Archive for lies

Mitt Romney Can’t Help Himself

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , on November 22, 2011 by rottenart

Hot on the heels of a very interesting story in which Romney aides and staffers bought and subsequently destroyed 17 hard drives with information relating to his time in the Mass. governor’s mansion comes his first major political ad:

Pretty devasting, right? Well, it would be if it weren’t a completely disingenuous fabrication. When Obama is quoted in the video as saying, “if we keep talking about the economy, we’re going to lose,” he’s not making that assertion for himself but rather quoting a McCain staffer who said it in relation to the McCain campaign! The most amazing part is that the Romney campaign, much like with the continuing e-mail situation, has doubled down and asserted that the blatant dishonesty is perfectly legit and that they used the clip on purpose.

Any sane person can see the obvious implications here: if you could get a candidate to, say, quote The Shining and say on camera, “I didn’t just kill you, I cut you up into little bits,” you could, according to RomneyLogic™, then put that into a commercial and claim the the candidate was a  murderous sociopath. Think Progress has put together a response to the Romney commercial to illustrate this beautifully:

Romney must really be sweating the Gingrich bubble if he’s this desperate already.

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Let’s Talk About ‘Fair Share’

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 21, 2011 by rottenart

Steve Benen has a good post today about the persistent meme that’s been making the rounds since the deficit became the holy grail of national political discussion: it’s not fair to ask the wealthiest Americans to pay more in taxes because they already pay so much! John Boehner, ever the voice of the oppressed 1%, said this:

“Come on. The top 1% paid 38% of income taxes in America. How much more do you want them to pay?”

“We are not going to engage in class warfare,” Boehner said, adding: “The president’s clearly trying to do it, and it’s wrong.”

Well, let’s just parse that a bit, shall we? As Steve puts it:

“Just as important, while these very Americans are paying a larger percentage of the nation’s overall income taxes, they’re also paying a smaller share of their personal income in income taxes.”

As a percentage of their income, they’ve seen their tax rate drop significantly. While the top 20% do pay the majority of the income tax, they also control around 90% of the wealth and account for ~80% of the income.  In fact, while the middle and lower classes have seen their wages stagnate and even decline over the past 30 years, the uppermost 1%  have seen their incomes soar by 275% in the same period. And those vast majority who Boehner thinks aren’t paying enough? They’re already poor and don’t make enough money to have to pay!

Beware the Republican bearing statistics about taxes and who pays their ‘fair share’.

Failure is a Pretty ‘Super’ Option

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 18, 2011 by rottenart

It’s been clear for a while now that Republicans on the so-called “Super-committee” to oversee deficit reduction weren’t going to budge in the slightest. The media, for their part, have continued to advance a ridiculous narrative in which the GOP’s offer of $300 million in raised revenue (read: taxes) while making the Bush Tax Cuts permanent is somehow serious. Democrats on the panel, surprisingly, have refused to go along with such an inane proposal. So, here we are, less than a week until their deadline and they appear to be headed for complete failure.

Good.

First of all, the whole idea was stupid in the first place. It’s already congress’ job to come up with a budget. To put in the hands of an extra-super-secret congress is just political theater. More important, however, is what happens when they do fail. The whole idea was to make this committee accountable by building a doomsday scenario into their work:  if they can’t come to an agreement, automatic budget cuts (or sequestration, to use the word of the day) are triggered. Entitlements take a hit, defense takes a big hit, everyone’s pissed off and everyone can brag about reducing the deficit, right? Well, yes, but there’s one other huge piece of the puzzle that would have more of an effect than anything else: letting the Bush Tax Cuts expire.

We faced this same scenario earlier this year in the debt limit fiasco and last year when the cuts were supposed to expire originally: Republicans are too busy licking Grover Norquist’s boots (no matter how much John Boehner tries to pretend otherwise) to actually get serious and admit to fiscal reality. The fact that the GOP has become radicalized to the point of self-parody doesn’t help either. Tax rises, no matter the context or practical use, are anathema to the modern Republican party.

Regardless, the super-committee’s failure to reach an agreement, for all the bitching and moaning that Republicans will undoubtedly do, will actually lower the deficit. They won’t admit it, but it’s hard to deny facts. In fact, it looks to be as much as $7.1 trillion over the next decade. That’s a lot of scratch and it should be cause for celebration for those who feel the deficit is the end-all, be-all of American political discussion. Yet it’s clear that if the panel fails to deliver, the blame game is going to shift into overdrive with an election year looming. At the end of the day, however, the Bush Tax Cuts are the major driver for the deficit and letting them expire at the end of 2012 would put us back on track, with virtually no other actions to be taken.

It seems like those on the GOP side who are accusing the Obama administration of cheering for the super-committee’s failure should be doing a little cheering themselves if they truly care about the deficit. Anyone believe that’s the case?

Let’s Get Up to Speed

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 16, 2011 by rottenart

It’s November, people. That means we have almost exactly one year until the elections of 2012.

“But Rottenart,” I  hear you ask, “between Occupying Everything and working three jobs, not to mention reading your numerous daily blog updates, how can I possibly know which loony tune GOP candidate to vote for in the upcoming primary? They’re all so equally crazy that it’s really difficult!”

Have no fear, dear readers! Follow me after the jump to take an in-depth look at the GOP field as it stands so you can become the informed voter our country needs, not the one our country deserves!

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What If They Accidentally Polled the Truth?

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , on October 27, 2011 by rottenart

Well, it’s happened. A new CBS News/New York Times poll found that nearly 7 in 10 Americans think the GOP supports the wealthy. That’s compared to only 2% who think they care about the poor.

I know, I know, shocking, right? I’m going to assume the very best of my readers when I say that all of you are probably saying “DUH!” right about now. Unfortunately, good sirs and madams, we’re not the norm. Indeed, the most shocking part of that result is that so many people in this country actually get it.  Despite the corporate media churning out pabulum masquerading as journalism, despite well-paid propagandists manufacturing anger and sowing hatred, despite a major political party being fully consumed by mendacity and willful ignorance… 70% of the country can see through the bullshit!

Personally, I’m pleasantly surprised. Who knew the truth could be so stubborn?

The GOP “Debates”

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 19, 2011 by rottenart

I’ll start with a confession: I didn’t watch last night’s debate. Mostly because this is, what, the 27th in a  row now? Secondly, I already know about all the excitement. Lastly (and most importantly), I didn’t watch because there’s absolutely nothing more I could learn about the candidates to convince me that any of them is worth worrying about. Remember, we’re talking about the nomination of the 2011 Republican party. In a nutshell, that means no taxes, no regulations, no gays, no Mexicans and no poors. There, I just saved you having to watch the next one.

In fact, the only real reason to keep watching these things is to see which candidate flames out next. From Perry’s narcoleptic swagger to Bachmann’s twangy platitudes from outer space to Herman Cain’s SimCity tax plan, it’s hard to see how anyone takes them seriously. Romney, far and away the most electable, also comes off as just a clueless buffoon. Who doesn’t understand why expanding your manse while calling for foreclosures to continue (so they can be scooped up by investors, naturally!) is tone-deaf at best and utterly callous as worst?

The real takeaway is that the GOP field is populated much like a clown car. None of these candidates offers any real plans for American progress. Their messages are all predicated on ideas that have been tried for the last 30 years and have failed miserably. Their best hope is a chameleon who would be a staunch liberal if he had any core principles whatsoever. I’m not naive enough to believe that Obama will have an easy time next year but with this current crop of Republican jokers, it’s hard to see how he won’t.

It’s Easy to Understand.

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 18, 2011 by rottenart

Hell, even Calvin gets it.

The Occupy movement has been tough to pin down for a corporate media drunk on its own self-worth and slowly going the way of the dinosaur. They treat it as if it’s rowdy kids climbing the counter and pulling down cookies as opposed to a true populist uprising. That is, when they don’t scoff outright.

On the bright side, opinion seems to be shifting. Here’s Melissa Francis explaining to Joe Scarborough what he clearly doesn’t take seriously. That’s great, and I applaud Francis and any other outlet willing to actually talk about OWS and why they’re so mad. The big focus so far has been on why they don’t have any demands in sound-bite form. I don’t seem to remember the Tea Party discussing the finer details of “Take My Country Back” but I digress.

The point is that even as the media is shaking off the dust, the powers that be are not sleeping at all. In fact, they seem to be scared shitless of the power that the masses hold. That means that what we’re doing is working.

Keep pushing. Keep standing your ground. History is on our side.