Mendacious Mitt and Lyin’ Ryan…now frantically move to the middle, so that they will not appear to be so extreme. Simple advise to the Democrats: Don’t engage them about what they are now saying their policies are. Tie them to them to the concrete facts that cannot be denied. Tie them to their platform, and tie them to bills approved by the house and state legislatures controlled by Republicans.
First, Democratic speechwriters and candidates should know the Republican National platform chapter and verse. It is a MANIFESTO for all Republicans anywhere, and it is the blessed product of those who are currently in, or who aspire to be in the U.S. Congress. That manifesto will control what is put forth for legislation, and as the powerful Grover Norquist has said, “The Congress will control the policy agenda. All that they need is someone with enough opposable disgits to hold a pen to sign legislation.” Does he not understand how the congress is held in contempt?
Second, understand that the Republicans have held the WHOLE COUNTRY hostage…not just during and since the debt ceiling talks. They have done it since the day the president was innaugurated! Books have been written, and participants do not refute, that their strategy has been to deny this administration ANY politcal or legislative success. They should be ashamed.
Remember, the Republican congress has only a 12% approval rate, and if Romney wins, they WILL DO JUST WHAT THEY SAY THEY WILL DO. They will pass legislation that the American public despises! We can trust the Republicans to be just what they say they are, and the public needs to know it.
Most people cannot comprehend the voter suppression efforts, as orchestrated by new ID laws, court challenges, attacks on the League of Women Voters, Acorn, etc. These Republicans have passed vaginal probe ultrasound bills and laws declaring a fertilized egg to be a person. Yet they do not acknowledge global warming, the need for green energy, road building, etc. People cannot believe Republicans would really pass such legislation! But they have, they will, and a President Romney will sign it! He has just enough opposable digits!
There is no doubt that Mitt Romney is a well skilled, very smooth liar on the debate stage. It vexed his Republican challengers and it astonished President Obama and the rest of the thinking public during their first debate. So what to do about it?
The first thought is to prepare a brief, but finely tuned assault, that would simply list the “top ten” postions that Romney changed just for the debate or outright lied about. It may well be that it was beneath the dignity of the office for the president to have to do this, but that could, in itself, be used as a way to demonstrate that Romney is not up to the office.
After Ryan’s convention speech, he was widely regarded as Lyin’ Ryan. Now Mitt repeats the tactic in the first debate…Mitt the Mendacious. It does no good to attack the press for not fact checking, most journalists are content to simply repeat what has been said without vetting for veracity.
It might work, however, for Democrats to repeatedly ask the public to do their own fact checking. Most people will not take the time, but repeatedly hearing that it is their duty and obligation to do so, might cement the notion that this “victory” came totally at the expense of honesty. It could be used to lock in the notion that is it NOT RIGHT for a Republican candidate to run hard right then change or lie about positions at the last minute. It should be drummed relentlessly, that if we accept that type of campaign, then that’s the type of representation we receive.
But there are other ways, too! From now until the end of the campaign, the President and all democrats should tie their Republican opponents to two things…absolutely incontrovertible and totally indefensible. The first attack should TIE EVERY REPUBLICAN CANDIDATE TO THEIR PLATFORM. No matter how shifty Romney is, his party, his base ADHERE TO THEIR PLATFORM, and they WILL enact it into law if given a chance…even if Romney suddenly decides to become a democrat!
The second strategy should be to tie Romney and all other Republicans to the actual positions of the party members and the real devastation caused by this Republican congress. From legitimate rape, to comments that evoluton is an idea straight from hell, to comments about slavery being good for America, to climate change deniers, the war on women, the suppression of voters, holding the nation hostage during the debt crisis…these ideas are NOT popular with thinking people. But most importantly, the reality of these positions cannot be denied. The platform is fact. Democrats should use it as a bludgeon.
For some reason, it seems like President Obama and the Democrats have largely ignored the role the congressional Republicans have played in sabotaging his agenda and the American people along with it. They decided the day he was inaugurated to deny him ANY legislative victories that might enable him to have an easier road to re-election. I think we should be talking about it.
I’m sure the president of the United Statets does not want to appear to be weak or a whiner. Nevertheless, just as the house Republicans held the nation’s credit rating hostage during the debt ceiling fiasco, they have held the entire nation hostage for nearly two years. When they criticize the president for his failed policies, people should know that it is the Republican house whose policies of austerity we have followed.
Damaging the presidency is equivalent to damaging the entire country and its citizens. I am not talking about legitimate differences of opinion on specific policy matters here. House Republicans have consistenly voted against (or failed to even allow a vote) on policies they have previously held dear.
Destroying the president, and hurting the entire country along with him is certainly NOT PATRIOTIC! Intentionally weakening the nation is closer to treason.
The entire nation witnessed the Repulican party nearly self-destruct over the debt ceiling debate several months ago. For seemingly the first time, the Dems accused the GOP members of the house of holding the nation hostage, attempting to extort unrelated concessions for a vote to approve the debt limit that previously approved spending bills required. The GOP threatened the nation (and the world) with a U.S. default on its debt.
The Republicans did not deny their tactic. Many Tea Party types are running on platforms of TOTAL non-cooperation with Democrats, until they get their way. Oddly, they talk incessantly about the founding fathers, but fail to recall that from its earliest days, the government utilized deficit spending, borrowed from other nations and taxed its citizens to raise necessary revenues.
What I do not understand is why no one discusses the fact that REPUBLICANS HAVE BEEN HOLDING THE ENTIRE NATION HOSTAGE FOR 3 1/2 YEARS. Republicans believe that if the economy of the nation collapses, President Obama will be blamed for it and will not win a second term. Mitch McConnell and others have said as much many times. They are sabotaging the national economy, holding our citizens, our children our workers hostage…they will not do what is obviously needed until a Republican sits in the oval office. How cynical. How despicable. Why doesn’t anyone call them out? Putting party before country is simply WRONG.
How much better would the economy look if we were not laying off public sector workers. How many more would be working today would if we would rebuild our roads and bridges. The Republican House would not even take up the President’s jobs bill. Yes, we’re all hostages.
And make no mistake, if Romney wins, it will only get worse. Republicans hate to talk about Europe, because we are so superior, but the Europeans have benn doing just what the Republicans want to do regarding austerity and spending cuts. The result is economic and political suffering, loss and instability. Economic repair does not work without a well rounded mix of stimulus, taxes and cost cutting.
No Republican president has been able to balance a budget on tax cuts alone. Do the math, it has never worked. It is a fallacy to think it can succeed now. By all means, balance the budget, but RAISE REVENUES ALONG WITH SPENDING CUTS. That’s the only way to set this straight. Be leaders and real patriots, not snake oil salesmen.
And to the lame stream media…how about doing your jobs and reporting the COMPLETE SABOTAGE OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE BY THE REPUBLICAN PARTY THAT GUIDES OUR NATION AS FIDUCIARIES. It’s despicable; almost treasonous.
The senseless shooting and murder of Trayvon Martin has been haunting and troubling me terribly…and this is but a one-off. In the U.S. for the month of February alone, there were four major school shooting incidents resulting in deaths. From Columbine to Virginia Tech, from Sanford, FL to homes and city streets all over the country, how long must this go on?
Apparently, we like our children, but we LOVE OUR GUNS MORE. Really? Stand your ground laws as an excuse to to stalk, chase and then murder? Really? The right to carry arms to public events and political events. Really?
NRA be damned. Constantly expanding Second Amendments rights with no regard for outcomes or the safety of our children is as obscene as the tragedy that Trayvon’s Martin’s family must endure.
This is not about gun rights. It is about the firearms industry. Rein in the NRA and take their money (its power) out of politics! Limit “right to carry” and “stand your ground” laws. The U.S. firearms industry can not sell enough weapons or make enough money to bring these children back.
Maybe I’m too lazy to be a pundit or a reliable author of liberal talking points. In what seemed like the blink of an eye, months have gone by since my last post. So perhaps I will focus on brief talking points rather than more lengthy pieces from now on.
Getting back to business, like most everyone else, I have been at once captivated and horrified by what I hear from the Republican candidates…obviously, a race to the right and from there to the bottom. I keep asking myself, “Why are Republicans so very unhappy with their frontrunner?”
Independents, and other folks of good will…including moderate Republicans, should make no mistake. The ENTIRE Republican Party is playing to, and in the pocket of, the so-called Tea Party…angry, angry people who would rather vent and rant than govern. The Tea Party ABHORS compomise. The Tea Party LOVED the debt limit crisis, becasue it empowered them, and let them show their anger and contempt for the courtesies, compromise and civilty required for governing.
So Republicans now play to the most angry and irrational of their constituents, who HATE the very idea that Mitt Romney because he might one day even consider compromise. They want what they want. PERIOD. To hell with science, economics, mathematics, the future. They have been throwing tantrums ever since the day the President took the oath of office.
The Tea Party and its Republican lackeys WANT WHAT THEY WANT with no thought for the real life consequences. None of President Obama’s compromises were acceptable either, because they want it ALL. Not just a fair deal or good compromise. They want it all, and they cannot abide a candidate who will not promise them everything they want…and with a vehement, angry conviction.
God help us if they win. We’ll need it.
Commentary: Political Parties are the Problem in America
by Bill King
Watching the shameful spectacle in our nation’s capital masquerading as a national government, I cannot help but be reminded of George Washington’s dire warning about political parties.
In his farewell address to the nation, Washington forcefully warned the country that “political parties serve to organize faction, to give it an artificial and extraordinary force; to put, in the place of the delegated will of the nation the will of a party, often a small but artful and enterprising minority of the community (resulting in) ill-concerted and incongruous projects . . . they are likely . . . to become potent engines, by which cunning, ambitious, and unprincipled men will be enabled to subvert the power of the people and to usurp for themselves the reins of government.”
I cannot imagine a more prescient description of our nation’s sorry state of affairs.
What makes the situation more infuriating is that 70 to 80 percent of Americans think the federal deficit should be reduced by cutting expenses a lot and raising taxes a little.
Why is it, then, that Congress continues to defy the will of the American people? It’s actually pretty simple. The minority who believe the deficit should be solved either by solely cutting expenses or raising taxes are the voters who dominate the primaries of the Democratic and Republican parties. It is these voters who give us nothing but ideologues, incapable of compromise.
For meaningful change, we’re going to have to return to the Founders’ view of political parties. Instead of being proud to be associated with a political party, it should be an embarrassment. After the debacle with the supercommittee, that sentiment should not be much of a stretch.
Bill King writes for the Houston Chronicle.
From The Detroit News: http://detnews.com/article/20111201/OPINION01/112010330/Commentary–Political-parties-are-the-problem-in-America#ixzz1fKnrYaFp
I certainly did NOT expect to be touting a Republican politician in this political environment, but Just a couple of days ago, Senator Tom Coburn released a report which was stunning to me. Though he did not call for tax increases per se on the wealthy, he certainly lined right up with Warren Buffet and many of the 99% as he called out business as usual in Washington for subsidizing the lifestyles and excesses of the very wealthy. Below is an excerpt from his Senatorial website.
(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK) today released a new report “Subsidies of the Rich and Famous” illustrating how, under the current tax code, the federal government is giving billions of dollars to individuals with an Annual Gross Income (AGI) of at least $1 million, subsidizing their lavish lifestyles with the taxes of the less fortunate.
“All Americans are facing tough times, with many working two jobs just to make ends meet and more families turning to the government for financial assistance. From tax write-offs for gambling losses, vacation homes, and luxury yachts to subsidies for their ranches and estates, the government is subsidizing the lifestyles of the rich and famous. Multi-millionaires are even receiving government checks for not working.
“This welfare for the well-off – costing billions of dollars a year – is being paid for with the taxes of the less fortunate, many who are working two jobs just to make ends meet, and IOUs to be paid off by future generations. We should never demonize those who are successful. Nor should we pamper them with unnecessary welfare to create an appearance everyone is benefiting from federal programs,” Dr. Coburn said.
These billions of dollars for millionaires include $74 million of unemployment checks, $316 million in farm subsidies, $89 million for preservation of ranches and estates, $9 billion of retirement checks, $75.6 million in residential energy tax credits, and $7.5 million to compensate for damages caused by emergencies to property that should have been insured. All and all, over $9.5 billion in government benefits have been paid to millionaires since 2003. Additionally, millionaires borrowed $16 million in government backed education loans to attend college. On average, each year, this report found that millionaires enjoy benefits from tax giveaways and federal grant programs totaling $30 billion. As a result, almost 1,500 millionaires paid no federal income tax in 2009.
Finally, a Republican who will at least share the same set of facts that the rest of us use. If only there were more…how much better off would we all be.
I was so distraught at the outcome of the 2010 elections, that I have barely been able to even think about getting active politically again. However, there is so much at stake that I guess it’s time to get busy again.
The Republican Party has lost its way, or perhaps its collective mind and has been hijacked by the Tea Party, which is very much out of sync with the majority of Americans and suffering from too much of the Rush Limbaugh Kool-Aid. Propaganda and intransigence are not substitutes for facts and consensus building in a democracy.
So I intend to get back to work again, writing more frequently, focusing on finding expressive language to explain what I believe is really going on and trying to frame discussion according to my own perspective. In addition, I have invited a friend, Bryan Schefman, to submit his very clear and articluate thoughts several times a week. Democtrats STILL need help framing issues and developing powerful labels and talking points.
Hopefully, we can add something to the conversation and move the dialog forward.
I’m going off topic for moment here, but in another sense, maybe this little comment will turn out to be right on track.
I just read that the Justice Department will be appealing the recent Federal District Court judge’s ruling that effectively strikes down “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” What the heck is THIS all about? I’m a loyal democrat and a life-long liberal (I refuse to cowed into referring to myself as a progressive), but I confess; I don’t understand this decision at all! I’m confused, and if I’m confused, I assume most people are, too.
I’m angry, and I’m disappointed. I feel this way, not so much because I feel the urgency for immediate change, but because the DEMOCRATS’ MESSAGING IS SO SCREWED UP! Is the president for or against DADT? Does the Justice Department report to him, Does it consult on policy, or what? It’s like saying Obama was against DADT before he was for it, but don’t worry, he’ll be against it again. Maybe.
Is it asking too much for the President of the United States, his administration and his party to settle on a message, adhere to it, repeat it and speak with one unified voice? The Dems messaging is an unqualified disaster, and, frankly, heads should roll.
More messaging failures…here’s a quote lifted from today’s “First Read” by NBC…
The New York Times has this nugget: “Calculations by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office and other independent fiscal experts show that the $1.1 trillion cost over the next 10 years of the Medicare prescription drug program, which the Republican-controlled Congress adopted in 2003, by itself would add more to the deficit than the combined costs of the bailout, the stimulus and the health care law.” And here’s Bloomberg: The TARP bailout “provided taxpayers with higher returns than they could have made buying 30-year Treasury bonds — enough money to fund the Securities and Exchange Commission for the next two decades. The government has earned $25.2 billion on its investment of $309 billion in banks and insurance companies, an 8.2 percent return over two years.”
So here’s the issue. Who knew? Does ANYONE in the administration know at the present time? If so, who’s discussing it and explaining it to the media and the electorate? The president, his administration and the democratic Congress have been getting bludgeoned for almost two years over wreckless spending yet they have accomplished so much, while the Republicans have been so frivolous and two-faced?!?
I’m proud to be a liberal, and I’m proud of our president, but democratic messaging is an embarrassment and nothing short of a disaster.