Epic Fail

From The Jaws Of Victory

Following yesterday's revelation that 552,462 individuals donated to President Obama's re-election campaign during the first quarter, shattering records previously set by the president in 2008, new polls out today reiterate the fact that the "the base" has not abandoned the president nor has public opinion concerning the economy dramatically shifted as some critics would have you believe.

Numbers out of Quinnipiac University Thursday morning indicated that 54 percent of Americans say Bush is to blame for exploding the federal deficit and swelling unemployment, whereas just 27 percent believe it is President Obama's fault. [...]

By and large, Americans told Quinnipiac that they trust Obama on the economy more than congressional Republicans, despite a growing dissatisfaction. Fourty-five percent also said they trust the president to help the U.S. economy, versus 38 percent who believe Republicans could do a better job.

The poll also found that voters will largely blame Republicans, rather than Obama, if the debt limit is not raised. A further 67 percent of respondents said any debt deal out of Washington must include tax hikes for the wealthiest Americans.

Meanwhile, Republican voters also overwhelmingly agree that any deficit reduction package should include tax increase.

According to a new Gallup poll, only one in five Americans agree with Congressional Republicans that deficit reduction should be based on spending cuts alone. That includes 74 percent of Republicans who agree that a responsible deficit reduction plan should include both tax increases and spending cuts.

Republican voters!

This places congressional Republican well-outside of the mainstream of their own party. They've drank so much of their own bullshit-flavored Koolaid they can't see straight.

When it comes to "snatching defeat from the jaws of victory," this latest example, by Republicans, is unparalleled. The president offered the Republicans exactly what they wanted, but they rejected it because tax-hikes, which 74% of their own party agree should be included, have been deemed unacceptable.


    One other point I’d like to make, and it comes to the crux of why the Democratic message on social security and Medicare is barely ahead of the Republicans message:

    By the time I retire, I’ll have paid Social Security taxes amounting to somewhere near $300k in my working life. Since when is something I paid $300k into an “entitlement”?

    If you want to crush them in the message game, you need to change the NAME of the game. Yes, there are people who will receive benefits who didn’t pay very much in, but the system is fair and based on levels of contribution.

    Starting with this idea that Social Security is a promise that our government made with us, I say, bullshit. It’s a promise each individual makes to himself when he takes it upon himself to work and pay taxes in this country. Entitlement? My ass! There would be nothing wrong with SS had our wondrous elected officials not decided to raid it into near oblivion.

    Think about that. The message coming out of both parties is that this “entitlement” is just something that America cannot afford in its present state; as if we the people didn’t pay enough taxes for it, or work hard enough for it, or somehow we criminally abused it. Our elected officials are talking about SS as if it is a gift they gave us, and now they have to take it away.

    There is a danger here, and you may be missing what that is. Our government is lying to us, boldfacedly. Both sides get up on their pedestals and preach fiscal responsibility; yet, if you separated SS from the rest of the budget and made it untouchable to our elected officials, the fund would survive into perpetuity; even forgiving the congressional theft of the fund over the last decades.

    Bob, this is why I hate political parties, along with the debate over the debt ceiling. Only two political parties hell-bent on serving their doctrines first would squabble over the full faith and credit of America, and hold it hostage for agenda driven cuts and taxes. In the business world, this is a simple decision. Are you going to default or not? Make that decision first, instead of making it into a reality TV show.

    The truth is, neither party could resist making this into a power grab.

    That we will reach agreement and pay our debts IS NOT a done deal. No matter what President Obama and the Repubs agree to in these talks, there are now too many wildcards in the House to ever guarantee that what is agreed to will garner enough votes for passage.

    Mark my words: If we default, this country is fucked. Some of you understand how the bond markets work, and you also understand that no nation defaults on debt owed to other sovereign nations without losing the power necessary to govern themselves. If August 2nd comes and we default, the world economy may crumble, and the nations that are our lenders will call the debt we owe them due immediately.

    Historically, nations that default on their debt go into what could almost be considered receivership status, UNDER the DIRECTION of its lenders. This being America, it’s a crap shoot as to how far and how fast that could happen, but we’ve been storing up envy against our country for quite some time, and it’s not a stretch to imagine that three or four large nations would make a run at us.

    Think Yugoslavia in the late 80’s and early 90’s. You’d have the complete breakdown of every social service in this country, whose funds would be held hostage by the lending nations. When you default as a nation, you no longer have a choice as to what gets paid.

    The world is no longer in awe of us. If we break faith, the world may well decide to be unforgiving. That affects each and every one of us! The first places where order will be lost will be our major cities, where police could walk off the job under rumors that their next paycheck can’t be paid. If it breaks down at the national level, the local level will be the first level to show it. Money trickles down in government, from the Federal level down to your hometown. Local services will be unable to function, and the situation will multiply upon itself.

    This is no time for the two parties to be fucking around with debt talks. They are teetering on the edge of failure the longer this takes, and that failure will affect all of us in ways that are too horrible to imagine.

    But if you’d like, you can try to imagine it. Just imagine what happens in a large city when the police force walks off the job. Imagine the sequence of events after that. Imagine your governor calling in the National Guard to “keep the peace”. Imagine how things break down from there.

    This is no time for our two political parties to be fucking around making political points.

    If we default, we’ll lose our status as the reserve currency of the world. When that happens, within days, nearly everything that can be purchased in America will double and triple in price. There will be a short grace period where, if our elected officials can then finally get their collective heads out their asses, we might be able to save our nation…we’ll never reverse the instantaneous inflation that occurred to that point, because our currency will no longer be wanted. I don’t think most of our politicians get just how cushy we have it being the reserve currency. Every nation wants our money, and with that comes bargaining power that the rest of the world knows nothing of.

    We’re about to know it, too. God bless you all. God have mercy on the souls of Republicans and Democrats, because the rest of America won’t.

    • JMAshby

      You started your post by making a political point, then you said “This is no time for our two political parties to be fucking around making political points.”

      Aside from that, you’re mostly right about all the potential consequences of failing to raise the ceiling, but where you go wrong is blaming “both sides” just like you always do.

      The president offered the Republicans exactly what they wanted. A massive reduction in the deficit. But they rejected it because it includes tax increases.

      So how exactly are both sides at fault? The democrats are completely willing to give and take and move on.

      And how can you say both parties are turning this into a power-grab? The democrats would be perfectly happy with a clean debt increase with no attachments. The president called for as much months ago.

      Your “both sides” argument wouldn’t hold up to even the casual observer.

      • Dan_in_DE

        Yepp, nail on the head. Otherwise it was a nice screed though from PPP..

      • Yeah, it’s not like Democrats had anything to do with passing the laws enabling the pilfering of SS funds or anything like that….

  • Dan and Sheila: Did you two have those same reservations at the beginning of the year when Obama’s “supporters” were doing the freak out because ‘he gave billions in cuts’ to the Republicans, and when the story was finally told, Obama had done such a head fake that it took progressives days to catch up to him?

    My mother (who is on Medicare) had vision problems. She saw doctors over a course of 10 months, five of the months two doctors were “consulting” on her problem. She was going to see one or the other every two to four weeks. Each and every time, they dilated her pupils. Now, I don’t know how much that particular test cost, but to repeat the same test 10 times has to be expensive (and unnecessary). If this is the kind of stuff Obama is trying to get rid of, I’m all for it and I could give a fuck who calls it Medicare cuts – I would still think he’s doing the right thing.

    • jjasonham

      Very well stated.

    • Dan_in_DE

      No I’m definitely not so much of a knee jerk Obama critic.. I’m just going on what’s coming across in the mainstream news + comedy news. Obviously they have been happy to present a bullshit controversy in which Obama sticks it to his netroots base again. I shouldn’t fall for it, but I’m also too busy to be more engaged with the day to day politics right now.

      Anybody have a good link describing the actual deal Obama offered them?

  • jjasonham

    But weren’t the Medicare and SS cuts from the wasteful parts? It wasn’t going to effect benefits.

  • Dan_in_DE

    It worries me too, that Obama would make them such an offer – including Soc. Sec. and Medicare cuts – and I dont buy that it was purely a ruse to make them an offer they couldn’t accept. But the result is undeniable. The R’s look pathetic! (not to mention bastardly greedy and evil)

    Here’s hoping that it’s a wakeup call to the Dem’s to reposition themselves at the rightful defenders of American social programs.

  • Dan_in_DE

    Yepp, the current R party is living in their own parallel reality.

  • I’m afraid Obama, too, is snatching defeat from the jaws of victory by putting Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid on the table.