It's Official: Obama v. Romney

According to the LA Times, 40 states won't matter much in the November election. Obama v. Romney will be decided by voters in 10 battleground states. Here's the map. Colorado is among them.

Yesterday, Mitt Romney officially won the Republican nomination. Election season has begun.

I think President Obama will win. I know that Big Tent Democrat and I intend to do our part by urging people to vote for him here on our tiny corner of the Internet. Why? The most important reason I can think of is to avoid saddling our children with decades of bad rulings by the conservative federal court judges and Supreme Court Justices that Romney would appoint to lifetime judgeships. That just about trumps every other issue for me. (I'll let Big Tent Democrat speak for himself as to his reasons.) [More...]

While I've been ignoring politics for the last year or so, focusing only on crime issues and cases, we seem to have attracted a lot of Obama-bashers in comments.

It's time to re-establish some ground rules for comments. I have my hands full with moderating comments on my criminal law threads, and don't want spend any more time than necessary moderating the political threads.

Big Tent Democrat's analysis is a gift here. I couldn't duplicate it, nor would I try. He doesn't have time to moderate comments, nor should he be expected to. Blogging is a hobby for both of us, not a job.

Neither of us wants to write posts, only to have people in comments go off on some tangent, ignore the points we've raised, and then initiate an attack against someone or something we support.

So here's a fair warning to anyone reading what we write who does not support President Obama's re-election for President: You will be limited to four comments per thread expressing your disapproval of Obama. You must still comply with our other comment rules. And you may not shill for an alternative candidate or urge other readers not to vote.

Elections are important. TalkLeft is a Democratic site. We may be harsh in our criticism of specific Administration policies -- even I have given Obama a pink slip notice a time or two over the past four years -- but now it's election season and it's very important to Big Tent Democrat and me that the Democrats keep the White House and hopefully win control of both houses of Congress. You can't work at cross-purposes to this goal in comments at this site.

During the 2007 primary season, TalkLeft gained thousands of new readers because I supported Hillary. When she didn't get the nomination and I threw my support to Obama, thousands of new readers left. It was okay then, and it will be okay if it happens again.

What makes independent blogging so rewarding is that we get to choose the topic, when and how often to write about it and advance our own agenda. We don't have to worry about maintaining or increasing traffic levels -- we aren't selling anything. And we can write unfiltered, free of editorial control.

While we are not a neutral site, we are a professional one. Our information is factual, we do a lot of research, and if we make an error we fix it. We don't allow profanity, personal attacks on other commenters or insults to the authors or friends of the authors.

People can disagree, that's called spirited discourse, but they can't post demonstrable falsehoods or call other commenters liars or stupid. They can say things like "I disagree" and why, or "I don't think that's accurate" and explain. It's called civility. We don't aim for quantity of comments, we hope for an intelligent discussion.

In two weeks, Talkleft will turn ten years old. That's long enough to know that people of like minds will find their way here while others will complain we've lost our way and choose to spend their internet time elsewhere. It's okay.

So, as we begin yet another election season, please keep in mind that Big Tent Democrat and I support President Obama, and that while we will undoubtedly continue to criticize various policy decisions, we want him re-elected, and won't have the site used by others who are at cross-purposes.

We sincerely appreciate every commenter who has taken the time to contribute their thoughts at TalkLeft. We know there are thousands of places on the Internet to choose from. It's gratifying to know that so many of you have chosen us. We hope you stick around. If you don't want to, we understand. We thank you for reading and contributing your thoughts to our site in the past, and we wish you the best.

< Short Fingered Vulgarian Trump Still A Birther | Great Britain High Court Okays Assange Extradition >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • Even if you're disappointed in Obama... (5.00 / 2) (#1)
    by unitron on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:45:30 AM EST
    Even if you're disappointed in Obama, voting for Romney would be like voting to return Hoover to office in '36.

    Amazing (2.00 / 3) (#28)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:35:23 AM EST

    Hoover's economic policy was to raise marginal tax rates, deficit spend, and increase regulation.  FDR doubled down on those policies and unlike every other previous business contraction, the Depression went on for many years.  It is Obama's economic policy that comes out of Hoover's playbook.



    good to know, (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by cpinva on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:02:04 AM EST
    the stress of uncertainty was killing me.

    It was keeping ... (none / 0) (#35)
    by Robot Porter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 09:00:50 AM EST
    me up nights.



    The President of Planned Parenthood (5.00 / 4) (#5)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:04:37 AM EST
    Was just on Morning Joe, she came swinging so hard on Romney she knocked the Joe Boys on their arses.  They literally looked winded when she was done.  No false equivalency gets past girl.

    I find (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:16:20 AM EST
    this post kind of sad Jeralyn in the sense that the Supreme Court is the only reason you can find for supporting Obama. I know that's of supreme importance with you but I wonder how many voters out there think the same way? I think the economy is going to determine the election.  

    I think that the economy will too (5.00 / 4) (#12)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:26:54 AM EST
    Between Mitt and Obama though, who is most likely to make decisions that improve my economic conditions?  It is Obama.  As you pointed out, our last poor little rich boy Republican President left us all doubled over in pain while he kept standing up there in a trance mouthing Stay the Course.  He blew up Fallujah and Baghdad and the strength of our military and whole worlds economy and we were to stay the course as he was calm and carried on.

    No Mitt for me!  No destroy Planned Parenthood Mitt for me!  No "Lets get involved in Syria deeper than we are" Mitt for me.  No "We must threaten Iran with invasion" Mitt for me.


    Here's (none / 0) (#13)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:32:33 AM EST
    the problem I see. If Obama wins reelection and the GOP wins the house and senate Obama is going to give them what they want or maybe it's what he really wants too.

    I think Mitt's foreign policy stances are going to really hurt him in November. So he definitely will not get the foreign policy vote that is out there.  I mean who in their right mind other than crazed Tea Partiers think W. did a good job with foreign policy? And I'm worried that Mitt will go full neocon and start a war with Iran.


    Do you really think the House and the Senate (none / 0) (#14)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:34:43 AM EST
    will go to the Republicans?  I'm not sure either way

    I'm fairly sure (none / 0) (#15)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:38:26 AM EST
    Mitch McConnell will be the next Majority Leader.   I think it will be awfully hard for the Dems to keep the majority.

    The House could go either way - maybe a little more towards the Dems (although recent polls show that for the first time in a long time, voters would prefer to vote for a generic Republican candidate for Congress)-  so I think it will be tight.


    Take a look at Nevada. (5.00 / 1) (#145)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:31:09 PM EST
    You have an appointed GOP senator who has some very serious problems with Latino voters in his state right now, thanks in no small part to his literally two-faced website in which the English language version touts his support for draconian anti-immigrant policies, while such sharp-toned rhetoric is nowhere to be found in its Spanish-language version.

    Nevada has long been a predominantly Red state, but bad governance and personal scandal (thank you, former Gov. Jim Gibbons) have taken its toll on the GOP recently. The state went for Obama in 2008 by a very decisive 13 points (yours truly and his spouse were there on Election Day driving voters to the polls in Las Vegas, as part of the Democrats' GOTV effort), and the president looks to carry the state by a similar margin this time.


    I haven't taken a serious look (none / 0) (#16)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:43:12 AM EST
    at the races being run.  I've read various things this past year during down time, one that said that the Senate would go Republican and one that said it was impossible for it to go Republican.

    It's a sheer numbers game (none / 0) (#17)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:54:13 AM EST
    Dems are defending 23 (or 24?) seats - the Republicans 8.  The Republicans need only 4 seats to pick up the majority (3 if Romney wins). There are at least 8 seats considered "toss up", depending on the day. North Dakota is gone.  In Nebraska, a Tea Party candidate is currently leading former Senator Bob Kerrey by 18 points!  Virginia is basically tied(George Allen, for goodness sake!)  Who knows what's going to happen with Wisconsin? McCaskill in Missouri is in a tight race (where's MO Blue been, anyway??)

    And don't get me started on Massachussetts...

    The Dems might have a chance for a pickup in Indiana, but I think it's too soon to tell. Maine has Angus King who is a front runner and would probably caucus with the Dems (from what I've been reading), but there are still state primaries to go through up there.

    I don't see it as being a particularly difficult path for the Republicans, especially given the mood of the country where incumbents are reviled.

    Of course, it IS early, but on the other hand, most people aren't really paying attention to Senate races right now, so the polls probably won't change much between now and September, and then you run the risk of people's views being entrenched.


    Please get started (none / 0) (#46)
    by CST on Wed May 30, 2012 at 09:48:19 AM EST
    seriously though, what is your opinion about the MA race?

    I'd say at this point it's 100% toss-up, given that's what the polling says.  I'm hopefull that Obama will pull her over the top but by no means certain.  I will say I've seen more positive support for Warren than I ever saw for Coakley.


    I agree (none / 0) (#48)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 09:54:26 AM EST
    I'd say at this point it's 100% toss-up, given that's what the polling says.

    Which is what I meant.  It's "Ted Kennedy's seat" (which is a canard - it's the people's seat, but I digress) in blues of blue Massachusetts.  It shouldn't even be close.


    MA is not nearly (none / 0) (#51)
    by CST on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:23:34 AM EST
    as blue as as the rest of the country thinks.

    Not only did we elect Mitt Romney, but he was the 4th consecutive GOP governor.  Ted Kennedy always won that seat because he's Ted Kennedy, not because he's uber liberal.  John Kerry isn't exactly a Bernie Sanders either, and Scott Brown isn't exactly Rand Paul.  There has always been a place here for moderate Republicans that b*tch about the tax policy but still like sending their kids off to good schools.  Frankly, any state with a decent concentration of rich white people will also have Republicans.  Although they definitely aren't the kind that want their girlfriends to get pregnant.  Shoot, Deval Patrick, who IMO has been doing a pretty solid job, only won his re-election by 5% in 2010.

    So the fact that it's close is not that shocking.


    See, I actually disagree with you CST (none / 0) (#57)
    by dk on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:44:55 AM EST
    I think MA is pretty much as blue as the rest of the country thinks.

    IMO, if Warren comes out swinging and acts like the Ted Kennedy of the 70s and 80s (i.e. not the later Ted Kennedy who supported No Child Left Behind and Obama in the '08 primaries, but the Ted Kennedy who saved this country from a Justice Bork and pushed for real health care reform), she'd have a very good chance of winning.  Instead, Warren is so far running a cautious campaign, not to be perceived as veering from the national Democratic party line, which of course if much further to the right than it was when Ted was in his heyday.

    As for Republican governers, that's kind of a canard.  MA is not a state where governors have real power, due to the fact that the legislative branch is so dominated by Democrats.  There was a run where the Republican candidates were simply more charismatic.  Ironic, I think the dominance of the Democratic party machine in the state makes it harder for interesting characters to move up the chain.  Victims of their own dominance of the political landscape.  


    yea but they still keep voting for them (none / 0) (#61)
    by CST on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:52:37 AM EST
    in statewide races.  The senate is more like the governor in that regard than the legislature.

    I think in some ways what happens is that the people who really care, who go out there and do the grass roots stuff and the local politics are mostly D for sure.  But during these statewide races you get the casual (rich, white, works in the city, kids in fancy suburban schools, etc...) voters who probably don't pay that much attention to the other races, because as long as they are fat and happy they don't really care.  And they tend to tilt the state to the right in the statewide races, at least compared to the others.

    I dunno, I use to think more like you, but I work with some of these people and I feel like all of a sudden they are everywhere.  It's ironic too because I think when it comes to all the other issues, social, foreign policy, science, religion, they are D, but when it comes to taxes they get greedy all of a sudden.


    I tend (none / 0) (#66)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:00:22 AM EST
    to agree with you on MA even though I don't live there. The 2008 primaries kind of proved that to me.  I would have thought the state would have gone hard for Obama in the primaries but it didn't. I think there's a bunch of "lunch bucket" dems in the state that probably willing to swing their vote.

    Ga6, why is that? (none / 0) (#79)
    by dk on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:18:36 AM EST
    Hillary trounced Obama in the MA primaries, IMO, because (a) MA has long been "Clinton country"; (b) the MA political machine was behind Hillary and (c) Hillary was generally to the left of Obama.  So I don't really see how Obama's lackluster performance in the primaries here is much of a data point, particularly one to show MA being less liberal.

    Okay. (none / 0) (#114)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:58:05 AM EST
    I agree on point 3 that she was generally to the left on economic policy but MA seemed to me to be more focused on the IWR than anything else. I did not know that the "machine" was backing her nor did I realize that MA was "Clinton country".

    Well, I suppose I could be way off base, (none / 0) (#75)
    by dk on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:14:34 AM EST
    but part of it for you might just be a function of you getting older (and being around people who are older).  You're probably seeing more people obsessed with their tax payments, but that's generally a function of age.  Even liberals, as they generally get older, hae more financial responsiblities, etc., start earning more money than before, care about their personal tax position more.  However, I still contend that, compared to the rest of the country, they are more open to liberal tax policy if explained effectively.  (Of course, I'm not denying there are some true 1%ers in this state, but certainly not enough votes to win election).

    As for statewide senate races, as I was drinking my morning coffee today, I saw my first Scott Brown ad of the season.  You know what he was bragging about right off the bat? Voting FOR Dodd-Frank.  Now, everyone can make note that he only did so after watering it down, but that's beside the point.  The point is that even before he watered it down the bill wasn't all that great, and thus for Warren to be effective she'd have to argue that even her own party is letting people down by being to corporatist and that she would fight to make her own party, as well as the government in general, more accountable to the people and less to corprate cash.  


    If you're waiting for Warren to (none / 0) (#64)
    by itscookin on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:59:32 AM EST
    "come out swinging", I hope you have a comfortable chair and a good book to read while you wait.

    Then, there is Nevada... (none / 0) (#99)
    by christinep on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:42:53 AM EST
    And even Republican Indiana is considered to have it's Senate seat in play after Mourdock dumped Nixons-favoriite-onetime-mayor Lugar.  And, surprisingly, there is now a lot of talk about Arizona's Richard Carmona (D).

    As time goes on, I'm becoming more optimistic about Democrats holding the Senate.


    "No Mitt for Me." Terrific (none / 0) (#39)
    by oculus on Wed May 30, 2012 at 09:12:13 AM EST
    bumper sticker, yard sign, button etc.   Copyright?

    I saw one yesterday (none / 0) (#40)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 09:15:30 AM EST
    that said "No Tea for me, thanks.  I prefer progress."

    That doesn't even ... (none / 0) (#42)
    by Robot Porter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 09:23:07 AM EST
    make sense.

    Another indication the clever folks are sitting out this election.


    This was always a blog (5.00 / 3) (#21)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:14:15 AM EST
    by Democrats for Democrats during elections.  The Fair is in the Fall, if you aren't for Obama there is always Red State or Little Green Footballs :)

    So, is arguing for the kinds of (5.00 / 7) (#34)
    by Anne on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:59:27 AM EST
    policies that Democrats and liberals and progressives support, but that the Democratic president/candidate does not, or has not, or has paid little more than lip-service to, considered not being for Obama?  Because making those arguments is certainly not an argument for the Republican candidate, and making those kinds of policy arguments on right-wing and conservative websites might be entertaining, in a multi-car pile-up kind of way, but it would otherwise be a waste of time.

    And when does arguing for liberal - yes, I'm using "liberal" because I hate the wishy-washiness of "progressive" - policies become anti-Obama?  Doesn't that speak to where Obama is on the political spectrum?  Do I, as a Democrat, have to take on his version of what that means, or do I get to keep my own?

    I guess the thing that I just don't get is, what's the point of criticizing the policies and actions if your support is guaranteed?  Wait, I know: the "other guy" is worse.  We're supposed to keep voting for the lesser - who, this election, also happens to be the more efficient - of the two evils, and accepting with that vote that the choices are just going to get worse and worse.

    I respect Jeralyn's right to make the rules and set the parameters and so on - it's her blog; but I think if she looks into some of the legal decisions that are already being made, looks at the arguments this administration is making before the courts - Supreme and otherwise - I don't know that there's a whole lot of comfort to be found there if what one is worried about is what happens if Romney's elected.  I think it might just be more of the same, given the path Obama has taken.

    But, whatever.  Cheering for a candidate who seems to have run from what I think of as true Democratic principles hasn't - so far - pushed or moved Obama in a more Democratic direction on a lot of issues; the areas where he has moved have been the result of interest-group pressure and the threat of withdrawing financial support.  Saying one will vote for him no matter what is an agreement to have "WELCOME" tattooed on one's forehead, because, for all intents and purposes, one has agreed to be a door mat, not a force for change.

    For me, this has nothing to do with the "who" and everything to do with the "what:"  what has he done, what is he doing, what is incidental, what is precedent-setting, does it align with my views and values.  

    There is no question in my mind that Romney would not be a good president; he does not get my vote - period.  

    I knew this 4-comment thing was coming; it saddens me, but I'll get over it.  I just don't agree that the things Jeralyn is concerned about will be markedly or even marginally better with Obama in charge, and there's no guarantee that if Obama gets the chance, he's going to turn the Court to the left; he's got too much authoritarian policy at stake to threaten it with a liberal Court.


    I think we are in for a hell of a fight Anne (5.00 / 1) (#56)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:42:40 AM EST
    It isn't that I believe that arguing for the policy that we want isn't important. It absolutely is for me.  The war is on now though, if the Republicans sweep this election I don't know how we survive the next two or four years.  I really don't.

    I'm not a Romney fan, but (5.00 / 1) (#87)
    by itscookin on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:27:09 AM EST
    in the aftermath of a his governorship, MA has near universal health insurance coverage, people of the same sex can marry, and the current MA unemployment rate is 6.5%. Romney can't take credit for most of it, but his governorship didn't keep it from happening, either. It's been 5 years since he was governor, but Deval Patrick wasn't left with a huge mess to clean up after he left office. I see the bigger problem as the Obama re-election campaign not being as supportive to all of the Democratic senators and congressmen who are running for their seats as they need him to be. The O being all about the O. Because should Romney win, and the Republicans take both branches of the legislature, Romney won't be able to put the breaks on a truly conservative agenda even if he really is the moderate he was in MA.

    Romney can be compelled to do (5.00 / 1) (#95)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:35:53 AM EST
    many things when he is governor of a blue state.  He has demonstrated clearly that he knows how to maximize his own profits.  Now add some Citizens United to who he serves, and how easily he is compelled to do certain things and his penchant for his own personal survival over all others and he takes on a whole new shape.

    What MT said. (5.00 / 1) (#155)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:54:53 PM EST
    As governor, Mitt Romney had an overwhelmingly Democratic Massachusetts General Court (the formal name of the state legislature) to contend with, and his midterm attempts to get more Republicans elected to the State House in 2004 backfired, resulting in an even more lopsided Democratic majorities in both chambers.

    Ergo, the MA health reform plan was primarily a Democratic initiative, and Gov. Romney deserves a lot of credit for simply going along for the ride, getting the business sector to hop on board and not vetoing the measure once it passed.

    Nevertheless, Romney left office in 2006 with an anemic approval rating in the low 30s, and may well have been defeated for re-election had he not stood down. Ever since, he's taken unseemly delight in denigrating his state to GOP audiences, and has run away from whatever policies he rightly could've claimed credit for as governor.

    The man has proven himself to be a slave to his own personal ambitions with no apparently core values he can rightly call his own, and it's no small wonder he's getting waxed by Obama in Massachusetts by nearly 20 points, and also in his former home state of michigan by 13 to 15 points, depending upon the poll.

    That Romney's even close on a national level can be chalked up to one thing: Obama is an African American. Romney couldn't even bring himself to separate himself from the race-baiting rhetoric of that combed-over clown Donald Trump prior to last night's fundraiser in Las Vegas, because he needs the white racist vote to even have a chance to win.

    That in itself is a sad commentary on the current state of GOP politics today.


    Actually he did veto (5.00 / 1) (#162)
    by CST on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:07:41 PM EST
    sections of the health care bill, like the part that provided dental care and (if I recall correctly) the (miniscule) business mandate.  All of the vetoes were overridden by the legislature.

    Also "may well have been defeated", IMO should say "would definitely have been defeated".  Although I should preface that with the informatino that his last 2 years as governer he spent the vast majority of the time running around the country bashing MA to whoever would listen.  So absent that, who knows, but by the time he did leave the rose was so far off the bloom he would have lost in a landslide had he suddenly changed his mind.


    Right (none / 0) (#157)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:00:45 PM EST
    EVERYONE who doesn't like Obama, or isn't planning to vote for him is a racist.

    Race baiting AGAIN Donald? (none / 0) (#159)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:02:13 PM EST
    Is there any level to which you won't stoop?

    Perhaps Obama's approval is low because the electorate is polarized and quite a bit of what was once Obama's base no longer trusts him and the economy (despite all the playing around the Feds have done with stats the past 10 years, esp the last 5) is enimic?

    Nope, it's those dang raycisssssst Republicans.

    Flog it again and again, boyo. As someone who has voted for both Dems and Republicans in my time before I gave up on the current political process, I resent your implication that the only reason anyone could vote against a Democrat is that they are racist.

    Fact is, Obama sucks and is one of the biggest disappointments in recent memory. Hope and change? We have neither.


    Did you happen to read Jeralyn's post? (5.00 / 1) (#161)
    by oculus on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:05:42 PM EST
    Are you saying Jeralyn would agree to Race (none / 0) (#163)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:09:27 PM EST
    baiting to get Obama re-elected?
    Besides, I thought that was in threads from this point on.

    I'll quite commenting about O for today. I suppose Donald will be back later to say that yes, all Republicans or white people or white males (depending) who don't vote for Obama are racists.


    You seem to be personally (none / 0) (#165)
    by oculus on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:11:38 PM EST
    insulting Donald, who is quite capable of defending himself.

    The war is ALWAYS on, (none / 0) (#73)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:12:47 AM EST
    Isn't it?

    In different ways yes (none / 0) (#76)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:16:05 AM EST
    Some days I get to fight my personal wars, but I'm really frightened about the condition the world economy is in and what would become of us with Republicans running things........and military decisions too....some of that scares the $hit out of me

    Here's the Ironic thing Ms Fearful (none / 0) (#101)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:44:18 AM EST
    Whether Obama wins or not you have plenty of reason to be afraid, so I suggest no matter how you vote you do so based less on fear and more on what is important to you.

    Yikes! (none / 0) (#105)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:46:33 AM EST
    Twice today that I agree with you? :)

    Yikes! (none / 0) (#115)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:58:38 AM EST
    Twice today that I agree with you? :)

    How did this happen? (none / 0) (#116)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:58:55 AM EST
    I think it was the "Yikes!" (5.00 / 1) (#129)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:32:14 PM EST

    Ha! (none / 0) (#146)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:32:38 PM EST
    Must be that.  Either that or my shock transferred through my fingers then through the keyboard directly to my computer, causing my browser window to misfire and ultimately resulted in a double post.


    No.  It was probably the "Yikes!"


    Excellent points (5.00 / 2) (#68)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:07:34 AM EST
    It is as I have said at other places:
    You may pick your poison, but poison you will get until you decide you no longer wish to drink it.

    Both Republicans and Democrats need to learn that lesson, unfortunately as the parties have started to alienate ordinary people only the die-hard partisans and those that depend on one party or the other for political favors are left and these people will continue to prop up the current system until outright collapse occurs.

    The good thing about that is then people who put party always over principle  won't have any  more control over what happens than anyone else, indeed, as known shills, they might find their voices marginalized.


    These sort of unsubstantiated comments (5.00 / 2) (#89)
    by Farmboy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:28:41 AM EST
    about how Obama is alienating his base, or how he's disparaged by real liberals/progressives/Democrats, make me wonder what's behind them.

    Here's something substantiated about Obama's base: In April, Obama averaged 84% approval among Democrats, 43% among independents, and 12% among Republicans. More than that, his approval rating since last August has increased 10% with Dems, 20% with independents, and 33% with GoP members. citation

    These numbers don't make the base look too alienated.


    Polls are polls just as pols are pols (none / 0) (#106)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:47:12 AM EST
    A. Some social scientists don't trust any poll and I'd say for good reason, since how and when you conduct them as well as the questions you ask and sample size will affect the answers you get.
    B. More to the point it's how many people don't bother to vote because they have no one to vote for.
    Riddle me this Farmboy, just what percentage of the Democratic and Republican voters do you think will come out for the election this year? Do you think it will be even half?

    'Some social scientists don't trust any poll' (5.00 / 1) (#131)
    by Farmboy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:37:55 PM EST
    Sure, but the other 99.9% agree that polling, done correctly, is a valuable tool.

    And what's important in an election is getting the most votes. Period. Without the support of your base, you can't get that. Obama has the support of his base. Romney doesn't (currently).


    Romney (none / 0) (#133)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:50:50 PM EST
    Has his most of his base and will have the rest now that he is the official nominee.  Thinking that the Newt supporters or Santorum supporters are going to sit out this election is silly.

    And Obama doesn't have the support of all his base either - only around 80%.  That's around 20% of his base that doesn't support him.  THEY are more likely to stay home, IMO, on election day.


    I won't be surprised when Romney picks up (none / 0) (#139)
    by Farmboy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:07:15 PM EST
    the support of the majority of his party, and I'm actually expecting high turnouts again for both candidates come the fall. My comment was based on the polling that shows that this month, even after Santorum and Gingrich dropped out, Romney still didn't have majority support from his party.

    The GOP has been suffering from low primary/caucus turnouts this whole season - really low. But enthusiasm will pick up within their party for Mitt as we get closer to Nov.

    As to Obama's numbers, they're about where Clinton's were with the Dems in '96. Not a bad place to be. If things in the economy hold they'll probably be around the same this fall.


    Except (none / 0) (#140)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:08:16 PM EST
    Romney is no Bob Dole and Obama is no Bill Clinton.

    The difference between Romney and Dole (5.00 / 1) (#142)
    by Farmboy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:17:51 PM EST
    is that Dole spent his life in public service. Romney has spent his life being waited on by the liveried service.

    My contention would be (none / 0) (#135)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:54:19 PM EST
    That both parties bases are shrinking as many people no longer find any use for these parties.

    That's a problem for a stable political polity, it's arguably a problem with the part of our republic that is democratic in nature.

    However, I don't think you see it as a problem. If one percent of the people voted - the other 99 percent staying home in pure disgust for sake of argument (yeah I know lots of people are both ignorant and lazy but not in this argument they aren't)but 50.001 percent of the 1 percent voted Democratic - well, I think you'd be pleased as punch and crowing about how Obama has a "popular mandate". I feel really sad about that.


    You've got it (5.00 / 3) (#71)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:12:33 AM EST
    but I think if she looks into some of the legal decisions that are already being made, looks at the arguments this administration is making before the courts - Supreme and otherwise - I don't know that there's a whole lot of comfort to be found there if what one is worried about is what happens if Romney's elected.
    Even more alarming are the actions and policies that are not going through the courts.  Has either Jeralyn or BTD read this NYT article or Glenn Greenwald's analysis of it?  Here is today's column but there is much, much more.

    I don't understand how BTD and Jeralyn can keep talking about the Supreme Court when they are practically becoming irrelevent.  Who needs judical oversight when we have this :

    That record, and Mr. Awlaki's calls for more attacks, presented Mr. Obama with an urgent question: Could he order the targeted killing of an American citizen, in a country with which the United States was not at war, in secret and without the benefit of a trial?

    The Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel prepared a lengthy memo justifying that extraordinary step, asserting that while the Fifth Amendment's guarantee of due process applied, it could be satisfied by internal deliberations in the executive branch.

    Mr. Obama gave his approval, and Mr. Awlaki was killed in September 2011, along with a fellow propagandist, Samir Khan, an American citizen who was not on the target list but was traveling with him

    Emphasis Glen's.  And this?  Any of you have a military age male child?  If he's killed by drone then he is automatically a combatant.  

    Obama administration now considers "all military-age males in a strike zone as combatants," on the ground that such individuals "are probably up to no good."

    See how they keep the civilian losses count to a low level?  Just decide they're all combatants.  I don't know how we survive the next 2 - 4 years no matter who sits in that office.

    I know that when they make the (none / 0) (#80)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:19:51 AM EST
    strikes, they have been following these guys for a long time.  They have collected a lot of intel, and often they usually wait until they are meeting each other or going to a "work" location.  That is why nearby civilians (women and children) are avoided.  I don't know if anyone innocent has been hit, but I'd be flat out shocked if they were.  We can always speculate that they had an innocent driver or something, but I find it really really doubtful.

    Excuses MT (5.00 / 1) (#86)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:26:26 AM EST
    Nothing but excuses.  If you ask the wrong question but come with an acceptable answer and act on it, and then decide that no damage is collateral, the "you" are no better than your target.



    Look, if you all took up for me on this topic (none / 0) (#88)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:28:24 AM EST
    This would be Red State :)  I don't expect you to.  But Joe Scarborough can still kiss my fanny.  And what I said about the Republicans handling all that is true.

    No. There were no special limits during (none / 0) (#90)
    by jimakaPPJ on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:29:28 AM EST
    the 2004 election and we had some interesting debates.

    Will these rules dull things?? Probably. Depends.

    And while I agree that it is Jeralyn's blog I just find the new rules so unlike her.

    Oh well. Life goes on.

    BTW - Didn't LGF reform??



    After the economic collapse ... (5.00 / 4) (#23)
    by Robot Porter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:22:06 AM EST
    with regular people really needing help from the Democratic Party, they decided it was more important to reward criminals in the banking and insurance sector with a trillion dollar giveaway.

    That's what they did.  Pure and simple.  They gave money to criminals while real Americans suffered.

    Further, they also favor the killing of American citizens with Predator Drones, the continuation of largely spurious endless wars, the continual limitation of our civil liberties, endless imprisonments without showing cause, and so on.

    I won't rubber stamp any of this.

    Obama will win.  That's the story TBTB want to tell right now.  But I won't play a role in helping them tell it.

    It would be interesting to know (5.00 / 2) (#49)
    by NYShooter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:14:18 AM EST
    what the Obama team is holding in reserve if things turn ugly in the next few weeks/months. The Macro picture: Europe teetering on implosion, Greece, Spain, Italy, Portugal, are on life support; England has sunk into recession, and in Asia, more and more it looks like China may end up with a "hard landing." With "austerity," being the only "solution" these lunatics have to offer the question has to asked, what miracle do they expect that would fuel a recovery?  

    Hewlett Packard is firing 25,000 employees. (did you catch a glimpse of that piece of dirt, Meg Whitman, grinning from ear to ear at the news that the stock price took a big jump after the firing announcement?) Countless thousands of teachers, police, firefighters, and other government workers...Gone.

    Romney wants to go to war in Syria, and there's always Iran. I mean, what else is there?

    i know he won't do it, but he needs something really dramatic to shock the perople out of their mailaise, and the only thing I think could do it, and show the people he's serious about helping us get out of this worsening debacle is........fire Tim Geithner.


    Heh ... (none / 0) (#55)
    by Robot Porter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:32:07 AM EST
    Funny.  But, of course, firing little Timmy Geithner won't change one vote.  Not even Timmy's mom.

    ooh, that's cold n/t (5.00 / 1) (#65)
    by NYShooter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:59:39 AM EST
    Cold but true. (none / 0) (#92)
    by jimakaPPJ on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:32:15 AM EST
    Pay the cost to be the boss (5.00 / 1) (#50)
    by vicndabx on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:17:48 AM EST
    Other commenters have already stated what should be obvious - it's your blog and you can do with you want with it.  I will only add that no one should "recommend" or think it "unjust" or "unfair" when they aren't paying the server fees.  This is indeed your "house" and the rules of the house should always be respected.

    Glad to see you both are supporting re-election and re-taking control of the Congress.

    As always, thanks for providing a site where those that choose to do so can interact civilly on the issues of the day.

    To add my 2 cents (5.00 / 5) (#59)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:47:25 AM EST
    I think my record on disagreement with some of the President's policies has been clear.

    That said, his policies are so superior to Romney's from a progressive's viewpoint, I find it hard to believe that the choice can possibly be difficult.

    My blogging will be very much about the political campaign as much as policy differences.

    For example, I will be writing a post on what I fell is a major blunder being committed by the Obama campaign as we speak - a failure to kill Romney on the Ryan budget and what it does to Medicare and Medicaid.

    If Obama wins Florida, Romney simply can not beat him.

    If I was running the Obama campaign, all my moves would be made with Florida in mind.

    In my opinion, they are not running that campaign YET. Perhaps that will change.

    As for the rules announced by Jeralyn, I endorse them for one simple reason - four comments a thread is plenty for bashing Obama on policy.

    If you can't say it in 4 comments, then you need to work on your writing skills.

    You know FL. (none / 0) (#67)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:05:12 AM EST
    Do you think the Medicare issue is killing Obama there or what the issue is exactly with his numbers in FL?

    The question is (5.00 / 1) (#94)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:33:54 AM EST
    why isn't the Medicare issue killing Romney in Florida?

    That's my critique.


    Only a guess (none / 0) (#122)
    by christinep on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:15:20 PM EST
    But I'm supposing that "timing" may be involved...very much involved.  Since most people do not pay any serious attention --historically--to a Presidential election until at least summer (and, usually, a bit later) it would be sensible to define/soften up the opposition/characterize in the earlier stages and, throughout the summer, increase that definition via the introduction of the big hitters as the campaign progresses.  

    iMO the Bain background sets the table (while polling a fork in Romney's farflung job-creation claims); an expected move to some selected how-did-he-govern in Massachusetts (job numbers, e.g.); some emphasis here & there about Romney as weak, waffling, dishonest even; building to Romney's open profession for the Ryan Budget & tie-in to the Republican House.

    My sense of the all-important timing schedule is that the Romney Character Definition is a first focus that leads to populist-oriented late summer/early fall crescendo with what the Ryan Budget means for everyone...and so on.

    As for Florida: Agree that the voting purge is troubling.  Not just there.  The so-called "voter I'd" gambit, with it's voter suppression potential, could upended it all.  Thoughts?


    I hope the Voter ID goes through (none / 0) (#130)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:35:20 PM EST
    Though with ONE caveat:

    It has to be free to get an ID card in Florida. No one should have their poverty work against them.

    Other than the fees, I've never seen a good argument against Voter ID that I could respect.


    I've never seen an argument (5.00 / 1) (#149)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:36:39 PM EST
    for voter ID that I could respect.

    Have to agree with Slayer on this one (none / 0) (#151)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:46:07 PM EST
    To vote, you must register. to register, you must provide ID - why is it a problem to require someone to have ID with them when they show up at the polls? If a state is going to give away ID's for free - really, what argument can there possibly be to not require it?

    And the answer to your question is, (5.00 / 2) (#201)
    by Anne on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:31:18 PM EST
    if someone has already established their identity, their age and their legal residence in order to be registered to vote, there is no reason to do it again when they show up at the polls.  They arrive, you ask for their name, and - in MD - the month and day of their birth; if they're in the poll book, they sign the voter card, and off they go to vote - that was the goal: for people to vote.  

    In the three - or it might have been four - election cycles I was an election judge in my precinct, we never had a case of someone showing up to vote that the computer said had already voted.  Even if we couldn't find the person in the poll book, if they insisted they were registered, and wanted to vote, they still got a provisional ballot, which the powers that be at election HQ would have to sort out.  Even after being told that if their names could not be found and the problem identified, their provisional vote would not count, anyone who still wanted to vote was allowed to.

    The Florida law, like laws in other states, isn't about preventing voter fraud, because the statistics show that voter fraud just isn't a problem, it's about suppressing the vote.  You need only look to where these laws get proposed and passed, and which party is behind the legislation, to figure this out.  


    I know (none / 0) (#152)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:48:08 PM EST
    We have disagreed on this one before.  Sniping may have been involved.

    I'm asking a serious question (none / 0) (#153)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:51:34 PM EST
    I've answered it (none / 0) (#156)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:00:07 PM EST
    seriously before.  So, nope.    I think you're completely wrong, but I'm not getting into it again.  I've given my priorities and my reasons before.

    And I've heard yours.  I take strong exception to your priorities and your reasons.  I have no interesting in rehashing.


    Will we ever learn? (5.00 / 1) (#185)
    by NYShooter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:01:18 PM EST
    The goal should be for the absolute maximum number of eligible citizens  to vote. I don't know the guts of it, but the officials responsible for the voting machinery have told us that any impediment, or extra steps, put in place reduces the participation rate. You can say, "what's the big deal?" "Just get a free I.D. card." But, the reality is that a number of otherwise eligible voters won't vote. I can't explain why, but the empirical evidense is available as proof that it does.

    That's #1.

    #2 is, by the same experts/officials, who claim categorically
     that besides isolated cases (for which there are already safeguards in place,)  it has never been a problem.

    Who you gonna believe? The experts, trained professionals, or the Tea Party? I mean, why should we give in to them? Is there a person in the galaxy that believes the Republicans really give a crap about nonexistent voter fraud?

    The Republicans?

    Newt Gingrich's Republicans?

    I say treat'm like the spoiled brat children they are. Flip'm the bird, and tell them to come back when they've grown up. These crazy lunatics, from birthers, to commie muslims.....and we bend over backwards to accomodate them?

    You wanna know why Obama isn't blowing Romney out of the water?

    This is why.


    Couldn't you say (none / 0) (#189)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:16:25 PM EST
    2 is, by the same experts/officials, who claim categorically
     that besides isolated cases (for which there are already safeguards in place,)  it has never been a problem.

    That is hasn't been a problem because they just haven't been caught yet? It's not like most of the voting systems out there are equipped to check.

    Personal anecdote:  My sister was registered to vote where we grew up.  She got married in 1997, changed her name, and moved several times across the state.  Flash forward to 2006.  I lived in the same voting precinct where we grew up.  I went to vote. My sister's name was there (with her maiden name), yet she was registered under her married name in a different precinct.  If she wanted (and had known), she could have voted twice in the same election - 9 years later and they still hadn't corrected it.

    And in close races, does it matter if it's not a widespread problem? For example, in 2008, Obama won NC by .3% of the vote - if there was voter fraud going on (and we will never know), don't you think that could have made a difference? How about those local races where fewer than 10 votes decide the race?

    And people who won't vote because they don't have ID? How did they register in the first place? And can the "experts" really prove that those people would vote, but for the fact they had to show ID?  That doesn't seem reasonable.

    I'm sorry - we should move this to the Open Thread, but saying "it isn't a big problem" is a hollow argument.  Sometimes, the process actually matters.


    Thank you jb (1.00 / 1) (#196)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:24:05 PM EST
    You made a very good argument and saved me the trouble. I'm for anything that helps reduce the chance of fraud. If you are too lazy or stupid to get a free ID (mailed to you if it comes to it)I'm not sure I want you voting in the first place,anyway.

    I'm sure ID checks before you cast your anonymous vote help reduce the turnout of the hopelessly paranoid. Somehow, I'm not much concerned about this demographic.


    True Dat (none / 0) (#194)
    by NYShooter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:22:39 PM EST
    PBS recently had a show/documentary laying out 3 or 4 paths for Obama to get to 270 electoral votes.

    Paths 3, 4, & 5 had clusters of 3 or 4 states that, winning those, gave him an almost sure victory.

    Path #1 was simply Florida. They said if "O" keeps the States Kerry won, plus Florida, he's in.

    Florida is that important.


    And while I'm burying myself (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:08:36 AM EST
    I'm going to jump into the deep end with concrete boots on :)  Joe Scarborough criticized Obama this morning for making the decisions on who is on the terrorist kill list himself.

    First of all, if Obama did not do this the right would call him a pu$$y for pushing that decision off on the military.  Even though Bush made few military decisions and pushed it off on all sorts of generals who had as many strategies in play and literally set Iraq on fire, he is a Republican and can never be called a pu$$y for any military decision he pushed off on others.

    Second, the military studies killing people.  That is just about all they do all day everyday.  Since when has the military been the go to people to decide on how to conduct and make peaceful foreign relations decisions?  NEVER, and any leader who ever did that got exactly what they deserved and whole bunch innocent people did not.

    I thank God every single day that no Pentagon General or ex General decides who we hit in a drone strike.  Commands and commanders change out, every person has their own philosophies but the President is who is singularly responsible for who we kill and don't kill and Obama is not afraid of taking that responsibility unlike some Republicans are.  They would still be doing the same thing, but without accountability. If there were an "International Incident" Romney would just say that he didn't know about it, and for those who he would say were at fault, well you can't blame the pit bull for being a pit bull.

    Joe Scarborough can KMA!!!!!!!!!

    There shouldn't be a "kill list" ... (5.00 / 3) (#77)
    by Robot Porter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:17:55 AM EST
    at all.

    Of course, we're so far through the Looking Glass, that I'm sure that I sound crazy to many for suggesting such a thing.


    I'm fine there is a kill list (none / 0) (#81)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:21:06 AM EST
    The people on it belong there.  They mean to kill you.  They mean to kill me.  I'm fine killing them first.

    Well (5.00 / 3) (#83)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:23:44 AM EST
    Only goes to show.  Propaganda works.

    I wish we lived in a world where the (5.00 / 1) (#107)
    by Farmboy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:47:51 AM EST
    president's response to his anti-terrorist advisors telling him that our country was about to be attacked could be, "so what?" - and nothing happened, because there weren't really people out there who wished we were all dead.

    That being said, we don't live in that world, so despite my wishing I'll give credit to the current president for taking the commander in chief part of his job seriously instead of delegating it to his VP, SoD, or campaign manager. You obviously don't like his decisions, and neither do I, but it goes with the job.


    Really? (5.00 / 2) (#108)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:50:56 AM EST
    Those are the only two options?  Either he says "so what?" or he creates a kill list?  That's it?  No other choices?

    That's not what I meant, and I think you know that (5.00 / 1) (#121)
    by Farmboy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:13:44 PM EST
    By taking responsibility for what happens on his watch, and not delegating difficult national security choices, he is doing the job he was elected to do. Bush, on the other hand, didn't want to do the job. Playing dress up and flying in jets, strutting for the cameras, those were things he wanted to do instead.

    You don't like Obama's choices. That's fine. I don't like all of them myself. But my point was that he is making them, unlike his predecessor, and making those choices is part of the job.

    BTW, "kill list" is semantically charged, much like "death panels" was a couple years ago. How about we say he has been ordering drone attacks on members of terrorist groups?


    Let's be more accurate, Farmboy (5.00 / 1) (#124)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:21:16 PM EST
    He's ordering drone strikes on alleged members or suspected members of terrorist groups and not much caring about any "collateral damage" along the way.

    I'm sure that to you, his suspicions are always correct, and his missles never misfire, and of course we can't question the policy as a whole.


    It's my guess that your sneering personal (5.00 / 2) (#132)
    by Farmboy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:41:33 PM EST
    comments are exactly the sort of thing that Jeralyn was talking about.

    Have a nice day.


    Not seeing this point (none / 0) (#167)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:16:03 PM EST
    You don't like Obama's choices. That's fine. I don't like all of them myself. But my point was that he is making them, unlike his predecessor, and making those choices is part of the job.
    in what you said earlier.

    And even if I did, are you saying that making a bad choice and raining destruction somewhere is better than making no choice and someone, somewhere, gets to live another day?  And so does some very likely "collateral damage".  I can live with the "no choice" in this  binary scenario.  

    And btw, "kill list" may be semantically charged, but in this case appropriately so, IMO.  Comparing it to "death panels" is dishonest in the extreme.  Those "death panels" weren't sending drones to your neighborhood.  

    So how about we say instead, he is ordering drone attacks on targetted neighborhoods.


    I'll perform a little rhetorical analysis then. (5.00 / 1) (#195)
    by Farmboy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:23:15 PM EST
    In considering the Middle Eastern situation post Desert Storm, it is a given that there are those who are committing or actively supporting the commission of terrorist acts against the U.S. The president of the U.S. can either use the power of the office to take action against these groups (Clinton, Obama) or the president can choose to not act on information about their plans and intentions (Bush pre 9/11).

    In taking action the president can either take responsibility for the making the choice (Clinton, Obama) or pass off the duties to underlings (Bush). I believe that taking responsibility for military actions is part of the job.

    In taking no action the president can either take responsibility for the outcomes of the choice (Clinton) or pass off the results onto others (Bush). I believe that taking responsibility for choosing not to act is part of the job as well.

    Actions do not always have a downside, and neither do inactions. But my point is still that I respect our presidents for having what it took to make a difficult decision to act or not, and having made their call, stood by it - it's a sign of character, something lacking in Bush Jr.

    My wishes on the subject are that the president gets good advice and evidence from experts before deciding to order any military actions, and that if there isn't good advice and evidence, that he chooses inaction. If I were president, I'd work to see the terrorists in orange jumpsuits standing before the International Court of Justice as a first option - but that's just me, and I don't receive daily security updates from our intelligence agencies.

    BTW, the military has always had "kill lists" going back to the Israelites heading into Canaan. Calling them that instead of, say, operational targets, biases discussion, just as calling end-of-life counseling a "death panel" intentionally skewed the health care discussion. Similarly there have always been civilian casualties. The cure for this is no more war - an idea of which I heartily approve.

    I'm fine with just simplifying it to saying he's ordering drone attacks on targets - they aren't all neighborhoods.


    I'm with SJ ... (none / 0) (#84)
    by Robot Porter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:25:39 AM EST
    on this one.  I often agree with MT.  But not this time.

    It's okay if you don't (none / 0) (#91)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:30:42 AM EST
    You wouldn't be much of a liberal if you did man :)

    Don't even go there (5.00 / 1) (#82)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:21:57 AM EST
    ignoring the creation of a "kill list" and cheering who puts people there, and tacitly approving drone strikes is beneath you.  IMO

    There is no accountability.  Got yourself killed? Oh well.  You're all combatants now!  But it's okay!  At least a General didn't decide you should be dead!  It was the President hisself.

    It may be for all the wrong reasons, but based on what you are saying here (since I would never watch him myself), Joe Scarborough is on the right side of this narrow issue.


    I'm not cheering (none / 0) (#85)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:26:04 AM EST
    The people on that list are very dangerous

    Anyone can be dangerous (none / 0) (#93)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:33:17 AM EST
    And the more you kill the more dangerous the already dangerous become.

    Go ahead and respond to this if you want.  But I won't talk about this anymore with you.  You can justify it and justify it and make all the excuses you want.  

    It's still wrong.


    But Obama remains accountable (none / 0) (#96)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:38:07 AM EST
    And no matter how you may feel about it, that isn't nothing.

    To whom? (none / 0) (#102)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:44:49 AM EST
    To history and how he will be remembered (none / 0) (#109)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:51:19 AM EST
    and documented. The people killed are his burden to carry all his life.  He hasn't pawned any of it off on his pit bull military that got off its damned leash.  That's what Republicans do all the time.  Obama has not done this to his troops, he at least has that much respect for us all.

    That in my book is true respect.  I feel very respected and appreciated by this President.  He is something far more than flag waving gnarley Harley riding Fox News patriotism that has the ultimate worth of monopoly money when you must bury your dead and get old in all of this.


    The president who can ignore and pervert (5.00 / 3) (#118)
    by Anne on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:06:45 PM EST
    the Fifth Amendment - and do it in secret - does not respect you, Tracy; who knew he was the kind of constitutional scholar who would look for ways to get around it, a la John Yoo and David Addington, huh?

    The saddest thing I read in Glenn's post was this:

    A couple of months ago, I spoke at Purdue University in Indiana about civil liberties in the post-9/11 era, and several high school students drove from Kentucky to attend. They were aspiring journalists who worked on their high school newspaper and were battling their county School Board officials who were attempting to censor some of their articles on gay equality; they interviewed me after my speech in the hope that I would provide critical quotes about those officials (which I happily supplied). One of the student-journalists, a girl in the 11th grade, said something to me that was striking, something I knew rationally but had not quite internalized viscerally: she pointed out that much of my speech was grounded in post-9/11 erosions of civil liberties, but that for people her age -- she was 6 years old at the time of the 9/11 attack -- the post-9/11 era is basically all they know.

    The post-9/11 era comprises the entirety of their political experience. They have no different American political culture to which they can compare it, at least from personal experience. The post-9/11 U.S. Government is the only one they know. The rights that have been abridged in the name of Terrorism are ones they never experienced, never exercised, and thus do not expect.

    Food for thought.


    Isn't the job of the Commander in Chief (5.00 / 2) (#120)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:10:15 PM EST
    To Uphold the Constitution, which the soldiers are supposedly fighting and dying for?

    Isn't Obama's failure to do this -indeed , his willfull violation of this duty -treason?

    Why MT would support a treasonous CIC I'll never know. Regardless, I don't claim George Bush was any less of a traitor. The problem is despite the (mostly) good behavior of our troops they have been sent to do some dubious (and to be fair some necessary ) jobs under illegal orders the past 10 years.


    And those kids (none / 0) (#128)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:31:48 PM EST
    Become the "college kids" we hear so much about.

    Oh... (none / 0) (#113)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:56:42 AM EST
    ... to history... I see.  Well, when you can't make a legal argument, or a moral argument, may as well palm it off to history, I guess.

    I hope that I don't live in a world that where "history" is fine with this.  Or else, dystopia, here we come.

    I have a lot of respect for you MT.  But not for your views on this matter.  I said that I wouldn't respond and then I did.  But I won't anymore.  So go ahead, I give you the last word.


    We don't need to wait ... (5.00 / 3) (#125)
    by Robot Porter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:24:32 PM EST
    history tells us who uses "kill lists":  Criminal organizations.  Third world dictators.  And various other totalitarian systems.

    Liberal democracies* do not.

    And, no matter how you spin it, "kill lists" do not fit anywhere into the tenets of a liberal democracy.

    So, history informs us, a country that engages in using "kill lists" is stepping away from liberal democracy.

    That is what history says on the matter.

    (*Liberal democracy is the system we have.  A partial democracy with a system of checks and balances to protect the rights of the individual.)


    Don't think I won't take it :) (5.00 / 1) (#127)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:30:23 PM EST
    Obama has taken so much from those upset about drone strikes.  And I don't blame any of you.  I think there must remain an ongoing fight to cease them, or they will not be ceased when they are no longer needed.  I believe they are needed right now, most of my friends don't and I am grateful they will question and question and question.

    I've been married into the military over the course of three Presidents now.  When something goes to hell, this is the phone that rings, this is the family who does without someone.  While other decisions are made, and other arguments are discussed and fought, whatever conclusions, decisions, and solutions are arrived at by who is in charge....this family is part of executing that in the realm of keeping the nation safe.  That is what we do.

    I'm just grateful that when my current President desires certain militaristic policies, he doesn't hide behind the skirts of others and speak of those few bad apples when a microphone is in front of him and ditches all of us on the front lines taking his orders and doing his bidding.  And that happens all the damn time when Republicans run the show.  They are cowards!  And Joe Scarborough's President wouldn't make such calls as to who is on the hit list and who isn't.  Joe is just uncomfortable with that, but he is fine when something gets all phucked up and everyone hates my family for it when Republicans are running everything and on the record as being accountable for nothing we do.


    Just curious where you see the (5.00 / 3) (#98)
    by Anne on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:42:51 AM EST
    accountability for who gets on the kill list and eventually killed.

    Glenn is, as you might expect, all over this issue, which has come into the light just a bit as a result of the recent NYT article.

    Glenn highlights a passage from that article that's pretty disturbing, at least for me:

    That record, and Mr. Awlaki's calls for more attacks, presented Mr. Obama with an urgent question: Could he order the targeted killing of an American citizen, in a country with which the United States was not at war, in secret and without the benefit of a trial?

    The Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel prepared a lengthy memo justifying that extraordinary step, asserting that while the Fifth Amendment's guarantee of due process applied, it could be satisfied by internal deliberations in the executive branch.

    Mr. Obama gave his approval, and Mr. Awlaki was killed in September 2011, along with a fellow propagandist, Samir Khan, an American citizen who was not on the target list but was traveling with him.

    And then Glenn says:

    Here we have the Obama administration asserting what I genuinely believe, without hyperbole, is the most extremist government interpretation of the Bill of Rights I've heard in my lifetime -- that the Fifth Amendment's guarantee that the State cannot deprive you of your life without "due process of law" is fulfilled by completely secret, oversight-free "internal deliberations by the executive branch" -- and it's now barely something anyone (including me) even notices when The New York Times reports it (as the ACLU's Jameel Jaffer asked yesterday: "These Dems who think executive process is due process: Where were they when Bush‬ needed help with warrantless wiretapping?" -- or his indefinite detention scheme?)

    And how would you feel about Karl Rove being present at meetings where Bush decided who was going to die?  Because, in Obama's case, he has David Axelrod attending those meetings.  That makes my skin crawl.

    Then, let's add a rhetorical change, one that seems to have been established because of all those pesky civilian deaths from drone strikes: now, if you're a male and of military age, you're a combatant.  Since we've all been programmed to believe that combatant = terrorist, suddenly we don't have to worry about the deaths.  See how easy that was?  

    And, as I previously stated, I am never going to vote for Romney - or any Republican - but can you tell me that Republican policies and approaches to these kinds of things are actually going to be worse than what the Democrat has instituted, legitimized and will be well-entrenched by next January?


    I understand your misgivings about (3.00 / 2) (#103)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:45:07 AM EST
    "the process", I am still fine with how our President has conducted himself and decisions he has made.

    what about a different President (5.00 / 1) (#143)
    by pgupta on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:24:47 PM EST
    Would you be equally comfortable with the process with say a President Cheney or a President Palin?

    And if you are not, that means that the process is flawed.


    I'm not comfortable with a president cheney (none / 0) (#144)
    by CST on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:30:25 PM EST
    or president palin being in charge of any of the processes required by the president.  Appointing judges, cabinet members, making any decisions as commander in chief.

    Does that mean the entire presidency is flawed?  Maybe.  But I don't think we can get rid of it.


    cabinet members (5.00 / 1) (#190)
    by pgupta on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:16:31 PM EST
    So a President cannot pick his own Cabinet members?

    There are some powers that are unusually broad like the power of pardon.  Others like appointing judges require the consent of the Senate.  But at least these are explicitly mentioned in our Constitution.

     Nowhere does the Constitution say that the President can compile a hit list.  Rather the Constitution restrains the govt from taking life without due process.


    When you believe in serving your nation (none / 0) (#158)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:01:52 PM EST
    As my spouse has, and I have somewhat grown to embrace, you serve the United States and the President is a transitory object. It can break you though, it can destroy your morale, it can make you not want to get out of bed ever again when your CIC abandons you all in a war zone.  That is what happened with Abu Ghraib.  The whole military knew it and knows it too.  If you were in Iraq from the start up to Abu Ghraib, you knew what SOP were in places like Abu Ghraib or you were highly astronomically suspicious.

    After Abu Ghraib those things continued in the black sites run by McChrystal.  But the whole military knew we had been thrown to the wolves by the whole command to begin with our President right on down to the Secretary of Defense and into the Generals.


    I'm glad you noticed the 'combat age' (none / 0) (#147)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:34:38 PM EST
    Depending on how you define combat age that could be 12, to 15 to nearly 55 (if you go by international history, heck in some places in African ten year old kids are handed rifles to hunt with - and they are not hunting animals but humans). At the minimum it would seem to encompass all males between 16 and 45 (45 being the age limit of the militia in the US).

    Of course if I'm a terrorist I'm going to immediately try to find as many old old men and 10/11/12 or so year olds as I can to fill my ranks. I'll also take a page from the Palestinians and see if I can't get some female recruits too.


    Regarding this: (none / 0) (#150)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:43:19 PM EST
    Then, let's add a rhetorical change, one that seems to have been established because of all those pesky civilian deaths from drone strikes: now, if you're a male and of military age, you're a combatant.  
    Don't you wonder how long "male" will be a qualifying attribute?  Or even why it's one now?

    It's simple (1.67 / 6) (#154)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:53:06 PM EST
    Right now, at least it still "looks bad" to kill women and preadolescent children.
    I suspect they might try to expand the definition in the future but they might run into opposition. Want to know why?
    In the west, politically, men are actors, never victims, women are victims, never actors.

    The feminists on this site do it all the time.


    Well (5.00 / 3) (#160)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:05:29 PM EST
    This is more the cr@p I expect to see.  A half way decent point thrust from a small mind and embellished with bile.

    My world is now back in focus.


    Could you kindly explain? (none / 0) (#164)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:11:17 PM EST
    I really don't know what you mean. Are you referring to my post or the one I was responding to?

    Ack (5.00 / 1) (#166)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:12:11 PM EST
    Given it was your post I was responding to, clearly you are referring to mine.

    So: what do you mean?


    This (5.00 / 2) (#169)
    by CST on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:19:42 PM EST
    "The feminists on this site do it all the time."



    Yes (1.00 / 2) (#175)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:35:50 PM EST
    I will be fair, however and state that not every feminist on this site does it.
    There are some differences though most here appear to be "second wavers".

    wtf (5.00 / 4) (#182)
    by CST on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:46:37 PM EST
    Is Trayvon Martin suddenly female now?  Is Sarah Palin suddenly male?  Or for that matter Anne Coulter.  Or for that matter Elena Kagan?  Because people have plenty to say about our female leaders - both good and bad - none of which amount to victim status.

    And your not so subtle dig at feminists remains.  Heaven forbid we care about social issues that actually affect us, and start wielding that political power.

    You're not being fair.  You're being a word I can't print because it's against the comment rules.


    You'd be better off asking if (2.00 / 1) (#186)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:07:48 PM EST
    Trayvon Martin was an actual "victim" of anything.
    At this point we don't know that he was. We know he was shot, we don't know if it was justified.

    As for the rest, when was the last time someone called a female politician out  as a sexist for something she said about a male politician or males in general?

    When was the last time someone worried about men's total lack of reproductive rights? The hundreds of thousands of men - even today and despite some long overdue reforms at the state level - of men paying support for children that aren't even theirs biologically with the threat of jail backing up the malfeaseance of their cuckolders?

    I don't recall any criticism here when Hilary Clinton made her inane statement about women being the "true victims" of war.

    I don't recall any threads or even subthreads about things such as the forced conscription of boys of the age of ten or eleven in Sudan, though there's plenty of stuff about how women are suffering in Afghanistan or various other places around the globe. I don't recall a single person (though to be fair I've never read every thread)ever talking about boys in Afghanistan being traded around as sex slaves.

    With the sole exception of criminal law cases (where at least the existence of false accusations is noted) the commentariat on here tends to hew a pretty traditional set of gender themes and memes.


    ok I get it now (5.00 / 3) (#193)
    by CST on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:18:13 PM EST
    not talking about the specific subjects you want us to talk about is the same thing as calling all women victims.

    If you're so concerned about that stuff, bring it up in an open thread and see what people have to say.  Cripes there are thousands of topics every day that we don't discuss.  I don't see you writing about that either before this post.

    I think it's natural that people talk about things they can relate to.  So sorry that we are concerned with issues that directly effect us.  You want to talk about something else - talk about it.

    I haven't seen you write a post affirming a woman's right to vote.  By your logic that means you must be a sexist who hates all women.


    If the subject of the women's right to vote (2.00 / 1) (#202)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:37:36 PM EST
    Was still a contested subject, you might have a point.

    However as it is not only not contested but is a right I don't see how it relates to my argument.

    My main point was that when it comes to gendered troubles in the world this site and the commentariat assume and thus only talk about women's share of these things. Any concerns a male might have are either ignored or subsumed under other topics such as racism. For instance, white or black men tend to get harsher sentences for the same crimes as women do -though the gap has narrowed a bit over the past ten years partly due to the US becoming more of a police state and partly maybe, but I'm guessing due to the recognition that females can be evil too- however, when it is discussed on this site it is inevitably discussed under such subjects as white -black racism (the only kind of racism to most on here) or the War on Drugs.

    Men's problems are subsumed under other problems when they are discussed at all.

    By the way, you'll note I didn't call anyone here a feminazi, nor did I accuse any feminist here of hating males. I merely stated that in my opinion the gender discourse here could come straight out of the Victorian era, where women, (pure vessels of morality that they are) are always put upon by the world and men, esp men's nasty sex drives crude humor. It's so taken for granted it's not even questioned.

    Still, I'll take your advice and occasionally bring something up. Maybe I won't get my head bit off after all.


    This (5.00 / 3) (#176)
    by sj on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:36:03 PM EST
    In the west, politically, men are actors, never victims, women are victims, never actors.

    The feminists on this site do it all the time.

    Was the cr@p I was referring to.

    If I were so inclined, I might refer to it as knuckle dragging cr@p.


    Well, this is the same person who (5.00 / 3) (#183)
    by Anne on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:47:19 PM EST
    thinks Voter ID laws are good, as long as they're free, of course.

    Never mind that we don't have a voter fraud problem - that's just a pesky detail.

    Note the number of comments that seem intentionally designed to push people's buttons, and I think you'll know as much as you need to.


    Duly noted.... (5.00 / 3) (#100)
    by kdog on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:43:15 AM EST
    I can Rag Mama Rag on Mitt Romney for the next 5 months, he does have a never ending supply of dirty to comment on...then resume calling Obama out for his kinder gentler brand of tyrannical for the next 4 years after he defeats the plastic vulture creature the GOP unleashed upon us.

    Is it still cool to make note of the also-rans (aka real change) that will be on many ballots in an open thread once in awhile? I think one might crack 5% this year with disillusion running so high.

    The story this summer will be in the streets anyway...I hope.  Election?  Same sh*t different cycle.

    He's baaaaack! (5.00 / 1) (#137)
    by oculus on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:02:04 PM EST
    This morning I have to listen (4.63 / 8) (#2)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 05:59:36 AM EST
    to Romney tell cheering audiences that he was told by a businessman that a President should have to have at least three years in business before they can be President.

    Wow, that's an amazing insight.  Sort of like how every soldier gets mad or emotionally hurt or wounded and says you should have to serve in the military before you can be President.  I think you should have been pregnant at least once and had a couple of late periods before you can be President!

    Business (5.00 / 2) (#8)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:14:12 AM EST
    experience does not translate into a successful Presidency. Look no further than Exhibit A George W. Bush. I don't know why people don't see this. Romney was good at making money for himself not creating jobs.

    Personally, I think you should ... (5.00 / 2) (#148)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:36:15 PM EST
    ... have been pregnant and given birth before endeavoring to tell a woman what she should and should not do with her own uterus and ovaries.

    Think Progress noted that this rule would have... (none / 0) (#168)
    by magster on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:17:55 PM EST
    ... disqualified Eisenhower and McCain.

    Let the silly season begin (none / 0) (#3)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:00:48 AM EST

    And Mitt says we should inject (none / 0) (#6)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:07:16 AM EST
    ourselves into Syria.

    I have to add (none / 0) (#10)
    by nyjets on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:16:29 AM EST
    If a person is making intelligent and valid comments, the 4 comment limit is unfair and silly.
    I agree if someone is repeating the same thing over and over again, fine, limit them (truthfully, that should be true for everyone). But if a person is making good comments, there should be no limit.

    I bet this is how ... (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by Robot Porter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 09:11:45 AM EST
    it will play out.

    I'm not supporting Obama.  But I don't need to outline the reasons for that four times per thread.  Probably not even four times per week.

    However, I do think that if someone, in support of Obama makes an incorrect or highly debatable point, I could counter that without using up one of my "four posts".

    But, even if it was that, I could probably deal.  I don't think I make four posts per thread that often.  I'm not a big fan of tit-for-tat online exchanges.  I usually state my point and stop there.


    This is how it will play out. (5.00 / 1) (#63)
    by itscookin on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:55:31 AM EST
    I only come here to read Jeralyn's crime posts, which I find highly fascinating and well worth the time to read. When a political blog is one-sided, it gets boring, but that's Jeralyn's prerogative. The campaign season will be over soon, and the focus can go back to what she does so well. In the meantime, most of the people who comment here are only "tepid" Obama supporters. They are far more liberal than he is so their criticism will come from the left. The Supreme Court will be the last barricade that they will have to defend. But the Obama cheerleaders will arrive to insist that "tepid" support hurts Obama so that's where the discussion will be. How much support is too little support? IOW, the conversations will be reminiscent of 2008 except we're skipping the Hillary Clinton part .

    Perhaps . . . . (5.00 / 3) (#70)
    by nycstray on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:10:25 AM EST
    IOW, the conversations will be reminiscent of 2008 except we're skipping the Hillary Clinton part .

    If some of the pro-O regardless folks can finally get over it :)


    While I wasn't on this blog in 2008 (5.00 / 1) (#72)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:12:41 AM EST
    After the Duke case I left this blog.
    But I did read it occasionally -usually 2 to 4 times per week, and yes I remember the PUMA debates and all that. I think you are correct.

    I still wish both Obama AND Romney could lose because whichever one wins we are all still screwed. And it will be sad to see the focus of the debate on this blog in terms of politics devolve into "how much cheerleading" arguments rather than policy arguments, but that's how it is.


    Mr. Zorba has always (5.00 / 1) (#203)
    by Zorba on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:47:05 PM EST
    maintained that there should be a "none of the above" option when we vote, and if "none of the above" gets a majority, the election must be redone with completely new candidates (with the previous candidates disqualified from running again in the new election).  And that particular election must continue to be redone, each time with new candidates, until a human wins the majority.
    Never gonna happen, of course, but there are many times that I've wished for that option.   ;-)

    IIRC, Jeralyn's support of Obama ... (none / 0) (#112)
    by Robot Porter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:56:04 AM EST
    in 2008 was tepid to the point of nonexistence until Sarah Palin entered the race.

    BTD claimed his support for Obama was "tepid".  He always used that word.  But I'm not sure it was ever as tepid as he claimed.


    I gotta admit (none / 0) (#126)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:26:38 PM EST
    I found the way Jeralyns claws came out whenever Sarah Palin was mentioned throughout the election and a good year or two afterward very cute and funny.

    It is -or was- definitely very personal about SP with Jeralyn. I think she felt SP betrayed women or something like that.

    As for me? I don't think SP is as dumb as many on here seem to believe. I do think she is more corrupt and calculating than many of her "mama grizzly" supporters give her credit for. She's not a Republican savior. She can sometimes talk the talk but she's never walked the walk. Indeed, in some very important ways she is a RINO, in others she's loopily far right, at least in her rhetoric.


    Heh (3.67 / 3) (#138)
    by Dr Molly on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:04:18 PM EST
    As for me? I don't think SP is as dumb as many on here seem to believe.

    She is demonstrably as dumb as a bag of rocks. Or ignorant, if that is a better word choice.


    Dr Molly (none / 0) (#141)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 01:14:56 PM EST
    I actually agree with you.
    You see, you seem to know the difference between dumb and ignorant. I agree there are many things SP was ignorant about. But she wasn't a "stupid" woman. She has a decent intelligence, however it seems to have been turned totally into practical matters only insofar as they serve to push her ambitions or help her or her family/friends personally.

    I don't think she was "unqualified" to be VP, at least not in terms of real world experience. She had the experiences of raising a family, running a small business, running a small town and running a state. She had a college degree even if it was only in communications and only from second tier (but nonetheless accredited and thus "real" ) schools. To me that was more "real world" experience than Obama despite his cutesy law degree, which he apparently had very little use for when he got out of college. I'd argue Obama also got a better education in corruption, being in the midst of Chicago Politics.

    Regardless, SP knew how to run things. Her problem is she didn't have the intellectual knowledge or flexibility to make good decisions for anything outside her immediate intellectual purview. She clearly knows little of science, only very basic history, that sort of thing and she shows no desire to learn more.

    Arguably if we wanted to pick leaders with an education suited to ruling we'd only pick people with political science majors and military history or econ minors. Or maybe if we went purely for brains we'd stick with engineers, scientists, or linguists. Those are degrees that require real brains.


    My recollection as a former Obamabot (none / 0) (#174)
    by magster on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:34:44 PM EST
    was that BTD bashed Obama repeatedly and then said, remember I support Obama, and I got really po'd in a "a stranger on the internet is wrong" kind of way. (I'm not sure I was an Obamabot per se, I just believed he'd try to fulfill what he was campaigning for).

    Turns out he was right, but to assert that Romney would not be worse than the real Obama seems absurd to me.


    Of course, in 2008 ... (5.00 / 1) (#192)
    by Robot Porter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:18:08 PM EST
    Obamabots were so googly-eyed that if you didn't fawn over Obama in god-like admiration you were a PUMA or a DINO.

    He did quite a number on people. Strangely, he did it with some of the oldest tricks in the politician's handbook.

    What he would actually do was there if you looked.  He often just said it. Sometimes you had to read between the lines a bit. But even then squinting wasn't necessary.


    That (none / 0) (#11)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:22:10 AM EST
    electoral map is sad. PA is now a swing state after being solidly blue for 20 years? NH now has gone back to being a swing state? I think Romney will take NH in November. Romney will also take NC in the fall and FL too I imagine. Kind of sad about WI. IMO that should not be a swing state either. OH might be ground zero in November.

    Not so sure about that. (5.00 / 2) (#24)
    by labor nrrd on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:22:34 AM EST
    PA sure was a swing state in 2004 when the union I worked for sent me down to Philly.... but looking at HP/Pollster Dashboard (Rasmussen O47 v R41 - PPP O50 v R42 - Quinnipac O47 v R39)

    NH: UNH/WMUR O51 v R42 - Dartmouth O42 vs R44 (This one good for R) ARG O48 v R41)

    I agree with Wisconsin, but the last two polls had him up 6 and 10.

    I agree that Romney probably gets NC and FL...  

    but Ohio has O up and what I read about the Ohio economy boosted by the auto industry gives O a strong argument.

    It seems to me the electoral college map looks stronger than the popular vote for the incumbent.


    Unless (none / 0) (#25)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:24:39 AM EST
    Romney picks Rob Portman (R-OH) for VP.

    Really (none / 0) (#52)
    by labor nrrd on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:24:26 AM EST
    When does the VP pick matter much at all... It's the top of the ticket.

    "They" say (5.00 / 1) (#53)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:26:27 AM EST
    VP picks account for 4% or less - usually in the home state.  But since Ohio is a very important and up-for-grabs state, something like a VP pick out of Ohio could tilt the balance.

    Didn't Portman lose to Sherrod Brown (none / 0) (#177)
    by magster on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:37:04 PM EST
    who is way up in the polls now. Would Colorado vote for Romney if Romney picked Tancredo or some other whack-a-doo? I don't think it matters that much.

    No (none / 0) (#178)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:41:07 PM EST
    Portman is a current Senator, serving along with Sherrod Brown.

    Not in my version of reality.... (none / 0) (#181)
    by magster on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:45:38 PM EST
    or, b) thanks for the correction. I'll go with b.

    I actually don't see Romney taking NH, (none / 0) (#22)
    by dk on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:21:24 AM EST
    not unless he really moderates his stances on a whole host of issues (which I don't think he can do because that would dampen his base in other states).  Too many MA transplants in NH these days.  If Romney is perceived as too radical, he doesn't stand a chance there.

    I also don't think he has much of a chance in PA, but that's more of a gut feeling than an informed opinion.


    The polls (none / 0) (#31)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:51:09 AM EST
    right now are showing Romney carrying NH. Of course, like everything else, that's subject to change.

    PA depends on what happens in the cities and the 'burbs. If Obama can't get the turnout in Philly and Pittsburgh to make up for the rest of the state Romney could win there. Demographically PA is not that favorable to Obama.


    IMO (none / 0) (#32)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:56:55 AM EST
    Portman won't help in OH. He did OMB under Bush and how is Romney going to argue for his budget with someone like Portman on the ticket? If Romney is smart (which I'm not sure he is considering his embrace of Trump) he'll stay away from anyone associated with the Bush Administration.

    Hmmmm.... (none / 0) (#37)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 09:02:16 AM EST
    Portman is meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu this week....

    And he won his Senate seat by 18 points - people in Ohio seem to like him, which will be all-important.


    As with Obama (none / 0) (#41)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 09:21:47 AM EST
    that was then and this is now. OH has a very unpopular governor which could hurt the GOP ticket. Obama should thank his lucky stars for the Tea Party without which his situation would be dire.

    Currently (none / 0) (#47)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 09:52:51 AM EST
    (with the caveat that everything changes), Obama and Romney are tied in Ohio (staisitically at least Obama 45-Romney 44).  Portman doesn't help, according to a new Quinnipeac poll, but then again, 6 in 10 voters say they don't have enough information about him to make a decision.

    The composite of Ohio polls (none / 0) (#134)
    by christinep on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:51:54 PM EST
    Shows an Obama advantage.  Isn't the gap today about 4 or 5 points there in favor of the President (per Realclearpolitics?)  Not the biggest gap...but better than the other side.

    Yes (none / 0) (#136)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:55:57 PM EST
    Obama has had a slight drop recently - he was up as much as 7 a couple of weeks ago.

    And some of those (none / 0) (#33)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:58:15 AM EST
    MA transplants to NH probably voted for and liked Romney to begin with!

    Not really. It's not your father's New Hampshire. (5.00 / 2) (#44)
    by dk on Wed May 30, 2012 at 09:35:43 AM EST
    This is a state whose legislature passed gay marriage, and whose citizenry has not voted to overturn it.

    Seem that some of the polls referenced elsewhere in this thread show Obama leading.  Again, we're all speculating, but I'd speculate those are the more accurate polls.  Anything could happen, of course, but I just don't see Mitt winning NH.  Mitt really is not particularly popular anywhere in New England (other than by rich people, who will certainly give him plenty of money to use in trying to win other states outside of New England).

    I think what people not from here need to understand is that even though Mitt was governor of MA for a term, he was never really considered a favorite son of the area.  Also, the only reason he was elected was because he explicitly promised to be extremely moderate (and moderate to liberal on social issues) during his campaign.  As soon as he turned to the right, he lost all support in MA, and enough support in the other New England states to make him, in my opinion, not electable barring an even steeper downward economic spiral than we have now.  


    Pa is always (none / 0) (#45)
    by CST on Wed May 30, 2012 at 09:45:56 AM EST
    a swing state, that never seems to end up swinging.

    I was in PA in 04 and everyone said it was a swing state, so I changed my registration from MA and voted there.  Kerry won by a solid margin.

    Most polls I've seen also show Romney losing NH, not that it really matters given the size of the state, most of the focus will be on the bigger ones.


    Okay. (5.00 / 1) (#62)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:53:34 AM EST
    I guess my polling is old or something. The ones I saw had Romney pulling ahead there.

    It was razor thin for Kerry in PA but if Kerry could carry it I don't see Obama not carrying it unless Romney appears to be less toxic in areas than Bush was. That could happen. These designated "swing states" on this map don't really seem to be swing states to me. I mean NC really? There's no way Obama is going to carry NC in the fall. VA? Maybe. It's back to the same ole same ole where a few states are going to decide who is President. I would just love, love, love to get rid of the EC so that my vote would count.


    2004 (none / 0) (#54)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:29:07 AM EST
    Kerry only won the Pittsburgh and Philly suburbs that year (11 counties) - and won by 2.5%, so your vote really DID matter that year.

    maybe it would have (none / 0) (#58)
    by CST on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:45:35 AM EST
    if Kerry actually won :)

    Either way, I vote downticket.  It always matters.


    Downticket is good (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:49:41 AM EST
    Downticket is where the next crop of Representatives, Senators, Governors, and eventually, Presidents come from.

    That was a lesson that was unfortunately, not hammered home in 2008, when many people went to vote for a person, instead of a party.  With that came many state legislatures falling into Republican hands (along with the power to redistrict after the 2010 Census), and it gave rise to some of the crazy stuff we've seen states try to push forward.


    Right now (none / 0) (#18)
    by NYShooter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:57:10 AM EST
    most polls have the race very close, a couple of points either way. Everyone is certainly free to speculate what the outcome will be in November, but there's six months to go, and as the monthly economic numbers go, so go Obama's odds for re-election.

    Predicting now does not even rise to the level of speculation, it's pure guessing.

    Yep (5.00 / 2) (#19)
    by jbindc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:00:10 AM EST
    To quote James Carville:

    "It's the economy, stupid."

    Social issues, Supreme Court justices, stupid things candidates say, what their wives say, etc. are all just noise.

    It's going to come down to one thing:  the economy. And if people feel like things are turning around - Obama wins a second term.  If people feel like things are staying the same or getting worse, then Obama does not stand a chance in hell of winning.


    That's (none / 0) (#20)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:03:48 AM EST
    why I love love love BTD's posts on demographics and his "demographics are destiny" statements. It's some of the best political analysis I've seen anywhere.

    Steve Sailer (none / 0) (#78)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:18:19 AM EST
    Says the same thing about demographics (and has written many a post about the latino vote etc), but of course he's one of the Evil Ones whose name can't be spoken.

    Personally, I hope he and BTD are wrong. People have to be more than the sum of their race/gender/economic class or there will eventually be war, since racial/gender spoils systems inevitably have winners and losers, and when a group such as (to use an example) african americans rewards a single corrupt party for so long and so blindly they end up getting taken for granted.


    Heh (none / 0) (#104)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:45:13 AM EST
    Yes Steve Sailer and I say the same things about race.

    You are ridiculous.


    No, you say the same things about demographics (none / 0) (#110)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:52:33 AM EST
    Demographics are destiny, Big Tent Dude.
    To quote you.
    Sailor says the same thing when he's trying to spread the fear of the Mexican. You say with a shuffle in your step and a twinkle in your eye as you imagine the US going from a two party corrupt system to a one party corrupt system.

    In the end, what's the real difference? You might argue that Sailer is a racist and you are not (and since I don't think you are racist I might even buy that argument) but the fact is you still think people inevitably vote in chunks based largely on sex and ethnicity and you are HAPPY about that.


    Ridiculous (none / 0) (#187)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:08:36 PM EST
    Not worthy of response.

    I'll agree you are ridiculous (none / 0) (#191)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:16:40 PM EST
    And that you actually have no response to my statement because its totally true.

    I've read you long enough here and occasionally at Kos. I'm not misstating your beliefs at all.

    Anyway, carry on. I'll give you this: you are playing the game to win and I can respect that. I know that the Rethugs are doing the same thing. Shame about the country though.


    What did we say about insults? (none / 0) (#198)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:26:14 PM EST
    First warning.

    Actually (none / 0) (#200)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:29:08 PM EST
    Forget the warnings.

    You are banned from my threads.

    This is not my thread nor are Jeralyn's posts or Open threads my threads.

    You are only banned from my threads.

    I have no use for you.


    That guy (none / 0) (#111)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:53:24 AM EST
    is a nut who writes for a white supremacist blog. He's one of the ones who apparently are upset that America is becoming browner instead of whiter. Why would I want to read anything that guy said? BTD deals in pure numbers in his analysis not fear mongering that whites are going to be a "minority".

    Let me explain something to you (none / 0) (#117)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:03:18 PM EST
    Quite bluntly.
    In a truly color-blind assimilationist society it doesn't matter what color the nations babies are or what color /sex whatever the leaders are.

    When you have a society, however, in which people are rewarded for putting their private interests as members of a group (sex, race whatever) over those of other groups or even of more purely nationalistic concerns, then it does become important because government suddenly starts "taking note" of things and sets up a race or sexual (or both) spoils system. At the very best this consists of things such as biased policies and targeted benefits, at the worst this leads eventually to ghettos and other forms of prosecution.

    This is a potential long-term problem. I would agree with Sailer that much.


    What you (none / 0) (#119)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:09:34 PM EST
    are advocating is policies for "the common good" instead of the "individual good" which is directly in opposition to your statements of being a libertarian because Libertarianism is the ultimate "me" ideology.

    I never said I was a libertarian (none / 0) (#123)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 12:17:24 PM EST
    That's where your argument fails.

    I'm not a libertarian (though I back some libertarian policies from time to time) because, like EVERY OTHER SINGLE political ideology out there I think they are wrong about some things.
    I respect Rand for a few of her thoughts and I love that she drives some lefties nuts (hey, some lefties backed Stalin, she lived under the soviets for a time, I'll cut her some slack for being an extremist the other way), but I think she's mostly wrong in her approach. I'm certainly no anarcho-capitalist, either.
    My political philosophy is based on pragmatism where I can compare and contrast policies from parts of history and humanism where I cannot. Part of humanism is very individualistic. I also have to moderate it all with what I've learned of human nature, because any polity to be a long term success must take human nature into account. I find most political idealogues fail at that.


    The only (none / 0) (#171)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:20:57 PM EST
    people who are duped by the Randian crap appear to be evangelicals who apparently don't know that the Church of Satan was based on her principles.

    Well (none / 0) (#180)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:45:10 PM EST
    Isn't it good to know I'm not an Objectivist nor a Satanist?

    Although the Church of Satan does sound more interesting than any Church I ever attended back when I used to be a believer. Even that Unitarian Universalist one.


    Societies--Theoretical & Real (none / 0) (#172)
    by christinep on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:22:16 PM EST
    I don't know of any populous, long-running theoretical societies.  Perhaps, you can enlighten us?

    Observation:  Elsewhere you refer to yourself as pragmatic, only to insist as well that you may have limited options (including leaving or other fantasies) with regard to living in a country that doesn't follow your notions about constitutional interpretation.  Pragmatic, rigid, or simply scattered?  Of course, you get to be what you want & think what you will...and, little ol' me also gets to express an observation.


    My point which apparently (1.00 / 1) (#179)
    by Slayersrezo on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:41:50 PM EST
    passed over your head in that thread, was that you don't live in a Constitutional Republic, Christine, unless the Constitution is followed. It can't be "followed" if it can be reinterpreted to mean just about any old thing at any time.

    And the current political process in the USA is so broken that its almost impossible to directly challenge either of the two large parties because they control money, redistricting, and the very rules of who can get on the ballet at a state to state level.

    That you see no problem with this is an indictment of you as an individual, not me or my political philosophy.


    Five months actually. (none / 0) (#30)
    by brodie on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:50:03 AM EST
    And on the economic numbers, after three years of slow sluggish recovery rather consistently month to month, why should we expect the numbers in the final months before Nov to be much different?  And then there's the Euro crisis which could further affect those economic numbers for the worse.

    I don't like the way the positive indicators seem to have hit a ceiling with modest recovery only, while the potential with Europe negatively affecting our bottom line seems capable of boring a huge hole in the floor.

    Apart from Hollywood, I don't like the way the stars seem to be lining up this election season.


    This is a blog with a clearly stated agenda. (none / 0) (#26)
    by indy in sc on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:32:25 AM EST
    Fairness is not its goal--advancing certain issues/candidates is.  It is not a news organization where equal time is required, otherwise it would feature Pro-Mitt or pro-Republican bloggers as well as Jeralyn and BTD.

    I find myself bumping up against the agenda on some of the crime postings, but I appreciate the agenda being advanced overall, which is why I like this blog and hope it doesn't change one bit!

    The three most important (none / 0) (#27)
    by brodie on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:33:29 AM EST
    reasons for reelecting Obama:

    1. Mostly sound judgment on FP matters and waging war

    2. Scotus and fed court picks

    3. Economic policy

    Obama is far from perfect on the latter -- quarter steps where full measures should have been attempted -- and on the first he can be dinged for not pursuing a more aggressive withdrawal earlier from Afghanistan and a few other things.  

    But in FP Romney would risk a regional or wider war with his hawkish attitude about Iran and Syria, a reckless mindset which would threaten our relatively stable relations with Russia and China.

    On the economy it's certain R would go back to trickle down Reaganomics while cutting deeply into the ND social safety net.

    As for Scotus I see him adding a net one more conservative justice to replace an aging retiring liberal, while further filling the fed courts with right wingers with inadequate senate resistance.

    I'm backing O for another term with these thoughts in mind, though I have a bad feeling about how the vote counting will turn out in November.

    I agree except for your last paragraph (none / 0) (#97)
    by ZtoA on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:39:47 AM EST
    I think its way too early to tell. This will be the first truly twitter election, and one with massive amounts of secret money. I think it is going to be a very volatile election season. Even tho I can't be a cheerleader I'll try to muster the rohirrim.

    It is awful early to call it (none / 0) (#170)
    by brodie on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:19:44 PM EST
    but by my calculations not unreasonably so.  

    When I made it 5-6 weeks ago I felt pretty much alone out on that limb and the call for the somewhat bumbling and unpopular Romney may have looked kind of wacky and radical.  But not long after posting I noticed a few major commenters in the blogosphere seeming to read the electoral situation along similar lines, or at least express nervous doubt about O's chances.  

    Now, around 5 months from D-Day with the polls fairly close and tightening, it doesn't seem quite the radically outlier prognostication by some wacko lone nut poster spouting off to be different.

    Of course this is one where I'll be elated to be off the mark, and will gladly stand up here, in the unlikely event that should be necessary, and take my lumps for getting it so wrong.


    Don't you think (none / 0) (#173)
    by christinep on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:33:20 PM EST
    It was always going to be close in a politically divided country?  After some definitional jousting throughout the summer, we'll see what happens in debates or who makes a major gaffe or what singular matters "pop up" in September/October?  In short, let's see how Romney, who is enjoying the inevitable boost as the still-untested & undefined Republican presumptive nominee, wears.  We know that the President has passed the wearability/favorability test after these years.  I suspect that there will be a comparison as voters decide in the Fall (despite the druthers of the challenger.)

    Politically divided it is (5.00 / 1) (#184)
    by brodie on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:58:51 PM EST
    but prior to a few days ago all I heard from the complacent liberal blogosphere was how the EC math virtually makes it impossible for Romney to win.  Also how a divided GOP would fail to turn out for the Mormon.  And how a gaffe-prone out of touch 1%er like Romney couldn't possibly win over enough voters to make the difference.

    Not to worry we Dems were told -- the only real race this year, theysaid, was for Congress.

    I don't think so.


    Not just a few days ago, kos just posted (none / 0) (#199)
    by magster on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:26:22 PM EST
    based on new polls that Obama is pulling away in swing states and that the EC math is as good now as it has been.

    For once I live in a swing state (none / 0) (#29)
    by pgupta on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:43:16 AM EST
    For once I live in a swing state, and my vote counts.

    I was an enthusiastic supporter of Obama in 2008, but this time around I am undecided.  I won't vote for Romney.  But I just cannot get around to feel good voting for Obama.  I think the Obama Presidency was a wasted opportunity, and that Obama has failed on his signature promise which was bringing meaningful change.

    I consider myself to be a progressive, and Obama to be anything but one.

    So either I will skip the vote, or hold my nose and vote.

    A progressive nobel peace prize winner in the WH (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by pgupta on Wed May 30, 2012 at 09:34:27 AM EST
    Today's headline in the Washington Post:

    Drone strikes spur backlash in Yemen

    Outrage over civilian casualties

    Escalated US campaign fuels support for al-Qaeda


    Without ground rules, blog comments (none / 0) (#36)
    by Coral on Wed May 30, 2012 at 09:01:03 AM EST
    are unreadable. I like a well-regulated discussion based in fact, not random assertion.

    So thanks for posting the rules.

    Jeralyn I love this site (none / 0) (#74)
    by samsguy18 on Wed May 30, 2012 at 11:14:00 AM EST
    I Have been visiting here for at least four years and I have come to know and respect you and the other regulars. I am an independent and I have voted for both parties. The last four years I have watched average Americans and there way of life steadily decline.The healthcare system is a disaster. Everyday  I see more and more misery! The condition of healthcare and the people we serve is a  very good barometer.I am not convinced Obama will be good for this country going forward.   The economy will determine the outcome of this election and it will be individuals like myself who are independents  who will make the difference.

    Socialist Equality Party will particpate (none / 0) (#188)
    by Andreas on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:14:45 PM EST
    The Socialist Equality Party will participate.

    So let us start the debate with a paragraph from the election statement:

    Third, the SEP opposes imperialist militarism and the assault on democratic rights, which is being led by the Obama administration. After wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya, the White House is now beating the drums for a military intervention against Syria and Iran, which carries with it the danger of war with Russia and China. The banks and corporations will stop at nothing to expand their power and profits. Under the false pretext of fighting a "war on terror" the world has been increasingly terrorized. At home, fundamental constitutional protections such as habeas corpus have been trampled on.

    A president who is currently trampling on fundamental constitutional rights and ordering murders from his office in the White House will not defend constitutional rights in the future - the opposite is true.

    So, (none / 0) (#197)
    by NYShooter on Wed May 30, 2012 at 03:24:51 PM EST
    don't you know how to write 5000 word comments?

    She's a lawyer; how hard could it be to fake her out? :)

    No reply buttons?!? (none / 0) (#204)
    by unitron on Wed May 30, 2012 at 10:59:02 PM EST
    "Mr. Zorba has always...maintained that there should be a "none of the above" option when we vote, and if "none of the above" gets a majority, the election must be redone with completely new candidates (with the previous candidates disqualified from running again in the new election).  And that particular election must continue to be redone, each time with new candidates, until a human wins the majority.
    Never gonna happen, of course, but there are many times that I've wished for that option.   ;-) "

    The re-do if no winner part is also part of my idea of getting to vote yes or no on each and all candidates, and any candidate who does not have a net total greater than zero after the no votes are subtracted from the yes votes is out.

    That way you could vote for Anderson and Carter, or Anderson and Reagan, or for GHW Bush and Perot, or Clinton and Perot, or for Nadar and Gore or Bush and Buchanan, and if your first choice doesn't win your second choice might.

    Also, no more primaries paid for by taxpayers.

    Parties can go into their own pockets to figure out who their candidate is going to be and do it according to whatever rules they want to argue about and try to enforce with no help from the government whatsoever.

    Comments close here at 200 (none / 0) (#205)
    by Jeralyn on Thu May 31, 2012 at 12:10:40 AM EST
    This thread is now closed.