Archive for the ‘Mitt Romney’ Category

If you’ve followed me for a while you might remember back during the Presidential election that I predicted that our Glorious Fourth Estate, the Mainstream Media (MSM for short) would “lay down like a worn out hooker” when it came to holding our politicians feet to the fire and doing their damn job.  Well, the MSM has gone far beyond that.  They’re actually now participating in the screwing and what’s worse, they seem to be enjoying it.

I’m talking about how they handled the effects of Sequestration–you the know the across the board cut in Federal spending to the tune of $85 billion that occurred because Congressional Republicans refused to have any constructive dialogue with the President about what should be cut.  They had a lot of political motivation to avoid the conversation about spending cuts.  First, they didn’t want to be seen a compromising with President Obama in any way (it’s been that way since before he even took office actually) in order to keep their base happy.  Second, they could continue to point to the deficit and debt (two different things BTW) blaming the Democrats and supposed uncontrolled spending while doing absolutely nothing to solve said problem.  Third, they could go home and honestly tell their constituents that they personally did not vote to take away the funding for their food stamps, HUD loans, etc, etc because those things went away precisely because no vote was taken.  Fourth, they could further gin up the base by focusing on “nontroversies”* with issues like Benghazi, the President’s nominees, sovereignty issues with VAWA, Obamacare birth control mandate, suspension of White House tours, First Family spending taxpayer money on dog walker, etc, etc, etc.

It all usually starts with one crazy ass quote from a Republican in Congress about a nontroversy (see “dog walker” quote above).  It’s like blood in the water.  The MSM zooms right in and it becomes a feeding frenzy.  So while the GOP and the MSM are engorging themselves on such easy pickings, the real world keeps on turning, real problems are happening, and the only people who know about it are the ones who are suffering from those problems (and some few of us who actually pay attention).  With the sequestration for instance there are a lot of things that will affect the daily lives of Americans.  Low income families will receive less child care subsidies.  This will mean that struggling parents will have to choose between working less or leaving their child at home alone.  Fewer seniors will have access to “Meals on Wheels” and more of them are likely to suffer from hunger as a result putting a greater strain on private charities who are already overwhelmed.  Federal workers will have smaller paychecks and they will spend less.  Less consumption means a slower growing economy.  Industries that depend on government contracts, like aerospace and ship builders, will let people go increasing unemployment rates and ensuring that some families will be plunged back into financial insecurity and all that entails.  States like Virginia and Maryland who depend on those industries will be hit much harder in comparison to other states.

Those don’t apply to you?  What about the waiting we tolerate in airports?  Nobody likes it but you’d better get used to it because there will be fewer air traffic controllers.  There will also be fewer flights which means the prices on the flights that remain will go up.  This means that the cost of doing business (much less personal travel) will go up.  Do you see what I’m saying?  Americans are just now starting to see the impact of the Sequestration.  Americans SHOULD have known ahead of time. Then they would have been able to put pressure on Congress to behave responsibly and make the right choices. But they didn’t because the MSM was too busy in the mutual masturbatory experiment that politics and journalism has become in this country to pay attention to the “real news”.  Don’t believe me? Look at the chart at the bottom of this post (via JM Ashby from

Now, add to that fact that Wall Street isn’t overly concerned with the effects of Sequestration.  And Wall Street includes the very powerful and few wealthy individuals and companies that own all of the media in the U.S. and are trying every day to acquire more of it.  Here’s one example:  The incredibly wealthy, very conservative plutocratic Koch brothers, of Tea Party fame, have been actively looking to purchase several major newspapers in the wake of Romney’s loss in the 2012 Presidential election.  The theory among conservatives is that their messaging and how they distributed that messaging didn’t work so if they can control the media, they’re more likely to get their message out to more people.  They can’t and won’t accept the fact that it wasn’t their messaging, it was their policies.  They think if they can somehow polish their turd policies enough, they can put them out there, all shiny and new seeming without any interference from, you know, the truth.  Even though the MSM is very little concerned with the truth as I’ve show time and time again.  No need to purchase them outright.  Just let them continue doing the increasingly shitty job they’ve been doing for years.

So here’s how it breaks down.  There is the “let them eat cake” attitude of the wealthy, particularly the ones who own the MSM.  There is the greed of the MSM who will do anything to get higher ratings than their competitors.  And there is the hunger for power of the GOP.  What it all adds up to is a big collective, “meh” about issues that REALLY matter to the American people.  If the monied classes had really been worried about Sequestration the MSM would surely have been trumpeting their fears so loudly the Krenim** out near the Andromeda nebula would have heard them and the DOW would have declined significantly.    There are theories as to why Wall Street is okay with Sequestration centering around the fact that economists don’t believe that it will derail our economic recovery.  And I agree, it won’t.  Because ultimately the U.S. economy is big enough and diverse enough to make it through this round of idiotic austerity.  Ultimately, it doesn’t matter to the rich either way.  They get richer no matter what happens to the rest of us.  This last Recession is the final proof of that.  But the economy WILL slow down.

However, “derailing” isn’t the same as “slowing down” to everyone.  The wealthy are up in the first class cars where they have plenty of room and can move from the passenger car to a dining car complete with a restaurant and bar.  They have comfy seats with plenty of food and drink, and several clean male and female lavatories with an attendant to provide a freshly laundered towel or breath mint or whateverthefuckelse they might have a fancy for.  If the train slows down they might be late to have supper at an exclusive restaurant, miss a meeting to buy yet another company, or give up their seats to the opening night of a musical.  The poor are crammed into uncomfortable, hot, smelly cars like cattle and aren’t allowed to move from car to car.  They only have what food and water they brought with them and barely enough of that for the normal length of the journey.  They have to share small cramped dirty  unisex bathrooms and there’s nobody to help them with anything but there is a conductor who comes by periodically to ensure that everyone has a ticket otherwise it’s “out you go”!   The slow down will cause the poor to miss that very important job interview, the doctor appointment at the free clinic, the next train that gets them home in time to pick up their kid from daycare before a $5 a minute late fee is imposed that they can’t pay for the daycare they can no longer afford because of reduced subsidies, etc, etc.    If the train slows down, the wealthy get to have another martini and are inconvenienced.  The poor go hungry,  their discomfort and stress increases, and it significantly impacts their lives.

It’s the MSM’s job to inform “the rest of us” about these kind of things.  They’ve stopped doing their job and are now participating in their own victimization, which in the end makes the American people the real victims.  Congratulations American MSM!  You’ve gone from being a tired hooker to become one of the perps in a “gangbang”.  You must feel so proud.   But hey, viewership is up, so huzzah!

MSM Coverage of Sequestration Effects v White House Tours

MSM Coverage of Sequestration Effects v White House Tours


*A controversy that does not exist until created for political gain. A contraction of non and controversy

**Obscure Star Trek Voyager reference, sorry couldn’t resist

***A kudos to anyone who can figure out the title reference

Remember when the Romney campaign said they weren’t using “dog whistles”?  Remember how they said they cared about all of America?  Well, it turns not to be true–surprise!  Apparently, it was the white middle and upper class voters that mattered more according to Romney’s chief strategist, Stuart Stevens.

On Nov. 6, Romney carried the majority of every economic group except those with less than $50,000 a year in household income. That means he carried the majority of middle-class voters.
There was a time not so long ago when the problems of the Democratic Party revolved around being too liberal and too dependent on minorities. Obama turned those problems into advantages and rode that strategy to victory.
Republican ideals — Mitt Romney — carried the day. On Nov. 6, that wasn’t enough to win. But it was enough to make us proud and to build on for the future.

Shorter Stevens, the white people who matter voted for our ideas so we won a moral victory and will keep building on that for future elections. What a rational, pragmatic person should say in this situation would be, “Wow, we lost women, all of the minorities 1, too many in the middle class 2, and the fastest growing part of the population which accounted for 53% of the population. Maybe we’re doing something wrong!” No, instead the GOP is signaling that the 47% that voted for them, particularly those white folks, was good enough for them. So they’ll hunker down using the same failed strategies to motivate white voters that were so concisely detailed by Lee Atwater 3 and reinforced by jerks like Bill O’Reilly and Rush Limbaugh 4. Kind of makes you wonder, who was really engaged in class warfare?

From a practical campaign point of view I say keep on keeping on. Once whites begin to lose their majority status (which is happening as we speak) the GOP won’t win another major election until they change their ways. From a moral viewpoint, Stevens’ opinion and anyone that supports it in the GOP is insulting and wrong. From a long-term view maybe we will be better off as a country if the GOP dies this slow death. Maybe a new party that truly champions conservative ideas without using hate, and religious intolerance, and one that lacks a frothing at the mouth desperation can finally come into being. Then we could actually discuss the issues instead of the wedges.  I’m allowed to dream once in a while, right?

1. For example, Asian Americans who used to heavily favor Republican candidates made a dramatic shift to support President Obama.  Why?  The evidence seems to suggest that they, like me and many other whites who voted for Obama, didn’t vote solely on their own best interests.  That they voted based on a principle belief in the American Dream and to them the President best represented that American Dream….a point I have made on this blog, many, many times.  To me, President Obama is the quintessential example of  the American Dream and I heavily identify with it, as do many hard working, successful Asian Americans.

2. BTW, I’m white, middle class and Romney didn’t win my vote and there were tons more like me…why? Because we don’t believe that we are the only face of this country. We don’t think our interests are more important than other citizens’ interests….we love our country, every diverse part of it. We are capable of empathy, selflessness, and long-term thinking. By voting for Obama we could not only look out for our own interests but the interests of many others. With Romney there was a choice between “us” and “them”. I reject that kind of narrow thinking and I’m glad the majority of America did too.  

3.  Known as the “Southern Strategy” it now appeals to white folks in places like Wyoming, Kansas and Indiana.  It’s no coincidence that as white’s lose their majority status in this country that more and more white ears can now hear this kind of appeal.  Nothing opens the eyes and ears than the loss of privilege and it’s part of why extremists in the GOP appear to be increasingly desperate (and clinging to desperate hopes like secession).  

4. Bill O’Reilly and all the other GOP operatives masquerading as journalists, pundits and blowhards who said the President won because he was “giving away” stuff…you’re wrong. For example, in 2014 when insurance companies can no longer reject me for pre-existing conditions I will have to pay about $18,000 a year out of pocket for that health insurance, which does not include co-pays, prescription costs, extra lab fees, etc. Does that sound free to you? And this will apply to everyone else in the same boat. Even if we had a Single Payer health care system it wouldn’t be free because we ALL pay taxes in one form or another. So eff off with your lies about “free gifts” and Obama as Santa bullshit.

This post is the result of a “discussion” on Facebook between some self-proclaimed libertarians and their accusations that Obama Supporters ignored a long list of things about the President–cool aid drinking and all that.  I couldn’t answer their “list of things” on Facebook so I will address them one by one on my blog.  Unbeknownst to these libertarians, they don’t understand that Obama Supporters really do consider these “things” and think them through.  We just come to different conclusions than they do.  Maybe this series of posts will open their mind and allow them to see how a “liberal thinks” (like observing us in the wild maybe /snark) but I won’t hold my breath.  At the very least, maybe someone will be a little more informed, which is all good.

What is the NDAA and who signed it into Law?

Okay, some history because it matters. The original AUMF 1 of 2001 (passed by Congress, signed by G.W. Bush) was to be used against Terrorists. It allowed Pres. to use all “necessary and appropriate force” against those that perpetrated or harbored those who perpetrated in Sept 11th. This has been interpreted to mean that the Feds could use warrantless wiretapping, even against American citizens and later interpreted by G.W. Bush for the purposes of indefinite detention and to justify the use of Military Tribunals to prosecute terrorists in Guantanomo Bay 2. There was another AUMF in 2002 that was used to invade Iraq. In 2011, Congress proposed another AUMF that allowed for the indefinite detention by the Military of any accused terrorists.

Critics charged that the way the law was written, indefinite detention could be used against American citizens. This third AUMF renewed the 2001 AUMF with even more expansive language on who the Feds could target. So in addition to  those who were responsible for 9/11, they targeted anyone who substantially supports Al Qaeda, the Taliban or associated forces. Last thing it did was put restrictions on the Excecutive Branch’s ability to transfer detainees out of Guantanamo  This third AUMF was not passed on it’s own but included in a larger Dept of Defense budget bill in 2012, called the The National Defense Authorization Act, signed by President Obama.

All of these bills and provisions were begun by Congress, passed unanimously by conservative Senators and Representatives and some liberal defectors. They are, for the most part, Congress giving powers to the Executive Branch. President Obama openly spoke of his problems with the powers that Congress seemed so awfully eager to give him. The Supreme Court and the lower courts had already stated that the AUMF 2001 was considered Constitutional. The President had no qualms re-newing those provisions. But in regards to detaining citizens and other provisions not addressed by the Supreme Court, he was very, very concerned–Concerned enough to openly threaten a veto. In the end he created a signing statement, in which he said:

“The fact that I support this bill as a whole does not mean I agree with everything in it. In particular, I have signed this bill despite having serious reservations with certain provisions that regulate the detention, interrogation, and prosecution of suspected terrorists….under section 1021(e), the bill may not be construed to affect any “existing law or authorities relating to the detention of United States citizens, lawful resident aliens of the United States, or any other persons who are captured or arrested in the United States.” My Administration strongly supported the inclusion of these limitations in order to make clear beyond doubt that the legislation does nothing more than confirm authorities that the Federal courts have recognized as lawful under the 2001 AUMF. Moreover, I want to clarify that my Administration will not authorize the indefinite military detention without trial of American citizens.

He also had other problems with the bill, such as Congress preventing him from transferring Guantanamo detainees to U.S. soil so they could be prosecuted criminally, which in turn prohibited him from being able to close Guantanamo . Furthermore, if he didn’t sign the bill it also meant that our active soldiers, veterans and their families would have gone unpaid and unsupported. Beyond the moral implications of not taking care of them, there is a practical consideration too. You don’t just stop paying your soldiers 3, particularly in the middle of two wars.  Unfortunately his signing statement does not in any way bind future Presidents. And that’s really where the problem lies.

Now I want to know why Pres. Obama’s critics want to pin this on him and him alone? The two other branches have created and supported these hideous laws. How is the Executive supposed to control that in a legal manner? He can’t except through veto power.   At the time the NDAA was being passed the Senate had enough votes and the House would have likely found the votes to override his veto ( remember this is when Republicans were reflexively doing the opposite of what the President wanted). Then it would have become law without ANY limitation statements being added (i.e., the change in language that says not construed to affect any existing law regarding detention of citizens) AND without the signing statement, little comfort as that may provide. It’s still better than nothing, which is what the veto would have gotten us.

It confuses me when conservatives critics call the President a dictator (or Hitler) because of the NDAA and yet demand he act like a dictator to stop passage of the law.  You can’t have it both ways.  He’s a real President abiding by how our system works and following the rules.  This often constrains him as much as helps him (or any President that gives a damn about the Constitution–G.W. Bush couldn’t even spell the darn word much less abide by it).  It also means that we end up with abominations like the NDAA sometimes and the process to reverse such things is drawn out and very frustrating.

So in the end, I don’t blame President Obama for the NDAA but I do very much oppose it. I also believe that his signing statement is sincere. On the other hand, I have no confidence whatsoever that any conservative of either party or even a center-Democratic President would have such reservations or abide by the signing statement 4. Indeed American history has shown us time and time again, that regardless of which party controls the Executive Branch, once that Branch is granted powers, that Branch never gives it up unless forced to 5. Therefore, critics of President Obama on this particular issue need to be pressuring those idiots in Congress and/or hope that some more liberally minded Justices get appointed to the Supreme Court.  Otherwise, every four years habeas corpus could be threatened anew.  That’s not how it’s suppose to be.  But blaming President Obama alone for it, is simplistic and distracting.


1. Authorization for Use of Military Force
2. On the issue of the Military Tribunals, SCOTUS rejected this argument so technically it doesn’t include that power.
3. That’s what happened just after the American Revolution and almost caused our very young country to experience a military coup, wherein the unpaid veterans of the Continental Army met to find out how they could force Congress to pay them. Washington went becasue he wanted to give input and because he was afraid that violence might result. During the meeting the Veterans discuss a coup and proposed that Washintong be made King…he declined, calmed the veterans assuring them that Congress would deliver and our democracy survived.
4. The 2011 version of the AUMF was sponsored by Sen. John McCain, former Presidential candidate–phew, thank God it was Obama who in won in 2008. As for Romney, the guy who was once again advocating for the use of torture, he wouldn’t have thought twice suspending Habeas Corpus. So any conservative that supported Romney or told you Romney was more in support of Liberty than Pres. Obama because of NDAA is just plain wrong. And on the issue of Romney’s views on Liberty and women’s rights…I’d supposedly be free under a Romney admin but the government could shove things into me without consent and they can condemn me to death or a lifetime of obligation, expense, effort, etc I do not want if I just so happen to be pregnant.  That sounds an awful lot like slavery to me.  But I digress….
5. Hence the War Powers Resolution of 1973

You may have heard that people are so distraught over the President winning re-election that they are circulating petitions in 20 different states to secede (now I’m seeing reports of 30 states).  Texas has actually approached a “threshold”, which means someone will have to officially respond.

Here’s what I would like to see happen:  let them go.  Seriously, let them go.  Here are some the benefits for the rest of the U.S. if they do leave the Union.

1.  No fighting, a lot less bloodshed

2.  We will no longer pay for those Red States that actually take in more money that they pay out.  That’s right, the majority of the states on the list are a HUGE financial burden to the rest of us.  South Carolina, for every dollar paid in taxes, actually gets $1.92 back.  What’s that, almost 100% profit?  Alabama gets $2.03 back.  Mississippi gets $2.47 and West Virginia gets $2.57–250% profit.

What we could do with millions of dollars wasted on these states!  They’ve got quite the racket going, don’t they?  If they don’t want it, the rest of us want it back.  Every state that leeches off loyal, tax paying Americans can go so long as their governor sits down, writes a check out for the millions, nay billions, they’ve taken from the rest of us AND once the check clears the bank.

2.  We no longer have to provide any armed forces for them….no weapons, equipment, food, etc for their National Guard units.  Indeed most of that doesn’t belong to the state but to the Federal Government.  How about you give all that stuff back, hmmmm?

3.  We gain a buffer zone.  If they are a border state, particularly with Mexico, we no longer have to worry about over the border incursions by drug cartels.  Take Texas for instance.  The thousands of border patrol agents, ATF agents, DEA agents that help to control what would be a complete free-for-all without them could drop back to north of Texas.  Of course, Texas would have to create their own border patrol with their flush state budget.  And if Texas didn’t provide that border security, it would be first and foremost a no-man’s land, that the remaining U.S. would use as a physical buffer zone.  I’m sure the citizens of TX want to live in a no-man’s land.  I mean, look at how great the Palestinians are doing!

4.  Less to worry about.  In addition to joint protection stuff we would get back, there’s a ton of other things we’d no longer have to provide that these states would have to pay for.  Again, lets use TX as an example.  In 2011 they had a shortfall (deficit) and they had to slash services drastically (plus leave some stuff off the books and finagle a little).  They increased taxes across the board and lo and behold they might end up with a nice surplus in 2012.  But just set that aside folks because you will need it to pay for your new national defense force, your border presence with Mexico (good luck with that, BTW).  You’ll need that surplus to build and care for all of your highways–the Federal Government used to do that.  Any national parks get taken back?  Yep, you’ll pay for that too.  Medicaid and Medicare?  No matching funds, so you’ll need to cover that 100% or a whole lot of old people and  the parent’s of sick children are going to go bezerk, quite literally.  Oh, don’t forget a diplomatic corps, a spy agency, and embassies around the world.  School lunches and all the free food that the states receive to feed America’s children when their parents can’t.  Also, a stock exchange system, regulations for such things, a currency system…I could go on all day long.  Do you think that surplus would cover all that?  Do you really?

5.  And end to the whining.  We wouldn’t have to listen to them bitch any more.  They didn’t like paying high taxes to the Federal Government and they were always whining about it.  Now they’ll have whine about TX to TX.   I’m wonder what makes them think they’ll enjoy paying high taxes to the new nation any more than the old one?  Maybe they  won’t.  Maybe the counties can secede from the state.  This new version of “trickle down” economics should work really fine for you.  Loyal Americans will watch your disintegration with mixture of pity and disgust (and fear for any relatives who are stuck within your borders).

6.  Increase in tax base for the loyal states.  Speaking of, millions of refugees, half of your population essentially, wanting to remain loyal to the U.S. will leave your state.  It would account for a good portion of the tax base that you would need so desperately to pay for all the stuff mentioned in above. You can’t force them to stay.  All you states claiming to love liberty so much, surely you wouldn’t force them to stay? Who would end up being the jackbooted thugs in this scenario, I wonder?

7.  Cement the power of the Democratic Party.  Of the 20 states (now I’m seeing it’s actually 30), 14 voted for R0mney and most of those traditionally vote Republican.  Their electoral votes sum 153.  Furthermore all the Liberals and Moderates that exodus en masse from these states will go to the remaining states, some of whom used to vote Republican but won’t in future because they’ll be absorbing the millions of refugees who are not likely to vote Republican.  Basically the loss of these states will ensure that a Democrat would be elected to the White House every four years for the foreseeable future.  It would also drastically affect the composition of Congress.  Then maybe, just maybe the Dems will pursue a truly liberal agenda, because I got news for you folks, President Obama is a centrist in many, many ways.  He is not even remotely “soshulist”.

All that above was snark, now here’s some serious thoughts.  

How many thinking secession is an option?  There are some Blue States on that list, about 6 of them (again the list is changing as I type this).  I suspect in those cases they wouldn’t really secede.  And in truth, I don’t think the other 14 will either.  Any yahoo can create a petition and 49% of the Country is seething mad that the “Empty Suit” or the Ni-Clang or the Muslim Manchurian candidate (pick your reason, it doesn’t really matter) won another election so they’re just venting.  But what really worries me is the actual number who are signing the petitions.  Between LA and TX they have over 50,000 signatures.   How many will sign those petitions?  A hundred thousand, two hundred thousand?  How many agree but are too afraid to sign a petition?

We need each other.  What about the response from those who that the proposal to secede is, in itself, a treasonous act?  Loyal Americans have posted petitions to have anyone who signed those petitions to be stripped of their citizenship and exiled.  Some liberals might even want their state to secede because they are so very tired of supporting everyone else and being told that they aren’t patriotic, that they are stupid, cool aid drinkers, that they don’t contribute anything, etc, basically getting shit by the other side when these labels are demonstrably untrue.  I.e., most of the 17 states that support the other 33 tend to vote Democratic. Take CA as an example.  It is a huge economy bigger than many small countries but takes a loss of $0.19 for every federal tax dollar they pay out….We need them, more than they need us.  Still want to call them lazy hippies?  We’d all better pray that CA doesn’t secede, seriously.

We like and feel obligated to being a part of the U.S.  See what these Secessionist don’t understand that the vast majority of Americans like us being the United States.  Many of them will have taken oaths to defend our country from all enemies foreign or domestic (did you notice the domestic part?) and they consider that oath binding unto death (I’ve sworn this oath at least twice in my life and I meant it).    These Secessionist are awakening a sleeping and irritable giant that is getting tired of the far right (which seems to have taken over the Republican party)  whining about how they’re going to take their ball and go home because they lost.  Most of the time, when a Republican wins, you don’t see Liberals trying to secede.  You see them get mobilized and try to elect someone else next time around.  But they’re waking up now in a very different way and they’re getting angry.

That’s the problem though isn’t?  It always starts like this and if fanned, creates an unbridgeable chasm that eventually tears a nation apart OR results in the suppression of one of the sides by the other.  If these conservatives truly want liberty, make the system we have better.  Get rid of Lobbyists and the influence of the banks and the large corporations, improve the efficacy of voting for every citizen (not just the ones that look like Beaver Cleaver), get rid of the Patriot Act, do some real campaign finance reform…so many things that would make our system more fair, more transparent, more balanced, more agile.  Then the issues will be what’s important not either side’s hurt feefees or racism (which like it or not, does play a role for many secessionists just as it did 152 years ago) or insults (like 47% of us being moochers) or any of the BS.  We need to be more grown up about this.  This is not a game and this secession symbolism, because that’s all it really is, does actually hurt us a nation.  It’s plants yet another seed of hate and misunderstanding that could grow into another deadly plant that kills over half a million of us.

Really? Seriously?

Police said Daniel Solomon told them his wife became angry over his “lack of voter participation” in last Tuesday’s presidential election and believed her family would face hardship as a result of Obama winning another term.

Future Darwin Award Winner? Good Lord I hope they don’t have children!

I bet that she signed one of the many secession petitions floating around too. Let’s just hope they stop her from watching the news in jail. She swallowed the GOP bait–hook, line and sinker.