What is at stake in this election

President Obama took the stage at the DNC on Thursday night and instead of talking about change – he talked about choice. The President said, “when all is said and done – when you pick up that ballot to vote – you will face the clearest choice of any time in a generation.” You know, it’s easy to resign into cynicism and attack both parties as tools of the corporate elite. But the President’s speech last night revealed that there are still enormous differences between himself and Mitt Romney – differences that will affect the lives of tens of millions of Americans.

As the President outlined, it’s a choice between hiring teachers or firing teachers. A choice between making the rich pay their fair share or shifting more of the tax burden onto working Americans. A choice between doing something about climate change, which the President said “is not a hoax,” or continuing to do nothing as the planet gets dangerously too hot. It’s a choice between relying solely on big oil to energize our nation or adopting clean energy. It’s a choice between Medicare and no Medicare. It’s a choice between getting the healthcare you need or being denied health insurance for pre-existing conditions.

Ultimately, it’s a choice between having a middle class in America – or not. And even though the president didn’t mention it, this election will be a choice between having a Supreme Court for the next generation that sides with working people or having a far-right Supreme Court that sides with corporations. Many progressives are disappointed with President Obama – and have good reason to be.

But if we sit out this election, then the oligarchs will only tighten their grip on power in America. That’s what’s at stake.


telliottmbamsc's picture
telliottmbamsc 11 years 41 weeks ago

The differences obama cited between the democratic and republican party are alleged differences, and yea there may be technical differences between the parties. But there is no difference in substance between the two parties. Both will crap on the 99% in their craven pursuit to serve the 99%. They'll just say different things and go about it differently.

I'm voting for Jill Stein.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 41 weeks ago

"President Obama took the stage at the DNC on Thursday night and instead of talking about change – he talked about choice."

Sure, Obama needed to change the subject..since he failed on "change you can believe in"...or was that "hope you can believe in"? Choice? what choices do we really have here? You can choose to opt out of the Obama Care but you will be fined by the government. You can choose either Obama or Romney and you will get the same rapacious policies that the 1% have gotten away with.

America has turned into a relatively lawless wild west of gunslingers and the few that are toting M16s against our pea shooters (you gave all your guns away, remember?)....are controlling us all.

The only real CHOICE is to vote for Jill Stein not tweedle dee or tweedle dummer! Jill Stein may be our only chance to keep this empire from bursting into violence...things could get really, really bad. And I am certainly not looking forward to it!

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 41 weeks ago

" You know, it’s easy to resign into cynicism and attack both parties as tools of the corporate elite."

It's easy because it's the truth...they ARE both tools of the corporate elite! Sure, there are some differences...enough, perhaps to convince some Democrats..that Obama is the lesser of two evils. Most should realize, by now, if they haven't been swayed back into stupidity and forgetfulness by all of this campaign rhetoric, that Obama sounded much the same before he was elected the first time. You see...that's the real trick in all of this...they have you in a trap of voting for one of THEIR guys...Romney or Obama. Romney is plan A and Obama plan B. Plan A, in order to move quickly to screw us...or, if the people are getting too upset...Plan B, to feed the simpletons hope that they really should know better to believe in.

But, alas, America is full of superstitious simpletons who believe in ghosts and demons and devils and gods. And many of them are easy to fool into voting for Republicans...or, fake Democrats. Which one do you think Obama is? With the ruling elite...it's heads they win and tails you lose. Let's break that chain and vote for the Greens..vote for Jill Stein.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 41 weeks ago

"But the President’s speech last night revealed that there are still enormous differences between himself and Mitt Romney – differences that will affect the lives of tens of millions of Americans."

Obama's speeches, when he campaigned before his first election, "revealed enormous differences" as well but his bark turned into a whimper after he was elected. He was voted in by the people because they were convinced that Obama was seriously going to change things. But Obama just kept giving in to the Republicans and I think that was meant to be all along. He sold us hope but gave us more of Bush.

Actions! Not more empty prattle!

Are you going to believe all of the sweet nothings that Obama tells you or are you going to believe what he actually did or didn't do during the last 4 years?

Are you going to be cowed into voting for Obama again because the alleged alternative, Romney, is just too horrible to imagine? Or are you going to take a chance that the majority of voters will, this time, break their chains and vote outside of the corrupt two party system. Think of how much elation will come over everyone if they finally were able to make a masterful statement that "we will not be held prisoners anymore by the corrupt two party system", and leave the jaws of the ruling elite and their political puppets wide open in shock and amazement that the people actually fought back. Vote for Jill Stein!

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 41 weeks ago

"But if we sit out this election, then the oligarchs will only tighten their grip on power in America. That’s what’s at stake"

If we fail to shake up the good old boy, corrupt two-party system, then the "oligarchs will continue to tighten their grip on power in America". If we elect Jill Stein..it would send an acute sign to those in power that their money bought them nothing and they can't continue to get away with fooling the people all the time with their rigged system. They would have to change their superior attitude and start to compromise...in the very least.

And in the very best...if Jill Stein does turn out to be America's savior and appoints all good and strong people to her cabinet...investigators and prosecutors to bring to justice all of those war criminals and economic criminals..and restore America to a place where we can again feel proud and safe again....then we will have saved America by voting for Jill Stein! We really have no other choice!

I'd rather have Jill Stein appointing Supreme Court Justices than either Romney or Obama.

klentz's picture
klentz 11 years 41 weeks ago

2012 is the last chance for republicans from here on out. The demographics have turned against them, and by 2016 no amount of money will get them elected. So its all in this time around - win at all costs. Expect more big money than even imagined in negative ads, false ads, lies and innuendo.

And if the republicans do win, expect a scorched earth administration stacking the supreme court, taking away personal liberties, eliminating taxes, outlawing abortion,abolishing regulation, etc. The only good news is that they will be out for good in 2016 and after 10-12 years progressives may be able to clean up the mess and return to normalcy.

If dems win, its more of the same nothing happening for four years. But when demographics catch up - it will be full Democratic from here on out.

Then with some luck and a leader with balls, money may even be eliminated from politics and we may return to democracy. I only hope it happens in my lifetime.

Karl Smiley's picture
Karl Smiley 11 years 41 weeks ago

I can't vote for someone who has treated Bradley Manning like Obama has, or someone who has usurped the right to kill anyone he decides to without due process, or someone who uses drone warfare, or someone who brags about killing Ben Laden when he could have easily captured him and brought him to trial so that perhaps the truth of what happened on 911 could come out, or some one who goes along with the FEMA camps being prepared for protesters, or someone who is not fighting to stop the tar sand oil from flowing through our country and who says all the options for our energy needs when it is obvious that that will alter our planet to the extent that it may compromise our grand children's ability to survive. Yes, he is the lesser of too evils, but this time I see no hope in voting for him.

I will vote for Jill Stein, who speaks for our survival, both physically and morally.

naturesmasterpieces's picture
naturesmasterpieces 11 years 41 weeks ago

Everyone talks about Romney calling for letting Detroit go bankrupt, but I don’t think anyone has really pointed out just how selfish what he was suggesting actually was, and how much it reflects one more example of the thinking he lived by, and prospered by at Bain Capital.

If companies go bankrupt, it will nullify union contracts. It would eliminate legacy costs like pensions and health insurance benefits for tens of thousands of former employees. Those holding stock would want to unload it quickly before the price of it free fell.

The stock of those companies would bottom out and be worthless. BUT, people like Romney would swoop in and buy up that stock at bargain basement sale prices, knowing full well that the auto companies would be back in business sometime soon, hire people at much lower wages, with much less benefits, and with all the shed costs, the company would be seen as highly profitable for investors, and the stock would soar and those Romney types would makes millions. All at the expense of perhaps millions of middle class union workers.

Likewise, Romney suggested in a Las Vegas interview that we should let the foreclosure process play out. Sure, so that people like him, or at least those managing his blind trusts, could buy up foreclosed properties for pennies or dimes on the dollar, and make huge profits when the housing market returns someday.

So my point is, these examples people often cite about Romney speak a lot more about him, and people like him, when you play the scenarios out.

dowdotica's picture
dowdotica 11 years 41 weeks ago

i was just thinking about it all and how in 4 years none of them have really done anything to help me and mine! sky rocket college costs while fat cat administrators get raises? $ being squandered on idiodic municiple projects while teachers take the shaft and the kids get dumbed down even more? the banks still sticking to the people and the gov doing absolutely nothing for those of us who actually keep it a float! seriously i am disgusted with all the hot air and smoke blowin! i want to hear obama say he is going to..."i will put through an executive order today allowing for those hard working middle class and working class folks to be able to tap thier retirement accounts without penalty and pay off thier mortgages so they don't have to be prisoners to the banks anymore so they can get back to being able to afford to put mac and cheese on the table.."in the meantime my money is still tied to rules and regs that i have little control over as i worry about it everyday and wonder who the next dolt is that is going to rip me off!!! its all BS but tragically? i will still go out and vote, trying to convince myself it actually means something. Sad....

naturesmasterpieces's picture
naturesmasterpieces 11 years 41 weeks ago

When you think about it, it really is like history is repeating itself - returning to what it's been for so much of human history. Kings and queens and lords, and a whole lot of peasants, with kings and queens having more than any human could ever possibly need in a lifetime, all at the expense of the peasants. Kind of like America's version of monarchies.

And the sad part is that they manage to get tens of millions of people to vote against their own interests by playing on the resentment that some of their hard earn money that is taken from them in taxes might go to some imaginary welfare queen or king out there who doesn't want to work and just wants to live off them. I've received dog whistle emails about just that from conservative friends since Obama got elected.

One of my favorite signs from Madison, WI was "A middle class worker voting for a Republican is like a chicken voting for Colonel Sanders". Can't sum it up any better than that.

It's like the movie the Matrix. That's exactly what the conservative, corporate owned media outlets have created in this country. When people blog against Obama, I keep thinking of what Barney Frank once said to a ranting woman. "What planet do you spend most of your time on?" But as a mental health care professional, I also find it rather scary. Maybe that's the job area that will grow and bring us out of this economic mess - the mental health care workers. Lord knows they're needed.

historywriter's picture
historywriter 11 years 41 weeks ago

It means something. I understand the disappointment and disillusionment. I cannot understand the president buying into the "I can kill anyone." I don't understand NDAA and a lot forays into our constitutional rights.

But the Romney/Ryan ticket would, if it could, make abortion almost completely unavailable except for "forcible," rape--oh, wait, not even that. It wouldn't try to bring women's wages up to equal men's--he did bring about and sign the Lily Ledbetter act. I don't think he isst going to renege on Social Security and Medicare, but we may have to keep our feet on his neck to make sure he doesn't. He did get us out the Iraq and is ending the Afghanistan war. He got a somewhat weak Wall Streeet reform bill passed--that repubs are still trying to defeat and whittle away at. He got rid of Don't Ask don't tell and came out in favor of same-sex marriage.

He lowered taxes on ordinary people, although it was slight and didn't amount to a lot for individurrals, and most people were unaware, but over a year it added up. He raised America's image and standing abroad and has conducted a foreign policy based on diplomacy, sanctions, etc., instead of bombs and guns. He's way far from perfefct but R/R know nothing about foreign policy and from Romney's stumbling overseas venture, I'd be afraid of what he might do.

I am not particularly proud of killing Omar bin Laden. He could easily have been captured and we could have gotten information from him. I suspect this administration also ordered Saddam Hussein killed immediately because he knew about all the skeletons going at least as far back as Bush 1.

There's more, but he is disappointing, disillusioning, sometimes lies, etc. etc., but his stated values and policies put us in the right direction, and I am voting for him. The alternative (not Jill Stein or Rocky Anderson) of R/R is really too awful to contemplate, especially if they get a strong repub congress.

There's more, but you can look it up.

Loren Bliss's picture
Loren Bliss 11 years 41 weeks ago

If in pre-Fortress Brest, pre-Pearl Harbor 1941 I were a free adult U.S. citizen and were suddenly by some fluke of physics teleported into the police-state the United States has now become, I would assume the Nazis had won.

No we don't have death camps -- not yet -- but the total loss of our constitutional rights and the 24/7 surveillance and the mostly unspoken but utterly rational horror of being tortured that now oppresses us all is exactly the sort of governance Hitler, Mussolini and Tojo were imposing on the entire world.

Nevertheless, as Mr. Hartmann says, though the difference between Obama and Romney is surely no difference in kind, it is unquestionably a difference in degree. Hence I ask myself the only real question in this election. Do I want full-fledged fascism now? Or do I want to (maybe) put off the inevitable for another four years?

I know that under Romney we'll have not just avowedly genocidal termination of Medicare, Medicaid (and most likely Social Security), but the imposition of JesuNazi theocracy, with faith-based organizations like the Ku Klux Klan -- known throughout the South as "the Saturday Night Men's Bible Study Class" -- functioning as the Christian equivalent of Islamic morality police. I believe -- I hope -- under Obama things won't be quite so bad.

The transformation of capitalism into fascism and finally into some form of Nazism is inevitable -- that is what is happening now, essentially as Marx and Engels predicted 164 years ago. But if the final transition can be delayed another four years, maybe -- because I'm 72 years old and not in the best of health -- I'll be dead by the time the for-profit prison corporations venture into the extermination business.

That's my one remaining hope, and that's why I'm voting for Obama -- to delay, as long as I can, what I now recognize as inevitable.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 41 weeks ago

Vote for Jill Stein and watch both the crooked Democrats and the Republicans be all washed up in 2016. I'd much prefer that than to have yet another disappointing Obama term. Lets face it, Obama and the Democrats just did not work for their voters and, like with the banksters, if you keep bailing them out...there is no incentive to be honest and fair. Realizing that all they have to do is use their rhetoric to fool the people and then go back to working only for the 1%. What we need here is a "tough love" slap on the hand and show these people that they cannot get away with it anymore. And by electing Jill Stein you will do just that. The Dems and the Repubs will be shocked and so will their wealthy backers. That's the only way, short of rioting in the streets, that we can really change things.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 41 weeks ago

Even Michael Moore is sending around emails to people trying to muster up support for Obama. He basically hits us with the negatives first...like using drones, and not shutting down Gitmo Torture Camps..and a bunch of other things but then he says...but "you just can't expect Obama to fix everything in just four years...give the guy a chance..he is such a nice guy!". NO!
He had his chance, along with the Democrats in Congress. And he blew it right off the bat when he started acting just like a Bush clone. I believe that he never even intended to change things even when he was lying through his teeth when campaigning....like he is now!

Our only hope is to call them on their game and throw the bums out. Vote for Jill Stein and make it happen!

To Michael Moore: I hope Obama does lose...he deserves to lose. It will be horrible to have Romney as a President for sure. But whether or not Jill Stein wins or Romney does it will have shown the Democrats that the people are not going to be fooled by their rhetorical lies again. If we are lucky, Jill Stein will win and really teach those good old boys a lesson. Besides, it is high time we had a woman President....not cat lady Clinton but Jill Stein a physician...someone who knows what people are going through and really cares.

TruthAddict's picture
TruthAddict 11 years 41 weeks ago

Voting for either party is a wasted vote. I’m voting third party, most likely the Green Party. If Obama wins then the left will not rally to make change and stay home thinking it could have been worse. If Romney wins things will get so bad that even the Tea Party folks might just join the left on the streets demanding fundamental change (I know it's a pipe dream but I have to believe in hope for humanity). Change must happen from a people’s movement and Romney might just be the right guy to get people in the streets.

Fundamental change can’t occur within either party. That is why I have to vote my conscience on the third party candidate. The real fight occurs after the election. Vote none of the above. But vote!

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 41 weeks ago

"..we may have to keep our feet on his neck to make sure .."
And that's what we said, and even Obama himself said in the beginning of his first term. But guess what...obviously no one did....and Obama kept giving in to the Republicans.

"He did get us out the Iraq and is ending the Afghanistan war. He got a somewhat weak Wall Streeet reform bill passed--that repubs are still trying to defeat and whittle away at. He got rid of Don't Ask don't tell and came out in favor of same-sex marriage."

And I'd say that most American don't really care much about some of those issues...like Don't Ask Don't tell or same-sex marriages. He has made the gays and lesbians very happy...fine...but the majority of Americans are not gay or lesbians. The majority of Americans wanted universal health care and jobs. Obama gave us neither. Yes, he was opposed all the way by the Republicans but Obama just seemed to accept it and shriveled up in the corner sucking on his thumb. He only "got out of Iraq" at the time that it had already been agreed that the US would leave by the Bush administration. Had Obama, during the first part of his term shut down Gitmo and pulled out of Iraq then we could give him some credit. But we're still in Afghanistan and often in Pakistan murdering civilians and children with Drones. Obama tightened up on secrecy and security so tight that now we are all being spied on...and it will get worse!

ken ware's picture
ken ware 11 years 41 weeks ago

You sound like some left wing political zealot. The remarks you have made deserve a response, but it would be a waste of time and energy.(but here goes anyway), Your pius attitude sounds if you see yourself as the enlighned one and the rest should follow your wisdom. Get a life and present yourself with some humbleness. As important as this election will be, a vote for Stein will in effect be a vote thrown away. I watched her and her pick for vice president present themselves on PBS. They did not sound much different then what Obama had to say. They have no chance of winning the election. Their presentation on PBS left much to be desired from two people who would help run this country. Your comments reflect a person with a great deal of time to waste and not very much to say that is substanile in content. You call your fellow Americans simpletons, as if you abound in wisdom. I have read several of your rants on this web page, you are not very impressive from someone who thinks he has all the right answers. Politics are much more complex then what you seem to grasp. We only have a real choice between two different concepts of what direction this country should persue, and fortunately they include Obama and Romney, not Stein. Trying to convince the voting public to vote for Stein, will only pull votes away from Obama and is ludicrist at best. Your comments are one of the reasons I try not to read Thom's blog. It reminds me that there are people out there that feel they are superior to others and that just irritates me to no end. You actually never have any original thoughts or comments, except to belittle other Americans and try to make someone think your intelligent by your remarks and you have failed at that attempt. You must be retired with a great deal of time on your hands. Perhaps you could be more useful as a volunteer at your local homeless shelter or as a tutor for grade school children. At least in those two situations you could do little harm to other Americans. The homeless are primarily concerned about surviving another day and the children would not understand your rantings and putting down of your fellow citizens. Good luck and long live the Republic.,.

ken ware's picture
ken ware 11 years 41 weeks ago

What could be more wasteful then voting for a party that has zero chance of winning? Voting your concience is your choice, but does little to solve the problems we face as a nation......

U.S. Citizen's picture
U.S. Citizen 11 years 41 weeks ago

I didn't see Moore's article but even Tom Hayden wrote an article defending Obama.

dugmaze 11 years 41 weeks ago

John Spargo, The Common Sense of Socialism, Chapter XI - What to do

"Of course, the first duty of every sincere believer in Socialism is to vote for it. No matter how hopeless the contest may seem, nor how far distant the electoral triumph, the first duty is to vote for Socialism. If you believe in Socialism, my friend, even though your vote should be the only Socialist vote in your city, you could not be true to yourself and to your faith and vote any other ticket. I know that it requires courage to do this sometimes. I know that there are many who will deride the action and say that you are “wasting your vote,” but no vote is ever wasted when it is cast for a principle, Jonathan. For, after all, what is a vote? Is it not an expression of the citizen’s conviction concerning the sort of government he desires? How, then can his vote be thrown away if it really expresses his conviction? He is entitled to a single voice, and provided that he avails himself of his right to declare through the ballot box his conviction, no matter whether he stands alone or with ten thousand, his vote is not thrown away."

I've been taught by the best, Thom Hartmann. So I will be voting for Stewart Alexander or Jill Stein.

MontanaMuleGal's picture
MontanaMuleGal 11 years 41 weeks ago

My vote is for Rocky Anderson. I am not "throwing my vote away," because in reality my vote don't mean squat. That's because the votes of American citizens will NOT be accurately counted with the private, computer voting machine system currently installed.

Ballots need to be hand-counted to show the voters' intent. It's possible to accomplish, but will it ever happen?

Loren at Comment 13 couldn't be more accurate. It's bleak, it's black, but it's close to the truth.

Unfortunately, Average American, your vote don't mean squat. And even if your candidate gets into office, he is coerced to vote for corporate interests by a gun pointed to his head. Literally.

Insight's picture
Insight 11 years 41 weeks ago

This country is relentlessly being stripped of its earnings and savings. The industrial base and infrastructure that once created wealth disproportionally has been dismantled by those who don't wish to create items of value. They instead just hijack money and use it to accumulate more. Our country enjoyed a period of disproportionate success when we were a sufficient market for our own products and overseas industrial competitors were few or temporarily dismantled by war. That is clearly no longer the case. The latest countries to industrialize have all of the advantages if they can start up with the best tools and technology their predecessors achieved. They enjoy their own emerging new markets plus ours if we have not stepped up to a new level of product creation and manufacturing effectiveness. Politicians are not schooled or experienced in the creation of goods and services. The elite schools that today's money manipulators attend may not even emphasize that wealth (needed to sustain countries and communities) is only produced by farming, mining and manufacturing. Today's American realities are that climate change can disable the industrialized chemically based farming model we have concentrated in our heartlands. Our industrial base has been taken overseas by money manipulators seeking easy profits only for themselves with less responsibility. And our country is being used as a raw and used materials colony for off shored products and manufacturing. We may not like the physical, economic, and emotional scars that will result form hollowing out our land in addition to our base of manufacturing self sufficiency. Does it make sense that we allowed a hundred years of knowhow in product and process to be given to competitor nations who now enjoy the stripping of our nation's resources as the most innovative workers on the planet are idled in our country? If we realize that war in the 21st century is for economic dominance, is such exporting of our self sufficiency not definable as economic treason, reverse patriotism?

The alternate illusion behind the stranglehold being attempted by those who would bypass value creation here to just get money anywhere is orchestrated from a place called Wall Street - an illusionary market acting as an overlay to the actual market of real goods and services. Money manipulators can artificially drive pricing via perceived supply and demand. They can extract real money from every real revenue stream and every change in perceived value. Purchasing politicians, political parties and media mouths is just another cost of doing business on the way to accumulating immense sums. Money is way more portable than factories people, communities, or even nations, Schemes for manipulating money are instant, and with today's computer technology able to be executed with nanosecond responsiveness to opportunities. This money harvesting mechanism is not constrained by any boundary's, loyalties to community, nor ethical constraints. So if our perception is sucked into money as a substitute for superiority in creating real value, we hand imense leverage to a few, who have amply demonstrated they can't be trusted. The party of conservatism has clearly been hijacked, lock, stock and barrel. The party of the working class has been hobbled. If Americans don't challenge every non value based agenda, representative, diversion, distortion, from what we know works and benefits the common good, we will face continued unpleasant erosion.

Most American's feel the loss of self sufficiency we have suffered, but don't understand the why's. The two centers of thought leveraging, political and media are mainly either bought and paid for parts of the money driven stranglehold or are focused on amplifying, not challenging irresponsible and profit-for-a-few agenda driven words and actions. Worse, they are populated by people who never made anything, designed or built something tangible. Solutions to real challenges get very little play. That leaves what we "do want" without voice and without support. It would be fairly easy to diss-empower the few hundred predatory billionaires and the few thousand minions attempting to put a semi permanent stranglehold over hundreds of millions of decent people. Stop listening to what doesn't wash with what makes basic sense, doesn't add value, doesn't address serious needs, doesn't offer solutions your gut feels comfortable with. If a company spends more on lobbying , legal protection, than they do on R&D, product development, manufacturing improvements, education of it's workers right here in the USA, then buy from a company that does. Don't let a dime of your money pass into the hands of any entity that misuses it e.g."too big to fails". Take any member of governance to task for positions or actions that don't represent the common good. If they don't get constructive, remove them. Focus on issues and actions that improve quality of life, not made up emotionally disabling drivel.

We are at a crossroads with respect to reality verses illusion. Competitor nations are demonstrating a better grip on what counts than us. We have 70 million boomers coming out of companies and systems in this country that need overhauling, updating, and redirection toward the future. With no axe to grind working for money focused administrators, bureaucrats and caretakers, they are a knowledge and experience base that can provide what no politician or money changer can. Their motivation is the welfare of their children and grandchildren. We have the most innovative workforce on the planet. It's time to put our trust, emphasis, and support on who and what's worth trusting and supporting. Worthy politicians can facilitate but value adders must lead! By building what sustains, what doesn't will collapse of its own vacantness.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 41 weeks ago

Very well written and so very true, Insight!

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 41 weeks ago

Rocky Anderson would be ok, in my book, if he wasn't backed by Americans Elect which is a secretive right-wing outfit funded by wealthy right wingers (as are the Democrats and the Republicans).

Anyone thinking about Rocky Anderson should check out the background of Americans Elect and that of it's founder, Peter Ackerman (the right hand man of Michael Milken). Check out his association with right-wing groups that pose as liberal groups that are believed to be working with the CIA as front groups that are working to overthrow foreign regimes by fomenting internal dissent. I'm sure they are working on Americans as well.

About the only way our votes would really matter, to effect a positive change from the destructive past, is to elect a more socialist government...a government that will investigate and prosecute the economic evil-doers and war criminals in this country. Obama, despite what the right-wingers will have you believe is far to the right of center...not anywhere close to socialist. We have to counteract the destruction of the past 30 years of right-wing, laissez faire pressures.

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 11 years 40 weeks ago

For christ sakes, President Obama couldn't be a problem for we progressives even if he wanted to be.... however three things are...... the filibuster, Republican/Teabag House of Norquist, and the Koch sponsored Citizens United ruling. Senator Sanders understands we must vote for Obama.....what more do you want?

If Romney becomes a Viceroy for the Koch Empire we'll have a CORPORATE WELFARE STATE LOADED WITH EVEN MORE DEBT....just ask ole monkey boy Ryan!

fatfax's picture
fatfax 11 years 40 weeks ago

Tom Hayden is a Has-Been old school Democrate. His comment to Thom Hartmann after Thom asked him his opionon on PAID commenters that post far right leaning comments online. Tom Hayden's words where quote " GET A GRIP HERE THOM " unquote. It's old has-been's like Tom Hayden that can't think outside the box. TOM HAYDEN needs to go home and take a long nap in his rocking chair.

Loren Bliss's picture
Loren Bliss 11 years 40 weeks ago

Your comment about an elder needing to "take a long nap in his rocking chair" illustrates perfectly the Ayn Rand viciousness that has metastasized from the One Percent to infect the 99 Percent at every level, producing a Moron Nation that (as we have seen since the Nixonoids won in 1968), now reliably votes for its own enslavement. But your attitude is especially noteworthy, seemingly a classic example of the self-proclaimed "progressive" who -- as the above comment proves -- scorns and despises elderly people, and therefore probably hates disabled and chronically unemployed people as well. The result -- Moron Nation's moronic majority -- tells us all we need to know about why the Democrats have joined the Republicans in busting unions and destroying the New Deal, Social Security included, as well as obliterating every other vestige of the socioeconomic safety net. Thank you for providing us with such a vivid object lesson.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 40 weeks ago

I can certainly recognize the sensitivities (I'm not so young any more either) but I cannot dismiss the idea that there are paid right-wing bloggers out there..some of whom even pretend to be liberal or progressive, perhaps, that try to steer liberals or progressives into accepting something that would be very detrimental to their health, economically, mentally, and physically. Tom Hayden's quip "We need to get a grip" indicates that maybe he either doesn't believe it or he doesn't understand it, or.......

I am glad that Thom asked the question. Tom Hayden seemed to be very uneasy with it...almost as if he was being asked if he believed that the earth has been repeatedly visited by extraterrestrial aliens.

There have been a number of articles from various sources that have shown us that is actually happening. It is certainly not a "too hard to believe" concept. It's like Blackwater for blogs!


Loren Bliss's picture
Loren Bliss 11 years 40 weeks ago

I didn't (and don't) question the reality of agents provocateur, whether they are paid by the government's various secret police agencies, by sundry hard-Right individuals and organizations or by the for-profit secret police force -- literally the U.S. equivalent of the Nazi SS -- maintained by Blackwater aka Xe.

Mr. Hayden in his rebuttal of Mr. Hartmann was not just wrong but in denial. Obviously, Mr. Hayden grossly underestimates the intent and capabilities of the enemy; he is also obviously self-blinded to the murderous magnitude of (patriarchally conditioned) human malice. Indeed Mr. Hayden's stance -- all the more astonishing given his years in the shark-tank of California politics -- typifies the Left/liberal failing that enabled the Nazis to win Germany and is enabling their 21st Century counterparts to take over the United States. We all of us need to adopt as our own a 21st Century version of Lev Bronstein's 1905 dictum: "in every gathering of three revolutionaries there is at least one agent of the Okhrana."

Thus Mr. Hayden's refusal to accept reality has nothing to do with his age. It is instead a typical expression of the PollyAnna stupidity that paralyzes the USian mind: the moronic belief that -- whether by divine grace or manifest destiny -- all will be well, an aspect of the credo of U.S. exceptionalism in which we are brainsoaked from birth. Barbara Ehrenreich describes this suicidal syndrome vividly in her groundbreaking expose' Smile or Die: How Positive Thinking Fooled America and the World, which points out numerous examples of how -- regardless of our ages -- it is the bane of us all.

To blame Mr. Hayden's intellectual failure on age is in fact identical in its psychodynamics to blaming race for Obama the Orator's transformation into Barack the Betrayer. Each form of blaming is an expression of the greater cancer of bigotry -- racism, age-ism, sexism, class-ism -- that directly due to the hatreds generated by capitalism have come to dominate U.S. politics. Nor -- as fatfax's comment reveals, is the Left immune: even in the Occupy movement there were numbers of young people who hatefully blamed their elders -- and more specifically, blamed Social Security and Medicare -- for the malicious contractions of the economy by which the capitalist aristocracy is enriching itself.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 40 weeks ago

Very well said! And I agree.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 40 weeks ago

As I read various articles relating to paid right-wing sock puppets, I noticed many were saying that one way to tell a paid right wing sock puppet was the use of certain key words when referring to Obama or the Democrat party (ie: variations of their names). They also said that another way to tell would be the level of "hatred" they seem to be showing against them. I began to wonder, based on their definitions, if I was not, myself, a paid right-wing blogger..or even just an unpaid one.

Of course, I know that to be totally not true...of course, no one else knows, or necessarily believes that. And as for the use of the word "hatred"..I personally do not hate anyone...even Romney...well, maybe Romney. But Obama does seem to be a very nice person and has a very likable personality...and he sure didn't get rich by destroying people's jobs like Romney did...except, perhaps by not acting in a manner, as President, that would preserve jobs..even though he did save gm/chrysler. His appointing some of the people he did and constantly giving in to the Republicans...jobs still going overseas...would be tantamount to destroying good manufacturing jobs in the US.

I believe both parties are no where close to being liberal or progressive...obviously, the Republicans aren't, but less obvious to many is that the Democrats are not either.

I believe that the essential message of some of these bloggers, paid or not, right-wing or left, is to ensure that everyone is herded into voting for either the Republicans or the Democrats. There are a number of well known people, like Chris Hedges, who know that voting for Obama is not the right answer. So, are the bloggers, both unpaid and paid, both right-wing and (pretend, or compromised left-wing), trying to steer their votes to either Romney or Obama and using their persuasion to keep people in the oligarchical owned and controlled two party system?

david c. 11 years 40 weeks ago

A GOP COUP D'ETAT?: Of course CEO's of publicly-traded company's HQ'd in the US have off-shored manufacturing and/or service sector jobs and/or apparently have something like 'veto power' over what rules & regulations they must abide by, and in turn make tens, hundreds, in some instances billions (in large part) through the adroit shuffling of various instruments of corporate finance (stocks, bonds & options) thus in effect looting their company's, starving the Treasury of revenues, and/or despoiling the environment; All done it seems, really in a panic(!) before some other (LBO raider, socialist, workers union,, radical, non-white, woman, gay, gen-x'er, etc.) in effect pushes them aside to do this [looting] themselves. So from the perspective of a CEO can taxes on income, capital gains and/or corporate profits ever be too low, or taken further; if you don't own real property and/or are a non-white/racial minority and/or woman, should they even be allowed to vote? The larger point being that Congressional Republican leaders in Washington can't and/or won't (in effect) turn on their corporate paymasters to instead rally around their candidate for president [Romney/Portman] by all together pledging to voters, in a unified forum (at their convention for example, or deploying Rove's ginormous campaign war chest to buy long-running ads) explaining and/or pledging how, if elected they'll {gulp} for the good of the country {gasp} attempt to rethink, reform and/or compromise on all the seemingly obvious (even to this simple-minded idiot) issues, resulting in re-engineering, rebuilding and/or restoring a stronger (AAA rated) America. Again, if the Republican's in effect revolt, there seems to be a window-of-opportuniity for them to take back the White House while being seen as saving the nation from (what sober-minded Sen. Coburn and/or wizened advisor like David Walker described as) inevitably problematic federal budget imbalances. Regarding the likelihood of a major overhaul lead by the current administration - this being their 'last election'; Sideways drift looks more likely as inevitably the focus and/or their priorities shift from responding to various constituencies to instead shaping exit strategies (i.e., legacy's, libraries, advisory boards, book deals, speaking engagements, consulting fee's, charities, children, grandchildren, retirement estates, presidential pardons, etc.) Of course 'a GOP coup d' etat?' is a clown question. My guess is that just as the stock market value of Apple now exceeds Exxon so too will the power of a more frictionless 'digital democracy' eventually displace less efficient (more resource intensive) 'analog' politics; allowing lawmakers to work from their home districts, and concievably resulting (by like 2112 and/or beyond) in the tranformation of much of official Washington D.C. into (in effect) a cermonial backdrop and/or Smithsonian Museum.

fbacher's picture
fbacher 11 years 40 weeks ago

Medicare Branding is an issue. In Texas at least, Medicare and Medicaid billing is handled by contracts. This means that instead of getting monthly statements from Medicare or Medicaid you get statements from XYZ corp. This confuses people and reinforces the idea that privatization is a good thing. The contracts should require that there be no mention of the contract company, only the name of the government program.

megalomaniac's picture
megalomaniac 11 years 40 weeks ago

Cut to the Chase, My view is very much in line with most everyone on this blog. Thank you for introducing me to Dr. Jill Stein. Watched two video’s that present the Green Party. Straightaway, I like her. Would I vote for her? Perhaps, I will explain. Most of her issues are in line with mine. But, be sure those in power right now will not give it up to her easily.

As odd as it may seem those in power would likely arrest her and jail her similarly as they did Rod Blagojevich. In my perspective shooting your mouth off over the telephone or communicating on a blog like this is not grounds to jail someone. But it happens. Even if one talks about making money in a scandalous way it is perpetrated through the theater openly in our social arena constantly. However, from what I read, one needs to take the payoff, yet in Blago’s case no money changed hands.

Anyway, for those who think we are going into a fascist society, from my view, America is partially there, or largely there now. Corporate America has its thousands of little islands of fascist tyrannies. Those University persons with MBA’s are the lieutenants wearing varied corporate icons of that famous swastika, some masquerade like a Pepsi ying yang icon. For those of you who don’t know there are few history books left that fully describe the Bush family going back to grandpa Prescott Bush in complicity with the Nazi during world war two. With big corporate America financing the Nazi during their rise. Mr. Loren Bliss perhaps knows if this is true, for me, just beginning to understand this ugly history these past few years. I am enraged to find out that Bush and Cheney have been business partners with the Bin Laden family for decades, and the media lied to America about it. That’s the kicker they the media must lie notoriously, brag, faithless, slander, and obsessively lie. There is no going back.

Three main cable networks Fox News, CNN, and MSNBC, they are the vehicle of the big money rewriting history. Consider this: Fox News owned by Richard Murdock, which I consider a dangerous man for social development. With of course the Arabs with an interest in the Fox news medium kept just below the radar so American’s are blacked out that they are a huge influence. This Islamic investment American should know has the core believe that American’s are infidels and should be wiped off the earth. Imagine the influence in the programming that goes into the Fox News. In the middle CNN, Ted Turner, The Paladin of news telecasting, have network will broadcast for money Cable Turner. Then with the shining star MSNBC giving Americans everything they want to hear, yet are the flip misters that change faster than a Shakespeare play. All’s well that ends well. The biggest contradiction of any age is the double knowledge of all histories of our secret federal reserve delivered via Andrea Mitchell wife of former federal reserve board chairman Allen Greenspan. With that and all the while to understand the largest corporation in America General Electric the icon of Ronald Reagan where progress is their most important product is incredible in your face programming. Especially when Americans do keep buying insurance from the Geico lizard, we know they are of the moppet government society. (Sock government), chuckle.

Jill Stein would have to kick a lot ass to do what she wants. I won’t go into what I really think for now but the other green video about the railroads will not happen unless Dr. Stein has the courage as she said one must have. Dr. Stein would have to commandeer the railroad system to do what she wants to do for national security reasons. It is possible. But it will be “HELL ON WHEELS”. This is a huge industrial complex that is corrupt and has been a cash cow for congress and the senate for a hundred and fifty years, just as the Federal Reserve.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 40 weeks ago

What would happen if Jill Stein/Cheri Honkala of the Green Party were elected President/Vice President? Would the Fascist Two Party system mobilize the Supreme Court to call the election illegal...or something? They used the Supreme Court to put Bush into office. Would they call martial law and name Obama or, more likely, Romney, dictator (of course they would call him Mr. President). Or, would they do a JFK on her if she didn't play her cards the way they wanted her to? Even if any of those scenarios were to happen, the American people, I think, would finally wake up. I believe that we may have a chance by voting out the two-party system, otherwise, we have a very violent ride ahead of us as people eventually lash out against the Fascist system. With Romney, it may occur much sooner....with Obama, maybe a little later when it becomes apparent to even the last vestiges of Obama believers that we'll end up exactly where Romney would have taken us.

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