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October 29, 2008

Comments

Hilzoy, it's almost 2:00 am east coast time. What are you doing posting at this hour?

McCain is just returning to his socialist position of 2000:

During the 2000 campaign, on MSNBC’s “Hardball,” a young woman asked him why her father, a doctor, should be “penalized” by being “in a huge tax bracket.” McCain replied that “wealthy people can afford more” and that “the very wealthy, because they can afford tax lawyers and all kinds of loopholes, really don’t pay nearly as much as you think they do.” The exchange continued:
YOUNG WOMAN: Are we getting closer and closer to, like, socialism and stuff?. . .

MCCAIN: Here’s what I really believe: That when you reach a certain level of comfort, there’s nothing wrong with paying somewhat more.

The man is a hopeless socialist dreamer.

a limited^H^H^H^H^H^H^H nonexistent government

"Nonexistent" is the limiting case of limited.

On the spectrum between fatuity and humor, this posting reaches the 1% mark.

On the spectrum between fatuity and humor, this posting reaches the 1% mark.

1% fatuous, 99% funny?

Well done, hilzoy!

Thanks -

On the spectrum between fatuity and humor, this posting reaches the 1% mark.

Not sure what that means, but the fact that a major party candidate for president is guilty of uttering such fatuous inconsistent drivel isn't all that funny, really

"Nonexistent" is the limiting case of limited.

Whereas the pathological case of 'limited' is there being no government and then having gangs of armed folks running around shooting anyone who wants to start one.

1% fatuous, 99% funny?

a little bit of fatuity is necessary in all good pieces of writing. like marbling in a good steak, fatuity adds flavor, tenderness, and helps the overall piece from becoming too dry.

i try to never read anything with less than %0.5 fatuity.

Fatuity aside, you're right, of course. McCain has a lot of bad ideas that, if not socialist, are definitely statist and interventionist. Which is why the enthusiasm level for him, and for Obama, is marginal at best among people who will have to fund his or Obama's plans.

Which is why the enthusiasm level for him, and for Obama, is marginal at best among people who will have to fund his or Obama's plans.

speak for yourself.

Aye. Speak for yourself. I'll be doing my share of the funding, and I'm giddy.

Also: Cleek, why'd you do that? I can't stop thinking about steak and it's 10:00am.

When the wingnuts who are screaming about "socialism" start voting for Ron Paul or Bob Barr, I'll take them seriously. Otherwise, they're just saying "your team are poopy-heads".

I really wish that the neo-cons and tax-allergic fools would all move to Somalia so I don't have to.

Democrats should have used Milton Friedman against Reagan when he decided to run deficits instead of collect enough revenue to pay for his big government. Friedman rightly pointed out that deficits are nothing but deferred taxes. Raising spending is raising taxes, just not today.

Sometimes, such as in a recession, it makes a lot of sense to defer taxation, but Reagan and the Bushes and their craven congresses had no excuse. They had good enough economic times for most of their years to be paying for what they were buying. They are the ones who are completely responsible for the next tax increases, no one else.

Isn't there some difference between extraordinary measures to keep a victimized sector afloat due to past malfeasance; as opposed to turning the 'American Dream' into entitlement feeding frenzy to buy votes with no concern for killing the golden goose. Don't you sorta, kinda mostly agree with McCain, but continue to stoop below low to lead your choir? You betcha!

Isn't there some difference between extraordinary measures to keep a victimized sector afloat due to past malfeasance; as opposed to turning the 'American Dream' into entitlement feeding frenzy to buy votes with no concern for killing the golden goose.

Absolutely!

Which is why I'm voting for Obama. He navigates between those two polls quite nicely. He neither plans to lavish excess on corporate America or the wealthiest 2% among us, nor open an entitlement feeding frenzy that will kill the American Dream.

After 8 years of the Bush administration taking the "lavish excess on the wealthiest," the American Dream has been taking a beating. The country needs to return to a more balanced progressive tax system that we had in place during the Clinton administration.

Don't you sorta, kinda mostly agree with McCain

No, because he's backing more of the American Dream-killing Bush policies that redistributed wealth to the top in such concentrations not seen since the gilded age. Literally.

mmmmm... steak....

Actually, I think fatuousness is like the thin drizzle of strawberry on a piece of cheesecake.

as opposed to turning the 'American Dream' into entitlement feeding frenzy to buy votes with no concern for killing the golden goose.

mmmmmmmmmm..... goose!

Thanks -

keep a victimized sector afloat due to past malfeasance

Oxymoron alert! If the sector is sinking due to past malfeasance, they are hardly victims.

Is this election over yet?

All except for the crying, ugh.

And the gloatteral chortling.

Ugh -- five more days until the month-long drunken stupor of a contested election. It'll be awesome!

Oxymoron alert! If the sector is sinking due to past malfeasance, they are hardly victims.

Usually the entire sector suffers, even if only some of its members or even people outside the sector are the malefactors.

Not everyone in the housing market were speculators, fraudsters, con artists or self-deluding fools. Sadly, it is beyond anyone I am aware of to sort the wheat from that chaff.

Eric responds: "Which is why I'm voting for Obama. He navigates between those two polls quite nicely. He neither plans..."

Does he? Will he? How do you know? His skill, and it is a skill, and it is an admirable skill, is to make you fabricate and attach to him your own individual impressions without Him having to assume accountability for subsequent action in the future. What passes for gaffes these days is when Senators Biden and Schumer 'slip' and let reality slither out. Besides, a president doesn't lavish excess on anyone, now can they.

russell, is gander an equal morsel?

Does he? Will he? How do you know?

Judging by his record in office in Illinois and the US Senate. Judging by his proposals. Judging by his lengthy record discussing policy.

Now, it's possible that the guy makes a sharp turn to the Left after talking like a center-liberal, voting like a center-liberal and promising to govern like a center-liberal, but that would be unlikely.

Possible, but you'd have to make the alternative case.

If anything, people attached too much of a progressive mindset to him during the primary with Clinton (where she became "like Cheney" and "neocon light" and he was deemed the progressive choice - this despite her more progressive domestic agenda).

I wrote about this phenomenon at the time, so I'm not that worried about your implausible scenario.

Besides, a president doesn't lavish excess on anyone, now can they

Then why worry about President Obama!!!!

If you reply that he might have a complicit Congress, then I would reply that so did Bush so my original statement about his upward redistribution stands.

pin-yin:shi shi zao ying xiong

BBM, I have a lot better idea of Obama will do than of McCain. How do you know what he'll do, considering that he's constantly coming up with new gimmicky proposals that he hasn't thought through and that he's abandoned almost every position he had in 2000 in order to appeal to the base, including (as I said above) support for progressive income taxes (and support for not being insane enough to call them socialism).

I'm not for spreading my money to mortgage lenders. Quite a few of them frankly need to go under and what we certainly don't need is to reenable the foolishness of the last few years by keeping the really stupid ones afloat.

I'm also hearing rumors about a serious bailout of the not-so-big 3 automakers (more serious than what we gave them last week). Umm, no. Propping up really poorly run companies every 5 years or so for 30 years isn't a good model of government intervention. At this point I'd be much more ok with helping all the autoworkers over 50 to retire and giving all the rest some sort of medium sized government payout plus 2 years of unemployment to look for new jobs rather than let GM continue on like a zombie for one more year.

He navigates between those two polls quite nicely.

Nicely Freudian, Eric :-)

Doh!

as opposed to turning the 'American Dream' into entitlement feeding frenzy to buy votes with no concern for killing the golden goose

36% is a free market. 39.6% is a goose-murdering feeding frenzy. Gotcha, drama queen.

Don't you sorta, kinda mostly agree with McCain, but continue to stoop below low to lead your choir?

It's amazing that you managed to reverse the point of the post; it was relatively straightforward. Of course Hilzoy *agrees* with spending on social welfare (in general anyway; McCain's plan is beyond stupid). The point is that McCain speaks against such spending (using the same sort of drama-queen hyperbole that you've demonstrated above), but turns around and promises a 5k tax credit to everyone. She isn't speaking against the redistributionist impulse, she's speaking against hypocrisy.
Did you also believe that she was really moving to Somalia?

Hilzoy said he is committed to ensuring that veterans' health care programs receive the funding necessary to provide the quality health care our veterans need and deserve" -- in other words, to taking the money you have earned and giving it to veterans who get sick. Talk about the nanny state!

Just to nitpick, I think even the staunchest libertarian could agree that providing benefits to vets is part of the contractual obligation that the government has for the people who work for it. But, I understand the gist of you post.

36% is a free market. 39.6% is a goose-murdering feeding frenzy. Gotcha, drama queen.

heh.

Sadly, No puts it in easy-to-read picture form.

Does he? Will he? How do you know?

Would you?
Could you?
In a blog?

Thanks -

I've read several commentators musing about whether Obama is a liberal or a pragmatist. If he's a pragmatist, why does he have "the most liberal voting record in the Senate"? And if he's so liberal, why are grass-roots liberals dismayed by things like his death-penalty views, his views on gay marriage, aspects of his healthcare plan, etc?

It seems pretty clear that Obama's ideals are essentially liberal. He thinks healthcare is a right. When he talks about the economy, he uses the word "fairness". Cooperation is a much more important aspect of his message than competition. But in terms of policy, he's a pragmatist. His healthcare policy is a good example - he sees it as a step toward the ideal. His energy policy too - the exciting part of it is that it serves several different ends.

All in all, I'd say that his pragmatism overrides his liberalism when they come into conflict. Luckily, though, pragmatism is in harmony with liberal ideals much more often than it is with conservative ones.

In a stunning reversal, John McCain today endorsed the redistribution of wealth:

Hilzoy, you're just seeing the trees instead of the forest. If you look from a bit further back, it's obvious that McCain rattles around from one position to another, contradicting himself, turning his back on past positions, and often not making sense. He does it all the time. Hence, his floundering is, in fact, his source of consistency.

If he's a pragmatist, why does he have "the most liberal voting record in the Senate"?

well, that's because the National Review is a pathetic joke and says that about all Democratic nominees.

Hence, his floundering is, in fact, his source of consistency.

his Maverissitude is so great that he'll gladly buck his own platform, if that's what the situation calls for. he could be the ultimate pragmatist, except that the only thing he's concerned about is his own aggrandizement. that pushes him right out of the range of pragmatism and into that of narcissism.

If he's a pragmatist, why does he have "the most liberal voting record in the Senate"?

So was Kerry, but only after he ran for President. The National Review simply picks the Democratic nominee and manages to find them to be "the most liberal". They're a joke.

blogbudsman: I'm glad you're posting less unintelligibly these days, and you may be a nice enough person, but I'm probably not the only one who's getting sick of your snide attacks.

What I mean is, when you say things like Don't you sorta, kinda mostly agree with McCain, but continue to stoop below low to lead your choir? You betcha!, you're basically saying that someone who disagrees with you can't possibly be writing in good faith -- that Hilzoy and Eric, and commenters who think as they do, are either lying or stupid. This isn't a choir, it's a group of people whose opinions are similar in some ways and different in others, and except for a few trolls, they say what they mean. If you think our hosts are demagogues and panderers and Obama-worshippers who just need a few more insults from you to see the error of their ways, then I wish you would leave.

If he's a pragmatist, why does he have "the most liberal voting record in the Senate"?

To pile on, the National Journal comes by its classifications by picking and assigning lib/conserv labels a handful of votes, not all votes. They don't pick all votes because if they did, Kerry wouldn't have been the most liberal in 2004 and Obama wouldn't be in 2008.

Come on. Do you really think Obama has a more liberal voting record than Feingold? Sanders?

Eric, was that National Journal or National Review you were referring to? I didn't think that NJ ever called either the most liberal, but I may be mistaken.

Hello Hob, don't believe we've met. Aw come on, I can't be offending your sensibilities that much. I've always been a stream of consciousness poster. And I'm a life long ADHD sufferer so I jab instead of spar. I'm a staunch moderate and you'd love to have a beer with me, or even a nice glass of wine. I do have a few valuable life experiences that should count for something. Banning the opposition, is that just more Chicago-style politics? It does seem to work though.

National Journal.

If it were the National Review, it wouldn't be treated as reliable (even though it shouldn't by virtue of the methodology used)

http://nj.nationaljournal.com/voteratings/

Banning the opposition, is that just more Chicago-style politics? It does seem to work though.

Neither Barack Obama, nor Obsidian Wings, bans opposition.

But Obsidian Wings, unlike Barack Obama, has a commenting policy. Further, commenters may, on their own, decide to engage, or not, a given commenter based on the merits of that commenter's contributions/sincerity.

"Eric, was that National Journal or National Review you were referring to?"

Not sure about Eric, but I was talking about the National Journal.

"Come on. Do you really think Obama has a more liberal voting record than Feingold? Sanders?"

No. Thus the scare quotes. But I think my larger point was correct. Ideologically, he's a liberal.

But... wouldn't it be better to mandate that every commenter respond to every other commenter?

"I'm a staunch moderate and you'd love to have a beer with me, or even a nice glass of wine."

And maybe... if the mood is just right....

But... wouldn't it be better to mandate that every commenter respond to every other commenter?

In keeping with the generally **ahem** socialist ethos round these parts, wouldn't make more sense to have a policy where each commenter contributes according to his/her abilities, and each reader takes in accordance with his/her needs?

hilzoy, publius, Eric and Sebastian better watch out, or after the election the commentors may sieze the means of, er, commenting.

all this talk of obama as a socialist, at its heart, is silly really. america today is facing many complicated problems, and some form of wealth redistribution, as you pointed out, will probably be part of the solutions to be applied by whichever side wins.

if i were an american, struggling financially, i don't think i'd mind a little help from the government, and if wealthy persons have to make do with a little less, maybe have one less fancy dinner regularly, in order for that to happen, i don't think i'd have a problem with that. and i think society would benefit, not lose out, if such a thing were to happen.

I don't mean to hijack the thread, and I'll try not to argue with blogbudsman since it doesn't seem to help, but in response to his last remark I'd like to say this:

ADHD is a real thing and can make life pretty difficult, and often leads to people wondering what the hell your problem is. However, ADHD is not a good excuse for casting careless aspersions on other people's honesty and motives, whether you choose to call that "jabbing", "sparring", or just "acting like a jerk". People who recognize that their brains are wired in this funny way can learn what kinds of unhelpful choices they're liable to make, and can learn how to avoid them and/or get used to apologizing a lot. Or they can just let it all hang out, and complain about being oppressed whenever someone doesn't take it well; then they'll often be treated with the same thoughtful consideration they're giving others.

At least, that's the standard I apply to myself, my sweetheart, and the many other interesting people I know who have ADHD.

Do you really think Obama has a more liberal voting record than Feingold? Sanders?

One of the Republican goons "talking heads" was spouting the usual "SOCIALIST!!!Eleven!!!" nonsense. The host (I think it was Matthews, asked the fool if Obama was more of a "socialist" than Barney Franks. The idiot actually tried to spin it so Obama was to the left of Franks, but the host wasn't having it it.

It should be up at Crooks & Liars in a day or so.

I'm not for spreading my money to mortgage lenders. Quite a few of them frankly need to go under and what we certainly don't need is to reenable the foolishness of the last few years by keeping the really stupid ones afloat.

I'm also hearing rumors about a serious bailout of the not-so-big 3 automakers (more serious than what we gave them last week). Umm, no. Propping up really poorly run companies every 5 years or so for 30 years isn't a good model of government intervention

Liquidate the mortgage lenders! Liquidate the automakers! It will purge the rottenness out of the system and people will work harder, live a more moral life!

Good to see the party of Hoover getting back to its roots. You want to see socialism, have the government start pulling crap like that - turning a recession into a depression.

Jeff, I imagine you mean Bernie Sanders -- not Barney Frank, who is in the House and is not a socialist.

Oh no. McCain is a socialist.

No socialism is best.
A little with McCain is better than alot with Obama.
But you knew that.

why david, I thought you already had a boyfriend.

blogbudsman - I apologize for my inappropriate but undeniably humorous comment.

...and HOB, you got to chill out. I'm at least 2nd generation ADHD, and my son is definitely 3rd. One of the aspects of ADHD is an accute impatience to bores - at work, in the classroom or elsewhere in life. That causes many ADHD sufferers who are quite clever and innovative to act out and become behavioral challenges to those in charge of their environment, say teachers or even employers. Back in the day, my teachers - and my dad's (I know because one of my teachers was one of my dad's teachers - God bless you Mrs. Wilson) had the skill and authority to push back and steer. I overcame my ADHD with their guidance and excelled (IMHO) wheras my son had to struggle more in a passive, retreating classroom environment. So HOB, breathe or do your keggles, contribute or engage another thread with your hysterics, you're beginning to bore.

Hob: Or they can just let it all hang out, and complain about being oppressed whenever someone doesn't take it well; then they'll often be treated with the same thoughtful consideration they're giving others.

Nice try, but evidently Blogbudsman is out to be the second kind of person. I wonder if he has hopes of being able to present himself as a martyr for his political opinions, a la Dave C, by getting banned for rudeness?

why jes, you know mine is the voice of reason. martyr? - they don't live long enough.

McCain admitted to Larry King that the claim that Obama is a socialist is a lie. (That's more than Lieberman was willing to say.)

That causes many ADHD sufferers who are quite clever and innovative to act out and become behavioral challenges to those in charge of their environment

Don't know about the diagnosis, but the symptoms appear to be a match.

Lots of people have ADHD. Most of the ones I know somehow manage to not annoy everyone else in the room.

I've no wish to minimize the challenges that ADHD folks deal with, but it ain't a license to be a jerk.

This:

Don't you sorta, kinda mostly agree with McCain, but continue to stoop below low to lead your choir?

is pointless, baiting jerkitude.

Don't try blaming it on your nervous system. The problem is you, dude.

Thanks -

McCain admitted to Larry King that the claim that Obama is a socialist is a lie.

Why would McCain ever call Obama a socialist? That's what the flying monkeys are for.

Thanks -

russell - I've been consistent with my theme that the posters of Obsidian Wings, who have tackled many issues in wonderful fasion over the years have teamed their talents to completely give Obama a pass with any depth of inquisition and pepper McCain with arguments that range from valid to grotesque doses of inane minutia in an obvious intended effort to gain power for their chosen party. An example of this minutia was HOB's capture of my ADHD remark merely reflecting the length of my arguements as some sort of offensive personal attack on his family. Jeesh! Jerkitude intended. Otherwise, as usual, I've enjoyed the exchange. The folks here are fun to play with, even if you have to buy a vowel now and then.

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