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Media Balance

© David Horsey

Who else thinks that defunding PBS has nothing to do with balancing the budget, and everything to do with pushing the Republican agenda. After all, you can’t buy public television.

As the cartoonist David Horsey put it:

So, after many long months of campaigning and promising to cut the deficit while also cutting taxes, the single genuine and specific spending reduction Romney has stipulated is the one one-hundredth of a percent of federal expenditures that helps pay for Big Bird, Downton Abbey and the rest of the PBS lineup. Defenders of PBS were quick to point out that eliminating the federal subsidy for public television would trim an amount equal to just six hours – 360 minutes – of spending at the Pentagon.

It seems as if it would be more effective to leave PBS with its minuscule piece of federal largess and, instead, cut six hours – or maybe 24 or 48 hours – of military spending, right? Apparently not to Romney. Rather than trimming the Defense Department budget, he has proposed a radical spike in defense outlays that would take military spending to the highest level in 60 years.

We already spend more on our military than the next ten countries combined. We need more weapons, and less education for our young children? That sounds like a recipe for disaster.



  1. Michael wrote:

    Of course it is. NPR consistently leads surveys as the most reputable news source (followed closely by NY Times and Christian Science Monitor). If the facts are not on your side, attack the source’s credibility. It’s easier than actually changing your position, apparently.

    Wednesday, October 10, 2012 at 8:16 am | Permalink
  2. Michael wrote:

    Additionally, let’s be specific. DoD wants to freeze refurbishment spending on the M1 Abrams. That is, the Pentagon is saying, “We don’t want to spend this money. It’s unnecessary waste.” Doing so would cut $3 billion from 2014 to 2017. The only people that want to keep the contract going are General Dynamics (the maker) and the Congresspersons they finance. See

    Maintaining the entire CPB subsidy for that time would cost $1.8 billion. Unless Romney comes on record in favor of cutting the M1 budget, he’s a hypocrite. But we know that he won’t and he is. Of course, on this site, I’m preaching to the choir. Sigh…

    Wednesday, October 10, 2012 at 12:05 pm | Permalink
  3. PatriotSGT wrote:

    Michael, I agree on the M1 issue, but has the President made his views on the M1 known. I think the current leader should do just that, before asking the challenger to lead.

    On big bird, (shaking head slowly). I can’t believe with all the major issues facing the country domestic and foreign our leader chooses to pick a fight over this. He must really not have anything better to do or nothing else to run on. Really?

    Wednesday, October 10, 2012 at 12:21 pm | Permalink
  4. TJ wrote:

    PtSgt, why do you pretend you’re still undecided? You seem to be searching far and wide for some justification to vote against the president. Just vote against him if you want to so badly.

    Your last sentence says it all. “Obama must have nothing better to do” – it’s so laughable it isn’t worthy of a response. “Nothing else to run on” – Romney is running on the idea that he will reduce the deficit, but the only actual cut he’s willing to present is PBS funding – an amount so small it wouldn’t come close to fixing the deficit. That’s not something worth pointing out?

    Wednesday, October 10, 2012 at 12:39 pm | Permalink
  5. Iron Knee wrote:

    Who is picking a fight on this? Romney brought it up at the debate.

    I personally think that early childhood education is extremely important, and PBS has played an big role in this. Dozens of studies show that early childhood education can have a significant positive effect, helping the child grow into a more productive citizen. One study (my mom was involved with it) even showed that early childhood education, especially if the parents were involved, paid for itself (by providing Headstart, recipients were more successful later in life, and less likely to be involved in crime).

    Do you not think that education is an important issue to the future of our country?

    Wednesday, October 10, 2012 at 1:30 pm | Permalink
  6. TENTHIRTYTWO wrote:

    Unless I’m mistaken, it is more accurate to say that cutting PBS funding was the ONLY tangible policy decision he voiced during the debate. No other concrete details were provided.

    Wednesday, October 10, 2012 at 2:34 pm | Permalink
  7. Dave, TN wrote:

    Apparantly Mitt didn’t spend enough time watching Sesame Street or he would have better math skills, or he is just a bold face liar.

    Wednesday, October 10, 2012 at 3:01 pm | Permalink
  8. ebdoug wrote:

    History repeating itself. For twelve years, Hitler removed all education from Germany and put all the money into military. Cut the German wages, no more minimum wage. Turned the Germans into low paid slaves along with the Polish, Jews, etc. We learn nothing.

    Wednesday, October 10, 2012 at 3:03 pm | Permalink
  9. PATRIOTSGT wrote:

    TJ- I’m waiting on something from the President besides heckling his opponent about big bird. Have him tell me what and how he’s going to cange our course, besides hoping for change. Where is the leadership. Who cares what his opponent says, tell me what his plans are for things important to me. How are we going to keep from being 22 trillion in debt by the end of his next 4 years? Tell me how we are going to save the pensions of all those wo worked their lives to earn, tell me how we are going to repay SS and save medicare, how are we going to prevent rogue nations like Iran from going nuclear.

    IK- my wife is an early education teacher, I know the value of these programs AND parent involvement. What plays the biggest part of early childhood education, you got it-parents. How do we get parents involved in our urban schools? Hopefully not just by showing big bird, there’s got to be something else, please tell me there is. Hold parents accountable nd make them come to school if there child is underperforming, give them choices in their childrens education, let them pick the schools. Those who are motivated will do so and their children will succeed and thrive, but those that aren’t won’t. Hold them accountable, how might be a discussion. Oh, but underperforming union schools won’t like competition and unions won’t contribute. Competition spurs progress and improvement, not lack of it.
    Give me a reason to want to give him 4 more years not just I did my best and I’m a good guy.
    I kept hearing him say I’ve cut the budget, I’ve cut the budget. Where’s the savings 4 straight years of higher spending then even Bush and he had 1 less war to fight, when will deficits fall below a trillion dollars a year, 2017?

    Wednesday, October 10, 2012 at 3:36 pm | Permalink
  10. Iron Knee wrote:

    PSgt, I’m glad you understand the value of parent involvement in education, but the original question was slightly different. Do you think Sesame Street is worth our investment? When you use phrases like “Hopefully not just by showing big bird” I think you are demeaning what Sesame Street does, which is provide education that children want to watch.

    You want a reason to vote for Obama? A better question would be to ask how Romney’s stated policies would be any better than Bush’s policies, which got us into two wars, blew up the economy, ignored the warning signs of 9/11, hurt education, etc.

    But I’ll take the bait and give you a reason anyway. Actually lots of reasons. Obama saved the US auto industry. Romney clearly stated that he would not have. Obama got Wall Street reform passed, to help avoid another financial meltdown. Obama passed health care reform, which brings us up to the level of ever other civilized country in the world. Obama ended a war that Bush started (Iraq — and Bush even declared it over before it was). Romney wants us to start a new war (Iran). Obama took out Osama bin Laden. He also helped topple Moammar Gaddafi and told Hosni Bubarak to step down. Obama repealed “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”, with excellent results in the military. World opinion of the US increased dramatically during Obama’s term, especially compared to Bush’s. Got new START treaty with Russia to reduce nuclear warheads. Obama actually did two good things for education: created “race to the top” to encourage education reform at the state level (instead of “no child left behind” which was unfunded federal mandates). And he made it easier and cheaper for students to go to university by stopping the wasteful subsidizing of banks for student loans. He increased support for veterans, including tuition (make that three things for education), and tax credits to encourage businesses to hire veterans. Got new fuel efficiency standards passed that will help us toward energy independence. Invested in renewable energy technology. Passed credit card reforms. Increased transparency in government (e.g.,, which provides detailed information on stimulus spending, reducing fraud). Expanded stem cell research, which is saving lives.

    You want more? There’s lots more. Now give me one reason to vote for Romney. And one reason to believe he won’t push the same (or worse) policies as Bush.

    Wednesday, October 10, 2012 at 4:48 pm | Permalink
  11. Michael wrote:

    Obligatory mention:

    Wednesday, October 10, 2012 at 4:59 pm | Permalink
  12. PatriotSGT wrote:

    IK- I’m not saying that Obama hasn’t done some good things, but why is he talking about big bird? It makes him seem amateurish not presidential. It’s that part of his personality that makes him seem unfit for the position.
    On your points they make it seem as is he’s saved the world, but he could have done better. Wall St reform that saw 3-4 people investigated, and after taxpayers bailed them out they handed out millions in bonuses to the people that caused it? No change there. How did Facebook bamboozle millions of small investors with a ridiculously overpriced IPO while commercial investors and banks seemed to get a warning? Repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell I agree it was time and glad. Yes Gaddafi and Mubarak are gone, but what about the killing in a terrorist attack on US Soil of our hard working Diplomats and blaming it on a you tube video? The military’s Post 911 GI bill was created in 2008, and scheduled to begin in 2009, does he really deserve all the credit? College loan rates have been dropped, but college prices have continued to rise so school is not really more affordable it just costs less to finance.

    Everything you said paints a rosey picture of a savior, but lets get honest and talk about what he could have done better.

    Gas prices are at their highest avg prices, the trade deficit is widening, exports are dropping, manufacturing is dropping, more people are on Gov’t assistance, health care costs are rising not falling. The deficit is ballooning with no end in site. We “surged” in Afghanistan, but now what, leave? Our Soldiers are taking fire from the front and rear, what are we doing about or do we not have a plan? I guess we just keep letting them get killed until the deadline arrives and give the country back to the Taliban. There are 2 sides to every coin and to every president.

    What I want is for him to tell us how he intends to tackle these very real and large problems, tell us your plan Mr. President. He tells us he’s cut the budget, but deficits are still over 1 Trillion per year, when will that stop? If you see him IK, tell him I’m still undecided, but he needs to dump the Chicago style politics and get serious about our country. Don’t give me a bailout or subsidy or handout, give me opportunity. Give my children a chance free from the crushing burden of an estimated 20 Trillion in debt on the table after the next 4 years, part of which is borrowed from SS. While he’s at it, how are we going to repay those SS IOU’s?

    If he puts a real plan for the future and in particular how he’s going to work with congress to get it passed he can still have my vote. But Big Bird is not a Big Deal, so skip that nonesense and worry less about his opponent and more about our problems. Be bold and lay out his plan to reduce our spending, get people off the Gov’t check and onto a paycheck. Thats really what its about, not Big Bird.

    Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 7:50 am | Permalink
  13. TJ wrote:

    Thank you Iron Knee, for answering far better than I ever could. PtSgt – You’re waiting to hear what the president’s plans are? I hope your alternative choice isn’t Romney, because the next time he give a detailed plan for what he will do as president will the be the first.

    If you’re worried about spending and the debt, look at Obama’s actual record instead of listening to Romney’s lies. This is the first result that comes up when I search for “Obama spending increase”:
    Romney won’t name a program, besides PBS of course, that he would cut or a loophole he would close. Until the debate his plan included a new large tax cut for the richest Americans. He continues to not only be against cutting military spending, but actually supports increases to the largest government spending category. How are these policies going to do a better job of cutting the deficit? Is the challenger granted a blind trust that the incumbent is not?

    Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 8:05 am | Permalink
  14. TJ wrote:

    My last comment was written before I saw PtSgt’s response above.

    So my question is… Ok, so now we see what you expect from Obama in order to vote for him. Do you hold Romney to the same standard? Does Romney have to satisfactorily answer the same questions you’ve raised above or is he given a pass?

    You do know he’s the one who brought Big Bird up, right? If you’re mad Obama for making PBS spending an issue, shouldn’t Romney be getting a black eye too? If for nothing else than for answering the question of what programs he would cut with PBS spending – knowing that it wouldn’t even make a dent in the deficit.

    Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 8:21 am | Permalink
  15. PatriotSGT wrote:

    TJ – Yes I would hold Romney to the same standards the President was held to when he was elected in 2008. What they want to do usually ends up different then what they actually do. I expect to hear more of both the Presidents and Candidates plan in future debates. I will reserve my decision until then, but I want to hear about what is important to me and my families future. Growth of jobs and opportunity and reduction in debt are 2 key items of interest.

    On the spending and your statement “supports increases to the largest government spending category” that is not true anymore. HHS has owned the largest share of spending since 2008 although there was virtually a tie with Defense in 2009.

    Also, the interest on our debt is fast approaching 50% (343 Billion through August 2012) of our defense spending and as the debt goes up Treasury and interest payments may overtake defense first then if not effectively dealt with the HHS budget. As the debt reaches 25-30 Trillion (not that far off at current pace) paying interest will be the largest category of our budget.

    I agree that we should spend more on our people through HHS then in making bombs, so I’m fine with where it is now. Adding 200 billion a year to defense would bring it close to a tie with HHS. This of course is before the major protions of the Affordable Care Act main parts come into effect over the next 1-2 years, then the HHS will jump back into the #1 spot.

    Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 8:44 am | Permalink
  16. TENTHIRTYTWO wrote:

    “dump the Chicago style politics”

    I’m now convinced that Patriot is a paid commentor. I was on the fence before, but this thread has officially sealed the deal.

    Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 11:30 am | Permalink
  17. Arthanyel wrote:

    PSGT – I think you should re-examine some of the numbers that you are using. In your last post, you state that after the ACA goes into effect health care spending will rise back to #1. Thats interesting since if the ACA is repealed expenses go UP about $70B PER YEAR. You state in in a way that suggests the ACA is adding costs – it isn’t.

    I also think the whole discussion of % of budget for Defense vs. HHS is a stalking horse, not a real issue. The percentages don’t matgter. What matters is that we decide what services we need from the government, and we pay for them in a fair and equitable way that supports our country’s structure. We might be spending twice as much on Defense now as we need – we might be spending half. But the difference is in defining what we think we NEED. And we don’t need to pay for M1 tank upgrades and 2nd engines for the JSF that even the Defense Department says are a waste of money.

    As for Obama v. Romney in terms of plans or actions, Romney has lied outrageously hunfdreds of time even after being caught, flip-flopped himself sometimes more than once IN A SINGLE DAY on issues, and refused to state ANY DETAILS. His tax plan is mathematically IMPOSSIBLE. He has PROVEN beyond any doubt he WILL SAY ANYTHING to get elected, that he has NO PROBLEM promising one thing and completely flip-flopping tomorrow, and that he has NO VIABLE PLAN of action. For those reasons he should not be President, REGARDLESS of his opposition.

    I personally think Obama has done a fair job under the circumstances. I think, in the face of unrelenting total opposition from Republicans it’s hard to see what else he could have done. I think he has been the ONLY ONE pushing for a rational start to reducing the deficit. And for those reasons I think he deserves a second term. But even if I thought that most the conservative propaganda about his responsibility for the current economy was true, I would STILL vote against Romney – because he is patently disqualified to have any authority whatsoever.

    And of course I don’t want him and the Republicans to sweep into power because I don’t want to move out of the country – which I will likely have to do if they win. Better to get out before the collapse and the civil war begins.

    Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 11:44 am | Permalink
  18. PatriotSGT wrote:

    1032 thats funny, any disagreement at any level is met with dismissal.
    Moving On…

    Arthanyel – I was just responding to TJ not commenting on the post. When the ACA goes into full effect the cost of subsidizing health insurance cost for 10’s of million has got to raise the cost of the program, unless there are alot of hidden taxes and fees we don’t know about.

    I get he is pushing for reductions in the deficit, only there has been no real reductions to date unless you consider going from 1.4 to 1.1 trillion, but both are still way over the top. Talking about it and doing something about it are 2 different things. I’m not saying Romney has the plan, I’m saying I want the President to state his plan and not talk about Big Bird. On the opposition I understand and don’t disagree, but a leader has to find away to make it work not point fingers. Failure is not an option. I’ll admit I am a fiscal conservative, but a social centric and there are alot of me out there.
    Obama has the progressive vote he doesn’t need to play to it. He does need voters like me, who don’t like political games and want our politicans to tell us what the truth is, and what really needs to be done to solve our problems, not hype. I work with alot of moderates some Libs a few more conservatives. I have many who are black and virtually all voted for Obama, like me, in 08. None plan to vote for him this time, I am still on the fence. I actually blame republicans in congress and from 02-06 and dems from 06-10 more then the presidents who presided over them. The ones who really want the defense budget to survive are the congress and they are the ones who keep this sherade up and blame it on Presidents. But, it it the presidents job to lead and I have’nt heard him render an opinion on the M1 either.

    Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 12:25 pm | Permalink
  19. TENTHIRTYTWO wrote:

    No sir, I dismiss you not because of a disagreement, but because of the content of your message. Pure and simple. “Who cares what his opponent says” should have gotten you written off by everyone here. But apparently some still believe you are the democrat/moderate/whatever you pretend to be.

    I’m all for rational, productive discussions with people I disagree with. Yours, however, is not a rational one. “there has been no real reductions to date unless you consider going from 1.4 to 1.1 trillion” This is not a rational statement. That is a 300 billion (with a b) reduction. That is a 22% reduction. Would you like a 22% reduction in your salary? You probably won’t mind it, since it isn’t a ‘real’ reduction.

    But congratulations on crafting this alternate reality where Obama has been harping on Big Bird every hour of every day since the debate, and then acting highly offended because this strawman doesn’t live up to some mythical standard of being presidential or a leader. If you get paid by the word, this thread is probably going to pay for your Christmas. Maybe you’ll have money left over to buy something for all the black people you know.

    Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 12:59 pm | Permalink
  20. dnono wrote:

    All, If you haven’t watched this already – you probably should:

    It’s a well-balanced piece on both candidates, if you already lean heavily toward either then it probably won’t change your opinion, but it should help you make a more informed choice.

    BTW, it’s 2102 – skip the ads. If you haven’t visited either candidate’s website by now and feel like you need more information on what they fundamentally propose – shame on you.

    Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 3:32 pm | Permalink
  21. Iron Knee wrote:

    Let’s try to cut down a little on the personal comments. I’m convinced that PSgt is not a paid commenter (or if he is, he isn’t a very good one!) and believes the things he is saying. I defend his right to disagree with me, and would gladly have more people like him commenting on this blog.

    Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 5:35 pm | Permalink
  22. TENTHIRTYTWO wrote:

    ‘Tis your blog, and you control the content. I would suggest to you, though, that if you are convinced he is not a paid commenter, then he actually *is* a good one.

    You might honestly believe that the left-leaning moderate used the phrase “chicago style politics,” a phrase that was crafted and put into use by the right-wingers post-Obama (look at the create-date on the wikipedia article). You might honestly believe that he/she/it happened to link to a “non-partisan” site that just happens to link to MRC (

    I don’t. But, I’ll stop conversing with him.

    Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 6:34 pm | Permalink
  23. Iron Knee wrote:

    I do think he consumes a bit too much right-wing media, but there are lots of other people out there who do as well. After all, somebody is watching Fox News, Beck, Limbaugh, etc. Like it or not, it is part of our country, and if we dismiss these people we are no better.

    So please, do keep pointing out when his arguments don’t add up, but I don’t think personal attacks help win any points.

    Friday, October 12, 2012 at 3:43 am | Permalink
  24. PATRIOTSGT wrote:

    1032 – First of all if someone was going to pay anybody to write in this blog I can assure you they can find someone more qualified then me. I come here because I learn and I’m allowed to speak my mind and you’re allowed to speak yours and if you want, try and change mine. I realize you have conspiracy theoryitis and I’m sure you are dead set in your beliefs and can’t understand how anyone can think differently, much less 1/2 the nation. Your entitled to your beliefs and opinion.
    Trust me I’m a much better debater in person, writing gets in my way when my fingers can’t keep up with my thoughts.

    I’ve been a Soldier for 20 some years and I’ve been to combat I have holes that weren’t there before the wars. I live in a right of center world working with both Soldiers and Law Enforcement. I believe in the rights of individuals and have grown more tolerant of others lifestyles through the years. I do not believe the rights of others are more or less important then mine and vice versa. I’ve done alot and spent time in the small business world managing restaurants for chains and private owners in my younger years before joining the military because I wanted to serve as my father before me had.
    I am a staunch fiscal conservative, I get that from my father who went on to be an accountant, treasurer and comptroller, my older brother who became a lawyer and CPA and my older sister who is a small business owner and employs some 250 people. I developed it myself in learning how to run business and stick to a budget and I apply it in running my very small business I manage in my spare time.
    I was taught to be tolerant of others, I was born before the civil rights act and saw the country transform before my eyes, I also watched the Soldiers heading off to Vietnam. As a grade schooler I made friends with the black folks who lived in their separate town next to mine and didn’t know or care that it was a remnant of segregation. I invited my friends to my house for birthday parties because they were my friends and so my mother insisted. To this day my black friend still thanks me for being his friend and making him feel welcome and I always tell him it’s not necessary because he was just my friend and i didn’t do it to be “polite”.
    My parents were staunch Democrats, but they were always fiscal conservatives and social liberals and church going people. My mother today says she agrees with civil unions, but not same sex marriages, she thinks that is an infringement on religion and since he flip flopped or evolved on the issue she holds it against the President. But she’ll still vote for him or just not vote, becuase she has always voted for the “party” regardless of their views.
    I am not my mother, I will vote accross party lines and I want a fiscal conservative and a tolerant social liberal who does not put the rights of any group before another.
    Neither of these candidates fits that bill, so I am forced to choose the lesser of 2 evils. My fiscal conservatism draws me to the right and it’s a strong call. I don’t believe in taking gambles with money that isn’t mine. Our politicians seem to think tax dollars belong to them, they do not. Tey seem to think they know better how to spend our money, they do not. Their job is to keep us safe, regulate interstate and cross country commerce and then listen to the people and provide services that make sense. Their job is not to decide for us becuase they know better, but to listen to us and provide what we want. All of us, liberal, conservative, progressive, independent and non political what does the majority feel would best serve the needs of the people.

    Thanks IK – I know we only agree occasionally, but you have always supported the right to disagree and thats why I continue to visit.

    Friday, October 12, 2012 at 8:11 am | Permalink
  25. Trip Ericson wrote:

    I don’t post here much, and I don’t know that I’ve ever made a lengthy political post here, but I’m feeling particularly animated this morning. I may not even feel like replying to any potential response, as I’m not typically very outspoken on my views, and I feel like I’m not a great debater. But here goes.

    “My fiscal conservatism draws me to the right and it’s a strong call.”

    You’re not the only person I hear this from, and I don’t understand why it continues to be so. Nothing the Republicans actually have done backs up the idea that the Republicans are going to do anything with deficit reduction. During Clinton’s administration, Republicans howled about the deficit and so Clinton worked with them to produce a surplus for the first time in roughly 40 years. Then, when Bush was elected and the Republicans were back in control, the first thing they did was take the surplus and, instead of working toward paying down the debt with it, gave it away as tax cuts, wiping out the surplus, then deficit spent us into two wars without adding it to the debt/deficit total until later, and added prescription drugs to Medicare as deficit spending. Vice President Dick Cheney, in the middle of all this, said that deficits don’t matter. Wasn’t his party the one harping about them during the Clinton years?

    Then, Obama gets elected and suddenly, the biggest issue on the face of the Earth is the debt and deficit again, and large pieces of Bush’s deficit spending suddenly appears as “the Obama deficits” and the only thing the Republicans want to do is cut, cut, CUT!

    Perhaps it’s just me, but the Republicans have zero credibility on this issue. Like it or dislike it, Obama has at least put forward deficit-cutting proposals that are somewhat reasonable in nature. I’m not sure what I’ve heard from Romney other than, “we’ll do things differently than Obama, but I won’t tell you how, other than to tell you that every benefit you receive will be just like what you receive under Obama, except PBS which gets cut, and Medicare which gets turned into a voucher or maybe not.” If Romney has a specific proposal that he won’t backtrack on 15 minutes later, I would love to hear it. Who knows, it might even be worth talking about.

    I actually like Obama, but I still acknowledge he is not perfect and there are always improvements that could be made in my eyes. But when it comes down to Obama, with a concrete record and concrete plans, versus Romney, who either has made none of his plans public in some areas, or has plans that are different based on which audience he is addressing in others, I know which one I would prefer.

    I would like to close by noting that I always appreciate reading the different points of view held by the various commenters here. The great thing about reading here is how rational, respectful, and level-headed almost everything is (there are exceptions), in stark contrast to many other places I visit and read on a daily basis. Thank you both to IK and to everyone who comments.

    Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 7:42 am | Permalink
  26. Arthanyel wrote:

    Trip: The Republicans have a specific agenda – Grover Norquist’s “starve the beast” plan. The end game is the elimination of social security, Medicare, welfare, and all social discretionary spending (search up the plan, this is exactly the goal). The method is to be the party of “fiscal responsibility” and viciously attack the debt (when out of power) and cut taxes to CREATE THE DEBT when in power. The combination is supposed to manufacture a debt crisis (WHICH WE HAVE NOW) and use that to scare everyone into allowing cuts to the social safety net that they would never allow otherwise. Then when things stabilize, do it again. Keep going until all “bad” spending is gone.

    And we have to stop them.

    Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 8:36 am | Permalink
  27. PATRIOTSGT wrote:

    Trip – I agree that the 2000-2006 Republicans blew it and they were rewarded by losing the House and Senate in 2006. But then instead of seizing the strategic moment the Democrats continued the same path, even uping the ante. Perhaps it was their ownplan to blame Bush and ensure a Democrat was elected in 2008. Then in 2010 the Democrats were rewarded for their spending and the Republicans won back the house and instituted their plan to get a Republican back in 2012. With trillion dollar deficits the new norm we cannot survive for 10 more years on our present course.
    I’d vote today for Obama if he had lowered the deficit in this last year to the previous high of 800 billion, no questions. He’s talked about it, but I can’t see any action.
    Athanyel – I agree about Norquist, I think the Republicans ought to drop him like a bad cold.

    Sunday, October 14, 2012 at 9:28 am | Permalink
  28. Iron Knee wrote:

    PatriotSgt, you know it isn’t true to say that Obama hasn’t done anything about the deficit. Let’s just take one example: The Republicans under Dubya pushed through Medicare Part D that was completely funded by massive deficits. ObamaCare is projected to reduce the deficit and you see how the Republicans react — screaming that Obama is cutting $715 billion from Medicare. Second example: I know you know that Obama has been winding down the two wars that Dubya and the Republicans got us into. That will save lots of money. What does Romney want to do? Increase military spending!

    We won’t have to survive for 10 more years on our present course. Obama has managed to get the economy going again (despite total opposition from the Republicans) and revenues will increase and the need for stimulus spending will decrease.

    Monday, October 15, 2012 at 12:36 pm | Permalink
  29. TJ wrote:

    It’s like talking to an empty chair. Democrats proposed a 10:1 ratio of spending cuts to tax increases last year and Republicans wouldn’t even consider it. Zero tax increases, not matter how much the Democrats were willing to give. All this while screaming about the deficit and debt.

    These are the people who are serious about the deficit?

    Monday, October 15, 2012 at 2:58 pm | Permalink
  30. JC for Pennies wrote:

    And the way so many well-heeled GOP supporters live? Simply, by definition, they are not really worried about the deficit. It’s just a game to them. Period. And millions of people continue to suffer in this, the richest society in the history of the planet. For shame, everyone; for shame!

    Tuesday, October 16, 2012 at 5:44 am | Permalink
  31. PatriotSGT wrote:

    IK – I’m not so sure on the deficit. The Iraq war ended in 2011, and our annual deficit is now 1.1 trillion. Yeah that’s better than 1.4 trillion, but we’re still talking trillions not billions. How much of this year’s savings could be contributed more to a do nothing congress then the savings from 1 less war?
    This year we’ll spend 380 billion of our budget just to pay interest on our debt and in just a few more years our spending on interest will equal our current defense spending.
    I just want him to lay out what he plans for the next 4 years like we are demanding from Romney. It seems both are keeping their cards close to their chest. I know what Obama has done and it’s not bad, but can he take us to the next level from where we are now. That, i guess, is what my question is.

    TJ – Can you provide me a link to the 10:1 plan the Dems put out. I’m not familiar with it and would like to read.

    JC – There are just as many, if not more, well-heeled DEM supporters out there. I don’t think the rural south or Appalachia quite qualifies as well-heeled. But they are quite independent.

    Looking forward to tonights debate 🙂

    Tuesday, October 16, 2012 at 8:17 am | Permalink
  32. JC for Pennies wrote:

    Oh, Patriot, how disingenous of you. Are you really so centrist? You don’t have to be a leftist to (dis)appreciate the downright disgusting display of greed on the part of the GOP visitors to Tampa, Florida during their convention. Too bad the hurricane affected the poor people of Louisiana and Mississippi, rather than turning back around and hitting the Tampa convention “dead center”. No, Patriot, these ol’ boys (and all the working girls whose services they were patrionizing) were having WAY to good a time from the point of view of folks still without jobs. The Repugs make the Dems look like amateurs when it comes to sucking up the nation’s wealth. That’s the REAL sucking noise you hear.

    Wednesday, October 17, 2012 at 3:28 am | Permalink
  33. TJ wrote:

    Sorry, I can’t find anything to share. I may have been confused – in looking through articles I have found that the 10:1 number was a big issue during the Republican debates – the candidates were asked if they would accept that and Mitt said no.

    I am pretty sure Obama offered something during the debt ceiling that included more cuts than tax increases, but it might not have been 10:1. However, I can’t find an article about it so I have no link to share. The search results are all skewed toward more recent articles. Sorry.

    Wednesday, October 17, 2012 at 7:40 am | Permalink
  34. Ron W. wrote:

    If anyone needs to know why we are in the mess we are in, why we can’t seem to get out, here it is.

    That’s treason to the American worker, 19 jobs bills filibustered and that includes one that was totally paid for that sought to help veterans, that are inequitably affected by unemployment and have been committing suicide in alarming numbers. Since the stimulus, almost nothing has been allowed through congress. A stimulus that took a free falling GDP and turned it around to the tune of 12.4 percent in the first year, by the way. Vote for Romney, or any Republican at this point in time? This is one independent that is voting a straight Dem ticket, this time around.

    Friday, October 19, 2012 at 11:30 am | Permalink
  35. Ron W. wrote:

    Now an anonymous Republican Senator has a hold on the bill to grant disabled veterans a COLA increase, as well. Last I knew, anyway. What is the matter with these people?

    Friday, October 19, 2012 at 11:34 am | Permalink
  36. Ron W. wrote:

    PatriotsGT, Obama is going to keep trying to do what the Republicans in congress have not allowed him to do, make things better. They have chosen party over country, and at this point, it’s getting damn old to those that know it.

    Friday, October 19, 2012 at 11:38 am | Permalink
  37. Ron W. wrote:

    Obama initially agreed to four trillion in cuts, I do know that much, because it would have meant cuts to the social safety net far beyond what I considered prudent, TJ.

    Friday, October 19, 2012 at 11:54 am | Permalink
  38. Karl Leuba wrote:

    Patriot Sargent, I am a veteran. I am over 65. I served under Eisenhower, Kennedy and Johnson. What I hear from Mitt Romney bodes well for the arms industry, and ill for the troops.
    On the issue of Defense, Obama has taken a stand for the troops, a stand for maintaining peace through strength, a position favoring Diplomacy backed by power. Romney does not just mention PBS as a potential cut. He also offers cuts for Planned Parenthood, cuts for combat pay, and most disturbing to me, as a vet, denial of some vital medical services to active duty personnel.
    I don’t have first hand experience raising a family while in the Service, but I suspect PBS is a vital connection with home and heart for dependents living with their service people in foreign countries. I know for certain that Planned Parenthood is available to military families as well.
    You need to rethink who is buttering your toast.

    Friday, October 19, 2012 at 12:01 pm | Permalink