I know you guys are eager to start working on an “It Gets Better” video specifically geared for 1000 year old Jim Lehrer, but bear with me for just a few moments. I’m sure most viewers of either political persuasion can agree that tonight’s debate was less than groundbreaking. I also realize that most people have their minds already made up, and that nothing short of one of the candidates declaring they enjoy eating babies will have any impact on anyone.
But I spent an hour of my evening watching this, and want to pretend it makes a difference. Humor me.
*One last warning. I am unashamedly liberal, so this will be slanted against Romney.
Mitt Romney? Wow. You did an amazing job tonight proving the oft-used maxim that a lie repeated often enough begins to sound like truth after awhile. The reason most people say you won the debate is because you tell your lies with such tremendous authority. I have to admire that. I still think you’re a lying douchebag, but you have mastered that Republican/Faux news method of making people believe your bullshit. I’m going to list out some glaring errors, just for the sake of ranting:
* You led the debate off with an immediate lie, as I expected you would. You denied that you would lower the tax burden on the nation’s wealthiest. Obama brought up your $5 trillion tax cut figure several times, and you kept beating it down. Yet your repeated declaration on the campaign trail that you will lower taxes by 20% does just that.
* The most elementary understanding of economics shows that the biggest dollar items on our nation’s budget are Social Security and military spending. You agreed you would not go after Social Security, but never refuted you would add a trillion dollars to defense spending. Nevermind that–not only is the US #1 in military spending–our spending already outranks the combined spending of the next 14 countries on the list. Combined. So let’s do the math. You stated repeatedly that you don’t want to spend more than we take in. But you are cutting $5 trillion in taxes and raising military spending. How do the economics work on that exactly? America needs a solid answer on that. You didn’t give one tonight. Your running mate just said in an interview that it was “too complicated” and you even said in the debate you didn’t have time to explain. I think you need to make time. By the way, cutting spending on things like PBS (and killing Big Bird) doesn’t even begin to make a dent in the debt you are going to run up. So quit with your “I don’t want to borrow from China” crap.
* You have no plan in place, unless it means putting the burden on the middle class. In fact, you just suggested–24 hours prior to the debate–that the mortgage interest tax deduction should be eliminated. How is that not a kick in the ass to the middle class? The richest get a 20% reduction, as you admitted (even though you avoided the $5 trillion issue), while middle class people lose the deduction they get on their mortgage interest? Asshole.
* Did you actually criticize the investment this administration has poured into clean energy initiatives? Now you’re just being a dick. I noticed you brought up energy on one of your lying rants, and yet I remember you only mentioning something about Alaska and a pipeline. Are we going down “drill baby drill” lane again? I don’t think you want to go there. I’m not getting into the global warming debate, but your curious omission of showing any initiative in wind, solar, and bio-fuels (as Obama did mention, by the way) is highly suspect.
* Your position on Dodd-Frank changed right in front of our eyes tonight. You previously pledged to repeal it, then tonight you said you supported parts of it. Could it be that parts of it actually benefit your cronies on Wall Street?
* No one knows where you stand on Simpson-Bowles. You supported it originally, but your chosen running mate Paul Ryan opposed it. You claimed in tonight’s debate that Obama should use it as a template for fixing the economy, but then you wouldn’t even state clearly if you supported it or not. You said “we have our own plan!” Really? Do you? What exactly is it then? This didn’t help the public’s established opinion that your only goal is to criticize Obama without standing on any convictions or coming up with any ideas of your own.
* You sure seemed to enjoy talking about that $700 billion Obama is going to take out of Medicare, right? Only problem is that it’s a lie. Not only is it a lie, but is a clear and obvious lie. It has been proven inaccurate countless times. The plan doesn’t cut money out of Medicare, it cuts money going to private insurers. This means that healthcare cost actually goes down, and we get the same care for less money. This usually happens in healthcare when you eliminate the disgusting private insurers and their unnecessary administrative costs. The worst part of this is that you must have known you were lying, given your running mate Paul Ryan’s plan relies on the same exact $700 billion reduction in his own plan.
* The most ridiculous and outrageous of your lies came when you promised to “reach across the aisle” and work with Democrats on issues, thus implying that Obama hasn’t attempted to do this. OH. NO. YOU. DIDN’T. Where the hell have you been the last four years? Obama has done nothing but attempt to reach out to Republicans; he even did so at the expense of pissing off the actual liberals in the Democratic party! The Republicans in the Senate and the House have done nothing but block every single attempt Obama and the Democrats have attempted on a variety of issues. Their goal from the very start of Obama’s term was to make him a one term president. They didn’t care about jobs or healthcare. They didn’t give one flip about reaching across any aisles. Your own Mitch McConnell, minority leader of the senate explicitly stated this. Don’t believe me, okay:
If there is one meme you Republicans need to give up on, it is the claim that the president doesn’t want to work with you. He tried to do nothing but that–at great expense–and your elected officials were more interested in making him appear ineffectual so he would lose re-election than they were in helping to repair the country’s problems (which were caused by the Bush administration, in case any of you have forgotten). How dare you come back and make these accusations against him now. You. Evil. Lying. Douchebag. Cyborg.
President Obama? I’m disappointed in you too. Why didn’t you hammer Romney on any of this? I know that you tried a few times. I liked your “If you’re 54-55 you might want to pay attention” line, but I wanted more. So much more. I wanted you to be stronger than you were, and slap the bitch down. I know that the Republicans are desperately resorting to the “Jeremiah Wright-sympathizing angry Black man” meme to discredit you, and you prefer to maintain your even-tempered mannerisms. But centrist independents don’t buy into the “angry black man” bullshit; that only works with the racists who won’t vote for you anyway.
The rest of us want you to fight. Hard. I know you can’t stand Romney. Neither can we. Even most Republicans are only voting for him because they hate you more. No one can really stand the guy. But you can’t stand there with your head bowed looking like a shy schoolmarm on her first date. You should have been stronger tonight. You should have mentioned the above issues, especially the last one. You should have brought up Romney’s 47% gaffe. You have done a damn good job with the mess you inherited, and you should have been more of a fighter stating such.
To those who think Romney won, I say just wait. The public’s expectations for Romney were so low heading into this debate that anything (short of him eating a live baby on air) would have seemed like a win. He had no zingers as he claimed. If Obama appeared to come out the loser, it is because he is at the disadvantage of telling the truth and working with actual facts. Things like “honesty” and “facts” come across as boring to a large portion of the public, but in the end I think he will come out ahead.
When the fact-checkers are done with Romney, he will be toast.
That’s if anyone is still paying attention.