Romney campaign takes credit for Auto Bailout Romney opposed

One of Mitt Romney’s top advisers said Saturday that President Obama’s decision to bailout Chrysler and General Motors was actually Romney’s idea.

“[Romney’s] position on the bailout was exactly what President Obama followed. I know it infuriates them to hear that,” Eric Fehrnstrom, senior adviser to the Romney campaign, said.

“The only economic success that President Obama has had is because he followed Mitt Romney’s advice.”

The claim appears to be a shift from Mitt Romney’s November 2008 op-ed in The New York Times, headlined, “Let Detroit go bankrupt.”

Expect a lot of this.  Romney’s core supporters are two groups that will believe anything: people who hate Obama and Mormons.  Hence the Romney campaign is under the impression they can say pretty much anything and expect a good portion of their supporters to believe it wholeheartedly.

As to the general election, the hope is to sling so much mud the cynics stay home and the low-information folks get fooled in sizable numbers.

“Romneality” is what I call the strategy, although I don’t think it will work…blatant b.s. like in this story only fools a small portion the populace.  Combing John Kerry’s charisma with George W. Bush’s policies doesn’t seem like a winning combination in any sense.


Romney campaign aide claims auto bailout was Romney’s idea – The Hill’s Ballot Box
http://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box/presidential-races/224371-romney-campaign-claims-auto-bailout-was-his-idea?utm_campaign=briefingroom

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How Crazy Have We Become When…

George W. Bush comes across as a voice of reason (or when viewed through the skewed prism of Election 2010, a terrorist sympathizer).

Thank you all very much for your hospitality. We’ve just had a wide-ranging discussion on the matter at hand. Like the good folks standing with me, the American people were appalled and outraged at last Tuesday’s attacks, and so were Muslims all across the world.

Both Americans, our Muslim friends and citizens, tax-paying citizens, and Muslim in nations were just appalled and could not believe what we saw on our TV screens. These acts of violence against innocents violate the fundamental tenets of the Islamic faith, and it’s important for my fellow Americans to understand that.

The English translation is not as eloquent as the original Arabic, but let me quote from the Quran itself: “In the long run, evil in the extreme will be the end of those who do evil, for that they rejected the signs of Allah and held them up to ridicule.”

The face of terrorist is not the true faith of Islam. That’s not what Islam is all about. Islam is peace. These terrorists don’t represent peace, they represent evil and war.

When we think of Islam, we think of a faith that brings comfort to a billion people around the world. Billions of people find comfort and solace and peace. And that’s made brothers and sisters out of every race, out of every race.

America counts millions of Muslims amongst our citizens, and Muslims make an incredibly valuable contribution to our country.

The Muslims are doctors, lawyers, law professors, members of the military, entrepreneurs, shopkeepers, moms and dads, and they need to be treated with respect.

In our anger and emotion, our fellow Americans must treat each other with respect. Women who cover their heads in this country must feel comfortable going outside their homes. Moms who wear covering must not be intimidated in America. That’s not the America I know; that’s not the America I value.

I’ve been told that some fear to leave; some don’t want to go shopping for their families; some don’t want to go about their ordinary daily routines because, by wearing cover, they’re afraid they’ll be intimidated. That should not and that will not stand in America.

Those who feel like they can intimidate our fellow citizens to take out their anger don’t represent the best of America. They represent the worst of humankind. And they should be ashamed of that kind of behavior.

And it’s a great country; it’s a great country because (we) share the same values of respect and dignity and human worth. And it is my honor to be meeting with leaders who feel just the same way I do. They are outraged; they’re sad. They love America just as much as I do.

And I want to thank you all for giving me a chance to come by, and may God bless us all. Thank you.

“The worst of humankind”, indeed.

How quickly so many forget the lessons of 9/11.

UPDATE: Here’s a few of them…

The harsh Republican response to President Barack Obama’s defense of a mosque near ground zero marks a dramatic shift in the party’s posture toward Islam — from a once active courtship of Muslim voters to a very public tolerance after Sept. 11 to an openly aired sense of mistrust.

Republican leaders have largely abandoned former President George W. Bush’s post-Sept. 11 rhetorical embrace of American Muslims and his insistence — always controversial inside the party — that Islam is a religion of peace. This weekend, former Bush aides were among the very few Republicans siding with Obama, as many of the party’s leaders have moved toward more vocal denunciations of Islam’s role in violence abroad and suspicion of its place at home.

International and Interstellar, News Update

Here’s the “remainder” for the week.  Just a short blurb and be done with it.

No fence yet for W from Big D.

Former President George W. Bush is officially living in Dallas, as our own Lori Stahl reports.

But a security gate scheduled to be erected on Daria Drive near in Bush’s Preston Hollow home on cul-de-sac Daria Place has yet to go up on the public street.

In fact, Dallas officials say, Bush’s camp has yet to submit gate plans to City Hall’s public works and transportation department — a necessary step before its installation.

Hmmm…him without a gate and me with all these old shoes…what to do…what to do…

Fix the Electric Box. Currently I’m stuck on 14, but should get it eventually.

The Earth as the Moon. Have you ever been on a satellite and seen the Earth eclipse the Sun?  Now you have, thanks Japan!  [peep the video…yes…the Sun is that bright.]

The Galaxy may be full of “Earths”.

The focus of the mission is finding planets in a star’s habitable zone, an orbit that would ensure temperatures in which life could exist. Video Watch a NASA scientist explain the search for habitable planets »

Boss, who serves on the Kepler Science Council, said scientists should know by 2013 — the end of Kepler’s mission — whether life in the universe could be widespread.

Finding intelligent life is a very different matter. For all the speculation about the possibility of other civilizations in the universe, the question remains: If the rise of life on Earth isn’t unique and aliens are common, why haven’t they shown up or contacted us? The contradiction was famously summed up by the physicist Enrico Fermi in 1950 in what became known as the Fermi paradox: “Where is everybody?”

The answer may be the vastness of time and space, scientists explained.

“Civilizations come and go,” Boss said. “Chances are, if you do happen to find a planet which is going to have intelligent life, it’s not going to be in [the same] phase of us. It may have formed a billion years ago, or maybe it’s not going to form for another billion years.”

Luckily, there’s more “people” on this planet than you can ever meet and more organism than you can ever study, so we’re pretty much set as it is.

Heading over the Pakistan…it’s getting shaky.

Pakistan’s Supreme Court has upheld bans on former prime minister and opposition leader Nawaz Sharif and his brother, Shahbaz, from elected office.

Nawaz Sharif’s PML-N party holds power in Punjab province. His brother is chief minister but must now step down.

Nawaz Sharif accused President Asif Ali Zardari of being behind the ban.

Mr Sharif said it was because he would not back down in his campaign to have judges sacked by ex-president Pervez Musharraf reinstated.

The hard part about this one is that it is the new judges that made the ruling.  D’oh!

What to do?

Riot!!!

Thousands of supporters of opposition leader Nawaz Sharif protested in Pakistan Thursday, angered over a court decision banning him and his brother from elected office.

Sharif denounced the Supreme Court ruling, blamed President Ali Asif Zardari, and called for more protests at a rally near the eastern city of Lahore in Punjab province. Around 20 lawmakers gathered outside the Punjab provincial assembly were detained.

Smaller protests also erupted in the capital, Islamabad, where police fired tear gas at a mob trying to block the highway to Punjab province.

[full story]

Pakistan is on the brink.  Believe it.

Japan is sending the ninja after the pirates. You may have thought we put all the ninja to bed during WWII, which we did.  But ninja are tougher than that.

An anti-piracy bill that the government plans to submit to the Diet early next month will enable the use of force by Japan in deterring pirate activities, it has emerged.

The move is expected to spark controversy as the use of force is prohibited under the Constitution. The Self-Defense Forces’ use of force during overseas deployment has been limited to legitimate self-defense and averting imminent danger.

Under the bill, Japanese vessels and foreign vessels will be protected under the anti-pirate measures. Coast guard officials will play a major role in cracking down on pirate activities, and the SDF will only assist them in cases that are beyond the control of the coast guard.

The government seeks to apply Article 7 of the law governing policemen in the line of duty, which enables police officers to use force in order to attack suspects in heinous crimes when they resist or try to flee. By applying the article of the law, the officials to be dispatched for anti-pirate activities will be allowed to use force against pirate ships that refuse orders to stop.

Gotta love loopholes (in bold).

Japan’s PM is also in a bit of hot water for (admitting to) losing to the Americans.

Prime Minister Taro Aso will not retract his remarks that World War II started with Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, it has emerged.

The government decided in a Tuesday Cabinet meeting not to correct remarks that Aso made in a video interview for the Dec. 4, 2008 edition of the Aso Cabinet’s weekly e-mail magazine.

In the interview, Aso remarked: “World War II began with the Pearl Harbor attack in December 1941, but perhaps no one at that time could have imagined that we would have the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty a decade later.”

Sure, WWII actually started with Hilter invading Poland in Europe and all that, but for us and the Japs, the Day of Infamy was the real start of Global Conflict: The Sequel.

Mass layoffs in January.

WASHINGTON – Employers took a large ax to their payrolls in January, the government said Wednesday, and the cuts are likely to get worse over the next few months.

The Labor Department reported that mass layoffs, or job cuts of 50 or more by a single employer, increased to 2,227 in January, up almost 50 percent from the same month last year. More than 235,000 workers were fired in last month’s cuts.

There is a ticking time bomb here, and it’s when these workers unemployment runs out.  If they can’t find jobs, any jobs, by then…things get nasty…quickly.

Oh, and I wanted to do something about this story. It’s actually a really big story…something I need to read a bit more about.  I’ve lived through some of it personally, and investigated professionally (yea…I know this one) another bit of it.  Need to take some time to tell the story correctly.  Maybe this weekend, but it’s a big part of Chapter 11 in my book.  And yes, I’m probably going to quote that article in the my chapter.  It came along right when I wanted it, curiously enough.

And there’s another one making the rounds about a new diet study that says, basically, you are energy and if you eat more energy than you burn, you will get fatter.  If you eat less, you will lose weight, which is painful.  Story at 11.

Lest We Forget

I’ve been having a few economic discussions lately with various people in various places.

Everyone seems to be gung-ho against any sort of stimulus package that isn’t perfect.  Sorry, folks, this is why we have a “democracy” so we can make decisions even when a bunch of folks on TV and Radio whine about helping toddlers.

I mean…improving toddler care…what a waste, let’s buy bombs instead!

The simple fact of our economy is this…mentioned here previously…

Well, it looks like that move to leveler playing field happened a lot quicker than even I expected.  And the War in Iraq seems to be gone from the economic discussion.  Does not one realize that is why Bush, et. al. had to let the shennanigans on Wall Street continue so long?  Without the myth of great wealth, we couldn’t fund his War.   And that’s where the other 3 trillion went.

Does no one remember that Bush took the deficit from this…

Instead, the president explained, the $5.7 trillion national debt has been reduced by $360 billion in the last three years — $223 billion this year alone.

This represents, Clinton said, “the largest one-year debt reduction in the history of the United States.”

To this…

Are you surprised? Times Square’s National Debt Clock, which has been tallying up money owed by the U.S. government since 1989, is running out of spaces.

In September 2008, the digital dollar sign was eliminated to make way for an extra digit—the “1” in $10 trillion (the national debt is currently $10.2 trillion). Now, a new clock is in the works that will make room for a quadrillion dollars of debt, according to the Associated Press. Anticipated completion is early 2009.

A little history on the clock: It was created in 1989 by Manhattan real estate developer Seymour Durst to inform the public about the nation’s snowballing national debt (back then, it was $2.7 trillion). Seymour died in 1995, and the clock is now owned by his son, Douglas Durst.

Bush ran up a $4,500,000,000,000 tab.

Lest we forget…

And a Very Merry Christmas to Wilmington, OH from Bush to You

No, I’m not letting Bush off the hook because some pissed off guy threw a shoe at him.  I would highly recommend the town of Wilmington, OH do the same thing.   It’s a nice, non-lethally violent, way to express one’s displeasure…

WILMINGTON, Ohio — As hard times go, this is about as hard as it gets. The single-biggest employer in these parts is laying off about 7,500 men and women.

In a town of fewer than 13,000 people. In the midst of the worst financial crisis in generations.

“It’s going to test us,” says Mayor David Raizk. “The numbers are frightening.”

Those numbers came in a Nov. 10 announcement by Deutsche Post World Net, the German owner of package-delivery company DHL. After investing five years and nearly $9 billion, DHL is abandoning its ill-starred effort to compete in the United States with FedEx and UPS. Winding down its U.S. business will eliminate 9,500 DHL positions around the country plus thousands more here at the company’s local partner, ABX Air.

DHL, which has long struggled in the U.S., said in May that ABX would likely lose business that supported thousands of workers. But the global financial crisis magnified shareholder pressure on DHL’s German owner and accelerated the erosion at the No. 3 company in a three-company market, triggering DHL’s exodus. Exposure to bankrupt investment bank Lehman Bros. blew a $450 million hole in third-quarter earnings at the German giant’s banking subsidiary, while DHL’s customers grew tightfisted amid the spreading economic malaise.

[full story]

And this is what’s going to happen if we sell off our auto industry too.  Sharehlders and foreigners aren’t going to take a hit to keep Americans working.  Sorry to be the bearer of bad tithes, but that’s the facts, jack.

If you think this whole debacle can’t be directly traced back to our current President and his policies, you haven’t been paying very close attention.  And now we all get to pay for that apathy and ignorance.

The Dark Bailout (and Joker vs. Joker)

Here’s a couple quick mash-ups made from “The Dark Knight” and Heath Ledger’s soon to be legendary performance.  When I rent a movie, I might watch it once before returning.  This one I’ve watched at least 3 times, and will probably *gasp* by a $.015 piece of plastic for $20 just to have a copy laying around.

Anyway, here’s the goods…

And the Joker v Joker one, “Whens Clowns Collide”.  This took some serious editing, but did a great job making something new out of something old.

Best Grumpy Old Man Post of the Day

Quite a bit surprised by this one. It’s tough to find the right line in a rant like this, but GOM does a very good job.

I can’t vouch for his other work, but this one is very well done.   Personally I think Obama is being practical in how to draw down U.S. forces in Iraq.  I’m fairly certain he understands that the “surge stragety” for Iraq won’t pay dividends in Afghanistan, and will be settling on another strategy to try and turn the tide in that country.

Oh, and here’s the shoe incident he mentioned…

I wonder if we could all head to the White House and throw our shoes at it. I wonder if Bush would get it then.

That’s probably the first thing I’m going to do once they dedicate his library in my home town (he just bought a house down the street from me).

For some reason that might do the trick, and I think he would finally get it….so….who’s up for a quick trip to D.C.?

I’m fairly certain Cheney wouldn’t get it.  He would either ignore it or order everyone shot…in the face.

A bit of cultural explanation, via the BBC.

Around the Arab world, if you want to escalate a situation, by saying for example “I’m going to thump you”, add the words “with a shoe” and you’re adding serious insult to the threat of possible injury.

It’s that cultural significance that has added real sting to the assault by an Iraqi journalist against US President George W Bush at a Baghdad news conference.

In Arab culture it’s considered rude even to display the sole of one’s shoe to a fellow human being.

Certainly, crossing one’s legs ankle-on-knee style should never be done in a public place for fear of offending the person next to you.

The sensitivity is related to the fact shoes are considered ritually unclean in the Muslim faith.

In addition to ritual ablutions before prayer, Muslims must take off their shoes to pray, and wearing shoes inside a mosque is forbidden.

There’s a lot of dust in the Middle East, you see, and it gets everywhere…and a lot of camels and other livestock…it’s a cultural tradition with a good bit of common sense behind it, when you think about it.

Devastating Ad Attacks Palin Experience (and McCain’s Ad get Slammed)

…comes from the person who picked her…

Yea, I know primary debates are great fodder for talking points…but this one is just about hilarious…especially after McCain’s First Choice got a big fail after cramming for her foreign policy exam.  Hint: Cram for 10 more years and you’ll probably be ready for the test.

This video is actually a pretty good attack ad on McCain as well.  But that’s probably because I think he was only batting 33% from this chart.

What Talking About Issue Looks Like (Joe Biden)

I know a lot of you don’t know what it looks like, as it happens quite rarely during “silly season” (at least on major cable channels), but this is how it looks when you go out and talk to people about actual things that matter.

This is what real politicians do.  Go out and explain the reasons why our healthcare system needs to be fixed (international competition) and a bit about a governing philosophy (we can’t fix all your problems, but we should at least be aware of them).  Explain how you balanced a budget, and what happened when an “experienced” executive took over.  Explain what needs changing and how it could be better.  Pretty basic stuff.

“Image-based” politicians try to limit their exposure to the public.  For a great example of this, see: Bush, George W.

For a current example…watch the news…

Campaigning keeps Palin from media

Palin will spend much of the next few weeks campaigning with Sen. John McCain, a move that not only capitalizes on the Republican enthusiasm for the vice presidential nominee but also limits her exposure to the news media.She left Washington for Alaska on Wednesday, her first trip back home since being named to the ticket.

McCain and Palin traveling together limits her exposure to reporters and gives McCain’s top aides more control of her.

Palin has not done interviews after one she gave to People magazine on the day she was introduced as McCain’s vice presidential choice.

[full article…which includes this bit]

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the Republican vice presidential nominee, has sought to burnish her executive credentials by telling how she had engineered the deal that jump-started a long-delayed gas pipeline project.

Stretching more than 1,700 miles, it would deliver natural gas from the North Slope of Alaska to the lower 48 states and be the largest private-sector infrastructure project on the continent.

Palin has asserted the pipeline will help lead America toward energy independence.

An examination of the project has found that she has overstated both the progress that has been made and the certainty of success.

The pipeline exists only on paper. The first section has yet to be laid, federal approvals are years away, and the pipeline will not be completed for at least a decade.

In fact, the pipeline might never be built.

Biden’s money quote from his speech: “Name me one single thing that John McCain and Sarah Palin are talking about, on the major issues,  the issues that affect our lives and our security.  Name me one, one, where they disagree with George W. Bush.”

Now this is kinda the point of the media here.  This is a pretty basic question that should be addressed.  It should be fairly easy to address.  Where are you different from Bush?   We keep hearing about “executive experience” and “mavrickness” but where is the meal?  The appetizer was fascinating, but is there a meal coming?

Or are we going to be told to go straight to dessert, and go eat some cake?

Build More New-Clear Plants

I saw a quick bit on CNN about something so I decided to do a bit of personal research.

This is really quite funny. See if you can spot the special difference…

From the Palin Speech

Starting in January, in a McCain-Palin administration, we’re going to lay more pipelines … build more new-clear plants … create jobs with clean coal … and move forward on solar, wind, geothermal, and other alternative sources.

Another one…

Starting in January, in a McCain-Palin administration, we’re going to lay more pipelines … build more new-clear plants … create jobs with clean coal … and move forward on solar, wind, geothermal and other alternative sources.

Aaaah, found a real one.

Starting in January, in a McCain-Palin administration, we’re going to lay more pipelines… build more nuclear plants… create jobs with clean coal… and move forward on solar, wind, geothermal, and other alternative sources.

And finally CBS and PBS, for the clincher.

Starting in January, in a McCain-Palin administration, we’re going to lay more pipelines … build more new-clear plants … create jobs with clean coal … and move forward on solar, wind, geothermal, and other alternative sources.

O.k. so…what is this about? Which one of these is not like the others?

Take your time….(playing Jeopardy music…..still playing Jeopardy music….and….done).

So you figured it out, right? The “real” one is the one cleaned up by the BBC to make sense to English speakers. In “English” the phrase “nuclear plants” makes sense and people know how to say it.  The phrase “new-clear plants” kind of sounds the same, but makes no sort of logical sense.

In all the other “official versions” of the speech, they left in the phonetic pronounciation “new-clear” that was used on the TelePromptHer during the live speech. This was done because Sarah Palin, like George W. Bush before her, has a curious habit of pronouncing the word “nuclear” as “nukular”. Many people, rightly in hindsight, pointed to this as a reason George W. Bush was unqualified to be President. Despite the fact that he had been re-elected Governor of Texas, he had very little intellectual curiousity about the world and about real, effective, government. And he was kind of an idiot.

This was done to avoid looking like that. And know the evidence of what they did to avoid looking stupid is all over the world (and someone caught it on tape…which I’ll find as soon as I find it).

—-

NOTE: It should be noted that this is also a flippity-floppity from her previous position.  ‘Energy Expert’ my ass.

The environment. As governor, Palin vetoed wind power and clean coal projects, including a 50-megawatt wind farm on Fire Island and a clean coal facility in Healy that had been mired in a dispute between local and state governments.