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Can anyone tell me: why Mitt Romney?

Original post made by Ed Treller on Sep 21, 2012

Looking at the polls, President Obama is ahead by larger margins in key battleground states than he was at this time 4 years ago. Obama is far ahead of his numbers 4 years ago in Florida, Ohio and Virginia.

The republican candidate 4 years ago was beat by Barack Obama in a landslide, almost 200 electoral votes, 365 - 173.

With recent history in mind, why did the GOP pick the guy who lost so badly to John McCain, who lost so badly to Barack Obama?

Looking at Mr. Lawrence's recent thread, with 88 comments and 1200 views, no one can offer a reason why the GOP chose Mitt Romney. I heard lots of reasons not to choose Gov Romney in the primaries; was no one listening?

Real Clear Politics, which seemed to be highly recommended in the last political thread, predicts an Obama victory, 332-206, with the "toss-up" states all breaking to their composite polls. Web Link

Similar electoral numbers appear at the vaunted 538 blog, with them giving Gov. Romney only a 23% chance of winning. Web Link

Again: why did the GOP pick Mitt Romney?

Comments (155)

Posted by follow the money, a resident of Atherton: other
on Sep 21, 2012 at 4:24 pm

Two reasons for Romney:
1. the other Republican candidates were boring and/or seriously flawed
2. big money loves Romney, which allows him to outspend everyone else combined

Maybe the Republicans will find someone more competent 4 years from now. None of the RNC speakers was very interesting, except maybe for Condi Rice.


Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 21, 2012 at 4:44 pm

All the big boys stayed out of the race, so Romney won by default -- Santorum Perry Bachman Cain Trump et al.. ain't exactly the first string. The first string saw Obama as unbeatable based on last year's poll numbers and elected to wait for the open eat in 2016. With the decks cleared, Romney just outspent the rest, virtually carpetbombing, with negative ads, each one as they stuck their head above 20% in the polls. Conveniently for Romney, they did it serially, so he could knock them off one at a time. Shooting fish in a barrel.

In 2016, Thune, Daniels, Bush, Christie, Rubio, etc.. bring their 'A' game for the open seat. We'll see if Republican voters exhibit a backlash on them for not having the guts to run this year, leaving them with Mitt and the pathetic 7 dwarfs. That anger will be one of the 7 stages of Mitt-post-loss-grief-syndrome.

The senate stays blue. Yet to be seen is if Romney's lack of coattails costs the House. The repercussions of such a devastating turn could wreak havoc for the GOP for a year or more leading to the midterms.

In short, Romney was a fluke. In what other circumstance would a party nominate someone who wouldn't even release his taxes like his father did?

A stunning choice.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 21, 2012 at 4:46 pm

Although your question is clearly rhetorical, you did ask it more than once. As the current White House would say, the answer is "self evident"... I suppose you know it.

Because he won the primaries. Why did the Democrat party pick Michael Dukakis or George McGovern? Neither party gets to pick ANY candidate, they get to choose between the ones on the ballot. In this case, Romney was preferred over the others.

The plain truth is that President Obama is not Kenyan, not a Muslim, not Communist, and not un-American. Similarly, Mr. Romney is not an evil guy who cuts and burns companies, contributes to the death of ex-employees, and wants to destroy the middle class. He is, perhaps the most charitable, boy-scout like candidate in our history. No, you may not like him and he's certainly not a warm, fuzzy guy, but like John Kerry's "swiftboating," he has been unnecessarily demonized. Perhaps turnabout is fairplay, but just wait until it happens to your guy next.

We should be having an honest conversation about our government's uncontrollable spending, mounting debt, continuing credit downgrades, unsustainable entitlements and pensions, lack of revenues, unfair taxation, our increasing wealth gap, unemployment, energy, immigration, the staggering economy and a world that is quite literally ablaze and appears to be on the verge of a melt down.

Have we heard anything about these issues? Sadly, not much. But we have heard about "you didn't build that" and "47%^ of Americans are victims."

So if you want to talk about Mitt's taxes for the next few days, have at it. But there are better ways to enjoy yourself and far more productive ways to discuss our problems.

Mr. Romney is clearly behind and he is very lucky that this election isn't held on the first Tuesday in October. An awful lot can happen in the next 45 days and I can almost assure you that this race is more likely to tighten than widen. We'll just have to wait and see.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 21, 2012 at 5:08 pm

"We should be having an honest conversation about our government's uncontrollable spending, mounting debt, continuing credit downgrades, unsustainable entitlements and pensions, lack of revenues, unfair taxation, our increasing wealth gap, unemployment, energy, immigration, the staggering economy and a world that is quite literally ablaze and appears to be on the verge of a melt down."

But we won't. Because the two parties have been hijacked by the extremists and have absolutley no room nor interest for conversation or compromise. One can only hope that with the coming continuing gridlock voters may get fed up enough to start actively supporting a third party. I'm not holding my breath.


Posted by Joe, a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 21, 2012 at 5:11 pm

Anyone who feels anxiety over what Obama will be facing if he wins, and how the Republicans may just be right in keeping their powder dry, might want to read what Sean Trende at RealClearPolitics has to say today.

Web Link


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 21, 2012 at 8:11 pm

I didn't read the article Joe, but you make a good point.

Whoever wins this election is in for a very difficult time. Should Obama win, he will almost certainly face a Republican controlled House. That could mean another stalemate for 2 or 4 years (great...) but it could also mean that everyone finally comes to their senses, swallow hard, and get something done such as avoiding the "fiscal cliff" or even some real tax reform. And even the Tea Partiers came around for the recent "continuing resolution" vote earlier this week which included $18 billion more in spending than they wanted.

Should Romney wins, he will almost certainly have a Democratic controlled Senate who may see this as their opportunity to return the favor of being the party of no.

In any event, there are some extraordinarily serious issues to face. Far more serious than a rich guy's taxes or a sitting President's birth certificate.

This campaign is truly a disservice to all Americans. And that applies equally to both candidates... who seem to look for every opportunity to avoid these issues.


Posted by Realist, a resident of Portola Valley: other
on Sep 22, 2012 at 2:57 pm

Might as well ask the other question: why Barack Obama?

Neither candidate inspires me, neither scares me, each is obligated to a party platform that caters to extreme views. As an independent, I want to vote for the right person, not the right party. I'd like to see a genuine discussion of issues and ideas, not attacks on the other side. But that's what we get.

We are far from what was envisioned when this country was founded.

"change" = doing something different, not doing something necessarily better. Would love to leave both candidates, and both parties, behind us..


Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 22, 2012 at 4:50 pm

"why Barack Obama?" is that tongue in cheek?

January 2009 had 800,000 jobs lost, the last 28 months created 4.5 million private sector jobs.

By 2008, George Bush had disbanded the Bin Ladin CIA unit many years prior, when Mitt Romney said Obama was wrong to go after Bin Ladin. You know the rest.

In the last two years, the GOP House held dozens of anti-abortion and other women's health issue votes, if passed, would have been vetoed by Obama.

You may not like Obamacare, you may not like the fair pay for women act, or any of the others, but if you type in seriousness: "why Barack Obama?" you're betraying your claim of independence.

Why Barack Obama in 2008? He resonated with Democrats and after a hard primary battle, united his party and ran a stellar campaign. McCain and Romney only dream of the success Obama had on either front.

In 2016, the GOP hopefuls I listed above all seem to me to be able to run better campaigns than either McCain or Romney. The question I interpreted Ed Treller indirectly asking was: where was the GOP first string in 2012?


Posted by calling out, a resident of Atherton: Lloyden Park
on Sep 22, 2012 at 5:12 pm

Realist: What's so extreme about the Democratic party platform?
Moving America Forward
Rebuilding Middle Class Security
1. Putting Americans Back to Work
2. The Middle Class Bargain
3. Cutting Waste, Reducing the Deficit, Asking All to Pay Their Fair Share
4. Economy Built to Last America Works When Everyone Plays by the same rules


1. Wall Street Reform
2. 21st Century Government: Transparent and Accountable
3. Lobbying Reform and Campaign Finance Reform
Greater Together
1. Strengthening the American Community
2. Protecting Rights and Freedoms
3. Ensuring Safety and Quality of Life
Stronger in the World, Safer and More Secure At Home
1. Responsibly Ending the War in Iraq
2. Disrupting, Dismantling, and Defeating Al-Qaeda

It goes on and on, but I don't see extremism in this platform, just things that nonest folk may disagree with.

Who's the extremist?


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 22, 2012 at 5:57 pm

calling out:

you forgot one. letting illegals stay here after they broke the law to get here.

Sorry, but Realist is right, both parties SUCK. They're opposite sides of the same coin. they're all corrupt. the only difference is who's paying the bill.


Posted by Dawn, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 22, 2012 at 7:03 pm

Don't believe the poll. YOu actual answer will be on ELECTION NIGHT.
Go out and get some FRESH air. Drinking too much soda in the 16 0z. cup.


Posted by Ronnie, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 22, 2012 at 9:34 pm

Menlo voter is confusing himself with Ronnie Reagan letting the lillegals stay.


Posted by Realist, a resident of Portola Valley: other
on Sep 22, 2012 at 10:24 pm

Hayword Park,

love the fact that you are so willing to offer your opinions as facts, and offer only the "facts" that possibly support your chosen party and candidate. Good for you! I'm not trying to speak for you or anyone else, only for myself as is still my right.

Obama does not inspire me, neither does Romney. And neither do their parties. I don't see a big difference between the candidates as of today. Hard decisions to come, but not in states like CA where party politics rule.


Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 23, 2012 at 8:35 am

Realist - "love the fact that you are so willing to offer your opinions as facts"

Nice claim. Want to back it up? For example, do you disagree with "January 2009 had 800,000 jobs lost, the last 28 months created 4.5 million private sector jobs"?

Web Link

"love the fact" that when conservatives finally find their candidate as lacking as the rest of us see, it becomes a "both parties suck" argument. Never hear a conservative say Texas or another red state is "where party politics rule" but no problem blasting solid blue California. Besides this thread is about the presidential race, specifically the lack of a qualified GOP nominee.

Realist - what is your theory that the GOP is running, as the original poster put inelegantly it - "the guy who lost so badly to John McCain, who lost so badly to Barack Obama?"

A governor who failed so badly that he couldn't even face running for a 2nd term, who will lose his home state so badly, the state that once saw fit to once elect him and know him better than anyone, he is looking at a loss by 20 points.

Is it the GOP candidate, or is it the party?

Bill Clinton has an answer, he thinks it's the party, not the man; in fact, Clinton has Romney coming to his upcoming event, the Clinton Global Initiative. Web Link

Clinton on the party - In Tampa, the Republican argument against the President's re-election was pretty simple: we left him a total mess, he hasn't cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in.

Read more: Web Link


Posted by Poll Watcher, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Sep 24, 2012 at 9:56 am

The GOP picked Mitt Romney because he is going to win. I know that California liberals can't understand that concept in their cocoon of Western European Socialism; but Obama's running up the debt, his picking winners and losers in what used to be the free market place (and doing a pretty lousy job at that); and his inability to create new jobs will be his downfall.

Obama is truly the worst president this country has ever had. Yet gullible liberals will vote for him because he is young, charming, and a socialist. It does not matter one whit to them that he is clearly over his head and does not know what to do. They will vote for him anyway.

Fortunately, the rest of the country is not as obtuse as California liberals and will vote for the more experienced and accomplished candidate. So not to worry Rahm has a job for Obama as one of his senior staffers.


Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 24, 2012 at 11:14 am

poll watcher - you are so wrong about your opinion of the current state of the presidential election, that every other opinion of yours becomes meaningless, though your assigning your opinion as to why liberals like Obama is quite humorous...

Because he is young?

By that token, we must love young blues eyes and his fitness routine... we love you Paul, because of your youth!

"The GOP picked Mitt Romney because he is going to win." That's close to why they picked him, I suppose, though maybe more accurately described as the GOP THOUGHT Romney had the best chance to win given the GOP first string sat on the bench for the 2012 'game'.

"... the rest of the country [...] will vote for the more experienced and accomplished candidate" Well, it looks like they are going to vote for the "more experienced and accomplished candidate" alright! O rmaybe "poll watcher" just can't read polls! Web Link

Which is why President Obama will give his second inaugural address in January and continue to move America forward towards a more sound economy, as opposed to Romney taking us back to the Bush Cheney policies that brought us to the brink in early 2009. One more time, with feeling, everyone:

"the Republican argument against the President's re-election was pretty simple: we left him a total mess, he hasn't cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in"

Web Link









Posted by From Planet Earth, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 24, 2012 at 11:58 am

Yes, of course, Poll Watcher. The rest of the country will reject that socialist Kenyan-born whipper-snapper and vote for Romney, even those 47 percent of Americans the Mitton Head said he doesn't care about.


Posted by T, a resident of another community
on Sep 24, 2012 at 1:16 pm

The following is copied from an email that landed in my in-box this a.m., for the consideration of all commentors, and I quote:

"Mad @ President Obama: interesting read
Whoever SEEMS TO BE SO MAD AT OBAMA, SHOULD READ THIS AND REFLECT A MOMENT, THEY WOULD SAY:

"Hmmmmmmmmmm... YOU ARE RIGHT!!........."

Now, since Obama's regime, all of a sudden, folks have gotten mad, and want to take America Back...BACK TO WHAT/BACK TO WHERE is my question?

After The 8 Years Of The Bush/Cheney Disaster, Now You Get Mad?

You didn't get mad when the Supreme Court stopped a legal recount and appointed a President.

You didn't get mad when Cheney allowed Energy company officials to dictate Energy policy and push us to invade Iraq.

You didn't get mad when we illegally invaded a country that posed no threat to us.

You didn't get mad when we spent over 800 billion (and counting) on said illegal war.

You didn't get mad when Bush borrowed more money from foreign sources than the previous 42 Presidents combined.

You didn't get mad when over 10 billion dollars in cash just disappeared in Iraq.

You didn't get mad when Bush embraced trade and outsourcing policies that shipped 6 million American jobs out of the country.

You didn't get mad when they didn't catch Bin Laden.

You didn't get mad when Bush rang up 10 trillion dollars in combined budget and current account deficits.

You didn't get mad when you saw the horrible conditions at Walter Reed.

You didn't get mad when we let a major US city, New Orleans, drown.

You didn't get mad when we gave people who had more money than they could spend--the 1%--over a trillion dollars in tax breaks.

You didn't get mad with the worst 8 years of job creation in several decades.

You didn't get mad when over 200,000 US Citizens lost their lives because they had no health insurance.

You didn't get mad when lack of oversight and regulations from the Bush Administration caused US Citizens to lose 12 trillion dollars in investments, retirement, and home values.

You finally got mad when a black man was elected President and decided that people in America deserved the right to see a doctor if they are sick. Yes, illegal wars, lies, corruption, torture, job losses by the millions, stealing your tax dollars to make the rich richer, and the worst economic disaster since 1929 are all okay with you, but helping fellow Americans who are sick... Oh, Hell No!"

I could not have said it better, myself.


Posted by Bill Ashton , a resident of Portola Valley: Westridge
on Sep 24, 2012 at 3:30 pm

Liberals are typically selfish, spoiled children. They want what other people have, but they don't want to actually work for it. It's much easier to throw tantrums and demand the "right" to share in what others have earned. Because of this outlook, most liberals bask in a perpetual state of imagined victimhood. Nothing is their own fault, and every woe in their life is caused by "society"... by "other people"... by "fat-cats" and "corporate greed".


Posted by conservative fear, a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 24, 2012 at 3:46 pm

Mr Ashton's weird rant is noted without comment. Perhaps other than to suggest talking to someone.

The only answer offered to Mr Treller is that everyone THOUGHT Mr Romney was a good choice, without offering anything to back up the opinion.


Regarding polls, every swing stare poll out this week shows Obama building upon his lead.

Mr Ashton and his ilk best spend the next six weeks preparing excuses.


Posted by who"s playing defense?, a resident of Belle Haven Elementary
on Sep 24, 2012 at 3:53 pm

People here attack Obama, others jump in and defend him with charts and numbers.

Others here attack Romney and no one defends him.

So someone asks the simplest question: why Mitt?

and.....

Crickets.


Posted by Business Owner, a resident of another community
on Sep 24, 2012 at 4:37 pm

Dear Mr. Ashton:

Wow! You sure are angry at "liberals." Funny, I'm a liberal, and a successful business owner who works hard, employs people, pays my mortgage, educates my children and pays my taxes. I don't seem to be the victim of anything. But I do feel morally obligated to share with those who are less fortunate. Last time I checked, we describe people who don't like to share as "selfish spoiled children." Hmm.


Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 24, 2012 at 5:22 pm

Today, with swing states assigned to the current leader, as fixed by the composite polling:

Real Clear Politics has it Obama/Biden: 347 Romney/Ryan: 191

The 538 blog has it Obama: 330 Romney: 208

347 - 191 and 330 - 208

As Nate Silver pointed out, it's only going to get worse for Romney. "There has not been any tendency, at least at this stage of the race, for the contest to break toward the challenging candidate. Instead, it's actually the incumbent-party candidate who has gained ground on average since 1936. On average, the incumbent candidate added 4.6 percentage points between the late September polls and his actual Election Day result, whereas the challenger gained 2.5 percentage points."

Romney's campaign is in complete disarray, changing message every week, even wanting to reintroduce the candidate after tens of millions spent at their convention reintroducing a candidate who's been running for SEVEN YEARS. They did save a few bucks with that empty chair, though...

Romney spends more time fundraising and little time in front of voters in the battle ground states, less time than any candidate in history. This is a man who could do both, by writing himself a $50 million check tomorrow morning while shaving.

So in what parallel reality must someone reside when they claim Romney will win?

"The GOP picked Mitt Romney because he is going to win."

Sure, whatever you say. Let me know how that goes.




Posted by winner on points barring TKO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 24, 2012 at 7:00 pm

To stick with the contest theme (first string, etc) this is game over. The judges have already marked their cards and are handing them in to be totaled, before the final bell of the 15th round.

Over a third of the country is already voting, some states for weeks.


Posted by perspective, a resident of another community
on Sep 24, 2012 at 10:07 pm

Business Owner, I commend you for your success in your work ethic, as well as raising responsible children. Funny, I am a conservative, yet I respect this about you, and agree that we are morally obligated to share with those who are less fortunate. That's the great part about living in the USA. We all have the right to decide who to give to, how to give to them, and how much. Where we seem to disagree is when it comes to the government taking what we have earned and deciding who gets it. This my come as a surprise to you, but conservatives are very generous people, as I am sure liberals are. A perfect example would be that Romney last year gabve away 33% of his income to charity. In fact, he only claimed on his tax return half of the $4 million he gave away. Didn't even take full advantage of what he rightfully had coming. Feel free to compare those percentages to Obama. GWB was also very generous in his contributions. Clinton? Don't know. The point is, I don't need some distant bureaucrats thousands of miles away telling me where my charity belongs.

Oh, and Haywood Park, if you have an issue with how Romney spends his time fundraising, then you surely not be pleased with your President, who has done nothing BUT fund-raise this past year, instead of Presidential things like, oh, meeting with your jobs czar--you know, the head of GE who shipped tens of thousands of jobs to China. Great choice that was! And maybe he could have spent a minute or 2 meetin with the international committee on Middle Eastern affairs, and realizing that there is a genuine crisis there,rather than referring to that a "bump in the road", and continuing to apologize to the world for being ourselves, as though there is something wrong with being the leaders in almost everything, while leading the wealth sharing to the rest of the world.

And a note to "T", we still don't have a black president. He is bi-racial, as much white as black. I still can't figure out why that fact is never promoted. It's always "the black president". Maybe some day there will be.


Posted by Margaret Fruth, a resident of another community
on Sep 24, 2012 at 10:11 pm

I'm not worried about vote counts. I'm worried about hacking & voter suppression. Less than one hundred examples of voter fraud nationwide in this millennium. What kind of patriot works to win by preventing other citizens from voting?


Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 24, 2012 at 10:43 pm

"A perfect example would be that Romney last year gabve away 33% of his income to charity. In fact, he only claimed on his tax return half of the $4 million he gave away. Didn't even take full advantage of what he rightfully had coming."

Romney let part of the charitable deduction go, so his previous claim of never paying a rate below 13.9% would still stand.

If he took the full deduction, his rate would have been closer to 10%.

Romney has three years to amend the return and take the full deduction. Given his previous statement, one assumes he'll do it after the election: "I don't pay more than are legally due, and frankly if I had paid more than are legally due I don't think I'd be qualified to become president"

Odd that he is now paying more.

Until he refiles.

re: "if you have an issue with how Romney spends his time fundraising" the key word is IF. Clearly you need to reread the statement: "Romney's campaign is in complete disarray, changing message every week, even wanting to reintroduce the candidate after tens of millions spent at their convention reintroducing a candidate who's been running for SEVEN YEARS. [...] Romney spends more time fundraising and little time in front of voters in the battle ground states, less time than any candidate in history. This is a man who could do both, by writing himself a $50 million check tomorrow morning while shaving."

He's raising money for useless TV ads when he should have been trying to win a battleground state or two. Right now, he's down in almost all battleground states, including a couple big 'must wins' by over 10 points.

But he knows he's lost already, so it's academic. Might as well pad the coffers. Raise the money, tuck it away, use the money down the road for one of his sons to launch his political campaign, probably the bi-lingual one. The rules on transferring money from one campaign to another are loose.

perspective: why do you think Romney was the nominee?


Posted by indy Ike, a resident of Portola Valley: Ladera
on Sep 25, 2012 at 8:45 am

The answer to the topic question: Romney was the best the GOP had. The rest of the GOP field was deeply flawed, and the RNC showed how weak the GOP bench is. Marco Rubio is the only one ready for prime time. Christie looked like an angry balloon.

I'm an independent. Did not vote for Bill Clinton either time. Voted for Bush then Kerry because of the Iraq war. Voted for Obama because McCain would still have us at war, tho I liked the maverick McCain of old. That was a tough call.

Even though I never voted for him, I have listened to Clinton a lot lately, and he is spot on. He may be America's best politician by a country mile right now, in terms of explaining things and willing to compromise.

Never ever thought I'd say that.


Posted by woodside, a resident of Woodside: Mountain Home Road
on Sep 25, 2012 at 11:38 am

I thought "who's playing defense";'s comment of "crickets" was well put.

Recently, Stanford announced a new class requirement for all freshman: "Critical Thinking". The adults in this online community could use a good dose of this education as well.

Alas, presenting a critical analysis on Why Mitt?, to this crowd would be lost on deaf ears.


Posted by Margo McAuliffe, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Sep 25, 2012 at 12:44 pm

It looks to me like the big shots were trying to buy this election, rather than offer substantive proposals---like HOW would Romney ensure more jobs? He's never said exactly what he would do, so it sounds like campaign rhetoric to me. I'm not sure I would buy his program, even if he were to spell it out, but he hasn't. Maybe he's afraid more folks would "just say no".


Posted by gunste, a resident of Portola Valley: Ladera
on Sep 25, 2012 at 12:47 pm

>because Huntsman, the best of the lot was too moderate for the right wingers, who were willing to cut off their nose to make their point.


Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 25, 2012 at 1:04 pm

As a lefty, I feared Huntsman most of all. A great candidate, electable, smart, personable, proven successful leadership as governor (opposed to Mitt's failed governorship,)actually sane -- has reasonable positions and solutions. Proven to work with both sides, ie.. unelectable in today's GOP.

If he was the nominee, I think he would have won (lots of if's: if a good campaign staff, no Etch-A-Sketch foot-shooting gaffes, etc..) My fear about him? It wasn't him, per se, if elected, I don't think even a moderate like Huntsman would hold back against the extremists in the GOP House, that's the only fear I had about him.

I have little worry about the GOP "getting it" for 2016. After the blowout next month, the GOP will blame the candidate, not the bat**** crazy extreme conservative ideas they keep advocating. The GOP can't talk about their ideas in public, so they spent the whole RNC talking about "we built that" while under a taxpayer built roof. Americans get it, those that didn't heard Bill Clinton explain it.

I mean really -- voucher coupons for Medicare? How does any candidate win with that?


Posted by Steve, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 25, 2012 at 3:02 pm

Maybe the RNC can have Palin run in 2016


Posted by Kathy K, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Sep 25, 2012 at 3:50 pm

I echo the Clinton post. I was driving Sunday and caught most of his Face the Nation (or whatever one it was) with Bob Scheifer. Probably the only pol that could keep me listening, any other one I can think of and I would have flipped the station, especially Romney and Obama. I laughed when I saw the phrase ten years ago, but I'll second it.

Come back, Bill, all is forgiven.


Posted by David, a resident of another community
on Sep 26, 2012 at 7:13 am

[Post removed; material lifted from another website.]


Posted by copyright infringement, a resident of another community
on Sep 26, 2012 at 9:22 am

[Post removed because it refers to another post that has been removed.]


Posted by Vlad Sanchez, a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Sep 26, 2012 at 10:07 am

[Post removed; unoriginal material lifted from another website.]


Posted by copyright infringement, a resident of another community
on Sep 26, 2012 at 10:28 am

An amazing thread! No one can stand up and explain Why Romney? But let's try a silly rhetorical anecdote about a mysterious woman who supposedly changed her mind. Of course, "Vlad" is the same as "David" above.

Lots of little digs at Obama, like "how little regard Obama has for the military". Really? Based on what? Based on the way he unleashed our military's best to get Bin Ladin?

"I read to her a quote from Paul Ryan's speech at the Republican National Convention" Did you read her any quotes from Romney about our veterans and those currently serving, from his RNC speech?

Nope. You couldn't because he didn't think they were important enough to mention in the biggest speech of his life.

Romney could care less about our military and vets other than as a tool to be elected. Take a look at his 47% speech -- PART OF THE 47% ARE OUR ACTIVE MILITARY!

The poster above should first read, with a critical eye, the trash she steals and posts, in this case from the politicaloutcast; though let's give her brownie points for trying to change it up a bit to avoid copyright infringement.


Posted by Business Owner, a resident of another community
on Sep 26, 2012 at 12:11 pm

To Perspective:

I appreciate your respectful tone (in contrast to Mr. Ashton, who I was responding to.) However, I am not impressed with Mitt Romney's charitable deduction decision, for two reasons. One, his favorite charity is the Mormon Church, which is a powerful political force that should not, in my opinion, have non-profit status, therefore any donations to the Mormon Church should not be deductible. If you've ever done any work for the state of Utah, you will be painfully aware of how political this "church" really is. The second was explained above - he chose to not deduct all of his donations for political, not moral, reasons.

We do not all live off by ourselves in remote cabins with little or no contact with each other. We are interdependent, the actions (or inactions of others) do effect us. As such, as a democratic society, we decide that there are ways that we must "share". We share in order that we can have schools, safe roads and bridges, a national defense, fire and life safety officers, etc. We also "share" in ways that promote public health (e.g. health insurance, programs for the disabled, etc.)

Some of the very wealthy (not all, clearly, but some) are very detached from the realities that their affluence insulates them from. Not all of the wealthy got that way through hard work. Many, in fact and increasing number of the wealthy, got there by being born wealthy (like Mitt Romney.) So I'm not impressed with the "pulled myself up by my bootstraps" rhetoric, which clearly does not apply to someone like Mitt Romney.

In answer to "why Mitt", as posed by the originator of this thread, I can't answer that because the way he looks at the world is completely opposite of the way I look at the world. In the interviews that I have read of him and the way he conducts himself, I see him as detached from the majority of Americans, especially women (and I am a woman.) And as a professional and a business owner who is starting to see my business lift itself out of this recession, I feel very strongly that his slash and burn business approach will prolong or even worsen the recession.

So, my answer is "no Romney for me."


Posted by We can see with our own eyes, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Sep 26, 2012 at 12:53 pm

The fact that they didn't even MENTION GW Bush, the last Republican to hold office for 8 years, and the one to do it immediately prior to Obama speaks volumes.
The real reason the GOP is hurting is because they failed and left a huge mess. EVERYONE knows this, including the GOP which is why GWB seems to have evaporated from this planet all together.
You crow about a 2 term president...look at Reagan or how the Dems talk about Clinton. Then you have W. Epic fail and the elephant in the room who everyone knows caused this mess. Well, he and his Carl Rove cohorts.
We are living the results of an having an idiot in the white house from 2000-2008. Things have gone in a favorable direction after Obama took over. Look at the trends, look at the DOW and your own 401K. All trending upwards...the right direction. Jobs, housing, all trending upwards, the right direction.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 26, 2012 at 8:50 pm

Besides everyone talking past each other, the most disappointing things about this thread are that people are (a) focusing on issues of little or no importance to most Americans and (b) repeating respective talking points. You are good scribes and Chris Matthews and Sean Hannity would be very proud.

So let me pose some new points. For the sake of argument, I will stipulate that President Obama inherited an incredible economic mess that was caused ENTIRELY by President George Bush, who is stupid and also got us into two unnecessary wars The Republicans, including Mitt Romney, are totally corrupt and want to bankrupt the middle class by giving tax breaks to the rich. So stipulated.

So here are some questions, and I think they are just a bit more serious than Mitt Romney's taxes, whether he issued his statement about the Egyptian embassy too early or how much money he donated to the Mormon church. It's also more serious than picking on our President for saying "you didn't build that" or that the deaths of 4 Americans two weeks ago was a "bump in the road." Rome is burning and these are your biggest issues?

So try these (and no, I don't expect any answers):

1. What is the President's plan to deal with Iran's nuclear capability? Israel is about to launch missiles at Iran and it wouldn't be an overstatement to say that such a provocative action just may start World War III. What is his plan to prevent this?

2. What is the President's plans for Medicaid and Medicare which, by some estimates, will be bankrupt before the end of this decade? How about Social Security which will be bankrupt a short time later? These three expenses now exceed all of our tax revenues. What are his plans?

3. What is the President's plan to reduce government spending which is now at historically high levels of about 25% of GDP. What are his plans?

4. What is the President's plan to reduce our ever soaring national debt? By the end of this decade, our national debt will exceed $25 TRILLION and the debt service on that debt alone will exceed tax revenues. What are his plans to reduce the debt?

5. What is the President's plan for the Middle East? It would appear that Muslim hatred of America is now at an all time high. What are his plans?

6. What is the President's plan to resuscitate our economy? We have spent several trillion dollars and more people are on government support today than ever before. And just today, the CEO Round Table announced that companies project hiring EVEN FEWER employees in the coming year and unemployment is projected to increase. What is his plan to get businesses hiring?

7. What is the President's plan for tax reform? We all agree that it is horribly unfair? Yes, he wants to get rid of the "Bush tax cuts" now but what does he want to replace them with? What is his plan?

8. Where is the President's budget? The President hasn't received a single supporting vote from a single Republican or Democrat in THREE YEARS. What is his plan?

I stipulate that Mitt Romney doesn't have a plan, BUT HE'S NOT THE PRESIDENT. Perhaps Bill Clinton has one, BUT HE'S NOT THE PRESIDENT EITHER (and he's not running when I looked last).

I follow this stuff pretty closely and I have no idea what President Obama's answers are to any of these questions. So to paraphrase President Josiah Bartlet from "The West Wing," THE PRESIDENT IS BARACK OBAMA. I don't care what a contenders or a pretender thinks. We're now nearly four years into his first term and I care what our current President thinks.

And that's the tragedy of this election. Some seem to be quite content talking about Mitt's tax returns and other things of absolutely no consequence. Seriously? When the Straits of Hormuz shuts down, Moody's downgrades our debt, or unemployment starts creeping back up, perhaps you'll focus on something more important.

As I've said many times before, we get the government we deserve.


Posted by Lynn Charles, a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Sep 27, 2012 at 9:37 am

Pogo's concern troll post sheds no light on the topic: "Can anyone tell me: why Mitt Romney?"

500 words and not a note about the topic; a masterful example of changing the subject!

I'll take his first line item, others feel free to address the next or one you prefer.

"What is the President's plan to deal with Iran's nuclear capability?"

Read the papers. It's one of the president's top agenda items. Diplomacy and sanctions. Sanctions - remember those? They're the thing that had Saddam Hussein boxed into a corner without an American life lost until George Bush came along. When pressed, despite all his Bush-like bluster, Mitt Romney two weeks ago admitted his "redline" was the same as Barack Obama.

One of the tough stances I admire most about Obama is that he doesn't kow-tow to another country and let them call the shots on our foreign policy, especially when we give them 3 billion taxpayer dollars a year for their military. Yes, I said it: Israel should not control our foreign policy any more than the UN should. Of course, all three countries are coming up on elections, so bluster is at an all time high.

This is where it's easy to see brilliant leadership in the calm, cool, toughness of Obama. The same guy that's unafraid to pull the same Bin Ladin trigger that Romney in 2008 said he wouldn't.

The alternative: Romney, who has dozens of Bush & Cheney's foreign policy team in his campaign. That explains Romney's hawk-like bravado against China and Iran, despite zero foreign policy experience.

Back to Ed's topic: why on earth did anyone think that Romney was the best choice for the republicans?

He can't even visit Britain without offending our strongest ally.


Posted by Lynn Charles, a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Sep 27, 2012 at 10:18 am

The best spokesperson for President Obama against Mitt Romney? Mitt Romney, starring against Mitt Romney in an ad running in Ohio, Virginia, Florida, Iowa, Colorado, Nevada and New Hampshire. Web Link

Anyone, like the writers above, who claims "they're all the same" and we get the government we deserve, yada, yada, yada... has blinders on.

Has to explain to me when was the last time a candidates own words have been so devastating against himself. Kerry - voted for before against? Nope, not close. Dukakis, another Massachusetts moderate governor, in a tank? Nah.

Romney: "There are 47% of the people who will vote for the president no matter what ... who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe that government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it ... And they will vote for this president no matter what ... And so my job is not to worry about those people. I'll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives." Web Link

Romney's quite lucky that half the states are already voting with early voting and absentee ballots. The polls are only going to get worse in the next month. Romney's best bet is to lock in the undecideds leaning his way now, before they get to know him better.


Posted by What flavor Kool Aid?, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 27, 2012 at 10:46 am

"This is where it's easy to see brilliant leadership in the calm, cool, toughness of Obama"

Funniest read ever!! LOL!

And what experience of any kind let alone foreign policy experience did our Dear Leader have? ZERO. ZIP. NADA. Just a community organizer who could not even take a position or vote on most important issues in is only federal office before the media annoited him.

You are a party tool of the highest order. L. Ron Hubbard would be proud.


Posted by Lynn Charles, a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Sep 27, 2012 at 11:11 am

"This is where it's easy to see brilliant leadership in the calm, cool, toughness of Obama"

Kool-Aid: "You are a party tool of the highest order."

Fact: in 2008, Obama promised to get Bin Ladin. In 2008, Mitt Romney chastised Obama for promising to get bin Ladin. Romney told Americans it wasn't worth moving heaven and earth to get him, and Romney wouldn't go into Pakistan. Who's the "tool"?

Obama promised to get Bin Ladin. Done. OBL sleeps with the fishes. A fact, as much as you wish otherwise.

Please pour us your koolaid about how it was no big deal and didn't show any leadership, blah, blah, Bush could have had him, blah, blah, not really public enemy number one, blah blah, Romney would have got him, blah blah, cough, choking on your kool-aid, blah cough sputter.

Whine about your dribbling kool-aid all you want. Romney can't even go to Britain without insulting the Brits and getting called in to apologize before the Prime Minister. As a senator, Obama worked across the aisle with Dick Lugar on loose nukes - nuclear proliferation. Romney's foreign experience? Avoiding taxes in the Caymans and shipping jobs overseas. Obama knows more about nukes, and Iran, in his little finger than Romney and Ryan out together.

Who's the "tool", kool-aid? Any thoughts on why everyone in the GOP thought a one term loser like Romney was a good choice? The guy's been running for 8 years and still has to "re-introduce" himself every other week!

Have a good day, boys, I'm done here. Finish your kool-aid, you're going to need something stronger in five weeks; and I will think back to "tools" like kool-aid while I enjoy mine!

hugs

LC


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 27, 2012 at 11:18 am

Still waiting for those answers.

In response to my queston, "What is the President's plan to deal with Iran's nuclear capability?" Lynn Charles offered this:

"...Read the papers. It's one of the president's top agenda items. Diplomacy and sanctions. Sanctions - remember those? They're the thing that had Saddam Hussein boxed into a corner without an American life lost until George Bush came along..."

As I recall Mr/Ms Charles, Mr. Hussein IGNORED all 18 of the United Nations resolutions and all of the sanctions... for much the same reason as Iran does, namely, cheating by China and Russia, not coincidentally all of the biggest trading partners for these problematic countries. When President Bush finally said "enough" to Iraq and went to war (rightly or wrongly), people shouted how dare he! So Bush did have a "red line" for Iraq. What is Obama's? He said Iran won't get a weapon. How does he plan to enforce that? With the same sanctions we used in Iraq and North Korea? How'd that work out?

And no, this isn't having our policy dictated by Israel, who will certainly act on their own. It is President Obama who said it was his policy that Iran will not get a nuclear weapon, not me.

Answer that, and you only have seven more questions to go.

As I said, since we don't have an answer from someone who has been in the Oval Office for nearly four years, I hardly expect one from you.

PS - I did answer "why Romney?" in my very first post. You may not like my answer, but I did answer it.

PSS - And why did Democrats choose Dukakis or McGovern?

PSSS - Shortly after President Obama's election, I recall a Time or Newsweek magazine noting the death of the Republican party. Then came the "shellacking" of 2010 and a literal landslide in Congress and state houses all over America.


Posted by common sense, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 27, 2012 at 12:55 pm

Mitt Romney is the finest man to run for office in many years. He is a man of integrity with an amazing intellect. He is a turn-around expert and that is exactly what our country needs right now. He also believes the American people can solve problems if given the economic and moral freedom to exercise and not the overreaching crippling arm of the government. He is not interested in pitting one group against another, not rich against poor, black against white, nor female against male. He wants us to work together to solve the great problems our country faces. And those of you who have practically drowned in the kool-aid offered by Obama need to come up for air and look at what reality is--not what you hope it to be. Obama is a disgrace, a divider, a diminisher and totally incompetent. Why Mitt?---because our country needs Mitt and we need to tell the guy who thinks he's a King--to hit the road.


Posted by say what?, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 27, 2012 at 1:18 pm

Common sense says Romney's "not interested in pitting one group against another, not rich against poor, black against white ..." This is a stunning statement. The poster is talking about a man who was caught with his pants down recently, disparaging 47 percent of Americans because, he claimed, they pay no income taxes and therefore don't take responsibility for themselves. Despite that stupendously stupid statement, made in the company of fellow billionaires, common sense claims Romney doesn't pit rich against poor? Does this forum exist in the Twilight Zone?

And implicit in his/her post is that Obama is guilty of pitting one group against another. OK common sense, cough up some examples. We're waiting.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 27, 2012 at 1:49 pm

The 47% statement by Romney = shiny object.

The "bump in the road" statement by Obama = shiny object.

Focus people... there are far bigger issues at stake. We ignore them at our own peril.

Romney is a horrible politician but he MAY be a good President. I honestly don't know if he will or won't. I'm not voting for him because he will bring business experience to the Presidency, I'm voting for him because I'm totally disenchanted by President Obama.

Obama is a superb politician and, in my opinion, a historic but below average President. The Great Recession isn't the problem - it ended three years ago. It's the Obama Recovery that's the problem.


Posted by say what?, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 27, 2012 at 2:32 pm

POGO, some people want to talk about what you call "shiny objects" (I reject your assessment that the 47 percent comment to billionaire friends is a shiny object) and others, like you, want to expound upon your faith-based voting intentions. I can assure you, I'm not ignoring the bigger issues.

I'm disappointed with Obama too, although I think he's proving to be an above-average president. On the other hand, I think it would be a painfully misguided act of faith to opt for Romney, thinking he might do a better job. As someone pointed out above, he's been Obama's best campaign spokesperson. He's shown his true colors, and I find them frightening.


Posted by Bush lives in Romney, a resident of Atherton: other
on Sep 27, 2012 at 6:59 pm

Pogo - buy a lottery ticket. You don't know IF you will win, but you MAY win, and that's better than your wagers are doing currently! You know Romney sucks, is an awful politician and leader (ask the folks in Mass) but you don't like Obama because he didn't fix the Republican mess fast enough, so Romney's okay with you because he MAY be better!

Pogo lists a dozen questions for Obama, all but ignoring the fact she/he hasn't a CLUE about what Romney would do with those issues, yet somehow thinks it's worth giving Romney a shot at it. Despite the fact that Romney won't tell Pogo or the rest of us how he will address the issues other than the broadest terms.

Ms. Charles nailed the foreign policy questions -- Obama is doing great (unless you listen to Rush/Fox) and we haven't a clue about Romney, other than most of his advisers are Bushies which will in Pogo's words: "got us into two unnecessary wars".

Gimme a break. The craziest? "When President Bush finally said "enough" to Iraq and went to war"

Bush never claimed to go to war because of some sanction violations - it was the lies about WMD, the soft links to some alleged AQ in Iraq before Bush invaded and "we don't want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud." Lies that cost 5,000 American lives. A trillion bucks.

Lies. And Romney's in bed with the Bushies. Who in their right mind would get back in bed with the Bushies?


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 27, 2012 at 7:29 pm

"Despite the fact that Romney won't tell Pogo or the rest of us how he will address the issues other than the broadest terms..."

No, Mr. Romney hasn't been very forthcoming and there is no excuse for it. I know Mr. Romney resists specifics because as soon as he says something, it will be ridiculed. If he said he wanted to cut defense, people would rail. If he said he wanted to cut entitlements, people would rail.

Unfortunately, President Obama hasn't told any of us what he will do and, unlike Mr. Romney, Obama has been PRESIDENT for four years. We should know his plans... we don't.

And please don't tell me what I like or don't like about each of them. Like most elections involving an incumbent, I view this election as a referendum on our current President. As I've said, the recession ended three years ago (it was in all the papers...). It's the recovery that's the problem and this President and his ever changing cast of economic advisors don't seem to know what to do.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 27, 2012 at 7:33 pm

say what?

Thank you for, perhaps, the most thoughtful post on this thread. No invectives. No rhetoric. Refreshing.

Just one point. You said "I reject your assessment that the 47 percent comment to billionaire friends is a shiny object..." Fair enough. I presume that you take President Obama's "you didn't build it" just as seriously. A lot of people thought that was a very revealing, anti-business, pro-government expansion comment.

Then again, perhaps you have different standards for shine for each party.


Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 28, 2012 at 8:45 am

Pogo: "I did answer "why Romney?" in my very first post. You may not like my answer, but I did answer it."

Pogo's answer: "Because he won the primaries."

So enlightening. Way to stand up for Romney policies that emulate Bush! You remember what the Romney campaign said in July about Bush policies: they will follow the Bush program, "that program just updated."

Web Link

Like when Pogo asks about American policies to Iran. Pogo is answered yet enlightens us further by ignoring the answer and shiny objecting over to Saddam and falsely claiming Iraq sanctions didn't work. Now he ignores being called out on that. To repeat the poster: "Bush never claimed to go to war because of some sanction violations - it was the lies about WMD, the soft links to some alleged AQ in Iraq before Bush invaded and "we don't want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud."

Obama policies against Iran ARE working. To paraphrase Pogo: "You may not like the answer, but they are working" Sanctions are working. Let's see, whom shall we quote on that?

How about the Israeli Government?

"JERUSALEM -- A new Israeli government report published locally Thursday concludes that international sanctions are hitting Iran hard and called for another round...

...President Shimon Peres and others want to give punishing measures more time to persuade the Iranians to negotiate.

Iran insists its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes.

Existing UN sanctions have cut Iran's oil exports by more than half in the past year and slashed oil revenue by $40 billion, the report concludes. Also, sanctions on Iran's central bank have made it difficult for the regime to access its foreign currency reserves. Bread, meat and electricity prices have soared."


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 28, 2012 at 9:23 am

Wow. I don't know where to begin... but I'll try (and here we go off a tangent about a different subject, but I can't let such a false statement go unanswered).

With regard to my comment that sanctions are NOT working in Iran, Hayward Park incredibly states:

"...Like when Pogo asks about American [Obama's] policies to Iran. Pogo is answered yet enlightens us further by ignoring the answer ... AND FALSELY CLAIMING IRAQ SANCTIONS DIDN'T WORK [EMPHASIS ADDED]."

Again, wow.

If you think that UN Chief Inspector Hans Blix reporting that (and I quote) "Iraq appears not to have come to a genuine acceptance—not even today—of the disarmament, which was demanded of it and which it needs to carry out to win the confidence of the world and to live in peace" as well as UN Resolution 1441 - adopted UNANIMOUSLY by the UN Security Council, which found Iraq in "material breach" of nearly every previous resolution which allowed unfettered access and inspection of their facilities - if you consider that "proof" that sanctions worked in Iraq, then I can only hope that sanctions in Iran are less successful.

War is not a desired outcome but it is quite clear that Iran is ignoring US, UN and world (sans China and Russia) sentiment. Perhaps you missed Ahmadinejad's speech at the UN earlier this week. It was in all the papers. They are marching forward.

So again, if Obama's position on Iran is that "we cannot allow them to get a nuclear weapon!", what is he going to do if sanctions do not work (or, conversely, work as well as you suggest they did in Iraq)?

Still waiting. But as I said, if we haven't gotten an answer from the White House in four years, I hardly expect to hear them enumerated on The Almanac web site authored by a CalTrain parking lot.


Posted by Menlo Moderate, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 28, 2012 at 9:25 am

President Obama is one of the great speakers of all time. He has youth, vigor, and passion. Unfortunately he does not have the ability to keep his promises. He is befuddled. I truly wished he was able to accomplish what he said he would do. However, his vision far exceeds his ability to deliver. To put it simply: He just can't get it done.

Mitt Romney has a record of suceess in both the private and public sectors. He is a man with a proven track record. Admittedly, he is not as passionate or exciting as President Obama but right now I will take dispassionate and accomplished over passionate and unable.

There are many disaffected Democrats who are changing their vote to Romney this election cycle.[Portion removed; this site is not for posting candidate ads.]

It is sad. President Obama really tried. But he can not deliver. Our country is heading in a downward spiral. We have had 43 consecutive months of unemployment above 8 and a national debt that is reeling out of control. Our debtor nation status makes the United States beholden to countries holding our debt. Some of them do not value freedom and democracy and could exert influence to have the United States sacrifice its commitment to freedom.

We need discipline to reduce our national debt. It is clear that President Obama can not achieve that. We need Mitt Romney to take over in January.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 28, 2012 at 9:28 am

And again, "why Mitt Romney?"

Because he was preferred over the other field of candidates which was more to the right (and probably split the vote). I am no fan of the others like Cain, Bachman, et al, (or Bush for that matter), so that was certainly fine with me.

Just like Obama was selected over Hilary. That's how our system works.

Now, keep repeating the question and enjoy yourself. As I've said, their are better ways to self-flagellate.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 28, 2012 at 9:31 am

Well said, Menlo Moderate. I feel much the same way.

Obama is one of the best politicians of our time, but he simply does not know how to manage. His results with Congress demonstrate that. And before people cite how obstinate this Congress was, that occurs every single Congress.

Yes, every - single - Congress.


Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 28, 2012 at 11:25 am

UN Chief Inspector Hans Blix? The guy who told us Iraq did not have WMD, yet Bush invaded anyway? That Hans Blix?

UN Chief Inspector Hans Blix: "I don't buy the argument the war was legalized by the Iraqi violation of earlier resolutions."

Sanctions worked against Saddam, even those he violated. Iraq did not have WMD and posed no threat to the US.

Hawks like Pogo will always disagree and sputter forth about violating sanctions; John McCain does to this day, for instance. Of course McCain wants American boots on the ground everywhere, especially Iran and back in Iraq.

Even Israel admits that Iranian sanctions are working. President Obama says no options are off the table. If Pogo wants a line item list of actions potentially following sanctions, perhaps he should join the State Dept, get clearance and request a peek. Thinking that outlining future diplomatic and potential military actions should be public knowledge is ludicrous.

.............

Menlo Moderate: "Mitt Romney has a record of suceess in both the private and public sectors."

Nope. Mitt Romney is a failed one term governor. The only people to ever elect him, that one term as a governor, aren't fooled by him anymore. They told him they wouldn't elect him to a 2nd term so he ran away.

The only people to ever elect Romney to anything are voting solidly against him in 2012. Romney will lose his home state by 25 - 30 points.

Those that know Mitt best, will vote against Mitt,by almost a 2-1 margin.


Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 28, 2012 at 11:30 am

"In Tampa, the Republican argument against the President's re-election was pretty simple: we left him a total mess, he hasn't cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in."

Funny to say that Romney "MAY" be better than Bush, even though you have no evidence other than his saying he will follow Bush policies, only updated, and teams of former Bushies on his campaign staff.

Romney = Bush

Pogo and Menlo "Moderate" prefer Bush over Obama, so they will vote for Romney.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 28, 2012 at 2:08 pm

I didn't vote for Bush... and I've been a registered Democrat my entire life.

Just another falsehood offered from the parking lot.


Posted by Independent, a resident of Woodside: Woodside Glens
on Sep 28, 2012 at 2:49 pm

Pot, meet kettle; ummm, comix character, meet parking lot (?)

Parking lot (ie.. Obama) has a strong argument, Romney failed to take a clear stand that would differentiate himself from Bush; if you support Romney, you're supporting a return to Bush/Cheney. Bush Cheney wanted to privatize Social Security, Romney Ryan will get to that when they finish turning Medicare into a coupon program. Bush/Cheney wanted war everywhere, Romney wants to listen to John Bolton and bomb Iran. Tough for Romney to combat that for independents.

When given a big fat softball to explain how he was different from Bush, Romney avoided the question. "The major planks of your job plan, lower taxes, both corporate and marginal rates, and reduce regulation. Explain how that would be different from what George W. Bush tried to push through?" Web Link More of the "Bush plan, just updated" fiasco messaging from a campaign that never had a plan.

My take? Romney had two areas he could have changed the tone early on. I won't get into Comix's shiny object theory, and I won't hit Romney on never coming out with any plan (that's just too easy.)

1. Romney should have chastised Bush, allowing himself to differentiate himself from the last two term Republican president. By not doing so invited comparison. They went the whole convention without mentioning he-who-shall-not-be-named. Opportunity lost to explain to America who Romney is. The few voters enamored with Bush were going are going to vote for Romney anyway.

2. Romney should have attacked Obama on Afghanistan. Heck, most Republicans want to get out, let alone democrats and independents. It was the only area of foreign policy that I see Romney being able to dominate Obama. Obama has not done well with Afghanistan (arguably a no-win for any incumbent.) Now, no one knows what Romney's Afghan policy is, and he can't attack Obama in the foreign policy debate when it comes to Afghanistan because Romney never set a position. Never mentioned it at his convention.

Water under the bridge at this point. It's all but over. I don't think it'll be as bad as the polls suggest because the GOP invested heavily in both ground game and that won't show until election day (an artifact of 2010) and a couple other GOP things to drive down the left voting block. Even at that, Romney has never been above 45% except for the conservative pollsters. Can't win that way.








Posted by Bucko, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 28, 2012 at 3:24 pm

"There are many disaffected Democrats who are changing their vote to Romney this election cycle." then posts the Rmoney "peeps are changing" ad.

Almost spit my soda out on the keyboard! What a lame attempt to change the narrative from a reality based to the right fringe fantasy world.

Show me a poll, bucko. Even Fox has Obama running away with it.


Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 29, 2012 at 8:52 am

"I didn't vote for Bush"

Didn't say you did. I said by voting for Romney, you prefer Bush over Obama.

Romney = Bush

I'd love to read your ten point list of the VAST differences between Bush and Romney.

The Republican argument against the President's re-election was pretty simple: we left him a total mess, he hasn't cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in


Posted by Bush rocks!, a resident of another community
on Sep 29, 2012 at 4:14 pm

@bucko thinks Romney should publicly disown Bush, but Bush is more popular than Romney. Which is saying a lot.

> A Bloomberg News National Poll released Wednesday has Bush receiving a favorable rating from 46 percent of those surveyed and an unfavorable rating from 49 percent. That's compared to Romney's 43 percent favorable and 50 percent unfavorable.

> Bush also fared better than Vice President Joe Biden (42 percent favorable, 45 percent unfavorable) and the Republican Party as a whole (41 percent favorable, 46 percent unfavorable).

Wish they would poll Clinton's statement

> the Republican argument against the President's re-election was pretty simple: we left him a total mess, he hasn't cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in.

Odd we haven't seen any direct response to it.


Posted by Menlo Moderate, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 29, 2012 at 5:35 pm

Bill Clinton is as honest about the Republican strategy as he was with the American Public regarding his illicit affair with an intern young enough to be his daughter.

Yes, There is no question that George Bush left Barack Obama a mess. During the Bush years the national debt went from 5.768 Trillion dollars to $10.626 Trillion dollars for an increase of $4.858 Trillion creating a monthly defict at the rate of $50.604 Billion a month.

In the 44 months since Obama took office the national debt has increased to $16.068 Trillion creating a monthly deficit at the rate of $123.682 Billion a month.

If Bill Clinton's premise was correct than Obama would have been reducing the deficit not increasing it. In fact when it comes to creating budget deficits for every dollar of budget deficit that Bush created in a month Obama created $2.44 cents of debt.

So to make the ridiculous assertion that "Obama did not fix it fast enough" is patently false. The real fact is that Obama made the economy far worse than Bush could every imagine doing.

Now Mitt Romney is not Bush. Even though some people try to make the absurd assertion that he is. Romney took over the Salt Lake City Olympics that was deeply in debt and made it a money maker. Now Romney won't wipe out the national deficit but he will take proactive steps to put it on a healthy reduction trend line. This is something that Obama is simply incapable of doing.

The American voters will see the light and vote for the preservation of this country by electing Mitt Romney as the next president of the Untied States in November.


Posted by Thomas , a resident of Portola Valley: other
on Sep 29, 2012 at 6:11 pm

In life, what we do defines who we are more than our rhetoric. Barack Obama had the most extreme voting record on either side of aisle in the senate - and I proposed his presidential record would be similarly extreme. He, of course, said he would be better suited to stand in the middle of the aisle to bring our country together. I was right, and he of course mislead the country blatantly. He has added over a trillion dollars a year to our deficit, been mired in controversy (Anita Dunn, Fast and Furious, leaking classified information for politics, Libya, etc.) shown a severe lack of leadership (even in his own party), ignored our most important relationships in the world, and has proven to be the worst diplomat I've ever seen. His "do what I want or I'll take my ball and go home" diplomacy is so childish, it's mind boggling.

One can only surmise that Obama is doing his best to push people into a poverty trap of dependance on the Democratic party - all the while referring to Republicans as the rich or "Billionaires" (i.e. more division), even though there is little income division between the two parties anymore. With more than two dozen new taxes on their way, likely amounting to close to a trillion dollars while we are on the tipping point of another recession seems ludicrous. That's why he pushed it all past the election, and didn't implement sooner.

It's really unbelievable that Democrats are still blaming Bush for the mess a Democratic congress left behind - mainly related to the mortgage industry debacle. The financial meltdown had more to do with Barney Frank than George Bush. So, besides blaming Bush, or claiming Obama descended from a helicopter to shoot Bin Laden, I'm not sure Barack has done anything to help our economy, foreign policy, trade, relationships, or anything at all. His economic plan is a mess and is the biggest deception yet, and he knows it. Even independent CBO analysts say the math doesn't even come close.

What exactly is he running on?

The history of the struggle of man always seems to come down to the State versus the liberty of man (i.e. the Government versus the people). I choose the people.




Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 29, 2012 at 8:02 pm

I prefer to live in the present and look forward.

It's 2012 and last I looked, neither Clinton nor Bush are on the ballot. We are four years into Barack Obama's recovery (the recession ended in Q2 2009, more than three years ago...) and the recovery, by any standard, is anemic.

It's also pretty clear that Romney is behind in the polls and has very limited ways to win the election. But it is more than a month away and a lot of things can happen. Most recently, we have seen a downturn in sentiment from business leaders and last quarter's growth in durable goods orders was zero. Not particularly encouraging for the economy or jobs.

We can stick with the current scheme - whatever that is (I've yet to see a budget from this Administration or a plan to curb spending) - or we can change.

I voted for change four years ago and I will again.


Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 30, 2012 at 9:19 am

Bush IS on the ballot in the form of the Bush policies adopted by the Romney team. Yet again I ask Pogo for "your ten point list of the VAST differences between Bush and Romney."

Dozens of the Bush/Cheney team are on the Romney campaign.

Even the Romney TRANSITION team is being run by a Bushie! "The transition is being led by former Bush Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt, a former Utah governor and fellow Mormon who is expected to play a senior role in any Romney White House." Read more: Web Link

"Their task is doing their job no matter what," said a source close to the campaign. "Just because the guy had a crap week last week, doesn't mean they stop. This is a very volatile presidential race. (wrong!) They have to prepare as if he wins.""

"He" won't.

Thomas: "by electing Mitt Romney as the next president of the Untied States in November."

You can make a LOT of money if you are so sure of that!

Intrade:

Barack Obama to be re-elected President in 2012 - Highest Bid - $7.78

Mitt Romney to be elected President in 2012 - Highest Bid - $2.20

Five Thirty Eight:

Obama: 84%
Romney 16%

Real Clear Politcs - no toss ups - Obama/Biden 347 Romney/Ryan 191

No one argues this: Bush - 800,000 jobs lost per month, Obama: 4.5 million private sector jobs created in last 28 months

"the Republican argument against the President's re-election was pretty simple: we left him a total mess, he hasn't cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in."




Posted by Thomas , a resident of Portola Valley: other
on Sep 30, 2012 at 2:23 pm

What's Obama's plan to reduce the deficit?

What's Obama's plan to reduce gas and oil prices?

What's Obama's plans to stimulate job growth?

What's Obama's plans to increase free trade?

What's Obama's plan to help small businesses?

What's Obama's plans to improve his tattered, if not in flames, foreign policy?

Who knows...

I also don't understand the left-field questions about the differences between Romney and Bush. Educate yourself...

Let's talk about real associates of Obama's (Antoin Rezko, William Ayers, Rev. Wright, Rashid Khalidi, etc.). Although he claimed to not share any of the views of any of these men, he was close to all of them. ...and actions speak loader than words...


Posted by Menlo Moderate, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 30, 2012 at 4:42 pm

Thee was a net gain of 3.0 Million jobs under Bush and a net loss of 315,000 jobs under Obama. The labor force participation rate is at 63.5% the lowest participation rate since Ronald Reagan took over the White House from Joimmy Carter. If you didn't count the people who have jsut givingg up looking for work or who have exhausted teir unemployment benefits the unemployment rate would be well north of 10%.

The claim at the Democratic Convention that more than 4.5 million jobs have been created as true but the job growth has not been enough to offset 4.8 million jobs lost during the first 13 months of Obama's presidency. They forgot that minor detail.

That would be like one boasting he has made $4.5 Million in the stock market over the last 30 months but neglecting to say that he lost $4.8 million in the 13 months preceding that great run up.

Compared with that of each president since 1945, Obama ranks dead last in job creation.

By any objective measure the Obama Administration has been an ignominious fiasco. So why should we give him 4 more years?


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 30, 2012 at 7:36 pm

From the Associated Press: "Deficit Plans Don't Add Up"

"Obama claims more than $4 trillion in deficit savings over the coming decade. But it you peel away accounting tricks and debatable claims on spending cuts, it's more like $1.1 trillion."

"...the biggest faults with Obama's math are his claims of more than $2 trillion in savings from earlier budget deals with Republicans and an additional $848 billion in savings from winding down of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq."

"Obama promises relatively small cuts of $597 billion from big federal benefit programs such as Medicare and Medicaid over the next decade while proposing tax increases of $1.9 trillion that he couldn't push through Congress WHEN DEMOCRATS CONTROLLED BOTH THE HOUSE AND SENATE [EMPHASIS ADDED]."

"Obama's performance on the deficit should be his Achilles heel. The deficit has exceeded $1 trillion each year on his watch. HE GAVE A COLD SHOULDER TO HIS OWN SPECIAL DEFICIT COMMISION [EMPHASIS ADDED]." Whatever efforts have occurred over the past two years to curb the deficit have come under pressure by Republicans."

Web Link

No, Romney's plan doesn't appear to add up either... but he hasn't been President. You would think the guy who's been sitting in the Oval Office for the PAST four years would at least have a plan for the NEXT four years.

He doesn't.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Sep 30, 2012 at 7:43 pm

On today's Face The Nation program, Bob Woodward quickly corrected Moody's Mark Zandi who praised how much money ("trillions...") was saved when President Obama and Congress agreed to sequestration earlier this year. NOT TRUE. NOT A CENT WAS SAVED THIS YEAR... and no money will be saved until after 2013 (yeah, like our next Congress will be bound by a deal cut in early 2012).

A very interesting and strident point made by one of the most respected authors of our time. Start the video at 18:45 or so if you'd like to watch.

Web Link


Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Oct 1, 2012 at 8:40 am

Thomas: "What's Obama's plan to reduce the deficit?"

Pogo: "What is the President's plan to reduce our ever soaring national debt?"

So humorous how deficit hawks are so vocal when a Democrat is in office, yet can't link to a single deficit post of there's when Bush was in office.

So let's look at history: Reagan tripled the debt, Bush 1 boosted it 25% in a single term. Clinton took that deficit trajectory and gave America it's first first budget surplus's. Bush 2 took those surplus's and doubled our national debt on his way to giving America it's first trillion dollar deficit.

Go search almanacnews.com, they put a helpful box in the upper righthand corner and see if you can find any old posts from Thomas or Pogo in 2008, 2007 or 2006 on how dastardly George Bush was in doubling the debt, or his plans to balance a budget.

Find any?

Okay, now that the hypocrites have had their moment, let's look at the guys they claim will bring fiscal sanity to our budget: Paul Ryan, asked yesterday about how $5 trillion in tax cuts for the wealthy is a way to balance a budget...

Paul (I voted against Simpson Bowles) Ryan: 'I Don't Have The Time' To Tell You How We'll Pay For Our Tax Plan' Web Link

Most amazing part of that quote? Paul Ryan said it on Fox, which is a 24 hour infomercial for Romney Ryan! He can take as much time as he wants, but we all know he can't explain it in a day, a week or a month!

---------------


Menlo "Moderate": "he claim at the Democratic Convention that more than 4.5 million jobs have been created"

Explain this graph then - monthly job creation, note the consecutive months where we lost 750,000 jobs per month during the Bush Great Recession.

Web Link

Or will Menlo ignore the jobs graph the way Pogo ignores a request for his "ten point list of the VAST differences between Bush and Romney."?

Romney = Bush

No one argues this: Bush - 800,000 jobs lost per month, Obama: 4.5 million private sector jobs created in last 28 months

"the Republican argument against the President's re-election was pretty simple: we left him a total mess, he hasn't cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in."

Time for Pogo to claim no one is listening, speaking over each other, and he will throw up his hands in exasperation and depart, but not without one last Caltrain stop reference.

But first, Pogo, please give us your "ten point list of the VAST differences between Bush and Romney."

The reason Obama IS winning, and WILL win?

"the Republican argument against the President's re-election was pretty simple: we left him a total mess, he hasn't cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in."




Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Oct 1, 2012 at 8:44 am

Paul (Lying) Ryan in August, on Fox:

Hume: When will we see Romney plan in all its particulars laid out?

Ryan: You have seen more details from Mitt Romney on fiscal policy, on saving entitlements, on getting back to work than the incumbent president of the United States has offered.

Hume: Well, wait a minute, he (Obama) proposed a full-blown budget.

Ryan: His budget didn't even try to balance the budget.

First lie, when called on it, change the subject and move on as fast as one can.

Romney/Ryan = Bush /Cheney


Posted by Romney = Bush, a resident of another community
on Oct 1, 2012 at 12:48 pm

Thomas says "I also don't understand the left-field questions about the differences between Romney and Bush. Educate yourself..." Clearly, Thomas doesn't get the poster's point ---- there is NO significant difference between Bush and Romney.

If Thomas disagrees ---- he can try to prove it ain't so.

he can't.....

Or as Haywood mocks "I'd love to read your ten point list of the VAST differences between Bush and Romney."

that list sure ain't forthcoming


Posted by Michele Johnson, a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Oct 1, 2012 at 2:21 pm

- the Republican argument against the President's re-election was pretty simple: we left him a total mess, he hasn't cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in

Thats the election, right there.


Posted by Menlo Moderate, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 1, 2012 at 5:20 pm

Almost everyone agrees that George Bush left Barack Obama a mess. During the Bush years the national debt went from 5.768 Trillion dollars to $10.626 Trillion dollars for an increase of $4.858 Trillion creating a monthly defict at the rate of $50.604 Billion a month.

In the 44 months since Obama took office the national debt has increased to $16.073 Trillion creating a monthly deficit at the rate of $123.795 Billion a month.

So to make the claim that "Obama did not fix it fast enough" is a mockery of logic. The real fact is that Obama made the economy far worse than Bush (almost 2 1/2 times as worse) could ever imagine doing.

Obama has increased the national debt $5 Billion since yesterday. If he continues at that rate he will have increased the deficit by $1.825 Trillion in a year. That is why we must not re-elect him. The Surgeon General should issue a notice that "Voting for Obama is dangerous to the United States' economic health".


Posted by Scott Banks, a resident of another community
on Oct 1, 2012 at 5:58 pm

One notes "Menlo Moderate" seeks to keep the discussion on deficit and debt, without acknowledging the points put before him by other posters.

1. "Explain this graph then - monthly job creation, note the consecutive months where we lost 750,000 jobs per month during the Bush Great Recession."

Web Link

2. "So humorous how deficit hawks are so vocal when a Democrat is in office, yet can't link to a single deficit post of there's when Bush was in office." As Haywood requested, use the search bar above (I suggest Google instead) to find your numerous posts about debt and deficit during the period George W. Bush was doubling the national debt and running our first $1 Trillion deficit.

Menlo Moderate - we'll wait for you to show us you are not a hypocrite. We'll also except links to an archive of any newspaper showing your letter to the editor during the 80's complaining about Ronald Reagan tripling the national debt, signed under you name, Menlo Moderate, or even Harold Hypocrite.

3. "Okay, now that the hypocrites have had their moment, let's look at the guys they claim will bring fiscal sanity to our budget: Paul Ryan, asked yesterday about how $5 trillion in tax cuts for the wealthy is a way to balance a budget...

Paul (I voted against Simpson Bowles) Ryan: 'I Don't Have The Time' To Tell You How We'll Pay For Our Tax Plan' "

Obviously, Menlo Moderate won't want to vote for Romney/Ryan and their plan to balloon the deficit with $5 Trillion in unfunded tax cuts.

Beautiful.


Posted by Menlo Moderate, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 1, 2012 at 7:52 pm

People like Scott Banks would prefer to have Obama put our nation into a Keynesian Coma.

Scott,

When the tax elasticity is above 1 raising the tax rates result in reduced tax revenues and lowering the tax rates result in increased tax revenues. I will let you ponder tha one for a bit.

When Mitt Romney is elected he will prove that the tax elasticity under Obama was well north of 1.


Posted by Scott Banks, a resident of another community
on Oct 1, 2012 at 8:17 pm

Was going to repeat the three questions that Menlo Moderate did not answer, but it is an obvious waste ... Menlo Moderate CANNOT possibly answer them!

As far as trickle down, it's never worked, so forget it. I expect an Arther Laffer reference soon. That never worked either.




Posted by debatin' foolz, a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Oct 2, 2012 at 9:19 am

this is a Romney thread, so here's Eugene Robinson on the debate Web Link

"Wednesday's presidential debate promises sharp contrasts.
- One candidate wants to repeal Obamacare, one candidate invented it.
- One opposed the auto industry bailout, one takes credit for it.
- One doubts the scientific consensus about climate change, one believes in it.
- One wants to "voucherize" Medicare, one wants to save it.
- One dismisses nearly half of Americans as a bunch of moochers, and one claims to champion the struggling middle class.

It promises to be an epic clash: Mitt Romney vs. Mitt Romney.

Oh, and President Obama will be there, too."

Gene's being too nice to Rmoney.




Posted by Steve, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 2, 2012 at 3:07 pm

Menlo moderate -
You write: "Obama has increased the national debt $5 Billion since yesterday. If he continues at that rate he will have increased the deficit by $1.825 Trillion in a year."
You either don't know, or don't want to know, that Obama has held discretionary government spending to record lows not seen in the past 40 years. Web Link
The deficit continues to increase because:
1. the economy remains very weak and so revenues are down,
2. non-discretionary payments are way up for unemployment, medicare & medicaid, early social security claims, and other payments necessitated by the poor economy.
To blame Obama for this is to show that you don't understand how our national economy works.
Government expenditure increases automatically in recessions and decreases automatically in a boom. This will be true regardless of who occupies the White House.
To quote from Andrew Sullivan in the above link:
"No administration has reduced aggregate government spending as a precentage of GDP as much as Obama's in forty years. If you look at the full chart, back to George HW Bush, you reach an inescapable conclusion: the biggest spenders and borrowers are Republicans and the most fiscally conservative presidents have been Democrats. Given the last two decades, the Tea Party, if they really want to shrink government, should be voting for Obama."


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 2, 2012 at 5:01 pm

"the Tea Party, if they really want to shrink government, should be voting for Obama.""

The tea party isn't interested in shrinking government. they're interested in shrinking entitlements. They have no problem with any other government spending, especially defense.


Posted by guvmint is bad, a resident of Belle Haven Elementary
on Oct 2, 2012 at 5:54 pm

Tea Party sign (look it up) Get yer guvmint hands off my Medicare!

Nice try, menlo voter. Seriously, which "Tea Party" are you referring to? Where do they say that?


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 2, 2012 at 6:37 pm

Sorry guvmit, all "bad" entitlements. Those don't include social security or medicare. My bad. Can we say hypocrites?


Posted by guvmint is bad, a resident of Belle Haven Elementary
on Oct 2, 2012 at 6:41 pm

BAD entitlements go to someone else.

GOOD entitlements are what you paid taxes for, daggumit, and you deserve.

MV, you did not say which tea party you are referring to; is there a national Tea Party?


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 3, 2012 at 8:13 am

guvmint:

the tea party isn't an actual party, so i'd say no, there's no national tea party. tea partiers self-identify as such. the ones I've had conversations with are usually pretty hawkish.


Posted by Alfred Taxpayer, a resident of Woodside: other
on Oct 3, 2012 at 9:54 am


Ok, I contemplated starting a new thread for this, but I decided it was a little more thoughtful to only subject the 8 of y'all who actually read the comments on this thread to a bit of a new (but related) question.

Yesterday, Romney finally gave us the first inkling of a concrete deal of how he can make his budget proposals pencil out. His idea is to completely phase out itemized deductions after $17,000. I'm not supplying a link because if you just google "romney 17000" you'll see dozens of news items confirming that he really said it.

This is an utterly fascinating proposal.

On it's face, I can see a lot of idealogues finding this really attractive because it moves us closer to what might be regarded as a flatter tax system.

On the other hand, the practical impact for so many of those of us who live in the California and the Bay Area in particular is pretty darn significant. For many of what I call the really rich (incomes well in excess of $1M+/yr), the impact of this proposal will be modest at worst. Why? Because a huge proportion of the "really rich" are already subject to the AMT so state/local/property taxes are already not deductible for their tax calculation. The other group is the really, really rich folks like Romney himself who despite their wealth have managed to manuever themselves into a 13% federal tax bracket. Even if the "really, really rich" lose their deduction for taxes in California, 13% of the 10.6% California top rate is still barely a 1% tax increase.

OTOH, if you are a run of the mill dual professional couple earning in excess of about $180,000 you will lose every bit of your deductions beyond this amount because you are already paying 9.6% state taxes. So for the vast, vast majority of Silicon Valley homeowners, their mortgage interest deduction will evaporate to ZERO. In addition, you'll be getting a 3% tax increase (28 or 31% of 9.6%)on any additional dollars you earn.

So this proposal balances soundly on the backs of the affluent (and many not so affluent homeowners) in high tax states like California and Mass. that are already not voting for Romney.

Is this really what y'all were expecting? If Obama had made this particular proposal, I can only imagine the howls of outrage from the Right. But politics being politics, I just don't think that will happen this time around.

It does amuse me when I hear local conservative realtors waxing on about Romney. But if you're on the outside of home ownership looking in, then maybe this is all a good thing because I don't think I'm being alarmist to say that stripping out the value of the mortgage interest deduction WILL affect property values.

Feedback?


Posted by Haywood Park, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Oct 3, 2012 at 10:04 am

So Menlo Voter's claims about the "Tea Party" are merely anecdotal stories with "ones I've had conversations with"?

"The tea party isn't interested in shrinking government. they're interested in shrinking entitlements. They have no problem with any other government spending, especially defense."

followed by

"the tea party isn't an actual party, so i'd say no, there's no national tea party."

Why not identify so called tea partiers for what they are? Fringe conservatives. They love Romney. Well, when Mitt has his "severe conservative" costume on, at least. Too bad none of them are ever on here defending Romney, or answering the topic: why Romney?


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 3, 2012 at 11:34 am

You're right Haywood, tea partiers are fringe conservatives. Sorry I wasn't clear enough for you. The problem with them is they have or have had too much influence in the republican party. One would think as fringe they would be marginalized, but they're not, at least as far as I can tell, or else they wouldn't have been able to get fellow tea partiers elected to office.


Posted by Wally, a resident of Portola Valley: Westridge
on Oct 3, 2012 at 1:24 pm

Bill Clinton talks about Mitt Romney again

"I couldn't believe the other day when the president's opponent said that the 47 percent of the American people who don't pay income tax just want to hang around and be dependent on the government, and you know, we just had to wean them off of that—because they didn't want to pay income tax.

Now, the guy with a tax account in the Cayman Islands is attacking other people for not wanting to pay income tax? I mean, you've got to give him credit."


Posted by perspective, a resident of another community
on Oct 3, 2012 at 3:08 pm

Amazing how this thread has flourished for 2 weeks, with much of the same rhetoric, as well as inventive theories being offered. Mostly, we are seeing those who's minds have long ago been made up, pointing out why the "other side" is not competent. I have posted once earlier, but could not possibly have kept up responding to the relentless postings since then, while I am trying to make a living. While I am reasonably sure I will keep true to my conservative leanings, I still plan to watch ALL of the debates. I challenge you all to do the same, with an open mind. That is what I intend to do, in hopes that my favorite candidate makes his case as to why we need a change. However, I will also be listening for something he says to make me take pause, and at the same time, will be listening to our President for the same. Not just tonight, but until all debates have been exhausted, including those of the VP. History will show us all that, in any election, issues can come up at the last minute that can have a material affect on any candidate. That is why I do not vote early, and I ask that all of you wait to do the same. There is no hurry to cast your vote, and you can not take it back if you are blindsided by by an serious unforeseen revelation. Just a suggestion.


Posted by debating, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Oct 3, 2012 at 3:15 pm

Plan on watching all the debates. Looking to see who shares the most SPECIFICS on topics that interest me. Like taxes and the home mortgage deduction. I won't get my hopes up - neither will address the war.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Oct 3, 2012 at 5:15 pm

perspective -

Well stated.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 3, 2012 at 6:58 pm

Perspective:

I agree with you. I never vote until election day.

Watching the debates now. they're both making good points. They're also full of BS, but they're politicians. Goes with the territory.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Oct 3, 2012 at 9:52 pm

You may not know "why Mitt Romney?"... but I suspect that even Mr. Obama found out tonight.


Posted by Watch all the Debates, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 3, 2012 at 10:56 pm

A win today for Mitt. Will the President take these debates as serious as Mitt? Mr. President, start gathering boxes for that move out of the White House. What have you done for us lately? Creation of jobs, Gas prices and our country's financial situation count now! The experiment is over.........you lose....


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Oct 4, 2012 at 6:17 am

Romney is still behind in nearly every key swing state and still has a lot of work to do.

But the pro-Obama and anti-Romney momentum has stopped. People got a chance to see these two candidates "unfiltered" and I'm guessing by the snap polls and results from the few uncommitted that they liked what they saw from Mr. Romney and that he wasn't this evil villain that they had been sold.

Expect Mr. Obama to (a) joke about his performance and (b) come back VERY strong. As I've said before, this will probably be an extraordinarily close race.


Posted by Menlo Moderate, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 4, 2012 at 9:01 am

The vast majority of the Media has conceded Mitt Romney won the first debate resoundingly and while this won't have a meaningful effect in California it will tilt most of the swing states in Romney's favor.

Über liberal commedian Bill Maher, the penultimate Obama supporter who pledged $1 Million to the Obama campaign, made the following tweets:

"Romney won the debate"

"Obama made a lot of great points tonight Unfortunately, most of them were for Romney."

"I can't believe I'm saying this but Obama looks like he does need a teleprompter."

"Barry: less looking down making notes, u look like you're hanging your head in shame and more eye contact."

"That President Obama sure is smart; but I'm not sure if I'm gonna take his class next semester."

"Romney looks more confident and energetic"

"Barry, stop nodding at Mitt when he's lecturing you. It looks like he's right and you're chastened!"

However, Dennis Miller had a the most hilarious tweet:

"Obama better hope a Kicked A** is covered under Obamacare"










Posted by Wally, a resident of Portola Valley: Westridge
on Oct 4, 2012 at 10:15 am

Fact check this next week: "it will tilt most of the swing states in Romney's favor."

Uhhhh, really? You can get really good odds (this week) on that if you place your bets before the battle ground polls swing as you predict. Go for it. Easy money.

Romney won the style points. His best debate ever. Obama wasn't combative, that isn't his style. Look back at the zillion 2008 debates, especially when it came down to Hilary and Obama alone. The style argument hides some interesting statements though.

Romney not only won and took all the notice because of style, it hid his movement to the center. A masterful performance in hiding his best etch a sketch moment. Did he also call his sons all liars? That's gotta leave a mark at home.

Next week will be fun to watch with Ryan/Biden. In 2004, Cheney cleaned Edward's clock. In 2008, someone winked at me and I got a little lost.




Posted by Dana, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Oct 4, 2012 at 9:56 pm

Will obamacare cover the care of the Potus bruised ego.


Posted by Wally, a resident of Portola Valley: Westridge
on Oct 5, 2012 at 10:06 am

Bruised ego? Was there a debate this week?

Looks like all anyone is talking about are jobs. If it was a bad jobs report, Romney ends a golden week. Instead, now he goes to Florida today with the news from republican Gov Scott: "@FLGovScott: Tampa & Miami saw largest unemp rate declines in US."

Mitt's debate was a sugar high -- the fact checkers had a field day, and now the jobs numbers come out and unemployment is below 8%. The structural weaknesses of Romney's campaign remain.

The GOP is left whining about job numbers manipulation. Who would have thought immediately following the debate euphoria that they'd be whining on the beltway by Friday?

- "Unbelievable jobs numbers..these Chicago guys will do anything..can't debate so change numbers" — @jack_welch

- "What have you done for us lately? Creation of jobs, Gas prices and our country's financial situation count now! The experiment is over.........you lose...."

- "Will obamacare cover the care of the Potus bruised ego."

Sugar highs all around.



Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Oct 5, 2012 at 2:52 pm

I congratulate this administration for getting unemployment under 8.0%. That helps all Americans. Unfortunately, they did say it would be under 6.0% by now, but let's let that go for a moment.

Lead opinion piece in TODAY's Washington Post by Dana Milbank. It would be difficult to find someone more supportive of President Obama and his policies or more critical of Mr. Romney and his.

His lede was "Obama's Emperor Has No Clothes Moment" and it may be instructive, especially coming from Mr. Milbank: Web Link

As I've said, Mr. Obama has a pretty significant lead in the swing states but it is definitely tightening according to the latest polls. Yes, Mr. Romney has a lot of work to do (as does the President) and anyone who thinks this race is over is sadly mistaken.


Posted by Wally, a resident of Portola Valley: Westridge
on Oct 5, 2012 at 3:48 pm

I agree with Mr. Milbank that all recent Presidents have shied away from our press, much to our detriment. Good article. Missed this, it was the fellow we all expected to debate Governor Romney and he never showed.

"When I got onto the stage, I met this very spirited fellow who claimed to be Mitt Romney," he told supporters in Denver. "But it couldn't have been Mitt Romney because the real Mitt Romney has been running around the country for the last year promising $5 trillion in tax cuts that favor the wealthy. The fellow on stage last night said he didn't know anything about that."


Posted by Menlo Moderate, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 5, 2012 at 11:55 pm

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics

During the Bush Administration the unemployment rate averaged 5.307%.
During that 96 month period under Bush:

Months of unemployment under 5% = 35
Months of unemployment between 5%-6% =47
Months of unemployment between 6%-7% =12
Months of unemployment between 7%-8% =2

So far during the Obama Administration the unemployment rate has averaged 9.093%

During this 44 month period under Obama
Months of unemployment under 8% = 1
Months of unemployment between 8%-9% =15
Months of unemployment between 9%-10% =25
Months of unemployment between 10%-11% =3

So before you pop those champagne corks remember that:

The worst month of Perentage of Unemployment under Bush was better than the best month of Perentage of Unemployment under Obama

The unemployment rate under Obama has averaged 71.33% higher than under Bush

Compared to Obama Bush is the bedrock of fiscal responsibility. If you have any complaints you can address them to the Bureau of Labor Statistics


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 6, 2012 at 9:17 am

come on moderate, that is disengenuous. Like you, I am a moderate. I don't like either candidate, but I think we should be honest. Bush had good numbers because the economy didn't collapse until shortly before he left office. We were shedding jobs at 700,000 a month. The economy isn't like a light switch. You can't just flip a switch and immediately turn everything around. It takes time and with how badly the economy was, a lot of time to turn it around. But, I think you already know that.

The facts are the economy is better and is getting better. Not fast enough, but improving. The Dow is back to where it was and unemployment just dropped below 8%. So let's not throw disengeuous numbers out there as if they're the only way to evaluate what Obama has done.


Posted by Wally, a resident of Portola Valley: Westridge
on Oct 6, 2012 at 9:30 am

Menlo Moderate: Haywood posted this chart above, if you want to harp on some strange list of jobs numbers, why not just look at the most obvious of all?

Web Link

Month by month jobs lost/gained. Doesn't list September's, announced yesterday. There are a bunch that are hollering conspiracy on those numbers, which reflects badly on the party, imho.

800,000+ jobs lost in January of 08. Technically assigned to Obama who took over January 21.

Are those Obama's numbers, of Bush? 2/3rds of them for Bush?

Hello? Menlo Moderate? You there?


Posted by Menlo Moderate, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 6, 2012 at 4:34 pm

Sorry Wally,

Month by month jobs lost/gained does list the September 2012 figure. It was the only one under 8%. Nice Try.

Just remember Bush's worst month (7.6%) was better than Obama's best month (7.8%). No way to spin that.

On a month by month basis for every dollar of new debt Bush created Obama created $2.44 of new debt.

On October 1 the national debt was $16 Trillion 73 Billion. In 5 days our national debt has increased to $16 Trillion 153 Billion. Obama has created 80 Billion in new debt in just 5 days. That is $16 Billion/day. Annualized this is $5.84 Trillion of new debt for GFY 2013. Nice way to start off the new GFY. The man is out of control. For the continued viability of our nation he must be voted out of office before he causes irreparable damage. Obama is the most dangerous president this nation has ever had.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 6, 2012 at 5:51 pm

moderate:

you continue to conveniently ignore Obama took over an economy sliding rapidly into the abyss. Obama stopped that and turned it around. He hasn't done enough but for you to complain he hasn't fixed things fast enough is just wrong.


Posted by Menlo Moderate, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 7, 2012 at 8:54 am

Bill Clinton's assertion at the DNC in Charlotte was simply false. I truly wish that Obama has made some progress in fixing the economy. The truth is he has made it far worse. His gamble to spend his way out of the recession just did not work. Obama still has a net loss of jobs whereas George Bush created 3 Million new jobs.

Shame on Bush for moving the national debt from 5.768 Trillion dollars to $10.626 Trillion dollars for an increase of $4.858 Trillion. However, Obama has moved the national debt from $10.626 Trillion to $16.155 Trillion for a increase of 5.529 Trillion. Obama has created more debt than Bush in less than half the time!

This debt has to be paid back. All those college students who voted for Obama will be burdened with paying back that debt. They will be the first generation of Americans who will have a lower standard of living than their parents and they have themselves to blame for being taken in by a glib, charismatic huckster.

Most people agree with Obama that what President Bush did to the economy is unpatriotic. However, what Obama has done to the economy is even more unpatriotic.

I can't see any reasonable person buying into the false premise Bill Clinton proffered that some people are arguing that no one should vote for Obama because he did not fix the economy fast enough when the real argument is no one should vote for Obama because he made the economy far worse in less than 4 years than what Bush had done in 8. And we should reward Obama's incompetency with another term in the White House?


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 7, 2012 at 9:29 am

moderate:

other than increasing the national debt what has Obama done to make the economy worse? Or are you going to continue to stick your head in the sand and ignore all other positive economic indicators?


Posted by Wally, a resident of Portola Valley: Westridge
on Oct 7, 2012 at 9:59 am

Great deflection Menlo <Moderate!!!!!!!!!!!

"Month by month jobs lost/gained does list the September 2012 figure. It was the only one under 8%. Nice Try."

Yes -- there are NO percentages listed. It is just that -- a month to month jobs gained/lost.

Shows' the Bush losses of 800,000 per month and Obama's last 28 months of creating 4.5 million new jobs.

Menlo Moderate: " I truly wish that Obama has made some progress in fixing the economy. The truth is he has made it far worse."

All FACTUAL EVIDENCE showing otherwise: listing only debt as the economic indicator is disingenuous.

Web Link

Updated chart per Menlo Moderate's request above.

To repeat:

Menlo Moderate - 800,000+ jobs lost in January of 08. Technically assigned to Obama who took over January 21.

Are those Obama's numbers, oo Bush's numbers? 2/3rds of them for Bush? All? None?

Hello? Menlo Moderate? You there?



Posted by Menlo Moderate, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 7, 2012 at 10:12 am

The labor force participation rate is at 63.5% the lowest participation rate since Ronald Reagan took over the White House from Jimmy Carter. If you didn't count the people who have jsut givingg up looking for work or who have exhausted teir unemployment benefits the unemployment rate would be well north of 10%.

The claim at the Democratic Convention that more than 4.5 million jobs have been created as true but the job growth has not been enough to offset 4.8 million jobs lost during the first 13 months of Obama's presidency. They forgot that minor detail.

That would be like one boasting he has made $4.5 Million in the stock market over the last 30 months but neglecting to say that he lost $4.8 million in the 13 months preceding that great run up.

Compared with that of each president since 1945, Obama ranks dead last in job creation.




By any objective measure the Obama Administration has been an ignominious fiasco. So why should we give him 4 more


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Oct 7, 2012 at 10:13 am

The recent economic news is undeniably positive. But before you start the celebration, pay attention to the dark cloud inside that silver lining. This year's economy is growing slower than last year's and last year's was slower than the year before. That deceleration is decidedly NOT positive.

From the Wall Street Journal:

"The reality is that more than three years into this weakest of economic recoveries, 12.1 million Americans are still out of work—nearly 23 million by the broader definition that includes those who have stopped looking or can't find full time work—and the labor participation rate is still down to 1981 levels at 63.6%. Hooray!

Of the 114,000 new jobs, 104,000 were in the private economy, and all of the 86,000 in upward revisions for July and August came in government jobs. Job growth for 2012 has averaged 146,000 a month, which is down from 153,000 in 2011.

Manufacturing employment fell again (down 38,000 in the last two months) further dampening one of the few bright spots in this recovery. A still abysmal 40.1% of the unemployed in America have been jobless for six months or more. Such a job market is anemic by any historic measure for this stage in an expansion and reflects continuing slow GDP growth in the 1%-2% range.

The household survey contacts about 60,000 individual households to find out how many Americans are working. It is different from the much larger "establishment survey," which measures about 141,000 businesses and government agencies to see how many jobs they created. The household survey determines the jobless rate, so the huge one-month leap accounts for the September decline to 7.8%.

Even if (September's) 873,000 job estimate is confirmed in future months, the survey found that 582,000 of those jobs were what the survey calls "part-time for economic reasons." That is, they would rather be working full-time. The number of part-time workers for economic reasons grew to 8.6 million in September from 7.7 million in March.

Working part time is certainly preferable to not working at all, but it's tough to pay the mortgage, energy, medical and grocery bills with a 20-hour-a-week job. The job market has been bad for so long that people are settling for any paycheck they can get. One suspect in this shift to part-time work is the cost of providing health insurance, especially with ObamaCare [and lots of other new taxes and regulations] looming."

Web Link

And we've still done almost nothing about entitlement or tax reform.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Oct 7, 2012 at 10:20 am

Perhaps it's a coincidence that some on this thread are no longer talking about those polls anymore. Maybe because the trend just isn't looking quite so positive for President Obama anymore.

RealClearPolitics.com: Florida, Virginia and Colorado are now all dead even. And that bellwether of Ohio has now tightened with Obama leading by only 3 percentage points, now within the margin of error.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Oct 7, 2012 at 3:28 pm

MV -

You may not be precisely correct about three years ago (when growth hit 3%, more than twice last year's rate), but that's less of an issue for me. As I've said many times before, I prefer to look forward, not backward.

But a slowing economy three years after the recession ended should be viewed with extreme caution. When you have a recession, there is a significant pent-up demand by businesses and consumers. Economies usually "spring back" with a vengeance in the first few quarters following a recession. This recession was relatively short-lived and actually ended more than three years ago in July 2009. It's not unusual to see economic growth pop up to 6 or 7 percent following a recession before settling down into a more normal 3 percent range.

The fact that our growth has gone from 3% to 2% to a very dangerous 1.3% in successive years, coupled with the continuing erosion of our manufacturing base and the Federal Reserve literally flooding the economy with our dollars, means we may be heading toward that dreaded "double dip" recession.

In my humble opinion, President Obama is doing very little to promote business hiring and growth. My opinion is that he's saddling them with even tougher regulations and even higher taxes - not what our country needs right now.

But we can run this little experiment and see how it works out.

PS - Others please spare me the comments about President Bush. I wasn't exactly a fan of his, either.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 7, 2012 at 7:10 pm

POGO:

I realize things aren't good and that Obama has not done enough, but for someone to make the argument that Obama has made things worse is simply wrong. The Dow is back up, unemployment is down and there is growth. No, not nearly enough, but I lay part of the blame on our congress, especially the republicans who's sworn goal it is to make Obama fail at all costs, even if it means the total collapse of our economy. The dems haven't done much either. Frankly I'm disgusted with all of them. They are playing hyper-partisan politics to the great detriment of the citizens they supposedly represent. I will not vote for a single incumbant for many years to come.


Posted by Wally, a resident of Portola Valley: Westridge
on Oct 8, 2012 at 11:07 am

"(CNN) -- Jill Thacker was dying for a cup of coffee when she recently ran into a 7-Eleven convenience store. To her pleasant surprise, the coffee was free -- as long as she would commit to drinking it in either a red Mitt Romney cup or a blue Barack Obama cup.

"Which are you going to choose, Mom?" her son asked.

Which, indeed. A gun-owning, big-government-hating Republican, Thacker's every instinct told her to buy a Romney cup. But Thacker, 56, and her daughter have asthma -- a pre-existing condition -- and with Obama as president they'll be guaranteed the ability to buy insurance.

Thacker stood in the 7-Eleven and stared at the red and blue cups, stymied by the choice they represented.

Perhaps no other election has posed such a difficult personal decision for some conservatives: How do you vote if you're ideologically conservative, but you're benefiting, or stand to benefit, from the Affordable Care Act, often referred to as "Obamacare"?"

It's socialism when someone else benefits......


Posted by Wally, a resident of Portola Valley: Westridge
on Oct 8, 2012 at 11:18 am


Ohio moves to tossup, but Pogo neglects to point out that Missouri moves from lean R to tossup and NH moves from toss up to lean Obama.

realclearpolitics
10/5 Ohio Leans Obama »»» Toss Up Obama +2.6
10/2 Missouri Leans Romney »»» Toss Up Obama +3.3
10/1 New Hampshire Toss Up »»» Leans Obama Obama +4.0
9/26 Ohio Toss Up »»» Leans Obama Obama +4.0

Net?

251 Obama/Biden vs 181 Romney/Ryan

Toss Ups 106, none of which are breaking yet for Romney.

Reich: "Romney says we're not doing well enough, and he's right. But the prescriptions he's offering—more tax cuts for the rich and for big companies—won't do anything except enlarge the budget deficit. And the cuts he proposes in public investments like education and infrastructure, and safety nets like Medicare and Medicaid, will take money out of the pockets of people who not only desperately need it but whose spending is necessary to keep the tepid recovery going."

Romney will drive America BACK into the Bush Great Recession.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Oct 8, 2012 at 1:07 pm

It's interesting that Wally cites polls that were taken BEFORE the last debate. All of the polling since shows a remarkable swing to Romney.

The opening sentence of this thread is no longer even true.

Just keep drinking that Kool-Aid, Wally, but you may want to check RealClearPolitics.com today.


Posted by Wally, a resident of Portola Valley: Westridge
on Oct 8, 2012 at 2:34 pm

"but you may want to check RealClearPolitics.com today." Thank you, I did, today. Where are the links for your claims?

Web Link
Web Link

Florida Tie
Virginia Obama +0.3
Ohio Obama +3.0
North Carolina Romney +0.8
Iowa Obama +3.2
Colorado Obama +0.2
Wisconsin Obama +6.6
Michigan Obama +10.0
Pennsylvania Obama +7.5
Missouri Romney +5.2
New Hampshire Obama +6.0
Nevada Obama +4.6

Who's drinking the koolaid, Pogo?

Romney got a small bounce, reflected primarily thus far in the national polls. There is debate on how much of that bounce 'sticks'.



Posted by Wally, a resident of Portola Valley: Westridge
on Oct 8, 2012 at 2:49 pm

"Others please spare me the comments about President Bush. I wasn't exactly a fan of his, either."

Then why are you voting for the guy who hired Bush's team and has essentially no policy differences from Bush?

This morning, Chuck Todd asked Richard Williamson, Romney's senior foreign adviser/leader how Romney is different from Bush.

Twice. No response. He went off on the economy and how Romney will reverse that, blah, blah, blah... Web Link

">> let me start with a simple question here. how is the romney doctrine on foreign policy going to be different from the bush doctrine?

>> well, first of all, doctrine is a phrase that professors apply afterwards. his approach, but his approach to foreign policy, that's, that's what this speech is about. that's the big choice that the american people have on the economy. you've got these crippling deficits, anemic jobs. you've got romney's plan to reverse that. [...]"

So Todd asks again, and still no answer.

Romney/Ryan can not answer the most basic question about "how are they different from Bush".

Because they aren't any different. Haywood asked Pogo above: "I'd love to read your ten point list of the VAST differences between Bush and Romney."

Pogo's response: "I prefer to live in the present and look forward."

Romney is just Bush on steroids.


Posted by Why Mitt, a resident of Woodside: other
on Oct 9, 2012 at 11:26 am

Why Mitt?

The Romney manifesto.

"I am entitled to complain about the economy even when my stock price, my portfolio and my profits are at record levels.
I am entitled to a healthy and well-educated workforce, a modern and efficient transportation system and protection for my person and property, just as I am entitled to demonize the government workers who provide them.
I am entitled to complain bitterly about taxes that are always too high, even when they are at record lows.
I am entitled to have my earned income taxed as capital gains and my investment income taxed at the lowest rate anywhere in the world — or not at all.
I am entitled to inside information and favorable investment opportunities not available to ordinary investors. I am entitled to brag about my investment returns.
I am entitled to pass on my accumulated wealth tax-free to heirs, who in turn, are entitled to claim that they earned everything they have.
I am entitled to use unlimited amounts of my own or company funds towards elections without disclosing such expenditures to shareholders or the public.
I am entitled to provide political support to radical, uncompromising politicians and then complain about how dysfunctional Washington has become.
I am entitled to fire any worker who tries to organize a union. I am entitled to break any existing union by moving, or threatening to move, operations to a union-hostile environment.
I am entitled to operate my business free of all government regulations other than those written or approved by my industry.
I am entitled to load companies up with debt in order to pay myself and investors big dividends — and then blame any bankruptcy on over-compensated workers or too many Washington regulations.
I am entitled to contracts, subsidies, tax breaks, loans and even bailouts from government, even as I complain about job-killing government budget deficits.
I am entitled to take credit for all the jobs I create while ignoring any jobs I destroy.
I am entitled to claim credit for all the profits made during a booming economy while blaming losses or setbacks on adverse market or economic conditions.
I am entitled to deny knowledge or responsibility for any controversial decisions made after my departure from the company, even while profiting from such decisions if they enhance shareholder value.
I am entitled to all the rights and privileges of running an American company, but owe no loyalty to American workers or taxpayers."

I am Mitt Romney and I am entitled.


Posted by Steve, a resident of Woodside: other
on Oct 10, 2012 at 4:04 pm

Mitt Romney is basically a "people pleasing" used car salesman.
IN return for some fundraising $$, he wants to get use into new
war (anyone wanting another war should basically have his head
examined). On top of this, he wants to have a 20% tax cut across
board on top of which he wants to add more defense spending etc etc.
Noe of this makes sense, the only way their this makes any semblance
of sense if if he does not believe any of this and is just
mouthing these positions to get elected..

I value Obama's prudent (i.e. war as a last resort) approach
to the Iran issue, the other side's agenda is pretty clear
basically "give away" money that is spent on social services
to the MI complex by getting into "wars" plus tax cuts..


Posted by Rebecca, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Oct 10, 2012 at 8:31 pm

Romney will win inNovember . Now everyone go to bed!


Posted by Summary and Accountability, a resident of Woodside: Skywood/Skylonda
on Nov 10, 2012 at 10:52 am

How did the accountability crowd do?

* Rebecca - Romney will win inNovember

Got it. Is there another election later in the month?

* Pogo - Just keep drinking that Kool-Aid, Wally, but you may want to check RealClearPolitics.com today.

Also checking this: Web Link Romney down by 3 million, on his way o 4 million when the states finish. What's Real Clear Politics have so far?

* Menlo Moderate - Obama is the most dangerous president this nation has ever had.

Okey-dokie.

* Menlo Moderate - The vast majority of the Media has conceded Mitt Romney won the first debate resoundingly and ...... will tilt most of the swing states in Romney's favor.

Uh-huh. He got North Carolina. The other swing states? Not so much.

* Menlo Moderate - When Mitt Romney is elected

Waiting.

* Menlo Moderate - The American voters will see the light and vote for the preservation of this country by electing Mitt Romney as the next president of the Untied States in November.

"Untied States"? That's too easy -- now we know where the teabaggers are residing, in the "untied" states!

* Poll Watcher (now THAT'S funny!) - Fortunately, the rest of the country is not as obtuse as California liberals and will vote for the more experienced and accomplished candidate.

They did. They passed on the guy who won only one election and had little success in the one term he served.

And the winner is:

Michele Johnson - "the Republican argument against the President's re-election was pretty simple: we left him a total mess, he hasn't cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in....

Thats the election, right there."

Nice and succinct, Michelle.

Winner.

Winning.

Moving Forward.










Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 10, 2012 at 1:10 pm

"Posted by POGO, a resident of the Woodside: other neighborhood, on Oct 4, 2012 at 6:17 am

ROMNEY IS STILL BEHIND IN NEARLY EVERY KEY SWING STATE [EMPHASIS ADDED] and still has a lot of work to do."

I think my comments were reasonably accurate. No kool aid involved.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 10, 2012 at 1:16 pm

I stand by my comments that Obama's policies are bad for our economy and bad for businesses. Those big taxes he likes so much are about ready to hit everyone (and those are the ones beside the expiration of the Bush tax rates). If he argued against raising taxes two years ago - when the economy was undeniably stronger than it is today - I'm not sure how he justifies raising taxes (on anyone, but especially the middle class) today. We'll see how this little experiment pans out over the next four years. I certainly hope for success but I'm skeptical.

But one thing I do know for certain. If Obama's policies do not improve the economy in four years, we're going to hear again how it is all Bush's fault and how horrible that recession was that ended in June 2009... just six months after Obama's first inauguration.


Posted by Say what?, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 11, 2012 at 11:00 am

POGO wrote
> two years ago - when the economy was undeniably stronger than it is today

huh? You mean "undeniably" as in way back in 2010 when the unemployment rate was topping out at 10% and the GDP had fallen backwards to under 1.4T? Unlike today when unemployment is under 8% and GDP is over 1.5T? I don't think that word means what you think it does.

POGO wrote:
> If Obama's policies do not improve the economy in four years, we're going to hear again how it is all Bush's fault....

Apparently we don't agree on much at all. To say we haven't bounced all the way back from what Bush inflicted on us after 4 years is not a losing argument. After 8 years, it will be a losing argument, so I don't expect to hear it either way. OTOH, if the economy has improved over the next 4 years, we're going to hear how this administration had nothing to do with that and it is only because of the restraint imposed from the Republican House and because of the natural business cycle. So I suppose we're even.

Funny that I never heard about "socialism" back when Clinton's tax increases went into effect and before he signed off on cutting the cap gains rate from 28% to 25%, a number still higher than anything proposed by Obama.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 12, 2012 at 7:36 am

There is absolutely no doubt that the economy was in better shape two years ago whether you use job numbers or GDP growth. I'm not aware of a single economist - including the highly biased Paul Krugman - who disagrees.

In the first quarter of 2010, President Obama told us that the economy was too weak to let the Bush tax rates expire. At that time, the economy was growing at a rate of 4.0% (it fell to 2.3% in Q2 and remained in the mid-two percent growth for the remainder of the year).

Last quarter, the economy grew at just 1.3% - actually FALLING from the prior quarter's 2.0% growth (ironically, one more quarter like that would mark a recession...) - and for the current quarter is a modest 2.0%. Yet, today, we can afford to raise taxes!

And taxes are most definitely going up. The payroll tax holiday is expiring which will cost everyone, especially low and average wage earners dearly. And all of the health care taxes go into full implementation in January. All capital gains, sell your house, etc. and you'll pay 2.9% (qualified for some) extra tax tot the government. And that doesn't even take into account taxmageddon.

Just what you want to do in an economy teetering on a second recession - take money out of people's pockets and give it to the government who spends it far more efficiently.

Right...


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 12, 2012 at 7:40 am

Oh, and here's a link to the data in very easy-to-read form. Web Link

And as for that horrible Bush recession, yes, it was deep. But it was also very short lived. The recession - which you can easily see on the above link - lasted a whole four quarters and was finished in Q3 of 2009.

It is the three and half years of this recovery where you find stagnation.

Just look at the chart... and then you can argue the FACTS.


Posted by hop hop hop, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Nov 12, 2012 at 8:40 am

take Pogo's GDP link out to 1990 or earlier for a better look Web Link

Glad to hear Pogo supports increasing the deficit by giving tax cuts to the top 3%

Since Pogo is on a Keynesian-grow-the-deficit schtick, let's start repairing roads and bridges. Take ten billion and put solar on half the rooftops around the country, too.


Posted by hop hop hop, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Nov 12, 2012 at 8:47 am

Lowering taxes on the ultra rich creates growth.

Oh, wait a minute.... evidence says otherwise!

"Throughout the late-1940s and 1950s, the top marginal tax rate was typically above 90%; today it
is 35%. Additionally, the top capital gains tax rate was 25% in the 1950s and 1960s, 35% in the
1970s; today it is 15%. The real GDP growth rate averaged 4.2% and real per capita GDP
increased annually by 2.4% in the 1950s. In the 2000s, the average real GDP growth rate was
1.7% and real per capita GDP increased annually by less than 1%. There is not conclusive
evidence, however, to substantiate a clear relationship between the 65-year steady reduction in the
top tax rates and economic growth. Analysis of such data suggests the reduction in the top tax
rates have had little association with saving, investment, or productivity growth. However, the top
tax rate reductions appear to be associated with the increasing concentration of income at the top
of the income distribution. The share of income accruing to the top 0.1% of U.S. families
increased from 4.2% in 1945 to 12.3% by 2007 before falling to 9.2% due to the 2007-2009
recession. The evidence does not suggest necessarily a relationship between tax policy with
regard to the top tax rates and the size of the economic pie, but there may be a relationship to how
the economic pie is sliced."

source: CRS Web Link


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 12, 2012 at 8:54 am

So I answer the point about a economic growth and you deflect. You will deflect alone.

But I never said LOWER taxes on the rich.

I said keep tax rates the same. Raising taxes in this economy is suicide. Even President Obama said so... two years ago in a demonstrably BETTER economy.


Posted by hop hop hop, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Nov 12, 2012 at 9:09 am

Fair enough. Obama said it a couple years ago. A few years before that, these tax cuts were sold as important to create jobs (they didn't.) They were sold as being important because Greenspan said we would be paying the debt off too fast with Clinton's surpluses (idiocy to the Nth degree.) They were sold without being "paid for" (thereby eliminating our balanced budget and busting the deficit wide open.)

Just don't come back with the unsustainable deficit/debt argument later. Wouldn't want any hypocrisy to be too obvious.

I shall hop off, or pogostick, or whatever. Enjoy your week, lads and ladies.


Posted by Seth Thompson, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 12, 2012 at 10:17 am

everyone still happy with Mitt Romney as a great candidate?

Romney ran against the first presidential candidate in a generation actually promising to raise taxes (albeit on income over 250K.) An incumbent struggling to recover from an awful economy. A minority. Romney had the AM radio spectrum and Fox news on his side, with the rest of the media afraid to fact check him or Paul Ryan.

All that, and the GOP got spanked. Red cheeks spanked.

everyone still happy?


Posted by Say what?, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 12, 2012 at 3:39 pm

> Just look at the chart... and then you can argue the FACTS.

My oh my. Your theory that the economy is "weaker" today than in 2010 is simply ridiculous. If you want to argue that the growth rate is less than in 2010, then we can talk about that. But to take one narrow metric and define economic "health" by quarterly GDP growth is fatuous.

In 2010, the economy was coming over a generational low after receiving literally hundreds of billions of stimulus. Having lopped off so much excess capacity and slack demand, it's not at all surprising that we would see some robust growth in 2010. But to ignore the absolute GDP and employment numbers is simply twisting the facts to suit your story.

And your exact link points to the full charts that support my view, not yours. Look at absolute GDP, annual GDP (gdp without need of seasonal adjustment), and employment. In 2010, the economy was just at the beginnings of a fragile recovery after 5 quarters of decline which resulted in a 20% retrenchment in GDP. That's frickin close to a depression, dude.

You clearly are somebody not in the job market if you'd rather have been looking in 2010 then now at least in this valley.


Posted by Rebuttal, a resident of Ormondale School
on Nov 12, 2012 at 4:00 pm

@say what?

- snap!

Let's put a few hundred billion into roads and schools. Hire back some county workers too. Can't believe the reduced hours of our court system.

Fix the ROADS. My teeth clatter when I hit those bumps! Don't want third world roads on my commute!


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 12, 2012 at 7:02 pm

Say What? - Depressions and recessions are, in fact, defined EXCLUSIVELY by GDP growth. As a reminder, two consecutive quarters of negative growth defines a recession and this recession. As I said above, although deep, it is without dispute that our last recession ended in July 2009 - just six months after President Obama was inaugurated. But if you have a new definition that more accurately assesses the economy based on job growth, you may want to submit it to the editors of the Journal of Political Economy for review. I would only remind you that the labor participation rate and U6 are still breathtaking.

Rebuttal - I thought we already put $900 billion into those "shovel ready jobs." Before we do that again, you may want to find out what happened to the last tranche.


Posted by Say what?, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 13, 2012 at 12:01 pm

Thanks, that's ever so delightful that you can remember the definition of recession from your high school econ level class. But I don't recall arguing about what is or isn't a recession.

Your argument, as I understand it is that the economy is less healthy today than it was in 2010. My point is and remains that it is a ludicrous position to suggest that the economy overall after 12 consecutive quarters of growth (whether tepid or not) and after putting literally millions of people back to work and rebounding in GNP by 100's of billions of dollars is more robust than it was in 2010. Is growth still tepid, sure. Are we heading towards a mild recession, possibly, but possibly not. But I do know that I'd rather be looking for a job today with unemployment down at 8% than in 2010 with unemployment at 10%.

But as long as you insist on being pedantic, let's also step back and talk about this recession thing a bit more. I suggest that it would be more appropriate to let the NBER (National Bureau of Economic Research) call the recession rather than your novice hand. And they call the last recession at starting in December 2007 and ending 18 months later in June 2009 (which as you point out it 6 month after Obama took office). And since then we've had nothing but growth (even if less stellar than we would all like).

But I'm going to let you have the last word here since further discussion on my part seems like it is not going to make headway with you. Still, I do chuckle that you must truly be bwildered that Obama won the election with the economy doing so much worse now than it was in 2010 (notwithstanding that unemployment has dropped by two full percentage points and that we've had more than 36 months of economic growth). Now I get where the narrative that it's because the 47% wants free stuff (even though much of the 47% is R voting military, elderly collecting social security and working blue collar males. Notwithstanding that 47% is not even a correct number.) Ok, I just don't have time for more of this foolishness, so go for whatever narrative you want to create.

One last comment, as somebody whose tax will go up under the Obama proposals, the real people who want free stuff are those who are willing to borrow and expand the debt in order to finance tax cuts as the Bush tax cuts so egregiously did.


Posted by Say what?, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 13, 2012 at 12:34 pm

ludicrous to suggest NOT more robust. fix typo.


Posted by rebuild and reduce the deficit, a resident of Atherton: Lloyden Park
on Nov 18, 2012 at 5:11 pm

Reduce the deficit by 40% just be getting unemployment down to 5 percent.

Easy decision -- stimulus for infrastructure and jobs. Send billions to the state to rehire laid off workers, get unemployment 5$ and revenues soar..


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 18, 2012 at 5:23 pm

My opinion is that we are now past the tipping point. There are more voters (for five of the last six presidential elections) who have voted for more entitlements, larger government, higher taxes on the wealthy and lower taxes on themselves.

I certainly hope for the best for our country but I'm highly skeptical. The Democrats now have undisputed, full control of both state houses so there are no excuses when it comes to the economic health of our fair state and we'll see how President Obama's policies work out for our country.

In four years, I won't be the least surprised if unemployment remains high, the economy is stagnant, there is no tax reform, no entitlement reform, the annual deficit is essentially unchanged and not even a small dent in our debt. We will find out what direction Obamacare has "bent the cost curve" and I'm guessing we will still be involved in at least one war and perhaps even a new one that is looming on the horizon.

In retrospect, I don't think Romney would have fared any better. The problems are systemic and worldwide.

For the sake of my children and grandchildren, I do hope I'm wrong. It wouldn't be the first time.


Posted by Kathy K, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Nov 18, 2012 at 6:56 pm

uhhhh, yowsers.

"In retrospect, I don't think Romney would have fared any better."

Not what I recall reading from Pogo, earlier. What changed your mind about Romney so suddenly?

I'll go back to my last post: come back Bill, all is forgiven.




Posted by Econ 101, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Nov 19, 2012 at 10:43 am

@Pogo,

I looked at your link and don't have a clue what you are talking about. Growth is growth, so as long as GDP growth is positive, each quarter is better than the next. So 2012 is definitley better than 2010. If your GDP graph had some negative growth I might agree with you.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 19, 2012 at 1:55 pm

Econ 101 -

What I said is that the economy is growing slower now - in fact, it's almost at a stand-stand today - than it was when President Obama extended the Bush tax rates two years ago.

Here are numbers:

Q4 2009 1.4% (growth, marking the end of the recession)

Q1 2010 4.0%
Q2 2010 2.3%
Q3 2010 2.2%
Q4 2010 2.6% (President Obama says the economy is too weak)

Q1 2011 2.4%
Q2 2011 0.1%
Q3 2011 2.5%
Q4 2011 1.3%

Q1 2012 4.1%
Q2 2012 2.0%
Q3 2012 1.3% (the last reading of our economy)

Easy enough, even for an Econ 101 student.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 19, 2012 at 2:01 pm

Kathy K -

Of all the things I posted, the one that got your attention was "in retrospect, I don't think Romney would have fared any better..."

Things change, Kathy, even in a few weeks. The fiscal cliff, Hamas and Israel, the election results, Hurricane Sandy, increased jobless claims. All of those things matter. It's global and it's bad (in my opinion). And I think the United States economy is in for a very long run of very low, single-digit (like 1% to 2%) growth and continuing high unemployment. Get used to it.

But I would pay attention to the recession in Europe (yes, now OFFICIALLY a recession), the decreasing growth in China, and our economy which continues to cycle DOWN.

I'm not sure anyone short of Superman can solve it quickly and I haven't seen him since I was a kid.


Posted by Kathy K, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Nov 19, 2012 at 2:46 pm

It's just you seemed quite adamant that Romney was the superior choice to keep all the doom and gloom away.

Fascinating.

Regarding the economy and growth since Q$ 2009, why not add the element of job growth?

Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec


2010 -40 -35 189 239 516 -167 -58 -51 -27 220 121 120

2011 110 220 246 251 54 84 96 85 202 112 157 223

2012 275 259 143 68 87 45 181 192 148 171

Unfortunately, the formatting will likely not be optimal for viewing; you may find monthly job loss/growth charts all over the intertubes.

Once we get serious about getting people back to work, the growth will follow. I don't think we should accept "get used to it". It's the lives and well being of many families at stake, as well as the strength of our country relative to the other powers.

Jobs.



Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 19, 2012 at 3:00 pm

Well, that's a novel thought. Hire people even if you don't need them.

I've never known a company to hire anyone in the face of diminishing (or even flat) demand.

Jobs come from demand. Demand comes from an expanding economy. It's not the other way around.

Think about it for your company. Would you hire a bunch of people if the demand wasn't there?

No, I didn't think so. (And neither will GE or Walmart.)


Posted by Kathy K, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Nov 19, 2012 at 3:41 pm

Yes. Hire now. Comparing a government to a small business is inane. America rejected Romney for that very reason.

Build roads bridges powerplants schools; put solar on top of ten million homes.

ABSOLUTELY.

Jobs mean paychecks. Paychecks create demand. Paychecks create growth. Paychecks lower the deficit.

Get employment down to 5% and watch the deficit drop by 40 percent, because paychecks increase tax revenues; that number was quoted above.

If we don't start rebuilding and replacing, America will not have an infrastructure for the 21st century. We will be unable to compete with China Japan and Germany. They are all investing in infrastructure.

We can start building higher seawalls and dikes too. Sandy showed us that.


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 19, 2012 at 5:54 pm

Well, Kathy, if the government is going to borrow even more money simply to employ people, you do realize that the taxes those new employees are going to pay will be with the government's own money, don't you?

But here's a novel idea, how about businesses providing jobs? Jobs that are sustainable and needed, not just some government "shovel ready" (remember those?) project. Gee, now there's a novel thought - jobs based on real demand. Go figure!

Yes, I know the electorate rejected that thesis a couple of weeks ago. Too bad. We'll live with the consequences because you the current pathway of spending into oblivion is simply unsustainable. Look what's happening in Europe right now.

But I suppose we can simply turn over more money to the government so they can spend it because our Congress men and women are far more efficient with other people's money than Bevmo or Village Stationers would be with their own.

Right...


Posted by POGO, a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 20, 2012 at 4:49 am

This thread has certainly wandered far and wide from the original post by Ed Treller. I wanted to thank Mr. Treller and acknowledge his very accurate election prediction noted in his first post. You may wish to check it - pretty darn close!

But now that we are two weeks post election and America has made its decision, I think this thread has gone about as far as it possibly could and, as such, I'm checking out of it.

Thank you to everyone, especially Mr. Treller, for a vigorous and often worthwhile exchange of ideas.


Posted by el Presidente, a resident of Woodside: Woodside Heights
on Feb 27, 2013 at 10:48 am

President Romney gave a stirring dedication at the unveiling of the Rosa Parks statue today.

Oh... sorry, menlo 'moderate'

Too soon?


Posted by funny guy, a resident of Woodside: other
on May 8, 2013 at 9:46 am

that's funny!


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