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OBAMA HEARTS 'RONNIE' - An Old New Song

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Author Topic: OBAMA HEARTS 'RONNIE' - An Old New Song  (Read 104 times)
Bianca
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« Reply #15 on: January 19, 2008, 11:05:16 am »








JOHN EDWARDS:




"Ronald Reagan, the man who busted unions, the man who did everything in his power to destroy the

organized labor movement, the man who created a tax structure that favored the richest Americans

against middle class and working families, ... we know that Ronald Reagan is not an example of change

for a presidential candidate running in the Democratic Party."
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Bianca
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« Reply #16 on: January 19, 2008, 11:14:46 am »








                                                    Played for a Sucker
             




By PAUL KRUGMAN
Published: November 16, 2007

Lately, Barack Obama has been saying that major action is needed to avert what he keeps calling a “crisis” in Social Security — most recently in an interview with The National Journal. Progressives who fought hard and successfully against the Bush administration’s attempt to panic America into privatizing the New Deal’s crown jewel are outraged, and rightly so.

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Paul Krugman.

Go to Columnist Page » Blog: The Conscience of a Liberal But Mr. Obama’s Social Security mistake was, in fact, exactly what you’d expect from a candidate who promises to transcend partisanship in an age when that’s neither possible nor desirable.

To understand the nature of Mr. Obama’s mistake, you need to know something about the special role of Social Security in American political discourse.

Inside the Beltway, doomsaying about Social Security — declaring that the program as we know it can’t survive the onslaught of retiring baby boomers — is regarded as a sort of badge of seriousness, a way of showing how statesmanlike and tough-minded you are.

Consider, for example, this exchange about Social Security between Chris Matthews of MSNBC and Tim Russert of NBC, on a recent edition of Mr. Matthews’s program “Hardball.”

Mr. Russert: “Everyone knows Social Security, as it’s constructed, is not going to be in the same place it’s going to be for the next generation, Democrats, Republicans, liberals, conservatives.”

Mr. Matthews: “It’s a bad Ponzi scheme, at this point.”

Mr. Russert: “Yes.”

But the “everyone” who knows that Social Security is doomed doesn’t include anyone who actually understands the numbers. In fact, the whole Beltway obsession with the fiscal burden of an aging population is misguided.

As Peter Orszag, the director of the Congressional Budget Office, put it in a recent article co-authored with senior analyst Philip Ellis: “The long-term fiscal condition of the United States has been largely misdiagnosed. Despite all the attention paid to demographic challenges, such as the coming retirement of the baby-boom generation, our country’s financial health will in fact be determined primarily by the growth rate of per capita health care costs.”

How has conventional wisdom gotten this so wrong? Well, in large part it’s the result of decades of scare-mongering about Social Security’s future from conservative ideologues, whose ultimate goal is to undermine the program.

Thus, in 2005, the Bush administration tried to push through a combination of privatization and benefit cuts that would, over time, have reduced Social Security to nothing but a giant 401(k). The administration claimed that this was necessary to save the program, which officials insisted was “heading toward an iceberg.”

But the administration’s real motives were, in fact, ideological. The anti-tax activist Stephen Moore gave the game away when he described Social Security as “the soft underbelly of the welfare state,” and hailed the Bush plan as a way to put a “spear” through that soft underbelly.

Fortunately, the scare tactics failed. Democrats in Congress stood their ground; progressive analysts debunked, one after another, the phony arguments of the privatizers; and the public made it clear that it wants to preserve a basic safety net for retired Americans.

That should have been that. But what Jonathan Chait of The New Republic calls “entitlement hysteria” never seems to die. In October, The Washington Post published an editorial castigating Hillary Clinton for, um, not being panicky about Social Security — and as we’ve seen, nonsense like the claim that Social Security is a Ponzi scheme seems to be back in vogue.

Which brings us back to Mr. Obama. Why would he, in effect, play along with this new round of scare-mongering and devalue one of the great progressive victories of the Bush years?

I don’t believe Mr. Obama is a closet privatizer. He is, however, someone who keeps insisting that he can transcend the partisanship of our times — and in this case, that turned him into a sucker.

Mr. Obama wanted a way to distinguish himself from Hillary Clinton — and for Mr. Obama, who has said that the reason “we can’t tackle the big problems that demand solutions” is that “politics has become so bitter and partisan,” joining in the attack on Senator Clinton’s Social Security position must have seemed like a golden opportunity to sound forceful yet bipartisan.

But Social Security isn’t a big problem that demands a solution; it’s a small problem, way down the list of major issues facing America, that has nonetheless become an obsession of Beltway insiders. And on Social Security, as on many other issues, what Washington means by bipartisanship is mainly that everyone should come together to give conservatives what they want.

We all wish that American politics weren’t so bitter and partisan. But if you try to find common ground where none exists — which is the case for many issues today — you end up being played for a fool. And that’s what has just happened to Mr. Obama.
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April Kincaid
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« Reply #17 on: January 19, 2008, 12:51:15 pm »

Quote
But Social Security isn’t a big problem that demands a solution; it’s a small problem, way down the list of major issues facing America, that has nonetheless become an obsession of Beltway insiders. And on Social Security, as on many other issues, what Washington means by bipartisanship is mainly that everyone should come together to give conservatives what they want.

We all wish that American politics weren’t so bitter and partisan. But if you try to find common ground where none exists — which is the case for many issues today — you end up being played for a fool. And that’s what has just happened to Mr. Obama.


I just read this whole article and I still don't see what is supposed to be making Barack Obama being played for a fool.  Why, because he says there is a problem with Social Security benefits?  There is, both Democratic and  Republicans say that - once all the baby-boomers start retiting, there won't be enough money in the system to handle the benefit payments.  I don't know how you possibly fix that without coming to some kind of concensus about how to fix it.
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April Kincaid
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« Reply #18 on: January 19, 2008, 01:03:35 pm »








JOHN EDWARDS:




"Ronald Reagan, the man who busted unions, the man who did everything in his power to destroy the

organized labor movement, the man who created a tax structure that favored the richest Americans

against middle class and working families, ... we know that Ronald Reagan is not an example of change

for a presidential candidate running in the Democratic Party."



Edwards has it all wrong, Barack Obama wasn't holding Reagan up as an example of what the Democrats should be, what he said was actually:

"I don't want to present myself as some sort of singular figure. I think part of what is different is the times. I do think that, for example, the 1980 election was different. I think Ronald Reagan changed the trajectory of America in a way that Richard Nixon did not and in a way that Bill Clinton did not. He put us on a fundamentally different path because the country was ready for it. They felt like with all the excesses of the 60s and the 70s and government had grown and grown but there wasn't much sense of accountability in terms of how it was operating. I think he tapped into what people were already feeling. Which is we want clarity, we want optimism, we want a return to that sense of dynamism and entrepreneurship that had been missing."

It's a perfect example of how politicians tend to twist what people's words for political gain. 
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« Reply #19 on: January 19, 2008, 02:24:42 pm »

Hillary actually lists Ronald Reagan as one of her favorite Presidents, it's referred to in this endorsement from a New Hampshire paper:

Eleven Salmon Press Weekly Newspapers Endorse Hillary Clinton for President

MANCHESTER, NH - The Salmon Press newspapers, which include 11 weekly newspapers published throughout New Hampshire’s Lakes Region and North Country today endorsed Hillary Clinton for President. The Salmon Press is the first newspaper in New Hampshire to endorse a Democrat in the 2008 primary. In their endorsement editorial, the Salmon Press highlighted the "combination of her proven track record and positive vision for America" adding "she’s an engaging personality able to unite people behind a common cause regardless of their political affiliations."

"Every week the Salmon Press newspapers provide a local voice for many New Hampshire communities and I am honored to have their endorsement," said Senator Clinton. "I have enjoyed talking and meeting with voters in New Hampshire and earning their support in my campaign. I believe I am the candidate with the record and experience American families can depend on to make real change happen."

The 11 Salmon Press newspapers include: the Littleton Courier, Coos County Democrat (Lancaster, NH) and Berlin Reporter, the Granite State News (Wolfeboro, NH), Carroll County Independent (Conway, NH), Meredith News, Record Enterprise (Plymouth, NH), Winnisquam Echo (Tilton, NH), Gilford Steamer, Baysider (Alton, NH), and Mountain Ear (Conway, NH). The Salmon Press endorsed Bill Bradley for president in 2000 and Howard Dean in 2004.

The Salmon Press endorsement editorial follows:

Sen. Hillary Clinton

Those that don’t think experience counts in politics haven’t been listening to Sen. Hillary Clinton. The combination of her proven track record and positive vision for America make her our choice in the Democratic primary.

Sen. Clinton earned our admiration as the First Lady and respect as a U.S. senator from New York. Today she’s an engaging personality able to unite people behind a common cause regardless of their political affiliations. She hit the Senate floor on the run and she can do the same thing in the White House.

She is sincere and passionate about restoring fiscal responsibility, providing health care to all Americans, protecting the environment, keeping the tax burden off the middle class and earning the faith and trust of the American people.

But no president can do it alone. She must break recent tradition, cast cronyism aside and fill her cabinet with the best people, not only the best Democrats, but the best Republicans as well.. We’re confident she will do that. Her list of favorite presidents - Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Lincoln, both Roosevelts, Truman, George H.W. Bush and Reagan - demonstrates how she thinks. As expected, Bill Clinton was also included on the aforementioned list.

After all it was during his administration - eight years of peace and prosperity - that Hillary was able to observe, learn and contribute, all at the same time. And though she possesses traits similar to the former president, a great communicator chief among them - the voters of New York State have overwhelmingly validated her abilities - twice.

Sen. Clinton told us she doesn’t want our vote just because she’s a "woman." She wants our vote because she’s the "best." On the Democratic side we agree that she is.

http://www.hillaryclinton.com/news/release/view/?id=4674
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