The Watering Hole, Monday, September 24th, 2012: Monday Morning Mix

First up today, an article from Foreign Policy Magazine entitled “Why Mitt Romney Can’t Talk About Iraq”. An excerpt:

“According to a University of California, Santa Barbara archive of formal campaign speeches by both candidates, Romney has used the word “Iraq” seven times on the trail (usually in the context of military service) while Obama has referenced the country 76 times (often as part of a stump-speech line about keeping his promise to end the war). The same pattern held true at the conventions: Republicans mentioned Iraq seven times, while the Democrats did so 34 times. Romney didn’t talk about Iraq in his convention speech and made only a passing reference to it in his biggest foreign-policy address of the campaign in South Carolina.

Romney might argue, as he has in defending his failure to mention the Afghan war in Tampa, that it’s his policies that matter, not how many times he mentions particular words in speeches.”

(So, it appears that others have been studying the information at The Presidency Project, to which I had linked in a recent post.)

The article finishes with, “The Romney campaign isn’t about to give the president any more ammunition.

That line sounds familiar, doesn’t it? Ann Romney, when stating that “you people” weren’t going to be allowed to see any more of the Romneys’ tax returns than what was ‘legally required’ – a phrase that both she and Mitt seem to be fond of – because it would just give “more ammunition” to the pundits and political opposition. Too bad…if the TRUTH would give your opponents ammunition against you, then you really aren’t Presidential material.

Next up: I had also recently mentioned an effort by two Catholic groups, Catholics United and Faithful America, to keep politics out of Sunday Mass. Faithful America’s website has an interesting listing of other political causes, working against the radical right-wing religious zealots.

And lastly, a piece from our local Patch online newspaper, which discusses a poll taken of ‘New York GOP Insiders’ regarding Romney’s chances post-“47%” remarks from the recently surfaced Romney fundraising video. Some of the comments here are worth reading.

Speaking of the Romney fundraising video, I would like to thank James Carter IV for his efforts in finding the video and for getting this amazingly damning revelation of Romney’s character into the public arena. And, of course, special thanks to whoever actually made the video.

This is our Open Thread. Speak Up on any topic that you choose.

190 thoughts on “The Watering Hole, Monday, September 24th, 2012: Monday Morning Mix

  1. I seem to be having a lot of encounters with owls lately.
    There is an owl in the wooded lot next door that woke me up this morning.
    I hope it stays around.
    I think it is a good omen.

    • This could be your present time animal totem.–a-6.html

      The Superlative Owl Totem possesses the following virtues:
      Powerful magic, good omens, prophecy, astral travel, power to see the un-seen, all seeing knowledge, great wisdom, good luck, power of the moon and night, insight, giving and receiving messages, clairvoyance, religious beliefs, communication with the sprit world, and insight into others true motives.

      Owl Animal Pearls are said to impart their particular magical virtues to their owner. Owl Pearls are characteristic of its host; they possess all the awe-inspiring characteristics that may be seen in the Owl itself; the dignity and grace of this animal is contained within the pearl waiting for its proper owner to bestow its inner magic to that unique and fortunate individual.

      For century’s shamans, priestesses, witches, sorcerers, wizards, spiritualists and practitioners of the occult have used Owl animal pearls to transfer the powerful magical energy of the Owl to themselves and to others in need of this commanding animal magic.

      Owl pearls are highly sought after by any wishing to absorb Owl like virtues into their lives and develop stronger mental abilities such as those embodied by this magnificent creature. The owner of an Owl pearl will see their lives, spiritual energy and mental clarity imbued with all of the virtues attributed to the “Wisest” of the bird kingdom the Owl.

      The Owl animal totem is a strong spirit indeed and its magical properties are one of the most influential of all animal totems. Strength, virtue, clairvoyance and so much more can be integrated into the spirit of the possessor of this magical pearl and the Owl totem.

      Sounds like a special animal totem is connecting with you. Our animal totems can change over time. They come to us when we need them.

          • There is if they seem to be talking to you. It’s their patterns, way of being and habits that can carry the messages.
            “Totems” are guides from the natural world, and they are not necessarily limited to the animal kingdom. They could, and can be, elemental as well. Wind, water, air, etc.
            Of particular note to me is the horned lizard, which in the Navajo tradition is an Elder figure. They call him Che (pronounced chay), which in Navajo means “grandfather”, and they are the keepers of ancient wisdom and knowledge.

            • I rescued a chuckwalla lizard about a week ago from my neighbor’s chicken wire fence ( she was petrified that it was a gila monster) and ever since, he’s been hanging in my yard. I fear for his safety because my dog likes to chase things that move.

  2. I can’t wait to see what Mitt says this week.
    I’m not seeing a lot of Romney signs around here. One local R politician always has huge signs on his farm beside a major road. He has big signs this year too, for every R candidate but Romney.
    Bryce Reeves is my state senator. Doesn’t his fundraiser sound like a fun time?

  3. I love this reference in the comments section of The Patch, “TAX THE RICH!” . So is this person claiming that the rich don’t pay taxes while the rest of us do? The rich should be paying taxes now, but with all the loopholes maybe they aren’t paying taxes. We poor slobs don’t have enough money to send to off shore accounts and we certainly can’t afford to write off airplanes. It sounds to me like the Repubs are a bunch of angry people that believe that money will make them happy. The sad part is that there is so much beauty in this world that they don’t see because their greed blinds them thus preventing them from being happy.

  4. Iraq.
    Big oil got what they wanted, contracts signed sealed and delivered. The mega bases are still there, their sole purpose is to protect the oil fields and the pipelines.
    The military got what it wanted, billions pumped into new weapons systems.
    Sure, the COMBAT troops are all home, or if not, they’re conveniently still in the neighborhood.

    Rethugs don’t want to talk about it, it might bring up the issue of how much did it cost, and where our national debt really comes from.

    Listening to President Obama, I’ve noticed he distinctly says COMBAT troops.

    It’s all a matter of definition.

  5. Yesterday I found a box of coffee table books hidden away. Several Calvin & Hobbes were in there so I had some fun getting re-acquainted with old friends. I thought this quote was apropos for Willard if you just replace Mom and Dad with advisers.

    Calvin: “Mom and Dad say I should make my life an example of the principles I believe in. But every time I do, they tell me to stop it.”

    Hobbes: “I’m not sure that total self-indulgence is really a principle.”

    • Perfect.
      I miss those guys…
      One of my favorites, and appropriate at present:
      (Calvin 🙂
      “I was placed on earth to accomplish a certain number of tasks, and right now I’m so far behind I will never die.”

      • “Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us.”

        Calvin and Hobbes

  6. Thanks for plugging my Alma Mater, UCSB, Jane!
    I graduated in 76 with a Poli Sci degree. One of my professors was a Congressional wonk, but he taught an amazing class on the presidency. I’ll have to go back to school now and dive in!

  7. When a squirrel chewed through a cable and knocked him offline, journalist Andrew Blum started wondering what the Internet was really made of. So he set out to go see it — the underwater cables, secret switches and other physical bits that make up the net.

  8. Early voting has started:

    “More than one-in-three voters – more than 46 million people — is expected to vote early in 2012 in some form, either in person, by mail, or absentee, according to Dr. Michael McDonald, a professor at George Mason University who studies voter behavior. “Once you turn up the faucet on early voting, you keep turning it up until it’s all the way open,” said McDonald, who predicts that 35 percent will vote early this year. Early voting participation has been on the rise in recent election cycles, hitting an all-time high in 2008, when an estimated 30 percent voted early in the presidential election. That was up significantly from 2004, when slightly more than 20 percent cast their ballots ahead of Election Day.”

    Team Willard’s strategery of spending big on ad buys in late October looks like yet another poor decision.

  9. Catch 60 Minutes last night?

    Marquis de Mitt finally announced his comprehensive plan to replace Obamacare: just go to the Emergency Room and they’ll have to treat you for free.


  10. Okay, so I get this custom order for abnormally long seat belt covers, and I think, “That’s kinda weird,” but whatever they want, right?

    So I buy the fabric, measure and cut the fabric and everything that goes with it, and the customer contacts me this morning, saying “I forgot to tell you, these seat belt covers are actually going to go on the metal arms of lawn chairs that are 5 1/2 inches around, so you’ll want to make them bigger around than a seat belt.”


  11. Evolution
    Talk about adaptation! This impala from the Kruger National Park in South African is now a mobile home for a spider with the spider’s web spun between the impala’s two horns. The impala had the misfortune to walk into the spiders web, and it seems to have settled in for a permanent stay!

    • When I run across stuff like this — or for that matter stuff spoken by other idiots (e.g. Romney, for example, or Bibi-the-Netan-Yahoo) — I’m invariably reminded of a single panel cartoon I remember from back in probably the early seventies if not before. In it, there was a little flying saucer hovering over the earth. Rising from the earth’s surface, there were mushroom clouds, ‘rat-a-tat-tat’ gunfire, raucous musical notes, smog, ‘beep-beep’ car horns, etc. The caption was a radio transmission from the little green man in the flying saucer to his home base, planet, whatever, and it said, simply: “I have concluded that though there is tremendous activity on this planet, there is no sign of intelligent life.”

      How true, how true.

  12. QOTD:

    “When it comes to our national security decisions — any pressure that I feel is simply to do what’s right for the American people. And I am going to block out — any noise that’s out there.” — President Obama on 60 Minutes last night.

    Bibi is noise.


  13. Well it’s really more basic than that. Romney’s white, and Obama is black. And that’s all Romney is running on.

    The Optimism Cure –

    In fairness to Mr. Romney, his assertion that electing him would spontaneously spark an economic boom is consistent with his party’s current economic dogma. Republican leaders have long insisted that the main thing holding the economy back is the “uncertainty” created by President Obama’s statements — roughly speaking, that businesspeople aren’t investing because Mr. Obama has hurt their feelings. If you believe that, it makes sense to argue that changing presidents would, all by itself, cause an economic revival.

    • Another gem from Krugman in the same piece…

      (O.K., I guess you could argue that electing Mr. Romney might encourage businesses by promising an end to Republican economic sabotage.)

    • But wait there’s more.

      The Optimism Cure –

      Yet here comes Mitt Romney, declaring, in effect, “I am the confidence fairy!”
      Is he? As it happens, Mr. Romney offered a testable proposition in his Boca remarks: “If it looks like I’m going to win, the markets will be happy. If it looks like the president’s going to win, the markets should not be terribly happy.” How’s that going? Not very well. Over the past month conventional wisdom has shifted from the view that the election could easily go either way to the view that Mr. Romney is very likely to lose; yet markets are up, not down, with major stock indexes hitting their highest levels since the economic downturn began.

  14. Mittens might just be stupider than Bible Spice. Did he really just suggest that airplanes, pressurized airplanes, should have windows that can be opened in flight? Leaving aside the contents of the cabin being blown out the windows; in this particular case the last thing one wants to do is to provide more oxygen to a fire. Maybe he’s just sick of Ann(toinette)?

    • This quote alone should really cause every intelligent person to not vote for Mitt Romney.

      “When you have a fire in an aircraft, there’s no place to go, exactly,” he told the LA Times. “And you can’t find any oxygen from outside the aircraft to get in the aircraft, because the windows don’t open. I don’t know why they don’t do that. It’s a real problem.”

    • “And you can’t find any oxygen from outside the aircraft to get in the aircraft, because the windows don’t open. I don’t know why they don’t do that. It’s a real problem.”
      Mitt. You really are a fumbduck. Twain famously said:
      “It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt.”

      • If you’re wearing magical under wear, you can do this without having to deal with the laws of physics.
        Come to think of it, if you’re wearing magical underwear, why do you need an airplane?

    • So when was the last time she let her children watch her and her male partner go at it? I mean, if we need to shelter the kiddies from the abby normal, we need to demonstrate the ‘right’ way, right?

  15. And then there was Libya, again…

    “Chanting “Libya, Libya,” hundreds of demonstrators entered, pulling down militia flags and torching a vehicle inside the compound, Ansar al-Sharia’s main base in Benghazi – once the base of forces of former leader Muammar Gaddafi.

    The crowd waved swords and even a meat cleaver, crying “No more al Qaeda!” and “The blood we shed for freedom shall not go in vain!”

    “After what happened at the American consulate, the people of Benghazi had enough of the extremists,” said demonstrator Hassan Ahmed. “They did not give allegiance to the army. So the people broke in and they fled.” ‘

    — Imagine if the US had armed these militias to the teeth. A President Romney would have.

    • How dishonest can these people get? Absolutely no idea how the world works at all. Only interested in rabble rousing. Ahmadinerjacket is a head of state, he gets to come to the UN no matter how many beckerheads and limbots pee their pants on Fox.

    • All Toad Akin had to do was change the definition of ‘ear mark’ to get the campaign cash the rest of the Republicon party won’t give him.
      No problem.
      Kinda like ‘legitimate’ soul bartering.

  16. Just saw the vile “Dear Daughter” ad Zooey posted above. I can’t watch video here, the damned thing just showed up on my TV. All that came to mind was the fact that Romney/Ryan would be the ones telling the mom “Why did you have a daughter you can’t afford?”.

  17. Anyone ever heard of “Bill Nye, the Science Guy”?
    His roots are in the NW, and he’s had lots of exposure as a teacher of science on the tubes.
    He’s B A C K
    as Bill Nye warns: Creation views threaten US science

    and, to make matters worst…the article continues…
    “Millions of Americans do hold those beliefs, according to a June Gallup poll that found 46 percent of Americans believe God created humans in their present form about 10,000 years ago.”

    • And when that 46% of Americans turn on their lights …. what do they think happens? If you believe the Earth is 10,000 years old, then that light coming on is act of black f**king magic.

      Thank God for Bill Nye – heh.

  18. Not that I like Mitt, but any time a candidate is trailing and likely to lose, and gets asked “do you think you have chance to win” (or words to that effect), what does a reporter actually think the candidate is going to say? I think this is in the “dumb question” category.

    Romney: ‘There is no question in my mind. We’re going to win.’ | The Ticket – Yahoo! News

    Romney: ‘There is no question in my mind. We’re going to win.’

  19. The roundup of today’s polls from key states: (RealFuckingClearPolitics)
    Obama leads in:
    Colorado by 6
    N. Carolina by 4
    Nevada by 7
    Iowa by 7
    Florida by 5
    Michigan by 12
    Wisconsin by 12
    Pennsylvania by 8
    Minnesota by 8

    Rmoney leads in:
    Montana by 9

    Yeah, WillardRat, you’re going to win if you can manage to disenfranchise 20 million or so Americans.

  20. How did I miss such a monumental, emphasis on the “mental”, anniversary? On Sept. 22, 1823, Ol’ Joe Smith found the “golden plates”. Oh! How I would love it if someone in the “librul media” would recount the particulars of the story for Mitt and ask “do you really believe this crap?” “Do you really expect any sane person to trust anyone who believes this crap?”

    • More like: Joe Smith went out to get drunk and lay some blart at the local bordello … his wife called him on being out all night and he spent the next year coming up with the bender excuse to slay all bender excuses ….

      … if you think otherwise, you have be a Moroni.

      • “…the bender excuse to slay all bender excuses ….”

        “I found golden tablets out in the woods last night, honest I did, and it took till daybreak to haul them in… and I got a flat tire… and my dog died… after it ate my homework…and I couldn’t find a shovel to bury the tablets, er… I mean the dog…………………………….”

        Joe Smith.
        Now there’s a moniker to found a religion on……………………………………………………………………………………………………

  21. There was a little-heard song by Pat Benatar from the 80’s called Suburban King. It tells what now seems like an all too familiar story of the white middle class with nothing left.

    Here’s a snippet:

    The union man said you’d be recalled
    But the company up and moved to Taiwan
    You counted on the pension plan
    But you were out of luck
    The union says you only qualify
    For twenty five bucks

    Suburban king
    Suburban king
    You had it printed on your van
    ‘Cause it had a pretty ring
    Suburban king

  22. More of that American “exceptionalism” at work.

    Why Your Phone, Cable & Internet Bills Cost So Much | Daily Ticker – Yahoo! Finance

    The U.S. has fallen behind much of the Western world when it comes to phone, cable and Internet service. Americans actually pay much more for inferior service compared to their global counterparts.
    In his new book, The Fine Print: How Big Companies Use ‘Plain English’ to Rob You Blind, Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter David Cay Johnston highlights these astounding facts:

    Americans pay four times as much as the French for an Internet triple-play package—phone, cable TV and Internet—at an average of $160 per month versus $38 per month.
    The French get global free calling and worldwide live television. Their Internet is also 10 times faster at downloading information and 20 times faster uploading it.
    America has gone from #1 in Internet speed (when we invented it) to 29th in the world and falling.
    Bulgaria is among the countries with faster Internet service.
    Americans pay 38 times as much as the Japanese for Internet data.

    • It’s not necessary for a country to be a third world Hell hole for totalitarians to seize absolute control but it makes it a whole lot easier. One of the more disturbing trends in mass media is cable networks hosting exclusive “debates”. I don’t have cable for a bunch of reasons and I get more and better news coverage from my klunky internet connection but what about people who have neither? The less informed they keep the low information voters the easier it is for them to package their jingoism in sound bites and bumper stickers.

  23. Willard is reminding me more and more every day of Harry Morgan’s first appearance on MASH. “It’s a treat to beat your feet in the Mississippi mud.”

  24. One of the frustrating things about today’s politics is the difficulty of distilling progressive ideas down to a bumper sticker. Here’s one that seems so simple I can’t believe I haven’t seen it.

    You can’t trust FAUX”News”

  25. Another spectacular.

    Tim Huntington – webnectar photography
    The sun sets over the ruins of the Peninsula Packing Company’s cannery at the end of Cannery Row in Monterey.

    The hues are magnificent to behold.

  26. The NFL replacement refs have shown, once again, what happens when “replacement workers” are used to thwart collective bargaining. As a Minnesotan I have no love for the Packers but they should challenge the result of the final play of their game till Hell freezes over. It’s especially interesting that I listened to the pregame show on the radio, Fox Sports no less, where the announcer’s commentary was that the real refs should quit whining and agree to whatever the owners want. I know it sounds silly but I still want the Dems to use this situation to demonstrate the crucial value of collective bargaining and a trained work force.

  27. I’m still going back to the alarming statistic that 46% of Americans think the earth was created 10,000 years ago. 1/2 the country is f**king cuckoo for cocoa puffs…. I honestly don’t think I encountered any of these people today – well maybe one or two…..

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