piranha: red origami crane (Default)
[personal profile] piranha
i'm mostly staying away from it, but if the alternative is kate middleton's bared breasts...

so the mass media is in an uproar over romney's "47%" bit. (if you live under the same comfy rock where i am normally curled up, he was secretly taped at a closed, wealthy donor fundraiser, where he spouted a lot of really lovely crap, see [*] for verbatim quote about this particular bit).

and i gotta say, i see why the uproar is handy, of course (and a nice present for the obama campaign), but it's not like this is news. isn't this what the right wing has been flogging for more than a year already? hasn't there been some anti-"occupy" reference like "we're the 53%" from them? ok, so it's news that the candidate for the presidency said it, with the addendum that he doesn't worry about these people (which will be taken out of context, but he clearly meant it in regards to his election strategy)(well, "out of context" -- i think romney does in actuality not care about most people, but he wouldn't ever say that out loud as president, or act overtly as if he believes it. heck, maybe he doesn't even realize it.).

so some people say "stick a fork in him, he's done". and i say "alas, no".

because his base will gobble it up. seriously. they think it's poor people driving the US to the brink (nothing could be further from the truth, but truth was a victim of republican talking points long ago). they're dead set against helping poor people, because they think they're lazy freeloaders. they have become a lot less compassionate than they were even under reagan (who started the whole "welfare queen" malarkey). they don't recognize who these 47% are. since i know how to, uh, quack (using duckduckgo as my search engine), i looked it up, to be sure i had actual data instead of gut feelings: most of the 47% pay other taxes, just not federal income tax -- they simply don't make enough for the latter. but they pay sales taxes, payroll taxes, state income taxes, etc. most of them are not lazy, shiftless bums lying on their couches eating government bonbons, they're working in menial jobs where they barely make ends meet because they also have children. or they are retired, after a working life of, well, not being a corporate raider; the 47% includes many seniors. the idea that they're not taking responsibility for their lives is preposterous.

and a huge part of his base don't even realize that they are quite possibly part of these 47%. they just don't think of themselves as lazy victims, dependent on government handouts, unlike those obama voters.

so no, romney's not gonna lose those voters. not a chance. in fact he might fire them up some, which he badly needs, since they're not that excited about him. well, maybe a few seniors will stay at home, the ones who're already worried about medicare and medicaid.

he's just not gonna win any undecideds. but i doubt there are many of those left. how can anyone still be undecided? it's not like the republicans are actually fiscally conservative; they just prefer to direct their welfare at the corporate sector. of all the people to rail about debt, romney is their champion? romney, who made his fortune off pushing companies into debt? romney, who has never created anything, and who got his own personal bailout for bain? why paul ryan isn't throwing up every time he looks at him, is a mystery. or hell, not so much. he's a republican; hypocrisy comes with the territory these days.

i mean, for me obama has been a crushing disappointment, but if i could vote, i'd vote for him 10 times over romney. people are supposed to become more conservative as they grow older, but so far it looks like the opposite is true for me. i used to have respect for some republicans, but that group is tiny now, and most of them have already left the party.

last but not least, romney saying anything at all about people not paying taxes? the irony, it slays me.

[*] “There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right? There are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you name it. That that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what. …. These are people who pay no income tax. Forty-seven percent of Americans pay no income tax. So our message of lower taxes doesn’t connect. So he’ll be out there talking about tax cuts for the rich. I mean, that’s what they sell every four years.

And so my job is not to worry about those people. I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.”
cheyinka: A Blargg (a lava crocodile) emerging from lava. (blargg)
Posted by [personal profile] cheyinka
The funny thing is, at least some of the people who pay no (federal) income tax might well think that lower income tax is a good thing, or believe that lower taxes on businesses result in lower prices, or even think that it would be fair if they too had to pay income tax! So by saying "the people who don't pay income tax want to be taken care of for free, and I don't care about convincing them," he's not just being needlessly malicious, he's also wrong.

Sigh.

on 2012-09-20 08:13 (UTC)
firecat: red panda looking happy (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] firecat
The thing that bugs me about Romney's comment is that EVERYBODY is dependent on the government, because the government is responsible for most of our infrastructure. But his comment ended up reinforcing the "I suceeded with no help from anyone" attitude that a lot of people have.

on 2012-09-22 20:22 (UTC)
firecat: red panda looking happy (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] firecat
The whole rugged individualism fantasy seems woven fairly deeply into US culture in general. Not good.

on 2012-09-20 08:24 (UTC)
zeborah: On the shoulders of giants: zebra on a giraffe (science)
Posted by [personal profile] zeborah
people are supposed to become more conservative as they grow older

I read Somewhere On The Internet that this was a conclusion drawn from a very short span of data, and more longitudinal surveys suggest rather that society gets more liberal over time. So it's more that older people are (on average) more conservative than younger people at the same point in time, but they might nevertheless be more liberal than they had been when they'd been the younger people.

on 2012-09-21 11:54 (UTC)
necturus: 2016-12-30 (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] necturus
My gut feeling is that older people tend to want the world to be more like what they remember it to have been in their youth.

Some call that conservatism, but it isn't, really.

on 2012-09-22 01:55 (UTC)
zeborah: Map of New Zealand with a zebra salient (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] zeborah
Well, I occasionally say I'm conservative in that I believe in good old-fashioned values like love and tolerance and richesse oblige... And I suppose I could say I want the world to be the way I remember thinking it was in my youth, before realising I had a bad case of societally-induced unreliable narrator...

But ultimately, no, the older I get the more I want the world to change.

on 2012-09-21 12:16 (UTC)
necturus: 2016-12-30 (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] necturus
The United States is in a state of political gridlock, at least at the federal level. It's hard to see Barack Obama getting anything done in the next four years with tea party types running the House of Representatives. Expect more "fiscal cliff" brinksmanship games, and if the economy takes a turn for the worse -- maybe even if it doesn't -- a lot of Americans may start wishing for some sort of authoritarian alternative.

A President Romney, on the other hand, with a Republican House, Senate, and Supreme Court, might effectively be that alternative. There are enough conservative Democrats willing to fall in line that the Republicans would have little trouble getting their agenda enacted. Remember how easily George W. Bush got his wars, his tax cuts, and his massive homeland security apparatus.

We have to hope for the unimaginable: an Obama landslide, Nancy Pelosi back in the speaker's chair, and Democratic gains in the Senate.
Edited on 2012-09-21 12:17 (UTC)

on 2012-09-22 06:47 (UTC)
Posted by [personal profile] matthewdaly
"and a huge part of his base don't even realize that they are quite possibly part of these 47%."

The problem for Romney is that they most certainly do know. When you fill out your income taxes, you know when you're one of the people whose deductions and exemptions and credits push your liability to zero or below.

The reason the Republican party is typically so effective at regressive economic policy is that they frame the unworthy beneficiaries of the safety net as welfare queens and anchor babies, and blue collar workers throughout the South and Midwest will vote against their own well-being in response. I'm not sure what to make of this video -- is it evidence that American conservatism has gotten so brash that they don't feel like they need to play the game any more to control half the government, or is it just Romney that's this tone deaf?

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