Browsing the archives for the Mittens category.


It’s Armistice Day

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American History, Armistice Day, holiday, Mittens

My Grandpa finally home from the Western Front, some time in the summer of 1919, with Granny and my Dad. (Look at all the crochet stuff! Granny used to crochet a cover for anything that stood still for more than ten minutes. I still have a shawl she crocheted stored away somewhere.)

ALso, too, do read Gary Wills, “What Romney Lost.”

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Trick or Treat

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disasters, natural and unnatural, Mittens, Obama Administration

Wow, the sun is out, the sky is blue. Haven’t seen than in a while. Still no heat, but it’s not that cold outside. Washed my hair in cold water and am now awake.

Anyhoo — more details are coming out about Mitt’s “relief” party.

The plan was for supporters to bring hurricane relief supplies to the event, and then deliver the bags of canned goods, packages of diapers, and cases of water bottles to the candidate, who would be perched behind a table along with a slew of volunteers and his Ohio right-hand man, Senator Rob Portman. To complete the project and photo-op, Romney would lead his crew in carrying the goods out of the gymnasium and into the Penske rental truck parked outside.

But the last-minute nature of the call for donations left some in the campaign concerned that they would end up with an empty truck. So the night before the event, campaign aides went to a local Wal Mart and spent $5,000 on granola bars, canned food, and diapers to put on display while they waited for donations to come in, according to one staffer. (The campaign confirmed that it “did donate supplies to the relief effort,” but would not specify how much it spent.)

Zombie Eyes had his own “relief” events in Wisconsin, where people had to hold up work so there’d be something left for the candidate to do when he showed up. No more washing clean pots!

This is so stupid. It may cost more to truck the stuff from Wisconsin than the stuff is worth. And I bet most of these donations are just going to sit on a loading dock for weeks until someone gets around to dealing with them. Eventually they’ll probably end up in a “free food” pantry for the poor after things are more back to normal.

And they really do have lots of grocery stores in New Jersey. Many are closed, but you can check the Twitter feed #njopen to find out where to get stuff. People without power or Internet need generators more than they need cans of corn.

Joan Walsh:

It’s impossible not to see that this storm has devastated Mitt Romney’s presidential candidacy. The response to the hurricane has seemed like one long dramatic Obama campaign commercial, a lesson in “We’re all in this together,” while Romney, the man who said he’d dismantle FEMA, flails on the sidelines….

…I can’t be sure whether or how much disaster relief will matter to swing state voters outside of the hurricane zone, but I am stranded (on a blue island) in the swing state of Wisconsin, where people are tuned in to the storm and the government response. No one can be reassured by Romney’s empty posturing. Unless there is some government-abetted or neglected further disaster, I think Obama will be reelected next Tuesday. Hurricane Sandy has reminded us what’s at stake.

Alec MacGillis:

… to the extent that the race was still an open question, with some voters still making up their minds or willing to change them at the last instant, it is hard not to believe that the storm has helped the president. Put simply, it has brought the race back closer to first principles. For most of the year, Obama had successfully framed the election as a choice between two approaches, one favoring the Bain Capital upper crust, the other geared toward the broad middle—the 99 percent and, yes, the 47 percent.

We’ve still got SIX DAYS to go. By this weekend, people still without power (or hot water!) will be very cranky, and Fox News will be talking about “Obama’s Katrina.” So the President has to stay on his toes. But right now, from here, Sandy looks like “Mitt’s Waterloo.”

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Stuff to Read and Watch

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Mittens

I need to crank out as much of the work I get paid for as I can this weekend, in case Frankenstorm knocks out the power. But here are some links to other stuff –

Righties have come up with a new excuse for being outraged over Benghazi. John Cole smacks them down.

Charles Blow argues that we know Romney by the company he keeps.

Remembering the time Mittens lied under oath.

Good segment from last night’s Maddow:

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Another video:

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Mitt Romney on Leadership

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Mittens
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Reality and Its Detractors

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elections, Mittens, Wingnuts Being Wingnuts

There possibly is no clearer measure of the difference between the U.S. Right and Left than the way we react to bad news. Righties immediately scream that the whatever-they-don’t-like is a lie, because it doesn’t fit what they think reality is supposed to be. And they blame somebody else, usually news media, or Democrats, or anybody but them. The whatever-it-is is never their fault.

Lefties accept the reality, sometimes perceiving the reality as even worse than it is. Then we blame ourselves (or at least each other), and form circular firing squads.

(It really does resemble the dynamics of domestic abuse situations, in which the abuser is perpetually flying into rages because the world isn’t the way he (or she) wants it to be. And then he (or she) concocts some reason to blame the significant other, or the kids, and takes the rage out on them. The abusee, all too often, blames her/himself and accepts the abuse.)

This week a Gallup daily tracking poll showed a significant lead for Mitt Romney. Nate Silver calmly and rationally explains why there is reason to think the Gallup poll is wrong. In a nutshell, the Gallup daily tracking poll has a history of swinging wildly in ways that don’t show up in other polls, and whenever that happens Gallup usually is wrong. See Nate for the wonky details; Business Insider provides a simplified version of what Nate wrote for those of us who don’t speak wonk.

Predictable headlines from rightie blogs:

“Nate Silver Blows Gasket as Gallup Shows Romney Pulling Away in the Presidential Horse Race” (American Power)

“Nate Silver Asks: Whose Shark Is This, and Why Do I Feel a Need to Jump It?” (The Other McCain)

“Romney Surges In Polls, Nate Silver Hardest Hit” (The Lonely Conservative).

That last headline is especially off, because the other polls, as in plural, are mostly showing Obama making a small gain over Romney (see also Sam Wang’s latest figures). It’s just the Gallup poll that shows a “surge.” Oh, and a Pew poll taken before the Tuesday debate shows Romney looking better on foreign policy. But that’s about it.

Speaking of foreign policy, Mittens hasn’t been talking about Libya lately. I wonder why?

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Right-Wing Conspiracies and Mitt’s Debate Disaster

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Mittens, Obama Administration

First-rate rant from Rachel last night.

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

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Mitt’s Mendacious Math

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Mittens

Mitt has a five-point plan that will create 12 million jobs in four years. He says this over and over. And multiple headlines today say Mitt’s math is malarkey.

Dana Milbank wrote, “the source the Romney campaign provided for the jobs figure was a trio of studies that either didn’t directly analyze Romney’s policies or were based on longer time horizons than four years.”

In brief, Milbank says that (a) some independent economists think that if the economy stays on its current trajectory, it will add 12 million new jobs in the next four years, never mind who wins the election. And (b), those studies that the Romney camp claims to be about his particular plan don’t say what he says they say.

In a recent ad, Romney, speaking to the camera from a factory floor, says his “energy independence policy means more than 3 million new jobs,” his tax plan “creates 7 million more,” and “expanding trade, cracking down on China and improving job training takes us to over 12 million new jobs.”

But when Kessler asked for substantiation, the campaign referred him to a Rice University professor’s study for evidence that Romney’s tax plan would generate 7 million jobs — which turned out to be a 10-year number. The evidence for the energy policy creating 3 million jobs comes from a Citigroup Global Markets study that did not analyze Romney’s plan and was assuming an eight-year horizon. The remaining 2 million jobs, Kessler wrote, were justified by a 2011 International Trade Commission report that also didn’t analyze Romney policies.

See also Glenn Kessler (since when has Kessler given a Republican four pinnichios?), Joe Conason, and Don Lee in the Los Angeles Times.

I also like what E.J. Dionne says

Under pressure this time, the former Massachusetts governor displayed his least attractive sides. He engaged in pointless on-stage litigation of the debate rules. He repeatedly demonstrated his disrespect for both the president and Candy Crowley, the moderator. And Romney was just plain querulous when anyone dared question him about the gaping holes in his tax and budget plans.

Any high school debate coach would tell a student that declaring, “Believe me because I said so,” is not an argument. Yet Romney confused biography with specificity and boasting with answering a straightforward inquiry. “Well, of course, they add up,” Romney insisted of his budget numbers. “I — I was — I was someone who ran businesses for 25 years, and balanced the budget. I ran the Olympics and balanced the budget.” Romney was saying: Trust me because I’m an important guy who has done important stuff. He gave his listeners no basis on which to verify the trust he demanded.

If you think about it, Romney probably hasn’t had to justify himself to anybody since he became head of Bain Capital in 1984. Must be a shock to his system.

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Membranous Mendacious Mitt, Morloch of the Midwest

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Mittens, Obama Administration

Charles Pierce:

Those of us who lived under the barely distinguishable leadership of Willard Romney in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (God save it!) know very well that the emotional membrane separating Lofty Willard from Snippy Willard is thin indeed, and that the membrane separating Snippy Willard from Dickhead Willard is well-nigh translucent. Both of those membranes were tested fully here on Tuesday night by the president, by Candy Crowley — who has clearly had enough of your bullshit, thank you very much — and by the simple fact that certain members of The Help tested the challenger’s ideas and found them wanting and, my dear young man, that simply is not done. And both of those membranes failed like rotting levees in a storm….

…But not even I expected Romney to let his entitled, Lord-of-the-Manor freak flag fly as proudly as he did on Tuesday night. He got in the president’s face. He got in Crowley’s face. That moment when he was hectoring the president about the president’s pension made him look like someone to whom the valet has brought the wrong Mercedes.

Really, I’m sorry I missed it. Pierce finished the post –

Put all those Romneys together and that’s what they sound like, even when they’re talking to the president of the United States. It’s the voice of the bloodless job-killer, the outsourcing Moloch of the industrial midwest, and the guy who poses with his Wall Street cronies with dollar bills in his mouth. People who claim to be interested in “character” should remember that.

The best part is not just that Mittens looked bad, but that he looked bad in ways that most folks who didn’t watch the debate are going to hear about. For example, the moment when Candy Crowley corrected Mitt on what the President said after the Benghazi Consulate attack was replayed on every news show on television, network and cable, I believe. It’s all over the Web as well. You’d have to be cloistered to miss it.

The Right, of course, thinks Crowley was behaving disgracefully by not letting Mittens get away with lying. Some are still arguing that the President didn’t say the consulate attack was an act of terrorism in his Rose Garden speech. Oh, sure, he said,

No acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation, alter that character, or eclipse the light of the values that we stand for. Today we mourn four more Americans who represent the very best of the United States of America. We will not waver in our commitment to see that justice is done for this terrible act. And make no mistake, justice will be done.

… but, they are whining, he didn’t explicitly say “The attack on the Benghazi Consulate was a terrorist act.” When he said “acts of terror,” he might have been referring to the 9/11 attacks of eleven years ago. And he said “terror,” not “terrorism,” so it doesn’t count.

Seriously. That’s what they’re going with. And then they get mad when normal people make fun of them.

Reminds me of …

Update: Josh Marshall found another rightie quibble

Now Romney’s allies are trying to recover the fumble on his behalf by saying well, sure he uttered the word ‘terror’. But that’s just a word. Look at the context. He also mentioned the video. And videos don’t have anything to do with terror! In other words, but, but, but … the video!

More –

Through the lengthy and squalid effort of the Republican party and its press allies to exploit the attack last month in Libya, the centerpiece has been the alleged magical powers of the words ‘terror’ and ‘terrorist’. It’s reminiscent of Rudy Giuliani’s endless yakking in 2008 that the biggest problem with his Democratic opponents was that they didn’t say “9/11” enough, as though one grapples most effectively with the threats to the country by the endless repetition of buzzwords. … The Romney camp’s angle has been that Romney is Churchill incarnate because he’s saying terror, terror, terror and is too big a man to try to get a read on whether the video played any role.

Live by the buzzword, die by the buzzword. It’s been a nonsensical proposition from the start to imagine that foreign policy seriousness is defined by being the first one to hit the ‘terror’ buzzer like you’re a contestant on Jeopardy. But the Romney camp laid the trap. And tonight Mitt walked right into it.

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Veep Debate Live Blog

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Mittens, Obama-Biden

I refuse to listen to the pre-debate commentary on teevee, but you can begin commenting here if you like. I’ll start the live blog at 9 o’clock.

* Well, it’s 9 o’clock. Wish us luck.

* Joe Biden says the last thing we need is another war.

* There’s a split screen on MSNBC that shows Biden reacting to Ryan.

* I want Biden to call Ryan out for saying anyone is “apologizing for our values.”

* There is no subsidy of abortion in Obamacare.

* Well, Ryan was clear about something. He wants to criminalize abortion.

* Ryan is anti-abortion because of reason and science?

* I think Joe is doing well so far. I like the question to Ryan, how will you change minds in two months.

* 47 PERCENT! Joe got it in!

Sic ‘em, Joe. He’s on a roll.

Ryan is saying the economy is getting worse, and I don’t think that’s what people are feeling now.

Is Ryan even making sense now?

*Show me a policy!

WE DIDN’T SPEND MONEY ON ELECTRIC CARS IN FINLAND!

No, Social Security is not going bankrupt.

Sorry I’m not posting; I’m having a good time watching this.

Privatizing social security!

Who do you trust.

Oh, is Ryan leaving himself open.

No, he doesn’t have the specifics. He has a framework, no details.

Push him on the math.

How is American foreign policy “unraveling”? Does it seem that way?

Ryan is smacked down on Afghanistan.

Ryan is not making sense. We’re supposed to work with our allies but he doesn’t want to wait for allies.

If we don’t get to women’s issues there is going to be a of griping, but that would be the moderator’s fault.

Ah ha! abortion!

Joe said “forcible rape.”

47 PERCENT!

Ryan has been neither a convincing wonk nor a convincing salesman. He comes across as a callow little twerp.

Well, Chris Matthews is happy. Should everybody be happy?

* Twitter is alight with calls for Martha Raddatz to take over Meet the Press. And with that I will sign off for the night. See you tomorrow!

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Live Blog Tonight

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Mittens, Obama-Biden, Wingnuts Being Wingnuts

If you plan to watch the veep debate (beginning 9 pm eastern time), you’re welcome to hang out here for moral support. As before, I make no predictions. However, I do not make the assumptions that Captain Ed assumes we liberals are making.

Democrats are too quick to deride Ryan as a colorless wonk. They know he will bring an encyclopedic knowledge of policy, especially on budgets and entitlement programs, but assume that he will come across as bland and unemotional.

If that meathead has an encyclopedic knowledge of anything more complicated than mayonnaise, I’m Prince Harry.

Lately Zombie Eyes hasn’t even been faking it well, although I assume he is being drilled with misinformation he can use in place of actual facts. And when he’s on his game, he’s good at presenting a right-wing caricature of a policy wonk, so anything can happen tonight. But no, I am not concerned that I will be bored by Paulie’s emotional blandness.

The moderator will be Martha Raddatz, ABC News’s chief foreign correspondent. She has not moderated a debate before, so there is no way to know how she will do. However, after all the criticism leveled at Jim “the Marshmallow” Lehrer, I hope she will provide a bit more of an edge to the evening.

Speaking of debates, there was another Warren-Brown debate in Massachusetts last night, and from the descriptions I read Warren did very well and Brown is a jerk, although it seems he has backed off harping on Warren’s family heritage. Current polls have Warren ahead by 4 points.

Finally, the eternally pathetic Darrell Issa and his witchhunt hearings on Benghazi, eagerly trying to find political ammunition to use against the Obama Administration, accidentally blew the cover of a secret CIA base. Thanks loads, guys.

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