Tuesday Reads: Ooh That Smell!

Good Morning!!

Can you smell the “death stench?” coming from the Romney campaign?  Mark Halperin is beginning to. Yesterday he wrote about The Troubles: all the bad news piling up for Mitt Romney following the conventions–like the fact that the Obama camp raised more cash than Romney in August, multiple polls suggest that Obama is getting a bounce from his convention and Romney didn’t. Halperin says all this bad news is leading to a “congealing” media narrative that Romney’s campaign is dying. And all that was written before the latest CNN poll showed Obama at 52% with a lead of 6 points.

Until Romney breaks this cycle, he is in danger of living out the Haley Barbour dictum: in politics, bad gets worse. Super PACs might start shifting their money from the presidential race to save the House majority and look to pick up Senate seats. Romney’s own fundraising will take a hit. Stories about Romney pulling up stakes in Michigan and other ostensible battlegrounds will add to the death stench. And there will be an avalanche of suggestions and second-guessing from pundits and Republican operatives and politicians about Romney’s tactics, strategy and staff.

How tragic! The “death stench.” Oooh That Smell!

Ooh that smell
Can’t you smell that smell?
Ooh that smell
The smell of death surrounds you, yeah

Priorities USA has released a new ad to kick Romney while he’s down.

Everyone is still talking about Romney’s wacky interview with “Disco Dave” on Meet The Press and how he pretended to be in favor of parts of Obamacare on national TV and then quickly flip-flopped in such a way that low information voters might not find out about. From TPM:

“Mitt Romney literally went on ‘Meet The Press’ and misled the American people,” Brad Woodhouse, communications director for the DNC, said on a conference call with reporters Monday. “He acted as if he supports something that he clearly does not.”

Romney said Sunday that he intends to keep parts of ‘Obamacare,’ and cited the law’s rule forbidding discrimination against people with pre-existing conditions as an example.

“I’m not getting rid of all of health care reform,” Romney said. “Of course there are a number of things that I like in health care reform that I’m going to put in place. One is to make sure that those with pre-existing conditions can get coverage.”


The Romney campaign later clarified that his position on pre-existing conditions had not changed, and that he only supports coverage for people with pre-existing conditions if they have had “continuous coverage,” according to a statement released to National Review. “[Romney’s] own plan will deal with pre-existing conditions but not in the same way that Obamacare does,” a Romney campaign aide told TPM after Romney’s interview.

Ezra Klein wrote a post about the Obamacare kefluffle called “when begin vague backfires.”

Romney has been playing a little trick. Here’s what he told David Gregory:

There are a number of things that I like in health-care reform that I’m going to put in place. One is to make sure that those with preexisting conditions can get coverage.

To most of the world, that sounded like Romney was saying he was going to keep Obamacare’s protections for people with preexisting conditions. And enough reporters know Obamacare well enough to know that you can’t keep those protections without keeping quite a bit of the law. That’s why people thought Romney’s position had changed.

But to folks who’ve been following Romney’s game of three-card monte on this issue, it was clear he was just being strategically vague in describing his position: Romney has long said he would protect people with continuous coverage from being discriminated against due to preexisting conditions. But this is something that the law mostly does now, and that would leave 89 million Americans out in the cold.

Romney’s play here was obvious enough: By being a little fuzzy about what, exactly, he was proposing, he could sound like he had a way to protect people with preexisting conditions while still saying he wants to repeal Obamacare. He’d get the best of both worlds. But the problem with trying to strategically confuse people is that you actually confuse them, and that’s what happened here. Rather than coming away thinking Romney had a secret plan to protect people with preexisting conditions, they went away thinking Romney had a secret plan to protect Obamacare.

Disco Dave tried half-heartedly to get Romney to provide just one specific loophole that he would close in order to pay for the massive tax cuts he’s proposing. But Romney was determined not to reveal whether he wants to get rid of the mortgage deduction, the charitable contributions deduction or something else. We know he’s not going get rid of all those loopholes that make it possible for him to pay less than 15% of his income in taxes.   I’m sure of that.

Fortunately, TV Pundits are beginning to confront Romney and his running mate Paul Ryan with their attempts to con less-informed voters. Here are two examples.

MSNBC’s Chris Jansing asking Romney adviser Tara Wall for specifics on which tax loopholes Romney would close and getting word salad.

JANSING: What are the loopholes you would close? Will you tell the American people how you’re going to to this better place that you say they have?
WALL: Well, again, the campaign has laid out a number of specifics relative to the principles that will guide the policies of a Romney-Ryan ticket. […] Again, the specification include policies that are pro-growth in nature, that reduce the deficit, that reduce the burden on taxpayers and small businesses, small businesses number one have been hit hard by a number of regulations that have stifled growth and job creation. And so number one, those are some of the things you have to start with.
JANSING: Well, with all due respect, a pro-growth policy is not specific.

WALL: The other part of that is energy independence. That’s an approach to energy independence that will create millions of jobs. There is a target of 12 million jobs by the Romney-Ryan target. Relative to those loopholes that you mention, I agree that Congressman Ryan pointed out taht have to be put out in a public debate. But I think, again, we have to look at the overall principles that are going to drive the policies and not ram through policy as we saw with Obamacare.

WTF?! Is that the kind of thing Romney is going to say in the debates?

Here’s Norah O’Donnell of all people confronting Paul Ryan on his vote for the sequester that he’s blaming on President Obama.

Amazing! Too bad Disco Dave can’t do that.

Yesterday Jonathan Chait reported another Romney conspiracy theory: the media is conspiring with pollsters to help Obama win.

These comments from a “top Romney adviser” to National Review…are pure derangement:

PPP has these polls that just put chum in the water for the media. Sometimes I think there’s a conscious effort between the media and Chicago to get Republicans depressed. And I hope our friends realize that all these media analysts out there are Democrats WHO WANT US TO LOSE. And the more Washington DC controls our economy, the more important inside-the-beltway publications are and the more money they make. The 202 area code is dominated by people who will make more money if Obama is reelected, so it’s not just an ideological thumb they’re putting on the scale for him, it’s a business interest.

If this is the Romney campaign’s genuine theory of the race — that political reporters are deliberately trying to mislead America into believing Obama is winning in order to fatten their profits — the Romney campaign is in a lot of trouble.

Again, WTF?! That “death stench” is getting stronger.

Think Progress caught something else odd in Romney’s interview on MTP. I noticed it when I listened to the interview but I thought it was just more Romney strangeness. Romney told Disco Dave, “I’m as conservative as the Constitution.”

Now what the hell does that mean? TP says it’s a dog whistle to “Tenthers.” From Wikipedia:

The Tenther movement is a political ideology and a social movement in the United States that espouses that many actions of the United States government are unconstitutional. Adherents invoke the concept that the states share sovereignty with the federal government and with the people by citing the Tenth Amendment to the United States Constitution as the basis for their legal and ideological beliefs:

“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people”

Adherents believe that political authority enumerated in the United States Constitution as belonging to the Federal Government must be read very narrowly to exclude much of what the national government already does. They argue for the recognition of limited sovereignty of the States. Opponents use the term in order to draw parallels between adherents and 19th century states’ rights secessionists, as well as the movement to resist Federal Civil Rights legislation.

This is the Ayn Randish version of the “Constitution” that Paul Ryan believes in.

Last September, GOP vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan spoke at the Hillsdale College’s Kirby Center, a Washington, D.C. arm of the conservative institution that was founded under the leadership of Supreme Court spouse Virginia Thomas. The speech was delivered in commemoration of Constitution Day, and it provides a fairly substantial window into how he understands America’s most important document. Unfortunately, the speech also raises very real doubts about whether Mr. Ryan can distinguish the founders’ vision from his own. Ryan’s speech does not simply defend his laissez faire vision for the country, it suggests that this austere vision is mandated by the Constitution itself:

We can strengthen our defense of liberty if we remember to keep in mind those who are struggling to make ends meet. What makes our Constitution such an extraordinary document is that, in making the United States the freest civilization in history, the Founders guaranteed that it would become the most prosperous as well. The American system of limited government, low taxes, sound money, and the rule of law has done more to help the poor than any other economic system ever designed.

That is scary. Make sure you click on the link and read the whole thing. Good thing that “death stench” is surrounding Ryan too.

I guess this has been kind of a strange post, but I’m in a strange mood today. I hope it makes at least some sense.  I realize I didn’t mention that today is the anniversary of 9/11, but JJ will have something about it later on.

So… what are you reading and blogging about today?

79 Comments on “Tuesday Reads: Ooh That Smell!”

  1. bostonboomer says:

    Good morning, everyone. I had to turn my furnace on this morning. It was 58 degrees inside my house!

  2. ecocatwoman says:

    Great roundup, bb. The media turnaround (except for Disco Dave) is a welcome relief for the softball they’ve been playing with Romney/Ryan & other politicians. Personally, I’m not interested in a candidate’s iPod playlist. However, I’m not ready to count my chickens just yet. Two unknowns in particular bother me: the debates & how many people will be turned away at the polls because they don’t have a picture ID. I remember the underdog factor that helped win votes for W – people felt sorry for how badly he did in the debates, so many voted for him. And, the low voter awareness may result in many folks, not aware of the picture ID requirement, being turned away at the polls.

    There is no escaping politics once one has dipped their toes into the “pool.” I checked out Treehugger this AM and found a couple of stories worth mentioning. First, Shell started drilling in the Arctic & had to stop within a couple of hours. Unfortunately, it’s only temporary: http://www.treehugger.com/fossil-fuels/shell-already-forced-stop-arctic-drilling-operation.html

    Lovely photos from Katmai National Park in Alaska: http://www.treehugger.com/slideshows/natural-sciences/wildlife-katmai-national-park-why-preserving-wild-spaces-important/ With a Romney presidency, our wild places will be decimated. Romney stated in the primaries that he didn’t understand why America had all these parks & wild places set aside.

    And, finally, only 8% of Caribbean coral reefs have living coral: http://www.treehugger.com/ocean-conservation/8-percent-caribbean-reefs-now-have-living-coral.html There are other links on this page, one of which explains why coral reefs are important to the health of our oceans.

    I can only hope that Forward includes humans operating in a more compassionate way, with an ethic of care that includes ALL living things.

  3. bostonboomer says:

    Romney Campaign copies text from Obama website–with screen shots.

    It’s desperation time!

  4. Pat Johnson says:

    The fresh air is wonderful here in Western MA! I can actually open a window and let it waft through!

    Someone on a talk show this morning mentioned that this election has also seen a “war on truth”. Just say anything, deny it later, and let the “facts” sort themselves out. Some in the MSM are beginning to call out the Romney/Ryan claims for what they are: outright lies.

    I just received the Bob Woodward book delivered to my Kindle and I will more than likely be “nose deep” in that sometime today. To hell with housework!

    I have never seen two men lie as often and as easiy as these two. Even when it has shown that they said or did one thing they manage to twist, contort, and outright deny their own words. And these are people we want in charge?

    Personally, I am at a juncture when I am beginning to accept the fact that Romney really and truly does not quite fully understand what is going on in the world. I think much of his “fudging” is based on his lack of knowledge which leads to more lies.

    Rather than appear “unknowledgable” he proves it which is a death knell for any candidate who lacks the flare to overcome that deficiency.

    And “golden boy” Ryan also proves that he is just another lightweight in this contest because his lies have the tendency to reach out and grab him in the ass.

    • bostonboomer says:

      I’ll be interested to hear your reactions to the Woodward book. I’m glad you’re reading it so I don’t have to.

      • Pat Johnson says:

        I just finished “The New New Deal” which also covers what has transpired in the last 3 years.

        It will be interesting to draw a contrast since we all know that the truth is somewhere in the middle.

        However, Woodward in being interviewed by Diane Sawyer last night suggests that both sides have failed. Boehner because he cannot control the Tea Partiers and Obama for not doing enough “schmoozing” which he says as a much needed effort to promote compromise.

        He pointed out that both Reagan and Clinton were “masters” in the art whereas Obama is not.

      • RalphB says:

        I suppose Woodward considers the fact that Bill Clinton was impeached to be a successful use of the power of “schmoozing”. He seems to confuse his own sucking up to sources with the art of political deal making. I consider Bob Woodward to be a useful idiot who spends far too much time on the Georgetown cocktail party circuit.

      • Pat Johnson says:

        I agree ralph. But most of the sources he uses in that book, including both Boehner and Obama, are on record.

        The primary reason I bought it was because he also uses taped recordings which none of them can actually deny.

      • RalphB says:

        Pat. I don’t have problems with his sourcing. It’s his conclusions that sometimes leave me shaking my head. 🙂

      • bostonboomer says:

        Actually, I liked Obama better after reading some of Woodward’s critiques.

        John Heileman claims Obama “doesn’t like people” and he’s an introvert with good communication skills.

        JH: Obama is an unusual politician. There are very few people in American politics who achieve something — not to mention the Presidency —in which the following two conditions are true: one, they don’t like people. And two, they don’t like politics.

        KC: Obama doesn’t like people?

        JH: I don’t think he doesn’t like people. I know he doesn’t like people. He’s not an extrovert; he’s an introvert. I’ve known the guy since 1988. He’s not someone who has a wide circle of friends. He’s not a backslapper and he’s not an arm-twister. He’s a more or less solitary figure who has extraordinary communicative capacities. He’s incredibly intelligent, but he’s not a guy who’s ever had a Bill Clinton-like network around him. He’s not the guy up late at night working the speed dial calling mayors, calling governors, calling CEOs. People say about Obama that it’s a mistake that he hasn’t reached out more to Republicans on Capitol Hill. I say that may be a mistake, but he also hasn’t reached out to Democrats on Capitol Hill. If you walk around [the convention] and button-hole any Democratic Senator you find on the street and ask them how many times they have received a call [from the President] to talk about politics, to talk about legislative strategy, I guarantee you won’t find a lot of people who have gotten one phone call in the last two and a half years. And many of them have never been called.

        I’m not a psychologist, so I don’t know what the root of that is. People have theories about it. But I know in practice he is a guy who likes to operate with a very tight circle around him, trusts very few people easily or entirely. He ran his campaign that way in 2008, he runs his White House that way, and he’s running his campaign that way in 2012. President Obama just doesn’t talk to too many people.

        I can totally identify with that.

  5. bostonboomer says:

    Did Romney really want the U.S. to default on its debt last year?

    • ecocatwoman says:

      Romney is big on bankruptcy for everyone (auto industry, the companies Bain destroyed). No skin off his nose – he’s got his & it’s safe offshore.

      • bostonboomer says:

        Yes, but if the U.S. had defaulted on its debt, the entire world economy would have crashed. It would have been unprecedented–way beyond the Great Depression. Romney doesn’t understand that that’s what he advocated for in MTP. He’s that stupid.

        • ecocatwoman says:

          I’m agreeing with you. I was just being a smart a$$.

          Romney is, to put it kindly, an idiot. I have no idea exactly what he does know about anything & how he can get dressed by himself. Then, maybe he doesn’t. He’s not only detached, he is living in an alternate reality.

      • Pat Johnson says:

        Honestly, I am almost convinced that Romney is that stupid. His entire focus since he ran for office in MA was “the road to the WH”.

        He has surrounded himself with the neocons who used Bush and his lack of interest in world events to shape their agenda. He relies on these “experts” which I think gets him in trouble since he has no idea of what he is saying. just following whatever they tell him to.

        His “get me there at any price” is what causes him to change positions as often as he does: he forgets what they program him to say and loses the thread of the conversation when posed with a follow up question.

      • RalphB says:

        In fairness to Rmoney, in LBO world you make a lot of money by bankrupting companies after picking the bones clean. Maybe that’s what they intend for the US when they’re done.

  6. bostonboomer says:

    Interview with Kurt Eichenwald on how the Bush administration ignored explicit warnings from the CIA that an attack was coming–beginning as early as May, 2001.

    Eichenwald’s op-ed in the NYT.

    • RalphB says:

      Read that last night. It’s really damning. I agree with Kat, a lot of those folks should be in prison, especially Cheney and Rumsfeld.

      • ecocatwoman says:

        Please, Santa, that’s what I want for Christmas. Can they go to Gitmo since they are terrorists and traitors?

        Eichenwald was interviewed on Morning Edition this AM: http://www.npr.org/2012/09/11/160924602/the-deafness-before-the-sept-11-attacks Audio only, text up later. I got confirmation on something I said to my boss before the start of the Iraqi war – bin Laden was not working with Saddam Hussein. I couldn’t see a fundie like bin Laden getting into bed with an a-religious brutal dictator. It seemed so obvious to me, despite the constant drum beats for WAR – WAR – WAR. W had to push daddy’s face in daddy’s failure to “get” Hussein in the 1st Gulf War & the neo-cons (Cheney in particular) wanted the oil profits. And people, lots of innocent ones, were permanently damaged or killed over daddy issues & greed.

      • bostonboomer says:

        Too bad Obama decided that wasn’t necessary and defended just about everything the Bushies did.

    • NW Luna says:

      It was already clear that the risk was obvious. Now there’s even more evidence?

      One of the many reasons I didn’t like Obama as an ’08 candidate was his stance that impeachment was for “grave crimes” and he didn’t think it applied to Bush. Too interested in pushing himself forward.

      I too agree with Dak. Many in the Bush admin should be tried for war crimes and lying to Congress and the American people.

      Even now, in Afghanistant, one American a day is killed.

    • Have to add that interview link to the post I have scheduled. Thanks for posting it BB.

  7. ANonOMouse says:

    Great post today BB. I look foward to reading all the links.

    It may be noted in a link, but if not it should be mentioned that the ties between Tenthers and Dominionists are very strong. The combination of the the two ideologies is one scary scenario. The other dog whistle is the constant Romney theme about keeping god on the coins, keeping god in his heart, remembering that “all rights come from god”. That is a shoutout/dogwhistle to the Dominionists. The Dominionist/Tenthers went hard for Rick Perry in the beginning, Both Bachmann and Palin are supported by the Dominionist/tenther movement. If you remember the Dominionist had a gathering in TX to decide who they were going to endorse. They initially went with Perry but some defected to Santorum.

  8. Pat Johnson says:

    I have no idea of who will emerge the winner in November.

    Much will depend upon voter turnout and it would not surprise me to find us back in November 2000 when the nation found itself watching the state of Florida trying to sort out the mess.

    Voter suppression may play a huge role as the deciding factor since so much tampering has been going on so this could still be an election that “is up for grabs” regardless of how distasteful the Romney/Ryan ticket has become.

    I cannot discount the outright hatred toward Obama with race playing a role in this decision where blogs who once called themselves “liberal” are now pitching for Romney and the GOP.

    You cannot be a liberal and do such an abrupt about face without factoring in that suggestion. It makes no sense. The lies, the radicalization of the social fabric, the attempts to suppress votes, the anti union efforts, the war on women, is so far from Democratic Principles that it has become difficult to understand anyone supporting that side.

    • ecocatwoman says:

      Once again, you’ve hit the nail squarely on its head Pat. Totally with you on this.

    • NW Luna says:

      Not sure how much is race. At least in some of the blogs with commentators who used to be pro-Hillary, it seems to be fed by ODS. Yet R/R’s positions are completely opposite to Hillary’s. This is not ’08; McCain wasn’t ranting about personhood for a clump of cells, and let the mother die to “save” the clump of cells, etc. 2012 gives us a much starker contrast between the D candidate and the Rs.

      “The enemy of my enemy is my friend” isn’t always true. There are plenty of things we don’t like about Obama, and they get pointed out on this blog and discussed — for example, the Chicago teachers’ union strike that he should support but doesn’t.

      But the Rs are hideously worse this time. I’m not going to cut off my nose to spite my face, as the old saying goes. I live in a blue state and I probably will vote Stein/Green Party.

    • RalphB says:

      One of those “pro-Hillary?” commenters showed up in my FB and ranted about how the far lefties should stop talking about what Romney would do if elected. He was just this simply wonderful successful businessman who wanted to do what was right for his country and was a real moderate. I’m sure she got that opinion in that comfortable ODS bubble where they live now but it’s still bizarre. Of course the same person thought Rick Perry was going to be some kind of savior in the republican primaries, so there’s that 🙂

      • Pat Johnson says:

        The “danger” of Facebook writ large.

      • dakinikat says:

        I can’t take the Rombots. I keep repeating this but all other voting strategies are fine by me. It’s just any one that can vote for Romey is either not paying attention or not wanting to see the evil or totally lost in the Fox bubble. This teabagged Republican party needs to be put down so something new can rise from the ashes.

      • bostonboomer says:


        I’ve taken to de-friending those idiots on sight.

        • dakinikat says:

          Have you noticed this same people that hate on Obama just for the sake of it are the same group that are always hating all Muslims just for the sake of it? Detact a pattern there?

  9. janicen says:

    I’m breathless. A friend just tipped me off to this. This is Bob Marshall, a Virginia House of Delegates representative explaining that children born subsequent to abortions are more often “handicapped”. This, according to Delegate Marshall, is nature taking it’s vengeance; Christians would suggest that it’s a special punishment.

    • janicen says:

      I apologize. Apparently this is not recent news, he was speaking in 2010. You can remove my post if you like, but it’s a good reminder of what we are up against.

    • NW Luna says:

      Marshall must live in an alternate universe. There is absolutely NO evidence for this. (pardon my yelling but I am sick of all this stupidity.) Where do these idiots get their wingnut superstitions?

      In fact, children born to a healthy mother, who has enough time to recover between pregnancies, are more likely to be carried to full-term; and the birth is more likely to go smoothly for baby and mother.

      • bostonboomer says:

        These guys couldn’t care less about science or facts.

      • janicen says:

        He’s just winging it. Just making sh!t up. That’s what they do.

      • dakinikat says:

        The zygote zealots do make shit up. It’s all the do … but so many idiots believe them. I still can’t believe how many folks fell for that “partial birth” abortion canard. The college of Obstetrics put out all kinds of things out on how that wasn’t even a real procedure and none of them listened. They worked to ban a fairy tale basically and take a swipe at real procedures mostly used on already dead things that if left in place would go toxic and kill women.

    • janicen says:

      I finished reading Follet’s The Pillars of the Earth, took a pallet cleanser with Louise Penny’s Beautiful Mystery which interestingly takes place in a monastery, and now I’m reading Follet’s follow up to Pillars, World Without End. It occurs to me, if you look back through history that the single biggest hindrance to progress of any kind has been religion. Religion has been used to control people and keep them in the dark. It’s when people open their eyes and say, “Hey, this is all bullshit…” that they can proceed to improve their lives and make the world better. The pundits would have you believe that it’s the opposite, that charitable acts of the churches and their members make things better but the ulterior motive of controlling people contradicts whatever good is being done.

      • bostonboomer says:


        Do you recommend all of Louise Penny’s books? Should I start with the first one or read the latest one?

        • janicen says:

          Start with the first one. It’s such an enjoyable read you’ll burn through them in no time. When her latest one hit number 2 on the NYT best seller’s list I was as happy as if it had happened to a family member. In one of her reviews she was compared to P.D. James, but I honestly think she’s better, and I LOVE P.D. James. Enjoy!

      • bostonboomer says:

        Thanks! I think her books look good. I love detective stories.

  10. Pat Johnson says:

    For what it is worth, this is my take on Obama and I will leave the esteemed psychologist Boston Boomer to weigh in:

    This is a guy who really did not grow up with parents. His grandparents stood in as substitutes. This cannot help but leave traces of inferiority in one’s frame of mind no matter how well intentioned all parties concerned may have been. You learn along the way to sit back and observe before you figure out just where it is you fit in. And for a young person of mixed heritage that may have been even more difficult to figure out.

    He is more of a “teacher” in how he approaches the subject matter. Where we all accept that Bill Clinton was a political beast so to speak, this is not Obama’s style. As a community organizer he was always in a position of trying to find a middle ground in working within the framework of what was needed to accomplish something but what he failed to understand was that there were forces in DC who absolutely resented his success in achieving the WH. A lot of that was based on race.

    Yes he was offered up to the masses as “The One”; the press overdid the expectations in portraying him as “the savior” which was not only a misnomer but had to have fed his ego to some degree and when the “rubber hit the road” the luster began to wear off.

    I truly believe that he had no idea of exactly what he was up against with these people. He was looking to establish a 21 century administration that mirrored Lincoln’s by choosing people who did not share his thinking believing that every public servant wanted only what was best for the nation, especially with what we faced in 2009.

    They disrespected him from Day One. Openly disrespected him. This must have come as a blow to a man who oozed such self confidence as he did in coming to this role. But he failed to grasp what these people were capable of doing and when it finally dawned on him 3 years had passed. They were willling to let this nation “go under” in opposition and for that he came close to letting them win.

    I think – or perhaps choose to believe -that he finally “got it”. That no matter what he said or did was going to be dismissed no matter how much he was willing to bargain away to get something accomplished. The sorriest part is that so much of it was race based. I truly have come to believe that watching and listening to fools demand proof of birth over and over again.

    The truth is that Obama is not the “traditonal political animal” we have seen in others in the past. LBJ, Clinton, Nixon, even Reagan to some extent. People used to “kissing ass” and knowing how to sink the knife into political enemies. This is just not who Obama is.

    History will bear out some of what I may have perceived one way or the other but I am convinced that as the first black president he has had to suffer more of the slings and arrows owing much to that theory that also includes a temperment formed by his upbringing that makes him wary of how he perceives us.

    • ecocatwoman says:

      I couldn’t agree more Pat. Those of us who are perceived as or made to feel “different” growing up has a big influence on us for the rest of our lives. It’s not the same for those who choose to be different. I’m certain that the overwhelming sense of being embraced by so many people made Obama feel terrific. Sally Field’s acceptance speech for the Oscar comes to mind: “you like me. You really, really like me.”

      I agree on the issue of race. It’s not only directed at Obama, but at voters and immigrants as well. The White Male Privilege is slipping away. US demographics are projected to change, making people of color, non-whites the majority in the very near future. And all those white men can’t trust their wimmenfolk to “stand by their man” any longer. They feel surrounded and attacked on all fronts & they are fighting for their very lives – at least that’s how they see it – IMHO. Hope & Change – that simply amplified & confirmed their fears. Why else would these White Knights sow the seeds of fear & hate & divide & conquer? They are protecting their God given rights.

    • bostonboomer says:

      I agree with everything you wrote, Pat. I too think Obama has finally “gotten it” that the Republicans are never going to cooperate with him, period. The good news is that Obama is very competitive, and he can be ruthless, as we saw in the 2008 primaries. Now I’m hoping he turns that ruthlessness against the Republicans in Congress. He’s certainly using it skillfully on Romney, distracting from the knife in the gut by using sarcastic humor. I must admit, I’m enjoying it. Maybe that’s what Bill Clinton sees in him too?

  11. Pat Johnson says:

    Some of us here “go way back” together and it was extremely upsetting to be called “racists” simply because we opposed Obama in favor of Hillary.

    The difference was that she was fully prepared to lead. She “made her bones” so to speak from having served 35 yrs in the public eye, secured a place in the US Senate, and found friends on both sides of the aisle.

    Obama had barely gotten his feet wet as a senator but took advantage of the CDS although he was unqualified and unprepared in our estimations to run at that time. Hell some of us were even promoting a Clinton/Obama ticket that would have given him 8 years to strenghten his creds before a run. That was not racist but practical.

    But unlike Chris Christie who had to admit “I’m not ready”, Obama took the risk. What he found waiting for him was something even I had no idea was in store. The vitriol, hidden at first, became quite apparent when the Tea Partiers emerged releasing a full throated message that he is “not one of us”. It could not have been any clearer.

    I hope I am right in expecting that if given another 4 years he manages to lead as we would prefer.

    But I see no hope in rewarding the opposition who essentially held back support for this nation who was suffering simply because they refused to serve the public out of a grasp for power in face of the consequences.

    • RalphB says:

      I still think Clinton/Obama would have been the best way to do but I’m not sure she would have come in for better treatment. Well, what is “is” and it’s what we have to work with. The other side is just not possible.

  12. bostonboomer says:

    Don’t miss this! Little face Mitt:


  13. bostonboomer says:

    OMG! This is so funny.

    It’s a very good example of why I’ve begun to actually like Obama a little bit. It’s about that bit in Woodward’s book where Obama says he probably shouldn’t have utterly humiliated “Jack Ryan” by ripping his “budget” to shreds in front of an audience that included “Paul Bunyan, or whatever his name is.”

    President Obama Is Really Sorry About Insulting Whatshisface


  14. janicen says:

    When you read this, you really understand why it’s vital to keep the right wing reality deniers out of power.

  15. dakinikat says:

    Jared Bernstein ‏@econjared

    Anyone who doesn’t think the job market is improving needs to explain this clear trend: http://bit.ly/OcJzbf

  16. pdgrey says:

    I don’t watch CNN but this link to Suzie is amazing. But it’s scary that both sides are trying to make people think Medicare is going bankrupt.

  17. bostonboomer says:

    NYT editorial: The Shallow End of the Campaign:

    If the first weekend of Mitt Romney’s general election campaign is any indication, the country is in for eight weeks of wild, often random answers to some of the most important policy questions. Voters trying to understand the positions of Mr. Romney and Representative Paul Ryan are going to have a harder time than ever.

    On issue after issue raised in the first weekend of interviews after the conventions, Romney and Ryan actively tried to obscure their positions, as if a clear understanding of their beliefs about taxes, health care or spending would scare away anyone who was listening. Aware that President Obama’s policies in these areas are quite popular once people learn about them, the Republicans are simply sowing confusion.