Do "Adults" Fight?


As the economy worsens, President Obama and his senior aides are considering whether to adopt a more combative approach on economic issues, seeking to highlight substantive differences with Republicans in Congress and on the campaign trail rather than continuing to pursue elusive compromises, advisers to the president say.

Mr. Obama’s senior adviser, David Plouffe, and his chief of staff, William M. Daley, want him to maintain a pragmatic strategy of appealing to independent voters by advocating ideas that can pass Congress, even if they may not have much economic impact. [. . .] But others, including Gene Sperling, Mr. Obama’s chief economic adviser, say public anger over the debt ceiling debate has weakened Republicans and created an opening for bigger ideas like tax incentives for businesses that hire more workers, according to Congressional Democrats who share that view. Democrats are also pushing the White House to help homeowners facing foreclosure.

[. . .] So far, most signs point to a continuation of the nonconfrontational approach — better to do something than nothing — that has defined this administration. Mr. Obama and his aides are skeptical that voters will reward bold proposals if those ideas do not pass Congress. It is their judgment that moderate voters want tangible results rather than speeches.

Just passing bills that do nothing are not "results." Pretending that they are "results" with the economy floundering is part of the President's political problem. Another "Recovery Summer" stunt won't help - it will hurt.

Speaking for me only

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    If we have to say President Bachmann (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by Towanda on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 12:19:24 PM EST
    or President Ron Paul or President Fill-in-the-crazy-blank, this post explains the reason.

    The reason, of course:  Obama.  

    Well, add in the Dems now running the party and their decisions dating back to at least May 31, 2008, when those "adults" abandoned principles of the party.  They've kept doing so, ever since.

    Incremental progress (5.00 / 3) (#10)
    by MO Blue on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 12:52:52 PM EST
    of passing anything even if the legislation has no positive impact. In fact, Obama gets extra points on his scorecard (not to mention campaign contributions) if the legislation moves government money from the poor and the middle class and into the coffers of corporations and the uber-wealthy.

    Go Obama go. Rah, rah, rah. Smell that incremental progress as we go boldly back to the pre-New Deal era.  

    Great Leaders (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by ScottW714 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 01:08:39 PM EST
    The article is non-sense, his only options are rolling over or getting combative ?  It also assumes that Obama is for democratic ideals, which IMO is a hard argument to make.

    Great/good leaders do not 'compromise' for the sake of compromise.  They don't get combative, they don't have staff so clueless as to think that's even a option, and most importantly, they don't blame others for their failures.

    Great/good leaders stick to their principles, surround themselves with people of integrity, and find a way to way to accomplish the goals they were elected on.

    Lastly, the fact that Obama's chief economic adviser believes the Debt Ceiling fiasco hurt one party more than another, is telling of the administration.  The fact that anyone thinks this man's opinion is worth printing is just as telling of the people who are aiding and abetting this fiasco.

    Good leaders are not narcissists (none / 0) (#18)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 01:41:11 PM EST

    You are witnessing the difference between a good leader and a narcissist.  What did you expect from a man that thought he could stop the seas from rising and heal the planet?



    i notice (5.00 / 3) (#24)
    by The Addams Family on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 02:20:23 PM EST
    that Obama's "narcissism" is today's Rethuglinut talking point

    show me a politician who is not at some level a flaming narcissist

    the GOP's hatred of Obama is so nasty & over-the-top crazy & meanspirited that the party's stuck-on-stoopid neanderthals may just overplay their hand & bring out the sympathy vote for Obama


    The GOP (5.00 / 1) (#52)
    by cal1942 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 05:29:51 PM EST
    would have played the same game no matter who the Democratic President had been.  Republican MO has become party over country and has been that way for some time.

    Obama's limp approach to the economy his inaction on finance industry reform, failure of his AG to investigate the industry, his habit of compromising in advance, etc., etc., made him an easy mark and only whetted their appetite.

    Obama has made it easy for them.


    accomplishments (none / 0) (#30)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 02:58:59 PM EST

    Most pols have some actual accomplishments to point to, where their leadership made some difference.  Obama not so much.

    Have the seas stopped rising?


    in case you failed to notice (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by The Addams Family on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 03:22:59 PM EST
    i am not defending Obama

    i am calling you on parroting today's GOP talking point, & i am calling it to your attention that Obama, as cr@ppy a president as he is, retains some vestiges of personal popularity -  many people still like him, whereas the stooges of the GOP are roundly & justly detested by great swaths of the electorate

    moral of story: the GOP turns loose the dogs of b@tsh!t crazy "Muslim-Kenyan-commie-socialist" Obama hatred at the GOP's own electoral peril

    then again, the GOP is no novice at lodging its foot in its big blowhard mouth & pulling the foot-shooting trigger


    Most pols? (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by cal1942 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 05:47:39 PM EST

    Tell us, for example, what Michelle Bachman has accomplished.

    Beyond getting elected and insuring that their benefactors' interests are enhanced I see few pols who deserve to be called leaders.


    There are a lot of elected officials in the (none / 0) (#58)
    by LatinDem on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:08:53 PM EST
    House of Representatives who have done very good work for many years. They're not all crooks. But they can't do anything to create change unless millions of us little people have their backs, and I mean really be willing to support them, not just donate or vote and walk away.

    The problem is that the system is gamed so that the unethical majority are easily bribed by lobbyists and the super rich. We keep trying to use the voting booth to effect democratic control, but the world and our nation are probably at the point where we need to be more active to take back control of our government. We may need a constitutional convention to establish a new direction, one that ensures the survival of the middle class. Basically, we need a non-violent overthrow of the plutocracy that's grinding us down.

    The question is, are working and middle class citizens hurting enough to take the risk of trying to reclaim our government?


    there is a difference between a healthy ego (none / 0) (#93)
    by TeresaInPa on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 07:44:56 AM EST
    with an over abundance of confidence and being a narcissist.  Most politicians have strong egos and an over abundance of confidence.  But most of them have real ideals.  Obama is a narcissist. When he looks in the mirror of what might be good for the american people in terms of policy and governance, he sees only himself and his own aggrandizement.  

    I Really Wish You.. (5.00 / 2) (#42)
    by ScottW714 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 04:32:45 PM EST
    ... would stop commenting on my posts.  I hate the way you take well thought out post and stick in some republican talking point as if we agree on anything.

    I think Obama is the complete opposite of a narcissist.  Bush loved the idea of himself, his accomplishments, his legacy, he was a vain man.

    Obama to me is in desperate need of approval, he needs people to love him because that is what drives him.  Obama's self image is defined by others, whereas Bush's was defined from within and grossly exaggerated from within.

    I just don't see the narcissism.


    There is no greater narcissism (none / 0) (#47)
    by Politalkix on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 04:54:21 PM EST
    than politicians imagining that they are executors of God's will. The Republican Party is full of these people.

    Open your eyes, Abdul Abulbul Amir!


    Right on the money (none / 0) (#49)
    by cal1942 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 05:15:16 PM EST
    Obama's need to be accepted, to seek approval, to ingratiate himself is, along with his basic Conservatism, THE problem.

    Not a single economist (none / 0) (#80)
    by gyrfalcon on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 08:12:18 PM EST
    left in the White House, according to the article.

    I sounds like the arguments on strategy (5.00 / 2) (#19)
    by Anne on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 01:43:26 PM EST
    in the WH pretty much mirror the ones we have here on TL every day...

    All kidding aside, I have to figure that if anyone knows Obama, it's Plouffe, so it doesn't surprise me that all he's really doing is trying to eke as much electoral success from the Obama he has rather than trying to contort Obama into the persona the country needs; whether that works in an atmosphere where Obama is now more of a known quantity than he was 4 years ago may depend to some degree on (1) where the economy goes from here and (2) whether the GOP ends up nominating one of the crazies.

    The whole thing is really just too depressing for words.

    Maybe the crazy... (none / 0) (#34)
    by lambert on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 03:21:34 PM EST
    ... won't be able to get anything done?

    "From this day on, the official language of San Marcos will be Swedish. Silence!"


    One possible saving grace (none / 0) (#35)
    by NYShooter on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 03:21:44 PM EST
    (if you call improving Obama's chances as "saving grace")

    I've been reading more and more that the senior Republicans, both past and present, and the Bank/Corporate moguls, are seriously getting fed up with the Tea Party nuts. The Republicans of 70's. 80's, and into the 90's were at least cognizant of reality. They accepted "compromise" as a necessary, no, vital, part of legislating, and I think they rightly view the Tea Party as leading to the destruction of the "Grand Old Party."

    Those guys may wind up being Obama's best friends.


    Frankly, I am less concerned with (5.00 / 3) (#43)
    by Anne on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 04:41:55 PM EST
    who will save us from the Tea Party than I am with who will save us from Obama, whose vision for America seems totally whack to me.

    I know I can't count on the Congressional Democrats, who keep proving that they take orders from the WH.

    What's the answer?  I still think an effort should be undertaken to push Obama over to the other side of the aisle:

    "Want to govern like a Republican?  Then be a Republican."  

    "To Obama: We HOPE you will CHANGE your (D) to an (R)."  [As if]

    "Hey, Obama - want to get an 'A' from Democrats?  Change that (D) to an (R)."  [Problem with that is, I don't think he much cares what Dems think]

    "Obama: go from (D) to (R) or get an (F) in 2012."

    Maybe we'd have more luck getting our states to initiate a "None of the Above" choice on the ballot.


    Robert Reich twitter (none / 0) (#94)
    by MO Blue on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 07:56:41 AM EST
    So far, O's proposals for jump-starting the economy and jobs are policy miniatures, like Clinton's 1996 "v-chips" and "school uniforms." (h/t http://firedoglake.com/2011/08/15/early-morning-swim-419/ - link)

    Serious vs. Adults (5.00 / 4) (#21)
    by Stellaaa on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 01:59:12 PM EST
    We seem to have created two classes of leaders, the Republicans call their leadership "serious", we choose "adults".  

    Yet, I don't see any adults or serious people around.  

    What alternate universe do his (5.00 / 4) (#31)
    by esmense on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 02:59:35 PM EST
    "advisors" live in...where voters will reward you for "getting things done" that hurt their interests, hurt their communities, or, at best, fail to address the real issues the country faces?


    It really is absolutely (none / 0) (#81)
    by gyrfalcon on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 08:15:05 PM EST

    "Getting things done" (5.00 / 2) (#44)
    by glanton on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 04:43:41 PM EST
    Cracking down on the white collar criminals who have robbed us blind and continue to make mint off of our stoopid wars is what desperately needed to be done the second W was out of there.  It is to the eternal discredit of the entire Democratic establishment that instead, even more cookies were placed into the jar, even as we were inundated with the claptrap about Obama's "historic" election, the bankers were making a little history of their own.

    Every time a hedge fund manager goes to prison, an angel gets its wings.

    oh golly (5.00 / 2) (#45)
    by The Addams Family on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 04:45:43 PM EST
    Donna Brazile is unhappy

    Well then! Something must be done (5.00 / 1) (#46)
    by glanton on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 04:49:53 PM EST
    What you mean Donna is not proud (5.00 / 2) (#62)
    by MO Blue on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:18:33 PM EST
    of the man she pushed so relentlessly. Talk about the direction Obama is taking this country:

    Jokes about the U.S. becoming "Europe's Mexico" are commonplace, but now high-priced consultants are pushing the notion in all seriousness.

    They're predicting that within five years certain Southern U.S. states will be among the cheapest manufacturing locations in the developed world -- and competitive with China.

    For years advisers like the Boston Consulting Group got paid big bucks to tell their clients to produce in China. Now, they say, rising wages there, fueled by worker unrest, and low wages in Mississippi, Alabama, and South Carolina mean that soon it won't be worth the hassle of locating overseas. link

    Donna must be sooooooo proud of his accomplishments. America replacing China as the low cost provider of cheap labor should be right up her alley as she has advocated that the New Democratic party doesn't need the white working class or Hispanics either.  


    I actually have come to believe (5.00 / 2) (#84)
    by gyrfalcon on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 08:19:46 PM EST
    that the stuff you cite there very much underlies why Obama isn't particularly interested in doing much about unemployment.  I think he figures Americans, particularly working class, have to accept even lower wages in order to remain "competitive," and the only way to accomplish that is to have a nice long period of high unemployment that makes people desperate for any job at any wage.

    Thanks for the link -- I"ve often wanted to (none / 0) (#50)
    by mogal on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 05:24:02 PM EST
    ask Mrs. Brazile how she thought things had worked out for the DNC?  

    The female (none / 0) (#68)
    by NYShooter on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:30:23 PM EST
    Bob Shrum.

    40 years in the business, still waiting for first win.


    Well, "first win" (5.00 / 1) (#77)
    by brodie on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 07:50:54 PM EST
    Depends how you look at it.  Did GeeDub win in 2000 or did the Shrum-Gore team have that one stolen?  I think the latter.  2004 -- similar.

    Shrummie also advised dozens of successful candidates for both houses of Congress, governors and mayors.

    For sure on some of the major decisions for Gore and Kerry he was both wise and unwise in his counsel, but if so his bosses were equally wise and flawed.  And he had nothing to do with the Holy Joe pick, while he tried to counsel Kerry to stay away from windsurfing until after the election,advice the candidate stupidly ignored.  

    Also a very smart political analyst on tv -- Brazile really isn't in his league.

    But hey, I happen to have a soft spot for Shrum.


    Took the words right out of (none / 0) (#82)
    by gyrfalcon on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 08:17:01 PM EST
    my mouth.  I'm not the world's biggest Bob Shrum fan, but he's vastly more sensible and thoughtful than Donna Brazile.

    O.K. my apologies (none / 0) (#96)
    by NYShooter on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 08:15:23 AM EST
    its just, over the years, watching and listening him pontificate the same ole, same ole, sleep inducing bromides.

    one thumb up for the Shrumster.


    The White House should have had (5.00 / 1) (#53)
    by cal1942 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 05:38:31 PM EST
    this conversation or something like it before the inauguration.

    Still, little to none of the conversation they're having today relates to actual leadership or any policy that could yield dramatic results.

    From the start their mindset has been more like management than leadership.

    Their whole conversation is about image.  How pathetic.

    So far Obama's strategy (4.86 / 7) (#2)
    by MO Blue on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 12:09:37 PM EST
    for wooing independent voters has not been a stellar success. His approval continues to drop among this group each month.

    Another whopping success story will be when Obama gets his "Grand Bargain" which will cut the safety net programs and lower taxes for corporations and the top income brackets. Throw in eliminating taxes on corporate offshore money and new trade agreements which will cost a few hundred thousand more jobs and I'm sure that independent voters like me will be soooooo impressed. :-(

    Obama will IMO get his second term because the Republican Party will allow their crazies full rein for 2012. Obama still has work to do to complete their agenda and they will stay out of his way and let him do it.    

    Yep (5.00 / 7) (#8)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 12:50:45 PM EST
    Keeping Obama in office is a win-win for Republicans...they get their agenda pretty  much enacted and Obama destroys the Democratic constituency all at the same time...

    And then they get to argue in 2016 (5.00 / 3) (#16)
    by Towanda on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 01:37:34 PM EST
    that a "Democrat" screwed up our lives, so it will be a shoo-in for a Republican again, and then we will have de facto Republican control of the economy for at least the first two decades of this century, if not for the entire first quarter of the century.

    Bad as the stratification of wealth is now, imagine how bad it will be by 2025.


    Stratification of wealth in 2025 (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by MO Blue on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 01:50:21 PM EST
    How bad can it be going back to the good old days? link

    Before anyone scoffs at this idea, please refer to comments made by Republican legislators on the subject in the last year.  


    And Unlike 2012... (5.00 / 1) (#29)
    by ScottW714 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 02:53:22 PM EST
    ... 2016 will the perfect opportunity to usher in a Paul Ryan type.

    Everyone keeps mentioning that Obama is better than a republican, although true, a republican will eventually be president, and electing Obama is IMO only going to make our side weaker and allow the republicans to get real government hater in office.

    Like the song says, "You ain't seen nothing yet..."


    They argued in 2000 (none / 0) (#22)
    by Politalkix on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 02:10:09 PM EST
    that Democrats got the country involved in all sorts of wars and nation building exercises in foreign lands and they needed to elect a President who would bring more humility in foreign policy and bring back honor and dignity to the WH.
    Half the country listened and believed them! Many held their noses and still voted for the Democrats. In 1996, only 49% of voters showed up to vote. People were disgusted with politics!
    Republicans will always say anything to get elected. They have done so in the past and will do so in the future. Voter apathy is also nothing new! Why are you keeping on pretending that it is?

    Voter Apathy (5.00 / 2) (#61)
    by cal1942 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:18:19 PM EST
    may and, IMO, will probably get worse.

    When people decide that government is ineffective no matter who is in power they just won't bother.

    Imagine just how bad turnout may be if this continues:

    Overwhelming majority of people want NO changes to Social Security and Medicare.

    Republicans, Obama and some Democrats openly talk of cutting both.

    Strong majority of people want military involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan to stop now.

    Both parties (in the public mind) own the wars and say nothing about a total end to involvement.

    Overwhelming majority of people want tax increases on wealthy individuals and large corporations.

    Recommendations from "Super Committee" could well recommend tax decreases.

    After trade pacts and tax policies have damaged American manufacturing and encouraged outsourcing.  The conversation about trade agreements and outsourcing is getting stronger every day.

    What do we see from government - more trade pacts and a complete unwillingness to insure Americans have good jobs.  Though the GOP is most at fault the Democrats hardly have clean hands.  The public probably blames both.

    High unemployment nationwide and yet people see no bold action.  Not good under Republicans and no better under Democrats.


    Whaaaa? Show me where I said (none / 0) (#97)
    by Towanda on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 09:30:44 AM EST
    much less argued anything about voter apathy.  And the rest of your post hardly engages mine, either.

    Show me.  


    Rather, the Rs will be permitted... (5.00 / 3) (#38)
    by lambert on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 03:23:15 PM EST
    ... by their owners, who also own the Ds, to "allow their crazies full rein."

    Surely you don't think the legacy parties have absolute autonomy?


    Or maybe (none / 0) (#9)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 12:52:24 PM EST
    or maybe he won't get his second term....

    Look at his daily tracking.  He's dropped below 40%:



    One thing is pretty much guaranteed (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by MO Blue on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 12:56:11 PM EST
    Main street loses big time in 2012 regardless of which of the current field (Obama or other) sits behind the desk in the Oval Office.

    Independents vote for the person (none / 0) (#23)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 02:10:42 PM EST
    who will solve the current problems.  Obama has not done that and has in fact exacerbated most serious problems our country faces.

    When the Republican nominee is chosen, that candidate will then swing left for the General election with the blessing of their base.  Mitt Romney has evidence he sleeps on his left side sometimes to woo some to get into bed with him and Rick (gag) Perry used to lay claim to be a Democrat.

    President Obama is supposed to swing right for the General election and he will do so with nobody's blessing.  It will only be further proof of his failure(s) when he does so.  This election will be from hell for Democrats.


    Obama and the Dems pass anything (5.00 / 2) (#26)
    by MO Blue on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 02:36:53 PM EST
    strategy no matter how bad did not prove successful in 2010 and so now they are going to double down on it for the 2012 elections.

    Obama was very successful in rehabilitating the Republicans in time for the 2010 elections by validating their agenda. The Republicans will return the favor by fielding the least electable candidate for President and help him get a second term.

    BTW, did I happen to mention that we are so screwed.  


    I am much less certain (5.00 / 1) (#27)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 02:43:36 PM EST
    than you that the Republican party will repay our past kindness by nominating the least electable candidate.  I myself would view Rick Perry unelectable until I lived through the two terms of George W Bush.

    Continuing on your point (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by NYShooter on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 02:59:46 PM EST
    Perry is an extremely successful politician. He's never lost an election, winning, I believe, 17 in a row.

    Also, he's going to own the "jobs, jobs, jobs"  mantra. Yes, I know the growth of jobs in Texas is a macroeconomic phenomenon which he had nothing to do with, but its happening on his watch and he's going to sing it 24/7. He looks like a younger Reagan and has that same optimistic, smiley, sunshiny aura. And a guy who got more write-in votes in Iowa than the "front-runner," Romney, who actually campaigned there, is the one to watch.

    (Pawlenty saw enough, and got out.)


    Hopefully that old adage (none / 0) (#70)
    by cal1942 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:43:22 PM EST
    winning, I believe, 17 in a row

    'you can't win 'em all' will kick in.


    Romney did not (none / 0) (#78)
    by gyrfalcon on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 08:06:48 PM EST
    mount an Ames Straw poll campaign.

    Perry's supporters actually did mount a last-ditch effort for a write-in.


    oh jeez (none / 0) (#87)
    by NYShooter on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 08:57:15 PM EST
    Romney was the FRONT RUNNER. He should have been able to be hiking in the Himalayas and still score 1 or 2. Perry had some front men pushing write-ins....big deal. You're talking a few hundred people, not worth wasting breath over.

    Nope, that's not the way (none / 0) (#89)
    by gyrfalcon on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 10:49:56 PM EST
    the Ames straw poll works.  It's solely a GOTV organizing contest.  Most people don't even get there on their own, they come on candidates' buses.

    Seriously, do read up on it.  It's hard to believe how idiotic it is.  You cannot do even half-decently in this thing unless you have extensive on-the-ground organization.  (And it helps a lot to be a wingnut)  If you don't contest it, you aren't going to get more than a very small number of votes.  Straw poll voters also traditionally take offense at candidates who don't participate actively.  They wanna be wooed, baby!


    Perry Used to be a Democrat... (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by ScottW714 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 04:06:19 PM EST
    ... even backed Gore in '88.

    When I moved here, Perry wasn't bad, more of a true moderate, which was unexpected from this Yankee.  But now, he is a loud & proud republican, and I am not sure if its for show or if he has truly de-evolved.  it's a recent phenomena.

    The real hard core Texas fire breathers are not fans of Perry.

    In this climate, sans his secession talk and insanity in regards to the death penalty, he about as moderate as a republican can get.  His views on the economy are better than Obama's, he has brought a lot of good jobs into the state by catering to corps.  

    He's not bad for a republican, which of course is bad news for Obama.


    Pehaps you didn't see (5.00 / 1) (#85)
    by jen on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 08:43:37 PM EST
    Or this (none / 0) (#92)
    by Madeline on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 02:35:42 AM EST
    The Miracle Worker



    Nothing changes, (none / 0) (#95)
    by NYShooter on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 08:06:47 AM EST
    the fools will be fooled, and those that read, won't.

    Good Point (none / 0) (#98)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 09:53:48 AM EST
    I am going by my view as a Texas resident and his record, not articles about what he might become.  Those to me, are no different than then the right pushing so anti-American angle because he went to a certain church, speculation and opinion.

    If anyone feels like they want to dispute that, please do.  Otherwise idiotic comments with nothing are a waste of everyone's time.

    I am not pro-Perry, but this last 3 years has made me realize that being pro-Democratic Party is not where it's at either.  If you think Perry is the GD devil, give me something to gnaw on, what has he done that would change my mind about sitting on the couch in 2012 ?


    Perry is not too different (none / 0) (#99)
    by Rojas on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 01:33:37 PM EST
    Than the new democrats that rose up from that era. Pro corp (anti-trust, what's that??), tough on crime (if you're poor), cheap labor (lax enforcement of imigration statutes), anti union (pro free trade), no infrastucture spending (unless it's a prison), ect,...

    After the 2010 elections (none / 0) (#25)
    by Politalkix on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 02:23:18 PM EST
    where the Democrats received a "shellacking", the WH political team conducted a review. Based on careful analysis of poll data, they came to the conclusion that the WH was at serious risk of losing Independents permanently if they could not convince people that they were not a "tax and spend" party. The political team decided that they would keep moving to the right for the next 1.5 years to stop the bleeding of independents before once again starting to court liberals (say 6 months before the 2012 election).
    This is what I remember reading. Do not know how accurate the reporting was!

    I really wonder about (5.00 / 2) (#69)
    by cal1942 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:38:45 PM EST
    the conclusions that political parties come up with when they assess election results.

    In my state Democrats decided the shellacking was because of the candidate for Governor and a poor GOTV effort ("If we'd only gotten our base out"). The fact that other old line industrial states also saw Republicans take over the Governor's Chair and legislature was lost on them.  The pasting was because of what happened in Washington but policy failure at the federal level never seemed to occur to them and it never occurred to them that the base stayed home because they were so disappointed.

    If the Obama crowd figured they would lose Independents if they didn't turn right they were dead wrong.

    Independents were turned off because they saw his first two years as totally ineffective and I'd wager most Independents don't know the difference between right and left except what they're told in political ads.

    Good policy would have made a real difference but everything was a compromise and the priorities were way out of order.  The full power of the Presidency was never used to alleviate problems that people care about most.


    I don't know (none / 0) (#28)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 02:44:09 PM EST
    Waste of Time and Resources (none / 0) (#37)
    by ScottW714 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 03:23:01 PM EST
    ... chasing independent voters, because the reality is, true independents, people that will vote for either party are rare.

    Bush got 62M votes to win in 2004 with 72.9% of registered voters voting, Obama had 69M votes with 74.4% turnout.  

    217M people voted in 2004 and 80M didn't.
    225M people voted in 2008 and 77M didn't.

    To me chasing independents is fine to a point, but the big money, the real numbers are people who don't vote and those are especially high for minorities.  

    Why a minority president hasn't spent any energy getting minorities excited and out voting is an epic failure.  Chasing those votes more than not parallels Democratic principles, which would have the added benefit of party allegiance.


    Coming right down to it (5.00 / 1) (#71)
    by cal1942 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:55:16 PM EST
    Effective policy wins independents.

    Independents, it seems to me, are big on slogans.  For many it's the only bit of political knowledge they possess, a cover for their chronic confusion.  If they're unhappy about the 'way things are going' they'll hook up with a phrase or slogan from the out of power opposition as rationale for their vote.

    That's been my experience over the years.  Anecdotal I know but it's been absolutely consistent.

    A charge like "tax and spend" doesn't mean anything if the economy improves and wars they're confused about come to an end and people they see as crooks are punished.

    From what we're reading the Obama team is talking about effective imaging instead of effective policy.


    The Obama campaign had a huge (none / 0) (#55)
    by LatinDem on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 05:50:10 PM EST
    push to get minorities to vote. From registration drives, including volunteers walking door to door to register people, to calls before and the day of the election, to massive campaigns via the churches, to volunteers actually driving voters to the polls, I don't know what else he could do to get people off their butts to vote.

    Personally, I'm surprised so many African Americans didn't bother to vote in this historic election.


    Right (5.00 / 3) (#66)
    by ScottW714 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:24:58 PM EST
    And that was a reason for the record turn out, but it stopped.  I can't think of any legislation or policies Obama has pushed that help minorities.  One SCOTUS appointment.

    All the economic BS has hit minorities far worse, so one could make the argument that his policies are anything but friendly to minorities.

    He's even stopped paying them lip service.


    And Obama just insulted today (none / 0) (#100)
    by Jjc2008 on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 10:00:04 PM EST
    one of the largest, most consistent voting blocs for dems...public employees, specifically teachers.

    He was asked about by a teacher about his supporting public employees "right to collectively bargain" and he basically lectured her on how teachers/public employees needed to sacrifice.



    Didn't get to finish.... (none / 0) (#101)
    by Jjc2008 on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 10:02:09 PM EST
    To me, a retired teacher but a lifetime teacher even though retired (I sub, I tutor), this is the second time he has told public school employees to go to hell.  The first time is when he appointed Arnie, charter school loving, Duncan.

    It's a republican talking point and he uses it with a dem crowd????


    This does not inspire me to vote (4.86 / 7) (#5)
    by MO Blue on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 12:30:31 PM EST
    for Obama since I strongly disagree with the agenda below. From the linked NYT article:

    Administration officials, frustrated by the intransigence of House Republicans, have increasingly concluded that the best thing Mr. Obama can do for the economy may be winning a second term, with a mandate to advance his ideas on deficit reduction, entitlement changes, housing policy and other issues.

    Don't see anything in that mix that will do anything positive for the economy and much that will harm average citizens.

    Everytime (5.00 / 5) (#7)
    by Ga6thDem on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 12:33:54 PM EST
    I read something like this I have to wonder if they were living in a cave in the 90's. These are the most clueless people on the earth if they are surprised by the GOP.

    Maybe they believed their own press that Obama was so awesome that somehow the GOP wouldn't act like they always do.


    Yes, this is the part of the article (5.00 / 4) (#14)
    by KeysDan on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 01:04:25 PM EST
    that shows the reason behind the  NYT "scoop", complete with named attributions: the best economic plan is re-election of President Obama.   Bold economic and jobless plans will not be chosen now or later---there will be no confrontation because there is nothing they want to confront. The  Republican economic agenda and theirs is in alignment:   the unfinished business of deficit reduction and the cutting of "entitlements."  If there is a difference, it is that Obama wants more cuts as he continues to seek his grand bargain.  (note: no mention of Pentagon cuts).

    The economy is is the hands of economic "experts" such as Mr. Plouffe and Mr. Daley, who the article reports 'share a view that a focus on deficit reduction is an economic and political imperative. A view bolstered by another "expert",  Mr. Pfeiffer, the White House director of communications, with the quote: " It would be political folly to make the argument that government spending equals jobs."


    Amazing, isn't it? (5.00 / 7) (#33)
    by NYShooter on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 03:10:14 PM EST
    That this brilliant politician still doesn't understand, Good Policy is the best Politics.

    Then again, he never did policy in his career, just strategy for his next election. Being a "phenom" in the minors doesn't mean he can play with the big boys of Yankee Stadium in October.

    p.s. The dynamic duo, Plouffe & Daly, two Major League Dunces.


    Does anyone care if there's an "Adult" (4.83 / 6) (#4)
    by nycstray on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 12:24:48 PM EST
    in the room if that "Adult" is just plain wrong?

    Adults make tough decisions (none / 0) (#13)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 12:57:35 PM EST
    that change things for the better for the people of the family and they implement the new policies that are sometimes very tough changes, just ask my kids.  In that light how can anyone in this White House attempt to claim "adulthood"?

    In this administration (5.00 / 3) (#72)
    by cal1942 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 07:04:49 PM EST
    and in others, the "tough" decisions are cutting earned benefits from people during their most vulnerable time of life.

    Tough for who?  Certainly not for their moneyed supporters.

    Whenever I hear a politician talk about making a tough decision it always means regular people are about to get kicked in the gut.

    Then the pol wants to be honored for making the "tough" decisions as though he/she suffers in some real material way.


    Perhaps the (none / 0) (#1)
    by LatinDem on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 12:06:19 PM EST
    threat of a primary challenge is making team Obama reconsider their obsessive support of the super rich.

    Given our Democratic Party and Prez Obama's penchant for establishing and solidifying Republican policies, we have to do something to redirect our stealth Republican president. I think the time is ripe for a non-violent overthrow of the plutocracy by America's working and middle class citizens. Democrats need to LEAD so that our gallant leader Obama can follow us.

    Wow. (none / 0) (#17)
    by Towanda on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 01:39:11 PM EST
    From the link:

    one-third of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents tell pollsters that they favor a primary challenge to the president

    A primary challenge. Well, OK. (none / 0) (#39)
    by oldpro on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 04:04:26 PM EST
    Who shall we court who could possibly scare Obama enough to move him left toward the middle on progressive issues?

    I'd say the best bets would be a Latino or possibly a black female officeholder.  Since all the House members will be up for reelection, who does that leave?

    Any ideas?


    Oprah? (none / 0) (#41)
    by The Addams Family on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 04:19:37 PM EST
    Hardly. Loyalist suprema. (none / 0) (#48)
    by oldpro on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 05:04:27 PM EST
    Here's a wacky sudden thought:  the Mayor of San Francisco?

    forgot my snark tag for Oprah (none / 0) (#57)
    by The Addams Family on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:05:57 PM EST
    mayor of SF? really?

    I dunno...he just popped into (none / 0) (#63)
    by oldpro on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:20:21 PM EST
    my head!

    Why not?


    the charisma of stale toast (5.00 / 1) (#73)
    by The Addams Family on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 07:21:09 PM EST
    Please, please (none / 0) (#74)
    by cal1942 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 07:40:00 PM EST
    let's not go down that kind of route.

    Anyway Oprah is an Obama disciple.

    Whenever I hear a show biz person put forward I think of Donald Trump and it convinces me all the more that as a nation we're absolutely on an unstoppable downward trajectory.


    Peter Defazio (none / 0) (#51)
    by LatinDem on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 05:28:52 PM EST
    Representative from the great liberal state of Oregon.

    If only the state were as solidly (none / 0) (#56)
    by oldpro on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 05:55:54 PM EST
    liberal as Defazio!

    Even so...he's up for reelection to the House.  Do you imagaine he'd give it up to chastize Obama?  I doubt it.  And, he's not Latino, blacvk or female...

    C'mon folks...names you can realistically defend?


    Peter won't run for president. (5.00 / 1) (#86)
    by caseyOR on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 08:45:30 PM EST
    If he runs for any office, other than his current one in Congress, it will be for governor. The never-ending cross-country trip, which he has been making for more than 20- years now, is starting to wear on him.  If he changes political jobs, it will be for a job close to home.

    The right-wing noise machine and money has been gunning for DeFazio. Millions of dollars were dumped into the race against him in 2010 from an out of state right-winger. There is every reason to think they will back, and bigger than ever, in 2012.

    His district is not really all that liberal. Sure, it has Eugene, but it also encompasses a wide swath of rural and small town Oregon. Peter wins because he comes across as more of a populist than a liberal.


    No, he wouldn't ever run against Obama. (none / 0) (#59)
    by LatinDem on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:12:15 PM EST
    But if we created a movement, a real honest to goodness CHANGE movement, I bet we could get Obama to lead it if we led the way first.

    Obama couldn't lead (5.00 / 5) (#60)
    by The Addams Family on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:13:53 PM EST
    a blind dog on a leash

    I beg to differ (none / 0) (#88)
    by sj on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 10:04:58 PM EST
    O has the Dems in Congress on a very short leash.  And much of the Democratic party appear to be blind.

    those dirty dogs (none / 0) (#90)
    by The Addams Family on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 12:38:02 AM EST
    indeed :\ (none / 0) (#91)
    by sj on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 01:39:19 AM EST
    Obama is leading (5.00 / 1) (#65)
    by MO Blue on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:23:44 PM EST
    He just isn't leading in the direction that you want him to go. He is pursuing the agenda that he wants to pursue and has no intention of changing direction. He may talk about a shift in direction but that is the most he plans to do while he tenaciously continues to govern for the benefit of the Masters of the Universe.

    Bobby, Jr? That could create some (5.00 / 1) (#67)
    by oldpro on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:26:10 PM EST
    fun in the 'pass-the-torch' camp!

    Oh no...another Kennedy challenges a Dem President!


    heh. (none / 0) (#64)
    by oldpro on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 06:22:35 PM EST
    Sorry (none / 0) (#75)
    by cal1942 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 07:43:16 PM EST
    Obama will never follow a liberal/progressive path.  He's a Conservative who ingratiates himself to the in crowd and in DC the in crowd is Conservative.

    Of course (none / 0) (#6)
    by Ga6thDem on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 12:31:32 PM EST
    Obama is not going to choose the combative approach. First of all, it's not him. Second of all he has boxed himself in with this bipartisan junk and would look silly doing it now.

    At this point nothing short of the GOP imploding or a straight forward jobs program passing is going to help. The odds of the GOP imploding are a lot greater than Obama actually getting any sort of jobs program passed and tax incentives DO NOT work so he might as well pass nothing if that's what he's going to do.

    He doesn't even want (5.00 / 2) (#76)
    by cal1942 on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 07:47:18 PM EST
    a real jobs program.

    Their idea of a jobs program is tax breaks for employers that'll hire.  Total crap.  Just plain nice sounding junk.

    Worse still it leaves the impression that only the private sector has any value and that lowering taxes on people at the top is a good solution.


    Might not pass (5.00 / 1) (#79)
    by gyrfalcon on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 08:10:37 PM EST
    but actually submitting a bill, campaigning for it all over the country and having the GOPers shoot it down would at least have major, major political benefits and give people a tiny bit of hope that maybe their president and Dem. congress are actually trying to help.

    But noooooooo.


    I know (none / 0) (#83)
    by Ga6thDem on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 08:17:52 PM EST
    but Obama is only to put forth things that will actually pass for some reason. And the only thing that is going to pass is junk so why even bother. He might as well spend the next year going to cocktail parties for all the good that's going to come out of this particular congress.

    It will hurt (none / 0) (#11)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Aug 14, 2011 at 12:53:14 PM EST
    But what is left?  In a White House that is not good at promoting the good fight or real fighting of any kind for that matter, do they dare do anything different at this late hour?  Is there time to change your tactics, educate the public, get those messages out there and get the public believing in you again, and win this thing hands down?

    Only if they hired you, and then you would have to pound on tables with bulging eyes (hey...that has worked in the past getting this White House all on board to do certain things that some were uncomfortable with).  I think it's too late though for them to do anything different that would require some of them to feel uncomfortable for awhile.  I think this upcoming election is going to be a bloody vile battle too if the Mitt gets the nomination.

    You and Mark Levin both (none / 0) (#102)
    by diogenes on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 11:33:35 PM EST
    "Another "Recovery Summer" stunt won't help - it will hurt."

    Politics makes strange bedfellows.