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2012: An Election To Lose

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The election chatter among political pundits these days centers on their belief that, come 2012, the White House is Obama’s to lose. These opinions are hardly surprising. Elections with an incumbent running are typically all about the officeholder’s performance. Opponents are often bystanders, their fortunes rising or failing on how voters feel about the state of their lives during the incumbent’s term. So, according to the experts, Republicans in 2012 can run the elephant and hardly anyone will notice because the attention spotlight is focused on Obama.

Under that theory, if the election were held today, the elephant would win because the state of our economy makes most of us very cranky. And, according to the prevailing wisdom, people vote their wallets first and foremost. How bad is it? In the first quarter of this year, GDP fell to an anemic 1.8 percent from 3.1 percent in the previous quarter. Unemployment in April rose again to 9 percent, while the number of people who gave up looking or settled for part-time work climbed to 15.9 percent. The housing market remains unstable. The huge government debt hangs like Damocles’ sword over everything.

Of course, today is not November 6, 2012 and things can change between now and then. But, by enough? Probably not. Twenty eight months into Obama’s presidency, we’re still wallowing deep in the doldrums caused by the recession. The recovery, to the extent it exists, is uneven. Robust is not a word on anyone’s lips, not even Obama’s. The remedies he has tried since January 2009 have not turned things around as he promised they would. In fact, things got worse than he claimed they would ever get. What he’s likely to do in the next 18 months has virtually no chance of making a significant improvement for a couple of reasons. It’s obvious by now that he doesn’t know how to jump-start a capitalist economy. And his record shows that even his instincts are wrong.

What we can expect to get from him is a lot of pious rhetoric, and taunting and mocking, of course. But, what we won’t get is a detailed plan for a return to economic prosperity. He never comes up with the specifics of anything. All he seems to do is hand-wave his way through speeches loaded with emotional trigger words and pointless platitudes. Trying to analyze that for anything substantive is like catching grains of sand pouring through your fingers. Try as hard as you might, you’re not going to come up with anything solid.

The economy is much more likely to show signs of a real recovery before November 2012 if Obama gets out of the way. He just has to stop trying to raise killer taxes and over-regulate businesses. Give them breathing room and see what they can do. At least then, all we’d have to contend with is his taking credit for the efforts of others. But, even if a sustained upturn begins later this year or next, is it enough to get Obama re-elected? I don’t think so. He turns too many people off with his leading-from-behind style, his government-can’t-get-big-enough expansion and his class warfare battle strategy.

Obama’s a politician, not a leader. He’d rather take a seat on the sidelines, ridiculing and jeering, than take the initiative in charting a course through hard times. He plays waiting games, baiting others to offer detailed solutions so he can attack them based on the current political wind speed and direction. Rather than facing up to difficult choices, he spews counterproductive rhetoric that divides when unity is sorely needed. Our president simply is not up to the commander-in-chief task.

His years of day in and day out failings are difficult to escape. Voters are unlikely to forget the difference between the promise of Obama in 2008 and the reality of his performance by 2012. Even now good feelings about him are less enthusiastic and fade faster than those enjoyed by other White House occupants. In the latest example, the bounce he got from bin Laden’s assassination earlier this month has evaporated. This week his Rasmussen Reports Presidential Approval Index hit minus ten.

It is true that people vote their wallets. In this case, they can’t afford more of what Obama has been trying to sell. Rejecting his pitch is something to vote for. That, and the large gray circus animal.

See you on the left side.

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About Sidney and Riley

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    People would not know a “a detailed plan for a return to economic prosperity” if they tripped on it. Nor do they care. That the GOP created our economic problems is the elephant. It cannot sell its budget and people don’t care about that either.

    We, the people, care about jobs to fill our lives and our wallets. The Republican “Pledge to America” mentions jobs and that’s it. So far, we have nothing from the elephant party to justify electing a Republican administration.

    Tommy

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Sidney –

    In other words, you think that those who drove our economy into the ditch are the only ones who can get us out of the ditch. Do you remember, by any chance, the surplus that Clinton handed over to Bush in January 2001? Did you know that at that time we were on track to pay off the ENTIRE national debt by 2012? What happened? [Image deleted as it is not allowed by Blogcritics. Comments Editor]

  • Leroy

    This article is just a personal attack on Obama, not a serious analysis of the electoral situation. I don’t know who this left-brained Sidney is, but they show no analytical skills whatsoever.

    Pleading that “…if Obama gets out of the way. He just has to stop trying to raise killer taxes and over-regulate businesses. Give them breathing room and see what they can do.” is quite foolish since Obama has only proposed that the TEMPORARY Bush 2001 taxe cuts partly lapse and regulation has never been more slack. And “breathing room”? US Business is sitting on $2trillion in retained earnings and the banks have another $2trillion and with all that ‘breathing room’ they’ve done NOTHING! It would be foolish to reduce business taxes further or hand out more subsidies as the money would just go dormant and further damage our demand starved economy! If they can’t figure out how to invest the $2trillion they have how could they do anything with more of the citizens money?

    With innovation and investment frozen in our biggest corporations and banks one is driven inexorably to the conclusion that the government must not only become a large scale Employer (Of Last Resort) but also a large developer and investor (Of Last resort), probably in future technology, like alternative fuel and future manufacturing. Our stagnant and paralyzed private industrial sector seems unable and unwilling to do it.

    Your “analyst” should read and study and learn that our financial problems are due to Demand drought, not excess debt.

    And so far the Republicans have not shown one single thing that would convince anyone to vote for them. Not an attractive candidate and no economic policy. For example, they still haven’t introduced a Jobs Bill in the House.

  • zingzing

    how do you do that, glenn? i love that bush’s tax cuts run like a river of shit.

  • Baronius

    S&R – Do you really think that the President turns off too many people, or just really turns off the people who weren’t going to vote for him anyway? You mention his style and his spending. I’d bet that his style hasn’t alienated that many voters, when it comes time to cast a ballot in 2012. His spending has alienated the Tea Party, some of whose members may have supported Obama in 2008, but other than that percentage I don’t think he’s turned off many of his old supporters at all.

  • http://www.RoseDigitalMarketing.com Christopher Rose

    Unfortunately, one of the many things Blogcritics doesn’t do is allow the posting of images in comments, so please don’t follow Glenn’s well intentioned but uninformed example.

    Christopher Rose
    Blogcritics Comments Editor

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    Unfortunately, one of the many things Blogcritics doesn’t do is allow the posting of images in comments

    Um, Chris, did you perchance miss the giant graph in comment #2?

  • Leroy

    The left 5% hates Obama because he didn’t do what they thought they had commanded him to do, and the right 5% hates Obama because he’s dusky. So that just leaves 90% to vote for him. Too bad.

  • Costello

    What’s the point in pretending to be two dogs? And why should anyone trust their opinion about politics?

  • Baronius

    Yeah, Leroy, because the right 5% was going to support his policies if he were white.

    That’s stupid.

  • Baronius

    You know, reading over my last comment, I’m worried that I was too ambiguous. What I meant to say was that Leroy’s comment was stupid. I hope that came across. It’s important to me that no one reads my comment and thinks, “I wonder if Baronius thought that Leroy’s comment was anything other than stupid”, because that’s not the message I was trying to go for; quite the contrary, in fact.

    I hope that clears things up.

  • http://cinemasentries.com El Bicho

    what’s wrong with two dogs writing? we’ve had quite a few donkeys (and I don’t mean Democrats)

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/irene-athena/ Irene Athena

    All good dogs go to heaven, but I did not like the article on waterboarding in your blog, Sidney and Riley.

    The comics in your blog are EXTREMELY cute, and I like some of the other articles.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/irene-athena/ Irene Athena

    .That link I posted in #12 is not from your blog. Riley will look at it, and then in the mirror again, and say, “I don’t think that’s us, Sidney, but maybe it could be one day.”

  • Glenn Contrarian

    I wonder if Sidney and/or Riley had a chance to see the chart…for I’d love to hear their excuses about it.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Chris –

    I understand no images in comments – but are images in articles allowed?

  • http://www.RoseDigitalMarketing.com Christopher Rose

    Glenn, personally, I don’t understand no images in comments, but them’s the rules.

    As to articles, yes, images are welcomed and, indeed, encouraged. Thought you might have noticed that, as there is an image in this very article!

  • http://mekancatherine.blogspot.com/ Catherine

    Answer me these questions three,
    And then open your eyes will be:

    1. What was the amount of national debt when Bush took over from Clinton as opposed from when Obama took over from Bush?

    2. What was the number of wars America was involved in when Bush took over from Clinton and when Obama took over from Bush?

    3. What was the value of your home in 2000 as opposed to 2008?

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Thanks, Chris.

    And for Catherine – what do you think the chances are that Sidney will actually reply to what you pointed out?

  • Leroy

    Shhh. Sidney is left-brained and responding to others is right-brained.

  • Clavos

    There are corollary questions to Catherin’s in number #18;

    1. What was the amount of national debt when Obama took over from Bush and wat is it today?

    2. What was the number of wars America was involved in when Obama took over from Bush and what is it today?

    3. In this one, Catherine has a point. I will never forget the day George W. Bush came to my house and personally slashed its value by half. Obama has never been by; he just has his minions in DC cut it every week.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    So easily answered, huh?

    1. What was the amount of national debt when Obama took over from Bush and wat is it today?

    I refer you to this chart which shows CLEARLY why we have such a huge deficit…but be sure to ignore it now, Clavos!

    2. What was the number of wars America was involved in when Obama took over from Bush and what is it today?

    For one thing, unlike the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, America is NOT taking the lead in Libya, are we? How many ground troops have we sent in? How many troops have we lost? Furthermore, did we invade Libya on false pretenses? No…but Bush invaded Iraq on false pretenses and you know it! That’s the real pity – you want SO badly to castigate Obama for anything you can think of, but Bush committed an even bigger crime than the Gulf of Tonkin incident (although Vietnam turned out to be a significantly bigger tragedy)…and are you raising hell about that? HELL NO YOU AREN’T! If you’re SO offended by our taking a supporting – repeat, supporting – role in Libya, why aren’t you out marching in the streets calling for Dubya’s head because of the thousands of Americans and tens of thousands of Iraqi men, women, and children who are dead because of his warmongering?

    Pointing out a mote in your enemy’s eye while ignoring the log in the eye of your friend standing next to him is called hypocrisy, Clavos. If you are offended by our supporting role in Libya, can you not show your even-handedness by agreeing that what Bush did was a major war crime and that he should be standing in front of the Hague?

    And on that note, I just wonder what the Republicans would be saying if it was Obama who approved of waterboarding? You’d see a revolt – an honest-to-goodness revolt – and rightly so…but since it was a REPUBLICAN who approved torture, well, THAT means it’s okay….

    3. In this one, Catherine has a point. I will never forget the day George W. Bush came to my house and personally slashed its value by half. Obama has never been by; he just has his minions in DC cut it every week.

    Oh, I see – because Obama didn’t wave a magic wand and make the Great Recession go away in a day or so, he’s the REAL reason we have any economic problems at all.

    Clavos, do you really, truly think that an worldwide almost-depression eight years in the making (thirty, actually) is going to be completely fixed in two years…especially when the president is even now having to fight with the very people who dragged us into that almost-depression, who think that THEY are the ones who have the real answers of how to fix our economy? Do you really? Who here is being truly Pollyannish?

  • Clavos

    I refer you to this chart which shows CLEARLY why we have such a huge deficit…but be sure to ignore it now, Clavos!

    The chart is real purty, Glenn, no doubt about that. Unfortunately, it was created from data supplied by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a well known progressive (read liberal) think tank, so it doesn’t impress me, I’m not interested in furthering progressive ideas and policies — I’m working against those policies and ideas. So I’m not merely ignoring it, Glenn, I’m rejecting it, on the basis of its bias.

    Cute colors, though. Real purty.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    NO, the data, sir, is from the CBO, and analyzed by the CBPP, as is clearly stated on the chart.

    Furthermore, here’s an article by Mark Thoma, Professor of Economics Department of Economics, University of Oregon. It would seem that he’s got a bit more experience with such data and charts than you and me put together…

    …and he seems to accept the CBPP chart and the data from the CBO upon which it was based. In fact, it’s a chart that extends back to 2001, unlike the earlier chart to which I linked.

    But then I have to remember that no matter how eminently-qualified an individual may be, if he says something that disagrees with your political dogma, or if he’s at all associated with a (gasp!) liberal, then he’s automatically wrong.

  • Cannonshop

    hey, Tommy…is that a “Five Year Plan”?

  • Cannonshop

    Come to think of it…if “Stimulus is good”, then the huge amount being spent (and the huge number of people being employed as a result) in the Middle East (Iraq, Afghanistan, and now Libya) should be a HUGE stimulator of the economy per the amounts Glenn keeps trotting out (which thread had that nifty graph, Glenn?)

    I mean, someone’s gotta be picking up paycheques for all the boots, uniform items, food, ammunition, guns, trucks, armoured trucks, Humvees, spare parts, tyres, etc. etc. etc. ad Nauseum…

    yet…

    nada. Just like the wealth-transfer to Wall Street (version 2.0, Bush’s plan cranked by Obama to “11”), I’m not seeing it.

  • http://mekancatherine.blogspot.com/ Catherine

    Clavos –
    This is one of the biggest problems in our country that people who are “conservative” think: conservative =good, liberal = bad OR people who are “liberal” think: liberal = good, and conservative = bad.

    But most of these issues being debated are not black and white, they are so many different shades of gray. If any person who wanted to actually implement policies that helped the country rather than fulfill some predetermined ideology, well, that person probably wouldn’t be very effective in helping anyone.

    I would never claim to say that everything Obama, Clinton, or any other Democratic president did was amazing. I don’t think anyone would be expecting you to say “Yeah Obama! He’s the man!” if you were conservative. But I think it is a bit unrealistic to blame the man for every bad thing going on in America today – that would not only deny the fact that Bush did some truly horrendous things but also that we as Americans bear no responsibility for the state of our economy/society.

    Personally, I see no reason to belittle others for their opinions to have an honest debate about serious issues. Or to deny solid facts and statistics.

    Also, you can’t expect anyone to listen to you blame Obama for the problems of America when in your “answer” to my questions, you so vehemently deny that Bush had anything to do with the housing bubbles and its inevitable pop. Because if you’re saying that president’s have no effect on the economy in your answer to question 3, then you’re saying Obama is not to blame for any of the current economic problems.

  • http://mekancatherine.blogspot.com/ Catherine

    Oh and I never commented on the article itself.

    Obama isn’t going to lose for any of the reasons you stated, he’s going to win because the Republicans haven’t put up any candidate that has a serious chance of beating a Democratic candidate as awful as John Kerry, much less Obama.

  • Baronius

    Catherine – “Solid facts and statistics” is a pretty bold claim. There’s still plenty of room to debate them and their meaning. If I recall correctly, the CBPP numbers showed the Bush tax cuts to account for 1/4 of the deficit. But those numbers assume that lower tax rates have no positive effect on the economy. How valid is that assumption? If you set up the chart differently, you could demonstrate that Medicare and Medicaid spending account for about half the deficit. Would that be a fair demonstration?

    For another example, when you note that the debt increased under Bush, it’s reasonable for Clavos to point out that the debt has increased at three times the rate under Obama. I don’t think that Clavos blames every problem on our current president, any more than you blame Bush for everything – but every criticism that each of you made in your “three questions” comments was directed at that particular president. How is it fair to blame Clavos for doing exactly what you did?

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Um, Baronius –

    Check out the chart that I linked to – the one based on CBO data that Clavos doesn’t like because a liberal organization put the data into chart form – and see who CONTINUES to be the cause of the great majority of our deficit.

    It’s as if y’all think that any effect of what Bush did stopped suddenly in January 2009…but that’s not the case. If you’ll look at the chart, it’s easy to see that what Bush did still accounts for the great majority of our deficit! Obama tried to fix it by allowing the tax cuts to sunset…but your guys wouldn’t let him.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    Much of the stimulus was limited to one or two fiscal years of spending, so the extremely high deficits of this year will decrease immediately with next year’s budget, without doing anything. Furthermore, if the Bush tax cuts are allowed to lapse, the deficit will decrease even more.

    So maybe that’s the answer: Congress shouldn’t even pretend to do anything. Then the deficit will begin to go down.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    Taxes and stimulus spending are frequently used as the source of quick gotchas, to score points, on this and other Internet shouting-match sites.

    Here’s my two cents: Moderate tax increases and decreases by themselves have no cause-and-effect correlation with economic growth. You can find counter-examples for every example.

    And stimulus spending [I’ve said this before] is not a ‘magic wand’ that turns a depressed economy around. It helps the economy to function while the economy heals itself.

    In 2009-10, neither individuals nor businesses were spending, so for the government to step in and promote activity by spending made sense.

    Most economists [not just ‘liberals’] agree that this spending prevented a recession from becoming a depression.

    The right-wingers on here won’t accept any evidence that doesn’t agree with their ideology. Tunnel vision, cast in concrete.

  • Cannonshop

    #32 actually Handy, a change of spelling did that-recession doesn’t sound as scary as depression, but the results are largely the SAME.

  • Clavos

    NO, the data, sir, is from the CBO, and analyzed by the CBPP (emphasis added)

    As my stats prof taught us the first day of 101, “Figures don’t lie, but liars figure.”

    And as Mr. Clemens was wont to say,

    “There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics.”

    Thank you for making it easy. I rest my case.

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    Sidney and Riley. Sidney Riley, the ace of spies, was a real person. He played a prominent role in what became the British secret service and was killed by the order of Josef Stalin, after the Bolshevik revolution.

    Tommy Mack

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    Cannon, if you ever post a comment that actually demonstrates any knowledge whatsoever of what you are bloviating about, I will be the first to congratulate you. In the meantime, please educate yourself at least a little.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    ah – because some liars figure, therefore the CBPP must be lying…regardless of your total lack of proof that they’re lying, and the existence of eminently-qualified people who DO accept the CBPP chart. The CBPP is lying because…? Oh – because You Just Know It!

    There seems to be a logical disconnect there….

    And what happened to that surplus that Clinton handed over to Bush?

  • Cannonshop

    #36 Instead of screeching about my grammar skills, why don’t you provide the uncontested, settled-science definitional difference between the terms “Recession” and “Depression”.

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    “Recession” has one less letter than “Depression” but occurs more frequently as a market correction. It’s in the Five-Year-Plan. There are also treatments for depression.

    Tommy

  • Leroy

    Clavos appears to be the type who can make trillion dollar decisions based on flippancies. Why would any serious person pay attention to him?

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Leroy –

    The reason I pay attention to Clavos is that he’s one of the few BC conservatives here who I believe is truly sincere. He truly doesn’t want other people to be miserable – he just wants to be free to believe as he does…never mind that his particular set of beliefs make some of us want to pull our hair out in frustration.

    I respect the guy. Sometimes I want to unleash the wealth of insults that I’ve learned over the years because he’s so doggone stubborn (of course I’m not, no, not at all), but I won’t. He’s a good man. Politically-wrongheaded and too cynical by half, but a good man nonetheless.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    “Recession” and “depression” were just shorthand: what the economists have said is that stimulus spending prevented worse job losses and GDP slides than we actually experienced. The only Depression most people refer to [the one in the 1930s] had unemployment more than twice as bad as the 2008-09 slump.

    The private sector started hiring back 13 months ago. 8 million jobs were lost; nearly 3 million have been restored. We’ve got a long way to go, but caricaturing and mischaracterizing the situation accomplishes nothing.

    I wasn’t referring to your grammar, but to your lack of interest in or respect for facts. You prefer blunt rhetoric, however distorted it may be, perhaps because you think that’s how political discussions are won and lost on the internet. Ugh.

  • Cannonshop

    #42 That’s right, Handy, both terms are shorthand, but the reason the “Great Depression” was so bad, wsa that it WAS so bad-afterward, the term itself carried so many connotations that a new term, “Recession” was invented. The 2006-2010 run was worse than most of the “depressions” that occurred before 1929. The verbal shorthand itself becomes a matter of choice, kind of like how terms like “tolerance” have accrued new meanings in our politically charged world.

    I will contest the assertion that the Stimulus packets even buffered a little bit-it is my belief that they EXTENDED the damage and the misery, where allowing the wall-street bankers and their fellow incompetents to actually FAIL might have resulted in more immediate pain, the recovery would have likely been quicker, and far more stable and lasting. The bail-outs did NOT remove the core problems that caused the crisis in the first place, and in my humble, honest opinion, likely rewarded the bad behaviours and bad actors that created the bubble, exploited the bubble, and eventually overloaded and collapsed the bubble-we saw this game before in the nineteen eighties iwth the S&L crisis (caused by CARTER deregulating Savings and Loans. CARTER, not Reagan, REAGAN wasn’t in office until January 20, 1981, the deregulation of the S&L’s occurred in 1979 amid double-digit interest rates and double-digit inflation rates, a condition known as “Stagflation” where economic growth was stagnant, but inflation was running amok.)

    Saying that Bush’s Stimulus, and Obama’s 30% increase in the National DEBT (not just that year’s deficit) softened the blow, you can use the same logic to claim that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan prevented an earlier eruption and also softened the blow.

    Which, if you’re familiar with history, was the position of several of LBJ’s advisors regarding our involvement in Southeast Asia-“Guns and butter economics”.

    Now, personally, I don’t buy that, but I’ve actually read enough to understand the hypotheticals- go into a war you don’t care about the outcome of, you have men employed as soldiers to take them out of the general labor pool of job-seekers, you have people employed making uniforms, guns, bandages, packaging food (and growing/raising it), truck and vehicle companies making vehicles, helicopter plants making helicopters, stevedores, merchant seamen, and civilian aircrew and corporations delivering the goods to the front, plus everyone that relies on those people’s business getting money.

    in short, a government subsidized industry with little risk of having too many goods lowering the price, since most of the goods produced are disposeable, and since you don’t really care about the outcome so long as the war can continue, you don’t have to put forth the expensive, low-returns effort to actually win it, either diplomatically, or militarily.

    And when this war peters out…well, hey, look-Arab Spring! we can have a whole new one ready to go by the time the existing one is used up!

    The model fits with the half-assed version of Keynes that is popular in Dee-Cee among the shallow stuffed shirts we elect to office, as well as the equally shallow crooks THEY appoint in the upper levels of the civil service.

    Problem being, of course, it’s not a sustainable model, something that appears to be ignored generation after generation.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    Again, lots of assertions, nothing to back them except more rhetoric.

  • Cannonshop

    #44 Handy, a lot of the ‘supporting’ evidence from your side relies on unsupportable assumptions-such as the effect the Stimulus had vs. the economic effects of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Both are huge spending items (the Stim and the Wars), but the wars we can identify in rough terms how many people are directly being employed, and how many goods and services are being paid for to support them in the private sector.

    Flip side, yeah, eight million jobs went away, and three million APPEAR to be added in the private sector…but how many of those hires come from contracts related to supporting Stimulus items, how many of them would have existed without it, and how many would exist regardless? Your figures can’t answer that, so you’re just using cherry-picked data to support your own empty rhetoric.

    Some of which (Opposition to the wars, while supporting “Stimulus”) is mutually contradictory since the logic for the first and the logic of the second conflict.

    “Spending bad/Spending good” you need to pick ONE of those, you can’t have it both ways.

    In short, handy, at least MY rhetoric is consistent.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    Consistently based on rhetoric and point-scoring, and very unconnected to facts or reasoning. Read more, spout off less. It really does help.

  • Leroy

    45-cannon: your analysis and reasoning are very shallow. Not all spending has the same effects on the economy. You really need to read more and educate yourself. Or take some post-grad coursework.

  • http://heloise8.wordpress.com/ Heloise

    You guys wrote: “Obama’s a politician, not a leader. He’d rather take a seat on the sidelines, ridiculing and jeering, than take the initiative in charting a course through hard times. He plays waiting games, baiting others to offer detailed solutions so he can attack them based on the current political wind speed and direction. Rather than facing up to difficult choices, he spews counterproductive rhetoric that divides when unity is sorely needed. Our president simply is not up to the commander-in-chief task.”

    I just watched “Inside Job” and read up on the meltdown and your comment is quite disingenuous given that those in power (rethugs and the damn dems) gave the damn bloated dollar away to a handful of the now-richest thugs in the world. No one went to jail, except a few Enron folks, who were the tip of the meltdown we know now. No in fact they were the model of what was to come.

    I don’t want to hear it’s a lack of leadership on Obama’s part. Not because I am lib or luv BHO but because it is way bigger than any POTUS it is the whole Washingtonian system. I am so sick of the finger pointing and not one of these including some world bankers like DSK not going to jail.

    A few of the bastards did suicide but that is not enough. Why blame Obama or point out his idiosyncrecies and foibles and fake-outs before you blame the blasted system of vast corruption?

  • http://heloise8.wordpress.com/ Heloise

    “An Election to Lose” Not, so not true. Just like McCain predicting that Palin will beat Obama…loser-talk.

  • Clavos

    Glenn,

    Just saw your #41, even though it’s now up two days.

    Thanks! I think. :-)

  • Cannonshop

    #47 Leroy, where the money goes does matter-to some extent. But it matters where the money’s going, and a road-project that costs a million dollars a mile to handle light traffic may stimulate a local economy for a few months-but when it’s done, that stimulation’s gone, while social programmes may make us all feel better about ourselves (better as in ‘more civilized’) but they’re a rathole most of the time, the money goes in, and like buying a boat, it just goes in, and in, and in.

    Never mind funding groups like ACORN, who don’t actually DO ANYTHING that generates jobs.

    I grew up in an area that was forced by politicians and activists into a service economy, it sucks, you starve the nine months of the year that the tourists aren’t interested in coming down, and you can’t eat the scenery, so you’ll pardon if I don’t believe in the vast cornucopia of benefit from Uncle Sam’s Largesse, and you’ll pardon if I think paying bankers to screw their customers, or paying off big contributors, or staging a phoney war, are bad ideas for the economy-I tend to think little booms followed by big hangovers are symptomatic of a disease, rather than a good way to run the operation.

  • Clavos

    like buying a boat, it just goes in, and in, and in.

    Heh.

    “Boat” is an acronym: Break Out Another Thousand.