Sunday, September 25, 2011

Why Obama Is Going to Win in 2012

Obama did it! He went to that bridge in Ohio that crosses from Boehner's Ohio into McConnell-land. He said, "Fix this bridge!" And he told the GOP to quit playing games and instead start putting people back to work. And he looked great! No one goes up a flight of stairs and crosses a stage like Obama. He and Jack Kennedy are the best campaigners I've ever seen, and I've seen them all  -  all the way back to FDR.

He's also the best president we've had since Lincoln. This has been one hell of a great presidency. Obama's list of accomplishments in three years is longer than FDR's in his first eight years.

As Churchill said, "People get the government they deserve." Do we deserve to get Obama for four more years? Only if enough of us wake up and see reality.

In 2012 we must re-elect Barack Obama because the problems we face require a very smart person, and the GOP candidates are the stupidest bunch of would-be nominees I've seen in my very long lifetime. Surely we don't deserve one of them as president! They are all stupider than George W. Bush! Would you believe that possible?!

Mitt Romney is stupid enough to think he can flip-flop on everything and get away with it. Jon Hunstman is stupid enough to think he can believe in evolution and climate change and still win the TeaPee-dominated GOP nomination. The rest of them are just crazy stupid. The bunch is so bad that after last week's GOP debate in Florida, even the GOP press was shrieking in despair.

As Lincoln said, "You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time. But you can't fool all of the people all of the time."

This bunch of GOP clown candidates can only fool themselves and their backers into thinking they can beat Obama. Don't you be fooled!

The only one who could actually defeat Obama is YOU. Just believe the media's doom narrative about his chances, the same tune they played in '08.  Listen to his I-know-everything Democratic critics. Get discouraged. Grouse to your friends and relatives. And sit it out next year. That will defeat Obama. Is that what we deserve?

We don't need a miracle in 2012. We had that in 2008. All we need is Obama up on that stage and the rest of us doing our bit. No, "bit" is the wrong word. What we supporters do is the most important thing in politics. It's huge.

And here's why. The single most persuasive force in election campaigns is the individual supporter. Not Obama's team in Chicago. Not the piles of campaign money they are already raising. Not the TV ads to come. The most persuasive force is the individual who talks to friends, relatives, neighbors, and the folks at work.

I know this is true because studies establish it. This isn't just me talking. This is a solid, bedrock truth of elective politics. So I'll say it yet again. The most powerful force in an election campaign is the individual  supporter. It's you.

And I can prove it. Back when I ran campaigns, we'd have two side-by-side precincts that were identical in every way. If one of these two precincts got walked by our precinct workers, we'd win that precinct. If the other precinct didn't get walked, we'd lose it. The only thing that distinguished the two was the precinct walker knocking on doors. These were high-profile campaigns with tons of mailings and on-air ads, etc. Everybody in both precincts knew about the candidates. What made the difference was the individual at the door.

So when you get frustrated by the gloom-goblin talking heads or the ups-and-downs of the stock market, remember these things. We have a candidate  -  a GREAT candidate  -  while the GOP has NOBODY. And we have YOU.

And that will do it. That's how Obama is going to win in 2012. And the biggest winners will be this country and your future and that of your children. Yes, you can do this! YOU are the one we've been waiting for.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Obama's One-Two Punch! But Where Are the Other Democrats?

Obama has come out swinging a second time! First was the announcement last week of his American Jobs Act. Yesterday he announced his proposal for deficit reduction. And he said what needed saying: there must be increased revenues and more fairness in the tax code.

Both of these tax measures have strong support among voters.

So where are the Congressional Democrats?

Hiding out in their cloak rooms? Or  -  like Senator Robert Casey of Pennsylvania  -  expressing doubts about Obama's legislative "packages"? Where the hell are the Congressional Democrats and the Democratic talking-heads? Why aren't they cheering for Obama?

Do Sen. Casey and his ilk really think they can get re-elected next year unless Obama does well? Unless enthusiasm for Obama is running strong in November 2012, Casey and a lot of other Democrats in Congress are toast because Democrats won't turn out at the polls in sufficient numbers. So why aren't Congressional Democrats in Obama's corner giving a shout-out for his proposals?

The only one thus far to show up in Obama's corner is Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York. At least he's the only one I saw in the hours following Obama's speech yesterday. In those hours the GOP chorus dominated the news cycle with chants of "class warfare" and other nonsense. The Silence of the Democratic Lambs was thunderous.

So who is in Obama's corner?

We are. And WE are the ones who count!

The 2012 election will be about turnout. It always is. And it will be us, not Casey or Schumer, who turn out the voters. (Lots more about that in later postings.)

Obama has now set the course of the election campaign by announcing the American Jobs Act and the deficit proposal. He has trapped the GOP into either going along with his ideas or looking like what they really are:  opposed to the needs of the people.

Good fighter that he is, he nevertheless needs us in his corner to carry the water. The Congressional Democrats are a stumblebum bunch who can't even find the buckets! They are hopeless and helpless in matching the concerted chants of the GOP. But aside from Ted Kennedy  -  God rest his sweet soul  -   Obama had nobody but us in winning the nomination in 2008. And we were enough. Obama ain't gonna walk that lonesome valley by himself in 2012.

We are still here. And, like Obama, we too are fighters.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

GOP Walks into the Trap

Only Jim DeMint sees it. He's the blithering idiotic, far-right Senator from South Carolina. But he is smart enough to see the trap Obama has set for the GOP. No one in the media or among Obama's Democratic critics has apparently caught on yet.

The trap is the American Jobs Act. In proposing it, Obama has put the GOP in a lose-lose position. As DeMint notes, if the GOP adopts it, they co-own blame if the economy doesn't improve. If they refuse to adopt it, Obama can  -  and rightly so  -  blame them for the economy not improving. Note, however, that DeMint won't even consider the joy for America if the GOP helps enact the proposal AND it works. He and his GOP buddies only care about how the proposal hurts the GOP politically and helps the Democrats.

Beyond the politics, the American Jobs Act is also a good proposal for the American people. It would immediately put teachers and firemen back to work and would fix our dangerous bridges, crumbling roads and school houses. Even John McCain's economics advisor from 2008 says the proposal could raise the GDP significantly and put a million-plus people back to work. What's not to like?

To make it even more likable, the proposal would be financed by raising taxes on the ultra-rich who are not currently paying their fair share even though they have benefitted from this country more than anyone else.

Obama now has his campaign theme and strategy for 2012. He has pledged he will take his fight for this proposal to "every corner of America". Last week I fantasized about the photo op of Obama standing on a rotting bridge and saying, "Come on, Boehner and McConnell! Fix this bridge!" This week Obama's doing the bit! He's going to the "structurally deficient" bridge that spans the Ohio River between Boehner's home state and McConnell's Kentucky.

So far, the media aren't caught up by Obama's crusade. They are still following their own narratives that Obama's in big trouble and that the American economy is in big trouble. Neither of these story lines is particularly true (more on that another time), but the talking heads seldom have the facts straight or understand their implications. Remember that this is the crowd that predicted Obama couldn't get the nomination against Hilary. And then that he couldn't win the presidency. And then that the Health Care Reform bill would never pass. And then that the Libyan rebels couldn't win.

With the humor of an Irishman, O'Bama  noted last week that he thought his chances of winning next year were better than his chances of winning in 2008. A clever thrust at the talking heads! And a very sound assessment.

Remember the old adage when following the "news" and the blither-blathers. "Believe nothing you hear and only half what you read."

Except, of course, when reading this blog.

P.S. Right after I wrote this piece, Bill Clinton was on TV describing the quandary the GOP now faces in opposing Obama's plan. DeMint and Clinton both see it! What a pair! Enough to make a chicken laugh!  

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Are YOU the People Obama Hoped For?

"We are the ones we have been waiting for."

That's what Obama said in 2008. And he got a miracle! We all got a miracle. Remember election night?

So now all we hear about is how disappointed his supporters are. They want things their way. And they want them NOW. It doesn't matter to them that he has a teetering economy on his hands, a viciously opposed House, a financial rating system ready to pull the rug out from under us with more downgrades, and a highly financed lie machine pumping out crap day and night.

"We want what we want and we want it NOW!" That's the voice of Obama's supporters! Are these the people we have been waiting for? Is this the best we can be?

We don't deserve Obama. As he gets grayer and thinner, his supporters whack away at him. And let him down. We lost in 2010 because Democrats sat home. Now they aren't even responding to his plea that they call  Congress and urge passage of the American Jobs Act. You folks won't even make one phone call for that graying, skinny guy who saved the country from economic collapse and gave us a health care act that no prior president could get for 70 years.

You won't make even one measly phone call to Congress?

Backing away from Obama is not smart. And it's dangerous. What do we Democrats really want? A Republican president, House and Senate? A bunch of the GOP's selfish and discredited "solutions" that will tumble us into a financial meltdown, take away our environmental and consumer protections, turn the Supreme Court so far right that our basic liberties are gone, end the entitlement programs? Hey, the crazies were right! Armageddon IS coming!

And it's all OUR fault! As the saying goes, "We have met the enemy and he is us."

Who of Obama's chorus of critics knows anything about running a government? Do you?

Robert Reich is on TV every three minutes whacking at Obama. As Clinton's Secretary of Labor, Reich did NOTHING! Who of Obama's critics has ever done ANYTHING?!

And when did YOU last run a government?  What do you know about the hard choices Obama faces, the ones that are graying his hair and putting deep lines in his cheeks?

Like about oil? Among the ruthlessly greedy are oil speculators poised to drive up the price of oil and make a killing. Their financial killing could also be the killing of our economic recovery as happened earlier this year when they played on fears that the Arab Spring would disrupt supply.

Do you understand why the oil speculators have now backed off? Obama ended their game. That's what his sudden reversal on oil drilling is all about. He has spiked the game of the oil speculators playing on fears of shortage. Of course, the environmentalists are screaming mad. I'm an environmentalist. I helped create the movement back in the 60s. I hate the oil drilling, too. But the President has to do what's best for the country. Gasoline at $4-plus a gallon will end this slow recovery. On the other hand, the Environmental Defense Fund, etc. will be fighting the "approved" oil projects in the courts for years and years. The drilling and pipelines ain't happened until they've happened.

And did you all forget that Obama took BP to the woodshed for $20 BILLION for the Gulf oil leak? Some of that has gone to plaintiffs in the disaster, but there's still BILLIONS in that fund to restore the Gulf Coast to an environmental condition BETTER than at the time of the BP leak. Like restoring the  wetlands previously wiped out by "progress" and the misguided Corps of Engineers.

Yeah, you forgot that one, didn't you? Like you forgot all the other achievements of Obama. Americans have a memory span of two weeks. But I expected better from Obama's supporters. They were smart enough and gutsy enough to support his candidacy against all the odds. I thought they would be smart enough and gutsy enough to stand by their man. I'm disappointed in the us that we were waiting for. We're playing right into the GOP hands.

Perhaps Obama is disappointed in us too.  He sure has the right to be. He's out there in the hustings, pleading for support, for a phone call to your representatives in Congress.

And the switchboards in Washington are silent.

May you get what you deserve. Rick Perry or Mitt Romney. Both lovely men, are they? And a Republican Senate. And a TeaP-strangled House. And a far-right Supreme Court. If I sound bitter, it's nothing compared to how bitter you will be after 2012 when you and your children have to live with what you have done.

And you will try to blame Obama even then. But the fault is not in our stars or in Obama. Grow up and admit it.

We are the ones who will have failed.

Unless it's not too late.....

Monday, September 12, 2011

Out of the Park, Obama!

President Obama did a masterful job in his speech before a joint session of Congress last Thursday night. He knocked it out of the park! And he simultaneously loaded the bases for his team!  More than just a fiery speech of solid substance, his address set up the field for 2012. In one stroke he put the GOP at a great disadvantage and at the same time set forth a plan that can really help Americans. Even John McCain's 2008 economics advisor projects that the Obama plan could raise GDP by 2 points and cut unemployment by a full point in 2012.

Plus America could stop firing teachers, firemen and cops. Obama has proposed $35 billion for just teacher hiring. Another $30 billion is slated for school repairs and renovation. And lots of billions are in there to fix our broken bridges and mend our worn roads. And, oh yes, rehiring those laid-off cops and firemen. These are quick-results proposals.

Obama also found a way to get around the babyish desire of the sometimes-majority of Americans who want two incompatible things: federal job creation and no federal deficit spending. He assigned to the Joint Congressional Committee on deficit reduction the task of identifying cuts that will pay for his new $480 billion proposal. His plan will, therefore, be paid for. Those who want to eat their cake and have it too just got their wish. And he's insulated himself from GOP criticism that he's Mr. Big Spender.

More than that, he's done something supremely smart legislatively.  First, he's getting Congress to do what only Congress can do: the finances. Second  -  and extremely important  -  he's securing the highest possible chance that the funding for his proposal can pass both the House and Senate and do so quickly. Under the rules of the agreement last spring that set up the Joint Committee, the deficit-cutting legislation the Committee proposes is greased to go right to the floor of each house for an up-or-down vote. No lingering in committees, no fear of filibuster, no refusal by the House majority leader to schedule a vote, no amending.

What happens politically if the Committee does provide the cuts to cover the cost of Obama's jobs plan BEFORE the GOP House acts on his jobs proposal? (The Committee must act before Thanksgiving.) If the Committee acts first, the recalcitrant GOP House would be stuck with trying to explain why it won't approve a jobs program that is ALREADY FUNDED by cuts! Take that, Eric Kantor!

Picture this! Obama in September 2012 standing on an obviously defective bridge in Eric Kantor's Richmond VA district, scolding Kantor for failing to take care of his own constituents' needs. There are over 90 such broken bridges just in Kantor's district!

Go get 'em, Barry!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Obama Has the Gold

The media are having fun pushing their narrative that Obama's re-election in 2012 is in serious doubt. The pundits gleefully cite the latest polling figures but do so very selectively. They choose the ones that show that the public thinks the country's in trouble (duh!) and that Obama isn't doing enough. But these pundits pointedly overlook three things.

One of these is Obama's likeablity. The same two major polls that show his job approval rating at less than 50% also show that 70% of American voters "like" him. Yes! An astounding 70%! This is as good as it ever gets for a president. It's pure gold. It's even more impressive given the times we are in.

History teaches us about "likeability". Eisenhower wasn't much of a president. He messed up on an array of issues, from Little Rock desegregation to the fiasco of a downed U2 spy plane in Russia. He was even caught lying about the U2. And he was a terrible speaker. Plus he had a recession on his hands in 1957-58. Also two heart attacks. But the motto "I Like Ike" became an American mantra. People loved the guy with the smile.

Ronald Reagan was a lousy president, though now being unjustifiably revised into a great one. More of his aides were indicted and/or jailed than those of all prior presidents put together. Yes! Even more than in Nixon's Watergate mess. He also ran up bigger deficits than all prior presidents en toto. He raised taxes on the middle class. His administration failed to perceive that the USSR was tottering and instead pushed ever-greater military spending, including the idiotic Star Wars defense. He also was a divider, not a uniter, ceaselessly speaking the code words for racism so as to cement the anti-black "Southern strategy" begun by Richard Nixon. But people loved him. Even when polls showed that Americans did NOT agree with his policies, the same polls showed people liked him anyway. That guy with the smile.

Obama's got a better smile than Ike and Reagan put together. Do voters feel that's enough to re-elect a president? Quite possibly, especially one who is also smarter than Ike and Reagan. History suggests that Americans want someone in charge that they FEEL good about. The darker the skies, the more they need that element. And people are fair. A majority still blame the Great Recession on GW.

A second factor studiously ignored by the pundits is that people don't like the Tea Party. A big majority don't, and this number has been growing throughout this year. At the same time, the explosion of Rick Perry into the GOP nomination fight has shoved the GOP even further to the right, causing even poor old Nicked Romney to blather blatant pandering to the TPers. Only Huntsman is a hold-out against this extremism, and he's been rewarded with a 1% in the polling of GOP voters.

A third factor the pundits ignore is that you can't beat somebody with nobody. Obama is certainly a somebody, a formidable somebody with that 70% likeability rating. Meanwhile, the GOP still have nobody. Perry's mercurial rise shows how even the GOP voters realize that they don't have a candidate. Without time to learn anything about him, in just a matter of days after his announcement, they pushed him ahead of front-runner Romney by almost 2 to 1 in the polls. Man, that's pure panic!

So far, the election is Obama's to lose. Can the Democrats find a way to lose? You betcha! The left is working at it ceaselessly, bless their little pointy heads! With friends on the left like Maxine "The Mouth" Waters and egoists Robert Reich and Paul Krugman, Obama doesn't need any enemies. But that's another story for another day.

For now, keep on smiling, Barry O' ! We LIKE you! And in 2012 that's gold that's worth more than $1880 an ounce.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Time Out for Irene

Irene has created a problem here, so I'm taking some time out. Be back in a few days.