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Tag Archives: Barack Obama

Last One … I Promise

My last pre-election post.

For your viewing pleasure.  The wit and wisdom, as well as intelligence, of at least one group of Romney supporters.

Sunday Scraps (Hockey, the Election and a NaNo Update)

Thanks to a friend, I had three tickets for the Stockton Thunder hockey game last night.  The Thunder are a minor league hockey team playing their season even though the NHL is on strike.  After spending the day refereeing soccer and then watching my youngest play his game at 4:30, I wasn’t entirely thrilled with making the 45 minute drive to Stockton for a 7:30 game.  I’m glad I did.

Took the Pr incely Midgetsand had a good time with them, although it started with this.  As soon as we got in my car,  my oldest who usually has his phone in permanent text mode, but who didn’t last night because his girlfriend is backpacking in the mountains and doesn’t have cell service wherever she is, pulled his ITouch out and started to play a game on it.  He knows that when I have them with me for events like this I want to actually be with them and not just be a side show to his technology.  As soon as he pulled his ITouch out, I told him to put it away.  He didn’t.  I told him he could put it away or not go.  He kept playing with it.  Before we left the neighborhood I turned around and went back home.  Pulled up in front of our house and said, “It’s your choice.  Either you go or you don’t.”  He smirked at the ridiculousness of my demand and did nothing.  “Decide now.  Put it away or get out of the car.”  He put it away.

We had a good time after that.  The Thunder were having a promotion last night to raise funds and awareness for cancer, focusing primarily on breast cancer.  The ice was pink, there were 8,000 fans for a game that usually only draws half that number.  The Stockton players had pink on their uniforms.  There was pink everywhere.

The kiddos enjoyed it.  There were even a couple of small fights to thrill them.  Not being huge hockey fans, we benefitted from a kind woman who sat next to us, educating us about the rules of hockey.  I finally know what offsides is in hockey and how it differs from offsides in soccer.  I know a little bit more about face-offs and why they boot people out of them.

The fast pace of the game makes it a fun game to watch.  What I liked most, however, were the sounds.  In baseball, you have the crack of the bat and the pop of a fastball hitting the catcher’s glove.  In hockey, there’s the loud ‘whack’ of the puck hitting a stick on well-placed passes, the swoosh of skaters stopping and changing course, and, of course, the shudder of the walls when somebody is slammed into the boards.

It was a fun night.

* * * *

On to the election … I’ve stopped posting daily about this because there isn’t much more to say.  It’s Sunday morning as I write this.  Two days before the election.  Less than 72 hours from now we’ll have a winner (barring an electoral college tie, of course, which remains a remote possibility).  It’s clear who I support this year and that support is just as strong as it was four years ago.  Barack Obama is an adult amidst political children.  He exudes a calm confidence and works towards not what will get him a win today, but will achieve long-term objectives.  He has always been about the long game — keeping his eye on the prize of what he can accomplish over the long-term and not what he can do just for political expediency.  On so many issues, uninterested in short-term gain, he has taken risks to achieve what he believe would achieve the best long-term consequences, frequently against the counsel of his own advisors.  I firmly believe that if we are fortunate enough to have Barack Obama re-elected, years from now he will be considered one of our finest Presidents.

On the other hand, I shudder to imagine what a Romney Presidency would lead to.  If he were to accomplish half of the things he has promised, that he has claimed he believes are the right approach (although as I’ve written, it’s impossible to really know what he actually believes), we will continue further down the fiscal and foreign policy slide we have been on since GWB took office.

* * * *

It’s day four of NaNo.  Which means I should be at about 6,500 words.  I’m at about 2,200, all on The Irrepairable Past.  Yes, woefully behind.  This is the problem with me achieving a real NaNo goal.  There is too much life in my life.  Yesterday, I was basically out of the house from 8:00 in the morning until 11:00 at night, with only two hours in the middle of the afternoon.  My Saturday nap is far too important to sacrifice it to the demands of NaNo.  😉

It’s Sunday.  I have nothing except for laundry to do today.  Let’s see if I can do what I haven’t done for a number of years now.  Churn out a few thousand words in one day.  If I get bogged down on Option #1, I have a list of 40 words to propel me forward on Deviation.  Oh, and there’s this blogger out there who posted about a woman in New Orleans who sits on the street with her manual typewriter and offers to write Abrupt Erotica for a fee.  The blogger challenged her readers to offer 55 words of Abrupt Erotica.  So, I did, and well, I started something with that and I need to finish it now … otherwise, it would be somewhat interruptus, if you know what I mean.

I wonder if the 900+ words of this post should count towards NaNo.

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Day 4

Day 4

Obamacare.  That really should be all it takes on this topic.  After Presidents (including such conservative luminaries as Richard Nixon, during his Presidency, and the Heritage Institute, which supported the individual mandate before Obama adopted the idea) and politicians have spent decades talking about providing a health care system that ensures everybody has access to health care, President Obama enacted the Affordable Care Act, a program designed not to provide health care for all, but instead to require that all Americans have health care insurance.  For those who cannot afford it, there are tax credits and subsidies to help cover the costs.  For those who refuse to purchase insurance, there are penalties, the revenue from which will help fund the program’s costs.  In addition, insurance companies will no longer be able to deny coverage for individuals with pre-existing conditions and insurance will be portable, so you don’t lose your favored insurance just because you switch jobs.

To witness the response to this, however, one would think that Lenin, Stalin, and Mao have completed their takeover of our country, while Idi Amin runs the death panels.  The outrage over this program is the perfect demonstration of the non-reality-based world in which far too many Americans live in.  If employed we are required to contribute to the Social Security system, with a few exceptions.  We are also required to contribute to the Medicare program.  Every State has laws requiring drivers to obtain insurance.  Many locales require flood insurance or earthquake insurance because of particular risks those locations face.  Where is the outrage over these programs?

And, why do I bring them up here?  It’s simple really.  Every American should pay for their health care costs, just like every American should be required to pay for the costs of damage or loss they cause when driving a vehicle, contribute to a retirement system, etc.  Why?  Because these are costs that are born by society whether you have insurance or not.  Here’s the thing that amazes me about the Obamacare craze that suggests it is horrible for the government to have done this.  That it somehow reeks of socialism, communism, or who knows what evil it is the right-wing is afraid of.  Almost all of the people who are outraged about this are people who already have health care insurance.  What does that mean?  Through their insurance premiums and the ever-increasing cost of health care, they are already paying the health care costs of the uninsured.  Wake up people … those who don’t have health insurance are taking money out of your pockets!!!  It’s that simple and yet the anti-Obama’ers froth at the mouth at the idea of a program that addresses that problem.

Obamacare doesn’t require the already insured to pay more.  In fact, if it works the way it should, by expanding the pool of insured, it might actually result in lower insurance premiums.  Instead, what Obamacare does is force individuals to take responsibility for their own health care costs and penalize them if they don’t.  Stunning that people would object to this, especially when you consider the typical political views of those individuals.

If Obamacare is wrong, let’s jettison auto insurance, home insurance, social security, medicare, and every other government program that requires individuals to take responsibility for a cost of living in the modern world.

And, if you don’t believe me, here are a few recent pieces endorsing Obama’s re-election.  Two of them from decidedly conservative sources.

Mayor Bloomberg

The Economist

E.J. Dionne

Day 5 … cont’d

This is what I would have written if I had more time this morning.  It’s a long read and has a bonus at the end — a link to the author’s argument against Romney.  Here’s the key quote from the linked article:

For anybody who voted for Obama in 2008 and had even the vaguest sense of his platform, the notion that he has fallen short of some plausible performance threshold seems to me unfathomable.

Let me add to that … for anybody who voted for Obama in 2008 to believe that Romney and the current Republican Party are a more credible alternative is beyond anything I can comprehend.

 

 

 

 

Less Than A Week

By my countdown, I’m on Day Five of An Election.  It’s Wednesday.  The election is on Tuesday.  To me the choice is clear, as it was four years ago.  I’ve spent the last week providing examples of how Mitt Romney is a fundamentally flawed candidate.  He has no political soul and he has showed an alarming willingness to shape-shift throughout the entire course of this election, dating back to the very beginning.

Why vote for Barack Obama?

What I hear almost universally from those who oppose him is that he didn’t do enough to solve the economic woes this country was in when he took office.  I marvel at this contention.  When he took office, our economy was losing 700,000 jobs a month.  Just stop and ponder that number for a moment.  Let’s make it bigger — if that job loss had continued, it would have been 8.4 million lost jobs over the course of a year.  As well, the auto industry was on the verge of collapse and the American financial system was right behind it.  If the auto industry had not been “saved” a couple more million jobs would have been lost and entire communities throughout the Midwest would have been devastated.  If the financial system had failed, we would be in a Depression.

What did he do?  His programs saved the auto industry and also saved the benefits autoworkers have bargained for with their employers.  Romney’s idea for “saving” the auto industry never would have worked.  It depended on two things.  First, going through bankruptcy — which would have likely resulted in autoworkers losing their pensions, benefits, and other compensation they had bargained for with their employers.  Romney’s plan would have done to the auto industry exactly what he did when he was at Bain — strip companies down and leave the carcass behind.  Pay attention to what he was proposing for the auto industry and you have an idea of what he wants to do if he’s elected.

Second, and more important, is that Romney’s idea for the auto industry depended on private capital coming to the rescue and bailing out the auto industry instead of the government.  Guess what.  The capital markets were completely frozen at the time.  There was no investing going on, no lending.  There would have been no interest or ability of the banks and investment firms to invest the billions of dollars it would have taken to rescue the auto industry.  So, remember this … Romney’s idea was a sham.

Barack Obama, however, did what needed to be done to save those millions of jobs and, in the face of significant opposition from Republicans, he engineered bailouts of the auto industry and the banks to keep a depression at bay.  Was everything done perfectly?  Of course not.  I’d love to see the people responsible for engineering the crisis be punished.  I’d love to see the banking system massively overhauled.

So, where are we now … 31 months of job creation.  Yes, the numbers aren’t huge, but going from losing 700,000 jobs a month to 31 consecutive months of job growth says something.

Barack Obama hasn’t done enough?  I say he has done everything he could on these particular issues, particularly when you measure the progress and his policies against the intransigence of the Republican Party which was united in being more concerned with defeating him than with doing the right thing for this country.

And, here I’ll ask the question I keep asking and not getting an answer to … if he didn’t do enough, what would you have had him do?  If he didn’t do enough, what would the Republicans (or Mitt Romney) have done that would have produced a better result than where we are now?

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