State of the Union Theme: Economic Unfairness

President Obama will deliver his State of the Union address tonight. It's theme is Economic Unfairness . (Update: Transcript here.)

"We can either settle for a country where a shrinking number of people do really well, while a growing number of Americans barely get by,” he will continue. “Or we can restore an economy where everyone gets a fair shot, everyone does their fair share, and everyone plays by the same set of rules.

He'll remind us once again that in his view, this is not a Republican or a Democratic issue, but a U.S. issue. I hated that line in his 2008 campaign (no red states or blue states) and I doubt I'll like it much more tonight.

What’s at stake are not Democratic values or Republican values, but American values. We have to reclaim them.”

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    Nobody (5.00 / 3) (#1)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 07:32:01 PM EST
    can do a better job at resurrecting crazy than Obama it seems. The GOP is handing him stuff on a silver platter and he can't seem to use it.

    What are you talking about (none / 0) (#3)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 07:49:20 PM EST
    Its the sotu.  What is he not saying exactly?

    I predict unfortunately that responses will run the full spectrum from people who hate the speech because he didn't say exactly what they want to hear in exactly the right way to people who hate the speech because it doesnt matter what he says but what he does.

    Fair and balanced.


    Um, to be all fair (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by Towanda on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:06:16 PM EST
    and balanced, check the clock and the time of posting.

    didnt watch the speech last night (5.00 / 1) (#104)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:12:00 AM EST
    I watched the speech and response this morning so I actually read feedback on both before I watched.
    the Obama feedback had me expecting pretty much what I saw which was a great speech.  but the feedback about Daniels did not.  it says a lot about the republican party that the guy seemed to get way too much credit simply for not spitting rage on the camera and setting his hair on fire.  I suppose he has to be given credit for saying some thing that were not typical republican batsh!t but taken as a whole I thought it was pretty much a disaster.  grim, bitter, be afraid. and light bulbs?
    the government want to tell us what light bulbs to buy? light bulbs? really?  THAT is the great white hopes response to what Obama did?

    watching Obama one thing struck me.  it is very clear why all smart, serious republicans stayed home for this election.  there is not a republican in the country to day who can touch THAT GUY politically.  whatever you think about his policies you would have to be blind to not see that guy is going to be reelected.

    I thought the speech was politically brilliant basically. and watching the republican yahoos respond to the various proposals to help the middle class and students others with the same tired "we cant raise taxes on the job creators" (you mean job creators like Mitt Romney?) has be feeling really good about the election. no matter who is the nominee for the protectors of the 1%.


    Well (none / 0) (#118)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:53:24 AM EST
    apparently tweety thought Daniels did a good job.

    yeah (none / 0) (#119)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:54:15 AM EST
    I saw that and Rachel basically laughed in his face

    Yup- Gingrich thinks he can eviscerate (none / 0) (#120)
    by ruffian on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:54:59 AM EST
    THAT guy in 3 debates? I think not.

    Both for character and the simple fact that Obama has the truth on his side more often than not. Yes I know his failings, no need to repeat them. But he does not lie every time he breaths like everyone on a GOP debate stage.

    I think that comes through in the end.


    But debating a lyin' little liar (5.00 / 1) (#126)
    by Towanda on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:11:23 AM EST
    can be really problematic for someone who sticks to the truth -- and someone who does better when scripted, and someone who does a lot of "umming" and "aahing" when not scripted, which audiences can misread.

    I can hope that the listening public actually listens to the words, not those miscues, but I  worry about that.  However, let's hope that Obama's handlers have worked with him to do better on his feet, this time around, so that audiences do detect the lyin' little liar's lies -- and listen well for which one is telling truths.  


    Newt would find (none / 0) (#128)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:14:05 AM EST
    a bipartisan audience far less receptive to his patented bile.

    and Obama can take care of himself.  the prompter crap is a republican talking point.


    Is it? (5.00 / 2) (#149)
    by Towanda on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:14:57 AM EST
    I'm writing about what I see.  So that must be the only talking point that has some basis.

    From what I see, he comes across better in terms of eye contact when off the teleprompter.  Fixing the "uhhhs" and "ahhhs" would be good -- but the eye contact (rather than the eyes shifting back and forth from screen to screen) is more important.  There are times for scripting, certainly, but he needs to let himself have more times freed from it, when scripting is not necessary.  That's when he does so well with the crowd.


    I already got the part (none / 0) (#178)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:31:15 PM EST
    that your opinions are based on your opinions.

    which I suppose you could say at least makes you consistent


    Well, duh. (5.00 / 1) (#186)
    by Towanda on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:44:15 PM EST
    And what a silly waste of your limited number of comments, already nearing 30 in only 3 hours!

    still waiting for a link (none / 0) (#187)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:46:09 PM EST
    showing Newt spent money in FL before the SC primary.

    (thats 31)


    Ridiculous (none / 0) (#192)
    by Towanda on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:10:54 PM EST
    and, as I had noted, the site is not allowing me to do links, so you'll just have to google to see that, for example, Gingrich opened campaign offices in Florida weeks ago . . . but try using common sense.  Campaigns cost a lot of money for a lot of things, many of them having to be ordered well ahead, even before officially opening offices.  For pity's sake, you claim to be in the business of production.  Apply your knowledge.

    not allowing you to do links? (none / 0) (#197)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:19:02 PM EST
    that interesting.  never heard of that.  you could just tell us what it is.

    and I am not in production.  I dont know where you got that idea.

    but I get it and this will be my last thought on the subject.  its clear that when you state something as fact what you mean is that it is your opinion.

    got it.


    No, I try to obey site rules (none / 0) (#198)
    by Towanda on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:23:56 PM EST
    and not use links that I cannot embed.  (The problem seems to be from a recent upgrade of Firefox, and I am unwilling to delete it, as it is upgrading security.)

    I have told you enough buzzwords -- newt, florida, open, office -- to google for it.

    As for where I got the idea that you are in production, I recalled you writing about producing videos or the like . . . but fine.

    As for stating facts and opinions, I have provided facts that you opt to see as opinions, but that's fine, too, as it only affirms my opinion of your ability to face facts.


    Okay (none / 0) (#200)
    by CoralGables on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:32:26 PM EST
    let me try and settle this for both of you as you are both right.

    Yes Gingrich opened some campaign offices in Florida prior to South Carolina (point for Towanda).

    No Gingrich didn't make any TV ad buys in Florida prior to winning South Carolina, while Romney had already spent 7 million on TV in Florida (point to Capt).


    Exactly. (none / 0) (#202)
    by Towanda on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:35:30 PM EST
    And I've said exactly that, several times -- that precision is useful -- so have stopped repeating it, but perhaps you will not be so reflexively dismissed, and the point will be regarded now.

    thank you (none / 0) (#203)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:36:56 PM EST
    the original point that started the discussion was about advertising.  and I knew what you said was true.  its been reported everywhere.

    and I will repeat it.  I found it amazing that Newt found himself 8 points up after SC having done 0 advertising.  dont you?


    still (none / 0) (#122)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:57:41 AM EST
    those three debates would be a sight to see.

    part of me hopes we get to see it.


    I don't get it (none / 0) (#205)
    by TeresaInPa on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 02:26:53 PM EST
    years ago, many years ago, I heard Obama give a speech, my BS detector went off and ever since I do not get the reason anyone still finds him either a great speaker or brilliant at politics. People have to know that no matter what he says, it has very little relation to what he does. The whole time he is speaking I am listening a little chant of "...stilted, phony, stilted, phony..."keeps running through my head.

    Peter Green and very early Fleetwod Mac (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by Edger on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 07:42:09 PM EST
    picked and sang Obama's State of the Union years ago...

    Need someone's hand to lead me through the night
    I need someone's arms to hold and squeeze me tight
    Now, when the night begins, I'm at an end
    Because I need your love so bad

    I need some lips to feel next to mine
    Need someone to stand up and tell me when I'm lyin'
    And when the lights are low, and it's time to go
    That's when I need your love so bad

    So why don't you give it up - and bring it home to me
    Or write it on a piece of paper, baby - so it can be read to me

    Need Your Love So Bad

    Thanks for the tune! (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by Farmboy on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:02:32 PM EST
    I haven't heard that song in years, and you reminded me that my own Fleetwood Mac collection only goes back to Kiln House. Time to go digging in the vinyl stacks...

    I can recommend this box set ... (5.00 / 2) (#68)
    by cymro on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:42:42 PM EST
    ... of the albums before Kiln House:

    The Complete Blue Horizon Sessions: 1967-1969

    It does contain "37 minutes of alternate takes of "Need Your Love So Bad." But read rest of the All Music Guide review to see if it's for you. Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac were quite different from the later incarnations. There are also buyer reviews on Amazon.


    Thanks for the suggestion (none / 0) (#95)
    by Farmboy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 08:21:18 AM EST
    I do love me some late 60s UK blues. One of my first albums in junior high was John Mayall's Blues Breakers w/Clapton.

    Green Manalishi (none / 0) (#199)
    by jondee on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:31:40 PM EST
    with the two-pronged crown..:)

    Someone dosed Peter pretty bad at some point..

    As Keith said in his book, Ken Kesey's got alot answer for..


    One more apropos blues tune for this evening... (none / 0) (#10)
    by Edger on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:07:55 PM EST
    Savoy Brown: Train To Nowhere

    How about a little partisanship? (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by lentinel on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:09:29 PM EST
    A fair shot.
    That's for the democrats.

    Everybody does his fair share
    . That's for the republicans. No slackers or welfare cheats.

    Everybody plays by the same rules
    . I Could he be a little more specific?

    People who are in the Democratic camp believe quite firmly that the Republicans are implacable obstructionists. Does Obama think so?
    If he does, can he bring himself to say it?

    Just started watching, very late (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by ruffian on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:15:48 PM EST
    Very good working in the bin Laden raid in the context of everyone working together. A much better take on at context than the 'there are no red states or blue states' stuff.

    I think he did a subtle job (none / 0) (#38)
    by lilburro on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:22:14 PM EST
    of reminding people that a lot has happened in the past year.  And that he did a lot in the past year.  That doesn't change how I feel about a lot of things that happened, but based on what I heard (the last 20 minutes or so) great speech.

    The fact that a lot of this confidence is based upon  a fragile economy, the foundations of which we are unlikely to actually strengthen, does uh, dampen the spirits a bit though.


    Very small ball with few hard (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by BTAL on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:35:51 PM EST

    The tone was that of a campaign sermon.

    What struck me (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:47:55 PM EST
    Boots on the border, cops on the street
    More DOJ prosecution task forces.

    Criminals (none / 0) (#52)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:55:22 PM EST
    Have no lobby.  Read meat for all.

    well, except for the ones on Wall Street n/t (5.00 / 5) (#54)
    by The Addams Family on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:58:49 PM EST
    Surprised there are no comments here (5.00 / 2) (#56)
    by BTAL on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:00:23 PM EST
    about the Frack Baby Frack comment (paraphrased) regarding the increasing natural gas production.  The only way that is happening is via fracking.

    I noted below (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by brodie on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:44:32 PM EST
    his energy proposals overall are rather conservative in nature.  They also fail to fully appreciate the climate change crisis to the extent much of his program is fossil fuel based and so would add to the problem while clean energy solutions are minor footnote priorities with this admin.

    The call for more natgas fracking is just consistent with his call for more domestic oil drilling including offshore as well as his unworried attitude about nuclear power. (one environmental victory re stopping Keystone at the moment went unmentioned in the speech, an interesting omission)

    Very disappointing admin on energy.  The guy has offered nothing new and he doesn't seem to appreciate the urgency of the climate situation.


    Well, (none / 0) (#70)
    by sj on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:50:18 PM EST
    You just made one.  So good for you.

    Overall, Impressive speech (5.00 / 1) (#72)
    by Realleft on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:57:49 PM EST
    Too centrist for my taste, but I knew that when I voted for him, so I never really expected otherwise...  Still, he didn't leave many places for Republicans to hide.  They looked foolish not clapping for mainstream common sense comments and proposals.  There were certainly some comments that left me saying WTF? But overall a very solid SOTU,

    Table scraps for the peasants ... (5.00 / 3) (#83)
    by Robot Porter on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 05:15:49 AM EST
    that was how I read it.  And most of these scraps will never materialize.

    Obama's speechwriters seem completely unable to catch the zeitgeist of the times.  Unless, those times were 1996.

    And the attempts to recapture the "glory" of his '04 convention speech were truly cringe-inducing.  He just won't give up on those unity ponies, will he?

    Of course, with things so bad maybe even the promise of table scraps will be enough for most people.  But that's rather said, isn't it?

    Re: "The glory". (5.00 / 2) (#92)
    by lentinel on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 07:55:14 AM EST
    I watched that self-serving bromide that Obama delivered at the 2004 Convention. I continue to be astonished that it has been described as "electrifying".

    Here are some quotes from the "glory" of that speech.

    The people I meet in small towns and big cities, in diners and office parks, they don't expect government to solve all their problems. They know they have to work hard to get ahead and they want to. Go into the collar counties around Chicago, and people will tell you they don't want their tax money wasted by a welfare agency or the Pentagon.

    Pure Republican malarky.
    He's making an analogy between the waste incurred by "a welfare agency" and the fking Pentagon!
    And I'm sure that he was busy meeting people in 2003-4 - in diners and "office parks". Gimme a break.

    We worship an awesome God in the Blue States, and we don't like federal agents poking around our libraries in the Red States. We coach Little League in the Blue States and have gay friends in the Red States.

    Yeah right. Not just any God - an "awesome God". That's what we worship in the Blue States. And I'm looking forward to meeting his "gay friends" in the Red States.  Ooof.

    And then there's this. For those of us waiting for the guy who "opposed the war in Iraq" to say SOMETHING: This is what this shnorrer had to say:

    There are patriots who opposed the war in Iraq and patriots who supported it. We are one people, all of us pledging allegiance to the stars and stripes, all of us defending the United States of America.

    So we bombed the wrong people. What the hey.

    Who in the world is still going for this?


    I didn't get to watch it (5.00 / 1) (#96)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 08:28:50 AM EST
    The comments are pretty dreary though, and I sure hope he never seriously thought that cutting a deal for robo-signers and the fraudulent foreclosing was something we all wanted and would have been a great addition to the SOTU.

    President (5.00 / 2) (#103)
    by Edger on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 08:51:23 AM EST
    Obama began his State of the Union speech Tuesday night by absurdly claiming the exact opposite, asserting that the war on Iraq has made us safer and -- I kid you not -- "more respected around the world."  He later equated the war on Iraq to World War II, a surefire way to put anything beyond criticism in the United States, provided you can get people to fall for it.

    Remember, this is the guy who won the Democratic Primary in 2008 by the simple fact of having not yet been in the Senate in 2003 and thus having avoided voting for the war that he funded to the hilt as a senator beginning in 2005.  He had called it a dumb war.  Now he says it made us safer.  If it was dumb, was he dumber?  What is he trying to say?

    In the next breath, Obama says "some troops in Afghanistan have begun to come home." Never mind that there are three times as many U.S. troops in Afghanistan now as when Obama moved into the White House.  The myth is that he's ending wars.  Never mind that he was compelled to end the Iraq War, in so far as it has ended, by the treaty that Bush and Maliki created, and which Obama sought every possible way to violate.

    2012 State of the Union: Killing Iraqis Makes Us Safer -- And Other Lies

    How insane are Republicans? (5.00 / 1) (#109)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:38:54 AM EST
    I can't believe Mitch Daniels said that Obama was a divider and a castigator, and then told us all he is some sort of glowing patriot called a "loyal opposition".  WTF man? These people make ZERO SENSE...NADA!

    Stuff (5.00 / 2) (#117)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:51:24 AM EST
    like this shows why the whole unity pony thing was so stupid. I mean all the GOP had to do was not go along with anything Obama proposed and voila! Obama is now a "divider". Imagine if he had actually campaigned on ideas instead of unicorns and fairies.

    the unity (none / 0) (#121)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:56:26 AM EST
    is going to help him get reelected.  and very possibly with a congress that actually may be a bit more united

    It might (5.00 / 2) (#124)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:02:55 AM EST
    get him reelected but it's not going to help down ticket at all. People want solutions not rhetoric. They don't really care about bi-partisanship. They only care about results. I mean if things were humming along right now who would care if the GOP voted for the bills or not? And frankly, if success comes and the GOP didn't vote for any of the bills all the better. Right?

    I already said (none / 0) (#127)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:11:42 AM EST
    I think we will take back the house.  and even if we dont the motivation to stop him at all costs to prevent another term will be gone so I think its more likely the republicans are going to be a bit more likely to want to do some actual work to try to rehabilitate their image a bit.

    A bit more united in service of what (5.00 / 5) (#129)
    by Anne on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:25:44 AM EST
    kinds of policies and ideas?  I really don't want the Congress united on "entitlement" reform, on austerity programs, on changing the foreclosure laws to make it easier for lenders to get away with hosing borrowers, on more infringement of privacy rights, more onerous drug laws, on Supreme Court nominees that may be more to the right.  

    The Congress is not trending left, it's trending right - thanks, in large part, to the insane belief that a Democrat is a Democrat is a Democrat, which I think we can agree is just not the case - and a trending-right Congress isn't going to be agreeing on policy that trends left, it's going to agree on policy that isn't as far to the right as the extreme right wants it to be.

    Sure, the argument is that with a Republican in the WH, the push will be for that extreme right position - but in a Congress that's already getting redder in ideology if not in party affiliation, what guarantee is there that the few truly blue Democrats will triumph over their redder peers AND the united Republican caucus?  

    Unity for its own sake is, in my opinion, not just useless, but possibly dangerous, depending on what kinds of things people are uniting around.  


    Did you see this this morning, Anne? (5.00 / 1) (#132)
    by Edger on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:28:48 AM EST
    A survey taken moments after President Barack Obama finished giving his third State of the Union speech found that an overwhelming majority of Americans who viewed the speech, including most Republicans, strongly favored the president's proposals.

    State of the Union poll: Most Republican voters approve of Obama agenda


    Those polls are meaningless (5.00 / 1) (#137)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:48:46 AM EST
    He will get a 5-6 point bounce. For a while - like a week or two.

    Since SOTU speeches never have details, people always have a "feel good" attitude about them.

    But the cheerleaders will be out crowing about how this proves he can't be beat.


    and (none / 0) (#138)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:51:10 AM EST
    the Dudly Doo Romney inevitability crowd will be clinging to denial

    your singular ability to miss the point (none / 0) (#182)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:34:59 PM EST
    is impressive.

    the speech will do nothing to help him get reelected.  the policies and ideas he put forward in the speech will.


    Actually (5.00 / 3) (#190)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:01:14 PM EST
    not unless he tries to implement them. You have to realize that Obama has a credibility problem and everybody knows that Obama will say a lot of stuff and doesn't back it up with any action whatsoever.

    well (none / 0) (#191)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:07:29 PM EST
    first no.  speaking from a purely political point of view no one really expects him to implement much of that with this congress.  having said that I expect him to try.  he has been trying and every poll shows even republicans believe he has.
    but second I would say the poll sited in this thread about even republicans approving of the goals he set forth and elections are about the future and the candidates competing visions for it.

    and the republicans dont have one.


    I didn't (5.00 / 2) (#193)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:10:56 PM EST
    say implement I said try. So far he has only been trying on one thing and that was the jobs bill.

    Oh, the Republicans definitely have a vision for the country. It's just not a good one.


    silly me (none / 0) (#133)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:41:28 AM EST
    I would look at that and see it as a great sign for the coming election.

    the fact is that it is not in the least surprising.  every single thing he said last night was aimed right at the middle class and that includes republicans.  and btw I did not disagree with a single word of it.

    hand wringing and whining aside entitlements are going to be addressed. the need to be and the will be.  I would personally much rather have him in the lead than any republican.

    but thats just me


    Either a republican or Obama is going to win (5.00 / 1) (#135)
    by Edger on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:45:26 AM EST
    and either way, like you, most republicans will be happy.

    And everyone else will lose.


    Edger, some people seem to believe (5.00 / 4) (#143)
    by Anne on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:04:59 AM EST
    that Republican policies wrapped in a Democratic package are a good thing - for Obama - AND that Republicans who express approval based on a speech that targeted that response will, when push comes to shove, break ranks and vote for him.

    I suppose if one makes the focus what is best for the candidate, it allows one to ignore what is best for the people; maybe this is where people have to go when faced with a choice between a Republican who's not afraid to be a Republican, and a Democrat who seems eminently more comfortable espousing Republican policy.

    Or there's certainly the possiblity that some people actually believe that Obama has and will continue to govern as a Democrat, but that seems like it would require a change in the definition of the label.

    It's really too bad that words like "whining" have to be flung at people who want more from an allegedly Democratic president, and the Democratic caucus, than we've been getting; seems to me that back when Bush was president, no one who wanted better was being told, in so many words, and with "sweetie" attached, to STFU and stop whining.

    But, hey, I guess it's Howdy-Doody time, all the time now, and we'll just have to get used to living in that world, huh?


    It's "team" kind of thing I guess, Anne (5.00 / 1) (#147)
    by Edger on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:13:11 AM EST
    Sad though when it comes down to, for many apparently, redefining losing as winning, isn't it?

    I personally prefer the kind of thinking people like Bruce Dixon practice...

    A vote is a terrible thing to waste, they say. But exactly when are votes wasted? Are they thrown away when cast for the least of multiple evils. Are they squandered when cast for what people really need and want, even if that means a Democrat might not win? Are they lost when people with few or no good choices stay home? Or have voters already been robbed when the menu is limited to corporate-funded Republicans vs. corporate-funded Democrats?


    This is what Eugene Debs referred to a century ago, when he declared he would rather cast a meaningful vote for what did want, and not get it, than a fake and hollow one for what he didn't want, and get that.

    And so, a hundred years later, the game is still the game. If we want our votes to have any meaning, it's time to reject the fake choices between the two corporate parties. It's time to wise up, to grow up and like adults, to take a view longer than dessert, or the next two or three elections

    Howdy-Doody time (none / 0) (#179)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:32:33 PM EST
    you really need some new material

    and the everyone is a republican who doesnt agree with me part is also getting pretty tired.


    Waaaaaaaaayyyyy (5.00 / 1) (#204)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:42:15 PM EST

    We get it.  Everyone is conservative and it stinks. But these are our choices right now, and at some point choosing the one you hate less would be helpful.


    no (none / 0) (#136)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:46:33 AM EST
    you will lose

    We ALL lose. Either way (5.00 / 3) (#161)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:34:01 AM EST
    I'll be fine (none / 0) (#139)
    by Edger on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:54:30 AM EST
    I've already left the country...

    he EVEN (none / 0) (#134)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:44:37 AM EST
    mentioned that copyrights and intellectual property rights need to be protected from foreign pirating.

    clutch my pearls!


    Wasn't Mitch taking his cue (none / 0) (#111)
    by Edger on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:41:52 AM EST
    from the way Obama describes republicans?

    you think that crap (none / 0) (#113)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:43:06 AM EST
    is going to go far with anyone but republicans?

    There are a LOT (none / 0) (#114)
    by Edger on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:46:03 AM EST
    of republicans calling themselves democrats the past few years...

    well (none / 0) (#123)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:59:48 AM EST
    I hope that is the strategy.  I think it is about as far from what the country (or as much of it as Obama needs to be reelected) wants to see and you can get.

    nothing can match the (none / 0) (#112)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:41:57 AM EST
    light bulb line.

    that was pure Michelle Bachman.


    One big chuckle though on my President (5.00 / 2) (#130)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:27:33 AM EST
    If you give EVERYONE a housing subsidy in order to live in a safe respectable home, free healthcare for life after 20 years of service and all during the 20 years, decent and safe schools in ALL of the neighborhoods, feed and cloth the poorer low ranking noobs for free, swear to God and the whole world you will never leave one of them behind in battle, you would be surprised how many out of uniform Americans would be just as loyal and dedicated as the ones in uniform.

    That was a totally unfair thing to throw at civilians.  I've never had it so good as we get to have it in the military.  My husband works very very hard too and there is no boss' son around here who will inherit everything when dad dies, he really does get fully appreciated in ways that almost the whole private sector can only dream of if the silver spoon wasn't born in their mouth.

    To pretend that anyone has the backs of the common civilians at this time in my nation is a really really horrible thing to pretend in the SOTU.  Nobody has their backs other than the guys with M16s. And the civilians may owe their lives to that protection at times, but you can't eat a gun or the bullets in a way that KEEPS you alive.

    G*dammit, MT (5.00 / 1) (#188)
    by Dadler on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:51:52 PM EST
    Sometimes you're more brilliant than the stars, even though I'm worried far too many of those guys with M16s are going to come home and blast them INTO the backs of far too many civies.  And that, tragically, I will understand why.  Hope you're well and good, my dear.  I'm trying to deal with the one real punk at my son's middle school harrassing my son miserably.  Finally came to a head yesterday, when my son came to me tearfully admitting that he'd punched the kid finally.  They got in a little scuffle after than, but nothing major.  The punk kid, who I have sympathy for as he is apparently being raised by wolves (no dad in the hosue, old brother already in jail), had been tormenting my son's best bud, whom my son then tried to defend.  Punk kid then follows my son, right on his heels saying, "Whathca gonna do?  Whatcha gonna do?"  So Eli finally whacks him.  This has been a few months in the making, and it seems like I'm going to have to get in the school administrators' grills again and really demand something be done.  Probably later in the week, unless this kid, after finally getting smacked, decides to leave my son alone for good.  I hope so.

    Peace out, my friend.


    Peace Dadler (5.00 / 2) (#195)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:12:07 PM EST
    And some peace to find Eli in all of this.

    Anyone have the remarks as prepared? (none / 0) (#4)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:00:19 PM EST

    Answering my own question (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:15:27 PM EST
    From the linked article (none / 0) (#5)
    by vicndabx on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:01:11 PM EST
    His Republican rivals in Congress and on the campaign trail have called his message class warfare. But it has found a receptive audience among the large pool of independent voters who had helped elect him in 2008 but had grown disillusioned with his performance in office.

    A Washington Post-ABC News Poll conducted late last week found that Obama's approval rating is now 53 percent, its highest point in months, and that a majority of independent voters now look favorably on his performance in office.

    It really is about what works best for the vast majority of us.  Looking forward to the speech.

    He's good at making speeches (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by Edger on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:05:33 PM EST
    At follow up, not so much...

    For months, a massive federal settlement with big Wall Street banks over their role in the mortgage crisis has been in the offing. The rumored details have always given progressives heartburn: civil immunity, no investigations, inadequate help for homeowners and a small penalty for the banks. Now, on the eve President Obama's State of the Union address--in which he plans to further advance a populist message against big money and income inequality--the deal may be here, and it's every bit as ugly as progressives feared.

    I had read that he had hoped to be (5.00 / 1) (#19)
    by Anne on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:21:46 PM EST
    able to announce a deal in his speech tonight, but as far as I know, no deal has been agreed to.

    Instead, he's going to pivot:

    During his State of the Union address tonight, President Obama will announce the creation of a special unit to investigate misconduct and illegalities that contributed to both the financial collapse and the mortgage crisis.

    The office, part of a new Unit on Mortgage Origination and Securitization Abuses, will be chaired by Eric Schneiderman, the New York attorney general, according to a White House official.

    Schneiderman is an increasingly beloved figure among progressives for his criticism of a proposed settlement between the 50 state attorneys generals and the five largest banks. His presence atop this new special unit could give it immediate legitimacy among those who have criticized the president for being too hesitant in going after the banks and resolving the mortgage crisis. He will be in attendance at Tuesday night's State of the Union address.

    "The goal of this joint investigation will be threefold: to hold accountable any institutions that violated the law; to compensate victims and help provide relief for homeowners struggling from the collapse of the housing market, caused in part by this wrongdoing; and to help us finally turn the page on this destructive period in our nation's history," reads a White House document outlining the objectives.

    "This is a big achievement and something the entire progressive advocacy community wanted [with respect to] housing policy," added the White House official.

    David Dayen weighs in:

    I need to digest this; lots of implications here. First of all, Schneiderman is a co-chair, along with DoJ's Lanny Breuer, who worked for the law firm that defended MERS. Robert Khuzami, the director of enforcement at the SEC, who has embarrassed themselves with their no-fault settlements, is also a co-chair. This could be good or could amount to nothing, with Schneiderman outvoted.

    My big question is: I thought the Administration already did a comprehensive investigation of the mortgage crisis? That's what they keep saying.

    It remains to be seen if this is "too little," and while it may not be "too" late, it's still late, very late, to just be getting around to this.


    I'd like to see (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by Edger on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:33:46 PM EST
    former Director of the Institute for Fraud Prevention William K. Black chairing that investigative unit.

    Moyers interviewing Black in 2009: U.S. Banking Collapse Driven By "fraud", Tim Geithner Covering Up Bank Insolvency

    He equated the entire US financial system to a giant "ponzi scheme" and charged Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, like Secretary Henry Paulson before him, of "covering up" the truth.

    "Are you saying that Timothy Geithner, the Secretary of the Treasury, and others in the administration, with the banks, are engaged in a cover up to keep us from knowing what went wrong?" asked Moyers.

    "Absolutely, because they are scared to death," he said. "All right? They're scared to death of a collapse. They're afraid that if they admit the truth, that many of the large banks are insolvent. They think Americans are a bunch of cowards, and that we'll run screaming to the exits.

    And by Black: The Two Documents Everyone Should Read to Better Understand the Crisis

    The FBI correctly identified the epidemic of mortgage control fraud at such an early point that the financial crisis could have been averted had the Bush administration acted with even minimal competence.

    Turning the page ... (5.00 / 5) (#84)
    by Robot Porter on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 05:37:07 AM EST
    help us finally turn the page on this destructive period in our nation's history," reads a White House document outlining the objectives.

    Why is the Obama administration so obsessed with this "turning the page" metaphor? I don't wanna turn the page. I want that page to be blown up to poster size, and plastered on the side of ever building.

    Also this whole thing smacks of the classic "blue ribbon panel" dodge.  A favorite of pols since world was new.

    I hope it's more than that.  But a very, healthy dose of skepticism is warranted given the administration's horrendous track record on this issue.


    he is goint to be running against (none / 0) (#185)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:37:34 PM EST
    two things this fall.  congress and wall street.
    I guess three if you want to count the republican nominee.

    that bodes well for your hope.


    If Only WS Had Stored Copyrighted... (5.00 / 2) (#172)
    by ScottW714 on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:08:35 PM EST
    ...materials on their servers, then the Fed would have kicked in doors, seized assets, and made arrests.  

    But since they only manipulated the markets to make themselves rich, and left the country in shambles, it's time for the Feds to cut a deal that WS will payoff with their ill-gotten gains, aka our money.


    Drink! (1.00 / 1) (#27)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:54:38 PM EST
    key words: (none / 0) (#17)
    by vicndabx on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:20:04 PM EST
    offing, rumored, may be

    You should click links and read (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by Edger on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:24:41 PM EST
    before commenting.

    Five banks--Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citibank and Ally Financial (formerly GMAC)--would pay the federal government $25 billion. About $17 billion would be used to reduce the principal that some struggling homeowners owe, $5 billion more would be used for future federal and state programs and $3 billion would be used to help homeowners refinance at 5.25 percent. Civil immunity would be granted to the banks for any role in foreclosure fraud, and there would be no investigations.

    And the keywords are in the last two sentences of the article...

    Moreover, attorneys general in California, New York, Delaware, Nevada and Massachusetts have previously said they won't be a part of any deal that offers civil immunity.

    So the deal is far from done--but it's certainly moving towards an undesirable conclusion. We'll have plenty more in this space all week.

    Who decides?? (none / 0) (#86)
    by jimakaPPJ on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 07:12:44 AM EST
    About $17 billion would be used to reduce the principal that some struggling homeowners owe,

    That should start a real screaming match between those who get it and those who don't.

    The Repubs should thank Obama.


    Well, I guess like with most things he does (5.00 / 2) (#99)
    by Edger on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 08:42:48 AM EST
    He'll do his damndest to fall all over himself doing everything he can do to make republicans happy, and make you want to vote for him, Jim.

    i.e. zero accountability for and prosecutions of wall street fraud specialists (and maybe slide them a few hundred billion more of taxpayer money in the process), and help as few homeowners as possible, or none.

    He's a bipartisan kinda guy, in the you scratch my back I scratch yours sense of the word.


    What works best for the vast majority of us? (3.17 / 6) (#7)
    by Romberry on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:05:31 PM EST
    Do you mean the rhetoric? Sure. But the rhetoric of Obama is the rhetoric of a liar seeking votes. Why is it that people want to vote for the most pleasing liar?

    From the excerpted text (none / 0) (#11)
    by Farmboy on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:08:48 PM EST
    Let's never forget: Millions of Americans who work hard and play by the rules every day deserve a government and a financial system that does the same. It's time to apply the same rules from top to bottom: No bailouts, no handouts, and no copouts. An America built to last insists on responsibility from everybody.

    And then he'll announce that he's just made a deal with the Empire* that will keep them out of here forever.

    *reference to the rumored Wall Street immunity deal

    Interesting. Instead of the rumored amnesty (none / 0) (#46)
    by Farmboy on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:37:37 PM EST
    for Wall Street, he announced:
    And tonight, I am asking my Attorney General to create a special unit of federal prosecutors and leading state attorneys general to expand our investigations into the abusive lending and packaging of risky mortgages that led to the housing crisis. This new unit will hold accountable those who broke the law, speed assistance to homeowners, and help turn the page on an era of recklessness that hurt so many Americans.

    About time. Orange jump suits, all in a row.

    I will settle for nothing less (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by Towanda on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:43:05 PM EST
    than perp walks in those orange jumpsuits.

    Now, now (none / 0) (#107)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:21:04 AM EST
    Folks around these parts get very upset when you wish for peple doing perp walks in orange jumpsuits.

    Have you no mercy?  <snark>


    Yes, humanitarians do;).... (none / 0) (#131)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:28:32 AM EST
    stop stealing and I'm satisfied, hold the pound of flesh.

    But that won't bring (5.00 / 1) (#140)
    by Towanda on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:57:52 AM EST
    any repayment or other compensation to the homeowners who had their homes stolen from them.

    Nope, we need sufficient retribution to help those former homeowners.  To simply settle for "stop stealing" in future helps the perps, not the victims.


    How about... (5.00 / 1) (#148)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:14:32 AM EST
    restitution instead?  Stop stealing and repay ill-gotten gains, still hold the pound of flesh;)

    Believe you me gang I understand the sentiments...I feel them too.  But I don't see the "morally right" in caging human beings over what at the end of the day are property crimes, even if on the grandest scale in human history causing real pain to innocent people.

    We gotta find that enlightened higher plane and stat, lest we build another piece 'o sh*t society post-revolution.  


    "Cross my fingers (none / 0) (#154)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:20:50 AM EST
    I'll never help collapse the economy again for my own benefit."

    Just like drug cartels.... (none / 0) (#156)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:30:49 AM EST
    lock up one Brooks Brothers cartel, another comes along to take its place.  

    The fraud is systemic, were not talking about a few bad apples here, but an economy that is itself a bad apple.  We got grift down to the foundation, there is no way to cage our way out of this imo.


    A former Congressional aide disagrees (none / 0) (#167)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:54:54 AM EST
    with you kdog :)  Via Rolling Stone Matt Taibbi

    Conversely, one has to consider the powerful deterrent to further wrongdoing that the state is missing by not introducing this particular class of people to the experience of incarceration. "You put Lloyd Blankfein in pound-me-in-the-ass prison for one six-month term, and all this bullshit would stop, all over Wall Street," says a former congressional aide. "That's all it would take. Just once."

    Always tasteful, that guy


    Not sure if I buy that... (none / 0) (#169)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:01:56 PM EST
    the grift is too profitable for cages to be a deterrent, and no grifter thinks they'll be caught, only the other guy.

    But even if true, is it morally acceptable to sentence a human being to torture, up to and including potential rape? I say no...though I must admit it is perversely fun to imagine Blankfein in Cell Block 4 bunking with Boggs;)


    Can't help it kdog (5.00 / 1) (#173)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:08:42 PM EST
    Character flaw I have.  Thinking about Blankfein living like that for six months makes me smile. I promise to examine this problem that I have though, expound on it, focus on why I hate so much until the reasons why I feel this way finally go away :)

    The guy did exactly that to all of us.  He did it to me for fun, for pleasure, for profit.  It won't kill him, it will just allow him to understand that doing it isn't a "good" thing, it isn't nice for the other person.  It generates unnecessary suffering.


    I would prefer that these people be (5.00 / 2) (#180)
    by Anne on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:34:10 PM EST
    stripped of their worldly possession, prohibited from associating with anyone who could, um, bail them out, and forced to live life like the least among us - scrabble for a minimum wage job, without access to the concierge doctor, struggle to get help from the government without the benefit of a fixed address - have to face all the things we common folk have to face every day, day after day.

    But, since that isn't likely to happen, they could still be stripped of their worldly possessions, forced to live with and share personal space with others convicted of less genteel crimes, forced to be a number wearing a jumpsuit not styled by Armani or made from fine Egyptian cotton, in a room with a door that opens and closes at someone else's hands, and is devoid of thick wool carpeting, leather chairs and a TempurPedic mattress.  Let these people live like that, and be released to poverty, and maybe - maybe - that would begin to erase the financial hardship and economic catastrophe imposed on millions of people, and the vast karmic debt incurred as a result.



    You mean like this? (none / 0) (#155)
    by oculus on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:27:28 AM EST
    Sounds about right... (none / 0) (#159)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:32:39 AM EST
    as long as we treat the blue collar or no collar thieves the same way...equality under humane law.

    Of course, kdog (none / 0) (#164)
    by Towanda on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:41:54 AM EST
    A perp walk does not automatically mean a prison sentence, after all.  Restitution is better -- but to get it requires at least a threat of charges.

    Charges are cool... (5.00 / 2) (#166)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:50:30 AM EST
    I'm looking for humanity on the sentencing end primarily, for all convicts...even the ones I have a compelling urge to beat the living crap out of.

    Absent that, I'd settle for equality under current law.  I dream left and right and twice on Sundays, don't I? ;)


    First, there would have to be any (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by Anne on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:55:09 PM EST
    investigation before one could be "expanded," no?

    In an excerpt I posted here, Eric Schneiderman, the NY AG who has been the proverbial thorn in the side of efforts to get a settlement, is to be a co-chair, as is Lanny Breuer, whose ties to Covington & Burling (also Eric Holder's old firm), the law firm that defended MERS. And bringing up the rear is Robert Khuzami, who is the director of enforcement at the SEC, they of the no-fault settlements.  With the exception of Schneiderman, I'm not seeing any names that inspire confidence, as much as they inspire incipient "fix."

    Further, the fact that Obama didn't announce a settlement doesn't mean one isn't still being worked on, does it?  I have seen no indication that settlement efforts have been scrapped, and I am highly skeptical that this "commission" will prove to be the accountability juggernaut it should be.

    Honestly, how many times is Obama going to announce some new program or effort to resolve this crisis?


    What commission? (none / 0) (#61)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:23:04 PM EST
    "a special unit of federal prosecutors and leading state attorneys general" is not a commission.

    So, rather than comment on the (5.00 / 3) (#88)
    by Anne on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 07:17:10 AM EST
    composition of the leadership of this "unit," and what that might mean for the success of its so-called investigation - oh, I mean "expansion" of an investigation - if you can even call it that, considering what we've gotten from it - you would prefer to focus on my choice of the word "commission?"

    Way to miss the point.

    Maybe you have confidence in a "unit" where 2/3 of the leadership comprise (1) someone who represented MERS, which is right at the heart of this mess, and (2) someone who seems pre-disposed to the "no-fault" approach to accountability, but I don't.

    Perhaps Eric Schneiderman will be able to take the lead on this, and make sure there is, in fact, a meaningful and in-depth investigation; I'd have more confidence in that if his co-chairs were people whose focus has been on real accountability and not on sheltering those responsible.  

    And since the administration's approach all along has not only been grossly inadequate, but more concerned with putting this behind us ("turning the page") without actually holding anyone accountable, and he is still, by all accounts, working to get a settlement that will include immunity for the banks, I'm going to reserve my praise for the president's extremely late interest in accountability until I actually see some.

    Here's Yves Smith, in part (read the whole thing; it's well worth it):

    If you wanted a real investigation, you get a real independent investigator, with a real budget and staffing, and turn him loose. We had the FCIC which had a lot of hearings and produced a readable book that said everyone was responsible for the mortgage crisis, which was tantamount to saying no one was responsible. We even had an eleven-regulator Foreclosure Task Force that looked at 2800 loan files (and a mere 100 foreclosures) and found nothing very much wrong.

    Now we have a committee full of people who have made numerous statements in the media and to Congressional committee minimizing the severity of the mortgage mess. Are were to believe they all had a conversion experience on the eve of the State of the Union address? But apparently the members of what passes for the left are prepared to take "investigation" at face value since it would be unpleasant to consider the possibility that they are being snookered again.

    And it seems awfully plausible that the aim of getting Schneiderman on board with an Administration "investigation" is to undermine the effort by 15 Democrat attorneys general to devise their own strategy for dealing with mortgage abuses. We've heard reports privately that some of the defecting AGs are in a panic.

    Put it another way: one thing that would convince me that this committee was serious was if the settlement pact was put on hold until the investigation were completed. The fact that the settlement push is in high gear is yet more proof that this committee is yet another bit of regulatory/enforcement theater, just like the Foreclosure Task Force, or the servicer consent decrees (confirmed as an embarrassment via the use of badly conflicted "consultants"), or the current OCC investigation into foreclosure abuses, which excludes all sorts of injuries inflicted upon homeowners, most notably servicer fees abuses and misapplication of payments.


    It would appear big aim of setting up this committee (and the uncertainty as to whether Schneiderman is now going to join the settlement deal) is to create disarray among the dissenting AGs. I'm sure it is no coincidence that there is a conference call scheduled for 11:00 AM tomorrow among the Democratic AGs. Delaware's Biden as of Tuesday afternoon said he was not supporting a settlement, and there is good reason to think at least Masto of Nevada, who has been the most aggressive so far, will hold firm.

    It would be better if I were proven wrong, but this looks to be yet another clever Obama gambit to neutralize his opposition. With all the same key actors in place - Geithner, Walsh, Holder - there is no reason to believe the Administration has had a change of heart until there is compelling evidence otherwise.



    Requisite fashion commentary (none / 0) (#13)
    by Towanda on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:12:05 PM EST
    That color is fantastic on Michelle Obama.  Good neckline for her shoulders, too.  That's all that I can see of it.  (I do like her hair better when it's up, but it's also fine this way.)

    I thought Giffords looked fabulous (none / 0) (#14)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:14:14 PM EST
    Based on what I saw tonight, I would have thought she was coming back to Congress.

    Yes, then I saw her (5.00 / 4) (#16)
    by Towanda on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:18:21 PM EST
    after posting.  She does look good -- but the hand gesture suggests why she needs to focus on rehab.  Her decision is absolutely the correct one, as every day matters, to the point that I wish that she had put herself first before this, including tonight.  May she recover well.

    I remember NPR reporting her dead (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:20:28 PM EST
    and fully believing it.

    That she's standing on her own two feet is absolutely remarkable.


    Agreed, again -- and (5.00 / 3) (#20)
    by Towanda on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:22:49 PM EST
    as someone who is able to stand today, too -- and also is even alive today, too -- thank you, modern medicine and its practitioners, including its researchers.  Oh, and for my daughter, too.

    Nancy Pelosi has a new haircut (none / 0) (#31)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:06:20 PM EST
    If you believe one poll (I don't, yet), she might start packing boxes to move back to the Speaker's suite.

    I think theres' a shot (5.00 / 1) (#63)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:25:02 PM EST
    especially if the GOP primaries keep on going, and double especially if Newt wins (which I don't think he will, but still).  I think it's close enough that it's going to depend on how the presidential campaign goes.

    So let me understand (none / 0) (#87)
    by jimakaPPJ on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 07:16:04 AM EST
    Voters are losing confidence in Obama but he is going to be re-elected.

    Voters are losing confidence in Congress and they are not going to be re-elected.

    Okay. Makes sense to somebody. I guess.


    What you (5.00 / 1) (#90)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 07:20:38 AM EST
    don't realize is that the GOP is doing their best to lose an election that they could win. Yes, they are losing confidence in Obama but they aren't going to replace him with a lunatic like Newt.

    And demographics are not in the GOP's favor. Elderly evangelicals is not enough to win an election with. The GOP base is dying off.


    Michelle's dress is fantastic. (none / 0) (#53)
    by caseyOR on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:56:37 PM EST
    Great color. I love cobalt. The dress, the neckline and the color, was a good choice for her.

    Here's a picture.


    Check. (5.00 / 1) (#59)
    by brodie on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:12:01 PM EST
    Unusual but eye-catching color, nice clean cut, and the nifty
     line of jewelry below the neck -- it actually looks kinda 21st C, part contemporary part futuristic.  A lot more bold, pleasing and creative than most of her husband's proposals tonight.

    Grade:  A+.


    damn, yes - she looks swell (none / 0) (#55)
    by The Addams Family on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:59:29 PM EST
    She looks great in (none / 0) (#60)
    by ZtoA on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:14:59 PM EST
    deep pure colors, especially purple. The men on stage were interesting optics. Boehner is really funny to watch as one of the blue tie guys. He looked so sour.

    The word "funny" has two meanings: (none / 0) (#71)
    by cymro on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:53:07 PM EST
    Funny ha-ha and funny peculiar; I assume you meant the latter.

    He was so the second meaning (none / 0) (#80)
    by ZtoA on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:33:20 AM EST
    that he became the first.

    Oh yeah, that is really nice. (none / 0) (#58)
    by ruffian on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:11:24 PM EST
    I mean, she's no Callista Gingrich, but not bad.

    I kid!

    All I could think of in the brief section I saw was how shocked i would be if Gingrich is there next year.


    she looked amazing (none / 0) (#108)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:24:44 AM EST
    I never ceases to amaze me that so much hate and vitriol can be directed at that woman.

    When hate and vitriol is all you have (none / 0) (#115)
    by ruffian on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:47:52 AM EST
    I guess you fling it all over.

    Just like Daniels and Romney, speechifying about an Obama that does not even exist.


    heh (none / 0) (#21)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:23:04 PM EST
    [F]or the first time in fifteen years, Master Lock's unionized plant in Milwaukee is running at full capacity.

    "heh" = ? (n/t) (none / 0) (#25)
    by Towanda on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:45:51 PM EST
    He got in a reference to unions in Wisconsin (5.00 / 2) (#26)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:46:33 PM EST
    Well, it's not like finding (none / 0) (#35)
    by Towanda on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:16:13 PM EST
    his "comfortable shoes."  

    But it played well to the crowd, I guess.

    Now, wait for whether any journalist looks into the background at that company. But the union did what it had to do.  Again, and again, and again.  Union concessions make many things possible!

    It's nice, though, to bring back 100 jobs from China.  That's a start to come back from the many 100s of jobs that it sent out of the state and to Mexico.


    Logical fallacy watch (none / 0) (#24)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 08:36:26 PM EST
    "That's why there are fewer illegal crossings than when I took office."

    The President is smart enough to know that's almost certainly false.

    Actually (none / 0) (#28)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:00:10 PM EST
    That is true.

    Fewer crossing because he put (5.00 / 5) (#29)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:03:00 PM EST
    more troops on the border?

    No, that's almost certainly false. I accept that there are fewer crossings, but I am confident that it's because of the economy.


    Irrelevant (none / 0) (#39)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:23:24 PM EST
    The larger point is that the need for walls and such are made up.  There is no wave of immigrants coming to steal US jobs.  Illegal immigration is way down and the money could be used elsewhere.

    It is surely relevant (none / 0) (#43)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:27:50 PM EST
    to the fallacy in the speech.

    On substance we agree.


    Fair enough (none / 0) (#49)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:52:44 PM EST
    Ill meet you halfway on that.

    So you opine that since the ecoonomy (none / 0) (#89)
    by jimakaPPJ on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 07:18:15 AM EST
    isn't going to recover there won't be many illegal immigrants....



    Wait, did he even state a reason why? (none / 0) (#40)
    by Addison on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:23:32 PM EST
    If the statement is true, it's true. No fallacy.

    At minimum, he strongly implied one (5.00 / 1) (#42)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:27:27 PM EST
    Read the remarks as prepared.

    Arizona, Alabama and other (none / 0) (#65)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:27:04 PM EST
    state laws have been a factor, too, I think.

    Everything pales in comparison (none / 0) (#75)
    by andgarden on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 11:07:32 PM EST
    to the economy. Do you suppose that Mexican migrants found Alabama friendly and welcoming even when times were good?

    More fallacy (none / 0) (#91)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 07:43:25 AM EST
    Now, you can call this class warfare all you want. But asking a billionaire to pay at least as much as his secretary in taxes? Most Americans would call that common sense.

    --Barack Obama, State of the Union, 2012

    Well, yes, most Americans would call that common sense - if that was a true statement. The problem is, the billionaire DOES pay at least (and a whole lot more) in taxes than his secreatry does. She pays at a lower rate than he does - which is a completely different argument.  I know this is a great bumper sticker line, and I know what he meant, but I absolutely cannot stand it when something so clearly wrong is thrown out so casually as fact.  Criminy - there is plenty of fodder to go after Republican policy and ideas, but when you resort to distorting the truth (AKA "lying"), all it does is weaken your own argument.

    And how many secretaries to billionaires really pay a higher tax rate than their bosses?  Actually - not many.


    The reason this entire argument is moot (5.00 / 2) (#106)
    by Dadler on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:17:19 AM EST
    Wages are flat against inflation for almost half a century.  And we have a taxation system that is regressive to its core.  If the bumper sticker doesn't hold absolutely every time, the PHYSICAL EFFECT OF TAXES ON THOSE WHO MAKE LESS means the poor pay more -- if by "pay" you are going to include all those things that go along with money (security, food, housing, etc.).  Take ten grand from someone who makes forty and you have a concrete impact on their ability to provide for themselves, take a million from someone making three and it means nothing.  The utilitarian fact of our system is that is OPERATES to the same effect as the one that would perfectly match the bumper sticker.  It doesn't really matter if every secretary pays a higher rate than every CEO, the fact that ANY do, and the fact that the resulting society is essentially in the sinking boat says it all.

    Just because you don't PAY a higher rate, doesn't mean you aren't BURDENED at a higher rate.  And it is that burden that MATTERS.


    Yes, it's really about the burden (5.00 / 1) (#125)
    by Anne on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 10:11:06 AM EST
    each taxpayer bears than the rate of the tax or the dollar amount that is paid.

    You have only to look at sales taxes to understand the regressive consequence of everyone paying at the same rate.  Mary Smith makes $25,000 a year, her neighbor Joe makes $50,000 and George Gotrocks lives up on the hill and doesn't "make" anything, collects $500,000 a year from his many investments.

    Mary, Joe and George shop at the same stores in their town; George can afford to buy more, and buy more often, but for the sake of argument, let's have the three of them buying the exact same items at the local Wal-Mart, and we'll be generous and have them living in a state where food is not taxed.  

    Let's say the total of the items purchased equals exactly $100.00, and the sales tax is 5%, so the grand total of each of their purchases is $105.00.

    As a percentage of their gross income, before taxes (income taxes probably should be part of the equation, but I'm trying to keep this simple), Mary is paying .42%, Joe is paying .21% and George is paying .0021%.  Even though they are shelling out the same amount of money, Mary pays twice as much as Joe, and 200 times as much as George, Joe pays half of what Mary pays, but 100 times what George pays - as a percentage of their gross income.

    Now, on $100.00, a 5% tax seems like peanuts, right?  But no matter how large or how small the purchase, Mary and Joe are always going to be paying more - a lot  more - as a percentage of their income, than George, and paying it is going to be harder, and take more out of the total of what's in their pockets than what's in George's.  

    Which is why Mary and Joe aren't buying cars or computers or "extras;" they aren't going to restaurants or movies, or buying more clothing beyond the basics - which they often have to skimp on because of a medical or pharmacy bill they didn't expect, or because they're late on the utility bill.  They end up contributing less to the economy in an effort to keep their heads above water - the millions of Marys and Joes have the power to slow the economy when they can't afford to participate in it, and the 1% of Georges can't make up for their absence from the economy - if they did, we would never have to worry about recessions, would we.

    Anyway, a percentage only determines how much one pays; it doesn't address the size of the burden of paying it, or the economic consequences that flow from that burden.


    No, his statement was false (none / 0) (#142)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:03:48 AM EST
    Americans are not stupid - we all understand that OTHER taxes (not mentioned) affect poorer people more.  Your illustration was interesting but irrelevant to what he actually was talking about.

    If he wanted to talk about the BURDEN of total taxes, he could have and he would have, except a great many of those other taxes that are a greater burden to poorer people were instituted under Democratic bills- gas taxes, bag taxes (as we have here in DC), sin taxes, etc.  If he argued about the BURDEN, he would play right into the hands if Republicans who say we should eliminate all those (and many other) taxes.  He was strictly trying to score points by intimating that secretary pays more in INCOME tax than Buffett.


    I'll use your refrain from yesterday (none / 0) (#146)
    by vicndabx on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:11:49 AM EST
    A non-issue (none / 0) (#11)
    by jbindc on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 07:21:53 AM EST

    He's {spinning}.  We're all shocked.
     So is everyone who is a serious candidate for POTUS.

     Stop the presses.

    Except (none / 0) (#152)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:18:53 AM EST
    It's bring hailed as potential policy - i.e. The Buffet Rule.

    Of course he's spinning.  My point was why lie about something so obviously discounted when the Republicans have so many other things to be genuinely attacked on?


    You are the only person who wants to call it lying (none / 0) (#157)
    by vicndabx on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:30:52 AM EST
    Many of us believe, in the context of arguments about deficits and cuts, the talking point succintly illustrates who can afford to sacrifice more.

    Further, some on the left would argue those taxes you referred to earlier, gas tax, sin (e.g. smoking) tax, are needed to discourage certain behaviors, i.e. move in a so-called "progressive" direction w/r/t the environment, and health.  Why undercut that argument?


    Exactly (none / 0) (#160)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:33:02 AM EST
    He can't say that the overall tax burden is higher for someone making less money, because of those other pesky little taxes added on.  I agree with many of those taxes.

    But then to turn around and say secretary is paying more in taxes than boss, is WRONG.

    I'm not sure why you can't understand that.


    It's not wrong... (5.00 / 3) (#163)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:39:14 AM EST
    as a percentage of income, the secretary does pay more in income taxes.  Case closed, beyond dispute.

    I should have specified... (none / 0) (#201)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:34:19 PM EST
    a person who makes their living on capital gains secretary, like Buffet's or Romney's.  

    The secretary of a salaried CEO would pay a lesser percentage than his/her boss.

    Damn that tax code is twisted...Im open to a flat "income is income is income" tax just to be able to understand the motherf8cker.


    I understand perfectly (none / 0) (#170)
    by vicndabx on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:02:42 PM EST
    To you, the president can't argue tax burden because some of the tax burden is due to democratic policies.  

    I disagree.  Those taxes you refer to are still choices, for some at least, and they don't apply to everyone.  What get's taken out of a paycheck is not a choice and applies to most.


    Yes, we get it.. (none / 0) (#196)
    by jondee on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:14:08 PM EST
    that beast, that usurper from 2008 is a LIAR because his "more" - in the most ham-handed, decontextualized, literalist sense of the word wasn't forensically accurate..

    The point being to ignore the sense and wider context of Obama's statement, and prove once again how your bete noir is a liar.


    Considering that sales taxes (none / 0) (#144)
    by BTAL on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:08:17 AM EST
    are all state and locally implemented, just what type of system would/could be implemented to charge different rates based on income?  

    Are you proposing that pays 15% (for example) and Mary pays .5% sales tax for funding local services that they all receive/utilize equally?  Does each carry a "tax status" card that must be presented at checkout?  Does Mary incur any disdain or embarrassment by being publicly labeled or flagged as a lower tax payer?

    Just asking.


    I'm not proposing anything, just trying (5.00 / 1) (#150)
    by Anne on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:15:58 AM EST
    to illustrate the regressiveness and unfair burden of a single rate for everyone.

    But, since you asked, it would be far less regressive, and place far fairer burdens on taxpayers, if state and local governments levied income taxes in a progressive way.

    As for our president and his comments, he wasn't going for accuracy, he was going for the sound bite/bumper sticker; it's hard enough to sit through a SOTU/campaign speech, but to add an accurate description of the state of the tax laws would put most people into a boredom coma.


    Which proves my point (none / 0) (#158)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:30:58 AM EST
    As for our president and his comments, he wasn't going for accuracy, he was going for the sound bite/bumper sticker; it's hard enough to sit through a SOTU/campaign speech, but to add an accurate description of the state of the tax laws would put most people into a boredom coma.

    "Accuracy" is the key word.  He was not accurate.  It wasn't that he was nuanced - he was flat out wrong. That works on bumper stickers, I guess, but if you are going to criticize Repbulicans for spreading outright falsehoods, then the Dems and Obama are fair game to play by the same rules.

    Now, you can call this class warfare all you want. But asking a billionaire to pay at least as much as his secretary in taxes? Most Americans would call that common sense.

    Using your math.  

    Mary Smith makes $25,000 a year, her neighbor Joe makes $50,000 and George Gotrocks lives up on the hill and doesn't "make" anything, collects $500,000 a year from his many investments.

    If Mary makes $25,000 then she will pays a 15 % tax rate.  That comes out to $3750 per year in federal income taxes (since that's what the statement was about).  Joe, making $50,000, pays taxes at a 25% rate, which comes out to $12,5000.

    George is not paying "income tax", but rather tax on long term investments (assuming he held these investments longer than a year - we won't assume he sold anything to bring in capital gains taxes).  In this case, George would pay at 15% - the same marginal tax rate as Mary, but he would end up paying $75,000, which is more tax than Mary.


    I'm not willing to cast Obama as a liar, (none / 0) (#168)
    by Anne on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:55:37 AM EST
    at least not on this, but I do think he was taking advantage of populist memes and counting on no one to parse his rhetoric for accuracy; in other words, that was politician-speak, not president-speak.

    And besides, if you wanted to, you could parse that part of his speech as meaning that billionaires think they pay too much, and paying "at least as much" as the secretary would be a pretty hefty reduction in the billionaire's tax bill!


    Since your example of the unfair burden (none / 0) (#162)
    by BTAL on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:38:02 AM EST
    was specifically about sales tax I don't see a clear argument - as offered.  AFAIK, most states that have income taxes have progressive rates based on income.  Not sure about those places (I pity the residents) that charge local income taxes.

    With federal and most state tax rates are income based and progress upward, the example should have been written using only income taxes.  

    Additionally, I understand the attempt at keeping things simple but to willfully omit income taxes from the example skews the numbers.  Specifically, Mary at $25,000 would have a much lower (even base rate with standard deduction) rate than the percentage offered.


    I acknowledged that not taking (none / 0) (#171)
    by Anne on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:05:30 PM EST
    income taxes into account would skew the numbers - I wasn't looking to have a Masters-in-Taxation-level discussion about the accuracy of the president's remarks, or the merits of the 50 states' approach to taxation  - I just wanted to illustrate that the rate of tax does not equate to the burden of paying it.  

    The Buffet Rule isn't going to happen, anyway, so this is all really just a brain exercise, isn't it?  


    Except (none / 0) (#176)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:29:17 PM EST
    That's the whole point.  Obama was speaking strictly about income tax (well, amount paid due to federal income tax vs. Investment tax)  as oposed to total tax burden which include things like state income tax, state sales tax, gas tax, foodctax, etc.

    E it's the burden that matters (none / 0) (#116)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:50:53 AM EST
    But that is not what he said.  What people will talk about and email about will say, "Can you believe that Warren Buffet's secretary pays more taxes than he does??"

    Which is 100% not true.

    And of course, Obama himself was only speaking of income taxes, not all the other taxes you mention.



    You are correct, of course. (none / 0) (#189)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:59:54 PM EST
    I would not expect much support on this from the TL crowd though...

    Obama's message (none / 0) (#30)
    by lilburro on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:06:15 PM EST
    on taxes is the strongest I've ever seen it.  An unneeded tax cut goes either to the deficit or to slash Medicare for a senior.  Ignoring for a moment his role in both of those things, I'm down with the message and hope this is a preview of 2012 Obama.

    This is a preview of Campaign 2012; (5.00 / 2) (#32)
    by Anne on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:13:42 PM EST
    governance, on the other hand, and as we've seen for the last three years, doesn't bear much resemblance to it.

    Drink! (1.00 / 1) (#41)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:23:50 PM EST
    Your little drinking game (5.00 / 2) (#57)
    by ZtoA on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:11:20 PM EST
    put down is stupid. BTW.

    back to the thread....

    Yes, it was campaign mode, but that is just the reality. Over all I thought it was good. He did not gaze off into the stars and managed to actually make eye contact. His speech was forceful in presentation. Not very progressive, but not bad populist speech. Much less whiney, tho I could have done without on and on about working together. The optics were not bad at all.


    So are the predictable (none / 0) (#62)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:23:26 PM EST
    Comments. One tired meme beats another.

    I actually (none / 0) (#64)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:26:15 PM EST
    Didnt like the speech. There are real reasons to criticize it. I just need a little thought put into the bashing.

    stop with the drinking (5.00 / 4) (#67)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:38:46 PM EST
    comments, they are diminishing the discourse.

    A critical take! (5.00 / 3) (#73)
    by lilburro on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:59:59 PM EST
    ;)  In all seriousness, I would like to hear it whenever you get the time.  As I said elsewhere, of what I heard, Obama on taxation was as good as I've ever heard him.  Inasmuch as the SOTU is used to move public opinion one way or another, I thought it was good.  It capitalized on the conversation OWS has begun.  BTW, the effect of OWS is kind of amazing; the fact that Headline News this afternoon was in a tither about the tax returns of the GOP and economic fairness in general was kind of a shock to the system.  Almost though It's Not Okay If You're A Republican for once.

    I completely agree (5.00 / 2) (#76)
    by sj on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 11:08:01 PM EST
    about the impact of Occupy.  Nothing short of amazing.

    'Been watching these speeches for years, ABG (none / 0) (#78)
    by christinep on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:09:24 AM EST
    Even recall one during the Johnson era where the Speaker was so still with eyes shut for so long that my focus turned primarily toward him...when a friend called to say that she thought Speaker McCormick surely must have passed on given the lengthy absence of movement as President Johnson went on.

    This SOTU:  I began to like it quite a bit as the strands & cohesiveness became more apparent interwoven with a list-like specificity.  The organization by key job-related areas of manufacturing,  traditional & green energy,  education made sense in terms of a viewer listening for a laundry list of items...a technique successfully employed by President Clinton.  The expected tax discussion in the context of righting inequity was a strong presentation...not convoluted, not pretentious; but, sensible & direct. (With the recent Republican $$$ stories so vividly being played out, that aspect of the SOTU got an added assist.).

    Mostly--and for reasons not yet understood in my own receptivity--I found the rhetoric & reality of the start and conclusion symmetry involving the military to be exceptionally powerful as a motivator. To reflect on the sacrifices of those who serve in the military & the service they perform and then to offer an observation of how we can learn from that in terms of overcoming challenges...for me, the wrapping of the specifics within broader themes and, ultimately, interweaving the perseverance of our men/women in uniform sends a needed message of steely resolve with refreshing positivism.

    I liked it.  A lot.  (almost as good as the rise-to-the-occasion SOTUs circa 1997 - 1998.)


    Seems nobody has much to find fault on; (none / 0) (#94)
    by vicndabx on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 08:10:45 AM EST
    except for the usual suspects, which to me bodes well for the reporting on it and ultimately, dissemination to the public at large and their understanding of the themes and belief in the conviction of the speaker - contrary to all the talk about liars and distortions bandied about.

    I liked it alot too.


    I liked about 75% of it. (5.00 / 3) (#165)
    by Dr Molly on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:49:26 AM EST
    About 25% of it I vehemently disliked - the parts that pandered to warmongering and the parts that underlined how this president is definitely not a protector of the environment or a visionary on clean energy futures.

    The 75% of it that I liked - I just wish he would start showing the courage to back up his great words and be bold on policy. We'll see in his second term I guess. Yes, I'm sure he'll get a second term.

    Finally, Michelle Obama is always the most stunning person in the room IMO.


    Reading the GOP responses has reinforced the (none / 0) (#100)
    by Farmboy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 08:42:51 AM EST
    fact that Republicans hate Obama more than they hated Osama. And his mentioning things like the successful SEAL mission drives them completely frothing-at-the-mouth nuts.

    Where you reading at? (none / 0) (#102)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 08:45:39 AM EST
    I want to read what they have to say about it?

    I was looking at the various blogs and news (5.00 / 1) (#110)
    by Farmboy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:40:28 AM EST
    articles linked over at the Memeorandum aggregator site. Here's the link. I think they do a pretty decent job of grouping the day's news items together.

    It's really fun to read an article about an event at say, TPM, then click over to Weasel Zippers for their take on the same event. Boom goes the brain. And I always like to read at least the first dozen comments.

    Have fun.


    Boehner sort of a toasted gold tonight. (none / 0) (#34)
    by lilburro on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:15:55 PM EST
    I sort of miss having him on my TV.  As compared to the GOP Prez. candidates, that is.

    I was more amused by ... (5.00 / 1) (#85)
    by Robot Porter on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 05:47:02 AM EST
    Biden. Who clearly had a cold.  He was coughing, blowing his nose, drinking water, sucking on cough drops.  I was much more interesting than the speech.

    First thing I noticed too (none / 0) (#37)
    by ruffian on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:21:26 PM EST
    The orange has been toned down.

    He missed his calling as a comic actor. (5.00 / 1) (#44)
    by lilburro on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:29:30 PM EST
    Something about his facial expressions.  He's just so good at pouting.

    Like one of those circus clowns (none / 0) (#66)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 10:29:04 PM EST
    with great big teardrops painted on the cheeks.

    I think that era (none / 0) (#74)
    by lilburro on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 11:01:49 PM EST
    is still contemporary for Republicans, so that works.

    It's winter (none / 0) (#105)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 09:13:51 AM EST
    Seemed like overall (none / 0) (#36)
    by brodie on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:20:48 PM EST
    a somewhat mild reception in the hall despite the usual interruptions for applause.  Not much robust cheering.

    Not much to robustly cheer re his energy proposals either.  Tepid and conservative, no bold or creative new approaches.

    Speech gets only a B- from me.

    From the previous Liar in Chief (none / 0) (#50)
    by NYShooter on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 09:53:54 PM EST
    "fool me once, shame on -- shame on you. Fool me -- you can't get fooled again."

    Excellent speech and delivery. I forget (none / 0) (#77)
    by oculus on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 11:35:05 PM EST
    how amazing it is the U.S. elected and African American President.  Also, heart-warming to see the President and Rep. Gifford embrace.  

    I would (none / 0) (#93)
    by lentinel on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 07:58:03 AM EST
    feel somewhat more amazed if he stood for something.

    WSWS: War and wage-cutting (none / 0) (#79)
    by Andreas on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:18:27 AM EST
    Every responsible homeowner (none / 0) (#97)
    by Jlvngstn on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 08:33:13 AM EST
    EVERY?  Really?  Or just those @ Fannie and Freddie?

    Seal Team 6 (none / 0) (#141)
    by CoralGables on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:01:49 AM EST
    The reason for the mention of "good job tonight" to Leon Panetta while Obama walked in last night finally made it to my ears this morning.

    Somalia (none / 0) (#145)
    by CST on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:08:57 AM EST
    for all those comparing Obama to Carter, one very key difference, there will be no hostage crisis.

    And that's not an accident.


    Today's Somilia is nothing like 1979's Iran (none / 0) (#151)
    by BTAL on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:16:04 AM EST
    One is in a complete government-less anarchy state.  The other had a very functional control structure.

    No comparison.


    Well....a downed helicopter screwed Carter (none / 0) (#153)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 11:20:14 AM EST
    The downed helicopter didn't screw Obama because his troops had a plan B and a better helicopter that didn't hurt anyone when it hit the ground with a pilot that had special ops training because Carter got screwed :)

    Obama did lose the secret about his better helicopter though, but he got Osama so who cares :)

    Our ex-SIL is with the Coast Guard and says that the SEALs train on Coast Guard ships.  They sneak onto them and off of them and the regular Coasties don't even seem to be able to see them or discover them when they do it.  It happened to his ship once at night, none of them saw anything...didn't even know the SEALs had been there.


    Still an apples and oranges comparison (none / 0) (#174)
    by BTAL on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:13:51 PM EST
    My first of many joint service assignments was to the RDJTF (CENTCOM precursor) which Carter established in response to the hostage situation and the failed rescue.  After action analysis showed that even if the accident had not happened, pulling off a successful hostage rescue was still a 50-50 proposition at best.  

    Landing in Tehran with the level of Iranian protection of the hostages (providing they were all in one place) AND getting all of them out vs landing in a private compound with a shoot to kill mission against a small/few people is an entirely different situation.


    We will never know (none / 0) (#175)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:27:24 PM EST
    As difficult as the mission was, they got fairly deep into it before it was decided to abort it.

    Do Coast Guard crews not carry sidearms? (none / 0) (#177)
    by Farmboy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:30:41 PM EST
    It's great that the SEALs are so good - yay US! - but it could be an unfortunate moment if a crew member decided to "repel boarders" before knowing who the boarders were.

    A previous coworker was an officer on the Nimitz during the Iran rescue attempt. In his opinion it was the compartmentalized info sharing between the various special ops units during planning that handicapped the mission, which led to the cf in execution. Don't know if he's right, but it does kinda go along with the public reports.

    But yeah, Carter would have been a hero if the mission had succeeded. And possibly no Reagan in 1980. Still, what ifs don't pay the rent.


    coasties have arms lockers (none / 0) (#181)
    by jeffinalabama on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:34:26 PM EST
    to draw from when ordered to-- they can repel boarders, but they don't walk around with weapons on their hips or in their hands like soldiers/marines do, at least not on ship.

    Plus Coasties all have to be (5.00 / 1) (#194)
    by BTAL on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:11:11 PM EST
    over 6'3" - so that then can walk ashore if their "boat" sinks.  ;-)

    My USCG(ret) Master Chief uncle would probably give me smack for that comment.


    Ah, see, Jeff knows :) (none / 0) (#184)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:36:46 PM EST
    I know our SIL did not carry a weapon (none / 0) (#183)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:35:59 PM EST
    at all times, but he is very new.  They were on the boat though, but locked down.  I don't know if any of the higher ranking Coasties have sidearms on at all times.