Re Mitt: No one cares

You left blogospherians who got your marching orders from the DNC to Gore Mitt are wasting your time.  You could be blogging more productively about what Obama has or has not planned for his second term, presuming he gets one.

The more the Democrats get their knickers in a twist over Mitt’s latest ridiculous spewing of nonsense, the angrier I get.  The whole country is falling apart, people are not making money, they’re losing their jobs-still, the economy is growing at a paltry 1.7% and all the Democrats can think of is Mitt’s stupid Olympic comments?  Really?  This is the best the Democrats can do?  Relentless attacks on your opponent only work for the first term.  They are not substitutes for planning or policy.  Does the DNC think we aren’t paying attention?

This is not a game of who can out ridicule.  It’s not a game period. I don’t think that crap is going to work this year.  When I go to the polls my vote is going to the person who pisses me off the least.  Right now, the Democrats and Obama are making my blood boil.

Repeat after me: All the voters want to hear about is how Obama is going to get us back to work and when he is going to arrest the bankers.

I will vote for the candidate who has a plan to move my 401K to a defined benefit pension plan and promises to not touch Social Security.

Short of that, the Mitt Shit is BORING.  Nothing is going to make me vote for him anyway but the longer this nonsense goes on, the more attractive Jill Stein is looking to me and I never thought I’d say that.

Keep it up and I’m going Green.

Politicizing gun control? Are you kidding me??

This is more dangerous and political than….

Update: Here’s a new article in the NYTimes about the candidates’ reluctance to talk about gun control.  What I get from this is that both candidates think they have more to lose from pissing off the gun nuts than half of the voters in this country.

It’s the biggest slap in the face to women who have been bumped down to second class status by the relentless discussion of personal reproductive matters, as well as dismissive of anyone who cares about unregulated access to guns and ammunition.  Do voters have ANY say at all in this country anymore about what is important to them?

I caught up with the Daily Show this morning and did you know that if we want to discuss regulating access to guns, even just sloooooooowing the process down so that murderous paranoid psychotics can’t get their hands on them without raising suspicion, that we are “politicizing” gun control?

Yep, not only that but it’s an “unpopular” position for a candidate to take.  Really? And how do we know it’s unpopular if no one is allowed to discuss it publicly?  Can we take a vote on that?

The New York Times is a master of understatement on the issue:

Responding to the tragic shooting in Aurora, Colo., Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York,called on the presidential nominees Barack Obama and Mitt Romney to come up with a comprehensive gun control policy.

That might require political courage. Despite feelings of outrage over the horrific loss of life from shootings like the one on Friday, support for gun control has declined. Can a politician, particularly a presidential candidate, buck conventional wisdom and show leadership by calling for an assault weapons ban, even if it might not be popular?

Ok, let me put it this way.  The President is supposed to be a leader.  Leaders lead.  That means they persuade people to do things they might not otherwise do. So, if the presidential candidates do not want to talk about how families’ lives and finances have been ruined as a result of free access to guns no matter how crazy the buyer is, because it *might* make them unpopular, then maybe they should find another profession.  They could become accountants or ceramic artists where leadership on public matters is not a desired characteristic.

But wait!  There’s more.

While it is completely unacceptable for us to discuss gun control because congress is exhausted by the subject and the issue is now “settled”, it is perfectly fine to discuss and find ways to regulate lady parts because that is NOT settled, even after 50 years when we all thought it was.

So, to recap: Gun control- unpopular, exhausting subject that is so five minutes ago.

Your Reproductive Organs- perpetually pleasing topic of conversation, politically popular, never goes out of style, DESPERATELY IN NEED OF IMMEDIATE REGULATION!

this. These are not at all dangerous or political.

Guns- kill human beings with jobs, responsibilities, lovers, children, parents and friends.

Your Reproductive Organ- May contain human beings that might develop all the characteristics of a gun victim.  Or it may not.  Or may be waiting for a player to be named later.  The people that potential human touches is limited to one- the bearer.

I don’t know about you but I think we could all stand to hear a lot less about the latter and a whole lot more on the former.  Gun control needs to get as much attention as possible.  You can call it politicizing if you like, like I give a f^&*.

I call it self-preservation, maturity and common sense.

We’ve got our priorities all wrong if it is so outre to talk about how gun access has changed people’s lives permanently and destroyed their futures but have verbal diarrhea every damn day about whether or not some coed should have unfettered access to Lo-Ovral.   There’s something very wrong, tribal and unmodern with American society today if we think that somehow it’s OK to treat half the population as cattle that needs to be herded but the wannabee warriors in the crowd are allowed to be as violent as possible and no one is supposed to talk about these inconsistencies.

It’s sick.

Will someone please tell me where the women’s orgs are?  Why they f^&* are we putting up with this s^&* during election season and letting the candidates get away with it?  This is outrageous.  No piece of legislation on reproductive rights should go to the floor of any legislative body without a companion piece of legislation that keeps guns out of the hands of crazy people.

Let’s make a deal: We’ll stop politicizing gun control when politicians stop politicizing our vaginas.

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Tana French, the only mystery/thriller writer I read, has a new book featuring more of her characters from her Dublin murder squad.  The new title is Broken Harbor.  I love the way French writes.  Her characters are vivid and deep, the dialogue snappy and sharp.  It’s hard not to like some of these people, even the flawed ones.

Three days until my Audible credits renew.  I can barely stand it.  If you’re looking for a good beach read that is not brainless chick lit and interested in diving into mystery a la French, start with In the Woods.

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Totally off topic, this is Jack Van Impe and his dotty wife Rexella talking about The Rapture.  These two are very clever.  It feels like Van Impe uses rapid fire scripture citations to invoke some kind of trance state.  There are people out there who think he has this stuff in instant access memory.  I think he’s either reading it from the teleprompter or listening to the bluetooth in his ear.  Or maybe he does have it all memorized because he’s done this schtick for so long.  But to me, I hear “Oh, we got trouble, right here in River City” playing music in the background.

So, here’s Trouble in River City.  Compare and contrast:

Ignoring the polls

Gosh, if you’ve been reading Digby, Paul Krugman or Charles Pierce (among many, many others) you’d think that Mitt Romney was Thurston Howell III born with a silver horse in his mouth.  He’s out of touch, insensitive and politically tone deaf.  And rich.  And his rich friends are arrogant, condescending, name dropping uber contributors of the 1% who think they are more equal than the rest of us.

There’s nothing to like about this guy.  Seriously.  He is very unlikeable.  Plus, he’s a Mormon.  Those damn Mormons.  I think they have some weird eugenics program where they only breed good looking ones that have outwardly perfect families and where the mother has a homemaking blog and does interior design in her DIY tiny house that she built herself while caring for 4 small children under the age of 3.  Don’t ask me how she does it but women like her make other women feel inadequate.

Mormons and scientologists.  I’m always disappointed when I run across a blogger or celebrity who is a believer of either religion.  I feel like they’ve let me down.  Like Elizabeth Moss who plays Peggy Olsen on Mad Men?  Every time I see her on TV, it’s like she’s got “SCIENTOLOGIST” stamped in spacey ultraviolet across her forehead.  I can’t get past it.  She might be the best damn ad copywriter in Manhattan but she still thinks she’s full of engrams and that’s where the careful constructed illusion of the brilliant writers falls apart for me.  I *almost* buy into her character and then, boom, there I am, thinking about Sea Org instead of her Heinz bean pitch.

Who in their right mind believes that humans who pass all their earthly tests may get their own planet someday, or are the re-embodied spirit enemies of an intergalactic overlord named Xinu?  Who really believes that stuff?  It’s like fairy tales and horror stories and the made up religion of a con man.  But whatever.  There are some mainstream people who believe in trees with magical fruit and talking snakes, so, you know, Mormons aren’t so far out there when you think about it.  Still, if you’re going to start a religion in the modern age, why wouldn’t you create a story that’s a bit more believable, unless religions have to be unbelievable to be believed in one of those weird manifestations of human psychology.  Maybe Joseph Smith would have been the first guy to think up the Nigerian bank scam email if he were alive today.  I think that’s why I get so disappointed when I find out a blogger is a Mormon.    I understand (sort of) why the Judeo-Christian religions took root.  They’re too old to have had a conman starting them.  They’re the aggregation of myths and histories and traditions over thousands of years. Sure, it’s time to retire them for an updated God v2.0 but I can understand why it’s harder to resist religions that are so entrenched.  But Mormonism and Dianetics? People should know better.

I wandered significantly off topic there.

Ok, so the topic wasn’t really Mormonism (or Thetans).  The topic is that despite the non-Mormon related glaring faults of the Republican candidate, and all of his lackeys, he is still in a statistical dead heat with Barack Obama.  Yep, you’d think with all that Obama supposedly has going with him, he’d be kicking Mitt’s ass all over Utah.  But that’s not what’s happening.

And if you look at the numbers, it’s not like the Republicans love their candidate.  They don’t.  It’s just that he is their instrument to score one against the Democrats.  It’s up to the political scientists to tell us why this is but my opinion, for what it’s worth, is that Barack Obama doesn’t really stand for anything except persistant failure over the past four years.  It is because he is running on his “achievements” and his “achievements” were not transformative that he is having trouble.  If he’d done something earth shaking in the Democratic tradition, voters would have a more defined opinion of him.  They’d either love him or hate him. A Republican Town Hall meeting might end up going something like this:

But the healthcare reform act didn’t actually do much.  A lot of the ACA isn’t going to go into effect until 2014 so there’s no way to say whether it is a success yet.  And the ACA doesn’t really make any bold transformative changes anyway.  It’s not like the WPA or Social Security or Medicare that had a lot of popular support.  There won’t be enough personal testimonies before election day.  Instead, there is persistent unemployment and an unending drag on the economy as our jobs, wages and standard of living are eroded away.

Sure, the Republicans are standing in the way of progress.  But this president didn’t bother to differentiate himself.  When The Village repeatedly urged him to compromise bipartisanly against our better judgement, he did.  Well, Ok then.  Now that we’ve run that experiment and have shown conclusively that it does not appear to work with this group of Republicans, the White House should have grown a unibrow and gotten tough, not doubled down on a wimpy losing strategy.

I love how Paul Krugman keeps yelling at the Tom Friedman types to stop pining for a centrist because they already have one in Obama.  But in these poll numbers, that’s part of the problem.  The public doesn’t see Obama as the centrist that he is.  They see him as a liberal Democrat, which he most certainly is not.  If he were a liberal Democrat, promoting liberal Democratic things and rallying the Democrats in Congress with purpose to help homeowners and working people, he wouldn’t be tied in the polls with a clueless, wealthy Mormon.  He’d be eating the Mormon’s decaffeinated lunch.  I don’t think Americans think Obama cares all that much about them.  A lot of that has to do with the right wing noise machine.  But let’s remember that the noise machine and Congressional opposition was just as strong against Bill Clinton and he wasn’t tied with Bob Dole at this point in 1996.

You can blame racism on the tie but politicos who do that are only making it worse for Obama.  To blame the voters ignores the real, lasting effects of this prolonged recession on our society.  Everyone knows someone who doesn’t have a job or is losing their house or can’t afford their student loans.  There’s a lot of anger.  There’s a lot of confusion by the right wing about what the solution should be to fix these problems.  And there’s also a candidate who will be held responsible for not putting more effort into doing his job.

No matter how unlikeable you make his opponent, this election was always going to be a referendum on Obama.  That’s what the polls are saying and what we have been saying all along.

Recap

You could have had a V8.

Update: I don’t agree with Digby’s latest post that it’s all the Republicans fault that we’re stuck at 8.2% unemployment.  Yes, all of the things she lists the Republicans definitely did.  They’re bastards and they have a vested interest in seeing that Obama is a one term president.

The problem with her argument is that in the first two years of the crisis, it was Democrats who had the power to ram through any damn thing they wanted to.  They could have played hardball and stuck together and presented a united front.  I’m even betting that Ben Nelson and Joe Lieberman could have been leaned on to get their asses into line.  But there was no political push to do this.  It was an emergency and yet, the incoming Obama administration had no plans when it came into office.  It didn’t do its homework.  There has been plenty of evidence that Obama and Geithner totally blew it in the first two years and that’s why we’re stuck.

But the worst thing is that they seem to have just thrown up their hands and are are like, “Well, what do you want us to do about it now??  This shit is getting old.”  Let me just remind you that this is the same campaign tactic that Jon Corzine took and it didn’t work for him.

Let’s face it, the Democrats did this to the country when they decided to put a complete novice, bought by Wall Street, who had almost no legislative experience, in charge of the most important nation in the world in the midst of the worst economic downturn in 80 years.  There is no getting around it.  Obama’s lack of legislative progress reminds me of JFK’s and that was primarily self-inflicted because the Kennedy crew refused to use LBJ to muscle arm people into line.

Obama wasn’t dealing with a 100% hostile Congress in 2009.  He had almost a mandate and he could have used his political capital at that time to demand just about anything.  Instead, he spent an awful lot of time preening for the camera during the first two years and I know this because his face was on TV in the company cafeteria every fricking day during lunch.

I don’t know what is wrong with this batch of Democrats but I don’t trust them.  They’re too friendly to bankers, too dismissive of working people and they don’t do their homework.  Obama and his crew did not come to Washington with a plan to save homeowners and preserve jobs.  They just didn’t, Digby.  There is no evidence that they even made those items a priority and plenty of evidence that they bent over backwards to save the financiers from the consequences of their bad behavior.  You can blame the other side all you want but the lack of plans is very telling and you can’t blame that on Republicans.  No one should get blamed for the lack of planning but Obama and the Democrats.  They let us all down and this particular batch does not deserve four more years.

As long as the Democrats refuse to change their lineup, that leaves us with Mitt, who we also don’t want.  I’d like to think there was a difference between the parties but I’m looking at a party of almost criminal incompetence vs a party of insanity.  As far as choices go, this is as bad as it gets.  We can’t do anything to change the crazy Republicans and as long as Obama is on the ticket, we will have to expect more of the same lassitude for four more years.  It is only by changing out the top of the ticket do we push the election into a new energy state and have a hint of a possibility of recapturing a mandate.  At this point, working people on both sides need something to look forward to.  There’s only one person who could potentially pull this off.

Otherwise, we continue on in our lost decade, the rich get stronger, the voters continue to be disenfranchised and any hope that we will regain our footing will be lost for a long, long time.

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Let’s recap where we are leading up to this election, shall we:

The economy added a lousy 80,000 jobs last month.  The unemployment rate is stubbornly stuck at 8.2%.  Expect the assholes who are sitting on the money to stay sat until they get what they want, whatever that is.  In Ron Suskind’s book, Confidence Men, he describes a proposal by Christina Romer, chairwoman of Obama’s Council of Economic Advisors, that $100 billion would go a long way to putting many unemployed people back to work.  There were still Democratic majorities in Congress at the time. Obama passed on it.

Frankly, I’m finding this election to be really boring.  I don’t care how many frogs Mitt Romney blew up when he was a child or that Ann likes dressage.  I. Don’t. Care. Please don’t waste my time telling me how awful Republicans are, as if I didn’t already know.

Tell me why the Democrats aren’t just as awful from the standpoint of the unemployed.  You know what?  You can’t.

Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton is on a marathon trip around the world putting out multiple fires, likely without much help from the National Security advisors who seem to like putting her in tight spots and then hanging her our to dry all by herself on the world stage.  Nice way to support the State department.  Way to go, Obama administration. Oh, and we haven’t gone to war with Iran yet, which all of the anti-Hillary Democrats were *convinced* she was going to do.

So, you know, there’s that.

Plus more people are losing their homes, yada-yada-yada…

There’s still time.  If the impending catastrophe in November is starting to look like the end of the world as we know it, and more voter suppression and internet censorship will surely follow, NOW would be the time to register your concern with your local Democratic party apparatus.

It ain’t over until the balloons drop in Charlotte.

Trust me, Democrats, you do not want to bore your voters.  And right now, there are a lot of us out here who are less likely to vote for your candidate with each new revelation about his administration.  The peer pressure tactics may not work nearly as well this year.  What makes me furious with the Democratic party is their insistence on ignoring voters and acting all parental about what candidates we are allowed to choose from.  Then comes the pressure tactics where you’re made to feel guilty if you don’t choose one of these horrible people.  You know, f^*( that sh^&.  It’s not up to me to make this right for the Democrats.  It’s up to the Democrats to make this right for me.  I’m sick of voting for the lesser evil, especially because I can’t tell anymore who that person is.  Don’t roll your eyes at me.  It’s not obvious to those of us who are losing our standards of living, watching Obama stand by while Rome burns.  He doesn’t take any pains to disguise his ennui for people losing their houses and everything else they worked so hard for.  And his crowd suppression tactics of the Occupy movement tells me all I need to know about whether he intends to do anything about our grievances.

So, shove it, D’s.  Get him the f&(* out of there or YOU will be responsible for what happens next.  The authoritarian strain is strong in this one and I refuse to participate in the destruction of the Democratic party any longer.

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Here is the current Obama attitude as interpreted by Lilly Von Shtupp:

SCOTUS vs ACA

Update VII: Well, he’s wrong about this:

Boehner: “What I’m concerned about is a law that’s driving up the cost of health care, and making it harder for employers to hire people.”

1.) The LAW doesn’t drive up the cost of health care.  Rather, it does absolutely nothing to rein costs in.  That’s what makes it such a bad law- it’s every Republican’s wet dream, including the opportunity to now call it a tax!  It will now become the new political football between the parties, replacing the abortion bugaboo that’s just about run its course.  You could say that like Roe v. Wade, the ACA is also one of those laws that is incomplete and doesn’t address the underlying issues but will be used as a proxy until we all cry uncle in 40 years.  Except for the individual mandate, it doesn’t follow any of the principles of good health care policy which would include increased competition and cost controls.

2.) Employers find it hard to hire people because employees insist on getting paid.  Many Republican politicians come from states that once didn’t pay people as a matter of principle.

Boehner: “The number one concern for families and small business people is the cost of health insurance, and the Republican health care reforms will in fact lower health care costs.”

HOW does that work, John?  You guys don’t have a plan that doesn’t leave every man, woman and child vulnerable to high cost insurance plans or no plan at all.  Come to think of it, this is what ACA does too, except now more people will have the opportunity to hand over their small personal fortunes and savings accounts to insurance companies.  What is it Republicans have to be angry about?  You’ve got nearly everything you ever wanted.  Was it because a plan than no one but a Republican could love was forced upon you?
I want to move to Micronesia.

Update VI: I find myself hating the ACA because of the individual mandate even though in principle, I know that universal coverage is needed for a health care policy to be effective.  The reason is that with the ACA, we have disincentivized competition and cost controls.  Without those two pieces in the policy, this thing is going to feel like an albatross around the neck for the consumer and the Democratic party.  Sure, you can go without a high cost policy but when you do end up going to the hospital for some emergency that could have been treated with a lower cost insurance plan, you’re going to get socked with a tax when you are least able to pay it.

The characteristics of good health care policy are not a mystery and yet, this president and his party has declined to implement them in this law.  (See this excellent Frontline episode on what those characteristics are and how our elected officials have completely f^*(ed us over with the ACA)

As Lambert says, you can’t buff a turd.  This is the worst of all worlds for the vast majority of people who are forced to buy insurance on the individual market.  You’re made to feel irresponsible if you don’t put paying your health insurance the very first priority among a long list of monthly expenses.  There is no public option, insurers are not required to offer a reasonably priced option, no Tricare, no Medicare for All, no mandatory expansion of Medicaid. And zero cost controls on hospitals or providers. You’re either a “have” or a “have-not” now.

Bottom line: Poor policy is no substitute for no policy, especially now that it has been “decided” and is “over”.

Thanks Dems.  You deserve everything that’s coming to you.

Can we have Hillary now?!

BTW, Lambert has a very insightful post on what the new socio-political landscape now looks like.

Update V:

Obama: For those who don’t currently have health insurance, “this law provides an array of quality affordable private health insurance plans to choose from.”

Define “affordable” and “quality”, or “array”.  For that matter, why can’t we have a public option?

Obama: “Today the Supreme Court also upheld the principle People who can afford health insurance should take the responsibility to buy health insurance”

Has he seen what individual policies cost in NJ where the “array” starts at about $1000/month for a basic, high deductible policy??  Who the hell can afford that?!

Update IV: Here’s a snippet of Democratic party reactions from a NYTimes summary of the impact of the ruling:

“This decision is a victory for the American people,” said Representative Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic leader in the House. “With this ruling, Americans will benefit from critical patient protections, lower costs for the middle class [Really?  That's not what my source in the health insurance business is saying.  She says more consolidation among big companies, less competition], more coverage for families and greater accountability for the insurance industry.”

Jim Kessler, the senior vice president of Third Way, a liberal research group in Washington, said the president’s campaign team and his Democratic allies now had a challenge ahead of them to explain the ruling.

“I think it’s a big win for Obama if they handle it right,” Mr. Kessler said. “What they need to be saying is to declare that the fight is now over. It’s been decided by Congress. It’s been decided by the courts. This is now over. It’s in the past.”

You gotta give the Democrats credit for utter cluelessness.  No one does it better.  Yes, let’s craft an expensive, inadequate bill that burdens average Americans with private sector insurance premiums at a premium or slap them with a tax when they don’t pay it, and “tell them tough titties if they don’t like it because it’s over, looooosers.  We’re done talking about conservative non-plans or medicare for all or public options.  Did you hear us, nation?  It’s OVER!  Get in line, let’s Unify.  “People all over the world, join hands, get on a LOVE train, LOVE train…”

(Karl Rove sits in a corner and smiles like a Cheshire Cat.)

In a way, this concretizes (is that a word?) all of the worst aspects of insurance into law. There will be no competition.  Sure, the insurance companies will gripe about not being able to deny coverage mercilessly but they’ll get over it.

{{damn}}  I was really hoping for Tricare.

Update III: IANAL but this tweet by Dave Dayan concerns me greatly:

SCOTUSBlog: “rejection of Commerce Clause and Nec. and Proper Clause… a major blow to Congress’s authority to pass social welfare laws”

Is there a poison pill slipped into this ruling?

Update II:  Ok, I think I see how this is going to play out on Fox:

Supreme Court Rules that Obamacare Tax is Legal.

Well, that didn’t take long:

Obama lied to the American people. Again. He said it wasn’t a tax. Obama lies; freedom dies.

Update: The ruling came down a couple of minutes ago.  The NYTimes editors are reading it now.  You can follow it at the Elections 2012 page.  Also, follow coverage live at SCOTUSblog.

Andy Carvin tweets:

SCOTUSblog: “The individual mandate survives as a tax.” Does that mean the commerce clause version is dead, but a tax version conceivable?

Yes, this makes sense to me.  In a way, we are all forced to pay into the medicare system even if we can’t use it until we get older.  We pay for it with payroll taxes.  So, if the universal mandate is to stand, it has to be through a similar tax.  Otherwise, the ACA would force people to purchase insurance at whatever price the market would bear, which is what is happening now.  So, would this push us *closer* to medicare for all?? What are the chances that this SCOTUS would actually do something positive for the public?

Or, are they anticipating a firestorm from the private sector and libertarians, as Digby has suggested?  This might actually put Obama in more of a pickle this year if the answer is to raise taxes and spurn the free market.  No one would be happy except the uninsured.

And who cares about them, right?

{{sneaky bastards}}

Other questions:

1.) If you don’t have a job, how can you pay the tax?

2.) Would there be a mechanism to pay the tax at time of service?

3.) Would this make it more or less likely that employer provided health insurance benefits would continue?

Amy Howe of SCOTUSblog sums it up this way:

In Plain English: The Affordable Care Act, including its individual mandate that virtually all Americans buy health insurance, is constitutional. There were not five votes to uphold it on the ground that Congress could use its power to regulate commerce between the states to require everyone to buy health insurance. However, five Justices agreed that the penalty that someone must pay if he refuses to buy insurance is a kind of tax that Congress can impose using its taxing power. That is all that matters. Because the mandate survives, the Court did not need to decide what other parts of the statute were constitutional, except for a provision that required states to comply with new eligibility requirements for Medicaid or risk losing their funding. On that question, the Court held that the provision is constitutional as long as states would only lose new funds if they didn’t comply with the new requirements, rather than all of their funding.

Soooo, is this a win for Romney?  Or Obama?  Does this mean that we still have to pay through the nose?  Because that would be a loss for all of us, unless we get to pay a tax at the point of service, which wouldn’t be so bad if you set aside funds to cover it, I guess.  But what kind of money are we talking about here?

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The ruling should be out sometime this morning and, presumably, all hell will break loose.  If it stays intact, Romney will have to figure out a way of condemning pretty much the same healthcare bill he signed into law in Massachusetts.  If it is rejected, in whole or in part, Obama is going to have to figure out how to run on a new “accomplishment”.

Either way, we’re stuck with outrageous health insurance bills.

So, to the poll:

What’s that you say, Bernie?  Medicare for all?  It’s short, it’s got a good beat, you can dance to it:

And the military has socialized medicine.  {{snort!}}  Yep, pretty much.  I was raised on socialized medicine.

Jeffrey Toobin weighs in.  He thinks the individual mandate is in jeopardy based on oral arguments.

Adolescent Humor: Bad Lipreading and Mitt

This one is courtesy of Brooke:

{{snicker}}

The Democrats’ Monty Hall Problem

Decisions, decisions.  Democrats have a tough choice this year and most of us are scared to death to make a wrong move. We have to choose between a booby prize of Romney or a booby prize of Obama.  Is there a third choice?  Yes. Let me show you why it is better not to go with a sure thing:

Ok, so how does this apply to 2012?  Well, you already have a door.  You don’t know whether it is the same old Obama for four more years or the big prize that the Democratic party has yet to offer you.  Let’s imagine that the prize is a.) the Democrats start to vigorously act like Democrats on the economic front and reject austerity or b.) Obama gets serious about dialing back all of the unitary executive crap or c.) Obama tells the religious misogynist homophobes to kiss his ass and makes genuine and effective efforts to curtail their recent advances or d.) the party sees the writing on the walls and tells Obama to step down for a better candidate. (This could happen.  As we have seen before, primary results are fungible. It’s what happens at the convention that counts.) Whatever it is that you think would be a gigantic, event changing prize that would make you feel proud to be a Democrat is hidden behind one of those doors.

The host opens door #3 and tells you that if you had chosen that door, you would have gotten a goat.  The goat’s name is Mitt.

Then the host tells you that the prize, whatever it is to you, is behind one of the other doors.  There’s a pretty good chance (66%) that at the beginning of this game you had the door with the goat named Barack behind it but you know that you absolutely do not want to be stuck with a goat.  The host offers you a choice.  Do you want to swap the door you have, whatever it is, for what is behind door #2?  All you have to do is reject the door you have.

The crowd at this point becomes unhelpful.  “Stay!, you moron.  Don’t take any chances.  What’s the matter with you?  Do you want to lose this game?!?”

“Ummm…”, you say, hesitating.  So much pressure.

Then, the host says, “I’ll give you $500 if you stay with the door you have.”  Ahhh, now he’s haggling.

“I don’t know, Monty.  I think I might want to swap…”

“I’ll give you $1000 if you stay with the door you have.”

This is what the LGBT bloc did last week.  It got the host to fork over a sweetener.  But note that they didn’t get a prize because Obama said he is content to let the states make their own discrimination laws regardless of his personal feelings.  They just got a cheap tchotchke compared to whatever the prize they really want is.  They may still be stuck with the goat because they didn’t tell the host that they were firm about swapping.

The crowd is getting really loud and obnoxious and the noise is making it hard for you to think.

What do you do?

The answer is, you increase your chances of winning substantially if you reject the sure thing, and swap it for the unknown door, whatever it turns out to be.

This was a test that we failed in 2008.  We did not make the host bargain and we didn’t say, “Screw it, I’m a good Democratic base.  I deserve something better than what I’m being offered.”

In fact, we acted like a conservative Republican would act.  We took a sure thing after May 2008 and did not challenge the host.  We didn’t make him haggle with us and so we got nothing.  And this year, we know from four years of bitter experience that getting a goat sucks.

So, if you don’t like your choices this year, and I know that there is a lot of discontent about Obama, don’t act like a conservative who is afraid to choose and likes things black and white.  Act like a brave, open minded liberal and choose uncertainty.  Hold out for what you deserve and make them haggle with you.  You can win this.

The election isn’t over.  It’s just beginning and if you accept what you think is inevitable and do nothing, you will lose.

So, what are you going to do? Stay or swap?

Still not convinced?  You’re not alone.  Even some Nobel prize winners and mathematicians failed to see the logic of it at first.  So here’s how it works out if you do the experiment:

Monday: logical conclusions

Digby watched the Sunday shows so I wouldn’t have to and posted Santorum’s rant about Kennedy’s 1960 statement that he wasn’t going to be run by the Pope just because he wanted to be the first Catholic president.

So funny, Santorum’s reaction reminded me of a similar rant from a guy at work we used to have lunch with who proclaimed that he hated New York City so much that if it fell into the ocean, he would not “shed a tear”.  For Rick Santorum, just the thought of Kennedy saying he would put his religious preferences secondary to his Constitutional duties made him “want to throw up”.  Here’s more:

“That makes me throw up and it should make every American who is seen from the president, someone who is now trying to tell people of faith that you will do what the government says, we are going to impose our values on you, not that you can’t come to the public square and argue against it, but now we’re going to turn around and say we’re going to impose our values from the government on people of faith, which of course is the next logical step when people of faith, at least according to John Kennedy, have no role in the public square,” he said. Santorum also said he does not believe in an America where the separation of church and state is “absolute.”

“I don’t believe in an America where the separation of church and state is absolute. The idea that the church can have no influence or no involvement in the operation of the state is absolutely antithetical to the objectives and vision of our country,” said Santorum. “This is the First Amendment. The First Amendment says the free exercise of religion. That means bringing everybody, people of faith and no faith, into the public square. Kennedy for the first time articulated the vision saying, no, ‘faith is not allowed in the public square. I will keep it separate.’ Go on and read the speech ‘I will have nothing to do with faith. I won’t consult with people of faith.’ It was an absolutist doctrine that was foreign at the time of 1960,” he said

I don’t have any doubt that there are people who want to impose their values on the rest of us using government resources.  But from the evidence I’ve gathered in the last couple of years, it looks like the Catholics and other religious organizations are doing most of the impositions.   Those of us who want to keep state and church separate have no problem with Catholic values or religious values as long as we’re not forced to live by them.

But of course, this issue is not going to go away if the right has anything to say about it.  It’s amusing that there are so many Democrats in places like Michigan who think that prolonging the Republican primary is going to make it easier for Obama to win by pointing out how radical the Republicans really are. It’s pretty childish when you think about it.  It’s one thing to make a protest vote based on ethics and in support of voters’ rights.  It’s quite another to ignore all of the pain and suffering around you and work on behalf of the guy who has spared only the barest minimum of his enormous powers to alleviate any of it.  Note that making it harder for Obama to win Democrats’ votes would be a better use of their time but there’s no talking to people who are convinced they have the true religion.  What’s going to happen is that eventually, the Republican side of the aisle will get their shit together, a nominee will be selected, it won’t be Santorum but maybe he’ll get the second spot to keep the Mormon on the straight and narrow.  And then all of the money they’ve been saving up for the general election will be rolled out.

No, the economy is not getting better and with the guarantee of higher gas prices, it’s bound to get worse.  The middle class is still unemployed.  Yes, it looks like things are getting better in Michigan but Michigan had nowhere to go but up.  Here in New Jersey, the state everyone seems to be consciously avoiding, it still feels like the Great Depression where everyone I know has either been laid off, is in danger of a layoff or has been rehired and laid off several times in some kind of vicious cycle.  Oh and stay tuned for the Republican Congress to put Obama and the Democrats in more compromising situations.  Because that’s just the kind of people they are.

But let’s get back to Santorum’s pissy little rant about Constitution induced nausea.  The theme for this year’s election season is “religious liberty”, as if you’re not already aware.  The Republicans are going to beat this drum relentlessly.  And they’ve got all of the conservative churches onboard this year.  Obama is going to have to fight for the evangelical vote this year.  It’s all about “morals”.  The problem with the world is that no one has any morals anymore and God is angry and if we would only behave, the country could get back on its feet.  But Santorum let something slip about the “public square”.  If you’ve been following the Reason Rally concept, one of the problems that face secularists is that they’ve been almost completely shut out of the public square.  No one consults with the non-believers or strict secularists about what they think is right and moral anymore.  Hard to believe that it was precisely these people, the people of the Enlightenment, who wrote the first documents separating the colonies from the motherland.  The evidence is all over the Declaration of Independence but the religious choose to ignore this and the Enlightemnent’s descendants.   I think that’s about to change but we’ll see. The difference between then and now is that the new enlightenment thinkers benefit from advances in our understanding of the natural world that the 18th century thinkers could only dream about.

But the atheist/agnostic community knows more about history of religion than most of the relgious’ rank and file.  For example, they know that the Old Testament pentateuch was not written by Moses.  It’s a compilation of 4 different writers and an editor.  Those writers wrote over a span of about 500 years and adjusted the texts to fit their particular geographical locations and political situations.  Some of the book of Genesis was lifted straight out of polytheistic Mesopotamian creation stories and flood myths.  One of the writers, E, used the word Elohim excusively when referring to God, because he was from the Canaan area of the Levant, while J, another writer, used the word Yahweh almost exclusively because she was from the Judean area.  In the distant past Elohim and Yahweh were not the same god.  It took a different author to merge the two.  And it’s very easy to tease apart which author wrote which part.  You can read more about the Documentary Hypothesis here along with the parts of the bible written by each author.

Some of you might have heard of this hypothesis before, some might say it’s never been proven.  But go read those chapters yourself and you will find the idea pretty compelling.  Don’t just take my word for it.  For those of you who like to see vidoes on the subject, the youtuber Evid3nc3, will take you through a history of the bible in two parts. He does it in a very thorough way from the perspective of a Christian trying to figure it all out and you will be convinced by the end of his presentation that the bible is not what you think it is.  Here is what he found out about the bible:

I’m recommending Evid3nc3′s videos because they are very well produced, thoroughly researched and presented in an accessible style that is suitable for that religious person you know who insists that everyone in the country should get a religion and follow it religiously or have one selected for you to be shoved down your gullet by the government.  The next time they bring up the Judeo-Christian tradition, you can say, “You mean, the Judeo-Christian tradition as laid out in the bible?  Holy Hemiola, have you ever read that thing?  I mean, read it by author?  Fascinating.  Which author is your favorite?  I’m partial to J.  She’s got such an earthy feel to her prose and P incorporates all of that early Mesopotamian mythology from the Enûma Eliš.  And who knew that there were so many different versions of the 10 Commandments, hey, where’re you going?”

In other words, before Rick Santorum or Rick Warren or any other Rick gets up in a public square and tells the rest of us relgious or non-religious that they should engage the state to impose their superior Judeo-Christian religious beliefs on other people, they should have a thorough knowledge of just what it is they want to impose. Or at the very least, they should be honest and admit that seminarians and theologians have known about the polytheistic roots and inconsistencies of the bible for more than a century and just haven’t shared this with the rest of the class.  For those of you who ignore evidence, because you’re too afraid that your faith will be shaken by it, and rely on faith alone, please be aware that there are a lot of us out here who don’t think faith alone is a very good basis for a system of government and we will not go down quietly.

And as for that argument that without the bible or religion, you can’t be moral, check out this video on morality from evid3nc3:

Oh, SNAP!

Will someone please hand Rick an air sick bag?

Here’s the problem with Rick Santorum’s proposal that believers should get the state on their side to decide what the law should be to guide our daily lives: not all of us believe that there is a God or that his word is in the scriptures or that some 2000 year old all male organization has all of the answers for those of us who are not celibate men.  In fact, I guarantee that Catholics and Evangelical Protestants have differences of their own.  Pitting our beliefs or non-beliefs against each other is a recipe for conflict, argumentation, uncompromising positioning and it’s a huge distraction from the economy, the energy crisis and economic inequality.  Wars have been fought over religion around the world.  They were a tremendous waste of resources and human lives.  They were so destructive that believers of one sect were slaughtered by believers of another and whole relgious communities were forced to relocate.  And the people who put together the constitution argued about whether or not they wanted to go down that road in the Federalist Papers and decided it was a phenomenally bad idea to start imposing some state sanctioned religious dogma into their new rule of law.

And it’s still a distraction.  There’s nothing that the Wall Street psychopaths would like more than for the rest of us to be arguing about angels on pins and whether or not someone else’s wife or girlfriend can get her pill prescription pill.  The believers who fall for candidates like Rick Santorum are giving in to squabbles about faith that no one can solve at the expense of their own economic livelihoods.

Of course, that’s ok if what you really want is to make the country so unliveable that the Rapture comes and you’re delivered from all of the misery.  But if that’s the case, you’d better make damn sure that it was God who wrote that section of the bible you’re relying on and not some ancient editor who was trying to make all of the pieces go together.  Because if it wasn’t God, then you’re stuck here with the rest of us on a miserable earth of your own creation.

Thursday: Assholes R Us

Did you see this list of the top majors for the 1%?

We got an interesting question from an academic adviser at a Texas university: could we tell what the top 1 percent of earners majored in?

The writer, sly dog, was probably trying to make a point, because he wrote from a biology department, and it turns out that biology majors make up nearly 7 percent of college graduates who live in households in the top 1 percent.

According to the Census Bureau’s 2010 American Community Survey, the majors that give you the best chance of reaching the 1 percent are pre-med, economics, biochemistry, zoology and, yes, biology, in that order.

Undergraduate Degree Total % Who Are 1 Percenters Share of All 1 Percenters
Health and Medical Preparatory Programs 142,345 11.8% 0.9%
Economics 1,237,863 8.2% 5.4%
Biochemical Sciences 193,769 7.2% 0.7%
Zoology 159,935 6.9% 0.6%
Biology 1,864,666 6.7% 6.6%
International Relations 146,781 6.7% 0.5%
Political Science and Government 1,427,224 6.2% 4.7%
Physiology 98,181 6.0% 0.3%
Art History and Criticism 137,357 5.9% 0.4%
Chemistry 780,783 5.7% 2.4%
Molecular Biology 64,951 5.6% 0.2%
Area, Ethnic and Civilization Studies 184,906 5.2% 0.5%
Finance 1,071,812 4.8% 2.7%
History 1,351,368 4.7% 3.3%
Business Economics 108,146 4.6% 0.3%
Miscellaneous Psychology 61,257 4.3% 0.1%
Philosophy and Religious Studies 448,095 4.3% 1.0%
Microbiology 147,954 4.2% 0.3%
Chemical Engineering 347,959 4.1% 0.8%
Physics 346,455 4.1% 0.7%
Pharmacy, Pharmaceutical Sciences and Administration 334,016 3.9% 0.7%
Accounting 2,296,601 3.9% 4.7%
Mathematics 840,137 3.9% 1.7%
English Language and Literature 1,938,988 3.8% 3.8%
Miscellaneous Biology 52,895 3.7% 0.1%
Source: 2010 American Communty Survey, via ipums.org
{{hangs head in shame}}

See??  This is yet another reason to invest in research.  If you don’t keep us in the lab and pay us well, we’ll go to work on Wall Street.  Nice economy you’ve got there.  Be a shame if something *happened* to it.

I suspect that the large number of geeks on Wall Street represents the number of quants hired to construct and run the dynamic models.  Take D. E. Shaw, billionaire biologist, for example. While he’s running a hedge fund, he’s got a sideline creating molecular dynamics simulations programs on proteins.  I can definitely see the crossover but what the top dogs probably fail to realize is that to the geeks, the programs are just research, as in “what would happen if we tweaked this parameter?” and there goes the Euro. God, help us.

Ironically, major pharmaceutical companies are run by former ketchup company executives and salesmen.  Go figure.  What we really need is for everyone to stick to their own kind.  No more of this mixing of the majors.  It’s unnatural.

However, this study just confirms my suspicions that it is much easier for a hard sciences major to learn business and finance than a business major to learn the hard sciences. And we in the research industries are going to pay for that lack of intellectual reciprocity.

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Did you catch the article in Vanity Fair titled National Public Rodeo about the Juan Williams at NPR fiasco?  There’s a sad little tale of karmic justice in it, considering the way the candidates and Fox treated him in South Carolina.  His story sounds vaguely familiar.  Stop me if you’ve heard this before.

Flashy African-American dude with gigs at prestigious institutions gets hired by a bunch of solidly middle class, no-nonsense, Minnesota-type liberals.  They’re thrilled to be adding to the diversity of their lineup; he thinks he’s doing them a favor.  Turns out he’s an “idea rat”, not a workhorse, he’s considerably more conservative than they realize, and he has a history of lack of respectful treatment of women.  They would have known this if they had bothered to check out his background a bit more thoroughly but they’re blinded by their instinct to do good or fear of looking unfairly and tastelessly bigoted.  The staff and management try to accommodate his quirks and his moonlighting for their arch enemy.  But after half a decade, it’s just not working out.  They try talking to him but whenever they try to rein him back in, he starts accusing them of racism.  Everything is racism to him.  Racism, racism, racism.  So, they sit and wait until he royally fucks up in some spectacular way and then they fire him.  And the ones who fire him who end up losing their jobs in a firestorm of conservative vs liberal rhetoric- and accusations of racism.

It’s either a misunderstanding of worldviews or it’s a clever, common strategy to accuse your detractors of the most vile, prejudicial instincts in order to get what you want.  Too bad it bit him in the ass in South Carolina.  I almost feel sorry for the guy.  But he took the bait from Fox News and they own him now.

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I’ve been following Jeff Jarvis’s Tweets from Davos, Switzerland.  He snarked this tweet late yesterday:

jeffjarvis Jeff Jarvis

Now in the more fun part of #WEF: brainstorming sessions. Surprising that execs will play.

Jeff seems astonished that there is still no sense of responsibility among the uber rich.  They either don’t realize or callously don’t care about all of the misery they’re causing.  Or, maybe it’s all part of the plan.  What strikes me as odd about the very rich is that it seems like they live in a California-esque paradise of self-esteem programs.  No one has ever told them what stupid, selfish excuses for human beings they are.  They’ve never had any “character building” experiences.  You know the kind?  Whenever you needed something really badly, like a college education, and your parents didn’t have the cash to at least keep you from starving, they always said it would build your character?  I should have a rock solid foundation of character by now.  Not so the uber rich.  Their voices are “full of money” and they have no sense of guilt for running over people who get in their way.

jeffjarvis Jeff Jarvis

BofA’s Moynihan responds that bankers will bear their scars for many years to come. So will we all. #wef

Somewhere, I hear the world’s tiniest violin…

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The right’s boogieman, George Soros, says that if Mitt Romney is the nominee, there won’t be much of a difference between a Obama administration and a Romney administration.  The best shot Democrats have to retain the White House is for Santorum or Gingrich to get the nomination.  I happen to disagree with this.  Republicans, well, movement conservatives, will pull out all of the stops if Gingrich gets the nomination.  They want to win and all of the misery of the past three years will be dumped on Obama, some of it for good reason.  He squandered his opportunity to drag the country leftwards to the middle when he first took office and had a filibuster proof majority.

And why did he fail to do that?  It’s because he doesn’t believe in it.  He told you on Tuesday night that he was a moderate Republican.  He’s been saying that for four years now.  His heros are Ronald Reagan, Teddy Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln.  Doesn’t anyone ever notice that he doesn’t cite any Democrats as his role models?  Well, for one thing, no one believed that crap about him being the second coming of FDR so he had to drop it.  I think that forcing him to actually say he is a Democrat supporting strong Democratic values is physically and psychologically painful for him but I encourage the doubters to try.  Try to make him say something nice about LBJ or Bill Clinton.  Watch him flinch.

Anyway, Soros says he’s worried about the Supreme Court.  I’m not too worried.  I suspect that Ruth Bader-Ginsburg will announce her retirement before the election and will be replaced.  That leaves the composition of the court stable.  It would be different if Alito or Thomas or Kennedy stepped down but for some reason the Supremes have a history of living to a ripe old age whether we like it or not.

Here’s the rest of Soros’ interview from Davos, who, by the way, is also suffering from the failure to imaginate any other contest than the one between the Republicans and the Republican disguised as a Democrat. There are simply no other alternatives, like, replacing the Republican running as a Democrat with a real Democrat. I’m beginning to think that Soros is the one playing 11 dimensional chess here.:

Monday: Colbert’s brilliant ad

I have a post knocking around in my head about the after effects of the 2008 election season on women but it’s not quite there yet.  In the meantime, add me to the growing list of admirers of Stephan Colbert’s, sorry, JON STEWART’S SuperPAC ad.  For those of you who missed it last week, Colbert gave up his PAC to his business partner, Stewart, when he decided to form an exploratory committee to run for the President of South Carolina.  As the owner of a SuperPAC, legally he can’t coordinate it with his campaign committee or even know what it’s up to but he can transfer ownership of the PAC to his business partner and if they chat now and again about stuff and it looks like the two entities share the same vision, that’s merely coincidental.

Anyway, here’s the ad:

So, let’s talk briefly about the pros of this ad.  What I like the most about this ad was that it expresses in 30 seconds what I have been trying to say less successfully for a couple of years now.  There is a place for corporations in the American business landscape and we don’t need to always be hostile to them.  Those corporations are not people but they are made up of people.  Those people make the widgets or build the cars or design the airbuses or discover the drugs.  To do and build on this scale requires teams of people, working together, and sometimes, this just works more efficiently when they work in a corporate environment.  It’s like a department store where everyone needs what’s in the everyone else’s department.  For example, you can’t do drug discovery very easily outside of a corporation.  Those of us who are out of corporate settings realize that the level of coordination and high start up costs, coupled with the reluctance of banks to lend and vulture capitalists to invest, make new drug discovery companies very risky propositions.

Colbert doesn’t take any shots at those people who work for corporations.  The left could take a lesson from that.  He is not offending anyone who due to the circumstances of where they live or what their talents are, end up working for corporations.  Those people are not evil and they shouldn’t feel any shame for not being able to build a car or develop a drug all by themselves or with a couple of friends in a garage.  The “you ought to be ashamed for working for {{insert nasty corporation here}}” attitude is thick in the left blogosphere.  It is very offensive.  Yes, I think that most of the lefties who have this attitude, especially those who want desperately to fit in, have no idea how incredibly offensive they can be.  And insulting.  Did I mention that?  Failure to discriminate the portions of a corporation that are responsible for all the pain and suffering from the people who are suffering, including some of the corporation’s workers, leads to a lot of resentment towards the left from people who should be its allies.  Over and over again, the left’s insistence on moral purity alienates it from the very people they say they want to help.  It’s not helping, guys.  So, stop doing it.  It’s insulting to condemn people who work for corporations -who are in the rank and file.

It’s quite another thing to be critical of the people who run corporations and seem to be in it only to enrich themselves or gain some kind of social status.  THOSE people really do have a problem.  But the average assembler, engineer, CADD designer or labrat?  No, these people deserve your respect.  Stephan Colbert gives it to them and puts the blame where it belongs- at the top of the corporate ladder.

Now, Colbert is taking well deserved pot shots at Romney.  But I think we can see that down the road, he’s going to have a problem.  Because Barack Obama is indistinguishable from the corporate overlords who yank his junk.  In fact, this is the primary reason why I couldn’t support him.  He is their creature.  He is a schmoozer who rose to the presidency because he embraced the corporate executive culture.  He adopted their values and their tactics.  Do you think Obama is the first dude who rose to the top of an organization who had absolutely no idea what the business does for a living or how it operates?  Heck no, the country’s corporations are stuffed to the gills with guys like that.  Their prestigious Wharton B. School MBAs, Harvard law degrees, personal connections and ability to kiss ass, while cold bloodedly, unscrupulously and ruthlessly stabbing their competition, are their tickets to success.  The fact that they run companies or governments where thousands or millions of people are dependent on good decision making is tangential to their personal goals and aspirations.  Their success story doesn’t involve making a brilliant new product or turning around a struggling enterprise in a changing economy.  It involves their own personal struggle and self actualization.  They write books about the ascent of man told from their own intimate experience.  They are testaments to rugged individualism in the boardroom and fortitude on the back nine.  This is Obama’s reality.  It has nothing to do with YOU.  Why are you making unreasonable demands on him?  Hasn’t he shown you the way to accomplishing your own dream?  That’s what he was born to do: to make his own personal experience something that you can aspire to.  That was the secret to his electoral success in 2008.  He convinced a whole generation of Whole Foods shoppers that they were special people who could be the ambitious, intrepid masters of their own personal universes.  Yes, You Can!  Yes, You Can!  {{rolling eyes}}.

There are other reasons to not want him for four more years as president, like, he’s not a good politician and he’s lousy at making policy.  If you wanted someone who would have come to the White House prepared to make good policy and stick with core Democratic values, Hillary Clinton was your guy.  According to Ron Suskind’s book, Confidence Men, Obama had no idea how to actually do policy.  He has some kind of vision and then says to his minions, “Go do it!”.  He gives them very little guidance beyond that.  And that’s because he either doesn’t believe what his corporate overlords tell him not to believe or because he just doesn’t have the experience or interest to buckle down and concentrate on the task at hand.

Unfortunately, this is the person the Democrats keep saying (at this time) that they want in the White House for four more years.  I am of the opinion that until the Democratic party is willing to sit down and negotiate with its voters, those voters would be well advised to go on strike.  After all, we have zero influence over the Republicans.  There’s nothing we can do or say that will ever have any effect on them.  But we might be able to persuade Democrats that they will be in the political wilderness for a generation if they don’t get their shit together.  And then, we should find a third party candidate to the left of the Democrats, it doesn’t matter who it is, and vote for that person.  If Romney wins in November, I guarantee that you will not know the difference when it comes to who is occupying the White House, ask any of the thousands and thousands of laid off scientists who Obama ignored in the past 3 years while their corporate overlords slashed their way through the payrolls and pension funds to “enhance shareholder value” and their own bottom lines.  Obama was an accomplice to the serial killing of the American scientific infrastructure.  He was golf buddy to those homocidal maniacs.  So, why reward the Democrats by voting for him?  Congress is a different thing.  I’d primary every incumbent congresscritter of either party with few exceptions.

Now, can Citizens for a Better Tomorrow Tomorrow craft an ad that takes on the Democrats?  That remains to be seen.  If the PAC is to be successful, it has to motivate Democrats to take action, it can’t simply be content to trash Republicans.  Because when November rolls around, the Republicans will once again rile up its Christian conservative base to go to the polls.  To go to the polls, you need motivation and Republicans seem to be highlighting “religious freedom” this year, as in, anything the Democrats propose will be an infringement on the rights of fundamentalist Christians with Fox induced Acquired Stupidity Syndrome to push their Old Testament tribalism on the rest of us who don’t give a damn.  But right now, what is motivating Democrats to go to the polls?  Having new, more vigorous blood in the party would motivate many of us Democrats in Exile.

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