Saturday, November 19, 2011

Taking on the myth that Democrats caved

It all started right away from the get-go. Our country had just elected Barack Obama at the moment we were careening towards a second Great Depression. Something had to be done...and fast. Twenty-eight days after the inauguration, President Obama signed the Recovery Act (yes, that's right folks...28 days!) It was the largest stimulus package every passed by a U.S. Congress.

And yet the wails of "Obama caved" coming from the left were already well underway. Nevermind that time was of the essence and Democrats (who had 57 Senators at the time) had to negotiate with the likes of Lieberman, Snowe, and Specter (who was still a Republican back then) in order to get something passed. The myth was born.

Almost 3 years later, the myth persists. That's why I thought I'd take a few minutes and bust it up a bit.

The second stage in the development of the "cave" myth came, as everyone knows, when the public option was dropped from inclusion in health care reform. At that point, the Democrats had 59 Senators + Lieberman (who never supported the PO). But there were also moments like the day Sen. Blanche Lincoln - one of those 59 - took to the floor of the Senate and said she would join with a Republican filibuster of the bill if it contained a public option. We don't need to go any further than those 2 (although there were other Senators in opposition) to demonstrate that it NEVER had 60 votes in the Senate. That is sufficient to explain why it was dropped...not some other myth that President Obama gave it away in a secret deal or that he and the Democrats caved to Republicans.

Of course in the midst of all the hollering about the public option, way too many people missed that health care reform actually included one...Medicaid expansion.

Among all the changes and ramifications for health care forthcoming as a result of passage (and now law) of the PPACA (Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act), none may be as large and impactful as the expansion of Medicaid. In terms of impact I am referring to economic, political, social and systemic (present access and delivery of care to the targeted population)...

Best estimates place the increase in additional enrollees at 16 million to 18 million.

Next comes the deal that was struck on the extension of the Bush tax cuts in December 2010. To many on the left, President Obama once again caved to Republican demands. But the truth is that he took a stand on the idea that we should not - in the midst of a recession - end the tax cuts for the middle class. He was also insistent that Congress needed to extend unemployment insurance for those who continued to be out of work. But once again, a small group of Democrats would not support that position and actually voted against extending the tax cuts only to the middle class.

Given that reality, what President Obama did was compromise on extending all of the tax cuts for two years while getting the Republicans to sign on to a second stimulus.

Mr. Obama effectively traded tax cuts for the affluent, which Republicans were demanding, for a second stimulus bill that seemed improbable a few weeks ago. Mr. Obama yielded to Republicans on extending the high-end Bush tax cuts and on cutting the estate tax below its scheduled level. In exchange, Republicans agreed to extend unemployment benefits, cut payroll taxes and business taxes, and extend a grab bag of tax credits for college tuition and other items.

The third so-called "cave" is actually one of my favorites. Its about the deal that was struck when the Republicans threatened to shut the government down over the 2011 budget. By then Republicans had taken over the House and were looking to cut $100 billion from the budget in one year. As negotiations wore on, that number jumped around. But Speaker Boehner mistakenly kept his eye on the figure of the moment while President Obama and the Democrats went to work looking at the details. In the end, it was announced that the deal they reached contained $78 billion in spending cuts. What was amusing was to watch many on the left rise up in outrage over the "cave" while folks on the right woke up to the reality that the deal only cut $352 million from the deficit.

Finally we come to the debt ceiling deal. I've been talking about that one quite a bit lately - especially about how the Democrats outsmarted the Republicans. But I'll just add that while many on the left have been howling about the potential gutting of Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security - not a penny has been cut from any of those programs yet and it looks increasingly likely that all the focus next year is going to be on how much we can afford to cut from defense. I don't know about you - but I hardly call that a "cave." Instead I call it rather genius strategy.

I think that about catches us up to the current situation. I hope its clear by now why many of us reject this mythology about President Obama and the Democrats caving all the time. What they've done in each and every case is to deal with reality, minimize the damages, and get some pretty incredible "wins" along the way. And folks, that about sums up what good progressive politics is all about.

43 comments:

  1. Thank you so much. Reading this blog (and a few others) makes me realize that I am not insane when I believe I see an upside to these deals.

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  2. mlf - Thank you! What you've done is affirm the reason I thought it was important to write something like this.

    NO - YOU ARE NOT INSANE!!!!!!! You are paying attention.

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  3. What they want is for Obama to act like Bush. Anything less is considered a cave.

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  4. You absolutely ROCK, Smartypants. Thanks for this breakdown.

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  5. You said it EXACTLY!!! love this "hollering about Public Option, many people missed that HC reform actually included 1...Medicaid expansion." You put it more clearly than I've ever seen it! I kept trying & trying to tell folks it give the average guy/gal a safety-net! Thats so soo soo major & the facts aren't out to general public cause both the RW noice machine & the LW ideologues play into avoiding the facts!

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  6. Sorry but you are far off the mark here and are either knowingly or unknowingly leaving out a lot of facts. The big problem with our healthcare system Is their is mineral competition when it comes to insurance and prescription drugs. It's a few major corporation who coordinate fixed prices and are legally exempt from anti trust laws. What Obama did was entrench this broken and expensive system by mandating millions of people to join and pay these
    Monopolys for life. He could have stopped the debt ceiling debate in its tracks using the 14th amendment. He gave republican more than 10x what he got for extending the bush tax cuts?

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  7. He didn't support house members who tried to put real financial reform into law because he's paid off by wall st. He is an utter and complete sellout and failure. I campaigned for him in 08 and I knew it was bs as soon as he surrounded his inner circle with Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley alum. He's no different than any other corrupt politician.

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  8. Ryan, I see you've got all the talking points down. Most all of them are refuted as various places on this blog if you care to read.

    As an example - I'd be interested to know who in Obama's administration worked for Goldman Sachs.

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  9. "I'd be interested to know who in Obama's administration worked for Goldman Sachs."

    That would be Hank Paulson. Yes, he was put in office by GW Botch, but, Obanker (caving) let him stay on.

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  10. Part of the problem is that the GOP puts a higher priority on "make Obama a one-term president" than anything else, up to and including making sure the country doesn't melt down into a debt-ridden mess with a paralysed government.

    Obama is in pretty much the same position as a hostage negotiator facing a paranoid psychotic on meth - he's not listening to reason, and any overly sudden move might cause him to push the button and blow millions of people into unemployment (or poverty when their social security checks fail to arrive).

    What you do in a case like that is talk slowly and comfortingly and agree to whatever the guy is ranting about until he puts the gun down -- or until the SWAT team is in position to disable him without giving him a chance to "kill" his hostages.

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  11. dixie blood - Given that Paulson was George W's Treasury Secretary and was replaced by Geithner (and no, Obama did not let him stay on), I thank you for making my point for me...no Goldman Sachs alumni in the Obama administration.

    And next time you use disrespectful names for presidents here, I'll delete your comment.

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  12. Excuse me; the Health Care Bill was eventually passed under reconciliation. Obama did not press to have the Public Option put forth which as everyone knows(sarcasm) bills under reconciliation only require a simple majority, 51 votes not 60.

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  13. Anonymous @ 8:35

    Excuse me; but the health care bill was NOT passed under reconciliation. Only the "fixes" to the original Senate version were passed that way. The public option would not have met the requirements for the rules about what can pass via reconciliation. You can read up on the "Byrd Rule" that defines all that here.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Byrd_Rule

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  14. the PO never saw the light of day at the negotiation table. try again. but you're right it wasn't caving when they had corporatist intentions all along.

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  15. ernest - You fail to mention that a PO was included in the House bill and was also in 2 of 3 Senate committee bills. So you are wrong about it never being part of the negotiations.

    If - as you say - the Democrat's "corporate intentions" ruled the day, then you'll have to explain the inclusion in HCR of the much bigger and more impactful expansion of Medicaid.

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  16. You're right that Obama didn't cave. He got, and has gotten, just what he has wanted. He is a conservative Blue Dog democrat who favors those types of laws. His record speaks for itself.

    There was no public option because the leadership didn't want one. There were no investigations of past war crimes because they didn't want one. Tim Geitner and the rest of the Wall Street wrecking crew were hired because that's who Obama wanted. Social Security and Medicare were put on the table for cutting because that's what Obama wants as his legacy. The moderate who was willing to slay the our sacred programs.

    He isn't a poor negotiator. He just wants things I feel are very bad for our country.

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  17. Anonymous @ 11:16

    Lets take those one by one:

    There was no public option because there were not 60 votes in the Senate for it. What we know about President Obama is that he went around the country promoting the public option. He spoke very powerfully in favor of it over and over again. Unless you can read his mind - what we have to go on are his words and actions. But he's not a magician and couldn't simply wish away the lack of votes for it in the Senate.

    There is currently a grand jury working on an investigation of torture during the Bush administration. It will not likely lead to charges against Bush/Cheney because Congress passed the Military Commissions Act..google it.

    I'll agree - Tim Geithner was appointed because Obama wanted him in the job. You'll have to get more specific about who you mean when you refer to the Wall Street wrecking crew. Geithner has spent his career either working for administrations or as a regulator. He has never worked for Wall Street. So your point there is not clear.

    As I said in the article above - Social Security and Medicare have not been touched. If you actually listen to Obama - yes, he thinks they'll need some reforms (as was done in HCR with reigning in Medicare Advantage). Again - perhaps you have some mind-reading capability that I lack, but what Obama has said he wants to do is protect those programs and make them financially sustainable. The idea that he wants to "slay our sacred programs" is nothing but a fantasy in your head.

    Overall I have no need or desire to pin a label on President Obama - conservative, Blue Dog, progressive, socialist or anything else. What I will say is that he has progressive values and a commitment to pragmatism. That's something that I support 100%.

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  18. Obama did cave to the neocon American war lords, profiteers and torturers. The Gitmo concentration camp is still open; habeas corpus is a quaint memory; Yoo and Cheney are not in prison; and our troop level in Afghanistan has increased.

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  19. You can argue for all these so-called accomplishments all you want, but if they were more significant, Obama would not have suffered massive losses in the House in '010. Nor would we be seeing OWS. As long as the majority of voting Americans do not directly feel better from his policies, Barry's going to be a one-termer. And the most powerful man in the world being bossed around by three Republicrat Senators and Tea-Baggers eager to sink the ship just to insure he doesn't get re-elected doesn't look good in any light. Do you think Clinton would have had a shot at four more years if he let Newt drag out debt ceiling talks until the very last day?

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  20. So he didn't cave, he just failed to deliver... either way, I won't vote again for someone that doesn't fulfill his promises. He needed to play hardball, he chose to try being buddies with the republicans instead.

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  21. Boy - the trolls in here sure are wedded to fantasy politics, aren't you?

    Lets start with doneck:

    I guess you simply missed the fact that the Senate voted 90 - 6 to forbid Obama transferring Gitmo detainees. Unless you willing to trash the whole constitutional basis for our government, I'd call that a Congressional cave with Obama one of the few fighting on the right side of the argument.

    I already pointed out how passage of the Military Commissions Act made it impossible to try folks like Yoo and Cheney for torture. As I said above, go google it and find the real basis for that problem.

    Obama ran on increasing our troops in Afghanistan. And the process for ending that war is just getting underway...troops home by next September.

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  22. Hey remember when Harry Reid & Obama threw non-democrat Lieberman out of his democratic seniority committee positions as a payback for his obstruction?

    Nope me either.

    Remember when Reid and Obama publicly castigated Liberman, Snow, Nelson, Landrieu et al for being republicans? Then cut them off from all the goodness the democratic party sends their way?

    Remember Obama pushing Reid to change the filibuster rule? What became of Reids handshake w/ the GOP not to obstruct? File it with the war w/ Oceania.

    Yes, nothing has been cut YET. But the t-party terrorist ideals of reducing the deficit during a recesssion have been endorsed as legitimate.

    I understand that Obama actually had a filibuster proof majority for 6 months.

    But I don't remember Pelosi being crowned issue dictator ala Boehner back in 08.

    Why is it the GOP with one house directs the govt. while Obama and the dems did nothing w/ their 6 month window, except let Max Baucus "negotiate" w/ domestic terrorists/GOP politicians over a health care program that was entirely crafted by the GOP.

    We rejected Bob Dole's healthcare in 94', only to beg for it in 09'.

    What is the GOP pushing today that we will be forced to beg for in 15 years thanks to Obama?

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  23. D.Z.

    If you were looking for a progressive president to please the tea party crowd that dominated the 2010 midterm election - then you were sadly ignorant of what happened there.

    And on the debt ceiling deal - once again you're missing the drama of the defeat Obama just handed those Republican Senators and Tea Baggers. Too bad, because its been rather amusing to watch.

    Finally, you're suggesting a good bit of historical revisionism in suggesting that Clinton stood up to Republicans. How do you think we got welfare reform and the end of Glass - Steagall?

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  24. Anonymous @ 3:56

    When it comes to punishing folks like Lieberman - I have four letters for you...DADT. Wouldn't have been repealed without him. Unfortunately in politics, you don't get to pick the people you have to work with. It's a 2 year-old mentality that simply wants to yell and scream at opponents without taking account of the potential consequences.

    When you compare Pelosi's House with Boehner's, what you're overlooking is that its always more difficult to govern than it is to obstruct. That's another deficit that is typical of a two year-old mindset.

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  25. Just a thought...

    According to my stat counter, this article has been viewed by over 800 people since it was linked at Crooks and Liars this morning.

    What's interesting to me is that its only a few trolls that have stopped long enough to comment. I'd suggest that's one of those examples of "thou protesteth too much." LOL

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  26. Gary Gensler: former Goldman Sachs Co-Head of Finance; chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission

    Robert Hormats: former Goldman Sachs Vice Chairman; Under Secretary of State for Economic, Business, and Agricultural Affairs

    Mark Patterson: former Goldman Sachs Vice President; chief of staff to Treasury Secretary Geitner.

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  27. Anonymous @ 8:28

    I figured someone would eventually did down far enough into the weeds to find some folks who worked for Goldman Sachs - thereby demonstrating that NONE of the leadership fits the bill.

    Thanks!

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  28. Hi Smartypants, I appreciate your determined defense. Please answer me this...Okay, here's where I feel Obama makes mistakes...appointing Jeffrey Immelt, who has shipped so many jobs overseas, to head Job creation? Letting the DOJ bust medical marijuana providers when he says he supports medical marijuana? appointing a former lobbyist for Monsanto to the FDA when so many are suspicious of GM foods, allowing the banks to pursue immunity fromthe DOJ in defense of their plunder? Probably more stuff like this, but this is just the top of my mind today...These are not appts. He was bludgeoned into by an unsympathetic congress... ( please excuse sloppy ipad keyboard) best C.

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  29. I guess that when you are wrong, you just change your assertion. First, you did not ask who among the leadership of the Obama administration is from Goldman. You asked "I'd be interested to know who in Obama's administration worked for Goldman Sachs". These three members of the Obama administration formerly worked for Goldman.

    It is surprising that you consider the chief of staff to the treasury secretary, chairman of the CFTC, and under-secretary of state to be digging "down far enough in the weeds". They are senior administration positions, one level below cabinet secretary. Since these people are too far down in the weeds to count, you were apparently asking which members of the Obama cabinet are former Goldman employees. Is that your question?

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  30. Cassandra - Here's what I think about this issues your brought up.

    Jeffrey Immelt - I don't know that I really care who Obama puts in charge of a council that's designed to give him policy suggestions. I suspect those kinds of things a vanity appointments for the most part. But it just might be a great way to get Immelt focused on thinking about creating jobs in the US.

    Medical marijuana - I agree...dumb policy. And I've written about that here.

    DOJ and foreclosure fraud - Can't summarize that one quickly. But you can read my thoughts about that here.

    http://immasmartypants.blogspot.com/2011/11/primer-on-foreclosure-fraud-settlement.html

    and here

    http://immasmartypants.blogspot.com/2011/11/doj-settles-with-boa-on-foreclosure.html

    and here

    http://immasmartypants.blogspot.com/2011/11/what-is-justice.html

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  31. Anonymous @ 9:14

    I don't believe I ever made an assertion about the administration and Goldman Sachs. I simply asked a question and folks proved my point for me.

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  32. Actually, you did. You claimed that Ryan's criticism's of Obama were "refuted as various places on this blog if you care to read". You then said "As an example - I'd be interested to know who in Obama's administration worked for Goldman Sachs.".

    Readers of meaningful English would assume that you meant as an example refutation of Ryan's point that Obama has "surrounded his inner circle with Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley alum.". That is, that Obama has not surrounded himself with Goldman alum, and to refute your refutation, one must come up with Goldman alum who are in Obama's administration. Apparently, you meant something else. So what did "As an example" mean?

    As to folks proving your point, if you "simply asked a question", what was your point?

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  33. Anonymous @ 9:45

    My point was to ask a simple question that would allow the responder to demonstrate that when Ryan said Obama's inner circle was made up of Goldman Sachs alumni - it was categorically untrue. That's exactly what happened.

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  34. In a worldview that is impervious to reason, I suppose so.

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  35. "you're suggesting a good bit of historical revisionism in suggesting that Clinton stood up to Republicans. How do you think we got welfare reform and the end of Glass - Steagall?"

    Well, he stood up to them on the Whitewater witch hunt, the '94 assault rifle ban, and family planning services, which is still more than Barack is currently doing. And welfare reform is still a better compromise than forcing non-Boomers to work until they're 70 for SS benefits. As for ending Glass-Steagal, well, at least he didn't deny Elizabeth Warren a seat on the financial regulatory commission, because he caved.

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  36. You're the one "impervious to reason" anonymous.

    Here's what Ryan claimed:

    I knew it was bs as soon as he surrounded his inner circle with Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley alum.

    and here's the question that SP asked that revealed he was full of shit:

    "I'd be interested to know who in Obama's administration worked for Goldman Sachs."

    Then finally someone came up with three names, NONE of which could be described as being in the "inner circle". SP wasn't replying to a statement that castigated Obama for hiring ANY GS employees, he was responding to a statement that declared he "surrounded" himself with GS employees. I know you're all high fiving yourselves because you "got" the Obamabot. But you can only do that by ignoring the reality right befor you.

    Something you frustrati are really good at.

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  37. DZ

    I guess if you think standing up about Whitewater allegations is a stronger position than standing up to attempts to dismantle Medicare while insisting on tax increases for the wealthy - then Clinton is your man. And if you think not having Elizabeth Warren lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is more important than letting Glass Steagall die - then for sure Clinton is your man. But I'll just say that I certainly don't share your priorities.

    And please come back and tell me all about it when non-Boomers are forced to work until their 70's for SS benefits. Given that it hasn't happened - I'm afraid that you're punching at straw men with that one.

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  38. Plus, i'm not sure how in the world one can give credit to Clinton for "standing up" about Whitewater. They were charging him with crimes, for Crissakes! OF COURSE he defended himself against that! Does anyone REALLY think that if Obama were falsely accused of a crime he'd actually be like "Well, for the good of the country and in the interest of bipartisanship, i'll step down."

    Also, as far as Obama allegedly "denying" Warren a seat 1. You're conveniently leaving out the fact that he encouraged her to run for Senate and 2. The organization would not exist AT ALL without Barack Obama's leadership. And, judging from the way the right and the banks are fighting to get rid of it, i'd say that this is just ONE example where Obama did NOT cave

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  39. Thanks insipid.

    One could truly write whole diaries refuting the nonsense contained in some of these comments.

    One thing neither of us have mentioned yet about DZ's comment is that s/he claims that Clinton stood up for family planning services. I guess s/he missed when Obama was willing to shut down the entire federal government to protect them.

    Oh well, its Thanksgiving. So I'll simply give thanks for the right of folks like that to speak their ill-informed minds. LOL

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  40. Smarty: "I guess if you think standing up about Whitewater allegations is a stronger position than standing up to attempts to dismantle Medicare while insisting on tax increases for the wealthy "

    Yeah, he hearts Medicare so much that he's made it easier for it to be defunded in favor of subsidizing greedy insurance companies. And he's so insistent that the rich pay their fair share that he renewed the Bush tax cuts.

    "I guess s/he missed when Obama was willing to shut down the entire federal government to protect them."

    I guess you missed the part where he made it possible for women to be denied coverage under Obamacare.

    "And if you think not having Elizabeth Warren lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is more important than letting Glass Steagall die - then for sure Clinton is your man."

    I'm not going to pretend that ending Glass Steagall wasn't a disaster in the making. But giving a bankster profiteer like Dodd priority in dictating financial reform over Warren isn't even an attempt at holding Wall Street accountable. At least Bubba actually tried to fight the machine on health care and tax rates.

    "And please come back and tell me all about it when non-Boomers are forced to work until their 70's for SS benefits. Given that it hasn't happened -"

    Don't worry. It'll be a given in '012 if he's elected.

    insipid: "Does anyone REALLY think that if Obama were falsely accused of a crime he'd actually be like "Well, for the good of the country and in the interest of bipartisanship, i'll step down.""

    Well, at the current rate, even Moore was joking about how he'd do such a thing. But I don't just mean that Clinton defended himself. He also attacked the GOP for wasting the public's time. He didn't let them co-opt their disastrous policies and pin it on him.

    "You're conveniently leaving out the fact that he encouraged her to run for Senate and 2. The organization would not exist AT ALL without Barack Obama's leadership."

    Of course he's going to encourage her, in order to get him off his back. And the organization existed under her guidance, so...

    "And, judging from the way the right and the banks are fighting to get rid of it, i'd say that this is just ONE example where Obama did NOT cave"

    Yeah, he doesn't need to cave on it, because he's already eager to sell out the country to Big Oil.

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  41. DZ - If you could stick to actual facts I'd be happy to have a discussion with you about the merits and shortcomings of the Obama administration. But its clear that you don't. Its pointless to discuss the fantasies in your head that both distort the actual record of the past and project things that are never going to happen in the future. All I can suggest is that you examine why you are so intent on avoiding the facts. But its your choice whether to do so or not.

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  42. D.Z. said: Yeah, he hearts Medicare so much that he's made it easier for it to be defunded in favor of subsidizing greedy insurance companies. And he's so insistent that the rich pay their fair share that he renewed the Bush tax cuts.

    Actually the affordable care act increased the solvency of medicare by 10 years. He renewed the Bush tax cuts to save unemployment benefits for millions of Americans and to get a second stimulus. There is such thing as nuance.

    DZ said: "I guess you missed the part where he made it possible for women to be denied coverage under Obamacare."

    I "missed" it because it never happened. All Obama did was affirm that the Hyde Amendment is still in effect. And it was and is. He didn't change the law, he just had a signing statement saying that the law is unchanged.

    DZ said: I'm not going to pretend that ending Glass Steagall wasn't a disaster in the making. But giving a bankster profiteer like Dodd priority in dictating financial reform over Warren isn't even an attempt at holding Wall Street accountable. At least Bubba actually tried to fight the machine on health care and tax rates.

    Forcing them to hold enough capital on hand to pay for their own dissolution IS holding them accountable. Putting in place a powerful agency created by Elizabeth Warren to hold bankers accountable and picking Richard Cordray to run it is holding them accountable.

    DZ said: Don't worry. It'll be a given in '012 if he's elected.

    I've been hearing bold predictions like this from supposed Democrats since he took office. So far the ONLY thing he's done to the Social Safety net is increase it.

    DZ said: Well, at the current rate, even Moore was joking about how he'd do such a thing. But I don't just mean that Clinton defended himself. He also attacked the GOP for wasting the public's time. He didn't let them co-opt their disastrous policies and pin it on him.

    Yeah that's the same Michael Moore that said that organizing people to pass legislation "accomplishes nothing" that's the same Michael Moore that endorsed Nader in 2000 saying that there was no real difference between Bush and Gore, that's the same Michael Moore that thinks it is ok for kids to have temper tantrums when they don't get what they want and not vote. Michael Moore is no freind to liberals, no friend to progressivism, and no friend to Democracy. Michael Moore is a "liberal" Mitt Romney a 1 percenter patronizing and "passing" as a man of the people. Does not impress me an iota what he thinks.

    DZ said: Of course he's going to encourage her, in order to get him off his back. And the organization existed under her guidance, so...

    Your living in a fantasy land. Elizabeth Warren if she were on this thread would be agreeing with ME and not you. She remains now and will be in the future a HUGE supporter of President Obama. In fact the line i used about the Consumer protection agency not existing without his leadership i lifted directly from her. She was responding to another guy who was working the meme that the President is no progressive.

    DZ said: "Yeah, he doesn't need to cave on it, because he's already eager to sell out the country to Big Oil. "

    Again, you're living in a fantasy world. He's given more money to green energy than any other president in history.

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  43. insipid: "Actually the affordable care act increased the solvency of medicare by 10 years."

    And then he was willing to put Medicare on the chopping block to appease the super committee.

    "He renewed the Bush tax cuts to save unemployment benefits for millions of Americans and to get a second stimulus. "

    And yet he looked the other way on the 99'ers.

    "All Obama did was affirm that the Hyde Amendment is still in effect. "

    In other words, he looked the other way.

    "He didn't change the law, he just had a signing statement saying that the law is unchanged."

    No, he didn't change the law, but he didn't fight for a better one.

    "Forcing them to hold enough capital on hand to pay for their own dissolution IS holding them accountable."

    Except they just get around that by nickeling and diming the consumer.

    "Putting in place a powerful agency created by Elizabeth Warren to hold bankers accountable and picking Richard Cordray to run it is holding them accountable."

    What does Cordray got that Warren didn't?

    "Yeah that's the same Michael Moore that said that organizing people to pass legislation "accomplishes nothing""

    Well, do we have universal health care yet after we voted in a super-majority? No. Are people who tortured and destroyed the economy being prosecuted? No.

    "that's the same Michael Moore that endorsed Nader in 2000 saying that there was no real difference between Bush and Gore,"

    The fact that Gore couldn't win proves him right.

    "Michael Moore that thinks it is ok for kids to have temper tantrums when they don't get what they want and not vote."

    Yep. OWS is having a bigger impact than "Change we can believe in" via internet mailing lists ever did.

    "He's given more money to green energy than any other president in history. "

    He also relaxed EPA air quality rules and was ready to extend a tar sands pipeline into the U.S.

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