What film disappointed you most?
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1. How did the DOE clean energy loans program become such a disaster and will you prosecute Solyndra and the others who took loans obviously planning to go out of business? Also, what will you do to protect the rest of the money that was lent?For Romney: The first question for Romney strikes me as odd. They want Romney to pinky-swear that he won’t eliminate the mortgage-interest deduction. I don’t recall anyone outside of this blog talking about that? I think this is an attempt to put words in his mouth and make him deny something he never said, so they can call him a flip-flopper while simultaneously scaring people. That’s dirty pool.
2. Why can’t we simply return spending to 2008 levels to cut the deficit?
3. What tangible benefits has your Middle East policy produced?
4. What do you plan to do to create jobs?
5. You said you would keep lobbyists out of your government, but your government is full of them. Why did you appoint these people?
1. What do you plan to do to create jobs?What would you ask?
2. Would you support an across the board spending cut in the Federal government? At what percent? And what other cuts would you make?
3. Obama has been blasting you on Bain Capital, can you tell us how many businesses Bain closed, how many jobs were lost, did they make any money on those closures, how much did they lose on those closures, what companies are alive today because of Bain, and how many jobs do they provide today?
4. What role will Paul Ryan play in your administration?
5. You once said John Roberts was the type of justice you wanted to appoint. Has your opinion changed in light of the ObamaCare ruling, and if so, what justice is most like the type of person you’d like to appoint now?
“The Romney campaign has to get turned around. This week I called it incompetent, but only because I was being polite. I really meant ‘rolling calamity.’ A lot of people weighed in. . . . [but] no one that I know of defended the campaign or argued ‘you’re missing some of its quiet excellence.’”This is pathetic logic: “I’m right because I nobody bothered to tell me I’m wrong.” You can prove anything that way. She even claims that an unnamed source inside Romney’s camp secretly agrees with her! Yeah, right. But Noonan is not alone. Others on the left and right ends of the conservative spectrum have been just as harsh. Romney is swinging too far right, not far enough right, hasn’t said enough, says too much, needs to provide specifics, should avoid specifics. Mostly, he just needs to do “better.”
● A 2.3% excise tax on medical device manufacturers. There are 12,000 plants across the country employing 409,000 people. Several plan to close and reopen in China because of this tax. Whether this is true or not, it will increase the cost of medicine.● The Alternative Minimum Tax: The Alternative Minimum Tax is a way to phase out deductions for people with high incomes. This was reduced, but will now increase again, snaring 31 million families in 2013 as compared to 4 million in 2012. Business expenses for the purchase of equipment will also be reduced to 50% of the value of the equipment from 100%. That will hurt manufacturers as fewer people will replace equipment as it becomes comparatively twice as expensive as before. The deduction for tuition will be eliminated, encouraging people to stay away from college. IRA rules will be changed too to prevent retired people from deducting amounts paid to charities.
● The Medicare payroll tax will increase from 2.9% of wages to 3.8% for wages above $200,000 ($250,000 if you’re married).
● Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs), which can be used to pay medical expenses with pre-tax dollars, will be capped at $2,500 per year. They are currently unlimited. These have been popular with families of children with special needs who use them to pay for tuition at special schools.
● The threshold for deducting medical expenses will rise from 7.5% of AGI to 10% of AGI.
● On the surface, the Virginia poll shows only +5% Democratic oversampling. This may not sound like a lot, except Democratic turnout that high in Virginia would be identical to 2008 -- which won’t repeat this year. Factor that out and you’ve got a tie. But there’s something even more interesting hidden within this poll. “Independents” are oversampled by around +10%. So who are these independents? Are they genuine independents or leftists pretending to be independents? Well, when you dig deeper, you find that the poll oversampled blacks by 50% and oversampled the rich by about 10%, both of which groups line up on the left. Yet these people don’t show up in Democratic ranks in this poll. Moreover, the overall sample gave Obama a whopping +10% approval rating, compared to a negative 3-4% in most national polls. So it’s likely these independents skew heavily toward the Democrats. Factor that out and Romney wins Virginia easily.CBS/NYT shows Obama with a 3% national lead. They no longer provide their underlying data because they’ve been caught too many times now using laughably biased samples. But get this. . . Romney wins 90% of Republicans. Obama wins 92% of Democrats. So to get a 3% win for Obama, Obama must carry independents, right? No. Romney wins independents by +11%. Think about that. If they used a fair sample, then Romney and Obama should get about the same percentage of voters from their own parties. That means Romney should be winning by 11%, but he’s not. He’s losing by 3%. That tells us the sample was probably around +14% for the Democrats!! There’s also no enthusiasm gap for Obama among Democrats, which is inconsistent with all prior polling.
● NBC’s Ohio numbers are ludicrous. They are +10% Democratic. That’s way more Democratic than even 2008. Factor that out and Obama loses by 3%.
● The Florida numbers are interesting because they are only +2% Democratic. So it sounds like Obama wins by 3%. Except, when you look at the Senate numbers, you suddenly see NBC’s sample going +14% for the Democrat, even though everyone else gives the Democrat a small lead. It’s impossible to know what this really means, except you can’t trust this poll.
● (1) The video did not cause these attacks. These attacks were premeditated to coincide with 9/11. The video was simply given as an excuse. How do we know this? For one thing, Egyptian intelligence warned the US three days early that an attack was planned. For another, there is no way this video could even have been seen across the Middle East – not to mention, why would it only outrage Muslims in a handful of countries but not others?So what does this mean? It means that this was likely just another terrorist attack by al Qaeda, who have indeed claimed credit and say this was in retaliation for the killing of their number two man. More importantly, this and the reaction by the Egyptian and Libyan governments means that there is an opportunity here.
For yet another, these were not spontaneous crowds. We know this because not only did they bring heavy weapons, such as mortars, but they actually knew the location where the US Ambassador to Libya would flee after the riots began and they shelled that location with sufficient accuracy to convince military experts that this was a highly coordinated, professional attack. These were planned attacks.
● (2) This was not aimed solely at the United States. German and other Western embassies have been attacked as well.
● (3) The Libyan and Egyptian governments were not behind these attacks. Egyptian intelligence actually warned the US this was coming. Both governments have condemned attacks. Libya has arrested around 50 people who were involved. And crowds of Libyans also demonstrated against the attacks.
● The Daily Beast: “Let’s be blunt. Barack Obama gave a dull and pedestrian speech tonight, with nary an interesting thematic device, policy detail, or even one turn of phrase.”These aren’t things Democrats or leftist television hacks normally say. Indeed, this is the silly season of politics where nothing you read isn’t pure spin anymore. So for them to criticize Obama now is truly amazing.
● James Carville: “Certainly not the best speech of this convention.”
● Mother Jones: “I didn’t feel any real passion in the delivery. It felt more like an actor soldiering through his lines. There was nothing memorable, nothing forward looking, and nothing that drew a contrast with Romney in sharp, gut-level strokes. Obama was, to be charitable, no more than the third best of the Democratic convention’s prime time speakers in 2012.”
● Nathan Daschle (former head of the Democratic Governors Association): “Disappointed. It was sort of a metaphor for his entire first term.”
● Street Cred: If the media believes Obama is finished, and I’ve stated a pretty strong case for that, then now would be the time for them to regain their credibility with the public by attacking him and debunking his lies. They will need that credibility if they want to be able to criticize President Romney without being dismissed as partisan. And if Obama is going down, then there’s no reason not to pile on now.Whatever the reasons, it’s clear to me that the MSM is not Obama’s friend, not at the moment.
● The Left Is Angry: As much as some conservatives like to think of Obama as a leftist ideologue, he certainly hasn’t lived up to their expectations. His Wall Street reform bill was a sop to big banks. Taxes are still low compared to where they were even after Reagan’s first round of tax cuts. Obamacare sucks, but he didn’t socialize anything. . . it was basically a sop to insurance companies. There aren’t any new social programs. He didn’t grant an amnesty. He never pushed for equal pay amendments for women. He finally started talking in favor of the gay agenda, but hasn’t delivered. And his environmentalism is all crony-environmentalism. About the only thing he did was send taxpayer money to unions.
I suspect a big part of what we’re seeing here is that the left has decided Obama deceived them and that he will never come through for them. So I think they are willing to take him on.
● Journalists Just Don’t Like Him: Finally, Politico has been running a fascinating series of articles detailing how many journalists simply don’t like Obama. They’ve described him as arrogant, detached, petty and uninspired. They don’t like the way they’ve been treated by the campaign. They don’t think much of his skills. It is very difficult to treat people fairly when you have personal animus toward them, and I suspect there is a large amount of this going on as well.
“I'm not getting rid of all of health care reform. Of course, there are a number of things that I like in healthcare reform that I'm going to put in place.”Then he mentioned the two provisions above. That makes sense since it’s always been his position.
The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy, including a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay. We oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right. Abortion is an intensely personal decision between a woman, her family, her doctor, and her clergy; there is no place for politicians or government to get in the way. We also recognize that health care and education help reduce the number of unintended pregnancies and thereby also reduce the need for abortions. We strongly and unequivocally support a woman’s decision to have a child by providing affordable health care and ensuring the availability of and access to programs that help women during pregnancy and after the birth of a child, including caring adoption programs.Notice how reasonable this sounds. The word abortion is only used twice here, as compared to the Republican platform which couldn’t stop talking about it. Notice also how rather than talking up abortion, this very much reads like it seeks to curb abortion and notice how it ends with an insistence on protecting women who choose to have a child. This isn’t consistent with their normal rhetoric at all or their voting records, but it certain comes across as reasonable, not-obsessed and not extreme. Do you see the words "government financed"? No, huh? It's in there under "regardless of ability to pay."
Democrats know there is broad consensus to repair that system and strengthen our economy, and that the country urgently needs comprehensive immigration reform that brings undocumented immigrants out of the shadows and requires them to get right with the law, learn English, and pay taxes in order to get on a path to earn citizenship.That sounds reasonable, doesn't it? Too bad, this isn't the Democratic position.
Wow, he’s acting like a real journalist! MSNBC won't be happy. Keep in mind, MSNBC cut to commercial or commentary during every single speech by a minority at the GOP convention except Condi Rice. (Yes, FOX did too, but FOX did that to everyone and FOX wasn't pimping the “Republicans are all white” theme while hiding the minorities.)“Let me ask you though, this one question, why is it that the Republicans have elected more women governors and have two Hispanic governors and the Democrats don’t . . . don’t have as many women governors and don’t have Hispanic governors, why do you think that is?”
● Justice Clarence Thomas: Second black on the Supreme Court, and my favorite Justice.And here is a list of prominent Senators:
● Gen. Colin Powel: First black Head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and first black Secretary of State.
● Condoleezza Rice: First black female Secretary of State. . . second black Secretary of State after Gen. Colin Powell and second female Secretary of State after Madeline Albright.
● U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez: First Hispanic Attorney General.
● Gov. Bobby Jindal (LA): First non-white (Indian) governor of Louisiana since Reconstruction.
● Gov. Nikki Haley (SC): First female and first Indian governor of South Carolina.
● Gov. Susana Martinez (NM): First female governor of New Mexico (also Hispanic).
● Gov. Brian Sandoval (NV): First Hispanic governor of Nevada.
● Gov. Mary Fallin (OK): Second woman elected to Congress from Oklahoma and first female Governor of Oklahoma.
● Gov. Jan Brewer (AZ): Fourth female governor of Arizona.
● Gov. Luis Fortuno (PR): First Republican governor of Puerto Rico since 1969.
And let’s not forget Rep. Allen West, and Presidential candidate Herman Cain, both of whom were Tea Party favorites. Not to mention this list doesn’t include state Supreme Court justices, state attorneys general (e.g. Ted Cruz (TX)), state legislators, or mayors (e.g. Mia Love), or anyone not currently active in politics. Nor does this include talk radio hosts or other talking heads (e.g. Thomas Sowell).● Sen. Marco Rubio (FL)
● Sen. Kelly Ayote (NH)
● Sen. Lisa Murkowski (A)
● Sen. Olympia Snowe (Maine)
● Sen. Susan Collins (Maine)
● Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchinson (TX)