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The Right’s Twisted Blame Game

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Posted on Mar 26, 2009

By Joe Conason

As Barack Obama’s economic advisers confront choices that vary from bad to worse in their mission to revive the financial sector and the broader economy, it is worth remembering that those choices were in essence inherited by the president, who is still new to his office. Listening to his critics, especially on the right, it would be easy to believe that the president is personally responsible for ballooning deficits, gigantic bailouts, ridiculous bonuses, nationalized institutions and careening markets. It would be easy to believe but it’s entirely false—and merely the latest episode in an old political con game that is all too typical of Washington.

Ever since Election Day 2008, the usual suspects have been hard at work, deflecting responsibility from the Bush administration (and the Republicans in Congress) for the catastrophic effects of conservative policy enacted during the past eight years. Within days after Obama’s victory, as stock prices fell, radio host and ideological commissar Rush Limbaugh exclaimed that we were already in the “Obama recession.”

In fact, the economy had been shrinking for nearly a year by then, and the market was responding to bad economic news rather than the election result.

But facts are inconvenient for propaganda—especially when politicians and pundits are seeking to escape blame for policies that have failed.

Among the boldest perpetrators of this con game over the past few decades is Limbaugh, who shares with his fellow Republicans a peculiar method of timing the blame for economic woe. When he was flacking for the first President Bush back in 1992, he wrote: “The worst economic period in the last 50 years was under Jimmy Carter, which led to the 1981-82 recession, a recession more punishing than the current one.” But of course the president during the 1982 recession was not named Carter; that president was the sainted Ronald Reagan.

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In January 1981, Reagan took the oath, and within his first three months had rammed through a budget that contained his historic “supply-side” tax cuts. Reagan budget director David Stockman had created computer simulations supposedly showing that those tax cuts would result in 5 percent growth in gross domestic product during the following year. Years later, when simulation failed to materialize as reality, Stockman referred cynically to that prediction as the “rosy scenario”—and admitted that it was essentially a fraud. Contrary to the rosy scenario, 1982 was the worst year since the Great Depression, with negative growth of 2.2 percent.

According to conservative theory, the mere announcement of massive tax cuts for the rich by a Republican president ought to have stimulated euphoria in the markets and rapid growth. And according to that same theory, as explicated by Limbaugh, the prospect of a Democratic president with a progressive agenda was what drove the markets down last autumn.

But there is a double standard at work here. When a Democrat is elected president, he is responsible for economic contraction even if he will not be inaugurated for three months. When a Republican is actually president, he need not be held responsible, even well after he takes office.

If that strikes you as inconsistent, then you are beginning to notice how blatant deception passes for conservative ideology. But the deception is even worse than it appears at first glance.

The same Republicans in Congress and on the radio who lionize the late Reagan now complain bitterly about the tax increases on the wealthy in President Obama’s budget. What they never mention is that their conservative idol, faced with the recession that they blamed on his predecessor, likewise raised taxes during an economic slump.

Terrified by the looming deficits that resulted from the supply-side tax cuts, the Reagan administration rolled back many of the cuts just a year after they had passed—instituting what then amounted to the largest tax increase in American history. Those tax hikes took back about a third of the cuts legislated in 1981. But that historic tax increase is never mentioned when Republican legislators invoke Reagan—and they still love to blame Carter for their hero’s recession.

So even as critics roast President Obama and his treasury secretary, honesty requires that they acknowledge that the problems faced by Obama and Timothy Geithner are not of their making. Obama has held office only since Jan. 20—and if held to the Reagan standard, he deserves at least a year to begin correcting the Bush recession.

Joe Conason writes for The New York Observer.

      © 2009 Creators Syndicate Inc.


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By KDelphi, April 9, 2009 at 9:48 pm Link to this comment

First off, I want to say that I am sick of hearaing “Blame GAME”. Someone is to BLAME , and, it should be investigated. (This is to no one in particular—I just hate the title)

FiftyGigs—“Conservatives really thought they were doing a good thing by deregulation.” But a “good thing” for whom? Certainly they didnt CARE if it was a good thing for anyone but themselves. Summers and other Pres. Obamas advisors, (and Clintons’ ) helped spearhead it, so are you willing to call them “conservatives”? “It sure was radical” Well, it was done in Austria, where it has failed also. But, I cant claim to know alot about that..It seems as though Clintons advisors tried (and succeeded, somewhat) in trying it after the fall of USSR, too. They havent recovered from the corruption yet. Not that they didnt have it before, but, until we get our own head on straight, we need to stop meddling. (we need to anyway) Yeltsin would never have won without the help of Clinton and James Carville, and, Gorbachev might have made more gradual reforms?


It was known as the Shock Doctrine ,in Latin America. From the Chicago School. Now, they have tried it on their own country, which they dont give a rat’s behind about anymore as alot of their money is outside the country. Dont you think that there is just too much emphasis on MONEY in this country? People dont talk that much about it elsewhere, maybe the UK.

I dont think that Pres. Obama is ‘“wrong about everythong”, if I come off that way, it is wrong.(Apparently, I do, as I seem to have incurred much wrath!!) But, I do get very exasperated with people who excuse everyting that he does. He may or may not be better than Clinton, he seems to be a neo-liberal to me. I might argue that we havent had a really GREAT president in my lifetime, thanks to the duopoly, I believe.

Who was it that said that money doesnt , by itself, solve anything, but they had never seen a huge problem solved withoug it? (In reply to your other comment about money not solving problems)

Sorry, but, to me, Summers, Geithener, Bernanke, Gates and raising the military budget (even if re-directed) is not in the right direction. I hope that you are right about him getting rid of them, it sure would win over more liberals on the economics issue. But then theres the military budget and Afghanistan and not lifting the embargo on Cuba…lol. There is still time to “fix” some of this…

Yes, he’s better than Bush. So would I be…lol. I would just like to see the breakup of the duopoly. We are the only industrialized (for now) country that doesnt have more representation of more diparate views.

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By FiftyGigs, April 8, 2009 at 5:41 pm Link to this comment

I think I understand your point, KDelphi.

I can only relate my limited personal experience, and, for what it’s worth, I can affirm that politicians—my elected officials—have taken action against “big money” interests in the context of specific issues when masses of people demanded it.

Maybe those were exceptions.

As you know, I don’t buy into the notion that Obama is simply “more of the same”. I understand the frustration of people who want dramatic change. I personally prefer the President to be careful and safe, rather than radical and risky (in most things).

Conservatives really thought they were doing a good thing by deregulation. It sure was radical. A break from the New Deal. But they failed, and their failure was more than just an “oopsie”. It has dramatically affected many people’s lives for the worse. If they had moved more carefully, they might have actually managed to build a dominating ideology.

What I’m saying is this. I compare Obama to Bush, and I conclude, “Okay, this is better.” You probably agree. I compare Obama to Clinton, and come to the same conclusion. George Sr, Reagan, maybe even further back, but we’re already talking about the best President we’ve seen in over 25 years!

Undercut him because he isn’t radical? Not me.

Direction is everything, not degree. The degree of change can only be appreciated over time. Martin Luther King just walked down a street, pissed in a white bathroom. Why didn’t he run for President, do something radical?

Direction. He took the step in the right direction, which enabled him to take another, and another, and when he died other people stepped in and kept going, until a black man stepped into a White House door.

Dramatic change couldn’t be more simple.

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By KDelphi, April 5, 2009 at 1:19 pm Link to this comment

FiftyGigs—Then why shouldnt everyone have equal influence, rich, poor, no matter where you work or live? You dont just “pass an act” and wait for the schills in DC to implement it—they wont! Theyre still, a majority rich, white Anglo men. MLKJ might be very happy to sees an Af Am president, but, I think he would be confronting him about what he is going to do about he economic inequities, the ineaquity in lifespan, in work, in their very existences, day to day!

If it “works”, then, it is too slow. Id like to see some actual progress for the common person in this country for a huge change. HOw do you explain the Bailout, Patriot Act, FISA, no single payer health care, the continuuatin of Empire while people die in the streets. They are not listening to us—-they are listening to MONEY.

Have actaul civil rights improved for most minorities and women?(many think that we have taken steps backwards in recent decades) I mean, women and racial minorities still make up a disproportionate majority of the impoverished. We have a LOOOONNNGG way to go on those!

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By FiftyGigs, April 5, 2009 at 1:04 pm Link to this comment

KDelphi, I agree that dollars help, if you agree they aren’t essential.

I think you make a good point, but I also agree with Louise, and I think one could make a very good argument that some of the most sweeping changes haven’t really been due to “buying influence”. I’m thinking of voting rights in the 60s and the suffrage movement.

I don’t believe either of those held the creation of a new political party as a goal.

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By KDelphi, April 4, 2009 at 11:00 am Link to this comment

FiftyGigs—so have I , but, have you seen it WORK? W/out $$$? It didnt work on the AT&T FISA Laws (bought and paid for, from ATT to Sen. Jay Rockefeller), the Wall St Bailout, on single payer health care (bought and paid for by those listed at phnp.org), on the Patriot Act II…the money runs everything, If you dont have money, you have only the illusion of power. If that keeps you happy, good for you. There are some things that Pres. Obama has done that I like, too.(Esp. compared to GOP!) But, can you just imagine me mentioning them , in this crowd of worshippers?? I would get a “admit you were wrong!” and , the next time I posted anything critical, it would be “i thought you supported him”! These people are all or nothing. Goodman and Greenwald describe them pretty well.

Glenn Greenwald was on Washington Journal (c-span.org) yesterday, and, he and Amy Goodman (Democracy Now!) were on Bill Moyers last night. They had some excellent points.

http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/index-flash.html

April 3, 2009

“Amy Goodman and Glenn Greenwald are the first recipients of the Park Center for Independent Media Izzy Award (named for I.F. Stone) — named “Pillars of independent media, chosen for the award, because of their journalistic courage and persistence in confronting conventional wisdom and official deception.”
“I think the way the media works is they show the spectrum of opinion between the Democrats and the Republicans in Washington. Often that is very narrow. But the fact is, the majority of Americans fall outside of that opinion.” -Amy Goodman

She also recieved the Right Life Award, known as the Alternative Nobel Prize.(among many other prizes)


“It’s not even some sort of Machiavellian or conspiratorial effort, sometimes, to exclude certain opinions. It’s actually the fact that reporters — and media stars — and corporate and establishment journalists are so embedded into the establishment…That they’re so completely insular and out of touch from what public opinion actually is. And polls show that huge numbers of issues and positions that are held by large numbers of Americans are ones that are virtually never heard in our media discussions.” - Glenn Greenwald

Greenwald in a former Constitutional Lawyer who blogs at salon.com


They are two of the best journalists in the US today, in my opinion.

Greenwald recently did an article on Geithner, Summers and Wall St…conjoined triplets. Genslser, a former Goldman Sachs CEO, is also sited.

Heres’s the “update”:UPDATE:  “Just to get a sense for how propagandistic, sycophantic and fact-free are the most extreme Obama worshippers in our “journalist” class, consider this recent article from The New Republic’s Noam Scheiber in which he urged the White House to “free its economic oracle”—Summers—and defended and praised Summers on the ground that “his exposure to Wall Street over the years has been limited.”  As Jonathan Schwarz asks, citing the massive compensation on which Summers engorged himself by feeding at the Wall Street trough last year:  “I wonder what would have constituted ‘significant’ exposure to Wall Street? Maybe if he’d worked for D.E. Shaw full time? (Amazingly, Summers was paid $5.2 million for a part-time position.)”

You can read the rest at http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/

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By Night-Gaunt, April 4, 2009 at 10:12 am Link to this comment

I admit I didn’t research the last as closely as I could but I have many other things to do. However If you can show me where he is actually helping me and by extension everyone like me then please proceed. You treat me as if I don’t want things to improve. You are wrong, however I am not going to ignore when he promises the moon and gives us a variation on the same theme.

“On the occasion that he voted yes, it was because our troops had already been in Iraq 4 years, and without any of the equipment that they needed to survive/fight the war the Bush began on a whim. His reasoning, (whether you or I agree with it or not) was that having already put our troops in harms way, we at least needed to provide for them.”
The typical excuse to continue the war. Yes I do disagree with it and it is nonsense of the type usually found in Congress. If the troops don’t have the proper gear then they stay in their bases till they do. Since they were in there un-Constitutionally, something Obama should have known, paying to keep them there was the wrong thing to do. That is how Congress stops wars in the first place. He would know and I would expect you would too Cyrena. But then the USA will not be leaving the Iraqis alone any time soon. Not as long as the oil is there and the strategic position Iraq is located in.

Don’t get me wrong, I do like some of what he is doing in other areas in who is being appointed but not in the economic and geo-political arenas. Democrats are nicer than Republicans and soften the blows but the blows still land just not as many. Remember Clinton?

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By cyrena, April 3, 2009 at 8:45 pm Link to this comment

By Night-Gaunt, April 2 at 12:14 pm #
I  
Here is a partial list just so you understand that ‘bashing’ isn’t in my interest but facts and illumination of truth over advertising is. Substance not appearance should be in everybody’s interest shouldn’t it Cyrena?
~*~*
Yes Night-Gaunt, I agree with the substance rather than appearance statement. It should be in everybody’s interest. Problem is, all you’ve given here are his votes (many of which are incorrect) but even at that, it wouldn’t matter, because you’ve put your own context and interpretation to his votes, and that tells us nothing.
And, there isn’t much of an excuse for that either, because it’s generally in the record. So you’re citing only ‘appearance’ rather than substance. If you really wanted to provide truth over advertising, you wouldn’t intentionally disregard the context or the wording of the bills that you claim he supported or didn’t.
The irony is, (if you can remember back about 3 months ago to the campaign) McCain accused Obama MULTIPLE times of REFUSING to support supplemental funding for the wars. Yep, he sure did. So, which is it? It can’t be both.
Anyway, if you were actually interested in the facts, it would occur to you that during his Senate tenure, there were only 2 votes for supplemental spending for the war. On one occasion, (I’ll look it up if I feel like it later) he voted no. On the other occasion, he voted yes, and explained his vote both times. On the occasion that he voted yes, it was because our troops had already been in Iraq 4 years, and without any of the equipment that they needed to survive/fight the war the Bush began on a whim. His reasoning, (whether you or I agree with it or not) was that having already put our troops in harms way, we at least needed to provide for them. Like I said, whether you or I agree with it or not, that was his reasoning.
On the ONLY other occasion that had anything to do with off the books funding for those wars, he voted no, which is what McCain made such hay of during the campaign. So if you have lots of time on your hands Night-Gaunt, maybe you should check out the facts, (which requires more than looking at the roll call). Maybe it would be worth it to you to consider the context and the language of each of these bills before you expect anybody to accept your own interpretation of what that vote means, because so far, it would appear that you don’t have a clue.
It’s like me going to home depot and buying some fertilizer for my garden, and having you decide that I really bought the fertilizer to blow up a building like Timothy McVey did. So, when you can explain to me why Obama voted whatever he voted, your list is appearance with no substance.

Meantime, he’s making your life better even if you don’t want it to be.

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By FiftyGigs, April 3, 2009 at 5:43 pm Link to this comment

“I don’t think I am a “basher” but one who points out when the king is naked no matter what others may think or see.”

Yeah, you’re honest. Come on, Night-Gaunt. You and I know better than that.

Who exactly did Rice kill before 2005????

Another interpretation is that Obama voted for a qualified individual who the President wished to have in his Cabinet, and who wound up serving this country loyally as Secretary of State. I disagree with many of her policies, I consider her an intellectual lightweight, and I don’t think she should be absolved of any crimes, but… all you’re doing is spinning crap as dishonestly as you can.

For example, HR4939? That also pertained to hurricane recovery, and among the few who voted against it was Lamar Alexander, Larry Craig, and Lindsey Graham. So what game do you want play? You gonna argue those guys are “really” progressives?

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By Night-Gaunt, April 2, 2009 at 9:15 am Link to this comment

II

“6/22/06: Obama voted for cloture (the last effective chance to stop) on the National Defense Authorization Act (S 2766), which provided massive amounts of funding to defense contractors.

“6/22/06: Obama again voted for continued war by voting to pass the National Defense Authorization Act (S 2766) for continued war funding.

“9/29/06: Obama voted vote for the conference report on more funding for war, HR 5631.

“11/16/06: Obama voted for nuclear proliferation in voting to pass HR 5682, a bill to exempt the United States-India Nuclear Proliferation Act from requirements of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954.


“12/06/06: Obama voted to confirm pro-war Robert M. Gates to be Secretary of Defense. Gates is a supporter of Bush’s policies of pre-emptive war and conquest of foreign countries.

Also Jeramy Scahill on Altnet & Democracynow.org on “Obama’s Blackwater…” concerning his putting Triple Canopy mercenaries in place of Blackwater/Xe in guarding of diplomats, involved in Palestine/Israel and are not any better. What he should be doing is removing Xe, Triple Canopy, Dyncorp and all the other military for hire organizations out of those war zones. Then getting out of said war zones as soon as possible instead of promoting more violent terrorist interference in some one else’s business and country. Changing the names of things do not change the things. You should understand that considering your education level.

Finally the economy, with Treasury Secretary Timmothy Geithner now given the keys to the economy even his friend Paul Kurgman is distressed as you and everyone should be. With $1 trillion to control and the ability to promote risk and allow the investors to walk away from any failure it is the same song sung again. Just as pres. Obama continues to prop up the bad system instead of cleaning it up and out and put it back under the rigid controls first put in place by FDR and had been removed over the years by both Democrats and Republicans.

True President Barak H. Obama has been putting in place some good people in those other areas. Even removing the gag order on birth control & abortions (just as Clinton had before him) and allow for tax payer money for stem cell research but the critical areas of the economy and military adventures remains and can bring the rest of it down.

So am I being hypercritical and excessively judgmental or am viewing things with a clear and objective eye? Could it be that you want the dream so much that any criticism is biased and wrong no matter how correct it is? I don’t think I am a “basher” but one who points out when the king is naked no matter what others may think or see. I have no malice or anger though things are bad and could easily get far worse.

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By Night-Gaunt, April 2, 2009 at 9:14 am Link to this comment

I    

Here is a partial list just so you understand that ‘bashing’ isn’t in my interest but facts and illumination of truth over advertising is. Substance not appearance should be in everybody’s interest shouldn’t it Cyrena?

“1/26/05: Obama voted to confirm Condoleezza Rice for Secretary of State. Rice was largely responsible…for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent victims in unnecessary wars.

“2/01/05: Obama was part of a unanimous consent agreement not to filibuster the nomination of lawless torturer Alberto Gonzales as chief law enforcement officer of the United States (U.S. Attorney General).”

“2/15/05: Obama voted to confirm Michael Chertoff, a proponent of water-board torture… man behind the round-up of thousands of people of Middle-Eastern descent following 9/11. By Roll call 10.”

“4/21/05: Obama voted to make John ‘Death Squad’ Negroponte the National Intelligence Director. In Central America, John Negroponte was connected to death squads that murdered nuns and children in sizable quantities.

“4/21/05: Obama voted for HR 1268, war appropriations in the amount of approximately $81 billion. Much of this funding went to Blackwater USA and Halliburton and disappeared.

“10/07/05: Obama voted for HR2863, which appropriated $50 billion in new money for war.

“11/15/05: Obama voted for continued war, again. Roll call 326 was the vote on the Defense Authorization Act (S1042) which kept the war and war profiteering alive, restricted the right of habeas corpus and encouraged terrorism.

“12/21/05: Obama confirmed his support for war by voting for the Conference Report on the Defense Appropriations Act (HR 2863), Roll call 366, which provided more funding to Halliburton and Blackwater. ”

“5/2/06: Obama voted for money for more war by voting for cloture on HR 4939, the emergency funding to Halliburton, Blackwater and other war profiteers.

“5/4/06: Obama, again, voted to adopt HR4939: emergency funding to war profiteers.

“6/13/06: Obama voted to commend the armed services for a bombing that killed innocent people and children and reportedly resulted in the death of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi…

“6/15/06: Obama voted for the conference report on HR4939, a bill that gave warmongers more money to continue the killing and massacre of innocent people in Iraq.

“6/15/06: Obama, again, opposed withdrawal of the troops, by voting to table a motion to table a proposed amendment would have required the withdrawal of US. Armed Forces from Iraq and would have urged the convening of an Iraq summit.

“6/22/06: Obama voted against withdrawing the troops by opposing the Kerry Amendment (S. Amdt 4442 to S 2766) to the National Defense Authorization Act.

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By Leefeller, April 1, 2009 at 6:09 pm Link to this comment

Some must find fault with the system, any way possible, so Obama is the choice of the Plutocracy.  If he is then why does he seem to be doing more in three months than Bush did in 8 years?  I know, smoke and mirrors, he is not really doing anything except the bidding of the people he is working for. 

Let’s give Obama some time, I hope to prove myself and the critics wrong.  Expecting Obama to bend over and spread them for individual agendas seems slightly over estimated. In the scheme of things,Obama has to play the middle aginst both ends, so everyone is not happy. 

I find the wole thing rebulinic in nature.

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By FiftyGigs, April 1, 2009 at 5:42 pm Link to this comment

“Isnt it a bit ridiculous to suggest that the “people” “lobby”, with, what, phone calls??”

KDelphi, actually, yes. I’ve seen it.

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By cyrena, March 31, 2009 at 5:30 pm Link to this comment

“Obama’s choices tell us much about what he really is. One that was hidden in the soft, gauze of his efflorescent speech with very little detail. I didn’t trust him because I couldn’t read him. Lacking clear background and actions plus vague promises equals uncertainty. Unfortunately he has proven to be just the other pick by the cabal.”

~*~

Night-Gaunt,

You’re new to the Obama bashing crowd, but I’m thinking that we should set up a special thread for you guys.

Still, since you’re new here, I’m going to ask you the same question that I ask all of the Obama bashers, which is simple to qualify your statements.

So, let’s start with the ‘choices’ that you claim tell us what Obama really is. What are these ‘choices’ SPECIFICALLY (in your mind) that tell us who and what he is, and how he’s somehow part of the cabal.

I won’t ask you to prove your rhetoric, but that sends Obama bashers into fits, (because they never can). But, you deserve a chance to be different. So, would you be willing to tell us what his ‘choices’ are that tell us who he is, and what he’s about?

I won’t hold my breath, but if you’re willing to give it a shot, I’ll certainly respect you for it, and in about 1% of his ‘choices’ that I recognize, I would even agree.

For example, Hillary Clinton couldn’t be a worse choice for Secretary of State. I don’t know why he selected her, unless he was smart enough to keep his friends close, and his enemies even closer. Making Hillary SoS means that he can not only keep her busy, but out of his own hair. Now he wasn’t stupid enough to choose her as his VP, since he would have needed a food tester or some other round the clock protection.

Still, Hillary has proven herself to be poison, so the only reason I can think of for him allowing her to have such an important position has to be because he can keep his eye on her.

His choices for Labor, Justice Department, Health and Human Services, and Education, (just to name a few) couldn’t be better. So, what choices are you talking about.

Like I said, I won’t hold my breath. Obama bashers always rely on specious and pernicious rhetoric/lies, because overwhelmingly, nobody bothers to call them on it.l

Still, you might prove to be an exception.

So, what ‘choices’ are you talking about, and how can you find a single thing in common with his Administration and the former thug regime?

Oh, by the way, Do you ever watch any so-called ‘mainstream’ news programs like 60 minutes? Have you ever been willing to listen to what the guy actually says, and then follows up on. Like for instance he said he maintains a FUNDAMENTAL disagreement with Dick Cheney in terms of Guantanamo, and torture for ANY reason. Is that the ‘choice’ that you were mentioning that proves who he is? I’d say that a damn good choice for proving who is. How about his decision to end the farce of the so-called “war on Terror” Is that a representative choice of who or what he is about?

Let me ask you about his immediate lifting of the Bush BAN on stem cell research? Is that another bad choice? Then let me ask you about Bushes war on Iraq. Obama has called it off, and set up a time table for our troops to be out of a place that Obama knew all along we never belonged in the first place. Is that another bad choice?

I guess his economic recovery plan is a bad choice too, eh? And then of course his focus on making it possible for our population to actually get an education must be an equally bad choice.

Let me know what others you can think of that prove Obama to be the guy you don’t like because as you say, he’s not transparent enough. (of course if one is blind, it wouldn’t matter how transparent he is, now would it?)


Let me know

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By KDelphi, March 31, 2009 at 1:22 pm Link to this comment

Night Guant-yes…sad and very accurate.

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By Night-Gaunt, March 31, 2009 at 1:02 pm Link to this comment

Medved wrote a recent book where he ‘proved’ that we have had only a two party system. These days it is locked in for out side of such a rigid codified system creates a sclerotic cul-de-sac we are in now. Where else can you go? All other possibilities are shut out. Which is the reason why it is that way, to give us an appearance of freedom of choice by the oligarchs in charge of deciding the small pool we are given as the only ocean of choice. A false choice like false hope is what we are given. We shall never be allowed to get the whole carrot or apple dangled in front of us. That is the point of course. What inverted totalitarianism is. One that could convert to obvious one in a short time if needed. One that will be welcomed in a compromised society. Obama’s choices tell us much about what he really is. One that was hidden in the soft, gauze of his efflorescent speech with very little detail. I didn’t trust him because I couldn’t read him. Lacking clear background and actions plus vague promises equals uncertainty. Unfortunately he has proven to be just the other pick by the cabal.

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By KDelphi, March 31, 2009 at 12:31 pm Link to this comment

Louise—Isnt it a bit ridiculous to suggest that the “people” “lobby”, with, what, phone calls?? When both parties take obscene amounts of money from profressional lobbyists?? HOw many calls did our “reps” get against Bailout, the FISA renewal, etc What good did it do? The powerful, rich banking intersts won anyway! 71% want a universal health plan, but, its not even on the table, thanks to insurance lobbyists!

Until we have another option to the duoploy, and/or campaign finance reform, money rules the day. If you dont think so, you are incredibley naive. (Thats why it is called CAPITALISM)

The wikipedia type analysis of the two party system is flawed, in that, our “founding fathers” (btw—you are not allwoed to vote and are not a citizen—youre a female!!), were a bunch of rich, white guys, which is exactly the gorup that has us where we are now.

If you wish to go back to the Constitution, all minorities had better step out of all politics! I’m not sure how much land you have to own..

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By Louise, March 31, 2009 at 11:09 am Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, March 30 at 12:22 pm #

“How can you have a class war when at least one side (the GOP) definitely has no class?”
~~~

Good question! (chuckle) smile

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By Louise, March 31, 2009 at 10:38 am Link to this comment

jackpine savage,
The two party system DID NOT come about organically. The founders “called for it” for sure! 

Alexander Hamilton, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, founding fathers? I think so, to name a few.

Federalists and Anti-Federalists, out of respect for President Washington, refused to call themselves “parties” but recognized a need for two sides.

The call for two parties, as you should know, was going on long before Washington became President. He believed he served all the people - hence he refused to align with either side. But, by the time Washington entered his third year as president, the question was settled with the absolute of two parties.

As noted, from 1796 to the Civil War, it was common for the two parties to fracture and put forward more than one candidate. This practice PROVED Washington’s concern about parties evolving into self-interest groups who served themselves more than the country. It also proved, without TWO clearly defined parties, and allowing willy-nilly small factions to develop within those two, led to many sides all serving their own special interests, all leading to the lack of clear leadership in the whole. Which led to confusion, anger and bitterness. It also proved trying to please everyone generally leads to pleasing no-one.

The Civil War showed how dangerous political fracture, as opposed to two strong parties could be, so the two largest “parties” at the time – Democratic and Republican – remade themselves into broad coalitions of liberals and conservatives.

Without citizen input both of those parties, eager to win majority support, often look alike. At least to those who still prefer the fraction of factions that leads to NOTHING getting done! Kucinich and Paul are two powerful voices within their respective parties. But if either or both of them became the candidate for president in a third or fourth party, their powerful voices would be lost! Because their supporters like most citizens, focus on their personal issues, rather than ALL the issues confronting this nation!

Most citizens, including myself do not spend time learning and understanding ALL the issues. Why should we, when we have mainstreammedia? Why should we when our guy got elected, or didn’t? Why should we when everyone else is wrong, or right? When we call for a third party, are we really calling for a knew someone else to do it for us? “Let George do it” has been a common expression down through the ages. Something said when someone grumbles but doesn’t want to extend personal effort. Well we let a “George” do it for the past eight years didn’t we.

That went well. Duh. wink

My Senator tells me the most powerful Lobby in the United States is the People of the United States. You are a people. Under the First Amendment to the Constitution you have the right to lobby your Representative, your Senators and your President. President Obama, responding to the powerful lobby representing private, Insurance Corporations, was going to create an arm to Veterans Health Care, operated by private Insurance. The Veterans groups organized and sent a lobby to D.C. They were successful and met with the president. Once he heard about their needs, from them, he abandoned the plan to make their health care a part of the profit driven Insurance industry. Proving the truth of what my Senator said.

The voice of the people put the Republicans out of control. But where’s the voice now, here? Hardly. Voting is a beginning. The next step is to lobby!

If you, or anyone is unhappy with the behavior of the two parties, LOBBY! You can do that, and you can make a difference. And that difference can be far more powerful and immediate than spinning your wheels trying to organize another party. Which in the end would simply divide even more than we already are! Besides we already have a bunch of other parties, all as fractured and fighting to identify personal self-interest as the two big guys do. Only more so!

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By cyrena, March 31, 2009 at 10:27 am Link to this comment

•  “Calling for “Class War” makes about as much sense as calling for “people war”?  The problem is define people, how shall one define which people are worthy of war? “

Leefeller,
I’ve apparently missed something here. I was the one who initially mentioned that we (and I meant the majority of ‘we’ since I mentioned the 90% of our population ) are the VICTIMS of a class war that has been intentionally perpetrated by the approximately 10% of the population. I did NOT suggest that anyone should ‘call for’ a class war, since that would be stupid. My point is that we are already IN that class war that has been developing for several years.

My own comment about a class war was a response to I believe Max, who made the claim that we the times we’re living in now is NOT the Era of the Civil War, and my comment was that we absolutely ARE in a Civil War, but that we call it a class war.

Here’s how this civil/class war is displayed. 10% of the population owns/controls 90% of the wealth. The remaining 90% of the population then fight, argue, bicker, and kill each other as we scramble and scrap for our portion of the 10% of the resources that the wealthy leave as crumbs for us to fight over, amongst ourselves.

I’ll say this again. 10% of the population,  own/control 90% of the wealth and resources. That leaves the rest of us (90% of the population) to fight over the measly 10%. And, as we do that, the bad guys walk off with even more of our shit, because we’re too busy fighting with each other to even pay attention.

That is, (in my opinion) a class war, but clearly not the type of class war that we started against the perpetrators. Because we aren’t fighting the perpetrators. We’re fighting each other, and that 10% of the ultra elite is laughing all the way to the Swiss banks and other off-shore places where they keep OUR money, thinking to themselves how clever and untouchable they are because we’re so stupid we don’t even see what they’re doing.

This isn’t a new practice. It’s as old as dirt. Every time the US or any other entity for that matter, decides to take over a country, they do the divide and conquer strategy. Think Iraq. We went into a country that was controlled by a dictator and a minority class of mostly Sunni, but just as many Shia were members of Saddam’s Baath party. The majority of the population in that case, happen to be Shi’ites, but they were controlled by the minority. However, prior to the invasion and occupation of Iraq, the population managed to live together (within their economic class structure) without a whole lot of problems. (as long as they didn’t piss off Saddam). We go in, and within a year, they have a civil war, (or at least that’s what our media has chosen to call it because it puts the blame on the victims, and then we can lie and say that ‘oh, those people have been feuding for centuries, when in fact they haven’t been feuding any more that Catholics and Protestants here at home, because that’s the only difference between them.)

WE CAUSED that war, just as wars will ALWAYS develop WHEN RESOURCES BECOME SCARCE! That’s what I mean by a class war.

It’s not about ‘calling for’ that 90% of us to rise up against the 10% that keep us all oppressed, because we’re obviously too stupid to do that. (we wouldn’t have elected the Murderer and the Moron the first time, let alone the second time if at least a large percentage of us weren’t collectively stupid enough to sign our own death certificates at the voting booth)

No, instead we wait until the class war is a decade or more old to finally realize (some of us) what’s going on, and we finally get a leadership that is will and able to begin a correction to that, (in part by a more equitable distribution of the wealth/resources) and the same stupidos who’ve been so duped are now blaming him for their woes.

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By Night-Gaunt, March 31, 2009 at 8:53 am Link to this comment

Dwight Baker, we are speaking of the concept of class warfare and how it is applied. Take the USA, class war is declared by those very same interests that actively wage it against the working classes or ‘Blue Collar’ though that designation is insufficiently precise. The upper classes declare ‘class war’ when the lower classes call them on their constant need to dominate their workers and take most of their wealth for themselves. Curious isn’t it? The upper classes attack, the lower classes defend and the upper classes blame them for the ‘attack’ that is really a defensive action against the upper class strike at them in the first place! Remember how we keep hearing the slogan that the United States is without classes (economic)? Even though we hear about the wealthy and extremely wealthy all of the time. Many of them hide it so that the envious won’t attack them. Others are so well defended only the most skilled and ardent could have a chance to reach them if they really wanted to escalate to actual violence. Once we reach that stage the end is near for our civilization.

The so-called classes in India are habitual that benefit all but the lowest ones forced to remain in those services of the most dangerous and grotesque jobs. The Japanese have one such class like that too called “buraku” from feudal times that they are the lowest of the low and do only the ugly and ‘unclean’ jobs from sewers to morticians. It still exists today. Manufactured classes of people given the best or the worst of social positions and that is the only thing different about them. [Separate from the Anu of Hokkido who do have some racial differences.] We have that here as well less defined these days since the flattening, for most of us, of the economy is making the majority of us paupers and very few as rich as the feudal lords of the distant past only with more things and power over more people. A bad way of living. First you recognize the problem then you correct it. [See all of our other problems.]

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By Leefeller, March 31, 2009 at 8:00 am Link to this comment

My comments were in reply to Night-Gaunt, and Kdelphi. Comments are not in support of “Class War”, my discussion with them has been clear, or so I thought, though I did not mention them by name in the last post, so maybe it is not clear?

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By Leefeller, March 31, 2009 at 7:09 am Link to this comment

Class War, means a war between the classes, defining class can be difficult or easy, depending on the person calling the shots.  Does this mean anyone below your class, or anyone above your class? How to decide on who is the same class may be a bit sticky, but we are going to war anyway?

Class differences in India are accepted practices and defined from what I understand, quite clearly. In the United States, classes are not clearly defined. So a war is not clearly definable. Only in the minds of individuals may this be.  Actually a meaningless bit of rhetorical differences used to divide people, a broad brush instead of real focus on the issues at hand.  Same as the MSM, real issues are covered or ignored with smoke and mirrors, lower class, middle class, upper class which are you? 

Calling for “Class War” makes about as much sense as calling for “people war”?  The problem is define people, how shall one define which people are worthy of war? 

Trendy,  Class War is not.  It smells of division and seems counter productive to the real issues it wants to address. Class War, means little more than a war on Terror or Drugs other wars never defined, but used to instill fear and conjure support.  Alleged “wars” of bumbling proportions.

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By dihey, March 31, 2009 at 6:21 am Link to this comment

The rules of political inheritance are simple. What you inherit as a new president becomes your responsibility regardless of whether you or your predecessors caused the negatives in the inheritance. Blaming predecessors is an utterly useless exercise.

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By Inherit The Wind, March 31, 2009 at 4:04 am Link to this comment

cyrena:

3 posts to answer Jackpine?  This is a guy who believes the RNC talking point that the economic collapse is all Barney Frank’s fault…despite the fact that the House that enacted all the changes was GOP from Jan 1995 to Jan 2007—12 solid years, and the Senate was GOP from Jan 1995 to Feb 2001, then from Jan 2003 to Jan 2007—and that the Dems in BOTH the House and Senate from 2007 till now caved in to nearly EVERYTHING Bush and the GOP wanted.

So…how is that all Barney Frank’s fault?  Insanity!

See cyrena—people will believe bullshit even when simple arithmetic and a calendar prove it MUST be false.

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By cyrena, March 30, 2009 at 9:37 pm Link to this comment

1 of 3

Oh come now Jackpine, I wasn’t taking it out on you. I was responding to the fact that you choose to label everybody based on a political party, (the democrats of course) when you don’t have any idea what ALL democrats think, or even what ideology allegedly defines the party, because you are so incredibly partisan, and lazy at the same time. It’s far easier to just blanket blame ‘democrats’ despite the fact that history defies your claim that all ‘democrats’ subscribe 100% to whatever you think is the Democratic ideology. In fact, I don’t know anybody who subscribes 100%, without question, just because it comes from a so-called democrat.  Such rigid group think has always annoyed me, because my politics don’t ‘fit’ with a single party. I was a democrat here in my own home state. But when I moved to Texas, I changed myself to Independent, if only because being in Democrat in Texas is the same as putting ones vote in the shredder.

So you take the lazy way out, and just say, “All Democrats are bad” and of course I’m gonna call you on it, because it’s a lie. You hated the Clintons, and so because they were Democrats, you just automatically assume that the Clinton’s represent all democrats, which couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, the last election campaign should have made it clear that Hillary Clinton would have been a far better running mate for McCain, because their ideologies are identical, despite the fact that she claimed to be a democrat, and he a republican. Hillary is a republican. At least her ideology is, and she started out that way…a Goldwater cheerleader.

So it is the bunch of YOU ALL, who get hung-up and obsessed by such titles, when those things mean less than a damn to me, particularly in an age that has moved beyond such partisanship. The younger generations don’t ‘look back’ but rather forward, to the reality of the world today. Barack Obama could have been a Green, or an Independent, or a Purple, or a Peace and Freedom, and I would have voted for him regardless, because I at least have enough smarts to know who can do the job, and who can’t. In short, I don’t vote PARTY, but PEOPLE. For me, it only matters who’s best for the job, and who shares the interests of the community where I live.

So while you all wallow in the past misdeeds of the democrats, (with nary a mention of the neocon republicans that have literally destroyed our country) I say that’s a dead and gone mentality that you can hang on to if you want, but reality trumps every time.

And all the rhetoric in the world doesn’t change the reality, which is that we finally have intelligent people in our leadership, doing their damndest to clean up the mess that the repugs created.
Then you say this, which leaves me wide open to dispute you..

•  “Now, show me some evidence of the Democratic Party doing what’s right for America or the majority of her citizens.  Iraq War? Nope.  Torture? Nope.  Spying on us? Nope.  Stopping the credit card companies from robbing us blind?  Nope. “
Obama dealt with the torture issue nearly two years ago when he was still just a candidate. Remember his speech after he won in Iowa? Look it up. He made it abundantly clear, (not just then, but it’s as good an example as any) that Torture was absolutely NEVER acceptable, under ANY circumstances, including the phony ‘ticking time bomb scenario that Alan Dershowitz (a so-called dem himself) was doing everything he could to ‘make it legal’. Obama promised he would shut down that illegal facility at Gitmo, which he just happened to do the first day in office, in addition to calling for the suspension of the Kangaroo trials that were in progress at the time.

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By cyrena, March 30, 2009 at 9:33 pm Link to this comment

2 of 3

Then there’s the Military Commissions Act that Obama argued so passionately against when he was a Senator. It passed anyway, and that legislation, (for anybody with enough sense to read and understand it) is probably the worst legislation that has ever been passed, considering that it effectively covered the former regime (retroactively) for most of their crimes. Sooner, rather than later, that too will be over turned, since his action in terms of Guantanamo basically serves that purpose.

Then we have the restoration of the Freedom of Information Act, (I think Obama did that on day 2) which is another very important part of our structure that was destroyed under the former Nazis.
You claim he hasn’t done anything about Iraq, despite the FACT and the REALITY that he’s already committed to withdrawing our troops, and set a time table for it.

Even more recently he’s told the auto manufactures that they won’t get any more of our money until and unless they come up with a plan that works for US, not for the automobile industry/oil industry.

For 30 years before he died, my dad refused to buy American cars. Why? According to him, the Japanese would ASK the consumer what they wanted in a vehicle, and then build to those specifications. And also according to him, the US auto manufactures built whatever pieces of crap they wanted to build, and told us to ‘take it or leave it’. Now Obama has sent them back to the drawing table. No more money until they clean up their acts and find a better plan. And if they sink, that’ll be their problem.
He’s also put a lie to thebeerdoctors claim about only providing for those who deserve it the least…

Vice President Biden Announces $250 Recovery Payments to Go to Social Security and SSI Beneficiaries in May
Payments will inject more than $13 Billion into Economy

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the_press_office/Vice-President-Biden-Announces-250-Dollar-Recovery-Payments-to-Go-to-Social-Security-and-SSI-Beneficiaries-in-May/

Might I remind you that for the millions of us receiving Social Security or SSI, we aren’t rich. No doubt you’ll claim that $250.00 is nothing, but it will feed $13 billion into the economy, because unlike the uber wealthy who haven’t paid taxes in at least 8 years, low income people like us with SPEND that $250.00 instead of sitting on it or hiding it in off-shore accounts.

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By cyrena, March 30, 2009 at 9:31 pm Link to this comment

3 of 3
Then there’s this:

Obama Administration Announces $3.2 Billion in Funding for Local Energy Efficiency Improvements

Block Grants to Support Jobs, Cut Energy Bills, and Increase Energy Independence

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the_press_office/Obama-Administration-Announces-32-Billion-in-Funding-for-Local-Energy-Efficiency-Improvements/

Oh yeah, of course this is no big deal to republicans, or anybody else with a source of income. But for people with no jobs, this is like manna from Heaven, (if one believes in such) because I can assure you of exactly what it feels like to have no job, and no source of income, or how low income and no income people have to try to survive by eating all of the things that are disastrous for their long term health, because they can’t afford good food like fruits and veggies.  And when you conveniently jump into your pickup truck or whatever else you drive, the rest of us are hoofing it on most days, and taking the bus when we come across a few extra quarters to ‘splurge’ on a ride.

So you people live in your own little worlds/bubbles, oblivious to the concerns that every day folks struggle with, and it’s been clear for decades that only the ‘dreaded Democrats’ have ever given a rats ass about the majority of the people.
So let’s face it here Jackpine, your hatred of ‘the democrats’ is without any practical substance. Rather, it is all visceral. And for somebody that doesn’t vote for anybody, I don’t find any of your complaints legitimate. That’s not to say that I don’t find many so-called democrats as repulsive as many republicans, but yours in a collective punishment mentality because you’ve got this hair up your ass about democrats, rather than people who happen to associate with the democratic party.
Oh and by the way, how does it become the Democrats that have allowed the credit card companies to rob us blind? The only way that could have happened is if you have used the bad judgment to rely on them in the first place? Are you telling us that some of those awful democrats FORCED you to borrow money from them? Are you saying that you don’t have access to local banks and credit unions to do your business with? Is that the democrats fault as well?
As for robbing you blind, do you not get that the past 8 years of running TWO WARS off the books, is far more representative of what was robbing you blind? Surely you’re far too smart to think that Dick Bush could spend trillions of dollars in the destruction business, and not have that affect the level of resources available to you right here in the good old US of A. So tell us again how it was the credit cards companies that robbed you blind, (even though you obviously had to request that money/credit) when the former republican regime damn sure didn’t ask for your permission to borrow and spend trillions of dollars for the building of billion dollar Embassies in the countries that the destroyed in their efforts at neo-colonization.

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By BruSays, March 30, 2009 at 7:06 pm Link to this comment

KDelphi…yep…that’s what the “Etc. Etc.” was for. Bet you could come up with a dozen more “news” items without too much effort!

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By KDelphi, March 30, 2009 at 5:34 pm Link to this comment

BruSys—Please! Dont forget the crown jewel of Dubya and the neo-cons! Freedom fries—-‘bout says it all….

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By BruSays, March 30, 2009 at 5:04 pm Link to this comment

Wow, this blog has legs!

Louise: Thanks for the kudo. (“People, the NEWS isn’t that Rush Limbaugh is falsely blaming Obama. The REAL NEWS is that Corporate Media is quoting him to hype the ratings.”
~~~
Oh that is such an excellent point!)

Way too often we get into these major discussions (this one included so I’m guilty too, I suppose) over “news” that really isn’t news at all.

What Rush has to say about Obama’s record (blaming his 2-month tenure vs. the 12 years of Republican control…6 under Clinton and 6 under Bush from - ‘94 to ‘06) can be a ‘fun’ story but it is irrelevant. Rush is an entertainer and it’s fine if other entertainers pick up on that ‘story.’ But when the Corporate Media picks up what Rush says you KNOW you’re in trouble. Something else is underway and it smells like ratings to me, not substantive news.

Consider:
1. American Flag lapel pins
2. O’Reilly vs. Sean Penn
3. Tire pressure to increase fuel efficiency
4. Men’s bathroom cubicle “signage” in Minneapolis
5. Terry Schiavo
6. The Octuplet Mom
7. Kucinich and UFOs
8. Renaming Ground Zero’s “Freedom Tower”
9. Etc. Etc.

These “news items” were or are nonsense. Sure, they’re often “interesting,” (so is a pizza with Christ’s image) but they’re hyped up way beyond their significance simply because they polarize, cause fear, piss us off…whatever…and, most important, BECAUSE THEY INCREASE RATINGS.
Not because they inform or educate.

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By KDelphi, March 30, 2009 at 4:57 pm Link to this comment

Leefeller-“Class war can only exist if both side know it is happening.”

Well, that is clearly false…

” Manipulation by special interests is not class war, lets say corporate supporters have for a very long time indoctrinated the people on the street to vote against their own best interests.  Using many different pretenses and outright lies, fear is a good one, carrots on sticks can work and of course the grand illusion everyone is equal. Maybe the class difference becomes apparent when looking at the word equal?”

How is this not class war, exactly??

20-80,000 die every year in the battle with the industry for health care. People will die from losing their life savings in the bailout. People will die because corporations will do anything to make their stocks go up 1/4 point, even if it means putting melamine, in your food.

This is a more insidious warfare, but you end up dead just the same…maybe, its even worse. They could at least have the balls to declare war, instead of pretending to give you “freedom” and “choice”.

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By Night-Gaunt, March 30, 2009 at 12:40 pm Link to this comment

All wars have casualties even if you don’t see the typical accutraments of battle. No explosions or troop movements but people die whether fast or slow while living a life much harder than need be by those who want to keep the wealth earned by others for themselves which include health care and food and better homes etc. A life of added stress affects the human organism which kills slowly. Makes us more suseptible to disease and other ailments.

Subversion is the way it is done. The less choice we have the more influence they have over us. Controlling more and more leaves us with less and less. When one group controls the choices then the choices become a myth but the game of life continues to be played and as the 10% prosper the other 90% degrade and lose quality of life and it moves back to the Hobbsian for those of us not in that 10%.

Yes it is a war because deadly means are used against us from the police and military to laws and ordinances. There are casualties don’t ever forget that.

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By Leefeller, March 30, 2009 at 12:09 pm Link to this comment

Good one ITW, though prejudicial.

Although agreeing with most of your premise Night-Gaunt, I find the word war used for effect other than cause. It seems we disagree on the use of the word war,as a defining word of, defferencers we both find we may agree on.

Words for action or insult can be similar only in the sense they are used to instill emotional feelings in people.  “Class war” seems such to me, used to instill feelings in as lemmings go marching off the cliff?

Maybe I perceive it as Rhetorical, and find fault from there?

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By Night-Gaunt, March 30, 2009 at 11:00 am Link to this comment

Subjugation does not have to include out right killing with weapons. It can be a reserve measure. More subtle means can work as well from lack of good education to poor and limited opportunities offered as the only means of employment. Even better if you can get most of the people who are under your heal to believe and support your cause even if it is slightly misrepresented to them. With large amounts of a false hope cultivated in greed that they too can attain the wealth of their cheerleaders. Some of the myths have been so inculcated into society that they are considered common sense and normal. Any who notice the inconsistansies of them are attacked as being ‘un American’ and forced to shut up.

Subversion is part of warfare and is just not so visible and the bodies aren’t listed as KIA. When the 17,000 a month die here in this country from lack of health care alone because of those who fight against the idea of universal health care as a right is an example. There are many other examples you can find of the oligarchs and their own war against the rest of us.

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By Leefeller, March 30, 2009 at 9:39 am Link to this comment

War the word, has been bastardized beyond redemption.  In most cases as of late we have seen the word “war” to conjure fear.  “War on” Terror”, “war on drugs” among others.  Now we have the “class war”?  Most wars need prerequisites to be called wars. Even football is not called war?  Defining is in the pudding.

  Class differences even political and economic differences automatically do not indicate war? A bear siting in the woods analogy does nothing to indicate supporting the word “war”? The “Hatfields and McCoys”, counts as a war. 

According to the use of the word war in out of context of the true meaning, may even define our differences of opinion as war?

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By Inherit The Wind, March 30, 2009 at 9:22 am Link to this comment

How can you have a class war when at least one side (the GOP) definitely has no class?

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By Night-Gaunt, March 30, 2009 at 8:39 am Link to this comment

Class war can and does go on Leefella even if those targeted don’t know the word or who it is that is keeping them down. Even if they are unaware it is actually going on! [The tree falling in the forest still makes a sound even if no human is there to experience it.]

Sometimes the forest of noise hides the trees of manipulation and psychological warfare.

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By Leefeller, March 30, 2009 at 7:56 am Link to this comment

Class war can only exist if both side know it is happening. Manipulation by special interests is not class war, lets say corporate supporters have for a very long time indoctrinated the people on the street to vote against their own best interests.  Using many different pretenses and outright lies, fear is a good one, carrots on sticks can work and of course the grand illusion everyone is equal. Maybe the class difference becomes apparent when looking at the word equal?

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By jackpine savage, March 30, 2009 at 5:13 am Link to this comment

We have been the victims of a CLASS war, and it’s the same damn thing. ~Cyrena

And which side of the class war are the Democrats on, Cyrena? 

And no, i’m not talking about your “Progressive Democrats of America” whatever and wherever they are.  I’m talking about the Democratic Party.

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By Inherit The Wind, March 30, 2009 at 4:00 am Link to this comment

I tried to post this last night but Comcast went down…

cyrena, sometimes you p*** me off so much I can’t stand it…then you go and post a GEM like that this that reminds why I can’t stay mad at you!

“It would be interesting to find out how you people would choose your leaders if NOBODY had a party affiliation next to their name. You all wouldn’t know whether to shit or blow your nose, and that applies far more to the ignorant who can’t figure out who actually represents their best interests, without a party name attached to them. How in the hell do you think we wound up with the disastrous NON-leadership of the past. “

The insight here combined with “you all wouldn’t know whether to shit or blow your nose” had me ROFLMAO!  The idea that SO many Americans “pick” their candidates by how they comb their hair or whether their wife/husband is a b**** or SOB, and how they voted on “value” issues like flag-burning or gay marriage is how we ended up with George W. Botch. 

It wasn’t until literally EVERYTHING around them started to collapse, from their mortgages to their 401Ks to their kids off forever in a meaningless war, to losing jobs, to not being able to send their kids to college,  to the world hating us, to the rich getting tax cuts and $750 billion bailouts that they FINALLY said “ENOUGH!”

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By jackpine savage, March 29, 2009 at 7:42 pm Link to this comment

Ok, Cyrena, thanks for clearing up that you’re right and everyone else is wrong.

I especially enjoyed your liberal usage of the phrase “you people”...very enlightened.

Now, show me some evidence of the Democratic Party doing what’s right for America or the majority of her citizens.  Iraq War? Nope.  Torture? Nope.  Spying on us? Nope.  Stopping the credit card companies from robbing us blind?  Nope. 

Sure, there were six parties on the ballot but it wasn’t i who said that the “founders called for a two party system”.  I was responding to Louise.  But hey, take it out on me if you want. 

I’d know how to vote without a party affiliation, same way i vote now…i’d look at my choices and decide on the least worst.

Anyway, get back to me with some of the great things that the Democratic Party has accomplished in the recent past…should be good for a laugh.

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By cyrena, March 29, 2009 at 5:26 pm Link to this comment

•  “The world we live in is not the same as the Civil War era or even the late 18th century.  Yet you seem content to be stuck with the political structure developed to deal with those eras.  That’s fine, you’re not alone and i’ll remain a voice from the wilderness.  And your political parties will continue running the nation into the ground for the sake of the party’s electoral success.”

~*~

There’s more irony here Jackpine, since it is YOU and many others, who seem stuck in your labels and the political structure of the past. You make all of these claims about the Democratic Party, which is by no means the ‘same’ “Democratic Party” as what we’ve had in the past, and this last election proved it. Those who have previously associated themselves with the Democrats aren’t necessarily associating with the OLD Democratic Party, (like me for instance) because the Blue Dog have proven their worthlessness to anyone who is even partially politically conscious.

You (though more so others like KDelphi and Max Shields) love to discuss the ‘duoploy’ (their word, not anyone else’s) which is a huge contradiction, because as Leefeller has pointed out, (and I have as well…but to no avail) we do NOT have a ‘two party’ system. There were 6 ‘parties’ represented on the ballot last November. The fact that they didn’t get anywhere isn’t because they weren’t republicans or democrats, but the fact that they had nothing to offer in terms of the administrative skills and intelligence required to do the job.

More irony is the fact that for all of the ones who complain the most about a so-called two-party system, most of them were either Kucinich or Ron Paul supporters. Guess what? Ron Paul has been an ultra conservative REPUBLICAN for over 20 years that he’s been in Congress. Guess what else? Dennis Kucinich has been a DEMOCRAT even longer. (I would have voted for Kucinich had Obama not proved himself to be far more able to deal with the diversity of our population). And while we’re at it, lets remember that Lieberman the Zionist liar was a democrat until he was forced to become an Independent, proving that he never had a democratic ideology to begin with. In other words, these labels really have a bunch of you folks boxed in. It would be interesting to find out how you people would choose your leaders if NOBODY had a party affiliation next to their name. You all wouldn’t know whether to shit or blow your nose, and that applies far more to the ignorant who can’t figure out who actually represents their best interests, without a party name attached to them. How in the hell do you think we wound up with the disastrous NON-leadership of the past.

Another total contradiction is your statement that the Democrats only care about what’s good for the Democrats. That is and has ALWAYS been the Republican ideology, NOT the Democrats ideology. You also claim that this is not the era of the Civil War, despite the reality that we absolutely ARE in a civil war, but it’s called something else that you and others obviously have failed to grasp. We have been the victims of a CLASS war, and it’s the same damn thing. The Republicans represent the ‘wealthy’ class (they always have) and poor people that identify with that party don’t get that the republicans of today don’t give a shit about them or their interests. (not if they’re poor).

So, this is all disingenuous and overwhelmingly PARTISAN bullshit Jackpine. And, as things continue to change at the local level, (a rapid change in terms of the Democrats who have come far at redefining the parties’ ideals in the formation of the PDA (Progressive Democrats of America) the partisanship that you all have been so determined to cling to will fall away, just because you can’t stop change, no matter how hard you try.

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By dihey, March 29, 2009 at 2:38 pm Link to this comment

Fair enough, President Obama is not responsible for the many calamities which beset us. However, Senator Obama cannot totally escape criticism for having remained silent while he was in the US Senate.

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By Marge Currey, March 29, 2009 at 12:26 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The way I see it is Obama is right some of the time but to get to be president he still had to take money from the people on Wall Street.  These corporations put money on both sides and the one who wins they court.

Now Obama has the right Idea in he cannot do it alone.

But if we want to get rid of the two party system, the third party has to have a voice in the debates and Nadar as in Ralph was shut out of the debates.  So if this country is to change there has to be a third party, then the corporations will have to split the money three ways and that might be change that they will not go for.

Another thing is this country is in war as it makes profits for the likes of Chaney.  When Bush I was president he had a semi war in South America but that war was put on the sideline because after all Latin America is a third world.

You can compare Louisiana to a third world, the only state poorer than La. is Mississippi, the armpit of the United States.  I know because I lived in that corner of the United States.  But I left!

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By Leefeller, March 29, 2009 at 7:43 am Link to this comment

We have other parties, they never seem to surface further than primary one or two debates, for the simple reason the media calls the shots. Survival of the god cop bad cop persona of our so called two party system, is the foundation for the plutocracy and minions.

Reverse from the programed indoctrinations against the horrors of socialism is the comfort zone of acceptance which the two party system offers. Special interests prefer to spend their money on two people instead of 10, wild cards are not in the game.

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By Inherit The Wind, March 29, 2009 at 6:47 am Link to this comment

They started it.
They caused it.
It’s all their fault.
It cost them power.
They want that power back.

ANY means is justified by the END—regaining power, no matter what damage it does to the nation.

They didn’t care before, they don’t care now.

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By Richard_Ralph_Roehl, March 28, 2009 at 10:38 pm Link to this comment

According to Mr. Oxycontin (Rushit Limburger) on toxic talk $hit radio (a.k.a.: the “liberal media”), President Obama is the devil incarnate… and he is responsible for the bizarre ineptitude and vile mean-espirited corruption of George W. Bush, the dry drunk $ociopath that preceded Mr. Obama.

I’m no big fan of the Democrat-rats… however anybody who votes Repub-lie-con is voting for $omebody to cut their throat.

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By Virginia777, March 28, 2009 at 6:45 pm Link to this comment

The Right has done nothing but twist the truth (via media) for years!

I’m really hoping these savage liar’s, “day is done”.

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By jackpine savage, March 28, 2009 at 3:14 pm Link to this comment

Louise,

You did not say that the two party system came about organically, you said that the founders “called for it”.  Which of your two posts on the matter is your actual belief?

I don’t have a party, do not want a party, and will never belong to a political party.  They serve mostly to comfort those unwilling to think for themselves.

Your argument about political society fracturing with anything more than two parties is spurious, though you recognize that the underlying problem is factionalism.  We still deal with the problem of factionalism, only that we must be content to choose between two factions that seem quite content with one another.

The world we live in is not the same as the Civil War era or even the late 18th century.  Yet you seem content to be stuck with the political structure developed to deal with those eras.  That’s fine, you’re not alone and i’ll remain a voice from the wilderness.  And your political parties will continue running the nation into the ground for the sake of the party’s electoral success.

That’s what it’s really about.  The Democratic Party cares nothing for making things better for anyone except the Democratic Party.  It is not an individual and cannot be held to any account.  Both parties exist because they (with the help of people like you) propose that the only choice is a false choice.

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By Louise, March 28, 2009 at 12:14 pm Link to this comment

Jackpine savage,

The United States government was non-partisan before 1792, so the Constitution says nothing about political parties.

George Washington served from 1789 to 1797. He had no party affiliation. His Vice President John Adams, who became the second President was a member of the Federalists.

Perhaps this is an issue of semantics. Agreed Washington was opposed to the idea of a “party” so lets call it something else. From the very beginning there have been two “something elses.” I rather suspect you would be very unhappy if there were only one “something else” to select from. There have always been two. They just didn’t call themselves a party back then. Perhaps the title party became adopted when the word faction got attached. Faction implied everything the two “something elses” didn’t want to be seen as.

However, since the third year of the administration of George Washington two political “something elses” have dominated the United States political system, but they have not always been the same two. The first two were the Federalists and Anti-Federalists. Federalists were those who supported a strong federal government and the Anti-Federalists were those who did not. The leaders of the Federalists were Alexander Hamilton and John Adams. Both were from the Northeast where the Federalist line of thinking was strongest. Thomas Jefferson became the leader of the Anti-Federalists. These two groups did not call themselves parties. The founders feared parties because they thought of them as factions, who were self centered and driven by ambition to forward their own self-interests. They were right about that, weren’t they. But all the same the Federalists and the Anti-Federalists were indeed factions, that fractured into many factions, that sprang up in the interest of serving their own interests. Which led to the need to clearly define a two party system.

From 1796 to the Civil War, it was common for political parties to fracture and put forward more than one candidate. The Civil War showed how dangerous political fracture could be for the nation, with the result that the two largest “something elses” at the time – Democratic and Republican – remade themselves into broad coalitions of liberals and conservatives. Consequently, all Presidents since the Civil War have been nominees of one of these two major political parties. Now that may be real annoying, but it was found to be far better than a fractured society of factions with no clear coalition. Which kinda reminds me of where we could find ourselves very quickly, right now, if we don’t stop fracturing!

However, DWIGHTBAKER, has a point. We can lobby, and as the strongest majority, the majority of we the people, we can accomplish a lot as a lobby, or individual Lobby’s. But fracturing as in a multitude of parties all fighting for their own self-interests is not a terribly good idea. Just weakens everyone, and leads to the danger of fracturing our society.
Oh! Hmmm.

Dont like your party? Lobby!

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By Night-Gaunt, March 28, 2009 at 12:13 pm Link to this comment

So what is next on the Tyrannical Barons agenda——the killing of our American Empire?

Now the one thing that has always stood in the Tyrannical Barons way to BUILD, STEAL AND KILL EMPIRES is resistance from a communed folk who have their own life saving strategy with a sanguine, sane, and grass roots inhabitant’s agenda. Dwight Baker

The cabal’s plan is to kill a republic and replace it with a full empire. Not the half formed one we have now that limps and staggers like a 1/2 wolf grafted to a 1/2 sheep. They want the entire wolf to better hunt and dominate all of the unconverted ‘heathen’ of the world to their particular form of Christianity. Look up Dominionist and see just how busy they are in infiltrating & dominating of us first then the world. Why do you think we are only allowed two parties? Why the best times of this country was 1945-1980? Why these revolutionaries are from the nucleus of a failed coup in 1934? Why they continue to promote political and financial polices that will destroy our economy? Hint: they wish to swoop in when we lose confidence in our present gov’t after a full financial and commercial collapse as our ‘saviors’ for a new gov’t. The desperate can be easily convinced to let them have full control in order to get order and food and law enforcement. Even if it is corporate theocracy with no personal benefits or protections for the populace. I should say those that will benefit will support the new gov’t and those who don’t will be lost. Slavery will be re-instituted as the ‘races’ are separated into their own homeland (bantustands) as part of their mind set cum theosophy. No ‘rapture’ no Armaggon but anybody not converted is an ‘anti-christ’ to be evangelized or enslaved or killed. War is a means to and end. [To them the soul is more important than the flesh.] They consider themselves blameless and annointed to do anything to bring about the ‘cleansing of the earth’ so that JHVH will deign to return to them.They are also like the Crusaders and Inquisition and follow a strict Calvanism.

They aren’t to be trifled with or ignored because they will not ignore us and they are deadly serious in their mission. The best way to hide is in plain sight where no one of importance believes in what they really are. The best defense.

See talk2action.com for plenty of examples of their work on so many levels hear and in other countries. And Chalcedony.com for one of their own founding members by the name of Rushdoony.

The best thing we can do is to help pressure president Obama to hire the right people and do the work of all the People not just the aristocrats.

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By jackpine savage, March 28, 2009 at 10:11 am Link to this comment

As I recall, the founding fathers whom everyone loves to reference, called for this nation to be governed by a two party system. ~Louise

I’m not sure where you get your recollections from, but this little tidbit goes a long way to explaining a lot of your other statements.  There’s not a whit of truth in that statement.

Please provide some evidence from either the Constitution or the writings of the framers that shows them calling for two parties…oh never mind, i’ll just go ahead and disprove it.

From Washington’s farewell address:

I have already intimated to you the danger of parties in the state, with particular reference to the founding of them on geographical discriminations. Let me now take a more comprehensive view, and warn you in the most solemn manner against the baneful effects of the spirit of party, generally.

This spirit, unfortunately, is inseparable from our nature, having its root in the strongest passions of the human mind. It exists under different shapes in all governments, more or less stifled, controlled, or repressed; but, in those of the popular form, it is seen in its greatest rankness, and is truly their worst enemy.

The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries, which result, gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of Public Liberty.

Without looking forward to an extremity of this kind, (which nevertheless ought not to be entirely out of sight,) the common and continual mischiefs of the spirit of party are sufficient to make it the interest and duty of a wise people to discourage and restrain it.

And since no political parties existed in 1789 (“anti-Federalists” weren’t a political party and they basically ceased to exist - by definition - after the ratification of the Constitution anyhow), i’d say that it’s a far stretch to suggest that the framers built the whole thing on the idea of two party system.

No wonder our present is so screwed up, the majority of us don’t even understand our own history.

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By Louise, March 28, 2009 at 8:19 am Link to this comment

I once put money inside candy bar wrappers and mixed them in with wrappers that still had candy inside. I thought it was a cute idea, ‘cause the kids would get money as well as candy when they came trick or treating. Well, as I discovered when an upset mom came back with her sobbing child, I was wrong. She had been expecting a candy bar and what she got was a stupid piece of paper! I quickly got her a “real” candy bar.

So was that disappointed little girl uneducated, ignorant, or simply reflecting her age and my ignorance of her age? Technically I had deceived her. When she picked up that candy wrapper, she had every reason to expect a candy bar inside. I learned, my treasure is not necessarily what someone elses treasure may be.

As I recall, the founding fathers whom everyone loves to reference, called for this nation to be governed by a two party system. And if my memory of history is correct, there are no examples of a perfect party which always governed faultlessly. Or a president who was perfect. Or a Congress that was perfect. Or a society that was perfect.

Perhaps we’ve accepted imperfection because we’re imperfect. Or maybe we understand, “my treasure is not necessarily what someone elses treasure may be.”

Does the two party system deliberately “create these illusions of contrived differences”? No, those who have the most to gain create these illusions of contrived differences. And they are neither illusionary or contrived. They are quite real and quite deliberate. And we happily allow, even encourage it.

I have a friend who prepares tax returns. This time of year he’s overwhelmed and exhausted, which can lead to craziness. On the one hand are returns for the corporate dudes, which require an amount of record keeping [and money] that would make most of us crazy. On the other hand are the employed, or newly unemployed, who still have to file and sometimes come up with money. His sympathy’s are divided between the haves and the have-nots. Yet as he plows through the piles of papers he tends to empathize more with the haves. Is that because they have more money? Or does the increased demand on him to get their returns right, push him over the edge?

Anyway, he’s become a vocal agitator against the “free choice act,” exclaiming, “I am working myself to death so I can send more taxes to Obama who is pushing us right into Communism and the free choice act will lead us there! In fact we are right on the edge!” I was so startled by this outburst I asked, “Do you know what the free choice act is? It has nothing to do with taxes.” Someone I’d thought had good common sense, suddenly appeared to have no sense at all.

My friend hung up on me when I suggested he should take a break. So I never got a chance to ask him if he could remember last year, the year the taxes are being paid on. Or could he remember Obama wasn’t president then. Or did he know all those taxpayers who make less than $250,000 per year, get a tax cut now. Of course he can remember last year. Of course he knows Obama wasn’t president last year. And of course he knows the “free choice act” has absolutely nothing to do with taxes or Communism. But his dedication to the task at hand has allowed him to get sucked into the corporate line about free choice, taxes and Obama.

[Maybe they’re angry because they make more than $250,000 per year. wink]

Because he works so hard, you’d think he’d have empathy for the working class and recently laid off workers. They’re the ones really getting hurt! But he’s been overwhelmed by the corporate machine! Proving even the well educated and informed can be duped if the circumstances are right.

Or maybe he’s just gone bonkers.

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By Frank Cajon, March 27, 2009 at 10:37 pm Link to this comment

The two-party system in the US is done. Look around.
What is left of this country after being pillaged by the two parties and their bosses, since Raygun? First, that senile relic ran two off-the books wars while his pals picked the S&L’s clean and his wife ran the country by astrology charts. Bush I, former secret police chief, was a disaster who put half a million troops in the middle East, fathered a dictator, and got tossed because of a recession a a tenth as bad was what Jr brought upon us. Clinton was too busy with his liaisons to give a damn about the banking industry becoming a shell game. His money guy Greenspan is the patron saint of this fiasco, and his dalliances brought us eight years of fascists in the big chair, and a trillion dollar desert slaughter we couldn’t afford, if we were going to pay our banks to screw us-his final act and legacy.
The Democratic Party is just as guilty of corruption and greed as the GOP, they just are a bit more covert about it. The scams run by the banks were done on a Demo watch, compounded during a GOP greed orgy, and the ‘Bailout’-a ticket to screw for banks and financials at the expense of workers who were robbed of their savings and investments if they were lucky enough to have had any, was a complicit act by both of these obsolete parties to skirt the need for nationalization of the financials, banks, and health care industry.
Obama must be seen as a temporary step towards the goal of a European model. A new, Labor Party must arise from the ashes of this depression. The Republican Party will disappear and a Conservative Party with less influence take its’ place, an anachronism in a time of poverty. Parliamentary Socialism is the only way that we can get representative democracy back to the people. The bourgeosie have controlled the political process since Truman, and with capitalism in its death thrall, the working class must be represented in Congress, not just the elite.
Obama is an improvement over the Fourth Reich of Bush/Cheney, but has many faults; he is more of the same because those around him are the same as the Clintonheads that helped bring this pox upon our land. In the four years of his term, workers must take it upon themselves to remake the system into a multi-party system. The Green party is a good starting point, but needs change within; the socialist doctrines are there but not the organizational strength and vision, and the need is to pull in former Democrats. I hate to see the country fall into a prolonged economic depression because of the pain that it will cause, but if this can also be birth pains of a new Labor movement and party, maybe 50 years from now our children will look back and see that it was perhaps worth it.

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By samosamo, March 27, 2009 at 9:25 pm Link to this comment

It sure is not funny that now that obama is president that these neocons are making him out to be the cause of what they planned, plotted, schemed and carried out for the last 40 years or so in their goddamn think tanks. I have problems with a lot of obama’s decisions and selections but I sure am glad mccain didn’t win, especially with palin on the ticket. I do believe we would already be being loaded into cattle cars and shipped off to those ‘private contractor’ prisons.
Back to those think tanks and the republicans don’t have a monopoly on them and the disasterous ideologies that come bubbling up out of them. With the shape of this country(and the world), I don’t believe I can see these as anything less than terrorists cells that are still in the act of attacking this country. I would also think that these tanks should be treated as the kkk, neonazi, black panthers, and a host of other groups that the fbi and cia infiltrated and broke up to a certain degree. These ‘cells’ definitely need the transparency and oversight to control and contain them along with their active members, the lobbyists.

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By wildflower, March 27, 2009 at 6:24 pm Link to this comment

RE Cyrena: “Back during the campaigns last year, our own resident KDelphi threatened to vote for McCain. . . So, for all we know, she DID vote for McCain. Here again, people vote against their OWN best interests, so we can only assume it’s a matter of ignorance, or they’re just suicidal.”

Interesting observation, Cyrena.  It has been my understanding that KDelphi was a socialist - according to her posts anyway. She has expressed a lot of frustration in her posts about Obama because according to her, Obama is not as liberal as he should be on many of the issues. Yet, you say, she was going to vote for McCain who is very conservation. Oh, well. . . go figure.

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By KDelphi, March 27, 2009 at 3:58 pm Link to this comment

Leefeller—MAYBE, it is possible, that, after a couple more duopoly terms, another (or several) new parties will rise from our failed system. One can hope. There is not a “democracy” alive that survives a two party system very long, that I know of. Why would people want it to? Why are people so afraid of choices?

Hamilton and Jefferson have been gone a long time. It is time for us to grow up and join other free nations.


According to Alvin Toffler, the technological changes of our era require a reformulation of the political system: “The time has come for us to imagine completely novel alternatives, to discuss, dissent, debate, and design from the ground up the democratic architecture of tomorrow.”

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By Leefeller, March 27, 2009 at 3:00 pm Link to this comment

My comment was in reference to Jackpine, anyway it should be noted a question mark behind my last comment regrading survival. Sorry my attempt at open discussion, seemed conformational? Seems all comments should be open for retrospect and discussion?

Seems, some people would use the label word ignorance to justify their own opinions, only in disagreement, I believe this to be unworthy? As I stated earlier, I used to fall in the same trap using ignorance as a catch all and even to some degree of insult.

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By KDelphi, March 27, 2009 at 2:43 pm Link to this comment

People often vote against their best intersts, when they feel that they only have two bad choices, aND, that, neither “side” is going to do anything that will make any real differnce to them.

In Joe’s case, I’m afraid he’s just ingnorant. He made some mooney off of it, though.

But, given that there is Tweedledum and Tweedledumbass, maybe Joe and his ilk simply do not vote, most of the time. Unless someone frightens them ( no need, Joe—your gun, the “wars” and the capitalist free mkt you think that you “love” are all safe under BOTH parties!). Then they show up to vote AGAINST whomever.

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By cyrena, March 27, 2009 at 2:24 pm Link to this comment

“Values can be solipsistic in nature, others prefer to fight for human dignity of their fellows, these differences have been in conflict throughout human history, could this be simple survival?”

Well yeah Leefeller, it could be simple survival, at least if you prefer that one-term simplistic answer to the question rather than my one word answer. (Are you paid to write here?) But ignorance - at least in my dictionary- means a lack of knowledge about a particular thing. For instance, if someone came along and offered a group of people a choice between four $20.00 bills and a single $100.00 bill, and some of them chose the four $20;s because they thought it was ‘more’ than that single $100.00, I’d say it was probably because they were ignorant in terms of the face value of the currency. Maybe you would say it’s because of simple survival, but then that doesn’t make a whole lot of sense now, does it? Or to you, maybe it does.

HOWEVER, if they chose the four 20’s it might be because they just like Andrew Jackson, or because they decided they only needed $80.00 instead of $100.00. Or, it could be because their ignorant, and don’t realize that the single bill has more monetary value than four of the others.

I personally cannot find another explanation, (simple or complex) for why people vote against their own best interests, and I know exactly what Dr. King meant when he said:

“There is nothing more dangerous in the world than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”

Sorry if that’s too simplistic for you, but it damn sure doesn’t make it any less true to the reality that we all live in. I say it’s ignorance, and Louise and others have provided a very clear example of how the ignorance is perpetrated…via the media.

“Ignorance is the most violent element of society.”

~Emma Goldman

 

But of course if you don’t like that, you can always call it something else, (when people vote against their own interests) but ignorance works well enough for me. They

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By Night-Gaunt, March 27, 2009 at 1:36 pm Link to this comment

The blame game is on no matter how many neocons and neoliberals Pres. Obama picks to mess up our economy more. Just like with Clinton before him who was another right winger who had Democrat before his name but of the same mind set just with a little more civility than the Republicans. {Think Vampires vs Werewolves in the capacity of running your gov’t.} Obama will do a few things that the extremists won’t like in the ares of science and personal concerns [Stem cell research and birth control,] but maintain the status quo on economics and militarization of both foreign and domestic affairs. We might even get green jobs but the proto-dictatorship of the cabal will live on. The bulk of the information/entertainment system is controlled by right wingers who are the cheerleaders and information conduits for their mantra. That and raising the threat level to fever pitch. A dangerous thing considering what an assassination attempt on our president could do to us all. We are still in dangerous times and I wish someone like Dennis Kucinich were in charge instead of a front man for the cabal like Obama.

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By Leefeller, March 27, 2009 at 11:54 am Link to this comment

Divisiveness by media keeps focus off real issues, issues which could affect all of our lives. Spending time focusing and fighting over brain cells, right to life, gays, illegality sponsored aliens, American Idol a program of the fox (not the TV fox, though connotative)  is in the hen house, constant smoke and mirrors, usually well placed and choreographed, so we fall for it every time.  Louise, is right, pick a side and fight Always on the offense or defense for contention is the food of the manipulators. 

The two party system must create these illusions of contrived differences, why do you think Gravel was sidelined after attacking the military complex? Kucinich the same with his concerns even Ron Paul?  Now it seems cutbacks in education will make this job easier.  Republican or Democrat, what else is there?

In the end, Plutocratic elite will have more Joe the Plumbers, to support their opportunist agendas.

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By wildflower, March 27, 2009 at 11:23 am Link to this comment

Re Joe Conason: ”Ever since Election Day 2008, the usual suspects have been hard at work, deflecting responsibility from the Bush administration (and the Republicans in Congress) for the catastrophic effects of conservative policy enacted during the past eight years.”

When you reflect on what has occurred in the past eight years under Republican leadership, and contrast it with the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights, especially our emphasis on values like promoting the general welfare of our citizens, a system of checks and balances, fair and just courts, religious liberty, freedom of speech, and freedom of the press, one has to wonder who are these people called Republicans.  What country do they represent?  It’s obviously not America – at least not the America we’ve known for over 200 years.

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By Louise, March 27, 2009 at 10:02 am Link to this comment

ohnie,
“At what point did the United States and the dollar begin to dominate international currency and the world market economy?”
~~~

At the risk of sounding simplistic, I think it was about the time oil became the life-blood of society and we created the petro-dollar, the better to control international oil profits.

BruSays,
“People, the NEWS isn’t that Rush Limbaugh is falsely blaming Obama. The REAL NEWS is that Corporate Media is quoting him to hype the ratings.”
~~~

Oh that is such an excellent point!

Bending news is about profit, not keeping us informed. When a so-called journalist takes every opportunity to bend, it’s not about making it easier for us to understand. It’s about making it harder for us to understand. That way, we go back to them for more “understanding.” Folks smart enough to understand media plays head-games with us, shut them off. Those who don’t, don’t. 

Progressives alone didn’t put Obama in the winners circle. The numbers tell us even people who had steadfastly supported all things republican were fed up with the lack of leadership in Washington. When they went into the voting booth, they voted Obama.

Not all dems, repubs and “others” are too dumb to know their foot from their elbow. Sometimes it just looks that way. And often that can be laid at the doorstep of mainstreammedia. If the only thing folks know, is what they see, hear and read, and their choice of source is a media desperate for an audience, there’s a good chance they may see, hear and read something quite worthless. Worthless accepted as fact leads to confusion. Confusion leads to fighting. Fighting leads to picking sides. When the end result becomes defending fighting rights, really bad stuff can happen while folks are busy fighting!

Like the kid who had an accident, fell of the horse and cut his head open on a rock in the field. Mom and Dad, quite upset by the whole thing are standing on the porch fighting.

“This is all your fault,” says he. “You wanted that stupid horse!”
“No this is all your fault,” says she. “You wanted the stupid farm!”
“We wouldn’t have the stupid farm if your mother hadn’t given us the down payment!” Says he.
“Right blame my mother!” Says she. “We wouldn’t have needed the down payment if your mother hadn’t run your business into the ground!”
“Oh right, blame my mother!” Says he. “We wouldn’t have needed the business if you spent as much time working as you did using credit to run up debt!”
“Oh yeh?” Says she. “My credit made it possible to buy your stupid farm!” 
“Oh yeh?” Says he, “if you paid attention to what’s going on, we wouldn’t need credit to buy anything!”
“My credit was good enough for you when you needed a Barn!” Says she.
“Your credit didn’t mean squat!” Says he. “MY dad paid for the barn!”
“Well MY dad BUILT the barn!” Says she.
“Oh right,” says he, “did your dad buy the new freezer? MY dad bought that new freezer!”
“We wouldn’t need a new freezer if your stupid farm was closer to a store!” Says she.
“We wouldn’t need my stupid farm if we didn’t have your stupid horse!” Says he.
“I never wanted a stupid farm,“says she. “I just wanted a stupid horse!”
And so it goes.

Meanwhile, since fighting the blame game is more important than calling an ambulence, the kid is bleeding to death.

Besides, an ambulence would cost money.

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By Leefeller, March 27, 2009 at 6:29 am Link to this comment

Ignorance in this case, is a catch all used to answer more complex reasons, as suggested by Jackpine, it is not quite right, sort of like the three bears not right. Having fallen into the trap myself, 

  As Louse mentions their is the blankie mentality, were people want to be taken care of, many folks want the government to fix everything, so they can sit in their space within society and to feel comfortable,  religion and government can seem to provide these needed feelings when all cylinders are working. Others question the blankie and feel the need for answers. While ye old blankie is a comfortable rose colored glasses way to look at the world, in reality, it is not very practical.

Forces working against every fiber of the blankie are constant and persistent, so while the blankie is covering their heads, this is not ignornace.  Human nature has many more variables than simplistic one word answers. We have seen the work of opportunists, manipulators and even criminal behavior, the words describing human nature, can go on but seem accepted by the blankie folks, anyway accepted or ignored. Values can be solipsistic in nature, others prefer to fight for human dignity of their fellows, these differences have been in conflict throughout human history, could this be simple survival?

Looking at Joe the Plumber and people similar to him, a stereotypical GOP mentality, seems a whole suggested side of human nature against society as whole to me, but they disagrees. Ignorance is not the word here, but instead something else,  many variables of human nature are at work here maybe even moving into the realm of animal nature?

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By Purple Girl, March 27, 2009 at 5:48 am Link to this comment

Carter inhereited the Rescession, So did Bill. Big surprise it will take another Dem to fix yet another Treaonous Repug Economic Crime.
What Repugs are really afraid of is that the American Public are starting to comprehend what ‘Trickle Down’ is- an very Obvious attempt (and success) at returning the Citizens of this country to a Feudalistic Cast System- Family Crest or Logo, makes no difference- Our Founders Declared Our Independence for any such controlling entities.Repugs are feeling the Hot breath of Treason Charges on the back of their necks.Not Just for Torutre, wiretapping, constitutional Rights violations- but for High Treason against Our Democratic and Free market ideologies- the Back Bone to our Sovereignty.Through Trickle Down they sold our citizens Rights and Freedoms to the Corps.Everythime the Repugs handed over another Gov’t respsonsilbity to Private industry, they were Selling US off- peice by peice. In fact they were also selling US off to Foreign entities- OPEC, China - any one who had a buck in their pocket and promise of more in the future. They weren’t only selling off things they had no right to- they were selling off things that didn’t exist- they were selling deeds to the Brooklyn Bridge and ‘land’ in FL. Now they are shitting their pants because these foreigners have figured out they were conned. Best revenge (a dish served Cold) Send these Snake Oil Dealers over to face their foreign investors wrath.China and the Saudi’s seem to get justice in a rather quick ‘Chop chop’ manner. Send those who’s names are found on those contracts- they were never given authority to represent US. And if they were elected officials- their actions prove they had betrayed their oath anyway, so extradiction won’t be a problem (no immunity for Traitors). Reason Cheneycorp found other countries to carry out their heinous crimes against humanity- They knew we had no stomach for it, Turnabout is fair Game.
Oh is America was founded on any other principle of Gov’t- it’s a form of Socialism “We the People”, ‘For & By the People’ inherently socialistic ideals. Something Trickle Down flies in opposition to- that is the beloved economic stratdgy of Kings and dictators.so the Right can conatinue to spit out the word ‘Socialism’ - it only provides more evidence of their treasonous ideology (Royal Loyal Red Coats)

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By jackpine savage, March 27, 2009 at 5:09 am Link to this comment

Anyone ever notice that the Other is always described as “ignorant”...people who don’t vote like me are just too god-damned stupid to see the truth, and of course, the truth is obviously as i see it.

Maybe the real problem with our country is how quick we all are to write off millions of our compatriots as too stupid to see their own self-interest.

But i maintain that the deeper issue yet is that we frame everything in terms of rational-utilitarianism and it’s golden calf of “self-interest”.

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By FiftyGigs, March 27, 2009 at 4:47 am Link to this comment

Louise, your March 26 comment here was absolutely brilliant.

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By wildflower, March 26, 2009 at 11:46 pm Link to this comment

Re: Louise: “And folks who think, thinking is a lot of hard work”

Have you heard the one about the Republican Congresswoman who wants to pass legislation “to make sure the Chinese don’t foist a one world currency on us while we’re down?”

Yes, Michelle Bachmann has been thinking again. Kevin Drum has a video link. Just scroll down until you come to “The World’s Dumbest Deliberative Body.”  I couldn’t watch her think again so I just took Kevin’s word for it.

http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum

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By Scoppertop, March 26, 2009 at 10:06 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Rove deserves all the credit for this… Limbaugh, Steele, & the other usual suspects aren’t smart enough.

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By cyrena, March 26, 2009 at 9:59 pm Link to this comment

By Leefeller, March 26 at 4:13 pm #

As some say the wealthy, would it not be more accurate to say plutocracy? If the GOP stands for the elite, why would people like Joe the Plumber be so hot to support them?

~*~*

Leefeller,

The one word answer is IGNORANCE!!!!

The other one word answer is BIGOTRY!!!

Think back a bit if you will, (if only because you don’t have to go back far) WHY did so many people (poor people like Joe the plumber and many others in mostly SOUTHERN States - think of the few states that McCain won)vote for Dick Bush - TWICE!!

When any portion of a population actually votes AGAINST their own best interests, it’s gotta be ignorance. It’s difficult to fathom any other reason for it. Maybe they ‘think’ or otherwise perceive themselves as being on that same level of ‘elite’ but that too, (for somebody like Joe the Plumber) would obviously be a matter of ignorance.

In other cases, it’s because they’ve just ALWAYS been ‘republican’ and their parents were republican, and that’s reason enough, at least in their way of thinking. I remember several months back when a poster from Texas talked about the mostly Republican population there. One guy (though there are many) said that he would vote for Mickey Mouse, as long as he was on the republican ticket.

Back during the campaigns last year, our own resident KDelphi threatened to vote for McCain, having already mentioned that her family there in Ohio had always been Republicans. Then she proceeded to get pissed off when Hillary was allegedly being ‘attacked’. (we already know who was doing the kitchen sink slinging at the time.) But, that’s what she posted. So, for all we know, she DID vote for McCain. Here again, people vote against their OWN best interests, so we can only assume it’s a matter of ignorance, or they’re just suicidal.

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By wildflower, March 26, 2009 at 9:51 pm Link to this comment

Re Joe Conason: “Listening to his critics, especially on the right, it would be easy to believe that the president is personally responsible for ballooning deficits, gigantic bailouts, ridiculous bonuses, nationalized institutions, and careening markets.”

Speaking of Republican critics, I watched a humorous clip on Matthew Yglesias’s site today.  Norah O’Donnell is speaking to Rep Mike Pence (R-IN) who is the author of an alternative “budget” plan. Pence is very critical of Obama’s budget proposal and says that it would lead to high deficits, etc., etc. etc.

At some point O’Donnell asks Pence, what the deficit would be under his “budget” plan.  It’s a reasonable question, and as Yglesias points out, “it’s not a tough question, it’s not a gotcha question, and it’s not an ideological question.” But Pence didn’t know what the deficit would be under his alternative plan. He couldn’t answer O’Donnell. He only knows his plan is better etc., etc., etc.

Yglesias says this critic is not a smart man, and I think he may be right:

“I’ve been saying this for a while now, but something people need to understand about the current state of American politics is that Rep Mike Pence (R-IN) is not a smart man. He lacks intelligence. He’s been able to rise into the House leadership and even somehow acquire a reputation as a policy thinker of the right larger because it’s extraordinarily rare for the media to ask a politician to answer a question about a policy issue.”

http://yglesias.thinkprogress.org/

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By Ribald, March 26, 2009 at 3:23 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Though I agree with the point, this is hardly news. The Republicans have been blaming everyone else but themselves for each and every disaster that’s happened over the last half-century. Of course, that probably isn’t what the piece is really about.

  I have to agree with Jackpine. The line between fair and unfair criticism of Obama must be clearly drawn and not obfuscated. That is a Republican train of thought that leads nowhere.

  If you’re going to criticize the Republicans for doing what they’ve always done, at least praise those who offer honest, constructive criticism of Obama’s actions, especially in these early days of his presidency. It is all too easy to say he needs at least a year before we can judge his actions, but a year’s time is just an excuse to justify heedless assent. Are we going to begin appending 6 month increments to it when things continue to go south?

  This article is a bit absurd. We’re given something we all agree with (Republicans are passing the buck), then told to accept something entirely unjustified (Don’t criticize the president’s actions for a year, or else you’re playing the blame game too)). Of course, whatever Obama does between now and then is the Republicans fault!

  I can grant that Obama faces unprecedented challenges. So are many, many Americans. Yet, we still have the time to think for ourselves and recognize the poor decisions that Obama has made. We know he can do it too.

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By KDelphi, March 26, 2009 at 2:37 pm Link to this comment

Louise—I ranted and raved about Pres, Obama giving TO MUCH attention to the wants of both GOP and Blue Dogs *(, who, with Bayh leading are attempting to de-rail everything your beloved is trying to do right this minute.)

So keep ranting on GOP (they are out of power times 3, you know) and those that find Pres. Obnama decidedly too conservative—while you arent paying attention the DLC will stick a fricking knife in your back. The truth is, Sen Obama could NOT have won without progressive support, If he wants to keep it he had better do something DIFFERENT!

I know that you think that only a small group of neo-cons criticize the current going-on—not true! Many very progressive groups always backed Obama as the lesser of two evils.

If Dems want to show how very different they are—now would be the fricking time!!

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By KDelphi, March 26, 2009 at 2:29 pm Link to this comment

BruSys—Fine, but laissez-fire is hardly a “republican” policy! Clinton was the KING of it!

jackpine—you are once again correct..shame on you! for expecting more out of mr. expectations! (praise be to him)

if you listen to the defenders, they are so myopic, that if you are not a wholehearted Dem, you are the GOP.

Jason!!!!!!!!!!!!! you ignorant slut!

BOTH parties are to blame and GOP neo-cons suck—as close to fascismn as we will ever (hopefullly) come


Now can we get on with doing something DIFFERENT?! Because another bailout ala Geithner is NOT what is needed! We have given Wall St ENOUGH MONEY!

Se. Bernie Sanders has it about right.. http://www.commondreams.org/view/2009/03/26-2

and here:http://crooksandliars.com/susie-madrak/bernie-sanders-blocking-key-obama-nom

“While Mr. Gensler is clearly an intelligent and knowledgeable person, I cannot support his nomination. Mr. Gensler worked with Sen. Phil Gramm and Alan Greenspan to exempt credit default swaps from regulation, which led to the collapse of A.I.G. and has resulted in the largest taxpayer bailout in U.S. history. He supported Gramm-Leach-Bliley, which allowed banks like Citigroup to become “too big to fail.” He worked to deregulate electronic energy trading, which led to the downfall of Enron and the spike in energy prices. At this moment in our history, we need an independent leader who will help create a new culture in the financial marketplace and move us away from the greed, recklessness and illegal behavior which has caused so much harm to our economy.”

Yes, all GOP, huh?

Tell Pres. Obama to strop appointing neo-con and neo-lib crooks!!

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By SteveK9, March 26, 2009 at 2:19 pm Link to this comment

People are dumb, but they aren’t that dumb.  The country knows this is a Republican ‘laissez-faire’ crash.  It’s been building since Reagan.  This is the beginning of the end of Reaganism.

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By Leefeller, March 26, 2009 at 1:13 pm Link to this comment

As some say the wealthy, would it not be more accurate to say plutocracy? If the GOP stands for the elite, why would people like Joe the Plumber be so hot to support them?

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By ocjim, March 26, 2009 at 12:37 pm Link to this comment

The bankruptcy of the rights has been with us for a very long times. You might say that it began with Reagan. Before Reagan, there was some principle involved with right-wing methods and policy. Before the time of Reagan, the right-wing think tank began spending millions to turn around our country and our culture: both for the worse. The goal was right-wing dominance at any cost. The rich donated their millions to bring reverse class war, twisting cultural values, wedge issues, family values, war, and much, much propaganda. All were stirred in a cauldron of fear, hate, resentment, polarization, greed, and intimidation.

It is still right-wing methodology, it is still divisive and it still works only for the interests of the rich.

Their model is Macheavelli’s “the end justifies the means.

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By bogglesthemind, March 26, 2009 at 12:32 pm Link to this comment

”... it would be easy to believe that the president is personally responsible for ballooning deficits, gigantic bailouts, ridiculous bonuses, nationalized institutions and careening markets.”

You left out the common cold.

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By MaryT64, March 26, 2009 at 12:11 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thanks Joe, keeping writing these articles even if only progressives read them.  It has to remain front and center on what the repubs have done and doing now to blame this meltdown on Obama.  MSM will not discuss it.  They are in bed with corporate repubs and all we hear on the air is all this bloviating that it’s Obama fault, the dems fault, but never the repubs or Bushco fault.
Only history will tell the world what happened in this 40 years of conservative rule of US government.  Obama wants to lead us to a new place.  Will they (the money makers and rulers) let him bring on universal health care, reform education system or clean energy.  No, they will not, if they can’t control the new reforms.
I pray for our new president.  He has a lot on his shoulders.

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By ohnie, March 26, 2009 at 11:51 am Link to this comment

http://statehoodhawaii.org/wp/index.php/2009/03/26/marshall-plan-our-economic-downturn/

Throughout the discussions and dialogue, one question that I do not hear uttered is, ” how did the United States become so successful to begin with?” When both pundits and politicians talk about American ingenuity and hard work and the superiority of the American capitalist system, what is it that they are referring to? At what point did the United States and the dollar begin to dominate international currency and the world market economy?

One approach that needs further critical and historic examination is the Marshall Plan, often synonymous with the Truman Doctrine or the European Recovery Program (ERP).

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By BruSays, March 26, 2009 at 11:31 am Link to this comment

Discounting Jason!!‘s stunning ignorance, most people rightfully trace our economic problems largely to the Republican “anti-regulation,” “laissez-faire” policies of the past.

But that this story has any legs at all (that Obama’s 2-month tenure is the cause of our current economic ills) sits squarely in the lap of our Corporate Media. Let’s face it, looking back over the previous 8 years of Republican missteps (and Democrats drinking their Kool-aid) is boring. Sorting through all the measures, the legislation submitted, and the votes is time-consuming and the reporting of that analysis is boring; it requires us to listen and learn.

Corporate Media loses audience share with boring stories like that. There’s MUCH more of a ratings-rising story to be had by blaming the black guy in power, feeding on our fears and going for the easy, knee-jerk reactions. This is the story the right-wing entertainers put forth and the Corporate Media - hungry for market-share - will repeat.

People, the NEWS isn’t that Rush Limbaugh is falsely blaming Obama. The REAL NEWS is that Corporate Media is quoting him to hype the ratings.

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By Inherit The Wind, March 26, 2009 at 11:20 am Link to this comment

28 years ago, Ronald Reagan and the “Reagan Revolution” put us on the road to this catastrophe.  I’ve just wondered what took so long.

Then again, we had two warnings:
1) The S&L crisis back in the late 80s’
2) The Dot.com bubble back in the late 90’s
3) and it’s now the late Oughts….

Still, when you follow a path for 28 years and you get to this point you have to be psychotic to believe it’s the current guy’s fault.

Just how stupid ARE the American people?  Never stupid enough to fall for it more than two or 3 times in a row—-1980, 1984, 1988….then 2000 and 2004—but those last two were by VERY slim margins.

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By Big B, March 26, 2009 at 11:04 am Link to this comment

Lest we forget, Jimmy Carter was ultimately blamed for the evil course that Nixon put the nation on in his destructive years as prez. As was Bush I for the transgressions of the idiot clown prince, Reagan. Why would we think for five seconds that we dim americans won’t blame Barry for the highway to hell that W put us on.

Are there really that many stupid people out there?

We are, after all, Americans.

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By gezelda, March 26, 2009 at 10:50 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Nothing’s going to change till the American people (means you and me) take responsibility for the government instead of concentrating fulltime on private gains and entertainment.  WE play Wall Street’s games.  WE resist regulation of gains.  WE look the other way when others are homeless.  We buy more than we need with money we don’t have (that is, on credit).  We allow pollution and lobbying and second-class education.  It’s us, not them.  They are a minority whose money WE allow to control Congress.

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By Thomas Mc, March 26, 2009 at 9:44 am Link to this comment

The Retards voted for one of their own for President - twice - and it almost destroyed the country.

Nobody is ever going to listen to them again.

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By Bud, March 26, 2009 at 8:46 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Having lived through (barely) Ronnie The Rat Rayguns era of trickle down economics,I’m here to testify,that what I felt during his reign trickling down on me wasn’t money!!Most working men,and women were sub-leasing the basement of outhouses.As for Rush Limpdick,he is as ignorant as the back of my balls!!!

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By Louise, March 26, 2009 at 8:35 am Link to this comment

“In fact, the economy had been shrinking for nearly a year by then, and the market was responding to bad economic news rather than the election result.”
~~~

Slight correction. The economy fell off a bridge more than a year before the election! And the housing bubble sprang a leak at least a year before that! A concerted effort to create denial (denial - synonym for republican) followed. Thereby keeping those who never pay attention anyway, in the dark. Allowing for loser Republicans to raise their voice when Obama came into office and point their fingers. Which should serve to prove, the vast majority of grumblers don’t know what they grumble about. Because they never saw this coming. Nothing peculiar about the Republican method. It’s all based on the premise that too many voters and most grumblers never pay attention!

Funny.

Folks getting hurt by the evaporation of their retirement want that money back. But they don’t want to hear about how come that money evaporated. So they complain that the government hasn’t fixed everything yet. Then complain if they find out it costs money for the Government to fix anything.

Folks who never “play” the market think the market shouldn’t be controlled. But don’t have a clue what that means. The same folks who think if the market keeps climbing, everything will be fine. But if the market drops we are doomed. But no matter what the market does, they still don’t have a clue.

Folks who rarely pay taxes think the problem is they pay too much in taxes. And folks who do pay taxes think those taxes shouldn’t be used to keep the country running. And everybody seems to be walking in the upside down world of government shouldn’t fix, but demand government get it fixed faster.

Folks call for a freeze on government spending, but don’t want to give up anything government spends on. The same folks who think freezing makes sense as long as they aren’t caught in the freeze.

Folks who understand there is no credit to keep banks and business running understand, without capital there can be no funding for credit, and banks and business cant keep running. But don’t have a clue why there is no capital!

Folks who think private investment is better than a government fix, don’t have a fortune to invest in worthless investments. But think those who do should, which would be throwing money away. Folks don’t understand the very wealthy are very wealthy because they don’t throw money away.

Those are the same folks who spend money on info from hucksters and sharks, who tell them they can save themselves by investing on a “secret” inside track in the market. Then throw even more of their money away. Oh but, there might be a tax write-off. And TAX, not STUPIDITY is the enemy.

And folks who think, thinking is a lot of hard work, listen to the sound bites that sound easiest to remember. (Obama is so easy to remember) And march along waiting for someone else, anyone else - except government - to fix it all. Looking for another tax break, they don’t realize, if they don’t have an income they don’t have to pay taxes.

And folks who just want a job, wish all those other folks would just shut up!

Yep, it’s funny.

Not funny as in ha-ha, but funny as in really strange. Like visiting the mental ward and watching the crazies debate finance.

And the strangest thing of all?

They don’t really debate. They all talk and talk and talk, all at the same time, and hear only themselves! Until the caregiver comes and says, all right folks. Time to go to bed now.

Yep. Time to put the Obama-bashers to bed now.
Oh darn! Anybody know where their binky’s are?

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By Bodini, March 26, 2009 at 7:38 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Reading comprehension seems to be a lost skill among the commenters.  The article is not about who controlled Congress at a given time, Jason, it is about how the rightwing noise machine is going about blaming Obama for the mess Bush dropped in his lap, just as the same crew blamed Carter for machinations under Reagan’s watch.  (I recently witnessed Carter being blamed for the gas lines of 1973 and 74, even though the presidency at that time was filled by guys named Nixon and Ford.)  As to the insinuation that this article is obsequious to Obama…Jack,  that’s in YOUR head. Conason is not equating legitimate criticism to Limbaugh’s nonsense.  He is demonstrating how it is Limbaugh’s nonsense that too often prevails in how political issues are framed and then fed to us by the “liberal media,” which is only too happy to parrot the charges.  Subtle?  yeah, so subtle that only YOU got it.

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By Thomas O. Anderson, March 26, 2009 at 7:33 am Link to this comment

A truly disgusting article, that although tells no lies, certainly shelters the truth.

Amy Goodman recently interviewed Matt Taibbi who made clear our current financial disaster was empowered by none other than the likes of Joe Biden, John Kerry, and Mr. “boy from the mill” John Edwards.

Our country’s being destroyed because both major parties are corrupt to the core. And until so-called “alternative” news sites can offer “alternatives” other than Democratic or Republican, the American corporate empire will prevail.

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By Leefeller, March 26, 2009 at 7:21 am Link to this comment

Absolutism’s of blame feed the significance of bipartisanship. Blame is a game kids play, contentious differences must be made for the two party system to survive in the name of ignorance.

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By greatdogs, March 26, 2009 at 6:41 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

It always seems that according to the right wing talking heads, the country’s economic history started during the Carter Adminstration.  How much if the mess of the late 70s can be attributed to the Nixon policy of pulling us off the gold standard?  How did wage and price controls affect our economic growth?

Selective history and situational ethics are apparently the mantra of the GOP and their talk radio spokespersons.

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By ohoh, March 26, 2009 at 6:41 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“The Democrats caused this pure and simple and any attempt by Obama and his legion of propagandists to distract the voter from this fraudulent.”

[facepalm]

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By paleriderpalehorse@yahoo.com, March 26, 2009 at 6:37 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I voted for Obama and even had two Obama signs in my yard. It doesn’t mean that I am completely happy with his heavy reliance on Clinton era officials, whom I believe to be of questionable reliability, but I am not a big enough fool to believe that our current mess is Obama made. Plenty of room to question if his strategy is the correct one, but the need for action is real.

For the past 8 years we had a President and Vice President who worked largely with a Republican controlled Congress to fight a war without a war tax, to squander our Natl. treasure on no bid contracts without any oversight at all. To justify their anti-government declarations by appointing to government bureaus people who were opposed to success in the bureaus they ran.

We had an Administration that was supported by people who bleat pitifully every time regulation and rules of business and banking were brought up, people who hid their money in foriegn banks to avoid paying taxes to support the system which protected and nourised them. We had an opposition party that forgot to oppose and instead enabled all the arrogant and criminal activity of the Republican movement to trounce all over our democracy.

Now that the Republican’s are out of power they are like an out of control child who couldn’t wait for the bathroom and crapped on the dining room floor and then want their parents to believe it was a deed done by someone else.

Don’t buy it.

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By Jason!!, March 26, 2009 at 6:22 am Link to this comment

so author is basically saying that the Democrats have not controlled congress, have not passed bad legislation and never meddled with or tinkered with the financial institutions.

propoganda at its finest.

If the mortgage meltdown is the cause of this debacle (as even Obama agree’s) this can be directly attributed to the Democrat policies.

The Democrats caused this pure and simple and any attempt by Obama and his legion of propagandists to distract the voter from this fraudulent.

but what is new.

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By jackpine savage, March 26, 2009 at 5:18 am Link to this comment

Pretty well played, but still disingenuous.  Obviously the listeners of Rush and their ilk will not be reading this, so we can assume that it is not directed at them…but rather at those on the left being critical of Obama.

It isn’t a matter of whether Obama is to blame for the mess, Mr. Conason.  The mess goes back at least as far as Reagan.

The issue is what Mr. Obama (oops, sorry almost forgot, praise be to him) intends to do about the mess.  The issue is his reliance on people who proudly made the mess possible and fomented it.

And the granddaddy issue is whether his plans will fix the mess or make it worse over the long term.

Subtly equating those who question with the likes of Limbaugh is pretty low, but sure to raise a cheer amongst the “never question our president” crowd.

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