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Friday Talking Points [211] -- Good Enough For My Money

[ Posted Friday, May 18th, 2012 – 16:17 PDT ]

So, it's official. Disco is dead. The passing of Donna Summer brings to a close an era in American music that... well... if you didn't live through it, it's hard to explain. Especially the outfits people wore in public. And making John Travolta a movie star (although he did atone somewhat, by genuflecting to the 1950s immediately thereafter, in Grease).

Music history aside, it was a somewhat eclectic week in politics. The House -- in one of their rare moments when they actually meet and attempt to get something done -- passed a bunch of bills which have exactly zero chance of becoming law. Well, at least they had fun, right? Republicans were doing their usual clown routine out on the campaign trail, including questioning Obama's commitment to America and (once again) his birth certificate.

Sigh. The more things change, the more the clown makeup remains the same, I suppose. On a lighter note in clowning around, it seems arriving at a red carpet in a dog crate on top of a car is now chic. Heh.

Chicago is about to become "Protest Central" this weekend, for a meeting of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. The G-8 meeting was also supposed to have happened in Chicago, but was instead hastily whisked away to Camp David in the Maryland mountains, where popular protest is impossible (Camp David is definitely not a "free speech zone," to put it in Orwellian terms). This likely won't deflate the balloon of protest in the Windy City, but we'll all just have to see what happens over the weekend.

House Republicans passed a budget bill which hikes spending further than what they already agreed to -- yes, you read that right, Republicans are spending too much money -- because it is the one budget item that they'll never ever consider cutting: the Pentagon. They'll happily slash money for the poor, for the retired, and for the hungry... as long as we can build Ronald Reagan's missile defense system to protect us against the Soviet Union (which, someone really ought to tell Mitt Romney and the rest of the Republicans, no longer actually exists).

Americans Elect suffered a spectacular failure this week. These were the Wall Street kids who wanted to play in the big presidential sandbox, by buying ballot access in all 50 states so that they could run a "balanced ticket" of one moderate Republican and one moderate Democrat. However, it seems Americans aren't all that interested in the pipe dream of the Beltway chattering class for some sort of non-partisan "centrist" ticket, and not enough people voted online for anyone -- not even, astonishingly enough, Ron Paul -- for them to qualify for the next round of voting. C'mon, guys, just end the window-dressing attempts and go ahead and offer the ballot access you've already won (in over half the states) to Michael Bloomberg, which was really the whole reason you created this fake-grassroots movement in the first place, OK? Stop pretending you weren't going to do this anyway, and just jump in with both feet.

Enough of this looking backward, though, let's move forward to the rest of this week's nonsense.

 

Most Impressive Democrat of the Week

We've got to award an early Honorable Mention to all the folks in Wisconsin who are working hard to recall their odious governor. The matter is still very much up in the air, and the election is right around the corner. Wisconsin groups are doing the best they can with what they've got, and a story leaked out that they were a bit miffed at the lack of support from the national Democrats for their campaign. Since then, fundraisers have been announced, and support seems to now be a bit more forthcoming.

This is a big deal, not only for the people of Wisconsin, but on the national level as well. This election is going to happen long before November, and it will be read as having national implications no matter which way the chips fall. If the recall fails, Republicans will crow and push anti-worker legislation even harder at the state level. If the recall succeeds, Democrats will chalk up a huge victory (only the third governor ever recalled in American history), and feel the wind beneath their wings nationally. So it really behooves Democrats in Washington to support this effort to the hilt, because the stakes are much larger than just one state.

But we have two Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week awards this week, for Senators Chuck Schumer and Bob Casey, who introduced a populist-anger bill they charmingly titled the "Expatriation Prevention by Abolishing Tax-Related Incentives for Offshore Tenancy" Act, or (...wait for it... drumroll...) the "Ex-PATRIOT Act." This measure was introduced over the outrage at the news that one of Facebook's founders, Eduardo Saverin, renounced his American citizenship to avoid paying taxes -- right before his company was about to go public. Not only was the bill appropriately named (for once -- Democrats usually aren't so good at this sort of thing), but Schumer got off a great line explaining the bill: "Eduardo Saverin wants to defriend the United States of America just to avoid paying taxes. We aren't going to let him get away with it." Good one, Chuck -- nice use of "defriend," there. Heh.

Whether the bill succeeds or not, it was a nice political stunt to see. It's easy to work up some populist outrage against this sort of thing, because it taps into what it means to be an American -- and also the differences between how an average American views his or her citizenship and how a billionaire views the same thing. It's not only a 99% argument, it is actually a 99.99% argument. And it's not often Democrats get to push the "American exceptionalism" button in such a fashion.

Schumer and Casey's timing was excellent, too -- because Facebook is guaranteed to be the top story in today's news. If I might be allowed to mix a few metaphors, it was striking while the iron was hot and using the sparks to light a fire in some political hay.

OK, maybe that was just a little too over the top, sorry for the lapse. It won't happen again. Well, at least not until the talking points.

Seriously, though, this sort of tactic is usually used quite well by Republicans, and usually bungled when Democrats attempt it. But it has to be said, Schumer and Casey did an excellent job this time. The move by Saverin is so outrageous that it is impossible to politically defend by anyone. The only question is whether the media takes note or not.

For their efforts, and for so successfully playing this political card, Senators Chuck Schumer and Bob Casey are this week's two Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week award winners.

[Congratulate Senator Bob Casey on his Senate contact page, and Senator Chuck Schumer on his Senate contact page, to let them know you appreciate their efforts.]

 

Most Disappointing Democrat of the Week

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid apparently woke up this week and realized that the Republicans are abusing the filibuster in the chamber he is supposed to be running. Oh, sure, progressive Democrats had begged him to reform the filibuster rules back when they had a chance to -- with a simple majority vote -- over a year ago, but Harry wasn't convinced, back then. Now he has realized his mistake, and publicly said so on the Senate floor.

Well, good for you, Harry! It's a day late and a dollar short, but we always like to see people evolve in the right direction, politically. Maybe next time, you should listen a bit harder when progressive Democrats come a-knockin' at your door.

Since we can't very well hand Reid even a (Dis-)Honorable Mention for seeing the light, we will just mention it in passing and move right along.

Instead, we have to look back four weeks ago to find our Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week for this week, down in North Carolina. Back then, we handed out only a (Dis-)Honorable Mention to state party chairman David Parker. Parker was charged with badly handling a sexual harassment scandal against a state party official (not Parker himself), and the only reason he didn't get a MDDOTW was because Parker did the right thing, and handed in his resignation.

Now the news comes that the party committee who hires the party chairman actually voted to reject his resignation and reinstate him, much to the embarrassment of many Democrats -- especially those concerned with the upcoming national Democratic convention to be held in the state in only a few months' time. Parker then "unresigned" and accepted his job back.

So we've got a Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week not only for David Parker, but also for the Democratic Executive Committee of North Carolina. This is not what we need right now, folks. Parker himself, speaking to the press, summed the situation up much better than we could ever hope to do: "Well you crazy people, is this the Democratic Party or what?"

Sigh. Or what, indeed.

[Contact North Carolina Democratic Chairman David Parker on his official profile page (email address at bottom), and the North Carolina Democratic Party on their official contact page, to let them know what you think of their actions.]

 

Friday Talking Points

Volume 211 (5/18/12)

Kind of a grab bag of talking points this week. As always, these are offered up to be used by all and sundry to advance the Democrats' positions and frame the issues the way they truly should be framed. Whether you're a politician on a Sunday morning chat show or just a guy hanging around the water cooler at work, try a few of these out in the coming week.

 

1
   Home-grown austerity

This is such an obvious one, I'm actually surprised nobody else seems to have thought about it. Why use a different term for Europe and the U.S., after all?

"Republicans' plans for our economy can be summed up as more budget cuts, all the time. But you know, we have a word for that sort of thing, when talking about other countries: austerity. The Republicans want to slash budgets with a meat axe, and impose austerity measures on every part of society except the wealthiest one percent, who somehow are exempt from all of this austerity. But you know what? They should take a look at Europe and see how austerity on steroids is working for them over there. America faced the financial crisis and passed Obama's plan. Europe went all-austerity-all-the-time. Guess which economy is growing now? Ours. We don't need to travel the road Europe is traveling, but if the Republicans get all the austerity they are hoping for, that's exactly what will happen."

 

2
   Do you really want to go there, Mitt?

This one is also pathetically easy to connect the dots, one would think.

"I see that the people trying to elect Mitt Romney have been considering using Jeremiah Wright ads against President Obama. My question is: Do you really want to go there, Mitt? Do you really want to set the standard for attacks on a candidate's religion? Perhaps you are unaware of American history -- I would suggest you look up the Senate hearings on seating Reed Smoot, of Utah. A century ago, the United States Senate spent years taking 3,500 pages of testimony from 100 witnesses on every aspect of Mormonism they could think up questions to ask about. Do you really want to declare that we've returned to that era, Mitt? Personally, I thought America had evolved a bit since then, but you've already brought up Reverend Wright in an interview, so I guess you've decided that a candidate's religion is fair game. That's sad, and it's disappointing."

 

3
   Republican War on Women continues

Once again, it's not even the odious laws which place the government between a woman and her doctor, but it's just the sheer disrespect Republicans can't help but showing in the process.

"House Republicans just barred a woman from testifying in a committee, once again. This time it was a stringent abortion law they wanted to impose on the District of Columbia, and the Republicans refused to extend a common courtesy the House normally shows to their own members. The House member from D.C., Eleanor Holmes Norton, was denied an opportunity to address the committee on a law which targets her district -- even though such testimony is normally allowed. It's not so much a bunch of old men trying to get between a woman and her doctor, as it is about basic respect -- and you can bet women voters are noticing this sort of thing."

 

4
   Partisan games before women

GOP War on Women, continued....

"Instead of passing the bipartisan Senate version of the renewal of the Violence Against Women Act, the House Republicans decided to play politics with the bill instead, to water down protections for women against violence. They are putting their own partisan gamesmanship ahead of protecting women, and I find it disgusting. Every other time the VAWA came up for renewal in the past, it would garner a bipartisan vote in both houses. This time around, the Senate passed it with a large bipartisan vote. But the House Republicans would rather play politics on a version of the bill which President Obama has already said he will veto, rather than joining with their Senate Republican counterparts in putting something in this country -- anything, in fact -- before their own desire to play partisan games. Shame on them for doing so!"

 

5
   J.P. Morgan's near meltdown

Knock this one out of the park, while the iron's hot. Or, choose your own mixed metaphor -- but get this message out there.

"Republicans have been arguing for years that there's too much 'regulation' on Wall Street -- even after they almost destroyed the American economy because of little or no regulation on the insane risks Wall Street was taking. Republicans tell us over and over again 'Just let Wall Street run like a casino -- it'll be no problem, because they'll regulate themselves.' This is hogwash, and what we are witnessing at J.P. Morgan should be seen as a canary in the coal mine. The Dodd-Frank regulations that Democrats passed have not been fully implemented yet. The regulations are still being written, and at every turn Wall Street bankers and their Republican buddies have been blocking everything they can, so that commonsense rules aren't applied to them. The Republicans fighting against these rules should take a long, hard look at J.P. Morgan -- who has paid millions to lobby against the rules -- and ask themselves if that is really what they want to encourage Wall Street to do again. Wasn't one financial crash enough for them? Then why are they bending so far over backwards to facilitate another?"

 

6
   Bain-ful

The Obama re-election team fired a salvo against Romney's experience at Bain Capital this week. This is smart politics, and we are likely to see more of it soon. Romney is perceived by the public as being some sort of financial private-sector guru who knows what to do about the American economy. Obama began to launch a full-scale frontal attack on this perception, which is good news. I have to admit, the core of this particular talking point came from an excellent article by Robert Creamer at the Huffington Post.

"Mitt Romney says he knows how to create jobs because of his private-sector experience at Bain Capital. But nothing could be further from the truth. Bain is not in the business of 'creating jobs' -- they are in the business of 'creating wealth' for their shareholders. They take over a business and use accounting tricks to insure that Bain makes money no matter what happens to the company. Sometimes the company does well, and hires people. Sometimes it goes bust, and lays everybody off. In either case, Bain walks away with millions of dollars. This is the experience Mitt Romney is supposed to bring to the White House? No wonder he pals around with people like Meg Whitman, whose own company is about to lay off over 30,000 people. Do you think Meg's salary goes down one dollar for destroying these jobs under her watch? Nope. That's the world these people live in -- whether the company and the jobs survive or not, they continue to line their pockets. America simply can't afford someone with this sort of outlook in charge of our economy. It would be an unmitigated disaster."

 

7
   Good enough for me, good enough for my money

This one may cross some sort of line. Then again, it may not. Innocent deniability is the way to go, should Mitt Romney's name come up in response. You have to refrain from throwing in items like "an elevator for my cars" for this to work, however.

"I personally find it astounding that any sane person would voluntarily give up their American citizenship for any reason, and to hear someone do it just to save money is flat-out disgusting to me. These people live in a different world, apparently. They own multiple houses all over the world, they treat national borders as some sort of inconvenience, and they seek tax havens where they can live with others of the tiny fraction of the one percent who can afford such luxuries as a fluid concept of citizenship and national pride. As I said, to me this is outrageous, but then I've never had millions of dollars in a Cayman Islands or Swiss bank account, so I guess I see things differently. But I do know one thing: you could not pay me enough money to ever -- ever -- give up my American citizenship for any reason whatsoever. America's good enough for me, and it's good enough for me to keep my money in, as well."

-- Chris Weigant

 

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

 

69 Comments on “Friday Talking Points [211] -- Good Enough For My Money”

  1. [1] 
    dsws wrote:

    If a company finds a way to produce the same stuff with less labor, that's good. It makes us more competitive, and raises standards of living. Sure, it's no fun for the people whose jobs have been rendered superfluous, but efficiency isn't what causes unemployment overall.

  2. [2] 
    Michale wrote:

    But we have two Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week awards this week, for Senators Chuck Schumer and Bob Casey, who introduced a populist-anger bill they charmingly titled the "Expatriation Prevention by Abolishing Tax-Related Incentives for Offshore Tenancy" Act, or (...wait for it... drumroll...) the "Ex-PATRIOT Act." This measure was introduced over the outrage at the news that one of Facebook's founders, Eduardo Saverin, renounced his American citizenship to avoid paying taxes -- right before his company was about to go public. Not only was the bill appropriately named (for once -- Democrats usually aren't so good at this sort of thing), but Schumer got off a great line explaining the bill: "Eduardo Saverin wants to defriend the United States of America just to avoid paying taxes. We aren't going to let him get away with it." Good one, Chuck -- nice use of "defriend," there. Heh.

    I am just about to hit the sack, but I just HAVE to address this by reposting what I did a couple days ago.....


    And now, just for a change of pace, here is a DEM plan that I can fully and 1000% get behind...

    Senators to Unveil the ‘Ex-Patriot Act’ to Respond to Facebook’s Saverin’s Tax ‘Scheme’
    http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2012/05/senators-to-unveil-the-ex-patriot-act-to-respond-to-facebooks-saverins-tax-scheme/

    I am not a big fan of TAX TAX TAX, but am willing to make an exception in this case..

    Republicans would be totally stoopid NOT to get behind this...

    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2012/05/14/ridiculously-early-look-at-electoral-math/#comment-21591

    First Filibusters, now the Ex-Patriot Act.. This is becoming alarming..

    "Over a girl. Gabriel, really? I mean I knew you were slumming but I hope you didn't catch anything."
    -Lucifer, SUPERNATURAL, Hammer Of The Gods

    :D

    Michale......

  3. [3] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Personal note to tinsldr2, in case he happens by --

    I have no control over links which Huffington Post editors add to my articles. I tried to post this fact in a comment to yours, there, but I think the moderators nuked it. In any case, always check here to see what I actually wrote... and linked to... when reading my stuff at HuffPost.

    :-)

    -CW

  4. [4] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    The passing of Donna Summer brings to a close an era in American music that... well... if you didn't live through it, it's hard to explain.

    it's been said before that disco is dead, yet somehow it always seems to find its way back into the public consciousness. kind-of like richard nixon.

    agreed completely on the ex-patriot act and the ongoing war on women. i'm currently reading susan faludi's book, backlash; the undeclared war against american women, wondering about faludi's take on recent events.

  5. [5] 
    akadjian wrote:

    CW-

    I have to say that I usually agree with the Europeans on economic matters, but the austerity measures are exactly the opposite of what most economists say is needed to induce growth.

    Know this is coming from the Germans ... which seems odd to me. Especially since the Treaty of Versailles was the original austerity budget. And we know how well that worked out ... ahem, WWII. Austerity only leads to a more depressed economy.

    Great point. I vow to use this term as much as possible.

    -David

  6. [6] 
    Michale wrote:

    It's been a VERY long weekend..

    I just wanted to throw this out for discussion (especially want to hear from NYpoet) and I'll jump back into the swing of things tomorrow AM...

    http://www.theblaze.com/stories/n-c-teacher-tells-student-he-could-be-arrested-for-talking-badly-about-obama/

    Michale.....

  7. [7] 
    Michale wrote:

    OK, let's crack this new week open!! :D

    They should take a look at Europe and see how austerity on steroids is working for them over there. America faced the financial crisis and passed Obama's plan. Europe went all-austerity-all-the-time. Guess which economy is growing now? Ours. We don't need to travel the road Europe is traveling, but if the Republicans get all the austerity they are hoping for, that's exactly what will happen."

    Let's face it. Europe hasn't REALLY tried any austerity. They all gave lip service to the idea, they all agreed, "Oh yes.. THAT's what we must do" blaa blaa blaa..

    But can anyone tell me any real meaningful and effective cuts that Europeans tried??

    {{{chirrp}}} {{{chhhiiiirrrrpppppp}}}

    Zero... Zilch... Nada... None.....

    Let's face the facts. If this country doesn't reign in it's spending, if this country doesn't get Obama out of office, we're going to be Greece before the next Presidential Election..

    Do you really want to set the standard for attacks on a candidate's religion?

    Again, we have to face the facts here.. Democrats have "set the standard" for religious attacks when they attacked Romney for being mormon...

    Further, bringing Wright into the picture is NOT an attack on Obama's religion..

    It's an attack on Obama's judgement. And it's a legitimate line of questioning..

    Put it another way.. If Romney had claimed that Jim Jones or David Koresh was his "mentor", would Democrats have said such mentoring was "off limits"???

    We ALL know that Democrats would be all over that like stink on rice...

    "House Republicans just barred a woman from testifying in a committee, once again. This time it was a stringent abortion law they wanted to impose on the District of Columbia, and the Republicans refused to extend a common courtesy the House normally shows to their own members. The House member from D.C., Eleanor Holmes Norton, was denied an opportunity to address the committee on a law which targets her district -- even though such testimony is normally allowed. It's not so much a bunch of old men trying to get between a woman and her doctor, as it is about basic respect -- and you can bet women voters are noticing this sort of thing."

    Yea and the White House ignores women reporters at press conferences and the White House pays women less for the same work..

    The fact is, if one looks hard enough and long enough, they can find specific instances where women are being screwed over from BOTH Partys.

    But is that indicative of an ideological stance??

    There is absolutely NO evidence of that whatsoever.

    They are putting their own partisan gamesmanship ahead of protecting women,

    Assumes facts not in evidence.

    The Dodd-Frank regulations that Democrats passed have not been fully implemented yet. The regulations are still being written, and at every turn Wall Street bankers and their Republican buddies have been blocking everything they can, so that commonsense rules aren't applied to them. The Republicans fighting against these rules should take a long, hard look at J.P. Morgan -- who has paid millions to lobby against the rules -- and ask themselves if that is really what they want to encourage Wall Street to do again. Wasn't one financial crash enough for them? Then why are they bending so far over backwards to facilitate another?"

    "{{JP Morgan is}} one of the best-managed banks there is."
    -President Obama, 15 May 2012

    I'm just sayin'....

    "Mitt Romney says he knows how to create jobs because of his private-sector experience at Bain Capital. But nothing could be further from the truth. Bain is not in the business of 'creating jobs' -- they are in the business of 'creating wealth' for their shareholders.

    Ahem... How many people working in the Obama administration have also worked at Bain??

    Quite a few...

    I seem to recall something stones and glass houses.. I'll get back to you on that... :D

    As I said, to me this is outrageous, but then I've never had millions of dollars in a Cayman Islands or Swiss bank account, so I guess I see things differently. But I do know one thing: you could not pay me enough money to ever -- ever -- give up my American citizenship for any reason whatsoever. America's good enough for me, and it's good enough for me to keep my money in, as well.

    Attacking Romney because he is rich is ludicrous when one considers how rich Obama is...

    What *I* think is worse with Obama is how he flaunts his money in the face of every American.

    You want to say, "I never had a million dollars in a Cayman bank account"?

    Well, most Americans will say, "I never was able to take a dozen whirlwind world wide jet setting vacations"

    It's the "servants" issue all over again...

    Trying to slam Romney because he is rich w/o acknowledging Obama's wealth.. Well, there again.. Stones and glass houses...

    David,

    I have to say that I usually agree with the Europeans on economic matters, but the austerity measures are exactly the opposite of what most economists say is needed to induce growth.

    What austerity measures have actually been implemented???

    Austerity only leads to a more depressed economy.

    Well, we KNOW that an orgasm of spending doesn't help things.

    Is the economy better or worse than when Obama took office??

    What was gas per gallon when Obama took office? What was unemployment when Obama took office???

    Obama himself said Americans were better off before he took office..

    Straight from the horse's ass... er... I mean mouth...

    What more do'ya want???

    Michale.....

  8. [8] 
    Michale wrote:

    Put it another way.. If Romney had claimed that Jim Jones or David Koresh was his "mentor", would Democrats have said such mentoring was "off limits"???

    For the record, I am not equating Wright with the psychotic scumbags Jones and Koresh..

    Just so we're clear...

    Michale.....

  9. [9] 
    Michale wrote:

    Apparently, not every Democrat believes that attacking Bain is a smart way to attack Romney..

    "I have to just say, from a very personal level, I’m not about to sit here and indict private equity. To me, it’s just we’re getting to a ridiculous point in America, especially that I know I live in a state where pension funds, unions and other people are investing in companies like Bain Capital. If you look at the totality of Bain Capital’s record, they’ve done a lot to support businesses, to grow businesses. And this to me, I’m very uncomfortable with.

    The last point I’ll make is this kind of stuff is nauseating to me on both sides. It’s nauseating to the American public. Enough is enough. Stop attacking private equity. Stop attacking Jeremiah Wright."
    -Newark Mayor Cory Booker-D, Obama supporter

    I'm just sayin' :D

    Michale.....

  10. [10] 
    Michale wrote:

    Even more interesting things about the Bain attacks..

    The main impetus for Obama attacking Romney and calling Romney a "vampire" is the GST STEEL debacle..

    Ironically, Romney left BAIN two years before that happened..

    But do you know who DID lead BAIN during the GST STEEL issue??

    Jonathan Lavine was Managing Director for BAIN during the GST STEEL bankruptcy and liquidation..

    Lavine is also one of Obama's TOP bundlers...

    So, let me see if I have all of this right..

    Obama blames Romney for BAIN's GST STEEL actions, even though Romney wasn't even involved and hadn't been at BAIN for two years prior...

    Yet, Obama accepts hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from Jonathan Lavine, who was Managing Director at BAIN and had a direct hand in GST STEEL's bankruptcy???

    Seriously!!???

    So, what ya'all think??

    Ya'all think that maybe, JUST maybe, Romeny's BAIN connections is probably not the smartest line of attack for Obama to pursue???

    Stones and glass houses, people. Stones and glass houses...

    Michale.....

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    Here's Obama's problem..

    Back in 2008, Obama rode a fundraising wave made up of grassroots donations. He could afford to piss off the Wall Street crowd, because his grassroots small donations made up the difference and then some..

    But in 2012, Obama can't count on the grassroots donation. Because NOW, the grassroots KNOW what Obama is all about.. And they don't like what they see...

    So NOW, in 2012, Obama NEEDS the Wall Street crowd and the 1% crowd if he is going to have even a SMALL chance at re-election..

    Now, here's Obama's dilemma... Attacking and vilifying the "Fat Cat" bankers and the Wall Street crowd and the 1% on the public front, but then, in private, groveling to those same "Fat Cat" bankers and Wall Steet crowd and the 1%, hat in hand, begging for a handout...

    I might actually feel sorry for Obama, if he wasn't the architect of his own skullduggery...

    Michale.....

  12. [12] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    Back in 2008, Obama rode a fundraising wave made up of grassroots donations. He could afford to piss off the Wall Street crowd, because his grassroots small donations made up the difference and then some..

    Really?

    Looks like he is doing fine with grassroots support. Romney, not so much...

  13. [13] 
    akadjian wrote:

    it's been said before that disco is dead, yet somehow it always seems to find its way back into the public consciousness.

    Now Robin Gibb ... disco may be impossible to kill, but it's definitely had a bad week

    -David

  14. [14] 
    Michale wrote:

    Looks like he is doing fine with grassroots support.

    Oh, that is SOOOOO 2011..... :D

    Do you have any current figures?? Because I can quote you poll after poll after poll after poll after poll after poll after poll that shows how much trouble Obama is in with the rank and file...

    Obama has a REAL problem with the middle class.. That's because the middle class now recognizes that Obama isn't doing anything for them...

    So the Independents and NPAs are saying to themselves, "Do I vote for the guy who lied to me. spit in my face and said he would change things for me but then just bent me over?? Or do I vote for the guy who is going to screw me as well, but at least he's honest about it.."

    Well, for me the decision is easy....

    And, sad for the Democrats, I pretty much am your average Independent/NPA...

    Michale

  15. [15] 
    Michale wrote:

    Now Robin Gibb ... disco may be impossible to kill, but it's definitely had a bad week

    The curtain will truly come down when we lose Disco Stu... :D

    Michale

  16. [16] 
    Michale wrote:

    Exclusive: U.S. lets China bypass Wall Street for Treasury orders
    (Reuters) - China can now bypass Wall Street when buying U.S. government debt and go straight to the U.S. Treasury, in what is the Treasury's first-ever direct relationship with a foreign government, according to documents viewed by Reuters.
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/05/21/us-usa-treasuries-china-idUSBRE84K11720120521

    Great idea!! What could POSSIBLY go wrong with making it easier for the enemy to buy up our debt....

    Michale.....

  17. [17] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Do I vote for the guy who lied to me. spit in my face and said he would change things for me but then just bent me over?? Or do I vote for the guy who is going to screw me as well, but at least he's honest about it.

    Interesting voting criteria ...

    I myself vote for the person who stabilized the economy, kept GM in existence, killed bin Laden, and doesn't want to reinstate trickle down tax cuts to people who don't need them.

    -David

  18. [18] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [14] -

    Oh, c'mon, you're anything but "average."

    Heh. [That was a joke...]

    Actually, even Rasmussen has Obama at 50% approval today. He seems to be doing better and better as time goes on. But then the only poll that counts will be in November, right?

    -CW

  19. [19] 
    Michale wrote:

    David,

    I myself vote for the person who stabilized the economy,

    Which would you prefer?? They community organizer who "stabilized" the economy at such a crappy low level??

    Or the guy who has proven time and time again, that he can run a business??

    , killed bin Laden,

    Which would you prefer??

    The guy who fought his own countrymen as hard as the enemy to put policies in place that actually turned the tide against terrorism??

    Or the guy who road on those coattails and wrote a lawyered up memo that covered his OWN ass and left his troops' hanging out to dry (and DIE) if anything went wrong???

    My choice is clear...

    CW,

    Oh, c'mon, you're anything but "average."


    Colonel O'Neill:"What kind of archeologist carries a gun!!??"
    Daniel Jackson:"uh... I do"
    Colonel O'Neill:"..... OK.. Bad example.."

    -STARGATE SG1, Window Of Opportunity

    :D

    But then the only poll that counts will be in November, right?

    Yep, it's the ONLY poll that matters in the end...

    Michale.....

  20. [20] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    michale [6],

    the students were misbehaving and most likely trying to get a rise out of the teacher. they succeeded; apparently her opinion of the president was a sore spot. i also find it disturbing that students were secretly videotaping from their seats without consent, which is disrespectful and a violation of everyone in the room.

    all that said, the teacher's response was completely inappropriate - not because she was defending the president, but because her defense was ill-informed. she knew less on the subject than her students did, and was too proud to admit it. classroom discipline IS a valid reason to place limits on the first amendment, if the speech interferes with other students' ability to learn. however, this teacher's arguments were infantile and inaccurate. a better response on her part would have been that the student's attitude was disrespectful to her as a teacher, because it was.

    if the teacher had been thinking straight, she would have told the boy that he'd made a good point and assigned him to write a five page persuasive essay on the topic. he's entitled to his own opinions and to support those opinions with facts, but he's not entitled to dominate class discussion or disrespect his teacher (even if she is somewhat limited intellectually).

    ~joshua

  21. [21] 
    Michale wrote:

    Joshua,

    Going to address this more in detail tomorrow. Going to watch the season finale of PERSON OF INTEREST. Great show.. :D

    But I wanted to comment on one thing I thought was really odd..

    Now, I am just shy of half a century so I am probably the old fart here..

    But, in MY day, students didn't say "shit" in class.. As in, "People always talked shit about President Bush.."

    And teachers CERTAINLY didn't say "shitty" in response to a student, as in, "That's because President Bush was shitty!!!"

    Now, is that what passes for civility and debate in schools today? You're on the front lines every day.. Am I really THAT far out of touch??

    More in the AM...

    Michale....

  22. [22] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    in my class certain students do use profane language, but i don't condone it. one minor slip-up usually doesn't result in punishment (provided it is accidental), but if it persists there are consequences.

  23. [23] 
    Michale wrote:

    Obama Campaign Does Damage Control After Dems Question Anti-Bain Strategy
    http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2012/05/obama-campaign-does-damage-control-after-dems-question-anti-bain-strategy/

    WhattItellya??

    The Bain/Private Equity issue is NOT a good issue to attack Romney.

    Is it just me?? Or does many lines of attacks that the Obama campaign put forth against Romney seem to fizzle out and/or miss their mark???

    Michale.....

  24. [24] 
    Michale wrote:

    Joshua,

    in my class certain students do use profane language, but i don't condone it. one minor slip-up usually doesn't result in punishment (provided it is accidental), but if it persists there are consequences.

    OK, so generally speaking, it's not something that is acceptable behavior in today's classrooms..

    That's good to know..

    As far as this teacher, my personal opinion is that NO teacher should be imposing their views or even HAVING a view while class is in session. They are not there to have a position, they are there to teach.

    I am sure you would agree that, if a teacher would have acted like that in support of President Bush, the Left would have gone apesheet...

    Having said that, it appears the student DOES need to learn some manners and respect for authority...

    The teacher in question has been suspended...

    http://salisbury.wbtv.com/news/politics/73239-classroom-debate-over-obama-goes-viral-teacher-suspended

    Michale.....

  25. [25] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Or the guy who has proven time and time again, that he can run a business?

    The guy who's proven he knows how to run a country.

    Under President Obama, we have seen 26 straight months of private sector job growth.

    The Bain/Private Equity issue is NOT a good issue to attack Romney.

    I think it's a great issue. It shows that Romney is most concerned with short term profits, not the long term best interest of the country.

    An even better way to question Romney's economic policies is to ask him if he's for "austerity" (as CW pointed out in a previous article).

    -David

  26. [26] 
    Michale wrote:

    The guy who's proven he knows how to run a country.

    Under President Obama, we have seen 26 straight months of private sector job growth.

    In elections, perception trumps reality..

    If Obama has proven he knows how to run a country, why are his marks on the economy so low?? Why are gas prices so high? Why is unemployment so high??

    You can't cherry pick one stat and apply it to the entirety of "the economy"...

    Ask yourself. Are Americans better off now then they were before Obama?? Obama was asked that.

    "Of course Americans were better off before."
    -Barack Obama

    Yes. Obama has proven he knows how to run a country. How to run a country into the ground..

    But, let's see some shining examples of Obama's economic achievements..

    Solyndra
    Enir1
    Beacon Power

    And that's just in the "Green" Energy field..

    I think it's a great issue. It shows that Romney is most concerned with short term profits, not the long term best interest of the country.

    Did Romney have a hand in ANY of the companies that Obama have whined about??

    Nope.. Not a one.

    Ergo, Obama's attack on Romney is actually an attack on Bain and what Bain does.. IE it's an attack on the private equity business. An attack that has been repudiated by a LOT of Democrats, including Obama's own Economic Advisor who called such an attack "unfair".

    Mayor Booker called Obama's attack on Bain as "nauseating" as the GOP attacks on Wright..

    If Obama wants to scare away voters, then yes. The Bain attack is a good attack to make..

    Michale.....

  27. [27] 
    Michale wrote:

    An even better way to question Romney's economic policies is to ask him if he's for "austerity" (as CW pointed out in a previous article).

    We can do that.

    Right after we ask Obama why he is following in Greece's footsteps...

    Michale.....

  28. [28] 
    Michale wrote:

    But, let's see some shining examples of Obama's economic achievements..

    Solyndra
    Enir1
    Beacon Power

    Obama's biggest problem (well, one of them) is that he rewards political loyalty rather than actual ability.

    He doesn't make decisions based on what's best for Obama. He makes them based on what's best for Obama and Democrats..

    In that order...

    Michale.....

  29. [29] 
    Michale wrote:

    He doesn't make decisions based on what's best for Obama. He makes them based on what's best for Obama and Democrats..

    Grrrrrrrrr

    That SHOULD read:

    He doesn't make decisions based on what's best for the country. He makes them based on what's best for Obama and Democrats..

    If anyone says "Freudian slip", I shall taunt you a second time.... :D

    Michale....

  30. [30] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Are Americans better off now then they were before Obama?

    Ummm ... Obama was handed this little thing called the financial crisis.

    A crisis brought on by 1) deregulation, 2) war, 3) tax cuts and underfunding the government.

    All policies which conservatives would like to continue.

    I can understand if you don't like Obama personally, but the ideas he stands behind are the right ones. Defunding the government and giving tax breaks to rich people (the Romney plan) is not the answer.

    -David

  31. [31] 
    akadjian wrote:

    It's promising that people are starting to believe that an unfair economic system is more of a problem:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/obama-romney-in-dead-heat-on-economyobama-romney-in-dead-heat-on-economypoll-obama-romney-in-dead-heat/2012/05/21/gIQA0qKwgU_story_1.html

    BTW, Michale, the problem with Greece is "austerity".

    -David

  32. [32] 
    Michale wrote:

    On a complete unrelated note:

    Is Batman gay? Major DC Comics character to come out of the closet
    http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2012/05/22/article-2147928-133938DD000005DC-111_468x351.jpg

    Personally, I hope it's Wonder Woman :D

    Michale.....

  33. [33] 
    Michale wrote:

    BTW, Michale, the problem with Greece is "austerity".

    Assumes facts not in evidence..

    What "austerity" measures has Greece enacted?? I don't mean measures that has been talked about, I don't mean measures that might have even been voted on successfully..

    What austerity measures have actually been imposed??

    Not a one...

    No, if you want to make the argument that TALKING about austerity is not good for an economy, by all means. Make that argument..

    Greece's problem is NOT that they have to tighten their belts..

    Greece's problem is the orgasm of social program spending that has forced them to tighten their belts..

    If you make it easy for people to live off the dole, then people will live off the dole..

    Sound familiar???

    Michale....

  34. [34] 
    Michale wrote:

    If Obama is so good for this country, why did a convicted and jailed felon get 40% of the Dem Primary vote in West Virginia??

    If Obama is so good for this country, why is he only ahead by 7% in the Arkansas Primary??

    Remember, these are DEMOCRATS voting...

    I would venture to say that, in these states, Obama has a real credibility problem amongst Democrats..

    Michale.....

  35. [35] 
    Michale wrote:

    A crisis brought on by 1) deregulation, 2) war, 3) tax cuts and underfunding the government.

    All voted for enthusiastically by Democrats...

    Which doesn't change the fact that we WERE better off before Obama...

    I can understand if you don't like Obama personally, but the ideas he stands behind are the right ones. Defunding the government and giving tax breaks to rich people (the Romney plan) is not the answer

    Neither is funding incompetent companies run by political cronies..

    Nor is actions taken that make it the economic "recovery" indistinguishable from the economic depression...

    Regardless...

    If Bain attacks are legitimate attacks, then I guess you'll join me in advocating that the Obama campaign return all money, the hundreds of thousands of dollars donated and bundled by Jonathan Lavine, right?? :D

    Michale....

  36. [36] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    As far as this teacher, my personal opinion is that NO teacher should be imposing their views or even HAVING a view while class is in session. They are not there to have a position, they are there to teach.

    My mentor takes that approach. I do share my opinions, but when I do I always preface it with "This is my opinion, this is why I believe as I do, but it's not the only valid opinion. And here are some reasons why others may have opinions that disagree with mine."

  37. [37] 
    Michale wrote:

    My mentor takes that approach. I do share my opinions, but when I do I always preface it with "This is my opinion, this is why I believe as I do, but it's not the only valid opinion. And here are some reasons why others may have opinions that disagree with mine."

    If that teacher would have followed your example, it's unlikely we would be having this conversation. :D

    Michale

  38. [38] 
    akadjian wrote:

    All voted for enthusiastically by Democrats...

    Ummm ... More like shoved down their throat when conservatives held power. And when Democrats did support, ok, they shouldn't have. But they likely did because there was no political cost to them and great financial gain to be had from lobbyists.

    Under Obama ...

    Wars are winding down, deregulation has slowed if not stopped, and we're not pushing more tax cuts for rich people.

    -David

  39. [39] 
    Michale wrote:

    Wars are winding down, deregulation has slowed if not stopped, and we're not pushing more tax cuts for rich people.

    And the economy is STILL in the toilet and for your average American, it's impossible to tell a recovery from a continuing recession...

    The problem here is you want to convince me that the policies of Obama are making things better when ALL the evidence points to they're making things worse..

    Obama has pushed spending higher in 3 years than all previous presidents COMBINED!!

    On what planet in this galaxy would that be considered a GOOD thing??? :D

    Michale....

  40. [40] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ummm ... More like shoved down their throat when conservatives held power.

    Not according to Bill Clinton.. :D

    Michale.....

  41. [41] 
    akadjian wrote:

    The problem here is you want to convince me that the policies of Obama are making things better

    Not really. I don't really care about Obama one way or the other.

    I want to convince you that "trickle down" or supply side economics has been a disaster. It's gutted our middle class. It's crashed our economy. And it's heading us in the direction of other 3rd world countries.

    Under anyone. I would vote for Grover Norquist if he came out against trickle down economics (and I could believe him :)

    -David

  42. [42] 
    Michale wrote:

    I want to convince you that "trickle down" or supply side economics has been a disaster. It's gutted our middle class. It's crashed our economy. And it's heading us in the direction of other 3rd world countries.

    OK, so we are agreed.. Bush's policies didn't work and Obama's policies aren't working.

    So, maybe what we need is a businessman. Someone who has proven he can successfully run a business, but who HASN'T been tainted by Beltway Politics..

    Hmmmmmmmm

    Who would fit that bill?? :D

    Michale.....

  43. [43] 
    akadjian wrote:

    OK, so we are agreed.

    No ... do you really have to twist words? We're just talking here. Didn't realize you were that desperate.

    who HASN'T been tainted by Beltway Politics.

    Romney ... not tainted by Beltway politics ... hhahahahahahhhahahah. Romney? First name ... Mitt?

    The guy who was born into Beltway politics?

    Who would fit that bill?? :D

    Well, it's getting a little cheese-y around here w/ all the Romney love.

    Good luck w/ your anti-Obama crusade, Michale!

    -David

    Now I know you're willing to say anything to unelect Obama.

  44. [44] 
    Michale wrote:

    Not really. I don't really care about Obama one way or the other.

    Sorry. I thought that constituted "agreement"...

    Well, if you can't acknowledge that Obama is part of the problem and NOT part of the solution, I am not sure where to go from here...

    Now I know you're willing to say anything to unelect Obama.

    Who said anything about "un elect"ing Obama. Who do you think I am?? Some Hysterical Lefty circa Gore/Bush?? :D

    If I wanted to "un-elect" Obama, I would ask you to explain why, in 2007, Obama himself said he was born in Kenya???

    No.. I don't want to "un-elect" Obama.

    I simply want to make sure that, after 20 Jan 2013 Obama is not in any position to harm this country more than he already has...

    Obama has NOT been good for this country. On that, there can be no debate. Sure, you can cherry pick one or two pluses (DADT come to mind), but overall, the evidence is clear..

    Obama has been worse for this country than Carter..

    And THAT says a lot...

    Michale.....

  45. [45] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Let's just take Obama out of it for a second.

    What is the problem and solution you're talking about?

    I assume it has something to do with the economy. But what do you think the solution is?

    -David

  46. [46] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Is it unemployment? Is it globalization? Is it wages?

  47. [47] 
    Michale wrote:

    I assume it has something to do with the economy. But what do you think the solution is?

    My solution is a simple and sound economic principle...

    ***STOP DIGGING!!!***

    Stop trying to dig our way out of a financial hole. It's not possible.

    What's going to happen is we'll continue digging and digging and digging until.. guess what??

    We find ourselves in China.. Figuratively ***AND*** literally....

    We simply HAVE to curb the spending..

    Over TWO YEARS in unemployment??!!?? SERIOUSLY!!??

    The Leviathans are running things and fattening up the American people so they are too lethargic to care as they are being lead into the slaughter houses...

    Michale....

    Michale.....

  48. [48] 
    akadjian wrote:

    My solution is a simple and sound economic principle. ***STOP DIGGING!!!***

    Ok, so what is this the solution to? The deficit?

    -David

  49. [49] 
    Michale wrote:

    Top Obama Donor Tied to Bain Layoffs
    http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2012/05/top-obama-donor-tied-to-bain-layoffs/

    Are you SURE that Obama's Bain attacks are the right way to go??? :D

    Michale.....

  50. [50] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ok, so what is this the solution to? The deficit?

    It's a solution to the orgasmic spending that is putting this country deeper and deeper in debt...

    Wouldn't you agree??

    Michale.....

  51. [51] 
    akadjian wrote:

    It's a solution to the orgasmic spending that is putting this country deeper and deeper in debt. Wouldn't you agree?

    Sure. One solution. Let's look at the pros and cons without all the "adjectives".

    Pros
    ----
    - Government saves money
    - Deficit reduction (assuming we don't spend elsewhere, like on another war)

    Cons
    ----
    - Economy contracts
    - Unemployment rises
    - Tax revenues decrease

    There's a big downside to this as the only "solution". You don't grow an economy by cutting spending.

    I think the bigger problem is, and you mentioned this before, how do we improve the overall economy. This includes reducing unemployment and creating jobs.

    The only way this happens is if we can grow the economy. And the way to do this is through investment. It doesn't necessarily have to be government investment, it could be incentives to the private sector. Economics 101: you hire when there's increased demand.

    -David

  52. [52] 
    Michale wrote:

    The only way this happens is if we can grow the economy. And the way to do this is through investment. It doesn't necessarily have to be government investment, it could be incentives to the private sector. Economics 101: you hire when there's increased demand.

    OK, I think I am with you so far...

    So, let me ask you..

    Would more taxes and more regulation create more demand??

    No...

    Would more taxes and more regulation be an incentive for the private sector to hire more??

    Again, no...

    So, it seems to me (and you know I am a self-admitted economic dullard) that the idea is to give the private sector MORE incentive to do what's good for the economy...

    But more/higher taxes and more/stricter regulation would seem to me to do just the opposite.

    It seems to me that the current administration is looking to increase the government sector at the expense of the private sector..

    Once you get the public hooked on the government dole (The Julia Story) then you incentivalize the public to vote for the Party that will pay your mortgage and put food on your table, not realizing you are simply a slave to the system..

    Michale.....

  53. [53] 
    Michale wrote:

    Basically, I am saying that I don't know WHAT to do to get the economy going again..

    But, the current administration has clearly shown us what NOT to do....

    Michale...

  54. [54] 
    Michale wrote:

    A poll taken in Arkansas' fourth congressional district shows less than half of Democratic voters (45%) support Obama. Thirty-eight percent said they back Wolfe and 17% are undecided.
    http://www.policymic.com/articles/8657/arkansas-primary-results-live-can-john-wolfe-beat-barack-obama

    There is a REASON for that...

    Michale.....

  55. [55] 
    Michale wrote:

    Joshua,

    My mentor takes that approach. I do share my opinions, but when I do I always preface it with "This is my opinion, this is why I believe as I do, but it's not the only valid opinion. And here are some reasons why others may have opinions that disagree with mine."

    I think this issue is indicative of a much larger problem.. Bigger than a smart-assed student or an ignorant teacher..

    It would be easy to write this teacher off as some loony hysterical Obama supporter, an isolated case.

    But I think she is actually indicative of a typical Obama supporter.. It's been my experience that Obama supporters (present company excepted, of course. :D ) have a fact blind spot when it comes to Obama.

    Their view is that any fact that doesn't support Obama simply cannot be a fact at all..

    It's like the old Soviet Union and how the diagnosed crazy people. If you wanted to leave the Soviet Union, you MUST be crazy, so off to the Gulag you went...

    It's the same with the majority of Obama supporters.. They have an almost religious zeal over Obama that reminds me of the most devout religious fanatics...

    As we get closer to the election and Obama's defeat becomes more and more evident, we're going to see people like this Tanya Neely coming out of the woodwork.

    It ain't gonna be pretty...

    Michale.....

  56. [56] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Would more taxes and more regulation be an incentive for the private sector to hire more?

    The biggest variable in hiring is demand.

    Regulation may play a bit of a role because you may need more people to meet regulatory requirements. This would tend to increase hiring.

    Tax cuts are not a big variable in hiring. You don't hire just because you have more money. You only hire when you need to meet additional demand.

    So to answer your question: More taxes and more regulation would not be an incentive to hire. Neither would less taxes and less regulation. Taxes and regulation are not key variables in hiring. Demand is.

    It seems to me that the current administration is looking to increase the government sector at the expense of the private sector.

    Perhaps Obama would like this, but it hasn't happened. Federal government has been steady and overall public sector jobs are down 2.6% during his Presidency.

    http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/01/06/under-obama-a-record-decline-in-government-jobs/

    Basically, I am saying that I don't know WHAT to do to get the economy going again.

    Well, there's a couple of places to look. What's worked in the past and what economists would increase demand.

    But I'm afraid you're not going to like these solutions.

    I'm all for more efficient government and less regulations when they make sense, but these things aren't going to do much to increase demand.

    -David

  57. [57] 
    Michale wrote:

    So to answer your question: More taxes and more regulation would not be an incentive to hire. Neither would less taxes and less regulation. Taxes and regulation are not key variables in hiring. Demand is.

    OK.. So, then we're back to the first part of my answer/question.

    How would increased taxes and stricter regulation create demand??

    I'm all for more efficient government and less regulations when they make sense, but these things aren't going to do much to increase demand.

    Hmmmmmmm So, let's think about this.

    What would increase demand??

    More disposable income for the middle class..

    But the middle class is made up predominantly of small business owners.... They can't make their income disposable because they are worried about the costs of increased taxes and increased regulation...

    So, increased taxes and increased regulation equals LESS disposable income..

    And LESS disposable income equals LESS demand..

    I think we're on to something here!! :D

    Michale.....

  58. [58] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    But the middle class is made up predominantly of small business owners.... They can't make their income disposable because they are worried about the costs of increased taxes and increased regulation...

    that's why the increased taxes and regulation need to be only on the multinational mega-corporations that use their size to leverage an unfair advantage over their smaller, local competition.

  59. [59] 
    akadjian wrote:

    What would increase demand?? More disposable income for the middle class.

    On this point I'd agree. Disposable income for the middle class would probably do the most for the economy.

    So then the question is ... what's the best way to increase middle class disposable income.

    Option 1- Give them a tax break. First, we'd need to make sure that this tax break is just for the middle class and below. The wealthy would not spend additional money.

    Option 2- Invest in public sector infrastructure improvements that benefit all. Technology would be my favorite here. Space. Energy. Transportation. Science. Lead the world again. This would be a great deal for everyone as we wouldn't just be handing people money, we would be investing it in projects which would have significant returns. So not only would you get additional spending, but that spending would lead to businesses which would be able to demand premiums in the marketplace. Think our space program. Think the Internet. Think Silicon Valley. Think about how so much of our once leading edge technology was led by public sector spending.

    Option 3- Create a different incentive structure so that the private sector would do what I recommended in Option 2

    I don't know what this would look like. But this is the problem with most of the private sector right now. They are not willing to take risks. They find it easier to create monopolies and influence the government to right favorable legislation in their favor then to take risks.

    To me, we'd get the most bang for our buck from Option 2 or 3. My worry with Option 3 is that the right incentive structure would need to be established so companies couldn't focus on short term profits and game the system. But I think it could be done.

    Now to the tricky part. How to pay for it. Basically we have 3 options: make cuts to the government, find additional revenues, or borrow more money.

    Cutting government spending will reduce demand so this is my least favored option. I would rather not increase borrowing though this could be a short term possibility. If we, however, raised taxes on the very wealthiest, those who don't need any more disposable income, we could pay for more investment. You might say, but aren't the wealthy investing? Good point ... but the types of investments they're putting money in are short term investments designed to simply make them more money. They're not long term infrastructure investments which would benefit the entire country. Including the wealthy.

    Basically, the wealthy right now, or a large segment of them, are using their significant leverage to do things that aren't good for the entire country but are good for them. Like lowering wages and benefits for workers- both of which will reduce disposable income.

    I think we should consider all options. I just know that those at the top are going to spend a lot of money fighting to keep some of these options off the table.

    -David

  60. [60] 
    Michale wrote:

    Joshua,

    that's why the increased taxes and regulation need to be only on the multinational mega-corporations that use their size to leverage an unfair advantage over their smaller, local competition.

    But that's not what the Left is pushing for. The plan is to tax anyone who makes over $250K per year...

    And that will hit the small business owners the hardest...

    David,

    I don't know what this would look like. But this is the problem with most of the private sector right now. They are not willing to take risks. They find it easier to create monopolies and influence the government to right favorable legislation in their favor then to take risks.

    But ask yourself. **WHY** is the private sector afraid of taking risks??

    I agree that option 2 is the best way to go as well. But the problem here is that the Obama administration is not incentivizing companies that have a real chance to do some real good..

    The administration is pushing billions and billions of dollars to companies that are politically loyal, NOT companies that have the best shot at making things better..

    And THAT is why our economy is not recovering as fast as it should..

    Basically, the wealthy right now, or a large segment of them, are using their significant leverage to do things that aren't good for the entire country but are good for them.

    Change "the wealthy" to "Democrats" and your statement is ALSO true...

    I think we should consider all options. I just know that those at the top are going to spend a lot of money fighting to keep some of these options off the table.

    I couldn't agree more...

    Where we disagree is that I see that those "people" at the top as the problem.

    Ya'all only see that the REPUBLICAN people at the top as the problem...

    You are always fond of saying that this isn't a Left v Right issue and on THIS particular topic, I agree with you completely...

    The problem is that the people in power who are making these decisions are the ones who want things to stay the way they are...

    Which brings us back to the idea that the Obama administration is part of the problem and not part of the solution??

    Will Romney do better?? Unknown... But being an unknown didn't seem to bother America when they elected Obama...

    Could Romney do worse?? Doubtful...

    So, until there is some hard concrete evidence that Romney will do worse then Obama, I think the choice is clear..

    In this particular case, the Devil we DON'T know is the better bet than the Devil we know.

    Because it's all but certain that this country won't survive another 4 years of the Devil we know.

    That's my story and I'm stickin' to it. :D

    Michale.....

  61. [61] 
    Michale wrote:

    Looks like "Uncommitted" got over 40% (42.1%) in the Kentucky Democrat primary.. Obama got under 60% (57.9%) of the vote.

    How bad does THAT sting, eh?? You run against "None Of The Above" and you can't get more than 60% of the vote.

    Where's Brewster when ya need 'im! :D

    Arkansas doesn't look much better for Obama. Unknown John Wolfe garnered 41.53% of the vote and Obama got 58.43% of the vote. About the ONLY good thing that could be said for Obama is that at least his opponent wasn't a convicted felon languishing in jail...

    Things aren't looking so good for the Home Team, eh??

    Michale....

  62. [62] 
    Michale wrote:

    I'll tell ya'all one thing..

    Considering what the Democratic Party is going to do to the voters in Arkansas, there better not be a peep, not one peep from the Left on how the Right disenfranchises voters.

    Not ONE peep...

    Michale.....

  63. [63] 
    akadjian wrote:

    I agree that option 2 is the best way to go as well. But the problem here is that the Obama administration is not incentivizing companies that have a real chance to do some real good.

    Interesting ... I didn't expect that.

    You realize of course that in the eyes of the Tea Party or Ayn Randian conservatives, any belief in government solutions at all would make you a "socialist".

    Not that I think this would bother you, but I think many here would find it surprising given how conservative they think you are :).

    Where we disagree is that I see that those "people" at the top as the problem.

    We actually agree on this as well. I think we just disagree as to what the "people at the top" means.

    -David

  64. [64] 
    Michale wrote:

    Interesting ... I didn't expect that.

    "I'm just a fly in the ointment, Hans. A monkey with a wrench."
    -John McClane, DIE HARD

    :D

    You realize of course that in the eyes of the Tea Party or Ayn Randian conservatives, any belief in government solutions at all would make you a "socialist".

    Yea, well. I have been called much worse. :D

    Not that I think this would bother you, but I think many here would find it surprising given how conservative they think you are :).

    Troo dat! :D

    We actually agree on this as well. I think we just disagree as to what the "people at the top" means.

    I think we disagree as to the make up of the people at the top..

    I view them ALL as politicians and, as such, they are part of the problem, not part of the solution..

    "The only good politician is a politician without political power."

    An old saying that I just made up. :D

    Michale....

  65. [65] 
    akadjian wrote:

    I think we disagree as to the make up of the people at the top. I view them ALL as politicians and, as such, they are part of the problem, not part of the solution.

    Yup. I view them as a select group of the 1% who believe they can buy our government. It's not everyone in the 1%, but those who are using their money to write laws which make them more money. Politicians, while easy to hate, just do what politicians do.

    My 2 cents anyhoo ...

    -David

  66. [66] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yup.

    There's been entirely TOO much agreement around here lately..

    Either ya'all are coming around to my point of view, or I am coming around to ya'all's point of view.

    Either way, it's scary... :D

    Michale.....

  67. [67] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Either way, it's scary... :D

    Indeed ... :)

  68. [68] 
    Michale wrote:

    Judicial Watch Obtains DOD and CIA Records Detailing Meetings with bin Laden Raid Filmmakers
    http://www.judicialwatch.org/press-room/press-releases/13421/

    Takes "spiking the football" to a whole new level..

    I guess Obama was hoping for an October Release of THE DAY OBAMA GOT BIN LADEN...

    I wish I could say I am surprised..

    Michale.....

  69. [69] 
    Michale wrote:

    Pakistan doctor tied to bin Laden hunt sentenced
    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/05/23/MNPC1OMJG9.DTL

    Apparently, Obama & the Democrats were too busy spiking the football and talking about how bad things would have been *FOR OBAMA* had things gone wrong, to take time out to actually PROTECT our assets in Pakistan.

    Ya know... The people who actually risked SOMETHING besides political clout.. :^/

    Michale.....

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