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The Morning Plum

* Will Dems go big in the coming war over the Bush tax cuts? Read of the morning: Lori Montgomery's look at liberal Dems who are hoping the battle over whether to let the high end Bush tax cuts expire will lead to a larger argument about inequality and fairness that allows Democrats to remember why they're Democrats.

Naturally, some anonymous skittish Dems are warning that Dems must not go down this road, because Republicans will paint them as socialists. But get this, from Dem Rep. Tim Ryan: "I just really believe it's an argument we can win." Where did this poor deluded soul get the idea that Dems can win arguments?

* Labor parachutes into Perriello race: The SEIU is going up with a new ad slamming Robert Hurt, the GOP opponent of Dem Rep Tom Perriello of Virginia, for opposing an extension of unemployment benefits, entering a race that has emerged as a referendum on whether a Dem can win in a tough district by aggressively defending the Obama/Dem agenda:

This is a key race to watch: If Perriello wins, it will validate the idea that a Democrat can win in a tough district by trying to persuade voters your party's achievements were the right thing to do, rather than running away from them because Republicans are on the attack. Which helps explain the labor air support.

* Dems breathing easy in Connecticut: Quinnipiac finds that Richard Blumenthal has reversed his month-long slide, which rattled Dems, and now leads wrestling exec and crotch-kicker Linda McMahon by double digits, 54-43.

* Does lack of cell phone polling skew polls towards GOP? There's much chatter about the new Pew study finding that not polling cell phones biases polls towards Republicans, but Mark Blumenthal is skeptical.

* The Nevada Senate race has become a national contest: More than 80 percemt of the money flowing into the race on both sides comes from out of state, another sign that this dogfight has become a proxy on both sides for the national war over the direction of the country.

* Ad paints Sharron Angle as a dangerous lunatic: One of the most brutal ads yet from Harry Reid, this one featuring a Republican claiming she has "wild ideas" that would ensure we "never get anything done.

* Who woulda thunk it? Opposition to health reform has not allowed moderate Dems to avoid tough races: ABC's Josh Goldstein tallies it up and finds Dems who voted against reform because they thought it would insulate them from GOP attacks were sadly mistaken:

Thirty-four Democrats voted against the bill and more than half of those -- 23 -- are now in races ABC considers to be competitive. Twelve of the "no" votes are in races considered toss-ups.

* Can Dems recapture the spirit of '08? The DNC goes up with a new ad starring Obama urging Dems to "make history again," another reminder of how much Dems need the voters who propelled him to victory two short years ago to turn out again.

* Fun fact of the day: The man who made Dick Cheney's life a living public relations hell by blundering in front of his shotgun still has about 30 pieces of shot embedded in his body.

* Rand Paul's college reading, ctd.: Jon Chait says having your worldview shaped by Ayn Rand should be a disqualifier for public office, because she's a "nut." I'd only add that if there's one thing we've learned this cycle, it's that being a nut -- even one of the full-blown variety -- is proving anything but a disqualifier.

* And the bar is not very high for Christine O'Donnell: As Dana Milbank notes, even though she refused to say at last night's debate and stumbled over questions about the Supreme Court and Afghanistan, her performance nonetheless is an improvement.

What else is happening?

By Greg Sargent  | October 14, 2010; 8:35 AM ET
Categories:  2010 elections, House Dems, House GOPers, Labor, Morning Plum, Senate Dems, Senate Republicans  
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Comments

"Who woulda thunk it? Opposition to health reform has not allowed moderate Dems to avoid tough races: ABC's Josh Goldstein tallies it up and finds Dems who voted against reform because they thought it would insulate them from GOP attacks were sadly mistaken: Thirty-four Democrats voted against the bill and more than half of those -- 23 -- are now in races ABC considers to be competitive. Twelve of the "no" votes are in races considered toss-ups."

Bye bye Benedict Arnolds.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 8:43 AM | Report abuse

O'Donnell wasn't horrible last night and for that she will get props because people were expecting her to flop.

Posted by: maritza1 | October 14, 2010 8:44 AM | Report abuse

Coons will put this one away. CO'Ds response to a question about SCOTUS was a major blunder. We'll have someething up on my website? This would be a senator whose policies would be entirely written on K Street and by aides.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | October 14, 2010 8:44 AM | Report abuse

What else?

A commenter on the prior thread suggested a boycott of Chamber of Commerce businesses. I agree. I just sent this e-mail to my local Chamber:

"Who woulda thunk it? Opposition to health reform has not allowed moderate Dems to avoid tough races: ABC's Josh Goldstein tallies it up and finds Dems who voted against reform because they thought it would insulate them from GOP attacks were sadly mistaken:

"Due to the Chamber of Commerce's partisan political activities I will no longer utilize businesses that are Chamber members. If and when the Chamber ends its political propaganda I will again frequent Chamber members' businesses. Thank you."

And I intend to utilize non-Chamber businesses from now on. Starting with my bank.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 8:46 AM | Report abuse

Dems are starting to come home. The Dem Firewall may still hold. The Dems are poised to win the Senate races in Washington, California, and Connecticut which just a few weeks ago those races were a lot closer than they are now.

Posted by: maritza1 | October 14, 2010 8:47 AM | Report abuse

What else?

A commenter on the prior thread suggested a boycott of Chamber of Commerce businesses. I agree. I just sent this e-mail to my local Chamber:

"Due to the Chamber of Commerce's partisan political activities I will no longer utilize businesses that are Chamber members. If and when the Chamber ends its political propaganda I will again frequent Chamber members' businesses. Thank you."

And I intend to utilize non-Chamber businesses from now on. Starting with my bank.

(Oops. Bad cut & paste.)

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 8:48 AM | Report abuse

"But get this, from Dem Rep. Tim Ryan: "I just really believe it's an argument we can win." Where did this poor deluded soul get the idea that Dems can win arguments?"

He probably believes in Magic Ponies too. Give him a few years to "mature" and he'll be on board with the rest of the Whipped Dogs in the Dem Caucus. Please don't hit us again: We hate Liberals too.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne - How does one go about IDing companies that give money to the Chamber?

Posted by: PaciolisRevenge | October 14, 2010 8:57 AM | Report abuse

CELL PHONES

I think it works the other way - the seniors are the ones picking up the phone

A good pollster should compensate on a demographic basis.


I just said that, but how many good pollsters are out there...


Blumenthal just doesn't look good.


Linda McMahon's main problem right now is the "Connecticut" resistance to her WWE background. The two just don't mix. I think the more she gets out there, the more that comes off. She needs to get within 7 points by election day.


.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | October 14, 2010 8:59 AM | Report abuse

"A commenter on the prior thread suggested a boycott of Chamber of Commerce businesses. I agree."

As I responded on the previous thread, I agree and think a boycott should go both ways. Business should exclude liberals from jobs and from buying products. Liberals have an entitlement mentality that tends to make them poor employees anyway.

Let them go work for George Soros or one of their other megarich sugar daddies. I'm sure he has cars that need washing or something. But let's get liberals out of the mainstream economy, which they condemn and want to undermine anyway.

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 9:00 AM | Report abuse

PaciolisRevenge:

I'm not sure how it works generally but this is what I did. I went to my local (Greater Boston) Chamber website. Under "Member Center" there is a Chamber Business Directory. You can search by business name or type. Before I use a company I intend to search whether it is a Chamber member. If so, I won't use the business. AND I will send a note to the affected company explaining why.

You want to sell me a product, that's fine. You want to use partisan political propaganda then I'm not interested in you. If you want my business back resign from the Chamber of Commerce.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 9:04 AM | Report abuse

CHRISTINE O'DONNELL


She did OK in the debate last night

Coons really did not look good.

The night hightlighted the media circus around O'Donnell - and she did EXACTLY what she had to do to get voters to throw that aside.


The Bill Maher stuff is ridiculous - it is a comedy show - and the voters are going to throw that stuff aside.


The question on the Court cases really is not fair - the democrats have been complaining about Citizens United - but that is well known. Coons couldn't answer the question for a second case.

Overall, the media lost.


I think Christine O'Donnell did what she had to do - obviously these two candidates were not super-polished. However do we really want all our candidates to be super-polished? I think not.


.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | October 14, 2010 9:06 AM | Report abuse

Greg,

What is your response my request that you correct your post on the Boehner PAC? The link you posted does not support your statement.

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 9:06 AM | Report abuse

Republicans and conservatives rise up in angry chorus at the arrival of foreign monies targeted to influence elections in America...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1996_United_States_campaign_finance_controversy

We thank them for their patriotism.

Posted by: bernielatham | October 14, 2010 9:07 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne at 8:43 AM

I believe many of those races - the people who voted against health care - were going to be difficult ANYWAY - even without health care.


So you sort of have everything backwards there.

The democrats with safe districts could do whatever they wanted - they really didn't have to worry about the voters - or what they thought.


THAT is why we have to do something about gerrymandering


The VOTERS have to decide who their Congressmen are - not some lines on a map. The democrats are the worst.


.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | October 14, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Hmmm. I'm doubtful that a boycott will be effective.

I do wonder about members of the local chambers. These are still civic associations. I can think of a few neighborhood stores that I'm sure participate. There are likely a number of individuals unhappy with what their association is doing. Then again, plenty of Republican union members feel the same.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | October 14, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

P.S., I have also contacted my federal officials (the Democrats) and urged them to avoid Chamber-sponsored activities as long as the Chamber of Commerce engages in partisan political propaganda.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 9:15 AM | Report abuse

"even though she refused to say ..." what?

Am I missing something, or did she actually refuse to say something? Is this a "gaffe" we can hold against Greg?

Posted by: clawrence12 | October 14, 2010 9:16 AM | Report abuse

"We thank them for their patriotism."

"We"?

What can one even say about a sarcastic comment, made by a foreigner who professes "no loyalty" to the U.S., citing a scandal of actual criminality in Democratic fundraising to show the supposed hypocrisy of Republicans over a nonscandal involving no evidence of actual wrongdoing by the CoC?

What words could describe this level of irony?

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 9:18 AM | Report abuse

How bout that Dick Cheney, eh QB?

5 years on and still no apology to his friend that he almost killed.

You and Cheney are like peas in a pod, QB. Selfish, corrupted, mean-spirited, and bent on destroying what is right with America.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 14, 2010 9:20 AM | Report abuse

How bout that Dick Cheney, eh QB?

5 years on and still no apology to his friend that he almost killed.

You and Cheney are like peas in a pod, QB. Selfish, corrupted, mean-spirited, and bent on destroying what is right with America.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 14, 2010 9:20 AM | Report abuse

In addition to the 30 pieces of shrapnel in his body, Harry Whittington is also lacking an apology from Dick:

[D]id Cheney ever say in private what he didn't say in public? Did he ever apologize?

Whittington, who has been talking about his life and career for hours, suddenly draws silent.

"I'm not going to go into that," he says sharply after a short pause.

Harry Whittington is too gracious to say it out loud, but he doesn't dispute the notion, either.

Nearly five years on, he's still waiting for Dick Cheney to say he's sorry.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/10/13/AR2010101307173.html

h/t Benen

Posted by: pragmaticstill | October 14, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

BL at 9:07 AM EDT recalled the glorious '96 campaign. In the summer of that year, I heard the late Archibald Cox present a guest lecture at UT Law School. He noted in passing that the winner of the election could be subject to impeachment because the Clinton campaign had Chinese money and the Dole campaign had Saudi money. Because of Cox, I voted for Perot in '96.

Cox was right in one respect - the winner was impeached. How was the foreign money dealt with? In 2000, as I recall, the FEC in its bipartisan splendor ordered each party to give back the foreign millions. That episode ended with a whimper, not a bang.

There has long been some foreign money in national cmpaigns. Historically, it was Canadian or British, until '96, and amounted to thousands, not millions. I think that gave '96 and subsequent years a different "feel".

Posted by: mark_in_austin | October 14, 2010 9:22 AM | Report abuse

"P.S., I have also contacted my federal officials (the Democrats) and urged them to avoid Chamber-sponsored activities as long as the Chamber of Commerce engages in partisan political propaganda."

No doubt they otherwise would have been involved in many CoC events and activities. I can just see Obama addressing one of their gatherings to tell them they are a threat to the country.

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 9:23 AM | Report abuse

bernielatham, I remember that was about the law being broken. Do you realize that nothing the Chamber of Commerce is doing is illegal?

Chris Coons should have been asked which Obama Executive Orders he disagreed with.

Posted by: clawrence12 | October 14, 2010 9:23 AM | Report abuse

Hmmm. I'm doubtful that a boycott will be effective. I do wonder about members of the local chambers. These are still civic associations. I can think of a few neighborhood stores that I'm sure participate. There are likely a number of individuals unhappy with what their association is doing. Then again, plenty of Republican union members feel the same.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | October 14, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

No one forces local businesses to join the Chamber of Commerce. There are plenty of other business organizations. If they choose to do so they are endorsing the Chamber's political activities and should be held responsible for doing so. I think your union comparison is inapt for many reasons: most importantly, because individual workers MUST organize and bargain collectively to have any negotiating power at all. (In fact, one of the Chamber's primary goals has been to destroy the American union movement, and they have been monstrously successful in doing so.) Businesses have inherent power since they are the capitalists in a capitalist society. Second, the power differential between Labor today and Big Business is gargantuan and there really is no valid comparison to be had.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 9:27 AM | Report abuse

More fun facts from Benen:

It's an attack ad that writes itself: The House Republican leader, Rep. John Boehner (Ohio), votes with liberal Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) a majority of the time.

The statistic seems impossible to believe, given the ferocity with which Boehner denounces Pelosi, the progressive champion of San Francisco elitism and favorite GOP villain.

But it's true, according to an analysis by Democrats. Boehner has voted with the Democratic leadership 52 percent of the time in 2010. So has Rep. Mike Pence (Ind.), chairman of the Republican conference and former head of the conservative Republican Study Committee.

Rep. Eric Cantor (Va.), the House Republican whip, and Rep. Pete Sessions (Tex.), head of the GOP's House campaign committee, are even cozier with Pelosi. They've voted with her 57 percent of the time.

And Rep. Michele Bachmann (Minn.), the conservative firebrand who has compared the Democratic agenda to socialism? She's with Pelosi on 58 percent of House votes.

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2010_10/026119.php

Posted by: pragmaticstill | October 14, 2010 9:27 AM | Report abuse

"No doubt they otherwise would have been involved in many CoC events and activities"

There is a Chamber-sponsored forum on October 25. Sen Kerry and Rep Markey are scheduled to attend. In fact, Kerry is listed as the main draw. I have urged Kerry and Markey not to attend.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Greg said: "if there's one thing we've learned this cycle, it's that being a nut -- even one of the full-blown variety -- is proving anything but a disqualifier."

It's an interesting phenomenon indeed. Partly, of course, it is a continuation of an old American tradition of anti-intellectualism (a much more accurate phrase here than anti-elitism).

But it is also, surely, a manifestation of the turmoil and epistemological confusions that come about in times of declining hopes/expectations. "What we thought was true must not be true because just look at the shape we are in. Let us cast out the old and try something counter-intuitive."

I think such a dynamic can sometimes bring improvement (at the very least, it can shake up fixed ideas) but other times, it doesn't work out so well.

And "conservative" it is not.

Posted by: bernielatham | October 14, 2010 9:32 AM | Report abuse

mark_in_austin:

Yeah, we fell off the cliff during the 90s and now with Citizens United there are no meaningful limits or constraints on money drowning American politics. It is a frightening thing in part because resisting and combatting the influence of money will require an engaged and educated citizenry. Which we ain't got.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 9:37 AM | Report abuse

"How bout that Dick Cheney, eh QB?

5 years on and still no apology to his friend that he almost killed."

How about Dick Cheney? I can tell you really read the article.

It's great that WaPo is focused on the really important stories, like a four-year-old hunting accident. The no-apology speculation is really sound and high-class journalism, too, especially following this:

"'Despite his scars, Whittington bears no ill will toward Cheney. He calls him "a very capable and honorable man" and adds, "He's said some very kind things to me.'"

"Selfish, corrupted, mean-spirited, and bent on destroying what is right with America."

Oh, darn, now the truth is out. What shall I ever do?

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

As if I needed another reason to hate prohibition, according to David Okrent claims that prohibition is responsible for NASCAR.

"And if you buy Okert’s argument, Prohibition even gave us NASCAR; he says it emerged in the South after Prohibition ended, when all the former runners of liquor needed new uses for their driving skills and fast cars now that they could no longer make a profit smuggling booze."

Also from the link, medicinal alcohol!

http://thesocietypages.org/socimages/2010/10/10/28094/

h/t Sullivan

Posted by: PaciolisRevenge | October 14, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

"Do you realize that nothing the Chamber of Commerce is doing is illegal?"

First, we don't know that because the Chamber is hiding its donors. Second, even if the Chamber isn't breaking the law -- largely because the GOP refuses to enact proper disclosure laws -- that doesn't make it right. Boycott the Chamber of Commerce until it stops engaging in partisan political propaganda.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Greg and ALL


To be honest, there have been several changes in Campaign Finance Rules over the years - several court cases and the McCain Feingold law.


ALL ALONG 527s have been operating - under several sets of rules - all considered legal under the existing laws and caselaw. So to say the Citizens United started something - is not correct at all. All Citizens United did was AFFIRM an aspect of things which were going on for a long time - since the 1990s.


The democrats have taken advantage of these rules - and I just found this little wiki post - which (has to be verified) which says that Moveon.org USED TO be under one set of rules - but last year Obama put out a voluntary request on how he wanted the left-wing groups to operate.

So - I believe to gain greater control over the left's money - Obama said - left put your money through these groups this way.

But Obama NEVER changed the rules - it was voluntary - AND Obama NEVER restricted himself and the left by LAW - so Obama can go back AT ANY TIME. AND we all know from 2008 that Obama CAN NOT BE TRUSTED to stick to what he says.


_________________________________

From the wiki article


Examples of 527s include American Solutions for Winning the Future, EMILY's List, Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, Texans for Truth, The Media Fund, America Coming Together, the Progress for America Voter Fund, Secretary of State Project, United American Technologies, American Right To Life Action and the November Fund. MoveOn.org was previously a 527, until they decided to shut down their 527 group as a result of "new politics offered by Barack Obama".[1]

During April of 2004, the Federal Election Commission (FEC) held hearings to determine whether or not 527s should be regulated under campaign finance rules. The Commission ultimately decided that the law did not cover these independent 527 organizations unless they directly advocated the election or defeat of a candidate.

Federal Election Commission rulings after the 2004 election put advertisements which questioned a candidate’s character and fitness for office off limits to 527s specifically.[2]

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | October 14, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

"There is a Chamber-sponsored forum on October 25. Sen Kerry and Rep Markey are scheduled to attend. In fact, Kerry is listed as the main draw. I have urged Kerry and Markey not to attend."

Which only proves that Democrats are just shameless dividers and demogogues in howling that the CoC is a threat to the country, or are incredibly stupid and think we are, too.

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

"Democrats are just shameless dividers and demogogues "

So says the propagandists' propagandist.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Here is another quote from the wiki article

Remember that the 527s are supposed to be INDEPENDENT expenditures.


_________________________________


On May 5, 2004, the Republican National Committee accused MoveOn.org, The Media Fund, America Coming Together and America Votes of coordinating their efforts with the John Kerry campaign.

On August 20, 2004, John Kerry's campaign accused Swift Boat Veterans for Truth of coordinating their efforts with the George W. Bush campaign.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | October 14, 2010 10:00 AM | Report abuse

"Liberals have an entitlement mentality that tends to make them poor employees anyway."

qb

I saw your comment on the previous thread as well and also the reference to the Welfare State. This is exactly the kind of rhetoric that turns people into the arms of Democrats. You must know it's not true. The middle class and working class are made up of both liberals, conservatives and moderates and they have collectively been decimated by this recession.

I actually know people who are living on unemployment, who've lost their homes and who are receiving food stamps to keep their children fed. Every single one of them, regardless of political philosophy have worked hard their entire lives and fervently hope to have that opportunity again.

We can disagree on how this happened, but to claim that somehow liberals have a different work ethic than the rest of the population is absurd. I could just as easily claim that the top 1%-2% of the population has an entitlement problem when they value their worth at more than 285 times that of their employees.

Scott asked me the other day "Why" I was concerned about the disparity in income, and this is actually one of the reasons. Earners at the top now look at the "rest of us" as relying on Welfare to get by. Since when is unemployment insurance or even Food Stamps considered a sense of entitlement by those receiving it. These are safety net programs designed and funded for just this perfect storm of economic conditions.

People out here in middle America, liberal, moderate and conservative alike are all relying on the very programs that you and other conservatives are denigrating. Until the housing market, which is even now under a new assault, and jobs come back we're all collectively swimming up stream.

The liberal, progressive, and in rare cases conservative safety net programs passed over the last 80 years are the only programs in some cases that are keeping "hard working" people from living in cardboard boxes.

Posted by: lmsinca | October 14, 2010 10:01 AM | Report abuse

"The liberal, progressive, and in rare cases conservative safety net programs passed over the last 80 years are the only programs in some cases that are keeping "hard working" people from living in cardboard boxes."

Imsimca: Modern conservatism (an oxymoron beyond measure) says that's just where those people should be living: in cardboard boxes under bridges. It is Social Darwinism at its most vile.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 10:06 AM | Report abuse

I think it is important to get a better idea of what we have been talking about

A total of $439,709,105 was spent by these organizations alone, $307,324,096 of which was spent by Democratic/liberal groups and $132,385,009 of which was spent by Republican/conservative groups.

The four largest groups were all liberal groups:

America Coming Together $78,040,480

Joint Victory Campaign 2004 $72,588,053

Media Fund $57,694,580

Service Employees International Union $47,695,646


__________________________________

Let's point out a few things


The 527s groups which have NOT been disclosing have PRIMARILY been democratic and liberal groups.


MoveOn.org CHANGED their status recently - in 2009 - MoveON. org went through the 2004, 2006 and 2008 elections under a different status


______________________________

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | October 14, 2010 10:10 AM | Report abuse

"The liberal, progressive, and in rare cases conservative safety net programs passed over the last 80 years are the only programs in some cases that are keeping "hard working" people from living in cardboard boxes."

Well it is their fault for not being born with a trust fund!

Posted by: PaciolisRevenge | October 14, 2010 10:10 AM | Report abuse

The Republicans want to borrow Four Trillion Dollars to stock up on cat food for their Fat Cat pets.

Did someone say something about "a sense of entitlement"?!

Posted by: Liam-still | October 14, 2010 10:12 AM | Report abuse

OMG, a liberal blogger thinks Ayn Rand was a nut!!! Wow, methinks the earth will cease rotating on its axis any second now. quel bleeping domage man!

"Nut" of course is defined as "disagreeing with Chait and Sargent"

How sad for Mr Sargent that this is the sum total of reaction to his fishing trip into Mr Paul's past. Maybe if those Chilean miners hadn't been rescued yesterday America would care more about the writing of Mr Paul for all those years ago.

I wonder how many folks yet to be born will read the collected works of Mr Sargent or Mr Chait. In twenty, thirty, forty years will we see the kind of resurgence in the purchase of their books as we're now seeing with the works of Ms Rand?

Wait, what are the titles of their books? Mr Chait's "the big con" has sold exactly how many copies?

This is from a 2007 NYT article:
"Last year, bookstores sold 150,000 copies of the book. It continues to hold appeal, even to a younger generation. Mark Cuban, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks, who was born in 1958, and John P. Mackey, the chief executive of Whole Foods, who was 3 when the book was published, have said they consider Rand crucial to their success."


And what other lasting impressions on the thoughts of people will Mr Sargent and Mr Chait be remembered for?

This was a mighty thin reed to begin with. Adding the dead weight of Mr Chait just snapped it.

and I sincerely doubt that Mr Chait meant what he said about marxists.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | October 14, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

For anyone who still has a little money to donate to progressive candidates who are also swimming up stream, I've updated our actblue page. We've surpassed our goal and are running out of time. I took a couple of people off and added Raul Grijalva, who is in a real race and has been neglected by the establishment.

http://www.actblue.com/page/plcommunity

Posted by: lmsinca | October 14, 2010 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Republicans are pro-life, until the children of the poor are born.


Christine O'Donnell said last night that she is against abortion, even when the woman has been inseminated by a rapist.

Posted by: Liam-still | October 14, 2010 10:17 AM | Report abuse

@lmsinca: "I saw your comment on the previous thread as well and also the reference to the Welfare State. This is exactly the kind of rhetoric that turns people into the arms of Democrats."

I agree. And then the Democrats accuse them of being racists and wanting to lynch people (and remark upon their similarity to Goebbels or Himmler), and some of them go right back to the Republicans. ;)

But I agree. I've know some far left liberals who are as hard working as they come. There is no direction connection between things people (both left and right) want to believe there are direct connections between. Liberals can be frugal, hard working, thrifty, thoughtful, charitable, hard-nosed, practical, and entrepreneurial in their personal lives. I've know conservatives who were the same, and conservatives who were almost the opposite. My mother--who is very liberal, generally--retired, after having a long career, and immediately started taking contract work (with no real need of the money), because she cannot stand not working. I worked at one time at a place where one of my co-workers was very liberal--and he was not always the brightest bulb, but he worked hard, kept his space clean, got things done. And I was working for a very conservative person at the same time who was not a good person, despite his ideological similarity to me. Ideology does not equal personal morality does not equal work ethic does not equal taste in movies does not equal physical attractiveness.

I am not unsympathetic to the safety net = safety hammock argument, although the great majority of people--not a lot, but enough to make this observation--I've ever known who dwell in the safety hammock are surprisingly apolitical. I was sympathetic with the Gingrich/Clinton welfare reform. Examining the overall value of certain welfare programs seems entirely legitimate. If there are folks who are able to support themselves that are using the safety net to get a little bit extra, perhaps there are ways to control that expense.

But some of the hardest working people I've ever known have been very, very liberal people. Some of the most creative and prolific writers and autuers are lefties. Indeed, conservatives would be much better off in liberals were lazy. They (the liberals) would win many fewer elections, if they didn't expend so much energy on them. ;)

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 14, 2010 10:17 AM | Report abuse

Liam:

Good account of the Coons-O'Donnel "debate" on the prior thread. I watched about half and then realized: Why in the world is this ignorant woman on television outside a reality show? That's what it's like today: next we'll have Snookie as the GOP's NJ Senate candidate. The glorification of ignorance is frightening to behold.

Coons is a very decent person and will be a nice addition to the Senate.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 10:19 AM | Report abuse

QB, he shoots the guy in the head, neck, and torso and he DOESN'T EVEN APOLOGIZE!

"I'm not going to go into that," he says sharply after a short pause.

"Harry Whittington is too gracious to say it out loud, but he doesn't dispute the notion, either. Nearly five years on, he's still waiting for Dick Cheney to say he's sorry."

The thing is, I can see you doing the exact same thing that Dick Cheney has done here with his friend. Both of you are twisted, cold-hearted, thoughtless, and wrong-headed.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 14, 2010 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Imsinca: Just donated to Grijalva.

Later. Keep the faith.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Must-Read:

How 2 civilian sleuths brought foreclosure problems to light

PALM BEACH, Fla. — More than a year before lenders, law firms and document companies began owning up to widespread paperwork problems with their foreclosure filings, Lisa Epstein and Michael Redman already knew that something was wrong — very wrong.

Redman, a former online automobile consultant, got his first taste of the problem in early 2008, when he tried to help a relative who was facing foreclosure.

As he tried to determine which of three or four supposed lenders held the note, Redman, 35, realized that not only did he not know the answer, neither did any of the companies that were asking for payment.

Epstein, a nurse who cares for cancer patients, also is going through foreclosure. She got her baptism in the world of shoddy foreclosure paperwork in the summer of 2009, however, when she tried to help a brain tumor patient keep her home.

[...]

"It was like something struck inside me, like this is what I'm compelled to do. I can be a nurse for people caught in this foreclosure crisis," Epstein said. "I remember thinking, 'I'm not an attorney, and there are definite obstacles, but maybe there's a role for me.' And I ran back to the hospital like I had wings. I felt like this is my purpose."

Within a year, she and Redman — who didn't know each other at the time — would leave their respective jobs to pursue their passion for helping others and exposing injustice in the foreclosure industry.

After meeting late last year at a foreclosure fraud seminar, they teamed up to become two of the nation's most influential civilian beat cops for the beleaguered foreclosure industry.

Equal parts agitators, activists and advocates, Redman and Epstein have made their presence felt in Florida and nationally through their respective websites, 4closureFraud.org and foreclosurehamlet.org.

http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2010/10/13/101997/civilian-cops-take-on-beleaguered.html

Seriously, worth reading the whole thing...

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 14, 2010 10:24 AM | Report abuse

@lmsinca: "This is exactly the kind of rhetoric that turns people into the arms of Democrats."

Indeed. Here I go! I'm running! Into the Democrats waiting arms! Wait . . . who's that?

@Liam-still: "Republicans are pro-life, until the children of the poor are born."

And . . . who's that?

@wbgonne: "Modern conservatism (an oxymoron beyond measure) says that's just where those people should be living: in cardboard boxes under bridges. It is Social Darwinism at its most vile."

Oh, wait, there's a handsome young fellow astride a white horse. Certainly, he will welcome me home to the Democrats!

"You and Cheney are like peas in a pod . . . Selfish, corrupted, mean-spirited, and bent on destroying what is right with America."

Ooops. Back to the Republicans.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 14, 2010 10:25 AM | Report abuse

No one forces local businesses to join the Chamber of Commerce. There are plenty of other business organizations. If they choose to do so they are endorsing the Chamber's political activities and should be held responsible for doing so. I think your union comparison is inapt for many reasons: most importantly, because individual workers MUST organize and bargain collectively to have any negotiating power at all. (In fact, one of the Chamber's primary goals has been to destroy the American union movement, and they have been monstrously successful in doing so.) Businesses have inherent power since they are the capitalists in a capitalist society. Second, the power differential between Labor today and Big Business is gargantuan and there really is no valid comparison to be had.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 9:27 AM | Report abuse

----------------

I reject the contention that entering an organization requires one to endorse its political activities. Small businesses joining the chamber and conservative union members is an apt comparison. I was a union member for a few years (the AUT). I started as a lecturer at a British university. A few months after I started employment, the union was able to obtain a notable pay raise (salaries had been frozen for several years). The organization was representing my interests and I joined. AUT's political activities are quite leftist, much more so than mine. A friend of mine left the union over just that issue.

I just checked and the owner of my local wine is a member. She's a valued friend and has steered me very well in the five years I've been patronizing the business. There is no way that you can convince me that I should take my patronage elsewhere. I support independent businesses and will continue to support this one. The megastore in the area, by the way, is not a member.

Now, given that being a member of the Chamber makes one a supporter of its political agenda, I presume that knowingly patronizing a business that supports the chamber, makes me a supporter of its political agenda as well.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | October 14, 2010 10:28 AM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin pushed through a five billion dollar increase in the amount to be collected from the oil companies.

Alaska has no state income tax, and it already had an annual budget surplus. Palin distributed that extra oil revenue to the people of Alaska. She cut them all a check. In other words; she "spread the wealth around"

Did someone mention something about "a sense of entitlement"? Perhaps they should talk to the Welfare Queen Of Alaska about that subject.

Posted by: Liam-still | October 14, 2010 10:28 AM | Report abuse

Another great read.

Supreme Court Challenge to Louisiana Foreclosure Laws

Oct 10, 2010 – NEW ORLEANS--An area man has taken his two year quest to overturn Louisiana's foreclosure laws all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. Louisiana's controversial law, called "executory process*," allows homeowners to be foreclosed on without being told that they have been sued; only finding out when deputy sheriffs arrive - unannounced - to evict them.

"You can be sued, and you can lose, and no one tell you; not the court, not the bank, not anyone," says Michael Paul Castrillo. "I've talked to families still paying their mortgages, still rebuilding houses that were no longer theirs. I was the first and only person to tell them that they had lost their homes, and that a sheriff could evict them whenever the bank ordered them to."

http://www.prlog.org/10989444-supreme-court-challenge-to-louisiana-foreclosure-laws.html

I really dug into the foreclosure mess last night. It is INSANE what the lack of regulations and oversight has done to the housing market and the economy, much less people's lives.

Please, let's help this guy out!

Tell Governor Jindal: "No to Executory Process. No more stolen homes!"

The Governor's office can be reached at:

http://www.gov.louisiana.gov

at the "interact" link.

Let's do it people! For the side of good!

Cmon Kevin, show us that you're on the good side. Tell Gov Jindal to end this practice!

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 14, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

"Ooops. Back to the Republicans"

Anyone who thinks Sarah Palin should be president and who votes for Marsha Blackburn must be a Republican. There simply isn't a political tent big enough to hold that kind of freak-show act. Maybe try the circus if the GOP isn't satisfactory.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

kevin

Perhaps I'm just too old fashioned for the politics of today. I have never bothered to judge a person's character by their political affiliation. I was raised by very conservative parents and while my father and I disagreed on most political issues, he only dis-owned me once (during the 60's) for being liberal, we otherwise had great admiration and love for each other.

I think conservatives like qb tend to equate a liberal's belief in public investment equals all of us wanting some sort of hand out. It's simply not true.

Posted by: lmsinca | October 14, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

The question Americans are asking is simple: how did we get here? And the answer is emerging: our government failed us.

Those that believe that the government, at all levels, should have ever increasing involvement in our day to day lives must answer for this failure. Thus far the leader of that group seems to think that spending ever greater sums of borrowed money is the only proper response the government should make.

Perhaps if that approach had worked in a way that Americans recognized this election cycle would look different.

VDH summed up the psychological issues pretty well in an essay published today at NRO:
"What exactly is it about big deficits and our accumulated debt that is starting to enrage voters?

First, the public is tired of the nonchalant way that smarmy public officials take credit for dishing out someone else’s cash without a thought of paying it back.

Second, there is a growing sense of despair that even vastly increased income taxes cannot cover the colossal shortfalls

Third, it does no good for Beltway technocrats to explain how deficits are good at “stimulating” the economy, or why they do not really have to be paid back. Voters know that such gibberish does not apply to their own mortgages and credit-card bills.

Fourth, there is real fear that something terrible will soon come from this unsustainable level of spending"

Read the whole thing. It makes complete sense to those of us whom Mr Chait would call "nuts". Imagine, expecting fiscal probity from our governments. Why we Americans must be crazy!


Posted by: skipsailing28 | October 14, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

I don't care if Cheney never apologized to the old guy he shot.
The guy is a fellow Republican and a long time supporter of Cheney.
The guy already knew that Cheney did not do it intentionally, because if he had, he would have first waterboarded him.

GOP means never having to say you are sorry.

Posted by: Liam-still | October 14, 2010 10:34 AM | Report abuse

Here are the two strands of Modern Conservatism in action:

Hardcore Republicans despise the people living in cardboard boxes under bridges.

Moderate Republicans don't despise the people living in cardboard boxes under bridges but won't do anything to help them.

The people in the cardboard boxes under the bridges will be excused if they can't see a difference.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

Skip,

See my post at 10:30 AM on foreclosures?

"You can be sued, and you can lose, and no one tell you; not the court, not the bank, not anyone," says Michael Paul Castrillo.

That's not how America is supposed to work.

Please do the right thing, help out by contacting Gov Bobby Jindal.

Tell Governor Jindal: "No to Executory Process. No more stolen homes!"

http://www.gov.louisiana.gov

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 14, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Campaign Disclosure Foreign Money


If Obama thinks the law should be changed - he should STATE that -

HOWEVER for Obama to SINGLE OUT ONE GROUP - and imply or flatly state out that that group has been doing something wrong - that is simply NOT RIGHT.

Obama is a federal official - and he really should NOT be saying such things - the Chamber of Commerce should consider a lawsuit because if they were operating under the law, they should not be subjected to such attacks - it is an abuse of power.


______________________


The democratic and liberal groups have been the ones using these types of groups to run ads -

ONE has to realize, the Republicans are under pressure to KEEP UP with the democratic money.


So for Obama to criticize the Republicans for doing what the democrats have done - that is just wrong -


Furthermore, the democrats have had an UNFAIR ADVANTAGE ALL ALONG.


IN SUMMARY, this issue is a dog for Obama because it relies on deception (again)


.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | October 14, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin was a Socialist Governor.

Posted by: Liam-still | October 14, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

lms,

I used a bit of hyperbole to make a point. But only a bit. There are liberals who work hard. I know some.

But I've also been around long enough and worked in enough environments to know that there is a correlation between the resentment and entitlement-based worldview of liberalism and poor work performance. It's just a fact of life, whether or not you choose to acknowledge it, that employees who share the liberal worldview that the (capitalist) economic system is unfair, that they are exploited, that "the boss" is undeserving and overpaid, that they deserve more and better, tend to be poor employees. They cut corners, they don't work hard, they consider it part of their entitlement to a little justice on the side to "stick it to the man" a when they can. More than likely, they voted for Obama if they voted at all.

Now, that's just my observation from long experience. But you aren't going to change my mind about it by pretending it is hurtful to you or anyone else. And, no, I don't think that is "rhetoric" that "drives people" into the Democrats' arms. They are already there.

My main point was to suggest in an ironic way that liberals who hate business probably shouldn't be employed in it or using its products anyway, and that the business community would be entirely justified and should seriously consider whether liberals make good employees in the first place. Conservatives should start to find ways to turn liberals' tactics back against them. If we are going to talk economic boycotts, then conservatives should find ways to punish and exclude liberals.

My comment about the Welfare State was, as you must know if you read it, part of a direct response to ruk's tirade directed at me about how cutting defense is the only way to deal with deficits, because defense is "where the money is." All I pointed out was that, as a plain factual matter, that simply isn't true, because you could cut the entire defense department and still be left with a $700 BILLION deficit that would soon be over $1 TRILLION.

Since those are the budgetary facts, it isn't a matter of rhetoric to say that it is the Welfare State, which ruk holds inviolate, and not defense that we can't afford. That is a matter of fact. And you'll note that ruk, despite his characteristic SHRIEKING!!!!! about hot air and ideology did not factually challenge a word I said, nor can you. If we can't tell the truth about the budget without "driving" people into the arms of the Democrats, to run up still bigger deficits, then we are well and truly screwed and without recourse.

"We can disagree on how this happened, but to claim that somehow liberals have a different work ethic than the rest of the population is absurd."

You are really confusing issues. I never said that a different liberal work ethic caused the recession.

(cont'd)

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin was a Socialist Governor.

She took billions from the Oil companies, and used it to send out free money to Alaskans, who had paid no state taxes.

Imagine that; The Tea Party Queen, Is actually A Socialist.

Posted by: Liam-still | October 14, 2010 10:41 AM | Report abuse

All, good new Adam Serwer post getting to the bottom of why Sharron Angle thought Sharia had taken hold in Dearborn:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/10/why_did_sharron_angle_think_sh.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | October 14, 2010 10:42 AM | Report abuse

"I reject the contention that entering an organization requires one to endorse its political activities.:

When someone chooses to do something he is responsible for his actions. If compelled or under duress that makes a difference but here is the United States we have arrived at a point where no one takes responsibility for anything, That must change for the U.S. to regain its political health.

"Small businesses joining the chamber and conservative union members is an apt comparison"

I disagree for the reasons I already explained. In a capitalist nation, there is a vast difference between Capitalists joining together and Workers joining together.

"I was a union member for a few years (the AUT). I started as a lecturer at a British university. A few months after I started employment, the union was able to obtain a notable pay raise (salaries had been frozen for several years). The organization was representing my interests and I joined. AUT's political activities are quite leftist, much more so than mine. A friend of mine left the union over just that issue."

Fine with me.

"I just checked and the owner of my local wine is a member. She's a valued friend and has steered me very well in the five years I've been patronizing the business. There is no way that you can convince me that I should take my patronage elsewhere. I support independent businesses and will continue to support this one. The megastore in the area, by the way, is not a member."

Your choice. Mine would be to tell your friend that I can't support her business as long as she is a Chamber member and the Chamber engages in partisan political propaganda. Maybe she doesn't even realize what the COC has become and you could enlighten her so she can make an informed decision.

"Now, given that being a member of the Chamber makes one a supporter of its political agenda, I presume that knowingly patronizing a business that supports the chamber, makes me a supporter of its political agenda as well."

Of course it does to the extent that your money helps support the Chamber's Radical Right agenda.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

wngonne, is there any distinction between the local Boston Chamber (run by liberals) and the national U.S. Chamber of Commerce?

Posted by: clawrence12 | October 14, 2010 10:47 AM | Report abuse

quarterback

There are constitutional nuances here -

ONE may argue that the States should have powers for a "social safety net" - and not the Federal government.


That is the problem - once the Federal government starts one program, the liberals think that the Federal government should expand endlessly in that field. The Conservatives are willing to tolerate some of this - but unlimited expansion is riduculous.


The liberals usually start off by saying "This SHOULD be this way"


The Conservatives are saying - if you want that, GET A CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT - that's how many people you have to get to agree with you. Not a temporary majority in Congress for 2 years - get three-quarters of the States - that is the threshold for CHANGE.


.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | October 14, 2010 10:47 AM | Report abuse

"I reject the contention that entering an organization requires one to endorse its political activities.:

When someone chooses to do something he is responsible for his actions. If compelled or under duress that makes a difference but here is the United States we have arrived at a point where no one takes responsibility for anything, That must change for the U.S. to regain its political health.

"Small businesses joining the chamber and conservative union members is an apt comparison"

I disagree for the reasons I already explained. In a capitalist nation, there is a vast difference between Capitalists joining together and Workers joining together.

"I was a union member for a few years (the AUT). I started as a lecturer at a British university. A few months after I started employment, the union was able to obtain a notable pay raise (salaries had been frozen for several years). The organization was representing my interests and I joined. AUT's political activities are quite leftist, much more so than mine. A friend of mine left the union over just that issue."

Fine with me.

"I just checked and the owner of my local wine is a member. She's a valued friend and has steered me very well in the five years I've been patronizing the business. There is no way that you can convince me that I should take my patronage elsewhere. I support independent businesses and will continue to support this one. The megastore in the area, by the way, is not a member."

Your choice. Mine would be to tell your friend that I can't support her business as long as she is a Chamber member and the Chamber engages in partisan political propaganda. Maybe she doesn't even realize what the COC has become and you could enlighten her so she can make an informed decision.

"Now, given that being a member of the Chamber makes one a supporter of its political agenda, I presume that knowingly patronizing a business that supports the chamber, makes me a supporter of its political agenda as well."

Of course it does to the extent that your money helps support the Chamber's Radical Right agenda.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 10:47 AM | Report abuse

in response to this:
==================
Here are the two strands of Modern Conservatism in action:

Hardcore Republicans despise the people living in cardboard boxes under bridges.

Moderate Republicans don't despise the people living in cardboard boxes under bridges but won't do anything to help them.

The people in the cardboard boxes under the bridges will be excused if they can't see a difference.

============

here are two strands of modern liberalism in action:

(1) bigotry

(2) Hatred.

Thanks wbgone for so clearly illustrating the modern liberal mindset. Beautifully done. So clear, so concise. so ugly and wrong.

You go guy!!

Posted by: skipsailing28 | October 14, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

"I could just as easily claim that the top 1%-2% of the population has an entitlement problem when they value their worth at more than 285 times that of their employees."

You appear to be mixing up statistics, but in any event, yes, you could say that, but you would be hard pressed to support a claim that the highest earners in general have not worked very hard for their income. I don't know what you mean by "when they value their worth," either. People earn what they earn. Not many people can perform as CEO of a multi-billion company doing business across the globe. A lot can work in the mail room or fill orders. I don't think it's up to you or anyone else but a board or shareholders to decide that at CEO isn't "worth" his pay.

"The liberal, progressive, and in rare cases conservative safety net programs passed over the last 80 years are the only programs in some cases that are keeping "hard working" people from living in cardboard boxes. "

And may at the same time be what is putting them in danger of cardboard box living arrangement in the first place. That you or I or anyone else thinks safety net programs are necessary doesn't change the budgetary math or the economic reality that we simply cannot sustain this entire Welfare State much longer.

We will shortly be spending $1 TRILLION more on the nondefense budget than we take in over revenues, even though revenues are higher than they have ever been. And Democrats have exactly one, tried and untrue idea for how to solve that problem: raise taxes on people who create jobs, and government increase spending still more.

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

wbgone exposes the truth behind the liberal demand for disclosure. It has nothing to do with some mythical notion of transparency and everything to do with punishing those with the nerve to disagree with the liberal agenda.

This is just how the left operates. Look at how the CRU folks treated those scientists who disagreed with the so called concensus. Look at how the angry gays treated people of faith after their pet proposition went down to defeat.

Silencing opponents is what liberals do. It is all they can do because now because their nostrums have failed us.

bigoted, hateful and close minded. That's today's American liberal.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | October 14, 2010 10:59 AM | Report abuse

"And may at the same time be what is putting them in danger of cardboard box living arrangement in the first place."

So we cut the Welfare State which means even more people living in cardboard boxes so then we cut the Welfare State again which means even more people living in cardboard boxes we cut the Welfare State more ...

The GOP's answer to everything: Cut taxes and eliminate government regulation so that Big Business and the Plutocrats are unchallenged and unimpeded as they take control of our country.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

Kevin,

I'm afraid you misconstrued my comments in a subtle but very important way. I didn't say liberals are lazy as a general matter. I said they have an entitlement mentality that tends to make them poor employees. Not universally, but as a generality.

I quite agree that they can be industrious and energetic, say, when working to elect an Obama and "transform" our country into a different one more along the collectivist lines they would favor. But what they do outside the workplace is a different question than what they do when working in the mailroom or cubicle or warehouse for "the man." Working politically to tax and regulate "the man" energizes many of them and inspires them to all manner of exertions and sacrifices. Working FOR the man from 8 to 5 doesn't quite so inspire them.

That's my point, and to me it isn't terribly controversial. It's almost a truism confirmed through long experience and observation.

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

skippy:

You have a bizarre notion of democracy, not to mention free-market capitalism. People in a democracy have a right to make informed decisions about where they spend their money.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 11:08 AM | Report abuse

@lmsinca: "This is exactly the kind of rhetoric that turns people into the arms of Democrats."


Such as . . .

@wbgonne: "That's what it's like today: next we'll have Snookie as the GOP's NJ Senate candidate. The glorification of ignorance is frightening to behold."

@Ethan2010: "Both of you are twisted, cold-hearted, thoughtless, and wrong-headed."

@wbgonne: "There simply isn't a political tent big enough to hold that kind of freak-show act. Maybe try the circus if the GOP isn't satisfactory."

@rukidding: "That's a freaking FACT BUT YOU IDIOTS ON THE RIGHT SIMPLY DO NOT ACCEPT FACTS YOU BRAINLESS MORONS!!!!!!"

Generally, the best advertisement for the Republicans is the Democrats, and vice-versa. ;)

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 14, 2010 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Skip, did you see my posts?

This is an opportunity to DO THE RIGHT THING!

Costs you nothing. Takes just a few seconds. Will you do it? I have.

Here is my letter to Gov Jindal:

Dear Gov Jindal,

The foreclosure mess is devastating to Louisiana families and the economy. I have read about the foreclosure debacle in detail and the bottom line is that we should not be kicking Americans out of their homes based on fraudulent paperwork and improper corporate practices by the banks. This is especially true when the economy is dragging.

On that note, PLEASE end the horrible "executory process" practice where homeowners can be foreclosed upon without even knowing it.

Executory Process needs to end. Give homeowners a fair shake. Please end this practice IMMEDIATELY.

Thank you,

xxxxxxxxxxxxxx


Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 14, 2010 11:11 AM | Report abuse

Hey Kevin:

That False Equivalence shtick is Old & Tired. Let me know when the Dems are running Senate candidates like Angle, Paul and O'Donnell or considering presidential candidates like Palin. Until then, talk to the hand.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne, for your information, Tim Sweeney, the public policy director for your local Chamber of Commerce states "The Greater Boston Chamber is not affiliated with the US Chamber nor do we pay any dues. We're an indepently run organization in every respect -- financing, governance, staff, public policy advocacy, etc."

You can even call him to confirm (617) 557-7325

Posted by: clawrence12 | October 14, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

"So we cut the Welfare State which means even more people living in cardboard boxes so then we cut the Welfare State again which means even more people living in cardboard boxes we cut the Welfare State more ..."

Only if you believe, as I know you do, that the multi-trillion-dollar welfare and regulatory state, and the $12 trillion debt, do not burden the economy in the first place.

Your answer is just to keep spending and taxing, but most importantly spending, which means more depressed growth, more lost jobs, more people in boxes, so we spend more, etc. You actually believe the government can spend us to prosperity, even while it is the spending that is killing us.

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Ethan, gonna send the letter to Strickland?

If not, why not?

Posted by: skipsailing28 | October 14, 2010 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Wait until The Republican heard about people living in cardboard boxes. They will be outraged that people can afford such luxury, and will move to abolish the minimum wage; to get our fiscal house in order.

After all, when you have to borrow Four Trillion Dollars to look after your Fat Cats, you have to find offsetting savings elsewhere. Ending the coddling of cardboard box dwellers seems like the right place for Republicans to begin to economize.

Posted by: Liam-still | October 14, 2010 11:17 AM | Report abuse

Kevin,

He who is without sin should cast the first stone.

Why did you ignore my post about Executory Process?

Will you do the right thing, or are you just bluster and hot air?

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 14, 2010 11:17 AM | Report abuse

@ quarterback: "I'm afraid you misconstrued my comments in a subtle but very important way. I didn't say liberals are lazy as a general matter. I said they have an entitlement mentality that tends to make them poor employees. Not universally, but as a generality."

This has not been my experience, and I've known a lot of liberals. The entitlement mentality with folks of the left is almost always global, rather than local. People who have an entitlement mentality in their own day-to-day lives--well, I've known conservatives with that orientation, and many largely apolitical folks who are too narcissistic to be bothered with politics. I think a vision of personal entitlement is not correlated to politics. But the entitlement mentality, on the individual, is destructive, and our modern culture (including liberal politics) can encourage that mentality generally, without liberals' politics resulting in a personal entitlement mentality.

There is a tendency towards entitlement in the young and freshly minted employees, as well as liberalism, but I think this is correlation rather than causation. Kids who have always lived off their parents and have just gotten out of college to be more liberal their first couple of years in the marketplace, and also feel more entitled, having had little practical experience in working for a living. But they can develop a solid worth ethic, and remain liberals, or becoming politically more conservative, without developing a particular great work ethic. It's anecdotal, but I've seen both things.

Now radicals--folks who come to a job interviewer with hair to their butt, no apparent familiarity with soap, and a t-shirt that says something about killing everybody over 30--well, yes, those folks rarely make good employees. But I think that's more about their general attitude than which side of the political divide their radicalism falls on.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 14, 2010 11:18 AM | Report abuse

qb

"But I've also been around long enough and worked in enough environments to know that there is a correlation between the resentment and entitlement-based worldview of liberalism and poor work performance. It's just a fact of life, whether or not you choose to acknowledge it,"

I believe I'm older than you at 60 and my experience as both employee and employer since 15 does not gel with your view in the least. There are good and bad employees and bosses and I've never found a correlation to liberal/conservative world view to be a determining factor. I believe it has more to do with a work ethic people are either taught from an early age by responsible parenting or something they pick up along the way through accomplishment or lack of success. Some people have a sense of entitlement that comes from being an only child born to wealth, some have it in the form of resentment at both the top and bottom of the work force, and others are just greedy, also at the top and bottom.

"But you aren't going to change my mind about it by pretending it is hurtful to you or anyone else."

That is a truly depressing attitude and perhaps my own communication skills are lacking, I don't know. The fact that I am both successful and comfortable in my own skin while also being liberal seems to be something you cannot accommodate with your world view.

Also, my objection to your use of the term "Welfare State" while at the same time discussing "entitlement" programs is a very typical conservative view we see a lot of here. Un-employment insurance, Social Security and Medi-care are not Welfare programs and it's deceptive to characterize them as such. That is what I object to.

Your disagreement with ruk is a separate issue I made no comment on. I neither speak for anyone else here nor defend or denigrate their arguments, except for STRF for obvious reasons :). I speak my mind only and believe others are more than capable of defending their own comments if they choose.

Posted by: lmsinca | October 14, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Is skippy really the best you've got. The needle on my new snit-o-meter barely moved. How sad for you.

I never said otherwise pallie. Spend as you see fit. But that's not a response to my point at all.

so let me add that to the list: bigoted, hateful, closed minded, illiterate.

Care to add any more adjectives?

Kevin has it right. I doubt he had to look much beyond this thread to obtain his examples of liberal hatred and bigotry.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | October 14, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

What are your thoughts on how Sarah Palin took money from the oil companies, and just distributed it to all the residents of Alaska, where there is no state income tax?

Doesn't that make Sarah Palin a Socialist Governor?

Posted by: Liam-still | October 14, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

@Ethan2010: "Why did you ignore my post about Executory Process?"

I didn't, but, alas, I cannot acknowledge that I followed your recommendation. Not that I did not, but this:

"Will you do the right thing, or are you just bluster and hot air?"

And this . . .

"Cmon Kevin, show us that you're on the good side."

. . . suggests that I have something to prove to you, which I don't. So, in this case, I might have done as you suggested, but I'm not going to acknowledge it, one way or the other.

Unless you acknowledge you are in no position to judge me, and that I've got nothing to prove to you. Something of which I don't think you're capable of doing. :)

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 14, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

"Ethan, gonna send the letter to Strickland?"

Sure. You should too.

This is a non-partisan issue. Nobody should be okay with Americans being kicked out of their homes based on fraudulent bank documents.

Please dig into this, all.

Google:

"foreclosure fraud robo-signing"

They've been fast-tracking these documents without reviewing the facts of the cases. This is actually an illegal practice and it is being done across the entire mortgage industry.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 14, 2010 11:26 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne, to whom did you send the email referenced in your 8:46 am post?

Posted by: clawrence12 | October 14, 2010 11:30 AM | Report abuse

"Unless you acknowledge you are in no position to judge me"

Who the heck are you to tell me who I can and cannot judge?

Regardless of that obnoxious statement, thank you for doing the right thing. That's the only thing that matters in the end.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 14, 2010 11:30 AM | Report abuse

So Alaska received back far more dollars from Washington than it send there. On top of that; Sarah Palin then took billions from the Oil Companies, each year, and distributed it to the residents of Alaska, even thought they do not have a state income tax to pay.

Doesn't that make her Governor Hugo Chavez Palin, The Socialist Governor Of Alaska?

Posted by: Liam-still | October 14, 2010 11:32 AM | Report abuse

Kevin,

Well you and I have had very different experiences. I've spent years working in blue collar environments -- as one of the workers -- and seen the politically liberal entitlement mentality go too firmly hand in hand with . . . a slack working hand to believe it is just coincidence. I've seen the entitlement mentality applied very "locally," as in, why should I work that hard?

I think your hippy example acknowledges the same thing I am saying, and it is only a matter of degree. It is human nature that if you believe the entire capitalist business enterprise is unjust and unfair and exploitive, you will not be motivated to work as hard while in its employ, even though you might be very motivated to work hard on the weekends to tax said capitalist pig enterprise and its exploitive owners. Look, it's hard to get much better proof than spending some quality time around hard-core union members who work for big companies.

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 11:32 AM | Report abuse

"Who woulda thunk it? Opposition to health reform has not allowed moderate Dems to avoid tough races: ABC's Josh Goldstein tallies it up and finds Dems who voted against reform because they thought it would insulate them from GOP attacks were sadly mistaken."
-------------------------------------------

Why, Greg Sargent. A straw man -- and an obvious one at that? Shame on you.

It should be pretty obvious to even the most casual observer, let alone someone who writes about politics for a living, that those people were in for tough reelection races well before the healthcare vote came around. If their votes were mainly driven by political calculation -- something you can't actually assume in all honesty unless they tell you so or you believe you have the power to read minds -- do you seriously think the calculation was that it would enable them to ~avoid~ a tough race? Or does it seem more likely that given the already ~unavoidable~ prospect of a tough reelection fight, they would simply be looking to deprive their opponents of one potent weapon that would certainly be used against them in it? That's two fallacies in one sentence. I expect better of you than that.

Posted by: CalD | October 14, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Another ABSOLUTE MUST-READ:

The enormous mortgage-bond scandal

You thought the foreclosure mess was bad? You’re right about that. But it gets so much worse once you start adding in a whole bunch of parallel messes in the world of mortgage bonds. For instance, as Tracy Alloway says, mortgage-bond documentation generally says that if more than a minuscule proportion of notes in a mortgage pool weren’t properly transferred, then the trustee for the bondholders can force the investment bank who put the deal together to repurchase the mortgages. And it’s looking very much as though none of the notes were properly transferred.

But that’s not even the biggest potential problem facing the investment banks who put these deals together. It also turns out that there’s a pretty strong case that they lied to the investors in many if not most of these deals.

I mentioned this back in September, and I’ve been doing a bit more digging since then. And I’m increasingly convinced that the risk to investment banks isn’t only one of dodgy paperwork; there’s also a serious risk of massive lawsuits from the SEC or other prosecutors, as well as suits from individual mortgage investors.

The key firm here is Clayton Holdings, a company which was hired by various investment banks — Goldman Sachs, Bear Stearns, Citigroup, Merrill Lynch, Lehman Brothers, Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank, everyone — to taste-test the mortgage pools they were buying from originators.

http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2010/10/13/the-enormous-mortgage-bond-scandal/

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 14, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

May I also suggest a boycott of the CHAMBER Orchestra of Boston? (I much prefer the Boston Pops).

Posted by: clawrence12 | October 14, 2010 11:36 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne

Thanks for the contribution, a lot of progressive groups are trying to give Grijalva a boost. I think we did pretty well for a small group of donors, so thanks everyone.

Posted by: lmsinca | October 14, 2010 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Did someone say something about not catering to people with a sense of entitlement?

Alaska received back far more dollars from Washington than it send there. On top of that; Sarah Palin then took billions from the Oil Companies, each year, and distributed it to the residents of Alaska, even thought they do not have a state income tax to pay.

Doesn't that make her Governor Hugo Chavez Palin, The Socialist Governor Of Alaska?


Where is your 'sense of entitlement" outrage now? Crickets!

Posted by: Liam-still | October 14, 2010 11:40 AM | Report abuse

@lmsinca: "I believe I'm older than you at 60 and my experience as both employee and employer since 15 does not gel with your view in the least. There are good and bad employees and bosses and I've never found a correlation to liberal/conservative world view to be a determining factor."

I'm 41, and this has also been my experience. Literally, I've known hard working, get it done, ultra-responsible (meaning, personally responsible) liberals who, when the topic turned to politics, sounded like Marx, and when the topic turned to religion, he sounded like Richard Dawkins. But he was hard working, trustworthy, etc., etc.

I've got to agree 100% with lmsinca (and note that it's nice that a liberal agrees with me; I've had this exact same argument, that character has no correlation with politics, with plenty of liberals). I've known sociopathic conservatives and sociopathic liberals. My conclusion, in the end, had to be that sociopathy exists independent of political affiliation. Substitute any other negative personality quirk, and my experience has been the same. Of course, as a general rule, a particular conservative may be too strict (at least, in his children's opinion) and a particular liberal might coddle a daughter (who is to be the next great feminist hope) and dismiss the son, but, on the whole, the overlap seems inconsequential.

Also, the biggest fans of NASCAR I've ever known were hardcore liberals. So, let's put an end to the stereotypes, whatsay? :)

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 14, 2010 11:43 AM | Report abuse

The Powell Memorandum of 1971 is what launched the COC into its propagandizing mission for the Radical Right. Here is what it says about local COCs.

"The role of the National Chamber of Commerce is therefore vital. Other national organizations (especially those of various industrial and commercial groups) should join in the effort, but no other organizations appear to be as well situated as the Chamber. It enjoys a strategic position, with a fine reputation and a broad base of support. Also -- and this is of immeasurable merit -- there are hundreds of local Chambers of Commerce which can play a vital supportive role."

That said, I am definitely more interested in boycotting members of the US COC. But since the US COC operates in secrecy I don't have such a list so this will have to do in the meantime.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

lms,

I didn't make any absolute statements. All I described was a tendency. Obviously the values with which someone was raised, etc., matter to how they perform as employees. And someone said that young people today tend to have an entitlement mentality to begin with (hmm, could that have something to do with having grown up in more of an entitlement society than we did?).

But do you seriously disagree that, if you have two employees, one of whom thinks that business and U.S. capitalism are unfair and exploitive, that owners and bosses make too much money, that workplace laws still are not strict enough, etc., and the other who has contrary views, the former is less likely to be a devoted, hard-working employee who does his or her best at all times?

I'm really amazed if you do. Do you consider that type of employee to not represent liberal views? I really can't understand how you can believe human nature does not tell us which employee will tend to work harder for you. Do you think workers who believe these things just believe them in the abstract???

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 11:49 AM | Report abuse

@Ethan2010: "Who the heck are you to tell me who I can and cannot judge?"

The person you are presuming to have jurisdiction over. ;)

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 14, 2010 11:50 AM | Report abuse

NASCAR is just another sport. Millions of people enjoy it. There is nothing wrong with that. How it got it's start, is not important, although I tend to doubt that it Prohibition was the spark that ignited the engine.

There was no prohibition era in Europe, and yet they also developed a thriving car racing sports industry.

I don't think we can really blame it on Robert Mitchum, and Thunder Road.

Posted by: Liam-still | October 14, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Richard Dawkins ???


Are you talking about the host of the MATCH GAME ???

.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | October 14, 2010 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Tell us, Ethan, are you saying that mortgage companies are just picking homes at random to foreclose upon?

Isn't this really a process issue? Are you saying that people who have faithfully paid their mortgage every month are being ousted based on fraud?

Posted by: skipsailing28 | October 14, 2010 11:53 AM | Report abuse

I'm afraid you misconstrued my comments in a subtle but very important way. I didn't say liberals are lazy as a general matter. I said they have an entitlement mentality that tends to make them poor employees. Not universally, but as a generality.

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

---

Which is complete nonsense in every way. Not really worth engaging on as it reflects lazy thinking. Not a trademark of liberals or conservatives, but of ideologues.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | October 14, 2010 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Thanks Kevin

I try really hard not to make broad generalizations about people based on their political or economic philosophies. We could debate all day whether the current downturn (putting it mildly) was caused by Dems or Reps, Gov or Private, and how to fix it, but to equate any of that with personality, work ethics or a sense of entitlement doesn't really solve anything other than create more resentment.

Have a great day all. I'm back to work.

Posted by: lmsinca | October 14, 2010 12:00 PM | Report abuse

Kevin,

"I've had this exact same argument, that character has no correlation with politics, with plenty of liberals"

Who has argued to the contrary? Why are you attacking a straw man? Did you actually read what I wrote?

I think I am more amazed at you than at lms, to believe that what people believe in a "political" realm of their brain doesn't affect what they do in the personal lives.

For some reason this discussion reminds me of a family my wife and I met on our honeymoon many years ago. I had scratched and saved enough from my factory pay for us to go to Europe. On a train, we met a family of four from, Brooklyn, if my memory is right. They were taking a vacation tour of Europe, even though they lived on food stamps back home. And, no, I'm not embellishing a bit. They were essentially living permanently on the dole, going to school a little, working an odd job here and there, relying on the government for their principal support, and vacationing in Europe with their two children. They were quite pleased with themselves and firmly believed it was their entitlement, just because it was. Proud liberals, who believed they were owed their support while they pursued their own interests, because the American system is fundamentally unjust and exploitative.

Now, I ask you, would you as a business owner want to employ them, or a gun-owning, small government, low tax Tea Partier who is proud of the American way of life and thankful to have a job here?

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

"a family my wife and I met on our honeymoon many years ago. I had scratched and saved enough from my factory pay for us to go to Europe. On a train, we met a family of four from, Brooklyn, if my memory is right. They were taking a vacation tour of Europe, even though they lived on food stamps back home. And, no, I'm not embellishing a bit. They were essentially living permanently on the dole, going to school a little, working an odd job here and there, relying on the government for their principal support, and vacationing in Europe with their two children. They were quite pleased with themselves and firmly believed it was their entitlement, just because it was. Proud liberals, who believed they were owed their support while they pursued their own interests, because the American system is fundamentally unjust and exploitative."

Do the Koch Bros pay you extra for creative writing?

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

It might be easier to argue, qb, if you stopped using stereotypes out of central casting.

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | October 14, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Did someone say something about not catering to people with a sense of entitlement?

Alaska received back far more dollars from Washington than it send there. On top of that; Sarah Palin then took billions from the Oil Companies, each year, and distributed it to the residents of Alaska, even thought they do not have a state income tax to pay.

Doesn't that make her Hugo Chavez Palin, The Socialist Governor Of Alaska?


Where is your 'sense of entitlement" outrage now? Crickets!

Posted by: Liam-still | October 14, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

"We could debate all day whether the current downturn (putting it mildly) was caused by Dems or Reps, Gov or Private, and how to fix it, but to equate any of that with personality, work ethics or a sense of entitlement doesn't really solve anything other than create more resentment."

It's great that lms departs having again attacked a claim I didn't remotely make. If you are still here, you shouldn't wonder why dialogue is difficult, when you insist upon misstating what I said, over and over.

"Not really worth engaging on as it reflects lazy thinking."

Even lazy thinking would be more than you are doing.

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 12:10 PM | Report abuse

qb

Just saw your last comment.

"hmm, could that have something to do with having grown up in more of an entitlement society than we did?"

I don't believe this is true either. As you know, our life experiences are very different. I grew up smack dab in the middle class and have always been there. Literally all of my kids friends have worked hard, gone to college, bought their own cars, etc. etc., no entitlements or silver spoons in the bunch. Some are conservative but most are liberal, in large part over social issues more than anything else. I don't believe they're overly concerned with economic philosophy yet other than how it pertains to finding a job.

The rest sounds like you're talking about union workers and that's an entire different discussion than the one we were having. Unfortunately, it's one we'll have to engage in later, I really do have a lot of work today.

Have a good one.

Posted by: lmsinca | October 14, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

"Do the Koch Bros pay you extra for creative writing?"

"It might be easier to argue, qb, if you stopped using stereotypes out of central casting."

This is what liberals do when you give them specific examples: deflect and run away.


Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

wbgonne, are you boycotting the Chamber Orchestra of Boston too?

Posted by: clawrence12 | October 14, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

qb

Just because I disagree with you and find your arguments to be wrong does not mean that I'm lazy or that I think you're lazy, I've never said that to you.

I simply objected to your characterizations of liberals and the "Welfare State". I'm pretty sure that's allowed in reasonable debate. And I'm not running away, I'm working and I'll probably be back and we'll probably keep arguing. It's what we do.

Posted by: lmsinca | October 14, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

I gave a specific example of Sarah Palin taking a lot more money from Washington than Alaska sent there, and of also taking billions from the oil companies, and distributing to all Alaskans, even though the do not have a state income tax.

Why do the Right Wingers not consider Sarah Palin to have been A Socialist Governor?

Posted by: Liam-still | October 14, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

‘Are You Guys Eventually Going To Disclose?’ Chamber Responds Bluntly, ‘No!’

http://thinkprogress.org/

Boycott the Chamber of Commerce and its members.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

Obama NEVER disclosed $25,289,671 in his campaign donations:

http://www.opensecrets.org/pres08/summary.php?cycle=2008&cid=n00009638

BOYCOTT Democrats; vote straight-Republican party line!

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 14, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

"Liberals have an entitlement mentality that tends to make them poor employees anyway."


"A bigot is a person obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices, especially one exhibiting intolerance, irrationality, and animosity toward those of differing beliefs."

Posted by: schrodingerscat | October 14, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

"Tell us, Ethan, are you saying that mortgage companies are just picking homes at random to foreclose upon?"

Pretty much.

The mortgage companies are processing the paperwork in "foreclosure mills" (google it) who are fast-tracking the paperwork without any regard to the facts of the cases.

It's really complex stuff, but it is fraud on a MASSIVE scale.

Employees at all the big mortgage shops are "robo-signing" the paperwork sometimes on the order of 10,000 foreclosure papers per month for one individual employee. And again, this is occurring at ALL the mortgage shops.

Foreclosing on homes saves the banks HUGE amounts of money versus having to repurchase the loans. So the banks are fast-tracking the paperwork as fast as humanly possible. But in doing so, they are foreclosing on homes where the owners are on time with their payments and everything.

It STINKS. It's happening because the banks destroyed the housing market, they abused mortgage-backed securities and now they are issuing MASS foreclosures to cover costs.

It is very probably, collectively, the biggest episode of financial fraud in American History.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 14, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

"or a gun-owning, small government, low tax Tea Partier who is proud of the American way of life and thankful to have a job here?"

I missed this one qb. Basically, you're saying that as liberals we're not proud of the American way of life and thankful to have jobs here. It's patently untrue of everyone I know, liberal or conservative. You're digging yourself into a hole.

You get the last word. I'm out until this evening.

Posted by: lmsinca | October 14, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

"Tim Ryan: "I just really believe it's an argument we can win." Where did this poor deluded soul get the idea that Dems can win arguments?"

Well, since the MSM seems to take every Republican lie, fabrication, or flight of fantasy as gospel, and seems to ignore every single bit of fact favorable to the democrats as not n ewsworthy, perhaps we are beginning to believe that the deck is stacked.

The favorite polling organizations in use right now, Rassmussen, CNN/Time/whoever, and other Republican leaning polling organizations, all tend to go with their definition of "Likely Voters." Likely voters for CNN excludes all 18 to 34 year olds, and in many polls all 35 to 39 year olds, and all non whites. So the polling base right now is old white consistant voters. Naturally, when you poll mostly Republicans you get Republican Results.

Every poll reported over the last couple of months either doesn't report demographics, or turns out to have non representative demographics that are guaranteed to skew Republican.

When the Kids and the Minorities vote in quantity and Democratic, Polling creds will go back to the time of the Literary Gazette call of the Roosevelt Landon election.

The Literary Gazette never did accept that Roosevelt actually won.

Posted by: ceflynline | October 14, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Ethan2010:

The Obama admin / David Axelrod does not think there is massive financial fraud. Here's what he said on "Face the Nation" last Sunday:

"We’re working with these institutions. I’m not sure about a national moratorium because there are, in fact, valid foreclosures that probably should go
forward. And where the documentation and paperwork is proper. But we are working closely with these institutions to make sure that they expedite the process of going back and reconstructing these and throwing out those that don’t work.

SCHIEFFER: Well, I mean, I guess people are worried about what do you think the impact this is going to have on an economy that’s pretty shaky right now anyway?

AXELROD: Well, look, our hope is that this moves rapidly and that this gets unwound
very, very quickly and that they can go back reconstruct their paperwork and what
we’ve stressed to them is that they need to expedite that process and work very, very quickly to get it done."

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 14, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

ceflynline:

You don't consider the WaPo part of the "MSM"?!

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 14, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

FairlingtonBlade:

What do you think about a Dem boycott of local Chambers, which are not even affiliated with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce? Do you think maybe this is one valid reason why the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is refusing to disclose?

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 14, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

"* Does lack of cell phone polling skew polls towards GOP? There's much chatter about the new Pew study finding that not polling cell phones biases polls towards Republicans, but Mark Blumenthal is skeptical."

It should also be noted that Pew interviewed more cell phone users in its latest poll that most polls have being reporting for their whole accepted sample. That poll had 2700+ respondents, 2 to 3 times as many as get reported in most R leaning polls.

Posted by: ceflynline | October 14, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

lms,

I'm giving up on this, since you just keep attributing to me new things I never said.

scat,

Tell me about it.

Posted by: quarterback1 | October 14, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Ethan2010:

It's understandable, I guess, if you missed Axelrod on "Face the Nation".

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2010/10/14/obama_blacks_probably_dont_watch_meet_the_press.html

Good news, though, Obama DID ask Biden to stay on as VP nominee for 2012:

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/tobyharnden/100058890/joe-biden-blurts-out-that-he-will-be-barack-obamas-2012-running-mate/

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 14, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Ethan can you provide an example of a home owner that was current on the mortgage and was foreclosed upon illegally? I'd be interested in reading about that.

foreclosing on homes that are current on the mortgage certainly is wrong. That's why I'm curious to see examples of this.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | October 14, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

@qb: "'I've had this exact same argument, that character has no correlation with politics, with plenty of liberals' -- Who has argued to the contrary? Why are you attacking a straw man? Did you actually read what I wrote?"

Well, technically, that particular comment was addressed to lmsinca, and I have had exactly that argument with plenty of liberals, who seem to think meanness, parsimony, and larceny go hand-in-hand with conservatism, and I did read what you wrote. If I were to characterize, I think you're suggesting that liberals tend to make poorer employees because of their world view, but that this is not universal.

However, when it comes down to it, and the outset it sounded to me (at first) as if you were suggesting that there was a causal relationship between liberalism and being a poor employee, and I still think entitlement thinking regarding oneself, and believing that the government should be a nanny state and taking care of those who cannot care for themselves, are barely statistically correlative.

Which is why liberals often are parsimonious with their own time and money while insisting that it's morally right for the government to force you to share your own. ;) There are large gap between the ideological abstraction and the day-to-day living for many folks.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 14, 2010 1:29 PM | Report abuse

@JakeD2: "You don't consider the WaPo part of the "MSM"?!"

When you are sufficiently to the left, any news organ that does not bash capitalism, praise Marxism, and demand an immediate leftist benevolent dictatorship to advance us into Utopia is a right-wing mouthpiece. ;)

Thus why so many on the left advance the argument that all media is transparently biased to the right. It is to the right--of them.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 14, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

gave a specific example of Sarah Palin taking a lot more money from Washington than Alaska sent there, and of also taking billions from the oil companies, and distributing to all Alaskans, even though the do not have a state income tax.

Why do the Right Wingers not consider Sarah Palin to have been A Socialist Governor?

Posted by: Liam-still | October 14, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

@qb: "I think I am more amazed at you than at lms, to believe that what people believe in a 'political' realm of their brain doesn't affect what they do in the personal lives."

I didn't say that it didn't affect it all. What I'm saying is that the affects are not global, would vary from person to person, and will be weaker than the effects of other things--influence of peers (especially true in unions), relatives, parents, employers (who signs your paycheck tends to inform a lot regarding adult behavior in the day-to-day but, again, not everything) and your own natural proclivities. I've known more than one by-their-bootstaps, too-proud-for-a-handout liberal who, never the less, thinks you can't expect everybody to do the bootstrap thing--it's just not fair--and that, despite being too proud for a handout, a subsistence existence on the dole is fine for the proles.

I appreciate that the position is counter-intuitive, but it explains my experiences. And there are always exceptions--folks who eat and breathe their politics (or their hobby, or their relationship) to the exclusion of all else clearly let that thing spill over into every aspect of their life.

"Now, I ask you, would you as a business owner want to employ them,"

Well, not if that's there whole story. But I've known apolitical folks of a similar orientation. It's not their politics, but their specific behaviors in life, that would make them not the best candidates for employ.

"or a gun-owning, small government, low tax Tea Partier who is proud of the American way of life and thankful to have a job here"

I've worked with the good and bad in both categories. Give me a Marxist who knows how to program and will do the job. The best person I've ever had working for me was an Indian American who was also very liberal (although it than she may have just been doing as her husband instructed, I do not know for certain). Frankly, we didn't discuss politics much, she just cranked out the code. In another case, two of the most productive (and, yes, one of the most surly) people in the company were big liberals. But they cranked out the work. And did a really good job.

Neither were members of unions, however.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 14, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

@Liam-still: "Why do the Right Wingers not consider Sarah Palin to have been A Socialist Governor?"

Because she's MILFy. It's like a Get Out of Jail Free card for previously socialist right-wing icons.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 14, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

FairlingtonBlade:

What do you think about a Dem boycott of local Chambers, which are not even affiliated with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce? Do you think maybe this is one valid reason why the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is refusing to disclose?

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 14, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

---

Jake,

My earlier responses stand on this one. I absolutely oppose a boycott of local businesses. The irony in this case is the example I cited of my neighborhood wine store. The alternative would be to go to a megastore in the area. I know the character of my local store owner (and she's gotten me some fantastic bargains). I disagree with wbgonne on this one.

My stance is different on individual businesses. I'd be reluctant to buy Coors beer, though a preference for actual flavor dominates there. Sorry, too elitist. Strike that. Reverse it. My preference for greater variety of flavor and the use of more malt and hops leads me to drink other beers. Truth is that I have no idea about the politics of the owners of Sierra Nevada, Dogfish Head, Harpoon, and Redhook. No real interest into looking into them either.

You've a good point on reluctance to disclose. Boycotts of businesses that contribute to the anti-gay marriage amendment in Cali drew notice. I do think disclosure of substantial contributions is warranted. Where to put the threshold

One can easily argue this is a goose and gander type of thing. Dems were happy while Obama raised $800M, but are whining about $100M. I'm a no limits, full* disclosure kind of a guy. [*within the above parameters] That applies all around.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | October 14, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse

"I'm a no limits, full* disclosure kind of a guy"

So where is the Chamber's disclosure? And what will you do when the Chamber refuses disclosure? Nothing? That's not much conviction re: disclosure. I want to see global warming end but if I don't do anything to make it happen does it even matter what I want? I am open to other suggestions on how to pressure the COC to stop its partisan political propagandizing but I haven't heard any other suggestions. Doing nothing, I suspect, won't work.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

The solution is in legislation, not refusing to drop by the local coffee shop. Contrary to popular belief, moderates don't hold their convictions any less strongly than the left or the right.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | October 14, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

"The solution is in legislation"

But the Chamber's political arm -- the GOP -- won't allow such legislation to pass. So then what? Nothing?

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

It is the image of the "local coffee shop" or "local liquor store" that the US Chamber trades upon. The Chamber uses the Good Will of its local affiliates to manage its image and pretend it's for the "little guy" when all it really cares about is Big Business and undermining our government.

So I ask again: How do we make the Chamber reveal its secret donors?

I've e-mailed my local Chamber to voice my concerns about the political propagandizing. I will let you know if I get a response.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Just out of curiosity, how do we determine if our local COC is affiliated with the US COC? My understanding is that not all of them are.

Posted by: schrodingerscat | October 14, 2010 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Just out of curiosity, how do we determine if our local COC is affiliated with the US COC? My understanding is that not all of them are.

Posted by: schrodingerscat | October 14, 2010 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Yes, S'cat it is confusing, which I think is the very point. Here's my view: the U.S. Chamber uses the local chambers to foster a small-town image while all the dirty work is done through the secret donations at the national level. Similar to the games the Chamber plays with its foreign money. I am attempting to clear up the relationship between the Boston Chamber and the U.S. Chamber but it appears to be murky. I would be content if the Boston Chamber disavowed the U.S. Chamber's political propaganda but unless and until that happens I consider them in cahoots b/c the National Chamber is at minimum using the Local Chambers for Good Will purposes. And since the National Chamber won't disclose the burden falls on the Locals. Thee is, of course, a simple solution: Have the U.S. Chamber of Commerce disclose its donations and members.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 14, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Tim Sweeney disavowed any relationship already. It's not murky at all.

Posted by: clawrence12 | October 14, 2010 4:48 PM | Report abuse

"Sarah Palin pushed through a five billion dollar increase in the amount to be collected from the oil companies. Alaska has no state income tax, and it already had an annual budget surplus. Palin distributed that extra oil revenue to the people of Alaska. She cut them all a check. In other words; she "spread the wealth around" Did someone mention something about "a sense of entitlement"? Perhaps they should talk to the Welfare Queen Of Alaska about that subject. Posted by: Liam-still"

And how is that impost on the oil companies that Alaska disburses to its citizens any different from any other corporate tax?

SP is a tax and spend Republican.

Posted by: ceflynline | October 14, 2010 8:23 PM | Report abuse

wbgonne - It isn't the "image" of the local liquor store, it is the reality. I must note that it is a local wine store to which I referred as Virginia does not permit sales of hard alcohol outside of the state stores. You specifically called for a boycott of all members of the CoC and I have specifically rejected it. This approach destroys good will (not to mention local businesses).

Yes, the legislative solution is the way to go. The Democrats should have shoved a remedy to Citizens United down the throats of Republicans. It may not have passed, but it would have clearly delineated the parties. The public is against these unknown financiers 70 - 30. That's an issue worth campaigning on.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | October 14, 2010 9:31 PM | Report abuse

Ayn Rand's Objectivism lists as virtues the following: honesty, integrity, independence, justice, pride, productivness & rationality. I wonder which of these do the Ayn Rand haters disagree with?

Posted by: jackdoitcrawford | October 15, 2010 8:36 AM | Report abuse

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