship between these two things. If Mitt Romney becomes president and the Republicans push him into a war with Iran, what price do you think we'll all be paying at the gas pump? That's a choice voters are going to have to think very hard about, come November."

 

6
   Get back to work!

Finally -- finally! -- an actual member of the mainstream media wrote the column I've been begging them to write for years, now. It's about freakin' time.

"I would like to direct attention to the recent column by Dana Milbank in the Washington Post, which pointed out that the Republicans in the House scheduled only 41 working days out of a possible 127 this year. To be fair, Democrats aren't much better. I think it's high time the people of this country got their money's worth out of congressional salaries. This is an outright disgrace. As Milbank put it: To call this 112th Congress a do-nothing Congress would be an insult -- to the real Do-Nothing Congress of 1947-48."

 

7
   Indiana tea, anyone?

OK, this one is just pure snark, I fully admit. Which is why I saved it for last. You're welcome.

"I see that the Tea Partiers in Indiana are about to 'primary' a long-term Republican senator -- and by doing so, put the seat at risk for their party. Isn't it about time to get Christine O'Donnell on the airwaves to comment on this? I really think she'd be the best personification of what a brilliant political move this is for the Republican Party, don't you?"

-- Chris Weigant

 

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

 

34 Comments on “Friday Talking Points [209] -- Anniversary Week”

  1. [1] 
    Michale wrote:

    I have to admit, I have not yet seen the hour of BriWi (as I like to call him) doing his thing.

    "BriWi"???

    That's funny... :D

    Well, yes... yes, he did. And, upon reflecting on it for a week, I'm taking a "wait and see" attitude on the subject. Yes, this is a cop-out (one that I rarely take), but there it is.

    You really HAVE to have an opinion on what President Clinton said in that ad..

    President Clinton saying so serious and solemn how bad things would have been for ***OBAMA*** if the Navy SEALS had been captured or killed..

    I mean, seriously... That transcends ALL politics and just comes down to being narcistically bad taste in the extreme...

    How bad for **OBAMA**!!???

    As far as being a decent attack on Romney?? Fuuggediboutit...

    ANY American given the option to pull the trigger on Bin Laden would have GLADLY stepped up to the plate...

    Obama insults our (REAL Americans) intelligence by trying to insinuate otherwise...

    Pelosi is from one of the most liberal districts in the country (San Francisco), so she can show leadership on this issue and it will actually help her at the polls, not hurt her. For showing such leadership, she has earned the MIDOTW this week.

    Yea, but Feds still raided pot places in Santa Barbara....

    So our MDDOTW this week goes to the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, for continuing to use government dollars in such a disgraceful fashion, due (one assumes) to outright political cowardice.

    No mention of Elizabeth Warren and her faux-Indian ancestry??? 1/32nd Indian gets you a cushy job at Harvard... Regardless of anyone who actually might DESERVE the job!!! Great ad for Affirmative Action, eh??

    What about the bone head ad writer who thought it would be totally awesome to put the ego of POTUS *before* the brave souls of SEAL Team Six???

    Grrrr.. It's rigged!! Rigged I tell ya!!! :D

    President Obama has done more to successfully defeat Al Qaeda in three years than was done in the previous eight.

    That's ONLY because Obama hasn't had to fight DEMOCRATS more than Al Qaeda, as President Bush had to do...

    Which simply proves beyond ANY doubt that Democrat's opposition to Bush and his CT policies were nothing but political obstructionism that bordered on (and sometimes CROSSED the border into) *TREASON*..

    Absolutely NO other explanation is logically possible..


    Unemployment getting better

    This one is a tough sell, today, I realize. But the attempt must be made.

    You know WHY it's a tough sale??

    Because Americans are growing smarter about what exactly is meant by the unemployment figure.. They are finding out that the THOSE LEAVING THE WORK FORCE figure is a LOT more applicable to our current dismal economy, courtesy of the Democrats.

    What?? THAT figure??? Oh it's 14.8%... Let's cheer about that, eh??

    Do you really think that Democrats want to push these figures given that Americans are finally seeing thru Obama's HOPE/CHANGE mirrors???

    Let's face it people.. This country is in the toilet and even David Axelrod is saying the choice is between a change (Romney) and the same dismal course that brought us here (Obama)...

    And, of course, we have Obama himself saying that Americans were better under Bush than they are under him...

    Probably the first thing I agreed with Obama on in a LONG time...

    Michale.....

  2. [2] 
    Michale wrote:

    For the record, the Veterans group response to Obama's silly and narcissistic Bin Laden ad will appeal MUCH more to the Independents and NPAs who will decide this election...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JsrSAqRrCc0

    It might have helped Obama if he had had at least SOME support from the actual men who went on the mission in his ad...

    But those kinds of heroes will rarely support a 'wannabe' who is a legend in his own mind...

    Michale.....

  3. [3] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Chris,

    It is so strange for a Democratic president to even be in this situation -- where he can attack Republicans from a position of strength on one of their traditional strong points, national security.

    Well, all I can say is get used to it! I hear Vice President Biden is seriously considering a run for the White House in 2016.

    Soon, no one will remember that Republicans were ever "strong" on national security.

  4. [4] 
    Michale wrote:

    Soon, no one will remember that Republicans were ever "strong" on national security.

    Actually, it's not that the concept of "strength" has been passed to another Party... It's more that what passes for "strength" these days has been redefined...

    Now, "strength" is drafting a memo telling a general to choose the time, place, and circumstances of an op, but then cover yourself politically by making it clear that, if anything goes wrong, said general will be thrown to the wolves faster than a Chinese dissident..

    When *I* was in the military, strength and leadership was defined by getting a memo that says

    "Do what you have to do to accomplish the mission. I have your back if anything goes wrong"

    Our political leaders these days wouldn't know "strength" and "leadership" if it came up and kicked them in the ass....

    Michale.....

  5. [5] 
    Michale wrote:

    As far as the alleged GOP "war on women"....

    Which is preferable??

    Pushing women to actually work, think and benefit from their own strength of character???

    Or setting it up so that they are totally dependent on the Federal Government from age 3 on up???

    http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/225553-paul-ryan-obama-julia-website-creepy-demeaning

    Take Head Start for example?? A program that is dear to our hearts, as it was where my lovely wife entered the Educational Career field...

    What would happen if Head Start WAS cut back...

    Seems to me then, that parents would actually have to take responsibility for their children and actually invest time in teaching the children themselves..

    "Oh my fucking god, what a nightmare!!!"
    -Marisa Tomeii, MY COUSIN VINNY

    Maybe if parents did that we would have more Tim Tebows and less Trayvon Martins, eh??

    I'm just sayin'...

    Forcing a population to be dependent on it's government may SEEM like compassion...

    But it's nothing more than slavery...

    Michale.....

  6. [6] 
    dsws wrote:

    Apropos of nothing in particular, the whole us-v-them dynamic stinks. Why can't politics be more about ideology, and less about group identity?

  7. [7] 
    Michale wrote:

    dsws,

    Why can't politics be more about ideology, and less about group identity?

    Simple.. Because any ideology must have a scapegoat to blind it's followers to the inadequacies of said ideology..

    Hitler used the jews, Ekosians used Zeon, Republicans use Democrats and Democrats use Republicans..

    The fortunate few are the ones who don't FOLLOW ideology (or more accurately, follow an ideology that is outside the main stream) and can therefore, see the inadequacies inherent in the system.

    But those trapped in the system?? They are force fed daily on how evil xxx is, how xxx wants to take your money and eat your babies, why xxx is bad/evil and yyy is all goodness and light...

    The first step to be free from ideology? Take a step outside the bubble and really look at the ideology with a cold, objective and logical eye.

    Michale.....

  8. [8] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    I am shocked and ashamed!!!!

    Not ONE single "May The Fourth Be With You" reference all day!!! :D

    Michale....

  9. [9] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    Not ONE single "May The Fourth Be With You" reference all day!!! :D

    we were simply waiting for cinco de mayo!

    What would happen if Head Start WAS cut back...

    Seems to me then, that parents would actually have to take responsibility for their children and actually invest time in teaching the children themselves..

    more likely, said parents would continue not caring, and their kids would grow up even less prepared for literacy and numeracy than they are already (and based on police data, be more likely to turn to crime).

    within a few years test scores would plummet and teachers would be blamed.

    That's ONLY because Obama hasn't had to fight DEMOCRATS more than Al Qaeda, as President Bush had to do...

    OR it's because obama is more competent himself OR has a more competent staff around him (this may be the most plausible, since the change from Rumsfeld to Rice preceded improvements in iraq under bush, and i don't think any of us doubt secretary clinton's credentials). OR perhaps a bit of each. but the fact is there were many options available to get bin laden, once he'd been located. president obama chose one that was high risk, and it was successful both in eliminating the most wanted man on the planet and gathering valuable intel on AQ operations planet-wide. it's a campaign, you take credit both for what you and the people who work under you have achieved. this isn't "spiking the football," it's shouting at the coach (us) to keep him in the game. whether or not the particular ad was a wise move is a different question. i still haven't seen it yet, so i can't comment to that effect.

    ~joshua

  10. [10] 
    Michale wrote:

    more likely, said parents would continue not caring, and their kids would grow up even less prepared for literacy and numeracy than they are already (and based on police data, be more likely to turn to crime).

    within a few years test scores would plummet and teachers would be blamed.

    I wish I had a logical argument to refute this gloomy assessment.

    Sadly, I don't...

    OR it's because obama is more competent himsel OR has a more competent staff around him

    Assumes facts not in evidence.

    whether or not the particular ad was a wise move is a different question. i still haven't seen it yet, so i can't comment to that effect.

    President Clinton stated how bad it would have been *FOR OBAMA* if the SEALs were captured or killed..

    That pretty much says everything that NEEDS to be said about the ad..

    Michale

  11. [11] 
    dsws wrote:

    Plunging into his campaign for a new term, President Barack Obama tore into Mitt Romney on Saturday as a willing and eager "rubber stamp" for conservative Republicans

    That sounds to me like a good talking point. It plays on Romney's main negative, which is that he doesn't seem to have any core. Or to put it positively, he's a pragmatist. He and the president both are, but Obama was smart enough to get out in front of it by introducing himself to the world with, first, his biography and, second, a bunch of high-toned rhetoric. The danger in that route is that the base can feel betrayed.

  12. [12] 
    dsws wrote:

    Oops, I left off the link to say whom I was quoting. It's from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/05/obama-2012-rallies_n_1483491.html

  13. [13] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    Obama was smart enough to get out in front of it by introducing himself to the world with, first, his biography and, second, a bunch of high-toned rhetoric. The danger in that route is that the base can feel betrayed.

    ain't no "feel" about it. the president absolutely did break his campaign promises, both general and specific, and in his case that is a betrayal. now this is perfectly normal behavior for a normal politician, but obama didn't market himself as a normal politician, he ran as an agent of change. yet as soon as he was elected, the president started to play the same game he had promised to change. the fierce urgency of now became an ominous admonition to wait - for the next term, the next election, the next opportunity.

    This "wait" has almost always meant "never."
    ~MLK2, letter from a birmingham jail

  14. [14] 
    Michale wrote:

    Joshua,

    Well said.... I couldn't have said it better.. :D

    Michale.....

  15. [15] 
    Michale wrote:

    "Stuart, don't agree with me. It just makes me doubt myself."
    -Michael J Fox, SPIN CITY

    :D

    Michale....

  16. [16] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [8] -

    You are right, and my face is red with embarrassment. I missed "Star Wars Day" this year. May the fourth be with you, indeed, even if belatedly.

    Michale [all the rest of it] -

    Two words: "Mission Accomplished." Or maybe: "Rudy Giuliani." Republicans would have a tiny, tiny shred of believability on the issue of "spiking the football" if they hadn't spent the last... oh, forty or fifty years, say ... doing exactly the same thing, with every possible chance they got.

    As for Clinton, to be technical, it's not narcissism if you're not talking about yourself. Clinton stated a fact (for proof, see: Carter, Jimmy). What's your problem? Do you not believe that fact? You really, honest to Murgatroyd, believe that the GOP wouldn't be using -- as Argument Number One -- right now that Obama had tried and failed to get OBL? Puh-leeeze.

    As for 14.8% -- that number used to be 17%, which makes the (admittedly weak) case I laid out -- things are getting better, slowly.

    Elizabeth -

    I hope you caught Biden on Meet The Press this morning. He was pretty downright awesome. Excellent points, intelligent arguments, very focused, excellent surrogate for the Obama campaign. All-around, this was one of the best Biden interviews I have ever seen. More Biden, please, out on the campaign trail!

    If you missed it, try and find the video, it's worth your time.

    dsws [11] -

    This is a good point, one I've been thinking about. I predict Monday's column will be on this subject: Romney is painted into a box of his (and his party's) own making. Check back tomorrow, same bat time, same bat channel for more of what I have to say on this.

    OK, reached the bottom of the list.

    -CW

  17. [17] 
    Michale wrote:

    No fair. You caught me right as I was hitting the sack..

    Yea, I know it's only 2010hrs, but gimme a break.. My day started at 0300hrs...

    That just gives me all night to work on my response.. It's gonna be a humdinger!! :D

    Michale.....

  18. [18] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    To Everyone -

    OK, I have something to get off my chest. I have been lax here in the comments for a while now, and it is even getting worse (I was so lax I forgot to post an article this past Thursday -- I was going to run Nancy Pelosi's whole letter, verbatim, so click the link above if you're still suffering from Thursday withdrawal).

    I apologize for this sad state of affairs, but I do have somewhat of an update. I started slacking off here, way back in August of last year, for a purpose. That purpose was to put together two chapters of a book I'd like to sell to a publisher.

    I am getting closer to the end of this particular tunnel -- which I (naively) thought would take roughly just last August to do. Eight or nine months later, I am almost done with the first draft of the second of these chapters. After a review period, I'm going to put together a second draft and start attempting to actually sell the book. I am not quite there yet, but like I said, I can at least see the light at the end of this very long tunnel.

    I'd like to thank everyone for their patience, and for putting up with substandard service here in the meantime. I am in the final push to the finish line, and therefore the next few weeks may be even spottier service.

    Which means that it's up to everyone else to keep the conversation going (read: smack Michale down every time he richly deserves it, chore though it may be), while I am too busy to do so myself. [Heh. No offense, M.]

    Anyway, I just wanted to give you folks a progress report, and to apologize once again for not being around here as much as I would like to be. Hang in there, hopefully thiings will get better within the next few months.

    And to say thanks, once again, for sticking around and being so patient with me.

    -CW

  19. [19] 
    dsws wrote:

    ain't no "feel" about it. the president absolutely did break his campaign promises, both general and specific, and in his case that is a betrayal

    Ain't no relevance in reality. People can be betrayed but not feel it, people can feel betrayed when they aren't, and people can be betrayed about one thing while coincidentally feeling betrayed about another. It's the feelings that drive the political dynamics, which are what I was talking about.

  20. [20] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Chris,

    I did see Biden today on MTP and was pleased to learn that he and Hillary will be teaming up for the 2016 campaign. Heh.

    :-)

  21. [21] 
    Michale wrote:

    Two words: "Mission Accomplished." Or maybe: "Rudy Giuliani." Republicans would have a tiny, tiny shred of believability on the issue of "spiking the football" if they hadn't spent the last... oh, forty or fifty years, say ... doing exactly the same thing, with every possible chance they got.

    While I'll give you Rudy, the "MISSION ACCOMPLISHED" incident has been so blown out of proportion.. The banner was put up by the crew of the carrier that Bush landed on. It was to denote that THEIR mission (the CBG's) had been accomplished...

    Regardless, you miss my point. *I* am a BIG fan of "spiking the football".. It serves MANY useful purposes, not the least of which is in the MWR category.. MY point was that, when Bin Laden was killed, everyone here (and Democrats out there up to and including Obama) said that "spiking the football" wasn't appropriate, wasn't a good idea, wasn't the right thing to do..

    But NOOOWWWW.... Now that Obama's re-election campaign is in the dumps, now that Obama is playing to empty venues, NOW "spiking the football" is right, appropriate and a helluva good idea...

    It's the "SUPER PACs/Citizens United are a threat to our democracy" hypocrisy all over again.

    Pure, unadulterated and unequivocal hypocrisy..

    That's my point..

    As for Clinton, to be technical, it's not narcissism if you're not talking about yourself. Clinton stated a fact (for proof, see: Carter, Jimmy).

    "I'm Barack Obama and I approved this message"

    What's your problem? Do you not believe that fact? You really, honest to Murgatroyd, believe that the GOP wouldn't be using -- as Argument Number One -- right now that Obama had tried and failed to get OBL? Puh-leeeze.

    Of course, the GOP would be using that. They would be pounding Obama into the ground with it.

    Which is absolutely NOTHING, compared to our Navy SEALS being captured or killed..

    Don't you think that THAT is a bit more important, in the grand scheme of things. More important than Obama being politically savaged??

    To put another way, would the children of those dead SEALS be thinking to themselves, "Wow.. President Obama is really getting beat up over the failed Bin Laden mission.. Poor guy.."??

    Or would they just be missing their dad terribly??

    "However, we face far, far worse if the attempt fails. If caught in Romulan territory, we and Bloodwing's crew will assuredly die. You and your ships could conceivably fight your way out again. Whatever difficulties you may have with Starfleet Command afterward, you will still be alive to have them."
    -Subcommander Tafv, STAR TREK-My Enemy, My Ally

    Let's keep things in perspective here...

    As for 14.8% -- that number used to be 17%, which makes the (admittedly weak) case I laid out -- things are getting better, slowly.

    No one denies things are getting better. A snail's pace, to be sure, but better nonetheless. But, do you think Obama would be re-elected if Americans really understood the TRUE Unemployment figure is more accurately 14.8%??

    Which means that it's up to everyone else to keep the conversation going (read: smack Michale down every time he richly deserves it, chore though it may be), while I am too busy to do so myself. [Heh. No offense, M.]

    None taken. I have been a tad miserable lately because, apparently, I am the victim of my own success... :D Or else, people around here have an acute case of ODS... Obama Disappointment Syndrome. Symptoms include CGT (Cat Got Tongue) and lack of desire to continuously defend the indefensible.. :D

    Michale.....

  22. [22] 
    Michale wrote:

    I did see Biden today on MTP and was pleased to learn that he and Hillary will be teaming up for the 2016 campaign. Heh.

    Of course, a lot can happen before 2016..

    But a Hillary/Biden team just MIGHT be able to beat the Romney/Rice administration... :D

    Michale....

  23. [23] 
    Michale wrote:

    Clinton stated a fact

    Yes, Clinton stated a fact.

    Obama WOULD have had a rough time of it, if the Navy SEALS had been captured or killed..

    But, by stating that "fact" it clearly demonstrates ANOTHER "fact".

    The "FACT" that Clinton and Obama and Democrats are more concerned about the political fortunes of their president and less concerned about the LIVES of the Navy SEALS..

    Personally, I don't think that's the kind of "FACT" that Democrats want to put out there to the Independents and NPAs of this country.

    But, maybe that's just me....

    Michale...

  24. [24] 
    Michale wrote:

    A "Highly Lawyered Memo"
    http://freebeacon.com/admin-drafted-memo-to-shield-obama-if-obl-raid-failed/

    It goes to what I said above.

    A *GOOD* leader will draft a memo that says, "Do what you have to do to accomplish the mission. I've got your back if anything goes wrong."

    That's what Lincoln did during the Civil War and that's what Eisenhower did on D-Day..

    A conniving and scheming politician will draft a memo that allows him to shift the blame if something goes wrong.

    Obama's actions were not the actions of a leader. They were the actions of a politician..

    Michale.....

  25. [25] 
    Michale wrote:

    I hope you caught Biden on Meet The Press this morning. He was pretty downright awesome. Excellent points, intelligent arguments, very focused, excellent surrogate for the Obama campaign. All-around, this was one of the best Biden interviews I have ever seen. More Biden, please, out on the campaign trail!

    Here's a different take on Biden's MTP appearance..

    Vice President Biden’s gay-marriage gaffe is mess for White House
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2012/05/07/gIQAOzFw8T_story.html?hpid=z10

    Seems like Ol' Joe has stepped into it again, making Obama's re-election harder, not easier..

    Michale.....

  26. [26] 
    Michale wrote:

    Prepare for the October Surprise, coming soon. Courtesy of Israel.

    Come Together: Netanyahu to Form Unity Government, Elections Canceled
    http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Peace/2012/05/08/Come-Together-Netanyahu-to-Form-Unity-Government-Elections-Canceled

    All I can say is, it's about frak'n time!

    Michale.....

  27. [27] 
    Michale wrote:

    House to vote on Trayvon amendment
    http://www.washingtontimes.com/blog/inside-politics/2012/may/8/house-vote-trayvon-amendment/

    It's official..

    There is absolutely NO intelligence amongst Democrats in Congress...

    Michale.....

  28. [28] 
    akadjian wrote:

    CW-

    Kudos for being one of the first I've seen to come out in favor of Obama's new slogan. I also thought it was quite well done.

    I especially like how they worked in the campaign 'O' logo into the design. From a design standpoint, it's quite well done.

    http://www.theblaze.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/obama-forward.jpg

    Best,
    -David

  29. [29] 
    Michale wrote:

    Kudos for being one of the first I've seen to come out in favor of Obama's new slogan. I also thought it was quite well done.

    The problem with "Forward" is that it has a RICH socialist history and the Republicans will make great hay about that...

    I'm just sayin'.... :D

    Michale...

  30. [30] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Republicans will make great hay about that...

    Is there anything Republicans won't make "great hay" about? :)

    -David

  31. [31] 
    Michale wrote:

    Is there anything Republicans won't make "great hay" about? :)

    Probably not...

    But that will be small consolation come 7 Nov when GOP has the House and the Senate and we have President Romney...

    Democrats don't NEED to help the GOP out in this regard, do they??

    I mean, it's like Obama standing up and saying, "If I had a son, he would look like Willie Horton."

    Why GIVE the Republicans ammunition like that??

    Why choose a slogan that has such a blatantly socialist history??

    James Carville says that this election is the Democrat's to lose..

    And they seem to be doing their damndest to do just that.

    Lose..

    Michale.....

  32. [32] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Let me put it to you this way ...

    If Democrats chose the slogan "Capitalism, God, and Puppy Dogs", conservatives would say that puppy dogs were Socialist.

    -David

  33. [33] 
    Michale wrote:

    If Democrats chose the slogan "Capitalism, God, and Puppy Dogs", conservatives would say that puppy dogs were Socialist.

    And if Republicans choose the slogan, "FREE EVERYTHING FOR EVERYONE", liberals would say that it's a racist slogan...

    If your point is that Republicans try to make everything political, you are preaching to the choir.. Democrats do the same thing..

    *MY* point is why make it EASY for Republicans?? At least make them work for it, fer christ's sake! :D

    Michale.....

  34. [34] 
    Michale wrote:

    HA!!!!!

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/blog/inside-politics/2012/may/8/democrats-withdraw-trayvon-amendment/

    I guess there still is some semblance of intelligence amongst Democrats in Congress..

    Michale.....

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