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Patch Blog: Shame - Recapping the Republican Convention (Part 1)

Ann Romney is entitled to talk about working folks and economic hard times all she wants, but it would be nice if in her analysis there had at least some connection to working and economic reality.

Shame is an old-fashioned virtue. It requires a conscience and some semblance of a heart and soul. It is the feeling generated by an examination of one’s errant thoughts and actions. It is authentic and morally cleansing in those who are authentic. And that, of course, is why it is totally missing in the shamelessly dishonest Romney campaign.

Early on we got a flavor for this campaign in an ad that attributed words spoken by President Obama to President Obama. The President was quoting Republican John McCain, but the ad failed to mention that. The words, and more importantly the context and intent of those words, were totally misrepresented. The ad was a deception. It was also a model of things to come. At Tuesday night’s Republican Convention, the delegates repeated another lie. They took up the chant “we built it.” That phrase was part of an Obama speech about private enterprise and its relation to and dependence on publicly supported and financed infrastructure. The President said “you didn’t build that” referring to the roads, airports, sewer systems, and bridges that enable business to function and thrive. But bereft of an original, and God forbid, true take on the issue the Romney campaign, instead, expropriated the Obama phrase and injected it into yet another deceptive ad. One that made it sound like the President was telling entrepreneurs that they did not “build” their own enterprises - quite a different meaning and quite untrue, but who cares? Certainly not Republican conventioneers who appeared delighted to be mouthing a catchy if totally inaccurate slogan.

And then it was Ann Romney’s turn to join the charade. Comely, blonde, reeking of money, quality dental work, and fresh from one of several Romney built multi-million dollar homes, she wasted no time expressing her kinship with everyday Americans – “I know a lot of you guys.” On and on she went, citing single dads, working moms “who would like to work just a little less,” “hard times,” and “brothers and sisters whose work is never done.” According to Ann, alleviating any of their worry and concern is “out of the question in this economy.” Ann’s concern for working Americans was about as convincing, and every bit as political, as Mitt’s faux concern for the illegal immigrants who had worked on his Massachusetts estate – “…you can't have any illegals working on our property. I'm running for office, for Pete's sake, I can't have illegals.” What a gal. What a guy.

Now, Ann Romney is entitled to talk about working folks and economic hard times all she wants, but it would be nice if in her analysis there was at least some connection to working and economic reality, especially as it pertains to Republican legislative values. Last time I checked, the Romneys and their Republican supporters are pretty damn anti-union. They seem never to have met a right to work (i.e. low wage/low benefit) state they didn’t like or a union member who was not in some way either related to or subject to the whims of a dreaded union boss. They seem pretty damn unaware, in their concern for unpaid medical bills, low wages, and long working hours, of the beneficial role played by unions in bargaining for and improving the plight of workers in each of these areas. Who knew? Certainly Mitt Romney, who, in his multitude of hostile corporate takeovers always found a bottom-line restoring reason to cut wages, benefits, pensions, and or workers while preserving and guaranteeing enormous fees for his crew of hard-working “vulture capitalists,” a term made familiar to us by nearly every Republican candidate for President other than Mitt himself. Wasn’t it Newt Gingrich, that paragon of thrift, who utilized that terminology thus establishing himself as the original “divider” of Americans over the issues of big money, unfair business practices, and the absence of virtue in Mitt Romney’s business dealings? Thanks Newt, for the “cred.”

Maybe there are facts unknown to us, but privy to Ann and Mitt, that somehow deflate my argument and support their point of view about our economy. Maybe they’ve read data from the St. Louis Fed that indicates that corporate profits are at an all time high in America while wages are at an all time low relative to GDP. Maybe they’ve read what Republican Bruce Bartlett (former economic policy advisor to Ronald Reagan, Jack Kemp and Ron Paul) has to say about federal revenues and effective corporate taxes being at their lowest levels in 60 years. They might be familiar with Bureau of Labor statistics that clearly show a steady rise in American worker productivity accompanied by stagnant wage growth since 1975. Or the conclusion of an MIT Industrial Performance paper which indicates that 80% of all income gains in the period from 1980-2005 were claimed by the top 1% of federal income tax filers. And then there is my personal favorite, a piece of data, not for the faint of heart (no wonder Republicans don’t mention it), that captures the essence of where America’s economy is and has been headed in terms of that struggling middle-class that Anne feels so at one with – the 400 richest Americans as calculated by Forbes Magazine own more wealth than the poorest 150 million Americans. Now there’s an economic truth that America can believe in! (to be continued.....)

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David V. November 12, 2012 at 04:52 AM
The problem of race is hardly ancient history. Can you really say that all the efforts to eradicate so-called "voter fraud" -- a non-existent problem -- is anything other than a fundamentally racist effort, and is fundamentally different than the poll taxes and literacy tests of a generation ago?
not Carl Peterson lll November 12, 2012 at 05:46 AM
Voter ID. The NAACP asked the UN to condemn our elections. The oldest democracy had inspectors from some countries that have dictators, and women that can't vote. The UN inspectors were more than alarmed that ID is not required. Voter ID is non partisan, non racial some argue that You are saying that minorities just aren't smart enough to get it together. Is their any evidence at all that voter ID is to a ploy to lower the amount of minority voting? Anything as proof and not a Chris Mathews dog whistle moment, not conjecture, but proof?
Robert Defulgentiis November 12, 2012 at 08:16 AM
BuzMart - "Is their any evidence at all that voter ID is to a ploy to lower the amount of minority voting?" Why did this REPUBLICAN Pennsylvania House Leader say the following: "In June, Pennsylvania House Majority Leader Mike Turzai listed off a number of legislative accomplishments. "Voter ID, which is going to allow Governor Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania: Done," Turzai said..." http://www.democracynow.org/2012/8/17/judge_upholds_penn_voter_id_law What does Turzai know that you don't? Never mind minorities, how about college students whose college ID is no good and who may lack a drivers license in the state they are attending school- whatever it is, statistically, guys like Turzai know why suppressing turn out harms Democrats. Why did REPUBLICAN Paul Weyrich, co-founder of heritage Foundation and "figurehead of the new Right" say this; "I don't want everybody to vote. Elections are not won by a majority of the people. They never have been from the beginning of our country and they are not now. As a matter of fact, our leverage in the elections quite candidly goes up as the voting populace goes down." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Weyrich Wherever have you been Buz?
David V. November 12, 2012 at 08:15 PM
1. That some countries have terrible systems of government has no bearing on what we ought to aspire to, and what we're by law entitled to have. 2. Efforts to require voter ID are highly suspicious. Why? Because, for starters, voter fraud is not a problem. The existence of widespread voter fraud, in fact, is a myth. See Jane Mayer's recent New Yorker piece on the creation of this myth. http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2012/10/29/121029fa_fact_mayer 3. If it's a myth, why have all these elaborate voter ID requirements? Who do they disproportionately keep from voting? The answer, yes, is poor and minority voters. Do the people who pass these unnecessary and pernicious voting requirements not know that? Sure, the requirements are facially neutral -- just as poll tax and literacy tests and grandfather clauses were a generation ago. But they doesn't make them any less an effort to keep poor, minority Democratic voters from casting ballots.
David V. November 12, 2012 at 08:33 PM
Buz, first you say you don't believe in global warming -- that the scientists of the world are wrong and even engaged in a fraud. Now you tell us that you don't think Republican voter suppression is real or racist. It's both. Come on, wake up to reality.
not Carl Peterson lll November 12, 2012 at 08:44 PM
If I had to bet, voter I'd would mean fewr Democrat votes. And from what I have read, extended voting time is a parallel battle. Although it would be nice to know that every vote counts, and counts once by verifying, applied voter ID would probably have a net positive for Republicans. If I had to bet, I would join Robert, and Dave that the motive of voter ID is a mechanical tactict . Both sides look and act whatever may help their team. As mentioned in your above posts , it would also negatively impact the number of poor and college students. The republicans want ID, the democrats want extended voting time---ying and yang of the same battle. Plainly said: voter ID = fewer Democrat votes. If voter ID meant more black votes for republicans, they would be just as much for it. It is a battle of tactics, and numbers. Although examples of racial predjudice can be made, this is not one that exemplifies it.
David V. November 12, 2012 at 09:01 PM
No, Buz. That's just not right. Imposing new voter ID requirements makes it more difficult for low-income, mostly minority voters to cast ballots. Extended voting hours helps promote voting, esp. among people who would otherwise have to wait in long lines to vote (see Florida; and guess who had to wait in the lines once extended voting days/hours were cut?) Being against either of these things constitutes an effort to suppress the vote -- blatantly. The whole thing is coded racially. No one is going to come out and say, "We're doing this for racist reasons." Of course not. If you require that to conclude that there is a racial problem, then of course you'll come up empty. But it's asking far too much to express such explicitness. Racism works in far more subtle, coded channels. Though, really, this isn't very subtle at all.
not Carl Peterson lll November 12, 2012 at 09:33 PM
Dave you can call, and argue the ying and yang of the mechanics of the parties. If a whole host of different people are affected, picking one sub- group and saying that is the target does not fly. Let's follow through with your train of thought ... Theoretically, if requiring voter ID meant that more black people voted Republican then the Republican would fight it because they hate black people more than winni g an election. Now if you want REAL suppression, telling women and minorities that half the country hates them, and if you don't vote for democrats, you will be back in chains, ... Etc .. The affect of this scare tactic completely takes the power away from those voters. Once the lip service is done, and the votes are i n pocket, they can be ignored. I realized the last paragraph
not Carl Peterson lll November 12, 2012 at 09:38 PM
(oops) accidently pressed submit) Continued... Last paragraph is a far distance for you. So as for the original topic You can't pick a sub group and claim it the cause. If you read my posts, I never said racism does not exist. However, the race- baiting tactics by some does harm to all
David V. November 12, 2012 at 09:44 PM
I'm hopelessly confused as to what your argument is. There is no "ying and yang" here. There are no ambiguities. Nothing is nearly as complicated as you're making it out to to be. Your premise, that "requiring voter ID meant that more black people voted Republican" is way off. No one is talking about voter ID causing people to vote Republican. Rather, the efforts by Republican politicians in swing states to change the voting laws to shorten voting time and to require ID to combat non-existent fraud means *that more poor and minority voters don't get the chance to vote,* as they would in the absence of these changes. And since these folks traditionally vote democratic, that means fewer democratic votes are cast. It also means that a group has been effectively disenfranched, just as in the days of poll taxes and literacy taxes and grandfather clauses. It's disenfranchisement that's the evil here -- an evil that is alive and well in states such as Ohio and Florida, and that both has to stop and has to be recognized for what it is -- a shameful effort to take, as a practical matter, the vote away from our most vulnerable citizen.
not Carl Peterson lll November 12, 2012 at 09:49 PM
This discussion is getting a bit silly Your continued attempt to brand Republicans as racist is insulting and is based on pop culture scare tactics of the left One more time. Yes, racism exists. Trying to find that dog whistle that republicans can hear is a very tired argument. How about something more fun like responding to the global warming issue. I believe I asked earlier if you are willing to hear a concise reason for my views. Your comment just stated your opinion of my view, not a willingness to read it......
David V. November 12, 2012 at 09:59 PM
1. There is no doubt that global warming is real and a dire threat to the planet. We need aggressive policy action to address it, if we wish to heal the earth and prevent the seas from rising yet more. About this there is no valid scientific debate. Until the various academies of science change their positions, I'm wedded to 2. No, there are no "pop culture scare tactics of the left." There is reality, and there are the leaders of the Republican party, such as Karl Rove, who have famously mocked those of us who live in a reality based community. I wish the Republican party would focus more on reality, so it could offer real solutions to our very real problems. Having a debate over real solutions would improve our politics immensely. I'm done.
KMD November 12, 2012 at 10:13 PM
Washington D.C. and all her elite leaders can be proud they have the WEALTHIEST and the POOREST Americans in the nation living in Wash DC. DC also boasts the highest crime rate and the strictest gun controls in the country. Quite the resume for our leaders wouldn't you say...
not Carl Peterson lll November 12, 2012 at 10:13 PM
Dave " I AM DONE", you state. Hmmm. Do not be afraid. I am not here to have a gotcha monemnt. You wanted to paint the country and republicans in a horrible way, and could not deal with the logic of my response wich was a neutral party answer. You state you are closed minded to the climate thing, as well. Real scientists never state case closed. You are "done". OK I agree you are done. I will go on learning and growing. It is what allows me to see behind the the front page. It also allows me to be wrong. Not having ego attatched to a view opens the door to the whole universe of knowledge. I value facts and truth above my need to feel correct at every point in time of my learning proccess. Good luck
not Carl Peterson lll November 12, 2012 at 10:21 PM
Dave, I understand you are confused. Read the word "theoretically". You are tripping over yourself as you insult the country. OK Yes I will droip it as you state you are done Nothing more i can do to help you.
KMD November 12, 2012 at 10:42 PM
This is a funny response from David V after he sent me a link from an "award winning writer or author" that Voter Fraud is a myth.What makes me laugh about David's voter I.D. argument for the poor is U.S. taxpayers are paying for birth control, killing unborn children, cell phones, subsidizing college loans, house loans, new cars and on and on, but somehow we can't find a way to subsidize the cost of a U.S. citizens i.d. to protect the most important right of all, the right to vote. Doesn't that strike you as odd? Here's some voter fraud news from the Allen West campaign http://townhall.com/tipsheet/heatherginsberg/2012/11/10/breaking_massive_voter_fraud_in_st_lucie_county_florid (: Condescending remarks are David V's hallmark. You should just know, If DAVID V says it is so, than IT IS according to him. There are no other credible sources or perspectives worth pursuing outside of his own. His reality is the ONLY reality that matters... to him. Best to ignore him. Checks and balances. Let's pray they work and the Bamster can't operate any further around the constitution than he already has.
Robert Defulgentiis November 12, 2012 at 10:43 PM
Buzmart - "Now if you want REAL suppression, telling women and minorities that half the country hates them, and if you don't vote for democrats, you will be back in chains" This is the Rove way - take an issue that is your weakness (i.e. lots of press about how Republican-led states are suppressing voter turn out in Democratic areas and among Democratic voters), appropriate the issue or term ("voter suppression") and spin it in your direction, thus obfuscating the entire issue among the electorate. Stating a POV about any issue - Romney is a plutocrat, Republicans are waging a war against unions, a war against women's health rights - which may strike voters as "true" and thus depress their turn out to vote for Republicans IS NOT VOTER SUPPRESSION. It's political discourse. Creating physical barriers to voting - fewer machines, fewer locations, fewer hours, more new and last-minute requirements (that disproportionately effect certain voting groups) suggestions of punishment for voting incorrectly - THAT'S VOTER SUPPRESSION. Why did that Republican leader in PA say enacting the PA voter ID law would = creating a victory for Romney in his state? What did he know about how this law would disproportionately effect DEM leaning/likely voters?
Robert Defulgentiis November 12, 2012 at 10:49 PM
BuzMart - "You wanted to paint the country and republicans in a horrible way.." Why did high-level REPUBLICAN Lawrence Wilkerson go out of his way to speak LOUDLY and UNAMBIGUOSLY about his belief that "my party (i.e. Republicans) is full of racists"? Isn't he the one "painting" Republicans in a horrible way?
David V. November 12, 2012 at 11:00 PM
KMD, I don't understand why you feel the need to insult me. I have consistently provided reasoned arguments. What makes that "arrogant"? I have also cited credible sources -- Jane Meyer of the New Yorker is not some hack; she's a fine journalist, whose piece has been fact-checked by the New Yorker's fact checking department. If you have a quibble with her claims, I'm all ears, as is the New Yorker. By contrast, the Allen West campaign site is of course not a credible source (never mind that the link your provide doesn't work). There is nothing the least bit condescending about either my argument or my sources.
David V. November 12, 2012 at 11:04 PM
Buz, just to be crystal clear: I am not insulting the country. That is an absurd charge. I am pointing out that voter fraud is a myth; that voter suppression efforts took place in this election; that such efforts are akin to poll taxes, grandfather clauses, and literacy tests; and that both types of voter suppression efforts have serious disparate racial impacts that are offensive to democracy and to equality. All of us should united around the idea that these voter suppression efforts are offensive and illegitimate and have to stop. Full stop.
Robert Defulgentiis November 12, 2012 at 11:05 PM
BuzMart - "It is a battle of tactics, and numbers. Although examples of racial predjudice can be made, this is not one that exemplifies it." Well - this is tough to tell, though ((and I hate to keep bringing it up BUt it was stunning in its directness and power)) Lawrence Wilkerson's SUPER LOUD indictment of the Republican Party as racist is something ya'll should take seriously. Did the Ohio AG cut early voting in NE Ohio because NE Ohio votes 70% for DEMS or because areas of NE have a high density of black voters? If NE Ohio voted 70% DEMS but was all white would Republicans cut early voting just the same? If everyone knows that urban areas across America have a higher density of blacks and urban areas tend to vote DEM and efforts are made to make it harder to vote in those areas is it because they are black or pro DEM? Both? Why did Wilkerson make his explicit remarks? Maybe he hears and has heard things we don't.
not Carl Peterson lll November 12, 2012 at 11:06 PM
Robert, One mans comment on Schultz show... Oh brother!! Mr."they want you dead".Mr. they would rather your mother die and make money off her dead corpes" Mr. "They should rip his heart out". Mr." its a war on everything". Mr. "republicans are evil" Yes, the show to go on for crazy hate talk is the perfect venue for him, and just before an election. Another hollow attack onRepublicans and my country. and this is your main point of the basis for your argument? One more time.... Picking one sub group, blacks sub group of Democrats, to pick out as the main target of action has no logic. If you wan to continue to live in the past, and harm my countrty, its one heck of a horrible way to live. Now you and dave are like two peas in a pod here, and unable to move past YOUR prejudice. Please stop your hate speech. I think you need sensativity training....Where Gloria Alred when you need her.........
David V. November 12, 2012 at 11:10 PM
Buz, may I refer you once again to Steven Hahn's article in the NYT on the persistence of racism. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/11/opinion/sunday/political-racism-in-the-age-of-obama.html?pagewanted=all Racism is subtler these days than before, but our past isn't past. Far from it. Racism persists. It has to be watched carefully and called out if we ever have a prayer of overcoming it. One way to do that is to call the voter suppression efforts what they are: racist. Partisan, yes, but also racist.
detrich November 12, 2012 at 11:11 PM
for what it's worth, i'd like to point out that the problems with the current republican party is that they have completely separated themselves away from true, core republican values. they've undermined the great republican presidents like reagan and of lincoln, who fought bigotry to free the slaves and promote democracy around the world.... i don't think that "core republican values" are to hate gays/ women/ immigrants/ the poor and to be stingy about gov't programs etc. that is simply not true and an unfair generalization and manipulation of facts. i think the current republican party has just been inundated with selfish people who have warped and turned the party into serving their own warped agendas, which has sunk the party away from its true, core values... i think that core republican values are about valuing life and personal liberties; promoting/ rewarding hard work & equal opportunities; creating a fair/ open economy with only as much gov't regulation as required; promoting a lean/ efficient/ fiscally-responsible and accountable gov't; facilitating steady economic growth; overseeing strong foreign policies; and promoting conservative judicial activism etc. until the republican party gets a new, younger crop of leaders who can get rid of all the rats in there, they will continue to go downhill and pollute our democracy. but, that doesn't mean that the ideologies of the republican party itself are bad. anyhow, that's just how i see it...
David V. November 12, 2012 at 11:26 PM
Hear, hear! Let's have a Republican party that offers real solutions to real problems, to compete with the Democrat's proposed solutions. We'd have a better political system for it.
not Carl Peterson lll November 12, 2012 at 11:26 PM
Hi Detrich, Did you have a grandmother,in the in the movies? I am interested to know what the....Warped and turning the party into to serving their own agendas is refers to. I won't be back until later. Thanks
Robert Defulgentiis November 12, 2012 at 11:52 PM
BuzMart - "One mans comment on Schultz show.." I referenced two people in this discussion and THEIR words/POVS...not Ed Schultz's or anybody else's. #1 Paul M. Weyrich was an American conservative political activist and commentator, most notable as a figurehead of the New Right. He co-founded the Heritage Foundation.. AND HE SAID - "I don't want everybody to vote. Elections are not won by a majority of the people. They never have been from the beginning of our country and they are not now. As a matter of fact, our leverage in the elections quite candidly goes up as the voting populace goes down." #2 Lawrence B. "Larry" Wilkerson is a retired United States Army Colonel and former chief of staff to United States Secretary of State Colin Powell (and a WHITE Republican) + Wilkerson is a visiting professor at the College of William & Mary, teaching courses on U.S. national security. He was a Professorial Lecturer in the Honors Program at the George Washington University...AND HE SAID - "My party, unfortunately, is the bastion of those people, not all of them but most of them, who are still basing their decisions on race. Let me just be candid: My party is full of racists." Talk about them and THEIR WORDS...not about Ed Schultz.
not Carl Peterson lll November 13, 2012 at 02:40 AM
Robert del, One man on the most attack cable show less than 72 hours before the election. One man talking about getting or not getting people to vote. ======equals zero facts. Some people keep throwing spaghetti on the wall to see what sticks. You keep throwing the same cold noodle that is lined with oil. 93 percent of white people voted for the white candidate..........oh I am sorry, that reversed. 93 percent of blacks voted for Obama. Obama won because of the white vote As I go through life here in California, I am surrounded by, and reminded every day that I must hate people of color, I don't care about the poor, old, woman I am mean, evil..... A person does not wake up and decide to join a minority party so that his fellow community members hate him. Your prejudice against Republicans has grown old. I am tired of your mean spirit of me, a minority... a republican. I have to fight every single day hateful closed mined people like you who hate for no logical reason, just a simple predudice. You attempt to pontificate some kind of righteous indignation of being on the side of those who can not defend themselves. In reality you are a bully who takes pleasure in castigating and spitting out lies that harm everyone. You have no ability to see beyond your hate with logic. You have no positive reason to be hurting me, our country, and fellow humans. I will follow you, and any article you write, and expose your hate and prejudice.
Robert Defulgentiis November 13, 2012 at 03:17 AM
BuzMart - "You have no positive reason to be hurting me, our country, and fellow humans. I will follow you, and any article you write, and expose your hate and prejudice." As some very famous philosopher I'm sure once said - "oye"
not Carl Peterson lll November 13, 2012 at 08:00 AM
"oye" ok that was almost funny Speaking of funny,... It's ok now. I got my dog whistle marching orders. Shhhhh.. We're moving to Texas. Texas has well over the amount needed to legally file separation papers that the fed legally has to respond to. So anyway we're gonna finally make Texas a country, where we will have our base for the takeover of... The... ( can't link the words or the fed easdropping computers will capture this) --U...S...Then we are back to world domination, and dogs on the tops of cars, and not on your dinner plates. Gotta go. My tin hat is picking up a new white republican dog whistle directive. (the preceding was fun sarcastic humor).....except the Texas part is a real news story. No, I am not gonna follow your writings, but maybe a hard time once in a while

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