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Tuesday, September 27, 2016

The oversimplification of Romney’s economic plan avoids calling it out for what it really is: an extension of failed Republican economic policies.

In the home of Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick this week, The New York Times reported that President Obama described Romney’s campaign attacks, which claim all current problems are “the fault of the guy in the White House,” as “an elegant message. It happens to be wrong.”

This is as clear an example as we have of Obama’s inability to make a powerful message in a few words. Sounding professorial, he uses the word “elegant” as if referring to a mathematical proof. Clean and simple, I suppose. But to many a listener and reader, elegant only has positive connotations. Why this loftiness when plain, honest, focused language will do the job?

The fact is that almost all of our current situation is a result of economic policies that were put into effect before Obama took office. Not only is Romney’s message not elegant, but his economic plan will boldly extend these failed policies. His central message is simplistic, ignorant, and, to use a lofty word, ahistorical. In actuality, the plan has been underway since the 1980s and even before, and look where it’s gotten us. It serves the interests of the wealthy very well, but has it served America at all? It’s not the collapse of the welfare state, but the ravages of a rising oligarchy, that are undoing America.

Which brings me to another New York Times piece, Friday’s David Brooks column. Brooks’s methodology as a “thinker” is to develop arguments that he knows will sound plausible to his readers and maybe to a significant swatch of centrists. He is good at these over-simplifications. The column is as unaware or deliberately neglectful of history as ever. What Democrats don’t understand is that the system is broken, he says. Republicans understand this and want to return us to some early (if mythological) economic state. The welfare state is on the cusp of failing; he quotes a Weekly Standard piece on this idea that he thinks definitive. This welfare model, he goes on, “favors security over risk, comfort over effort, stability over innovation.”

  • jarheadgene

    Here Here…..like the writer…I say…GO FOR IT ! Mr. President. reach for the brass ring. Our country need Harry Truman again….not Herbert Hoover. And Mitch McConnell needs to be exposed for the how bought off he is by BIG OIL. Hit the BULLY PIT hard and expose Congress and Senate for the do nothing corrupt scum they can be, tell them it is time to get to WORK, their free ride is over they may not be listening but America is. We know they have been listening to the 1% too much. THE 99% need to let their voices be heard.

  • It Works Only For The 1% Like Romney And His Handlers The Koch Brothers That’s Why They Keep Using It!! Trickle Down Is Only Rich Men Pissing On Your Head Telling You It’s Raining (Money)!!

    • You beat me to the punch. The problem with their logic is that a trickle can only tickle. It isn’t enough income to pay the bills’ full sum.

      • jlelandthomas

        Your are right Kinklu .I worked for a man years ago that beleived this in our little town .Even in our little town this did not work as it left the big business with money and strength and it controled the small business just one example in the winter the nortern people come down a local but big hardware store starts having specials on what they use the Yanks but when they leave now this is after it caused the little or home town hardware to close up when thay leave they no specials for the locals and my boss called them on this and they would not respond I really laughted at him as he still beleived that it works it works the way they want it to work after they run the little guy out and now we have a Wal Mart GOD help us all and their MEAT STINK’S .It is bought by the truck load and they use carbon dioxide to recolor the meat. I cannot find a Butcher shop open anymore so I have to pay Winn Dixie’s price for good meat I am being forced to become a vegetarian so the little cattle man will disapeir soon I think no more Ma and Pa’s that have good wholsome food because the farmer’s market closed last year and we have to drive 50 miles one way to a market at 60 years old the stuff they add to kep food is killing us .We are getting into big trouble and the Repubs think it not serous because they are sitting comfy on their fake lizard covered chair’s telling their neighbor’s it’s real Lizard skin.

    • jlelandthomas

      A men FERN A_MEN you tell it like it is this is their way if taking over leaving no indepence for the human race

  • Romney, Bush, McConnell, Koch Brothers Or The American Taliban Members Never Gave A Damn About America Nor It’s People!! POWER CONTROL AND MONEY IS THE ONLY THING THEY SEEK AND CARE ABOUT!!! WAKE UP PEOPLE Before It’s Too Late!!!

    • You sound like my alter ego! Acquisitiveness is a good stimulant but, after a lifetime, it tends to transmute into pure greed if not carefully controlled.

  • Trickle down. How many cars does a person with assets over a million dollars own. If a million dollars was the total of the yearly incomes of twenty families, how many cars would they own. A he@^of a lot more then one person. Trickle down DOESN’T WORK. The economy of this country is based on the middle class, they have jobs, they get paid, they spend money. That means MORE people will have jobs. Drive this country into poverty, thank you for pushing the trickle down b$ into people’s faces so hard they believe it. The economy crashes, unemployment blows through the roof, the number of families in this country with assets over $1 million increased more the 14% over the last three years. Try and convince me that helped the general population. Look up how many families worth more then $1 million paid ZERO in taxes last years. Who sets up the taxes, the public? It’s our money. not a chance. Look up how many in Congress are worth over $1 million. How many own stock in major corporations,

    “National Voter Turnout in Federal Elections 1960-2010”
    That’s not their fault.

  • jlelandthomas

    I agree with every one in this collumn.Fern hit the nail on the head and I am glad it was said speaking the mind of a real American .The working class does determen most of the economy when they are not working the buck stops here because the rich do not spend money .Jed Clampet spoke the truth about his banker all the time little did we know that he was actually speaking the real truth .Romney just wants in to RAPE America the same as Bush used America to get the one that threatened his family and never even spoke of Ben Laden at all Sadan was all that he wanted because of the threat he made to old amn Bush and then left Ben the child murderer molester queer pile of less than dog Du did the real damage on 911 to Obama to get and then said he was not going to do any thing about what was coming as he was aware of the up and coming depression he sulled like a and true Elephant sitting down in his own pile of stinking Sh?? like the drung he really is .If you sober up a drung and he doesn’t change you still have dry drunk if you can;t understand try leading horse to water and make him drink if he aint thursty it will not work just as he really was not in his heart a President he was a rip off dry drunk

  • quasm

    Mr. Madrick;

    The government action you call for Pres. Obama to trumpet is not compassionate. It compulsion used by those in power to promote their own ends. The current administration is using it to buy votes to remain in power by rewarding those who want to live off other’s efforts. A free society provides the best opportunity for all its members.

    Dik Thurston
    Colorado Springs

    • William Deutschlander

      quasm – the “CURRENT ADMINISTRATION” saved your a-s!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      The previous REPUBLICAN ADMIN. kicked you in the a-s!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Sad part is you can not see the handwriting on the wall!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • jlelandthomas

      quasm is that some kind of new orgasm .and which rock were you born under some thing got us to this country it was not a Mitt Romney or Raygon it was peope who wanted a life with out this kind of rich man control why don’t you go back to England in the 1700’s where you came from and leave us alone we want to be equal and feed our family but people like Bush gave it the rich for us to pay for it .You are doing the same ole thing expecting different results you can’t even see your hand in front of your face if people like Mitt Romney get in contral then we are head back to Hitler days look at his record dummy .I hold my guns and stand fire that Romney is a Socialist wating for contral we can’t afford him he is a dush bag in my book and it looks like other too.

    • jlelandthomas

      Are you talking about Mitt Romney Or George Bush I’m confused .I think you are too .As the fact’s are weighted out Obama is the best at that we have according to the way you are putting it .How can you talk about free society when society is paying the way for the Repubs by paying their taxes and other hidden agenda’s we are since Bush sighned it in .The only thing I see Obama doing is signing into our society is a free society to be as it should be all are equal if they qualify in this country to be a member and vote as they see fit .
      Why isn’t Mitt Romney being investigated? His father was a Mexican turned Mormon and Mitt Romney was born here they say. I haven’t seen any proof of that but he isn’t under fire . I guess their is a place called Romneychusit’s
      The GOP or some part of them are saying Obama was born here but not born a naturalized citizen because his father is from Africa another country or some where and was not from the US. What is the difference they both were born here Mitt Romney’s Father is a Mexican turned Morman .Isn’t Hawai still a state like Romneychusit’s .
      I am just a confused old Redneck that some one said last week that I was not voting for Obama because I did not want black’s in the white house because I am from the south funny I voted for him the first time and I will vote my will again even though I am an old red neck from the south .

  • William Deutschlander

    ROMNEY”S MESSAGE, Lets do the same thing again and again and see if we can get a different result!

    It did bnot work under Reagan ( worst recession in history 1981, 82, 83 ).

    It sure as hell did not work under GW Bush ( the GREAT RECESSION of 2008, will take 10 to 15 years to recover ).

    Wake the hell up Americans!

    Most of Romney’s advisors, who would morph into his cabinet, are from the G W Bush cabinet, a different result from the same losing team???????????????????????????

  • Ed

    The president has no idea how to present ideas to the American people in a manner that will excite them. He should learn a little more street talk. I don’t mean “dese and Dios” or h”Hey Bro”.I mean he should realise he is not trying to rouse academics or classicists. He must reach the common man. He has to learn to use anologies, such as FDR’s “Suppose your neighbors house was on fire and he wanted to use your house; now you don’t want money, you want the fire out and the neighbor to return your hose”. With these lines FDR convinced the American people to accept lend lease which kept England afloat until Japan and Germany forced as to go to war.

  • greghilbert

    I strongly agree that “trickle-down” has served only to transfer more wealth to the wealthy, and that Romney would work to expand it. That’s what we expect of a Repub. Trouble is, as the author notes, the voice from the bully pulpit remains weak, and his actions duplicitous. Obama/Dems failed to do anything whatsoever to reverse trickle-down when they had the White House and a majority in both houses of Congress. The wealthy still have their tax cut and corporations their subsidies and tax dodges. Obama gave banksters a pass and acquiesced to toothless financial reform, and then put Social Security on the table. He is giving job-exporting corporations still more “free trade” deals, and supports spending as much on Defense as the entire rest of the world combined. Most of the stimulus spending went to jobs for teachers and other govt employees — which had little staying power — and now the Obama/Dem mantra is not repeal of tax cuts for the wealthy and job-exporting corporations but spending on teachers and other govt employees. The latter plays into the hands of the wealthy looking to profit from privatization (read corporatization) of education and other government services. Spending more on govt employees is seen as another form of trickle-down insofar as many impoverished private-sector taxpayers are concerned, and so austerity gains momentum. In short, many are being impoverished by the combined effects of Repub/Dem policies and politics. My hope is that a new non-partisan coalition will adopt a battle cry of “Repeal Tax Cuts for the Wealthy”. It lends itself to ferocity, it is something a majority of Americans already support, and it helps build an exit ramp off the Repub/Dem one-way highway to hell.

    • Have You Not Been Paying Attention!! The American Taliban Congress Have Been Blocking Everything Good He Has Been Trying To Do!!! He Only Extended Them To Help The American People First Time They Tried To Shut Down The Whole Government, Second Time They Was Going To Let All These Unemployed People Just Go Without Any Money!! So Make Sure You Pay Attention To What Going On Before You Post!!!

      • greghilbert

        Fern, in Reply to your Reply to my Comment: your posting (of exactly the same message to me that you originally posted in response to the article) doesn’t make a great case as to your ability to discriminate. But hey, I do play close attention, and the truth is that comments like yours bring me sympathetic sadness for reasons some may appreciate, while you and others may not. I am mindful that you are a person.

        I am well aware that Repubs were holding hostage (1) the extension of unemployment benefits and (2) extension of tax cuts for the NON-wealthy. Suffice it to say I paid close attention before, during and after that awful December. I struggled with the implications of my conclusions, and still do, but I came to them in good conscience.

        I realize that you believe as you do with purity of conviction, and wish you well. If there are “enemies” to despise, and I agree there are, at least it can be said the we have enemies in common.

  • howa4x

    The true welfare state involves subsidys to corporations that are far more costly than any benefits paid out the the elderly and poor. Just look at the allowable cost over runs in weapon systems fro Grumman, Lockeed, and that other major welfare client:Haliburton which was paid a whopping 6 billion for Iraq. Or how about the farm subsidy for corn oil that is helping fuel the obesity epidemic, or for ethanol, or how about paying the major oil companies to drill. I’m definately for ending the welfare state for these groups. Imagine the savings?. People are always talking about welfare but back in the 80’s Texas Instruments, (remember Ross Perot?)was paid 34 million to run the Texas welfare system, so is that added in to what welfare costs?. If the republicans where really fiscally responsible they would start here. When they want to cut benefits for the poor they should carry a cross with them when they make the vote.That way they can show what really good Christians they are.

  • jlelandthomas

    I know you guys and girls get tired og hering from me but i acn’t stand it when people use lies to gain power .
    I just got through searching to find out about the comment that Hillary is going vote at the UN to stop gun owners in the US .That was far out stretched lie it came up and she said that she doent have the power to do that .Also even if I did it would have to go to the senate and win by 2/3 ds vote and go to supreme jsutus and court and then to the American people for which it is our constititopn that we do have right to bare arms and to protect our selves .I agree that it is a move for those few get their foot in the door again .
    I think that we need to put a stop to the abuse of it coming up so much by posing limits on what and how often it can be brought in any manner in this fashion for any point of gain like money power or senate seats
    I am real tired of the real lie’s and this one that come up to often .At same time I am writing the news came on about a man being killed by for gun men braking into his home and yelling Police they shot him in the chest and killed him he had camera showing them kicking in the door of his home he had a gun and hesitated because the cheap craps yelled Police their gun killed not his is the point had he been able to figure out the truth ib time he would be alive and maybe a couple of them would be dead and people are confused on how to protect them selves because it is always in contraversy the Police should not be able to use this tactic to inter a place of residence either as they are almost alway’s in contral
    Had it been the Police and he shot not believing them they would have unloaded on him out of revenge .this might not be the place to sound off but I did it any way .Why should they live and he die while in fear of breaking the law

  • ijac234

    Romney’s sound bites remind me of a line I heard in a movie one time.Romney is telling folks what is wrong with this country and puts the blame on who he thinks is responsible.Romney can’t tell you how to fix it because he dosen’t know how.All Romney is doing is utting fear in the minds of voters and that’s all he can do.

  • alumahead

    If you’re not part of the solution, you’re a Republican.