TRUMP AND HIS ADMINISTRATION ARE UNDER FBI INVESTIGATION; A SPECIAL COUNSEL HAS BEEN APPOINTED TO LOOK INTO POSSIBLE COLLUSION WITH RUSSIA BY TRUMP CAMPAIGN; AND THE US HOUSE AND SENATE HAVE COMMITTEES LOOKING INTO RUSSIAN COLLUSION AND CONSPIRACY WITH THE TRUMP CAMPAIGN.
Sunday, September 30, 2012
PAUL MORPHY IN PARIS*
Saturday, the First of November
I open with the Sicilian Dragon
the clock quiets and the room starts,
voices expand. I climb over the chair.
A good enforcer of the touch-move rule,
I make the bastard play it, mop his pawns,
capture his Carthusian rooks.
Somewhere in the Month:
Bogolyubov and Botvinnik sing five octaves
in the French Defense. I interrupt only to sip
their wine, nibble their gambits.
At The End of This Horrid Month:
I'm in jail. In Paris. My torturers make me
confess to my wife's shoes--in a half-circle.
And what of it? It is a perfect half-circle.
The Late Nineteenth Century:
I wish I could fly. This queen's knight
pawn forwards two squares, the Orangutan
sits under the canopy in a glass tree.
The Circle at the End of Time:
"He will plant the banner of Castile
on the walls of Madrid, with the cry:
The city is taken, and the little king will go away."
*NOTE: Paul Morphy was an American and one of the world's greatest chess players. At the peak of his career in 1859 he withdrew from tournament chess, became increasingly psychotic, and spent his days arranging women's shoes in half-circles in his bedroom, pacing his room and muttering in French, "He will plant the banner of Castile…”
Saturday, September 29, 2012
Except here's another nugget of truth [otherwise known as a "false fact"] that the conservatives won't face:
Wall Street Journal accused of concealing writers’ Mitt Romney links
"Veteran journalists attack Murdoch paper for failure to disclose writers’ political sympathies
The Wall Street Journal has been criticised by senior US journalists for failing to disclose that 10 of its op-ed writers are Mitt Romney advisers.
According to an inquiry by Media Matters, 23 pieces in the WSJ’s op-ed pages attacked President Obama or praised Romney without the writers acknowledging their political connections to Romney.
Max Frankel, a former New York Times executive editor, called the lack of disclosure 'shameless.' He added: 'They ought to put a banner saying Romney has approved of this page… It looks like the Wall Street Journal editorial and op ed pages have enlisted in the campaign. They should be disclosing that.'
'Not disclosing is inexcusable,' declared Stephen Henderson, editorial page editor of the Detroit Free Press. 'It is important to disclose that so that the reader can evaluate the argument intelligently,”'said Nicholas Goldberg, Los Angeles Times editorial page editor, adding that transparency is 'absolutely essential.'
A review by Media Matters on September 19 named the 10 WSJ writers with strong Romney links as John Bolton; Max Boot; Lee Casey; Paula Dobriansky; Mary Ann Glendon; Glenn Hubbard; Paul Peterson; David Rivkin Jr; Martin West; and Michael Mukasey.
The Wall Street Journal is owned by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation. Murdoch has made it abundantly clear in his many tweets that he supports Romney."
And let's not forget Murdoch's sleaze.
"Murdoch himself has taken considerable personal fire. After he testified that he had known nothing about the phone-hacking scandal, he was blasted for being out of touch, and a May British parliamentary report found that the media mogul 'is not a fit person to exercise the stewardship of a major international company.'
Earlier this week, Murdoch resigned from the boards of his British newspapers in a move that analysts said was designed to distance the media mogul from the hacking scandal and restore shareholders’ confidence in the company. However, a company spokeswoman told the New York Times that the move was 'nothing more than a corporate housecleaning exercise' and staff were reassured that Murdoch would remain involved with the papers."
The guy who's "not a fit person to exercise the stewardship of a major international company" is the guy who owns FAUX NOOZ, the propaganda arm of the Republican Party. The cable news station that employs melonheads like Sarah Palin and Sean Hannity, and that gave the self-described "rodeo clown," Glenn Beck, his own show in which he made a colossal ass of himself every night.
It is not surprising that a number of conservative blogs are so angry and upset over what the polls are telling us at this point. They've been reading from and listening to the GOP news outlets that sell them only what they want to hear.
Friday, September 28, 2012
Michael Tomasky has a fine piece on the GOP's self-delusion syndrome:
"What a fantastic last two weeks these have been. I don’t even mean Barack Obama solidifying his lead over Mitt Romney, although that’s perfectly fine. No, I mean the near-mathematically perfect joy of watching these smug and contemptible creatures of the right dodge and swerve and make excuses and, most of all, whine. There is no joy in the kingdom of man so great as the joy of seeing bullies and hucksters laid low, and watching people who have arrogantly spent years assuming they were right about the world living to see all those haughty assumptions die before their eyes. Watching them squirm is more fun than watching Romney and Paul Ryan flail away.
It’s not lies with which Limbaugh and Morris are now coming face-to-face. It’s the truth. Americans like Barack Obama. They don’t like Romney. And they really don’t like Ryan."
And Robert Farley of "Lawyers, Guns, and Money" asks some interesting questions that punch holes the size of Chris Christie in the GOP's quaint "skewed polls" theory.
Thursday, September 27, 2012
In the blindly partisan world of extreme rightwingers, President Obama has done nothing right. As proof, they offer up only the negatives and never, never, never do they consider the positives that exist in all presidencies. This skewed view of Mr. Obama's presidency now has them yawping like deranged hyenas over the leads Mr. Obama is, so far, enjoying in the polls, citing all the unfinished work the president faces as "failures." They've even gone so far as to suggest that polling firms like Gallup, and others, are deliberately slanted in Mr. Obama's favor--an incredibly dumb suggestion, since these polling companies depend on their accuracy to stay in business. Why would they all damage their reputations? But don't go looking for logic where the fringies live.
Some of these extremists need a "reality bitch slap." In the last 3 1/2 years, Mr. Obama's presidency has been mixed with good and bad, but you'll not drag any of the good out of the yawpers.
Below are some to consider. These are facts that the wingers refuse to acknowledge, because they don't fit the narrative they've conjured up in their minds of a losing, failing, Marxist, Socialist, Commie, Kenyan Hawaiian Devil Baby. And they truly believe that Mr. Obama is losing, or will lose, to Mr. Romney; that the polling firms that show leads in critical swing states are deliberately falsifying numbers; and that only their polling tells the truth.
When folks believe only what fits their prejudices, and deliberately stay blind to what IS instead of what they want it to be, they generally need some reality bitch slapping to wake them up:
Factory Job Gains Under Obama Best Since Clinton: BGOV Barometer
In an election focused on jobs, President Barack Obama can boast of crossing one milestone: the longest stretch of employment gains in manufacturing in almost two decades.
The BGOV Barometer shows U.S. factory positions have grown since early 2010, arresting a slide that began toward the end of the 1990s. It’s the best showing since the era of Bill Clinton, the only president in the last 30 years to leave office with more factory jobs than when he began.
“The gain in manufacturing jobs is certainly helpful, it is one way to show we’re moving forward,” said Terry Madonna, a political science professor and director of the Franklin & Marshall College poll in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. “President Obama has to create a psychology all over the country that things are getting better. This is a piece explaining that idea.”
New U.S. single-family home sales eased in August but held near two-year highs and prices vaulted to their highest level in more than five years, adding to signs of a broadening housing market recovery.PBS NEWSHOUR
The Case-Shiller index is out this morning, and housing prices continued to rise last month. Except perhaps for those shopping for homes, this is unambiguously good news. The more housing wealth, the greater the "wealth effect": the propensity to spend. The greater the spending, the less unemployment. The wheel then turns. Maybe we're heading for a Titanic iceberg, as some of my friends predict. Maybe the fiscal cliff bodes ill. But for those who think we can hang in there and muddle through, good news.
The Wall Street Journal:
Middle East Officials Praise Obama Speech
"...Middle Eastern officials said they valued Mr. Obama's call for tolerance.
"It was a very good opening speech," said Lebanon's Prime Minister Najib Mikati. "I agreed with it 99%, particularly his point that we need to expect and have openness, before it is too late."
Mr. Obama in his address called on new rulers around the world to govern fairly and openly, to permit dissent but discourage violence.
One Arab diplomat who was not authorized to speak publicly to the press, said: "The key message was that we need to fight for tolerance and accept people as they are. This was very important. We cannot be dragged down into violence by what is after all a very small minority."
The Wall Street Journal:
Putin on U.S. Vote: Obama 'Genuine,'Romney 'Mistaken'
MOSCOW—Russian President Vladimir Putin said the re-election of President Barack Obama could improve relations with the U.S., but that he was also prepared to work with Mitt Romney, calling the Republican candidate's tough stance on Russia "pre-election rhetoric."
In contrast to what had been viewed as a chilly attitude toward Mr. Obama, Mr. Putin called his U.S. counterpart "a genuine person" who "really wants to change much for the better."
Fellow blogger Infidel753 puts it this way:
"This is a high-stakes election. The stakes are theocracy vs. secularism, denialism vs. reality on global warming, Randian laissez-faire and an unregulated financial parasite class vs. a rational mixed economy, mythology vs. science in public schools, insurance-company death panels vs. a major step toward universal coverage, Bible-based bigotry vs. marriage equality, relentless attacks on abortion and even birth control vs. individual choice, cave-man foreign policy vs. informed diplomacy. And don't forget Supreme Court appointments."
A tiny, routine revision in some jobs data could have a big political payoff for President Obama.
The Labor Department on Thursday morning quietly released a new benchmark for payroll employment in the U.S. It turns out that with the revision, there has been net job growth -- not much, but more than nothing -- during Obama's first term.
According to the revision, total non-farm payrolls stood at 133.686 million jobs in August, up from 133.561 million in January 2009, when Obama's first term began. Before the revision, payrolls were at 133.300 million in August.
In other words, 125,000 jobs have been created, in total, during Obama's first term, compared with a prior estimate of a loss of 261,000.
This is obviously a very small difference, but it takes away a weapon that former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, the Republican nominee for president, has used repeatedly to hit Obama: the claim that there has been a net job loss since he took office.
That claim was arguably unfair in any event, given the state of the economy when Obama took on the worst job in America: The economy was shedding about 750,000 jobs per month just before and after his inauguration. With the new benchmark revisions, it added about 194,000 jobs per month in the year up to March 2012, according to Wharton economics professor Justin Wolfers.
Wednesday, September 26, 2012
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
"We believe that freedom and self-determination are not unique to one culture. These are not simply American values or Western values – they are universal values. And even as there will be huge challenges that come with a transition to democracy, I am convinced that ultimately government of the people, by the people and for the people is more likely to bring about the stability, prosperity, and individual opportunity that serve as a basis for peace in our world. "
"There are no words that excuse the killing of innocents. There is no video that justifies an attack on an Embassy. There is no slander that provides an excuse for people to burn a restaurant in Lebanon, or destroy a school in Tunis, or cause death and destruction in Pakistan.
More broadly, the events of the last two weeks speak to the need for all of us to address honestly the tensions between the West and an Arab World moving to democracy. Just as we cannot solve every problem in the world, the United States has not, and will not, seek to dictate the outcome of democratic transitions abroad, and we do not expect other nations to agree with us on every issue. Nor do we assume that the violence of the past weeks, or the hateful speech by some individuals, represents the views of the overwhelming majority of Muslims– any more than the views of the people who produced this video represent those of Americans.
However, I do believe that it is the obligation of all leaders, in all countries, to speak out forcefully against violence and extremism. It is time to marginalize those who – even when not resorting to violence – use hatred of America, or the West, or Israel as a central principle of politics. For that only gives cover, and sometimes makes excuses, for those who resort to violence."
And this applies here at home as well as internationally:
"A politics based only on anger – one based on dividing the world between us and them – not only sets back international cooperation, it ultimately undermines those who tolerate it. All of us have an interest in standing up to these forces. Let us remember that Muslims have suffered the most at the hands of extremism. "
President Obama speaking today at the UN.
Monday, September 24, 2012
"Well, we do provide care for people who don’t have insurance,” he said in an interview with Scott Pelley of CBS’s “60 Minutes” that aired Sunday night. “If someone has a heart attack, they don’t sit in their apartment and die. We pick them up in an ambulance, and take them to the hospital, and give them care. And different states have different ways of providing for that care.”
So there it is. The One Percenters' solution to people who don't have insurance: Go to the emergency room, and that'll take care of your medical needs and condition.
(Somewhere on the intertubes, there is a video from 2010 where Governor Romney says EXACTLY THE OPPOSITE of what he claimed on 60 Minutes. Isn't there ALWAYS some video of Willard contradicting himself every 20 minutes?)
Anyway, here is Willard in 2007 saying sending people to the emergency room for health care is a form of socialism [via daily kos]:
Mitt Romney, 2007:
[I]n a 2007 interview with Glenn Beck, Romney called the fact that people without insurance were able to get "free care" in emergency rooms "a form of socialism.""When they show up at the hospital, they get care. They get free care paid for by you and me. If that's not a form of socialism, I don't know what is," he said at the time. "So my plan did something quite different. It said, you know what? If people can afford to buy insurance ... or if they can pay their own way, then they either buy that insurance or pay their own way, but they no longer look to government to hand out free care. And that, in my opinion, is ultimate conservativism."
What he stated on 60 Minutes is about the stupidest Mr. Romney could possibly say, since he knows that is not an acceptable way to take care of uninsured citizens. Yet he suggested this as a way to take care of the uninsured: Send them to the emergency room--the MOST expensive way of treating people without insurance, and in his own words: SOCIALISM!
A man who changes his mind as often as Willard changes his can't keep track of what his position is or has been on key issues. That's why in 2007 he stated emergency room health care is socialism, but last night he offered it up as a solution for people who have no insurance.
Mr. Romney knows better. Yet he is so frightened to talk about Romneycare and how he solved the problem of uninsureds in Massachusetts--so frightened of the GOP's rabid base---that he turned himself into a caricature of a cluess melonhead in order to avoid discussing his own solution to the millions of uninsureds in this country.
He's a man without core principles, ready to debase himself for votes.
Sunday, September 23, 2012
Saturday, September 22, 2012
Gallup has published a poll of the highest and lowest income earners and for whom they are most likely to vote. The highest and the lowest income earners are those who pay the lowest income tax rates (see Romney, 14%) or the least likely to pay income taxes at all--the highest earners because they can stash their money in foreign bank accounts and hire armies of lawyers to find every loophole available to them so that they pay a rate lower than the people who wait on them hand and foot; and the lowest income earners, Romney's "moochers," are also those who pay no income tax.
The Gallup poll shows that those are the two segments of the population most likely to vote for Romney.
"Romney's comments in the recently released video clip from a May fundraiser implied that he has written off as certain Obama voters about half of the population whom he says pay no income tax. Gallup does not track voters who pay no income tax, so it is not possible to isolate these voters precisely.
Still, government data suggest that those who are most likely to pay no income tax are those who have very low incomes and are the youngest and oldest segments of society.
Recent Gallup Daily tracking data show Romney in fact has significant support among these segments: those with the lowest incomes, the young, the old, and the older voters who have low incomes."
Romney's secret remarks to a room full of mega-wealthy donors insulted those
It's difficult to come up with something more stupid for a candidate to do than that.
Fellow blogger Infidel753 has a blogpost up that elaborates on this subject. Here's a teaser:
"Former Reagan speechwriter Peggy Noonan has downgraded her assessment of Romney's campaign from "incompetent" to "rolling calamity". She offered some advice, too, as other Republicans have, but the candidate insists everything is fine, and Ann "Dances with Horses" Romney waved off all those trying to throw buckets of cold water on this Hindenburg disaster with an imperative that may yet win immortality: "Stop it! This is hard!" No wonder Republicans are becoming disgusted and divided and even campaign insiders are in despair."
And finally, this:
"The attack on Mitt Romney was tough, even vicious.
As expressed at a now-infamous fundraiser in Florida, the Republican nominee's 'ideology, pitting the 'makers' against the 'takers,' offers nothing,' the writer said. 'No sympathy for our fellow citizens. No insight into our social challenge. No hope of change.'
'This approach involves a relentless reductionism,' the writer argued Thursday in the Washington Post. 'Human worth is reduced to economic production. Social problems are reduced to personal vices. Politics is reduced to class warfare on behalf of the upper class.'
It was perhaps the most thorough, full-throated denunciation of Romney this year -- and, of course, a conservative Republican wrote it.
The author, Michael Gerson, has impeccable right-wing bona fides: He worked at the Heritage Foundation, served Chuck Colson and Bob Dole, and was President George W. Bush's chief speechwriter."
Thursday, September 20, 2012
Obama's lead over McCain was 1.9 percent.
Today, his lead over Romney is 2.8 percent.
Other races and polls show:
Senate Forecast: What Has Gone Wrong for G.O.P. Candidates?
By NATE SILVER
"The trend in the presidential race has been difficult to discern lately. President Obama has very probably gained ground since the conventions, but it’s hard to say exactly how much, and how quickly his bounce is eroding.
There are no such ambiguities in the race for control of the Senate, however. Polls show key races shifting decisively toward the Democrats, with the Republican position deteriorating almost by the day.
Since we published our initial Senate forecast on Tuesday, Republicans have seen an additional decline in their standing in two major races.
Two polls of Virginia published on Wednesday gave the Democrat, the former Gov. Tim Kaine, leads of 4 and 7 percentage points over the Republican, the former Senator George Allen. The FiveThirtyEight forecast model now gives Mr. Kaine roughly a 75 percent chance of winning the seat on the strength of the new polls, up from about 60 percent in Tuesday’s forecast.
The other problematic state for Republicans is Wisconsin, where their candidate, the former Gov. Tommy Thompson, had once appeared to hold the advantage.
Mr. Thompson’s Democratic opponent, Representative Tammy Baldwin, had published an internal poll earlier this week showing her pulling into the lead. The FiveThirtyEight Senate and presidential forecasts do not use internal polls released directly by the campaigns, as they typically exaggerate their candidate’s standing."
These, of course, are only trends, and they don't say what will actually happen on election day. But they are trending toward President Obama, not Mr. Romney, and it's getting late in the campaign season.
We still have the debates to get through. Most experts say there aren't a whole lot of undecideds that the debates can bring to one side or the other.
It will be an interesting next 48 days.
Tuesday, September 18, 2012
What Mr. Romney didn't take into consideration when he made those cynical and wrong-headed statements is that many, many conservatives belong in the category of those who receive government assistance of one form or another and who don't pay many taxes--he insulted his own constiutency (see the map below). It isn't just Democrats who are helped in difficult times by the government. But it is instructive to see how people like Romney view their fellow Americans. None of what he stated is true. It's an idea that many conservatives promote in order to advance their class warfare and to promote the idea that there really are two Americas--the hard working, take-no-government-help Republican myth, and the lazy, entitled, non-tax-paying bums on welfare, Medicaid, Social Security, and food stamps Democratic myth.
Talk about a divisive and mean-spirited vision of America.
Mr. Romney's mythological America fails to take into account his own "mooching." We know by his own words that he pays a very small percentage of his income in federal taxes--how much of his income? We'll never know, since he refuses to give the American people that information. But we do know that only the enormously wealthy have the luxury of stashing their hundreds of millions of dollars in foreign banks, to avoid taxes, taxes that would be collected by the American government. When people like Mr. Romney get to avoid paying taxes in this way, other Americans have to make up for it--other Americans like you and me.
Mr. Romney also failed to note that his own company Bain & Company was the recipient of a federal government guaranteed loan from the FDIC, a very generous helping hand when it got into financial difficulties, and when he went off to save the Olympics--his shining example of competency--Mr. Romney received government assistance, so that he could have bragging rights as a fiscally responsible administrator when he ran for public office--thanks again to government assistance.
We'll never hear Mr. Romney use those examples of "mooching" off of government because in his privileged world, that assistance is good Republican use of government funds. It's much easier to incite envy and resentment against poor and middle-class Americans than to point out that the wealthy corporations and the enormously wealthy individuals like the Romneys have benefitted from government tax loopholes and subsidies, which we "moochers" have to make up for.
Here is Mr. Romney in his own cynical and divisive words, words that no person who hopes to be president of ALL the people should have ever uttered:
"There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what," Romney says in one clip. "All right -- there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent on government, who believe that, that they are victims, who believe that government has the responsibility to care for them. Who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing."
Romney seems to be suggesting that nearly half of Americans expect to have all their needs supplied by the government.
"[M]y job is not to worry about those people. I'll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives,"
The AP reports:
Republican Mitt Romney says a video clip in which he called nearly half of Americans "victims" was "not elegantly stated" and was "spoken off the cuff." But he says President Barack Obama's approach is "attractive to people who are not paying taxes."...
The Republican nominee did not disavow the comments but said they were made during a question-and-answer session. He said it was indicative of his campaign's effort to "focus on the people in the middle."
Many Americans don't pay federal income taxes, in part, because of deductions like the child tax credit that have been championed by conservatives and progressives alike. Almost all of the "47 percent" do pay other federal taxes in the form of Social Security and Medicare payroll deductions and gas levies, as well as a variety of state and local sales and property taxes that aren't dependent on income.
"Let's look at who the people are who actually pay no income tax. Romney's statements are a little unclear, but it appears that the 47 percent figure represents all of those who pay no income tax, rather than the Democratic base. His problem is that those people are disproportionately in red states -- that is, states that tend to vote Republican": --The Atlantic
(Mr. Romney insulted his own constituents, the red staters, in his sweeping generalization about non-tax-paying moochers. As you can see from this map, the conservative red states are the non-payers, not the generally Democratic voting blue states.)
From David Brooks of the NYTimes:
"In 1960, government transfers to individuals totaled $24 billion. By 2010, that total was 100 times as large. Even after adjusting for inflation, entitlement transfers to individuals have grown by more than 700 percent over the last 50 years.
This spending surge, Eberstadt notes, has increased faster under Republican administrations than Democratic ones.
Romney, who criticizes President Obama for dividing the nation, divided the nation into two groups: the makers and the moochers. Forty-seven percent of the country, he said, are people “who are dependent upon government, who believe they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to take care of them, who believe they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you name it.”
This comment suggests a few things. First, it suggests that he really doesn’t know much about the country he inhabits. Who are these freeloaders? Is it the Iraq war veteran who goes to the V.A.? Is it the student getting a loan to go to college? Is it the retiree on Social Security or Medicare? [...]
Personally, I think he’s a kind, decent man who says stupid things because he is pretending to be something he is not — some sort of cartoonish government-hater. But it scarcely matters. He’s running a depressingly inept presidential campaign. Mr. Romney, your entitlement reform ideas are essential, but when will the incompetence stop?"
Mr. Romney, you can't win a presidential election by insulting half of the voting public.
Sunday, September 16, 2012
From the RNC convention in Tampa to the horrific events of the past week, it's pretty evident that conservatives have a very large enthusiasm gap where it concerns their candidate Mitt Romney.
They're just not that into him.
At the convention in Tampa, the keynote speaker, Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, took a very long and telling 17 minutes to even mention Romney's name. Astonishing. And what should have been a rousing, rolicking lead-in to Romney's acceptance speech turned into a bizarre, disjointed talk by a clearly confused and dithering Clint Eastwood, who proceeded to argue with an empty chair. It's been a jerky and painful downhill ride since then for candidate Romney, with a couple of stops along the way at harsh reality. The polls following the end of the RNC convention verified how awful it was. Romney got no bounce. Nada. Niente. Goose egg. And President Obama has widened his leads in several key states.
Then came the tragic events of the past week where Mittens could have shown his creds as a statesman and leader. Instead, he ran with a slanderous statement that accused the president of the United States of siding with the murderers of the US consulate victims [an accusation of treason against the US president], an unprecedented low in slimey mudslinging during a national crisis by the nominal leader of the opposition party. Even his own colleagues in the GOP had nothing kind to say about his incredibly misguided and amateurish reaction to a very volatile and dangerous situation. The ususal empty-headed loud mouths (Limbaugh and Palin) were the only ones, except for one or two other banana heads, who thought Romney's actions in this terrible drama were "presidential." The rest of the civilized world jeered at that preposterous assessment.
After all of Romney's unforced errors, I wondered about the people who support him, especially those supporters who blog. I did a bit of research to discover how many blog posts his supporters on the conservative side of the aisle have written about the man they so desperately want to capture the White House and send the hated Commie Marxist Usurper Hawaiian Devil Baby back to Kenya.
I looked at four conservative blogs--two run by males and two run by females and was surprised to find that all four of them, like the rest of conservadom, are just not that into Mr. Romney. Their raison d'etre is, of course, bashing President Obama, and they've posted far, far more on him than the guy they hope will rescue us from Obamacare and replace it with the parts of Romneycare that Romney so loves.
Here's what I found:
At the blog Western Hero: Two blogposts on Romney since June 1.
At the blog Jo Joe Politico*: Two blogposts on Mr. Romney since June 1, one of which was about a Romney gaffe, and the other was about the Romney/Ryan ticket.
*NOTE: The above-mentioned conservative blogger always appends to President Obama's name the designation, "The Child President" every time he refers to Mr. Obama. Apparently, the guy who runs this blog hasn't the stones to actually call the president "boy," since that is exactly what he implies with this back-door racial slur.
At the blog My Daily Trek: One post on Mr. Romney since June 1
At the blog Always on Watch: One post on Mr. Romney since June 1, and one post on a Romney rally in Virginia which mainly criticized the rally's production values, nothing about Romney himself, except this: "Romney made several excellent statements, many of which all of us have heard before. However no 'magic in the air.'"
So the count is really six posts talking about Mitt Romney on these four conservative blogs since June 1 of this campaign season.
(I did a count of my own blog since June 1 and came up with 11 blog posts on my candidate, President Obama, and that's just ONE blog.)
This is a small snapshot of the conservatives' enthusiasm gap beleaguering Mr. Romney's campaign. It's not meant to be scientific, just a little insight into why he's not doing as well as people on the right hoped he would.
They're just not that into him.
Adding to this losing scenario is this piece in Politico by Jonathan Riehl:
"This week we witnessed further evidence of the complete breakdown of the modern conservative movement, and it is Republicans who are speaking out on this even more than Democrats. Attempts by Romney party-liners to blame this criticism on the left are just plain phony. Laura Ingraham, whose pedigree includes a Supreme Court clerkship under Justice Clarence Thomas, put it most succinctly: If the best we can do is Mitt Romney and his bumbling, intellectually bereft campaign, it may be time to shut the Party down.
Here at POLITICO, Joe Scarborough, a more centrist GOP voice, blasted away at Romney's utter vapidness and expressed the frustration of many GOPers who just seem to be going along. Old school Reaganites from Peggy Noonan to Dan Coats also got into the act. Even the neoconservative intellectual leader Bill Kristol, who did much to justify the Iraq war boondoggle, tells us that Mitt Romney is failing, proving no more true to Kristol's New American Century ideology than he is to anyone other; say what you may about him, Kristol, like his father, is consistent.
The overall implication from these voices on the right is clear: Romney is an an empty suit, as frightening to real ideologues on the right like Kristol and Ingraham as he is to progressives on the left. Because no one, left or right, knows what he really believes."
Parsley's Pics has a post up on this subject and why Romney's fellow candidates in 2008 couldn't stand him either:
"But Romney's efforts to get right with the right landed him in trouble. For most of his life, he had been a middle-of-the-road, pro-business, pragmatist, unequivocally pro-choice, moderate on tax cuts and immigration. Running against Ted Kennedy for the Senate in 1994, he pledged that he'd do more for gay rights than his opponent, and declared, "I don't line up with the NRA" on gun control. By 2008, Romney had reversed himself on all of this, which quickly gave rise to charges of hypocrisy and opportunism. Even before he announced his candidacy, a YouTube video [see below] began making the rounds that captured him firmly stating his liberalish social views, comically juxtaposing them with his newly adopted arch-conservative stances. From then on, the flip-flopper label was firmly affixed to Mitt's forehead.
Unlike Giuliani, Romney had no reticence about slashing at his rivals. But the perception of him as a man without convictions made him a less-than-effective delivery system for policy contrasts. The combination of the vitriol of his attacks and his corelessness explained the antipathy the other candidates had toward him. McCain routinely called Romney an "asshole" and a "fucking phony." Giuliani opined, "That guy will say anything." Huckabee complained, "I don't think Romney has a soul." (L. Parsley's emphasis)
Friday, September 14, 2012
This is from Jim Hoft of some rightwing blog whose name I refuse to repeat here and who has been given the distinguished title of "The Stupidest Man on the Internet:"
The dishonesty surrounding that statement is not so much outrageous as comical, since no one with any functioning brain cells would believe such slander. President Obama called Libyan President Mohammed Magarief to “thank him for the cooperation the U.S. has received from the Libyan government in responding to the attacks on the U.S. Consulate.” In fact, Libyan authorities have already arrested some suspects. But leave it to the idiot Hoft to twist, deceive, and lie about the truth. This tactic should not surprise anyone, because lots of people on the right employ it as a way to hit back against a reality they cannot bear to face.
Very few readers of the idiot Hoft's blog will bother to check to see if what he wrote has any relationship to the truth--his fans, afterall, are the low-information sect of the far right.
Just recently a poll was taken in Ohio asking Republicans whom do they believe was responsible for the capture and killing of Osama bin Laden:
"According to a PPP poll of likely Ohio voters, 15 percent of Republicans in Ohio think Romney is “more responsible” for bin Laden’s death than Obama, while 47 percent of Republicans are “not sure” whether Obama or Romney deserves more of the credit.
Six percent of the overall respondents gave Romney credit where credit is not at all due. Thirty-one percent of them weren’t sure whether the president or the candidate deserves more credit." --Salon
And it's a good bet their ignorance comes from listening to Rush Limbaugh, FAUX NOOZ, or reading idiot bloggers like Jim Hoft and accepting the rot they promote day after day.
When the US embassy was attacked and Americans killed, the first reaction of the man who is the GOP's presidential nominee was to slander the president of the United States by giving false statements about the president and the events, the second reaction on some rightwing blogs was to double down on those false statements and fail to see what is in front of their noses--Willard Romney is a bumbling neophyte when it comes to foreign policy, and he is a shameless pandering pol who'll say anything anywhere for anyone's vote--with a smirk on his face.
And finally, here in the "Silly Season" comes a Romney spokesperson who claims that had Romney been president, the Arab world would have had more respect for the United States and would have NEVER attacked our embassies:
"A top foreign policy aide to Mitt Romney suggested Thursday that the deadly attack on the U.S. consulate in Libya that killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens would never have happened if Romney were president. There wouldn’t even be anti-American protests in the Middle East if Romney were in charge, the aide said.
'There’s a pretty compelling story that if you had a President Romney, you’d be in a different situation,' Romney adviser Richard Williamson told the Washington Post...
'In Egypt and Libya and Yemen, again demonstrations — the respect for America has gone down, there’s not a sense of American resolve and we can’t even protect sovereign American property,' he said. " --TalkingPointsMemo
I wouldn't go there if I were you, Mr. Top Foreign Policy Aide, lest Americans think about the "respect" shown to America on September 11, 2001, who was president of the United States and which party he belonged to.
This just in:
Claims that President Obama disarmed embassy Marines turns out to be another cowardly wingnut lie
Wednesday, September 12, 2012
This is how an amateur who knows nothing about diplomacy or foreign policy handles it:
"Romney campaign drew fire on Wednesday morning for issuing a blistering statement condemning the American embassy in Egypt for speaking against an incendiary anti-Muslim film, even though the embassy made the statement before any attacks had taken place. NBC's Chuck Todd, for instance, called the statement 'irresponsible' and a 'bad mistake.'
@davidgregory David Gregory Romney appears to have launched a political attack even before facts of embassy violence were known. Then uses day to issue vague FP vision
CNN Peter Hamby Clinton issued statement condemning violence at 10pm EST Tues night. Yet Romney camp still went ahead w/ claim O "sympathizes" w/ attackers
"Other reporters were similarly baffled. "The Romney campaign's politicization of the embassy attacks is even worse than I expected," Foreign Policy writer Blake Hounshell tweeted.
Speaking on Fox News, Peggy Noonan was also blunt. "I don't feel that Mr. Romney has been doing himself any favors in the past few hours," she said. “Sometimes when really bad things happen, when hot things happen, cool words or no words is the way to go.”
When even Mark Halperin can’t find a good angle for Romney’s stunt, it’s gotta be bad.
Unless the Romney campaign has gamed this crisis out in some manner completely invisible to the Gang of 500, his doubling down on criticism of the President for the statement coming out of Cairo is likely to be seen as one of the most craven and ill-advised tactical moves in this entire campaign.h/t Andrew Sullivan's blog; HuffPost
Before he knew the details of what happened or the timeline of the tragedy, candidate Romney shot off his mouth in what is being seen as a hugely embarrassing and irresponsible mistake by the man who wants to be president.
Josh Marshall of Talking Points Memo:
"Some moments show you when a candidate is ready or not to become President of the United States. I suspect last night will become one of those moments for Mitt Romney. The verdict will not be positive.
As I noted last night, when the full scale of the events in Cairo and Benghazi remained unknown, the Romney campaign let fly a crude political attack both blaming the Obama administration for the attacks and suggesting that the President actually sympathized with them."
From The Hill:
"This would be a great day for Mitt Romney to stop playing partisan politics on matters he has no experience in, and knows nothing about. There is a tragedy this morning for American diplomats in the Middle East. In a situation that is inflamed and unstable, the ill-chosen words of the inexperienced and amateurish Romney, who is already opining on the television news about real-time tragedy in the Middle East, could cause real harm to American diplomats, American troops and American security.
The situation in the Middle East is volatile. These are matters that Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan know nothing about. Romney is one of the least qualified commander-in-chief candidates in the modern history of presidential nominees. Ryan is one of the least qualified commander-in-chief candidates in the modern history of vice presidential nominees. The Romney-Ryan ticket is the least qualified ticket, on matters of military security and foreign policy, in the modern history of American presidential campaigns."
Foreign Policy Hands Voice Disbelief At Romney Cairo Statement
Romney's Incendiary Response to US Embassy Deaths in Libya Proves Him Incapable of Being Commander in Chief
MARK KARLIN, EDITOR OF BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT
What's important to remember here, beyond Romney's flame throwing opportunism, is that the statement Romney claims Obama apologized in (it was actually a statement from the US embassy in Egypt) -- which he didn't -- occurred before news of the killings were received by the White House. Yet, when questioned Wednesday morning by journalists about the timing of the original Obama statement (which was trying to cool things down, we remind you), Romney basically said that it didn't matter.
This is consistent with the recent statement of a Romney campaign aide who said that facts wouldn't get in the way of the campaign (paraphrased).
Steve Kornacki of Salon
Mitt Romney showed the American people, once again, that he would rather score political points than be accurate or wait to see what the facts are behind a tragedy. He got out in front of this story, that's for sure, and it's going to bite him in his inexperienced foreign policy ass. What a fumbling, stumbling amateur.
Tuesday, September 11, 2012
In Tribute to Kevin M. McCarthy
42 years old. Residence: Fairfield, Conn.
Died in World Trade Center
Monday, September 10, 2012
Great hug, great photo! Mr. Obama looks like he had a great time.
Kudos to the pizza man, Scott Van Duzer. The US president visited his business, and Van Duzer behaved with good humor, respect, and enthusiasm.
vis Andrew Sullivan's blog:
And about the big moment itself?
Everyone thinks it was scripted. Everyone thinks I asked the Secret Service. I didn’t ask the Secret Service anything. I didn’t know what I was going to do. You know what I mean? He just came in, and the way he came in was so genuine and warm. He came over to me like he had known me for 25 years. He said, "Where’s Scott?" He opened the door and I was standing right there. He gave me a big high five, and started talking about my biceps and muscles. He said, "If I eat your pizza, can I get some muscles like that?" We were just fooling around. He gave me this pat on the shoulder, and that’s when the big hug happened.
But the haters couldn't let a happy moment of good fun go without inserting their bile and rancor into it.
What small-minded, vile little insects. All of them.
Sunday, September 9, 2012
I thought that once the pollsters' reports on bumps and grinds from the conventions were reported, it would happen.
I saw the deluge coming when I read these reports.
The chart below shows why the level of invective by the opposition is rising (via Andrew Sullivan's blog).
"What does this mean for the race? It's still too early, but it's beginning to look as if the RNC may have brought down the prospects of the Republican nominee. Here's Gallup's tracking poll of the race in August through to today:"
And wow! was I correct.
This is one example:
"I frankly resent anyone's ever giving Bill Clinton credit for doing anything well.
I instinctively despised him the moment he first appeared in the scene -- long before he ran for president. I could see him for the cheap, baseborn, huckster with a glib line of patter that he was -- and remains.
I took one look at him, hs doughy, pasty-white physique, and his squinty, shifty eyes, and listened to his low-class, mush-mouthed Arkansas cracker drawl, and saw TRAILER TRASH -- SNAKE OIL SALESMAN -- CHARLATAN...
That he continues to receive ADULATION and is (so we are told!) more popular than ever, speaks volumes about the DEGENERATE, UNDESERVING STATE of the AMERICAN ELECTORATE.
Shame on ANYONE who let's this bogus, self-indulgent, virulently immoral excuse for a human being -- an unpunished RAPIST for Christ's sake! -- SEDUCE him into APPLAUDING this MOUNTEBANK."
The level of spittle-flecking hysteria in rightwing blogistan has gone through the roof. It's not just your average ugly, it's revoltingly ugly, mean-spirited, and seething with resentment and rage. Whew.
What we heard from the RNC convention's key note speaker, Governor Chris Christie, was emblematic of a party gone postal over the fact that Mr. Romney has not out-shone and out-polled the man they virulently detest and want to crush in this election. This campaign is not the walk in the government-supported national park they hoped it would be.
We still have the debates to get through, which could change the political landscape a bit, but I don't think they will have a huge impact. From what I've read, there are very, very few undecideds out there for Mr. Romney to influence.
If I could, I'd send you all umbrellas to protect you from all that rage-filled spittle raining down from the GOP's angry and stormy clouds.