Archive for May 2012
Barack Obama Memorial Day 2012 at the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial wall:
“And one of the most painful chapters in our history was Vietnam — most particularly, how we treated our troops who served there. You were often blamed for a war you didn’t start, when you should have been commended for serving your country with valor. You were sometimes blamed for misdeeds of a few, when the honorable service of the many should have been praised. You came home and sometimes were denigrated, when you should have been celebrated. It was a national shame, a disgrace that should have never happened. And that’s why here today we resolve that it will not happen again.
And so a central part of this 50th anniversary will be to tell your story as it should have been told all along. It’s another chance to set the record straight. That’s one more way we keep perfecting our Union — setting the record straight. And it starts today. Because history will honor your service, and your names will join a story of service that stretches back two centuries.”
In remarkably colorful terms, former Sen. Alan Simpson (R-WY) on Sunday lashed out at members of his party for their unyielding opposition to new tax revenues, whom he described as stymieing a debt reduction agreement.
“I guess I’m known as a RINO now, which means a Republican in name only, because, I guess, of social views, perhaps, or common sense would be another one, which seems to escape members of our party,” said Simpson, a co-chair of President Obama’s fiscal commission, on CNN’s “Fareed Zakaria GPS.”
“For heaven’s sake, you have Grover Norquist wandering the earth in his white robes saying that if you raise taxes one penny, he’ll defeat you,” he added. “He can’t murder you. He can’t burn your house. The only thing he can do to you, as an elected official, is defeat you for reelection. And if that means more to you than your country when we need patriots to come out in a situation when we’re in extremity, you shouldn’t even be in Congress.”
The failure on Capitol Hill to agree on the parameters of a sustainable fiscal vision has been the topic of lots of finger-pointing. As the conventional wisdom goes, Republicans refuse to budge on taxes and Democrats refuse to budge on safety-net programs. Democrats, however, speak often about the need to cut entitlement spending as part of a balanced deal, while Republicans maintain that new taxes are unacceptable.
“You can’t cut spending your way out of this hole. You can’t grow your way out of this hole. And you can’t tax your way out of this hole. So put that in your pipe and smoke it, we tell these people. This is madness,” Simpson said. “If you want to be a purist, go somewhere on a mountaintop and praise the East or something. But if you want to be in politics, you learn to compromise. And you learn to compromise on the issue without compromising yourself. Show me a guy who won’t compromise and I’ll show you a guy with rock for brains.”
The next time a Republican says that Obamacare is a liberal idea please disagree. This is what Republicans sounded like in 1989. It’s a long read, but the point becomes pretty obvious pretty quick. How could that have been their plan then, and now disagree completely with an almost identical vision? Really, how?
The Heritage plan suggests the mandate when they talk about young people who just opt not to purchase health insurance. I think Obamacare has tax credits and risk pools to aid those on the lower end. The Heritage plan says that if things remain the same, the health care benefit to you, not directly in your paycheck, should be considered taxable income. All in all, these plans sound very similar, albeit with some differences. If the argument society was having was between the variations of this plan, and The Affordable Care Act, that would be brilliant. It’s tangible and you can argue and measure which is better. That’s not the conversation we are having. Instead of arguing why this plan is better, they are saying Obama is a socialist and will take everything you own. They’ve lost rationality, and it would be great to see those on the right who can argue facts, bring them back.
The methods of these plans are way too close to discount. To completely support this plan one year, and completely oppose a few later makes one question where such a person really stands about anything. The differences are much smaller than the similarities. That warrants the argument of the details between the two plans. But that’s not the argument that we’re having. The people in charge are saying Obama is not an American citizen and is here to take your guns. Why won’t they just argue the differences? Wouldn’t we all be better off?
Bill Maher “It somehow became an article of faith, on the right, that Obama is the most extreme President in American history. Although when they say that, I think what they really mean is, he’s black. But, let me give you some examples. Newt Gingrich called Obama ‘the most radical, leftist President in history’. Senator Marco Rubio called him ‘the most divisive figure in modern American history’. Michele Bachman said ‘he’s the most radical President we have ever seen in the history of the country’, and when has Michele Bachman ever been known to misjudge a man (shows picture of Marcus Bachman)? John Bolton said ‘Obama just doesn’t care about national security’. Honestly, there are Mexican drug mules who don’t pull this much stuff out of their ass. And, my question is, how can the same guy, Barack Obama, make these people feel that America has changed so completely, and yet make me feel like it’s barely changed at all?
I travel all over this country doing stand up, and since Obama has been President, what? It’s still the exact same Kentucky-fried country it’s always been….We haven’t lost our freedoms. I’m pretty sure the only things Obama has killed are bin Laden and Donald Trumps last shred of dignity. If Obama were as radical as they claim, here’s what he would have already done: pulled the troops out of Afghanistan, given us medicare for all, ended the drug war, cut the defense budget in half, and turned Dick Cheney over to the Hague. Here’s what Obama actually did: He cut taxes and spending. Look at this graph.
These bars show the growth in Federal spending for each President (Reagan through Obama). Obama is at the bottom. Yes, the black man’s is the shortest. He didn’t go on a spending spree. He didn’t break up the too big to fail banks. They’ve only gotten bigger, and failyier. That’s not what liberals wanted, that’s what conservatives wanted. At the 2008 convention Sarah Palin chanted drill baby drill, under Obama there’s more drilling than ever. That’s not what environmentalists wanted, that’s what conservatives wanted. Obama spent most of last year conceding the Republican premise that government needed cutting. That’s not what progressives wanted, that’s what the Tea Party wanted. The Dow was at 7949 when he took office, now it’s 12,000 and over. Corporate profits are at their highest ever. If he is a Socialist, he’s a lousy one. He could not be less threatening if he was walking alone with iced tea and skittles.
So, the question remains, how can you guys be so unhappy with Obama, when I’m so happy with Obama? You think you got coal in your stocking? I wanted single payer health care, a carbon emissions bill, gun control, and legalized pot. If you get to carry around all of this outrage over me getting all that stuff, shouldn’t I have gotten it? So, just admit it. This isn’t about about what Obama is, it’s about what you need him to be, because hating him is what gets you up in the morning. And Ted (Nugent), you don’t have to fear what happens if the Democrats are re-elected, because they don’t have any ideas anyway. I can understand your paranoia that they have a secret plan, because they sure don’t have a public one. Can anyone tell me what the Democrats want to do? The best I can come up with is, elect us, we’re lame, but the other guys are nuts.”
Family Research Council President Tony Perkins found himself in an awkward situation on Thursday when one CNN host insisted he explain why “homosexuals bother you so much.”
When Perkins agreed to appear on CNN to hype his press conference
supporting the Defense of Marriage Act, he probably didn’t expect host Brooke Baldwin to make the conversation personal.
“Everyone has the right to opine,” Baldwin told Perkins. “But my question is more on a personal level to you: Have you ever been to the home of a married, same sex couple?”
“I have not been to the home of a married, same sex couple, no,” Perkins admitted.
“If you were ever to do so and you were sitting across from them over dinner, how would you convince them that their life together — either two men, two women — hurts straight couples?” the CNN host wondered.
“That’s not how we make public policy,” Perkins replied. “Certainly there are some same sex couples that are probably great parents, but that’s not what the overwhelming amount of social science shows us. And we’ve got some great single moms that are doing great jobs and we applaud them and encouraged them, but we still know that the best environment for a child is with a mom and a dad.”
“I know you don’t want to answer the personal questions, but I’m going to try again,” Baldwin pressed. “Why do — you’ve never been to the home of a same sex couple — why do homosexuals bother you so much?”
“They don’t bother me,” Perkins insisted. “I’m not going to be silent while they try to redefine marriage in this country, change policy, what my children are taught in schools and what religious organizations can do. I’m not going to be silent, nor are millions of other Christians across this country.”
“We don’t have a dislike for homosexuals,” he added. “They don’t have a right to redefine marriage for the rest of us, they don’t have a right to take away my religious freedom, they don’t have a right to step between me and what my child is taught. That’s what’s happening.”
During her keynote speech at the Special Operations Command gala dinner in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday night, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said that State Department specialists attacked sites tied to al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) that were trying to recruit new members by “bragging about killing Americans.”
“Within 48 hours, our team plastered the same sites with altered versions of the ads that showed the toll al-Qaida attacks have taken on the Yemeni people,” Clinton said. “We can tell our efforts are starting to have an impact because extremists are publicly venting their frustration and asking supporters not to believe everything they read on the internet.”
New York Times columnist Paul Krugman once again pushed back on the notion that America needs to engage in massive suspending cuts now to deal with the country’s debt Friday evening.
Appearing on CNN’s Up Front With Erin Burnett, Krugman rejected Burnett’s premise of advocating for austerity measures to tackle America’s debt and deficit, offering his usual recommendations for more spending.
“The fact of the matter is vast countries, with their own currencies able to borrow on their own currencies, are able to carry heavy debt loads for a long time,” he said. “This is not an urgent crisis. Give me an economic recovery (and) I’ll become a fiscal hawk, but not now.
“The other thing to say is that, right now, trying to bring that budget deficit down doesn’t even work, doesn’t even work in purely fiscal terms. It shrinks the economy that reduces tax revenues. It damages our long run growth because when workers have been unemployed for a long periods of time, they eventually drop out of the work force, they don’t come back . When students can’t get jobs coming out of college, they never get their careers started. And those are our future tax payers that you’re undermining. So this is not the time.”