Do the Math

The President’s proposals must be pretty good. I went to Firedoglake to find out in what ways I should be disappointed, and instead I found David Dayen admitting it doesn’t suck as much as he expected it to.

The money line:

“Either we have to ask the wealthy to pay their fair share, or we have to ask seniors to pay more for medicare, or gut education,” he continued. “This is not class warfare. It’s Math.”

Ooo, take that, Frank Luntz.

The President also vows to veto any deficit reduction bill that does not include tax increases. HOO-yah.

Best of all, Hillary Clinton’s former “strategist” Mark Penn hates it.

Barack Obama is careening down the wrong path towards re-election.

He should be working as a president, not a candidate.

He should be claiming the vital center, not abandoning it.

He should be holding down taxes rather than raising them.

He should be mastering the global economy, not running away from it.

And most of all, he should be bringing the country together rather than dividing it through class warfare.

Really, this is almost as good a predictor of success as being trashed by William Kristol. Four more years! See also Steve Benen.

11 thoughts on “Do the Math

  1. Penn’s comments are so lame, so pitiful, so vague that I can conclude Obama’s opponents haven’t a leg to stand on in opposing his budget plan.

    And, when did ‘class warfare’ become, what, frightening, scary, ominous, doomsday right around the corner? Class warfare has been around since the beginning of civilization. Intrinsic to human nature is the need to be ‘better,’ to be richer, to be smarter, to be more popular…there’s a very long list of ‘betters.’

    Perhaps the outrageously rich are afraid that the rest of us might discover that they’re at ‘war’ with the rest of us, thus are committed to keeping the term an unmentionable? That makes sense.

  2. Here’s my favorite paragraph by Penn:
    “America was mad at George W. Bush for increased spending, taking his eye off the economic ball and most of all for a war they thought should never have been fought. America is today just as upset with Obama, who they elected to bring the parties together in the Reaganesque style he championed as a candidate and bring a new generation to government. Instead, they see a tax and spend liberal trying to take taxes and spending to new levels. The independents and upper middle class voters who were with him last time are abandoning him in droves.”

    Yes, Mark, it’s clearly Obama’s fault that he couldn’t Reaganesquely bring both parties together.
    What does it take to be a Democratic political strategist?
    I mean, besides a below 100 IQ, and a rolodex full of Republican talking points.

    And I guarantee that’s ALL we’re going to hear from now on – Obama is waging “class warfare!”
    I actually hope that they keep using the term.
    Maybe some of the ‘morans’ out there will finally realize that they’ve been collateral damage in a class war for a long, long time.

    I’m wondering if Luntz will try to put the class warfare term together with racist dog whistle words and call this ‘The New Civil War?’ or, maybe ‘Civil Warfare?’

  3. “Best of all, Hillary Clinton’s former “strategist” Mark Penn hates it’

    Wasn’t he the schmed who insinuated that Obama was a coke dealer during the 2008 election? Well I’d say he’s a reliable and un-biased voice of reason!

    Penn said: “Instead, they see a tax and spend liberal trying to take taxes and spending to new levels”

    Looks like somebody might be auditioning for a gig at FAUX as a democratic strategist ala- Dick (small black marks on my hands) Morris! Did Morris like the Diapers or was that Senator Vitter, I get confused sometimes.

    • Mark Penn was a great campaign strategist … for Obama. He totally screwed Senator Clinton’s campaign. She fumbled it away.

  4. Obama is hitting his stride…I’m glad to see that he’s keeping it up..He’s the only one out there offering a solution…and that’s what a president should be doing. I believe him and I trust him… Now if he would have had a backdrop of American flags and star spangled bunting while telling me how great I am as an American..Then I might feel like I was being played.
    Several posts back Biggerbox made a similar comment as Obama did in his speech.. biggerbox said…”We can’t cut our way to prosperity”..and Obama said, “We can’t cut our way out of this hole” Not verbatim..but paraphrased. Anyway, that thought stuck with me as being essential to finding a path out of current economic/unemployment situation. I’m glad to see that Obama has used that point because it’s simple yet meaningful if reflected upon..If people stop and think about that statement they’ll see it provides its own answer.

  5. I bet Paulie Ryan really had to put on his thinking cap to come up with the class warfare dodge.. It’s lameness shows desperation. But, I guess it’s not easy being a Young Gun and having to constantly come up with great ideas.

  6. I agree with Obama on his tax proposals, and hope he can get it through congress. I don’t expect that to be easy – the Republicans will fight it every inch of the way. There is nothing more sacred to them than tax cuts for the rich.

    Again, hate to be the cynical voice here, but wouldn’t Obama have gotten much of what he wanted simply by not renewing the Bush tax cuts? Yes, I know it was a “trade” – he got an (unfunded) extension to emergency unemployment benefits, and a brief pat on the back from Republicans before they resumed vilifying him the very next day. The funding had to come from borrowing, which added more fuel to the fire during the great “raise the debt ceiling” crisis, in which Obama had to accept cuts to programs he wanted. Had the Bush tax cuts not been extended, there would be funds available for unemployment benefits, a jobs program, and a good deal more.

  7. Had the Bush tax cuts not been extended, there would be funds available for unemployment benefits, a jobs program, and a good deal more.

    Theoretically, yes…but millions of people would have gone down the drain in the interim … and on top of that..The repugs are determined to crash the economy so that Obama appears to be a failed president. Congress would have to authorize “unemployment” benefits for people who are no longer elegible…that would translate into a massive welfare program once the continuity of receiving unemployment benefits was broken. Obama’s welfare state?

    There is no help for the bottom rungs on the economic ladder… Obama is the only barrier that stands between the repugs desire to beat me into destitution and my attempt to partake of the American dream.

  8. Wow. Mark Penn still exists? I’d have thought he’d have changed his name and gone to work on a fishing boat in Chile or something. Well, I guess his political acumen is just as fine as ever. I had to laugh out loud at that “claiming the vital center” bit. As if that isn’t exactly why we’ve gotten nowhere in digging our way out of this pit. “Vital center”. Ha! He’s a funny guy.

  9. Your Penn quote is rhythmic. It should be set to sad music. Generally I distrust arguments that try to hypnotize you.

  10. Obama is the only barrier that stands between the repugs desire to beat me into destitution and my attempt to partake of the American dream.

    Swami, I’m taking an unpopular viewpoint here, but what you wrote is not reassuring. 🙁

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