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Cohen writes: "Increasingly, Democrats are making the argument that the real culprit for the country's economic woes lies in a more discrete location: with the Republican Party."

The Republican Party's Congressional leadership (left to right): Senate Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, and House Speaker John Boehner. (photo: Alex Brandon/AP)
The Republican Party's Congressional leadership (left to right): Senate Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, and House Speaker John Boehner. (photo: Alex Brandon/AP)

Did Republicans Deliberately Crash the US Economy?

By Michael Cohen, Guardian UK

10 June 12


Be it ideology or stratagem, the GOP has blocked pro-growth policy and backed job-killing austerity - all while blaming Obama.

o why does the US economy stink?

Why has job creation in America slowed to a crawl? Why, after several months of economic hope, are things suddenly turning sour? The culprits might seem obvious - uncertainty in Europe, an uneven economic recovery, fiscal and monetary policymakers immobilized and incapable of acting. But increasingly, Democrats are making the argument that the real culprit for the country's economic woes lies in a more discrete location: with the Republican Party.

In recent days, Democrats have started coming out and saying publicly what many have been mumbling privately for years - Republicans are so intent on defeating President Obama for re-election that they are purposely sabotaging the country's economic recovery. These charges are now being levied by Democrats such as Senate majority leader Harry Reid and Obama's key political adviser, David Axelrod.

For Democrats, perhaps the most obvious piece of evidence of GOP premeditated malice is the 2010 quote from Senate minority leader, Mitch McConnell:

"The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president."

Such words lead some to the conclusion that Republicans will do anything, including short-circuiting the economy, in order to hurt Obama politically. Considering that presidents - and rarely opposition parties - are held electorally responsible for economic calamity, it's not a bad political strategy.

Then again, it's a hard accusation to prove: after all, one person's economic sabotage is another person's principled anti-government conservatism.

Beyond McConnell's words, though, there is circumstantial evidence to make the case. Republicans have opposed a lion's share of stimulus measures that once they supported, such as a payroll tax break, which they grudgingly embraced earlier this year. Even unemployment insurance, a relatively uncontroversial tool for helping those in an economic downturn, has been consistently held up by Republicans or used as a bargaining chip for more tax cuts. Ten years ago, prominent conservatives were loudly making the case for fiscal stimulus to get the economy going; today, they treat such ideas like they're the plague.

Traditionally, during economic recessions, Republicans have been supportive of loose monetary policy. Not this time. Rather, Republicans have upbraided Ben Bernanke, head of the Federal Reserve, for even considering policies that focus on growing the economy and creating jobs.

And then, there is the fact that since the original stimulus bill passed in February of 2009, Republicans have made practically no effort to draft comprehensive job creation legislation. Instead, they continue to pursue austerity policies, which reams of historical data suggest harms economic recovery and does little to create jobs. In fact, since taking control of the House of Representatives in 2011, Republicans have proposed hardly a single major jobs bill that didn't revolve, in some way, around their one-stop solution for all the nation's economic problems: more tax cuts.

Still, one can certainly argue - and Republicans do - that these steps are all reflective of conservative ideology. If you view government as a fundamentally bad actor, then stopping government expansion is, on some level, consistent.

So, let's put aside the conspiracy theories for a moment, and look more closely at how the country is faring under the GOP's economic leadership.

As Paul Krugman wrote earlier this week, in the New York Times, while a Democrat rests his head each night in the White House, the United States is currently operating with a Republican economy. After winning the House of Representatives in 2010, the GOP brokered a deal to keep the Bush tax cuts in place, which has reduced the tax burden as a percentage of GDP to its lowest point since Harry Truman sat in the White House. At the insistence of the White House, Congress also agreed to extend unemployment benefits and enact a payroll tax cut - measures that provided a small but important stimulus to the economy, but above all, maintained the key GOP position that taxes must never go up.

But as Congress giveth, Congress also taketh. The GOP's zealotry on tax cuts is only matched by its zealotry in pursuing austerity policies. In the spring of 2011, federal spending cuts forced by Republican legislators took much-needed money out of the economy: combined with the 2012 budget, it has largely counteracted the positive benefits provided by the 2009 stimulus.

Subsequently, the GOP's refusal to countenance legislation that would help states with their own fiscal crises (largely, the result of declining tax revenue) has led to massive public sector layoffs at the state and local level. In fact, since Obama took office, state and local governments have shed 611,000 jobs; and by some measures, if not for these jobs, cuts the unemployment rate today would be closer to 7%, not its current 8.2%. In 2010 and 2011, 457,00 public sector jobs were excised; not coincidentally, at the same time, much of the federal stimulus aid from 2009 ran out. And Republicans took over control of Congress.

These cuts have a larger societal impact. When teachers are laid off, for example (and nearly 200,000 have lost their jobs), it means larger class sizes, other teachers being overworked and after-school classes being cancelled. So, ironically, a policy that is intended to save "our children and grandchildren" from "crushing debt" is leaving them worse-prepared for the actual economic and social challenges they will face in the future. In addition, with states operating under tighter fiscal budgets - and getting no hope relief from Washington - it means less money for essential government services, like help for the elderly, the poor and the disabled.

This is the most obvious example of how austerity policies are not only harming America's present, but also imperilling its future. And these spending cuts on the state and local level are matched by a complete lack of fiscal expansion on the federal level. In fact, fiscal policy is now a drag on the recovery, which is the exact opposite of how it should work, given a sluggish economy.

This collection of more-harm-than-good policies must also include last summer's debt limit debacle, which House speaker John Boehner has threatened to renew this year. This was yet another GOP initiative that undermined the economic recovery. According to economists Betsey Stevenson and Justin Wolfers, "over the entire episode, confidence declined more than it did following the collapse of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc in 2008." Only after the crisis did the consumer confidence stabilize, but employers "held back on hiring, sapping momentum from a recovery that remains far too fragile." In addition, the debt limit deal also forced more unhelpful spending cuts on the country.

Since that national embarrassment, Republicans have refused to even allow votes on President Obama's jobs bill in the Senate; they dragged their feet on the aforementioned payroll tax and even now are holding up a transportation bill with poison-pill demands for the White House on environmental regulation.

Yet, with all these tales of economic ineptitude emanating from the GOP, it is Obama who is bearing most of the blame for the country's continued poor economic performance.

Whether you believe the Republicans are engaging in purposely destructive fiscal behavior or are simply fiscally incompetent, it almost doesn't matter. It most certainly is bad economic policy and that should be part of any national debate not only on who is to blame for the current economic mess, but also what steps should be taken to get out from underneath it.

But don't hold your breath on that happening. Presidents get blamed for a bad economy; and certainly, Republicans are unlikely to take responsibility for the country's economic woes. The obligation will be on Obama to make the case that it is the Republicans, not he, who is to blame - a difficult, but not impossible task.

In the end, that might be the worst part of all - one of two major political parties in America is engaging in scorched-earth economic policies that are undercutting the economic recovery, possibly on purpose, and is forcing job-killing austerity measures on the states. And they have paid absolutely no political price for doing so. If anything, it won them control of the House in 2010, and has kept win Obama's approval ratings in the political danger zone. It might even help them get control of the White House.

Sabotage or not, it's hard to argue with "success" - and it's hard to imagine we've seen the last of it, whoever wins in November. your social media marketing partner


A note of caution regarding our comment sections:

For months a stream of media reports have warned of coordinated propaganda efforts targeting political websites based in the U.S., particularly in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

It is also clear that we still have elements of the same activity in our article discussion forums at this time.

We have hosted and encouraged reader expression since the turn of the century. The comments of our readers are the most vibrant, best-used interactive feature at Reader Supported News. Accordingly, we are strongly resistant to interrupting those services.

It is, however, important to note that in all likelihood hardened operatives are attempting to shape the dialog our community seeks to engage in.

Adapt and overcome.

Marc Ash
Founder, Reader Supported News

+345 # Barbara K 2012-06-10 09:19
The Republicans absolutely did destroy our economy. All one has to do is look at how they voted. They voted NO on every single Bill that would have helped the economy or us. They filibustered over 300 times, more than ever in the entire history of Congress. There is no other reason to do that to us, except to destroy our economy, country, and her citizens. All to fulfill their pledge to "Make Obama a one term President". How despicable they are and they don't deserve the seats they hold. They did nothing to earn all the money they make and the Insurance coverage they got that we paid for; and the Retirement benefits they get, that we paid for, while denying us the same. Check out their records, you will see they deliberately set out to destroy this country and all of us with it. Their voting records tell it all.
-133 # jlohman 2012-06-10 10:03
Barbara, note that the filibuster could have been killed at the beginning of the the senate session by a 51% majority. But Reid didn't want to because it helps the parties wield power over the moneyed interests. The R's would have done the same thing.
+222 # Barbara K 2012-06-10 10:10
Since I watch the Senate and saw what happened, I can tell you that a Republican Senator put a block on the filibuster. When a block is put on, it cannot come up for vote or any other thing until that Senator releases his hold on it. That is why it wasn't brought up for a vote. I watched it happen.
+74 # Stephanie Remington 2012-06-10 13:47
From Politico, 11 May 2012:

“If there were ever a time when Tom Udall and Jeff Merkley were prophetic, it’s tonight,” Reid said on the floor. “These two young, fine senators said it was time to change the rules of the Senate, and we didn’t. They were right. The rest of us were wrong — or most of us, anyway. What a shame.”

Reid added: “If there were anything that ever needed changing in this body, it’s the filibuster rules, because it’s been abused, abused, abused.”
-Harry Reid
-1 # Stephanie Remington 2012-06-10 13:49
Reid — who struck a “gentleman’s agreement” last year with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to preserve the filibuster from an effort by Sens. Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and Jeff. Merkley (D-Ore.) to water it down — signaled he is now on board with their effort given the gridlock in the Senate.
-1 # Stephanie Remington 2012-06-10 16:46
This is a quote from the Politico article reference above, so in giving this a thumbs down are you signaling that you object to the truth or just being presented with it?
+27 # John Locke 2012-06-10 14:44
Barbara: I keep saying let them filibuster, and bring congress to a stand still with a 7% approval rating that would be the best thing for the country...What positive legislation has congress actually done in the past three years? Thumbs down won't work...Name any!
-37 # Virginia 2012-06-10 20:34
Bless you John Locke. I just want these Dem sheep to tell me the first three issues they would focus on if they were President...and how they would solve this financial force majeure besides taxing the rich which would never be enough even at 100%.

Just tell me what they really think is important to American families besides jobs? ...cause we ain't creatin' any of those either.
-11 # Virginia 2012-06-11 02:08
You can thumb your nose - but if you can't answer the questions -what good are your votes? Same goes for the Presidential election. I think Dylan Ratigan said it best - he gets it. Apparently, you thumber, don't. Watch the video.
+22 # Carbonman1950 2012-06-11 20:00
Quoting Virginia:
Bless you John Locke. I just want these Dem sheep to tell me the first three issues they would focus on if they were President

1) Infrastructure replacement and repair (in support of private industry);
2) Recapitalizatio n of public education
(desired by virtually every form of private industry, particularly high tech);
3) Increased hiring of police, fire fighters, teachers.
(part of govt. "defense" obligation, also public safety, necessary to efficiently conduct private business - less costly and more productive than prisons, desired by virtually every form of private industry, particularly high tech).

And why did you exclude jobs for your question? Jobs are the issue in question.

Finally, I don't want to tax the rich. I think the Shrub tax expenditures were a huge error that should lapse entirely.

If you take a look at U.S. economic history you will notice that, in general, the economy was best at the times the top marginal tax rate and total tax collections were highest. In essence low taxation is tied to a declining standard of living for the vast majority of Americans.
+3 # susienoodle 2012-06-12 09:59
affordable Care act; but I agree, let them filibuster. make them expend the energy; so easy to threaten, make them act.
+66 # X Dane 2012-06-10 17:29
All the things you mentioned Barbara, are so infuriatingly true, yet the media is not telling the truth, they come out with lame "both parties are wrong" statements.
Sure the democrats are far from perfect, but they are not DELIBERATELY trying to sink the country, and they sure did NOT do that, when W was in the White House.

The opposition party is always doing some foot dragging because they don't want the party in power to seem totally successful. But this is waaaaay beyond foot dragging.


With a media that is mainly right wing owned, I don't know how we can make the average Americans understand what is happening.
And there is preciously little time for them to find out.
0 # Michael_K 2012-06-11 13:50
You're saying that because it isn't deliberate, but merely the consequence of depraved imbecility, then it's OK?
+26 # X Dane 2012-06-11 16:03
Michael K I am not sure to whom you are responding. Unfortunately there are a number of people in congress, that do not belong there AT ALL. They simply do not have the brains. You might call them imbecile.

But the right wingers who are KILLING OUR ECONOMY, are doing so ON PURPOSE. WITH MALICE AND FORETHOUGHT. They definitely mean to do so.

They ought to be prosecuted, for it sure is criminal what they are doing.
+11 # 2012-06-12 06:55
People don't know what they have until they lost it. some foot dragging because they don't want the party in power to seem totally successful. But this is waaaaay beyond foot dragging.

Working to sink the economy is sickening, it is UNPATRIOTIC, AND Quoting X Dane:
All the things you mentioned Barbara, are so infuriatingly true, yet the media is not telling the truth, they come out with lame "both parties are wrong" statements.
Sure the democrats are far from perfect, but they are not DELIBERATELY trying to sink the country, and they sure did NOT do that, when W was in the White House.

The opposition party is always doing some foot dragging because they don't want the party in power to seem totally successful. But this is waaaaay beyond foot dragging.


With a media that is mainly right wing owned, I don't know how we can make the average Americans understand what is happening.
And there is preciously little time for them to find out.
+63 # zachwes 2012-06-10 11:16
jlohman--Do you have a response to Barbara's response? How about, "Sorry, I was misinformed, thanks for setting me straight?"
-22 # Stephanie Remington 2012-06-10 16:35

Please take a look at my response (two posts) to Barbara K. You may revise your opinion about who owes whom the apology.
+32 # Bodiotoo 2012-06-10 15:03
Quoting jlohman:
Barbara, note that the filibuster could have been killed at the beginning of the the senate session by a 51% majority. But Reid didn't want to because it helps the parties wield power over the moneyed interests. The R's would have done the same thing.

jlohman is correct in that there was a window to change the rules. First session of a new Congress...but the super majority rule allows the minority party to gum of the works, and the Dems feared losing both houses...
We The People should demand that the Senate restore the one enumerated power of the Veep on all votes.
Also restore the filibuster to it's original standard and make the filibusting Senators stand up and hold the floor. Putting a "hold" type filibuster is just a cheap trick.
+5 # RLF 2012-06-11 05:48
There was a two year window for the Dems to do a lot of things but they have absolutely no discipline...or they are really just more republicans.
The economy was killed earlier by feds keeping the interest rates so low under Bush practically guaranteeing a housing bubble burst under the following president, sending the economy in the toilet for an entire (Democratic) administration. Too bad the Dems can't plan for more tha a month when they are up against Repubes that are looking down the road 20 years.
-50 # Virginia 2012-06-10 10:19
Here we go again with the Eeyore syndrome - "the Republicans held me hostage." Well, sorry Barry, Frank and Nancy... What in the world did you do to stop foreclosures and evictions? None of you have stood up in front of a microphone on the floor or in the media and said - "Stop the banks, these mortgages are fraudulent transactions. They are being gambled and traded on Wall Street and homeowner's did not know or have any disclosure."

140 million Americans are negatively affected by the Wall Street securitization Ponzi scheme and it has cost our country $600 TRILLION and none of you or your collective band of Democrats even acknowledge Wall Street reform on your websites let alone stand up in public and call attention to the massive fraud. Senator Levin's investigation is about as close as it came...and you, Ms. Pelosi, did nothing to champion his findings.

The Democrat House and Senate have helped turn President Obama into the Grinch while the Republican core group of Mr. Potters plot to take over our country. It's not Obama's fault that you can't get your party to travel and talk to the media and the public in a pack...or maybe it is.
-2 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:06
I have to agree, not since President Carter have I seen such a lazy lot of slobs. I would enjoy voting for independents, greens...even the GLB.

I must agree. I believe the Democrats are as biased, self centered, greed motivated as the GOP. I saw a group called the Dems4Change .... where are they? did they merge with the TP because most were the same snobs who had no idea of what middle America or poor need. Most were Social Bimbo and Bimbettes, I know I was going to work for Democrats with Ob but these snobs refused in a Depression County to go talk with the people. With no jobs they brought in out of State Workers as did Democrats allow out of State Contractors for Construction that should have been Union.

Afraid the 41 are as misguided or blind as the sheeple, that is what they all want.
+121 # Lolanne 2012-06-10 10:49
Quoting Barbara K:
The Republicans absolutely did destroy our economy. ... Check out their records, you will see they deliberately set out to destroy this country and all of us with it. Their voting records tell it all.

They sure as hell did, Barbara K. It is SO hard to believe so many people still believe in these sociopaths who don't give a damn who they hurt as long as they get their way. That "Make O a one-term pres" said it all, and their voting record since then just confirms it. WHY can't people understand this???

I have never been as frustrated in my entire life as when thinking about this situation and trying to understand it. I know racism is a big part of it, but I just can't believe that's the whole story. It must be a deadly combination of racism, ignorance, gullibility...w ho knows what else. But aside from that, we also have to remember that the evil Diebold machines can and are being manipulated to make the vote whatever the repugs want it to be.

Add all those factors together, and the best we can hope for is an overwhelmingly huge turn-out voting Dem in Nov, seems to me.
+95 # CL38 2012-06-10 12:37
If you want to understand republicans, read Republican John Dean's book, "Conservatives without Conscience". You'll see them in a whole new light and you'll never vote republican again!
+57 # Barbara K 2012-06-10 13:29
CL38: I have that book, it is a real eye opener. Maybe some more will read it, thanks.
+24 # mdhome 2012-06-10 18:49
Yes, I have read it and highly recommend it, some pretty scary stuff in there!
+5 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:07
Please get this to the Public....not us.
+15 # RMDC 2012-06-11 04:29
Or read Thomas Frank's The Wrecking Crew.

It is absolutely clear that the goal of the repubicans is to wreck effective government. They don't believe in it -- except for the Pentagon, CIA, and police. They believe those agencies can operate just fine as the sum total of government.

But this is the bigger picture. Obama did not help himself by bringing into his administration the very same people who caused the banking crash in the first place -- the key guy here was Larry Summers, the architect of the banking and investment de-regulations in the 90s. Obama could have fired Fed chair Bernake. There's a lot Obama could have done but didn't because Obama is a neo-liberal just like the repubicans are. He does not subscribe to the wrecking of government but he does subscribe to neo-liberal capitalism which is the same thing.
+20 # Regina 2012-06-11 09:51
You omitted the Uterus Monitors. Absolutely essential in the War Against Women.
+14 # brux 2012-06-11 13:09
I don't think it is government that the Repbulicans want to wreck, it is more evil than that, they want to destroy the idea of anything PUBLIC.

It really cuts to the core of the Constitution and the enlightenment, the idea that we have inalienable rights, or even that God presides in some way over the world, even thought the profess to be religious.

They seek the justify permanent power and ownership of the world and domination of nature and man - when they clearly do not deserve and cannot manage either.
+57 # Regina 2012-06-10 14:37
Before the rabid right uttered the words, "...make him a one-term president," they were saying, "...make him fail." If the whole country then fails, they are undeterred. The single factor that is responsible from their attitude toward Obama -- not so against any other Democratic president -- is his race. The others were all Caucasian. As for Diebold, isn't it amazing that their ATMs never fail, while their voting machines just happen to do so, and are never cured of their defects.
+55 # doneasley 2012-06-10 16:14
Quoting Lolanne:
...sociopaths who don't give a damn who they hurt... WHY can't people understand this??? ...racism is a big part of it, but I just can't believe that's the whole story. ...a deadly combination of racism, ignorance, gullibility... ...the best we can hope for is an overwhelmingly huge turn-out voting Dem in Nov, seems to me.

Lolanne, take the hatred for Clinton and double or triple it because of the racism. (1) The Dems had a peanut farmer from GA, a guy from AR whose father was a drunk, and now a Black man who spent a lot of his time with the poor in South Chicago. The GOP - who don't believe any of these guys should have been president - has a class complex. They look down their noses at the poor and middle-class folks in their own party. Consider their succession: a California governor, a rich oil man, the oil man's son, and now a businessman worth $250 Million. (2) The Norquist factor. People laughed when this unelected dunderhead said, "I just want to shrink gov't down to the size where we can drown it in the bathtub." He meant it and this new Congress, who signed his "no new taxes" pledge, is carrying out his wishes. In his speech at CPAC 2012 he said Romney would be just a puppet signing congressional legislation. (3) The Ayn Rand factor. Paul Ryan is a believer in this sociopathic atheist and makes his staff read her books. Check her out.

These idiotic lemmings have definitely tanked our economy on purpose.
+28 # mdhome 2012-06-10 18:52
Not any mention of Ayn Rand living on welfare? She did you know.
-22 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:10
Didnot. I did also when I was first a single mom with no car but got a Program started by Carter to give me a better choice.... She wrote books perhaps to wake us up
+19 # doneasley 2012-06-10 21:40
Quoting mdhome:
Not any mention of Ayn Rand living on welfare? She did you know.

Didn't have enough symbols left to go into detail, but this woman was a piece of work. After railing against all gov't programs most of her life, she ended up using Soc Sec and Medicare before she died. How could any self-respecting patriotic Christian - isn't that what all Republicans are? - fall under the spell of this hypocritical atheistic piece of trash?
+6 # Lolanne 2012-06-11 11:46
Quoting doneasley:
...Lolanne, take the hatred for Clinton and double or triple it because of the racism. (1) . . . The GOP - who don't believe any of these guys should have been president - has a class complex. They look down their noses at the poor and middle-class folks in their own party. . . . (2) The Norquist factor. . . . In his speech at CPAC 2012 he said Romney would be just a puppet signing congressional legislation. (3) The Ayn Rand factor. Paul Ryan is a believer in this sociopathic atheist and makes his staff read her books. Check her out.
These idiotic lemmings have definitely tanked our economy on purpose.

doneasley: Yes, all those things you mentioned are factors. And they all fall into the "ignorance" category, IMO. Seems to me anybody of reasonable intelligence ought to be able to READ enough to learn facts instead of swallowing propaganda hook, line and sinker. Maybe a lot of it is apathy -- we're all so busy trying to eke out a living and playing with our electronic toys there's no time left for actually learning anything. And I have read Ayn Rand, many years ago when I was young and naive. Even then, though, I didn't just swallow the poison -- I just thought the books were good reads.
+14 # Pickwicky 2012-06-11 09:16
Lolanne rightly said "It must be a deadly combination of racism, ignorance, gullibility...w ho knows what else."

I know "what else"--immorali ty.

Republicans stated their top goal: 'Make Obama a one-term president.' In concert with their actions they've revealed the depth of their moral problem: their refusal to put country above politics.
-100 # MidwestTom 2012-06-10 10:55
Remember that studies have shown that for every Green Job created, Maybe we have simply been swirching to Green too fast.. 3.7 jobs in the old economy are lost.
+28 # mdhome 2012-06-10 18:54
+19 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:11
Toooo fast? Like our Minimum Wage Increase or Seniors Social Security Raises?
Only people getting raises are CEO's and Politicians
+16 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:14
Sorry but I have been fighting for green jobs....only to be fought back by big money since the up Your Midwest could have kept jobs in the Solar Industry, in the Turbine Industry with Pa, Damns for Hydro if you made some changes for fish fry and birds. Let us not even think there is any wind out west to harnass. You have a Green Resource Nation out west...instead you want pipelines, and harmful mining at head of water supplies let us not forget Monsanto and buddies farms. What a waste
-11 # rebelle 2012-06-10 11:02
Obama has a huge responsibility in this economy. He had a majority in both houses, but was so determined to be bipartisan he allowed the republicans to dictate and destroy while giving nothing but more destruction. Obama however does have line item veto power and executive powers to do what needs to be done to protect the majority from tyranny, instead he has chosen to help instill tyranny and continue almost ALL of bushs policies and has been more destructive to our constitutional and civil rights. If obama were white republicans would build monuments in his honor.
+71 # Jerry 2012-06-10 12:14
Presidents don't have line item veto authority. The progressive democrats are not the majority in the Senate or house, and democrats didn't have a filibuster proof control of the Senate. Obama sucks as a leader, he is way too conservative for me, his use of drones, curbing of civil rights, and failure to prosecute fraud is abominable, and his failure to prosecute the Bush crimes incomprehensibl e, but if we can't make a third party candidate viable before Nov. 2, we better turn out in droves to vote for democrats because the republicans would be, at least, marginally worse and we don't have that margin to spare.
+46 # LiberalRN 2012-06-10 13:28
Quoting rebelle:
Obama however does have line item veto power and executive powers to do what needs to be done to protect the majority from tyranny, instead he has chosen to help instill tyranny and continue almost ALL of bushs policies and has been more destructive to our constitutional and civil rights. If obama were white republicans would build monuments in his honor.

Correct me if wrong - and I'm sure you will! - but I don't think the line item veto was ever passed into law. Debated yes, but ultimately the "other side" (going both ways) didn't want that power in the hands of the opposing party. Just think what power would be lost! No more tax cuts for the wealthy or giveaways to the powerful hidden in otherwise routine and innocuous pieces of legislation! Why, it's possible the debacle over the debt ceiling wouldn't have been a debacle at all. Where's the fun?

If Obama were Republican, those monuments would go up, white or not. If he were white they'd still be looking for a way to prevent his success. Look what happened to Clinton. The "race card" has simply been a handy divisive tool, appealing to our baser qualities - GOP, undecided, or Dem. Not that there aren't plenty of people out there for whom that "dog whistle" works... and yes, I think Obama could have, and should have, done much more - particularly in terms of using the "bully pulpit" to reach directly to the public. Instead he tried to deal. Foolish, and with tragic consequences.
+27 # Mrcead 2012-06-10 15:20
Of course Republicans are the problem..

Who is more likely to help you in a pinch?

Who is less likely to help you without an attractive incentive present?

These are core qualities we are talking about here. Everything else branches from there.
-1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:16
You are right he listened to the Clintons,,,diff erence is he will not be near as wealthy or better thought of. He will only be thought of as the first black president who didn't even get respect from his own party so why would GOP want to
+39 # Adagio 2012-06-10 11:43
You pretty much said it all Barb. I have to think that the majority of people in the country see it and understand it for what it is. The Repugs will get their share of the vote, but it's hard to imagine any sane voter not seeing what has been going on.
0 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:18
'sane' there is no sanity any more
+29 # geraldom 2012-06-10 12:55
You're right, Barbara K. The Repubs did all that you described & more, but you can't put all of the blame on them alone. Obama and the Senate Dems must take blame for this as well.

After Obama won the pres in Nov in 2008 & the Senate, at the same time, took on a heavy Dem majority of 60 votes, once the new admin took affect in Jan of 2009, Obama and the Dems could've totally nullified the filibuster by invoking the nuclear option in which case, a simple majority vote of 51 votes, not 60+ votes, would've only been required to pass any Bill that the Dems wanted passed as well as approving any judge for the fed bench over the complaints & objections of the obstructionist Repubs.

Please tell me what exactly didn't Obama & the Congressional Dems not fully understand about Mitch McConnell's threat in Jan of 2009, once Obama took office, of making sure that Obama would only a one-term president? Anyone at the time with any kind of brain & common sense should've known that the Repubs were going to do everything & anything in their power to block everything & anything that the Obama admin wanted passed that could've have helped and improve the life of the common man in this country.

Let me assure you beyond the shadow of any doubt that if Romney wins in Nov & the Senate becomes Repub, that the filibuster will go the way of the Do-Do bird if the Dems were to actually grow huevos & use the filibuster in the same way the Repubs did against them.
+31 # Barbara K 2012-06-10 13:40
HaroldRMencher: I guess you missed the part where I said that the Dems had a filibuster proof majority ONLY 2 months. Sen. Kennedy and Sen. Byrd both became ill and were not involved and they were working on the Affordable Health Care Act. For most of the time, 2 brave R Sens. voted with the Dems to get many of the parts of the Bill passed (Sen. Snowe and Sen. Collins) and when it came time to vote on passage, Sen. Kennedy and Sen Byrd were ushered in in wheelchairs to a standing ovation to vote Yes and got the Bill passed. That was the last time they were in the Senate, both died at later dates. Kennedy was replaced with a Republican, there went the 60-vote majority. I watched it all, too bad you didn't and you would know what you are talking about.
+13 # geraldom 2012-06-10 18:17
No, Barbara K, I didn't miss that part. The whole point of my posting is this. I knew at the time that Obama won the presidency in Nov of 2008 that the Repubs were going to do everything in their power to make him look bad, well before Mitch McConnell made his famous threat in Jan of 2009. Obama & the Congressional Dems, being the experienced politicians that they claim to be, should've also known that, most especially after McConnell's threat.

My point, Barbara K, is that Obama & the Senate Dems should have immediately, once they got into office, invoked the nuclear option & nullified the filibuster as a weapon that the Repubs could use to block anything that the Dems wanted passed. Unfortunately, Obama didn't but the Repubs will if they win both the presidency & the Senate this Fall.

It doesn't require 60 votes to invoke the nuclear option to kill the filibuster. All it requires is for the majority party in the Senate to have a simple majority of 51 votes to kill the filibuster which means that the Senate Dems, theoretically speaking, can, even today, invoke the nuclear option to kill the filibuster. Unfortunately, to do so today would be a complete waste of time now that the House of Representatives is under very heavy control by the Repubs.

I wasn't arguing in my post about how much of a majority the Dems had in the Senate after the 2008 presidential election, whether it be 60 votes or 58 votes or whatever the number was.
+6 # Barbara K 2012-06-10 20:29
HaroldR.Mencher : Are you aware that any Senate rules are voted on and can be changed only at the very beginning of each Congressional Session, only at the beginning? It cannot be done now. Remember all the 300 blocks I mentioned? Well the Filibuster was one of them, blocked by a Republican Senator, so it could not be put into place. With the block, it remains blocked until the Senator who blocked it removes his block. It takes just one Senator to stand up when a Bill is brought up for debate and votes: He just stands up and says "I object", and all action is then stopped until he removes his block, thereby blocking any action at all on that Bill. That is why the filibuster still stands.
+2 # geraldom 2012-06-10 23:49
In all seriousness, I'm somewhat confused as to what you mean by the filibuster being one of the blocks. As far as I know, the Senate Democrats never attempted to nullify the filibuster since they took control of the Senate I believe in the 2006 midterm elections. So please tell me what block are you talking about that specifically involves the filibuster.

What I do know as an absolute certainty is that GWB did in fact send Senator Arlen Specter to threaten Harry Reid with the so-called nuclear option that would have completely nullified the filibuster when the Supreme Court openings came up if the Democrats were planning on filibustering GWB's choices. It was all over the news. Even GWB at the time couldn't bend the rules. The threat shook the Senate Democrats enough for them to cave in to GWB's threats of killing the filibuster. So, please explain to me why GWB thought that he could get away with it while the Senate Democrats cannot.

If what you say is accurate and true, then why didn't any one of the Democratic Senators put a block on any and all of GWB's heinous Bills like the Patriot Act, the Military Commissions Act, and the FISA Bill? When you say they put a block on a Bill, I'm assuming that you're talking about a filibuster which can be broken with a 60+ vote in the Senate.

As I've said, I'm somewhat confused and would be grateful if you could explain what you are talking about.
+3 # Barbara K 2012-06-11 10:52
HaroldR.Mencher : When that session began, the Senate Rules were being taken up for discussion and votes. Most were blocked immediately, one of them was the filibuster rule. The Dems tried to compromise and make it so that the person doing the filibuster had to stand there and actually filibuster. But the Republican who blocked that one would not unblock it. The R's took turns blocking each thing that came up for vote. One of the blocks was to block the filibuster itself. I hope that is more clear. I can't think of a clearer way to put it. Yes, the R's blocked the vote on the filibuster, it was just one of the blocks they did. The block is not the same as a filibuster. The block cannot be voted on -- the Senator who put the block on it is the only one who can remove the block so it can come up for debate and votes. I do hope I explained it well enough. I wonder if you are confusing a "block" with a "filibuster". After 30 hours, they can take a vote to break the filibuster; but there is no way to unblock a filibuster up for vote to change the rule when it has a block on it.
+4 # geraldom 2012-06-11 12:51
So, Barbara K, please answer the following questions for me. Tell me if I'm correct:

o When GWB's heinous Bills came up for a vote in Congress, Bills like the Patriot Act, the Mil Commissions Act, & the FISA Bill, Bills that destroyed our Constitution & our Bill of Rights, that any single Dem Senator, just one, could've put a permanent block on that Bill preventing its passage. Is that correct?

o If Mitt Romney were to win the election in Nov & if the Repubs were to take control of the Senate, even by a number greater than 59 votes, which would nullify the Dems capability to mount a filibuster, that one single Dem Senator could still, right up front, initiate a block on any Bill that would prevent its passage by the repubs, even if they had a super-majority in the Senate. Is that correct?

o Are you telling me that when a session begins & the Senate Rules are being taken up, that any one Dem Senator can guarantee that the filibuster rules can never be changed to weaken its power to stop legislation, or to prevent any single Dem Senator from putting a block on another Bill like the Patriot Act. Is that correct?

Then please explain to me how GWB could've carried out his threat of killing the filibuster, & how all of GWB's heinous Bills ever got passed in the U.S. Senate if only one Patriotic Dem Senator could've blocked them.

I would be very interested in your answers. It doesn't say very much for the Dems.
+1 # Barbara K 2012-06-11 20:07
Any time any Bill is brought up for a vote one Senator can stand up and say "I object", and nothing on that Bill can proceed until that Senator removes the hold he just put on it. It doesn't matter how many Dems or Repubs there are in the Senate. It is held up from any further consideration. Some have been blocked for over 3 years now, including Bills that would have fixed our economy, etc. The press makes the mistake of calling a "Hold or Block" a Filibuster, but they are 2 different things.
+1 # geraldom 2012-06-11 23:27
So, if what you're telling me is accurate and true, then the answer is "Yes," that when Bush submitted his heinous Bills to be passed by the Senate, the ones that destroyed our Constitution and our Bill of Rights, the Patriot Act, the Military Commissions Act, and the FISA Bill among so many others, that any one of the Senate Democrats could have stopped these Bills dead in their tracks.

The answer is "Yes," that there was not one decent Democratic Senator or decent independent Senator for that matter, like Senator Bernie Sanders, who could see Bush's agenda and was willing to put a block on these unconstitutiona l Bills. That makes me even angrier than I was before against the Congressional Democrats.

Barbara K, how do you feel about that? How do you feel that not one Democratic Senator would put a block on these Bills that destroyed our civil rights and our civil liberties?

And, you haven't answered my question concerning how Bush's threat against the Democrats, when the Republicans controlled the Senate, of invoking the nuclear option to nullify the filibuster when it could have only been done at the very beginning of the session when the Senate Rules are discussed, a session in which any one of the Democratic Senators could have put an easy block on it. Can you please explain that to me? Why did the Democrats go into panic mode when this threat came up if Bush didn't have the power to do it?
+19 # Lolanne 2012-06-10 15:55
Quoting Harold R. Mencher:
. . .
After Obama won the pres in Nov in 2008 & the Senate, at the same time, took on a heavy Dem majority of 60 votes, once the new admin took affect in Jan of 2009, . . .

Nope. In addition to the illness of Senators Byrd and Kennedy, Al Franken was not sworn in until July 2009, thanks to the Repigs' demands for constant recounting in their attempts to prove he didn't really win his close election.
+6 # Barbara K 2012-06-10 20:31
Lolanne: Thank you, I meant to mention that fact too and forgot to do so. Al Franken was elected in the 2010 election, but the nasty Rs did all they could to keep him out, and left the Dems short by 1 Senator for several months.
+7 # X Dane 2012-06-10 19:02
Harold Mencher. McConnell didn't say that they wanted to make sure Obama was a one term President in 2009, but in 2010, right AFTER the election. They had CAMPAIGNED on jobs, jobs, jobs.... Seems it always HAS to be said three times,.... but as soon as they won the house they changed their tune, and f0llowed it up with withe disgusting inaction on everything that could lift the country up.
+2 # geraldom 2012-06-10 20:58
Quoting X Dane:
Harold Mencher. McConnell didn't say that they wanted to make sure Obama was a one term President in 2009, but in 2010, right AFTER the election. They had CAMPAIGNED on jobs, jobs, jobs.... Seems it always HAS to be said three times,.... but as soon as they won the house they changed their tune, and f0llowed it up with withe disgusting inaction on everything that could lift the country up.

I beg to differ with you, X Dane, but the facts are these; McConnell made that threat twice, the very first time was right after Obama took office in January of 2009.
-5 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:19
Tired of us not having a say in these more tenures
+7 # San 2012-06-11 15:26
I can't agree with you more Ms. Barbara. This article says what I have been saying all along to friends. The GOP is working so hard to make Obama a "one term " that they will sell out this country to do so. The bottom line is,"Obama does no not look like the majority of the GOP" Regardless to what anybody thinks or says "racism" is at the helm of this whole isssue with the GOP. Obama has made it quite clear that congress is not supportive of any of his bills to create jobs and strengthen the economy. When the Buffet rule went before the Senate, what did they do, vote against it. So the rich still do not have to pay their fair share of taxes. Yes, the GOP deliberatly set out to destroy our economy with the election of Barack Obama. But please be advised the Barack is not stupid. In the majority of his speeches has let America know that Gop is behind the continuance of this economic downturn, and that they are not concerned about the welfare of the american people. So come November, we will re-elect Barack Obama.
-21 # DPM 2012-06-10 09:33
I have not seen anything to suggest that the president is much of a leader. The Democrats are essentially worthless as a political power and the Republicans are little short of criminal in their moral corruption. Hooray, for us, eh?
+29 # Adagio 2012-06-10 11:47
Unless this stupid filibuster rule is done away with, nothing will EVER get done. The ideological divisions are simply to profound. Each side will block the other from doing anything and then blame the one in power for not "leading", and getting anything done. They're using democracy to destroy democracy.
+9 # geraldom 2012-06-10 13:31
Adagio, please read my posting under your name above which is directed to the fact that the filibuster could have been done away with under Obama in January of 2009, and that if Mitt Romney wins in November and the Senate becomes Republican, that the filibuster will in fact be done away with by the Republicans if the Democrats attempt to do to the Republicans what the Republicans did to them.
-3 # Barbara K 2012-06-11 10:55
HaroldR.Mencher : I just put a lengthy explanation to a previous inquiry from you to me, but maybe I can clear it up quicker, as I think you are confusing a "block" with a "filibuster". They are 2 different things.
+15 # LiberalRN 2012-06-10 13:39
Quoting DPM:
I have not seen anything to suggest that the president is much of a leader. The Democrats are essentially worthless as a political power and the Republicans are little short of criminal in their moral corruption. Hooray, for us, eh?

As much as I want to "dislike" your post, I think you have voiced a very unpleasant truth. The Dems, for whatever reason, continue to cling to "old style" politics (you know, the quaint olde kind in which debates are held, and then elected representatives come to compromises, however imperfect, for the good of the country). Against a GOP that votes as a phalanx and answers, not to the voting public but to Grover Norquist, this hasn't got a prayer. No compromise is going to come from that, EVER - only capitulation. You hit it on the head re: moral corruption among the GOP - any Republican not willing to toe that line is summarily rousted out of the party. Yet the Dems don't seem to be able, or willing, to get their message together, tell the truth about this to the public, and join the fight. It's almost that old adage - if you don't stand for something you'll fall for anything. And O's failure to use the bully pulpit to make his case directly to the voters... well... like I said, I don't want to agree with you, but I'm afraid I have to.
+20 # Regina 2012-06-10 14:44
Don't overlook the Blue Dogs in the House and their counterparts in the Senate -- worst specimen, Sen. Ben Nelson (D - NE), who voted with the Republicans this term even though he was retiring and no longer subject to his alleged base.
+6 # Barbara K 2012-06-10 20:35
Regina: Yes, he was upset because he wanted the Affordable Care Act to be free for the people of his state. How unfair is that? Of course, the Dems said "no", so he was pouting like a toddler ever since and votes with the Republicans ever since.
+2 # brux 2012-06-10 09:40
When Bush cut taxes when we had debt of $6 trillion and financed 2 wars on debt - no doubt that was a purposeful desperate move.

Republicans threaten poor and middle income people with the economy, the very people who get them elected.

Democrats do not have an agenda, they do not have an narrative, they do not work together like Repulicans, and they have very peculiar set of values and beliefs.

Democrats talk about freedom, fairness, liberty, but they do not seem to care about it really, like for people in other countries. They talk about getting rid of the US military, but they never think it through what a massive change like that would mean to the world.

They attack Israel while seeming to give aid and assurance to some of the most despicable governments in the world.

This is either the media mis-characteriz ation of the Democrats or a fault in Democrats themselves.

Progressivism is deliberately undermined by people in the media as well. Democrat's message it is most often explained by the minority, setting up a racist connection and implied threat to white mainstream voters that they will lose if they back a Democratic agenda.

It is very subtle, even subliminal, but it is consistent and perceptible.

One of the problem is that there are no forums that are not poisoned or controlled in order for calm and rational discussion to happen and real facts and ideas to come out.
+34 # Adagio 2012-06-10 11:58
>"and they have very peculiar set of values and beliefs"<

I'd disagree with that. I think what strikes some as peculiar is that they don't have peculiar values and beliefs. You can never demonstrate values or beliefs as being true, so clinging to them in the face of reality only demonstrates that you're a pathetic ideologue.

>"They talk about getting rid of the US military"<

Seriously...who talks about getting rid of the US military?? Where do you come up with this?? Tell me who is saying that?? I'm as liberal as anybody here, and my own son is a Green Beret. Nobody I know of advocates "getting rid" of the US Military.

>"They attack Israel while seeming to give aid and assurance to some of the most despicable governments in the world."<

Nobody has "attacked" Israel. We have however gotten rid of the Libyan dictator, supported the Arab Spring, and advocated democracy in those countries.

>"This is either the media mis-characteriz atio n of the Democrats or a fault in Democrats themselves."<

Considering the power and reach of media outlets like Fox News, and right wing radio...what do you think it is?
-6 # brux 2012-06-10 15:41
Adagio, a lot of Liberals and Progressive are what I call CYNICAL LIBERALS, that is they are like hippies during the 60's, a lot of guys grew long hair and pretended to be hippies to get the free sex - and ruined the idea.

It's the same with Liberals, and most Liberals do not realize it. They see no need to authenticate, or vet other Liberals.

Some are Liberals because they want help for them, but could care less for others.

Some are Liberals because they need to appeal to a wide audience and seem "nice" because they have something to sell.

Some are Liberals because they hate Israel.

That is why there is no coherent Liberal movement or philosohpy any longer - it has been a dumping ground for sad sacks in a way.

Liberals want the rich to pay more taxes, but in general, my feeling is if many of them won the lottery the next day they would become Republicans.

I really have a lot of friends that are like this, they really have no philosophy, their politics is dictated by their personal need - not their ideas of right and wrong and morality.

Of course, not all of them. Not me for instance, I am a staunch Liberal/Progres sive and always will be. I just feel I am in the trenches with half-hearted cynics.
+25 # Adagio 2012-06-10 12:05
>"Democrat's message it is most often explained by the minority"<

Do you think the Republicans give a damn about the minorities?? There is a reason why they vote Democratic. Why would they vote against their own interests. Republicans marginalize them from the rest of society. Where do you think they're going to go?

>"setting up a racist connection and implied threat to white mainstream voters"<

They already know about the racist connection and implied threat to white mainstream voters. Racism was embedded into our constitution. Article 1. Sec.2. Article 1. Sec. 9, and Articlle 4. Sec. 2. Republicans love to wave the constitution, and its embedded racism in everyones face. White mainstream voters feel threatened because of their own racist tendency's. They fear the loss of a White Supremacy in this country.
+5 # brux 2012-06-10 15:45
> Do you think the Republicans give a damn about the minorities??

Yes and no. Yes, if they are rich or can be used, but not in general.

My point was that when you paint every mention of Liberalism or economic justice with a minority face you end up stigmatizing the movement to many white people - enough white people to nudge a marginal number over to the other side.

Look at what happened in 2004 … when it looked like Democrats were going to win the whole gay marriage thing started up with Gavin Newsom marrying gays in San Francisco.

That infuriated people, and there was no point to it. It does not need to be injected in a President election - and it was done by a FAKE Democrat.

You have to be smarted than to just knee jerk a Liberal Line that was written by Republicans - be your own person.
+119 # mike/ 2012-06-10 09:41
when the Washington Post comes out with a story entitled "Let’s just say it: The Republicans are the problem." as does the American Enterprise Institute and the Brookings Institution, two very conservative think tanks, what else can one say?

succinctly put, if Romney is elected, he and the Repugs will turn around and do EVERYTHING that Obama is trying to do; their racism is getting harder and harder to hide even though they are couching it in 'politics'. yeah, right...
+46 # genierae 2012-06-10 11:37
I disagree mike/, Romney will continue the Bush policies, privatizing every public institution and busting their unions, opening all of our wilderness areas and park lands to drilling, destroying the EPA, and all other government agencies that protect us, getting rid of Social Security and Medicare, shredding what's left of the social safety net, etc., etc., etc. I agree that racism is a big part of their hatred for Obama, but they also want to destroy the middle class, and turn us into wage slaves who don't have time to revolt. They are insane, and as long as they are in control, we are forced to live in a mad-house.
+4 # kyzipster 2012-06-12 08:42
Let's not forget Romney's support of Ryan's insane budget, it would put the nail in the coffin of our once great country.
-7 # brux 2012-06-10 15:47
I think Romney is going to be a lot like Obama. If he gets elected he will infuriate hardline Republicans like Obama has infuriated me by passing a mostly Republican agenda.

Romney is the Republican version of Obama - this is what we are going to get from now on - never a real choice, never a deep factual discussion. Just distracting nonsense.
-63 # jlohman 2012-06-10 09:42
Look, if the tables were turned the Dems would do the same thing. Take out the political bribes and the chase for money and we'd see honest government overnight. Only public funding of campaigns will change it, and only a 100% turnover in November will get us there.
+132 # brianf 2012-06-10 10:07
I disagree. Although the Democrats have turned Republican in many ways, this is not one of them. In fact, they cooperate far too much with the Republicans, regardless of which party is in power. That is their problem, not being too partisan. Democrats are often wrong, but I have never seen them deliberately sabotage the economy or do anything else that would gravely damage the country in order to make the other side look bad or in order to win an election.

Republicans have been doing this since Nixon and Kissinger derailed the Paris Peace Talks, prolonging the Vietnam war and killing many thousands more people, in order to win the election. Johnson knew but didn't say anything because he thought it would tear the country apart. Gore didn't speak up when the Republican Supreme Court stole the 2000 election, because he thought it would tear the country apart. Democrats are still not speaking up, while Republicans ruin the economy and steal and buy elections. The country has already been torn apart by filthy Republican tactics. When are the Democrats going to speak up and fight back and stand up for something, after we have no country left?
+71 # sameasiteverwas 2012-06-10 10:34
Not to mention the back-door dealing of Reagan as he ran for president, dealing arms with Iran to jump-start his Central America debacle. Dirty tricks on dirty tricks. Any "both sides do it" talk is false equivalency.
+30 # Jerry 2012-06-10 12:29
I thought you were going to mention Reagan's getting Iran to hold the hostages until after the election, as well. Republican leaders are scumbags with no honor, morality, integrity, or empathy. And I’m not impressed with the democrats either.
+18 # Bodiotoo 2012-06-10 15:14
and dealing with Iran before he was elected...consp iring with the enemy.
+27 # seniorcitizen 2012-06-10 11:32
brianf, well said. It is time for the Dems to speak up and fight. If they can show how the Rep. have used every dirty tactic to accomplish a stalemate,the gullible will go on thinking that it is all the president's fault. The president cannot do anything without Congress. We have to vote these obstructionists out in order to have a working government for the people.
-16 # dquandle 2012-06-10 12:09
If Obama's purposely hiring Geithner, Summers, Bernanke , Rubin et al., the people who eliminated Glass-Steagall and engineered the financial catastrophe, and his absolute refusal to even attempt to prosecute any of the Wall Street figures whose corporations engaged in such extraordinary criminal activities, does not constitute deliberate sabotaging of the economy, what the hell does????

At every instant he has been on the side of Wall Street, because he is in bed with them and attached to their money tit as tightly as could be imagined. He is as much of a criminal as any of the "Republicans". He has fully demonstrated himself to be continuing and expanding the heinous and treasonous policies of Bush II, and to be bent on accruing and abusing power, essentially turning the nation into a tyranny. Sitting around drawing up "kill lists" and pressing for legislation enabling eternal imprisonment of whomever he wants, whenever he wants, proves this.

Just because "Liberals" refuse to believe and countenance these atrocities, does not eliminate the fact that he is perpetrating of them. He, like his predecessors, is a very dangerous monster, even more so because the people who would be screaming their heads off if a "Republican" performed these actions, refuse to act when our appalling tyrant-in-train ing "liberal Democrat" president engages in them.
+39 # Virginia 2012-06-10 10:27
You are so right and it makes me think that these hard core Democrats are blinded by the Republican spotlight and can't even read.

YES, YES, YES!!! ONLY public funding of campaigns and total campaign reform will CHANGE America's politics for the better. We have a bunch of life-time milk toast moochers running our government on both sides. They won't change the status quo because they'd be out of a job.

Thumbs up people - unless you recognize the problem - you can't begin to fix it.
+18 # LiberalRN 2012-06-10 13:48
Quoting Virginia:
You are so right and it makes me think that these hard core Democrats are blinded by the Republican spotlight and can't even read.

YES, YES, YES!!! ONLY public funding of campaigns and total campaign reform will CHANGE America's politics for the better. We have a bunch of life-time milk toast moochers running our government on both sides. They won't change the status quo because they'd be out of a job.

Thumbs up people - unless you recognize the problem - you can't begin to fix it.

Boy, don't I wish! Any thoughts about the chances this has? McCain-Feingold got its teeth completely pulled, then Citizens United came along, and on both sides, speaking out against the "elephant in the living room" is a great way to lose your next election to a well-financed Tea Partier. Even when you DO recognize the problem it's going to be damned hard to fix it. I'm convinced that the only realistic way to do this is to start at the local level, electing progressives to local, then state positions, and nurturing them along WHILE EDUCATING THE PUBLIC about basic economics and civics, not the smoke-and-mirro rs kind being so freely flung about by the GOP and their mouthpieces. But even then, this is a decades-long proposition, and I shudder to think what will be left of the country for 99% of its citizens by then.
+7 # Bodiotoo 2012-06-10 15:13
National Elections should by right and for the purpose of avoiding fraud...simple Paper Ballots, with only Representative
Easy to recount if needed.
+1 # Bodiotoo 2012-06-10 15:14
Not sure why you make truthful statements and get all those thumbs down!?
+5 # brianf 2012-06-10 18:48
... But I agree that we desperately need public funding of elections.
+170 # Robert B 2012-06-10 09:42
Over the years, I have noticed that people often accuse others of exactly the same things they themselves are guilty of. Ever since Joe McCarthy, the Republicans have "questioned" everybody else's patriotism, but there's more than enough reason to question their own. True patriots don't suppress the vote, steal elections, rig the voting machines, start illegal wars, torture people and lie constantly about what they really stand for. A lot of people say they are voting for the lesser of two evils, but the only true evil I see is the Republican Party.
+61 # Barbara K 2012-06-10 10:13
Robert B: You say it so eloquently, and are so correct! Thanks for getting the truth out there.
+39 # LeeBlack 2012-06-10 10:53
Speaking of rigged voting - one questions the recent Wisconsin election - it appears that more people signed the recall petition than voted for Barrett. Maybe it wasn't just the money?
+21 # Doll 2012-06-10 13:52
[quote name="LeeBlack" ]Speaking of rigged voting - one questions the recent Wisconsin election - it appears that more people signed the recall petition than voted for Barrett. Maybe it wasn't just the money?[/quote

Maybe they just did what they usually do, stole another election through shadowy election machines.
+27 # Lolanne 2012-06-10 10:53
Quoting Robert B:
Over the years, I have noticed that people often accuse others of exactly the same things they themselves are guilty of. Ever since Joe McCarthy, the Republicans have "questioned" everybody else's patriotism, but there's more than enough reason to question their own. True patriots don't suppress the vote, steal elections, rig the voting machines, start illegal wars, torture people and lie constantly about what they really stand for. A lot of people say they are voting for the lesser of two evils, but the only true evil I see is the Republican Party.

You are absolutely right, Robert B. In psychological terms, they project their own shadow (the evil in their own souls) onto others. It's pretty much inevitable that they have come to this, since they've been so blinded by greed and lust for power for so long they have completely buried their own darkness. After a while, what is buried in the Shadow simply takes over. I think that's what has happened to the R party. The party was not always like this.
+3 # mdhome 2012-06-10 19:35
Yep, they can not understand anything else, only see everyone as like themselves.
Another thing we will never get money out of elections until the wealthy are so short of money they will not feel like spending any on elections. RAISE their taxes!
+22 # ABen 2012-06-10 11:04
Well said Robert. I completely agree!!
+21 # genierae 2012-06-10 11:44
Amen, Robert B. Instead of looking at the situation negatively, as who is the "lesser of two evils", we need to see it in the positive light of which party will benefit the interests of the people the most. That is obviously President Obama and the Democrats.
-25 # dquandle 2012-06-10 12:17
Then you are willfully blind, the same condition which when occurring in the German populace, led to the rise of the Nazis in the late '30's.

Obama, the murderer-in-chi ef, sitting around drawing up kill lists, idolizes Reagan and has continued and very dangerously amplified the polices of Bush II. Apparently you're unwilling to even see that.
+17 # lincolnimp 2012-06-10 12:28
Robert B
I saw your comment on another RSN article/essay and was very taken with what you had to say. I wondered why I hadn't seen your comments before. I even wondered if you were in actuality another Robert who likes to invade our space with right wing drivel. I thought maybe that Robert was just having fun playing "devil's advocate"...but your comment today puts that idea to rest. My project now is to embroider this small paragraph that you submitted today and put it on display in a place of prominence. Until I get this done, I will copy and paste your comment and send it to all my fellow Progressives as well as a couple of my more tolerant right wingers.
+8 # Jerry 2012-06-10 12:51
While I gave you a thumb up for all but the last clause, don't you think Obama's use of drones to murder people convicted of no crime evil? Don't you see his asking to be able to indefinitely detain people without their having a right to a trial as evil? We are not at war with the people he is murdering, and one is more likely to be killed by their furniture than a terrorist. The drone murders and indefinite detention without trial are evil and a waste of money. I’m not sure it is evil not to prosecute fraud, abuse, and criminality, but it sure does set a bad precedent, and shows that everybody are not equal under the law.
-1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:30
It takes more than the pres to 'Send in the Drones" Where was everyone when Reagun, Bushes were killing innocents?
How about Korea, Nam esp Agent O? None of them are any good and we allow it, we cheer our troops and now they are killing themselves daily...guess our service people are trying to tell us all something
No one is listening certainly not the Military who has supplied the Drones
+24 # ptalady 2012-06-10 13:01
I think it more than a coincidence -- it is a strategy: they highjack words describing their misdeeds and use them for something else entirely, disguising and deflating the real issues. Example: "vote fraud": they took those words and applied them to the microspopic problem of phoney voter registration like "Mickey Mouse," focused the media spotlight on that, and thereby stole the thunder from the mindboggling scale of massive electronic vote-box fraud, which may have even included airplane or car "accidents" for likely whistleblowers Example: "food safety": what people are really concerned about is they don't want to eat GMO -- that is why the GMO folks are fighting labeling GMOs tooth and nail. But the "conservative" powerbase took those words and used them to pretend that small farming hygiene practices were the problem, and thereby stole the thunder from this terrifying prospect of forever disrupting the ecological balance of our agriculture and food supply. etc. etc.
+15 # LiberalRN 2012-06-10 13:52
Quoting Robert B:
Over the years, I have noticed that people often accuse others of exactly the same things they themselves are guilty of. Ever since Joe McCarthy, the Republicans have "questioned" everybody else's patriotism, but there's more than enough reason to question their own. True patriots don't suppress the vote, steal elections, rig the voting machines, start illegal wars, torture people and lie constantly about what they really stand for. A lot of people say they are voting for the lesser of two evils, but the only true evil I see is the Republican Party.

This isn't an unconscious strategy, either. Take your worst flaw and accuse your opponent of it, forcing them into an untenable position. It's the old "when did you stop beating your wife" question - no matter how it's answered, the ugliness is out there, clinging to you, and the truth doesn't matter. Rove, Inc. developed this into an art and used it to great effect in the Bush v. Kerry election, giving us a new verb we would ALL have been better off without: "swift-boating. "
+6 # Regina 2012-06-10 14:57
We could, and should, do more with "Etch-a-Sketch. " The hither-and-yon pattern of Romney's record shows that he will favor any idea that his sponsors support, going back-and-forth and up-and-down with them. The real hilarity is the fact that this label was introduced by Romney's own aide! Very apt.
-1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:30
Another Walker et al
+3 # Bodiotoo 2012-06-10 15:17
Quoting Robert B:
Over the years, I have noticed that people often accuse others of exactly the same things they themselves are guilty of. Ever since Joe McCarthy, the Republicans have "questioned" everybody else's patriotism, but there's more than enough reason to question their own. True patriots don't suppress the vote, steal elections, rig the voting machines, start illegal wars, torture people and lie constantly about what they really stand for. A lot of people say they are voting for the lesser of two evils, but the only true evil I see is the Republican Party.

I would change your wording. True "democratic believers" rather than "patriots" ere are patriots on both sides of the aisle, but the Republican Party and its apparatus sure do seem to lean towards dis-enfranchisi ng people.
0 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:22
Democrats are not up to par. Many are but where are they on any stands? A handful are standing up to be counted or we are realllly news flat lined
+68 # LeeBlack 2012-06-10 09:45
Is there any doubt? The Republicans haven't said "We are here to serve the people", "we are here to serve our constituents", "we are here to put country first". They may as well have said, "we are here to keep Republicans (and our corporations) in power."
+15 # Tazio 2012-06-10 15:20
And Boehner said in 2010 that the Republicans were going to "focus like a laser on creating jobs."

How's that lasery, focusy, jobs thingey working out
for ya there John?
+7 # Mrcead 2012-06-10 15:32
But that's just the thing. Republicans walk that fine line, you know, the line that allows them to do everything they can possibly do legally and literally without technically breaking "their" rules.

As long as they never come out and "say" any of those things you've mentioned, they will merely reiterate that they "never said any of it" instead of addressing the accusation. In black or white dualistic thinkers, if it isn't 100% accurate, it just isn't true. Well 99% true may not be good enough for lethal injection but it is good enough for life without parole. Boot the Republicans and organize the Democrats and let's fix this country.
0 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:31
They say it every minute of the day in every language it appears
+94 # fredboy 2012-06-10 09:48
This headline shares the most obvious of answers, and also demonstrates the expected naivety of many RSN readers: OF COURSE THE REPUBLICANS INTENTIONALLY HURT THE ECONOMY, DUMMIES! They do it whenever it is convenient and useful to them!

Remember when Republican Alan Greenspan and the GOP Fed INTENTIONALLY destroyed the stock market in the spring of 2000? That was to stop the roaring economy, and thus stop the Democrats. And it worked!

For the past two years they have done it again. And it's worked! Duh...

Republicans see the economy as a limp balloon. Squeeze it and you deprive sections of it of air, while other sections bulge. And they are smart enough to take advantage of the bulge--whatever or wherever it is!

The problem with Democrats is they think Republicans think like they do. They don't!

And they don't care if their economic actions hurt you. Repeat, for the real dummies out there: THEY DON'T CARE IF THEIR ECONOMIC ACTIONS HURT YOU--IN THEIR BOOK, IT'S NEVER ABOUT YOU.
+11 # Virginia 2012-06-10 10:49
What the Republicans grasp that the Democrats ignore is that the vast majority of the 99% want the bank cartel to collapse. Albeit the average American is not prepared to endure the final financial force majeure – they just know they want an end to the corruption. The Republicans play to this. They have massive social networking AND they speak out to the media. I have to tell you it's pretty effective communication.

And what do we do? Bury our heads like a bunch of ostriches and whine because we're afraid the banks and the fed won't give any financial support. Even my own Congresswomen fail to address the Wall Street issues in their mass emails. When is the last time you saw your Dem Rep. discuss auditing the federal reserve? Just think what it would be like if they collectively began to prote the concept.
+16 # Barbara K 2012-06-10 14:14
Virginia: Senator Sanders had the Federal Reserve audited not that long ago. That is where the proof of the 17 Trillion Dollars that I spoke of a few months ago is that Bush gave to foreign banks and countries immediately after Obama won the election and before he took office. Why? So Obama would have nothing to use to save this country. That is diabolical, don't ya think? Just check Bernie Sanders web page and you should be able to find it. I had a list once, still here somewhere (lol), about how much money went to what countries.
-2 # Virginia 2012-06-10 16:01
Barbara - that was not a full audit and my point was that Republicans KNOW this is what Americans want and they are using it. Obama knows exactly where the money went. The Dems' problem is that they want to run down the center line in the road and the Republicans want to run them over.

We don't need anymore Centrists - it isn't working and the Dems are not rounding up the votes as you can see by the polls that are consistently dropping.

Bernie Sanders is an Independent for a reason. You can harp all day long vote Democrat, vote Democrat... But in the end, just like Wisconsin - we've given the majority of people, the people we need, nothing to vote for and they will not stand for more of the same.
+5 # Virginia 2012-06-10 16:07
BTW - Obama could have attached strings to those funds because they were not disbursed until after he took office. All he needed to do was issue an executive order for an accounting. He didn't because he knew where the money was going... I'm still looking for the surprised look on his face when Sen. Sanders uncovered the $17 TRILLION.

Tell me why it took an Independent and not a Democrat to uncover this crap? Probably because Bernie doesn't need to take money from Wall Street.
-1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:44
Right to Know or Public Information Act still gives us Rights but ostriches are sanding it
+2 # Barbara K 2012-06-10 20:52
Virginia: BTW, Senator Sanders was not the first to uncover the $17 Trillion, I heard about it months before he requested that audit. I had the list long before then as to where the money went. Obama had nothing to do with it. It was gone by the end of the year, and a while before Obama was sworn in while the Republican scum were meeting at a fancy restaurant plotting the ruination of his presidency. Anyway, that money was already gone, just to make sure there was no money for Obama to fix the economy or run the country with. BTW, I like Senator Sanders.
+2 # Virginia 2012-06-11 02:43
Barbara - Not sure where you get you information but the bailout according to the CBO found that through December 31, 2008, transactions under the TARP totaled $247 billion. Obama then doubled the original amount ...not to mention the Trillon$ that went through the fed which he likely knew about as well. And why not ask for an accounting before he released the rest? That's the question here...not whether Bernie or Geraldo found it - why didn't Obama track it?

The answer is simple - he already knew where it was going!
+1 # Barbara K 2012-06-13 06:51
That $17 Trillion, had nothing to do with the baillout. It was simply hidden in other countries and foreign banks. It was not part of the TARP, that is why it was considered missing. What makes you think that Obama wasn't trying to find it? He had such a mess on his hands, that it all had to be sorted out, while he was trying to keep the entire economy from collapsing, and the Senate was working on the Affordable Health Care Act. He had a lot to deal with all at one time, so just give some slack, even superman couldn't have accomplished it all at the same time in a short time. You are barking at the moon.
-5 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:42
I know my Cong won't but I find the Dem senator is as sleazy
+28 # Adagio 2012-06-10 12:14
>"The problem with Democrats is they think Republicans think like they do. They don't!"<

This is absolutely true. They seem astonished that the Repugs are so intractable. And of course they think that playing their game will work, when the Repugs change the rules of their own game at every opportunity. There are no rules to their game. It's winner take all, and anything is fair, and they will use a scorched earth policy if they need to to gain the White House and power. If you are in their way, they will roll right over you.

Democrats need to fully understand and grasp the fact that the Repugs aren't interested in democracy at all. That isn't what they are about. They want a Plutocracy. Dems need to quit attempting to "play nice" with people that are willing to kill you to get their way. The lessons of Germany in the 1930's seems to have been forgotten.
+3 # dovelane1 2012-06-11 06:57
Someone commented after another editorial that the republicans aren't interested in policy, only power. Or perhaps it's only policies that promote or sustain their power.
+2 # mdhome 2012-06-10 19:59
I do not know if you have read John Deans book "conservatives without a conscience", but if not get it and read it, your way of writing is in the same direction. Congratulation, I like.
+1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:34
They have been practicing for a long long time
Problem with Democrats is they may believe the Thugs think. that is an impossibility
for a clone
+61 # brianf 2012-06-10 09:51
Of course they did whatever they could to stall the recovery. They said their #1 goal was to defeat Obama, not to help the economy. And it's obvious that is true from their actions.
+42 # CAMUS1111 2012-06-10 10:23
And nothing will change unless the GOP is openly recognized as the neo-fascist party it so clearly is.
+41 # Kathymoi 2012-06-10 10:31
Unfortunately, I think the Republicans are ruining the American economy for a reason more fundamental than to defeat President Obama. I think that ruining the American economy is itself their goal. It appears that the Republicans want exactly an economy in which a few super rich hold all the money, all the power, all the privilege and the rest of us are poor slaves, or better, dead.
+1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:50
However soon as we no longer have money there will be no money in their coffers so they are very will be like this world wide...Where will their raises come from robots? What will they need it is mute and they are stupid and greedy
+44 # thinking liberal 2012-06-10 10:31
I cannot believe that Liberals would even need to ask the question in the title! With the history of Nixon secretly negotiating with N.Vietnam during 68 campaign, telling them to not sign peace treaty till after election.. LBJ called it treason to Dirksen (google it- it's on tape). OR after Reagan's October surprise on Carter- negotiating with Iran to wait in releasing hostages (which laid the groundwork for Iran-Contra) THE FACT WHAT WE WOULD ACTUALLY QUESTION IF THEY DELIBERATELY crashed the economy is example of WHY the GOP is kicking the Dem's butts. The Dems refuse to play offense, continuing to play defense in a game the GOP chooses is folly. ANOTHER LOSING EX: is deciding in 09 that NO PROSECUTION, NO investigation, NO truth and reconciliation process of HOW WE WERE LED INTO IRAQ.
+26 # jwb110 2012-06-10 10:39
Here is the real problem. After Dick, Mitch and Eric have done everything to tank the economy they may not be able to revive it. Then where are you? Letting the rich hold onto their money for this last four years will only make them clutch onto it more. Not only have the Republicans done everything nefarious thing they could do to win, in the long run I don't think they care if the economy every gets healthy. They aren't hurt by it and neither are their business backers. SO every dupe who has voted Republican is looking at a life where they got their way and what they ultimately got was the short end of the stick. Amen, brother.
+16 # Jerry 2012-06-10 13:09
Don't you remember, they've said repeatedly when they have control that deficits don't matter? They will spend like drunken sailors if they win and the economy will recover. If you don't want their blackmail to pay off, you have to defeat them all.
-7 # dick 2012-06-10 10:40
Obama himself sabotaged the recovery & Keynesian economics when he rejected near unanimous advice from economists & went for pathetically weak, non-transformat ive, Stimulus combined with Goldman Sachs Trickle Down: give TRILLION$ to Wall St. & watch it trickle out to privately owned islands & yachts named "Bonus, Baby!" Obamacare is Corporate Crooks' wet dream. Bill Clinton repealed Glass-Steagall for Wall St. & triggered collapse. Barry WILL NOT indict Wall St. crooks. For shame.
+19 # Virginia 2012-06-10 12:14
You want to know why that it is so hard for these politicians to stop Wall Street? Look at the state land recorders’ office records and you’ll likely find your state (and federal) legislators have refinanced or paid off their mortgages since 2008.  Yeah, when average individuals were thrown into HAMP and told to default in order to get help, then denied modifications and foreclosed on – these legislating sta te and federal employees and their staffers – not union leaders, police, firemen or teachers - we’re talking L EGISLATORS here – were getting preferential treatment.

Then look at the financial disclosures for your judges and legislators and see how much money they have invested in the banks and mutual funds that hold tons of bank shares. It is more than an appearance of impropriety.

It’s not that their hands are tied – they are compromised.
0 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:56
GW and Red States didnt want Unions to invest in Mutual funds and local funds.
Very good rift.
+2 # Virginia 2012-06-11 02:52
If that's the case then it's even more sickening. They never should have invested in such risky intangibles. Sure makes one wonder who was the actual leader of the financial demise when Clinton still says he believes repealing Glass Steagall was the right thing to do. I wanna ask him, for who?
+3 # brux 2012-06-11 11:28
No doubt things are much more sickening. The "Conservatives" , a euphemism for American fascism have been working at this plan for 40 years, maybe more. They have the broadstrokes and the tactics down. They know human nature and they have control of the public mind in terms of who and what we CAN vote for, and what we know, and what gets discussed and taken seriously by the public.

I think this is the death of the human being and the engineering of a prole "product", throwaway laborers, all done very precisely and easily with computers that can recall and manage a different relationship with every person based on and managed from the top. In business the idea is called CRM, customer relations management, but it is just a database on which many queries and apps can be run to determine how best to exploit every individual.
+14 # dquandle 2012-06-10 12:20
Yup!, but its not just a "shame". It's extremely dangerous.
-1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 20:54
Can't give half thumbs but Clinton did help sell us out to be popular, at first he thought lil lady healthcare was going in, and should have, would have public op now. But he signed NAFTA and other shameful has foreign interests and vie versa.
OB then wants to be nice guy like Clinton...shoul d have cleansed DC
+31 # sameasiteverwas 2012-06-10 10:41
I know of small business owners who have done better under this administration, are doing quite well, but complain loudly and often about how Obama is the worst president ever...they are holding off on hiring because they want to wait until after the election. They don't want This President to get any credit for job creation. I wonder how many conservative business owners are doing exactly the same thing? Especially this sudden slow-down after 27 months of consecutive growth in the private this the plan each local conservative-dr iven Chamber of Commerce is pushing across the country? Slow it down, slow it down, it's going too well. Just wait until November. I've never been much of a conspiracy theorist, but this has me wondering...
+30 # TomDegan 2012-06-10 10:42
They call it the Republican "party". It's no longer a political party. It hasn't been one in decades. It is now an organized criminal enterprise.

Wake up and smell the elephant shit.

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY
+6 # Old Man 2012-06-10 15:15
Quoting TomDegan:
They call it the Republican "party". It's no longer a political party. It hasn't been one in decades. It is now an organized criminal enterprise.

Wake up and smell the elephant shit.

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY I like that one Tom. I was thing of, at my own expense of printing up some bumper stickers "Wake up and smell the Elephant Fart".(it's killing you).
Would that be o.k. w/you? I'm trying to turn Arizona Blue in place w/nothing but redneck.
0 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 21:30
'Do you have your Elephant Waders' On Yet?'

"Ain't the Blue Cheese your smelling upon entering Wisconsin, our Cheese isn't rotten'

If you do it let us all know You could probably get Unions to help produce some and help the groups and yourself....
+6 # Skeeziks 2012-06-10 11:05
Creating more tax cuts to me, appears to be the best atmosphere to raise prices for businesses, therefore draining those who must spend more and can not save their "bonanza tax cuts" for future unforeseen circumstances. Like maybe job layoffs and human cutbacks.
-36 # MidwestTom 2012-06-10 11:06
I have been wondering if the Republicans may be the reason we elected Obama. If they correctly guessed that looking at his record of achievements, one could guess that he would be in way over his head as President, and thus severely damage our chances in following elections. Realize that he basically came from nowhere, his his trackable background, and never was a rearing success at anything. Were we suckered by big money, who got a man they totally control in the White House?
+20 # Skeeziks 2012-06-10 12:04
Yes Tom. So why don't we all pitch in and help him out by creating a Congressional majority of his party?
-1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 21:34
I want some Greens, Independents in that mix...just no more Pukes
+19 # lexy677 2012-06-10 13:44
And George Bush came from somewhere? The "C" student who failed at everything he ever did in spite of all the help he got from his influential daddy ? The "moron" who couldn't even speak "standard english?...oh I forgot; he's white; so he is obviously constitutionall y immune from stupidity and the "nothingness" of being. And btw Goerge bush was in total control in the white house....of course! ha!!!
-1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 21:37
Papa Bush et al are nothing but pure evil their wives are accessories to the facts. Reagun...worst of the worst.
Clintons Waltzing with the boys didn't impress me, it doesn't now with OB
We may need OB but I prefer Biden. I want only new faces. NO MORE LONG TERMS Judges also out out out after ten years max. Full disclosure on all
-1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 21:33
I would prefer voting for a person with low profile anymore than some slime ball with ego.

Some of us remember that the Lord reminded us that if we pay our selves on our backs in this life, ex bragging, then expect no such award in the next life. These 1% ain't taken it with them either, their kids do not care on on
-5 # DaveM 2012-06-10 11:06
Three major factors come to mind when I think of the economy. The first is the number of American manufacturing jobs that have migrated overseas. That's been ongoing since World War II, but took a quantum leap when China was granted "most favored nation" trade status. We could start solving that problem overnight with heavy tariffs on most Asian-made goods--at least several Asian nations do the same to American-made products.

Then there was the "housing bubble". Developers dumped huge amounts of money into housing developments and yuppies bought three houses apiece, both believing them to be "sure things" investment-wise . No one seems to have realized that the average home buyer has no need for three homes and so, when the supply exceeded demand.... A lot of short-sighted people banked their retirement money on stupid real estate speculation.

Related to that are the various bank and brokerage collapses. Some of that was due to people taking out loans for the aforementioned multiple houses, some due to banks handing out loans to people who could not possibly repay, and some to outright fraud. Where are the prosecutions? Americans want their money back.

All this happened while Ds and Rs changed places in Washington several times, and chances are it will continue. Both parties point fingers and neither is interested in solving the problem, each so they can blame it on the other.
+17 # genierae 2012-06-10 12:02
Your last paragraph demonstrates the false equivalency that is so prevalent these days, DaveM. The Democrats are nowhere near as corrupt as the Republicans, and most of them still care about this country and helping those who have been harmed by this recession. Their progressive caucus is the best of the bunch, but even the most corrupt Democrat is miles above any Republican in integrity and decency. Instead of knocking them, why not volunteer at their local headquarters, and work to create positive change?
-1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 21:39
Prove it. Have yous see what Senator Casey of Pa is voting for look at other States. We need the cleansing OB didnot do
0 # genierae 2012-06-11 12:10
I don't have to do your fact-checking for you, KittatinyHawk, you need to do it yourself. You can name as many Dems as you want, there's NO comparison between them and the total virulence of these tea-party Republicans. Their party is losing all the decent ones who are willing to compromise, that should tell you something. If the Republicans had joined with Obama and the Dems to bring this country out of the deep recession that Bush got us into, instead of vowing to destroy him from the first days, the American people would be a lot better off, and we would no longer be in a recession. They sacrificed the well-being of their own country for political gain, and that looks a lot like treason.
+14 # Virginia 2012-06-10 13:08
It would take me too long to correct your inaccuracies of what caused the collapse - but suffice to say it wasn't 2nd/3rd home speculation. It was a not-so-brillian tly orchestrated Wall Street "patented" Ponzi scheme. It targeted over 84 million homeowner's and state, federal, corporate and union pension and retirement funds - laundering and funneling money off shore to various LLC entities to the detriment of the investors who finally caught on and sued the banks. See and watch INSIDE JOB and read THE BIG SHORT for starters.
+11 # brux 2012-06-10 15:52
breaking the law and the fiduciary responsibility by blending poison crap loans with good ones and rating them all AAA was crime on a massive scale, and nothing has been done about it still - meaning that the whole system is criminal -there is no way to work in a corrupt toxic system to change it. so, we are all waiting for it to get so bad or a crystallzing event that is so awful it begs a disruptive response. meanwhile the whole system, the whole world is held hostage while these criminals bleed us all dry.

We might as well realize that the only way to fix this is to take away what makes these people have so much power - that is their money. We need a kind of economic reset in this country, and probably the world.
-3 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 21:38
Yuppies and Jesus freaks were the Satan opening. Stuff, money, stuff, money.
+25 # asbpab1966 2012-06-10 11:09
Nixonites, dixiecrats, and billionaires--t hat's the Republican party. They have cheated since 1972 (Watergate). They would be trounced at the polls if not for the fact that many white Americans are racist and the RepubliKKKans take advantage of that.
+29 # ABen 2012-06-10 11:09
So many of my friends who are life-long Rs are absolutely disgusted with the actions of this current iteration of the GOP. Good government involves making your arguments, from all sides of an issue, and reaching a compromise that addresses the problem. The current Teabagger-drive n crowd in the GOP seems hell-bent on keeping the economy in the tank to hurt Obama and the Dems and has no goal other than regaining political power.
+7 # LiberalRN 2012-06-10 13:56
Quoting ABen:
So many of my friends who are life-long Rs are absolutely disgusted with the actions of this current iteration of the GOP. Good government involves making your arguments, from all sides of an issue, and reaching a compromise that addresses the problem. The current Teabagger-driven crowd in the GOP seems hell-bent on keeping the economy in the tank to hurt Obama and the Dems and has no goal other than regaining political power.

So, will your friends still vote GOP in November?
+1 # ABen 2012-06-11 16:01
Several did vote for Obama, while others simply did not vote in 2008. On of those R's refers to Romney as "the golden turnip." I would characterize these friends as conservative but not stupid.
0 # lexy677 2012-06-13 04:07
In America you have to be either a wealthy crook or decidedly stupid to call yourself a "conservative". What do you want to conserve?..your privileges?, if you are middle or working class you have NONE except that of skin color( if you are white). Other than that, if you are not wealthy and you call yourself a conservative, you are beyond stupid. If your friends are conservative and middle class they are definitely stupid...real "blinking idiots"
+1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 21:40
They can change to a new party and prove their ilk
-32 # MidwestTom 2012-06-10 11:13
As the late southern Senator Stennis, a member of the former Democratic part, once stated on the floor of the Senate "If it rakes a depression to correct the morals of the country, then bring it on"
+21 # Innocent Victim 2012-06-10 11:46
What an immoral man to quote!
+28 # seniorcitizen 2012-06-10 11:15
It has been obvious that ever since the Reb. have been in control of the House, that they are intent on voting NO to everything that Presdient Obama has asked. I believe that if the president would show the facts of how the Reb.have derailed the economy in his political ads and his speeches ;perhaps it would wake some people up.Romney is telling lies; it is time for some truth and hard facts to show where the problem lies.
-54 # brucbaker 2012-06-10 11:21
I don't get this RSS feed ... did you guys forget the OVER 30 BILLS passed in the HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES that the DEMOCRAT SENATE won't even discuss or bring to the floor for a VOTE?

Have you guys forgotten that NEARLY ALL LEGISLATION passed in the last three years was totally without Republicans, or nearly without Republicans?

I guess you guys DON'T pay attention to facts ... the spin and the propaganda is so much easier to swallow... you know .. say a lie three times and people begin to believe it!

Well, when a government spends more than it has coming in to fill the coffers ... damn straight something is wrong. PUBLIC SECTOR NEEDS PRIVATE SECTOR TO PAY FOR IT. Obama got that whole thing backwards backing and putting money FIRST towards Unions and Public sector!

READ'EM and WEEP! Democrats Screwed the POOCH ECONOMICALLY and KILLED so much small business .. the result is... guess what ... economy in the crapper! Oh well .. FACT BEAT SPIN every single time!
+22 # sameasiteverwas 2012-06-10 11:37
Um...private sector ("small" businesses, as well as Wall Street) are doing very, very well right now. VERY well if you insist on capitals. Try a true "fact" somewhere --oh,wait, yes, there is one -- the only legislation passed HAS been without any Republican support. Ding -- FACT! So we AREN'T in the midst of a second Great Depression, the American auto industry HAS been saved, and Wall Street IS back in the 12Ks. It isn't just a Republican nightmare -- it's the TRUTH.
+22 # Skeeziks 2012-06-10 12:15
And I guess, brubaker, not increasing the taxes of the corporations who pay their upper management people millions and rescinding Bush's tax cuts and paying off his war with that money and not the 99%'s money is not the way to go.

Me? I think Bush's portarait should hang over the 4500+ American military personnel gravesites with a benevolent smile on his face since he got what he wanted. The guy who wanted to kill his daddy.

Never have so many died for a revenge plan.And we are still paying the deal off. Go figure you Republican patriots.
+4 # Virginia 2012-06-10 19:37
Honestly, taxing is not going to help. Piercing the corporate veil would be more effective. These banksters took BILLION$ (if not TRILLION$) in bonuses, shares of stock, certificates, and golden parachutes after they had raped the world of it's investment funds. And they are still trading the debt as the securitization Ponzi lives on - because we taxpayers subsidized it.

If you suspected you had participated in a Ponzi scheme, would you continue to participate - or would you call an attorney, the FBI, or the DOJ? And if you did continue to participate would you be aiding and abetting criminal activity? Think about it - this is exactly where we are these days - and no one seems to be passing any laws or indictments to stop the financial terrorism.

The only good thing about Republicans, if there is any - is that in the end they eat their own.
+19 # MEBrowning 2012-06-10 13:27
brucbaker, it would appear that you haven't been paying attention for most of the past decade and just woke up in 2008. Suggest you track government spending since 2000, when GWB was handed a DEMOCRATIC SURPLUS. With the exception of the bailout authorized under Bush, the Obama administration' s spending has gone way, way down. Public-sector jobs have been cut by the hundreds of thousands. During the past four years, Congressional Republicans have killed any legislation that would have stimulated the economy — even policies they wrote themselves! — because of their pledge to take Obama down by any means necessary. How clueless do Republican voters have to be not to realize their own party is screwing EVERYBODY, including them?
+8 # lexy677 2012-06-10 13:47
Keep voting republican"#bru cbaker". You deserve all thats coming.
+11 # Barbara K 2012-06-10 13:58
brucbaker: Thanks to the Senate for stopping the crap Bills coming out of the House. Most were to put their own controls on our bodies. That is not the job of the government.
+8 # Jerry 2012-06-10 14:16
You need to understood economics, and understand that the country's budget doesn’t work like a family's budget. If the government cuts back, as the republicans are doing, when the private consumer is in debt and has no equity or confidence on which to borrow, businesses have few customers and lay off workers, the economy shrinks, and government revenue decreases, making the deficit worse. If the government spends on bridges and roads and teachers and education and firefighters and research and development, and other infrastructure, it builds a base that will increase productivity and enrich our children’s futures while stimulating the economy, increasing consumer confidence and the velocity of money, providing customers for businesses, increasing the GNP and government revenue, decreasing the deficit over time. And if taxes are increased on the people that have bought their wealth via government laws and rules and swindling people, the deficit will decrease faster. Historically, growth in GNP is greater when the top income tax rate is over 50%, and the capital games tax is over 25%.
+8 # Jerry 2012-06-10 14:16
The government isn't broke. Unlike dad and mom, it can increase its revenue anytime its brain becomes mature enough to do so. Unlike mom and dad it doesn't die, giving it an unlimited time to correct its expenditure and income issues. And since it borrows in the currency that it controls, it can inflate away its debt if it should get desperate enough to risk the consequences. There usually little consequence if the inflation is low enough, and the politicians are mature enough to show that they will pay the country’s bills so that the bond market doesn’t freak. It can also decrease imports that drain money out of the economy, decreasing its revenue, and if done with tariffs, increase its revenue from such.
0 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 21:44
They can sell on ebay, and Christies just like the rest of us and start payin back those illegal Social Security dip ins
+7 # Regina 2012-06-10 15:12
All the Republicans offer up is sabotage, even reversing themselves if Obama accepts something they put forth originally. It's all spin, spite, and stupidity. And when their obstruction on economic policy becomes too blatant, they move over to their war on women, a handy place to make more trouble and look busy while doing more sabotage to the country and the people..
+7 # RHytonen 2012-06-10 17:41
Without government there would BE no private sector.
+11 # Adagio 2012-06-10 11:23
The Title of this article is >"Did Republicans Deliberately Crash the US Economy?"
-11 # Innocent Victim 2012-06-10 11:42
Mitch McConnell's words amount to a prima facie case.

Still, as much as I would hate to see Mitt Romney as president, the matter has been taken out of my hands by the requirement that I vote for Barack Obama. I cannot vote for an evil, be it the lesser of two. Obama is a destroyer of my Bill of Rights, a presidential assassin, war criminal, protector of frauds, prosecutor of benevolent whistle-blowers , killer of innocent civilians, . . . , worst president so far.

Now Romney may outdo him, but there is nothing I can do to prevent it. I cannot vote for an evil of any degree.
+24 # wfalco 2012-06-10 11:55
Did Republicans deliberately crash the economy? Yes! One only has to look at who benefits. Aren't corporations raking in record profits? Aren't CEO's making more and more money, despite the lack of job creation? Isn't refusal to hire,even with record profits, a definitive example of pure, unadulterated Corporatism-a.k .a.-Fascism?

I gave up a long time ago thinking that any Republicans actually cared about the poor or working class stiff. They are narcassistic sociopaths who care only about the bottom line-profits for their donor class. The lack of, or incapability to care for others (one's own family excluded)is a clear example of being sociopathic. The prisons are full of such people-but those are the ones without money. The ones out here running the show as Masters of the Universe are running free-a very scary thought indeed.
-9 # Sea Star RN 2012-06-10 11:57
The Democrats had just as much a hand in this too and we're letting them all off the hook by making this partisan issue.

Think about their vote to go to war and the many re-funding votes to once again use their credit card to fight an unnecessary war.
82 House DEMs and 29 Senate DEMs voted YES on the Iraq War resolution:

Think about their desperate comments as they prefaced their voted to bail-out the banks.

40 DEMs in the Senate (33 GOP) voted YES
172 DEMS in the House (91 GOP) voted YES.

We have a one-headed Congress intent on doing the bidding of the corporate state at all costs to the American people.
+17 # angelfish 2012-06-10 12:03
This has been their goal since Inauguration Day! The are Treasonous Anti-American ME Firsters who don't care if our Country TANKS as long as President Obama gets the blame! Eight, LONG murderous years under the Malfeasance and Misdirection of "the shrub" (Thank-You, Mollie Ivins!) has inured them to the misery of our citizenry. Wouldn't you think, in times of National Crisis, the ReTHUGlicans would work in CONCERT with their Colleagues across the aisle for the betterment of ALL? Yes, you'd THINK that, wouldn't you? Not THIS bunch! They are a Shame and a Disgrace to our Nation and, hopefully, will be given their walking papers come November! The People, UNITED, will NEVER be defeated!
+25 # 2012-06-10 12:17
Germany's economic disaster opened the door for Hitler to seize power. Destroying our economy by design was the only way for politically ambitious group of people to achieve that goal in this sphere. I have no doubt this is not just about Obama. He is only slowing the process in motion for some time.It seemed obvious to me for some time. It is a shame that people have been too complaicant to see it coming.
+6 # Michael_K 2012-06-10 12:25
It certainly seems deliberate, since the results of their actions were so evidently predictable to so many of us. But they were hardly alone in sabotaging the economy. Please ermember that Clinton helped them a LOT. (NAFTA, Glass-Steagall, Mickey Cantor and GATT)

So-called free trade is actually forcing US manufacturers, laden with a pile of unfunded mandates, to try to compete with manufacturers who have none of these mandated expenses. So yes, it's sabotage, but even O'Bomber is signing so-called "free trade agreements" and bullshitting us that they will "create jobs"... So, there's plenty of blame to go 'round. Yet, still, you're all behaving as if this were a football game and feverishly rooting for your favourite teams... You should be tarring, feathering and running out of town most of the adherents to both Rethuglican and Dumbocratic parties.
+20 # CL38 2012-06-10 12:28
Since the 1970's when the far right began organizing and setting up think tanks and organizations to fund their policies, it's been the GOP plan to do away with civil, privacy and reproductive rights, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid and to return power and wealth to the "elite" and corporations.

That's exactly what they've done, including intentionally crashing the economy as another means of taking power and raiding the country's coffers.


If they get re-elected, it's going to get a hell of a lot worse. Vote in November!
+5 # DaveEwoldt 2012-06-10 12:38
The article starts off with a fundamental disconnect. The economy stinks because it is at odds with physical and natural laws. Infinite growth on a finite planet is unsustainable. Actually, it is ecocidal. We are destroying our life support system to support elite greed and appropriated power.

Blaming one wing or the other of the Corporate War Party is a distraction from the underlying destructive and inequitable paradigm.
+10 # tomr 2012-06-10 12:49
THE economy didn't crash (except for maybe a temporary setback). OUR economy - the economy of the middle and lower classes - is what crashed. So, yes. But, as some have pointed out, it's not just the Republicans' fault. Politicians represent (with VERY few exceptions) money. They don't represent people, they represent money.

And don't give me that garbage about small business. That's the anthem of the "Even Bigger Liars Than the Other Guys" party. "Pro-business" means anti-consumer (as Dan Quayle actually said, once) and, above all, anti-regulation . What really happens is the REAL money, from large corporations, is served, and all barriers are taken down and small businesses are swallowed up, stepped on, and sprayed with bug spray until they are dead.
+19 # Sensible1 2012-06-10 12:52
Lets put a stop to the false rhetoric that both sides do it, when we know that it is the side that actually does it, that makes this statement. It is a childlike way to neutralize and deflect any blame which was clearly and correctly leveled on the guilty party; namely the Republicans. I do not recall a Democrat ever using it.
+11 # Virginia 2012-06-10 12:57
The way it looks to average non-political Americans is that there are 3 elements in the nation election scene. There are (1) the free roaming, takeover all powerful Koch Capitalist Republicans, (2) the Tea Baggers who are rogue Republicans that want to control the zoo keeper (Federal Reserve) from feeding the Capitalists and would like to bring Wall Street to it's knees and under control and (3) then there is the Democrat Party that's not quite sure where it wants to be and keeps trying to move itself somewhere in the middle. Kinda like the mistress that wants the sugar daddy to get a divorce.

Now we've got the divorce but the mistress still isn't in control...and average Americans feel like the children of the divorce and they want a united family back.

The Republicans play this game very well. Democrats have to become united leaders and not followers. We don't belong in the middle. We should maintain a strong balance on the left.
+12 # guodr 2012-06-10 12:58
Yes the Republicans are destroying the economy. It's time for a change.
A progressive income tax needs to be renewed. We need to go back to the pre-Reagan tax rates.
The only stimulus we have today is the Military. It is huge. Don't decrease military spending, increase it. It's the only thing the Republicans will vote for. Make the emphasis on people not hardware. We have 11 aircraft carrier groups, 65 nuclear subs, etc. I hate to say this but small reductions hardware could fund more jobs for more people.
We have a big country, we need a big government. If I hear one more tea party twit compare The USA to Turkey I'll scream. Also sitting around the kitchen table doing the family budget in no way compares to making a budget for this country.
+2 # John Steinsvold 2012-06-10 14:03
An Alternative to Capitalism (if the people knew about it, they would demand it)

Several decades ago, Margaret Thatcher claimed: "There is no alternative". She was referring to capitalism. Today, this negative attitude still persists.

I would like to offer an alternative to capitalism for the American people to consider. Please click on the following link. It will take you to an essay titled: "Home of the Brave?" which was published by the Athenaeum Library of Philosophy:

John Steinsvold

“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result."~ Albert Einstein
+5 # RHytonen 2012-06-10 17:38
Richard Wolffe (Economist, UMass) has a recorded speech on LinkTV that describes an excellent Alternative to Capitalism.
It is in fact in place inn certai areas of Silicoon Valley and in Italy (through their unemployment compensation system)
Germany also has an excellent way of controlling offshoring of jobs and money, also described in this speech.
It's called “Can We Afford Capitalism?”
One has to losten carefully to distinguish the plans from Communism, but that's only because the Republicans on FOX have been calling anything that wasn't clearly Fascist, "Socialist" or "Communist."
As for the accusations of similar hyperbole in using the term "Fascism," look up the ONLY definition that counts - Mussolini's. You will see that it has existed since Queen Elizabeth 1 issued a "Charter" to the East India Tea Company. And opposition to merged corporate and government power to fleece the people through uncompeted monopoly, backed by the law and armies, is exactly why America was formed.
+7 # pernsey 2012-06-10 14:12
Did Republicans Deliberately Crash the US Economy?


Now they are saying its Obama's fault, this is the same old game, and its really old. The GOP is the party of NO!! They will destroy everything, then blame the dems, its so typical and predictiable!
+6 # Vardoz 2012-06-10 14:31
Bush deregulated, Wall St knew they would get bailed out. Bush waged unpaid for illegal wars for profit and NAFTA outsourced all our jobs for slave labor. There has been zero interest on the part of the GOP to elevate Main St. Bush stole 2 elections, the 1st with the help of the corrupt Supreme Court. After packing the court with corporate judges they passed Citizen United. The GOP and Blue Dog Dems have all conspired to not only bring Obama down but to do it at any cost to Main St and put big money in control of our lives and polluters in charge of the fate of the Earth. Too many are sold out scum and we need an aggressive voting population that will get these criminals out and replace them with people like Elizabeth Warren. The corporations and the military industrial complex have been working to destroy our Democracy for a long time. Person hood power, nation state power, 60 vote majority in the senate, bought off reps, an army of lobbyists all against the interests of the people, endless filibusters you name it. We are voting for Obama period end of story. If Mitt gets in now will look real good to us.
+1 # Sandy G 2012-06-10 14:53
To the extent that 'the economy' is not yet actually dead, it isn't because the Republicans haven't been trying to strangle it, and if any of their current economic platform actually makes in into 'law', the economy is as good as dead.
Doesn't anyone rfemember the Senate-floor assertions of Mitch MCConnell, who pledges to make Mr. Obama a one term president. I'd like to know who the hell anyone will be able to blame for the collapse, when it occurs.
+2 # CL38 2012-06-10 16:02
They'll blame Democrats.
+10 # LegendBert 2012-06-10 15:02
The fact that the Republicans have been deliberately sabatoging the economy in order to defeat Obama has been obvious to just about everybody for quite some time.
+9 # WestWinds 2012-06-10 15:38
The Republicans are ridiculous. They say they are "anit-governmen t" yet, they are IN the government and receiving government paychecks, so they can't be all THAT anti-government .

If the Repoublicans are truly anti-government , let them all get out of the government and mean what they say and back it to prove it. If not, then what they are REALLY saying is, that they are against any government except themselves running everything; they have no tolerance for anybody but themselves and their ideologies, forgetting that a good one half of the country doesn't agree with them AT ALL!
+5 # RHytonen 2012-06-10 17:20
If they were "anti-governmen t" they would refuse to serve - not seek it.

And trying to destroy it from within makes you a saboteur and so, a traitor;
certainly not a patriot.
+6 # fredboy 2012-06-10 16:19
These magnificent comments share one truth:
Republicans are anti-America.
Sorry, but it's true.
They repeatedly hurt our nation.
And could care less about its--or our--future.
+9 # brilyn37 2012-06-10 16:24
On May 13th I posted my own original research into state austerity budgets which shows which states are pursuing economically harmful austerity measures. The data shows that states with GOP governors are far more likely to lay off state workers, which is harming the economy. I too wonder if this isn't a plan to taint the economy for political gain.
0 # haole guy 2012-06-10 16:57
"Hear O Israel, you are to cross the Jordan (Atlantic, Pacific, Gulf of Mexico)
enter in and dispossess nations greater and stronger than yourselves." Deuteronomy 9:1
-15 # JackB 2012-06-10 16:59
The Republicans want to hold Obama to one term? That's almost impossible to believe. How can a political party be so perverse as to want to replace another party's office holder with one of their own? What is the world coming to?

Actually the entire piece is funny. Reid wants changes to Senate rules that are currently inconvenient. That they were very convenient for him in other instances is not an issue. But that's Harry. To paraphrase General Bullmoose from Orphan Annie: What's good for Harry Reid is good for the USA.

But that is just a sidebar. For Bush's last two years & Barry's first two the Democrats controlled both houses of Congress. They accomplished nothing when they had the power. What they lacked was the excuse. Now they still accomplish nothing but it's OK because the Republicans can be blamed. Four years in power, two with a Democrat President & nothing to show for it. That's what Democrats consider Leading America. Only the Democrats could take someone with a totally blank resume, a member of an anti-American, racist clergyman's congregation & a friend of an unrepentant domestic terrorist & say - That's Our Guy!!
+6 # RHytonen 2012-06-10 17:17
People need to stop saying Dems had a majority, at ANY time or date.

Just because a senator has a -D after his name or caucuses wih the Democrts, does not mean s/he's a Democrat,or would ever vote against large corporations. Ben Nelson, Joe Liberman (-I,) Blanche Lincoln, Mary Landrieu, Max Baucus - these were not Democrats. Anyone watching C-Span knows that.

Today it's worse - Joe Manchin (Painfully, "-D West Virginia") is even a member of ALEC.
+11 # wwway 2012-06-10 17:52
Did Republicans deliberatelly destroy the economy? That's a no brainer yes. They gave tax breaks to the rich, ran up the credit card for the purpose of saying "We can't afford Education, SS, Medicare, Health Care, Roads, Bridges, Bullet Trains......." This has been their plan for years and I'm amazed Americans voted like Chickens for Col. Sanders. Repbulican Bob Barr said Americans were too stupid to vote....well...
+5 # Carlosmik 2012-06-10 18:30
Duh!! The only people it isn't obvious to are the media. But, the author has singled out the wrong "most obvious piece of evidence", and it is real evidence: Republicans refusing to increase the debt limit last summer (and threatening to do it again this year). Their shenanigans threw the credit markets into turmoil and resulted in the first downgrading of US debt ever, which by the way cost taxpayers about $100,000,000 in additional interest expense, not to mention broadcasting the message that the US Government may not pay all its debts. For that Republicans should have been crucified!
+3 # Rick Levy 2012-06-10 19:29
This is an instance in which the President is to blame for the opposition party's toxic policies. Obama didn't have to roll over and play dead, but that's exactly what he did in the name of bipartisanship.
+2 # Richard Miller 2012-06-10 19:39
Yes, Shit does stink and that is what they have sold to the American people ever since the biggest turd was aired and that was Ronald RayGuns!!!!!!
0 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-10 21:47
This was a great Sunday w we get some sleep, hopefully some nice weather, relax, do something for yourself, you all deserve it...racking your brain, fightin anger.
Have a Day to an letus discuss what we can all do until October.
See ya Tuesday
+6 # tomo 2012-06-10 19:48
This article by Michael Cohen draws attention to what is a real puzzlement. If the Republicans continue as they have been going, they will destroy America and take a big chunk of the rest of the world down too. It goes far deeper than destroying Obama. If the "free market" is going to facilitate every fast-buck deal the boundless ingenuity and greed of humankind can devise, clearly the economy, and the infra-structure , not to mention the tottering educational system and the sorely beset human habitat will all come undone.

What motivates such an agenda? Unless the Republicans have another planet somewhere--to which they intend to evacuate in the near future--the behavior is so counterproducti ve as to be inexplicable.
+2 # charsjcca 2012-06-10 21:08
Following Watergate Democrats assumed control of the levers of government. That was too much for them to handle. Hence, they created access that Republicans did not deserve. They slayed the Jimmy Carter administration, created the Hunt Commission in 1984, and finished the deal in 1993 with Bill Clinton & the Phony Leadership Forum. Republicans were powerless to stop them from committing suicide.
+5 # artic fox 2012-06-11 00:08
See the article written in (Toronto) The Star on August 12, 2011 by a prof. Edmund Spies of Wilfrid Laurier University. .

In case the article is no longer accessible, you might like to read what is said:
The headlines have been apocalyptic and relentless. Unless the U.S. cuts trillions in social spending, it will go bankrupt. Unless Canada cuts billions in federal spending, our economy will go bust. Unless Toronto cuts more than $700 million in program spending, the city will collapse. We live in an age of apocalyptic crisis budgeting. Unless the most drastic social spending cuts are implemented, the world as we know it will sink into the quicksand of debt, never to reappear again. How could this happen?
During the Reagan era, a friend and former colleague, a professor of American history, was invited to the deliberations of a Washington think-tank that provided policy direction for the Republican Party. As they discussed growing the debt and increasing the deficit, he was flabbergasted: “Are you not the party of balanced budgets and debt elimination?” The reply was unequivocal, “Our goal is to grow the deficit as much as possible in order to create political space to eliminate government-fund ed programming. Until then, we want high deficits while lobbying for a balanced budget — and promoting social program cuts as the only solution.”
+5 # artic fox 2012-06-11 00:11
To create this useful deficit, tax cuts to wealthy individuals and corporate sectors would be dramatically increased, especially to the banking, energy and military segments. In short, one would implement a transfer of the state’s revenue supply obligations from the wealthiest to the poor and middle classes in order to permit an even greater transfer of wealth from the middle classes to the rich thereafter.
The only trick was to convince the poor and middle classes to “buy in” via a mixture of patriotism and structural necessity so that they would vote in favour of cutting the very programs that benefitted them.
Canadians have had front row seats to observe this structural engineering over the past two decades. After years of sky-high deficits, Bill Clinton’s Democrats balanced the budget and produced a surplus. Then George W. Bush granted tax relief for the wealthiest and went to war in Afghanistan and Iraq to create the largest deficit in American history
+4 # artic fox 2012-06-11 00:13
part 3
As Bush exited from office and Obama entered, trillions of dollars were transferred by the government (funded mostly by middle-class Americans) to the banks. As a thank you, the banks foreclosed on the homes of more people than at any other time in history. The recent debt ceiling settlement follows the pattern as additional social spending cuts are implemented without cancelling Bush’s tax cuts to the very rich.
Like Clinton in the U.S., the federal Liberals left office with a budgetary surplus. The Conservatives created the largest deficit in Canadian history and, unbelievably, ran an election campaign on financial management savvy! Of course, they created the deficit in part by implementing tax cuts and engaging in discretionary spending designed to produce the deficit which, we are told, now needs to be eliminated by cutting programs.
The same approach has now come to Toronto and is being mimicked by Rob Ford. He, too, was left a surplus by his predecessor. Nevertheless, the agenda marches on. First, create the crisis by reducing the revenue base through tax cuts and then take the budget knife to Toronto’s city-wide programs. Instead of articulating a vision for building a great city, it is simply a slash and burn approach to a manufactured crisis.
+3 # artic fox 2012-06-11 00:14
part 4 of 4
Some have pretended that the budgetary crisis is real and not manufactured. Let us be clear: our relative wealth is greater than at any time in our history. Our collective ability to build a strong, caring and inclusive society in which everyone can participate has never been greater. This also holds true for the community of nations: we have the capacity to build a just global society.
Our preparedness to do so, however, seems utterly lacking, for an extreme individualism has taken over the mindset of many. We believe, falsely, that we are best served by hoarding as many resources as possible and letting others fend for themselves. The opposite is true. We are best served when we build a society together where all, including each reader of this article, can benefit through the building of community-wide programs.
In many 16th century European cities, each citizen was required to swear an annual citizenship oath to the city (or community) in which they resided. In it citizens affirmed, among other things, their commitment to “support the well-being of their neighbour” and “promote the common good.” Toronto’s early history as a community, like Canada’s as a country, speaks of similar goals and aspirations.
Have we really lost our sense of the common good? Or is each person now on his or her own? There is no apocalyptic budgetary crisis other than of our own making. The crisis is in our orientation.
+1 # CL38 2012-06-11 11:26
see for greater elaboration on the greater intent of these policies on the right.
+5 # cherylpetro 2012-06-11 03:46
The Republicans said from day one that they were going to see to it that Pres. Obama would be a failure; the USA was merely collateral damage!
+1 # Skeeziks 2012-06-11 09:05
Y'know? I've been reading the comments written on this subject and have come to the conclusion that we have the worst government in Western Hemisphere.

These guys and gals just can not govern for all the people. They are either for power or just out for themselves. There is no u or I in the US government.
+5 # lin96 2012-06-11 09:39
The far left is almost extinct. The rumor is: If you want to get elected you must be center, the country is center. Republicans have intimidated the Democrats and the country into actually believing the rumor they started. It seems as though Democrats are "afraid" to be too far left, yet Republicans are boasting of being "far right". So, our country is shifting right. Using this method, they have even intimidated center Republicans within their own party to sway them even farther to the right. If you're going to be constantly criticized for being far left,(which they would politically whether it were true or not) you might as well BE far left and BE working for the benefit of the people who need support. (the 99%) Right now, it's all political, and Democrats look like a watered down version of Republicans with no solid Democratic stance, and willing to compromise to get only crumbs for the people in order to get money themselves from huge conglomerates and the very rich. That's why Republicans are confident, they know they've accomplished this so far. If Democrats would stand up to them rather than cowtow to them, the people would have a chance and some hope. Bullies intimidate people not because they have courage, but because they're really afraid. Our Constitution was designed to have "Justice For Everybody That Harms Nobody". The only way to get that is to get real and stop this political dance that goes nowhere.
+1 # mjc 2012-06-11 09:50
Have been around for decades so my perspective is skewed perhaps but I don't ever remember a time when the Republicans, in Congress or out, wanted anything but a monopoly on their agenda no matter what. They've always cried out that the Democrats want much too big government. They have always presented themselves as the party of those who make wealth and jobs for this nation. They have usually fought against any federal government programs that help the poor, the elderly, or those with health problems. Look back at the debates on Social Security, on Medicare, on Medicaid, and on any health care programs. BUT this is probably the first Republican controlled Congress, for sure in the House and even pretty assured in the Senate, to begin the initial session of Congress with leaders who vowed to make Obama a a one-term president and a leadership that rejected any attempts to fashion any compromise on health care. When all the votes for a program have to come from the party of the president, you can guarantee a do-nothing Congress because there will always be Democrats who feel like joining the Republicans. Don't think the Republicans deliberately crashed the US economy because that was probably the handiwork of those in the financial, corporate sector and in housing sector but for sure the Republicans have not wanted to rid this country of the depression which followed too soon. 2010 was the first success of that goal. Complete control is the GOP goal for 2012.
+2 # CL38 2012-06-11 11:21
Agree with everything you said, except that Republicans didn't deliberately crash the economy. I think you're wrong about this. To start with, they did away with Glass/Steagle and gave the market the freedom to do whatever it wanted, with no oversight. Then it sat passively back while the scams were ongoing, despite warnings.

If you haven't read Republican John Dean's book "Conservatives without Conscience", it's an eye opener about the right's agenda, beliefs and goals.
+2 # mjc 2012-06-12 09:09
Glass/Steagall was done away with in the Clinton administration with Clinton's approval. Further measures were introduced in Congress to lessen even a slim control over financial gambling which many Democrats supported completely. The depression we are in now is the result of both Democrats and Republicans, with even some help by the present administration, unfortunately.
+1 # cypress72 2012-06-11 11:58
Don't you think that the single most important thing for the Democrats in 2004 was to make George Bush a one term President?? This is hard ball politics, not some garden party social. Stop whining. And by the way, what happened in Wisconsin??? Obama couldn't be bothered to make an appearance for Barrett because he knew that Walker would win. Some leader.
+1 # Pickwicky 2012-06-11 14:08
Cypress72--"Oba ma. . .knew that Walker would win."

Pure mean-minded guesswork.
0 # 2012-06-11 15:41
Hardly. This is a consequence of running a loser against a winner. Barret already lost against Walker. Trying a second time was suicide. Suppose Obama clued in on this very simple fact?
+2 # kyzipster 2012-06-11 22:17
You forgot about the years 2001 to 2004 when Democrats cooperated and compromised repeatedly with the majority as a minority party should do.
+2 # Michael_K 2012-06-11 13:54
At this point, Americans arguing over the relative benefits of Rethuglicans over Dumbocrats, or vice versa, are exactly like deranged toddlers arguing their preference for vanilla flavoured feces over chocolate flavoured feces, or vice versa... One feels compelled to scream at them to STOP EATING FECES!
+4 # tigerlille 2012-06-11 14:09
Reading this discussion is kind of frustrating. Yes, the Republican party is evil and repulsive, but isn't a little too easy to blame them for
everything that is wrong with the government and the economy? Several posters have very eloquently described President Obama's role in furthering the right wing agenda. In many instances he has outBushed Bush. Quit flogging a dead horse - this is not a partisan issue!
+3 # 2012-06-11 15:38
The results of the 2010 congressional elections tell us everything we need to know. It was We the People who elected these clowns, and now they're giving us exactly what we asked for. Applause!
The American people, in general, lack the intelligence to gather the facts and make intelligent decisions based upon interpretations of those facts. Thus, we're a ship of fools, and likely we'll sink to the bottom with every hand on deck.
+3 # kyzipster 2012-06-11 22:14
It couldn't be more obvious that Republicans are determined to sabotage Obama's Presidency with no regard for the health of the country during one of the worst economic crises in our history. The biggest problem in the US is that so many voters support them for it.
-4 # James Marcus 2012-06-12 01:41
Lotsa action on this one!
Well, is it 'Tweedle Dee',... or 'Tweedle Dum'?
When will we learn?
The Donkeys, and the Elephants, are 'ONE'.
And we are suckers to go back and forth.
They should ALL be recalled, and stand for re-election, in a Publicly Funded Mass Re-Election
No Contributions, at all
Get The Money OUT!
+2 # Binaroundawhile 2012-06-18 17:16


What more did he have to say??? This was code speak to the base that meant the GOP intended to stop any Obama recovery for 4 years if they could pull it off and fabricate the wall of lies it would take to prevent suffering Americans from figuring out what the GOP was doing to them for 4 years.

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