Mitt Romney says half of Americans are immoral parasites who think they’re ‘victims’

The scoop seems to belong to David Corn of Mother Jones,SECRET VIDEO: Romney Tells Millionaire Donors What He Really Thinks of Obama Voters“:

During a private fundraiser earlier this year, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney told a small group of wealthy contributors what he truly thinks of all the voters who support President Barack Obama. He dismissed these Americans as freeloaders who pay no taxes, who don’t assume responsibility for their lives, and who think government should take care of them. Fielding a question from a donor about how he could triumph in November, Romney replied:

There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what…These are people who pay no income tax.

Romney goes on to say that such moochers can never be convinced “to take personal responsibility and care for their lives.”

So with the release of this video, it seems Mitt Romney has shifted from worrying that 47 percent of the country would never vote for him to ensuring that 47 percent of the country would never vote for him.

Josh Marshall tries to make sense of this, saying “Mitt seems to string together a handful of really distinct conservative talking points — and in a way that makes you think he just heard them in a fragmentary way and pasted them together without any clear sense of what he was saying.”

It is true that President Obama has enjoyed the steady support of about 47 percent of the country throughout his first term. It is also true that if you add up everyone who’s retired, still in school or working poor — i.e., people who don’t owe federal income taxes — that this is also about 47 percent of the country. (Or, rather, it peaked at 47 percent following the 2008 financial crisis.)

But it’s really weird to suggest, as Romney does, that this is the same 47 percent.

Last time I checked, there were plenty of senior citizens who are also Republicans. And those folks don’t take kindly to being told they’re “dependent” on government, or that they’re whiny moochers with a sense of entitlement.

No one likes being accused of that. Not senior citizens, not students, not the working poor. Not Democrats, or Republicans, or Independents.

Ari Kohen wonders why Romney even wants to be president: “Why would you want to be president of a country when you hold almost half of the citizenry in utter contempt?”

Josh Barro thinks the “combination of contempt and pity that Romney shows for anyone who isn’t going to vote for him” will be politically disastrous.

Ed Kilgore wonders what will be more harmful to the Romney campaign: “the video … or the ‘Hell yes!’ reactions to it from the rawer elements of the conservative chattering classes.”

“Romney’s theory of the ‘taker class,'” Ezra Klein says, is “core to his economic agenda.” The idea that America is divided between “makers” and “takers” isn’t true, Klein writes, but “Behind this argument, however, is a very clever policy two-step that’s less about who pays taxes now and more about who is going to pay to reduce the deficit in coming years.”

Conservative Ramesh Ponnuru agrees that Romney’s “makers vs. takers” idea is false. It is also, he says, bad politics: “most people don’t see themselves in that storyline, any more than they see themselves as dependents of the federal government. They don’t see Americans as divided between makers and takers.”

Ryan Chittum has some good background on the roots of Romney’s rehash and mishmash of the old “lucky duckies” canard.

Ta-Nehisi Coates says Romney’s remarks remind him “of Lee Atwater’s famous explanation of the Southern Strategy.”

Coates ends on an unexpectedly hopeful note. “When the party of white populism finds itself writing off half the country,” he writes, “we are really close.”

Charlie Pierce is less hopeful. Now that Romney has “declared a class war on himself,” Pierce says, “There’s really only one campaign left to him now”:

Unfortunately for American politics, that means only one thing. It’s going to get extraordinarily dirty extraordinarily fast. There is going to be pale birtherism and barely covert racism. The body of Ambassador Christopher Stevens is going to be exhumed and used as a bludgeon. There is going to be poor-baiting, and gay-baiting, and ladyparts-baiting, and probably baiting of things I haven’t thought of yet. The polite part of the campaign is going to be Romney’s effort to convince You that he was really talking about Them when he was calling people moochers and sneak thieves. He wasn’t talking about Your Medicare or Your Social Security. Naw, he was talking about Their greed for what You have. That’s going to be the polite part of the rest of the campaign, reinforced in the lower registers by a few million in ads to make sure You remember who They are.

The full video of Romney’s remarks at the fundraiser may not be as initially damaging as his disdainful comments about the entitled moochers who think they’re victims, but as more of the speech receives attention, the rest of it won’t be good for Romney’s campaign either.

Romney’s rejection of a two-state solution in the Middle East, for example, won’t likely win him many votes. Particularly when he outlines his idea of foreign-policy leadership: “We have a potentially volatile situation but we sort of live with it, and we kick the ball down the field and hope that ultimately, somehow, something will happen and resolve it.”

Romney isn’t about “hope and change.” He’s about “hope that ultimately, somehow, something will happen.”

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  • The_L1985

    If my parents still vote for Romney after this, it is going to be really hard to ever speak to them again.

  • Barb_Vass

    I have a sister who I voting for him for the wrong reasons. I’ve tried telling her that Romney ., hates women! I told my 2 other sisters, I did not want to be around her.

  • Jessica_R

    Mitt Romney does not think people are entitled to food. 

    Mitt Romney, does not think people are entitled to food. 

    Mitt Romney, does not think in the richest nation on Earth, people are entitled to food. 

    Mitt. Romney. Does. Not. Think. People. Are. Entitled. To. Food. 

    That is all. 

  • vsm

    And to think Marie Antoinette had her head cut off simply for recommending cake.

    (Yes, I know she didn’t really say that)

  • PJ Evans

    Mitt. Romney. Does. Not. Think. People. Are. Entitled. To. Food.
    FTFY.

  • Ima Pseudonym

      The loyal base will vote for him precisely because of his lack of humanity.  They will shrug and ask, “So?  What did he say that’s wrong?”  This is because they regard the poor, the destitute and the unlucky as a particularly unpleasant form of vermin, just like he does, and can’t imagine anyone thinking differently and regard taxation as theft. This is because the people supporting him see the corporate CEO who knows how to expertly game the system, who bought companies, moved many of the jobs overseas and slashed pay until the companies foundered then applied for government subsidies before taking full control of the companies, then paying themselves out and sending the last jobs overseas, who then started parting out the empty shell and selling it off at a profit while cashing out and funneling it through the system so it’s no longer taxable income….and they think, “Wow–what a clever man!  He keeps bad ol’ Uncle Sam from stealing all his money!”   And they tell themselves that this clever, clever man will treat his presidency like any other CEO position and run the government like he ran every company he ever bought, and tell themselves that *this is a good thing.*  They can’t imagine why anyone would think otherwise.

    All hail President Gordon Gecko. 

  • Ima Pseudonym

     “Gordon Gekko.”  Braining is hard, yo.

  • Matri

    Which goes into Fridge Logic territory when you think about it. The only reason they praised him is because he’s so adept at keeping the money out of Uncle Sam’s hands.

    And now they want to support him being Uncle Sam.

  • http://www.crochetgeek.net/ Jake

     Well, there’s the whole maxim about setting a thief to catch a thief… except that Romney has shown absolutely no interest in sealing up the tax dodges he exploits.

  • Jeff Weskamp

    Matt Taibbi discussed what Romney actually did at Bain Capital in the latest issue of Rolling Stone.  Romney basically performed a Mafia-style “bust-out” on every business he acquired.

  • AnonymousSam

    I endorse being a taker. Specifically, I endorse Taker tombstoning this nincompoop into the pavement a few times — it might improve his disposition. Honestly, what kind of a disgusting, greedy inbred lowlife do you have to be in order to utter words like this, and then unapologetically wave them away as “just the kind of thing that slips out when I’m just talking with fellow businessmen” and think that makes it all right?

  • Figs

    Do we figure this actually hurts him? That is, are the Republicans who are in the 47% aware enough of their status in the 47% to be offended by this?

  • http://heathencritique.wordpress.com/ Ruby_Tea

    I figure the silver lining to this horror is that it will motivate liberals who might have felt just a little bit too assured of a victory to go out and vote, not that it will actually change the mind of any conservative.

  • Figs

    I agree. Earlier in the process, my wife and I felt like Romney would have to play hard to the right to win the base but was probably deep down a pretty reasonable guy, who would govern to the right but would be more inclined than, say, Gingrich or Santorum, to do the right thing in the case of a crisis.

    I no longer think that’s even remotely the case.

  • http://heathencritique.wordpress.com/ Ruby_Tea

    For me, it just crystallizes the fact that he is a HORRIBLE politician.  We have a lousy employment rate and a fairly shitty economy right now.  Sure, both are getting better and sure, neither of these things are directly Obama’s fault, but C’MON, Mitt!  You want to blame the poor and unemployed when you could be trying to win them to your side.

    Idiot.

  • The_L1985

    I hope so.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

     Probably not. The pundit circuit is already Crowing about how they can finally make this campaign about producers-vs-parasites.  The spin is “If you vote for obama, that means you are a parasite. You don’;t want to be a parasite, do you?” and the hope is that enough of those eldery people, students, the unemployed, members of the military, poor people dependent on government subsidies will say “Yeah *I*’m not one of those freeloaders!” and vote for Team Money. (The cited article actually has the pundit in question say that they’re banking on voters knowing the difference between those who are “unemployed through no fault of their own due to Obama’s disasterous policies” and the “real” parasites — preemptively trying to spin it as “No no, we didn’t mean *you* even though you pay no income tax and liveoff of federal benefits. We mean those *other* freeloaders”)

  • Figs

    True, true. Though the innumeracy still stuns me. I mean, Mitt quite clearly says, “This 47% is the same as this other 47%.” To go from that to say, “Yeah, you’re part of the 47% with no net federal income tax liability, but for some reason you don’t count, presumably along with many, many more in that 47%” seems like a tough tightrope act, don’t you think? Once they start conceding that some of that 47% come by their lack of federal income tax liability honestly, it won’t be hard AT ALL for the Obama campaign to come up with identical examples who support the President.

  • Lori

     

    The pundit circuit is already Crowing about how they can finally make this campaign about producers-vs-parasites.     

    The part of the pundit ciruit made up of known hacks (Matalin), known evil & stupid people (Erick Eriskson) and folks known to have a highly questionable connection to reality (Althouse). Most of the rest have bailed. Bill Kristol is criticizing Romney for craps sake. It’s not like Bill is a decent human being so when you’re over his line you’re over the line.

    I think “He didn’t mean You, he obviously meant Them.” will really only work on the people who were going to vote for Romney any way, no matter what, because he has the (R) next to his name and/or due to his pleasing lack melanin.

  • Nequam

    That is, are the Republicans who are in the 47% aware enough of their status in the 47% to be offended by this?

    Either a) no; b) if they are they still think they properly paid into the system and all those Others are the freeloaders; c) a and b.

  • Figs

    I’d maybe even dig one step deeper into the combination of a and b. I think that many people probably realize that they have a non-zero total tax burden. That is, they pay payroll taxes and state and local income taxes, etc. I can’t say with certainty, to be sure, but my feeling is that a lot of these people who have no net federal income tax liability do not realize it because they still have a non-zero total tax liability.

    In other words, my suspicion is that the number of people who don’t believe they’re in that 47% is much larger than 53%.

  • The_L1985

     Not to mention that every non-clergy-member pays sales tax.  You cannot even buy things without paying taxes.

    So to pretend that no Federal income tax means no tax…GAH!

  • EllieMurasaki

    Not to mention that every non-clergy-member pays sales tax.  You cannot even buy things without paying taxes.

    To be fair, this is not true in all states. Delaware hasn’t got sales tax. Possibly other states too.

    WTF does being clergy have to do with it and how is that in any way not a violation of the establishment clause?

  • The_L1985

    If you’re a clergyperson, buying things for your church, you don’t pay sales tax on it (1st Amendment perk).  IIRC, you also don’t pay sales tax for necessities (same reason).

    However, this loophole has been exploited by the seedier types of pastor to buy all sorts of non-necessities tax-free.

  • PJ Evans

    a lot of these people who have no net federal income tax liability do not
    realize it because they still have a non-zero total tax liability

    It’s hard to miss. Federal tax liability is the one that everyone knows about; not all states have income tax or sales tax.

  • Figs

    Sure, if you know what you’re talking about. If all you know is that you see money coming out of your check every week on a federal income tax line, and you don’t necessarily connect that to getting all of that money back in April, and you still wind up paying payroll taxes and other taxes, I feel like you probably wouldn’t think of yourself as part of this 47%.

  • PJ Evans

     Like I said, that connection is hard to miss: you have to file a federal tax return to get that money back, or to get EITC.
    Been there, done that. And my response to Rmoney and Lyin’ Ryan is [hold up hand with three fingers out, pointing sideways]: ‘Read between the lines, assholes.’

  • Figs

    Fair point, though I think you’re giving way too much credit to the crowd that produced “get your government hands off my Medicare.”

  • The_L1985

    If you get $2000 withheld from your pay for federal income tax over the course of a year, but it’s in small biweekly doses, and you get a $2000 refund, do you necessarily notice that you got every penny back?

    Do you really notice that, essentially, you’ve paid no fed. income tax at all?  Especially if you’re in a state like, say, Alabama, which charges state income tax on pretty much everybody?

  • PJ Evans

    do you necessarily notice that you got every penny back

    Depends on whether you actually look at your W2 statement at the end of the year. It has all those numbers on it, and you have to have one to fill out your tax form, so you can get the money back.

    I have a hard time believing that anyone can not understand that kind of thing and still have a paying job, but from what you’re saying, there are people who are like that. (Why do I get the impression that Romney might be one of them?)

  • The_L1985

     You appear to be under the impression that most Americans do what we do and fill out their own tax forms.

    A lot of people don’t bother to learn how–they hire a CPA to do it for them.

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

     

    I have a hard time believing that anyone can not understand that kind of thing and still have a paying job

    I not only have a paying job, I have a paying job as a high-tech knowledge worker; I am paid to analyze complex systems insightfuly. I’m comfortably in the most intelligent 1% of the population. And once a year I copy a bunch of numbers from a stack of papers into a computer program that tells me how much tax I owe, and I do my best not to think about it, because thinking about finances makes me twitchy. I suspect I’m not alone in this.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    That said, federal tax law often allows deducting off state tax owing, so your federal  tax liability is reduced by that amount.

    As I once said the people who write the tax code, being lawyers largely before they were politicians, have a vested interest in keeping it complicated rather than simple.

    People here didn’t believe me when I pointed out that James Carville had managed to dig up a tax exemption written specifically for one corporation!

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    Do we figure this actually hurts him? That is, are the Republicans who are in the 47% aware enough of their status in the 47% to be offended by this?

    Given the correlation between how strong the Republican vote is in a given state and how much the state’s citizens give or receive, net, from government, I think the answer to your second question is–probably not many.

  • Lori

     

    Do we figure this actually hurts him? That is, are the Republicans who
    are in the 47% aware enough of their status in the 47% to be offended by
    this?   

    Possibly and no. GOP voters already think Romney was talking about Them. (The comments at some of the more charming Right Wing sites was just lovely, let me tell you.) This may be the thing that convincing a few of that tiny group of true undecideds not to vote for him, but that probably won’t make much difference. But there are two ways this can, and quite likely will, do him real damage.

    First, he’s now lost all but the most craven members of the chattering class. I mean David Brooks has turned on him. If he can’t hang onto Brooks he’s done with anyone who has any actual integrity (and isn’t drunk). Having the pundits cut you loose 7 weeks out is not good.

    Second, this is likely to be a big old slab of red meat for Dem GOTV efforts.  Democratic enthusiasm has been a bit better since the conventions, but this could light a real fire under folks who might otherwise not have been inclined to volunteer, or even bother to vote. For example, if I was working for Elizabeth Warren or Sharrod Brown I’d be getting an ad together ASAP. Both of them have strong progressive cred and are appealing to the beleaguered middle class. More than a few of those folks joined the 47% after the 1% cratered the economy and I doubt that many of them will look kindly on being called lazy moochers. I sure at shit don’t.

  • Joseph

    Many Republican leaders and pundits seem to think so. It’s not just center-right people like Brooks and Frum who think Romney screwed the pooch, but Joe Scarborough and the editors of the National Review and Weekly Standard as well. They’re still voting for him, obviously, but there’s a lot of facepalming going on in the right-wing media right now. q.v. http://www.upworthy.com/when-these-6-people-think-you-blew-it-you-know-your-campaign-is-in-trouble?c=la1 (The quotations are a bit decontextualized, and the actual articles linked tend to be a bit gentler to Romney, but the general theme of pooch-screwing is no less in evidence.)

  • Matri

    They’re still voting for him, obviously

    They would vote for the Pharaoh if it meant not voting for a Democrat.

    Did any of you honestly believe there is a gaffe big enough to actually cause republicans to vote for a Kenyan Satanic Baby-Killing Atheist Socialist Muslim? Or to stop voting for anyone with an (R) simply because voting for The Other is a fate worse than death?

  • LL

    I’d like to think (and I really would) that this actually will result in something of a landslide victory by Obama, but the election is still a couple months away and America is filled with idiots who agree that 47% of Americans (or some similar, equally ridiculous number) pay no taxes. Or that the percentage who “depend on the government” are going to vote for Obama, and the (presumably hard-working and virtuous) 53% who pay taxes and don’t depend on the government are going to turn out for Romney. People believe this stupid shit. They already believe so many other stupid things, this isn’t even a problem to them. It’s just numbers. So what if they’re bullshit numbers? They’ve already established that they have their own facts. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Don-Gisselbeck/520678931 Don Gisselbeck

    Do the taxes Mitt has paid cover the costs of unemployment and food stamps for the workers who lost their jobs thanks to him? 

  • Stone_Monkey

    The choice for US voters this November is between The Guy Who Thinks People Shouldn’t Eat and The Other Guy… That pretty much boggles the mind.

  • banancat

    Just a few weeks ago Romney was bragging that he pays a lower tax rate than people who make far less than he does.  And now he’s turning around and accusing others of being leeches.  It’s not even flip-flopping, just complete and utter hypocrisy.

  • depizan

    I thought the McCain/Palin campaign was terrifying.  Romney seems to be going out of his way to prove himself the most terrifying major candidate in my lifetime.  Grats, Mitt, you’re doing a marvelous job of proving that there are real people just as vile as your average one dimensional villain.

    What’s his next move?  To follow his declaration that nearly half of Americans are worthless and not entitled to food (food, really?  WHAT THE EVER LIVING FUCK!?) with the declaration that when he’s elected, he’ll make sure they don’t get any?  I mean, this really sounds like setting up to pull every single government program that helps people (while, I’m sure, leaving in place every government program that helps business, because what really matters?).

    Maybe he’s just talking out his ass.  I hope he’s just talking out his ass.  But if he’s not… 

  • Launcifer

    Thing is, news outlets in the United Kingdom (three, to be precise: Sky News, the BBC and Channel 4) are reporting that tickets to this shindig were $50k a pop. We’re talking about a hefty donation with a complementary sandwich here. How many wealthy undecided voters are really going to throw that kind of money away on a plate of food and a speech from a man who comes across as semi-literate at best?

    Moreover, if you’re shelling out that kind of cash in the first place, you aren’t exactly going to want to sit in a room with two hundred other people: you’re going to want to pretend you’re part of the privileged inner circle that makes and breaks nations. That means they’re likely dyed-in-the-wool bastards to begin with, so this is really about shoring up support amongst the guys (and I wouldn’t be suprised if they were all men) who are going to help bankroll the campaign.

    In short, Romney’s not really there to win new friends. The people in the room are likely to vote for him because he’s wearing their gang colours and, given this, I doubt he really needed to self-edit. That leads me to the horrifying conclusion that he meant every single word of it.

    Christ on a bike, but this guy’s within farting distance of the arsehole of reality.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Fifty thousand dollars

    Fifty thousand dollars

    Fifty thousand dollars

    *jaw unhinges*

  • Carstonio

     In fairness, today Obama attended Beyonce and Jay-Z’s fund-raiser where the attendance cost was $40,000. I strongly doubt, however, that this event’s featured speaker was peddling a Marie Antoinette economic philosophy.

  • Launcifer

    That’s true – and the price of both tickets is frankly appalling. I mean, seriously… how can anyone take that much as a single contribution and claim not to have been bought?

  • Carstonio

    I’m a big proponent of publicly funded campaigns, capping contributions at $25 or so. 

  • Antigone10

    Then I would recommend telling your Congress Critters to support Bernie Sanders Amendment:

    http://www.sanders.senate.gov/savingdemocracy/ 

  • http://profiles.google.com/marc.k.mielke Marc Mielke

    Marie Antoinette economic philosophy

    “Let Them Eat Cake” isn’t quite as bad as “Let Them Eat NOTHING! NOTHING I TELL YOU! GOOD DAY, SIR!”

  • EllieMurasaki

    I’m not sure there’s any practical difference. Someone who can’t afford bread is unlikely to be able to afford cake, and being governed by someone who has no idea that someone who can’t afford bread probably can’t afford cake really isn’t a significant improvement over someone who’s glad that there are people who can’t afford bread. I mean, the former person might be educable and the latter is probably not, which could make the former person a better overlord in the future, but doesn’t make any difference in the here and now.

  • Matri

    Yzma: It is no concern of mine whether or not your family has… what was it again?
    Peasant: Umm… food?
    Yzma: Ha! You really should have thought of that before you became peasants!

  • http://www.nightphoenix.com Amaranth

    Ever since this story got out, I have been waiting for someone to quote Yzma. Thank you!

    The really scary thing is, people like Romney think Yzma’s attitude here is something to *emulate*. And then they wonder why the world is mocking them.

  • Lori

     

    I’m not sure there’s any practical difference.  

    The difference is dumb vs evil. The appocriphal MA quote is clueless, the idea that people aren’t entitled to food is just pure meanness. Even in the here & now I’d rather take my chances with Clueless’ other polices than with Evil’s.

  • http://profiles.google.com/marc.k.mielke Marc Mielke

    Practically, you’re right. But I would still feel better about an overlord who was sort of out-of-touch and clueless versus totally malicious.

    My previous post works better in this voice, though (just because I think this video is awesome)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4UDnTJcjPhY

  • Lori

    At least that fund raiser wasn’t held on a yacht named the “Cracker Bay” and registered in, and flying the flag of, the Cayman Islands.

    http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2012/08/mitt-romney-party-yacht-cracker-bay

  • hidden_urchin

    Fifty thousand dollars…

    Yes, let’s put this in perspective.   Does anyone want to guess how long that much money would feed me at my current budgeted amount for food?

    Anyone?

    Forty years.

    I’m not really feeling all that sorry for these people.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    Christ on a bike, but this guy’s within farting distance of the arsehole of reality.

    Launcifer, I just want to say that I found this entire sentence construction to be delightful.

  • Launcifer

    Thankee. I should probably admit to having had it all ready to go for years now. I’ve just been waiting for the right opportunity ;).

  • Nomuse

    Wow.  Just wow.  That puts it in context for me in a very personal way.

    I’ve been carrying a credit card debt for over five years now.  Five years of working 40+ hour weeks that don’t quite pay enough to keep up on the interest and fees.

    One ticket for that dinner would cancel that debt.  Ten times.

    And what really sucks is, very probably, someone at that dinner is getting some of that vig.

  • Lori

     

    Maybe he’s just talking out his ass.  I hope he’s just talking out his ass.  But if he’s not… 

    I honestly don’t think he is. A commenter on another blog pointed out how much more fluid and relaxed his delivery is on that tape, talking smack about the poor to other rich people, than it ever is when he’s speaking to a crowd that includes the hoi polloi. That tape is the real Mitt Romney.

  • depizan

    That tape is the real Mitt Romney.

    And that frickin’ scares me.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    I posted this elsewhere; I feel it bears repeating:

    I have always thought it rather … I’m not sure of the word, but consider that animals other than humans don’t have to pay for food. And plants. They grow in the ground and get free food and energy too.

    The sheer ridiculousness of assigning chits of paper value to necessary sustenance, such that there are people who are then committing a crime by eating

    And then to have people like Mitt Romney come along and basically put the boot in along with a hefty heel grind.

    Ugh

  • Daughter

    Another outrageous thing Romney said in this meeting: that the economy would get better by his election without him doing anything at all. The magic of the markets would just respond positively to his victory.

  • depizan

     Whaaat?  &^%^$#$#^%&*!!!!

    Sarah Palin was less disturbing than this dude.

  • Daughter

    I have been trying to share this far and wide:

  • Daughter
  • Figs

    How are there undecided voters again? Can someone remind me? Are they all people who have recently been hit in the head with bricks?

  • PJ Evans

     There aren’t many real undecided voters at this point. Some may change their minds before the election, but most people have it sorted out already.

    You know the GOP is in trouble when people who don’t like the president, for good reasons, are going to vote for him anyway, rather than voting for someone who seems to live on a different planet.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    $RANDOM_OPINION_POLL_CLAIMING_NECK_AND_NECK

    $UNRELATED_INCIDENT_OFFERED_AS_”PROOF”_THE_DEMS_DO_IT_TOO

  • aunursa

    No, actually since the video has surfaced, even I have to admit that the election campaign is essentially decided.   Why, the latest Gallup instant-poll, taken within the past 24 hours, shows that Obama has a rock solid lead, a margin that even the The Evil Karl Rove accepts as “insurmountable.”  Might as well cancel the debates, since Obama’s reelection is a lead pipe cinch. 

    C’est la vie.

  • Joshua

    Ah, the polls have been your undoing!

    Nah, but I think this has always been the case. The reason Romney is the R candidate is because whatever smart people are left at the top of the party decided to sit this one out.

    Consider: Romney actually was the best of those that put their names forward for candidacy.

  • PJ Evans

     Well, Huntsman might have been a better choice, but he wasn’t conservative enough for the party bosses.

  • The_L1985

     Huntsman would have been an actual conservative, not the bizarre theocratic types who have taken over the GOP slowly over the course of my lifetime.

  • Tricksterson

    Aunursa, get out of Neutrino’s body.  Don’t make me break out the exorcism kit.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Don’t make me break out the exorcism kit.

    Kinky.

  • Figs

    Agreed, about undecideds. Everything I’ve read places true undecideds somewhere in the low single digits. Most people who say they’re independents vote in as reliably partisan a manner as those who claim partisan affiliation.

    But in this case, the news has been deafening, and the choice is stark. I can’t imagine how even 3-5% of people are still having trouble making up their minds.

  • PJ Evans

    Mitt Romney’s election strategy is turning out to be ‘Open Mouth. Insert foot. Keep inserting foot until it’s visible at the other end.’

    WTF, dude, didn’t they teach you anything in those expensive and exclusive schools?

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    Romney’s actual campaign speeches are not as gaffe-filled, but they are delivered at a frequency normal human beings can not hear.

    THey mostly just go “I’m white” over and over again.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    THey mostly just go “I’m white” over and over again.

    I’m white. Most of my family is white. Almost everyone I know is white.

    If it were up to white Mitt Romney, black Barack Obama would not have been able to push through policy that will allow me to have surgery and hopefully work and definitely be in less pain. Obamacare has helped lots of white disabled people I know, and all white women I know. 

    I learned in my Modern Caribbean History class that there’s a saying in… I can’t remember which country. But the saying is, “money whitens.” The reverse is also true. My ancestry is almost all Scandinavian, Dutch, and German, all considered appropriately “white”, unlike Italian, Jewish, and Irish people were for a very long time. My Dutch ancestors were in New Amsterdam in the 16th century. I’m related to a 19th century president. My skin tone is such a pale pink, I pretty much glow in the dark. But I am poor and disabled. Romney and his ilk do not see me as actually white unless they see an excuse to pretend to “protect” me from black men.

    No poor person is seen as really white by the Mitt Romneys of the world. He’ll do his best to manipulate poor white people, but they are not of his tribe, as he makes clear every time he opens his mouth. Whiteness has always been a tool to get the white poor and middle classes to hew to the rich. With the slow demise of racism (it’s happening), people are waking up, realizing that it’s all been a vile, deadly scam. So Republicans have to resort to clear class warfare. That is going to fail, and fail hard.

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

     

    class warfare. That is going to fail, and fail hard.

    That’s interesting. Why should class warfare be any less viable than race warfare?

    I mean, I get that historically in the U.S. we’ve pretended to be a classless society and have therefore used race judgments as a proxy for the class judgments  we pretend not to make (leading to all kinds of bizarre questions like whether Italians are white).

    But I don’t see why, if it turns out that the construct of race stops working for that purpose, those of us inclined to that sort of thing won’t just start making class judgments directly.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    Why should class warfare be any less viable than race warfare?

    Because working and middle class white votes are necessary for the Republican party to ever win anything. When working and middle class whites start feeling squeezed and the rich people doing the squeezing can’t distract them with race or jingoism or religion, it turns out quite poorly for the rich people. And if the rich people keep squeezing, rather than compromising, they tend to end up dead.

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

     

    working and middle class white votes are necessary for the Republican party to ever win anything. 

    (nods) Agreed, as long as we remain at least a nominal republic, which I hope we do in perpetuity.

    But it seems that can relatively easily lead to class war waged between a coalition of the upper and middle classes against the lower classes.

  • Lori

     

    And if the rich people keep squeezing, rather than compromising, they tend to end up dead.  

    The current behavior of our monied overlords strikes me as pretty clear proof that they don’t teach history any better in those fancy prep schools and Ivy League universities than the do at PS 84 and State U. If they did one would expect the current crop of 1 percenters to notice that they’re traveling at a high rate of speed down the road to PitchforksandTorchesVille.

  • EllieMurasaki

    one would expect the current crop of 1 percenters to notice that they’re traveling at a high rate of speed down the road to PitchforksandTorchesVille.

    Between American exceptionalism (has such a thing ever actually happened in the US? because I do not recall such, even in the small scale, and while I admit I am not the greatest student of US history, that seems like a thing I’d have heard of) and the fact that they’ve got more money than anyone ever has in order to boost the illusion that their money will protect them, I think that they may have noticed and simply don’t think it’ll happen.

  • Lori

     

    (has such a thing ever actually happened in the US? because I do not
    recall such, even in the small scale, and while I admit I am not the
    greatest student of US history, that seems like a thing I’d have heard
    of)  

    I think the Battle of Blair Mountain probably qualifies. That was an actual armed rebellion, with gun battles and everything, over wages and working conditions. I think there were other actions during the heyday of US labor that would also count, but I can’t think of any (it was a long night at work and I’m not exactly in top form memory-wise right now).

    In general we teach our labor history even more poorly than we teach other aspects of our history and I somehow doubt that the offspring of the rich hear much about it. At least not much that’s true.

  • EllieMurasaki

    I think the Battle of Blair Mountain probably qualifies.

    *wikis* I should think so. Why have I never heard about this before? This is important.

  • Lori

     We teach our labor history very, very poorly. People have been trying for years to get Blair Mountain declared a national historic site (in part, irony or ironies, to save it from mountain top removal mining). So far they’ve been unsuccessful. We still have statues to f’ing Nathan Bedford Forrest, but we can’t get Blair Mountain preserved.

  • EllieMurasaki

    We still have statues to f’ing Nathan Bedford Forrest

    *wikis*

    We what? *floored*

  • Lori
  • AnonymousSam

     Yeah. We have a statue to one of the founders of the KKK on the grounds that “he was a kick-ass general during the Civil War.”

    The fact that he also murdered black people for a living is entirely secondary.

    I heard about it from this: http://www.change.org/petitions/selma-city-council-no-more-monuments-to-kkk-hate

  • Lori

    Oh yeah, he was a kick-ass general—-for Treason in Defense of Slavery.

  • The_L1985

     Welcome to the U.S. South, home of Confederate flag T-shirts that say things like, “KEEP THE SOUTH BEAUTIFUL: Buy a Yankee a bus ticket!”

  • hidden_urchin

    We teach our labor history very, very poorly.

    Of course. Those big corporations wouldn’t want their (future) employees getting any ideas.

  • Lori

    Sadly true. Which is why anyone who is interested has to do the work themselves.

    The folks at the Labor and Working Class History Association have some interesting things.

    http://www.lawcha.org/

    Including some info on Friends of Blair Mountain and their ongoing attempt to save the site

    http://lawcha.nfshost.com/wordpress/2012/06/13/friends-of-blair-mountain/

    The Shanker Institute did a depressing, but worthwhile report on just how crappy our labor history education is. Their report is here:

    http://www.shankerinstitute.org/docs/american-labor.pdf

    I also can’t say enough good things about the “This day in labor history” series that Eric Lomis is doing over at Lawyers, Guns & Money. He won an award for it not too long ago and it was richly deserved. This is the most recent one and at the bottom there’s a link to the archive of the entire series (42 entries and counting).

    http://www.lawyersgunsmoneyblog.com/2012/09/this-day-in-labor-history-september-2-1885

  • PJ Evans

     ISTR that Shays’s Rebelllion was about taxes and being required to pay them in cash rather than in kind – most people didn’t have much, if any, cash around back then.

  • Lori

    Shays’ Rebellion was against the government though, not against the rich as the rich. I think our current crop of 1% ers would be fine with armed rebellions, at least of certain types, against the government. 

  • PJ Evans

    our current crop of 1% ers would be fine with armed rebellions, at least of certain types, against the government

    I think they’d be flattened pretty quickly if they actually tried it.

  • Lori

     

    I think they’d be flattened pretty quickly if they actually tried it.  

    I was unclear due to being tired after a long shift of being a lazy moocher who will just never take responsibility for my life. (Gawd I really hate that guy.)

    I didn’t mean that the 1% wanted to engage in armed rebellion against the government. Why would they bother? What I was trying to say was that it would be find with them if the little people got into it with the government. They’ve been working hard for decades now to make sure that as many of the poor and the getting poorer as possible are pointing their anger at the big, mean ol’ gub’ment in order to keep them from looking at the folks who have actually been taking all their money.

  • Tricksterson

    If Obama wins, while unlikely, I’m not entirely ruling it out.  Likewise a major league assassination attempt.

  • Tricksterson

    I cannot remember the name of the icident but there was the “Something Army” that camped out in washington between WWi and the Great Depression.  it was a bunch of WWI vets who had been cheated of their back pay.  I think.  I’m probably remembering it all wrong and am only posting this as a sign post for someone who might have greater knowledge.  One might also point to Shay’s Rebellion and the Whiskey rebellion in the early days of the republic.

  • hidden_urchin

    Bonus Army.

  • Lori

    Bonus Army. 

    Nonviolent and aimed at the government, so again not really an example of pitch forks and torches directly threatening the rich oppressors.

  • Tricksterson

    Thank you.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

     I daresay that the fact you can see this places you firmly outside Mitt’s demographic.

    The GOP has done a VERY good job in recent years in convincing the victims of their policies that “When we talk about those freeloading poor people, we don’t mean *you*, we mean the black undeserving poor! Not *you*! (quietly: Seriously, we mean black people.)”

  • reynard61

    “WTF, dude, didn’t they teach you anything in those expensive and exclusive schools?”

    Or, as I like to ask: “If you’re so rich, why aren’t you smart???”

    My mom used to complain that every Presidential election usually boiled down to a choice between Mickey Mouse and Frankenstein. This go-round seems to be a choice between Einstein and Frankenstein.

  • Nomuse

    Wait, which one?  The monster?  Or the magnificent creature he brought to life?

  • The_L1985

     Of course!  They taught him that it is important for rich people to be well-connected with other rich people.

    They also taught him the phenomenal business skills business-destroying skills that he used to such great success working for Bain Capital.

  • Isabel C.

    Yeah, I don’t even. Like, there are responses that I could possibly make in re: breaking down that speech, but I’m still in the stage of “…he said what? No, seriously, he *said*…but I…but he…people don’t…” and bleeding from the eyes.

    I admire the people who’ve actually addressed the thing, because damn.

    To paraphrase Wayland Smithers, Romney has crossed the line between everyday villainy and cartoonish super-villainy. 

  • badJim

    Just in case anyone has missed the racial undertone of his remarks, there was also this:

    Describing his family background, he quipped about his father, “Had he been born of Mexican parents, I’d have a better shot of winning this.”

    Because Latinos get everything handed to them for free?

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    Because Latinos get everything handed to them for free?

    Because the only reason Obama got elected was that he’s a racial minority. Not that people thought his policies and leadership were superior to McCain’s; people just vote for minorities over rich late middle aged white dudes to show how morally superior they are.

  • Hawker40

    “Because the only reason Obama got elected was that he’s a racial minority. Not that people thought his policies and leadership were superior to McCain’s; people just vote for minorities over rich late middle aged white dudes to show how morally superior they are.”

    Which explains why every branch of government in the United States at every level is dominated by women, minorities, the poor and the young.  Or not.

  • AnonymousSam

    The majority of racism today is based upon the presumption that whites are becoming increasingly shoved out of opportunity/their rightful place/etc because employers are more likely to hire a minority, judges will more often side with a minority, and a white can’t do anything without being accused of racism.

    So yes, when Romney says this, he’s playing a very racist card indeed.

  • Joshua

    I gotta say, this is hilarious. I can’t wait to find out what he says next. And nearly half of you USAians are going to vote for this bozo? You can’t make this stuff up.

    Next week on the Mitt Romney Show:

    “Balance the budget? I can’t even balance a chequebook! I have people for that.”
    “Voters are shitheads, and paying taxes is for chumps anyway.”
    “Eh, screw you guys, I’m going home!”
    “My first act as President of these United States of America will be to declare nucular war on the Unites States of America!”
    Sorry, chekbook.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    Technically, given recent trends in turnout, something like a quarter of American adults are expected to vote for this bozo.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    D-X

    I’ve heard the black church leaders were starting to advise their attendees to not vote because omggaymarriage and omgmormon

    But this if nothing else proves Romney is explicitly racist and will not hesitate to throw minorities under the bus if it means reinforcing and reinstating power structures that give whites an easier ride of it than anyone else.

    Given that, I think it’s more like

    Reasonable current President who understands the challenges minorites face

    versus

    OMGTHEDEVILHIMSELF

  • Joshua


    OMGTHEDEVILHIMSELF 

    Now, now, be fair.

    The devil’s competent.

  • depizan

    Though Romney does rather resemble Ellanjay’s Antichrist.

  • Joshua

    Though instead of being named after a mountain, he’s named after a sheep.

    He’s a ram, he’s pissed, and he’s not going to take it anymore.

    His run for president is the ultimate false-flag operation against the human race.

  • http://www.facebook.com/susan.paxton.94 Susan Paxton

    I do pretty much think “Nicolae Carpathia” every time I see him.

  • Baby_Raptor

    And can probably act extremely well…I can’t imagine he’d be able to be the horrible tempter he supposedly is if he can’t be convincing.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    Reasonable current President who understands the challenges minorites face
    versus
    OMGTHEDEVILHIMSELF

    I wouldn’t go for hypoerbole myself. Jessica and Steve Monkey had it: the choice is between someone who thinks that human beings are not entitled to food, and someone else.

    You don’t need any dressing on that.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    A man who thinks a lot of people don’t deserve food ought rightly to be called the devil, I should think.

  • Lori

     

    “Eh, screw you guys, I’m going home!”   

    I’m not kidding—I would vote for Cartman before I’d vote for Romney. At least Cartman is honest about being evil.

  • Joshua

    Well, there was that episode where he became a televangelist in aid of his goal of getting a million dollars. He wasn’t honest, but at least he was funny.

    Well, Romney is funny too. At least Cartman’s is intentional humour.

  • The_L1985

    …Checkbook. :)

  • Joshua

    I was being generous with my sarcasm. The USA has created Cheez Whiz and Froot Loops, and is therefore going to get a little flak on the spelling front.

    Also, a spray product called “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter!“? Seriously? Is it just for people who don’t know what butter is? Or some kind of elaborate joke lost on foreigners?

    Different rant, I admit.

  • Joshua

    All trademarks own by their respective owners, who are welcome to them.

  • The_L1985

     Well, technically, “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter” was a spreadable product for at least a decade or two before it became a spray.

    The idea was a diet spread that tasted so much like butter, you couldn’t believe it.  Hence the name.

  • badJim

    Craig T. Nelson: “I’ve been on welfare and food stamps…did anyone help me?”

    Mitt Romney: Contending that he is a self-made millionaire who earned his own fortune, Romney insisted, “I have inherited nothing.” Apparently he made it through prep school and Harvard entirely on his own. It’s entirely irrelevant that his father was the head of American Motors and the governor of Michigan.

    Those who haven’t had the pleasure of viewing “Mitt Romney: A Human Being Who Built That”, a brief video from the Daily Show narrated by Leonard Nimoy, ought to indulge themselves immediately.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Charity-Brighton/100002974813787 Charity Brighton

     Incidentally, this might be Romney’s most irritating trait. When Herman Cain or someone like that says this, yeah, it’s irritating but I can at least understand where he’s coming from. He actually did come from humble beginnings and work his way to the top. Romney’s parents were both high-level politicians and his dad was the CEO of a fortune 500 company. He went to Harvard.

    That’s not to say that he didn’t have to work hard, only that he had a leg up that most people — even most business people — can’t even imagine. He not only grew up around money, he grew up around political power. This doesn’t negate the part of his life that he built for himself but it does mean that he should take into account this gigantic advantage when he decides to lecture the working poor about their laziness.

  • Lori

    Yup. I won’t repeat my whole rant about Ann Romney’s offensive and idiotic story about how she & Mitt struggled in college, but yeah, the worst thing about Mr & Mrs Mittens is how totally oblivious they are to their incredible privilege. No amount of work or illness changes that, but the Romney’s have no interest in understanding that privilege =/= no work or trouble.

  • Ross Thompson

    Romney’s parents were both high-level politicians and his dad was the CEO of a fortune 500 company. He went to Harvard.

    He went to Harvard twice. Harvard School of Law and Harvard School of Business.

  • The_L1985

     And it worked.  He learned how to use both law and business to help himself at the expense of others.

    So yes, he learned something.  It was just something grossly immoral.

  • Ross Thompson

    So yes, he learned something.  It was just something grossly immoral.

    I think what he learned was that “the poor” are those people whose parents can only afford to send them to Harvard once.

  • Lori

     

    Romney insisted, “I have inherited nothing.” 

    This may technically be correct in that Mitt’s daddy gave him all that stock while he was still alive, therefore it wasn’t an inheritance. It’s possible that Mitt received little or nothing when George died because he had already gotten his cut.

  • Lunch Meat

    I posted a facebook status asking my friends to please consider that as an Obama supporter, it is me Romney is talking about, and they know me, and they know I’m neither lazy nor selfish nor a victim nor irresponsible nor careless nor entitled, and therefore Romney is lying. One person kindly reassured me that he was talking about people who don’t take care of themselves, not about me (fortunately, his “clarification” in the NY Times actually makes it very clear that he considers the two 47s to be synonymous), but I hope it gets through to at least one person.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    I have a friend who is the loveliest guy on the planet one-on-one, but an extreme conservative when it comes to politics (yeah, I don’t get it either). He posts Facebook articles about the great climate change conspiracy pretty regularly, which I usually sit out. But a while ago he and his fellow travellers were commenting away about how carbon pricing will make eldery people unable to afford heating, so they will freeze to death in their houses, and he remarked that this is environmentalists’ (sorry, “greenies”) precise intention.

    I replied, saying that I don’t know how to deal with the fact that he thinks I want old people to die. He was shocked (I say, shocked) and said that he would never think such a thing about me. I pointed out that the group he was describing (viz., people who advocate carbon pricing) includes me, so whatever he believes about the group he has to believe about me. “Of course I don’t mean you!” And so forth.

    Two weeks later he was back making the exact same blanket claims.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Charity-Brighton/100002974813787 Charity Brighton

    I said it before — Mitt Romney is probably one of the most honest men to ever run for office. A lot of people have these thoughts but generally try not to express them out loud while running for office, and if they do get caught they try to dissemble or disavow. Not my man Romney — he really clings to his guns.

    (There’s no reason to spend too much time thinking about the actual accuracy of Romney’s implication here. If you really think that everyone who lives in poverty is liberal or everyone who doesn’t is conservative, you’re probably a few watts short of a match, and “thinking” might be a little ambitious.)

  • Lori

    OMG you guys, this is the best part about this whole debacle—the person who encouraged the owner of the tape to make the whole thing public was James Carter IV, grandson of Jimmy Carter.

    http://firstread.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/09/18/13938614-how-the-romney-video-leaked-for-carters-it-was-personal?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

    Important safety tip Mitt: Do not talk smack about the grandpa of a smart, persistent person who does oppo research for the other guys.

  • PJ Evans

    the grandpa of a smart, persistent person

    Said grandpa is reportedly pleased with his namesake.

  • urquelldude

    While it’s thrilling to think the campaign is now a slam dunk for progressives, I worry about the fairly large number of working lower middle class, that have been struggling for years, maybe a little more than most, but still pay taxes.  Every paycheck they see a bunch of taxes going out, and they pay their bills but can’t afford much else, so they crack a PBR and turn on Fox News.  They really BELIEVE the reason they struggle is that half the country is just sucking the life out of it: taking welfare and foodstamps.  They thing undocumented people get government money.  They thing    These people will be sure to vote for Romney, because he’s the one they think who will get all these freeloaders off the dole.  We can’t get complacent.

  • Joshua

    Cthulhu for President: No longer the lesser of two evils.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Obama needs to seriously seize the initiative, now.

    – Dump Tim Geithner. Get a real brass-balls die-hard populist politician as his new SecTreas.
    – Roll out a new tax system that removes the FICA cap, slashes the FICA rate for all taxpayers, and reinstates the tax system present in the 1960s.

    And most importantly,

    – Replay that clip as often as possible. Mitt Romney does not give a shit about anyone except his rich fellow travellers when he says he doesn’t think people deserve to have food.

    Even George W. Bush cracking jokes about the “haves” and “have-mores” and “being his base” didn’t quite have the same sheer level of jerk-assery about it, and that’s saying something.

  • Lori

     ITA, but sadly I think there is zero chance of either of those first two things happening.

    Obama himself has apparently, and I think wisely, opted for the high road.

    http://www.politico.com/politico44/2012/09/obama-all-of-us-make-mistakes-135934.html?hp=f1

    Especially after the “bitter clingers” controversy during the last election he’d seem like a hypocritical ass if he personally went in for the kill over this.

    Of course, that doesn’t mean that other people can’t do it for him.

    http://www.democraticunderground.com/10021371424

  • Daughter

     Obama could dump Geithner, but I don’t think he can change the tax rates on his own. He’d need Congress for that.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Well, if he pushes a tax proposal and links it to the increasingly offensive out of touch sense of entitlement rich people have about their money there’s a good chance the rates will at least go back up at the top end, even if the top rate doesn’t go back to 70%.

  • Nat

    Capitalist Imperialist Obama thinks the same things as Romney, he’s only better at hiding it! Long live the Communist revolution against both Capitalistic, oppressive, imperialist parties!

  • EllieMurasaki

    You know, I don’t have a problem with people saying Obama’s too in favor of big-money donors and big corporations. I’ve said it myself. But that doesn’t mean Obama and Romney occupy the same space on the economic political spectrum. Nowhere near. And even in hypotheticobizarroworld where a Democrat with Romney’s economic beliefs could get nominated for president, and supposing that Democratic presidential candidate to be Obama, Romney still thinks that because I have a uterus that I don’t want in constant use, that because I think other folk with boobs are sexually appealing, and that because I don’t think gods exist, I’m rather less than fully human. And I’m fortunate in that regard because I’m able-bodied and very pale-skinned and excellent at faking being my assigned-at-birth gender. Obama has nothing against members of disadvantaged groups, which would make him the preferred candidate on social grounds even if there were no reason to prefer him on economic issues.

  • The_L1985

     Ah, college Marxists…

  • Jessica_R

    I think my favorite part of all this is that apparently it was a waiter at the event that took the video of this. The 47 percent can press record just fine m’lord, might have done well for you to remember that. 

    And Colbert as usual was marvelous about this, “Russian Fuck Pit” is my new band name.

  • Münchner Kindl

    I’m only surprised that anybody is still surprised/ outraged at this. It’s what US Republicans, esp. pundits and radio/ Fox news persons, have said for years. We’ve already had teaparty members saying that they want the govt. to keep its hands of their medicare/ social security pension, or saying that they get food stamps, but never took handouts, without realising the mistake in there.

    We’ve had budget suggestions during the last election battle from Republicans that meant the same thing. We’ve seen the Republicans in congress holding a whole country hostage over the debt ceiling. We know about the just world fallacy and authoritarian thinking pattern they cling to.

    We know that the people who watch Fox and vote R  never consider themselves leeches, no matter facts. We have heard that facts don’t matter for years.

    Why is this news? The only news would be if they really ate babies of poor people to help them earn money and curb the spread of poverty, a la Swift. Everything else is part of the usual ideology being phrased in different forms.

    So yeah, you can choose between a candidate with very bad ideas who wants to wreck the whole country, or a candidate who didn’t close Gitmo, who increased drones, who’s also forgotten the poor and who can’t achieve most of his aims because congress R and teapartiers can block him. So not good and bad, but evil and less-bad/ inpotent.

  • Joshua


    I’m only surprised that anybody is still surprised/ outraged at this. It’s what US Republicans, esp. pundits and radio/ Fox news persons, have said for years.  

    I think the surprise is at the fact that he was stupid enough to speak honestly about politics in a place where he could be recorded.

    The large majority of Republicans in this campaign appear to be smart enough not to do that, Akin obviously excepted.

  • http://loosviews.livejournal.com BringTheNoise

    who’s also forgotten the poor

    [Citation Needed]

    Also, please visit whatthefuckhasobamadonesofar.com before writing Obama off as impotent. I suspect a fair number of LGBT American servicepeople might disagree (to name just one group).

  • Münchner Kindl

     

    who’s also forgotten the poor

    [Citation Needed]

    I was thinking of this article http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2012/09/02/3496773/the-story-you-wont-hear-this-week.html
    which Fred linked to http://www.patheos.com/blogs/slacktivist/2012/09/03/hate-sits-alone-on-the-hood-of-his-car/

    Also, please visit whatthefuckhasobamadonesofar.c…
    before writing Obama off as impotent. I suspect a fair number of LGBT
    American servicepeople might disagree (to name just one group).

    I didn’t say that he didn’t do anything; it’s just that he campaigned with big promises, big visions and big dreams … and then the Republican/ Tea party controlled House/ Senate showed how much a legal POTUS can be blocked, so we got to watch the endless dragging-on of the Health care law; the debt-ceiling being used as weapon; the threat of filibuster stopping everything.

    On top of that, things like increasing drones and not closing Gitmo were active decisions by Obama.

  • Daughter

     Drones, yes; Gitmo, no. Not closing Gitmo was a Congressional decision.

  • Ross Thompson

    Drones, yes; Gitmo, no. Not closing Gitmo was a Congressional decision.

    Well, kind of. Had he had his druthers, he’d have transferred the prisoners to Thompson Supermax in Indiana, because he didn’t object to indefinite detention without trial of people known to be innocent, he just didn’t like that it wasn’t happening in Cuba.

    Some of Congress voted against it because they didn’t want terrorists on American soil, and some voted for it because they didn’t want to perpetuate the basic iniquity.

    But the point is, even if he’d closed Gitmo, he would have closed Gitmo; he’d only have moved it a thousand miles North.

  • http://mistformsquirrel.deviantart.com/ mistformsquirrel

    What surprises me about this is that I have a reaction to it at all.  I’ve known for a long time that this is how that crowd thinks – it shouldn’t be surprise, it shouldn’t be upsetting, but it is.

  • The_L1985

     Well, it shouldn’t be a surprise.  But it should still be upsetting because it is upsetting. :)

  • Isabel C.

    It’s what I like to call the Dog Shit Principle.

    I’m not *surprised*, per se, if I step in dog shit. I live in a fairly large city; a number of people have dogs; a number of people don’t grasp civic responsibility as applies to cleaning up after their pets.

    But if I step in dog shit, I’m still annoyed: this pair of shoes is pretty much ruined because some total asshat thinks he or she is too good to get a plastic bag and a plastic scoop like everyone else, and I want that person to get stung repeatedly by flaming wasps. 

    These two things are not incompatible.

    (The number of times I’ve had to explain that they’re not incompatible–particularly in re: sexism and harassment and so forth–is depressing, but not really surprising either. How meta.)

    And the Republicans keep bringing up that principle, especially this year. I mean, Romney’s really been the Akin of economics here: we all know that’s what his buddies *mean*, but nobody expected any of them to actually come out and say it.

  • http://mistformsquirrel.deviantart.com/ mistformsquirrel

     True, I guess I just figured I’d be acclimated to it by now.  I guess some things you never quite get used to; and maybe that’s a good thing.

  • Kiba
  • Hexep

    And, at this point, a man loses an election.  If the President thinks the White House needs a new kitchen or something, well, now he’s clear to start.

  • Launcifer

    Aaand we in the United Kingdom have learned today that someone thought to show Romney the latest Batman film, given his comments concerning the feasibility of hiding a dirty bomb in Chicago.

  • The_L1985

    If anything else, the new Batman emphasizes that it’s impossible to stop terrorism without creating a draconian police state. (And even then, things still go pear-shaped pretty quickly.)

    Whether or not you believe such a society is a good idea is beside the point.  We literally cannot have a free state and a terrorism-proof state at the same time.  It is not possible.

  • FrenchRoast

    Considering just how many people I know who get Medicare were anti-Obamacare with the reasoning of “I don’t want the government interfering with my (government-provided) healthcare!”, I’m not sure Romney’s statements will change many people’s minds about voting for him. Cognitive dissonance is something a large part of the electorate is really, really good at, alas.

  • JustoneK

    My favorite part – Ryan is now claiming the statement is “inelegant.”  Yesss.  That’s our problem with it.  It wasn’t the actual idea communicated at all, but the way it was CONVEYED.

    Because we are teh dum.

  • http://loosviews.livejournal.com BringTheNoise

    Considering that the Makers/Takers bullshit is what Ayn Rand’s philosophy is built on, Ryan defending it doesn’t surprise me. As always, he’s just annoyed someone got caught talking about it in plain language, rather than code.

  • Ross Thompson

    My favorite part – Ryan is now claiming the statement is “inelegant.”  Yesss.  That’s our problem with it.  It wasn’t the actual idea communicated at all, but the way it was CONVEYED.

    It’s like when Limbaugh described Miss Fluke as a “slut”, Romney’s response was “those aren’t the words I would have used”. Because he believes that the basic point is correct, but it would be more polite to call her a “trollop”, or perhaps “slattern”.

    It’s not that you used the wrong words, or expressed yourself inelegantly, it’s that your basic ideas are monstrously sociopathic, and no degree of polishing is going to make them seem voter-friendly.

  • Launcifer

    Actually, that leads me to (yet another) disturbing thought: Romney’s not going to get no votes in the election. I know there are many, many reasons to vote one way or another, generally speaking, but how many of those people who do vote for him are thinking “well, I don’t agree with him on that, but it’s not enough for me to vote for someone else”, how many are in the “the Republicans could offer up a bucket of shit and I’d vote for it just so long as the bucket was red” category and how many people actually agree with everything he said?

    It’s the last one that worries me most of all, ’cause Romney may well be coming across as sociopathic, but if people are voting for him because they agree with him, doesn’t that – by extension – make all of them a tad sociopathic, too?

    And that possibility says something downright terrifying about the country that traditionally sees itself as an exemplar to the world-at-large.

  • aunursa

    You say this as if it’s news to you.  It’s been an established fact for some time now that we Republicans are sociopathic monsters.

  • The_L1985

    Using Google as a citation.  How cute.

  • Launcifer

    Bit disingenuous that, but it is news to me, at least in the sense that this guy could still be considered a candidate for any kind of office in a prosperous western nation. Then again, I’m English, which might suggest a degree of cultural confusion.

    I mean, going by his own words there, Romney’s just written off more than 146 million people in the country he wants to govern. The possibility of throwing that many people under the proverbial bus is something that’s quite beyond my comprehension. It’s also a bit mystifying that he’s assuming that the other fifty-three percent are even eligible – or able – to vote, never mind that they’re all going to vote for him.

    I’m also incredibly wary of the implications of this man rolling out that kind of logic as an aspect of his foreign policy because, on that scale, it’s likely only a matter of time before it starts screwing with the governance of my country.  

  • Carstonio

    I don’t like the labeling of someone as “sociopathic” in political discussions unless a psychiatrist has made a formal diagnosis. Too many people without medical degrees hear that term and assume the person tortures puppies for fun, or is one step away from climbing the Texas Bell Tower. Better to describe the mindset and agenda for what they are instead of using labels.

  • Launcifer

    I have to hold my hand up and admit to some awareness that the term was not the best – or necessarily the most appropriate – one that I could have used when I posted my earlier comment. The problem I had (have might be more accurate, actually) was that when I looked into my Mental Box of Words for a quick description of this man’s apparent behaviour, that was the word that repeatedly fell out.

    What I think I’m doing wrong is looking for a quick way to describe an incredibly lengthy list of issues that I perceive in what’s being said. I can accept that doing that is only really going to lead to inaccurate or unfair labels being applied for the sake of convenience.

  • VMink

    In that, there’s no fault for going to their own oracle of Right Behavior and using her language: Ayn Rand said up front ‘Selfishness is a virtue.’  How can they complain when we call their behavior ‘selfish?’  It is what it is.

    Though the problem with that, is that with the Bizarro-world memetic warfare going on, ‘compassion’ and ’empathy’ have become BAD and ‘selfish’ has become GOOD.  I don’t know how to oppose this sort of values inversion.

  • Launcifer

    I have to hold my hand up and admit to some awareness that the term was not the best – or necessarily the most appropriate – one that I could have used when I posted my earlier comment. The problem I had (have might be more accurate, actually) was that when I looked into my Mental Box of Words for a quick description of this man’s apparent behaviour, that was the word that repeatedly fell out.

    What I think I’m doing wrong is looking for a quick way to describe an incredibly lengthy list of issues that I perceive in what’s being said. I can accept that doing that is only really going to lead to inaccurate or unfair labels being applied for the sake of convenience.

  • Vermic

    Actually, that leads me to (yet another) disturbing thought: Romney’s not going to get no votes in the election.

    To give just one example, there are millions of voters who are just here for the abortion issue, and nothing either candidate says about economics, foreign policy, or anything else matters one bit.

  • Lori

     

    how many of those people who do vote for him are thinking “well, I don’t
    agree with him on that, but it’s not enough for me to vote for someone
    else”, how many are in the “the Republicans could offer up a bucket of
    shit and I’d vote for it just so long as the bucket was red” category
    and how many people actually agree with everything he said?   

    I think the number of people who actually agree with what Romney said is quite small. The number of people who think they agree with it because they willfully refuse to understand what he actually said (see your 1st & 2nd points) is much higher. I’m not sure where the sociopath line ought to be drawn there. I do know that it’s frightening that our discourse is so partisan that for about 30% of the population there is literally nothing that Romney can say that would make them not vote for him.

    There are obviously Dems who are looking past some pretty appalling stuff to vote for Obama again. (I’m one of them.) Somehow though, lying about and dismissing almost half the people you claim to want to govern just strike me as being in a whole other category.

  • AnonymousSam

    So these men spent more money in an hour than what most families make in a year, just to sit around and talk about how other people don’t deserve the tiny fraction of a percent of their wealth that they get. “They’re so greedy,” these men say, dining on foie gras with truffle oil. “Why should we care that they throw away their money and are too lazy to get more? Oh, speaking of which, what’s a good Swiss account to set up a trust fund for my kids? I don’t want them having to hob-knob with the blue collars just to get by in college.”

  • Wednesday

    So, this 47% statistic… is it supposed to be 47% of people living in the US, 47% of US citizens, 47% of eligible voters, 47% of adults, what? Does this exclude married couples filing jointly where one spouse does not work for pay? Because 24% of people living in the US are under 18, according to the 2010 census. Another 13% are over 65. And if I understand the GOP correctly, they want all mothers to be married to a man and staying at home caring for the children, which would mean that (again going by 2010 US census numbers) about 32% of the population would not be working.  (Or maybe it’s just all white women are supposed to be stay-at-home moms married to men? I’m not always clear on that.)

  • Wednesday

     …would not be working _for pay_, my apologies. Obviously being a SAH parent is work, it’s just one that you don’t get income for so you don’t pay federal income taxes.

  • The_L1985

    Don’t forget the working poor.  Half the people receiving government assistance (a.k.a. welfare) have full-time jobs–that don’t pay enough to live on.

    Also, there are a surprising number of people with disabilities that prevent them from working, and those people are on SSDI and have no income to tax.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    Also, there are a surprising number of people with disabilities that prevent them from working, and those people are on SSDI and have no income to tax.

    They’re on SSDI if they’re lucky. I have a disability that prevents me from working. I was in college and not working when I threw my back out, and therefore uneligible for SSDI, though I’ve paid a whole lot in Social Security taxes in my life. I can’t get need-based disability in my state because, according to the lawyer I talked to, I’m:

    1) Too young (35)
    2) Too educated
    3) Technically able to function on the most basic level. I am unable to cook or clean or bend over to pick up things I drop, my memory is absolute shit, I shake so much that I drop things regularly, I am in incredible, debilitating pain all the time, I am unable to drive, but I can get myself to and from the bathroom.

    She said there was no way I could win my case in Florida, even with my doctor testifying that I needed disability. If my parents and fiancé couldn’t afford to support me, I’d be on the streets. Most likely dead, as I can’t do anything physical.

    Gee it’s just so fun being in horrible, debilitating pain all the time that makes me completely dependent on others! Yep, I do so love it. Obviously a choice I’m making. 

    I wish for Mitt Romney to be poked in the eye with a sharp stick.

  • The_L1985

     Ugh.  This is why the whole “DURRR, people game the system!” folks piss me off.

    The system isn’t broken if someone takes unfair advantage of it–EVERY system will be abused eventually.  There are assholes.  There are a few people who do, in fact, want something for nothing.  But they’re rare, and the system can handle them to an extent.

    The system is broken if either a large percentage of people using it are doing so unfairly (not the case in the U.S.), or if people aren’t getting desperately-needed services.

  • Daughter

     I had an argument about just this issue on Facebook yesterday. People were complaining about the unemployed, people on welfare and illegal immigrants gaming the system, and I asked them to put some numbers to it. How many? What percentage? And how do you know? I said anecdotes don’t count, and gave a statistic of my own: a House subcommittee investigation this year that found that 1.9% of unemployment claims are fraudulent. The document I linked talked about how to combat that 1.9%, since that adds up to millions of dollars, but I pointed out that that means that 98% of unemployed people are NOT cheating the system.

    Only one woman (of 4 people making this type of claim) gave any number: 67% of newcomers are illegal immigrants are cheating our welfare system, like Muslims that come over with four wives, claiming they’re all different relatives, and collect welfare for all of them. I asked how she knew, and she mentioned the businesses and service providers who offer translation into other languages. I said that means they serve said large immigrant populations, not that undocumented people are cheating the system. 

    So she said something about Google it. I did, and came up with a survey in which 67% of the respondents said illegal immigration was a problem for America. I said that’s an opinion, and in plenty of opinion surveys, people don’t know facts. Then she said she couldn’t reveal her source because she’s been subpoenaed to testify before Congress about this issue. (!?)

    My last point to this group: I feel like one big difference between liberals and conservatives is that liberals think people gaming the system are a small minority, and don’t want to punish the honest majority because of it. Conservatives feel the opposite: that most people are dishonest, and so they’ll punish everyone, even people who really need help.

  • Lori

     

    Then she said she couldn’t reveal her source because she’s been subpoenaed to testify before Congress about this issue. (!?)  

    That’s certainly an interesting approach to getting out of an argument when the facts aren’t on your side.

  • Tricksterson

    I’d be more willing to buy that if she hadn’t already changed her story twice.

  • Lori

     I’d be highly dubious even then, but yes, I’d be at least somewhat more likely to take her word for it if that had been response #1, not #3.

  • Kubricks_Rube

    This is why the whole “DURRR, people game the system!” folks piss me off.

    I like to point out that G-d established a pretty high baseline for when it’s acceptable to punish the innocent along with the guilty:

    22 So the men turned from there and went toward Sodom, but Abraham still stood before the Lord. 23 Then Abraham drew near and said, “Will you indeed sweep away the righteous with the wicked? 24 Suppose there are fifty righteous within the city. Will you then sweep away the place and not spare it for the fifty righteous who are in it? 25 Far be it from you to do such a thing, to put the righteous to death with the wicked, so that the righteous fare as the wicked! Far be that from you! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do what is just?” 26 And the Lord said, “If I find at Sodom fifty righteous in the city, I will spare the whole place for their sake.”

    27 Abraham answered and said, “Behold, I have undertaken to speak to the Lord, I who am but dust and ashes. 28 Suppose five of the fifty righteous are lacking. Will you destroy the whole city for lack of five?” And he said, “I will not destroy it if I find forty-five there.” 29 Again he spoke to him and said, “Suppose forty are found there.” He answered, “For the sake of forty I will not do it.” 30 Then he said, “Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak. Suppose thirty are found there.” He answered, “I will not do it, if I find thirty there.” 31 He said, “Behold, I have undertaken to speak to the Lord. Suppose twenty are found there.” He answered, “For the sake of twenty I will not destroy it.” 32 Then he said, “Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak again but this once. Suppose ten are found there.” He answered, “For the sake of ten I will not destroy it.”

  • The_L1985

     But….but Republican Jesus said that 1 bad apple spoils the bunch!!1!!!!!111!!!one!!

  • Isabel C.

    I like Jon Stewart’s take on it. “You may know these deadbeats as the Greatest Generation or ‘Nana’.” 

  • PJ Evans

    So, this 47% statistic… is it supposed to be 47% of

    My understanding is that it’s 47 percent of the households in the US.

  • SkyknightXi

    The problem is going to be convincing them that they ARE sociopathic, or even pseudo-sociopathic (i.e. even without the affliction, they’re managing to follow its patterns). The problem is one of self-righteousness; they’re convinced that by following the proper path in utmost purity, they’ve become incapable of philosophical error. Russell/Ingersoll’s (I forget who said it) point about how the regarding-themselves-as-pure see themselves as unable to be critiqued legitimately comes to mind. Cue trouble when two such self-canonized purities OF DISSIMILAR SUBSTANCES meet…They don’t even have to be on the same axis. Or axes that intersect. Or axes that are parallel. The point is that purity is largely defined not just by the pure substance, but the absolute lack–in many cases, outright rejection–of anything else as detracting from the primary substance.

    Basically, the archons don’t see themselves as corrupt. Merely willing automatons of righteousness.

  • VMink

    I admit… it’s taken me a while to avoid calling people ‘sociopaths’ who follow this ‘secular prosperity gospel,’ ‘You do not have the right to EAT FOOD,’ stuff.  Because it’s not sociopathy; it’s definitely a lack of empathy and a whole lot of privilege, but it’s not sociopathy.  None of the people cleaving to this really do want to go out and stomp on homeless people.  They simply don’t know.  For the most part, it’s ignorance and fear.  This may result in sociopathic behavior but I don’t see them as DSM-IV sociopaths (or rather diagnosed with antisocial personality disorder.)

    How many people like this have started to reverse their stances on QUILTBAG equality when confronted with a friend or a family member who is QUILTBAG?  How many of them plunge into cognitive dissonance to say ‘Oh, but you’re one of the ones who NEEDED government assistance!’  Those are cracks in their armor, a slow falling away of the scales on their eyes.

    Which isn’t to say we shouldn’t continue to push, push, push to ensure that the least powerful are protected from the most powerful, and have the benefits and protections of living in a civilized society.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    That’s the problem.

    Even the anti-abortion people who get confronted with “That could be you (if female)” or “That could be your wife/sister/mother/daughter (if male)” wave their hand and make excuses for why those people are special cases while Everybody Else is Just a Slut, or some misogynistic variant on why abortion should, on the whole, remain illegal.

    I really hope that the people who listened to Romney say those things are not already trying to rationalize “oh, he meant Those Other People!” – although his mean crack about being born Hispanic suggests he’s trying to plant that suggestion in people’s heads already.

  • PirateAnon

     In a lot of ways, that’s what changed my thinking on the life/choice debate – being personally confronted with that choice, and having to think it through from a perspective of need, circumstance, intention, long term outcome.  The ‘why?’ is a lot harder to hand-wave away when it’s YOUR choice (or hers, as it were.)  My sister hadn’t intended it, was shamed into avoiding birth control, and was in a controlling and abusive relationship that burdened her with an impossible choice.  No one had the right to brow beat her for that decision.

  • Münchner Kindl

     

    Because it’s not sociopathy; it’s definitely a lack of empathy and a
    whole lot of privilege, but it’s not sociopathy.  None of the people
    cleaving to this really do want to go out and stomp on homeless people.
     They simply don’t know.

    I don’t want to Godwinze, but that’s exactly what Hannah Arendt called “the banality of evil” or what TPratchett talked about with the inquisitors in “Small Gods” who after a day of torturing go home to their wifes and kids.

    Today, one person sitting at a desk can sign an order/law that will affect tens of thousands of people – condemning them to live without food if foodstamps are cut, or no medical help if Obamacare is repealed, and go home and think of himself as nice person because he is kind to his neighbours.

    The strong emphasis in US culture on being “nice” and polite, coupled with the stress on “good intentions” from the Christian culture, means that a large amount of people can get away with not bothering to care about the impact the policies they advocate and vote for have on thousands of people they don’t know personally.

    Changing that would require better education but the system of local school boards and home schooling prevents that.

  • AnonymousSam

    Admittedly, part of me feels the urge to make No True Scotsman arguments to defend the holy sanctity of sociopathy whenever the word comes up in relation to these subhuman personifications of a broccoli fart.

    And then I remember, “Oh, right, I’m the exception…” and it gets better. When in doubt, I can rest comfortably knowing I’ll always be able to appeal to my own colossal ego. ^_^

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    I think the phrase “dangerously out of touch”, while it doesn’t carry the connotations of sociopathy, works as well for describing the things people like Romney say or do.

    Also, one thing I think Obama needs to do is throw cold water on the “Othering” people tend to do.

    “For those of you tuning in, ask yourselves honestly: Do you collect Social Security? Do you use Medicare? Do you use Medicaid? Do you use WIC or SNAP?

    “If you use these things, you’re benefitting from government aid just as much as all the ‘welfare bums’ you complain about. The money comes from taxpayers’ pockets just as much as it does when a person on welfare gets money or an EBT card.

    “Sure, I could talk about roads or schools or police or firefighters, but we take those so much for granted we don’t stop to think ‘hey, I drove a road today; I benefitted from that even though I didn’t have to pay a toll for it.’

    “But we do stop, a lot, and complain bitterly about ‘freeloaders’ who take more in taxes back than they give – only we try and pretend that this very small sliver of the American population is the sole beneficiary of the three to four trillion dollars we spend every year.

    “And that’s not true; it’s not right, and it’s not fair. People on welfare are no more freeloaders than you are for collecting a Social Security check, or for going to the store and using WIC to feed your kids.

    “We breathe the same air. We drink the same water. We live on the same planet, in the same country.

    “And this means as Americans, we reach out to lend a hand when someone needs help, not slap their hand away and tell them to do it all on their own.”

  • Isabel C.

    “Out of touch” doesn’t quite do it for me: it implies a sort of helplessness, a well-okay-he’s-just-behind-the-times, that doesn’t really cover the intentional cruelty and callousness I’ve seen from Romney and his supporters.

    I usually just go ahead and say “evil”, these days. 
    Because, in all honesty? I don’t think he’d do it for fun, but I can easily imagine Romney torturing a puppy or climbing up a bell tower if he thought it’d get him what he wanted.  

    “Vile excuse for a human being” works pretty well. Or “walking Dickens villain.”

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    There’s just something so profoundly disconnected, though, about  the way some rich people view the world. Maybe not Mitt so much, but Ann Romney qualifies with her ridiculously vapid, “Oh, we totes scrimped and saved and yadda yadda da.”

    But to be conscious of it – and to sink to such a depth – “evil” and “diabolical” do cover it well.

  • Lori

     

    I don’t think he’d do it for fun, but I can easily imagine Romney
    torturing a puppy or climbing up a bell tower if he thought it’d get him
    what he wanted.  

    I actually don’t think Romney would do that. I do absolutely believe he’d hire someone to do it for him and sleep perfectly well at night after he signed the check.

  • Lunch Meat

    Moveon.org is asking for people to submit video responses to Romney to be used in campaign ads. I know some folks here have really good stories. Check it out: https://pol.moveon.org/47pctvideos.html?id=52173-23242077-iAjUH5x&t=3

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Speaking of Romney?

    So, back in 1969, his daddy gave him about 60 grand worth of stock, which he sold off to “make ends meet”.

    60. thousand. dollars.

    In 1969.

    That’s the equivalent of $377,000 in today’s money.

    Mitt Romney sold off stock worth a full ride’s worth of school, and he and his wife have the temerity to claim that experience is the equivalent of any of the 99%’s struggles to put themselves or their kids through school.

    The sheer magnitude of the disconnection between his life and the average person’s is so large as to be utterly incomprehensible.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Even if it was sixty grand in today’s dollars, I think that windfall alone would make it damn hard for Romney to understand my economic situation.

  • PJ Evans

     In 1969 my father was making less than $30k a year, as an engineer with thirty years experience.
    Mitt is so clueless I’m surprised he can be allowed out without two keepers.

  • Hawker40

    Nathan Bedford Forrest’s command murdered prisoners of war at Fort Pillow.  The KKK which he helped found were terrorists who murdered American citizens by the thousands.  Of course he has a statue dedicated to him for being a “kick-ass general”…
    And I am Queen Marie of Romania.

  • AnonymousSam

    Don’t look at me, I’m not one of the people who worship the Civil War as the greatest military event in history. The fact that there are thousands of people who do disturbs the everloving hell out of me.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    More and more, I’m coming to the depressing realization that for all that the Union won the Civil War militarily, fighting about the closest thing to a “just war” in history (fighting to end slavery? Hey, go for it!) the Union managed to lose, post facto because of the open refusal by Southern whites to understand or care that things had changed and to continue their furtherance of treason to the laws of the country which governed them, partly by means of misappropriating religious themes of fall-and-redemption.

    Aided and abetted by politicians – in this case if ever you wanted to blame the politicians you certainly could!* – the Reconstruction was incompletely carried out, because there were white Democratic politicians in the South who worked where they could to actively hinder it, while relying on the KKK as their effective paramilitary terrorist arm to further that hindrance.

    —-

    * As opposed to boilerplate modern Republican kvetching that no politician today is worth a damn because they’re all in it for themselves. Except, of course, God-fearing Republicans.

  • Mark Z.

    The always-interesting Adam Cadre, in his article on Andrew Johnson*, blames this largely on Lincoln:

    Once the Civil War was underway, it seemed as though there were two possible outcomes, both of them pretty good: – The South wins and goes its own way, and the Union embarks upon a very different history without a very different culture dragging it hard to the right. – The North wins, the Southern power structure is dismantled, and the entire nation is reshaped by a period of unchallenged dominance of the progressive ideals espoused by the Republican Party of the mid-19th century. Instead, against all odds, the war ended with a Southern Democrat at the head of the United States government. The Great Balancer … had decided that it’d be a good idea to “reach across the aisle.” The result was that he somehow managed to find a path to defeat in a win-win situation.

    * part of his “blogging through the presidents” series

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

     The Great Balancer … had decided that it’d be a good idea to “reach across the aisle.”

    Shades of Barack Obama! :O

    People of good will invariably find out too late that sometimes the other side they reach out to does not have any intention of working together honestly.

  • Carstonio

    When I think about that massive failure to win the peace, I’m tempted to concede that Sherman had a point in targeting the plantations in his march to the sea. (These were his targets, despite the later revisionism that claimed he was targeting the entire population.) In the last year or so of the war, the Confederate government had lost most of its support . But I still wonder how the war would have gone if the Union army had bands of marauders burning down plantation houses across the South and freeing slaves, simply to strip the region’s oligarchy of its economic and hopefully political power. If nothing else, it would have been rewarding to see the freed slaves decide the punishments for their former owners.

  • Lori

    This has been a really depressing thread so I offer a bit of a chuckle to offset the gloom—President Obama celebrates Talk Like A Pirate day.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-5008563-503544.html

  • EllieMurasaki

    Can all our presidents be geeks?

  • Lori

     If I had my way it would be a job requirement.

  • http://mistformsquirrel.deviantart.com/ mistformsquirrel

     Lol, I have to admit, that’s fantastic.  I wonder how the Republicans will try to spin this? (You know they will.)

  • aunursa

    Lol, I have to admit, that’s fantastic. I wonder how the Republicans will try to spin this? (You know they will.)

    Ask an’ ye shall receive.

  • Lori

    That’s really rich coming from the folks who supported the president who took the most vacation time in modern US history (by a lot).  Unsurprising, but rich nonetheless.

    Even setting aside the issue of Bush’s huge amount of  brush-clearing “me time”, and the fact that Obama is allowed to share a joke with his staff now & then, presidents do stuff like this all the time. It’s not time out from their job, it’s part of their job.  It’s public relations, aka dealing with their constituents. (Some folks apparently need to watch that episode of the West Wing that’s about the one day a year that Bartlett makes the staff see anyone and everyone who lines up to talk about their pet issue.)

  • http://mistformsquirrel.deviantart.com/ mistformsquirrel

    Figures.

  • Carstonio

    http://www.salon.com/2012/09/20/beyond_guns_and_god/

    Some polls define the white working class by income, but increasingly
    the more politically unique group – and the most politically
    troublesome for Democrats — is those without college degrees…

    As most analysts have asserted, they are, as a group, trouble for Obama — in
    mid-August Romney led 48-35 — but there were interesting regional
    differences. Romney led Obama by a staggering 40 points in the South
    (62-22) while Obama actually led Romney 44-38 in the Midwest (hello,
    auto industry rescue?), and the two candidates were nearly tied in the
    West and Northeast. White working-class Protestants favor Romney 2-1,
    while Catholics are evenly split. Likewise, Romney clobbers Obama with
    men, but the candidates are tied for the votes of women. And younger
    white working-class voters support Obama.

    A pattern emerges: Obama is doing surprisingly well with white
    working-class voters — but he may have to write off most older,
    Southern, white working-class Protestant men
    .

    My first reaction was, “Ya think?” This is the same demographic that benefited the most from Jim Crow’s white privilege, and old enough to remember legal segregation. In many parts of my state, legal desegregation wasn’t implemented until the late 1960s, and in at least one Catholic school the white and black students were taught in separate classrooms in the same building.

  • Thing1

    Has anyone seen this nonsense (relevant to Pennsylvanian’s especially)? Holy crap, what an asshole.

    http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/09/20/penn-state-rep-photo-id-law-only-disenfranchises-the-lazy-47-percent/

  • http://mistformsquirrel.deviantart.com/ mistformsquirrel

     Sweet mother of crap… the combination of arrogance and idiocy is astounding (x.x)

  • Ross Thompson

    Oh, and to extend that, he went on to decide that the best way to get round the trouble of imprisoning people without trial would be to execute them without trial (and, for that matter, without charge). That’s hardly a step in the right direction.

  • BaseDeltaZero

    I’m not sure there’s any practical difference. Someone who can’t afford bread is unlikely to be able to afford cake, and being governed by someone who has no idea that someone who can’t afford bread probably can’t afford cake really isn’t a significant improvement over someone who’s glad that there are people who can’t afford bread.

    It’s my understanding that ‘cake’ in this context refers to the semi-leavened detritus left over after the baking of bread – those spongy bits at the edge of the loaf which sort of have the consistency of cake.  It’s edible, just generally not considered very good…  So the statement wasn’t so much clueless as contemptous.  (Someone made it, it just wasn’t Marie Antoinette)

    Don’t look at me, I’m not one of the people who worship the Civil War as the greatest military event in history.

    Greatest military event in history?  Well, I suppose one could make certain arguments as to its significance… but I wouldn’t necessarily say that.  You’d have to define your criteria, first.

    Nonviolent and aimed at the government, so again not really an example of pitch forks and torches directly threatening the rich oppressors.

    But the (current) army was called out to deal with it, and there was a battle of sorts…

  • Lori

     

    But the (current) army was called out to deal with it, and there was a battle of sorts…  

    Still citizens vs government as opposed to oppressed masses vs rich oppressors (or more precisely, their hired goons). The redneck army at the Battle of Blair Mountain was fighting agents of the mine owners, not the government (at least not until the government intervened on the side of the owners).


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