90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
It’s Romney-Ryan

Mitt Romney names Wisconsin’s Paul Ryan as his VP running mate. We’ll look at the Ryan factor.

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, right, and vice presidential running mate Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, greet the crowd during a campaign event at the Waukesha County Expo Center, Sunday, Aug. 12, 2012, in Waukesha, Wis. (AP)

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, right, and vice presidential running mate Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, greet the crowd during a campaign event at the Waukesha County Expo Center, Sunday, Aug. 12, 2012, in Waukesha, Wis. (AP)

It’s Romney-Ryan as the Republican ticket. Mitt Romney, businessman former governor who won the primaries but did not set the Republican faithful on fire.

Paul Ryan, the 42-year-old Wisconsin congressman who’s government-slashing “Ryan budget” is the battle hymn of the Republican right.

He’s a live wire, even as his veins – as he told a Wisconsin crowd yesterday – run with cheese and bratwurst. Democrats call him a radical extremist. And the race, we’re told, is now clarified as a big, deep choice. This hour, On Point: Romney-Ryan, Obama-Biden, and the choice.

- Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Major Garrett, White House correspondent for National Journal.

Mark Halprin, senior political analyst for Time magazine, Time.com, and MSNBC.

William Hart, Paul Ryan’s former professor at Miami University in Ohio.

Congressman Brad Sherman, Democrat of California.

From Tom’s Reading List

Washington Post “Mitt Romney has selected Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin as his vice presidential running mate, introducing the seven-term congressman and architect of Republicans’ budget-cutting plans at a spirited rally on the deck of a battleship here Saturday morning.”

National Journal “”Paul Ryan isn’t a two-fer in presidential politics. He’s a ten-fer. Not because it’s convenient but because it’s true, Ryan brings five potential advantages and five potential hazards to Mitt Romney. Unlike anyone else Romney could have picked, Ryan is multifaceted politically and genuinely memorable on the gritty substance of fiscal policy. Next to Romney, Ryan stands equally balanced between promise and peril.”

Time “The left, right, center are in general agreement: Romney felt he was on a trajectory to lose a close contest and chose Ryan as a risky game-changing pick to move the frame from a referendum election on the President’s economic record to a choice election on the future of the size and scope of the federal government.”

Video: Paul Ryan’s Acceptance Speech

Here’s Congressman Paul Ryan’s full acceptance speech as Mitt Romney’s VP choice:

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
  • buncombe

    A perfect choice. Precisely as authentic and compassionate as Mitt himself.

  • http://www.facebook.com/chris.ossman Chris Ossman

    I agree with buncombe. Ryan is as immoral and compassion-less as Romney, perhaps even more so.  They could use any of the following slogans to describe their partnership:  “The Axis of Evil”, “Romney Dearest”, “The cRyan game” or “R & R, Risk & Reward”

  • http://freeourfreemarkets.org/ steve banicki

    Paul Ryan said they will be releasing two years of tax returns to the public. As the man who may be one step away from being President I trust the person who vetted him has looked at more than two years of returns.
    This is true of anyone running for President. The ones who are vetting those who are running for the highest office in the land have a right to review at least five years of tax returns. It is the citizens of this country who are vetting Presidential candidates. 
    Mr. Romney, where are your tax returns? 
    http://www.freeourfreemarkets.org/2012/07/is-romney-trustworthy.html

    • Mike_Card

      That pair of wingnuts just don’t seem to understand:  putting out the information is the price of admission.  If you don’t want to pay, you ain’t playin’.

  • Ellen Dibble

    I am really looking forward to having a national candidate with the time and the opportunity (and the long-time experience with the House and with the Budget) to explain to us exactly how the trickling can take place, for example; how the middle class will get to flourish again without either hanging a (tax) millstone around (globally inclined) corporate necks or decapitating our capitalist urges far and wide altogether.  

    I’d like to hear exactly how he has squared his vision with that of Wisconsin voters he represents, who have certainly had a chance to level with him, over time.  

    Rather, I “was” looking forward, till I heard him talking on 60 Minutes Sunday night, and now I’m afraid he has “pulled in his horns,” snail-wise, so to speak, and only says what he’s supposed to, without really responding anymore, nor taking on board anything new.  What an epic tragedy!  His foreign experience sitting on the Budget Committee, as some strategist put it, sounds like a bad joke.  Very bad.  I do hope he realizes that the American dream is/was to be free, not to be rich.  Spanish conquistadores cornered the moral market on that.  At least I doubt, were it not for the constant noise of advertisements, we’d want to be so rich as to count as/for more than one citizen, as they say, when it comes to weighing in. 

    • BHA_in_Vermont

      Perhaps Romney gave him an Etch-a-sketch when Ryan agreed to join the campaign.

    • Don_B1

      Explaining in any depth how Republican policies can help the bottom two-thirds of this country is the LAST thing that Republicans want to/will do!

      There is NO DATA that shows “trickle-down” works; all you have to look at is the eight years of GWB: great growth in the stock market and next to NO growth in wages. The business class simply took the extra money generated by increasing worker productivity for themselves.

      Read Joseph Stiglitz’s book, “The Price of Inequality.” An indication of what it haas to say is given in Stiglitz’s articles,

      http://www.vanityfair.com/politics/2012/05/joseph-stiglitz-the-price-on-inequality

      and,

      http://www.vanityfair.com/society/features/2011/05/top-one-percent-201105

      with a Q&A followup at:

      http://www.vanityfair.com/online/daily/2012/06/joseph-stiglitz-innovation-fallacy-reagan

      But the BOOK will give you the full story, at least to the extent it has been analyzed to date. And that story shows that inequality at the levels the Republicans will take this country will not be good for a single one of us, with the possible exception of those who can escape to some other Shangri-La.

  • Michiganjf

    So Ryan was voted “Biggest Brown-Noser” by his senior High School Class… I guess Romney did find a perfect match.

    Romney has fought pearly-white tooth and claw to avoid imparting an iota of specific substance on any issue whatever… obviously, Romney hasn’t a clue (“Russia is our number one geopolitical foe,” Palestinians can’t succeed because of their culture, etc…), but does that mean he chose Ryan to adopt an instant platform the TPers already love, or was he also clueless that he’d be instantly pegged to all of Ryans moronic, criminally irresponsible fiscal brainstorms?

    Ryan is another simple-minded Republican with more puppy-eyed charm than most, but no one will ever accept the sight of wonderboy in the oval office… it’s hard to imagine even Romney there.

    I’m assuming Romney has no ally quick-witted enough to keep him from stepping in c#@p.

    Some one is looking out for America… a deep mole on the Romney team, perhaps?

    • Michiganjf

      “Ryan is another simple-minded Republican with more puppy-eyed charm than most, but no one will ever accept the sight of wonderboy in the oval office…”

      No one, that is, other than the obvious battalion of brainiacs who would vote for a stick if they thought that somehow meant “their side wins.”

      • Michiganjf

        BTW, it looks like Romney’s wiki page has been wiped… there’s no longer any factoid about his having been voted “Biggest Brown-Noser” in High School!

  • Michiganjf

    I’ve set this image of ROMRYANEY as my desktop background.

    I Love It!!

    You can almsot hear them cackling,”Ah haaa… we’re going to pummel you chumps for every penny you’ve got… (keep smiling…)”

    Click for an exploded view… ;)

    • Michiganjf

      Hmmm… the image can no longer be expanded.

      I noticed The Daily Show used the exact photo as their opener tonight!

  • JGC

    I am pleased with the Ryan nomination.  The Romney/Ryan ticket explicitly spells out the direction they wish to take the country, well contrasted with the Obama/Biden ticket.   

    Romney/Ryan 2012! Get energizzzzzzzzzz….zzzzzzzzz….

  • Duras

    Hey, think of the children!  That’s why we got to cut everything including secondary and post-secondary education.  Otherwise, our kids might get educated and vote against the republican ticket.  Seriously, cut everything including taxes on the top.  But don’t cut the military.  We got to fight another war based on speculation with Iran.  So our kids don’t need college–they can join the military.  And don’t get the big A, we need body bags to fill until we clear out every Muslim country so the oil companies that fill our pockets will have an easier time in the region. 

    Don’t worry, if we make the rich just a little richer, in the words of Rick Santorum during a primary debate, “it will really trickle down.”  What is economic policy without faith?

    • Don_B1

      Remember, the Texas Republican legislature just moved to cut spending for teaching “critical thinking” in school, as it encourages “disrespect” for parents and elders (i.e., Republican ideology).

      • Duras

        Critical thinking will cause us to lose faith in the Creators of Jobs.  If we keep on worshipping them, they will bless us with tricklings.

  • JGC

    From Rep. Ryan’s House page on the issue of Social Security,
    http://paulryan.house.gov/issues  

    “The Social Security trust fund is derived from dubious government accounting…From 1984 to 2009, the trust fund collected more in Social Security taxes than it paid our in Social Security benefits.  But the government borrowed all of these surpluses and put them in other government programs unrelated to Social Security.”

    My timeline is as follows: 

    1984 – Ronald Reagan is President….Reagan and Congress overhaul Social Security to collect and hold more in trust for large contingent of working Baby Boomers who will need to start drawing on Social Security benefits starting around 2010…
    1986 – Paul Ryan’s father dies suddenly of heart illness. Paul Ryan, age 16, is eligible for Social Security Survivor’s benefit, which he saves to use towards paying his university tuition when he becomes 18…
    1996 – Bill Clinton is President…The U.S. has a budget surplus, that increases for the remaining years of the Clinton presidency…
    2002 – George W. Bush is President. Income taxes are cut, while unfunded wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are declared. The budget surplus begins to turn into a budget deficit… Towards the end of the G.W. Bush presidency, the Medicare prescription entitlement for seniors is increased, without an offset in increased taxes or decreased spending…The budget deficit rapidly widens…
    2008 – Wall Street implosion, G. W. Bush gives go ahead for TARP negotiation, unemployment increases,budget deficit huge,…
    2009 – Barack Obama is President. Employment rate stagnant, less Social Security taxes being collected, continued increase in budget deficit…
    2010 – Tea Party says “Keep your government hands off my Medicare/Social Security ” while Tea Party hero Rep. Ryan works to curtail entitlements like Medicare and Social Security.

    The trust fund collected more Social Security taxes in 1984 to 2009 because it was to be saved for the future retirement of the large Baby Boomer wave. This is called prudent planning, not dubious accounting.  If the government borrowed the surplus for other government programs, it was to obscure the shocking deficits generated under GWBush’s dubious Iraqi war and his Medicare donut hole giveaway…mmmm, donuts…

    But I digress, as I was saying, Paul Ryan izzzzzzzzzzzz…. 

    zzzzzzzzzzz…..
          

    • William

       What is the data that Obama took 700 billion out of Medicare?

      • Duras

        Obama’s cuts from Medicare Part D on the supplier side.  Medicare Part D is riddled with fraud: it’s where people are on their death-bed and a foot-doctor, a knee doctor, etc., comes in to treat a person dying of a brain cancer.  Obamacare restructures Part D to end the fraud. 

        If you read the Ryan Plan, Ryan cuts all of Medicare on the consumer side. 

        Please, get informed and quit voting against your own economic interests.

        • William

          So 700 billion dollars in cuts is not actually cuts, but savings? At least that is what Obama’s top adviser said yesterday. Ryan’s idea was to put the consumer into the mix rather than a blank check forcing the consumer of Medicare to think before they buy which makes sense.

          Are you sure your facts are correct?

          • Duras

            No.  There is actual fraud.  60 minutes did a piece on it.  Medicare Part D is the third leading driver of the deficit.  And that is the fraud and what Obamacare restructures.

            I hope you take the time to look at the index on Obamacare and read about what he does to medicare part D.  And then read the Ryan Budget. 

            And “think before you buy” doesn’t make sense.  People have regular check ups and listen to doctors.  Unless you want to send everyone to medical school, the think before you decide is stupid.

            I hope you do get yourself informed, and realize that the republicans are not working in the best interests of the majority of the country.

          • Don_B1

            And that SAME $700 billion is reduced by the PAUL RYAN plan, just in cuts to Medicare support to seniors (vouchers instead of full coverage for effective treatments). And then Ryan makes further cuts in Medicare.

        • Don_B1

          William is fully informed; he only throws in these distracting comments to divert the thread from informing people about the true story of how Republicans are out to kill the social safety net.

          In the Stiglitz VF articles I referenced above, the penultimate paragraph of the article, “Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1%,” says:

          “Alexis de Tocqueville once described what he saw as a chief part of the peculiar genius of American society—something he called “self-interest properly understood.” The last two words were the key. Everyone possesses self-interest in a narrow sense: I want what’s good for me right now! Self-interest “properly understood” is different. It means appreciating that paying attention to everyone else’s self-interest—in other words, the common welfare—is in fact a precondition for one’s own ultimate well-being. Tocqueville was not suggesting that there was anything noble or idealistic about this outlook—in fact, he was suggesting the opposite. It was a mark of American pragmatism. Those canny Americans understood a basic fact: looking out for the other guy isn’t just good for the soul—it’s good for business.”

          William has no idea of what “self-interest properly understood” means. And neither do any in the Tea/Republican leadership and too many in the Republican Party “base.”

  • Joseph_Wisconsin

    What I find funny is that Romney is already trying to distance himself from the Paul Ryan budget.  Well people actually believe this after Romney has in the past endorsed this budget several times and, my God, picked this budget’s author for VP? 

    It is consistent with Romney’s wish to run as the guess-what’s-behind-door-two candidate who says issues like income inequality should only be discussed in private behind closed doors. The many who touts his experience as a businessman at Bain as his principal qualification for office and turns around and whines when that  experience is subjected to scrutiny. The man who of what’s known about his tax reform policy is to provide even more cuts for, well for people like Mitt Romney, because such people are over taxed. Yet does not want the public to see just what tax rate he actually pays. The man who has actually stated that he does not want to talk about  what he would do as President because “if I tell you you won’t vote for me.”

    I suppose that this obfuscation is needed as the Romney/Ryan ticket is trying to sell  trickle down economics round three—Trickle Down on Steroids—to a public that knows how well trickle down rounds one and two worked for them.  

    • Don_B1

      Romney is just continuing his whole approach to the election: having it both ways:

      He will say his budget will preserve the safety net while his pick gives the “dog-whistle” signal to the core conservatives that Ryan’s approach to the budget and killing the safety net will be policy. He is counting on the majority of independents not knowing much about Ryan since they in general do not pay attention to policy at all and make a decision based on bumper-sticker quotes in the voting booth.

  • Mouse_2012

    What a dumb pick. Ryan’s whole career is based on having big government supply him with Health Care and many other Big Government perks .

    The right-wing spin machine will have to go in overdrive to spin all of Ryan’s previous statements,votes and plans.

    • Don_B1

      That is underway with reports of Ryan’s wiki page being scrubbed of all counter-story data.

  • Mouse_2012

     Paul Ryan is No Deficit Hawk
    http://wonkwire.com/2012/08/11/paul-ryan-is-no-deficit-hawk/

    Jonathan Chait
    points out that Ryan “spent the entire Bush administration either
    supporting the administration’s deficit-increasing policies, or
    proposing alternative policies that would have created much higher
    deficits than even Bush could stomach, but came away from it with a
    reputation as the ultimate champion of fiscal responsibility.”

    Tax expert: Paul Ryan’s ‘smoke and mirrors’ budget would increase deficit

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/post/tax-expert-paul-ryans-smoke-and-mirrors-budget-would-increase-deficit/2012/03/20/gIQAQ0cyPS_blog.html

    Ryan’s Budget Spin

    The GOP budget chairman throws some curves while supposedly ‘setting the record straight.’

    http://www.factcheck.org/2011/05/ryans-budget-spin/

    Paul Ryan was for Big Deficits before he was against them (graphic)

    http://www.juancole.com/2012/08/paul-ryan-was-for-big-deficits-before-he-was-against-them-graphic.html

  • BHA_in_Vermont

    I wonder if Ryan would have different thoughts about Medicare and Medicaid had he grown up in other financial circumstances. He didn’t even need the Social Security money he got after his father died, saved it for college.

    Would he think differently about social safety net programs if his mother had had to go to work at a minimum wage job after his father’s death? 

    I suspect Ryan is as disconnected from the ‘common man’ as Romney. OK, maybe not AS disconnected. Romney is worth over $200M. Ryan only a few million.

    “Mitt Romney’s newly announced running mate reported assets in the range of $2 million to $7.7 million. The largest was the interest that his
    wife, Janna, holds in a trust resulting from the 2010 death of her
    mother, Prudence Little. Her interest in the trust falls in the range of
    $1 million to $5 million, Ryan reported.”

    From the LATimes: http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-pn-ryan-millionaire-20120811,0,606000.story

    • nj_v2

      Yes, and with Obama’s net worth at around $7 million, he’s clearly more “connected” to the ” common man,” right?

      • BHA_in_Vermont

         Obama started as “the common man”. Much of his life before college was “common”. Ryan never wanted for anything – except his father, a tragedy no matter who you are.

      • Don_B1

        Your point that wealth is not a prima-facie case for connection to the “common man” is well-made; but it does not absolve either Romney or Ryan for their long-demonstrated inability to relate to the needs of those less well-off than themselves.

        Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy and Edward M. Kennedy being excellent examples of those with great wealth who did understand what was necessary to ease the plight of the poor and middle class in finding a way to live with a decent job that they could work hard in and gain self-respect as a contributor to the general welfare of the country.

  • Yar

    Paul Ryan “It is our duty to save the American Dream for our children and theirs.”  (5:36 in YouTube link above)

    What is the American Dream?  Not all that long ago it was 40 acres and a mule.  In the past decade, it was suburban on a 1/4 acre lot.  Today, it is a job. Hopefully one that pays living expenses and student loan debts.
      
    It is a false claim that we can continually grow our way to prosperity.   
    American people desire security in all stages of their life.  Political polarization is designed to pit Americans of different ages against each other.  The truth is, we haven’t prepared for baby boomers’ old age.  Where the stock market was intended to invest in productivity, instead it invested in political power and cronyism.  Banks are involved in the same institutional corruption.   This truth is at the root of Americans’ current fears and frustration.  Baby boomers played by the rules, saved for retirement, and thought they were investing in the future of America.  A middle class whose hard work stolen by a corrupt “market”.

    “Jenna and I tell Eliza, Charlie and Sam that America is a place, where, if you work hard and play by the rules you can get ahead.” (Paul Ryan 12:18 in YouTube link above)

    The idea that we are a nation of equal opportunity is also false.  We have a sorted history of exploitation, from natives who we drove from their homeland in tears, to the “undocumented immigrants” who pick our vegetables today, but don’t have a path to citizenship. America strongly protects its caste system with an iron fist, even denying caste class exist.  Upward mobility is decreasing in the US.   Hope in upward mobility is what creates the American dream.  This is a difference in the Democratic and Republican ideologies, Democrats play to achieving the dream while Republicans play to holding on to the dream which has already been achieved.  

    Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan are in the middle of the class of Americans their policies are designed to protect.

    My questions for today:

    Did a Social Security death benefit help put Paul Ryan through College?

    How do people with power get average Americans to vote against their own self interest?

    • BHA_in_Vermont

       “have a sorted history of exploitation”
      Presumably: “have a SORDID history of exploitation”

      • Yar

        BHA,
        Thanks,
        I will edit the post.
        I have a sorted history with spelling.
        I use this blog to keep my skills from deteriorating to the point of being incomprehensible.
        I appreciate a good editor. I don’t even mind when my logic is challenged.

        • TinaWrites

          And you are a very appreciated contributor to On Point’s Comments!

    • Brandstad

      You should talk to Obama’s advisors on your question; “How do people with power get average Americans to vote against their own self interest?” since 90+% of black voters voted for him and 4 years of his policies have resulted in more blacks on welfare, foodstamps, increased unemployment, and decreased black household wealth.

      • BHA_in_Vermont

         Remove the word “black” from your “and look what happened” comments and they still apply – to all but to the richest people of any racial background.

        • Brandstad

          You are mostly correct.  I only segregated my comment to blacks is because they voted overwhelmingly for Obama and they have suffered more than almost any other demographic group under Obama’s presidency!
           
          Black youth unemployment rate is near 50% while white youth unemployment is under 20%
           
          The youth unemployment rate as a whole in the United States has spiked dramatically since 2007. The youth unemployment rate was 10.8% in July of 2007, meaning that we have witnessed a near 8% increase over just two years.
           
          Where you are wrong is your comment about the rich.  The rich have lost great deals of wealth over the last 4 years, but I will admit their unemployment rate, food stamp participation, and Medicare usage for the rich is mostly unchanged. :)

          • TinaWrites

            The Obama Presidency has been blighted by the obstructionism of the Republicans!!!   Also, the so-called “Job Creators” already HAVE their tax break — the tax break they say allows them to create jobs — yet, THEY have NOT created enough jobs recently.  All the while, the rich are getting richer….

          • Don_B1

            The rich “job creators” are NOT job creators except by accident. They work tirelessly to preserve their wealth and further increase it. They are not into taking “risks” on new uncertain enterprises, they want to collect “rent money” on their current wealth and want to create monopolies to make sure their investments will continue to generate even more income. And their wealth “guarantees” (at least as long as they can sell themselves as “job creators”) the ability to use government to create those monopolies.

            Mitt Romney looked at a business for weaknesses, not necessarily in how it did business but whether there was a way of buying in cheap and either selling off pieces or extracting assets in other ways. If he did something that helped the company prosper, all the better, but it was not necessary. That is rent-seeking at its basic level.

            Read Stiglitz on inequality in his book (or the VF articles).

          • TinaWrites

            Yes!  I saw an op-ed article by Stiglitz and an interview with him. I have been trying to tell everyone to try to link to them!  Thanks so much!

          • Reasonforall

            The rich have not lost a great deal of their wealth. The dollar is strong, corporate profits are very good, and the markets are equally healthy. Makes sense, since it’s now the government of the 1%, by the 1%, and for the 1%…

      • sickofthechit

         Huh, Brad, actually their are ever higher numbers of people (blacks, hispanics and whites) on welfare and in poverty because we are going through the worst recession since the Great Depression.  The decrease in black household wealth was the result of the housing debacle, not President Obama’s policies.

      • jimino

        The destruction of over $8 trillion in middle and lower class assets will tend to have those kind of repercussions.  That happened before Obama was elected and the party whose policies led to that has fought any realistic attempt to remedy any of the problems resulting from it.  So there we are.

        What do you suggest be done to deal with these facts?

        • Brandstad

          My examples compare day 1 of the Obama years to today.  This doesn’t account for anything that happened before so your statement is not accurate.

          • timwesley

            Your examples make it seem like I should think that because I’m black I’m at greater risk of going on welfare if Obama is president. Are you one of those people that think there’s a “black vote”, and that can’t distinguish between causal and non-causal factors?

          • Michiganjf

            The genius, Brandstad, will argue in one post that Obama is handing America to poor blacks at the expense of “job creatin’ ” whites, then in the next post Obama is the worst thing that ever happened to impoverished minorities.

            He’s THE PERFECT Romney “Richie Rich” supplicant.

          • Reasonforall

            More often that not, commenters supporting the 1% are the folks who are not wealthy but think that one day the GOP will offer them the winning lottery ticket.

    • William

       Is the American Dream receiving some sort of check from their fellow taxpayers? What was the numbers released last week? 100 million Americans receiving a check, not country SS/Medicare…is this the way forward?

      • Yar

        In a word yes, the American dream is to “trade work over time”. Money is a unit of measurement for that trade. We learn to work during the first of our life, we work during majority of our life and we hopefully have some value left from that work for our years past work. Call it the taxpayer or the next generation, we were assisted by the previous generation, we assist the next generation. Pay it forward. This has been corrupted
        by the financial industry. It has pulled from the flow of wealth to feather their their own nest at the demise of the rest of us.

        Money has no value without a society and educated population ready to work. No man is an island, everyone needs someone to wipe their butt at some point in their life. How do we trade work over time without government or taxes? As a nation we have a responsibility for people during all stages of life. Even if you are the most selfish person in the world, you should care about the destruction of our social safety net.

    • Mary Kubac

      Oh yeah, when my husband died of cancer, that $250 SS death benefit made such a HUGE difference in the monetary security of myself and my teenage son. Life improved vastly. And now, when I find myself with bone metastasis from my breast cancer, and have been put on SSDI, I can’t get Medicare coverage until 24 months are up because I’m 60, not 65. Some Republican earwigs back in the 1970′s were responsible for that nasty little piece of work. Now yacht club idiot Mittens has chosen to pick a running mate that’s intent on ripping up the only remaining benefit we can see from all our years of hard work. I had a 401K. Because of the greed and underhanded corruption of the 1%. it amounted to almost nothing. Talk about a scam.  The only way that 401K would have amounted to anything useful was if I had had anything substantial to put into it to begin with. This country is another Rome in its death throes, and the “little people” have been nothing but its slaves. Darwinism at its finest.

      • Don_B1

        As your story tragically demonstrates, there is a need for a stronger safety net, not the weakened, or non-existent one that Republicans, particularly Romney and Ryan types, who have inherited money to cushion them in periods of trouble, but are unwilling to provide similar cushions for those who do not have inherited cushions.

        My hopes that you are able to at least struggle through your troubles and come out able to enjoy some real life in the future.

    • Don_B1

      I like the points you made, but there is one aspect of growth in GDP that consists of getting the currently unemployed back to work; that would have two effects:

      1) The safety net costs to the federal government would be reduced as direct unemployment checks would drop, food stamp costs would drop and Medicaid costs would drop. These “increased” costs due to the financial crisis of 2007-9 are what Republicans are falsely claiming are Obama’s increased spending; with the exception of the extensions of unemployment eligibility, these were all in place before Obama took office.

      2) It is the Republicans that have blocked attempts to provide money for necessary infrastructure maintenance and renewal as well as other necessary investment in future technology and education to build and keep a great workforce that has kept many unemployed from finding work.

      In that sense, as the population grows, the economy must grow and as worker productivity grows, the country will be able to carry the costs of the safety net and do the necessary things to provide for the future of everyone.

      But we cannot grow when the elites are only, to use a term in its full economic meaning, “rent seeking.” When that happens, those with money only invest it to provide the maximum short term return. Then there are no investments made in basic scientific research, which gives the industries of the future. Business (with MA Bell and its Bell Laboratories being one of the few exceptions, and it, like all the others, was basically a regulated monopoly unlike most businesses) has never done the basic research that develops new industries.

  • adks12020

    I have to believe this pick is only going to help to rally the Democrat base and move many independants to the left.  Ryan is such a divisive figure. He’s been leading the Republican charge of “let’s pass this even though we know it won’t get through the senate” for three years. He’s one of the most public figures in a Congress that has one of the lowest approval ratings ever and can’t seem to get anything done.  It makes no sense to me to pick him.

    It may rally harcore conservatives but they were already going to vote for Romney just to get Obama out of office.  They really needed to gain support from Independants and even some moderate Dems.  This pick is not going to help that at all.

    Sure it makes a distinct choice.  Now the two options are about as different as they can be.  Was it wise though? I don’t think so.

    • Ray in VT

      I was largely thinking along your line when I read the piece in the paper yesterday announcing the pick.  I think that Ryan could do a great deal to increase the enthusiasm from within the GOP and the Tea Party, and Romney has certainly seemed to have a problem with credibility with the latter.  Certainly, though, elements from his legislative record and his budget proposals lend themselves to some pretty easy attacks from the administration and the pro-Obama super pacs.

      • Gregg Smith

        I like the pick and welcome the super Pac lies and distortions. I think people realize we need a real plan and don’t even have a budget. There has not been a single (please correct me) proposal from Democrats that addresses entitlements and in fact they created the mother of all entitlements with Obamacare. It seems to me the tactic of attacking the opposition is less credible when you have no plan. This is exaggerated exponentially when the attacks get gratuitously tacky and over the top in perilously serious times. 

        • jimino

          If you want a real and realistic plan I suggest The People’s Budget:

          http://cpc.grijalva.house.gov/the-peoples-budget/

          • Don_B1

            I am so glad that (at least a few) others remember that truly great proposal.

            But so far, Senate Republicans have forced amendments to every budget that makes them unpassable, which is their goal in the first place, as admitted by Mitch McConnell, the Republican Senate Minority Leader.

            And any bill that was built on Obama proposals comes out of the House of Representatives unrecognizable from its original form.

  • Gregg Smith

    The only person in Congress with the cojones propose actual solutions is depicted by Democrats as throwing Granny over a cliff. There you have it. Romney/Ryan will speak to us as adults and level with the American people while Democrats will say they want dirty air and water, to ship your jobs overseas and then have you die of cancer. Obama will conflate debt and deficit, “stimulus” and TARP, valid  criticism and racism and on and on. He will imply it’s either a tax hike for the rich or autistic children going hungry. Mitt Romney put it well: “Mr. President, take your campaign out of the gutter”.

    We’re in a real mess here and this juvenile crap is killing us.

    • J__o__h__n

      And the so called death panels were an example of reasoned debate?

      • Gregg Smith

        Yes.

        • jimino

          Kind of like a dog whistle.  You have to have to be a “special” person to get the message.  And well trained too!

    • Duras

      Yeah!  Cut everything except the Military!  As for the dems who want to lower the deficits by ending its number one driver (The Bush Tax Cuts), kiss our butts.  Who cares about what we do to the consumer class when all we have to do is make the rich a little richer.  God, I wish this was a one party state, then we wouldn’t have to hear the dems whin about “compromise.”  There’s nothing disingeneuous about presenting budgets that would never pass in a two-party system.  And there’s nothing autocratic about it either.  And it’s not like autocratic attitudes cause gridlock….

      • Gregg Smith

        That’s funny!

        • Duras

          The world is pretty funny to people who believe tax cuts raise revenue while tax hikes decrease revenue, who believe the poor are rich while the rich are actually poor, who believe teacher wages and welfare are eating more of the budget than a small tax cut on the top, who think the poor like being poor because of lavish $2 a day food stamps. 

          Yup, pretty funny.

          • Gregg Smith

            What’s funny is looking back a decade for blame when it’s right in your face. In 2007 after 4 years of raging wars and tax cuts the deficit was $151 billion. 2007 still holds the record for the highest revenue in the history of the universe. BTW, revenue was less as a percentage of GDP when the top rate was 90%. Your argument is hilarious.

        • Don_B1

          It would be if it wasn’t so tragic.

    • Don_B1

      Ryan’s budget had to assume that unemployment could be reduced to 2.8% by 2020 or sooner and even then his tax cuts for the rich in addition to making the Bush cuts permanent prevented reaching a balanced budget until 2040, more than a decade after Obama’s plan would.

      That is “responsible?” How many bridges over the East River have you bought lately?

  • J__o__h__n

    Mitt needs to decide if he is going to continue appeasing the base or start etch-a-sketching his way to the middle.  He selects Ryan who is best known for his radical budget (which Romney has supported) and now claims that Ryan will be following Mitt’s lead to try to distance himself from it.  This is a new low in disingenuousness.

    • Brandstad

      There was nothing Radical about the Ryan budget.  It was so mainstream it only cut federal spending growth to 3% above the bloated Obama budget increases.  If the budget was radical, it would bring government growth to -3% per year for 10 years!

      Please tell me what you think is radical!

      • J__o__h__n

        Tax cuts for the rich and cuts to the middle class.  If it isn’t radical, why is Mitt weaseling away from it?

        • Brandstad

          Exactly what cuts to the middle class are you talking about?

          • J__o__h__n

            medicare vouchers

          • Duras

            Medicare, police wages, teacher wages, higher tuition, less scholarships, fire fighter wages….

      • Duras

        Jesus always said to help the rich whenever possible, cut healthcare for the poor, and let the moneychangers do whatever they want.   Now that is a universal truth I can bend over to.

  • Brandstad

    If Democrat spending theory was true, Italy would be the next Germany.

    See below.

    Italy just announced its all-time record high general government debt load at EUR 1.973 trillion. What is perhaps most stunning, given all the talk of austerity, cutting back, reforms, and change is that the size of this debt is growing at an ever-increasing pace that is simply stunning.Pre-Euro (1999), Italy’s debt was growing at a rate of just less than EUR 2 billion per month; in the eight years from then until the crisis in 2008, Italy’s pace of debt growth (fostered we are sure by the convergent cheapness of funding and their immutable belief in invincibility) almost perfectly doubled to EUR 3.8bn per month. Since 2008, and the onset of excess Keynesian ridicule we assume, Italy’s debt load has grown at a stunning pace of EUR 6.4 billion per month and perhaps most incredible; however, the last nine-months (since the peak ‘peak’ of the crisis in September of last year) has seen the pace of debt-load growth surge to EUR 9.5 billion per month. Sustainable levels of exponential debt growth – sure!

    • Duras

      You mean the Germany with high taxes, robust infrastructure, free health care, free college, and the biggest renewable energy initiative in the world. 

      You mean republicans are for all of that…?   Gee, I’ll vote for any party that is working for the conditions Germany has.

      • Duras

        You’re a joke Brandstad.  Face reality and realize that there is no model of strong economics and human rights for your political vision. 

        Every successful country in the world right now has economic conditions to the left of America.  America’s most productive periods had higher taxes, stronger regulations, and more public employment.

        I love how you avoided this kind of argument over the weekend, but thought you could mention a backhanded version of it now.  You are pathetic.

  • J__o__h__n

    I had been hoping he would pick Rafalca. 

    • Ray in VT

      Gotta be at least 35 though.

      • BHA_in_Vermont

         She is – in “people years” ;)

        • Ray in VT

          Does she have a birth certificate, and how does she feel about laissez-faire?

  • Brandstad

    Obama Campaign Defends President’s $700 Billion Cuts to Medicare…

    • sickofthechit

       Its a shame you aren’t willing to tell the whole story, but then it would contradict your headline view of things…

      • Brandstad

        Are you asking me to give you a page by page review of the 2000+ page bill?  Is this because you didn’t read it?

        I don’t think most people here care enough to read it or discuss it in detail.

        • BHA_in_Vermont

           2000+ pages is part of the problem. Few will read it all let alone be able to understand it. Least of all the people in Washington who vote it up or down.

      • Don_B1

        I agree, except that it is Brandstad’s cherry-picking approach that more appropriately characterizes his statement here. Every argument he makes leaves out a lot of contradictory facts that would blow his case out of the water.

        First, the Ryan plan also cuts Medicare by over $700 billion, but by cutting the money to patients, where, second, the Obama cuts do it by eliminating overcharging, defensive testing and spending on ineffective procedures, particularly when the patient is at the end of life and the procedure is more likely to cause the patient reduced quality of life in the final days. Obama’s policy also begins to reorient the way medicine is practiced, more in groups like at the Mayo or Cleveland Clinics, etc.

        Note that 30% of hospital costs are for administration, providing a good target for savings, which the Ryan plan does not require.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

      And Ryan gets kudo’s from the right for wanting to cut major money out of Medicare. I guess posturing is much more popular to the right than actually, like, doing it.

  • Brandstad

    Dear Florida Seniors: You Should Be THRILLED By Paul Ryan!

    Paul Ryan is committed to radically changing Medicare into a voucher program, and Democrats are hoping that they can turn this fact into an issue that destroys Romney’s chances in Florida, a state filled with entitlement-happy seniors that is a must win for the Republican.

    But if Florida seniors were thinking rationally and self-interestedly, this Democratic attack would flop.
    Paul Ryan is proposing no changes to Medicare for another 10 years, so anyone currently 55 or older wouldn’t be affected at all.
    And if you assume that the law won’t get passed for a couple years, you can safely assume this issue is 100% irrelevant to anyone 53 or older.
    The distinguishing characteristic of Florida is old people, but if the law doesn’t even affect anyone who is older than their early 50s, it really shouldn’t be a problem in Florida at all.
    Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/florida-seniors-should-be-thrilled-by-paul-ryan-2012-8#ixzz23QzC8ZPZ

    • J__o__h__n

      Any cuts should be for everyone.  Why should those of us paying into it, get less than current seniors?

      • Brandstad

        Cutting benefits promised to seniors that are retired and not earning an income is pretty cruel. 

        Forcing the young and working population to pay more isn’t great but at least they can plan ahead.  if these people would have paid attention for the last 20 years they could have prevented the current elderly from getting ever increasing and unfunded benefit increases by voting for conservatives!

        • Don_B1

           Like the drug benefit bill (Medicare part D) which the Bush administration and the Republican-controlled Congress did not pay for, but which IS paid for under PPACA (Obamacare)?

    • sickofthechit

       It’s an obvious tactic to separate “us” from “them” in hopes of capturing the elderly vote.  Here’s hoping our seniors are more savvy than that.

      • Don_B1

        This has been true in the past and it is likely to be true now also. Seniors are generally more altruistic than the real rich and they do realize that their children will need Social Security and Medicare as it is today when they reach retirement.

        An example is the total failure of George W. Bush’s attempt to “privatize” Social Security, which took a similar approach in 2005, but appropriately went NOWHERE.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

       And those under 55 get to pay into Medicare for decades for vouchers many in practice won’t be able to afford to use. But I expect many on the right have no issues screwing over their children as long as they get theirs.

      • Brandstad

        I don’t think anyone can win an election by limiting medicare to levels where people on average get out of the system what they put in since the average family puts in 100K in their life and under current spending, they take out 350K.  This would mean senior would get crushed!  Are you acutally that cruel to put that penalty on our elderly?  or would you rather burden those who have deccades to prepare for how the change affects them?

    • jimino

      Before any vouchers get used, a market for health insurance for anyone 65 or older will have to be created.  There currently is no such market.  What’s the plan for forcing the “free market” to create such an entity, and how much will such coverage cost?

    • BHA_in_Vermont

       Hey thanks Branstad, I wouldn’t have known I should vote for Romney/Ryan because Rayn’s Medicare plan won’t affect ME, at least not for 10 years. Screw my kids, and everyone else’s kids. Oh, and my wife too. Think like a CEO – short term gain for me, Me, ME!!!!!! Make sure I am dead in 10 years though because all of a sudden, the plan WOULD affect ME.

      Frankly, any plan that doesn’t do anything for 10 years is no plan at all.

      • Don_B1

        There is one easily pointed out way that Ryan’s Medicare plan will affect current recipients, not to mention those between 55 and 65 (or 67) by noting that the drug “donut hole” will be restored under Ryan’s plan. There are others also.

  • MarkVII88

    Since Congress currently sits at what I think is its all-time low public approval rating (below 20%), do your guests think that having the “Republican Congressman” from Wisconsin as his running-mate will help Romney more than it hurts him?

  • Michiganjf

    Love the way the Romney campaign is trying to distance Ryan, a career politician who has never done anything else, from Congress.

    Ryan and his ilk OWN the current reputation of Congress!!

  • MarkVII88

    Since Congress currently sits at what is it’s all-time lowest public approval rating (below 20%), does having the “Republican Congressman” as his running-mate help Romney more than it hurts him?

    • Don_B1

      If the Democrats cannot make it hurt him, maybe they don’t deserve to to win, except that the consequences for the future of this country would be catastrophic. Thus it is up to us to make sure it hurts Romney.

      Find my links to Joseph Stiglitz’s articles in Vanity Fair above.

      And if the weather extremes this summer did not bother you, wait till the ones in four years, which should make everyone regret not getting serious about CO2 emissions reduction earlier.

  • Ellen Dibble

    Did Ryan turn the Congress from the Bush II overspending splurge to a budget conscious present?  But wait, didn’t he vote for the Iraq adventure and the tax cuts for the wealthy?  Hmm.

    • William

       I think Obama pushed extending the tax cuts for the rich too?..

      • J__o__h__n

        He went along with it to pass extending them for the middle class and extending unemployment benefits.  He didn’t push them. 

        • Gregg Smith

          He could have  ended them at anytime during the first 2 years but he did not have Democrat support.

  • MrNutso

    Raising my had right here on Romney’s remark.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    Well over 90% have already decided how they are voting this fall. While Ryan is a great choice for the far right, they were voting Romney anyway. I think Ryan will look much scarier to the undecided.

  • Larry Watford

    14 years in Congress – he’s part of the problem!

  • http://twitter.com/en_b ian berry

    Change the ticket to Ryan/Romney

  • nj_v2

    I’ll go out on a limb with a prediction: 

    Another political program, another day of forum partisans clinging to “their side,” desperately pretending that either the RR white-bread boys or the current Prevaricator in Chief give a whit about them or the general welfare of the country.

    The Recons have been fully hijacked by the most regressive, oligarchic factions of the party, aided and abetted by delusional, easily manipulated Tea Partiers and diehard social repressives. 

    With the genuine progressive elements so few and effectively marginalized, the Dims continue to steer a moderate right, corporatist route, placating their gullible devotees by throwing a few bones to the masses on a couple of social issues and making faint, squeaky, populist noises on the economy all while continuing policies that suppress civil rights and enrich the richest.

    A la Woody Allen, we have a “choice” between the horrible the the merely awful.

    Devotees of the current corporatist chair warmer in the Oval Office will want to pretend that if only they continue to believe real hard, that real soon the guy they thought they voted for in 08 will show his true colors, now that he doesn’t have to worry about re-election. 

    Never mind that Obummer has so far given us destruction of habeas corpus; targeting and potential killing of U.S. citizens by executive decree; appointments of corporate hacks to high positions, Monsanto exec. Taylor to the FDA, for example (breaking campaign promise not to hire lobbyists); Wall Street banksters as Chief of Staff; support of unrevised PATRIOT Act renewal; ACA (The Insurance Company Windfall Act, essentially the same plan the conservatives offered as an alternative to Hillary Care in the 90s); essentially no prosecution of the fraudulent, lying, corrupt banksters that brought us the Wall Street collapse (one prosecution that we know of, for sure); opposition to reinstatement of Glass-Steagal; more “free trade” job-offshoring (this time to Panama, South Korea, Columbia); exempting BP and other oil companies from environmental laws; protected Bush officials from prosecution; extended $8+ billion loan guarantees to support nuke power; drastic increase in government secrecy; more offshore oil drilling…

    With his “free trade” initiatives, and his signing of FSMA and CFMA which enabled the Wall Street corruption of 07/08, Clinton is as much a part of the Democratic enabling of repression and regression as is Obama. Shrub provided a nearly seamless transition, adding extra debauchery with the invasion of Iraq.

    This is now what “liberals” have come to represent and support. The ironic comedy of the right calling this the “radical left,” with the rank-and-file Dems and terminal Obamabots pretending this is the best hope for the middle class and ordinary folks has become the main act of the sad, now predictable political kabuki theater which is now American politics.

  • Ellen Dibble

    Someone should get either/and Ryan/Romney how they plan to address the gap between the top 1% and the rest.  Or are they in favor of that widening?  Perhaps they are?  All hail the oligarchy?  Regulate the taxpayers, not the oligarchs.  Watch for the DeTails of the $9,000 a year paid to 100 million Americans, per the Heritage Foundation.  That adds up to the trillion the Republican plan plans to cut.

    • BHA_in_Vermont

       I think it is pretty clear that Romney does not think there is anything wrong with the “gap” status quo.

    • Brandstad

      IF the top 10% didn’t make significantly more than the bottom 10%, what motivation would people have to better themselves?
       
      In your scenario of equality, the HS dropout working as a janitor would make close to the same as the PHD Graduate working to teach the students!  This makes no sense!
       

      • Don_B1

        It does not take an executive pay of 500 times the wages of the median worker in his company to “incentivize” the executive. The ratio was less than 100 in the most prosperous period of the U.S. economy, from 1950 to 1970 plus.

    • DrewInGeorgia

      They don’t plan to address the gap between the top 1% and the rest of us, they intend to widen it.

  • Brandstad

    Did this program just complain about Ryan’s lack of international experience?  Did this person sleep through the last election?  What international expreience did Obama have? 

    • nj_v2

      Translation: For the right, having someone as unqualified as Obama (something they complained bitterly about) is fine as long as it’s a repressive/regressive Republican.

  • http://www.facebook.com/anita.paul.5680 Anita Paul

    Why does everyone keep saying Paul Ryan is innovative.  Isn’t this the program the Republicans always wanted in the first place.  Since day one they have been trying to get rid of Medicare and Social Security.  Same with the tax issue give cuts to the rich and hope that they economy booms which it never has. 

  • Matt Wade

    Krugman said it best, “Romney obviously felt he needed a VP who will get people to stop talking about him.”

    This is the first GOP ticket with zero foreign policy experience since…well, forever? The base is already fired up, so Romney doesn’t gain anything from this pick, he only loses moderates and independents, as well as the elderly, hispanics, and the entire state of Florida.

    McCain lost the election when he suspended his campaign to save the economy. Rombot 2.0 lost it when he allowed himself to be bullied into picking a zombie-eyed granny starver as VP. 

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    Definition of doublespeak – condemning Obamacare for making cuts to Medicare spending while praising Ryan for saying he will make cuts to Medicare spending.

    • Brandstad

      Didn’t Obama cut 700 billion of medacare spending and Ryan propsed cutting the growth of the medicare spending?  These are not at all the same!

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

        So Obama took the more fiscally responsible role? Thanks for pointing that out.

      • Livin_Large

        No, the ACA did not cut Medicare funding but did cut reimbursement for Medicare Part C (managed care) which was audited and found to have excessively high reimbursements. Also, ACA has a primary goal of cutting the GROWTH of cost and has features which are intended to reduce all healthcare spending, including Medicare by hundreds of billions over the next decade. For perspective, the INCREASE in the cost of healthcare in the US between 2009-2010 was about $100 billion, or about $375 for every m-w-c in the US.

        Ryan’s voucher proposal, where Grannie gets a coupon and goes shopping, is a much different concept.

  • MrNutso

    I am dissatisfied with the Republican economy, because Republican ideas have been driving it for most of 16 of the last 18 years.

  • BHA_in_Vermont

    Given that Romney does not yet have the Republican nomination, isn’t it a bit early to pick a VP running mate? What if they get to the Conference and they decide to choose Ryan instead? ;)

  • Brandstad

    Wow, is Neil (the caller) the intelectual level of the listeners to this program?  I hope not. This caller had no clear thoughts only insults and misguided generalities.

    • MrNutso

      Frankly I think that is the general intellect level of the American electorate.

  • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

    The job of the vice-president:  Give speeches, break an occasional tie vote, and pray that the president dies.

  • MarkVII88

    Paul Ryan is an ambitious little so-and-so, like the Reese Witherspoon character in that movie “ELECTION”.  If Romney’s pick of Ryan may disenfranchise as many republican voters as it empowers, how can Romney’s choice be seen as anything other than another attempt to win over the minority of the GOP establishment who haven’t jumped on-board?

  • Matt Wade

    Just how laughable is Ryan’s long-term spending projections? His plan projects an absurd future, according to the Congressional Budget Office, in which all discretionary spending, now around 12 percent of GDP, shrinks to 3 percent of GDP by 2050. Defense spending alone was 4.7 percent of GDP in 2009. With numbers like that, Ryan is more an anarchist-libertarian than honest conservative.

  • Brandstad

    Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan – America’s Comeback Team. Optimism for a change.

    • J__o__h__n

      The choice of Ryan makes me optimistic for an Obama victory.

      • DrewInGeorgia

        I admire your optimism. Unfortunately, recent discussions with many “rational” people prevent me from sharing it.

  • Michiganjf

    Paul Ryan is “authentic???!!!!”

    Is that why he was voted “Biggest Brown-Noser” in High School?

    … or was he more authentic when he back-tracked on his statement (before Rand Disciples) that Rand was the NUMBER ONE factor in determining his world view???

    … back-tracked, of course, once his draconian budget FOR THE RICH began to get ripped apart!!!

  • Ray in VT

    On a bit of a lighter note, I saw him (Ryan) quoted in the paper as saying that Obama won’t be President on November 6th.   I love it when people say things like that.  Obviously Obama will still be President on November 6th no matter what happens on election day.  It’s a misstatement, and Congressman Ryan knows better, but it’s still funny.

  • Jennifer Jia

    lol, I just turned off the program after listening to Major Garrett and Mark Halprin crowing how Paul Ryan is this perfect guy with great ideas… 

    If I want to listen to known cheerleaders of Paul Ryan rehashing talking points, I don’t have to listen to On Point.  I can simply read Jennifer Rubin’s column and get my needed spin.

  • superfinehelios

    This pairing will certainly polarize the bases more. Romney is clearing saying he doesn’t want my vote.

  • 1davidkiroshabteselassie1

    Possibly the dumbest move Mitt Romney ever made. He just lost all the old folks who always vote. 

    • TinaWrites

      Not those wealthy old folks who did very well and saved a lot, ESPECIALLY IF they also have no health care issues. Those individuals can be remarkably smug, thinking that even their excellent good fortune in not getting ill means THEY exercised their “freedom” in the “correct and admirable” way; others just squandered their “God-given opportunities that were also “protected” by our Constitution.  They are the smug Patriots and the only thing they seem to lack is a capacity for empathy.  Every time I meet someone with these “credentials”, I wonder just how many others are of like mind to influence our elections.  (It is the Ayn Rand group, basically.)

  • 1davidkiroshabteselassie1

    The Ryan/Romney (pun intended) do have foreign policy experience. They have worked very hard to turn the United States into Somalia.

  • sickofthechit

    Ryan is the perfect poster child for my
    favorite saying about Repugnican Politicians.

    “Republicans: Hypocrites? or
    Schizophrenic Hypocrites?”

    The perfect example are his stances on
    Medicare and Social Security.

    He is willing to take advantage of
    Social Security when it helps him pay for college, and yet he wants
    to essentially gut it. He has a grandmother (I believe) with
    Alzhiemers who he seems to think will be competent to make decisions
    about which Medicare Program to invest her voucher in. A voucher
    which will not keep pace with medical inflation. This guys got a lot
    of heart! Aynd Rand’s view of America is not my America!

  • OnpointListener

    Women’s Issues vs Individual Liberty

    Ryan co-sponsored the “Right to Life Act” which
    declares that the right to life guaranteed by the Constitution is vested in each
    human being and defines human being to include all stages of life, including the
    moment of fertilization.

    This exemplifies the absurd lengths Ryan will go to limit women’s reproductive privacy and freedom.

    How can any sane person, especially a woman, vote for such government intrusion? 

    • BHA_in_Vermont

       Depends on how “Catholic” they are. There are a lot of “single issue” voters, “pro-choice/pro-life” one of the biggest.

  • Ellen Dibble

    Bearing in mind that we are in a global environment and global economy, is there a plan to catch up our education (and health care) such that our population can compete internationally (aside from bombing everyone into oblivion, which I suppose could be valuable if the opposition is thinking of deploying, say, smallpox and anthrax)?  The weapon of the 21st century is clearly education and organization/cooperation.  How can we do that?  It’s the battle of the bulget, how to mobilize the fat and get it into useful energy.

  • Guest

    test

  • MrNutso

    What a shocker.  Ryan’s professor supports his views.

  • MrNutso

    Why can’t medicare reform be about enhancing revenue for the program?

  • SKBoston

    Paul Ryan was a co-sponsor of H.R. 212: Sanctity of Human Life Act: to provide that human life shall be deemed to begin with fertilization.

    His position in relation to women’s issues is extreme.

    • Ellen Dibble

      It just occurred to me, if fetuses have full rights, they should have a vote.  I mean, they should be counted in the census, for purposes of gerrymandering.

      • BHA_in_Vermont

         Hey there you go. But there is a problem. Who gets to cast their ballot, the mother or the father?
        :)

    • OnPointComments

      If the Mars rover found a single cell organism tomorrow, everyone would be screaming there is life on Mars.  When a single cell organism is found in a woman’s uterus on Earth, half the country argues it’s not evidence of life.

  • Michiganjf

    Republicans have done everything they can to screw medicare/medicaid (and social security), not the least of which is their screwed up priorities which place everything else first, including tax breaks for the wealthy and corporations, and military spending!!

  • Matt Wade

    Mr. Ryan is the most conservative Republican member of Congress to be picked for the vice-presidential slot since at least 1900. He is also more conservative than any Democratic nominee was liberal, meaning that he is the furthest from the center. 

    Let’s not forget that Ryan has worked for the government since he graduated from college and it has been very lucrative for him. He was worth $400,000 when he was elected to congress and now he is worth $3.2 million. Government largesse for me, not for thee.

  • TribalGuitars

    Romney wanted Tea Partry cred, but this will bite him in the ass when the same TP’ers at the town halls that were yelling, “Keep your government hands of my Medicare!”, start to realize that it’s going to effect, may be not them, with the 55 and over exemption, but their loved ones that will be getting their AARP cards soon. 

    Ryan wants two tax brackets, 10% and 25%, and tell someone working two jobs at minimum wage to barely cover life’s needs without frills, that they have to give up 10% of their income.  For a couple making, say, $80K@year at a jobs they’re overqualified for, having had to move in with one of the their parents, feed and clothe the kids, that’s $3000 a year.  That’s a lot of money. That’s a decent used car. That’s food. That’s gas money. That’s daycare for a good while.   Compare that to 25% for someone making $3 Million. Does anyone suffer when they’re still living on over $2 Million a year?   And don’t forget that the wealthiest would be getting an additional 250K yearly tax break as a “job creator”, never mind that most of the money the wealthy make is from investments which aren’t considered earned income, so they’re taxed at a lower rate.  So the wealthiest would be giving up what? Not gas. Not childcare. Not a decent home.  They’d be gaining money. What’s just the $250K tax break buy? A new Bentley?  A 4 year college education just about anywhere.  More shares in stock they won’t have to pay taxes on?
      

    • TinaWrites

      Please write to the President on his website and tell him to say this out loud again and again and again!  Thanks!

  • J__o__h__n

    Not just Rand but Hayek and Friedman.  What a diversity of ideas!

  • Ellen Dibble

    Cutting government (regulations) essentially gives the regulatory muscle to far less transparent Forces, which you will find on K Street, for instance.  Back to the Wizard of Oz, behind the curtain.  You may vote for no wizard at all, but somebody will be trying to keep the trains running on time, and the banks flush.  That would be the architects of Small Government.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=84000469 Rob Senn

    The idea that we’re on a path toward socialism is such a preposterous strawman that the professor should be embarrassed to have said it on the air.

    • nj_v2

      Right wing hacks have no sense of shame or embarrassment.

      • DrewInGeorgia

        Willful Ignorance is Bliss.

    • jefe68

      He also used the word tyranny to describe how the Federal government bailed out GM and was involved in it’s restructuring. GM received loans and GM was not being run by the government. Talk about hyperbolic speech.  

  • SKBoston

    Please stop accusing Obama of socialism.  He’s not even close to being a socialist.

  • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

    Let’s solve this healthcare thing once and for all.  The government will offer its own insurance that will cover all aspects of health–prescription drugs, doctor visits, hospital stays, eye care, dental care, and so forth.  Any citizen that wants to participate can buy in, and the annual fee will be based on the person’s income.  The Federal insurance program will negotiate fees with doctors, hospitals, and drug companies.  Private plans may continue to exist.  Thus we have genuine choice.  Good enough?

    • MrNutso

      Of course it is not, because it is a government plan.  All citizens have the right to freely pick (or not pick) who they want to provide insurance from and how much (or none at all) they want.

      • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

         Actually, that’s not true.  Since I have a pre-existing condition, no insurance company will sell to me for any money.

        • BHA_in_Vermont

           Same here – 3 of 4 in my family. If Romney gets in and manages to kill the Affordable Health Care Act, my 19 Y/O is in SERIOUS trouble. If I retire, my wife and I are as well.

          Until we have Universal Health Care, it is “work ’til you die”. Of course, since my 19 Y/O can’t work, I guess she doesn’t have that option.

          • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

             And if you don’t get insurance through your job, life is even more difficult…

      • sickofthechit

         Actually Healthcare should be provided for all under The General Welfare Clause of the Constitution.  We need to quit wasting money on Health Insurance Overhead that contributes nothing to anyone’s health.

      • BHA_in_Vermont

        How many people eligible for Medicare choose NOT to choose Medicare? I’m guessing it is a very, VERY small number. Those that have the money just supplement their ‘government insurance’ with private insurance. Or they have SO much money, they don’t bother.

    • J__o__h__n

      No, choice equals vouchers to prop up private profits.  Stop being such a freedom-hating socialist. 

      • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

         I’m offering competition.  Are private companies afraid to compete with the government to come up with the best insurance plan?

        • J__o__h__n

          obviously

          • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

             Too bad.  I believe in genuine competition, rather than subsidizing and protecting favored businesses.

        • jefe68

          That’s working well for internet providers.
          In most areas it’s one company or two.
          The market is about returns, not choice.

          • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

             That’s the result of infrastructure requirements.  We have a vast healthcare infrastructure.

          • jefe68

            I disagree. It’s about our lousy infrastructure policy and the market does as little as they can to fix it.  Which is why the US is 26 in internet speed and going down.
            There are farmers in rural areas of South Korea with faster connections than I have in Boston. 26 times as fast give or take few Mbps’.

            You don’t have a lot choice in health insurance in a lot of states by the way.

  • J__o__h__n

    Paul Ryan voted against Bowles Simpson. 

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       Why?

      Because SB didn’t address our largest debt driver — unfunded health care entitlements.

      • J__o__h__n

        The Ryan mentor was linking Ryan and Bowles Simpson. 

      • Duras

        Wait a second…you have criticized Obama for not backing SB, but you find an excuss for Ryan…? 

        Nevermind if the policy is good or not.  Where’s your intellectual honesty? 

  • TinaWrites

    Testing…

  • jimino

    This is the dream ticket of the “Preservative Party”, which has as its goal preserving the outsize gains made by the wealthiest over the past 35 years, at the expense of everyone else, and cementing the resulting unprecedented inequality in place for the foreseeable future.

    • sickofthechit

       I call it “Class Genocide”, so yes, it is time for a little “Class Warfare”.

  • http://twitter.com/numtini Numtini

    Saving the US auto industry was tyranny?

    These folks need to visit the real world from time to time.

  • sickofthechit

    We need Universal Health Care PERIOD.
    No one has yet been able to tell me how Health Insurance Companies Overhead (including Sales Commissions) has ever contributed to anyone’s overall health!   When it comes to Health Care we spend more per capita, cover less and have worse results than all the other industrialized nations.

    Brandstaad do you want to take this on?

    To the professor, quit blowing smoke with talk of “Average Income”, it is meaningless, let’s talk median income levels and the breakdowns on either side.

  • nj_v2

    Signpost that the speaker can not be taken seriously—invoking “socialism” and Obama in the same sentence.

    Mr. Hart: “Obama taking us down the path of socialism.”

  • jim_thompson

    All this talk about President Obama and socialism..come on folks, get real…then the turn about President Obama taking away individual freedom.  Can anyone name me one freedom they have lost since the President was sworn in?  Give me a break folks.

    • nj_v2

      You don’t deserve a break.

      http://www.salon.com/2009/04/11/bagram_3/

      “…The Obama administration fights harder for the power to abduct people and imprison them with no charges.…”

    • BHA_in_Vermont

       I think I have given up on this one.
      - Capitalism “as long as I get mine” is GOOD.
      - Social conscious is BAD.

      NEITHER is a form of government.
      Capitalism: the people own the means to make money
      Socialism: the government owns the means to make money.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=605900884 Darryl Pendergrass

    Why do the Republicans not admit the main cause of the deficit explosion was tax cuts and spending increases related to two undeclared wars? When will we have a politician that is brave enough to reform the tax code, eliminate deductions, increase the number of income brackets, treat capital gains as income, decrease government spending across the board including defense.

    • MrNutso

      Don’t forget the unpaid for Medicare Part D.

    • Ellen Dibble

      Also, deficit explosion had something to do with the high cost of picking up the banks after their unregulated hijinks, and picking up the various collateral damage of those hijinks, to wit, currently unemployed, currently foreclosed, local governments stretched thin, ditto state governments.  Oh, the wobbling.

    • BHA_in_Vermont

       They were not undeclared, they were unfunded AND not even in the budget.  But I get your point and I agree :)

  • Thinkin5

    I think people need to see real life examples of what these budget/spending proposals mean to the people of this country. If there is no education, jobs training, and increase in new jobs, big cuts will shrink the economy. The false assumption by the right that cuts will bring private sector jobs just doesn’t prove true.

    • BHA_in_Vermont

       Where is H. Ross Perot when you need his charts????

  • Rex Henry

    People don’t vote for the running mate? Sarah Palin helped me make my choice and not vote McCain.

    • BHA_in_Vermont

       But you DIDN’T vote for the running mate, you voted AGAINST a running mate. (good choice BTW)

  • Michiganjf

    Americans CANNOT let Republicans slough off responsibility for the economic mess they’ve created for America and the world!!!!

    Romney/Ryan will again furiously begin digging the economic pit ever deeper, putting us right back where we were (bleeding to death) when Obama inherited the Republican revolution/Bush fiasco!!

    Obama began to fill the hole back in, Romney/Ryan will make the pit bottomless, finishing the job their Republican predecessors began!

  • http://www.facebook.com/patsmithiowa Pat Smith

    Why is the Ryan plan about throwing the poor under the bus? Why not talk about subsidies to corn, or tabacco? Why do big companies get bailed out? The military budget is gigantic and yet all Ryan wants is to get rid of healthcare and give even more tax breaks to rich people? If ten years of Bush tax cuts have made 0 jobs and the gap between rich and poor has increased, why do we think that the rich paying even less tax will help anyone but the rich. Romney seems to not even use American banks. And Obama seems to have given jobs to all the corporate robbers that got us all screwed up to start with. I sure don’t know the answer but having lots of homeless seniors living under bridges doesn’t seem like a great idea

    • BHA_in_Vermont

       “why do we think that the rich paying even less tax will help anyone but the rich”

      Because they will CREATE JOBS with the money they don’t pay in taxes (just like they do now). They are the JOB CREATORS! Then all the poor and middle class will pull themselves up by their bootstraps and get rich too.

      Don’t you listen????
      ;) ;)

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/H6Z76RQ4HBBZR6KOXCVWXMOVBQ Robert

         This has already been proven a false premise. The recession is a direct result of this thinking. Besides being immoral, radical austerity for the poor and radical irresponsibility for the rich just eliminates opportunity. Bootstraps are not enough. We need fairness too.

  • sickofthechit

    Romney hasn’t suffered enough for the Dressage horse because most Americans are not aware that he deducted either $67,000 or $78,000 for it on his 2010 taxes!   At a 14% marginal rate he saved $9,400 to $11,000 on an income of more than $20,000,000!  How out of touch can one be?  Apparently even more so, since he is afraid to release his earlier tax returns….

  • closetoretirement

    Chuck Todd actually made a valid point this a.m. Older folks don’t want choice as much as they want security.
    Ryan can talk all he wants about how Medicare/Social Security are at risk, but what are the alternatives? With business policies employed by the likes of Mitt Romney, job security and pensions are long gone. With the coruption and risk on Wall St,  aided and abetted by the Republican party’s push for deregulation, who can rely on thier 401k’s?
    Ryan is now attacking the last bit of security American workers have.

    • TinaWrites

      Thank you for this EXCELLENT comment!  Not only is Security more important than Choice, but when you, or your loved one, is ill, studying your choices is one more chore that you barely have time for.  Even the concept of “choice” is often bogus.  When you use a Medicare worker called a “SHIP” to help you plug in which corporate plan is best for you to choose to supplement your basic Medicare, sometimes the DIFFERENCE between one plan and another is only $43/year!  THAT is what the Republicans call “choice”.  Meanwhile, they have the opportunity for profit and for adding multiple levels of interfering professional services that all bring about fees.  Medicare is a much more trimmed down provider, and yet, we could learn even more by studying the Scandinavian countries and how they administer their health care services.  But no, we call them “socialist” when they are democratic-socialists with vibrant  capitalist economies! 

      Back to your comment:  I agree:  I want (and NEED!) Security more than Choice!!!

      And, I bet, the ONE medical issue where I MIGHT want to choose the company that will cover one aspect of my medical care:  ALL the companies will have the same policy, and I will NOT be able to “choose” ANY company to help me with this particular expense!!! 

  • Matt Wade

    This election is going to come down to one issue: Your Own Your Own economics of the GOP versus the We’re In This Together of the 80% of the nation.

    William Hart is full of nonsense. 

    Galt/Gekko 2012!!!

  • Ellen Dibble

    What the president will have to face in January?  This is an assumption the lame duck Congress will kick the issues down the road?
        But wait.  It’s my impression that ONLY lame ducks can actually fly.  Only lame ducks HAVE TO fly.  
        Kicking the can down the road guarantees trouble.  

  • Livin_Large

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/beltway/2012/03/23/paul-ryans-budget-plan-more-big-tax-cuts-for-the-rich/

    “… the Tax Policy Center projected the tax cuts in Ryan’s budget would ADD $4.6 trillion to the federal deficit over the next decade, even after extending the 2001/2003 tax cuts, which would ADD ANOTHER $5.4 trillion to the deficit. “

  • Thinkin5

    Romney, if elected, will be pushed which ever way Grover and the Tea Party want him to go. He simply wants to be president. Another notch in his belt.

    • TinaWrites

      That Grover has so much power is appalling!  

      • Thinkin5

        February 11, 2012 – Grover Norquist, in a
        speech to the American Conservative Union, laid out what conservatives
        are looking for in a president: “enough working digits to handle a
        pen…and sign this stuff. We don’t need a president to think…”http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wYYX0mZsQA

      • OnPointComments

        I almost agreed with you because I misread your comment as “That Grover has so much power is appealing.”  I agree with Milton Friedman:  “I am in favor of cutting taxes under any circumstances and for any excuse, for any reason, whenever it’s possible.  The reason I am is because I believe the big problem is not taxes, the big problem is spending.”

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WDIOY7RQ3F5EAR4EAP5FKRS52M bethrjacobs

    Ryan is a monster but who cares he will only be VP can only
    cast tie  braking vote in senate Dems had it all
    and proved they didn’t want to do anything they always cut out the far left and
    the working class and have gone to the right of Regan it’s Hitler vs. Mussolini
    and the left will walk away

  • Davesix6

    Congressman Shermin is such a typical, the end is near, you can’t make it without big government, full of BS negative democrat!

  • WorriedfortheCountry

     A players pick A players.  They have the self confidence to build the best team without the fear of threat to their ego.

    B players pick C players.  They fear being outshone by greater talent.

    Clearly both Ryan and Romney are A+ players.

    Look at the contrast.  Obama picked Biden.

    • jefe68

      You know nothing about politics. You don’t pick a VP who will out run you and take over the debate. 

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         Mr. Romney isn’t in it for himself. He only cares about getting the job done saving the country.

        • Duras

          “Saving the soul of America” as Romney put it.  Save us Romney.  Save us!  I’m sick of all this communism we are currently living under.

    • Livin_Large

      Joe Biden is a huge asset to the Administration. He understands how the Senate works and can negotiate and if necessary twist arms effectively. How exactly do you think Obama got the ACA passed? He’s also an extremely classy guy who has a very soft human touch. Ryan is a reptile.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         Biden is very likable. I’ll give you that.

         Biden just isn’t very smart and he’s been on the wrong side of most major foreign policy decisions in the past 30 years.  He was one of the few against the first gulf war.

        Ryan is very likeable too.  Even the Democrats like him (except maybe Obama since he was schooled by Ryan in a debate on Obamacare).

    • J__o__h__n

      Maybe A+ compared to Palin, Bachmann, Cain, Newt, santorum, etc.

  • Michiganjf

    Give up forever on the American middle class!!!

    ROM-RYAN-EY 2012!

  • MarkVII88

    Dick Cheney said that he was able to use the office of the VP to great effect during his 8 years there because he didn’t have aspirations to be President.  Contrast this to Paul Ryan with his seemingly endless ambition and idealistic outlook on the world.  I think a President Romney should beware and keep a VP Ryan on a short leash to keep him from working only to further his own political aspirations in 2020.  Ryan wants to be in charge and make the country as he sees fit, as written in his manifesto budget.  Romney may have bitten off more than he can chew here.

    • jefe68

      You mean 2016. You can bet your last SS dollar that Paul Ryan would be looking to run for president in 2016 and beyond, he’s 41.

      • MarkVII88

         No, I did mean 2020.  Despite my comment, there has not been a modern example of any sitting VP rising to challenge the incumbent President for his or her party’s nomination for a second term.

        • jefe68

          Truman, LBJ, but then again they took office due to the deaths of the Presidents they served under.

  • Thinkin5

    President Obama put out ads a couple weeks ago saying that this election is about two different philosophies about the future of our country. Once again, Romney copies Obama and pretends that it’s his original thought. He’s done this before with his “I care about the poor” after he said that they “are doing fine”.

  • TinaWrites

    1)  Republicans want to eliminate the mortgage interest deduction.  Who can afford to lose that???!!

    2)  I’d rather pay taxes than give money to corporations for their fees and pricing all of which is for PROFIT!  How can we reduce the cost of health care, etc., when the expense of PROFIT it added to the overall bill?

    3)  The Republicans just want to open up “markets” everywhere so that they can do #2, above.  They see Social Security as a “market” opportunity.  

    • BHA_in_Vermont

       1)  Republicans want to eliminate the mortgage interest deduction.  Who can afford to lose that???!!

      Everyone if:1) It is phased out, say over 15 years, starting with the top earners2) There are tax bracket decreases for the NOT rich.

      The MID has WAY outgrown it’s original premise – to help people
      afford a home. It is no longer “can I buy a starter home” it is “how big
      a house can I get if I deduct the interest”.

      You can deduct mortgage interest on up to $1M to
      purchase/construct/substantially improve a 1st or 2nd home. Seems to me
      that if you can afford a million dollar house, YOU DON’T NEED MY HELP!
      Buy a $900K house instead. Be a “take care of yourself” Republican
      instead of looking for handouts.

      • TinaWrites

        Why do you write about such big numbers?  I asked “who can afford that” meaning even people with less income than what you suggest.  Maybe there should be a limit for the value of the house, but then the costliness of some areas of the country have to be taken into account:  NYC metro area, for instance:  a basic house can be extremely expensive compared to a house in central Maine.  Also, people who got caught in the Housing Bubble have not yet see that Bubble burst yet, with their own finances back in a steadier state.  Until the consequences of that fiasco have settled out, I don’t think people should have this rug pulled out from under them.  

        I NEVER thought that the mortgage interest on SECOND homes should be tax deductible.  It had disastrous effects on certain kinds of regions, like coastal regions, environmentally and socially (coastal fishermen, for instance, could no longer afford to stay in their homes when the values sky-rocketed thanks to the “comparable” values established by the gigantic second homes built near them).  

  • Ellen Dibble

    I’d like to see a debate between Rahm Emanuel and Paul Ryan.  I just would.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       Maybe at the nearest Chick-Fil-A?

      • Ray in VT

        There has to be a place somewhere between Janesville and Chicago where there’s a Chick-Fil-A and a Starbucks right next to each other where they could give it a go.

    • sickofthechit

       The Biden Ryan debate will be better, just wait and see.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         I can’t wait.  It’ll be a ‘big f’n deal’.

  • Livin_Large
  • Thinkin5

    The woman caller is right. The rightwing constantly talks about “freedom” as they are on full scale war against women’s rights and voters rights. Do they think no one can see this contradiction?!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=691625356 Peter Van Erp

    I did not hear the Professor from Miami University advocating the ending of the Socialist support for higher education.  He advocated taking the hard choices for you, but not for him.  He’s another typical welfare recipient. 

  • MichaelinVancouver

    It was notable this weekend when Beth Myers said she’d asked for several years of Ryan’s tax records. Howcome Romney may demand this window into Ryan’s past, yet the American people may not demand the same view into Romney’s?

  • Michiganjf

    Romney only gets one thing from RYAN… an INSTANT, “READY-MIX” PLATFORM.

    … Romney was lacking utterly ANY sort of platform, so I guess you could say that’s an improvement?

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    The rhetoric will be phenomenal. The reality is Obama was basically 4 more years of the Bush administration, and either Obama or Romney will just be another 4 years. The only winners will be those winning already – the 1%.

    All that said, Ryan represents a side which would destroy the US in exchange for huge short term profits for a few. And this is what needs to be watched closely.

  • TinaWrites

    When the Republicans say that everything was so great during the Reagan years:  people were being enticed AND getting into using credit cards in those years.  People hadn’t quite realized what horrid consequences would occur because of all this credit card debt, but before the Realization, things sure felt “good”.  THAT’s what people “remember” — falsely!

    • MrNutso

      And the tax deduction for general interest charges was eliminated.

  • Ellen Dibble

    With Romney, we talk about Sheldon Adelson.  With Ryan, who do we speak of?  Do his constituents give him the substance he brings with him?  I doubt it’s “just” from his college education.

  • jim_thompson

    Paul Ryan has a zero rating from the Human Rights Campaign.  He has voted against the repeal on Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, he voted to defend the Defense of Marriage Act, he has voted against the Matthew Shepard-James Byrd jr. Hate Crimes Bill, voted against Employment Anti-Discrimination laws. These kinds of votes don’t sit well in 2012 unless part of the far right religious wing of the GOP.

  • Ellen Dibble

    Ryan says we haven’t had such a level of debt since post World War II.  At that time, we embarked on the GI bill and the interstate highway system.  What this time?  What’s the vision?

    • BHA_in_Vermont

       “Ryan says we haven’t had such a level of debt since post World War II.”

      And why is that? Because we had much HIGHER tax rates to PAY for the war, that’s why. The rates didn’t drop until a good chunk of the debt was paid off and that was under JFK.

  • Michael Alderman

    Ryan as a VP choice, at some level, is just noise.  The fact remains that Romney is 40 to 50 electoral votes behind Obama.  By a few polls measure, the challenge Romney/Ryan face is that they must win Florida, Virginia & Ohio AND they still wouldnt have 270 

  • http://www.facebook.com/anita.paul.5680 Anita Paul

    1.  Cutting taxes for the rich has never worked.  2.  If your 55 or younger what happened to the  money you paid into Medicare before the new program kicked in?

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=691625356 Peter Van Erp

      in answer to 2): you turn around, and make the people born before 1957 go into the same system of vouchers 5 years later!

  • Kathome

    I’d have a lot more respect for Ryan’s budget if it was going to remake the Defense Dept. as well as the Medicare/Medicaid….it doesn’t.  And I’d have a lot more respect for Ryan if he had voted against ANY of the Bush era spending.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       Valid points.

      Like many, I believe he learned that the Bush spending as a mistake.

      I think there is an opportunity for Mitt to use his business skills to slash defense spending WHILE  keeping up a strong defense but that may be wishful thinking.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Romney/Ryan had huge, accepting crowds yesterday.

    Romney was on fire.

    They had a great interview on 60 minutes last night.

    Romney is clearly very comfortable with Ryan and vice versa.

    So far it looks like a great pick.

    • sickofthechit

       If they win, you should change your name to VeryWorriedfortheCountry

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         No, I’m feeling a lot better today.  We may be able to save the country for our children and grand children.

        Remember the debt is at $16T ($50K per man woman and child) and our unfunded entitlement liabilities currently sit at a staggering $120T ($1M per man woman and child).

        • DrewInGeorgia

          What a bargain for our children and grand children. We leave them a Balanced Budget (which will NEVER happen in our current political climate) in exchange for an uninhabitable environment, no access to fundamental healthcare, no access to anything remotely resembling education, and no feasible means of bettering their position in life despite their best efforts.

          Seems like you’re Worried about the wrong things Worried, I’m glad you’re feeling better today though.

      • Brandstad

        You are right if the country you are talking about is China

  • inthewoods

    To the guests: comparing Ryan and Krugman as the same level of argument is ridiculous.  Ryan’s plan lacks any detail about he would actually balance the budget other than to say he’d close “loopholes” – he’d need to be amazing at that – $700b a year’s worth.  Krugman’s analysis of the Ryan budget plan is strong because he challenges this unlike your guests.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       Get your facts straight.

      Ryan’s budget is very detailed.  That is precisely why the Democrats are licking their chops.  The irony is Ryan’s budget only slows the growth of government.  It doesn’t cut government.  This is why some TEA party are not happy with Ryan.  Even Erskine Bowles – leading budget Democrat and Clinton best bud — says that Ryan’s budget is a serious proposal.

      Contrast that to Obama’s budget which explodes government debt and received ZERO votes in both the house and Senate.

      • inthewoods

        “Get your facts straight.”  Uh, I have my facts straight – the Ryan budget does nothing to detail what tax loopholes he would actually close.

        http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/paul-ryans-budget-doesnt-deliver/2012/03/22/gIQAWAMqTS_story.html 

        He’ll need to be amazing at closing loopholes – because he’ll need to generate $700b.  And that makes his budget fundamentally UNserious.

        • WorriedfortheCountry

          Sorry. I thought you were referring to Ryan’s budget — as was referred to on the show.

          The tax plan is very similar to Simpson-Bowles.  The primary difference is Simpson Bowles raises some new revenue and Ryan’s plan is revenue neutral.

          btw –  There are $1T in loopholes in the current tax code so $700B is achievable.

          • inthewoods

            Then name them – provide details on what you would cut.  Mortgage deduction?  Health care tax breaks? Without those details, the plan is a fantasy that provides more tax cuts without paying for them.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

             I’ll name them as soon as Obama tells me how he’ll fix Medicare or the budget deficit.

          • inthewoods

            I’m not asking you to name them – I’m asking Ryan and, now Romney, to name them.  Otherwise, this isn’t a budget.

            This is a discussion of the Ryan plan – not Obama’s plan.  Ryan’s plan will not, realistically, fix either Medicare or the budget deficit, so if that’s your standard then you should be questioning the Ryan plan as well.

          • BHA_in_Vermont

            Deleted - didn’t connect to proper post

      • BHA_in_Vermont

         Any proposal can be serious. That doesn’t make it viable. :)

        When Ryan gets the Republican party to drop the “no increase on the ‘job creators’” line of bull, removes the loopholes that only the rich can use, and puts the rich in higher tax brackets suitable to their income and value to society, THEN it will be a serious and potentially viable proposal.

        Come on, Romney wrote off $77K (losses carried forward since the company basically didn’t make any money) – much more than the average American family makes, for he and his wife’s 1/3 interest in “Rob Rom Enterprises LLC”. I know owning horses isn’t cheap but I think you can support quite a number of WHOLE horses for $77K.

        If “Rob Rom Enterprises LLC” was under the control of Bain Capital, it would be liquidated.

        “Rob Rom Enterprises LLC, a foreign corporation registered in Delaware that buys and trains dressage horses.”  Yep, typical Romney. Why isn’t it a US corporation? Taxes no doubt.

        • WorriedfortheCountry

           Our tax code is 74,000 pages and growing.

          Romney is the guy who wants to rip it up and have a simplified and efficient tax code that will help grow the economy.

          It is Obama that will keep the deduction for horses; not Romney.

  • Thinkin5

    Make the congress and senate pay for their own health care. A big dose of reality would be very helpful to the lawmakers.

    • Brandstad

      They should be by law only allowed to use public Obamacare provided healthcare that everyone else in DC uses.

      • inthewoods

        That is the plan under the ACA.

        “Indeed, you may be surprised to learn that once the lion’s share of the ACA kicks in on January 1, 2014, not only are Members of Congress and their staff obligated to play by the same rules as the rest of us, they will actually be required to follow a more restrictive path to their health insurance than you and I.”

        http://www.forbes.com/sites/rickungar/2011/12/08/congress-exempted-from-obamacare/ 

    • BHA_in_Vermont

      I believe they pay part of their premiums, same as most people who have a job with health insurance. Their employer (you and me) pays the rest.

  • Ellen Dibble

    Listening to the panelist now (Halprin?), if taxes will be so much lower on investments, and investments end up much more “productive,” then your average worker starting out would get any bang for their buck at ALL by putting every crumb into stock funds from age 24.  You pay your student loan, let the government take out their percent for health care and for subsidized housing, and then you are left with tuna and rice, but you maybe save a thousand dollars, in year one.  You have to, if you want any Piece of the Pie At All.

  • TinaWrites

    The programs that the Republicans propose be administered completely State by State would be SO open to re-instatement of discriminatory practices!  

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    State block grants so that states can decide how to spend it themselves is being applauded as a good thing by the right – but a major Romney attack has been on Obama trying to give states more control over workfare.

    • Brandstad

      What are you talking about?

      • Ray in VT

        That would be Romney and the Republicans criticizing the Obama administration for taking an action that he, Romney, and other governors from both parties, have advocated.

        • WorriedfortheCountry

           I call this the Wimpy rule.

          I’ll gladly work on Tuesday for a welfare check today.

          Newt was defending the criticism of Obama’s new workfare rules this weekend.  He said the new rules open it up to the same abuses that existed before they wrote the requirements into law.

          Also, GOP governors are claiming their request for flexibility  was not on the work requirement.  That could be BS. I haven’t followed the details.

          • OnPointComments

            Dick Morris, Clinton’s campaign manager, said the same thing.  Morris said he was integrally involved in the 1996 welfare negotiations, and that a key part of the negotiations was not giving states the option to decide what is work, because states had previously decided that work could include bed rest, personal care activities, massage, exercise, journaling, motivational reading, smoking cessation, weight loss promotion, participation in parent-teacher meetings, or helping friends or family with household tasks and errands.

  • sickofthechit

    I’m taking up prayer again because Major’s possible view of Romney Ryan and Repub Congress is cataclysmic!

  • commonsense197

    Paul Ryan has been in office since he was 28 years old.  He is completely out of touch with anyone outside of Washington.  He has no connection to real people working a real jobs to survive.  He himself never worked a regular job except for a short stint in a family business. 

    NO Connection to reality and therefore he is able to exist on a plane where he can come up with lofty ideas in which people are reduced to numbers on a page.  He has no connection to humanity. In this, he is a natural partner for Romney who also is isolated from ordinary people and their concerns.  Both are elites who dismiss the American people with a wide swath.  this is the glue between Romney and Ryan and Rand.  The masses be damned, we have ours.

    So what if working folks have been paying into Social Security and Medicare all their workings lives….they should figure out now how to survive on less or “decrease the surplus population”.  “Are there no workhouses?  Are there no prisons?–Charles Dickens

    • Bruce94

      Spot on.  Definitely a good fit for Romney–born with a silver spoon in mouth and tin in ears (although that is probably more of an acquired personality trait).

      Also, just take a look at the demographics of Wisconsin’s Congressional District 1–his home District.  It is striking because it looks absolutely nothing like the rest of America and is totally lacking in ethnic or racial diversity. 

  • Ellen Dibble

    Who’s the deputy Budget Committee chair in the House?  Who steps in now?

  • Potter

    I’ll choose Krugman’s words about the economy any day over Ryan’s. 

    • Brandstad

      If Krugman was right, Italy woulb be booming now but the facts say otherwise.

      Italy’s Latest Record Debt Load: Bigger, Faster, More
      Italy just announced its all-time record high general government debt load at EUR 1.973 trillion. What is perhaps most stunning, given all the talk of austerity, cutting back, reforms, and change is that the size of this debt is growing at an ever-increasing pace that is simply stunning.Pre-Euro (1999), Italy’s debt was growing at a rate of just less than EUR 2 billion per month; in the eight years from then until the crisis in 2008, Italy’s pace of debt growth (fostered we are sure by the convergent cheapness of funding and their immutable belief in invincibility) almost perfectly doubled to EUR 3.8bn per month. Since 2008, and the onset of excess Keynesian ridicule we assume, Italy’s debt load has grown at a stunning pace of EUR 6.4 billion per month and perhaps most incredible; however, the last nine-months (since the peak ‘peak’ of the crisis in September of last year) has seen the pace of debt-load growth surge to EUR 9.5 billion per month. Sustainable levels of exponential debt growth – sure!

      • inthewoods

        Yes, but you never answer the question why they have a high debt load – it isn’t because of increased spending – it is because of recession – lowering revenue.  This is true basically across Europe.  Italy hasn’t been engaged in much stimulus because they don’t have the funds – they’ve done some but are highly constrained.  This is particularly true as they don’t control the currency.

      • Potter

        You don’t have a clue– they are trapped in the Euro for one. I am not going to argue with you.

        • DrewInGeorgia

          No it’s me that doesn’t have a clue, Braindead told me so. How dare any of us question the Wisdom Of The Brainless One.

      • Duras

        No, if you knew anything about Krugman or economics in general, he judges correct economic policy based on the economic conditions.  This is why he had right wing opinions during the recessions of the 1970s, when supply side policy was necessary.   I know this might be over your head, but if supply side policy worked in every economic condition, we would have world peace by now. 

        • WorriedfortheCountry

           When are alien invasions the appropriate economic FIX?

          • Duras

            Yeah, that’s what he meant….

  • inthewoods

    Tom: challenge your guests – Ryan’s budget is a fraud – it specifies nothing and increases the budget, military spending and cuts the social safety net.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000970215779 Paddlingirl Chris

      During 2011 the people in his district, especially the seniors protested every speech he gave.  The THINKING people of WI do not support him

    • Brandstad

      Have you read it?  I doubt it because your comment is nonsensical.

      • inthewoods

        Uh, yes I have – tell me, if you’ve read it, name one tax expenditure that his budget would cut.  I’ll answer it for you – he doesn’t name one.

        Do you have any actual data or facts to defend your position that my comment is nonsensical?

        • WorriedfortheCountry

          The budget is not the tax reform.

          Tax reform needs to come from the ways and means committee.  You need better talking points.
           

          • inthewoods

            The budget is a reference to the total outcome of the Ryan PLAN.  And the Ryan Plan has tons of tax reform – are you not aware of those parts of his plan?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

             Yes, I replied to you below.

            Ryan’s tax plan is very similar to Simpson-Bowles.  The primary difference is his plan is revenue neutral.

            However, the debate SHOULD now shift to Romney’s plan vs. Obama’s plan.

            Romney’s is very much like Simpson Bowles.   Obama’s plan is to stiff the rich on rates without ANY tax simplification or reform.  The benefit of this plan is covering less than a week of deficit spending at the cost of economic growth.  Not a good tradeoff.

          • inthewoods

            His plan is only revenue neutral if you agree with his overly aggressive growth rates for GDP.  Now, granted, all Presidents make budget proposals based on aggressive growth rates.

            But the real laughs are when you look at his forecasts for government spending – which are just ridiculous.

            “CBO said spending on anything other than health care entitlements and Social Security would fall to about 5.75 percent in 2030 and 3.75 percent of the nation’s economy in 2050. How low is that? “By comparison,” CBO says, “spending in this category has exceeded 8 percent of GDP in every year since World War II.” And that doesn’t include defense, which last year was 5 percent of the gross domestic product. So, if defense spending wasn’t touched, there would be no money left for anything else.”

            http://www.factcheck.org/2012/04/fall-preview-obama-vs-romney-and-ryan/ 

  • MrNutso

    We’ll have an adult conversation if Romney stops telling lies.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       That is very adult of YOU.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Major Garratt:  Have you heard of Ron Wyden – liberal Democrat Senator of Oregon? 

    Paul Ryan and Wyden have been working together on modifying the Medicare proposal to be acceptable to both sides.
     

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=691625356 Peter Van Erp

    You keep talking of a “Grand Bargain”.  How about real grand bargain: the Republicans tell us what they intend to cut to balance the budget, and the Democrats let them say it.  Or another one: all the rich pay their share, and they get to avoid the tumbrils?

  • Dick Johnson

    Global corporatism trumps both Dem and Rep policy, but would profit more by a Rep win. But nothing is that simple, and the complex struggle for policy benefits will be influenced somewhat by voter choices and consumer choices, the only power leverages remaining for most of us.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    So – given the Obama economy is labeled “a failure” – how much did Romney “fail” over the past couple of years? How much money did he lose?

    • J__o__h__n

      His IRA is doing well.

  • DrewInGeorgia

    Cheney/Bush part III. Great.

    • Brandstad

      You are clueless!

      Thanks for letting us know!

      • DrewInGeorgia

        You’re welcome, thanks for the compliment.

        You’re thinking I’m talking Policy, I’m only talking Billing. You know, as in Ryan/Romney.

  • Bruce94

    Paul Ryan has already been vetted to some extent thanks to his outrageous budget proposal titled “A Path to Prosperity”–a budget which could not pass muster with the U.S. Conf. of Catholic Bishops who said it “fails to meet [the] moral criteria” of the Church.  Perhaps “A Path to America’s Ruin” or “The Ryan Express to Nowhere” would more aptly describe his plan to end Medicare as we know it, to privatize Social Security, and to eviscerate Medicaid–pretty ambitious for a politician who has never held a state-wide office and represents a constituency of just over 600,000 people in a state with a pop. of nearly 6 million.

    All we really need to know about Ryan is contained in the admiration he expressed for Greed Is Good guru, Ayn Rand, when he reportedly attributed his involvement in public service to the ideas of this cult leader who championed an extreme form of unregulated, rapacious capitalism.

    In the Social Darwinist, Narcissistic-Randian universe embraced by Ryan, the Fed. budget would be balanced on the backs of the poor, elderly, disabled and disadvantaged.  Nearly a century of progress securing equal rights for racial & ethnic minorities, women & gays would be jeopardized.  The rights of workers to organize and bargain collectively would be further eroded, delivering yet another blow to working and middle-class families.

    There is nothing new or fresh about the Ryan agenda which reflects a GOP hijacked by a Reactionary group of national chauvinists, religious zealots, phobic racists and paranoid, anti-govt. wing-nuts (a.k.a. the Tea Party).  Four years ago McCain caved to the same rotten extremist core when he trotted out a blathering village idiot as his running mate.  Today, Romney has done essentially the same thing, only this time it’s a pseudo-intellectual village idiot who has been chosen in the hope that he will be better able to survive a Katie Couric interview and to regurgitate that old, worn-out conservative mantra (no matter how irrational or morally indefensible) which goes like this:  even more tax relief for the wealthy; regulatory relief for Wall St; and free trade outsourcing for the benefit of the corporate elite.

    The above prescription is based on the same, old (30+ years) laissez-faire, supply-side delusional thinking that created the conditions (beginning with the Reagan admin.) for our growing income inequality, declining social mobility, and historic economic contraction in 2008 accompanied by a huge private and public debt overhang–the worst recession in most of our lifetimes which we are pulling out of slowly but surely in spite of unprecedented GOP obstructionism and efforts of Right-Wing ideologues like Ryan to undermine the recovery. 

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    More tax cuts in the name of creating prosperity.

    If I remember right we had 2 huge tax cuts last decade – and then had the biggest crash since the Depression.

    Those tax cuts are still in place – when’s the payoff?

    • BHA_in_Vermont

       The rich already got it.

      • Brandstad

        I love the rich.

        If it wasn’t for the rich, I wouldn’t have anyone to look up to.  It motivates me to be BETTER!

        This is why the rest of the world looks up to Americans because we are the top 1% of the world!

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=691625356 Peter Van Erp

          Have you been anywhere else in the world?

          • Brandstad

            I have been to three other continents and over 16 countries.  I lived in Europe for a while too.

            Have you ever been outside the US, not for vacation but with everyday people?

    • Duras

      The wealth at the top has increased by a much wider margin than the rest of the country for the last 30 years.

      My theory is that if we make the rich just a little bit richer, great jobs with benefits will rain down upon us. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=84000469 Rob Senn

    It doesn’t matter if it’s OK or not: America seems to want purely free capitalism, and in a poorly regulated free market, this is what happens.

    • http://freeourfreemarkets.org/ Steve Banicki

      Capitalism is broken, needs fixing or must be further regulated to protect the market from oligopolies. This is related to inequality of income. If we desire to fix inequality, we must fix capitalism

      .”The central problem, then as now, was that very large corporations could easily undermine regulatory and antitrust strategies. The Nobel laureate George J. Stigler demonstrated how regulation was commonly “designed and operated primarily for” the benefit of the industries involved. And numerous conservatives, including Simons, concluded that large corporate players could thwart antitrust “break-them-up” efforts — a view Friedman came to share. http://www.freeourfreemarkets.org/2012/07/too-big-to-regulate.html#more

      • DrewInGeorgia

        Capitalism is broken and needs fixing? It’s been Fixed to no end and that is the problem.

      • mochajava13

        This is how capitalism works – companies strive for greater and greater market shares until we have a few large companies.  We’ve been here before in the late 1800s to early 1900s.  The fewer and fewer have more and more, while poverty skyrockets.

      • Brandstad

        Capitalism is broken when socialists are allowed to implament bad policies that the socailists can point to and say “look over here, this is another failure of capitalism” LOL

  • commonsense197

    I agree with most of your post but your comment: “Obama has given jobs to all the corporate robbers”?  Don’t think the auto industry chain would agree.  Obama has bent over backwards to pass the Jobs Act which was stopped by republicans who refuse to bring it up for a vote in the House. The only business republicans have done in the past 4 years is their effort to make the economy worse so they can point at the President for blame. Disgusting..treasonous!

    • Brandstad

      The Obama administration fought to wipe out the pensions of over 20K Delphi workers, that happend to not belong to a Union while their coworkers who were union workers got 100% of their pensions maintained.

      • commonsense197

        Bradstad: Really?  The administration “fought” to wipe out pensions of non union workers.  They “fought” to do this.  One of the most absurd ideas I’ve heard. But for the record, it is corporations that have led the battle to get rid of unions for the expressed purpose of gaining more and more profits for the CEOs in charge (like Romney) and they are in record profits right now. A sterling argument for people to get back into those unions since it is the blood, sweat, and tears of unions that gave ALL workers benefits such as health care, 40 hour work weeks, lunch breaks, bathroom breaks, vacations, pensions, sick leave.  All of these benefits enjoyed by union and non-union workers were the result of those pioneer union folks who risked everything to make a better life, resulting in an “American middle class.”  Think not? All you have to do is see how corporations have fled to find slave labor to bunk up their profits.  Their aim is to bring back their cheap products for Americans to buy, unfortunately, they have taken away jobs from Americans, thus, no income to support the economy and here we have the current economy.  Manufactured by corporate greed. And they still want taxpayers to give them corporate welfare and huge tax breaks. But, by damn, don’t help the needy or the poor.  Put our tax money in the hands of those “job creators” who are creating jobs in China.

        • Brandstad

          Obama is the one who is helping create jobs in China.

          7 out of 10 vehicles GM makes are made outside the US!

          Almost two thirds of  GM’s jobs are outside the US!

          GM’s outsourcing is not a slip. GM clearly states that foreign investment and  outsourcing of jobs are an integral parts of its growth strategy.

          Grace D. Lieblein, President and CEO of GM Mexico, for example,  proudly announced in a GM Mexico press release:
          “75 years ago, General Motors came to our country with a dream to fulfill: turning Mexico into a prosperous nation for the benefit of millions of families.

          Today, after 75 years into the adventure, we have achieved goals that seemed unattainable, thanks to the efforts and dedication of Mexican talent. During the 75 years GM Mexico has been in operation, the subsidiary has produced 7 million vehicles, 20 million engines, and 4 million transmissions. GM Mexico employs 11,500 direct and about 90,000 indirect employees.”So it now appears that GM’s goal is to make Mexico prosperous, not the good old US of A! In the same press release, GM heralds its upcoming billion dollar investments in its Mexican plants (versus a $100 million investment in Rochester, New York). It should have saved the Rochester announcement for another day.

          Source: Forbes

          Should I go on…

          • commonsense197

            75 years ago?…doubt if most of us were alive.
            But if I were you, I’d talk to that Mexican CEO of GM about your concerns.  I don’t see how this corporate decision 75 years ago was done by Obama.  His parents weren’t even alive.  One bright note: if Mexico were a more prosperous nation like Canada, we wouldn’t have  any border issues with poor Mexicans crossing over for a better life.  Just saying…

    • Brandstad

      If Obama wanted the “jobs act” he should have tried to pass it durring the 2 YEARS he controlled all branches of government.  Since he didn’t try, we see  how important it was to him.

  • commonsense197

    You mean listen to propaganda?  The rich have been getting record profits for 10 years.  Where are the jobs?  “Job creators” is a scam term from the republican talking point list.

  • Brandstad

    If the politically correct argued for the 2nd amendment… See the cartooon below…

  • Dee

    What Obama and Biden can add to the ticket….

    They should Pledge to continue to move the economy 
    forward from the worst financial downturn since the 
    depression …acknowledging that will continue to be 
    a long hard fought battle moving forward….

    In addition, to renewing their commitment to protect
    Social Security–so it will be there for them and all
    Americans when their time comes. And continue to 
    close the dough hole in Medicare and make Medicaid 
    available for those Americans who need it…..

    And Lastly, to increase their individual and collective 
    rights, the rights of minority groups and immigrants 
    who come to this country hoping their hard work will
    improve their lot and their childrens’ in life…And 
    bring relief to debt ridden students and opportunities
    for a greener economy and world……

  • Duras

    Corporations will police themselves…you’re getting sleepy.

    Tax cuts for the rich will create new jobs…you’re getting sleepy.

    Fox News is objective journalism…you’re getting sleepy.

    Now when you read the word “snap” you will awake and vote against your own economic interests.

    Snap!

    Hey, Mitt Romney everybody.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    The conventional wisdom is the democrats are licking their chops and believe the Ryan pick increase their chances.

    The Axelrod body language on yesterday’s Sunday shows belies that theory.  He came across as a desperate man — continually rudely talking over the usual media sycophants.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      This race is shaping up a lot like 1980.

      The difference is Carter was up +10 at this point to Reagan.
       

      • Duras

        Hopefully, the country doesn’t make the same mistake.  This country would be a lot better off today if we had stuck with his energy intitiative, which was akin to Germany’s at the time.  Germany is far along, and we are trying to start it again.  Not to mention taxes on the top would be around 50% to 60% and nobody but the Oliver Goldsmith type of republicans would think anything of it.  Before Reagan, nobody cared about what the top was being taxed; now it’s a religion. 

        With all that revenue, our public institutions wouldn’t be falling apart, people wouldn’t be paying off student debt while saving up for their kids’ rising college tuition at the same time.  We probably would have Glass-Steagall regulations (one would hope).  And America would still be a Nation/state instead of a Market/state. 

        We did need a dose of supply side at the time, but the pathological movement after it is well on its way of whipping out the middle class. 

        • WorriedfortheCountry

           Reagan didn’t kill Glass-Steagall; Clinton did.

          Reagan was a great President and is revered by both sides of the aisle for his accomplishments.  Only left wing ideologues still demonize him.

          Germany’s energy policy is a folly that I predict will be reversed in a few years.  They never should have shuttered working nuclear plants.  The irony is they are now increasing their carbon emissions.

          I’m all for renewable energy but it needs to be competitive with fossil fuels.   There has a been a lot of progress but we aren’t there yet.

          • sickofthechit

             How can renewables ever be competitive with fossil and nuclear when the subsidies those two receive are gargantuan in comparison to the subisdies renewables receive?  Problem with renewables is that once we invest enough in them they begin paying  for themselves and the Nuclear and fossil fuels industries are screwed.  Among the other non-economic subsidies that coal receives here in my home state of Kentucky are the loss of irreplaceable mountains and  diverse forests as well as 40,000,000 pounds, yes I said forty million pounds of toxic air pollution dumped on our state in 2010 making us once again a nationwide leader, yoohoo!
            As for the hidden subsidies to Nuclear they benefit from a multi-billion dollar liability insurance pool funded by the US government (that’s us).

          • WorriedfortheCountry

             Are you serious?

            Measure the subsidy per BTU and then compare nat gas, oil, coal, solar, wind and nuclear and ethanol.   The renewables have by far the largest subsidies per btu or energy equivalent.

          • nj_v2

            Ha ha!!

            More unintended humor from the forum right.

            Subsidy per BTU for established, highly profitable industries that dominate the market and produce the majority of our energy, vs. new, upstart, as-yet-unscaled technology.

            You guys are a laugh a minute.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

             I know.  The facts hurt.

            I used to be for some renewable subsidies but now I favor eliminating ALL subsidies  — especially corn based ethanol.

          • Duras

            I never said Reagan killed Glass-Steagall.  I’ve always said Clinton killed it and it was obviously a terrible choice. 

            And I’m not demonizing him.  How am I demonizing him if I’m talking about what America would be if Carter had been elected.

            And you are talking out of your butt about Germany.  They never have brown outs and they are scheduled to be completely on renewable energy by 2050.   Your comment about Germany is completely baseless, and you call me an ideologue….  Did you also predict economic progress when Bush was elected?

            The only thing that is folly is a religious stance against modest tax hikes on people who can afford them and a stance against the same level of regulation that held this country for so long.

          • Duras

            Also, you have to recognize that before Reagan, republicans were scared of liberals.  That’s why Nixon passed food stamps and enviromental protection.  After Reagan, democrats have been scared of conservatives: Clinton repeals Glass-Steagall and Obama passes nothing that comes close to the regulatory power of GS. 

            They call it a Reagan Revolution for a reason.  The war on drugs, which is nothing more than a war on civil rights (go ahead and roll your eyes but it’s true), corporatocracy extended its tenticals on government, anti-intellectualism grew during his presidency and has gotten disgusting now.  You know that corporate profit to wage ratio is at the same level as it was right before the great depression?  Did you know that CEO to average earner income is 385:1?  But unions are the problem…? 

            JFK was the hight of American liberalism and he got shot.  It wasn’t socialism at the time; it wasn’t communism or anything of the like.  It was a beautiful level of equality and push for civil rights…the very things that the Social Darwinists of your party cannot stand.  Republicans are not capitalists–they don’t believe in market competition, because since Reagan corporate mergers have skyrocketed.  Republicans will never block a merger and let the market monopolize while preaching human competition…competition between neighbors.  That is not capitalism; that is Social Darwinism; that is corporate Fascism. 

            Call it demonization all you want, but it doesn’t escape the fact that that is what has been happening.  If you want to know what capitalism is then read Adam Smith’s ‘Wealth of Nations.’  Unlike republicans, he acknowledges the social contract.

        • sickofthechit

           Carter, most under-rated President ever.  In the 70′s Kentucky’s Department of Energy was actually funding cutting edge Solar Research in the area of Passive Solar design.  Regan took the Carter Solar panels off the roof of the Whitehouse and it has been downhill ever since.  It saddens me when people wax poetic about Reagan, he is no American hero.

          We are on a limited resource in the middle of nowhere, when are the resource eating mobs going to figure this out?  The future depends on sustainability, not exploiting every corner of the globe and poisoning our air and water.

          • DrewInGeorgia

            Not saying whether or not I believe in Heaven but if Carter and Reagan were standing in wait and only one makes it in, who do you think would be walking through the Pearly Gates? I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t be Saint Ronald.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

             How about Obama vs. Carter?

          • DrewInGeorgia

            You’ll find no argument here, Carter wins again. So what? How about if it were President Obama and Mitt Romney? Or Obama and Ryan? Or Obama and Bush (either one)? I didn’t even say I believed in Human’s definition of Heaven, finger-pointing is getting us nowhere.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

             I don’t agree with Carter’s politics but I do agree the man has some admirable attributes.

            He was a very hard worker and did try and address some of our domestic woes.  Also, his work on habit for humanity should be commended.

  • Potter

    Ryan is a radical, not a conservative (small c). Conservative (with a big C) can be anything the “Conservatives”  decide to be, including radical. Let’s not get that confused. 

    Americans are conservative in the sense that they are not going to go for anything as radical as Ryan’s vision embraced by Romney which departs from our long course towards liberalization, caring for each other, especially the poor, through now modest enough social programs. Voters are, I predict, going to want to preserve what we have now…maybe  tweaking it here and there if they are scared enough about the deficit… but not by making such radical changes.

      

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       How is he ‘radical’?

      His ‘controversial’ budget simply limits the growth of government.  It doesn’t even cut government.

      I wouldn’t call that radical.  If you were analyzing Ron Paul’s proposals and called them radical then you might have a point.

    • Brandstad

      I think you mean Ryan is radically Pro American in a way that every middle class person can relate to and agree with on many issues.

      • jefe68

        Pro American. Spoken like a true demagogue.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/H6Z76RQ4HBBZR6KOXCVWXMOVBQ Robert

    According to the New Yorker, in a 2005 speech to the Atlas Society, Ryan said that Ayn Rand was “required reading” for his office staff and that she was “the reason I got involved in public service.” Ryan doesn’t want to reform entitlements he wants to eliminate them. This is a very radical pick. He rejects the basic idea that government has any role to play in improving the general welfare of citizens.

    • Brandstad

      sure, that is exactly why Ryan is in government.  oh wait, one of those things can’t be true, and I am pretty sure Ryan is in government, thus you are the Idiot that doesn’t understand

      • jefe68

        Ryan is in government to play the hypocrite. It’s the height of regressive politics to have the views that Ryan has and to be collecting all the perks that his job entitles him too.
        If he’s so into cutting the cost of government why not start with his own house. He could start by putting forth a bill to do away with the absurd pensions members of Congress receive. How about a bill that requires all members of both houses of the Legislature and their staff to purchase health care like the rest of the working folk in this nation do. Those who can afford it that is. 

        • LinRP

          Amen. Drown government in a bathtub, but elect ME!

    • J__o__h__n

      Why is he requiring employees to read that?  Shouldn’t people have the liberty to choose what they read on their own time?  Or did they read it at the office when the taxpayers were subsidizing it?

  • Brandstad

    Ryan destroys Obamacare in 6 minutes!  Watch this video and judge for yourself!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zPxMZ1WdINs

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       Awesome.  Can we get this guy for VP?

    • Duras

      Ryan said that the CBO didn’t score the bill, but they did and they found that Obamacare reduces the deficit by a $100B over 10 years.

  • BHA_in_Vermont

    Deleted – Was supposed to be attached to another post as a reply

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=64701112 Dana Covitz Hackley

    Please sign this petition.  I am incredibly frustrated with WESA (Pittsburgh public radio) and their decision to slash their diverse, intelligent and interesting news programming.  It may be cost saving, but it’s not journalism.  They have cut The Takeaway, Tell Me More and On Point.
    http://www.change.org/petitions/keep-on-point-tell-me-more-and-the-takeaway

  • Dee

    Obama & Biden should just tell voters –They will not be 
    worse off in 4 yrs on their ticket as they would be on the 
    Romney-Ryan ticket….

    In addition, they should Pledge to keep the economy 
    moving forward, protect Social Security, close the 
    dounut hole in medicare and make Medicaid available 
    to those in need.

    Last but not least promise to expanding their individual 
    rights not curtailing as the Romney -Ryan ticket would 
    do. And bring more opportunities for agreen economy 
    and away from fossil fuel..Plus bring relief to debt ridden students & tax reform -so millionaire and billionaires 
    are paying more to help build the economy….Dee

    • Brandstad

      If we keep moving the economy forward on the Obama plan, we will have the permanent depression since job creation in the US is well below the level needed to keep up with population growth.  So for the slow people out there, if the current recovery continued for the next 100 years, we would have higher unemployment rates every year forward, assuming the government doesn’t reduce the labor force participation rate downwards like they have done for the last 3 years.

      • Duras

        Shouldn’t talk about jobs since republicans blocked the jobs bill….

  • Taoist_Crocodile

    Dear On Point,

    I’d like to hear a show dedicated to this question:”Is it possible that Romney paid no income taxes in any of the last ten years?”It would be a show about our tax code, the guests would be non-partisan accountants, and their opinions would be based on what we know about Romney’s income, plus what we know about the kind of tax shelters that are available.Consider it the “fair and balanced” counterpoint to the “birther” show you did with Orly Taitz.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       And maybe as a followup we’ll do a show on whether Obama attended Columbia and Occidental as a foreign student.  I hear Harry Reid has a source.

      • Taoist_Crocodile

        Like I said, On Point did a birther show.  You should look it up in the archive; Orly Taitz was in classic “disgusting mess” mode.

        Aren’t you interested in the answer to that question?  Do you think it’s possible that Romney paid no taxes, even in one of the last 10 years?

        • WorriedfortheCountry

           We know that isn’t true since he released 2010 and an estimate for 2011 and paid millions in taxes.

          Was there a 10 year window where he paid no taxes?  This isn’t even plausible given the tax code and AMT.  They only possible way would be if ALL of his earning were in muni bonds and given his financial disclosure in the 2008 race we know that isn’t where he holdings weren’t in muni bonds.

          • Taoist_Crocodile

            So you’re an accountant, then?

            Lots of people assume that the super-wealthy have access to financial maneuvering that the rest of us do not.  Offshore tax havens, different types of funds, even philanthropy.  I’d like to hear On Point’s take on this subject; I don’t understand why you wouldn’t.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

             I welcome a show on the tax code.  However, using Romney’s taxes makes it political.

            I am in favor of ripping up all 74,000 pages and starting over with a simpler, flatter tax  code.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

             Also, On point has had many shows on the tax code. Way more than ‘birther’ shows.

          • sickofthechit

             What of Romney’s $60,000+ deduction for the Dressage horse and his 14% marginal tax rate.  He has to much to hide to ever let them be seen. When he releases 12 years like his father then he can be considered a serious candidate.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            If that is important to you then don’t vote for him.

            I prefer to discuss his plan to create 12M jobs in his first 4 years and also increase the average wages.

            I think jobs and take home wages will win out.

          • Reasonforall

            All the policies in the Romney/Ryan economic plan have already been tried at both the national and state levels, and in almost all cases have failed the middle-class, the working-class, and the poor.

        • jefe68

          These rubes are not interested in the facts.
          They are here to get a rise from people and to puff up their chest like Quail. They should be careful however as they might be shot by Dick Cheney.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       Maybe they should do a show on “where are the friggin jobs”

      Voters (except for partisan hacks) don’t care about tax returns but we do care about jobs.

      • Taoist_Crocodile

        I think there have been lots of shows on this question.  What’s the point of your post, other than to express that you’re a partisan yourself?

        • WorriedfortheCountry

           There have been many shows on the tax code.  Using Romney’s tax return during the election is a partisan political device.

          • jefe68

            So it’s partisan when it’s used against Romney but not against the the other 1%er’s in Congress.

          • Reasonforall

            Providing copies of income tax returns is the norm in national elections, in nominations of federal judges, and in appointments to the executive branch.

      • jimino

         You ask “where are the friggin jobs”. 

        You heard about the over $8 trillion in middle and lower class assets destroyed by the economic crisis, as it’s euphemistically known, didn’t you?  That tends to affect employment.

    • Brandstad

      An anonomous source told me that “Obama stopped beating his wife 10 years ago”.  Should we have a show on that too!

      • DrewInGeorgia

        ananomous. lol

        A Nano Mouse?

      • jimino

        An IRS report indicates that in 2009, over 35,000 Americans with income exceeding $200,000 paid no federal income tax.  Does that group include Romney?

        • Brandstad

          I am pretty sure it includes Nancy Pelosi, and Tax Cheat Tim Geitner!

          • jefe68

            You are one hilarious stooge.

          • Brandstad

            and you are a socailist pig.

          • Mike_Card

            OnPoint Moderator:  this comment is out of line!!

        • Brandstad

          Please give me a link to this report on a government website! 

          I suppose sence only 49% of americans pay any federal income tax that could mean that only people with income exceeding $210,000 pay federal income tax, but I doubt you can provide the report.

          • jimino
          • Brandstad

            So you don’t agree with people’s ability to write of losses? 

            Do you think the same for companies?  Then you must HATE Obama’s car company GM.  When he saved it he also allowed them to carry forward losses so they won’t have to pay a penny for close to 10 years!

      • Reasonforall

        If there were police reports relating to spousal abuse, they would be public unlike tax returns which are private.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kathy.douthit.3 Kathy Douthit

    Here is a primary question:  are worldwide economic problems due to social entitlement programs…OR, are they due the economic philosophy followed by the right for 30 years?  That is to say, removal of banking regulations, privatization of public services, tax benefits for the upper income bracket etc etc.  The Republicans keep saying that we don’t want to be like Europe, but the economic problems in Europe are due to the latter, and most of that was a direct result of European involvement with financial activity in the U.S….not their social programs.

    • Brandstad

      There is a method to the madness, and the method even has a name: the Cloward-Piven Strategy. It was first elucidated in the 1960s by a pair of radical leftist Columbia University professors, Richard Andrew Cloward and Frances Fox Piven:

      The strategy of forcing political change through orchestrated crisis…. …the “Cloward-Piven Strategy” seeks to hasten the fall of capitalism by overloading the government bureaucracy with a flood of impossible demands, thus pushing society into crisis and economic collapse.

      • http://www.facebook.com/kathy.douthit.3 Kathy Douthit

         With all due respect…that is rightist crap.

        • jefe68

          I concur. More porky pies from Mr. regressive.

      • Duras

        So why did FDR (America’s most liberal-progressive president) save capitalism?

  • hennorama

    Willard picking Ryan as his running mate marks the day he lost the election.  Ryan’s ideas of financial survival of the fittest, with rewards going to the wealthiest, will crash and burn in Florida, Pennsylvania, Iowa and other states with the highest aged populations.  His plan to change Medicaid and Medicare will alienate the oldest voters in those states.

    Adios, Romney.

    • Brandstad

      only if they listen to people that don’t know the facts like you.  If the electorate clearly reviews the plans of Ryan vs. Obama, they will easily see who they agree with. 

      One has lots of hope the other has a lot of real facts and details.

  • kevnorth

    By picking Paul Ryan, I believe that Mitt Romney has thrown this election away. He has targeted to voters who were already most likely to vote for him by tying his fate to an ideologue who many independents view as dangerously right-wing. Ryan is at the forefront of Republican efforts to tear down the New Deal safety net, and many Americans see that as a bad thing. I understand Romney’s desire to seem more conservative, but he went way too far to the right by selecting Ryan.

    • Brandstad

      Thank you for showing you are out of touch with America.
       
      Ryan is trying to save America because what good are government safety nets when the government can’t afford to fulfill their promises.

      • Gregg Smith

        Exactly.

      • kevnorth

        Thanks for your opinion, but national polling data indicates that Americans believe that Ryan was a questionable choice: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/post/paul-ryan-pick-is-less-popular-than-palin-cheney-selections-poll-shows/2012/08/13/6577a26a-e557-11e1-8f62-58260e3940a0_blog.html

        And one could argue that Ryan would be able to do more work on the budget from legislative branch, since that is the branch that actually drafts/passes budgets.

        • Gregg Smith

          Ryan’s bi-partisan plan (co-authored by Ron Wyden) passed in the house with support from both parties. 

          • http://www.facebook.com/patrick.marren Patrick Marren

            That is false. Ron Wyden didn’t even vote for it. Zero Democrats supported the proposal and 10 Republicans even voted against it. Check your facts.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Check your facts.  Ron Wyden didn’t vote on the budget; not the Medicare reform.

            Are you saying Ron Wyden won’t vote on the Medicare reform he cosponsored? I think that would be news to him or do you believe he will be Cory Bookered?

            Expect a hostage tape any minute now.

          • Mike_Card

            For such a loudmouth, your lack of understanding concerning the legislative process is shocking.

        • Brandstad

          Mitt Romney announced this morning that Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan will be his running mate.

          Earlier polling found that 39% of all voters had a favorable opinion of Ryan, while 25% offered a negative review.  Thirty-five percent (35%) express no opinion of Ryan. The congressman is relatively unknown to the nation at large. Only a third of voters have a strong opinion in either direction.

          Scott Rasmussen has explained why Romney’s roll-out of his vice presidential pick is as important as the choice itself. “Most Americans will learn all they know about the new name on the ticket during the week the candidate is introduced,” he wrote in a recent newspaper column. While 69% of Republicans have a favorable opinion of Ryan, 42% of voters not affiliated with either major political party have no opinion of him one way or the other at this point.

          • http://www.facebook.com/patrick.marren Patrick Marren

            Bulletin: almost no one knows Paul Ryan. Once they understand how radical his proposal is, and how it actually not only further enriches the already rich and raises taxes on 95% of Americans, but doesn’t even lower the deficit at all (even if you take his ridiculous assumptions — like reducing total discretionary spending to 30% below current spending on the military alone, seriously), you can kiss Florida and the election goodbye, unless the whole world collapses before Halloween. 

          • Brandstad

            Are you refering to the Ryan budget that had bypartisan support?

  • MarkTNelson

    People are talking about Ryan’s personal philosophy, which was influenced early on by Ayn Rand’s atheistic, individualistic egoism.  But this does not fit well with Ryan’s Roman Catholicism, so lately he has been emphasizing his preference for Thomas Aquinas over Ayn Rand. But this does not fit well with his libertarian capitalism. 

    Thomas Aquinas, the Roman Catholic philosopher par excellence, says:

    “Now, according to the natural order instituted by divine providence, material goods are provided for the satisfaction of human needs. Therefore the division and appropriation of property, which proceeds from human law, must not hinder the satisfaction of man’s necessity from such goods. Equally, whatever a man has in superabundance is owed, of natural right, to the poor for their sustenance. So Ambrosius says, and it is also to be found in the Decretum Graziani “The bread which you withhold belongs to the hungry; the clothing you shut away, to the naked; and the money you bury in the earth is the redemption and freedom of the penniless.” ( Summa Theologica, II-II, Question 66, Article 7)

    Has Ryan explained anywhere how he reconciles his libertarian capitalism with his Thomism?  Just curious.

    • OnPointComments

      The US is the most generous country on Earth.  Thomas Aquinas didn’t advocate that government is the source of compassion and generosity.

      • Brandstad

        Great Point.

        Charity is done by individuals and private churches and organizations. 

        Charity is not a function of governments!

        • Duras

          Didn’t the French Revolution teach anybody anything?

      • MarkTNelson

         I think “OnPointComments” (if I read him/her right) is making
        the valid point that one can logically accept that we have duties to the poor
        without holding that an institutional welfare state is the best means to fulfilling
        those duties.

         

        But my question is different and narrower.  I take it that classic libertarians (of the
        Rand/Hospers/Friedman stripe) deny that individual persons _do_ have moral
        duties to the needy, or that the needy have moral rights to the “super-abundance”
        of the wealthy, but I also take it that this is precisely what Thomas asserts.  So my question is:  does Ryan explain anywhere how he reconciles
        these apparently conflicting opinions?  One
        way to handle the conflict would be simply to ditch Aquinas, of course, but that’s
        not an option for faithful and committed Catholics.  Another option would be to drop the
        fundamental commitment to libertarian capitalism, and base one’s political
        philosophy on a moral theory of the common good.  By itself, this doesn’t necessarily entail a
        commitment to the federal welfare state, since one could believe that there _is_
        a common good and that human law is properly ordained to promoting it (as
        Thomas does), but combine that belief with a principle of “subsidiarity”,
        according to which government business ought to be undertaken at the “lowest” possible
        level (roughly, the level closest to the local level).

         

        If Ryan has already discussed these things somewhere, I’d be
        happy to get a reference or pointer.

  • AlitzaB

    Paul Ryan is the darling of the Koch brothers, is anyone really surprised? They are “all in” for this election and have never relied on people _voting_ for their policies and they are not worried about such detail now… clearly. The Left and Center need to get LOTS of people voting early because, I guarantee, Election Day is going to be a fiasco.

    • Brandstad

      Who cares about the Koch brothers, they have 1/50th the wealth of George Soros and Soros is throwing more than 50x the money around as the brothers.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/2UMZUUIKIXXJ6V4BQYLMD5UWTA roddy

        not true. charles and david koch are 4th and 5th wealthiest people in the US.  Soros is 7th.

        http://www.forbes.com/forbes-400/list/

      • http://www.facebook.com/patrick.marren Patrick Marren

        The Koch brothers, according to that communist source Forbes, are worth $25 billion each. George Soros is worth $20 billion, according to the same source. The Koch brothers are “throwing around” at least as much money, and probably much more, than Soros is, and not only that — there are over THIRTY billionaires who have committed to give to Romney SuperPACs, as opposed to a handful giving to Obama’s. So your “50x” is absolute cr*p.

      • jefe68

        Well, well, more lies and misinformation from the regressive right.

        • Brandstad

          oh, I am sorry.  the 50 to one wasn’t wealth, it was political contrabutions and actions taken to promote their political beliefs. 

          Soros Spends $400 Million On ‘Open Society’ Education, ‘Social Action,’ Colleges And Universities

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/2UMZUUIKIXXJ6V4BQYLMD5UWTA roddy

            ‘Open Society’ Education, ‘Social Action,’ Colleges And Universities’
            All terrible things that should be ended.

  • http://freeourfreemarkets.org/ Steve Banicki

    There has to be an Obama mole on Romney’s campaign team. Picking Ryan could not be a better choice for the Democrats and Obama. Ryan gives Romney Wisconsin. In the remainder of the country the lines have been drawn deeper in the sand.

    Romney already has the hard line conservative vote. Obama has the liberals. The battle is in the middle and Paul Ryan is no where in the middle. By many, he is considered the architect of the Republicans scorched earth plan to control our debt: no tax increases on the wealthy, no cuts in defense, severe cuts in entitlement programs and no investment in infrastructure to improve our production capabilities in the future while providing jobs now.

    I am sure Obama will be discrete about it, but he must remember to thank Romney. http://www.freeourfreemarkets.org/2012/03/ryans-new-debt-plan-nothing-new.html

    • http://www.facebook.com/patrick.marren Patrick Marren

      I would not be too sure about Romney winning Wisconsin. After the Scott Walker thing, there were about seven undecided voters left in the state, and Obama had a 12 point lead. Everyone in WI either hates or loves Ryan, and none of those will change their minds by November 6. Some huge event before then could change things; but if it doesn’t, Obama probably wins WI.

  • Brandstad

    Ryan’s favorability rating is 39-to-25, and an astounding 52-to-29 among… seniors.

    http://hotair.com/archives/2012/08/11/rasmussen-ryan-favorability-3925/

    • http://www.facebook.com/patrick.marren Patrick Marren

      If that 52-29 approval among seniors is not at least reversed by Halloween, I will eat my oldest mealiest hat. 

  • Chris Rice

    The professor said that entitlements brought us to this economic point…  What about the housing bubble?  What about Wall Street betting against the American people?  Didn’t we have a balanced budget under Clinton (not a fan of Clinton, but, still…).  Why weren’t entitlements a problem then?  

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Renoir-Gaither/615760671 Renoir Gaither

       To add to your comment:  Why weren’t costs of the two wars factored into what brought us to this economic point?  This debate is really dancing around a heck of a lot of problems, problems so often shuffled off to collective amnesia.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         The cost of the two wars is about $1T.  That is completely fair game.

        However, our national debt is $16T.  That is $51K per man, woman and child.

        Worse is our unfunded entitlement liability is $120T. That adds up to $1M per man woman and child.

        Think about it.  Politicians, of both parties, have been lying to the American people to the tune of $1M per person.

        How many people in your family?  Do the math.

        • inthewoods

          The 2 wars are a lot more than $1t. Latest estimate is that the eventual total cost will be between $3-4 trillion.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Financial_cost_of_the_Iraq_War

          • WorriedfortheCountry

             My point was the actual cost vis a vis the actual $16T in debt.

            Future cost is a different issue.

          • inthewoods

            Are we still in Iraq? No. Then some of those costs are coming due now.

            But bottom line, if you are concerned about the deficit, then you should vote for Romney/Ryan – their plans will significantly balloon the debt further.

          • Mike_Card

            And that 3-4 T number is only what made it into the number released to the public.  The cost of caring for armed forces survivors is undetermined.  Further, the cost of contractors (think Black Water, e.g.) is in the dark budget and will never be revealed to the public, as a matter of “national security,” thanks largely to Darth Cheney.

            The amount the American taxpayers will pay for those forays into Iraq and Afghanistan already make the national debt trivial by comparison.

            But, of course, Paul Ryan wouldn’t know about that–he’s far more interested in remaining philosophically pure, even though his philospohy changes more ofter than Romney’s political stances.  Ryan doesn’t dirty his pure little hands with notions like military service or learning about the rest of the world.

            Willard and Eddie Munster:  they’re a perfect match.

    • OnPointComments

      Capitalism goes wrong when the government decides it is going to meddle and “encourage” certain behavior, as it did in the housing market.  The politicians (Republicans & Democrats) decided that everyone should own a house, so they enacted “affordable housing” & other policies that turned a healthy market into financial ruin.  In 1989, only 1 in 230 (.4%) homebuyers made a downpayment of 3% or less; by 2007, after the policies were enacted, 33% of homebuyers made a downpayment of 3% or less.  Affordable Housing laws initially required that Fannie & Freddie meet a quota of acquiring 30% of loans to low- and moderate-income borrowers; the quota was later increased to 42%, then 50%, and reached 56%; a subgoal was added requiring that 27% of the loans be made to borrowers who were at or below 80% (& in some cases 60%) of median income.  Underwriting standards were relaxed to meet the goals.  Wall Street is guilty, but the government was the enabler.  It’s a wonder that this government-manufactured market lasted as long as it did.

      • Bruce94

        – Freddie & Fannie are not the bogeymen…the liar loans and subprime mortgages were created by private mortgage cos. like Countrywide in that segment of the market that was totally unregulated by the Feds. The loans were then sold to Wall St. investment bankers, who then bundled them into CDO’s that were approved (some say fraudulently) by the credit rating agencies (non-governmental entities) and sold to pension plans, commercial banks, insurance companies and, yes, Freddie and Fannie, which also backed many of them.Blaming the sub-prime mortgage crisis and subsequent economic collapse on Freddie and Fannie (and implicitly Community Re-Investment Act provisions which applied only to FDIC regulated banks, NOT to the private mortgage companies like Countrywide) fits a convenient, anti-government conspiracy theory.  However, it does little to contribute substantively to our understanding of what happened or how to prevent similar debacles in the future. 

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    CBS 60 minutes edits out Paul Ryan talking about his plan protecting his Florida mother’s Medicare and his work on a bipartisan solution to saving Medicare.

    There is no media bias.  No way.  Yeah right.

    The irony is the CBS interviewer, Bob Schieffer,  was selected today  to moderate one of the Presidential debates this fall.

    • Mike_Card

      And you know about the CBS edits because…?

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        They put it online but cut it from the broadcast.

        • http://www.facebook.com/patrick.marren Patrick Marren

          That 60 Minutes interview was a sloppy-wet-kiss love-fest. It is preposterous to think otherwise. I bet you Mitt’s and Paul’s families just ate it up.

          • RobertLongView

            Ryan-Romney 2012 vetting Bob Schieffer for the upcoming debates, eh… did 
            Schieffer have to furnish any tax returns?  

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         The also have a history of this under Dan Rather.  This is why George HW Bush shrewdly insisted on a live interview.

      • Brandstad

        Because we research news stories beyond the limited scope that the NPR democrats want to.

    • Michele

       Paul Ryan’s family is wealthy.  I doubt his mother is collecting medicare.  Although Ryan did collect Soc. Security after his father’s death.  Additionally, Ryan is guaranteed healthcare, a pension, and a salary all paid for by the American tax payer.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         You may doubt it but you would be wrong.

      • RobertLongView

        bet you didn’t know Paul Ryan received his fathers Social Security in college, eh…  Greedy people like Ayn Rand leave nothing on the table… wake up before it’s too late… .

  • http://www.facebook.com/patrick.marren Patrick Marren

    Very disappointed in the conversation, which seems to assume that the “Ryan budget” would actually balance the budget. No analyst has endorsed that view after going through the real number-crunching. To quote William Saletan, “His plan projects an absurd future, according to the Congressional Budget Office, in which all discretionary spending, now around 12 percent of GDP, shrinks to 3 percent of GDP by 2050. Defense spending alone was 4.7 percent of GDP in 2009. With numbers like that, Ryan is more an anarchist-libertarian than honest conservative.” Ryan’s budget does not lower the deficit at all; it merely halves the tax burden on the rich and raises taxes on the lower 95%. 

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/2UMZUUIKIXXJ6V4BQYLMD5UWTA roddy

    Having read Ryan Lizzas nice article on Mr. Ryan in The New Yorker, it was interesting to read that the Ryan family of Janesville, WI, made their living and considerable wealth in the construction sector and participated in the nationwide construction of highways and other roads that was going on in the 1950s and 1960s. You know…. some businesses just have that go it alone, only in America entrepreneurship.

  • Brandstad

    This graph shows how great our recovery is compared to other recoveries in the past.

    The graph shows the job losses from the start of the employment recession, in percentage terms. The dotted line is ex-Census hiring.This shows the depth of the recent employment recession – worse than any other post-war recession – and the relatively slow recovery due to the lingering effects of the housing bust and financial crisis.Read more at http://www.calculatedriskblog.com/2012/05/april-employment-report-115000-jobs-81.html#KW6ahmlK5IwZ1jrg.99

    • Edward Hsu

      Are you insinuating that it’s Obama’s fault that he couldn’t fix fast enough the mess left by his predecessor?  Considering that the current recession is caused by housing crisis, which in turn causes household deleveraging that by nature takes longer to recover, and the outright obstructionism of Congressional Republicans, I am surprised that the recovery has gone this far.  I’d be more worried about the “tax cut for the rich will pay for itself” scam that caused the great recession in the first place.  Romney would make a deal even with the devil if it helps him get into the White House.  Ryan is no fiscal conservative – he voted for the tax cuts, Medicare expansion plan and wars that are all unpaid for and responsible for the majority of the federal deficit today.  Even his new-and-improved budget plan $14 trillion to our national debt.  So don’t tell me they are seriously interested in solving our national fiscal problem.  They use our fiscal problem to push their agenda that benefit their corporate and rich buddies and put the rest of us deeper in the hole.

      • William

        If Obama is serious, where is his budget? If he wants to save Medicare where is his fix? At least the Ryan-Wyden plan is on the table. 

        • Duras

          I told you earlier that Obamacare restructures medicare Part D.  Why don’t you listen?  All that bs that republicans say about Obama setting up a bureaucracy (death panals) etc, is actually a screen for foot doctors to not treat someone with a week to go dying of brain cancer so they can bill medicare.  I. e., fraud.

          Also, he budget made cuts that republicans wanted but democrats did not but it also raised taxes on the top.  That’s why nobody voted for it–because it was actually a serious proposal.

          • William

             Listen to you? Why?
            There is nothing wrong with Part D and it has received good reviews and is coming in under budget. The cuts made by Obama to Medicare were applied to providers which does not exactly entice providers to keep with Medicare. Where do you get your information from?

            Obama has no budget. Nothing, zip. Even his own party rejected his last submission How can you defend this guy?

            Obama said back in 08 to Tom Brokaw that he would have entitlement reform during his first four years. He has nothing.

            You might not like the Ryan-Wyden Medicare plan, but it’s on the table and that is more than Obama has produced.

          • Duras

            http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=5414400n

            http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=5111033n&tag=mncol;lst;3

            http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=4334910n&tag=mncol;lst;6

            You know, before Bush took over, the U.S. had a surplus.  Than the tax cuts, than the wars….

            Raise taxes on the top, get out of the war, cut the military, cut homeland security a little (it has ballooned after 9/11, but either party is too scared to cut it because whoever does would pay politically during the next terrorist attack).  Obamacare decreases the deficit by $100B, that with 49% taxes on millionaires and up and 44% taxes on $250k, no wars, the largest military in the world (instead of a military larger than the next 14 militaries combined) and we would have a balanced budget.  The labor departments says that the infrastructure spending multiplier is 1:1.8 over the last 30 years, so there is no reason to not do that as well.  All of that, given the political will would deliver a surplus that would pay for Social Security and all of healthcare, provided the fraud is remedied.

            Unfortunately, it seems that republicans don’t just ignore the fraud but they like it because it allows them to say, “see government doesn’t work,” when they are the ones in the way of government working.  That’s just a theory.  But there is no excuss for Ryan to ignore supply side fraud and cut consumer side medicare to save it.  That is downright evil.

            Here are the republicans:

            Hey, Medicare is too expensive and instead of cleaning up the fraud, we are just going to cut the consumer side and offer you a vaucher.  It will be more expensive, yes, but at least some of it will be there for you.  Unlike these democrats who have no plan other than cleaning up the fraud and using new tax revenue from people rich enough to not need medicare to pay for it.

  • Joseph_Wisconsin

    I can only hope that people really take seriously what Romney and Ryan would really like to do regarding SS and Medicare.  The massive tax cuts that are proposed in the Ryan budget for the top few percent income earners (Ryan’s first proposed Pathway to Prosperity called for  complete elimination of taxation of capital gains, interest, and dividend income, as well as elimination of the estate tax, Romney’s effective tax rate would actually be essentially zero, as it would be for his heirs, and their heirs, ad infinitum) will reduce revenue to such an extent that really massive cuts in spending will be required to come anywhere close to balanced budgets.  With Romney’s commitment to actually increase annual military spending this will require leave no alternative to make deep cuts in the other budget items where current spending is enough to find those kind of reductions; Medicare, SS, and Medicaid; interest payments on the ever compounding (since Reagan first introduced mega-deficits) national debt must be paid.

    So for now Romney and Ryan will promise seniors either already receiving Medicare and SS, or those who will in the next few years, that they will not be impacted.  For now the Republicans cannot alienate this group that trends highly Republican.  Just a temporary divide and conquer strategy though.  Republicans have wanted to completely do away with SS, Medicare, and Medicaid ever since these programs were first enacted. 

    The only at all fair solution to deficits is to recognize that the problem is as more one of a revenue deficit than it is of spending, and that would require returning income tax rate collection to something like it was before Reagan.  The current state of the economy means that the bulk of that revenue will have to come from the top 10%.  To those who moan about the fact that the bottom 49% are paying no income tax (they are of course paying payroll taxes, sales taxes, and a host of other regressive taxes and fees) I say that I would love to see those people paying some income tax.  It would mean that their incomes were sufficient to do so.  Income tax collection would be more broadly distributed if worker’s wages had even partially kept up with increases in productivity over the last decade, instead of almost all the benefits of productivity gain going to the top few percent.

    • William

       Why is it a fair solution to give more money to people that put us in this financial mess? Will they decrease spending? Eliminate any failed programs? Anything?. So the idea of just tossing more money into the fire will only increase spending because there is no reason not to stop spending.

  • Brandstad

    If the “radical belief system” of holding individual liberty up as the cornerstone of true freedom is the biggest negative about Ryan, I like him even more.

    • Duras

      Freedom is all about moving economic and political power to the top 1% of the population….

      • RobertLongView

        Freedom just another word for nothing left to lose, Bobby MCGee… Sang Kristofferson

    • RobertLongView

      As long as it is not the keystone holding up the arch.  Ayn Rand and Paul Ryan both had traumatic lives in their youth.  Can’t help but color your outlook on life… Some people like Rand never over come the pain… they have to cope… wears a man down… .

  • notafeminista

    ….and so it begins.

    • RobertLongView

      Freedom is just another word for nothing left to lose, 
      Nothing don’t mean nothing honey if it ain’t free, now now. 
      And feeling good was easy, Lord, when he sang the blues, 
      You know feeling good was good enough for me, 
      Good enough for me and my Bobby McGee. 

  • Brandstad

    When GM invests abroad and hence transfers jobs abroad that is globalization. When a company that Bain Capital is trying to turn around does the same, that is outsourcing. Can we see any media bias

    • RobertLongView

      If you’re talking about the SUV plant that closed in Wisconsin — they’re getting federal money to re-train laid off workers there.  

  • donniethebrasco

    Finally, some grownups will be in charge.

    • RobertLongView

      Can we have an adult conversation about gov’t. they say.  Small gov’t. for small minds, i say.  I wonder how long it took Ryan in grade school to learn to spell his last name?

  • Brandstad

    Democrats Are Now Officially Freaking Out About Paul Ryan

    The email, from DCCC field director Brynne Craig, is entitled “disturbing report” and cites a Wall Street Journal piece of the crowd sizes (emphasis added):

    I just got this disturbing report: Yesterday’s Romney-Ryan rally in North Carolina pulled in an overflow crowd of 15,000 people.There’s no spinning that number. It’s a LOT of people, and the Republican base is energized.And that’s not all. Since the VP announcement, Romney’s campaign has brought in over 70,000 donations from his Tea Party base.We’ve got to step up our game and mobilize our supporters — starting right now.Donate $3 or right now to help us rally our base around President Obama’s agenda >>

    Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/democrats-paul-ryan-mitt-romney-crowds-wisconsin-north-carolina-2012-8#ixzz23SmWnsuX

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      Must be astroturf :)

      There is no way for the Dems to spin this because they kept this thing a surprise until the last minute.

  • hennorama

    Romney: Mormon; changes his political mind often; rich guy; had Swiss and Cayman accounts; may be hiding something unsavory on his tax returns; makes money by cutting jobs; travels with his dog on the roof of the car; has a dancing horse that he deducts on his tax returns; a moderate while MA governor who now says he’s a conservative; has a simple 59 point economic plan; says he will magically create 12 million jobs in 4 years; buys “hardware stuff” at the hardware store …

    Of course he’ll look out for the average American, since he clearly can relate so well to the average person.

    Ryan: Ayn Rand disciple; career politician; unknown to most Americans; has Reagan haircut; has a plan to balance the budget - in 10 TO 20 YEARS!; extremely anti-choice …
    @OnPointComments:disqus 
    This choice seems only to solidify Romney’s standing with the Republican base, not to gain votes from independents and other undecideds.

    Adios, Romney.

    • RobertLongView

      Let’s not forget, Romney knows a couple NASCAR owners (brains of the operation.)  Just yesterday those people were down here having a Sunday morning Pit Road prayer meeting — laying on of the hands — blessings & hallelujahs.   I just wonder who furnished the hooch?

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    I finally figured out the strength of Paul Ryan’s pick for Romney.

    Both Romney and Ryan exude leadership.  You might not agree with their policy point of view but they are both  have a long history leading and solving problems.  I’ll grant you that Romney’s resume of success in leadership is stronger.  In fact, it is almost flawless — from business, to the Olympics to the state of MA.

    Mr. Obama’s glaring weakness is lack of leadership.  He punted on Simpson-Bowles.  He ceded all responsibility for Obamacare and stimulus to Nancy Pelosi and Congress and look at the result — we got crap.

    I’ll grant you that Mr. Obama is an excellent campaigner but he is very weak on governing and leadership.  He didn’t even look like he was having a good time until he started campaigning again.  We shouldn’t be surprised because he never held a leadership or executive position prior to the Presidency.  

    The contrast on leadership between Mr. Obama and either Romney or Ryan is stark.

    • inthewoods

      Romney has almost no position on which he hasn’t reversed. He seems to have no deeply held beliefs – the opposite of a leader.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         I guess you haven’t read his book or been paying attention.

        Obama has had far more flips and flops than Romney over the last 6 years.

        • inthewoods

          I don’t think so. And you can expect some level of flip flops in actual governing – compromise is a part of the game – but Romney has flipped even his own healthcare plan. And he’s not governing – he’s just changing positions to get elected.

          Here is just a short list of his flip flops:

          http://www.businessinsider.com/14-bald-faced-mitt-romney-flip-flops-that-were-dug-up-by-john-mccain-2012-1?op=1

          • WorriedfortheCountry

             I said in the last 6 years.  Those supposed flip flops are from McCain prior to 2007.

            The only major flip flop by Romney is his switch to pro-life from a policy point of view and he has explained his reasoning in gory detail.  Romney made that change while he was governor.

            Regarding health care, he made it clear that it is a states rights issue and has been consistently against federalizing health care.  And he as been proven correct after observing what happened with the 2700 page Obamacare monstrosity.

            Try again.

          • inthewoods

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFmursxum1g&feature=youtube_gdata_player

            He’s been stating the plan should be adopted nationally up until 2009.

        • J__o__h__n

          Romney did most of his flip-flopping prior to his first failed attempt to be president.  His pledge to be better for gays than Ted Kennedy and his shifts on abortion took place soon after he became governor.  The Romneycare mandate is a more recent switch. 

      • Gregg Smith

        How’s that no lobbyist, anti-gay marriage, close Gitmo, end indefinite detention, end military tribunals, no signing statements, cut the deficit in half fiscal responsibility (while being civil) thing going?

        • inthewoods

          Some of these I agree with you on – indefinite detention, military tribunals, rendition – others, like signing statements, I disagree as he never said no signing statements – he said said he would not use them to overturn an act of Congress.  On Gitmo – that was a failure of Congress rather than him – and the fault of Dems who bailed on him specifically.

          His deficit comment was related to his budget – but I agree it was unrealistic from the get go.

          My point, however, is that many of these (but not all) are the result of governing – you can’t do everything you promise.  In contrast, Romney seems willing to change his views to get elected.  Obama isn’t clean in this way either, but with 16% of his promises rated as broken, I consider that a decent record. 

          http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/promises/obameter/

        • J__o__h__n

          He never ran as anti-gay marriage.  He said he didn’t personally support it but that his views were evolving.  He stated that he opposed DOMA during the campaign. 

      • christophertwood

        Will Rogers (actor, radio personality, rural philosopher)…”I have never met a man I didn’t like.”

        Willard Romney (pseudo-actor, non-personality, Country Club philosopher)…”I have never had a position I didn’t change.” 

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       Also, Mr. Obama has hurt his brand with all the early negative campaigning and demagoguery by the likes of Axelrod, Gibbs and Burton.  Obama has personally engaged in these negative attacks.

      Personally, I thought Obama’s personal appeal was tad overrated.  I found him likeable — enough.  That’s it.

      None of this takes away from his historic achievements.  But we’ve been there and done that.

      Time to move on.

    • christophertwood

      Romney’s leadership of Salt Lake Olympics?

      I guess it’s leadership by getting that evil, nasty federal government to fork over $1.5 billion in taxpayer dollars  into Utah, which was 1.5 times the amount spent by lawmakers to support all seven Olympic
      Games held in the U.S. since 1904—combined!

      Even Mr. Standstrong admits it in  2004 book, “Turnaround,” by acknowledging the central
      role of the federal government in making the Salt Lake Olympics possible. “No
      matter how well we did cutting costs and raising revenue, we couldn’t
      have the Games without the support of the federal government.” 

      2012…”I will follow the policy of Grover Norquist and shrink government to the point where it will only pay for defense of my property (a permanent Naval Base in the Cayman Islands) and perks for multi-millionaires. I just don’t relate too much to the middle class’s issues. They just need to work harder!”

    • J__o__h__n

      Ryan opposed Simpson Bowles.  The Republican party tried to block the commission despite years of claiming they wanted a commission. 

      • RobertLongView

        Ryan what, went to Boehner and pressed him to pull out — Ryan thought that of Simpson Bowles were successful then it would assure Obama of his 2nd term this year.   Ryan is the epitome of a partisan-hack.  He would sell out our nation’s future for politics.  
        Sad.  I thank God for Obama’s efforts.  50% don’t care but — only 5% of voters — truly “DON’T KNOW.

    • J__o__h__n

      I agree Obama could have been a better leader but he believed his own BS that Washington could be changed and that the Republicans could be reasonable.  He wasted a lot of time trying to negotiate with them. 

  • Michiganjf

    Paul Ryan BROWN-NOSER

    Here’s a picture of a page from PAUL RYAN’S high school yearbook:

    ENJOY!

    BTW, the Romney campaign keeps desperately trying to wipe this from Ryan’s Wikipedia page, but it keeps getting put back.

    This is especially embarrassing as Romney has proven himself KING OF THE BROWN-NOSERS and doesn’t want his crown usurped by his own VP!

    FYI, the photo is NOT Ryan, just the unflattering blurb.

    • christophertwood

      And Paul Ryan couldn’t beat out cousin Adam Ryan for most successful because Adam was part of the multi-millionaire side of the family tree (Ryan Construction) and Pauly was only from the millionaire side of the legal side of the family.

      • Duras

        Yep, Romney and Ryan, both born to wealth and never lived a day outside of the upper class.
         
        While Obama worked hard and actually achieved social mobility.  But what else is new.  The party of old wealth who tells the rest of the country to “work hard” while cutting scholarships and public universities at the same time and so goes the world. 

        • RobertLongView

          More concerning than: “IF you ain’t Rich it’s your fault” mantra is the feel good Religion of Prosperity “pray hard” and the blessings will flow… .

      • RobertLongView

        i’ve heard of those, one-horse-towns, usually Mill Hills down on the See-wan-nee rivers in the deep south during Jim Crow where the Lint Heads work cheap — they owe their soul to the Company Store and the mill owner…  up in Republican West VA it was played out in the coal mines… .  We built the country up back in the day — it ain’t that-a way now… . Greed took over and what’s in it for me mentality.  SILVER SPOONS, Black Gold & Texas Tea for the Teapublicans

  • Michiganjf

    ROMRYAN-EY 2012… uh, yeah.

  • Duras

    Apparently, when America had higher taxes on the top and stronger regulations, we were in enslaved the entire time. 

    • Gregg Smith

      No, but less revenue came in and there were many more loopholes and shelters. Usually you guys hate that.

      • Duras

        Oh Gregg, yes, the GDP-to-Revenue ratio was lower when tax rates were above the maximum revenue mark on the Laffer Curve (upwards of 70%), but there ain’t nothing wrong with remaining below it and more than what is taxed now.  And there weren’t heavy shelters back then.  Probably because we didn’t need tax shelters due to Glass-Steagall.

        Seriously, what do you have against Glass-Steagall regulations and taxes on the top in the 40% range?  The tax shelters have only gotten stronger, loopholes wider…the effective tax rate is around 30%.  And the GDP-to-Revenue ratio was better under Carter, Clinton, Nixon, Ford, down to Kennedy.  Incomes were much more equal then.

        What happened?   In the 70s and even in the 80s, did you care what the top got taxed?   Why are republicans so religiously against tax hikes on the top?  The theory of the Laffer Curve says that maximum revenue come at a rate that hovers around 50%. 

        The majority of republicans after FDR were sane Eisenhower types, what would be consider the 90s republican would have been crazy Oliver Goldsmith back then.  Today, it seems that Jesse Helms’s political vision rules republican ideology.  You guys have gone over the deep end.  It is obvious. 

        Republicans have all the tell-tail signs of a totalitarian attitutde: anti-intellectualism, anti-science, believe and work for economic and political power to be in the hands of as few people as possible, the flag waving brand of patriotism, exlusionary nationalism, the placement of product and corporation before people, the love of the death penalty, teachers have become scapgoats and public employees are parisites, the effort to regulate cultural expression and norms while letting the economic elites do whatever they want, the hatred of unions.

        In China, 20 or so people pick the leaders.  In America, thanks to republicanims, 20 or so people can pick the republican and democrat they want by drowning out the others with advertisement.  Then after they have decided between the politicians they find most acceptable, we can choose.  This is an oligarchy.  It is what happens when economic power shifts to a few amount of people (also thanks to republicanims).  Deny away.  But republicans have a lot in common with the communists over in China. 

        • Gregg Smith

          My problem with Glass/Steagall is it is not the law of the land and therefore a non-seqitur. We are stuck with Dodd/Frank. 

          Any tax policy should have raising revenue as it’s main goal. The issue right now is any tax hike in this economy is unwise and will do more harm than good. Ask Bill Clinton and Nancy Pelosi, they agree.

          • Duras

            The greater point/reality of Glass-Steagall’s history is that it is a joke to think that Obama is over-regulating with Dodd-Frank.  Anybody who thinks that Dodd-Frank is overreaching is smoking crack.

            And quit giving me that crap about Clinton and Pelosi.  There is nothing wrong with taxing the top during a demand-driven recession.  Capital and supply is high, while labor and demand is in the toilet.  Most of what Obama has done is bailout corporations, banks, and given tax cuts to small businesses–that was all to save the supply side in the immediate, which it did and yes the private sector is doing fine.  That got us out of the recession, but to get us out of the depression, we have to help the majority of society and not the elite minority. 

            Individual income has nothing to do with job creation; businesses hire to produce enough supply to cover demand.  Start up capital is everywhere; Demand is nowhere.  We can tax the top because the top has most of the nation’s wealth and they would be forced to hire when people can spend money in the markets because public wages didn’t get cut, because tuition is lower, because fees are lower–all due to government funding.

          • Gregg Smith

            It cracks me up that people actually believe you can increase demand by passing around other peoples money.

          • Duras

            When most of the nation’s wealth is pooling at the top 1% of the population, there ain’t much demand.

            I don’t know why it would be wrong to raise public employment to 20% of the economy and raise their wages to at least on par with inflation. 

            800,000 public employees had been fired since republicans took the house.  If we had kept public employment at the rate of increasing population which was still below 25% of the economy, we would have a net gain of 1.5 million jobs.  That would increase demand in the private markets and force employers to hire enough employees to produce enough product to cover the new demand.

            You have never provided a counterargument against that idea.  You just reject it without historical reference, without analogy, without any rational basis whatsoever.  Why?

            Your reply has always been, “Redistribution never works….”  How so? 

            My argument isn’t for public employment to be above 50% of the economy…teachers in Canada get paid upwards of $80k after 5 years of teaching on average.  That is significantly more than American teachers, but they don’t have our problems.  What do you got against tax rates in the 40% range on the top to lower the deficits, lower tuition, and fund state services.   It’s pretty radical to be against modest and precedented proposals such as those.  I don’t know what your problem is.  Adam Smith say that the capitalists has responsiblity to ensure and build public institutions. 

            I think you need to get over the fact that Obama and the democrats are not socialists, communists, or even leftists really.  Obama is for sensible capitalism, while the republicans are for a puritanical vision that resembles the conditions in China more so than in Wealth of Nations.

          • Gregg Smith

            You’re entitled to your misguided  opinion.

          • Duras

            .hhh

          • Duras

            And you are entitled to ignore everything, not provide counterargument, and be solipsistic.

          • Gregg Smith

            The evidenceis our crappyeconomy afterover$5trillionin Keynesian insanity.

        • Gregg Smith

          BTW, I’m here in NC, what do you have against Jesse Helms?

          • Duras

            I thought Jesse Helms came from Brazil…he started living there around the late 1940s. 

          • J__o__h__n

            At the top of a long list, he was a racist homophobe.

        • RobertLongView

          NC Tar Heels Virginia Foxx & Sue Myrrick proudly keep Jesse Helms’ traditions in NC along with Jim Demint & Lindsay Grahamn just to the south.  

  • RobertLongView

    Professor Hart states that the Republicans want to make Medicare stronger and with the Ryan Plan and you have more choice because you can get a voucher that you can use to buy your medical procedures.  You can have it all.  Good luck selling that line professor, most American voters know the Republican Plan for government as outlined by Norquist.  Plutocrats Path to Prosperity Paul Ryan.  Its all good.  yeah baby… .

    • Mike_Card

      Aww…I’m sure this guy is among the country’s most respected political observers.  (snicker, snicker, snicker.)

  • Evan Rosenberg

    Professor Hart, probably a tenured member of his faculty, railing against “socialism”…pretty funny!

  • NPR_CDT

     I think one again the Republican Party is forfeiting the
    election by selecting a running mate that is polarizing.

     

    Why republican moderates running against President Obama
    pretend to be a right wing conservative? When you are not true to yourself, how
    can anyone trust you?

    • RobertLongView

      ahhhh, all good… .

  • christophertwood

    Professor Hart proves the lie that  liberals control minds on college campuses. Business departments have always been the breeding ground of free-marketeers (except for government bailouts and protectionism). 

    According to the prof. entitlement programs are the problem…not the two unpaid for wars, along with ever-growing military budgets (that the Pentagon didn’t even request). And certainly our economic troubles couldn’t be tied to the lowest tax rate for millionaires in 100 years.By the way, the staunch money-for-the-monied views of Romney and Ryan would revel that they wouldn’t understand the satire of Jonathan Swift who suggested that English aristocrats could handle the destitute and impoverished on their landholdings in Ireland in the 18th century—by eating them.

    By the way, from truth-is-quirkier-than-satire department, let’s see how the holier-than-thou right wing Christians run to support Ryan, whose philosophical “fountainhead” is Ayn Rand, an out-and-out atheist.

    • Gregg Smith

      It’s quite clear colleges are liberal indoctrination centers. I suppose you can disagree but… wow. BTW, newsflash: The wars were paid for… and are still being paid for even though there is no budget. I have no idea where you get that we have the lowest tax rate for millionaires in 100 years but I would suggest seeking better news sources. It’s not inconsistent to acknowledge the good ideas of flawed personalities. Margaret Sanger founded Planned Parenthood to abort all the blacks. Democrats love her.

      • Duras

        Better get your kids into church and beat them with the Bible boy!  Don’t go to college; go to church…that way you’ll stay dumb and vote against your economic interests. 

        • RobertLongView

          I know a smart Ivy League man with two college degrees who will look after me.  If something happens and he can’t, i know a preacher man down the road. 

        • Gregg Smith

          I have no idea what you are babbling about.

          • Duras

            Yes you do.

      • RobertLongView

        U, U, U, eugenics?   The dreaded U, U, U union word, eh… baaaad, for biz?  job killin’ taxes, bow to the job creators…. we know our place

      • christophertwood

        Since you have no idea where I get
        my facts…let me put you in the know-how—it’s called a history BOOK. Start
        with the 16th Amendment to the Constitution
        enacted in 1913, which made the income tax a permanent fixture in the U.S. tax
        system. The effective rate for millionaires was initially 42% on $$ over
        $1,000,000. That rate soared to as high as 90% during WW2 and hovered in the mid
        80% until the 1960s when it came down to a 60% rate. 

         

        The point is this, Mr. Smith…the
        U.S. has had the highest rates of national economic productivity, employment,
        and a prosperous single wage-earner middle class during the last century with a
        federal income tax with the highest rates on the wealthiest citizens well
        above the highest rate during the last economic boom — Clinton’s
        administration when the top rate was 39%, not the current 35%.

         

        A bit of “book loinin’” goes a
        long way, Mr. S. “Just look at the record,” as was oft stated by Silent Cal
        Coolidge before he handed over a shaky economy to his successor Herbert Hoover;
        but no so much after Herb’s continuation of laisse faire Republican fiscal
        policies drove the country into the Great Depression, kinda like the Great
        Recession of BushCheney, but worse. Yeah!! Let’s go back to that policy because it
        worked so well!

        • Gregg Smith

          We did alright when the top rate was 28% under Reagan.

          • Mike_Card

            Caused GHW Bush to break his pledge about new taxes; think he’d agree with you?

          • Duras

            Yeah right, we were doing well enough to convince Bush to raise taxes….

          • brettearle

             
            “We did alright when the top rate was 28% under Reagan”

            That’s like playing the violin, while Rome burnt:

            Back then, Reagan wrote the book on deficit. 

      • jefe68

        It’s quite clear colleges are liberal indoctrination centers.

        Hilarius diatribe. I guess your a product of right wing idiocy and mendacity learned in the halls of Glenn Becks quasi university.

        • Gregg Smith
          • Duras

            I think if you knew anything about academic environments, you would roll your eyes at this piece.  If you read some academic papers, Professors have to argue against other professors and conservatives are an easy target.  All academic fields have their discourse community, and conservatives who publish are often cited because it is easy to argue against them.  Conservatives provide nice springboards.   Sorry, but it is true.  Academics have to do a ton of research and remain empirical.  They are often liberal because their research has led them to certain realization. 

            Even on this board, I constantly ask you to consider historical examples and look at what is happening in other countries.  But you argue from a narrow point of view, and when I challenge you with historical examples, you fold.  Republicans say, “look at Greece.”  Okay, let’s look at Greece: 60% public employment.  That is an excess.   Does America have that same level of excess?  No.  Does America have the same level of pentions?  No.  Does America have the same type of safety net?  No.  So where are America’s excesses?

          • Gregg Smith

            We teach classes for 2 universities at our farm. I went to college myself. If you think there isn’t a bias against conservatives in academia then I can’t help you.

            And yes, I do look at other countries. Most are worse off than we are. I find it funny that Romney/Ryan are the ones that are trying to save the safety net of medicare and Obama gutted it $717 billion. The notion that doing nothing and letting it go under is prudent, is astonishing. Where is a single Democrat proposal to save it?  Even Senator Obama was riled up about it. Now not so much. And yes we are as a nation living beyond our means. We are headed for Greece. Just because we are not their yet does not mean we have no excesses. We are clearly on the path. We are not on a sustainable road.

          • Duras

            It’s not a matter of bias; it’s a matter of argument.  I went into college a conservative republican, which was a long time ago.  I fought for my ideology as hard as possible, but in the academics, conservative ideology has been pretty much debunked and it’s not an argument anymore.

            Now, there are times where conservativism has redeeming qualities.  But, let me put it this way, conservative derives from the Latin conservatas meaning “slave to.”  And that is what it ultimately is. 

            However, in law, society needs to balance the safety of the society and the freedom of the individual–there conservativism has its place, for sure!

            But to say that there is a “liberal bias” is not correct.  If anything, liberalism has gotten weaker over the last 50 years in the University. 

            Do you think that the Enlightenment shouldn’t be taught?  Do you think that Marxism as an analytical philosophy shouldn’t be taught? 

            Do you think that Twain and Steinbeck shouldn’t be taught? 

            How about St. Augustine? 

            Math and biology turn people into atheists, should we teach those subjects? 

            Should we not teach Feudalism, which is a right wing economic system?  

            Should we teach about the French Revolution?

            Are teaching these subject liberal bias? 

            Is a conservative going to walk into a classroom and say, “You know, the French people, even though their kids were starving, they should have just worked harder instead of wanting to tax the rich more so their lives are better.”  Really?

             
             

        • Duras

          I remember the last Glenn Beck show on Fox.  He had a studio audience of college conservatives and allowed them to whin about liberals for an hour.

          Obviously, the university is a place to bring ideas and have them disputed.  I was definitely one of those college liberals that let the conservatives have it.  As we know, conservatives are hardly ever prepared to defend their argument and they just want to speak their mind without push back. 

          In fairness to Gregg, he does hang with an argument for a while, but when he’s lost one, he usually uses a dismissive phrase like “Keynesian economics never works” without providing counterargument, historical examples, and logic.

          • Gregg Smith

            I like Beck alright but I didn’t like him at all when I first heard him which was back before his CNN show. I was tweaking Jeffe a bit.

            Obviously I disagree with your statement about Conservative backing up their ideas but I don’t want to fight. I actually replied about Keynesian evidence but it was a tiny box. We spent over $5 trillion in 3 years and the economy is absolutely in the dumper. What more evidence do you want? 

    • RobertLongView

      The only Republican candidates better than Plutocrat Ryan would be Herman “Let them eat Pizza” Cain or “Chik-fil-A in every Poke” Huckabee.  

    • brettearle

      Hypocrisy is nothing new to the Right Wing Christian Crowd:

      Many of them support capitol punishment, looser gun regulation and care less about a child’s well-being after the child is born.

      They’ll find a way to embrace Ryan–even if they have to resurrect Rand and convert her, in order to resolve their own double standard.   

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_67MZCOUXFSLOM257CRHBKW4AL4 wareinparis

        I SO wish that the folks who embrace Ayn Rand’s ideas knew what a hypocrite she was. This woman, who claimed to want no help from the government, and wanted to abolish all entitlements, lived out her days on Social Security and Medicare.

        In her own way, Rand was as dangerous as Sarah Palin. Ugh!

        • brettearle

          You can’t fault a lung cancer patient for taking entitlements–despite her political convictions.  [Rand died of lung cancer, I believe.]

          However, if Rand had money at the time, that’s different.

      • Mike_Card

        Have the Mormons converted her corpse?

        • brettearle

          You know something, that’s a good question….

          If they can’t resurrect her, maybe they can have her body exhumed….and we’ll resurrect Joseph Smith, instead…..just for the conversion ritual.

        • RobertLongView

          And the Pope got her into purgatory for a few years. The final verdict awaiting the Ryan-Romney outcome.  Canonization a long shot me thinks.  Teamwork!

        • J__o__h__n

          Maybe Ryan won’t need to distance himself from her now that she is no longer an atheist.  The one thing she was right about and he needs to refudiate it. 

  • Michiganjf

    What a wishy-washy, clownish goof!

    “MIAMI – Stumping here on Monday, Mitt Romney told reporters he couldn’t think of how he differs from running mate Paul Ryan when it comes to their views on Medicare.
    “We haven’t gone through piece by piece and said, ‘Oh, here’s a place where there’s a difference,’” Romney said of his running mate’s plan. “But my plan for Medicare is very similar to his plan, which is ‘Do not change the program for current retirees or near-retirees but do not do what the president has done and that is to cut $700 billion out of the current program.”
    Sustaining Medicare, the government’s health care program for seniors, will likely become a central issue in this election campaign – particularly because Ryan, the House budget committee chairman, crafted a controversial plan that analysts say would increase costs for low-income and unhealthy seniors down the road.

    Romney was less committal Monday than he was in January, when he said during a debate that Ryan’s Medicare reform plan was “absolutely right on.” Instead, he said that he and Ryan agreed on the main points – and that he planned to restore the $700 billion cut from Medicare under Obama’s Affordable Care Act.

    There’s a hitch, however: Ryan’s budget makes the same $700 billion in Medicare cuts as the Obama plan. CNBC’s Scott Cohn explains:
    “The Affordable Care Act – Obamacare – does cut the growth of Medicare by $700 billion over 10 years. But benefits to seniors actually increase under Obamacare, which reduces payments to providers in exchange for more people covered by insurance. What’s more, the Ryan plan – approved by the House – cuts Medicare spending every bit as much as Obamacare does. In fact, it incorporates the very same budget projections, even as it repeals Obamacare. That’s what you call having it both ways.”

    Here’s a link to the whole article:

    http://firstread.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/08/13/13266514-romney-struggles-to-get-square-with-ryans-medicare-plan?lite

  • J__o__h__n

    Mitt keeps proving what a values-free liar he is.  He selects Ryan whose political asset is his budget plan and then denies that he embraces all of it, despite having praised it in the past, and doesn’t give any specifics of his own budget agenda. 

  • brettearle

    So, in reply to J_o_h_n, below, what else is new, about Romney’s etch-a-sketch backtracking on policy?

    Romney plays fast and loose with ObamaCare by distancing himself from the distinct and credible notion that his (Romney’s) Massachusetts Health Care plan was the prototype for Obama’s ACA.

    Why would we expect any less duplicity from him, on Ryan’s policy?

  • allswellhere

    Romney, in being “bold” (in trying to appeal to the far right who despite all their complaints would still vote for him – did he think they would have gone to Obama???)  has polarized his issues (but he has proven that he has no issues, hence the characterization as “flip-flop”) and has moved himself to minor leaguer on this ticket. It is now Obama vs. Ryan!
    Good slogan for Ryan’s campaign: “We’ll cut your entitlements – health, education and security;  not ours -low taxes for the wealthy”.

    • brettearle

      Romney ought to debate Biden

  • myblusky

    Nothing represents the diversity of America like two rich religious white guys.  

  • Gregg Smith

    It’s time to pick a cabinet, a few suggestions:

    Secretary of State – John Bolton
    Secretary of Defense – Allen West
    Secretary of Interior, Energy and EPA – Sarah Palin
    Attorney General – Rudy Giuliani 
    Secretary of Transportation – Richard Petty
    Press Secretary – Rush Limbaugh
    Secretary of Commerce and Education – Newt

    It’s going to be awesome!

    • Duras

      A natural Algonquin Round Table….

    • jefe68

      Apparently you’re not paying attention to what a fair amount of high placed GOP’ers are saying about this not so dynamic duo.

      GOP pros fret over Paul Ryan:

      “I think it’s a very bold choice. And an exciting and interesting pick. It’s going to elevate the campaign into a debate over big ideas. It means Romney-Ryan can run on principles and provide some real direction and vision for the Republican Party. And probably lose. Maybe big,” said former President George W. Bush senior adviser Mark McKinnon.

      Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0812/79697.html#ixzz23Yaq1Dte

      David Stockman eviscerates Ryan’s budget plan and put’s both of them on the spot in terms of really dealing with our deficit and debt problems. 

      http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/14/opinion/paul-ryans-fairy-tale-budget-plan.html

      • Gregg Smith

        The GOP hasn’t been this fired up since Palin was picked. McKinnon is a loser and Stockman is old news. I seem to remember the establishment Republicans saying picking Marco Rubio, Rand Paul and many others in the primaries was suicide for the general. How’d that work out. For that matter how did 2010 in general work out for you? 

        • RobertLongView

          Stockman has no use for the blue bloods.  
          Maybe Ryan can work his  VP gig into a “REAL job” at Faux News.  
          Rupert can always use a good communicator with education.

          • Gregg Smith

            He’s alright but not a tea party conservative. As for McKinnon he was McCains right hand man. McCain was everything the press told us people wanted. He criticized Republicans more than Democrats. He reached across the aisle with McCain/Fiengold and many other legislative efforts. He refused to say “Hussein”. And McKinnon would not hit back at Obama. They lost. All the the tea party does is win. Paul Ryan is one of us. That Romney picked him, fires up people like me who did not have him as a first choice but would vote for a can of dog food over Obama.

        • jefe68

          I’m not a democrat. Romney is going to lose.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1042404403 Lisa Shaw

      YIKES!

    • J__o__h__n

      This is insane!  Giuliani is the only one remotely qualified.  Palin actually negotiated a good deal for Alaskans with oil companies but drill baby drill destroys any credibility she may have had on that issue.  Romney wouldn’t pick Rush.  Not that I needed them, but thanks for supplying several more reasons to vote for Obama.  And you didn’t even list the scariest appointments – Supreme Court Justices. 

      • Gregg Smith

        Can a press Secretary be elevated to the Supreme Court?

        • J__o__h__n

          How about the reverse?  Justice Thomas can be the silent press secretary. 

          • Gregg Smith

            Make it Roberts and you have a deal.

          • J__o__h__n

            Perfect.  John Roberts is an evil genius and he can do less damage and for less time in that role. 

  • Gregg Smith

    For all of those trying to tag Romney with Ryan’s medicare plan and criticizing him for not embracing it, a question: Did you criticize Obama for not embracing Biden’s plan to split Iraq in three regions between the Shia, Sunni and Kurds?

    • J__o__h__n

      I did.  I thought that plan made sense.  There was a defacto ethnic clensing and a unified Iraq isn’t worth our blood or treasure.  And Biden wasn’t chosen just for that plan.  Ryan’s only national credential is that plan, a plan Romney endorsed and is now trying to associate himself with for the base that he still needs to solidify and distance himself from for the middle class voters whom it will hurt. 

      • Gregg Smith

        The vice President does not set the agenda, never has. Ryan’s credentials go much farther than his medicare plan. I disagree completely, there were many reasons for the pick.

        • J__o__h__n

          What were the other reasons?  The Catholics for Ayn Rand vote?

          • Gregg Smith

            He’s a genius, he’s from Wisconsin, he’s got charm and charisma, he has experience and he has the courage of his convictions… to name a few.

          • J__o__h__n

            Perhaps I’m not a genius like Ryan, but how does his austerity budget ideals fit reconcile with his voting for the Republican Congress and Bush’s wasteful spending?  Since when did Republicans think that someone with no private sector background has experience?  Charm and charisma sound like Republican dismissals of Obama.  I’ll concede he is from Wisconsin. 

          • jefe68

            He’s a genius? Charlie Parker, Rembrandt, Albert Eisenstein, Bach, and Ben Franklin were geniuses. Paul Ryan, not even close. In fact he sounds pretty pedestrian to me.

          • Gregg Smith
    • jefe68

      Hyperbolic, but I have been extremely critical of President Obama’ forigen policy in both Iraq and Afghanistan, which is becoming a quagmire. 

  • http://freeourfreemarkets.org/ Steve Banicki

    I see the President in a different way; appreciative but reserved. I see him not making friends easily, because friends are cherished and not to be collected like trophies. At the same time, I see him knowing that key working alliances are important.The biggest issue in this campaign is trust.
     
    Romney comes across as a “transaction guy”, instead of a “relationship guy”. Reagan, Clinton, Bush Sr., George W. and Obama are all relationship guys. People who are transaction oriented tend to focus on the deal. They want to sell you a house, sell you a used car or sell you a mortgage. They don’t think beyond the single transaction. As a result they get away with over promising. When Bain was negotiating to buy a company they knew they would not be dealing with the seller again so they could promise anything. Romney became successful at it.
     
    The relationship guy realizes much of what needs to get done must happen through others. Therefore, they nurture a solid working dependence on each other. These relationships are not “buddies”. They are a group of individuals all seeking to get the job done the best, most efficient way possible. http://www.freeourfreemarkets.org/2012/08/romney-mr-transaction.html#more

    • Duras

      That was pretty apt, but Romney is a transaction guy among people like himself. If he becomes president he will have to learn how to extend empathy to people of differnt cultural, economic, and class backgrounds–i.e., he would have to become diplomatic.  And that doesn’t seem to be likely.  Instead, he has shown a more iron-fisted approach to foreign affairs.  I’m suprised Obama hasn’t had to apologize for Romney already.

    • Gregg Smith

      If he does not make friends easily then it does not paint a pretty picture to consider the friends he does choose. 

  • jefe68

    It’s interesting to see how far Mitt Romney has moved towards the right.

    Befitting a Republican who sought statewide office in navy-blue Massachusetts, Mitt Romney spent most of his political life, in the words of The New Yorker’s Louis Menand, as “a liberal Republican cryogenically preserved from the pre-Reagan era.” Back in Massachusetts, Romney believed that “abortion should be safe and legal in this country” and pledged to “sustain and support” Roe v. Wade. He promised not to “line up with the NRA” and proudly boasted of the state’s “tough gun laws.” He refused to sign Grover Norquist’s “no tax” pledge as governor and termed it an example of “government by gimmickry.” He endorsed equal rights for gays, a generous immigration policy and, most famously, instituted universal healthcare for the state’s citizens based on an insurance mandate.

  • Duras

    Okay Gregg,
     
    Let’s look at the alternative.  GDP was contracting at 8.9% and the economy really hit the fan when Paulson let Lehmann Brothers file bankruptcy.  Are you saying that we should have let 6 more banks fail and the auto industry go under when GDP was already contracting north of 8%…?
     
    Do you have any idea what would have happened to the economy? 
     
    Do you understand how much better the economy would be today if Bush had forced the banks to refinance bad mortgages and loans during TARP? 
     
    You are wrong Gregg.  And now you should see that the ideas I laid out (that you couldn’t argue against) is reasonable and necessary. 

    And you said that you look at other countries and said that others are worse.  Where is your example of an economy that works?  Mexico is along the lines of your political vision….  You once said the Bush economy was what you wanted…is that where you still stand?  …Because it is obviously easier to one up you and tell you the obvious flaws of his economy.

    Seriously, why is Germany doing so well with free healthcare, free college, renewable energy initiative, robust infrastructure? 

    Your lack of global and historical examples, your unwillingness to argue against tax rates on the top that are lower than America’s most successful periods, against regulations that worked for 70 years before Clinton repealed them, and public employment around 20% of the economy means that you have lost the argument and you are being solipsistic at this point.

    As for Medicare, I don’t know if you remember, but we had a surplus with relatively low taxes on the top.  If we taxed milionaires and up at 49% and $250K and up at 44%, got out of the war, cut down the military to a reasonable size, cut homeland (which has ballooned and both sides think it needs to be cut but they are too scared because of the politics after the next attack), Obamacare reduces the deficits, the labor department says that the multiplier on infrastructure spending over the last 30 years has been 1:1.8 so infrastructure spending should continue, Obamacare also restructures Medicare to eliminate the fraud (which republicans refuse to touch; they rather cut consumer end Medicare).  I don’t see how we can’t pay for medicare if we took those measures.

    Now I know you won’t argue against them.  You will just dismiss it as leftist bunk. But thoses tax rates have worked before, that public employment percentage has worked before, Obamacare has worked before.  Everything on there has been tried and worked.  I wish you would realize that this is reasonable capitalism instead of the puritantical right wing vision the republicans have.  And in a lot of ways, republicans go directly against the principles Adam Smith lays out for us in Wealth of Nations.  I’m not being unreasonable, Gregg.  I’m considered right wing in much of Europe.  And I know this might sound foreign to you but you can be a capitalist and a democrat…after all FDR saved capitalism.  And he was far more left of Obama.

    • Gregg Smith

      Look man, save the lecture. We have a different view. I never said I wanted the Bush economy but I did say unemployment went down and revenue went up after the tax cuts. Thats true. Ditto Kennedy. Ditto Reagan. Ditto Harding. There is a school of thought that it would have been better to crash and burn then recover but I think TARP was necessary. It could have been implemented much better. Obama blames Bush for the debt it caused but he implemented half of it. Further he did not return the paid back money to the coffers. He threw it down a rat hole with the “stimulus”. Don’t forget the trends turned around briefly and crashed again after Obama disastrous policies. The idea that we can raise taxes on the top and fix squat is insanity. We need dramatic cuts in spending, we need to repeal Obamacare, address the ticking time bomb of entitlements, shrink the size and scope of government, get rid of onerous regulations and set the economy free. Obama’s policies are a disaster.  

      • Duras

        It’s obvious you have no argument.  I have talked about the Laffer Curve.  The Bush Tax Cuts didn’t work–Look at the GDP-to-Revenue ration, which dropped under Bush meaning less revenue, and the number remained lower than any year during Clinton and many other presidents. 

        If tax cuts on the rich worked under all conditions we would have world peace by now.  And that is basically what you are saying.  I think you need to be honest with yourself.  Either you are in the 1% and/or work in a business that may cause a problem to public health, or you are voting against your economic interests because you have staked your identity as a republican and you would have to break your ego to vote the other way.

        • Gregg Smith

          “If tax cuts on the rich worked under all conditions we would have world peace by now.”
          NO!! This is frustrating. I said no such thing. A tax hike on the rich worked great during the tech bubble. I am saying a tax hike in this economy won’t fix squat. I am not saying, have never said and will never say tax cuts on the rich work under all conditions. That’s just stupid. The whole thing is stupid even the phrase “for the rich”. The Bush cuts were for every single person, 6 million poor were dropped from the rolls, the rich took up the slack despite their 4.6% cut, the  poor that were left got a 5% cut. NO ONE is singling out the rich for a tax cut but they are for a tax hike. And it won’t do squat to grow the economy. That’s the only solution.

          Of course Revenue/GDP dropped when the bubble burst on Friday, March 10, 2000. Of Course 9/11, 6 months later was devastating. Gee wiz. But the rates were not lowered, except for the poor, until 2003. The Revenue to GDP then was fine and bigger than at any time during Clinton’s first term. And if you want to look it up and do the math (I have) revenue as a percentage of GDP was higher under Bush’s rates that Eisenhower’s 90% rate. So there’s that.

          Finally, I would suggest you look in the mirror with your ideological charge. I don’t care a wit about ideology. If you can’t see what’s right in front of you as a result of the policies you advocate more of then I don’t care about convincing you. I care about defeating you in November. I feel pretty good about my prospects. If the Tea party continues their amazing, highly successful takeover of the Republican Party, I may just register as a one.

          • Duras

            You need to understand what a ratio is!  This is how economists can tell that the Clinton rates would have derived more revenue.  GDP and revenue could have dropped at the same time while the ratio could have gone up, but it didn’t under Bush.  If it would have, we can say that the Bush Tax Cuts raised revenue like it did one time under Reagan. 

            Second, I agree with you about Eisenhower rates.  I recognize the Laffer Curve, but you don’t!  You think the Curve is actually a slant.  Laffer says that you will derive the same revenue if at tax rates of 0% and 100%, and you the maximum revenue mark floats around 70%.  Most supply siders think that taxes on the top should hover around 50%–only politicians republicanize the Laffer Curve into a slant.  I am of the opinion that the tax rate on the top should hover around 50%. 

            You need to think in terms of balancing supply and demand!  When supply and capital is low while the majority of national wealth is distributed pretty evenly throughout the economy, we can do supply side policy.  When supply and capital are high while the top has the majority of the nation’s wealth, we need to tax the top through the individual tax code and push down tuition, beef up public employment (but always keep it under 40% of the economy), which will fill the void of demand.

            That’s as simple as I can put it. 

          • Gregg Smith

            I was referring to column 9 of OMB’s historical table 1.3, “Receipts” under the subheading “As percentage of GDP”. I understand ratio, thank you very much. Smarty pants.

            I understand what you are saying, people have been saying it for decades. I got it. I disagree with it. I do not believe you can increase demand by passing out other peoples money… or printing it or borrowing it from China. I believe supply through innovation comes first. There was no demand for ipads 10 years ago. I am not concerned about the wealth gap. Spreading the wealth around is just redistributing water from the deep end to the shallow end of the pool. When people believe, as Obama seems to, that before someone can get a bigger piece of the pie someone else must get a smaller piece, the idea makes sense. But the pie can get bigger. Keynesian economics inhibits that.
            I’ll leave you with this video by Margaret thatcher explaining it as well as I’ve heard. I am pretty sure it was commenter Brandstad that first linked it.

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okHGCz6xxiw

          • Gregg Smith
          • Duras

            Again, you are not arguing against my specific ideas of taxing the top to 40% range, boating public employment to 20%, driving down tuition, and driving down the deficits.

            Instead, you revert to maxims and a flat denial that anything can possibly work out side of supply side policy.  You are not arguing against my ideas that apply to a certain economic condition in a certain time and place; you are arguing against Keynesian economics in a universal abstract. 

            Your brain needs to get out of the idea of universal truths and argue according to conditions on the ground.  You do believe that supply side works in all economic conditions.  And the idea that supply somehow comes before demand is just stupid.  The two need to be as balanced as possible.  Capitalism requires a certain amount of inequality and will always have recessions, but the wider economic inequality grows, the deeper the recessions become; hence, the Great Depression and the depression we’re in now.

            Read Edmund Burke’s Reflections on the Revolution in France: he argued with the aristocracy that the rich need tax breaks so it would trickle down, he argued that we should look to the business man to solve our economic woes instead of the professor, etc.  But if the French would of had an FDR, there wouldn’t have been a revolution.  The same type of republicanism only made things worse, and the public had enough.  In a secular world, things tend to equal out. 

            At a certain point, republicanism looks ridiculous, and republicans have crossed that line 10 years ago.  And I don’t know if you’ve read about Hoover and FDR, but it was FDR’s New Deal, an increase in union power, and a national manufacturing project that got us out of the depression and created the Great American Middle Class.  Now, CEO to average earner wages, and corporate profit to wage ratio are the same as right before the Great Depression (which is the complete opposite of the conditions during the 1970s).

            There’s your history lesson.  Now show me one country in the world that is doing well in economics and human rights that has conditions similar to the political vision you want.

            You can’t and you know it.  History is not on your side, data is not on your side.  If you lived in Greece, you would be correct about everything!  But the conditions are the opposite here!

          • Gregg Smith

            I’m saying don’t raise taxes in this economy, that’s all. That’s the fact on the ground. Bill Clinton and Nancy Pelosi say the same thing. Not now, it’s counter productive. No one is talking about tax cuts. And please don’t tell me Romney’s plan to completely revamp the entire tax code is the same as a tax cut. The issue is the scheduled tax Armageddon on Jan.1. It’s about tax hikes not cuts.

            Again, with the arrogance. FDR prolonged the depression with his policies. If you think I am alone in my view then you have not studied the subject from a very wide perspective. I don’t need a history lesson, I’ve heard it a thousand times. The counter argument make much more sense to me.

            I don’t have a vision or an example, all I’ve done is say it worked under Bush (yes revenue to GDP), Kennedy, Harding and Reagan… and others. Look at what Obama has wrought. Look. Look at Wisconsin. Look at Puerto Rico. Then look at California. Evidence abounds. The path is clear.

            Job 1, defeat Obama in November.

          • Duras

            top

          • Gregg Smith

            Speaking of history lessons, look up the depression of 1920 and Charles Dawes.

  • Duras

    You are trying to show me the negative out come of left economics, which I acknowledge, and you think that what I’m saying will lead us there.

    Your problem is the same one moda had.  You think with a two-valued logic.  It comes from Aristotle.  You think that if one thing works all other things won’t work.  That is why you can’t argue against individual policy for an individual moment in time in certain conditions.  You need to think with an infinite-valued logic.  That looks for the correct discisions given certain conditions.  Once you start thinking more clearly, you will see that there are no universal solutions.

    Second, all I have been trying to tell you is that these are the correct conditions to raise taxes on the top.  And be honest with yourself, you would be against tax hikes on the top because its your religion….  And it is funny that you can’t argue why it would be bad to raise taxes but rather cite Clinton (which is untrue: he said we should raise taxes on the top but said it is not necessary).  Most of FDR’s policy got held up in the courts until his third term, and the economy improved throughout his presidency and actually only faultered when he made cuts to the demand side. 

    And you still can’t find an economic model is to the right of where America currently is?  California had a republican governor!  Mexico is along the lines of what the GOP want, and many other countries like it.  You need to realize that this country has moved too far to the right.  It’s okay to realize that.  You do believe countries can move too far to the right, right?

    • Gregg Smith

      I’ll start at the end but I gotta tell you I’m about to check out of this because it’s a wast of time. I absolutely believe a country can move too far to the right. Okay? I swear, I believe so. Now hear me: I believe to the pit of my soul with every fiber of my being, this government has moved too far to the left. Way way way to far. So have the people but not so much. We’ll find out in November. You seem to be astounded that there are people who actually challenge the leftist dogma. Get out more. We’re a force to be reckoned with. Perhaps you missed the midterms.

      You are wrong about Clinton. He is against raising taxes on anyone in this economy. What I said about Clinton is his tax hikes on the top rate were a good thing in that economy… even if it was a bubble. That tax hike helped. It was good. BTW, there were a lot of other things but I digress. So again, you are wrong with your charge about my religion. I already said it, keep up.

      California has tried the Obama road. I don’t care the party of the Governor, it’s lefty policy driving the train. It’s a disaster. Where liberty has prevailed there is success. New Jersey, Wisconsin, Virginia, Ohio, Puerto Rico and that’s off the top of my head, have turned the corner mostly without raising taxes or over regulating. Look at the 3 point something unemployment rate in South Dakota from the natural gas boom. Frack baby frack. We’re shutting down ANWR, imposing offshore moratoriums and pissing away the pipeline all while paying through the nose for gas. We’re stomping on the necks of small business with $46 billion a year in added regulations and you’d have to be nuts to put your money at risk and start something. Hell, not a single person, business or entity knows what their tax liability will be in 5 months. There is no confidence. Think about that. It doesn’t have to be like this. It won’t be under Romney/Ryan. 

      Republican will hold the House with a few pick-ups. If they get the Senate it will be with some real game changing Tea Party types. I think it’s likely. A filibuster proof 60 is a long shot but not out of the question. The day is coming, get ready.

      • Duras

        I don’t see how you see after basically 30 years of republicanims how government has moved to the left.  We have deregulated the banks, we no longer have a nation/state but a market/state, Wall Street is actually regulating Washington.  A few dozen of the richest people in the country can pick the politicians they want, republican and democrat, by drowning out their competition with advertizement.  It’s an actual oligarchy, which republicans have been fighting for for 30 years, and now it’s hear.  And Obama being reelected is our only hope to get money out of politics, corruption out of Washington.  Whereas Romney believes in corporate personhood (which Adam Smith warns explicitly against).  We have the weakest labor unions since the pre-depression era.  We have very low taxes on the top in relation to American history, and again, we are deregulated.  Look at Glass-Steagall: it breaks up the banks for crying out loud! 

        Republicans main problem and the main reason why I don’t vote for them is because they believe that economic and political power should be concentrated in the hands of a few elites.  Whether that comes from the right or left, it is wrong.  They believe in product/people, not people/product.  They tend to see everything–embryos, corporations, businesses, products–as having more personhood than living breathing human beings.

        If you look at history, all malignant governments share thoses same viewpoints.  The Ryan Budget will cause massive poverty and financial inequality.  America will see the second coming of the Gilded Age.

ONPOINT
TODAY
Jul 29, 2014
The U.S. Senate is seen on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, July 16, 2014. (AP)

The “Do-Nothing” Congress just days before August recess. We’ll look at the causes and costs to the country of D.C. paralysis.

Jul 29, 2014
This April 28, 2010 file photo, shows the Colstrip Steam Electric Station, a coal-fired power plant in Colstrip, Mont. Colstrip figures to be a target in recently released draft rules from the Environmental Protection Agency that call for reducing Montana emissions 21 percent from recent levels by 2030. (AP)

A new sci-fi history looks back on climate change from the year 2393.

RECENT
SHOWS
Jul 28, 2014
U.S. Secretary of War Newton D. Baker watches as wounded American soldiers arrive at an American hospital near the front during World War I. (AP Photo)

Marking the one hundredth anniversary of the start of World War One. We’ll look at lessons learned and our uneasy peace right now.

 
Jul 28, 2014
This June 4, 2014 photo shows a Walgreens retail store in Boston. Walgreen Co. _ which bills itself as “America’s premier pharmacy” _ is among many companies considering combining operations with foreign businesses to trim their tax bills. (AP)

American companies bailing out on America. They call it inversion. Is it desertion?

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Our Week In The Web: July 25, 2014
Friday, Jul 25, 2014

Why the key to web victory is often taking a break and looking around, and more pie for your viewing (not eating) pleasure.

More »
Comment
 
The Art Of The American Pie: Recipes
Friday, Jul 25, 2014

In the odd chance that our pie hour this week made you hungry — how could it not, right? — we asked our piemaking guests for some of their favorite pie recipes. Enjoy!

More »
Comment
 
Hillary Clinton: ‘The [Russian] Reset Worked’
Thursday, Jul 24, 2014

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton took time out of her global book tour to talk to us about Russia, the press and the global crises shaking the administration she left two years ago.

More »
2 Comments