LOOKING FOR LIFE BEYOND CABLE NEWS AND FINDING THAT RESISTANCE IS FUTILE
You can have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, or democracy. But you cannot have both.
- Louis Brandeis
Tension is who you think you should be. Relaxation is who you are.
- Chinese Proverb
Well, look who came to dinner!
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Tag Archives: Romney
. . . do note that Romney’s constant campaign rhetoric has been “Obama promised to cut the debt/deficit in half but instead he’s doubled it (debt/deficit)!”
He uses the terms carelessly and interchangeably. The debt is not the deficit. The deficit is not the debt.
Obama promised to cut the deficit in half. He did. Actually, he said his ‘proposed budget’ would cut the deficit. I can’t even remember if that budget ever passed the House.
But this is just political trivia – there’s not a conscious Romney voter to whom that fact will make a difference.
Oh the stupid, it just hurts. The ‘timing is suspicious’ they say. Perhaps it might have been better if NBC did their one hour benefit concert before the storm and not so close to the election.
After all, they could have included Meatloaf (formerly a favorite of mine). Listen to what a has-been who’s lost the voice sounds like (he jumps in at 1:00) and check out the confused Mitt Romney who has certainly never heard Paradise by the Dashboard Light.
And FEMA? You know Willard says give that function back to the States, don’t you? Well, Colbert agrees with him. On the Report the other night, Stephen sez “Mitt’s got it exactly right! States with shattered infrastructure and devastated communications systems are the best equipped to handle their disaster.”
(Thank Elvis, Romney is still all talk.)
1030 pm – okay, moving into closing statements. I’ll just listen. Liveblogging over.
1028 pm -Mitt says American such a prosperous nation, it’s a shame what’s happened in last four years.
1027 pm – are closing statements scheduled? We’ve got 3 minutes left.
1024 pm - Ooooh, Mitt’s feelings are hurt. Obama called him names. And again, more lying. It’s getting to Obama. Mitt is slimey smooth. Obama is frustrated and pissed. Solyndra!!! Romney is doing that condescension again. And he can overtalk anyone. The man is unbeleivable. Just unbeleivable. He just talks and talks and talks and he lies and lies and lies. Quite remarkable.
1023 pm – Obama: America is a Pacific power. So there.
1021 pm – Obama – we’re not buying cars from China, we’re selling cars to China! US exports to China have doubled since ’09. So, Mitt?
1019 pm – BUT, currency manipulator!! Day One! So now he’s listing all the bad bad things China is doing,, but, you know, not an adversary in any shape or form. Egad.
1015 pm – Obama: China adversary and potential partner. Mitt: First, government bad. “we don’t have to be an adversary in any shape or form’. I cannot beleive he just said that! Is Mitt chiding prez for not being nice enough to China?
THIS THING is a draw so far. Romney, lying little shit that he is, sounds strong. He’s been reminded of his manners, and that helps. Obama is strong and I think he’s getting a bit pissed with the lying . . .
1010 pm – Schieffer just said “obama’ for “osama’.. Nice.
1008 pm – Obama: we’re are so getting out of Afghanistan!
1004 pm – Romney talking Afghan as if he were president and listing all that he’s done and how good it is. But, Pakistan!! Some people think it doenst matter (oh, not you Mr. President). O Christ, he wants benchmarks for Pakistan. He’s going to fix Pakistan.
1003 pm – Romney tried the talk over moderator again. Scheiffer shut him down and it passed. Someone obviously had a cautionary word with Mitt before tonight
958 pm – Obama didn’t have fundraisers when he went to Israel. Romney took donors with him. So there! Ooooh, Romney says he has such a great relationshhip with Netanyahu, Israel wouldn’t do anything like bomb Iran without talking to Mitt first. They’re close. Really close.
956 pm – Romney says it’s four years later than when Obama came into office. And he hurt Israels’ feelings.
953 pm - oooh, Mitt’s saying Chavez and other scary names.
Obama didn’t save Iran – he was probably dreaming of socialist utopias. Also, Romney doing some serious lying here.
950 pm – here comes that creepy smile again. He’s smirking – who knew the man could smirk?
947 pm – Mitt repeating Obama’s words re Iran. He seems to think his words are original. Sanctions? Mitt called for them five years ago, so I guess that’s why we have them today. But he would of course ‘tighten’ them. Does he know Iran’s currency has crashed? He’ll launch diplomatic efforts – clever lad. He thinks Prez Ahmajinidad should be dragged before world court for genocide because of what he said? Puzzling.
946 pm – stupid Israel question. Is an attack on them an attack on us? (Does Schieffer watch the news?)
944 pm – Obama. We don’t have as many ships as whenever, true. But we also don’t have as many horses or bayonets.
940 pm – Barry on military for a minute or two. Somehow Mitt is talking again. And boy oh boy! He balanced budgets lots of them. Romney won’t cut military. Sinking down to Limbaugh type talking points about numbers of ships and planes and the sequester.
939 pm – Romney is utterly shameless. Absolutely shameless. Taking credit for stuff he didn’t do. Insisting he did it. And he’s still talking. Obamacare goes! He’ll cut ‘programs’. Balanced budget – presto!
937 pm – I’d like to see who ends up having had more speaking time. Sure feels like Romney right now.
932 pm – Mitt said our alliances are weak. Barry says Romney wants to go back to Bush/Cheney days. Mitt says he has a plan too. He’ll get America working again. Five Steps!!!!! Energy independance! More trade! Latin America! China? Meh, China doesn’t matter. Latin America! Schools! Kids! Balanced budget! Or we’re Greece ya’know. Champion small business!!
931 pm – Mitt’s been speaking for a long long time. Also, we blew it in Iran.
930 pm – Mitt loves our military and allies. And America. And guess what, we have 42 allies. Obama destroyed America! Mitt going all flag waving and bumper sticker. America must be strong. America must leave. But Obama ruined economy – no jobs, bad bad Obama, what a mess he made. Also, our military needs to be stronger. Again!
925 pm – Barry talking Egypt – Israel, women, counter terrorism – talking region, goals of peoples there. Mitt says he agreed with Obama re Egypt at time of revolution, except, see, Obama blew it cuz he didn’t see it coming and control every single second of the revolution.
920 pm – question: would you do no fly zones in Syria? Mitt – no military intervention. None. But still, Obama screwing it up. Ahhh, ‘we have to make sure they have the arms they need’. Again, pretty much exactly what we’re doing right now.
918 pm -Barry: intervening has risks and is very serious. Who is the ‘opposition’. Romney: Syria important! Israel! Seeing to replacement govt be responsible people. No war! Actually,, he’s basically rephrasing everything Obama just said. He’s talked about Isreal, Qatar, Saudi Arabia – no mention of Jordan, Lebanon or Turkey who are being pulled in right now??? Hey Mitt, what about them?
915 pm – Syria bad bad bad. Barry talking, Mitt can’t wait to hit back.
914 pm part deux – Barry is saying Commander in Chief a lot. Romney looking over with that genuinely creepy smile of his.
914 pm – arguing! Anyone involved in a drinking game can now take a sip
911 pm – Re Romney’s earlier claim that Russia is our greatest foreign threat: “The 1980′s are calling,, they want their foreign policy back.” Obama to Romney. Good.
908 pm – Barry didn’t say bin Laden. (but he wanted to!)
907 pm – Mitt says we can’t kill our way out of this mess. Peacenik.
906 pm – Barack looks steely eyed.
904 pm – Libya!
901 pm – the rules are, oh hell,, who cares.
9 pm – And we’re off.
9:03pm: Right out of the box, Romney opened with “and thank you Mr. President for being here”. Put himself right in charge.
Dear Mr. President:
Please don’t call Romney “Governor”. Call him ‘my opponent’.
Sobering words and numbers from Nate Silver at The New York Times today – the electoral college projection particularly is unnerving. Story here [CAUTION, NY Times paywall link). I think it’s possible that a veep debate could, unusually, make a difference if Biden nails it.
Mr. Romney may have increased his chances of becoming president by 15 or 20 percent based on one night in Denver.
- . . . . deny Romney any opportunity to put his own spin on the 47% video? I’m sure he had a crisp and well rehearsed answer. All he needed was the question, but it didn’t come. He was locked and loaded, 70 million viewers and their 140 million eyes were waiting, but the question didn’t come. Poor guy had to go on Hannity the next night and present his case to barely a tenth of the audience.
. . . . boost the chances for Democratic ‘down-ticket’ candidates? Even before the debate, party and PAC money was shifting away from Romney into the war chests of Republican Senate and House candidates. But the dollars did a quick U-turn after the debate because Romney wasn’t a loser anymore! Which is pretty good news for the Democrats who are running for those Senate and House seats.
I don’t beleive it either, just fishing for a silver lining.
Friend Gina just reminded me of what I said Romney needed to do in his convention speech if he wanted to appeal to a broader base. Since he’d already won the nomination, that acceptance speech should come from a guy who’s going to actually be running in the general election. He didn’t take my advice then, but by Wednesday night he’d listened to this mama and he did as he was told. Full post here. Summary:
He’s a technocrat, a strategizer, an analyst and he’s been very very successful where those qualities have mattered.
He shouldn’t hide from it. He should acknowledge – publicly – who he isn’t.
But whatever way he goes, he’ll still be a weak candidate unless he actually presents a vision that goes beyond the bumper sticker talking points.
I think that’s what he did the other night.
Dishonestly for sure, lying openly for sure, cavalier to the extreme, but he knew that millions of viewers were taking their first good look at him as a candidate – and what he said is what they’ll remember.
Look at “Age 65 and Older”. That’s a demo where Romney should be doing much better. Perhaps some day, in one of what will be many stories about how the 2012 election played out, this graphic might be resurrected and renamed How Medicare sunk Romney ‘s dreams of the White House. Chart from National Journal where the story is worth a read.
Gosh, Mittens, I was there and I really, really missed you. And you know what? If you had been there it would have done wonders for your ability to empathize with the little people.
For example, there was the family separation of 474 days out of 540 during which my wife raised our three boys alone, closed on the purchase of a house and made all the major family decisions without me. For example there were the incessant hours of boredom punctuated by moments of fear and immense loneliness. For example there was the frustration of having politicians trying to run the goddam war by sitting around a coffee table drinking bourbon while we were racing up and down the South China Sea lobbing 8 inch shells into attacking Viet Cong. For example there was the immense pleasure of receiving one’s wife’s accumulated 17 daily letters, each numbered consecutively because she knew they would arrive that way, and because there was no fucking email or satellite video then.
But never mind, Mittens. You can take consolation with all those souls you won for the Lord in France. After all, there are all kinds of sacrifice.
Yours in sympathy,
From The Last of the Milleniums where he has a juicy post about vets, Sen. Jim Webb and the 47%.
Dickens worthy this is. Thanks friend Shep.
The Atlantic sheds some light on the subject (notice that the red states are Red States and the blue states are mostly Blue States). This is a pattern we see often on issues like teenage pregnancy, educational levels, income, health, obesity. It’s not Connecticut that isn’t educating its next generation.
The GOP’s choice for the White House also said this of the Israeli peace process:
[He] as president, would aim to postpone significant action: “[S]o what you do is, you say, you move things along the best way you can. You hope for some degree of stability, but you recognize that this is going to remain an unsolved problem…and we kick the ball down the field and hope that ultimately, somehow, something will happen and resolve it.”
The man’s a giant.
Oh, nice, even more – from Dependable Renegade (who finds all the good stuff):
Thank-you! - Vladimir Putin thanks magical panties enthusiast The Willard Mechanism for saying that Russia remains the US #1 geo political threat, because it solidified his missile defense argument:
“I’m grateful to him (Romney) for formulating his stance so clearly because he has once again proven the correctness of our approach to missile defense problems,” Putin told reporters, according to the Russian news agency RIA Novosti.
“The most important thing for us is that even if he doesn’t win now, he or a person with similar views may come to power in four years. We must take that into consideration while dealing with security issues for a long perspective,” he said, speaking after a meeting with Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic, according to Interfax news agency.
Romney’s rash statement last night is being widely criticized:
Foreign Policy Hands Voice Disbelief At Romney Cairo Statement
“Bungle… utter disaster…not ready for prime time… not presidential… Lehman moment.” And that’s just the Republicans.
Mitt Romney’s sharply-worded attack on President Obama over a pair of deadly riots in Muslim countries last night has backfired badly among foreign policy hands of both parties, who cast it as hasty and off-key, released before the facts were clear at what has become a moment of tragedy.
Romney’s statement . . . came just before news that the American Ambassador to Libya had been killed and broke with a tradition of unity around national tragedies, and of avoiding hasty statements on foreign policy. It was the second time Romney has been burned by an early statement on a complex crisis: Romney denounced the Obama Administration’s handling of a Chinese dissident’s escape just as the Administration negotiated behind the scenes for his departure from the country.
Our Ambassador to a country we just fought for has been killed there in a protest triggered by an anti-Muslim film, made by and/or in America or connected to America.)
Typically and with cheap abandon, Mitt Romney jumped the gun and took a low road, blasting the Obama administration and claiming they’d issued an apology which they had not. He’s carelessly adding fuel to what is certain to be (is) an eruption of political finger-pointing. Worse though, he again is less interested in those Americans who died for their country. He didn’t even wait for the event to play itself out or check his facts before he went on the attack. Not very presidential.
“It’s disgraceful,” Romney’s statement, which was released late Tuesday night, read, “that the Obama administration’s first response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks.”
The comments that outraged Romney were issued, not by the White House, but by the Ambassador to Egypt (before Stevens and the others were killed in Libya) in an attempt to calm things down and protect the Embassy and his staff. Ambassadors are powerful; they are empowered to and expected to respond quickly in the best interests of the Embassy.
UPDATE: This is the statement issued by the Embassy yesterday before things deteriorated:
The Embassy of the United States in Cairo condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims – as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions. Today, the 11th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, Americans are honoring our patriots and those who serve our nation as the fitting response to the enemies of democracy. Respect for religious beliefs is a cornerstone of American democracy. We firmly reject the actions by those who abuse the universal right of free speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others.
Here’s some more on the film (not Romney related):
One of the things fueling the protest is the misconception that, as in Egypt, films made in the U.S. must have government approval, according to this article in The Atlantic:
The movie . . . has received attention far beyond its reach, which would be modest if not for obsessively outraged media . . . That doesn’t mean this incident
will become(was originally) anything more than a bizarre moment of cross-cultural misunderstanding (the protesters seem to assume that, as in Egypt, movies must secure the state’s approval), but that it could go so far is yet another reminder of the tensions just beneath the surface in Egypt.
What is clear is that (loony) American Pastor, Terry Jones, is involved, vigorously promoting the English language version. (Pastor Jones, in case you’ve forgotten, is the careless fool who burned the Koran in front of TV cameras, even after Sect’y of Defense Robert Gates pleaded with him not to do it.)
According to Reuters:
U.S. pastor Terry Jones, who had inflamed anger in the Muslim world in 2010 with plans to burn the Koran, said he had promoted “Innocence of Muslims”, which U.S. media said was produced by an Israeli-American property developer.
Jones, a pastor in Florida whose latest stunt fell on the anniversary of the September 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, triggered riots in Afghanistan in 2010 with his threat to burn the Koran.
According to Haaretz:
An Israeli filmmaker went into hiding on Tuesday after his movie attacking Islam’s Prophet Muhammad sparked angry assaults by Muslims on U.S. diplomatic missions in Egypt and in Libya, where one American was killed.
Speaking by phone from an undisclosed location, writer and director Sam Bacile remained defiant, saying Islam is a cancer and that he intended his film to be a provocative political statement condemning the religion.
(Well, thanks Sam and Pastor Jones. Great work there.)
Protesters angered over Bacile’s film opened fire on and burned down the U.S.consulate in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi, killing an American State Department officer on Tuesday. In Egypt, protesters scaled the walls of the U.S. embassy in Cairo and replaced an American flag with an Islamic banner.
Bacile, a California real estate developer in his fifties who identifies himself as an Israeli Jew, said he believes the movie will help his native land by exposing Islam’s flaws to the world. “
There’s an article in Addictinginfo from a former Mormon who says Romney “should never be President”. The tone seems a bit like sour-grapes, but there was this, having to do with the growth of Mormonism (which I’ve heard reported to have the fastest growth of any religion in the country).
If the membership numbers come from the Church, this makes them suspect:
Mormons duck out the back door of the church as quickly as they come in the front door. The number of people on the church rolls rises all the time, but that’s because even if you join and then decide the church really isn’t for you, they still continue to count you as a member. . . . .
Mormons have a member “stand in” for a dead person and they’re baptized as a member of the church.
Mormons have a couple “stand in” for a dead man and woman and marry them into the church, and those count as a “twofer” in church membership rolls. Supposedly they’re “sealed for time and eternity” as husband and wife.
There’s also this, which made me giggle:
Mormons are also supposedly the only ones who will be allowed to have sexual intercourse in Heaven.
Romney seems to have found his voice. A really fine speech.
Senator Rubio of my own enlightened State is clearly a rising star. He’s definitely got it. Which is why he’s been given the official rising star slot tonight, introducing Romney. And right now, he’s speaking.
And my oh my but isn’t he the pious one – he just offered the requisite boilerplate and utterly unoriginal statement of belief that we’re one ole nation ‘under God’. And he took it just a step further and nearly pledged us to the service of, what I believe he called, ‘almighty God’.
Check the transcript. It was over the line.
Everyone with a microphone knows what Mitt Romney ‘needs to do’ with his speech tonight. They are agreed, they are certain. He must show his human side. He must ‘tell his story’.
I think they are wrong. We already know who he is, and it is not the guy you’d like to have a beer with. He’s a technocrat, a strategizer, an analyst and he’s been very very successful where those qualities have mattered.
He shouldn’t hide from it. He should acknowledge – publicly – who he isn’t. It would be refreshing in a Christie kind of way.
But whichever way he goes, he’ll still be a weak candidate unless he actually presents a vision that goes beyond the bumper sticker talking points.
Don’t misconstrue this as a case for Romney. I won’t be voting for him, not least because that would put you-know-who a heartbeat away. Obama is my choice.
I was wrong. I thought Romney would bypass Ryan. He’s from Congress - a body with an 11% approval rate. He voted with Bush on Medicare D. His budget is unpopular. He’s aligned with the Tea Party. He’s a Randian.
HIs appeal is narrow, but he will energize a segment of the Republican electorate with a pretty good record of getting the vote out.
Ryan closed his speech with ’We will be America’s comeback team’. Good line, very good line. If they’re tuned in, that phrase should become central to the campaign from now on.
Paul Ryan just descended to the podium on a walkway from the USS Wisconsin. I’m trying to think . . . battleship? politician? Damn it, I know it reminds me of something.
Okay. Choosing Palin was bold. Her Convention acceptance speech, to tens of thousands of Republicans who had never even heard of her, was a knockout. I watched it live and was stunned. She was hot. The faithful fell in love, the media as one dropped to their knees and thanked their respective deities. There was rejoicing in the land.
For a while. And then the cringe began inside the McCain campaign, and it spread. It spread.
Last week, reporting was that Palin would be granted B-list status at the convention and the campaign was dearly hoping she wouldn’t come at all. There was even talk – frivolous probably – that she’d have a shadow convention just to ‘stick it to them’ and feed the beast.
But that was before Ted Cruz, who is going to be the next Senator from Texas. Cruz is a new kind of Tea Party Republican: informed, capable, well-educated, attractive, terrific speaker – a credible candidate, a serious person.
So even though Romney’s people would despair at the idea of being forced to give Palin a prime speaking slot, it’s not as easy a decision as it was last week.
The conventional wisdom has been that Romney chooses Portman, Paultenty or possibly Ryan. (I’ve called it Portman.) Ryan could excite the base, but that would put the Ryan budget front and center and give Obama a really juicy bit to run against.
So what to do? The Palin decision must be made and a veep must be chosen. Might there be a way to have one over-shadow the other?
What if they brought in a shinier toy? What about out-McCain’ing McCain? Is there be a stealth candidate, a better-than-Palin, who could electrify the race?
Wouldn’t that be fun?