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Negotiations, Marketing and Sandy

Republicans steal Obama’s lunch money again

This morning’s post of stuff is in no particular order.  The first and third may be related.

Krugman writes in his blog, Conscience of a Liberal, today that, as expected, Obama is turning out to be a lousy negotiator on the so-called Fiscal Cliff conundrum:

Here we go again — or so I find myself fearing.

Obama’s fiscal deal offer was already distressing — cuts to Social Security, and a big concession, it turns out, on taxation of dividends, retaining most of the Bush cut (with the benefits flowing overwhelmingly to the top 1 percent). It wasn’t clear that the deal would have gotten nearly enough in return.

But sure enough, it looks as if Republicans have taken the offer as a sign of weakness, as a starting point from which they can bargain Obama down. Oh, and they’re not giving up at all on the idea of using the debt ceiling for further blackmail.

In other words, all of a sudden it’s feeling a lot like 2011 again, with the president negotiating with himself while the other side enjoys the process.

The Republicans have been dying for Obama to offer a social insurance program cut.  For weeks now, they’ve been saying that Obama wouldn’t name any spending cuts in a game of gotcha chicken.  The minute Obama blinked it was a.) not going to be enough to satisfy them and b.) going to come back to bite the Democrats in the ass because they were the ones who finally conceded on spending cuts that no one likes without getting much of anything in return.  So, what does Obama do?  He blinks.  Not only does he blink, he practically gives away every advantage he had and the Bush tax cuts remain pretty much intact for the 1% while the Chained CPI takes a big chunk of money away from vulnerable seniors as well as raising their taxes.

By the way, there is a very good reason why the Chained CPI is a horrible idea.  It’s predicated on the idea that seniors will choose to scale down on their consumer choices.  They’ll buy more generic goods at the grocery store or go to Walmart more often than Macy’s.  (Great, I can just imagine what my limited fashion choices are going to look like in 20 years.  More sparkly things that fit my tall frame even less well because all of the patterns are cut for some 5’2″ model from the Phillipines.)  And I might as well just forget about replacing any Apple gadgets when I hit retirement age.

How does this benefit Main Street?  If seniors now have to forgo the few little luxuries they have or pick the progressively less expensive items, isn’t that going to have an effect on what is sold and consumed?  And won’t that eventually impact the economy and create a progressively larger drag on it?  Just askin’ because to Republicans, the fate of the economy doesn’t seem to be very important as long as they get their exemptions on their dividends and they don’t have to look at a poor person in Walmart clothing.  What I see evolving is a modern version of the Sumptuary Laws where the “most vulnerable seniors” will still be able to buy low quality consumer goods because that’s where they are in the social ladder and should not seek to rise above their station.

More on this: Thereisnospoon’s post from this morning laments along with Markos Moulitsos at DailyKos that Obama is a bad negotiator and he’s is going to betray the left that supported him.

Let me tell you a little joke:

There was a dull witted guy who came home from work early one afternoon to find his wife in bed with another man.  The guy is distraught so he goes to the kitchen and returns with a sharp knife.  Then he stands over the bed and holds the knife to his throat.  The wife looks up and starts to laugh.

“Why are you laughing?”, he says, “You’re next.”


I kept thinking about this joke all during the election season and I would have told it sooner but some people would have just called me a racist.

On to Sandy.  I got an email from Senator Menendez about the negotiations for Hurricane Sandy funds and it has occurred to me that if Menendez and Lautenberg concede on the so-called “Fiscal Cliff” negotiations, it could be that they’re being pressured to give in or the funds will be much, much smaller than we need or non-existent.  Would the Republicans screw business owners in New Jersey who have been footing the bill for their states for decades by getting the least amount of federal funds back for every dollar they send to Washington?  Sure they would.  They’re not concerned with the fate of New Jersey, the shore communities that make their livings in the summer or the fact that the Northeast Corridor trains from DC to New York cut through this state or that New Jersey towns are really suburbs of either New York City or Philadelphia.  No, all that matters is that the Republican donors get to sit on as much wealth as they can possibly accumulate under them.  I’d like to hear what is going on with the Sandy reconstruction funds and be reassured that they aren’t being held hostage to the Republican terrorist threat but I am not hopeful.

The last item has to do with marketing.  There’s a grocery store in my town that I have been going to faithfully since I moved here in 1992.  But lately, the things I like are disappearing from the shelves.  It started with some bagged salad items but the trend is picking up steam lately.  Suddenly, I can’t find 2% yogurt anymore.  More than once I’ve bought groceries home, stuck my spoon in what I thought was going to be a thick and creamy Greek yogurt and unwittingly spooned a glob of honey flavored paste in my mouth.  Almost every flavor of yogurt on the shelf is 0% fat yogurt.  Oh sure, there are something like *two* flavors out of zillions that are 2%.  They’re usually in flavors I don’t like, like pineapple.  Don’t get me wrong, I like pineapple but I don’t want it in my yogurt.  I want lemon in my 2% Greek yogurt.  Can’t find it anymore on my grocery store shelves.

A similar thing has happened to the UHT milk.  The store has moved the location of the UHT milk to the juice aisle and reduced the size of the section devoted to it.  No explanation.  It just happens to be the only milk I buy because otherwise, fresh milk spoils in my house before we get around to drinking it.  You can store UHT milk forever.  But no, the UHT milk is on its way out.

The hummus crisis is emblematic of this trend.  In my grocery store, we have more flavors of hummus than I can count:

I can’t believe that Hillsborough can really distinguish between so many brands and flavors of hummus.  I’d like to see how much hummus gets dumped by the store.  But there is only one kind of babaganoush, which my house prefers.  We also like Tsazhiki but it’s ridiculously expensive.  I’d be inclined to make it myself but I don’t want to make it with 0% fat Greek yogurt, which is just about all there is.

I blame marketing and those stupid loyalty cards.  Apparently, there weren’t enough of us buying Chobani 2% lemon yogurt and now, the marketing people at Chobani and Shop Rite headquarters are going to send nothing but 0% yogurt from now until doomsday.  The thing that drives me nuts is not that they should be sending less of the flavors that were selling slightly less well but it turns out that they aren’t sending any of those flavors at all.  It’s apparently all or nothing in marketingland.

It somehow never occurs to them that flooding the shelves with only one type of yogurt or middle eastern spread or milk or whatever is reducing their sales.  I won’t buy 0% yogurt because it tastes bad, I don’t care how many suburban soccer moms have decided that 2% fat in yogurt is bad for you, I’m not buying the 0%.  Ever.  I do not like mouthfuls of pasty yogurt so I will go without it.  So, right there, Shop Rite has lost my yogurt purchases when I used to buy yogurt there routinely.  But it’s even stupid from a Greek yogurt perspective.  When Greek yogurt first hit the stores several years back it was special because of the unique flavors like lemon, honey and pomegranate.  If Greek yogurt manufacturers drop that uniqueness and instead go for more mainstream flavors like strawberry and the absolutely worst flavor in the world, strawberry-banana, what will make Greek yogurt stand out among the Dannons, Yoplaits and store brands that are much less expensive?  Instead of being something special that Americans would experience and come to love gradually, the Greek yogurt manufacturers have killed themselves by listening to their marketing experts and become just like every other yogurt on the shelves.  Except because their yogurt is strained, the end product of a 0% yogurt has none of the creaminess of a typical American or European style yogurt.  So now not only is the flavor not “Greek”, it’s got the consistency and mouthfeel of Elmer’s School Paste.  I will now go out of my way to Wegmans to find something that is now considered “niche” or I’ll make it myself.  Same with babaganoush.  From now on, I’ll go somewhere else for that or I’ll buy an eggplant for half the price at the little farmer’s market produce store and make it myself.

The steady encroachment of marketing on my grocery purchases feels like a combination of Soviet five year plans crossed with bullying.  “You buy the yogurt we have because we tell you what you want and like even if you don’t want or like it and now we have no way of knowing what you want or like because we don’t give you any way to make a choice that we can collect data on.  Suck it up, suburbanite.  Why do you have to be different from your neighbors??”  I guess I don’t like the idea that I am subsidizing the rest of Hillsborough’s preferences (we don’t know how much they prefer these items because the loyalty cards can’t measure lack of choice) with higher costs for the items I actually like or can’t even find anymore.

Do we know that all the residents of Hillsborough like the same thing or am I the only one who ever complains?

Don’t answer that question.

In any case, the trend continues in Shop Rite which means I am finding myself buying more and more stuff at other stores.  It’s a shame.  I really used to like that grocery store.  But whatareyagoingtodo?  I want choice.  I gotta be me.

48 Responses

  1. Damn, girl, you have a Wegman’s nearby? You’re lucky.
    If the Repukes and Obama have their way, I’ll be food shopping at Pet Smart.

    • Yeah, I have a Wegmans. But since the layoff, I don’t go there often. It’s too depressing to park my beat little PT Cruiser among the Lexus’s and BMWs to go shopping and then see all the lovely cheeses and meats and pastries that I can’t buy anymore.
      So, I avoid it mostly. Occasionally, I stop there after a trip to Home Depot in order to get something from the dry goods section. The prices in that section are pretty reasonable. But the chocolates and prepared foods and stuff I used to gorge on my Sunday evenings? Nope. They are on the verboten list now.

  2. >But the chocolates and prepared foods and stuff I used to gorge on my Sunday evenings? Nope. They are on the verboten list now.

    Chained CPI in action.

    This is a feature not a bug. From worshiping the market it is only a short step to worshiping scarcity.

    • What I am concerned with is that we are already seeing a two tiered society. I don’t go to Wegmans anymore because I can’t afford it. Pretty soon, I’m going to routinely make my own yogurt. And to be honest, I don’t mind doing it- if it’s a choice. But it won’t be a choice going forward.
      Instead, we will have a new modern version of sumptuary laws.

      • Which will ultimately lead to a more modern version of Communism or Fascism–or maybe we talking apes will invent something even worse this time–in reaction to the depredations of the 1%.

        But the majority of the 1% will follow the primal dictates of their lizard brains and seek to acquire and keep dominance until rebellion finally claims them.

        To compound their folly, they are doing this in the most heavily armed (I speak of arms in civilian hands) First World country on the planet.

        As the noted conservative intellectual Santayana said, “The only thing we learn from history is that we do not learn.”

  3. Part of the Shop Rite supply problem is caused by hyperactive manufacturers who eliminate food choices regularly. Diet Pepsi came in a nice lime flavor and we regularly bought a bottle. Pepsi has , according to Shop Rite, eliminated the product. So it goes back to the store brand and whichever is cheaper, Diet Coke or Diet Pepsi.

    They do the same thing with popcorn flavors just having an increasing variety of the same two or three flavors (4, 8, and 10 packs of mini bags + a similar selection of the full size bags. In two or three brands a piece.

    Toffee? Out years ago? Nacho? Out just recently. It is movie theater butter, kettle korn or plain in 6 sizes and three brands (Orville Redenbacher, Pop Secret, and the generic store brand)

    I’ve had similar things with yogurt flavors, ice cream flavors, frozen vegetables, bagged salads and more.

    My verboten list is due at least in part to health concerns but, like yours, it seems to be expanding. No sugar, no white bread, limited this and that. So my morning low fat no sugar yogurt gets replaced by whole wheat bagel thins. My favorite flavors and varieties have this tendency to disappear.

    We are already in a two tier society but seem headed at best for a three tier where many get clothes and children’s toys at Goodwill, others shop at Target or Wal-Mart, and the rich have their choice of luxe goods and stores.

    • I could swear that Chobani used to come in multiple delicious 2% flavors. Then suddenly, all they have is a very limited number of flavors I would never ever select. But they have a ton of 0% yogurts in the more mainstream flavors of strawberry, blueberry and other flavors I never, ever eat. If I’m going to get yogurt, I don’t want something booooorrrrrrinng. Emmi yogurt is a european style yogurt that comes in some unique flavors like green apple and apricot but lately I’ve noticed that their green apple flavor that used to taste like green apple now tastes like dutch cinnamon apple.
      So, I can only conclude that there are a bunch of marketing experts out there who come to these companies and tell them that their research shows that what Americans will buy is blueberry, strawberry and stuff with cinnamon in it but they are getting to be more health conscious and poof! there goes your favorite foods. What I don’t get is why these companies go along with it. If I had a unique product that no one else had in a flavor that was different enough to be interesting to the foodies out there, why would I dump it to appeal to the mainstream buyer? Haven’t I just decreased my uniqueness and sales by deciding to compete with the bigger brand names?
      The problem is business and marketing majors. We should have never allowed them to get the upper hand.

  4. Obama has conspired against survival benefits from his first day in office. Does Krugman really think that Obama is showing “weakness”?
    Or does Krugman merely preTEND to think so as part of Krugman’s own
    veiled stealth assistance to Obama’s decietful shuck and jive stringalong thing? Yves Smith of Naked Capitalism shows a lot more intelligence and honesty in assessing Obama’s motives and goals than Krugman appears to show.
    If we want to save our benefits, we may have to sacrifice and destroy the Obama Presidency to do it. I think it is worth it. (In fact,
    I think destroying the Obama Presidency in the process of saving Social Security is not even a “tradeoff”. To me it would be pure gravy).

    • Now that he’s been reelected, how do we do this?

      • Beyond short-term holding the line on our survival benefits, I have no longer term idea. Perhaps if we convince just enough Democratic officeholders that they can either support their Dvoter base OR they can support their President Obama, but they can’t support two such mutually-cancelling goals at the same time . . . we can peel enough D officeholders away from Obama as to render him helpless against spite-based R efforts to impeach . . . if we can figure out how to inspire the Rs to launch an impeachment effort over something.

  5. So while the nation had a debate on gun control, Obama went to the local dog park and collected some brun pâté to spread upon the lower 99%

    Obama agreed to a $290 billion cut for Social Security and $400 billion in unspecified Medicare cuts, and guaranteed Republicans that no more than $50 billion in infrastructure would be spent for ten years!

    The Obama/Democratic plan would permanently extend Bush’s tax cuts on household incomes below $400,000, only the top tax bracket, 35 percent, would increase to 39.6 percent.

    If you are employed making $175,000.00+ /year do you really need a tax cut more than the guy who has been paying 3.75% extra to SSI in payroll tax for 30 years? Is your tax cut worth disallowing some kind of dignity with minimal benefits for those in the lower 85%?


    Many Democrats are cheering Obama’s $100 billion “defense cuts”. Most of the “savings” are to achieved by “privatizing” VA services. The VA is the single most effective provider of medical care in the US, it’s reform by Clinton/Gore was without a doubt the highlight of their 8 years. Obama seeks to smash the VA just as the combat troops are fully expended from countless multiple/extended tours. Swell guy Obama, vets will remember Democrats a..long..long..long time.

    • The incredible lies being told about this so-called crisis and the “deal” is astonishing! There are no reporters or journalists on television today.

      I hadn’t heard about the plan to privatize VA services.

      Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck. Shit.

    • Many Democrats are cheering Obama’s $100 billion “defense cuts”. Most of the savings” are to achieved by “privatizing” VA services

      unfuckenbievlable…how is that defense cuts? Is the bed pan weapon system being shut down?

      so now we have aledged Dem cheering VA services being given over to corporations.

      Everything will be handed over

  6. Almost all milk companies have stopped making large curd cottage cheese. I’m in permanent seethe about this.

  7. Speaking of yogurt . . . are you still thinking about inventing that
    YogurMatic with built-in Circulateral Baseplate Agitation?

  8. Here in Cosmic Boulder, they’ve pretty much replaced all the yogurt on the shelves with “soy yogurt” and “almond yogurt”. I thought capitalism was supposed to offer us more choice, not less.

    • What’s wrong with yogurt made from milk?

      • Truthfully, I think it’s a fad. This is, however, the town where I overheard a Whole Foods clerk inform a customer:

        You know, those Amy’s vegetarian entrees aren’t reallyvegetarian, they but beans in them!

        I’m sure that the folks who are buying this stuff are doing it because they want to load their kids up on phytoestrogens while complaining that milk has BGH in it. These are the same (very well-off) folks who aren’t vaccinating their kids against pertussis and diphtheria because of some empty-headed New Age twaddle about it messing with their indigo auras or something.

        • Or some marketing firm has been studying the loyalty card purchasing data and decided that almond milk and soy milk yogurts are hot sellers in Boulder so let’s send them more of that stuff! Before you know it, that’s all that the grocery store head office is ordering and they don’t even realize that there’s nothing else on the shelves.
          It’s like the 425 different kinds of hummus we have. There is no fricking way we need that many different kinds of hummus. There is humus with artichokes, garden vegetable, pesto, pine nuts, chipotle chilies, roasted red pepper etc, from 4 different brands. And one little container of babganoush from a so-so brand. And even that I had to pull teeth for. A few months ago, there was no babaganoush. They stopped ordering it for no particular reason. I had to ask for it. And we got one kind. No real choice. It’s no the best baba but the kid likes it and doesn’t really like hummus. It’s either buy it or make it.
          I still blame marketing. They’re sifting through the data and the demographics and based on your age, income, vegetarianism, etc, they have decided what products you will get at your store. In your case, that doesn’t include yogurt made the old fashioned way. In my case it means we’re all on a no fat diet but carbs?? No problem. (In my case, it’s the carbs that have to go). In someone else’s case, no large curd cottage cheese for anyone within 10 miles.
          I don’t think this is very helpful or wise from an economic pov.

  9. What in blazes makes you think Obama is “negotiating”? In the bloody debates, he said his position on Social Security and Medicare was “substantially the same” as Romney’s. He’s not negotiating, he’s just doing what he’s done for the last 4 years: implementing Republican policies while using his race and party affiliation as cover.


    I said it.

    And as for the Republicans blocking Sandy aid – you know they’ll do it and they’ll manage to blame the Democrats for it, to boot.

    • Propertius, I agree, anybody who had either eyes or ears knew that Obama was a right wing ideologue. Years from now when “Democrats” deny foreknowledge of Obama’s ruthless right wing agenda, I’ll nod my head in agreement and liken them to all who joined the Nazi party and after the war complained that they had been misled. What was the poem?

      When the Nazis came for the communists,
      I remained silent;
      I was not a communist.

      When they locked up the social democrats,
      I remained silent;
      I was not a social democrat.

      When they came for the trade unionists,
      I did not speak out;
      I was not a trade unionist.

      When they came for the Jews,
      I remained silent;
      I wasn’t a Jew.

      When they came for me,
      there was no one left to speak out.


      Niemöller was an anti-communist and supported Hitler’s rise to power at first. But Niemöller became disillusioned. He was arrested and taken to Sachsenhausen and Dachau, his crime, “not being enthusiastic enough about the Nazi movement”

      Niemöller became a leading voice of penance and reconciliation for the German people after World War II. His poem, is a popular model for describing the dangers of political apathy.


      • Years from now, there probably won’t be Democrats. Or Republicans. That will be all to the good. Long past their expiration dates.

        • There will still be Rs because the Rs are doing what they said they would do. There will be fewer Ds as heretofor-D voters decide to realize that the Ds are mainly a false-flag
          hidden-hand black-advance secret agent undercover Rparty velcro-decoy hamsterwheel roach motel front group. With sincere useful-idiot nostalgiacrats still loyal to the fading memory of a party which died decades ago included to lend authenticity to the disguise.

          But the Ds still have a chance to prove us wrong. Can we generate enough pain and pressure on just enough of them to make them choose to humiliate Obama’s pride and destroy the rest of Obama’s legacy? It really is worth worth worth trying given the trillions of survival dollars at stake.

          • It’s worth trying but the best time to make obama quake in his Ferragamos was back in August

          • I don’t think we can make Obama quake. But, maybe we can make Congress & Senate quake (not me stuck in Kansas with crackpots on all sides)

          • Let me think………. Was that when everybody who was anybody on the only somewhat right centrist side was ginning up the hysteria vote for not Romney? The Lesser of Two Evils spin?

  10. I don’t read Krugman. I tried but I didn’t find him either informative or entertaining and while my choices lean to entertainment, you have to be one or the other to fit in my schedule. (Don’t ask) But the people I’ve read who do read him describe a man who can’t seem to find a comfortable (emotional) position on Obama. Krugman bounces around, hops from one foot to the other, so to speak, on anything Obama. I think Krugman may be another wishful thinker, hoping for a man who doesn’t exist to rise up and do the right thing. Dr Johnson’s “triumph of hope over experience.” And Krugman is captive to that emotion as surely as any “low information” voter–a term I hate because almost invariably the user exhibits the same amygdala driven simplemindlessness.

    Anyone who follows Krugman have a different take?

    • I am similar to you that what I read must be either informative or entertaining. The Information I get from Krugman is knowledge of what’s coming…. The Glenn Greenwald prediction in real time…. Krugman will NEVER go out on a limb against Democratic Leadership and in support of doing the right thing.

      Since he’s a smart man, he must be doing this deliberately. Maybe these are the sorts of games a man must play to win a Nobel Prize?

    • I’d say your relatively uninformed opinion is fairly accurate. Krugman is a die hard liberal and he finds Obama a huge disappointment. But he keeps trying to urge him to do the right thing and everytime he makes a step in the right direction, Krugman is like his personal cheerleader urging the Little Train That Could up the mountain. Invariably, Obama lets him down but he keeps hoping that there is a political philosophy and a conscience under Obama’s suit. What else does Krugman have to hang his hopes on? Or maybe he’s thinking that the slightly more liberal Congress that is to be sworn in in January will convince him to do the right thing.
      I love Krugman and I think he’s absolutely right on the economics stuff. In a way, it’s very mechanical. There must be a Three Laws of Economic Motion written down somewhere because it’s not terribly difficult to figure out even if the nitty gritty details are little rube goldberg machines all to themselves.
      But I think Krugman is thinking with a 20th century mindset, thinking that people will come to their senses and do the right thing with enough encouragement. Probably, that has to do with a certain amount of isolation you get from living in Princeton where you are surrounded by the smartest people in the world and it is all bright, beautiful and comfortable. They know that bad things are happening out there beyond the pool of light that surrounds them but they are only rumors and gossip and tidings. They haven’t actually seen it working up close and personally.
      I think Krugman is very exasperated with the Obama administration and he’s got a clue that it’s really bad out here but he has no real idea how bad it is from an average person’s point of view. He only sees the models, not what those models produce. But if he did know how bad it is, he’s be too shrill to listen to and no one would include him on their blogrolls. You know, sort of like what happened to us.
      So, he keeps trying to get Obama to be a decent fellow.
      Good luck with that, Professor.

      • For my (poverty level) money, Matt Stoller has Obama just right, narcissistic sociopath. I don’t have a high regard for Bill Clinton as president, but Bill, bless his loyalty, is a Democrat. He campaigns for Democrats, altho not the ones who betrayed his wife, and he always answers the call. I gather he’s made some campaign pit stops in some really out of the way places to fire up the troops. Yes, yes, I know he loves the roar of the crowd, but he’s been a good scout for the Democrats over the years. Obama, not so much. Obama puts me in mind of a friend who replied to someone going on about the then putative Democratic mayor of Haddonfield, “But he’s not a Democrat. He does nothing for the party, nothing for other Democrats.” Obama is about Obama, Democrat was his Chicago elevator to the political penthouse. There’s really nothing else to him.

        • Stoller has done good work on Obama. And yet the question emerges . . . when did Stoller first decide this about Obama? And has Stoller ever apologised for being an active part of the Obama conspiracy to take over the Democratic Party to begin with? (What!? What!? What is he talking about . . . )
          Here is an article which Lambert Strether led me (and anyone else who wants to see it) to in a NaCap thread.
          It hums and blowjobs the “Creativores” who were “changing the guard” in the Democratic Party.
          And that article itself contained a lead to an article by Matt Stoller himself , which is awfully praiseworthy of Obama’s takeover effort at the time, and ends with Stoller’s earnest declaration of loyalty and support to The One, the Preciousssss . . .

          In light of what I have later learned Senator Clinton’s views on things and stuff to ACtually have been, how is it that Stoller considered Obama to be the “progressive” one? And why has no one with the power to force Stoller to explain himself, ever been bothered to USE that power to FORCE Stoller to explain himself? ( And don’t look at me. I make $34,000/per year. Do you really think I am going to make a very well paid Roosevelt Center Fellow exPLAIN himself? To ME? Stoller would just laugh if he even heard me at all above the cheering adulation of the Creativores.)

  11. The Xmas season is a disappointment for retailers. Wal-Mart did this big study and the best brains Walmart can buy reports people are too afarid of higher taxes to buy the shit

    LOLOLOLOLOOLL excuse me

    anything but the truth

    They keep canning and firing our ass and we can’t buy the shit

    They are sitting on the largest money hoard in history , they will not hire and we can’t buy the shit

    how hard is that to understand?

    we cannot buy your shit

    see, you broke the conveyor belt
    that enabled us to buy your shit…and now we can’t buy your shit

    it’s really simple


    I’m so bore with the truly endless will Obama or won’t Obama this or that when it comes to budget kabuki

    Obama is doing what he was installed to do

    hold the towel for the .999% as they reem our asses

    there will be no fight , the will be only giving up…where is the suspense here?

    • The next Pelosi candidate Cory Booker is prepping to start his 2016 campaign ala Obama via the Senate in 2014. Pelosi needs to go as the minority leader. Pelosi has done more harm, than good and how she can say ruining Social Security, Medicare and the VA is good leaves one to believe she is on a RICH planet, because reality says otherwise.

    • Then too, there are people who are just-barely-well-enough-off to where they have a choice between buying Walmart’s shit once a day, or Classymart’s shinola once a week . . . and those people will buy Classymart’s shinola once a week instead of Walmart’s shit once a day.
      And eventually they will even stop being offended when hucksters of “slob appeal” accuse the seekers-after-shinola of “living in a bubble”.
      Eventually they will laugh and say “better a molehill of shinola than a mountain of shit”. And where will Walmart be then?

      • And you can find lots of good used shinola at the Salvation Army or Value World or the Treasure Mart if you have the time and energy to look.

      • And where will Walmart be then?

        I really don’t think Walmart and other huge retailers have thought things out. Unless you are selling things to the military or producing hooch, you are in a declining market…and one that will decline for some time to come.

  12. Thereisnospoon, eh? I don’t read spoondigby much anymore. I see they still have no comments. That way, they don’t have to spend their precious time deleting comments.

    Time is limited. I read The Confluence, Sic Semper Tyrannis, Naked Capitalism, Economic Undertow, Ran Prieur, Resilient Communities pretty regularly. I read a few other of the tens of thousands of good blogs every now and then. More than that, I can’t read that fast. I won’t live that long.

    • Well you talked me into it. I went and read the spoonypost. ” A Romney Presidency would have been so much worse”. I don’t know if Digby’s little Mini Me really means that or if he is just saying it as part of
      his DemParty Apparatchik shuck-and-jive stringalong thing. If he really means it, then he shares a psycholgical and analytical weakness with many Dems, Progs, and DemProgs. Many such people scared themselves into voting Obama to spare themselves Romney. They mistook “wannabe” evil for “effective” evil. So they voted against the President who would have made “destroy Social Security” unpopular and voted for the President who may make “destroy Social Security” possible.
      I’m not sure it is all their fault. They are still traumatized by just how much worse Bush turned out to be than what Gore could ever have been. Based on that, they dismissed anyone who said that Obama is basically Romney in “technically black” face as a Naderite Republigreen retread inviting them to permit yet another too-evil-to-believe President into office. I suppose I should stop bashing the NaderBush RepubliGreens. They have destroyed their own credibility for decades to come by trying their hardest to get Gore defeated (and Bush thereby elected). Millions of Dem Prog DemProg voters decided “we won’t make THAT mistake again” and I bet not one in a million of them ever read any comment I wrote.
      That doesn’t exCUSE them for voting for Obama. But that may exPLAIN them voting for Obama.

      • Even that’s giving them too much credit. The difference between Gore and Bush isn’t that they were dramatically different as candidates (Gore was one of the biggest Iraq hawks in the Clinton WH, and Bush actually ran against militarism) but that Gore couldn’t possibly have got 1/10th the crap past a hostile Congress that Bush managed to. That precedent actually augured in favor of voting for Romney.

        • I was going to vote for Romney till his dirty filthy lie about Chrysler specifically and the so-called “bailout” in general . . . for that very reason. But his statement about Chrysler and his continuing it through the implausibly-deniable cover of “his campaign in Ohio” made Romney too repulsive to vote for. So I voted for Anderson instead.
          Though since I wrote Anderson in because I didn’t know the Mahesh-Yogi Party had put him on their ballot . . . I probably actually voted for nobody at all.

          • By the way, I voted for Gore because I knew Bush was lying about his beliefs and intentions, and I knew Nader was lying about pretending to believe that they were “both the same”. So I voted for Gore.

  13. and I knew Nader was lying about pretending to believe that they were “both the same”.

    Nadar, like Bradly in the primaries, was employed by the powers that be specifically to torpedo Gore. Mission accomplished.

    • And yet to this day the Nader-suckers refuse to understand what maliciously motivated yet playable-dupes they rightly look like to any thinking person. I remember having some fun on a train once listening to a Nadervoter complaining about President Bush. I took full advantage of my chance to say: “don’t blame me. I voted for Gore.”

      As I think about my question about what happened to all the hate-inspired seekers after vengeance who were going to get even
      for DemCon 2008 . . . at least some of them voted for Romney. Which
      was better than voting for Obama. ( Though millions and millions of votes for third party persons would have been best of all).

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